How Do You Measure Up? 5 Essential Qualities of a Great Sales Leader

How Do You Measure Up? 5 Essential Qualities of a Great Sales Leader

By | B2B Sales, Business Mobility, Mobile Productivity Tools, Sales Leadership, Sales Productivity, Selling Tips

While you constantly measure the performance of your sales team — checking their ability to hit goals and manage their pipelines, you often take the time to measure your own performance as a sales leader.

Of course you do.

Well, OK, maybe you don’t.

One of the most essential traits of a great sales leader is actually taking the time to assess his or her own performance.

That would be the No. 1 quality of a great sales leader. Looking within.

Let’s take a look at five more.

1. You’re constantly aware.

Mobile Sales StrategyGreat sales leaders are not only looking at and stressing over numbers; they’re in tune with where each of their sales reps are with their individual performances. Are they struggling in one particular area? Is there a mental roadblock? Are they overwhelmed? Stressed? A great sales leader can pick up on those cues and take measures to help their sales reps overcome obstacles to move on to better performance.

Are they struggling in one particular area? Is there a mental roadblock? Are they overwhelmed? Stressed? A great sales leader can pick up on those cues and take measures to help their sales reps overcome obstacles to move on to better performance.

A great sales leader can pick up on those cues and take measures to help their sales reps overcome obstacles to move on to better performance.

2. You invite feedback.

“What do you need?” “How can we make this better?” “What challenges do you face?”Are all good questions to ask your sales reps. A great sales leader is willing to get input from their team without feeling attacked. This is also a great way to build trust

Are all good questions to ask your sales reps. A great sales leader is willing to get input from their team without feeling attacked. This is also a great way to build trust

A great sales leader is willing to get input from their team without feeling attacked. This is also a great way to build trust with your team.

3. You motivate.

While you hold everyone accountable for reaching their goals, you still find ways to recognize milestones — both large and small.

Just pointing out the top performers based on sales numbers can get repetitive. Find creative ways to recognize people on your team who also are discovering new approaches to the same old challenges.

Also, it’s a good idea to find ways that will help build the core 60% of your sales team. A small percentage in their percentage could be a big driver in top-line revenue.

4. You’re honest.

If things are not going well, your team can count on you to be direct and honest. You openly talk about challenges — avoiding the need to put a positive spin on any discouraging updates.

When you get to this point, your team will be more likely to help you solve any problems.

5. You remove roadblocks.

PD4_3629Along with assessing their employees for cues that could indicate stressors or frustrations, a great sales leader is analyzing ways to remove roadblocks that get in the way of the team’s performance.

Are inbound sales materials inadequate? Do they have the information they need at any given time?

A great sales leaders will be able to provide all of these to their team so they can focus on what they do best: selling.

Want to take that one step further?

Provide teams with the right tools they need to streamline the process.

A good sales team can go out and sell, but they can only do so much if they have to do everything manually.

A minimal increase in sales from the core 60% of your sales team could be a HUGE driver in top-line revenue.

Imagine what a mobile sales tool, specifically designed for them, could do for your numbers.

Frankly, it’s a no-brainer.

Give teams the tools they need and they’ll be able to make themselves and you look better.

So… where do you start?

View our article, “What Kind of Mobile Sales App is Best for Your Team?”, to learn more:

What Kind of Mobile Sales App is Best for Your Team?

 

4 Sales Tips to Equip You For a New Era and Win More Sales

4 Sales Tips to Equip You For a New Era and Win More Sales

By | B2B Sales, Business Mobility, Mobile Productivity Tools, Sales Productivity, Selling Tips

Long gone are the days of “wining and dining” to win over a sales prospect.

That’s a luxury that seems quaint and antiquated now that your prospects have already gone on with the business of doing their own research — virtually to the point of reaching their own conclusions.

But you already knew that.

The question is what are you doing to adapt to a sales landscape that’s increasingly shifting to an inbound model?

Navigating this new territory appears to require a combination of old-school approaches to make sure you’re still connecting with prospects, along with new technology that keeps you efficient.

If you handle it effectively, you could be in a win-win situation that has you standing out from the competition.

Here are four ways you can win more sales with today’s more informed prospects:

1. Get in the game of inbound marketing.

Onboard new sales repsBy now, your team already has developed an inbound marketing model — providing potential prospects with plenty of online content to help them find answers to their challenges at different stages of their customer journey.

But if you’re not constantly updating and building out a robust content strategy, you could be losing to the competition.

Constantly study analytics to find out which areas are underperforming — or where prospects seem to be dropping off, to make sure you’re filling in those gaps.

Also, make sure you’re surpassing the competition. Always have the mindset to outperform everyone else out there with well-written engaging content, videos, webinars, and other online material.

2. Pick up the phone more quickly.

The sooner you call a warm lead, the better.

Did they show an interest in your product and services? Left their contact info? Get on the phone and call.

According to a study by Lead Response Management, “the odds of making a successful contact with a lead are 100 times greater when a contact attempt occurs within 5 minutes, compared to 30 minutes after the lead was submitted.”

Another study by InsideSales.com revealed that 35 to 50 percent of sales were awarded to the vendor who responded first.

