Live blogging from HME Business Summit: Turbo charge your growth
Mike Sperduti of Emerge Sales on a new era in sales.
The keys to growing include the right products and markets; the right sales structure; and the right sales people.
Sperduti says old school means out of business. So are you going to change and grow, or are you going to leave the business?
HME News conducted a study for Sperduti on sales. Some highlights: 55% say revenues will go up in 2010 compared to 2009; 46% say competitive bidding will have a negative impact on their business (18% say they're not sure); 50% say they have plans to expand their products and services; 59.6% say they're not satisfied with the amount of time their sales people spend building new referral source relationships; 56% say the ability of their sales people to develop new relationships is only adequate.
Sperduti says a formal prospecting program is the single most important initiative you can implement. 99% of sales people hate prospecting. Highly educated and clinical sales people hate it.
The new era of sales is about specialists. Make prospecting the job of people who like it or outsource it. Make closing the job of people who are good at it. Sperduti says in sales we try to make everybody good at everything, but everybody should be doing what they're good at.
Sperduti says building the ultimate sales process includes incorporating business analytics. Create a marketing database. Incorporate customer relationship management (CRM).
He says inside sales (phone, e-mail) is a "strategic weapon." He says, "People don't adopt inside sales because they have the belief that you have to see people face to face. Not all the time. Sometimes. Relationships today are different...I'm not saying this is the end of outside sales, but the majority of interactions in the future won't be face to face."
Outside sales can be costly, from the cost of the gas to get there to the cost of possible lost time if the referral source isn't there or available.
Other aspects of the ultimate sales process include e-mail, Webinars and blogging.
Sperduti says e-mail is very powerful. On every single call that a rep makes, he should say, "May I have your e-mail address to keep you up to date on our products." But it has to be used very smartly. E-mail has become the new junk mail. The title and content needs to be relevant. You have to break through the noise.
In this new era of sales, Sperduti says you need to be a "triple threat." You need to be good on the phone. You need to be good in the office. And you need to be good using technology.