Consider fly fishing for a second (stick with me, I do have a point about business here): Three factors must be in balance for a fly fisher to succeed: the fly they use, the fish they are trying to capture, and the cast, or how they deliver the fly to the fish. The more clearly fishers specify these three components, the more probable they will succeed.
You confront a similar challenge. Your success depends on your capacity to select and draw in more of your top clients. You must choose the fish (target clients), choose the fly (the advantages they desire), and hone your casting, much like an angler (your sales system). Then, it would be best if you told your salespeople about these. Why? You’re not fishing alone, after all. Your salesmen will be enticed to sell to anyone they can connect with if you don’t watch them, asking for more territory, price reductions, better conditions, and giveaways that reduce your revenues.
Determine your most desirable consumers in Step 1 – The Fish
Your most lucrative, lowest-risk, lowest-cost-to-serve, most dependable, most predictable, and most devoted customers are who you want to service. When you describe your ideal client, you state who you are best suited to serve and who you are least done to help.
How would you describe your ideal client? Assess the profitability and development of your present clients first (divided by location, industry, growth rate, or other criteria that make sense to you). Secondly, search for the traits shared by the most lucrative clients:
A person’s demographics are their age, gender, location, family structure, ethnicity, and other traits.
Psychographics – This relates to how they make decisions:
What difficulties do they encounter? What issues are they trying to address?
How do they know when it’s time to tackle the problems? What is the situation?
What advantages or results are they looking for when they purchase?
What matters most to them regarding how they look for solutions or how they are presented?
Why do people choose to purchase from you as opposed to your rivals? (For instance: Less time needed, working with you was a good experience, unique products or services, price?)
Why do you stop making sales? What stage of the sales process do they usually stop at?
Avoid selecting the typical demographic indicators of company kind, age, income, and zip code (e.g., successful middle-aged dentists in zip code 02109) just because you can easily access the information or because they appear apparent as you build your ideal client profile. Ask how and why you are selecting various traits to push yourself and your team further than that.
Consider the alternative: Do you understand why your prospects do not become customers? When do customers abandon your sales process? When do most options leave after speaking with a business banker or visiting your branch? When do people tend to lose interest in your discovery and proposal process? Lean on your intuition, and create precise, quantitative data to test it and serve as a benchmark for comparison throughout time.
Create and present a compelling value story in The Fly, step two.
Use your value story to lure your ideal prospects, just like a fly fisherman would choose a fly based on the fish species, the time of day, the season, and the unique features of the stream. When your most excellent prospects hear the tale for the first time, they should recognize themselves in it and be able to listen to the benefits they desire, which will compel them to open an account with you.
To achieve this, you must carefully construct and deliver the tale, even down to the exact words, to draw in the prospects you want and determine whether the story is effective. The compelling value story for “why should I bank with you?” can be written in various ways. Here’s an illustration:
Script example Giving a particular advantage #1 to a target prospect group is what MyBank does for a living. And by that, I mean that practically every member of the target prospect group that we have encountered finds themselves dealing with an issue or pain shared by other members of the target prospect group while lacking benefit #1 or a comparable benefit. Have you ever desired something yet been unable to achieve it for any reason? At MyBank, you can receive benefit #1 or a related gift whenever possible.
Example: MyBank is in the business of enabling owners of small businesses to check on their operations at any time and from any location in the world. And by that, I mean that almost all small business owners we’ve ever met are concerned about how they can’t just monitor but also take action to make sure that customer receipts are deposited into the bank promptly, that they pay their vendors on schedule, and that there is enough money in the bank when they are on vacation (if they ever take one) or entangled in a custom job for a few days. Have you ever wanted to achieve something but couldn’t because you lacked the necessary knowledge? With MyBank, we allow you to view and manage what’s happening in your business, even when you have to spend a few days away from the office.
Of course, you or your ideal clients could or might not find this narrative interesting. You must create and evaluate your history. I want to know whether you have a story. Do all of your staff members understand how to convey the tale similarly? Do you have a mechanism to test the account to determine if there are any alternate, more effective, or efficient ways to tell it?
Establish your sales system in Step #3 of The Cast.
The throw, or how the fisher presents the fly to the fish, is the final step in our fly-fishing scenario. Professional fly fishermen spend hours perfecting their casting techniques to deliver the fly to the exact area at the precise time with a motion that exactly resembles the actual fly or bug the fish desire for breakfast. You and your sales team must put in the necessary work to perfect your casting technique so that it consistently attracts fish to the surface and encourages them to bite.
This entails converting your understanding of your ideal clients into actions, resources, and campaigns that tell potential clients that “we’re the ones for you” before testing them until you’re confident that your strategy consistently produces results. Effective methods become your sales strategy for attracting your preferred clients.
Although it may happen, your goal in establishing the sales system is not to make your salesmen insane. You can raise your revenue and profitability by steadily and predictably luring in more of your top prospects and keeping more of your top clients. The questions and the sequence become a part of your system if you discover that asking particular questions yields better results than asking different questions or combinations of questions. Similarly, if specific displays or conversations during the checkout process deliver better outcomes, they are incorporated into your system.
Never forget: No detail is too little as long as you can test it, and your testing demonstrates that the fact affects your ability to attract and convert your target customer.
President of Clarity Advantage Nicholas T. Miller assists banks in building more profitable connections with small and medium-sized businesses, their owners, and workers more quickly. Banks may identify their best business and consumer prospects and clients using Clarity advice, communications, sales tools, and training. They can then approach, engage, sell to, and maintain connections with these prospects and clients. Clarity also helps banks with consumer sales and sales related to cash management. Increases in household penetration, cross-sells, deposit volume, and loan volume have been reported by Clarity clients. To subscribe to “The Weekly Sales Thought,” a free e-newsletter and podcast focusing on business-to-business selling and sales management, go to the Clarity website.
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