Missed Sales Opportunities
Heaven knows, with the increase in competition and expectations it’s hard enough to hit sales quotas on a regular basis. But it’s near impossible if you are guilty of some of the most common missed sales opportunities even the most seasoned solution sellers make.
The Top 4 Missed Sales Opportunities
We are often called in to help clients improve the revenue, margin, win-rate, portfolio mix or retention of their sales force. It hurts to see how often the same missed sales opportunity mistakes are made. Is your sales team guilty of any of the following foul-ups?
1. Preaching to the Wrong Choir
First, we hope your sales reps have learned that complex B2B solution sales is more about quality, focus and value-add than about quantity, hope and features. Not all products or services are right for every buyer. The first mistake that leads to missed sales opportunities is not ruthlessly focusing on your ideal target client.
If you have not identified the target clients who most value what you have to offer, your marketing, prospecting, selling and negotiation strategies are set up to produce average results at best. Do not waste valuable sales time and effort.
2. Inability to Articulate Value
Other missed sales opportunities are caused by unclear value propositions that do not set you apart in the eyes of your buyer from their perceived alternatives. To succeed, paint a clear and compelling picture of how you help solve your customers’ most pressing problems better than the competition. Help your customers to envision success…problems solved, disasters averted, improvements in place, more engaged workforce, whatever matters most to them.
3. Inability to Add Value
Your sales force will be treated based upon how they behave. If your sales reps behave transactionally, they will be treated transactionally. Conversely, if your sales reps provide value and insights during each and every interaction, they will be seen as a trusted advisor rather than a simple vendor.
To add value, your sales team must thoroughly understand their target customers and their industry, be able to identify what matters most to them personally and professionally, and be able to articulate unique value consistently.
4. Unfocused Sales Activities
High levels of sales activities alone don’t result in high levels of sales. Real sales success occurs when you are smart about how you spend your limited sales time. Be sure to identify the leading sales activities (e.g. pre-call planning, client research, relationship-building, asking for client referrals, sharing knowledge) that have the most predictable and controllable influence upon reaching your sales targets.
The Bottom Line
Because it usually takes a lot of time and effort to get a new prospect, missed sales opportunities hurt. Learn from the mistakes of others to improve sales performance. Know your target clients, have a clear and compelling value proposition, bring value, and focus on the sales activities that matter most for your unique situation.
To learn more about increasing sales performance, download How to Optimize Your Sales Force in the Face of Increased Performance Pressure
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