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Sales   Engine   Diagnostics

Whether you are looking to improve your current sales organization or you’re gearing up one, this Sales Performance Diagnostic will tell you what’s broken, what’s working well, and where to put efforts to increase sales.

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Note: A comprehensive report will be generated after you answer all the questions. It will contain your diagnostic, recommended next steps, and tools to help you improve your sales performance. You will then be given the option to enter your contact details to access a more detailed report.

 

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1.   Defined   Value

How  do  you  create  value?

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Defined Value is the clear summary of what your company does and the value your company creates.
Your value should be clear and well-defined.

Defined Value - Evaluation 1 = Low. 10 = High.

1. Does your company have a documented value proposition or value statement?
2. Do you know exactly what your customers are buying from your company and why they choose your products or services?
3. How clear and well-defined is the value your company creates for its customers?

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2.   Target   Audience

Who  buys  your  offerings?

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Your Target Audience includes the kinds of companies and the specific people at those companies who benefit most from your offerings.
Your Target Audience should be grouped into segments and include specific demographic and psychographic characteristics. A good place to start is to profile your customers.

Target Audience - Evaluation 1 = Low. 10 = High.

1. If you could talk to one specific lead, do you know exactly who that lead would be?
2. Do you know the top three types of organizations that represent the majority of your revenue?
3. Do you know the common demographics of these top three organizations, along with the top three job titles of the decision makers you sell to at these organizations?

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3.   Messaging   Alignment

Does  all  your  messaging  align?

Alignment-Definition
Messaging Alignment is making sure the language and imagery you use to communicate the value of your business match your Defined Value and correspond with the needs of your Target Audience. The goal is to connect with that audience.
When prospects learn about your company, make sure they clearly understand your Defined Value. Hold up a mirror so they can easily see that you work with people like them.

Messaging Alignment - Evaluation 1 = Low. 10 = High.

1. Does all of your messaging – language and imagery – in your marketing resources align with your Defined Value?

Resources include website, company LinkedIn page, team member LinkedIn pages, capabilities decks, offering summaries, proposals, blogs, social media, and collateral.

2. Does your messaging – language and imagery – clearly align with your Target Audience and with their needs and expectations – does your messaging create a feeling of connection?
3. Do all of your marketing resources use clear keywords, specific messaging, and imagery that help your target audience recognize that you excel at working with and providing value to people like them?

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4.   Marketing   Alignment

How  are  people  learning  about  you?

ma-def
Marketing Alignment is making sure all of your marketing extensions accurately represent your brand and tell a clear and compelling story.
Do your marketing materials tell a clear, accurate story about your brand and communicate effectively with your Target Audience?

Marketing Alignment - Evaluation 1 = Low. 10 = High.

1. How accurate and up to date are your marketing materials and resources? Do all of these resources tell a clear, compelling story about your brand?

Resources include website, company LinkedIn page, team member LinkedIn pages, capabilities decks, offering summaries, proposals, blogs, social media, and collateral.

2. Do you have all of the marketing materials and resources you need to communicate effectively with your Target Audience?
3. Do the quality and design of all of these materials and resources accurately reflect your organization and your brand?

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5.   Sales   Team

How  effective  is  your  sales  team?

sales-team
Your Sales Team is the dedicated team that is always available to interact with all of the leads and customers that are in your sales funnel. This includes leads that have just entered the top of the funnel that may still be relatively cold, the warm leads that are in the middle of the funnel, and the hot leads and customers that reside at the bottom of the funnel.
Sales Teams need to be experts at explaining your value. They should be the physical extension of your brand and excel at building trust and rapport.

Sales Team - Evaluation 1 = Low. 10 = High.

1. Does the sales team feel they’re effectively able to be the physical extension of the company and its brand?
2. Has the sales team been given the tools and resources they need to meet company goals?
3. If the ideal lead stood before a member of the sales team, how confident are you that the sales person could close the deal?
4. How would you rate the team’s communication skills, attention to detail, and level of follow-up with leads and customers?
5. Does the sales team follow company sales processes? Is the team willing to receive coaching in order to hone their skills and better enable them to succeed at their jobs?

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6.   Revenue   Process

What’s  your  defined  process?

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Your Revenue Process is a defined series of steps associated with how your company interacts with leads and customers to generate sales and cultivate leads over time. It has two parts: Sales Process and Cultivation Process.
A Revenue Process is a best practice decision tree that your sales team consistently follows to stay in touch with and create value for leads and customers over time.

Revenue Process - Evaluation 1 = Low. 10 = High.

1. Do you use a defined Sales Process driven by standard operating procedures (SOPs)?
2. Do you have a defined Cultivation Process to provide ongoing outreach for leads? For customers?
3. Do you use a CRM to support your Sales and Cultivation Processes? Do you track associated KPIs?
4. Do you perform revenue analysis for win/loss opportunities? Do you analyze average sales cycles and lead/revenue sources?
5. Does your process for cultivating leads and referrals successfully leverage up those leads and move them through the sales funnel? Are you satisfied with your lead and referral close rates?

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7.   Performance   Management

How  do  you  ensure  success?

