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Sales Strategy - Trigger Events

The sales role is undergoing a culture shift. Today salespeople need to have a deep knowledge of the customer, what chalenges they're facing and how we can help them find solutions to their problems. Forrester found that 30% of buyers thought salespeople didn't have an understanding of their business issues or could find solutions. Unless we understand our customer in enough depth, we can't help them.

Many salespeople were trained to explain the features and benefits of their products. Today we have to know more about the customer's industry and their business. That's what is driving success in sales.

Salespeople need to monitor external events to know which companies are ready to talk. Trigger events are one of the best ways for salespeople to identify an opportunity.

What is causing companies to have a change in priorities which will make them receptive to us?

Here are a few trigger events:

Acquisitions: Creates a need that wasn't there before. For example, two sales teams may come together, issues with supply chains puts vendors in play, moving to new location, need to change systems.

New decision maker: A new person was brought in to make change happen and has little or no attachment to current solutions and vendors.

New funding: Whether it's venture capital or a new fiscal year, projects on hold can now go forward.

But there are lots more: a hurricane in FL, changes in government legislation, a new product launch, the dollar vs the euro.

There are many ways to keep informed. We particularly like InsideView, which provides real-time intelligence gleaned from 25,000+ sources. Google Alerts, LinkedIn and Social Media also let you dig deeper into a company's background and personnel.

Sales and marketing can work together in building the message for a particular event. Together with deep knowledge about the company, it's a winning strategy.