IT and Business Insights for SMB Solution Providers

Channel Sales Management—Innovate or Perish

The sales game has changed. Follow these recommendations for a performance-based approach to sales acceleration. By Janet Schijns

“I MANAGE WITH MY GUT.” “Experience matters; I only hire people who have a book of business.” “I just know when I see a good salesperson.”

Ever heard a sales manager make these statements? Here’s a reality check:

You can hire someone with a book of business, but a recent JS Group survey showed only 16% of an experienced rep’s business comes with them when they move to a competitor. The statistic is even more dire—7%—when that rep leaves for a noncompetitor.

You may think you know a good salesperson when you see one, but with over $1 trillion (that’s nine zeros!) spent annually on sales forces and more than a 50% failure rate on new recruits, hiring on instinct is fraught with peril.

Same goes for managing with your gut. It may work with a limited solution variation or a small team, but it doesn’t scale. More important, it isn’t the right way to build your sales capacity. In fact, without proper systems to manage salespeople’s impact you can find yourself wasting more than 40% of your sales capacity annually.

The bottom line? To innovate in sales and lead the pack, you need a performance-based approach to channel sales management. Follow these three recommendations to get started:

Hire Using Digital Analytics

Sales success is no longer measured by how many cold calls a rep makes or their old book of business. Today, successful salespeople have the right digital footprint and social selling expertise. In fact, a social selling expert will perform 76% better than their peers.

Want to find them? In the interview, ask candidates to show you the following:

Need to train them? HubSpot has some free training videos that will cover the basics, or reach out to firms like JS Group to participate in a social selling boot camp and leads program that will educate and evolve your entire sales team (or partner sales rep) to make the grade in a social selling world.  

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