How to Boost Sales Revenues and Profits – 10 Ways You Could Be Leaving Money with the Buyer…
You’ll know I’m a keen advocate of delivering exceptional value – just check out these two posts to see what ‘delivering value’ is and what it could mean for your business if you decide to go down that route and commit to building a business that never has to worry about finding prospects, customers, clients or buyers ever again.
Just hit the links:
Today, I want to share with you some of the situations you might see within your business that mean you’re not ABLE to fully realise and collect the revenues and profits your business is rightly due, meaning that you’re 100% guilty of business foul number 1! Leaving Money on the Table
So you can get out of this guilty position ASAP and fully practice how to boost sales revenues and profits, I’ve added some insights you can bring into play in your business…starting today.
I’ve collected these insights from real life client scenarios over the last 20 years or so, see if you’re falling foul of any of the same profit draining situations, and find out what you can do to stop.
Here we go:
How to Boost Sales Revenues and Profits
1. Sell to Your Sales Team Before You Sell to Your Buyer.
The company has a super product/service and it delivers a high level of value to buyers MOST of the time, the reason it’s not ALL of the time is simply this; no-one’s really taken the time and effort to explain the concept of value to the sales team so that the sales team can fluently deliver and articulate the high level of value for ALL buyers.
You see, if the sales guy thinks every competitor is offering the same level of value to the prospective buyer, he’s going to have a hard time selling his company as the best choice, whereas, if the sales guy knows…
a. the absolute differences in value offered by his company versus the competition and
b. what that value means to the buyer…
Then you can see how the sell becomes, firstly, much easier, secondly, more profitable and finally, more relevant, engaging and potent for the buyer.
2. Are the Marketing Team Onside?
You’ll never be able to fully realise your sales pipelines worth if they’re not.
Sales messages evolve with their telling.
Marketing messages tend to be quite static – think about it, the website, the brochure, the events pack, the corporate communication series.
Make sure marketing a supporting the most up to date, consistent, value laden message they can, supporting the sales message as it evolves.
Too often is the marketing plan agreed and then delivered to the sales team to make a reality.
Sales people are the agents of change, sales people are customer facing 80% of the time, if marketing wants to know what’s going on and what messages to be pumping out consistently through all of the channels, talk to the sales team.
Markets change fast. Client needs change faster. Trends come and go.
Sales knows this, marketing shouldn’t be playing catch up.
3. What’s ‘Value’ Really Mean?
If your business uses ‘Value’ as a global term then you might want to think about this:
The value of a chocolate bar is wildly different depending on whether it’s being viewed by an extreme sports person or a diabetic sufferer.
The term ‘Value’ has no value (no pun intended) unless it’s relevant to that specific buyer.
‘Delivering high value’ means very little in real terms.
We all use it.
We all know what it means, but the real benefits come when you articulate ‘value’ in such a way that your buyer immediately gets your product/service as the solution to his problem…without that, you’re most likely in a highly competitive price driven market where your profits and turnover is restricted by definition of you being one of many suppliers.
4. Innovation and Value Creation Comes From Everywhere
There is no single department or function in your business responsible for creating value.
Likewise it’s unfair that all the expertise around knowing how to boost sales revenues and profits should sit within the sales team.
In fact, you could consider that creating real and sustainable value, the type of value your competitors can’t mimic is the by-product of hundreds of very simple business improvement steps in each department…something you might want to consider while you’re putting out the suggestions box, sending out the ‘we want ideas’ email or simply talking to your ground floor workers and divisional teams…
Great ideas come from everyone and everywhere…your job is to make sure the correct combination of great ideas see the light of day…and land in your buyers consciousness
Nut shell – it’s everyone’s job to create value, it’s everyone’s job to know how to boost sales revenues and profits. No exceptions.
5. Value is NOT Just About Your Product or Service
When you think about how to boost sales revenues and profits, it’s easy to think it’s just he job of the sales person to do that when they negotiate price.
Value could be delivered and realised via any number of your business functions from Human Resources to Purchasing, from IT to Resourcing and Logistics…and beyond.
When you really understand how your buyers work and what their problems are, only then can you pass the responsibility for the solution through the supply chain or across the business.
That makes creating value sound time consuming and expensive (more on that later), that’s not always the case…it could be as simple as your returns policy, your delivery schedule, your customer service pledge, your SLA’s.
Sure, your competitors may be able to copy these elements of value very easily, that’s why embedded value based combinations are best if you’re wanting to create value as part of your strategic competitive advantage…but you have to start somewhere, so make it simple to start.
6. Who Knows Most?
Sales teams and people across the rest of the business invariably know their products and their bits of the supply chain process better than anyone else, and that’s great. You need that level of specialism.
But, great things happen when team of multi skilled professionals take on a challenge to solve a buyers problem.
That’s when the real magic starts to come through.
You see, typically what happens is the sales guy sells the solution to the buyer and then goes back to convince the business to deliver.
That’s fraught with pain, profit drain, mismatched expectation and trauma. It’s bad news!
Instead think about educating the rest of the business with the nature, extent, cost and implication of the buyers problem, and let the business propose the solution for the sales guy to deliver.
