Posts Tagged ‘Win Major Accounts’

Creating Customer Solutions

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February 22, 2012 · by Ray · Business Solutions, Sales Model

Understand: the Customer’s Business Model

A business model is made up of the following elements:

  • Customer Segments Served: Who are they creating value for? Who are their most important customers?
  • Value Propositions: What value are they delivering to customers? What customer’s problems are they helping to solve? Which customer needs are they satisfying?
  • Channels to Market: Through which Channels do their Customer Segments want to be reached? How are they reaching their Customer Segments now?
  • Customer Relationships: What relationships do each of the customer segments expect? What ones have been established? How costly are they?
  • Revenue Streams: What value are customers willing to pay and what are they currently paying?
  • Key Resources: What key resources are required by Value Proposition, Channels, Customer Relationships & Revenue Streams?
  • Key Activties: What key activities are required by Value Proposition, Channels, Customer Relationships & Revenue Streams?
  • Key Partnerships: Who are their Key Partners & Key Suppliers. Which Key Resources are they acquiring from partners? Which Key Activities do partners perform?
  • Cost Structure: What are the most important costs inherent in the business model? Which Key Resources are the most expensive? Which Key Activities are the most expensive

Diagnose: Pain Points

Diagnose where the customers pain points are in their business model:

  • Find new customer segments?
  • Create new value propositions?
  • Reach customers more effectively?
  • Increase Revenue Streams?
  • Provide new key resources or key resources with better attributes?
  • Increase key activities efficiency?
  • Replace one of their key partners?
  • Reduce cost structure ?

Create: Solution

Create a solution:-

  • Define benefits
  • Define investment
  • Demonstrate capability using references and endorsements
  • Communicate in customer’s language showing Return On Investment.

Communicate: Solution

Resolve concerns on solution, risk and price.

Communicate in customer’s language showing Return On Investment.

Deliver: Solution

Deliver the solution.

Use project management tools to manage delivery.

Demonstrate that benefits have been delivered. Ensure customer satisfaction.

 

 

3 Step Plan to Deliver Business Growth

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October 4, 2011 · by Ray · Business Solutions
What are the steps required to deliver business growth?
Business Growth may be delivered using a three stage approach:
  • Step 1: Diagnosis – What are the Business Challenges? What are the growth objectives? What is the current sales and marketing infrastructure and what needs to be provided?
  • Step 2: Design –  How can Business Growth be achieved?  Design the Solution
  • Step 3: Implement & Report.

Step 1: Diagnosis

“Diagnose before you Prescribe”. Covey.

Diagnose Business Challenges to create Solution

If the diagnosis is not correct then the solution may well be inappropriate or incorrect.

What are  the Business Challenges?

  • What are the Growth Objectives and supporting Business Plan?
  • Is New Market Entry required –
    • Early (New Products to Market),
    • Mainstream (Moving from Early Adopters/Innovators into broader Mainstream market or
    • Geographic?
  • Is Development of Existing Market required?
    • Does a Business Development/Improvement Plan exist?
  • Does an acceptable  Sales Strategy exist?
  • Does a Sales Team exist that is fit for purpose?
    • Create, develop or radically improve?
    • Is the sales infrastructure sufficient (Hiring Process, Reward System, Sales Process,Sales Management System & Sales Automation system)?
    • Is Marketing Support sufficient and integrated with sales (Sales Tools, Sales Training, Lead Generation, Market Coverage)?
  • What Major Accounts are required?
    • Do references exist?
    • Is there sufficient support infrastructure (Tailored Sales Process)?

Step 2: Solution Design

Having diagnosed and agreed the Business Challenges in detail, the Solution may now be designed. Depending on the Business Challenges the Solution will include some or all of the modules.

Choose Solution to fit Challenge

 

A full Market Entry solution will require all three solutions:
  • Create Strategy
  • Create New Sales Team
  • Win New Major Accounts
In some situations a suitable Strategy will exist but help is required to execute it. This will require:-
  • Create New Sales Team
  • Win New Major Accounts
In other cases an acceptable Sales Strategy and Sales Team exists but need to implement a Major Account sales process and to create positive references. In this case only one solution (Major Accounts) is required.
In other cases all the solutions are in place but are not fit for purpose or are not functioning correctly. In this case all elements mus be diagnosed and, if faulty, remedied. In addition the product must be diagnosed to ensure that expected value is being presented and delivered and that positive references are being created.

