Sales Classes | Sales Training Courses

If You Don’t TRAIN Them, Don’t BLAME Them!

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinyoutubeFacebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinyoutube

 

 

sales training courses

 

Does Some of Your Sales Team Have

  • Uneven or substandard close rates?
  • Lack of prospecting activity or success?
  • Price discounting when objections are received?
  • A lack of effective questioning or relationship building capabilities?
  • Resistance to coaching and learning?

 

If so, your sales team may benefit from an enhanced sales process, customized sales training programs and new sales tools.  A landmark study of 540 companies conducted by the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD) revealed that the top 25% of firms (ranked by their investment in sales training) had:

  • 57% higher net sales per employee
  • 37% higher gross profits per employee
  • 20% higher ratio in market value
Moreover, the highest performing companies (in the top quartile based on net profit) in the study:
  • Invested up to 6% of their payroll in training
  • Trained 85.9% of their employees
  • Used innovative training, high performance and compensation practices simultaneously

 

But, as indicated in another study, not all training is equal.  In fact, customized sales training classes that pertained to a specific company, industry and unique needs of the trainees was found to be far more effective than pre-packaged training programs.

 

If you’re considering a sales training program or are holding a sales kickoff meeting, we’d be happy to help!  Just call us for complimentary customized sales training class outlines and sales meeting suggestions.

 

All Rights Reserved.  The Sales Alliance Inc.  San Diego, California.

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinFacebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedin

Leave a Comment 

COMMENTS

.....Tell us what you think or ask a question.....

Sales Training – Short on Results

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinyoutubeFacebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinyoutube

 

Inferior Sales Training Results

 

Many companies looking for the best sales training classes to help them increase sales.  And while that’s the optimal outcome, many sales training classes fail to produce either short-term or long-lasting results.   
Industrial psychologist and sales researcher Neil Rackham reports in a landmark study that sales results typically went DOWN after traditional, non-customized sales training classes were implemented. Why?

Shortcomings of Sales Training Classes

  1. Sales training class materials were not sufficiently tailored to the client company or industry.  Consequently, salespeople selling products like computer networks were using techniques more appropriate to other industries such as insurance and financial services.  The use of suboptimal, less-than-successful sales techniques resulted in a higher level of objections and lost sales.
  2. Sales training classes used outdated techniques, like classical closing and appointment-setting methods popular in the 80’s and 90’s. Prospects’ everyday exposure to older and commonly-used sales techniques helped them easily identify someone as a “salesperson.”  Indeed, when salespeople are “tagged” as such, they are often “screened” and prevented from reaching decision makers and making sales.
  3. The sales trainer(s) hired to present the training program lacked credibility with the salespeople they were training.  In fact, many of the trainers spent little time prior to the training session learning their clients’ businesses or interviewing program participants.  This knowledge gap was readily apparent to the salespeople who, in turn, failed to believe in or adopt much of what was presented in the training.
  4. When initially trying out newly-learned sales techniques with customers and prospects, salespeople often felt “awkward” and failed to successfully use the new techniques. Consequently, their sales results often went down.  Due to a lack of success applying these new techniques, the most common reaction was to revert back to their old style of selling. Many sales training classes lacked the post-training sales team coaching needed to help salespeople through this “awkward use” phase so that they were consistently and successfully applying the new sales techniques.

 

Indeed, for sales training classes to produce measurable results, it is essential to tailor the training to each company and to select a sales training speaker and facilitator who can gain credibility with the sales team.  The Sales Alliance customizes all sales training classes and, to further boost results, can tie training outcomes to company compensation, incentives, coaching, post-training reinforcement and “best sales practices.”

 

 

All Rights Reserved.  The Sales Alliance Inc.  San Diego, California.

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinFacebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedin

Leave a Comment 

COMMENTS

.....Tell us what you think or ask a question.....

Value Selling

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinyoutubeFacebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinyoutube

 

 

Value Selling is a sales process that focuses buyers on the high returns they’ll receive rather than getting a low purchase price.  Considered an enhancement to the Solution Selling and Consultative Selling processes, the value selling style is most useful when products or services need to be sold at above-average or premium prices.

It has been said that “people buy emotionally, then justify it logically.”  A value selling process quickly pinpoints and quantifies tangible and emotional benefits and uses these to leverage sales.

