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Let's be honest; managing a sales team can be tricky. When you have a growing team, there comes the need to onboard and train new hires. While you do the work to lay the foundation for new team members, you've got to keep consistency across your reps in mind.
Obviously, this is going to take quite a bit of time out of your business sales manager schedule. How can you speed up the training process and get some quick wins for sales team?
Sales Playbooks are a really useful tool for quickly getting your reps on the same page and standardising your sales and support activities.
Sales Playbooks help you control and organise the data your teams are collecting (persona type, company size, etc.)
Sales Playbooks outline scripts to ensure sales reps are getting across the key points of your product/service and benefits you offer. They also work for structuring note-taking formats so your other members of staff can easily find and reference information collected by others in the team.
And they can be used to guide your entire team on how to conduct prospecting calls, qualifying calls, onboarding calls and on supporting enquiries based on best practice.
To create an effective Sales Playbook, you'll need input from anyone who deals with your customers in a sales role (especially your top salespeople), along with team members who help create and understand your products, their benefits, and how to explain both to other people.
You can create Sales Playbooks for your entire sales process, or it might be the case that you just need them for particular parts of the sales process.
If you're struggling to qualify leads properly then maybe focus on the questions and steps your sales team should take to identify whether a lead is qualified and worth pursuing.
It might be that your reps are struggling to get across the key benefits of your product, in which case you should create playbooks on understanding benefits and presenting them effectively.
With anything related to your inbound sales and marketing, you should also carry out a content audit of your existing material (including onboarding documents or training) so you can improve what your teams are working with.
Not sure what to include? In short, as much information as possible to help your sales team do their job better.
For example, give team members an overview of your company, how you're teams are structured, targets they need to meet, who to ask for help, and whatever other relevant information comes to mind.
This would be particularly useful for new members of your sales team to get a better understanding of how their job will work and get them up to speed faster. You could include projected career progression if you want.
You'll definitely need to include information about every product your company sells, or at least the ones each team will be responsible for.
This doesn't just mean a list of functions and features.
Spell out the benefits and how your products help prospects overcome problems so your teams know what messages they need to get across.
You should include this, based on best practice or how your high performing sales reps work. Every company says they have a sales process, but the problem with not writing it down is no-one can reference it and inevitably some people will start doing their own thing, even if it's not working.
Put your sales process down in black and white and make sure your teams stick with it.
Information in this part should include every step.
Including what to you if your sales team has to have more than one interaction with a lead. For instance, lay out how long they should wait to contact someone again, and even make it clear what kind of communication they should use (phone call, email, or LinkedIn message).
Also, try to include examples of how you expect your sales reps to deal with situations.
We've all been on those day courses where you have to act out or role play certain scenarios.
The reason we all eye roll at the thought of them is because while they're awkward and uncomfortable at the time, we also know they've been invaluable as well.
Instead, you can use recordings of your best salespeople on the phone for example to show other team members how to do it.
Finally, if you're using a CRM, make sure the details of how to use it are included in your Playbook.
Yes, this seems like a lot of work. And initially it will be.
But it won't take long before you start to see some quick wins paying off.
Whether it's your sales team making more calls and connections because they're spending less time chasing down information, or making more sales because they have a better understanding how to sell your products - you'll very quickly start to see some benefits.
This bit is going to sound simple, because it is.
You tell us what an ideal engagement look like for you, and we will translate them into useable, useful Sales Playbooks in a few minutes using a mixture of:
And that's it.
After that, you'll have your Sales Playbook.
The reason that sounds so simple, is because we took time to create our own playbook on this process based on what we found works best.
So, we can tell you from experience that playbooks work, and work quickly.
While creating a Sales Playbook will help you in the short term, if you don't keep coming back to it, updating it, reviewing and refining it then it will eventually become obsolete and of no value.
Your Sales Playbooks should evolve over time as your own processes and best practices do.
Sales Playbooks are obviously just one thing you can do to see some quick wins for your business' sales and marketing. Check out our guide to frictionless sales for more top tips.
We’d love to learn more about what’s brought you to the Six & Flow website. If you’re interested in learning more about how we can potentially help you and your organisation, get in touch.