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You can’t achieve goals unless you first know what they are and then measure them. Performance Management ensures your Revenue Process is being implemented in order to keep your company driving towards improved revenue performance.
Top-performing companies have procedures that foster accountability, systems that provide actionable knowledge and oversight, and managers who improve human capital.

Performance Management - Evaluation 1 = Low. 10 = High.

1. Does your company have a system of Sales and Cultivation Process accountability and oversight to ensure you provide value to leads and customers on an ongoing basis? If so, how closely do you follow that system?
2. Do you use a CRM? Do you run and evaluate regular reports, as well as meet regularly to review team performance?
3. Do you have a comprehensive Performance Plan that includes compensation plans, forecasting protocols, sales meeting processes and agendas, sales manager roles and responsibilities, review schedules, and accountability and oversight processes?

 

Start A Conversation With Us.

 

Additional Resources:

www.thecarruthersgroup.com

www.improvingsalesperformance.com

Build // Rebuild

Your score is strongly indicating that there are many core fundamentals missing.  Our experience across multiple industries has proven that there are seven foundational elements involved in consistent revenue generation. Our philosophy is that when these foundational elements are properly aligned, ever-increasing revenue is generated and maintained. We call this The Revenue Equation.

We strongly encourage you to start at the first foundation, Defined Value, and move sequentially through all seven foundations – building or rebuilding each one of them. The most important steps will be to ensure you are clear on your value, clear on who you generate this value for, and then use the words and phrases that describe both your value and your audience in all of your messaging and marketing. After that is complete, you should focus on your sales team and their understanding of your defined value and the needs and interests of your target audience. Once you are assured your team has a strong grasp on those foundations, move on to make sure leads have a clearly charted journey to move into and then down through your sales funnel. After the journeys are mapped, align them to workflows in a CRM. Finally, give yourself both tools and time to review your sales performance and look for quantitative and qualitative data that would support your actions or give you insight into informed pivots. Good luck and reach out to us if we can be of any help. And if you haven’t already, we’d recommend signing up for one of our newsletters or attending a webinar or roundtable with the Carruthers Team.

Fix // Repair

Your score is strongly indicating that there are some core fundamentals missing or coming up a little short. Our experience across multiple industries has proven that there are seven foundational elements involved in consistent revenue generation. Our philosophy is that when these foundational elements are properly aligned, ever-increasing revenue is generated and maintained. We call this The Revenue Equation.

Most likely you have some foundational elements that are functioning at close to an acceptable level, and some that are missing or are not yet complete. This means that there are some elements that might just need a little fixing, and a few that will need more work.

We strongly encourage you to start at the first foundation, Defined Value, and move sequentially through all seven foundations – fixing or repairing each one of them. The most important steps will be to ensure you are clear on your value, clear on who you generate this value for, and then use the words and phrases that describe both your value and your audience in all of your messaging and marketing. After that is complete, you should focus on your sales team and their understanding of your defined value and the needs and interests of your target audience. Once you are assured your team has a strong grasp on those foundations, move on to make sure leads have a clearly charted journey to move into and then down through your sales funnel. After the journey is mapped, align it to workflows in a CRM. Finally, give yourself both tools and time to review your sales performance and look for quantitative and qualitative data that would support your actions or give you insight into informed pivots. Good luck and reach out to us if we can be of any help. And if you haven’t already, we’d recommend signing up for one of our newsletters or attending a webinar or roundtable with the Carruthers Team.

Fine Tune // Refine

Your score is indicating that most or all of your core fundamentals are relatively strong. Your organization is probably ready to focus on implementing or enhancing outbound and inbound sales engine programs and really increasing sales growth and performance.

Our experience across multiple industries has proven that there are seven foundational elements involved in consistent revenue generation. Our philosophy is that when these foundational elements are properly aligned, ever-increasing revenue is generated and maintained. We call this The Revenue Equation.

Good news – most likely you have foundational elements that are functioning slightly below, right at, or above the acceptable levels of foundational completion. This means that there are some elements that might just need a little fine tuning, and a few that are probably pretty dialed in.

As you look to refine your foundational elements, we’d encourage you to look at each of them independently as well as how they stack together as part of the whole. Every improvement you can make will increase revenue, but it will be important to understand how all these foundations work together. As you make your review, we strongly encourage you to start at the first foundation, Defined Value, and move sequentially through all seven foundations – fine tuning or refining each one of them. The most important steps will be to ensure you are clear on your value, clear on who you generate this value for, and then use the words and phrases that describe both your value and your audience in all of your messaging and marketing. After that is complete, you should focus on your sales team and their understanding of your defined value and the needs and interests of your target audience. Once you are assured your team has a strong grasp on those foundations, move on to make sure leads have a clearly charted journey to move into and then down through your sales funnel. After the journey is mapped, align it to workflows in a CRM. Finally, give yourself both tools and time to review your sales performance and look for quantitative and qualitative data that would support your actions or give you insight into informed pivots. Good luck and reach out to us if we can be of any help. And if you haven’t already, we’d recommend signing up for one of our newsletters or attending a webinar or roundtable with the Carruthers Team.

