How Distributors Improve Customer Retention A common rule of thumb in distribution is that it…
Defined Sales and Marketing Processes Increase Enterprise Value
Shareholders and private equity companies place a value on your distributorship based on your sales history and profitability. One of the key factors that drives a higher valuation multiple on your sales and profit is the ability to demonstrate a predictable and repeatable sales and marketing process.
When your entire team uses a trackable, measurable and repeatable process for revenue growth, they better understand the exact steps needed in each step of their sales cycle. This process makes your company much more valuable than others in your market because shareholders know they can depend on your sales growth figures.
The truth is, your sales and marketing employees are using a process today whether you’ve outlined it for them or not. If you systematize your process for sales and marketing, you have no way of measuring and repeating success. You have no way of knowing which steps they’re taking add value or cost profits. You have no way of knowing which behaviors contribute to success and should be standardized across your teams. Having a distribution-specific CRM and BI platform like SMP in place gives you the tools you need to implement and measure a standardized sales and marketing process.
Areas you want to look at in your process might include:
Creating an outline of your sales milestones for tracking and measurement: Leads, qualification, bids and quotes, references called, negotiations, product demonstration, job-site visits, and of course closed deals. Being able to demonstrate your knowledge of every step of customer acquisition gives your stakeholders more confidence.
Determine areas to automate: Which targeted calls, sales reports, email follow up, vendor contact processes and more should be automated? SMP makes it easy to have processes in place for every deal.
Stay on top of important bids and quotes: SMP designed a special process to follow up on open bids and quotes and SMP users are increasing their close rates by 25% to 30% on average. SMP automatically creates follow up activities for your sales reps for any bid or quote over a certain dollar amount so you never lose track of important deals.
Include key milestones in the relationship: job or project data, shipping and delivery information and requirements, budgets and payment information, scheduling and value-added services, material handling needs and more.
Plan for deepening your relationship with large and strategic opportunities: who are the key contacts, influencers, related companies and vendors that are part of their decision?
Plan for after the sale: Don’t forget post-sale follow-up activities for future account planning, repeat business and increased share of wallet.
Building a Process-Centric, Data-Driven Sales Culture
Building out processes is as much about people as it is technology. That’s why it’s so important to use a CRM and BI platform like SMP that is built specifically for distribution. SMP understands how you run your business and we give you an approach to customer success based on successful, repeatable processes and a data-driven sales culture that helps you manage your processes and drive new revenue.
Distributors amass huge amounts of data. But most of the data that can guide decisions and actions isn’t analytics-ready or accessible. SMP turns that raw data into trusted, actionable data that’s easy to find, current, and immediately available through easy-to-build and easy-to-share dashboards, visualizations and trackable action plans. SMP gives you fast access, agility, automation and more with now advanced data-manipulation or complicated IT support. You can deliver data easily to the right users or create sales activities right in your system to take immediate action when the data calls for it.
You’ll be able to instill the best practices and processes while still giving your reps the data they need to respond quickly to changes and new ideas.