A competitive market is a never-changing scenario, and so is the fight for having better sales than your competitor. Sales – is the world giving sleepless nights to millions of people around the globe. Organizations across the world invest a lot of time, effort, and resources into the development of marketing strategies and innovating services and products.
Coaching the sales reps is one of the most trusted sales leadership ideas. Take a look at the following screenshot to have an idea of the kind of efforts that are invested in boosting sales.
But the efficacy of even such sales leadership programs depends upon:
- The willingness of the professionals to learn
- The kind of stats, data, and insights covered in the coaching program
Doing all the above-mentioned things to boost your sales is essential – but they all live or die by what happens when a seller meets a buyer.
It’s just that it is rare to see businesses across all sectors work on their brand. All they actually care about is sales. But the same business owners forget that if they have a brand image, then they’ll surely reach their sales target too.
The reality is that the biggest brands in the world never sell themselves. They brand their products and services. The best example is Apple. The company never told people to buy their phones or laptops. It showed them how great it would be to own an Apple product. It offered glimpses of photos, videos, and other accomplishments an iPhone owner can enjoy. Their ads brand an entire experience for the users and tell the customers what kinds of joy owning an Apple product can bring.
Similar is the case with Pepsico. As per the global brand expert, Kevin Keller, the brand has a tangible book value of 6.5 billion US dollars. But its market value surpasses 90 billion US dollars. Of this huge amount, 83 billion US dollars are attributed to the intangible assets of the brand i.e. brand equity.
So, building a brand is of consequence when it comes to discussing the future of sales leadership. Especially in the times when 73% of customers use more than one channel while purchasing some product.
In this article, we aim to help readers learn how they can work on the next big idea in sales leadership – brand building.
Before we explore the best ways of building a brand, let us find out what makes it one of the most crucial sales leadership ideas.
Why is brand building the new sales leadership idea?
Customers today are well-informed and have no dearth of options. They might fill their online shopping carts and then return back to the research phase without making a purchase.
So, the traditional sales funnel approach is an outdated model that doesn’t cut out in the current scenario. The journey of a customer from one phase of purchase to another has become non-linear and fast. Further, the amount of information to be considered has increased considerably.
Want more proof? Take a look at the coverage on the failure of brands to deliver personalized experiences to their customers. 75% of customers purchase products from a brand that knows them and their purchase history.
Hence, if your destination is boosting sales trends, then brand awareness is the shortest path!
Now that we have agreed upon the importance of brand building for sales conversion let us find out the best practices to establish your brand.
7 practices to help you establish your brand
Check out these 7 solid practices to establish your brand:
1. Help sales leaders develop strong skills
As per the studies, Nike took 14 years to hit the $100M sales mark. Lululemon took 9 years to reach there, and UnderArmour took 8. And surprisingly, Dollar Shave Club, Casper, and ClassPass hit the mark in just 3 years!
Apart from the bevy of other factors that played a key role in defining this timeline, there is one thing that stands out – training the Sales Leaders.
Back in the time, when Nike started, consumers were not informed. They didn’t have access to high-speed internet and smart digital devices to explore other options and choose. Thus, the job of sales and marketing professionals was easier.
As time progressed, the competition got fierce, and customers became the single-most entity driving sales trends. This called for coaching the sales leaders on the basis of knowledge repositories formulated on the basis of previous examples and experiences.
The market stats and data from all over the world helped them to come up with impressive and customer-oriented sales leadership ideas. Hence, the result!
Having a strong coaching culture and worthwhile coaching program in place is essential to help sales leaders to develop strong skills.
2. Get your support stack in place
The future of sales leadership lies in the hands of an impeccable multi-channel customer service system. Offering support across multiple channels such as social media, chats, calls, email, etc. is one of the most important pre-requisites of having a support system.
Next, the ability to gather information from all these sources, put it in one place, employ that information to understand the customer demands, and create a consolidated customer profile are also crucial.
Finally, tapping this unstructured data for actionable insights into customer behavior, preferences, and purchase history to offer personalized experiences is a must. So, a perfect future-ready live chat software helps you accomplish a lot to cater to customers’ needs like a pro!
If you proactively send a personalized shopping offer list to your customers based on their purchase history, they are bound to feel valued and will shop with your brand. Consumers relate to your brand in four ways – sensory, behavioral, affective, and intellectual. So, make sure that your business has the perfect customer support stack in place to provide help at all levels.
