There is abundant evidence to prove that IT solution providers with an effective sales process outperform their less disciplined competitors.
When asked, most MSP’s will state that they already have a sales process built out inside ConnectWise; But in my experience only a few have developed their sales processes to a level that consistently generates a compelling competitive advantage
The structure provided by effective sales process, while seeming rigid, actually allows agility because time and energy is directed toward creativity – rather than recreating the wheel.
In this guide, we will explore what top MSP’s are doing inside ConnectWise to improve sales process, and actually win high valued deals.
Identify, Understand & Document Your Niche Target Audience
Specialization and differentiation are critical to competitive advantage. You can specialize in certain technologies, such as security or remote desktops. However, you can also develop expertise in vertical markets where you combine your in-depth technical knowledge with rich industry understanding. Here, you sell both types of expertise, and can offer premium services at a greater margin.
By choosing to specialize in providing service to a specific industry, an MSP can focus on the specific needs of that area, the current applications this industry uses on a day-to-day basis, and what solutions are needed to keep this technology working as it should.
But vertical markets also create challenges; besides simply being familiar with the products and technologies in a specific vertical, you must be able to follow market trends and understand how certain incidents affect your clients’ businesses, and therefore, make adjustments to meet the changes that you see over time.
ConnectWise Tip: Top performing MSP’s are not only assuming the highest valued audience to target, but are projecting earnings by tracking important data. The most effective way to understand where your hottest deals are hiding is logging the industry in the market value. This will allow the ConnectWise users to develop an industry specific pipeline for each vertical, as well as follow the customer journey through the pipeline to identify trends – and ultimately understand the exact needs of niche clients.
Document and Define Granular Opportunity Stages
It’s important to define specific, concrete actions that move your prospects from one stage to the next. If you don’t formalize these triggers, your sales team might come away with a less accurate understanding of where things are and aren’t working, leading to misshandling of the sales process steps.
These actions are labeled as opportunity stages inside ConnectWise, and should be optimized and input with the actions you and your team identify. For each of the stages you define, you’ll want to have a crisp explanation of what causes a prospect to move from one stage to the next. Ideally that reason or cause will be based on the actions of the prospect, not the perception of the sales rep.
ConnectWise Tip: Document the steps you take in your business to move the needle forward on a new opportunity, and create these steps as stages inside ConnectWise. Defining the Opportunity Stages that accurately represent the sales process is one of the key tasks facing any business that is using ConnectWise to track sales pipeline performance. Collaborating with a ConnectWise consultant can help you and your team identify these unique stages, as well as understand how to move these prospects through the pipeline with more efficiency.
Provide Visibility and Training to your Sales Support Staff
Real-time visibility to pipeline and team performance frees you from constantly having to ask your team for updates. It’s not realistic to assume a sales team individual will step forward to announce they’re performing poorly, whether by their own fault or outside circumstances.
Documenting your sales process, as well as training your team to perform a certain set of activities on a daily basis inside the ConnectWise platform can provide insight that will allow owners to proactively view and manage every step of sales.
Standardization takes the guesswork out of your sales process—and makes training much easier, so scaling your business becomes a cinch. It provides a predictable flow and measurement for all activities. The resulting smooth operation benefits, both your sales team and customers, by removing the opportunity for knee-jerk reactions.
ConnectWise Tip: Use a combination of rep activities and customer ‘verifiers’ or behaviors to track the progress of a deal. This change explicitly encourages reps to focus on achieving certain outcomes in the best way instead of simply executing activities in the prescribed way.