Your Sales Strategy is all about how you will get sales from your customers, and how you will create a profit that will grow your business. A proper strategy will have a streamlined flow of how to land a new client and create reoccurring clients, which pulls in enough profit to satisfy your liabilities and the capital you need to grow.
To see how many sales you need to make you need to think of a few questions first:
What is the longest, and shortest sales cycle you can expect for your customers?
Do you have one time buyers or a group of reoccurring customers?
What sales have you made so far, and what type of revenue have you seen?
How many sales on average will you have to make to stay on track?
If you have clients already, which one brought in the highest revenue, and why?
What type of investments will you need to make to develop a better sales team or order turnover time?
What sales strategy appeals best to your target demographic?
There are many strategies confirmed to work throughout the years we will go over which educate your customers, inspire them to buy, and how to close the sale. However it is good to start with hard numbers to see how your current sales team is operating.
The first number you should work out is your
Conversation Rate, or your opportunity rate of potential leads to customers. Say you have 100 people on your contact list, you have an opportunity of 100 customers, but if only one of those purchased than you have a 1% conversation rate with your email campaign
Sales Pipeline Coverage
This is connected to your break-even analysis report. It shows how many sales you need to make and what size your opportunity pool should be.
To put it into a formula you multiply the number of opportunities, by your average deal size, then multiply that by your conversion rate percentage. This will give you your revenue, divide that by the amount of time it takes to fulfill those orders, and you have your sales velocity. Sales velocity refers to how quick you are turning sales into a profit. These formulas are a great way to get an idea of how you should structure your prices.
Now that you have the logistics worked out of how many sales in a month you need to pull in, its time to get out there and get your customers! First, you will need to develop a marketing strategy that appeals to your target demographic,
More on that Here: Marketing Strategy
Once you have your market strategy in place, you should be able to wait for your lead magnet to bring you, new prospective clients. Otherwise, you will have to rely on outbound calling and sales tactics to reach out to your demographic. Regardless of how you get your leads, you need a strategy to educate the customer of what you offer and how it can change their daily life or business operation, you need to build up the customers trust for you and the product, and you need to have a closing strategy in place.
Here are some strategies that have been proven to work for decades now:
Genuinely Help your Clients
You will miss out on many deals if you stick to a rigid sales pitch focused on profit margins for your company instead of value for your customer. As humans, we appreciate it when others help us, and we know how it feels to genuinely help someone with an issue they are dealing with. By providing a helping hand to your clients you offer extra value to your service. For instance, at Kele Web Designs we don’t just sell custom websites for our customers, we offer tools to educate them so that in the future they won’t have to hire us to edit their site whenever need be. Adding value to your services is easy if you focus on helping your client through the entire process. That rings true even if your services don’t end up matching up to your customer's needs if you help them in the right direction towards the solution they seek, they will remember you when they need you in the future. Any help you offer to a business relationship can pay off in a big way in time. You never know how many people one person can broadcast your services to just because you helped them one time with a specific issue that is important to them.
Embrace The No!
While selling any product or reaching out for your company you are bound to find rejection many, many times. This is okay, so long as it does not discourage you from attempting to close a sale. Developing a relationship with prospective clients or business partners is paramount to producing a solid foundation for your company. It will take time to find this group and at times fighting for their sale is what gets you their sale. If you say goodbye after every no you get you will get far with your business a whole lot later than if you embraced the ’No’. When you expect it, you can counteroffer with a resolution to their objection. After enough rejection, you will realize what responses will work for specific objections your clients may have. By rolling with the punches of rejection you will learn valuable information that will turn ‘No' into a win-win for you and your customer.
You need to keep a positive mindset in the face of closed doors, and non-responsive email campaigns to achieve a successful marketing campaign.
A Good Sales Strategy Comes From A Solid Marketing Strategy
As we know your market strategy may change over some time, to better suit your market segment, or target demographic. So it is important to always keep in mind the changing needs of your clients, and above all listen to their feedback! Always ask for surveys, private or public, they can lead you to create a perfect solution for the largest available demographic. You don’t want to have a rigid strategy for your sales and marketing style, but you also can’t conform to every single customer request. So be sure to keep any big decisions focused on the long term outcomes. Is it best for your companies profits? Is it best for the majority of my customers?
