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How to Train Sales Reps

Struggling to train your sales reps? Learn effective sales techniques to train your sales reps not only with integrity but with skills to help them grow and become excellent communicators. Our Head of Sales, Maddy Beckmann, shares her knowledge of executing sales techniques you need to know now.

4 Mar 2022 by Annie Symonds

Let's get things straight. No one is going to buy from a robotic or pushy salesperson. If you want to learn sales techniques that work, you've come to the right place. Our new Head of Sales, Maddy Beckmann, shares her wealth of experience to help your sales reps connect with customers on a deeper level to gain trust and loyalty. Learn to build a relationship that will help your customers grow alongside your business without mentioning the word 'churn' insight.

You may remember when we shared 7 Questions With Maddy recently, which explained who she is as a person, both professionally and personally. As a teacher at heart, she knows building connections with customers is the power of selling effectively. So, we sat down with her to break down effective sales techniques she teaches her team to help them grow professionally with confidence and integrity.

If you're struggling to keep customers or need to lead your sales team with effective sales processes, you're in the right place. Let's get started.

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Sales techniques we use to train sales reps with integrity

1. Identify areas of growth

As a Sales Manager, you'll need to identify whether you'll need to train an individual sales rep or the team. You'll need to understand the difference between team training and training one on one as both look very different.

Listen to the sales call live to make notes on the positives and opportunities to improve. You'll also need to check your sales rep's notes to see how you can guide them to learn and grow.

2. Listen back to customer calls

As many sales teams focus on selling via phone calls, it's wise to actively record the conversation (inform the customer you are doing so at the beginning of the call) so your sales team can listen back and understand different sections of the call. This will make it easier to understand what questions the sales rep should have asked to keep the customer engaged. They'll also understand what went well and what they should continue to do. This is a fantastic sales process to learn and improve skills.

It would also be a great opportunity to encourage your sales reps to listen to each other's sales calls, even if it's a specific part of the call, so they can get feedback on how to improve the next call in the future. Not only is this motivating, but when they are given positive feedback, they'll be able to see results fast.

3. How to make online sales training informative

If you want to learn to make online sales training as engaging as possible, ask your team members to share their screens and click along while you present to them (so they are navigating the presentation without you having to do so).

New to the online training world and unsure how to create a sales process that works? Customize and edit one of our customer training templates to build your sales process quickly and effectively. You can choose from a wide selection of course templates which will help you guide your sales reps with quizzes, tasks, and so much more so they understand the training. You can also add in audio, guiding your sales team through different tasks like you're there in person and record videos to drop into your course so they can watch demos.

4. Training should be continuous

Understand that sales training doesn't stop when onboarding your sales reps. Training should be a continuous sales cycle to evolve your team's skills. While wanting feedback is essential, know that giving feedback is equally crucial.

While there is no perfect sales training formula, you'll need to be consistent at being able to help grow your team's ability to be fantastic at selling with integrity.

You might like to start by setting up weekly meetings to continue training. Depending on how your team members learn, these could be bite-sized meetings at 15 minutes or 1 hour long. Revisit themes from the sales onboarding process, or refresh your team on the value prop. Start with talking about the positives to encourage your sales reps that they have the confidence to succeed. Listen to any concerns they have and how you can help them take new opportunities to learn and grow.

It's worth thinking about doing a full deal audit by looking over emails and calls for each team member so you can easily see what is working and how you can help them improve in any areas.

5. Find strengths in your team

It's really important to support your sales team not only when they start selling but throughout their time working alongside you. Give them valuable feedback and recognition when they are doing really well with the rest of the team. Ask sales reps to involve themselves in new hire training to teach each other new skills. Whether your team is fantastic at cold calling or can put together an excellent sales pitch, it's always essential to share various sales techniques the team can utilize and become a more robust sales team.

6. How to make sure your team lead the conversation

You may come across a customer who likes to overshare personal elements of their lives, which might feel like the conversation is going off track when your team is trying to hold an authentic sales pitch.

While there's a fine line between building a rapport, your sales reps need to make sure they are being considerate of the customer's time. A way to make sure your team is fully prepared is to inform the customer what the agenda will look like in the call. Email them prior and let them know how long you'll be talking together and what you'll be talking about. Sometimes you might talk for an hour and other times it will be for 2 minutes. The pain points the customer needs solving will determine how long the call will take.