Don’t delay. Follow up immediately.

3. Don’t neglect your networking.

Sure, times have changed. The steak dinners may be a thing of the past. But networking is an essential component of the sales business. Actively reach out to people on social platforms like LinkedIn, and ask customers and friends for referrals. Having someone vouch for you can turn a cold lead into a warm lead.

Actively reach out to people on social platforms like LinkedIn, and ask customers and friends for referrals. Having someone vouch for you can turn a cold lead into a warm lead.

Having someone vouch for you can turn a cold lead into a warm lead.

4. Use technology to become more efficient in selling.

While sales have changed, one challenge remains the same: there doesn’t seem to be enough hours in the day to handle all your responsibilities as a sales rep.

Sales enablement tools that boost efficiency from the front-end to the back-end of the sales process can help you and your team better manage presentations to handle calls.

Explore them to see how you can reduce the amount of time it takes to make a connection and close a deal.

How Mobile Sales Apps Can Help You Win More Sales

Imagine that you’re going to a sales call with a busy executive.

win more sales with mobile sales toolsLet’s say they give you less than 10 minutes to present your case, and you have to use every minute effectively.

Do you really want to be spending three minutes of that getting your computer up and running, another two trying to get the right password for the WiFi, and another two to load your PowerPoint presentation?

Let’s be honest: no one likes when they have to wait. And the scenario above is probably not that uncommon.

But there is a better way: mobile sales apps.

Mobile sales tools are no longer a remnant of the future; they’re here to stay.

Sales reps need to be able to pull out their phone, tablet, or desktop at any time — without needing to connect to the Internet.

Why? Because if you can do that, then you can support the notion of “right message, right time, right place”.

And your reps will be equipped to sell more in real-time. What marketing manager doesn’t want that?

Looking for a mobile sales platform to help your team win more sales? Request a live demo of FatStax today:

Request a Demo of FatStax Now!

What Kind of Mobile Sales App is Best for Your Team?

By | B2B Sales, Business Mobility, Mobile Productivity Tools, Sales Leadership, Sales Productivity, Selling Tips, Video Tips

Making the decision to invest in a mobile sales app is easy.

Figuring out which type of tool is the best for your sales organization? That’s a bit tougher.

The reality is determining which type of sales enablement app is best for your sales teams depends on a couple of factors:

For your team – it depends on how they sell and your offering mix.

For you – it depends on how much bandwidth you have to manage the tool.

The decision can be a little daunting and overwhelming. So how do you get an app for sales teams right the first time?

The Three Different Types of Sales Enablement Apps (And The Hybrid)

First, you need to learn about the different types of mobile sales tools that are available.

The most common mobile sales apps include:

1. File Sharing App

As the name indicates, these mobile sales apps are designed to share static files like PDFs, PowerPoints, videos, Word documents, etc.

This app for sales teams typically highlights files that have been created by the marketing team or the advertising agency that can be easily shared via the app, which can then be shown to a customer or prospect in the field.

2. Catalog App

The next type is a catalog app, which, as you can imagine, is similar to a catalog. Think of them like those giant paper catalogs you’d print up and ship out to your customers so they can buy something.

A catalog app for sales teams contain SKU-based information, like pricing, product specs, and general information. Some even allow you to create a soft quote or may even talk to your ERP system so you can actually create an order.

3. Presentation App

It’s important to differentiate this type from the file sharing app because this type of app facilitates long-form presentations, like PowerPoint or Prezi.

The presentation app allows you to give a pitch in front of an audience by presenting various slides or information.

4. The Hybrid App

Many times, companies need something that is not “one-size-fits-all”.

Your teams may sell with a combination of static files, catalog information, and by giving long-form presentations. You may have some divisions that need a static file and some divisions that need a customer-facing app. It all just depends on what’s right for them.

In short, your teams may need a hybrid of the three main types of mobile sales apps available.

Having a hybrid app provides flexibility to your team based on their needs. Plus, it doesn’t box you into one solution, limiting scalability and growth.

Regardless of how your team sells, it’s important to figure out which tools can help them the most. To learn more about the different types of apps for sales teams available, request a demo of our mobile sales app solution:

Request a Demo

3 Effective Ways to Onboard New Sales Reps in Less Time

By | B2B Sales, Business Mobility, Mobile Productivity Tools, Sales Leadership, Sales Productivity

Over the past 3 years we’ve had the pleasure of working closely with some of the most talented VPs of Sales in the world as well as great coaches like Craig Elias – the million dollar quota smasher.

One thing that we’ve spent a great deal of time talking about is getting new sales reps up to speed faster. Since I manage a few talented sales people myself these days, this hits even more close to home!

onboard new sales repsHere’s why. According to a report by Accenture and CSO Insights, nearly 50 percent of new sales reps took ten months or longer before they were able to contribute to company goals. By some estimates, that can translate into missed opportunities at an average rate of $50,000 to $200,000 a month.

As the manager, you can actually visualize the dollars passing you by — sort of like a bad version of sheep hopping over a fence keeping you up at night.

But, as the leader you’ve got it to take ownership – Extreme Ownership.

