There are plenty of brilliant people in the world that have uttered many brilliant words. Here are a few quotes not initially intended to help B2B sales consultants; however, upon additional review they do!
“Concentration is the key to economic results. No other principles of effectiveness is violated as constantly today as the basic principle of concentration.”
Peter F. Drucker
Application for B2B sales: This Drucker quote can be directly applied to Account List Management. The best sales organizations use a system that adds focus and concentration on accounts based on spending level. Here’s an overview of an account list management system used by world class sales organizations:
KEY Accounts: High priority customers that represent the top 25% of the customer count and 75% of the organization’s revenue. These customers are extremely important and should be treated accordingly.
TARGET Prospects: New business prospects—or target prospects—should be scrutinized using a filter that includes the following:
- Spending potential
- Access to the decision maker
- Product fit
SECONDARY Accounts: Low priority customers represent 75% of the customer count yet only 25% of the organization’s revenue. These small spending and often needy customers can suck the life out of an organization because when you spend too much time here, you neglect your KEY accounts and TARGET accounts.
EXTRA Prospects: Think of these as target prospects of the future!
Simply put, the first step to adding the power of concentration to an organization is to install and use an account list management system, and use it on an going basis to track and monitor progress with customers—specifically with KEY and TARGET accounts.
“A problem well stated is a problem half-solved.”
Charles F. Kettering
Application for B2B sales: Understanding the needs of customers—especially KEY and TARGET accounts—is extremely important for the following reasons:
- It lets customers know you care
- It creates sales opportunities
- It helps sellers create customized ideas and proposals to solve customer problems
The first step to understanding customer needs is to conduct a needs analysis. This type of non-selling sales activity should occur on a regular basis.
"Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new."
Application for B2B sales: Fear of failure is often the most significant hurdle struggling sales organizations deal with when tackling the concept of change. Too many organizations would rather continue practicing unproductive behaviors—also known as doing things the “way we’ve always done it”—than trying something new and possibly failing a time or two during implementation.
More of the same behaviors lead to more of the same results. Don’t be afraid to try something new. It will feel a bit awkward initially; however, it may lead to increased productivity in the future.
“If you don't have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?”
Application for B2B sales: Skipping steps to save time usually results in wasting time because the steps you skip often impact the outcome tied to the process you are executing.
If you spend enough time in B2B sales, you’ll see many inspirational quotes along your journey. Let these quotes inspire you, and take you places you’ve never been. If you need help with resources along your journey, consider partnering with The Center for Sales Strategy, where you won’t have to reinvent the wheel every time you come up with something new.