Stay The Course // Look For Informed Pivots

Your score is indicating that most likely all of your core fundamentals are really strong. Our experience across multiple industries has proven that there are seven foundational elements involved in consistent revenue generation. Our philosophy is that when these foundational elements are properly aligned, ever-increasing revenue is generated and maintained. We call this The Revenue Equation.

Great news – while there might be one or two foundational areas that could use a little improvement, your organization is ready for the rapid growth that comes from high performing outbound and inbound sales engines.

If there are any foundational elements you want to improve, we’d recommend that you look at each of them independently as well as how they stack together as part of the whole. Every improvement you can make will increase revenue, but it will be important to understand how all these foundations work together. As you make your review, we strongly encourage you to start at the first foundation, Defined Value, and move sequentially through all seven foundations – fine tuning or refining each one of them. The most important steps will be to ensure you are clear on your value, clear on who you generate this value for, and then use the words and phrases that describe both your value and your audience in all of your messaging and marketing. After that is complete, you should focus on your sales team and their understanding of your defined value and the needs and interests of your target audience. Once you are assured your team has a strong grasp on those foundations, move on to make sure leads have a clearly charted journey to move into and then down through your sales funnel. After the journey is mapped, align it to workflows in a CRM. Finally, give yourself both tools and time to review your sales performance and look for quantitative and qualitative data that would support your actions or give you insight into informed pivots. Good luck and reach out to us if we can be of any help. And if you haven’t already, we’d recommend signing up for one of our newsletters or attending a webinar or roundtable with the Carruthers Team.

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Build // Rebuild

Your score is strongly indicating that your Defined Value is unclear or undefined. This is a significant business risk. As a reminder, Defined Value is the clear summary of what your company does and the value your company creates. It is extremely important that your value is clear and well-defined, as this provides clarity for company direction, focus for your team, assurance for your customers, and defines the value your target audience needs to see to be aligned with your offerings.

Action Items:

  1. If it isn’t documented already, invest the time to document your Value Proposition or Value Statement. If it’s out-of-date, take the time to get it current.
  2. Consider a Value Definition Workshop with your team. Spending the time with a white board to list out all the words and phrases that describe your value is time well spent. This will not only be a great discovery exercise, but it will also be a great alignment exercise.
  3. Identify your top three competitors and visit their websites. Take notes on all the key words they are using to define their value. Ask yourself if any of these competitors use the same words and phrases your company uses in its Defined Value. Use this as an exercise to determine what is important to your company, how you want to describe your value, and as a mechanism to get ultimate clarity on your Defined Value.

Fix // Repair

Your score is strongly indicating that your Defined Value is unclear or not well defined. Perhaps your company is in a transitional phase and your Defined Value is dynamically changing, or perhaps your organization has evolved and your Defined Value has not been updated. There are many scenarios where a company realizes that their Defined Value is vague or uncertain. This is a significant business risk because almost everything your company does originates from an understanding of the value your organization provides.

As a reminder, Defined Value is the clear summary of what your company does and the value your company creates. It is extremely important that your value is clear and well-defined, as this provides clarity for company direction, focus for your team, assurance for your customers, and defines the value your target audience needs to see to be aligned with your offerings.

Action Items:

  1. If it isn’t documented already, invest the time to document your Value Proposition or Value Statement. If it’s out-of-date, take the time to get it current.
  2. Consider a Value Definition Workshop with your team. Spending the time with a white board to list out all the words and phrases that describe your value is time well spent. This will not only be a great discovery exercise, but it will also be a great alignment exercise.
  3. Identify your top three competitors and visit their websites. Take notes on all the key words they are using to define their value. Ask yourself if any of these competitors use the same words and phrases your company uses in its Defined Value. Use this as an exercise to determine what is important to your company, how you want to describe your value, and as a mechanism to get ultimate clarity on your Defined Value.
  4. Ask your closest customer and partners to describe the value that your company creates. Take notes and compare what you have documented as your Defined Value.

Fine-Tune // Refine
Your score is indicating that your Defined Value is relatively clear and defined. This is great news because almost everything your company does originates from an understanding of the value your organization provides. Your clarity is a tremendous advantage and should be something you continue to refine, document, and communicate.  It also works as a tool to gain continuous alignment with your team.

As a reminder, Defined Value is the clear summary of what your company does and the value your company creates. It is extremely important that your value is clear and well-defined, as this provides clarity for company direction, focus for your team, assurance for your customers, and defines the value your target audience needs to see to be aligned with your offerings.

Action Items:

  1. If it isn’t documented already, invest the time to document your Value Proposition or Value Statement. If it’s out-of-date, take the time to get it current.
  2. Consider a Value Definition Workshop with your team. Spending the time with a white board to list out all the words and phrases that describe your value is time well spent. This will not only be a great discovery exercise, but it will also be a great alignment exercise.
  3. Ask your closest customer and partners to describe the value that your company creates. Take notes and compare what you have documented as your Defined Value. You will most likely find that this is aligned, but this a great way to get ahead of any misalignment that may be occurring.

