At the 2015 Chief Sales Executive Forum over 250 executives gathered to learn more about how Sales Motions Connect Customers to Value. A sales motion is:
“…the combination of messages, activities and resources, that taken together, forge the ideal coverage solution for a particular revenue segment.”
The Forum explored how leading companies are building the capability to deliver three distinct sales motions to more effectively serve three very different revenue segments:
Such segmentation enables deeper understanding of customer needs and expectations. As well, it helps sales leaders take steps to serve their customers better. Here are some of the moves that speakers at the Forum indicated they were making:
- Use Buyer Expectations to Deploy More Precisely. Companies are shifting expensive sales resources away from the Price Segment and the Fulfillment Motion. They are redeploying them to serve Solution-Oriented customers with Innovation and Advocacy motions, where selling expertise makes a difference.
- Act like the Customer Experience Starts Before the Sale. Don’t wait for a “lead.” Create a dialog. Companies are targeting functional executives with value propositions that explain how their products and services can improve business results. They engage these executives long before any expressed interest in “buying.” Sales is judging Marketing less on the number of “leads” produced and more on its ability to support value-based positioning among functional executives.
- Leverage Inside Sales. Inside Sales is getting ramped up to both cover the Fulfillment segment AND to team with Account Sellers in serving customers before and after the sale. Mission: deliver an improved customer experience.
- Invest to Enhance Seller Acumen. Learning about what customers demand is translating into new training and mentoring initiatives. Sellers need to deliver more value … companies must enable them to do so.
- Invest to Enhance FLSM Acumen too. The role of the Front Line Sales Manager in mentoring new behaviors and teaching new skills among sellers is critical. This position is receiving increasing levels of investment to enhance its capability to transform seller behavior.
- Build “SMARKETING” Capabilities. New processes that bring Sales and Marketing closer together to leverage their complimentary skills are beginning to emerge. This includes teaming on segmentation, value propositions, sales tools, customer research … even product innovation. As the walls around these two functions come down, their collaborative efforts are sometimes referred to as “smarketing.”
Interested in a deeper dive? Contact AGI to arrange an executive briefing on key learning from the 2015 CSEF.