Due to the World Wide Web, information on just about any product or service is available in just seconds!  Historically, salespeople educated their customers, matching customer needs with products and services sold and then closing the sale.  Now, it is not uncommon for potential customers to have done their homework online and shop for the solution they’ve already picked!  This very phenomenon prompted a well-respected sales research firm to write an article “Solution Selling is Dead!”  Clearly, new technologies and societal norms demand an updated sales approach.

When people shop, they often shop for the lowest price.  If you’re NOT the low-priced vendor, you have a higher risk of losing the sale.  That’s where value selling comes in.  The focus of the value selling approach  is to justify higher prices based on compelling benefits and financial returns.  And these benefits will differ based on the individual customer’s values, ideals, perceptions and environments.

 

Value Selling vs. Solution Selling

Solution Selling embraces some great sales philosophies initially developed in the 1970s.   Although some concepts have become dated, others are still viable and robust.  Our Value Selling programs capitalize on the strengths of sales philosophies like Solution Selling and Consultative Selling, yet provide superior tools for selling products and services at average-to-premium prices.  Indeed, low-priced vendors are not as likely to benefit from this type of program and investment.

 

Value Selling Helps

  • Educate and re-orient clients that claim price is their most important buying criteria
  • Overcome client attempts at negotiating the deal, including “platform negotiating,” “nibbles” and “walk-aways”
  • Get access to decision makers or higher-level executives
  • Consistently beat tough competitors
  • Overcome misconceptions about product/service cost versus long-term value

 

Questions Trained “Value Sellers” Ask

  •  What are the key things you value about this type of solution?
  • How will this make money for your firm?
  • What things could go wrong that may prevent you from getting the return you’re hoping for?
  • What are your specific criteria for buying this?
  • Are you focused on the initial cost or the long-term costs and benefits?
  • How much value do you place on (service, reliability, maintenance, upgrade-ability)?

The Sales Alliance’s value selling process equips salespeople with tools, customized for their type of sale, to justify purchases based on benefits.

Our Value Selling Courses Include

 

All Rights Reserved.  The Sales Alliance Inc.  San Diego, California.

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinFacebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedin

Leave a Comment 

COMMENTS

.....Tell us what you think or ask a question.....

12 Ways to Boost Sales Training Results

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinyoutubeFacebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinyoutube

Sales Training Class

 

Twelve Ways to Boost Sales Training Program Results

  1. Select a sales trainer who knows or who is willing to invest the time it takes to learn your business and assess your people.  Remember, low knowledge = low credibility,  lessening his or her ability to help salespeople boost sales!
  2. Base the sales training program on the optimal sales process for your business.  The sales training program should use existing or newly-innovated sales best practices that have proven to be successful in your business.
  3. Gain “buy in” prior to the sales training program.  Effective sales trainers will interview your staff prior to training them to understand their individual needs and gain their buy in to what’s being taught.
  4. Tailor all course materials.  When salespeople perceive the sales training program to be “canned” and they spot sections that are not relevant to their business, they often perceive the entire program to be irrelevant.
  5. Spread out the training.  Providing salespeople time in between training sessions helps them practice what they’ve learned, ask the trainer for help when new techniques are not working for them and retain the knowledge longer.
  6. Require salespeople to attend all sessions of the sales training program.  Creative methods, such as tying learning objectives to compensation and incentives, may be useful.
  7. Commit sales managers to 100% attendance so that they can observe their salespeople and note skills bottlenecks.
  8. Develop a follow on coaching and reinforcement plan.   Permanent learning and behavior change occur over time and through repetition.  That’s exactly why post-training coaching is essential for long-term success.
  9. Provide the sales manager with management and coaching training.
  10. Create an optimized sales process and track each sales rep’s performance against the company average.    This provides a quick way to identify bottlenecks in each salesperson’s sales cycles.
  11. Consider using short-term incentives to boost sales activities such as cold calling.
  12. Provide a similar sales training program to non-sales staff to ensure consistent customer experiences with your firm.

For a list of our sales training classes, please view the sitemap on the right hand sidebar of this page

 

All Rights Reserved.  The Sales Alliance Inc.  San Diego, CA

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinFacebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedin

Leave a Comment 

Comments are closed.

