The Sales Playbook: an invaluable resource for new hires and current salespeople alike. Do you have one? Do you use it?
I’m not surprised if the answer is a sheepish “no.” Only 12% of companies report even having a sales playbook, let alone using it to its full potential.
Without a playbook, the sales process is largely guesswork. Without the tools to integrate that playbook into your sales team’s everyday workflow, it’s largely useless.
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The good news is that you can integrate CPQ solutions into your sales playbook for an even more robust resource leading to scalable and predictable results.
Here are six ways to help you more fully integrate CPQ capabilities within your broader sales framework:
1. Roles and Responsibilities
Your playbook lets new hires acclimate quickly to the organization and its operating methodology. Likewise, it keeps current staff walking a straight line so that no bad habits can be formed.
When your CPQ solution becomes a seamless part of your sales playbook, new hires can hit the ground running. Productivity is improved, leads are qualified much more easily and leads can be closed almost instantly.
2. Buyer Personas and Buyer Journey
CPQ takes the guesswork out of this thought process and even provides the proposals and quotes that will appeal most to your target audience. Integrate CPQ into your sales processes and watch a change materialize before your eyes.
Your sales force will learn to ask the right questions about your customers’ needs as well as identify the products, solutions, cross-sells (and up-sells) that prospects will most respond to.
3. Time Management and Day Structuring
A new salesperson’s biggest challenge will doubtless be making the most of his or her time. Days are often wasted contacting lost leads or searching for collateral that might not be the best fit for that particular prospect.
CPQ eliminates these errors by streamlining the sales process. Lead times and sales cycles are drastically reduced, leading to more productive days and more won deals.
Also available if you integrate CPQ within your broader sales framework, sales managers can track the sales force’s activities in real time, ensuring that all days are productive (while also providing advice as to where improvements can be made throughout the process).
4. Products and Pricing
Another challenge new hires typically have to overcome is learning the organization’s entire product catalog. When working with a new prospect, the salesperson needs to know which products will best appeal to the person while also keeping product bundles in mind. That’s a lot to remember.
A CPQ solution eliminates the need for salespeople to have encyclopedic minds. Products and bundles can be recommended at a moment’s notice based on the customer’s needs, and all inventory is tracked in order to reduce order errors.
When it comes to discounts and partner/channel pricing, these can also be calculated automatically without the salesperson having to break a sweat. This leads to customer-friendly (and more accurate) quotes.
5. Sales Process and Planning
Sales managers have to teach salespeople how to qualify leads, how to pitch those leads, provide quotes and all the rest that goes into the typical sales process. Even with experienced sales professionals, there still may be the need to teach them your specific sales process.
With CPQ, all of this information becomes automatic. Leads are qualified and the sales process is structured so that it is automatically tailored to the prospect and his or her needs.
Furthermore, salespeople can discover what’s working for the best sales performers, implementing those processes into their own sales strategies, leading to even more (substantial) deals.
6. Measuring Sales Activity and Results
Your sales playbook should include ways for your salespeople to track their sales metrics, which includes the leads they’re qualifying and the deals they’re closing.
If you integrate CPQ into your playbook, this information is plugged in by default – reducing human error and allowing sales managers to keep on top of their teams from home base.
With the proper metrics being tracked, sales managers can provide even more effective guided selling along with accurate and reasonable sales goals and quotas. The result is a far more successful sales organization.
Do you have a sales playbook? Do you plan on putting one together?
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