Setting and meeting quality sales goals should be an important objective for every business. What are the keys to doing so? Among them are having a defined sales process and implementing a sales methodology that supports that process. What’s the difference? A sales process is unique to your business – how you will find and qualify leads, how you will create opportunities and proposals, how you will negotiate and close deals. A sales methodology determines how you will approach and interact with your prospective clients – how you will ask questions and lead the conversations, how you will guide your prospect through the decision-making process. Following an effective sales methodology means that, in the end, the only logical conclusion for the prospect is to do business with your company.
What makes many sales methodologies brilliant is that they can be implemented effectively across a wide variety of businesses. Whatever your business’s unique sales process, there’s a tried-and-true sales methodology to accompany it.
Find Your Sales Methodology: Five Effective Ones You Could Be Using
1. Challenger Sale
Within any sales team, there is usually a wide range of personalities. These personalities can translate to different selling styles.
The Challenger Sale is a concept developed by authors Matthew Dixon and Brent Adamson that takes these personality differences into account.
They posit that all B2B sales professionals can be divided into five categories:
- Relationship builders
- Lone wolves
- Hard workers
- Reactionary problem solvers
While research shows that salespeople spread evenly among the five groups, 40% of the top-sales performers were made up of challengers.
How does a challenger behave, and why are they effective?
There are three things they consistently do well – teach, tailor, and take.
In teaching, the challenger offers a new perspective to the prospect. This can be a new way to see their business or the problem they are facing. Challengers also tailor their communication to the customer. Hence they make sure to align with the customer’s economic and value motivations. Finally, challengers take control of the conversation. They aren’t afraid to focus on the end goal of the sale and drive home their position.
Not all sales reps are naturally challengers. The Challenger Sale method aims at sharing and teaching the most effective traits of challengers they can be used by all. In addition, sales training sessions are a great place to teach your sales team about the five types of salespeople and highlight the strengths of the challenger.
2. SNAP Selling
An effective salesperson is one who develops a close relationship with prospective clients. And this relationship enables them to better understand and address pain points while guiding the decision process. The goal of the SNAP selling methodology is to keep the sales rep focused on maintaining four key directives during the conversations with prospects.
SNAP stands for:
- Keep it Simple – A complex sales pitch is one that will lose a prospect’s attention and interest. Simple is always better.
- Be iNvaluable – This is where the sales rep needs to demonstrate that they are an industry expert and that their product or service is truly valuable.
- Always Align – By aligning with a prospect’s core beliefs and values, the sales rep can therefore encourage a trusting relationship.
- Raise Priorities – Everyone has priorities, and understanding these priorities is an integral part of forming a solid business relationship.
Author Jill Konrath developed the SNAP sales method. And as a result, it provides an effective and useable guide to sales directives for teams and leaders alike.
3. SPIN Selling
Author Neil Rackham first developed this sales method in 1988. The method is designed to guide sales reps through any sales conversation.
SPIN is an acronym for the four types of questions that should constitute a successful sales call.
They stand for:
- Situation question – This is where sales reps make an effort to understand where a customer is coming from. This is a vital part of establishing rapport with the client.
- Problem question – The answer to this question will provide the sales rep with an opportunity to understand the client’s problem and how the client sees their problem, thereby helping them form the best approach to solving the client’s issue.
- Implication question – Here, the intention is to lead the client to consider the implications of the problem if it is to remain unsolved. In how many ways is it negatively impacting their situation? This then reinforces a sense of urgency in the customer.
- Need-Payoff – Directly following the implication question, this is where the sales rep prompts the client to consider how their situation would change if their problem was solved.
The intention of these questions is to develop a relationship with the prospective client. By asking these types of questions in this order, the sales rep is therefore able to form a comprehensive understanding of the client’s situation. Leading questions have the added benefit of helping the client to better understand their own situation and how your product or service can benefit them.
4. Inbound Selling
In today’s marketplace, buyers are more frequently performing their own research before ever engaging with a sales representative. More and more of the buying process is taking place online and before human interaction ever takes place.
The inbound selling method takes into account how customers interact with a company’s content. And that content could be an e-mail marketing campaign, on social media, on their company website, or all of these.
Afterwards, this method looks at data analytics and allows inbound sales professionals to approach prospects in a manner that makes sense, using four different actions:
- Identify – This is where sales reps identify active buyers, those who have taken initiative in seeking out the product or service.
- Connect – Sales reps connect with prospects using personalized correspondence based on buyer information.
- Explore – The exploratory phase is where sales reps build rapport with the prospect and develop a deeper understanding of their situation and pain points. This is an opportunity to build on previous conversations and encourage a strong relationship.
- Advise – In this final step, the sales rep uses what they’ve learned about the prospect’s unique situation and constructs a sales presentation tailored to their needs and values.
5. Integrity Selling System
This is the sales method favored by 360 Consulting. The Integrity Selling system takes a holistic approach to selling. It takes into account the values and ethics of selling and focuses on building trust and rapport with the client before any selling even begins. This approach is all about meeting client needs with integrity and high ethics—the building blocks of long-term selling success.
There are six steps in the Integrity Selling system, referred to by the acronym AID Inc.
With the Integrity Selling system, both sales reps and clients are treated with respect. It’s an approach that highlights what selling is really about: an exchange of value. It’s about meeting needs, creating value, and building relationships.
At 360 Consulting, this is what’s important to us. What does your sales methodology say about you?
To learn more about Integrity Selling and how it can help your sales teams improve and even surpass sales goals, schedule a free consultation here.
These are just some of the most effective sales methods out there. As there are many, it’s important to find one that works well with your business and your sales team. They can help elevate the performance of your sales reps and unify your sales team.
So, if you haven’t already, it might be time to find a sales methodology that’s right for you.
We Can Help You with Sales Methods
Need a consultation to discuss sales growth, leadership or processes? We can help. Call us today to see how we can help your company’s sales team break sales records! Find us at www.360consultingdfw.com.