How our best Sales reps work 24/7, don’t take breaks, and understand prospects in seconds… and how you could do the same.
As a product manager here at Webeo I’m exposed to all 4 corners of the business, from Sales & Marketing all the way through to Customer Success & Finance, there isn’t a team I’ve not had the pleasure of working with. It’s one of the joys of Product Management (more on that later).
Constantly switching context and seeing the business and our customers through these different lenses, led me to wanting to understand in more depth how our best Sales reps go from having never spoken to a prospect in their life, to establishing strong relationships with multiple buyers, deeply understanding their business, market and even competitors, to then closing them as a customer. A fascinating series of moving parts have to be juggled and perfectly aligned to close just one customer…. if the rep is good, they will do this at scale for multiple prospects at any given time.
To understand how the best execute this, I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to join a series of world class sales coaching sessions, with the aim of understanding how these reps can influence & lead without authority, while taking the prospect on an end-to-end buying journey (as a Product Manager, I also got a far better understanding of prospect needs, problems and overall market direction, another invaluable exercise for anyone in Product).
The coaching covered a wide-ranging set of techniques that straddled many subjects, a few of which seemed obvious. However a tactic stuck out to me as something I’d noticed all our best reps doing (but not one I necessarily picked up on immediately), was to develop an intimate understanding of a prospects objectives, challenges and how they would look if theses challenges were removed and objectives were hit*. But here’s the unlock, they do it in as little time, while asking as little questions as possible. The reps that have perfected this, close twice** as many deals than those that haven’t.
As the coaching wrapped up, I realised the problem with this discovery was:
1) not everyone will/can adopt this technique
2) it’s difficult to scale, like any process involving people
3) this discovery is happening way too far down into the Sales funnel
It then occurred to me that scaling this process and bringing discovery up in the Sales funnel could be achieved through a simple technique, using website personalization on our Webeo.com website. By dogfooding our own product, we know who the company & visitor is, therefore understanding potential objectives and challenges, and we can paint a picture of how their business could look if their objectives were hit – we can even show evidence of how customers within their market did the same…. all in real-time.
By replicating our best Sales rep techniques on the website, we’ve been able to target new segments, territories and speak with more prospects without the need for a single human conversation – we’ll never replace the art and science of selling, but by leveraging website personalization we’ll provide a tailored & informative journey, so when the prospect is ready to buy, all friction has been removed.
*Yes, I know this is Sales 101: I build, cut me some slack!
** it’s true, Stu (Sales director) can verify.
Written by Liam Winzar