Hacker Deals: 5 Disasters in Deals You Have to Avoid in Future Sales

Some companies have had to cut back on benefits, which is a sign of the times.

Research shows that the number of touches to close rose 65% from COVID-19 pandemic levels. Companies have been careful with their money, which has led deals to take longer.


Hacker Deals: Deal disasters youll want your team to stay away from

When times are tough, its a great learning opportunity. When things are going well and youre expanding your company, it can be hard to see where the problems lie. But when there isnt as much room for error, those weaknesses become easier to spot.

Weve noticed that there are five common deal disasters that can lead to missed opportunities. We want you to know what these pitfalls are so your team is prepared and not losing any deals.

1. Leaving the decision-maker out

Are your sales reps aware of who they should be targeting?

Researchers have found that too many salespeople are unable to identify decision makers in smaller companies, which can be a major deal killer. As the top of your company, you need to make sure everyone is aware of who they should go after.

When it comes to closing deals, there are many factors that can make or break the deal. Its important for your team to identify who has decision-making power and include them in the sales process.

Preparing and empowering your team in order to handle any situation

Collateral is a list of all the information you need for making deals, such as buyer personas and deal milestones.

To have your employees involved in the conversation, you need to give them materials and training.

I recommend that reps know the buyer personas of their company. They need to be able to identify them and then reach out.

Next, map out deal milestones for when specific DMs come into successful deals vs lost deals. This will give sellers goals to shoot for and also help them focus their energy on the right track.

Once you give your reps the materials they need, make it a habit to include decision-makers in coaching. If some of them are having trouble getting DMs involved, coach them on this.

Ask these questions:

  • Who do you think is the DM in this deal?
  • What are you doing to get them more involved?
  • There are a couple of lessons to take away from this.

    Article: When I first began hiring salespeople, I just assumed pay along with commissions and bonuses would be enough sales motivation.

Involving decision-makers in the sales process is a major part of successful deals. If you dont coach reps on how to get it done, then theres a chance that theyll lose out on some deals.

2. Overlooking the multi-pronged transaction

Although your reps need to focus on decision-makers, they also should pay attention to the C-level executives and their needs. Building rapport with them takes time and effort.

Its better to connect with multiple stakeholders when trying to win a deal. This is because if you can get two or three people on the buyer side of an agreement, then youre more likely to be successful.

Its not enough to have one champion for your product. They can move on unexpectedly, change roles or lose influence at any time.

There are many things you can do to make your team feel confident and prepared, like training them well before the meeting.

When deciding on the right type of collateral, its important to consider what your target audience would need. For example, if youre selling an insurance product to a corporation with multiple employees in different departments and roles within that company, then there are many people who may be qualified buyers for this product.

Multi-threaded deals are becoming more and more common. Train your salespeople to build out the buying team from the start of each deal so that they dont miss anything.

Some reps are awkward when trying to get other roles involved without stepping on toes. Others can be clumsy and step on toes while they try to bring new people into deals.

Train your reps to:

  • When you hire someone, start them out in a lower role and ask qualifying questions to figure out who needs to be involved from the beginning.
  • I need to mention who Im talking about.
  • I recommend starting to engage with them in a timely manner.
  • Learn from lower-level positions before you make a decision on how to manage higher-level DMs.

Youll need to work with sales ops and enablement for this. They will be able to give you a better idea of which deals historically involved different roles.

3. Low email delivery rate

You may already be running metrics like stage conversion rate, deal velocity and win rates. Dont forget to measure email velocity (the number of emails sent between prospects and your sales reps). Email is a particularly powerful leading indicator.

The more emails you send to your customers, the better chance of closing a deal. But most companies dont know how their reps should use email so they arent always successful.

Sending too many emails risks alienating your contacts.

Preparing your team to be empowered by the work they do is important.

Some of the most important things are templates for emails, content to market with and buyer personas.

The velocity of an email is a direct indicator of the accounts interest.

If you want to increase the velocity of your emails, theres no two-step plan. There are too many factors involved and it depends on how qualified leads are and whether or not you have a good product that people want.

If you want to get your emails seen, make sure that the right people are getting them and give marketing a hand by providing valuable content.

When it comes to sales, make sure youre reviewing emails and calls when a deal falls through.

  • Did they find a problem that needs to be addressed?
  • Did they miss an important signal from a customer?
  • Did you use the right language and tone?
  • They should have been able to add more insight into the conversation.

