In sales, process is king. Process enables repeatable actions and decisions to advance and obtain a sale. In this way, every step along the way should be an advancement towards a sale (or, close sale, good or bad). To do this, it’s often appreciated and strategically advantageous to be aware of not just the objective, but sharing the objective(s) with prospect as a means to guide them through a sales process. Otherwise, you may be thrust into no man’s land or harshly left to the buyer’s process (which could pit you against more competitors and into a price war). Though the overall objective is a sale, it’s not always attainable in a complex sale depending on the stage. Shooting for such an objective can be off-putting and lose the sale altogether.
With any call, it’s important to understand what is the objective of this call, this interaction. This will weigh heavily on where the prospect is in the sales process. From here, the objective may be to get confirmation of a buy-sell agreement. Or, in an early discovery call, the objective is to agree to a next call where more influencers and decision makers are present.
Walk through the objective(s) early on in the call to manage expectations. This doubles as confirming to the prospect that you’re here for business, and s/he should be assessing today’s interactions to make some commitment at the end. Then, at the end, be sure to close for the objective.
These objective-based calls help sales professionals stay on track on their own objectives. They also encourage commitment from the prospect to advance vs. stay stranded.
Understand, too, there are stretch objectives (maximum) and conservative objectives. Stretch objectives can be attained in the absolute best-case scenarios where the prospect commits to a “larger” objective like bringing on an integration team. A more conservative objective, then, may include introducing other key decision makers to evaluate a product or service. The objective of that call may be to bring on an integration team.
Before the next sales call, know where you and the prospect are in the sales process. Then, outline what the objectives are before the call to ensure proper alignment and talk-points are on track.
Get the objective.