Sales playbooks not only enable better selling, but embed sales into the overall organization. They are indispensable in sales management.
A Editorial of the FOM Magazine
How efficient is your sales department? This question is not so easy to answer!
But one thing you have surely observed: The individual success of your sales staff differs greatly. Some are "better" than others. But what is the reason for this? Does sales success depend on individual talent or rather on organizational structures?
Sales organization as the key to success
Talent, aptitude and individual personality can certainly promote sales success. But organizational factors are drastically underestimated. Companies must therefore provide their sales staff with the right tools and structures to maximize their chances of success.
For this purpose, there are sales playbooks that transform sales meetings into FOMs through structure. Playbooks are scripts with detailed instructions for preparing, conducting, and following up on sales meetings. Now they are also available for online sales!
Sales playbooks in online sales management
In operational sales, sales playbooks provide assistance to employees. They are integrated as plugins into video chat software such as Zoom or Microsoft Teams so that employees can use tools such as interactive meeting agendas, sales scripts or scheduling tools directly in one software. This minimizes multitasking with multiple tools.
However, sales playbooks also play an important role in the efficiency of the overall organization by embedding individual sales calls into organizational workflows.
A study by software company Salesforce found that companies with sales playbooks generate 33 percent more revenue and are more than 50 percent more likely to succeed in individual sales calls. These numbers speak for themselves!
Interdepartmental linking of sales management
Sales playbooks also provide links to other, non-sales departments.For example, many sales organizations require smooth interaction between the sales and legal departments, such as in the creation of contracts.
Inefficient workflows between the sales and legal departments can slow deal closing, reducing the likelihood of success.
Sales playbooks can show sales staff at the sales meeting where input from the legal department is needed, who exactly they need to contact, and what they need to tell customers from a legal perspective. In this way, legal aspects are incorporated into the sales process right from the start.
Reduce onboarding time with sales playbooks
Employee turnover is above average, especially in sales teams. According to a
survey of 350 B2B software-as-a-service companies by Bridge Group, the turnover rate in software sales averages 34 percent. One in ten companies even has a turnover rate of over 55 percent.
High employee turnover is very expensive for sales organizations. On average, it takes 5.3 months for new sales reps to reach their required productivity level - if they ever do, because only 67 percent of all sales reps meet their sales goals.
Sales playbooks can also make the sales organization more efficient during onboarding: They contain all the essential information from sales scripts to frequently asked questions and the corresponding answers, established best practices and the learnings of other employees.
With the right playbooks, new sales reps can meet their targets in as little as six weeks.
Sales management requires a well-maintained CRM
A sales organization stands and falls with its customer relationship management (CRM).
Sales employees must be able to access CRM databases during pre- and post-sales activities in order to obtain the necessary information. Marketing and customer service managers also depend on a well-maintained CRM system to provide the database they need to do their jobs.
Maintaining CRM databases is often not a priority for sales staff, who by their very nature would prefer to go straight into the next meeting. Sales Playbooks therefore provide them with the necessary reminders at the appropriate points as to when they need to enter which information where.
The result is a well-maintained CRM database and a more efficient overall organization.
Sales organization as a learning organism
In sales teams, there is often fierce competition, and in some cases this is also what management wants. Sales managers must therefore ensure that, despite competition, all learning is shared across the organization.
Sales playbooks are learning organisms. They are continuously developed based on new learnings and best practices.
Ideally, all employees involved in the sales process meet regularly to discuss changes and improvements to the playbook. This ensures that processes are improved not only at the level of the individual employee, but across the entire organization.
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