How To Maximize Your Selling Time And Crush Your Quota
Does it feel like you spend less time selling and more time on non-selling tasks? If so, you are in good company with many other salespeople. According to LinkedIn’s State of Sales Report, sales professionals spent just 38 percent of their time selling in 2019. The rest of their time was spent on a variety of miscellaneous activities, including administrative tasks, updating CRM systems, completing expense reports and sitting in team meetings.
Julie Thomas, president and CEO of ValueSelling Associates, points out that your job is to close deals and crush your sales quota. But when you are pulled in so many different directions, how can you make this happen? It starts by learning how to maximize your time to boost your productivity. We share Thomas’ tips on how to do this in today’s issue of Promotional Consultant Today.
Adapt your sales model. Your clients and prospects are increasingly moving online. The sales landscape was changing even before the pandemic, but it’s more important now than ever to connect with potential buyers in the digital arena. Thomas says that even in complex B2B sales environments where buyers do not point and click to place an order, they are conducting more of their purchase journey online by researching and shortlisting companies before connecting with a sales rep. Make it easy for prospects to find the information they need online and to communicate with a sales rep when they are ready.
Deliver exceptional content. According to Thomas, 87 percent of buyers want to understand the relevance of your products and services. You can help them do so by creating a stellar discovery process. Engage them in personal interaction—whether that’s in person or online—and provide customized content around their needs. Thomas notes that you should not dump data, but meet buyers where they are by asking enticing, relevant questions and then giving them useful content.
Look for ways to reduce complexity. Sales should be simple. To reduce complexity, Thomas recommends using a sales methodology that all customer-facing employees can easily understand and use consistently. This includes an effective prospecting cadence and steering clear of unwinnable opportunities.
Use a sales prospecting cadence. A sales cadence is a sequence of strategically choreographed sales activities that sales reps can follow to connect with prospects. It includes social media, email and phone calls. Thomas says sales cadences are helpful because they give sales reps a systematic framework to follow. And, she notes that when you keep things simple, your team is more likely to implement the plan and fill the revenue pipeline with qualified prospects.
Don’t chase unwinnable opportunities. It’s a drain on your time and productivity when you go after unqualified leads. Thomas says that too many sales reps think of qualification as progression through their own sales process, checking off activities and milestones to keep a deal progressing. However, to best qualify opportunities, the process must reflect the buyer’s process. You should understand the five questions buyers ask when making a purchase:
- Should I buy this?
- Is it worth the investment?
- Have I involved the right people to authorize the purchase?
- What must happen for me to be convinced?
- When will I execute this purchase decision?
Even though you may invest a good portion of your time doing non-sales tasks, you can increase your productivity by considering the points above. Start by adjusting your sales model and following a sales cadence, focusing on your best opportunities to make a sale.
Compiled by Audrey Sellers
Source: Julie Thomas, president and CEO of ValueSelling Associates, is a noted speaker, consultant and author of ValueSelling: Driving Sales Up One Conversation at a Time. Thomas is devoted to helping sales organizations compete confidently on value, not price.