Today’s workforce looks dramatically different from the past decade. Teams have moved out of cubicles to fill open floor plans, just to become remote this year. Software tools have popped up to serve almost every task and to make salespeople more effective. If your team is still tracking leads with paper business cards and conference notes, then it needs an overhaul. Take these four steps to revamp your sales department.
Most people look at the world of automated tasks and think about robots building cars or digital personal assistants making appointments. While modern technology can do these things, automation within your sales team looks much different. The goal with modern sales tools is to ask your team, “What basic tasks take up too much of your time?” “What busy work can get eliminated to free you up for more important matters?”
In the world of sales, these tasks often involve pricing out orders and submitting quotes. These tasks take time and prevent sales teams from working with customers to close their deals. With a CPQ software tool (like that developed by Configure One) you can focus less on developing quotes and more on getting contracts signed.
How long has your sales team been using the same deck to pitch your products to various clients? Do they work slowly through 20+ (or even 100+) slides, each one reviewing why your products are valuable and how to use them? Look at your current PowerPoints compared to your competitors to see if it’s time for an upgrade.
The first thing to do is identify what information is the most important. You may need to create a new presentation entirely if you want to sort out the good information from the bad. Think about working with focus groups to identify what content is important and which elements aren’t necessary. Then, update your design.
You can invest in custom PowerPoint templates that utilize key fonts and logo colors to create a professional look. This can seal the deal better than the standard slide designs offered by Microsoft Office or the Google Suite.
The sales and customer service teams aren’t too far away from each other. In some companies, salespeople serve as account representatives, occasionally working with clients to upsell items or negotiate new terms. This means your sales department can be key in your customer retention efforts.
Your sales team might already have the know-how to provide good customer service. Forrester reports that 73% of consumers say, “valuing their time is the most important thing a company can do to provide them with good service.” This can mean scheduling a call where the company really listens to them or giving customers back their time with good customer service. Keep this in mind as you utilize your sales staff.
Countless conferences went virtual in 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic, from Inbound to IBM Think and Adobe. While many people are eager to return to face-to-face interaction, some organizations might stick with the virtual model — or expand into more digital offerings.
If you send your sales team to conferences to network, speak, and pitch to clients, consider investing in training now to make sure they have a strong digital presence and virtual skills. This will prepare your company for whatever pandemic conference trends stick.
At the end of the day, your sales process isn’t what you want it to be — it’s what your customers need to hear in order to close the deal. Stay flexible to the needs of the people you are selling to in order to make the best pitches possible.
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