Sales Conferences Often Miss the Mark

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinyoutubeFacebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinyoutube

sales-conferences

 

 It’s time-consuming and expensive to produce an effective sales conference.   Many see the single largest cost of sales conferences as travel, living and training expenses, yet the real cost is the sales lost when salespeople are in training!  For example, if you have 20 salespeople who each produce a gross margin of $2,500 per day, the cost of taking 20 people out of the field for a 3-day sales conference is $150,000 in lost profits!

So, how can you make your sales conference both productive and profitable?

 

Sales Conference Ideas

  1. Survey participants in advance of the sales conference to identify needed topics and outcomes.
  2. Plan out every element of the sales conference, publish and stick to an agenda and involve participants.
  3. Ensure that salespeople receive information and skills that help them significantly boost their sales results. Remember, good managers manage; great managers help boost the performance of their team members. Make sure improving sales performance is a key element of your upcoming sales meeting or conference (and feel free to contact The Sales Alliance for suggested conference topics and programs).
  4. Make the meeting fun and motivational. People learn more and are more attentive when they’re entertained and full of energy. Likewise, they sell more when they leave motivated and “pumped up.”
  5. Watch for hidden messages and inconsistencies. If you hope to communicate that your salespeople are important to you yet the company puts them up at Motel 6, are you presenting a consistent message? If you are hoping to help your newer people become effective yet all the “old timers” are the ones receiving most of the awards, what does this really communicate?
  6. Provide creature comforts. Having water, soda, coffee and snacks on hand ensures that people have what they need (yes, some of us are addicted to our caffeine or sweets!) in order to focus on the meeting topics. Providing plenty of breaks (not just a mid-morning and mid-afternoon break) allows people to use bathrooms, take medications, etc. at the intervals they need.
  7. Don’t overdo it. Marathon sales conference sessions generally receive negative ratings. Plan in time for fun, outings, dinners and drinks and never end the meeting past the published times on the agenda.
  8. Coach your presenters. Even the best content can be boring if presented poorly. So, consider having a “dry run” of your sales conference and coach your presenters to be  interesting and interactive (and contact The Sales Alliance if we can assist with this function).
  9. Provide take-aways such as handouts, reference cards, pricing guides and software. People are able to retain more if they have reference materials to both re-read and to refer to when needed.

 

Indeed, time invested planning your sales conferences, along with providing the best possible tools and materials, is likely to provide a high ROI.

All Rights Reserved.  The Sales Alliance Inc.  San Diego, CA

 

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinFacebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedin

Leave a Comment 

COMMENTS

.....Tell us what you think or ask a question.....

Sales Tools Key Component of Training

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinyoutubeFacebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinyoutube

 

 

Effective Sales Tools

 

Several studies have shown that people retain less than 15% of what they learn in just one month!  Moreover, most people lack the sales tools and coaching needed to permanently change their selling approaches.  So, how can sales training classes have a long-lasting impact?

 

Training effectiveness is greatly enhanced by providing sales tools that help salespeople apply specific techniques they’ve learned. Examples of effective sales tools that we help salespeople develop during sales training sessions include:

 

Effective Sales Tools

  1. Prospect research checklists
  2. Prospecting call and campaign openings
  3. Elevator speeches for profitable networking
  4. Qualification questions list
  5. Prospect ranking criteria (e.g. A,B,C quality rankings)
  6. Telephone openings
  7. Voicemail sales tools and approaches
  8. Phone tag reduction strategies
  9. Needs assessment questions
  10. Major account profiles
  11. Problems-solutions checklists
  12. Objections and responses list
  13. Commitments lists
  14. Negotiation concessions
  15. Key information to track on a CRM

 

Although managers have developed and supplied their people with some of these sales tools, salespeople rarely use them!  Why?  In short, “people support what they help to create.”  If salespeople create the sales tools, they’re much more apt to buy into and use them than if the tools are given to them.  After all, the truth most sales managers hate to acknowledge is that their suggestions are often downplayed or ignored.

 

In summary, when post-training sales coaching is combined with effective sales tools, long-term behavioral changes are likely to occur.
 
 
 

All Rights Reserved.  The Sales Alliance Inc.  San Diego, California.

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedinFacebooktwittergoogle_pluslinkedin

Leave a Comment 

COMMENTS

.....Tell us what you think or ask a question.....

Sales Classes | Sales Training Courses