As a sales leader, you know the ins and outs of your business. And you probably think you know what your salespeople need to reach their sales quotas. However, there is likely more that you’re not seeing. Just showing them how to be a successful inside sales representative isn’t enough. Have you asked your team what they need to succeed in their roles?
In this article, we will look at eight factors that lead to sales success. We’ll also review a few ways to open up a conversation with your sales reps and find out what else they need to thrive as a sales professional.
8 Factors to Address for Sales Success
Let’s take a look at the qualities and skills required to be an accomplished sales professional. Do your sales representatives embody these qualities?
- Product Knowledge – High-performing sales representative know their products inside and out. They can adequately respond to most questions and know how to redirect technical inquiries.
Your Job as a Manager – Provide ongoing training and keep your team updated on any changes to your company’s products.
- Focus –To understand and connect with prospects, sales reps must practice active listening. Eliminating distractions and avoiding multi tasking keeps a rep’s mind on the task at hand, in this case, interpreting how your product is a solution for the prospect.
Your Job as a Manager – Ensure a clean working environment free of as many distractions as possible. Provide distraction-free sales tools that keep salespeople on task, too. A system with features such as lead routing automation and auto dialing can keep sales productivity flowing.
- Ability to Handle and Prevent Objections –Your team should have a clear understanding of your prospective clients’ recurring concerns. Enable your inside sales team to address any gripes before they become an issue. Instead of just handling these problems as they arise, they can be prevented.
Your Job as a Manager – Deliver coaching to your team on a regular basis and keep an open-door policy. Give them an opportunity to come to you with any grievances they’re facing in their work.
- Thought Leadership – Prospects are more likely to become customers when they’re dealing with someone they trust. Salespeople can build their thought leadership presence on social media to form relationships with their clients and prove their competency in the industry.
Your Job as a Manager – Allow your salespeople the time to devote to social selling. Foster their journey to becoming a thought leader and consider starting an employee advocacy program. An advocacy program enables you to provide your team with content to share that will help them stand out in the industry. The better they do individually, the better your company will do as a whole.
- Conduct Demonstrations – Customers want to see the product in action. You wouldn’t buy a vehicle without taking it out for a test drive, so how can you expect your prospects to spend thousands of dollars or more on your product if they haven’t seen it in action?
Your Job as a Manager –Provide a tool for demonstrations. There are free and paid options like Zoom, WebEx, and GoToMeeting that offer screen sharing for virtual meetings.
- Time Management – A successful salesperson spends more of their time on the phone or in sales meetings than they do on menial tasks like inputting notes into more than one system. These reps are organized and have access to technologies that save them time.
Your Job as a Manager – What can you do to streamline their work? Consider any duties you can take off of their plate, so they have more time to focus on calling leads. Automation software will give them the ability to drop a voice message in a mailbox, send a follow-up email, or nurture their prospects with the click of a button.
- Spend Less Time Prospecting – Salespeople who thrive in their space are working with qualified leads. They’re not usually the ones spending their time identifying prospects through cold calling.
Your Job as a Manager – Take your experienced salespeople off the job of making cold calls. Instead, assign them only qualified leads that they can quickly close and then move on to the next. Your new salespeople should be making the cold calls and working to qualify leads.
- Understand the Competition – Prospects consider price and lack of features when comparing your product with competitors and good salespeople are aware. They know how their product compares to competitors in the marketplace.
Your Job as a Manager – Consume as much industry content as possible so you can learn about any new products or updates in your space. You’ll want to keep your employees in the know of how the product their selling lines up against competing goods or services. This will give them an advantage when questioned by a prospect.
Ask Your Salespeople What They Need
Many employees will not come to management asking for things, even if these requests could lead to improvements to help them to do their jobs better. Consider surveying your sales team just as you would your clients, on a regular basis. Surveys can be printed or emailed, and ask yes or no questions as well as open-ended ones.
Another way to get your sales team talking about what could improve their performance is to devote part of your meetings to this conversation. This could be in a team or one-on-one meetings. Maybe you even have lunch with your employees a couple of times per month to invite a casual discussion. It’s essential to have an open-door communications policy where your inside sales representatives can come to you and know their ideas will be considered.
People who want to know how to be a successful inside sales representative should first and foremost be optimistic and confident when talking to prospects. When stressed out take the time to exercise and relieve some stress. As a manager, bear in mind that each salesperson will have their own vision of success. There’s a difference between hitting goals the company has set and reaching their own ambitions.