Question: Has your Sales Organisation clearly defined Ideal Customer Profiles – and do your sales executives use these ideal profiles to effectively qualify prospects?
According to our research at ThinkSales Global, only 42.43% Sales Organisations have clearly defined Ideal Customer Profiles for their product offerings.
In addition, only 34,7% of companies rate their confidence as Outstanding that their sales executives use their current Ideal Customer Profiles for their product offerings to effectively qualify prospects.
The ‘Missed Opportunity’ Problem
- There are only a finite number of hours in each day. Who you choose to call on, and for how long, is important. It could mean the difference between spending hours on the phone with no results to show for them, or closing deals and setting up high-value sales meetings. Success lies in whether your sales execs are maximising the use of their time calling on the best opportunities.
- Without a clear customer hierarchy though, it’s impossible for a sales executive to prioritise who they should be spending the most time on.
- Many Sales Organisations take it for granted that their sales executives are prospecting according to the most profitable customer profiles and that managers are monitoring this.
- In reality, this is often not the case. Instead, sales executives waste time and miss opportunities simply because they are focusing on the wrong prospects.
Identify and target ideal customers
The best buyers spend more, buy faster and buy more frequently than other customers. These are the clients your sales organisation must identify and prioritise.
In his book, The Ultimate Sales Machine, author Chet Holmes recounts how he was appointed to run advertising sales for one of Charlie Munger’s magazines. The business had a database of 2 200 prospective advertisers, but after conducting a market analysis, Chet identified that 95% of the advertising in the top four magazines was spent by only 167 of them. That’s 95% of revenue contributed by 7.6% of prospects.
By focusing specifically on these 167 buyers, he was able to sign up 28 of them in his first six months, doubling the magazine’s turnover.
Revenue in the second year was doubled again by servicing these accounts and then bringing in another 30 of the 167 ‘best buyers’.
Revenue in the third year was doubled again by bringing in the balance of the 167 best buyers.
The fastest way to grow your revenue is to focus a special and dedicated effort on your ideal clients.
Solve your ideal customer conundrum
Your sales organisation should:
- Identify ‘ideal customer profiles’ per product, based on characteristics such as industry, segment, revenue band, location, propensity to spend, maturity of business and so on.
- Based on this profile, you can identify high-priority customers for sales executives to pursue.
Sales Managers can then set activity targets such as:
- Number of calls and engagements with new prospects
- Number of interactions and proposals to under-penetrated existing accounts
- Number of pro-active courtesy calls, deal reviews and interactions with existing customers
- Number of calls and engagements with high versus low priority targets
- Lead qualifications completed in accordance with ‘Ideal Customer’ profiles
Assess the health of your sales organisation
Defining ideal customer profiles and then using those profiles to qualify prospects are two of 322 measures of a world-class Sales Organisation.
How does your Sales Organisation stack up? Find out by taking the ThinkSales 5 Pillar Strategic Sales Assessment™.
This first-of-its-kind 360-degree gap analysis report enables your Sales Leadership team to assess its strengths and detect the weaknesses that are impeding your revenue growth across the five pillars of a high performing Sales Organisation:
- Competitive Strategy
- Customer Engagement
- Sales Talent
- Sales Management
- Sales Enablement
Click here for more information on the ThinkSales 5 Pillar Strategic Sales Assessment™.