Put that monkey on your back and get to work.

Here are three tips to help you get sales reps onboarded — in a lot less time.

1. Use mobile sales tools. You know I had to go there. We build these things for just this reason all the time.

Why you should care – You’ll be able to get new reps up to speed much quicker with mobile sales tools that are configured to address the challenges they typically face.

By using a mobile sales tool that allows reps to easily access documents with the tap of a button — no matter where they are — you’re eliminating the barriers that can make sales transactions more cumbersome. Not only that, with mobile access to training materials as well as company sales sheets, presentations and collateral, they will be able to study your products and services during downtime or off hours.

2. Train with visuals. Studies show that 65 percent of us are visual learners. They also say most of us retain more information when it’s presented visually. Make liberal use of videos and highly visual learning materials to get your new team up and running sooner. It’s also a great idea to pair tips #1 and #2 by integrating those visual sales materials in a mobile app.

By making the training materials easy to digest — through visuals — as well as easily accessible, you’re providing new sales reps the ability to use them as quick references in between and during appointments.

3. Look beyond the sales department. Of course, you likely have a process in place that provides new sales reps the opportunity to join senior reps on sales calls. You more than likely will give them plenty of your own time.

However, it can be even more effective to talk to employees in other departments, including Customer Success and Product Development, to gain further insights into opportunities, case studies and product details. The sooner they can understand your products and services, the more quickly sales reps can confidently explain them to prospects.

We first wrote about this topic in our in-depth series on mobile hacks used by marketers to ACTUALLY drive revenue with a mobile sales tool.  You can access the first part of the article here.

How to Cure Your Employees’ Resistance to Adopting New Technology

By | B2B Sales, Business Mobility, Mobile Productivity Tools, Sales Leadership, Sales Productivity, Selling Tips

Sales enablement strategies are clearly helping to fuel the success of top performing sales teams, according to a recent report by Forbes Insights, in association with Brainshark. In fact, 59 percent of the surveyed companies that surpassed their revenue targets — and 72 percent that exceeded them by 25 percent or more — had a defined sales enablement function.

When you compare that to the 30 percent of underperforming organizations that had a defined sales enablement function, it’s not difficult to see the advantages of these types of strategies.

But what if you’re among that group that has a strategy, but is continually underperforming? Or if you’re considering moving to a sales enablement strategy but are concerned that your team may resist change?

To get your team on board with using tablets and accompanying tools, such as sales enablement apps, you’ll need a strategy to ensure that the technology is being used. If not, you run the risk of your office being clutter with unused tablets — just sitting there like expensive paperweights.

Here are 4 things to take into consideration to ensure successful adoption of technology and sales changes.

  1. Understand the sales reps’ reluctance to change. Resisting change is part of human nature. Especially when it comes to performing a job day after day. In some cases, your employees may feel they’re getting along just fine without making any changes. Be sure to convey relevant statistics on how tablets and sales enablement apps can help them gain efficiencies and boost productivity and, as a result, increase their sales.
  2. Provide plenty of support. Training must include plenty of follow-up to ensure the employees are familiar with the new tool. While some employees may be familiar with iPads and other tablets, others may not readily admit that they’re having difficulties adapting. Make sure that you provide one-on-one feedback along with the group training.
  3. Invite feedback on how the transition is going. Without real-life examples of how the new sales enablement strategy is working among team members, others may not be so reluctant to change. Encourage discussion about successes during a weekly sales meeting. Better yet, ask each sales rep to share how the tool is working for him.
  4. Use it yourself. What better way to demonstrate the benefits of the tablet and apps by demonstrating it yourself? First, make sure you have been trained in its use. Then, during a ride along, show how you use the tablet to engage a customer. Show and tell is a sure-fire way to gain converts.

When you and your sales team start realizing the potential gains of using sales enablement tools, adoption may steadily increase — right along with your sales.

8 Ways Sales Enablement Apps Can Rev Up Your Revenues

By | B2B Sales, Business Mobility, Mobile Productivity Tools, Sales Productivity, Selling Tips

If you’re fully expecting 2016 to translate into more sales than last year (of course, you do), then it’s time to make sure you’re giving your sales reps all the tools they need to succeed. For many companies, that toolbox will include sales enablement apps that are easily accessible from any tablet.

But first, let’s get an understanding of what a sales enablement app is not. It is not a CRM. However, a sales enablement app does allow your reps to become more productive in the field through the integration with a CRM. By connecting the two, you can produce benefits that impact sales, marketing, IT, product development, training, administrative and other aspects of your company.

