Simply put, a sales process defines the steps in a sale that are proven to work so that this success can be consistently replicated. Think steps in a pipeline or a yes/no flowchart. Some might also include cadence as a part of this process which will, among other areas, define the frequency of selling steps. For example, how many calls should you make to this one prospect and on what schedule?
“In simple terms, a sales process is a systematic approach involving a series of steps that enables a sales force to close more deals, increase margins, and make more sales through referrals.”
Speaking of referrals, we all love them but, how many of us are really adept at securing them? There is a process to accomplish this just as there is one to generate more sales from existing accounts.
My sales process used to look something like this …
- Find– We made cold calls, searched for warm calls, prayed for referrals and introductions, and monitored trigger events that might indicate an opportunity.
- Meet– Discuss customer needs, always in person, in order to determine if we have a potential match and, therefore, a basis for doing business.
- Qualify– Do they have the money, the authority, and a recognized need or issue that they wish to resolve? Are they the M.A.N.? Some refer to this as BANT which is an acronym for Budget, Authority, Need and Timing without these, you got bupkis.
- Present the solution– It’s show time! Be careful to tailor your presentation to identified needs and to those needs only. Use your eyes and ears to gauge customer reaction. Hint … the bird is the universal sign of rejection.
- Propose and Close– Having achieved customer agreement that your proposed solution meets both their needs and their budget, it’s ink time.
- Sold!– Now your work really starts!
- Follow-up– Beware of buyer remorse. Reinforce their decision to place their trust in you and prove that they made a wise decision in doing so by ensuring that all goes smoothly. This is where referrals and repeat business are born.
Make it social!
Now let’s look at this socially. Note that the social sales process includes many steps that are found in the traditional model because … your goal should always be to augment traditional selling activities with social selling strategies and tactics. Read on at Maximize Social Business …