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Sales Strategy
Mar 20, 2019 | Canadian Professional Sales Association lock

A strong understanding of your clients and the markets they work within can help you sell more.

When done in the right ways, deep-level customer intelligence not only informs sales and marketing strategy, it can offer a bigger picture which supports the efforts of frontline salespeople as they make real-time decisions affecting the value proposition and sales cycle.

In this CPSA article we will consider how client intelligence can be at the core of increased frontline sales success.

Power to the People
The days of blind loyalty to a brand or unquestioning faith in the claims of a salesperson are gone. Consumers no longer depend on a brand’s reputation to gauge the value of a product. Why would they?! They have 24/7 access to information about both your company and its competitors.

Whats-more, social media channels and review sites give the buyer high-traffic avenues to share their feelings about brands. This means that not only do salespeople need to present their solutions in the best possible light during the buyer journey, customer intelligence-fueled service must remain top rate or you risk impacting your online reputation.

Where Customer Intelligence Fits In
Customer intelligence is gathered in order to gain new ways to understand and engage the prospect or customer. An organization must develop strategies and employ tools to draw on data from various sources in order to get at the key drivers that lay behind customer behaviours and buying decisions. Many firms also use outside market research firms to help listen to, and analysis, the needs of prospects.

By getting at the factors behind the Who, What, When, Where, and Why you gain a competitive edge. Possessing the knowledge of why prospects and customers engage with, and respond to, your services in certain ways helps you to listen, learn and hone the value proposition. Additionally, it can assist in giving you the information needed to focus efforts on the strongest leads.

Actionable Insights

There's little point gathering insights into customer challenges and motivators if the information is not actioned in ways which drives the customer relationship forward.

A sales strategy which utilizes customer intelligence into more authentic and timely conversations involves combining information from quantitative and qualitative sources and using it to make a more compelling proposition at the company level and also with key stakeholders within it.

It requires the training, skills and emotional intelligence to interpret customer responses and arrive at actionable business insights and strategies to build genuine rapport. In turn, it means using insights to drive better business decisions and more measurable results.

Summary
To remain relevant and give frontline salespeople the best opportunity to convert prospects, it is important that big data and interpersonal skills are used in tandem.

Sales leaders and team members must understand the sources of customer intelligence and make use of the sales enablement tools that will help them get closer to their customers.

Combining lessons learned from market trends, predictive sales technology, social media engagement, and in-person/phone conversations adds up to fuel more powerful client intelligence.

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