What sales and business development mean to me.
So as a marketer first, I still know sales and business development professionals are important. I’ve been a Marketing Manager that supported business development officially and unofficially, but that’s always Marketing’s job: to support sales and company growth.
Bottom-line: how does a company stay afloat? Answer: making money/making sales happen. We are here getting leads and prospects to turn into business, after all. Then we try to retain customers.
I have done product demonstrations, made sales plans, managed customer/account support and engagement, and so on. That’s to be expected when you’re a team of one working with probably a sales team of one.
Luckily, we can “set it and forget it.” Sales people aren’t as lucky, but they do benefit from what we build.
We can all only do so much. It’s all hands on deck.
EFFICIENT AND EFFECTIVE SALES SUPPORT: THAT IS THE KEY.
So, I’m here to just explain some of my lessons and hopefully learn from you, too.
14 tips and tricks I have learned along the way
- Understand your market. How else do you know what templates, workflows, resources, content, downloads and so forth to build that will entice prospects further through the funnel?
- Create a mission and plan BUT break it up into specific and measurable goals. You can’t take the world on at once.
- Prioritize!!! What projects are quick wins? Which will be most effective? What does your employer or your personal business need right now?
- If you have a sales team, build tools to ease their process. However, you need to train them on what you need to be successful. You can build the most intricate workflow out there, but if you need certain lead status updates or triggers that people don’t understand to make the workflow or automation work, it doesn’t. Understand, you can’t make anyone do what you need them to, so use automation as best you can to make the process after implementation and going live easy (AND WORK) for everyone.
- Convince prospects they need your product. Maybe they don’t even know they do. Checklists, misconceptions lists, lessons and so forth may make a lead realize they need what you’re selling … or at least speak to you. At that point, you can continue the conversation and move them towards the next funnel milestone.
- Customer service is king! We’ve all heard the saying and it’s true.
- Customize! No one lead or prospect is the same. Speak to their specific needs. Ask questions unique to their situation.
- Be human. Don’t speak at prospects. Personally, I’ve found when doing email campaigns, the ones that work best are the personal letters that look like you wrote it specifically to that person, not a beautifully designed marketing email.
- Be responsible, good or bad.
- Ask for help when needed. Get input from team members. Ask what their needs are. What would help their process.
- Be willing to change your perspective and learn from mistakes.
- Don’t spin your wheels. If you need help, or don’t agree with a project or task’s projected outcome, say so! Don’t waste vital time. There’s only 24 hours in a day and you do need to sleep at some point.
- Enjoy your job, your projects, your mission.
- Listen. Customers will tell you what they need and you need to respond appropriately, whether with unique and customizable templates, certain resources, and so on. No one lead needs the same cookie-cutter response. This will make your prospect or current customer feel valued.
SOME ADDITIONAL AND VITAL TIPS FROM DALE CARNEGIE:
- Arouse an “eager want.”
- Use names.
- Avoid arguments.
- If appropriate, apologize.
- Let customers sell to themselves.
- Ask what’s in it for customers.
- Dramatize your ideas.
THE BOTTOM LINE
Ultimately, a sales transaction is a conversation between two people — whether in person, on the phone, or online. One person wants to buy; the other wants to sell. The conversation is the bridge that makes it all happen. Dale Carnegie said the secret to success was being interested in other people. Now you know it, too. (9 Sales Tips)
Be yourself, make things easy (for everyone), trust your gut.