Recently I decided that one of my goals for 2012 will be to help improve the perception of B2B Sales.  Many people have a bad perception of the role and the people in that role.  One of the things that helps to feed this is the thought that people are born to be in sales.  I feel that Sales is more Science than Art.  That is not saying that there are some people that are better suited for sales, but there is still process that is involved.  Here are my favourite sales processes that can help make the sales effort more effective.

Path to sales success. These are the steps in the sales process from the start of an engagement until the customer is rolled out.  This is one of the key actions every B2B organization should have formalized.  It is hard to ensure the sales team is moving in the right direction without a plan.  We wrote a series of blogs on our suggested path to sales success.

Meeting Plan.  A sales meeting with a target prospect is one of the best activities to help drive through to a close.  There should be almost as much time planning for the meeting as being spent in the meeting.  Creating a meeting plan and ensuring the customers’ expectations, your goals, and the proper next steps are outlines.  For more detail on a meeting plan, check out an earlier blog post.

Use a CRM.  A CRM should be used for the smallest and largest organizations to help with their sales efforts.  The tool does not just store accounts and contacts but can also be used to plan future opportunities, store strategic account plans, keep track of opportunities, and to help share information within the team.  An earlier blog from us on CRM highlights.

Research and be prepared. Understanding your best target companies and contacts can help to lead to a higher probability of success.  Some time spent researching targets and helping to link their needs to your benefit and solution is time well spent.  For some research tips here is a link to an earlier blog.

For more information about how you can make the shift in Marketing for your team, or for help getting your Marketing efforts off the ground, take a look at how we can help. For more information on VA Partners, visit our website.