Stay The Course // Look For Informed Pivots

Your score is indicating that your Defined Value is extremely clear and well defined. This is great news because almost everything your company does originates from an understanding of the value your organization provides.Your clarity is a tremendous advantage and should be something you continue to refine, document, and communicate.  It also works as a tool to gain continuous alignment with your team.

As a reminder, Defined Value is the clear summary of what your company does and the value your company creates. It is extremely important that your value is clear and well-defined, as this provides clarity for company direction, focus for your team, assurance for your customers, and defines the value your target audience needs to see to be aligned with your offerings.

Important: Use this clarity to your advantage as you review our foundational areas. This clarity will significantly help you prepare your organization for the rapid growth that comes from high performing outbound and inbound sales engines.

Action Items:

  1. Consider a Value Definition Workshop with your team. Spending the time with a white board to list out all the words and phrases that describe your value is time well spent. This will not only be a great discovery exercise, but it will also be a great alignment exercise.
  2. Ask your closest customer and partners to describe the value that your company creates. Take notes and compare what you have documented as your Defined Value. You will most likely find that this is aligned, but this a great way to get ahead of any misalignment that may be occurring.

Build // Rebuild

Your score is strongly indicating that your Target Audience is very unclear or undefined. This is a significant business risk.

As a reminder, your Target Audience includes the kinds of companies and the specific people at those companies who benefit most from your offerings. Your Target Audience should be grouped into segments and include specific demographic and psychographic characteristics. A good place to start is to profile your customers. It is essential that you clearly define your target audiences, since all of your marketing and sales efforts should align to the needs and interests of these different groups.

Action Items:

  • Spend time reviewing your current customer lists as an exercise to determine your target audiences. First, organize your customers into verticals. Then begin to organize each vertical into smaller groupings that represent segments within the vertical (if possible). The primary goal of these initial steps is to create clear groupings of customers that have as much in common as possible. After this grouping is complete, begin to determine the individuals at each company that are the decision makers that decided to hire your company. Follow a similar grouping exercise as above, and begin to look for patterns. Ultimately you want to take all of this information and create clear verticals, clear segments, and associated personas that represent the typical characteristics of someone that would hire your company.

Fix // Repair

Your score is strongly indicating that your Target Audience is unclear or not well defined. Perhaps your company is in a transitional phase and your Target Audience is changing, or perhaps you have numerous offerings and the target audience for some of the offerings are clear and the target audience for the other offerings are yet to be clearly defined. Regardless of the exact reasons, unclear or not well defined target audiences are a significant business risk.

As a reminder, your Target Audience includes the kinds of companies and the specific people at those companies who benefit most from your offerings. Your Target Audience should be grouped into segments and include specific demographic and psychographic characteristics. A good place to start is to profile your customers. It is essential that you clearly define your target audiences, since all of your marketing and sales efforts should align to the needs and interests of these different groups.

Action Items:

  • Spend time reviewing your current customer lists as an exercise to determine your target audiences. First, organize your customers into verticals. Then begin to organize each vertical into smaller groupings that represents segments within the vertical (if possible). The primary goal of these initial steps is to create clear groupings of customers that have as much in common as possible. After this grouping is complete, begin to determine the individuals at each company that are the decision makers that decided to hire your company. Follow a similar grouping exercise as above, and begin to look for patterns. Ultimately you want to take all of this information and create clear verticals, clear segments, and associated personas that represent the typical characteristics of someone that would hire your company.

Fine-Tune // Refine

 Your score is indicating that your Target Audience is relatively clear and defined. This is great news and something you should feel proud about. It is also a huge strategic advantage, as this allows you to be effective with your sales and marketing resources. Specifically, if you know the demographics and psychographics of your target audience, then you can be efficient in new business development efforts. Essentially you can fish where the fish are.

As a reminder, your Target Audience includes the kinds of companies and the specific people at those companies who benefit most from your offerings. Your Target Audience should be grouped into segments and include specific demographic and psychographic characteristics. A good place to start is to profile your customers. It is essential that you clearly define your target audiences, since all of your marketing and sales efforts should align to the needs and interests of these different groups.

Action Items:

  • Your focus should be on fine-tuning your understanding of your target audience and making sure your entire company is aligned to the exact characteristics of your audiences. This second part is essential for intentional, scalable sales growth.
  • To increase your understanding of your target audiences, you should also spend time reviewing your current customer lists as an exercise to determine your target audiences. First, organize your customers into verticals. Then begin to organize each vertical into smaller groupings that represents segments within the vertical (if possible). The primary goal of these initial steps is to create clear groupings of customers that have as much in common as possible. After this grouping is complete, begin to determine the individuals at each company that are the decision makers that decided to hire your company. Follow a similar grouping exercise as above, and begin to look for patterns. Ultimately you want to take all of this information and create clear verticals, clear segments, and associated personas that represent the typical characteristics of someone that would hire your company.

Stay The Course // Look For Informed Pivots

Your score is indicating that your Target Audience is extremely clear and well defined. Your clarity is a tremendous advantage and should be something you continue to gain clarification around, as well as a management tool to gain continuous alignment with your team.

