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How to win customers and influence prospects

Some say it’s the little things that make the biggest difference. When it comes to your company’s revenue growth, this philosophy holds true. 

Businesses don’t close deals — people do. One deal at a time, closed by one rep or a small team, your company’s revenue increases, and whether virtual or in-person, it comes down to a salesperson talking to a customer. If your reps aren’t influencing prospects and winning over customers, your growth will slow and eventually stagnate. Morale will fall. Employees will churn. And long-term revenue growth will be at risk.  

Consequences like this are prompting revenue leaders of all industries to ask the question: How can we increase the performance of our salespeople? The answer is simple – you help every seller become the best they can be. While this may be obvious, how to achieve it is a different matter. 

The key to unlocking your sales team’s potential

Our rapidly changing business landscape requires organizations to constantly adapt and evolve. In a time when collective business agility is everything, teams have no choice but to win together – or lose together. 

Unfortunately, operating as a team is something many companies struggle with. Far too often, sales teams are carried by a few top performers, while the rest of the salesforce falls behind. While the team may be hitting its target, it will only be so long before the ice wears thin and revenue leaders find that beneath the surface lies a harrowing problem.

When the majority of your reps are barely average or under-performing, it is next to impossible to achieve scalable, predictable revenue growth. Just like a car’s V-12 engine is only as powerful as each firing cylinder, a sales team is only as strong as each of its individual sellers. Failing to activate the majority your reps can be potentially devastating — but the opposite is also true. Improving more of your latent reps’ productivity can dramatically improve your team’s performance — and your revenue growth. 

So, how do you go about helping each of your sellers reach their potential? Start by taking a hard look at your team’s Participation Rate. By definition, this is the percentage of your reps who are at or above quota attainment – on a sales team of 100 people where 40 of your salespeople are at or above their quarterly goal, the participation rate is 40 percent. Tracking your Participation Rate reveals productivity problems. You know you have an uphill battle when the majority of your reps are failing to meet quota each quarter, indicating that serious revenue is being left on the table. 

While achieving and maintaining consistent rep performance is difficult, recent developments in technology, methodology, and process offer a clear path to helping every customer-facing employee, from pre- to post-sales, succeed in the moments that matter most. 

Turbocharge your revenue engine with sales enablement

Over the last several years, sales enablement technology has become an integral part of the tech stack, as revenue leaders recognize its power to prepare reps for every customer conversation. According to Sales Enablement PRO’s State of Sales Enablement 2021 report, having a dedicated sales enablement function is correlated with 7-percentage-point higher win rates. 

An end-to-end sales enablement platform enables you to carry out the three critical steps to driving rep productivity

  1. Equip your team with the right content and guidance
  2. Train and coach your sellers to peak performance
  3. Measure, optimize, and scale best practices across the team

The first step is all about making sure your salespeople have the content and guidance provided via sales playbooks at their fingertips. To make the most of every customer interaction, your salespeople should understand what they need to know, say, show, and do for every unique selling scenario. But in the modern era where buyers expect sellers to provide value beyond the basics, content and guidance alone are not enough.

The second step focuses on delivering modern training and coaching designed to not only teach skills, but drive real behavioral change. Training arms your reps with knowledge. Personalized coaching helps them apply this knowledge to real buyer conversations and improve over time. Creating a culture of continuous learning through consistent training and coaching is essential to helping your salespeople succeed in the long-term. 

Finally, you need to know what’s working, what’s not, and scale those best practices and winning behaviors across the broader team. With an advanced sales enablement platform, you can get a comprehensive view across your strategic initiatives, allowing you to look holistically at your rep productivity program and answer these foundational questions: 

  • Do your reps understand the key initiative?
  • Are your reps executing the initiative?
  • How are prospects and customers responding to your initiative?
  • Is your initiative driving the intended business outcomes at scale? 

To learn more about how to answer these questions and increase rep productivity, read our guide to the Top Three Sales Playbooks to Improve Sales Performance

When people come first, business growth follows

As a revenue leader, you can’t expect to reap what you don’t sow. In other words, it is unrealistic to expect consistent performance from your sellers unless you thoroughly and continually invest in them. 

Rather than focusing on the big revenue targets, narrow your gaze to the small numbers – how many of your reps are at or above their quota? What action can you take to improve your team’s Participation Rate? By unlocking each and every one of your salespeople’s potential, you will harness the true power of your team to win customers, influence prospects, and take your business to the next level.