The foundation of selling is based on the sales process, whether you're an inside rep, telemarketer, or field rep. Learn how the basics of sales hold true no matter what your role is.
- There are many types of sales positions, with titles ranging from national accounts representative to telephone sales professional, or account executives to field sales representative. We're sometimes called inside salespeople, outside sales, direct sales, closing team members, or business development managers. However, somewhere in our titles, job descriptions, or printed on our business cards is the very simple word that describes what we all do, and that's sales.
We have many different titles but at the end of the day in its simplest form, our jobs as a sales professional is to make the life of the buyer better by solving a problem with a product or service. If you're just starting out as a field representative, you may be asking yourself, "Do I need to have a different types of sales process? "Maybe I need a more complex one, "or since I'm on my own so to speak, "maybe I can have a quicker sales process, "or I can just create my own." Whether you're based in the home office of your company, or a satellite building, or out of your own home, and whether your title is vice president of sales, or field representative, the backbone of what we all do and way we start is the sales process.
There are many methodologies, theories, and approaches to sales, but in its simplest form and the one that many salespeople have been taught is INP, Information, Need, Product or Service. Some sales trainers talk about seven steps of the process. Others 10, and some break it down even more with more complex analysis. At the end of the day, to be successful we must work in a collaborative way with our clients and customers to provide solutions.
As a field representative, your sales process and how well you manage it is what will separate you from your competition. The process I believe in, and the one I'm recommending for you is 10 steps. Planning, gathering information, and preparation. Assess the need and the solution required. Solve with a product or service. Present and sell your product or service.
Ask for the business. Deliver on your promise. Follow up with your customer. Report and communicate back to your customer and company. Evaluate and improve continually. The tenth may or may not be a part of your job description, and that's prospecting. If it is, then it's the first step. If you need a refresher on this, you can refer to my course in the library called Creating Your Sales Process.
Your companies may customize the process with their own methodologies, or techniques which are unique to your product, service offering, or your industry. However, there are no shortcuts, and the foundation of selling and being successful is the sales process. This is true whether you are a key accounts manager based at headquarters, or a field sales representative based remotely.
- Running a small business
- Organization and time management
- Account coverage and account support
- Staying in tune with your manager
- Maintaining regular, quality communication
- Using your company's CRM software
- Balancing work and life
- Tackling the challenges of working remotely