7. Training techniques for closing a deal

One of the most significant sales techniques for closing a deal is simply building trust. Customers are real people, so remember you're talking to someone who may need your help to solve any problems they might have. Sales efforts are essential from the very beginning, so it's really important to make sure your sales rep understands the customer's pain points and how your product will solve their problems.

Make sure you're onboard with the customer's timeline because they might not be ready to commit or have the budget for six months. It's important to be honest from the beginning so you can plan the next steps and give them a call to action at the end of the call and schedule the next meeting. Build up urgency with the customer and make sure you keep in contact over time.

While some customers may prefer email as the method of communication, a sales call is a more accessible and more personable approach to get to know your customers and build a relationship quickly. Always go with the form of communication which best suits your customers and even keep in touch on their LinkedIn if it's their preferred choice.

You'll also need to establish if you're talking to a customer who has buying authority in the business. Often sales reps will quickly realize if the buyer is right for the company, so it will save everyone time if your sales rep is talking to someone who can make decisions for the company.

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8. How to create an opportunity to upsell

The most important way you can upsell your products to a customer is not necessarily about having powerful sales techniques; it's about building good relationships with your customers. When your sales methods have worked, and you've nailed the closing techniques for potential customers, you don't leave them once you close the deal.

Keep in touch with your customers and check in with them and make sure you can continue to offer them value over time. When the time is right, and they've been using your product for a while, you might like to give them insights on how to offer them more value by upgrading to another tier in your pricing plan to provide them with more solutions using your services.

9. How to keep sales reps motivated

Even the best salespeople feel unmotivated when a great salesperson in the team is getting customers over the dotted line and other sales reps aren't performing as well. A way to keep a salesperson feeling proactive is to highlight their strengths and give them the morale-boosting efforts they deserve.

While a sales career can feel like it's all about hitting targets, make sure you continue tested sales techniques and train your team. If your new sales rep isn't hitting any targets at all, spend more time with them and train your preferred sales method and sales funnel skills to help them discover new opportunities to grow and evolve.

Also, bear in mind not to overload your sales skills on new employees. You'll want to line up continuous sales meetings to support training in bite-sized pieces rather than to explain it all in one session.

10. What not to do

It can be easy to assume the sales technique your sales reps have fine-tuned is working so well that they'll verge on being too confident. This can lead to being lazy too early on in building a solid relationship with your customers. Many customers may be excited by your product as soon as you've had one conversation. Instead of putting in a call to action and follow-up sessions, before the sales rep realizes, the customer has forgotten all about them and is no longer answering the emails they've followed up too late.

Make sure the sales reps ask the right questions from the beginning, such as 'are you looking at other businesses?' so they know where they stand from the start. As a sales rep, it's much more important to hear a potential customer say no after losing interest rather than ghosting you altogether.

11. How to stop customers churning

The last thing any salesperson in the sales industry wants to hear is the word 'churn'. Wondering how to stop customers from churning? It tends to happen when the relationship stops. Make sure you always keep in touch with your customers and be proactive.

While many salespeople will be concentrating on sales leads rather than keeping current customers happy, you need to make sure you keep talking to your customers, especially if you're working for a start-up as your product evolves quickly. Keep the customers updated and point them to the resources on your website to sign up for webinars, blog content and newsletter updates, and keep up to date with the company's social media feed.

Let the customers know that if they have any problems, you're always there for them to reach out to right from the beginning when they are sales leads so you're on the same page. This will ensure you'll be on the path to success which will help turn prospects into potential clients or customers.

The churn starts when the relationship stops - always keep in touch and ask for feedback. Be proactive, being over communicative. If you don't talk to your customers after the sale, it's more likely they might churn. You need to let them know who to talk to if they have problems etc. It starts before the sale - as soon as you start talking to them. It depends on the level of support for customers for when you should check-in.

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12. Always, always ask for feedback

And if there's one more piece of advice I can offer sales reps, it's to always ask for feedback from their manager, their team and importantly, ask for feedback from the customers. If the potential lead didn't turn into a customer, ask them why. Understanding how you can grow and target customers' pain points will help your team develop value to turn prospects into existing customers.

Check out more tips from our team including The Best Interview Questions We Personally Ask Candidates and 9 Effective Live Chat Support Tips We Use To Engage Customers

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