Your sales people ARE the brand

There can be debates in sales circles about who owns the customer: the business or the salesperson?

While we may not get consensus on the topic, it's an indisputable fact that your salespeople, at the very least, own the immediate relationship with the customer, and thus can make or break any sale.

Imagine two scenarios:

Scenario 1
You've invested millions of dollars into marketing. Your brand has a strong reputation, and you're considered an industry leader. So when prospects think of buying a product in your category, you're the first vendor they call. So far so good.

From this point forward, however, the control is removed from your hands and placed in those of your sales people (including your distributors). And if they don't know how to sell, if they don't know how to establish a relationship, communicate value and effect closure, then all your marketing effort is for naught.

Scenario 2
You've invested hardly any money in marketing. Your brand reputation is actually poor. But somehow you get leads and your salespeople get with prospects. If the salespeople are good, if they can do the things described in Scenario 1 above, then you're likely to get a sale.

The point is this: While your marketing dollars can put in some of the initial hard yards, it will take the ability of your people on the ground to get you across the goal line. This is why your people are your brand.

And as we covered in Why the sales process never stops, "your people" are not limited to your sales team... it's all your people: customer service, technical support, accounts payable and especially customer-facing employees. So before sending your salespeople into the field, before customer service reps take calls, before technical support goes on service calls, be sure they undergo a sales training program so that they know how to communicate, aka sell, thus ensuring the customer account is properly looked after and the health of your relationship is sustained.
Posted: 4/21/2010 12:30:49 AM by Brett Morris | with 0 comments
Filed under: communication, sales, salespeople, selling, skills, training
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