Closing the Sale? 7 Ways Managers Can Help
by Mathias Thulin, on December 09, 2016
Closing the sales feels great and grows your business - is there a better feeling in the world?
Your sales reps spend the majority of their time qualifying leads, building trust, establishing credibility, and negotiate the terms, all in the hopes of closing the sale. And if the deal size is in the hundreds of thousands or millions, the stakes are even higher.
- Investing resources and finances in custom sales collateral
- Winning over and influencing multiple decision makers with competing interests
- Long sales cycles
- No points for second place
But winning these deals can reap tremendous benefits! Your company now has a reputable market leader that they can reference to win more work, and the additional revenue increases morale and fuels business growth.
We talked to sales leaders from around the world and came up with this list of 7 ways managers can help their reps when closing the sale.
1 - Clarify key terms of the agreement and avoid vague language
Spend the extra time having legal counsel review the proposal and helping clarify terms, so that the contract does not stay in legal review for a long time. The last thing you want is the execution of the contract held up for months as the legal teams seek clarification on vague or ambiguous terms.
“The steps in between obtaining a lead and signing a contract are numerous, and they require multiple people in different roles to play a part. One of the most crucial parts of closing a sales deal is legal review. There can be an inordinate amount of back and forth when reviewing contracts. Members of the sales, legal, and security teams are all involved.” - Trello blog
2 - Use digital data and social media to determine next steps and communications
Every company should have analytics on their proposals and contracts. What are the most important things to track?
- When the documents are opened
- Who is opening the document
- How long the documents are being read
- What sections are being reviewed most often
- Do they forward the document to other new influencers
3 - Create a sense of urgency with a buyer-centric mindset
The old school model of scaring a prospect with FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) type language simply does not work in today’s social and connected environment. However, reps can be coached to communicate the value of your offering in ways that moves the buyer to action.
When we talk with our users about how GetAccept solves their most pressing sales problems, they bring up the visibility into the pipeline and the insights that they can glean from our document analytics capabilities. These insights allows our users to coach their reps to new levels of performance in their communications which translates to closing deals faster.
To set a timebox that supports this sense of urgency, ask the prospect what date they can commit to a decision. This is a more personalized approach than using the expiration date of the proposal as your only constraint.
4 - Leverage marketing and IT resources to fill in knowledge or data gaps
Big deals often require the approval of a number of decision makers, each with their own set of criteria and needs that need to be satisfied. The last thing you want to get in your way when you are ready to close is competition between departments for credit, or impersonal messages being sent from an antiquated marketing list. And it almost goes without saying, but make sure your sales automation tool has a robust API to support bi-directional dynamic synchronization of data wherever possible!
5 - Maintain contact to understand if there any hidden blockers or objections
The final interactions you have before a deal is closed must be strategic and purposeful; merely checking in or following up with no other plan than to see if the prospect is ready to sign is not productive. Retargeting and SMS (both available in the GetAccept product), ensures the decision makers involved in signing the proposal are thinking about the deal even when you are not talking directly. Like one of our customers said “When I discuss using SMS with the client in the end of the sales process, I know that deal gets closed.”
6 - Equip and encourage them to be confident
A posture of confidence among your reps is arguably as valuable as their training and expertise. In today’s digital world where nearly everything can be tracked and measured, you owe it to your reps to use data to fuel their confidence. Historical data can also be used to spot trends in your reps behaviors that can be amplified or minimized depending on whether it leads to more closed deals. And let them have fun! GetAccept’s video messaging tool allows reps to create and share personalized content quickly and easily that will surprise the potential customer.
7 - Lighten their admin load so they can focus on the prospect
The best sales managers create resource libraries, model and teach time management skills, and limit meetings so that their reps can focus on their primary assignment. The mental benefits of reduced overhead in meetings or admin activities can be huge - and will translate to a fresh mind that will be able to stay flexible and communicate effectively under stress.
Which number stands out to you?
We love how our product has been able to make such an impact in our user’s sales process, and would be happy to answer any questions or take you through a demo.