Find out how to create a prospecting process that works in this video.
- Recently, I was sitting in traffic along a busy section of road near my home and noticed one of those sign spinners standing out at the upcoming intersection attempting to lure customers to the local mattress store in the adjacent strip mall. When we think of the various sales and marketing approaches we are exposed to every day, seeing an approach like this reminded me of just how important knowing your ideal customer is. This is certainly the shotgun approach, blasting a message to the masses in hopes that one person out of 1,000 things. Hey, you know what? I wasn't really interested in mattress, but suddenly I am. It's not a very effective approach, your companies and salespeople do it every day. Instead of thinking about how many possible people could buy your product if all the stars aligned appropriately, I want you to start thinking about who in the marketplace is your product or service, most likely to help quickly and effectively solve a problem and then work backwards from there. So what is an ideal customer anyway? An ideal customer could be described as a customer who values your product or service, a customer whom you can make a profit from, sorry, folks, but this is a business, you got to make money or you won't be in business very long. A customer who'd be willing to refer you to other potential customers. Start with the smallest market possible. If you identify a very focused group of potential customers that have the highest likely degree of success with your product or service, you will gain credibility faster and be able to expand your customer base. Think of your ideal customer through the ready, willing and able framework. Let's take a look at them one at a time. First, are they ready? Issue, do they have a problem that they need solved? Awareness, do they know they have a problem? Motivation, do they have a sense of urgency to solve their problem? Next up, are they willing, and this starts with timing. Are they ready to solve the problem today? Are they searching? Are they currently looking for solutions to solve their problem? And finally, are they able? The first category here is money, do they have the budget to solve the problem? Next is authority, do they have permission or approval or the decision making authority to actually solve the problem? Now, how do we find these customers that are ready, willing and able? Start by creating ideal customer personas or profiles. Customer personas include the following information. What's the ideal industry your best potential customer is in? The ideal title or experience that they have. What's the ideal buying cycle for your product? Meaning is the customer ready, willing and able to purchase your product when you need them to? And then the ideal location meaning your product or solution is geographically aligned to where your best customer is also located. One of the easiest ways to get started with customer personas is to build them around your best current customers. If you've got a handful of great customers today who love and appreciate you and your product, then you're going to want to clone them. If you don't have this type of information readily available, talk to the person responsible for marketing at your company. They should be able to provide you these types of profiles. If you're a small business and you're both the sales and marketing departments, you basically have two choices. First, you can do the research yourself with the help of Google, LinkedIn and others, or, you can hire a market research company to help you build these target profiles based on your input and their expertise. Remember, the key is to find the narrowest group of customers with whom you can develop a quick and effective partnership, by helping them solve their urgent problem, and you can expand from there.
- Describe the overall phases of a sales process.
- Explain how to perform prospect research.
- List and define possible motivations, as well as enabling situations for change.
- Describe ways to establish credibility and obtain commitment.
- Explain the elements of post-sales activities.
- Describe the importance of process in sales activities.
- Itemize steps in the process for obtaining commitment.