As a reminder, your Target Audience includes the kinds of companies and the specific people at those companies who benefit most from your offerings. Your Target Audience should be grouped into segments and include specific demographic and psychographic characteristics. A good place to start is to profile your customers. It is essential that you clearly define your target audiences, since all of your marketing and sales efforts should align to the needs and interests of these different groups.

Important: Use this clarity to your advantage as you review our foundational areas. This clarity will significantly help you prepare your organization for the rapid growth that comes from high performing outbound and inbound sales engines. Specifically, you should leverage your target audience clarity immediately by creating defined personas that represent your target audience and then by finding look-alikes – this will serve as great preparation for any sales engine implementations. Specifically, if you know the demographics and psychographics of your target audience, then you can be efficient in new business development efforts. Essentially, you can fish where the fish are.

Action Items:

  • Your focus should be on fine-tuning your understanding of your target audience and making sure your entire company is aligned to the exact characteristics of your audiences. This second part is essential for intentional, scalable sales growth.
  • To increase your understanding of your target audiences, you should also spend time reviewing your current customer lists as an exercise to determine your target audiences. First, organize your customers into verticals. Then begin to organize each vertical into smaller groupings that represents segments within the vertical (if possible). The primary goal of these initial steps is to create clear groupings of customers that have as much in common as possible. After this grouping is complete, begin to determine the individuals at each company that are the decision makers that decided to hire your company. Follow a similar grouping exercise as above, and begin to look for patterns. Ultimately you want to take all of this information and create clear verticals, clear segments, and associated personas that represent the typical characteristics of someone that would hire your company.

Build // Rebuild
Your score is strongly indicating that your messaging is not aligned to your Defined Value and your Target Audience. This is a significant business risk and is creating roadblocks for people wanting to do business with you. This should be fixed immediately.

As a reminder, Messaging Alignment is making sure the language and imagery you use to communicate the value of your business match your Defined Value and correspond with the needs of your Target Audience. The goal is to connect with that audience. When prospects learn about your company, make sure they clearly understand your Defined Value. Hold up a mirror so they can easily see that you work with people like them.

Action Items:
Take the time to set up your company for success. Your goal should be to make sure your messaging is aligned to the key words that define your value, as well as the key words that describe the needs and interests of your target audience. Accomplishing this goal will immediately improve sales performance. There are two recommended steps to achieve this goal.

Step #1 – Key Word Map Tool

  • Make sure you have your Defined Value documented and up to date. Then create a master list of the key words and phrases you are using to describe your Defined Value.
  • Create a list of all the verticals and market segments represented by your Target Audience. Then create a master list of the key words and phrases associated with each vertical and market segment.
  • Develop personas for each of the market segments you identified. Then create a corresponding master list of the key words and phrases of the needs and interests of each persona.
  • These lists become your key word maps and a content tool for you to use as you create your messaging.

Step #2 – Create Messaging That Aligns To Key Word Map Tool

  • Now that you have your Key Word Map Tool, use the words and phrases in it to create your marketing messaging. Suggestions include writing boilerplate copy that can be reused and modified throughout all of your marketing extensions. Standard copy typically includes About Your Company, Value Proposition, Key Differentiators, Competitive Advantage, and Offerings.

Fix // Repair

Your score is strongly indicating that your messaging is not very aligned or could use additional alignment to your Defined Value and your Target Audience. This is a significant business risk and is creating roadblocks for people wanting to do business with you. This should be fixed immediately.

As a reminder, Messaging Alignment is making sure the language and imagery you use to communicate the value of your business match your Defined Value and correspond with the needs of your Target Audience. The goal is to connect with that audience. When prospects learn about your company, make sure they clearly understand your Defined Value. Hold up a mirror so they can easily see that you work with people like them.

Action Items:

Take the time to set up your company for success. Your goal should be to make sure your messaging is aligned to the key words that define your value, and the key words that describe the needs and interests of your target audience. Accomplishing this goal will immediately improve sales performance. There are two recommended steps to achieve this goal.

Step #1 – Key Word Map Tool

  • Make sure you have your Defined Value documented and up to date. Then create a master list of the key words and phrases you are using to describe your Defined Value.
  • Create a list of all the verticals and market segments represented by your Target Audience. Then create a master list of the key words and phrases associated with each vertical and market segment.
  • Develop personas for each of the market segments you identified. Then create a corresponding master list of the key words and phrases of the needs and interests of each persona.
  • These lists become your key word maps and a content tool for you to use as you create your messaging.

Step #2 – Create Messaging That Aligns To Key Word Map Tool

  • Now that you have your Key Word Map tool, use the words and phrases in it to create your marketing messaging. Suggestions include writing boilerplate copy that can be reused and modified throughout all of your marketing extensions. Standard copy typically includes About Your Company, Value Proposition, Key Differentiators, Competitive Advantage, and Offerings.

Fine-Tune // Refine

Your score is indicating that your messaging is pretty well aligned to your Defined Value and your Target Audience. This is great news, as Messaging Alignment is a real advantage and is contributing to current sales success. The more you can align your messaging, both in words and imagery, to your Defined Value and the characteristics of your Target Audience, the more sales you will close.

