Is Your Sales Process Agile Enough For Today’s Buyers?
The only constant is change. For sales reps in today’s hyper-informed market, this translates into a constant need to adapt the sales process.
The most successful sales reps don’t fear change. Rather, they respond to it with agility and an open mind.
If you think of your sales process like it’s a manual transmission that has to shift from first gear to sixth in perfect order, you’re eventually going to stall. This model is going the way of the 10-mile-per-gallon SUV — it’s too inefficient to maintain.
You must appreciate that your buyers are smarter, more educated and more aware than ever.
In fact, the buyer is in the driver’s seat. Think of yourself as their co-pilot, navigating them along the way to the sale. The buyer may jump in at phase three of your sales process, or maybe at phase six. Wherever they enter the funnel, you need to be nimble enough to respond. Don’t try to take the buyer back to the beginning because you’re uncomfortable that they’ve skipped the first few steps. You have be agile enough to meet the buyer at their pace.
Because you’re no longer the gateway to product information, you must instead go out of your way to make your role integral to the customer experience. Ask yourself what value you’re providing the buyer as they move through the sales funnel. Are you a content curator? Are you a trusted advisor? You may have multiple roles, but it’s important that you (and the buyer) are aware of them.
Another facet of an agile sales process is the ability to make smart decisions quickly and change your process if it’s not working. You need to be willing to experiment with your sales approach. Work out a go-to-market theory and put it to the test.
This is effectively your own version of A/B testing. Agility comes into play here because you have to be willing to make small changes and track how well they perform. It’s a case of gathering data, gaining a comprehensive view of what’s working most effectively and dropping what does not.
An agile sales process is all about awareness. Be aware of market trends, buyer personas and the fact that there isn’t much exclusive information you have to share with your buyer. Don’t assume that you hold the keys and must drive the buyer through the sales funnel. Instead, strive to be an invaluable partner in their journey.
The Tellwise Nutshell (TTN): Avoid the temptation to force the buyer into your process. Adapt to their process instead. If a buyer engages you on Twitter, for example, it makes more sense to respond to them on Twitter rather than to call them on the phone. Upending your traditional sales process may seem uncomfortable, but in today’s buyer-driven market you need to be agile and ready to react at a moment’s notice.
Download the free whitepaper “The Role Of The Sales Professional Is Changing. Here’s How To Use ‘Selling Automation’ To Stay Ahead Of The Game” for more tips on staying agile in today’s buyer-driven market.