PART 2 for Sales Power Core / Power Core Series – 3 of 6
To get traction in the world of the sales power core, the first steps need to be tactical, supremely clear and with a return as soon as possible.
There will need to be a great meeting of the minds to gain agreement that you are not only a customer acquisition company but also a customer retention company. The challenge here is getting the time on the agenda to discuss these shifts. Sales organizations are constantly on the move. They’re in for ten minutes and then they’re gone again. Pull out all the stops to get the time at the highest levels to have the discussions where this conversation will receive the attention it deserves.
Lay out what these things are. Then gain agreement with leadership across the company that this is the direction you are all committed to. This will take a while. Slate at least six months to get to this point. During this period, work on defining and rolling out the guerrilla metrics boost the shift and create more clarity for the organization on the direction.
Next, identify the connection points between the sale and the overall customer relationship. Make this a simple exercise. I’m not talking process maps here. These are bullet points with questions, such as:
• What is the hand off between sales and service?
• What is the communication between the sale and the ownership experience?
• Where is the vulnerability in the customer lifecycle?
Create a Defector Pipeline
This is one of the best ways I know to turn what seems like a huge concept into a plan of action for the sales organization. It engages them immediately, connects them to specific actions to take, and expands the role beyond sales to relationship.
1. Plot the stages of the customer experience visually so the organization can see and identify the stages.
2. Identify the places where your research indicates that you are vulnerable to losing customers to defection.
For example, a classic area of defections for the insurance industry is right after a new policy is purchased.
- Connecting with customers prior to renewal is critical for resolving issues and increasing positive renewal decision making, as is reaching out to customers after pricing increases. This is all commonsense stuff you could recite based on your own experiences, but it needs to be laid out clearly to encourage a large corporate entity to move in unison.
- By identifying the points in time along the life cycle, you can take the concept of managing the customer relationship out of the clouds and down to points that are tied directly to sales.
- You will be able to turn that pipeline into a series of actions and tactics.