As a reminder, Messaging Alignment is making sure the language and imagery you use to communicate the value of your business match your Defined Value and correspond with the needs of your Target Audience. The goal is to connect with that audience. When prospects learn about your company, make sure they clearly understand your Defined Value. Hold up a mirror so they can easily see that you work with people like them.

Action Items:

Your focus should be on fine-tuning your Messaging Alignment. It may make sense to periodically audit your messaging to make sure you are not falling out of alignment. One exercise we’d recommend is to pretend you have a Google Search bar in your head and audit all of your marketing for messaging alignment. Audits would include website, company LinkedIn page, team member LinkedIn pages, capabilities decks, offering summaries, proposals, blogs, social media, and collateral.

  • Hint: Try the Find Tool on your browser and then search your webpages for the key words you use to describe your Defined Value and Target Audience.

If you really want to go the extra mile and improve your Messaging Alignment, take the time to set up your company for success. Your goal should be to make sure your messaging is aligned to the key words that define your value, and the key words that describe the needs and interests of your target audience. Accomplishing this goal will immediately improve sales performance. There are two recommended steps to achieve this goal.

Step #1 – Key Word Map Tool

  • Make sure you have your Defined Value documented and up to date. Then create a master list of the key words and phrases you are using to describe your Defined Value.
  • Create a list of all the verticals and market segments represented by your Target Audience. Then create a master list of the key words and phrases associated with each vertical and market segment.
  • Develop personas for each of the market segments you identified. Then create a corresponding master list of the key words and phrases of the needs and interests of each persona.
  • These lists become your key word maps and a content tool for you to use as you create your messaging.

Step #2 – Create Messaging That Aligns To Key Word Map Tool

  • Now that you have your Key Word Map tool, use the words and phrases in it to create your marketing messaging. Suggestions include writing boilerplate copy that can be reused and modified throughout all of your marketing extensions. Standard copy typically includes About Your Company, Value Proposition, Key Differentiators, Competitive Advantage, and Offerings.

Stay The Course // Look For Informed Pivots

Your score is indicating that your Messaging Alignment is extremely aligned to your Defined Value and your Target Audience. This alignment is a tremendous advantage and should be something you continue to maintain as you broaden your sales and marketing programs.

As a reminder, Messaging Alignment is making sure the language and imagery you use to communicate the value of your business match your Defined Value and correspond with the needs of your Target Audience. The goal is to connect with that audience. When prospects learn about your company, make sure they clearly understand your Defined Value. Hold up a mirror so they can easily see that you work with people like them.

Important: The more you can align your messaging, both in words and imagery, to your Defined Value and the characteristics of your Target Audience, the more sales you will close.

Action Items:

Your focus should be on fine-tuning your Messaging Alignment. It may make sense to periodically audit your messaging to make sure you are not falling out of alignment. One exercise we’d recommend is to pretend you have a Google Search bar in your head and audit all of your marketing for messaging alignment. Audits would include website, company LinkedIn page, team member LinkedIn pages, capabilities decks, offering summaries, proposals, blogs, social media, and collateral.

  • Hint: Try the Find Tool on your browser and then search your webpages for the key words you use to describe your Defined Value and Target Audience.

If you really want to go the extra mile and improve your Messaging Alignment, take the time to set up your company for success. Your goal should be to make sure your messaging is aligned to the key words that define your value, and the key words that describe the needs and interests of your target audience. Accomplishing this goal will immediately improve sales performance. There are two recommended steps to achieve this goal.

Step #1 – Key Word Map Tool

  • Make sure you have your Defined Value documented and up to date. Then create a master list of the key words and phrases you are using to describe your Defined Value.
  • Create a list of all the verticals and market segments represented by your Target Audience. Then create a master list of the key words and phrases associated with each vertical and market segment.
  • Develop personas for each of the market segment you identified. Then create a corresponding master list of the key words and phrases of the needs and interests of each persona.
  • These lists become your key word maps and a content tool for you to use as you create your messaging.

Step #2 – Create Messaging That Aligns To Key Word Map Tool

  • Now that you have your Key Word Map tool, use the words and phrases in it to create your marketing messaging. Suggestions include writing boilerplate copy that can be reused and modified throughout all of your marketing extensions. Standard copy typically includes About Your Company, Value Proposition, Key Differentiators, Competitive Advantage, and Offerings.

 

Build // Rebuild

Your score is strongly indicating that your marketing is not aligned to your brand, does not reflect your organization, and is incomplete. This is a significant business risk and is creating both roadblocks for people wanting to do business with you and challenges to your sales organization. This should be fixed immediately.

As a reminder, Marketing Alignment is making sure all of your marketing extensions accurately represent your brand and tell a clear and compelling story. High performing sales organizations have marketing materials that tell a clear, accurate story about their brand and communicate effectively with their Target Audience. As an example, if you were an innovative technology company, you would want your marketing to reflect innovation. In this example, your marketing and brand would be misaligned if your website was out of date, buggy, built with old technology, or not mobile friendly. This would create misalignment about how innovative you are to the viewers of your site and pose a huge challenge to sales effectiveness.