Don’t Focus on Promotion, Packages, or Prices
Describe what solution you are providing to their problem. Tell them how their life will be made easy by buying your product, and its sold. Focusing on the latest deal and how the promotion will only last for so long shows the customer you are looking to sell, not solve their issue. If you can relate to the customer’s level of perception, see what issue they have to deal with on a daily or monthly basis, what solution would work perfectly for them? Providing a solution to a customer with an issue they were unaware of how to resolve, sells itself every time. Most of the time a customer is unsure if the product is right for them, so giving them prices and promotions will not answer their doubts. Remember to focus on the benefit the customer receives, not your latest marketing promotion.
Break From the Script
While having an efficient sales script can be invaluable to your revenue during cold calls, you need to remember especially during presentations that breaking from the script for audience feedback can decide the outcome of the sales conversation. Notice when uncertainty comes up after you present a certain point, if you let doubt solidify in your client's minds it can cost your sale. So be sure to acknowledge any concerns the clients may have with your presentation. Do not ask guided questions such as, “Is everyone with me so far?” Or “Did that make sense?” If you feel insecurity start to build in the room address it immediately. Take the time in your presentation to answer any questions someone may have, chances are you can show your company has already made accommodations for a certain concern the client may have. Rushing past casual skepticism during a presentation can cause the client to solidify doubt that your company cant resolve the issue at hand properly. You need to recognize when a customer requires assurance that this product is right for them, running them down a cookie-cutter script will not work for all clients.
We are hardwired to retain information easier when we find it through a story. The story captivates our minds and we react differently in comparison to hearing firing range of facts and number. You can start by telling the story of your rise inside the industry, and the stories of your past client's experiences with your company. By giving situations of your past customers overcoming the same obstacles these prospective clients have, you can give the client the relation they need to work with you. You will have a much easier time connecting with your customers if you provide a story they can relate to.
This is a sales strategy for the ages, and unfortunately the same framework some politicians use...
Problem: What problem does your service resolve for your clients?
Agitate: What negative outcomes can the client expect by delaying resolving the problem?
Solution: Show how your product or service is the solution to their problem.
You don’t want to fear monger your clients into buying from you, but many clients don’t see the long term effects a problem may have on their business. You can show them the endgame or the worst possible outcome they may run into by refusing the solution to their problem. Most of all you need to focus on the helping hand you are providing to them, you are simply looking out for them as a fellow business owner.
Focus on a Niche Market Segment
Though it can be a long term investment, it will pay off itself in time, or right away depending on the demand and your strategy. In most circumstances, targeting a smaller niche market segment will be much more valuable when compared to broadcasting your services to absolutely everyone. You can waste a lot of time and money throwing a handful of campaigns out to random target audiences. If you provide a campaign proven to be liked by your niche group, chances are at least 4 out of 5 will take interest in your product.
Remember, it is much easier to sell to someone something they need, compared to convincing someone else that they need you.
Never Say No!
During your negotiations, or consultations with new prospective clients, you never want to say what you can not do. Even if that means you tell them, “we would love to make that happen for you”. Even if you cannot pull off the customer’s request, avoiding saying “We can’t”, “That's not possible”, or “No”, you show that you want to make it happen for your customer. If you strive to meet their needs, you will ensure a happy, and loyal customer, even if it means more expense for the customer. They will appreciate the lengths you and your company went to provide an adequate solution for them.
The keyword with keeping a sales conversation afloat: ‘Flexibility’
To keep a sale conversation going into a fully closed deal, you need to show flexibility and work with your client. Another huge thing to note is that you don’t need to focus too heavily on the client trusting you. Yes, getting the client to trust you to a level is important, however, the client needs to trust themselves to go through with any deal. You can give them a great trustworthy presentation, but if they don’t trust themselves to make the right decision you may end up in a stalemate. So be sure your customer understands the benefit they will receive by choosing you. Be sure to answer any of their objections with a story from a past client who overcame to the same objection, and now enjoy the benefits of your service years later.
Make it very clear that you are there to solve their problem in a cost-effective, timely manner.
After all, these are the qualities of a strong problem solver, which is what we all look for when faced with an issue we can not readily resolve. Focusing on the sales pitch, and on how much they will save by buying “NOW!” Will never be as effective as a true honest connection and understanding between you and the client.