Take a look at the 8 benefits of linking your CRM with sales enablement apps:

  1. Sales Enablements Apps Can Increase Revenue Increase sales team productivity. By linking a sales enablement app to your CRM, you equip your sales reps with a much more effective way to get things done. The combination essentially automates numerous tasks in the sales process — including quote building, ordering and product sharing.
  2. Build stronger customer relationships. By increasing efficiency through the sales enablement app, your sales reps will be able to devote more time to building solid relationships with their customers — instead of frantically checking to see if the profile in the CRM is up to date. Through the app, any orders or sales materials sent to the clients is instantly tracked.
  3. Cut expenses. Placing the wrong order or mishandling an invoice are mistakes that are difficult to overcome and can be costly both to your bottom line and company reputation. These can be avoided when using a sales enablement app connected to your CRM by quickly getting the right information where it belongs fast, make your sales cycle more efficient and close deals faster through an efficient process.
  4. Improve collaboration. There are many steps in the sales process that can lead to confusion and errors, requiring more time to be spent on properly reporting information. By implementing a sales enablement app that’s integrated with your CRM, you can minimizes those errors and maximizes your team’s effectiveness. As a result, your sales reps will be able to spend less time duplicating customer information and spend more time selling.
  5. Quickly update lead information. A sales enablement app enables you to add customized fields or surveys to better prioritize and group your customers and prospects. By adding these tasks in the app, they are instantly synced to your CRM, giving sales reps and managers insight into top opportunities without wasting time to make notes back at the office.
  6. Improve organization. Boost the power of your CRM by tracking and sharing sales materials via your app. By connecting the two, you gain a simple sales process that can be easily organized and tracked. The days of using a notepad and pen to tally how many catalogs were shipped to prospects are over.
  7. Enhance reporting. CRM integration with sales enablement apps allows sales reps to quickly get an in depth analytical look at customer profiles. They also will be able to forecast predicted sales by gaining insight into which sales materials have been shared and which products have already been sold. Also, by linking the two systems you can avoid duplicating data.
  8. Boost customer satisfaction. Of course, you want happy customers. Happy customers not only continue to purchase from you, they’re likely to give referrals. What better way to grow your business? With sales enablement apps providing real-time enhanced reports, reps will be able to customize their clients’ experiences. Sales reps will be able to find the right sales materials to supplement their decision-making process, optimizing for the highest customer satisfaction possible.

Looking for a sales enablement application that will help you drive revenue? Speak with our mobile sales expert and request a live demo of our application today:

Request a Live Demo

Infographic: The Benefits of Mobile Sales Tools

By | B2B Sales, Business Mobility, Sales Productivity, Selling Tips

What does it take to close more sales deals, better sales deals, and close them faster in today’s competitive environment? Selling is a 24/7 job for companies, but many sales teams don’t have the vital access to sales tools and information that are required to reach their sales potential.

If you find your sales team making these comments via email or phone, it’s time to look to the incredible variety of sales tools and closing sales techniques to help your teams:

  • “Let me send you that info later.”
  • Let me ask my boss.
  • Let me confirm this is the latest version.
  • I’ll look into it when I get back to the office.
  • Let me type up a proposal and send that over.
  • Let me return with samples/answers next week.
  • Let me ask the office to send me this document. Just a sec.
  • Let’s circulate this for signatures before we proceed.

Sales enablement platforms and mobile sales tools have skyrocketed in popularity because they’re making such an incredible impact on sales. From prospecting, appointment setting, pitching, consulting, capturing, proposing, closing and signing the deal – there’s a solution for every stage of the sale cycle. For companies who are investing heavily in tools for their sales team, they’re able to leverage their talent combined with the technology to drive sales productivity.

Here are some Incredible Sales Statistics on Tools and Mobile Tool Usage

  • [tweetthis hashtag=”sales”]On average, 71% of sales rep time is spent on non-sales activity[/tweetthis]
  • [tweetthis hashtag=”sales”]70% of mobile-enabled sales organizations report a positive ROI for their mobile investment[/tweetthis]
  • [tweetthis hashtag=”sales”]90%+ of sales organizations invest in tablets as sales tools today[/tweetthis]
  • [tweetthis hashtag=”sales”]55% of small businesses report mobile sales tools give them an advantage[/tweetthis]
  • [tweetthis hashtag=”sales”]29% average increase in lead conversion reported by mobile-enabled sales teams[/tweetthis]

Download These Amazing Statistics in a One-Page PDF

 

Here’s an infographic that provides all of the data, as well as three threats and opportunities to impact the your sales effectiveness with mobile sales tools:

mobile-sales-tool-infographic

5 Proven Hacks for Marketers to Create Revenue with Mobile Tools

By | B2B Sales, Business Mobility, Mobile Productivity Tools, Sales Productivity, Selling Tips

I saw a great tweet from social selling all-star Jill Rowley (@jill_rowley) recently.

“If you want your sales team to be successful, you need help from your marketing department.”

 

So Marketers here are five ways you can use mobile sales tools to drive more REVENUE.

What we are about to share with you has taken us over four years to learn.

On November 18, 2011, Melissa Kuhn took one of our custom built mobile sales tools into a live customer sales call. It was our first live test of the system we built. And since then, we have been configuring mobile sales tools for some of the largest global brands from hockey sticks to toilets.

When people ask us what we do we say:

“We find scalable and repeatable ways to use mobile tools to grow revenue for our clients.”

And while we have been growing and doing what we do, we are starting to identify a set of tactics that reliably deliver measurable revenue results for our clients and peers with mobile sales tools.

The marketing hacks we’re about to share with you come from 4 years of measuring sales analytics, talking to sales and tech support personnel, and most importantly listening to the users of the mobile tools we’ve helped create.

