Sales Strategy

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StrategyStrategy & Tactics

Strategy is best defined as “doing the right things” while tactics is best defined as”doing things right”

Strategy is a planning process and tactics an action process. The borderline between the two in a sales context  is market and customer contact.

The Strategy must be effective for the tactics to succeed longer term. Tactics may have some shorter term success with a bad strategy but will not compensate over the longer term.

A good strategy is simple, written and contains flexibility to adapt to reality.

The ultimate victory is to win before action. It will win without conflict. In business this is about choosing the markets and accounts with care and ensuring that the company  is best organized to win.
The right strategy is essential but normally  the battle is still only half won. The strategy requires and only succeeds with professional execution of tactics.

Combine Planning & Action

Problems arise if there is separation of planning and execution.
The important thing is to get started as too much planning can breed indecisiveness and error. It is often better to engage in some form of simultaneous planning and implementation.
A decisive plan may often only be created following some preliminary actions in the Market to determine competitive resources and customer real requirements.

Strategy seeks superiority and a good strategy ensures overwhelming superiority that as a result will guarantee success with effective execution of tactics.

Attributes of an effective Strategy

Customer comes first.

First satisfy the needs of the market. Then and only then can you profit from your actions. It cannot be the other way around.

Knowledge is power

Know yourself,your team,your product, your company, the market, the customers,the competition, the influences.

Fight battles that you can win.

Only compete with superiority. Look to win with ease. Concentrate  strengths. Operations succeed because strengths are concentrated against weakness.

If real superiority is not achieved then we cannot predict success and may well fail. A business destined to fail competes in the hope of winning.

The objective is not an equal match but an unequal advantage in your favour. As Napoleon said “God is on the side of the heaviest artillery”.

Choose when and where to take on the competition.

Create a strong position

Try to become invincible and await for vulnerability in the competition. Use resources wisely.

Be flexible.

Adopt different strategies for different market and competitive conditions. No victory is the same as another.Take advantage of opportunities. Act when others are unprepared or make mistakes. Take the initiative.  Make time your ally.

The strategy is driven by how early the opportunity or market is entered and the status of company resources and product.

  • Preferred Strategy:- Get in first and lead the way. Set the requirements, be the one that the competition is compared to.
  • Secondary Strategies:- Where the opportunity or market is already active and in progress and there is most likely a competitor leading the way.

Seconary Strategies are split into Lead and Fallback strategies in order of preference:-

  • “End Around”:- Change the requirements to suit vendor differentiators.
  • “Head to Head”:- Compete head to head – best when resources are much larger than competition.
  • “Divide and Conquer”:- When the vendor can’t win the whole opportunity. Often used as an account or market entry strategy.
  • “Stall”:- Used when in account and when the vendor needs time to develop a competitive product.

Build a Committed Team

Engage team fully. Create a team fully committed to objectives. Ensure that the team is at its best more of the time

Use organization, process, training & communication.

Cultivate resources.

Use allies, partners & network effectively.

Keep them guessing.

Use surprise to ensure that competition does not know all about you.

Deliver

An effective strategy delivers results.

Contents of an effective Strategy

  • Ensure that the Customer Profile is an addressable market segment with common needs and buying process.
  • Ensure that the value proposition and sales process appropriate to address this customer segment.
  • Update the Go-To-Market strategy as appropriate to best use sales and marketing resources and channels to efficiently address the sales process by product, by territory and achieve market segment coverage.
  • Review and Update the Sales Team design to ensure it is fit for purpose including appropriate structure, size, roles, responsibilities and territories assigned.
  • Review and Update the Market Share, Revenue, Margin and Sales Cost targets to ensure they are realistic and achievable.

 

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