Now, that route has momentum, and most likely is a better solution by virtue of the high level and expert input.
You see, when you’re really serious about how to boost sales revenues and profits, you need to make some changes, you need to look at how you work, how you serve the customer, the buyer, how you support the customer and buyer interfaces..
Get this right and it’s a double win for the business as the business is being continually informed…so innovation is as natural as breathing.
7. Be Different or Die
Don’t expect any buyer to take your claim of delivering high levels of value if your proposition is identical to that of your competitors…just don’t.
If you’re value proposition is not robust enough then either sort it out OR resign yourself to discounting to win business. That’s your choice. There is no other.
When you’re looking at how to boost sales revenues and profits being the same as every other supplier’s just not an option you can afford to take…
I’ve had a number of contracts and consultancy project where the opening briefing session is: how to boost sales revenues and profits.
Sometimes this is tougher than it should be…
I struggle with businesses and business people, function heads, staff and employees at all levels that aren’t EXCEPTIONALLY curious about everything.
Asking questions to help understanding and push boundaries. Expanding thinking and problem solving has got to be the biggest skill we have as humans.
So why do so few businesses remain curious?
Simple: They don’t recruit curious people. They don’t recruit avid problem solvers.
You can’t teach someone to be curious. Teach someone to want to solve problems? Forget it. You just can’t.
Sure, you can give them the skill set to do it, of course you can. And they can often do it well, but they just don’t WANT to do it.
You can’t make then naturally want to do it.
And…what’s even worse, when the curious problems solvers are out numbered by the ‘happy as we are’ crew…you know what happens then?
9. Really Use Your CRM….(for a change!)
If you really want to know how to boost sales revenues and profits then you should get an expert view of building your CRM as a major sales asset, knowledge back and well as sales generator and prospect store.
In the meantime…
When your prospective buyer is in the sales funnel and the sales pipeline – label the buyer by the problem then have. This ensures that anyone accessing this information has sight of what the challenge is.
It’s also fab for spotting trends. For opening up new sectors. Creating an asset mass/knowledge base as well as focusing the mind of internal and external representatives.
It changes the focus of the sales meeting from – ‘have we closed that deal yet?’ to ‘how far are we from solving that buyers problem?’
Try it…let me know
10. So, Worth the Bother or Waste of Time?
Let’s say you have a prospective buyer in the metal castings industry, he has a specific problem. You bring your company experts together to solve that problem. It may take a half day, it may take some follow up over a few weeks, it may take up 5 man days in total. That has a cost.
A cost that can’t be ignored.
So let’s assume that the problem gets solved and the buyer is happy. Problems solved but profit eroded by the cost of those 5 man days.
How do you ever get that back?
- Well maybe that solution is appropriate to other metal casting firms?
- Can you use this to enter a new, or develop an existing market sector?
- Maybe that solution is also valuable to associate/similar industries?
- Would this solution open doors and conversations with some of your choice TOP 100 prospects?
- Is there value in creating a marketing case study, a white paper from this solution?
- Can you speak at trade or associating exhibitions about your problem solving skills and showcase this as an example?
- Will this delighted buyer be able to refer you around?
- Could you develop a branding angle based on this?
You see, 5 man days may mean a lot…but it’s an investment to be realised, should you choose to do so.
BUT, what about if you don’t solve the problem and you don’t win the client. Oh, goodness, 5 man days wasted…but what did you learn?
Chances are, if you know it’s a no go-er, you’d know well before 5 days, so you might be looking at 2 days. And you’ll have learned a lot.
Plus you can go to your buyer with a best case solution. Would your competitors do that?
Only you can know…
The truth is you may still win the deal, since if you can’t solve it, could it be fair to say, that your competitors can’t either?
I think so.
So – how to boost sales revenues and profits…that’s one way of looking at it.
You might also like to think about it in terms of building a robust asset, skill set, mentality and culture in your business. All this sets you aside from your competitors and allows you to charge in line with the value you deliver.
That’s you call.
So, while you’re thinking …here’s a quick summary for you;
How to Boost Sales Revenues and Profits
A business that strives to create a compelling and highly competitive value propositions does so:
1. Across every business department and function
3. By being open to new ideas, insights and tests extensively before accepting or rejecting
4. By being focussed on the customer’s problems and not their own products or services
5. By rewarding creative thinking, problem solving, initiative, curiosity and having a challenging mind set
6. By not having a blame culture but one that welcomes insight, information, learning and wisdom
7. By displaying open communication, sharing, transparency and flexible working across the business
8. By being and staying close to their markets, prospects and customers
9. By being commercially astute, opportunistic, ambitious and aware of trends before they happen, is a leader not a follower
10. By being strategically alert and open, knowing that luck happens but design makes it real.
And the really good news if you want to boost sales revenues and profits is that by applying the above you don’t necessarily have to engage with more prospects. Instead you simply need to engage on a different level. In a different way and think about the solution before the sale.
How to Boost Sales Revenues and Profits
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I hope you enjoyed ‘How to Boost Sales Revenues and Profits’. If you have any questions just send an email to email@example.com, with the subject header – Question:How to Boost Sales Revenues and Profits. I’ll come straight back to you.
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