We call these five tactics marketing hacks because when mobile sales tools apps are used effectively, they can target very specific business issues at the regional, team, or even individual level to directly increase in measurable revenue.

Traditional sales tools will get you traditional results.

salesforce mobile apps

Tools like CRM are great for group-wide changes but are difficult to growth hack.

Traditional sales tools have become “table stakes.” You have to have them. They are considered a cost of doing business. But they are a one-size fits all proposition.

How would you use Salesforce to help a single division sell more?

You wouldn’t because it’s just not practical to reconfigure it for the entire org to help one group or individual.

But mobile sales tools are scalable and repeatable.

Scalable means you can easily expand the user base of your mobile sales tool as you grow. Repeatable means the process is simple enough you don’t need to hire a consultant or a temp tech guy to spend weeks expanding it for your entire organization.

That makes mobile sales tools apps different from, and often more valuable than CRM systems or sales reporting dashboards.

Get to the marketing hacks already!

Ok, ok.

Please keep in mind – we are not professional sales trainers or coaches. We help companies configure mobile sales tools apps to address business issues.

These marketing hacks are meant for marketers and sales leaders who:

  • Don’t know what apps can do
  • Don’t have mega budgets to hire coders
  • Just want results now

Download the 10 hacks in a single one page PDF

HACK #1: Create an app that CRUSHES pricing questions.

We have noticed that our most successful B2B marketer clients embrace pricing, instead of running from it. So one of the top marketing hacks we see is to make pricing information easy to access at your team’s fingertips.

Pricing, Pricing, Pricing.

Pricing, Pricing, Pricing!

Pricing, Pricing, Pricing!

How many times a day do sales people hear, “Can you tell me the price?”

So why are so many marketers focused on creating sales tools apps that contain only PDFs and videos and NO PRICING?

I suspect it has something do with all the new fangled sales techniques that de-emphasize selling on price.  We get it.  But at the end of your awesome Challenger Presentation, the prospect is still going to ask, “What does it cost?”

Right?

So maybe you don’t focus your mobile sales tool completely on prices, but at the same time why make it hard on your team?

We’ve seen marketers use a variety of techniques to facilitate easy access to pricing information.

  • Build a catalog pricing app –  Catalog apps by definition contain detailed product information like specs, sizes, details, and, of course, pricing.  These apps are appropriate for companies that offer more than 250 different SKUs and may scale to well over a million. Pricing at list will keep your reps safe from awkward conversations.  The ability to soft quote a prospect works best for offline apps since you won’t always have access to the Internet to check inventory or customer-specific pricing.
  • Keep your Price PDFs updated regularly – If you’re not going to use a catalog app, but instead want to load up you’re pricing PDFs make sure your tool can search within the file.  Another good suggestion is to place pricing documents in easy to access locations for like the home screen or an obvious folder for quick access. But no matter where you put these files, update them regularly.  There is nothing more frustrating than opening an old pricing document and quoting someone incorrectly for a sales person.
  • Provide a web link to the product – Most companies use their website as the source of truth for product details.  Embedding a simple link to a product page can provide pricing information for those that don’t want to include it in their mobile sales tool.  The caveat is that Internet access is required to see the pricing.
  • Specials, Promo Sheets, and Flyers – One of our clients ‘dances around’ the pricing issue by regularly updating their mobile sales tool with PDF specials flyers.  Essentially ‘one-sheeters’ that have special prices for a given period.

Below is last quarter’s top 10 items viewed by their team in our Analytics Platform.

ranking-by-pages-viewed

A quick glance shows that of the top 10 pieces of collateral a whopping 50% of the most viewed items were their quarterly updated flyers this is in an app with 1000s of individual items in it.  Analytics is the key to success here, e.g., knowing what your team needs to drive revenue.

The great thing about firm pricing information in a mobile sales tool is it give marketers a reference point to dig into the data and show a real return on investment.  Especially, when soft quotes are captured in CRM that can match to the order in your ERP.

If you can even get close to matching this type of interaction from a mobile tool to an actual deal, that is solid gold when you sit down for your annual review meeting with your boss!

Download the 10 hacks in a single one page PDF

HACK #2: Design your mobile sales tool for your middle performers first

Many companies make the mistake of implementing a mobile sales tool as a one-size-fits-all solution. Often, only a few top performing sales people are asked for input as to how the tool should be built. This completely overlooks the needs of the largest part of your top line revenue driver – the middle 60% of your sales team.

Let’s look at the math. According to research from Sales Executive Council, improving the performance by 5% of the “core” 60 percent of your sales force can yield approximately 70 percent MORE revenue than a 5 percent performance boost among your high performers.

 

middle_of_your_team

*Image from Shifting the Performance Curve. SEC. In the example above, it’s easy to see that the core drives more top line revenue and simply helping them do their jobs more effectively can drive the kind of revenue that gets you promoted.

3 Ways to Build an App that Will Move the Middle of Your Sales Team:

1. Ask the middle what they need. – It’s that simple. But we can guarantee that almost no marketers do this when planning and building their sales tool. They get distracted by what devices the team uses, or how many bells and whistles they can program in that they forget to get the input that matters most.Get your core involved early. Send a poll, send an email, pick up the phone, or pop into a weekly sales call. Whatever it takes to get their input.