Action Items:

  • Define your brand attributes. This can be a simple exercise of writing down words and phrases that you believe represent your brand. If you are innovative, the words you use to describe your brand should align to what you perceive as innovative. Our recommendation is to do this exercise yourself, with your leadership team, and then with all of your sales and marketing team. You are looking for alignment and consensus. Hint: This would be a good exercise to do after you are 100% clear on your Defined Value – as your brand attributes should align to your Defined Value messaging.
  • A good exercise to understand the power of Marketing Alignment is to think of name brands that are similar to your company and see how they are communicating their brand via marketing. When you do this, look at their marketing and see if your perception of who they are matches the marketing you see. For example, think of a luxury brand like The Ritz-Carlton Hotels that provide exceptional customer experiences. When you visit their website and read about their brand does your perception of a global luxury brand match what you see? Now try to view your website with fresh eyes. What do you see that aligns to your brand attributes? What doesn’t align? This will give you insight into what you need to rebuild or develop.
  • Other action items would be to develop a marketing budget and prioritization schedule, list of marketing outlets that match where your target audience is going for information, and wish list of marketing extensions that your sales team would want to use to improve their performance.

Fix // Repair

Your score is strongly indicating that your marketing is not very aligned to your brand, does not completely reflect your organization, and it is either incomplete or partially incomplete. This is a significant business risk and is creating both roadblocks for people wanting to do business with you and challenges to your sales organization. This should be fixed immediately.

As a reminder, Marketing Alignment is making sure all of your marketing extensions accurately represent your brand and tell a clear and compelling story. High performing sales organizations have marketing materials that tell a clear, accurate story about their brand and communicate effectively with their Target Audience. As an example, if you were an innovative technology company, you would want your marketing to reflect innovation. In this example, your marketing and brand would be misaligned if your website was out of date, buggy, built with old technology, or not mobile friendly. This would create misalignment about how innovative you are to the viewers of your site and pose a huge challenge to sales effectiveness.

Action Items:

  • Define your brand attributes. This can be a simple exercise of writing down words and phrases that you believe represent your brand. If you are innovative, the words you use to describe your brand should align to what you perceive as innovative. Our recommendation is to do this exercise yourself, with your leadership team, and then with all of your sales and marketing team. You are looking for alignment and consensus. Hint: This would be a good exercise to do after you are 100% clear on your Defined Value – as your brand attributes should align to your Defined Value messaging.
  • A good exercise to understand the power of Marketing Alignment is to think of name brands that are similar to your company and see how they are communicating their brand via marketing. When you do this, look at their marketing and see if your perception of who they are matches the marketing you see. For example, think of a luxury brand like The Ritz-Carlton Hotels that provide exceptional customer experiences. When you visit their website and read about their brand does your perception of a global luxury brand match what you see? Now try to view your website with fresh eyes. What do you see that aligns to your brand attributes? What doesn’t align? This will give you insight into what you need to rebuild or develop.
  • Build or rebuild your most basic marketing extensions. We believe that it is better to have a small marketing inventory that is correct and aligned than a large inventory of incorrect or misaligned marketing extensions. Our prioritization recommendation would be to focus on your website, company LinkedIn page, and any sales presentation pieces. Other action items would be to develop a marketing budget and prioritization schedule, list of marketing outlets that match where your target audience is going for information, and wish list of marketing extensions that your sales team would want to use to improve their performance.

Fine-Tune // Refine

Your score is indicating that your marketing is pretty well aligned to your brand, reflects your organization, and is either complete or pretty close to complete. This is great news, as Marketing Alignment is a real advantage and is contributing to current sales success. The more you can communicate effectively with your Target Audience by aligning your marketing to your brand attributes and Defined Value, the more sales you will close.

As a reminder, Marketing Alignment is making sure all of your marketing extensions accurately represent your brand and tell a clear and compelling story. High performing sales organizations have marketing materials that tell a clear, accurate story about their brand and communicate effectively with their Target Audience. As an example, if you were an innovative technology company, you would want your marketing to reflect innovation. In this example, your marketing and brand would be misaligned if your website was out of date, buggy, built with old technology, or not mobile friendly. This would create misalignment about how innovative you are to the viewers of your site and pose a huge challenge to sales effectiveness.

