Without a repeatable sales process, you don’t have the ability to qualify, advance, and close opportunities consistently. As a sales leader, are you struggling with these pain points?
- Reps taking shortcuts
- Losing deals to the dreaded “Do Nothing”
- Sales cycles that take too long
Aberdeen research shows that almost a quarter of B2B sales opportunities shift to the next sales cycle, and that means missed revenue numbers. There are many tools that can help accelerate sales cycles, but none are more effective than a salesperson that’s audible-ready to link a solution to an issue that’s so critical to an organization, the buying organization must take action.
If the problem is big enough, it doesn’t matter how much your product costs. When your entire sales team has the ability to uncover pressing problems and articulate how your solutions help correct them, they’ll be able to move opportunities through the sales process at a faster rate. The key is your sellers need the consistent ability to:
- Uncover high-level business needs
- Articulate value and differentiation based on those needs
- Position value throughout the sales process
How do you ensure your salespeople are audible-ready to move a deal efficiently through a sales cycle?
Work with them to make sure they’re staying focused on connecting your organization’s solutions with customer business issues. There’s no better way to get your prospects to see the benefit of your solutions than by sales conversations that drill down on these three components.
1. Positive Business Outcomes
Positive business outcomes are the tangible benefits that result from a buyer implementing your solutions. When salespeople articulate the PBOs effectively, they create a “stand-in-the-future” vision of how the buyer’s life could be a lot better after implementation. When drawing out the PBOs the prospect is hoping to receive, answering these two questions is critical:
- Do the PBOs identified address business-level goals or are they lower-level in nature?
- Are these PBOs compelling enough for an economic buyer to reallocate discretionary funds?
2. Required Capabilities
Required capabilities define the specific requirements that are necessary to achieve the positive business outcomes. If your buyers want to achieve X, they need to make sure Y is in place. Required capabilities are the essence of the decision criteria.
After the problem is identified, the seller and the customer must jointly develop a specific and finite list of requirements that the solution must satisfy in order to address the pain points and achieve the business objectives. These requirements should be reconfirmed throughout the sales process, especially when there are multiple decision-makers.
Here are three questions to keep in mind:
- Do the required capabilities describe the minimum requirements that are necessary to move the customer from the “before scenario” to the “after scenario?”
- Are they compelling enough for the buyer to take the next step? Remember, “no decision” is often one of the strongest competitors.
- Have you explained your differentiation in a way that maps back to the required capabilities and has meaning to the customer?
Metrics define how the customer will measure success. They establish the key performance indicators that define how success will be measured once the solution is implemented.
Every one of the required capabilities should be tied to a metric. Aligning them with measurements achieves two critical outcomes:
- It provides a tangible way to demonstrate how any potential solution (yours or any other) will be judged against all others.
- It ensures that the final solution choice meets the required capabilities so well that achieving the positive business outcomes is more of a certainty, than a lofty goal.
Use proof points to demonstrate the tangible metrics the customer can expect from doing business with you. Putting evidence behind your claims of how you’re better than the competition helps your buyers see the positive business outcomes. They can also influence the decision criteria.
Remember: today's metrics and positive business outcomes are tomorrow's proof points. Enabling your sales team with the ability to maniacally focus on these critical components of a sales conversation will help them create urgency, turning a pipeline of opportunities into closed deals.