2. Dig into the reasons the middle is not closing more. – Spend some time with your sales managers or snooping around in your CRM. Time spent figuring out the “whys” will pay huge dividends.

  • Is it product knowledge?
  • Lack of product training?
  • Has your company changed recently (merger, re-org, etc.) making it harder for the core to adapt?

You might discover some useful things about your sales team. And you will always gain insights that will help you build the best possible mobile sales tool.

EXAMPLE: After asking all the “whys”, a client of ours made a simple change to their app homepage. They put new product training in a highly visible spot and built an easy-to-consume landing page for those products only one tap away. Simple, effective, and their team responded to this change almost immediately.

Using mobile reporting tools they learned that the sales numbers for those products were increased substantially. Total time needed ~ 1 hr. Yep, one hour.

Sometimes you just specs and prices to sell a product!

Sometimes you just specs and prices to sell a product!

3. Make pricing easy to find. – One thing we consistently see in our clients’ mobile sales tool reporting is sales people searching for pricing. So many mobile sales tools apps are filled with files (PDFs, videos, etc.) that make finding pricing difficult.If your core has to sell a book of more than ~100 products, they likely need access to quick list pricing.There are lots of ways to design a mobile sales tool to make it super easy to get immediate pricing information during a sales call. For example, many of our clients build hybrid apps that incorporate brochures in digital format as well as individual product pages (with pricing info) that are “native” text within the app.Still others have built tools that use offline product information written native into the app. They make the choice to chuck out the PDFs and videos all together and focus on the ONE thing that can drive revenue the fastest – fast specs and prices at your core’s fingertips.

Focusing on improving the core of your sales team is not meant to suggest you should neglect the rest (I’m sure the skeptics’ brains are screaming right about now!). It simply means you are focusing on the easiest and most logical method to drive measurable results – helping your core 60%.

 

 

 

Download the 10 hacks in a single one page PDF

HACK #3: Building a mobile sales tool focused on the top 20% of items, products, or services that contribute 80% of your profits

Yep, the old 80/20 rule (thanks Tim Ferriss!).

Without even firing up Salesforce.com, I bet you can close your eyes and think of the products and services that generate 75% of your sales.

But which ones drive PROFITS.

Oddly enough many marketers don’t approach mobile sales tools apps with profit at the top of their minds. Why not?

At the end of the year, how awesome would it be to walk into your review with tangible evidence that you directly influenced measurable increases in profits?

In the example below from the Business Owner, Peerless Consulting created more profit by simply eliminating 2 of 20 products that their reps could sell.

profits with apps

This shows that profits matter not sales or revenue per se.

A mobile sales tool can easily be crafted to focus your team or channel reps on your most profitable products first, so you can keep these top of mind.

Here are two ways Marketers are simplifying their mobile sales tools apps to sell more profitable items first:

  1. Create quick reference “hot spots” for your top 5-10% of products. – The key to a great mobile apps is SIMPLICITY. The easier it is for your sales people to use, the more they will use it, and the more they will sell. Creating a “hot spot” for your most profitable products will help your team keep those profitable products top of mind.We first saw this with a customer that constructed a very simple image based screen for their top 3 product lines. They sell these products in North and South America, so they duplicated the hot spots in English and Spanish to reinforce the concept across bordersThe images featured easy to scan text and were tappable.
    Profitable Product Focused Homescreen in a mobile tool

    Profitable Product Focused Homescreen in a mobile tool

    When tapped a product-focused screen appeared that had everything a sales rep might need to speak intelligently about the profitable products.

    Another example would be to create a folder clearly labeled Key Product Information if you are utilizing a file sharing app like Box or Dropbox. The idea is to provide easy and immediate access to the information for your most profitable products every time your team members open their app.

  2. Simplify your mobile sales tool to the top 20% of profitable products – PURGE, BABY. PURGE! Simplify your mobile sales tool. Get rid of the all extraneous PDFs, videos, PowerPoints, etc. For every item in the app, ask yourself – “Is this information piece going to create more opportunities for a rep to sell something? Or is it just an unnecessary distraction?”Files that are likely to be unnecessary distractions might include – complex cumbersome calculator tools and old PowerPoints with out-of-date information among many others.Streamline your app content to include information ONLY for the 20% of your most profitable products… and you’re likely to see your sales increase.So… what are your most profitable products?
[tweetthis hashtag=”sales”]Drive revenue by making it easy to share your most profitable products on your mobile device in front of your customers[/tweetthis]

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HACK #4: Use your mobile sales tool to rapidly on-board new sales people

Getting new people up to speed fast can be a large driver of both top line and bottom line revenue.  It’s a binary equation.

TOP LINE: The faster you can get a new rep or dealer up to speed the faster they can create deals.

BOTTOM LINE: The less time you spend training new people, the more time leaders have to focus on more important things.

You can drive top and bottom line revenue by simply assembling a repeatable process to reduce the time it takes to deploy your sales personnel into the field.

