While some sales teams are saddled with a streak of genuine bad luck that indicates they must have angered the gods at some point, most organizations can point to exactly one reason they aren’t actually selling: poor training.
More specifically, “poor training” almost always actually means “nearly no training.” Individuals may get a sales process briefing during on-boarding and a yearly sales meeting and …that’s it. One day a year to focus on developing skills that actually clinch sales.
What these organizations may not realize is how much they are actually giving up in terms of sales performance by neglecting sales training. Here are just four mistakes sales reps can make in an organization that refuses to invest in upskilling its workers:
Using Outdated Sales “Pitches” That Ignore Value, Pain Points
Modern sales is all about “scratching an itch.” Companies have a goal, and a problem stands in their way. Only your solution can fix it in a way that makes a true difference.
Unless you are actively training sales reps to recognize pain points and hone in on value, they will insist on selling a solution on its own merits, devoid of context. Don’t be surprised if they end up arriving at desperate unique selling points (“The, uh, font looks great!”) when they are not trained to describe value in relatable terms.
Wasting Efforts on Low-Value Leads
Lead qualification is both an art and a science. Sales reps and especially their managers must be trained to identify the potential value in their prospects by both best-fit and business culture types.
With this filter engaged, they can quickly weed out the companies most likely to benefit from their solution or to say “yes.” In this way, upskilling lead qualification abilities leads directly to improved performance and efficiency.
Bad Prospecting and Communication Openers
First impressions matter, so your sales staff should be adequately prepared to make a good one. Memorizing canned sales lines won’t cut it, either, since companies have gotten fatigue after being given “hard sells” for many years.
Instead, sales reps must be able to personalize their communication style to seem friendly, knowledgeable and above all else interested in the success of their customers. Role playing is one of the only ways to build the related skills, but many sales organizations lack the resources to engage in sales role playing training.
To introduce role playing into their skills curriculum, sales teams will need the stakeholder buy-in to support the practice with the needed time and resources.
Antiquated Communication Practices
Maintaining a connection through email remains as difficult as ever. Sometimes the prospect responses come quick enough to qualify as a conversation, but most of the time the email goes cold, requiring significant efforts to restart the discussion.
Sales teams can use more modern tools that acknowledge these limitations and account for them. For instance, our own sales reps use videos via the 2Win Bridge cloud video platform so that they can send leads a personalized video with warm greetings and tailored information rather than a stilted text-only email. These videos not only boost open rates, but they also help foster a relationship even when communication is asynchronous.
Upskilling Through Sales Training
Only sales training can impart the skills needed to avoid the above mistakes and master the best remedies for them. Make sure your team is constantly getting better, or else you may end up surprised at how quickly they fall behind.