Written By: Kyle Natichioni
How many times have you listened to the same sales meeting where you run through the pipeline only to hear sales executives put a new coat of paint on deals they have been talking about for months? It’s probably safe to assume everyone else on the call is checking their phones waiting for their five seconds of fame. And more than likely your sales leader is having one-on-one conversations with each rep as they run through the pipeline. It’s time to change this status quo. Instead of having your team sit on mute how can you use the team’s expertise to create constructive dialogue allowing everyone to contribute to every deal? Let’s examine 3 ways to maximize every sales executive’s expertise:
Leveraging the team’s expertise to advance deals: Sales executives have seen countless scenarios where a deal will share similar attributes. Tapping into this collective intelligence changes the dynamic. Let sales executives coach one another to recommend remedies for an ailing deal. Ask the team to understand the dynamics of every deal in the pipeline so they start to think of the right marketing collateral that will inform the prospective client. Leverage the team’s expertise when developing relationships to help plan the next interaction. Use their networks to identify helpful information about which way the prospect may be leaning or where their potential client is making investments.
Improving coordination with marketing: If you are like most the marketing department gets a few minutes to rattle off their upcoming campaigns and events at the end of the call while the team is already moving on to their next meeting. Changing this dynamic to create a two-way conversation to match each campaign to sales activity magnifies the impact of the marketing efforts. This starts with the alignment of the sales and marketing calendars. It is important to make sure the sales team has the capacity to follow up on a campaign or those leads will cool off while the team is focused elsewhere. After leads are generated, set follow-up standards and measure how those leads are converting into the pipeline. Leverage the marketing team’s expertise to ensure sales executives are equipped to follow-up in a compelling way. Tag pipeline deals that generated by marketing campaigns to provide feedback on which campaigns produced deals to allow for future planning. By creating this dialogue you’ll see more from your marketing efforts and strengthen the partnership between departments.
Understanding the competitive landscape for each deal: Instead of talking about when the next meeting is, try discussing each competitor involved in the deal. Let the team help the owner position their deal for success by articulating differentiators that have won other deals. To help monitor the competitive landscape document the competitors within the CRM to see which competitors are trending and analyze success rates against each competitor. The data gathered will inform the development of sales collateral and product messaging. Understanding how those differentiators address your client’s pain points will also help propel your product development efforts.
There are countless ways to resuscitate a stale pipeline call. Hopefully, the ideas discussed above add new life to your team’s collective efforts.