During SKO sessions, many companies roll out new sales methodologies and processes. Companies pay boatloads of money to provide their teams with proven selling methods and techniques, however, they are often left with a 300-page binder or set of static templates that are quickly forgotten and go unused. How can companies get reps to adopt and operationalize sales methodologies in their day-to-day workflows?
In this post, we will outline the most popular B2B sales methodologies, and then discuss ways that you can actually bring the core elements to life.
Top Sales Methodologies of World-Class Sales Organizations
Every business needs a sales methodology that best represents its product, values, market and goals. There are a variety of different sales methodologies – here are a few of the most commonly used approaches:
- Target Account Selling: This methodology breaks larger deals down into smaller components. Using a strategic plan throughout the life of the sales cycle de-emphasizes the politics of an account.
- SPIN Selling: “SPIN” stands for Situation, Problem, Implication, and Need-Payoff. It involves asking questions to understand the buyer’s situation, issues, consequences, and situation, respectively.
- SNAP Selling: SNAP Selling assumes that everyone is busy and frazzled. The goal is to speed up the sales process by being Simple, Invaluable, Aligned with the needs of the customer, and a Priority.
- The Challenger Sale: Instead of unraveling the needs and demands of the customers, the Challenger Sale simply challenges the customer by making them aware of the pitfalls within their industry.
- Value Selling Framework: The Value Selling Framework creates a repeatable process, or map, based on customer buying processes. By building a process rather than customizing each deal, less management is required – which allows organizations to focus on helping team members improve their sales skills.
- Customer-Centric Selling: Customer Centric Selling involves turning your sales staff into collaborative consultants who become trusted advisors to customers. This methodology is dependent upon several kinds of behaviors, including closing deals on the customer’s timeline, targeting sales at decision makers, putting the product in the hands of the customer, and focusing on the solution rather than the relationship.
Tools Necessary to Bring Methodologies to Life
It’s difficult to translate these theoretical strategies from paper to practice in today’s complex B2B sales landscape. Sales teams are straying further away from what they’re trained on in favor of spending time on more meaningful activities that directly impact their ability to manage and close deals.
Advanced sales execution tools, such as playbooks, score cards and opportunity plans, can help guide reps through the sales process and reinforce training and best practice behaviors rather than expecting them to retain information from offline training materials.
For instance, execution playbooks provide a roadmap to coordinate the sales approach and an executable plan for aligning solutions to business value. These playbooks guide and empower reps to stay focused on the buyer’s journey, not just their sales process, and allow reps to align their activities and strategies to how the customer evaluates and purchases. These playbooks are interactive and include links to content/videos/artifacts, etc. to reinforce training and the chosen methodology.
As a result, these tools help companies focus more on verifiable outcomes and critical thinking, and can drastically reduce sales cycles by keeping reps focused on the activities that matter.