Sales & Marketing Strategy. This is designed to deliver Business Growth and other Objectives

Sales (& Marketing) Strategy

Use information on  customer profile, geographic profile,  product maturity, the competition and the strength of the vendor to shape the strategy. Develop Value Propositions as required to suit the particular product and customer profile.


A High Performance Sales Team Plan

Create a High Performance Sales & Marketing Team

A High Performance  Sales Team  will achieve effectiveness and efficiency. It  will strive for best in class Personnel Hire, Reward System, Sales Process, Sales Management System, Sales Automation System & Marketing Integration.
Marketing plan will include Lead Generation, Messaging Strategy and Sales Tools using Online and Offline techniques.

 

Win Major Accounts Plan

Win Breakthrough Major Accounts

Winning New Major Accounts will facilitate entry and growth within a target market segment. It requires a tailored sales process, A Value Proposition based on differentiators, positive references and detailed plans at account and opportunity level.

Step 3: Implementation

The solution may now be implemented. Project Management tools are used to measure progress and report on success.
Depending on the Business Challenges, some or all of the following market specific hurdles may need to be overcome:
  • Limited Resources
  • Immature Infrastructure
  • Customer Expectations too high
  • Product Development Required
  • Solution Development Required
  • Partner Management Required

Creating High Performance Sales People

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October 4, 2011 · by Ray · High Performance Sales Team

What makes a high performance sales team? What makes a high performance sales person? Can we analyse best practice and use it to improve ordinary sales people? Are relationships important? How important is Value?

To create a high performance sales team it is useful to analyse high performance sales people to understand what makes them successful. Such best practice can then be applied to a scalable sales model that will turn ordinary performers into stars.

Based on research by Sales Performance International and recently Dixon & Adamson in the Harvard Business Review the following was found:

High Performance Salespeople Get the Basics Right

  • They work hard & work smart. They put in the hours, prepare well, use tools and training to ensure their efficiency and effectiveness
  • They react and solve customer problems . They understand the value of a  happy customer as  future references and as a source of future business. They have the ability to manage the organisation to deliver the resources to solve the customer problems.
  • They build solid relationships. They are honest and deliver on promises and build trust with their customers.

High Performance Salespeople Deliver Value

  • Open with Value and Close With Value. Successful salespeople use their deep understanding of their customers’ business to challenge current thinking and to create new solutions to old problems. They have a very clear view of how they can deliver value to the the customer and use this to open and take control of  sales conversations. They understand the different concerns of the key players in the buying team.  They know that such concerns change throughout the sales cycle and they work had to ensure that such concerns are adequately addressed. Successful salespeople use value as the cornerstone in all  phases of the sales cycle  and especially during negotiation and close. They understand that it is important to present value in language and models that the customer is comfortable with.

Best Practice Used to Raise Performance of all Salespeople

The most successful high performance sales teams use best practice. They learn from high performing salespeople and use this best practice to create a sales model that is used to turn ordinary sales people into stars.

  • Hire Salespeople with High Potential. Sales people with the basics of a good work ethic, good basic relationhip building skills and a desire to win.
  • Use Leadership. Building a high performance team in any discipline requires leadership to ensure that the team is focussed and inspired to deliver.
  • Use a Scalable Sales Model. This will take all the best practice of the high performance sales people and use it in training and coaching and tools to turn salespeople with high potential into stars. This will include a Sales Process, a Sales Management System, Sales Automation and Marketing Integration. All will combine to improve sales efficiency and effectiveness.

Using Value to Sell Complex Services

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Value must be recognised by the customer - use his rules.

Selling Complex Services

Services are invisible, intangible so how best to sell them?

By describing clearly the value that they can bring to the customer.

