I’ve been lucky to attend Hubspot’s INBOUND conference for the last few days, attending sessions and networking with the brightest minds in the marketing industry. While it’s been amazing to hear stories of success from keynotes Malcolm Gladwell and Martha Stewart, it has been the smaller sessions that resonate with me the most.
Yesterday I attended a session called “Selling With Maximum Impact,” led by CEO of Zero-Time Selling, Andy Paul. Andy shared his three-step process to effective sales acceleration, which taught me that selling faster is good, but that faster isn’t always better.
Paul’s process can be remembered by the acronym AMP:
Accelerating responsiveness means helping customers make purchase decisions faster. According to Paul, customers want to make decisions 40% faster than they currently do, which means salespeople are taking too long. Salespeople must be able to answer prospects’ questions faster, meaning preparedness on calls is key. Each time a salesperson must “check and get back to” prospects, the sales cycle is lengthened. Making sure customers have the resources they need to make a decision in a timely manner is crucial when trying to accelerate the sales process.
In order to maximize value for prospects, you must know what they need and deliver it. This means doing your homework, planning, and preparing for each and every call. Understand the prospect’s pain points and provide resources that could help. Paul says that there is “no excuse for sending naked emails.” Gone are the days of “just checking in.” There is so much information out there that you can always deliver something useful or valuable to prospects. Including relevant data, articles or resources in your emails makes you relevant.
My favorite step in Paul’s process is practicing simplicity. It is impossible to close every deal every day, and it can get overwhelming very quickly if this is your strategy. Paul says that every day, salespeople should ask:
“What information does the prospect need from us today to move at least one step closer to a decision?”
You can’t do everything. Keeping it simple and making just a little progress each day will keep you top of mind. Plus, when a prospect knows that you are putting in the effort, they will be more likely to make a decision. Paul says keeping it simple means being just 1% better. Respond to leads 1% faster than the competition. Respond to questions faster than you did yesterday. Provide more value than your competitors, whether that’s in the form of free returns or an extended warranty.
I’m still reeling from all of the valuable sales and marketing insights I absorbed at INBOUND over the last few days. Andy Paul’s lesson remained top of mind, because it’s something that any sales team can implement today. The AMP process will produce immediate improvements, but continuing to use it over time will yield even better results. Thank you to Andy for his valuable advice, and to Hubspot for another successful INBOUND conference! You can connect with Andy here.