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4 Ways CEOs Can Proactively Increase Sales For B2B Companies

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Many companies effectively limit their ability to increase sales by taking a passive approach to their sales organisation. With only 17% of CEOs coming from a sales background, it is an area of the business that many are reluctant to approach. No matter how patched up or sputtering that engine may be, the mere thought of overhauling it fills CEOs and senior executives alike with dread.

Companies will make ongoing, piecemeal repairs as long as they can in a vain attempt to keep revenue flowing. They will tolerate behaviour in the performance of sales and marketing that would not be accepted in other areas of the business.

There is an over-reliance on attempting to boost sales through selling your products by word of mouth, focusing on your existing customer base. Small businesses can fall into the trap of offering free services, hoping to ‘get a foot in the door’. The focus of change at all times at the customer interface and not within the company itself.

Increasing sales requires companies to make changes in how they operate as a sales organisation. To make wholesale changes to how sales operate as a business unit, how it is managed and the culture of the team toward sales growth. Increasing sales requires the support of both marketing and sales.

This reluctance can be overcome with the right information, guidance, and tools, and CEOs can proactively increase sales in their business.

These are four steps that can assist you to start to increase sales.

#1 – Build a strong sales system. A sales system provides deep insights into how your sales organisation is performing and improves decision-making competency tenfold. The sales system provides transparency through the functionality of sales planning to execution.

Sales activities and sales effectiveness, deal closing trends, horizon management for pipelines, and performance of individuals. A strong sales system methodology, such as Money Ball, places the CEO in control with the knowledge of how to increase sales.

#2 – Promote a selling culture. A selling culture goes beyond discussing product and service attributes and providing sales reports and motivational cheering for the sales team. The culture goes deep into the company and affects everyone who is communicating with customers and potential customers.

The sales team does not run alone; they need to be part of the company team that is focused on fulfilling customer needs. From the provision of quality marketing, pro-active customer service or inside sales, focused operational personnel, and clear quality communications in emails, telephone calls, and other contact points.

Everyone who interacts with people outside the organisation shapes how customers view your company. The sales team, in particular, needs to have the energy and focus on prioritising selling and finding those pieces of gold in the market. Creating connections with them and bringing them back to the business as customers knowing the company will keep them and service their needs to gain lifetime value and a good relationship.

#3 – Ensure the right sales management is in place. Sales management can make or break your company. High-performance sales managers are competitive and results-oriented. They are great mentors, have sound business thinking, are systems-focused and are good communicators.

They are dedicated to increasing sales through the team and not their own big deal and relationships. To succeed, you need your sales manager to have all these qualities to do their job effectively. Sales management is a specific trained skill and not a promotion of a good salesperson in the company who gets along with everyone.

Learn the warning signs of underperforming sales management. If you have concerns over your sales management, you should consider a sales recruiter who can find you the right person

#4 – A culture of finding opportunities. In many successful companies, significant sales revenue comes from upselling existing customers and reconnecting with former customers. Increasing sales is about looking for opportunities under all stones and not leaving any unturned.

Ensure your sales management and sales team are focusing their attention on the ever-changing needs and situations of current customers. Revisiting past customers and keeping them in conversations to address their changing needs. Ensure the sales team sells to customers, current and past; they are proactive each and every week in finding new prospects too.

Marketing must contribute to the generation of new opportunities by conducting market research of ideal customers in new segments, territories or regions. Create high-quality marketing materials that resonate with those customers and solve their problems. Conduct, at a minimum, email marketing campaigns with a well-qualified email list to start conversations for sales.

Operating sound strategies for new customer acquisition with contributions from marketing and sales will increase your sales.

If you follow these four key points, you will increase sales.

Next Steps:

A well-designed programme can assist you in achieving these four points. Our sales improvement services are the right place to start. Please contact our office and discuss your specific situation and how we can assist you in proactively increasing sales.

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© Y2018 Adele Crane.  All rights reserved

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About the Author: Adele Crane

A leader in Implementation Consulting.
CEOs and Managing Directors have relied on Adele Crane to solve challenges with the performance of their sales and marketing since 1990. Her consulting experience in delivering results in 90-120 days is unprecedented by any other known sales and marketing consulting professional in the world. As an author of 3 acclaimed books, appearances on major media, and publications in USA, NZ and Australia, Adele’s experience brings fresh thinking and contemporary practices to business.