Improving your Sales and Marketing Performance

November 25, 2014 Leave a reply

I suppose the first point to make is that we can all improve our sales and marketing performance but clearly some businesses are winning at the moment and many others are struggling. What you were doing a few years ago to win new business and new clients is no longer enough and probably isn’t working anyhow. You noticed that I said “new” and this is important as clients will come and go, enlarge, divest, merge, be acquired so you will always experience some natural shrinkage but new business is the lifeblood of any business. The 80/20 rule applies here, you need 20% of new clients.

So clients used to come to you or you employed someone to “generate leads” but now these clients have procurement departments, tenders, and on-line auctions. Things have changed and these new buyers seem to be armed with all sorts of knowledge and questions and scoring ratios. The internet seems to have changed your world forever and there are competitors offering your services cheaper and cheaper and they’re not even based in the UK. What can you do to change the tide and understand better what you should/must do next.

The fact is that inbound marketing alongside targeted marketing of decision-makers can help your business receive more qualified sales leads and more cost effectively than hiring a cold caller. Your business can use CRM effectively to drive these qualified leads through the sales funnel and measure your sales performance objectively. How many times have I heard “we don’t really use our CRM system to do that, it’s more a contact database”.

By properly integrating sales and marketing you can improve your sales and marketing performance?

  • Has your compelling sales proposition become less compelling?
  • Have you ever had an independent sales and marketing review of your business?
  • Do you want theory or do you want someone to implement?
  • Is cold calling and all those emails getting you results?
  • Jefferson Sales has been advising Sales Directors, General Managers and Managing Directors for over 10 years on sales issues. We have assisted with sales strategy, customer and market segmentation, developing buyer personas and compelling sales propositions, implementing effective sales processes and systems including CRM, commission and incentive structures, selecting sales people, and performance managing sales teams. This sort of external expertise is available and has been widely used by our clients.

    Contact us to learn more about our services. We can tailor what we do for your exact needs.

Coaching Great Teams

November 10, 2014 Leave a reply

As I watch my North London football team capitulate again and England narrowly lose to New Zealand in both forms of Rugby I think about leadership and team coaching.

As members of a team whether that is sporting, I coach an under-15 rugby union team in my spare time, or in business we all make decisions and judgements that affect the outcome. Many times these are snap or quick decisions and therefore we need a toolkit and to know what options we have. These can often be taught or are learnt from making mistakes. Our coaches and leaders help us to make the right decisions.

Yes we also need Managers to help us but far better if they don’t just manage but also coach, mentor, inspire and lead us and then we can really look up to them. We are not automatons and therefore we need constant motivation, inspiration and desire to improve all aspects of our job whether that is as a sports person or as a sales person.

Coaching helps us focus on aspects of our role and step back and look at what we do and think positively about what we can do to improve rather than just negative criticism. After all no-one really likes criticism.

A coach who has been in our situation is more respected than one who hasn’t (armchair critic) and it is the same with sales. An experienced Sales Director can effectively coach, mentor, inspire and develop your sales people to improve what they do by discussing real world scenarios and providing proven tools, processes and tactics. A winning mentality is infectious and of course no-one likes losing…

Jefferson Sales has been leading and coaching sales people and creating high performing sales teams in companies since 2005.

Sales Under-Performance – Don’t leave it too long!

November 7, 2014 Leave a reply

The truth is that once a Managing Director decides to hire an external sales consultant to review their sales team or sales department they have often left it too long.

The company has been in sales growth decline for at least 6 months, some sales team members have been behind their sales targets for 12 months or more and never got a sales forecast correct. This has demotivated other members of the team and has created a culture of “it’s okay to under-perform”.

The truth is that it is okay to have a bad quarter but two in a row or more and questions need to be asked. But where does the fault lie if you’ve created the culture where this is acceptable?

For many companies they are in decline, their product or service used to be competitive and lead the market but they stopped innovating and lost their agility and flexibility. They stopped listening to the market-place and went into their shells. Some sales team members became lazy and complacent and there is little new blood coming in to shake up the hierarchy.

As their competitors adopted sales tools and improved their sales processes and moved from transactional to consultative and value-based selling they were able to steal a march. Using CRM and business intelligence from their marketing departments and deeper understanding of client needs they were able to build better relationships and predict future needs. They were also able to innovate their products and services to better align with these needs and structure their sales teams better around these customers.

The market for your products or services is constantly changing and your sales structure and team need to be able to adapt to these changes. The old way of selling won’t work any more and if you are the Managing Director you need to act sooner rather than later before it becomes harder to implement change.

Getting an external perspective or performing an independent sales and marketing audit of your department might be one good approach.

Jefferson Sales provides independent sales management consultancy and interim sales services to Managing Directors and can be contacted on:

T: +44 (0)20 7096 2005

E: contact@jeffersonsales.co.uk

W: www.jeffersonsales.co.uk

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