Your support bundle should be inclusive of the following platforms:
Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
Store your qualified leads and customer details in your favorite sales CRM tool to make sure you have all the data in hand. Not only will it help your operators track customer journeys but also enable them to offer product and service suggestions to customers. In short, you will get more upsell and cross-sell opportunities.
Everything from managing deals to building everlasting relationships!
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Live chat software
Add the best live chat software available on the market, like ProProfs Chat to the support mixture to make sure that you do not let your inquisitive website visitors go without an answer. You can even initiate a chat with your customers proactively and make sure that they get instant resolution to their problems hassle-free.
Help Desk Software
Use help desk software to never miss out on a single customer support opportunity. Just in case you miss out on a chat or even an email, a help desk software will help you track them easily with a single dashboard view. So all your customer-facing emails can be tracked with the help of a shared team inbox feature.
Another support tool that can help your customers and site visitors arrive at a firm decision is the knowledge base. With its use, you can answer frequently asked questions and encourage customers to take action.
Be available to your customers, offer omnichannel support, listen to them, and work towards delivering proactively curated personalized customer experiences. Future customers are savvier than the current ones, so the brands should also be savvy.
3. Improve sales pipeline quality
75% of ‘one size fits all’ sales methodologies fail. In the digital age, marketing and sales pipeline are more data-driven and require consistent work to stay market-relevant. The leaders believe that the best sales reps are agile.
Future of sales leadership is bright for the sales reps that have the following four agile characteristics:
- Agile diagnostics
- Agile insight
- Agile Training
- Agile Execution
These four empower the sales reps to devise a formal sales process that drives the revenue growth by improving the sales pipeline.
Follow up with your customers, identify the best leads, and dead leads. Drop the dead leads and monitor pipeline metrics for a pulse check of your pipeline quality. Opt for short sales cycles and update (or review) your pipeline processes regularly. These are some of the best practices to improve sales pipeline quality.
Monitor your pipeline metrics for agile diagnostics of pipeline-revenue relationship. Update and review your pipeline processes regularly to drop dead leads, find the best leads, and offer content accordingly.
Manage multiple pipelines all at once!
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4. Work on improving your sales team’s EQ
Customers don’t want to talk to recorded responses. We agree that sales automation is essential in the wake of digital transformation and to free-up time for more crucial tasks. But if you ignore your customers’ sentiments while offering support, you are bound to lose them. Coach your sales team to look at a customer as a live human being and not just a lifeless lead. Check out what experts say about having humanistic automation in the workplace.
Connect to your customers at an emotional level to gain a loyal lead. Conversion comes after brand reputation. If you treat your customers with genuine sincerity, they are bound to respond accordingly.
5. Boost Brand Visibility With Content Strategy
Be visible to your customers. Offer interactive content marketing, connect to your customers’ content bundles that offer relevant information to them based on their profiles, and purchase history. Be responsive to customer feedback and their search histories. Don’t ignore their calls on social media and respond to every query they raise.
Tesla, JetBlue Airways, Tesco, and Amazon are some of the finest examples when it comes to brand visibility and content.
Be visible to your customers and keep offering content that motivates them to keep choosing you for a purchase or subscription.
6. Work on strategies to retain existing customers
Retaining an existing customer is five times cheaper than acquiring a new one. Further, a mere increase of 5% in customer retention rates increases the profits by 25% to 95%. So, it is important to retain existing customers and work towards acquiring new customers. Existing customers add value to your brand. These customers become brand advocates and offer recommendations to their friends and families. These recommendations drive sales conversions.
Don’t spend five times more in gaining a new customer by letting the existing customers leave. Customer churn can devastate your sales trends. So, improve your customer retention rates.
7. Assist your employees to achieve a balanced work-life integration
Work towards attaining a healthy and motivating work culture where your sales reps can thrive. Instead of rewarding the numbers or quantity, reward the quality of work. Be an all-inclusive workplace where employees would love to work. Develop a work culture where employees can enjoy a healthy work-life balance. Families and friends are also important, and there is a life outside the walls of the office.
Instead of making your sales department a battleground of target wars and numbers, work towards making it a collaborative work environment. Collaboration brings out the best of every team member.
This brings us to the end of our discussion. We hope that all our readers realize the importance of brand building and the way it drives sales trends.
So, build a brand that leaves a legacy, for numbers are just another record that will be beaten one day!