The Sales Experience as a Strategic Imperative
I’ve been working with a client that has done impressive work on the customer experience. But not much on the sales experience. As they considered their growth strategy, we worked together on both the customer and sales experience. This is an important shift for the business as their go to market strategy includes differentiation and value both in WHAT they provide (products and services) and HOW they provide it (sales and customer experience.)
The sales experience rarely gets attention while time and resources are poured into the customer experience. But if the sales experience isn’t a good one, prospects won’t become customers, rendering the customer experience useless. As I said in this Harvard Business Review whitepaper
, “The sales experience is the first mile of the CX highway. If it’s a bad experience, customers get off at exit 1, and there is no CX, or even revenues.”
Without both components working in tandem, your growth strategy won’t be successful.
Depending on the research study, somewhere between 25%-53% of a customer’s decision criteria is based on the sales experience. Even if the data are at the low end of those figures, each sales call plays a major role in your strategy’s success. Here are a few tips to help you bolster the sales experience:
- Provide valuable insights. You will have more engaged dialogue if you are listening and responding to customers with a new perspective and applying your expertise to their circumstances. 1000 times more useful than a sales pitch.
- Help with problem-solving. If you can aid a customer in seeing how they can solve a problem in an entirely new way, you are improving the odds that they will find value in what you are selling.
- Help with innovation. Solving problems is great. But raising the bar may be even better. Helping customers identify and capitalize on opportunities is a powerful way to create value for them during the sales experience.
Take the time to map out the sales experience you want to (and need to) provide. You will start to see more wins in sales calls and overall growth.