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Challenger sales model: An in-depth understanding

In one of our previous articles, we talked about 7 tried and tested sales methodologies where we included the Challenger sales model in brief.

This article is purely dedicated to that subject and we will explore it in a little bit of depth.

This methodology is based on the book “The Challenger Sale” by Brent Adamson and Matthew Dixon.

What is the Challenger sales model?

Challenger sales methodology talks about one of the five personality traits (personas) of sales reps i.e, Challengers:

1. Relationship builders
2. Hard workers
3. Lone wolves
4. Reactive problem solvers
5. Challengers

Challengers sales reps are the ones who follow the T-T-T process (more on that later) and add a lot of value to their overall sales numbers.

According to the authors of the book, 39% of the most successful sales reps are challengers. Challenger sales model talks about taking the less-traveled road of challenging the prospect and trying to disrupt their process for a good cause.

You’ll get a better idea when we understand the T-T-T process.

What is the T-T-T process in sales?

T-T-T stands for Teach-Tailor-Take control.

First, the sales rep teaches or makes the prospect aware of a bigger problem or an idea. Something that the prospect is completely unaware of.

Secondly, the sales rep tailors his sales process for the prospect. Everything from the sales pitch to negotiation. He makes sure the discussion is about the larger problem.

Lastly, the rep takes charge of the entire conversation and offers his solution to the prospect at the right point.

Brent Adamson, an author and VP of Gartner, states that the most preferred sales rep persona is “Relationship Builder”.

This is obvious because this persona helps sales reps in building deeper bonds with prospects and customers. But, the relationship-building profile is found in only 7% of star performers.

Building deeper relationships is extremely important, but this can be achieved using the Challenger sales model as well.

As a sales rep, you will find some root problems for the prospect and suggest better solutions.

I mean, that is a very strong base to build a relationship!

So, what exactly does a Challenger sales rep do?

A Challenger sales rep will disrupt the current ideology of the prospect for a good cause. Not to manipulate the prospect into buying his product, but to show them the mirror. A mirror that shows the actual-bigger problem that they are missing.

It’s like; you’re facing a continuous pain in your lower back and you keep popping pills for it.

A Challenger sales rep will show you that your back pain is actually caused by the sitting posture. Then, he will pitch a perfect chair that can solve your problem.

In order to burst the bubble, you have to understand the prospect’s business from the core and deduce the base problem. I believe this attitude of disruption comes from great practice.

The next step is to come up with a tailored sales pitch and negotiation tactics. Everything from this point is purely dedicated to making the prospect understand the problem.

When the prospect understands the negative impacts of this problem – that’s your win!

The third and the last step is to take charge of the conversation and offer your solution.

A lot of sales reps put so much effort into being a good guy that they can’t pitch the product at the right moment. And that’s what makes the star sales reps stand out from the pack.

Here’s a short communication that can help you understand the Challenger sale methodology better:

Build a united sales squad!

Effectively collaborate with team inbox.

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Just like that, you can find out the root problem and suggest the best possible solution that your product can deliver.

Final words

Challenger sales methodology is a unique approach. It assists you in selling your solution to the prospects by finding the right problems.

Obviously, it adds a lot of value to your sales numbers, but it also helps you build better relationships with your customers.

You can even turn your customers into brand promoters.

In this article, we talked about only one methodology. You can read about the other 7 sales methodologies in our previous article.

Kashyap Trivedi

Kashyap Trivedi is working with an awesome marketing team at Salesmate CRM. He is deeply interested in learning digital marketing trends and try them out! When he’s not working, you’ll find him reading a good book or meditating.

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