The more people involved in a deal, the better odds of getting them to advocate for you.

Sales tech can help by helping your sales team come up with new messages and content.

4. Not adequately addressing pricing

The focus on pricing has become more important because of the COVID-19 pandemic. People know they need to get a good price or else their budget will be too low for them to afford anything.

Its important to train your salespeople on pricing, and that starts by encouraging them not to shy away from it. The prices you have developed exist for a reason, so they should be looked at as representation of the value you offer.

It is important to educate your employees on what they are getting into. You should also show them how you will help motivate and support their success.

One of the most important things in a salespersons arsenal is buyer personas and their unique value proposition.

The key to making pricing less stressful is through training and coaching.

When reps understand the pain points of their prospects and how they can be solved with what is being sold, pricing becomes less scary.

The second approach is to get the person who feels uncomfortable with a certain task or environment used to doing it. This can be difficult, but we should tackle this problem head-on.

  • Practice by setting up mock calls with the person you are going to be talking to, and practice discussing pricing.
  • Share successful calls with the whole team so everyone can learn from them.
  • One of the most common reasons calls fail in one-to-ones is not having a clear purpose for what you want to get out of it.
  • Listen in on a call or have them join you on one.

But importantly, you have to talk about pricing with reps who are struggling. Its completely valid for them to feel awkward discussing it. After all, most of us are on guard about extra expenses in our own lives and because of that, it can be hard asking others for large sums of money.

Discuss your sales process with reps: when you want to buy something that has little functional value in your life, it requires a lot of thought. However, if they have an urgent need for the product and money is not an issue like someone who needs antibiotics because their tooth hurts very badly- then pay doesnt matter.

Once you can prove that youre solving your prospects pain, theyll be less interested in pricing. This means reps need to know their personas well.

Its important to be flexible when it comes to pricing. Teach your reps to see if prospects are looking for a price break because they need the product or just dont think that it is worth enough, being careful not get taken advantage of.

5. Competitor discussions

What do you think happens when a prospect brings up one of the competitors products while theyre on an important call? Panic, stalling or disparaging comments?

Its important to be prepared for a competitor question if it comes up. In some cases, the buyer bringing up their competition might not indicate theyre ready to walk away from your deal.

This article will tell you what to do before a meeting starts and how to empower your team.

They also provide battle cards and case studies.

When your reps are at a point of the conversation where they need to differentiate their product, it is important for them to quickly pick up on which points matter most for each particular prospect. No one cares about all the technical details of where your offering is superior. But if you meet an important requirement that another competitor doesnt, then that will be enough motivation.

When I first began hiring salespeople, I made the mistake of constantly testing pay and commission structure. The best way to keep them motivated is by making sure they have battle cards with important differentiators that are key for each account.

Talk to your Sales Ops team about when in the deal cycle it is most effective to bring up competition. It can depend on industry and market, so theres no one-size-fits-all answer.

When it comes to the competition, you want your reps to be able to prove that what they sell will solve their problems and not just talk about how great or efficient. You need specific case studies.

Make sure that marketing and sales enablement have supplied case studies for multiple use cases, and make sure reps know where to find them.

Stop losing winnable deals

Nailing the basics consistently is key to avoiding common deal disasters and taking your sales team or organization to the next level.

You might have noticed that most of these points call for help from outside the actual sales team. If your team is not getting what they need in terms of collateral and training, you will be able to speak up! You may have to do some lobbying so they can hear you out, but make a case for better sales with better equipped reps.

Here are some final questions to ask yourself as you start this process:

  • Do reps have the latest buyer personas and are they familiar with them?

    Article: It is important to make sure that your salespeople know what you want. They need to know why they should be motivated by it.

  • Can the rep quickly name a few different pain points that their product can address?

    Article: How do you know if your reps are really listening to what theyre being told by customers or prospects?

  • Representatives want to try new methods of motivation all the time, but many times it doesnt work.
  • If the language that reps use in phone calls or emails is not being reviewed on a regular basis, then they are probably lacking skills.

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  • After deals are lost, do you coach your reps on how they could have done better?

If you have any nos or 50% ratings, its important to make the necessary changes. Otherwise, your winnable deals will be lost. sales roadblocks  


 

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Editors Note:

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Justin McGill
About Author: Justin McGill
Justin McGill is the Founder of LeadFuze - a lead generation platform that discovers new leads for you automatically. Get 25 leads free.