Get to the Demo
Providing a demo for your product or service is crucial to gaining your customer’s trust in you, your company, and of course your product. So be sure to get to the demo part of the pitch quickly. You told me you wish to achieve this goal, and this obstacle is in your way, this is what it will be like with this solution in place. You want to make it relatable to your client in specific, don’t focus on the features of your product, but on the changes, it will implement in their company or life.
This is the part where you can turn your customer into a believer, they simply have to see it to believe it at times.
Bargaining chips and Bottom Dollar
Be prepared before you ever go onto the sales floor. Know what your bottom dollar is, and certain add ons or discounts to close the deal. You must be prepared to play hardball if need be, you also need to know your worth so you know where to stand your ground, and when to give a little to gain a lot.
Do not lose a potential sale over a small detail the customer requests, comprising when needed will lead to a happy and loyal future client.
Follow Up or Fall Off
After finding a prospective client contacting your company inquiring about your services, you need to contact them within the first 24 hours they first attempted contact.
Be it a personal consultation over the phone or a simple initial outreach email.
Providing information about your company and product while you are fresh in their minds is critical if you want to keep them from your competitors.
If you have a ‘maybe’ lead you need to pursue them until you get a definitive answer, be it good or bad, proper pressure will provide an outcome for your business relationship. No one likes a barrage of emails every day from someone, so listen to the client. If they are busy for the month, ask again on the 1st, If they are busy when you cold call, ask for a better time to try again. Working with the customer’s schedule is critical to achieving a respected relationship between buyer and seller. Following up shows your client that you did not fall off from the offer you gave them, it shows your interest to provide your service to them. It's important to realize you can be swept to the wayside of emails if you are not clever with your marketing campaign.
Automated Email Campaigns
Initially, these may not be necessary until you develop a mailing list and prospective new clients. Through different lead magnets and click funnels you can create an impressive contact list for your website which is great, but how are you going to engage all of those people into a sales conversation? Of course, you do not want to barrage them with the latest sales or deals three times a day, but you want to engage them to come back to your site and learn more about your company and services you offer. You will find what specific topics work best for your market segment through enough market research studies. You need to collaborate the following for a successful email campaign:
Subject Line: You need to find a hook that works for your target demographic, what will pique their curiosity to open up your email?
Engaging Body: Now that they opened the message how will you keep them? You want to refrain from using walls of text and information, instead, go for graphics and humor-filled or describe an enticing story for them to become involved in.
Link to the Sale: The reason behind the entire contact list is to get them back to your site to book consultations or buy your products. So be sure to have a plan or a flow chart for their experience to be enticing, rewarding, and overall easy.
Be sure to have enough memory on your website hosting server so that your page does not load slowly for your customers, this will cause frustration and a swift exit of your site.
Outline any Risks
Anything with business comes with the risk of failure. You need to educate your prospective client about the risks attached to your service or product. If it takes time for your service to pay off for your customer you need to be very clear during the sales conversation. If you rush through without the client fully understanding, you risk the customer requesting a refund if their expectations are not met. For instance, with Kele Web Designs we have many inquires to create a custom website for new startups. The only problem is many do not have proper branding, marketing, or business structure. If we would create a website without a proper vision of the company that the site is for, the site will not be very profitable or popular. Therefore we offer branding consultation, marketing research, and business management as a whole. This allows a wider stream of revenue for our company but also defeats the risk of our client’s site failing after publishing. If it is a time-intensive product or service for your client, be sure to go into the turnover time. You want to set a clear idea of when they should expect results. Remember, do not oversell your self! If you have a full client load that requires your attention, do not promise a fast turn around time for a new prospective client. Be realistic with their waiting times, they need to know that the upfront fee they are paying for will be well worth their investment.
Prepare your sales conversation, detail any risk with your service and offer solutions to put the client's mind at ease.
