12 November 2018

5 Keys to Successful Sales Strategies

Developing a Sales Strategy is a deliberate, time consuming and thoughtful activity. Lack of a well-designed sales strategy can be one of the reasons for the failure of startups. It is like participating in a running competition where all the participants in the competition would undergo years of intensive training with an objective to win the competition.
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However, only the winner would have adopted the right strategy that fared well over others helping him win the competition. The market will also have a number of players. But only the product with the right strategy which has been pushed aggressively into the market survives the race and wins the competition.

1) A strategy based on objectives: Companies need to customize selling techniques based on their objectives. Hence, it is important to determine those objectives before designing a strategy. These objectives vary based on the various growth stages of a company. 

For example, a startup company could have its objective as increasing customer base. 

Another company in its growth stage may target expanding its business to new markets. Once the objectives are defined, companies can move on with designing a strategy that can help achieve its defined objectives.


2) Identify the target market: Now the company has defined objectives, it needs a target market to make a selling with the help of the above-developed objectives. After identifying the target market and before going ahead with selling, the company needs to study consumer behavior. 


There are different aspects of the buyer such as hobbies, age, income, likes and dislikes etc. that can influence the buying decision. For example, selling a BMW in the Democratic Republic of Congo is a futile effort. Hence, geographic, demographic, psychographic factors play a vital role in determining the target market. 

3) Take leverage of technology: A successful sales strategy should always have the backing of data. With the help of CRM Software, companies can pull legacy data to review and analyze what strategy worked and what didn’t in the past. Based on the data, companies can either go ahead with the existing strategy or tweak the strategy as per the requirements. Besides there is free CRM software that is available in the market which can be taken advantage of, by startups which may not be able to afford premium CRM software. 

4) Mode of communication: Companies at this stage are aware of what the target that needs to be achieved in terms of sales and they also have information on the target market. At this point, all they are required to do is to decide upon the mode of communication. 

There is no single approach to reach the target audience as multiple factors play role in deciding the mode of communication. If a company is approaching a prospective customer, then depending on the circumstances. 

A face to face interaction may be more appropriate as it will help connect with the customer personally, understand his requirements and in turn explain to him the benefits of the product. However, if it is a repeat customer that the company is trying to approach then may be an interaction with a customer via phone or via email would suffice rather than visiting him personally. 


5) Negotiation skills: Acquiring customers is far more difficult than retaining customers and there are multiple reasons behind it. A new customer is totally unaware of the benefits of the product. He is overwhelmed with too many offers and choices from the market. 


To convince a customer at his current state of mind, sales reps need to be prepared for a lot of negotiation and flexibility. Customer may request for a price reduction or maybe something that is not feasible to entertain. 

However, it is not the right time for sales reps to outrightly say a ‘no’. Even if it seems impossible to entertain customer’s request, sales reps can buy some time from the customer to check and get back to him. Sales reps can use positive phrases such as “I understand your requirement. 

Let me check and see how can I make this happen for you”. This will not only leave the interaction on a positive note but can help gain some time from customers for the sales rep to check internally and assess the feasibility of entertaining the customer’s request. 

Apart from negotiation skills, sales reps should have done their homework wherein they would have prepared a list of a questionnaire that they need to ask the prospective customer to better understand his requirement. 

Once the questions are asked, enough space needs to be given to the customer so that he can better explain his requirement. This will make the customer feel that the company is thinking about his best interests and also provides him with a chance to provide his exact requirement. 

It goes without saying that companies need to build a product that meets client requirements. So, any well-designed strategy that is being used to help deliver a product that doesn’t meet customer requirements will not yield any positive result. A trust between the customer and the company can only be created when a company produces a product that meets customer requirements and is being sold to a customer through a well-designed sales strategy.

AUTHOR

freshworks-dew.png
Apoorv Bhatnagar
Digital Marketing, Freshworks Inc
p : +91 9529958242
e: apoorv.bhatnagar@freshworks.com


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