As a senior buyer, my email inbox fills with offers from sales enablement vendors promising to increase sales productivity with sales skills training, new methodologies, faster access to content, improved negotiation techniques, etc. that all have three common traits: major change for sales reps, lengthy implementation process, and high cost. Yet in most cases sales adoption fails to occur and promised productivity increase disappoints sales leaders. Specifically, the breakdown of reps by top achievers, average producers and low performers measured by revenue volume or quota attainment remains the same as prior years. Ideally, we are hoping to clone some traits of our most successful reps into more of our salesforce.
What do our best B2B sales people consistently do when presenting to new and existing customers to engage C-Suite executives, senior buyers, and major recommenders in a meaningful conversation about your solution? Simple, the top 10% of your salesforce start at the END vision! Our best performing reps know today’s customer is more informed about product offerings via web research, social media and peer collaboration, so reps START meetings with your Value Proposition to share“What do we do for our customers?” High performing sales pros know influencing the buying criteria by engaging customers early in the sales process by discussing how your solution reduces costs, increases top-line revenue, lowers discounts and/or drives higher profitability is critical to winning the business. Forrester Research confirms this point by stating, “The first viable vendor to reach a decision maker and set the buying vision has a 74% average close ratio.”
A simple Value Proposition introduced early in the sales process accomplishes three objectives:
- Establishes credibility fast with the audience by speaking to the critical business issues facing typical customers in the same industry.
- Shows tangible financial results achieved by successful customers implementing your solution.
- Qualifies the customer early in the process to determine if additional time and resources should be expended on this specific customer.
In today’s environment of Cloud-based sales tools, Digital Value Propositions are readily adopted by successful B2B reps to enhance collaboration with customers by:
- Integrating “smart” calculator functionality encouraging customers to volunteer their own data to immediately see ROI, TCO, cost reduction, etc. expected results specific to their situation.
- Accessing relevant up-to-date industry content by simply clicking on a short video, customer testimonial, competitive comparison, positive industry reviews, etc.
- Creating competitive differentiation early by succeeding with senior buyers in “Relating to my role, understanding MY issues and showing where they can help”.
Value propositions developed by marketing accessed via a central repository provide all reps with consistent messaging in communicating your customer value before your competition even enters the sales process. Your top sales professionals know customer first impressions matter, so they start with your Value Proposition. Cloud-based successful Value propositions presented by average producers or the “middle of your salesforce” will increase your qualified sales opportunity pipeline by 15-20% this quarter.