While interpersonal, communication, and consultative selling skills are still relevant and important, sellers need new skills to share value-creating ideas that shape and create opportunities with buyers. Sellers also need insightful content to share, which requires even greater alignment between the sales organization and other functions that may be the keepers of subject matter expertise, such as R&D, Product Management, and Marketing.
Another unexpected outcome has been that many of our clients are using the program to rally the entire organization behind an important strategic initiative. They recognize that their new initiatives will require different customer interactions and conversations, and Richardson’s Selling with Insights® ensures that everyone knows what to say, how to say it, and why. Here are just a few examples of how our clients are applying Richardson’s Selling with Insights® in some very powerful and innovative ways.
1. Bringing new ideas or innovation to market
Our client invested heavily in R&D, but their sales team often sold on price. Richardson’s Selling with Insights® program got their subject matter experts aligned with the sales team, giving them an Insight Blueprint™ to capture and communicate innovative ideas for the sales team at the right level of detail. The sales team then learned how to take the blueprint, research customers, develop customized Insight Messages™, and share the insight at the right time during a customer conversation.
2. Launching a new product, service, or solution
Our client is a relatively new but fast-growing company in the telecommunications industry. They have been developing disruptive solutions to enable mobile operators to keep pace with growing demand for bandwidth and increasingly demanding costumers who expect fast, flawless connectivity at any time. Their sales force is very technical. Richardson’s Selling with Insights® gave them a standard template to position the benefits of their new solution from their buyer’s perspective and the skills to leverage insights with discovery and need dialogue. The content and the skills kept their sellers aligned with their customers and minimized tendencies to dive deeply into technical details too soon in the sales conversation.
3. Breathing life into underperforming products, services, or solutions
Our client is well known as a global manufacturer of personal computers and has also built a strong service organization. They recognized significant growth and profit potential in services and sought to get their sales teams focused on realizing this potential. At a national sales meeting, they used Richardson’s Selling with Insights® to clarify their unique differentiators and value proposition and train their sales teams to position this value in conversations with customers. Sales leadership is confident that driving focus, content, and skills across their sales force will make a huge impact.
4. Making “Big Data” more meaningful to customers
Lately, we have been working with a lot of media and advertising companies. Innovation is rampant, competition is fierce, and buyers expect measurable impact or they will try something else. Our client had reams of granular data to make a compelling business case to a customer, but customers didn’t have the appetite or the patience to sit through a 50-page PowerPoint deck filled with charts and graphs. Additionally, our client saw a need to up-skill their sales force to be more competitive in a rapidly changing market. Through Richardson’s Selling with Insights®, we gave their market research team a simple but effective format to keep their sales team informed of the latest market trends. Sellers learned to customize this information for client and prospects and deliver insight in a much more natural and conversational manner.
5. Delivering a compelling “Total Cost of Ownership” business case
Our client is another global technology manufacturer. The product managers of one of their hardware divisions built a powerful “Total Cost of Ownership” model that proved beyond a certain time period it was far more cost effective to replace aging equipment than to continue to try to maintain it. They trained the sales team on the TCO, but they were never really sure if the training “stuck.” Additionally, the training focused on the TCO model itself rather than the skills needed by the sales team to position and communicate the model with customers. Richardson’s Selling with Insights® helped to unite product management and sales, reinforcing both the content and the skills.
The big takeaway is this: Richardson’s Selling with Insights® is a very powerful program that can help an organization get marketing and product groups aligned with sales, provide a standard approach and language to connect a customer’s challenges with your unique capabilities to help them, motivate your sellers to be more assertive and proactive with buyers, and round out the skills necessary to succeed in the age of the informed buyer.