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Is Your Win Rate Heading In the Wrong Direction? Reverse The Trend

Posted by Doug Davidoff

Mar 17, 2014 7:30:00 PM

Stop for a moment and consider the path the growth side of your business is on. As we move into the heart of 2014, the Great Recession is far enough in our review mirror that we can assess what “normal” now is.

Rate these trends on a scale of 1-5 (5 being best):

 

Rating

Sales cycle time

 

Sales costs for new business

 

Leads generated

 

Closing rates

 

Ease of access to key decision makers                                       

 

Margins

 

Predictability

  

 

For the vast majority of companies, the first two indicators are increasing, and the last five are decreasing precipitously.  In response, most small and mid-sized enterprises (SMEs) are getting increasingly reactive. Double_B2B_Growth

It’s not at all unusual for me to come across organizations as big as $200 million in revenue that have virtually no formal lead generation effort in place. They’re simply out there, waiting for prospects to define their own needs; and then are frustrated by the increased power procurement and RFPs have in their industry.

The net result of all of this has dramatically negative impacts on your win rate, growth rate and profitability.  Simply put, the vast majority of growth patterns in business today are not sustainable. B2B organizations must transform their go-to-market approach to change their course, reverse trends and get back to sustainable growth patterns.

Reversing The Trend, Enhancing Your Win Rate

As Charles Dickens famously wrote, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.”  Today, while the vast majority of companies are struggling to find the seemingly elusive formula that is both winning and sustainable, there are a small percentage of organizations that are enjoying greater results than ever before.

These companies, in different industries, sizes and regions, all follow a similar playbook that allow them to quickly stand out from the competition, resonate with their defined markets and predictably accelerate their growth rates.  The CEOs of these companies enjoy a virtually effortless pattern of growth.

There are five key components in common to the effortless growth playbook (if you want to learn even more about these, makes sure to register for our upcoming webinar:  How To Implement A Sales Approach to Double Your Win Rate).

1.  They’re clear on who their best prospects are, and who they’re not.

In my experience, this is the toughest lesson to learn and act upon.  You cannot be clear who your best opportunities are unless you are clear about who doesn’t fit. Powerful messages are like magnets, they attract and repel. If you’re not repelling, you’re not attracting.

2.  They bring a unique perspective to their customer/prospects.

A large part of their ability to attract (and repel) comes from their take on the problems they solve and the solutions they provide.  Effortless growth companies are interesting and compelling. When their prospects/customers interact with them, they learn and are better off for the interaction. 

3.  They focus on helping, not selling.

Effortless growth companies are able to avoid the biggest obstacle to entry by focusing on helping their target market understand their business better.  Rather than focusing on “making the sale,” they focus on having an impact.  They invest in business acumen, so their people can “walk the walk.”  The experience they create for their prospects not only enables them to engage earlier in the sales cycle, it radically differentiates them from their competition.

4.  They have fully aligned their sales and marketing functions.

B2B sales today is too complex to be handled by a single group.  These companies ensure that their alignment brings more to the market than the sum of their parts.

5.  They are maniacal about measuring, tracking and learning.

There’s nothing cliché-ish or theoretical about their approach.  These companies measure everything, and focus on the metrics that matter. They know that sustained success does not happen by accident.  Clear service level agreements (SLAs) are in place, and everyone is held accountable.

These five components will give your sales efforts more traction than years of training. You’ll be able to allocate your resources more effectively, and your people will learn faster. This will result in greater wins, capacity and predictability.

I’ll be sharing more thoughts on this subject over the next month, but don’t miss our upcoming webinar How To Implement A Sales Approach to Double Your Win Rate for a deeper dive.