MORE TIME SELLING = MORE OPPORTUNITIES = MORE REVENUE.

(Plus – you’ll also free up a good amount of time on your calendar!)

Here are three situations where a mobile sales tool can be a revenue multiplier for on-boarding new people.

  1. You just re-orged, merged, purchased, or got purchased by another company or division – Major organizational shake-ups mean large-scale changes. And they can be extremely stressful. Besides worrying about your job getting down-sized, you will likely get tasked with merging and retraining the sales teams.
    Anchor your team with mobile tools.

    Anchor your team with mobile tools.

    A mobile sales tool can provide a common anchor for everyone to latch on too.

    An easily searchable product app now becomes your learning tool, sales tool, ace in the hole to answer tough questions, and the single source of truth for your sales and marketing team.

    “Where’s the XZY spec sheet?” It’s on your phone.

    “What’s the price of ABC?” It’s in the tool.

    You save time. They merge faster. They sell faster.

  2. You just got promoted or took a lateral move to a new position/company – In a leadership role, you are in essence on-boarding yourself. Your first 90 days are your chance to make a splash, impact revenue, and create your reputation of success. Implementing a mobile sales tool that drives revenue, address communication issues, and acts as a anchor between yourself and the new team can make your job that much easier.Furthermore, in the first 90 days you have so much more leeway with budget and can get things done before red tape starts to bog down your creative, inventive brain.
  3. Creating a new channel or signing with new distribution – Everybody knows that distribution channels can explode your revenue. Everybody knows that cajoling new channel reps and training them to sell your wares is like pushing a boulder up hill… all day long.It’s an obvious situation to drive revenue with a mobile sales tool.Design your app to focus on the most common questions and objections. Make it really easy to find the exact specs and details a dealer needs. Support your new channel by updating the tool at least monthly. Track usage by dealers and reward the 20% that are using it and driving revenue.Incidentally, a dealer conference is the perfect time to roll out a new sales tool, BUT you have to make it really easy for them to access the app while you have their attention in person. That’s a topic for another day.On-boarding new reps and channel reps is a critical time in their success. Providing people with an easy-to-use tool that contains comprehensive product and training information can be a boost to revenue that is easily measured and provide a resource that your team can rally around.

Download the 10 hacks in a single one page PDF

HACK #5: Use your app to milk your best channel reps

We first learned about Pareto’s Law (80/20 rule)  from the Four Hour Work Week. Since then, it seems like we can find an application for almost any business problem.

As a reminder, the 80/20 rules states that 20% of the inputs drive 80% of the outputs.So by determining the 20% of inputs that are working and doubling down on them you can double your results with 60% less work.

Using a mobile sales tool to increase revenue from your dealer and distributor channel sales is the perfect opportunity to apply the 80/20 rule. Here’s why:

  • Many marketers are looking for ways to drive more revenue via their channel.
  • Channel reps do not work directly for manufacturers and choose whatever devices they want (phones, tablets, etc)

This leads to the BIG RUB.

Coding apps for every device and managing content for 1000s of distributors’ reps seems like an insurmountable mountain (too much volume). This leaves many marketers returning to status quo = their Intranet portal or email.

What 20% of my channel is driving 80% of our revenue?

Apply the 80/20 rule by asking yourself that question. When you have the answer, you can drive revenue by making a simple choice:

A. Help the top 20% improve their sales of your products to drive more revenue = 200 dealers of a hypothetical 1000.

or

B. Help 20% of the remaining 80% to sell as effectively as the top producers = 160 dealers of a hypothetical 1000.

Focusing on one of these two subsets and showing measurable success will then produce a trickle-down effect to the rest of your channel as the stories and comments are passed along. (e.g., Dealer A talks Dealer Z at your annual dealer meeting.)

Focusing on smaller target group will allow you to focus your mobile sales tool on a specific measurable target and get top of mind with your best revenue partners.

5 steps to constructing a great sales tool for 160 channel reps:

STEP 1 – Set A Revenue Goal – Examples – Improve channel sales by 5%; or Create 10% more opportunities with the middle performers in my channel.

STEP 2 – Poll The 160 Reps On What They Need To Be More Effective. Descriptions, training, videos, price sheets, configurators, cross-reference? You won’t know until you ask. A simple Survey Monkey form could save you months of work.

STEP 3 – Build A Great Home Screen In Your Mobile Sales Tool. Build it to work on your dealers’ smart devices and to feature the most requested items and information.

STEP 4 – Pilot Your Tool For 4 – 8 Weeks. Before launching it live, a pilot will create ownership of the tool. The job of the pilot users should be to use the app and provide direct feedback on how to improve it for everyone.

STEP 5 – Launch, Measure, and Update. A good mobile tool should have solid analytics and you should be prepared to update the tool at least monthly. Only after letting the analytics tell you what to change. Rinse and repeat. Measure and Update.

Beware the Loud Minority.

Yes, you will hear people screaming that they want your tool to work on their generation 1 Kindle. Yes, you will hear people asking for costly items like calculators and configurators. You will hear lots of “suggestions” from a loud minority of your channel reps.

When you do go back to the 80/20 rule.