This is done by estimating the value to the customer, the investment required and describing how a customer reference has received similar value .

Value Proposition

The delivery vehicle for communicating value is known as a value proposition and can be used for all kinds of sale but is particularly useful for complex services sales.

It is normally used initially in prospecting to get the attention of an executive and to get agreement from him to assign resources to work together on an evaluation plan. This will include the  creation of a detailed business plan to ensure that it is the right decision for the company.

Simple Example

A very simple value proposition example using the services offered by O’Brien Business Solutions is shown below.

We believe that Customer A should be able to

  • Achieve Business Growth by a minimum of 15% in the next year 

Through an ability to:

  • Launch New Products and Services
  • Create a New High Performance Sales Team
  • Win New Breakthrough major Accounts & create positive references
As a result of
  • a Business Solution designed and implemented to deliver delivering Sales and Marketing programmes.
For an investment of
  • £YK.
Based on the assumption of:
  • an 1 year contract and a start within 2 weeks.
  • a similar Business Solution to Customer Reference A where a Business Growth of  20% was achieved in the same timeframe.

A more complicated BPO example

We believe that  Company A should be able to

  • Increase efficiency by 10% resulting in a 5% increase in profits per annum.
  • With an upside of 
    • Improve knowledge sharing, security and workforce effectiveness

Through the ability to

  • Design and implement new business processes using the latest technology

As a result of

  • Outsourcing specific document intensive processes in HR, Legal & Supply Chain departments

For an investment of

  • Set up – £XM set up
  • Ongoing –  Annual Service charge of £YM

Based on the following Assumptions

  • 5 Year contract
  • Set up in Yr  1
  • Relevant staff transferred according to TUPE.
  • Benefits realized in years 2-5.

Best relationships are based on value

Value is referenced throughout the sale. It may well start with a straw-man, built using data from a previously successful customer or reference and extrapolated to address this particular customer.  It will be developed as the sale proceeds as more detail on the solution is developed and information on the assumptions is discovered.  In some cases, some pilots may need to be implemented to test some key assumptions in the value equation.

The best relationships in business have the delivery of value as their foundation. A sales person that is perceived to consistently deliver value (advice, information, solutions) will be better placed to form better relationships.

Value flows throughout the organisation

A Goal/Objective for the CEO flows down to the CMO and down  to the marketing department.
For instance the CEO may have an objective of increasing the average revenue per user. This will be come a lead generation objective by the marketing department and an opportunity conversion objective by sales. A Value chain may be created to move from clearly known objectives at the top of the organisation to create new ones lower down the organisation.

Selling Complex Services into the Early Market

Selling into the Early Market is characterised by no or very limited customer references that will underpin the value proposition.

Whilst the Early Market is also characterised by buyers that are more innovative and as such prepared to take a risk, they do need some rationale for taking a decision to proceed.

Services do have more difficulties here than say selling a product like a piece of equipment in that a piece of equipment can be tested by a third party and the benefits verified.

Complex services such as BPO require at least one customer reference before the value proposition mat be truly verified. And as such it underlines how important the customer references are and therefore it is worth the company putting a lot of resources into obtaining the first contract an delivering it.  It is worth noting also that it will take time before the benefits can be calculated and therefore will take time before the contract can become a true customer reference.

What can be done in the absence of a customer reference? A number of options can be explored:

  1. Start with a  good relationship and trust as a foundation?
  2. Can you use process that is being done inside (selling) company’s own organisation?
  3. Does the new process utilize a core competence of the (selling) company? For instance a new technology that will improve the process. Examine its use in customer processes and obtain results.
  4. Utilize Market research to verify the value proposition.

There are two methods to achieving the market research:

  1. Find market research by a respected third party that will verify the claims made in the value proposition.
  2. If adequate market research is not available then conduct bespoke market research that will verify the claims made in the value proposition.
Using the information and the market research to build a model with clear assumptions,  a value proposition straw-man may then be created. For an innovative customer, or one that has a pressing issue that requires resolution this will be sufficient to proceed.  Normally they will require the assurance that sufficient support will be provided to address any unforeseen problems efficiently.