Trust in Triplicate
You have a great product that is proven to work, but the client is still unsure or weary to close the deal. Doubt is the enemy to your sale so you need to assure the client that they are making the right decision. Of course, you are attempting to sell the product, and if the client is in the market for your product, it's easy to make them trust your service. However, they also need to develop trust for you, the person attempting to close a sale, and trust for your company. No one wants to give money to an unstable company that may or may not deliver a quality product, just like no one wants to be fooled by a sly salesman. It may seem like an obvious tip to note, but give your client your full undivided attention. If they hear your keyboard clicking while they are talking to you, or sense your distraction from your call, they will lose respect for you as a salesperson and can cause them to end the consultation prematurely.
So be sure to develop a level of trust for your clients, for you, the company, and above all the product.
The key to a successful trial that turns into a sale is a short trial. You do not want to exceed a week or two for your software or online membership. You don’t want to give it all away for free of course, but you need to give them a test drive sometimes to get them to buy. By allowing them to implement your software into their business for two weeks, they will have plenty of time to see the difference your service makes for their company.
Remember Free Trials can be a massive lead magnet if you use them sparingly.
A good promotion with a solid marketing strategy will bring in many new customers, but it is important to fire most of your promotions to your past pool of customers. They are the ones who have shown loyalty by buying from your company, by offering your past client extra value to their package you can ensure their future business, and even a possible upgrade when you start to offer more for your customers. Not only are they the ones who will benefit most from the promotion but they are the ones you can pull valuable marketing research of what makes them buy time and time again. What works for them will most certainly work for the new prospective clients. Its good to spread out your promotions, for instance, Wix offers a 50% off coupon for a year of hosting your website about two times a year. In the end, it pays for itself after 4-8 months of typical payments, but it ensures that you will stay with Wix for an entire year, and more likely to spend next year with them as well.
Implement a Customer relationship management (CRM) System
Hopefully, with all the great information you’ve gathered from these blogs and other resources, you have a massive influx of prospective leads for your business. While it may seem like a blessing to have a pile of new clients waiting for your response to sell to them, it can be a quick curse if you do not navigate through them effectively. Many companies that have 3 months + turn around times for their services can run into big trouble by overbooking their services. Simply put you can not bite off more than you can chew, otherwise, you risk losing customer raptor, and a group of would-be clients. A CRM system can help outline your customers, your scheduled appointments, completed appointments, and more. Every job requires the right tool, and a CRM will take out the work of organizing your sales leads so you can focus on selling to your leads. One benefit it will offer is implementing a scoring system for your leads, setting the priority for clients who will show a quicker closing rate than other leads that may be a waste of time. Organizing your leads by the level of priority will allow you to make adjustments in your team to accommodate your turnover schedule.
This can make room for more prospective clients and offers a much more streamlined view of your clients.
Closing the Sale
A Classic sales tactic is ABC “Always Be Closing” of course it is the most important aspect of the sales conversation to nail into place, and there are many strategies to have an effective and efficient closing. Urgency is a classic motive, but it can become exhausting especially for repeat customers. The best form of the urgency tactic is by creating a custom offer for them only, which only lasts for 24 to 48 hours after the sales conversation. Or “If you commit now, I can get you a 20% discount” to offer that sense of urgency, to tip them over the fence onto your side.
Professional sales reps are always closing, by getting the client to agree to smaller commitments (or smaller closes) they set the stage for them to make a big commitment.
Another great closing strategy is to assume they have already decided to buy in, “So what day would you like to get started? Tuesday works well for us, how about you?”. This in a way will make their mind up for them, if they are on the fence and leaning your way, bridge the gap for them so they won’t have to make a full leap of faith. A better closing transition phrase is, “Based on what you’ve told me about your company I suggest we start at the turn of the week”. By using the trust you’ve built up during the sales conversation you can suggest to them and they will follow. The best way to find out what works for your product or service is to get out there and find what gets sales closed time after time.
So remember, listen to your customers, what did they appreciate about their buying experience, and what do they wish they saw more of? Your Sales Strategy is based inside your Market Strategy which can change drastically with changing trends, so be sure to adjust your sales strategy frequently when you notice the changes. Do not overload the customer with facts, and statistics, though they are helpful to gain trust and creditability, put them into a story like an outline so your prospective client can retain the information easier. Most of all remember to connect with your customer on a person to person basis, always stay business professional, but never focus solely on your profit margins. Remember you are in business by providing solutions to your customers, so be sure your sales strategy is not one of the problems they need to be solved!
Consistency with room for customization makes a lasting & successful sales strategy.