Does this loud minority represent 80% of revenue? If yes, then take action. If no, then give them a $400 iPhone as spiff instead spending $50,000.00 on a Windows 8 compatible app.

Hope you got something useful out of this article.  We want you to take action today.  Even it is small.

Next week we’ll be publishing part 2 – 5 more marketing hacks Marketers can use to create measurable revenue.

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Thanks!

The Team at FatStax

3 Strategies to Boost Your Revenues through Upselling and Cross-Selling

By | B2B Sales, Selling Tips

For most sales teams, the prospect of increasing revenue at a rate of 10 to 20 percent year over year is a definite win. And if they’re able to do it with the clientele they already have, it most definitely is a win-win situation.

That’s what many companies are increasingly discovering by embracing upselling and cross-selling as part of their sales and marketing strategies.

Take JetBlue, for example. By extending an upsell option to its passengers — more comfortable seats and additional leg room — the airline was able to boost its revenue by 12 percent year over year, resulting in $190 million in additional passenger revenue in 2014.

Other companies, like Amazon, are taking advantage of cross-selling techniques by presenting complementary options to items prospective buyers already have perused or selected to put in their cart. For example, if a buyer selects a book on marketing, Amazon will post additional books that may be of interest to the buyer.

[tweetthis]Amazon reports that as much as 35 percent of their revenue is from cross-selling[/tweetthis].

To make the best of upselling and cross-selling, consider the following tips:

  1. Present an option that makes sense – When upselling, avoid presenting a much more expensive option. For example, if you’re in the business of selling automotive insurance, it makes sense to present an option that provides more comprehensive coverage at a slightly higher rate. No one would question the benefit of seeking more protection. Or, if you’re selling SUVs, a customer may be interested in upgrades like leather seats or surround sound systems if they can be added for $1,000 to $2,000. In other words, don’t try to sell them a luxury model if they’re in the market for an economy vehicle. If you’re operating in the B2B realm, you can suggest ways that a more robust package could pay off in dividends in the long run. Just avoid presenting an option that would go far beyond the client’s budget or the amount they had anticipated spending.
  2. Use other clients as examples – You can take the Amazon route, by suggesting options that other customers have selected. However, make sure you’re able to provide an example or a case study on the results the client received with the additional items, if necessary.
  3. Avoid a hard pitch – Never push a prospect to the point where he feels discomfort at turning down the upsell or cross-sell option. Be informative, presenting the other items as option for consideration. By allowing the prospect the option to simply say ‘No,’ you’re building a good customer relationship that could eventually lead them to purchase the additional features or items at a later date if they choose to do so.

P.S. If you DON’T have a mobile sales tool already, then trying FatStax for Unlimited Users right now is by far the lowest hanging fruit you can do. 30 minutes of work = should give you answers in as little as 4 weeks!

Boost Your Sales with Setters and Closers

By | B2B Sales, Sales Leadership, Sales Productivity, Selling Tips

Maybe it happens after a year … or even within several months. There comes a point when you must decide how to retool your sales strategy, especially if your company’s profits are soaring or at a point of stagnation.

If you haven’t done so already, your business could do well by developing at least two tiers of sales team members – appointment setters and closers. By doing so, you can boost c by an average of 7 points, according to research released by Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management and InsideSales.com. So, if your close rate is currently 9 percent, you could move to a rate of 16 percent by separating those roles among your sales staff.

Not only that, if you have appointment setters that can respond to a  lead within 5 minutes — instead of 30 minutes — you significantly increase your odds of turning it into a qualified lead, according to another report by the Lead Response Management Company. If called within 5 minutes, the odds of contacting a lead drops 100 times versus calling in 30 minutes. Similarly, the odds of qualifying a lead drop 21 times with the same timeframe difference.

As a result, today’s sales challenges increasingly require specialization as a solution:

Companies realized that they could be more leveraged if they broke the sales role into closers and appointment setters. Ken Krogue, founder of InsideSales.com said in a Forbes article.

So, how do you go about leveraging a team consisting of appointment setters and closers? It starts by hiring the right people and clearly differentiating the roles and responsibilities. Here are several things to consider:

  1. Consider your volume. If you’re lucky enough to have a massive response to your lead generation efforts, you may want to invest in hiring a full-time person or team to act as your appointment setters. This option provides the opportunity for you to groom an appointment setter to become your next closer, especially if you anticipate expanding that team. Otherwise, you can outsource your appointment setter needs through a contractor that specializes in providing that type of talent.
  2. Provide adequate training. Just because your appointment setters are likely at the entry-level, take the time to train them adequately about your business, your industry and the solutions you provide. At the very least, they should be able to answer any basic questions a potential client has. Consider them the first introduction to your company.
  3. Clearly define roles and goals. There should be a clear distinction between where one role ends and another begins. Also, set expectations for how quickly your closer contacts a warm lead. If the appointment setter makes immediate contact only to have your next sales team member take an inordinate amount of time to follow up, your efforts could be wasted.

Need help to manage your B2B sales contacts? FatStax empowers your team with a mobile-friendly platform that helps you organize and quickly access sales, service, and product resources. Contact us today for a demo.