Action Items:

  • Your focus should be on fine-tuning your Marketing Alignment and possibly expanding our marketing reach. It may make sense to periodically audit your marketing to make sure you are not falling out of alignment as well as brainstorm additional marketing extensions.
  • If you really want to go the extra mile and improve your Marketing Alignment, you may want to audit your brand attributes. This can be a simple exercise of writing down words and phrases that you believe represent your brand. If you are innovative, the words you use to describe your brand should align to what you perceive as innovative. Our recommendation is to do this exercise yourself, with your leadership team, and then with all of your sales and marketing team. You are looking for alignment and consensus. Hint: This would be a good exercise to do after you are 100% clear on your Defined Value – as your brand attributes should align to your Defined Value messaging.
  • Another good exercise to improve Marketing Alignment is an exercise that demonstrates the power of Marketing Alignment. To do this, think of name brands that are similar to your company and see how they are communicating their brand via marketing. When you do this, look at their marketing and see if your perception of who they are matches the marketing you see. For example, think of a luxury brand like The Ritz-Carlton Hotels that provide exceptional customer experiences. When you visit their website and read about their brand does your perception of a global luxury brand match what you see? Now try to view your website with fresh eyes. What do you see that aligns to your brand attributes? What doesn’t align? This will give you insight into what you need to refine.
  • Other action items would be to develop a marketing budget and prioritization schedule, list of marketing outlets that match where your target audience is going for information, and wish list of marketing extensions that your sales team would want to use to improve their performance.

Stay The Course // Look For Informed Pivots

Your score is indicating that your marketing is extremely aligned to your brand, reflects your organization, and it is complete. This alignment is a tremendous advantage and should be something you continue to maintain as you broaden your sales and marketing programs. The more you can communicate effectively with your Target Audience by aligning your marketing to your brand attributes and Defined Value, the more sales you will close.

As a reminder, Marketing Alignment is making sure all of your marketing extensions accurately represent your brand and tell a clear and compelling story. High performing sales organizations have marketing materials that tell a clear, accurate story about their brand and communicate effectively with their Target Audience. As an example, if you were an innovative technology company, you would want your marketing to reflect innovation. In this example, your marketing and brand would be misaligned if your website was out of date, buggy, built with old technology, or not mobile friendly. This would create misalignment about how innovative you are to the viewers of your site and pose a huge challenge to sales effectiveness.

Action Items:

  • Your focus should be on fine-tuning your Marketing Alignment and possibly expanding your marketing reach. It may make sense to periodically audit your marketing to make sure you are not falling out of alignment as well as brainstorm additional marketing extensions.
  • If you really want to go the extra mile and improve your Marketing Alignment, you may want to audit your brand attributes. This can be a simple exercise of writing down words and phrases that you believe represent your brand. If you are innovative, the words you use to describe your brand should align to what you perceive as innovative. Our recommendation is to do this exercise yourself, with your leadership team, and then with all of your sales and marketing team. You are looking for alignment and consensus. Hint: This would be a good exercise to do after you are 100% clear on your Defined Value – as your brand attributes should align to your Defined Value messaging.
  • Another good exercise to improve Marketing Alignment is an exercise that demonstrates the power of Marketing Alignment. To do this, think of name brands that are similar to your company and see how they are communicating their brand via marketing. When you do this, look at their marketing and see if your perception of who they are matches the marketing you see. For example, think of a luxury brand like The Ritz-Carlton Hotels that provide exceptional customer experiences. When you visit their website and read about their brand does your perception of a global luxury brand match what you see? Now try to view your website with fresh eyes. What do you see that aligns to your brand attributes? What doesn’t align? This will give you insight into what you need to refine.
  • Other action items would be to develop a marketing budget and prioritization schedule, list of marketing outlets that match where your target audience is going for information, and wish list of marketing extensions that your sales team would want to use to improve their performance.

Build // Rebuild

Your score is strongly indicating that your Sales Team is ineffective at representing your brand, lacks the tools they need to meet sales goals, and have barriers that prevent them from closing opportunities. They also may have communication, attention to detail, and follow-up issues. Further your Sales Team does not appear to follow a defined sales process. While coaching and professional development may be beneficial, your results indicate that your Sales Team may be unwilling to participate in these improvement initiatives.

Warning: You have a significant revenue risk and need to improve your Sales Team immediately.

As a reminder, your Sales Team is the dedicated team that is always available to interact with all of the leads and customers that are in your sales funnel. This includes leads that have just entered the top of the funnel that may still be relatively cold, the warm leads that are in the middle of the funnel, and the hot leads and customers that reside at the bottom of the funnel. Sales Teams need to be experts at explaining your value. They should be the physical extension of your brand and excel at building trust and rapport.

Action Items:

  • Meet with your sales team as a group and individually to determine why they do not feel they are the physical extension of your brand. Determine what the source issues are and address them.
  • List out the sales tools that the Sales Team currently has. Audit the effectiveness of each tool. Meet with your sales team as a group and individually to determine why the current sales tools are not being used or are deemed ineffective. Also ask the team about other tools that they would use, rank these tools in both sales generation effectiveness and probability of group and individual adoption.
  • Ask your best sales person to take you through his or her sales process. Ask him or her where there may be roadblocks. Validate these roadblocks and develop a plan to remove them. Conduct the following exercise with your other sales people if you found the initial exercise valuable.
  • Review at least one proposal from each sales person. Determine if each proposal accurately reflects your brand standards and the level of attention to detail. Then review your CRM to see if the level of documentation against the proposal is acceptable for your sales organization.
  • Either take a sales assessment yourself or have a key leadership team member take the assessment so that you have a first hand POV. Discuss these results with the assessment provider and review their recommended steps for improvement. If you believe this assessment would be a constructive tool for your organization, develop a sales assessment and sales skills improvement plan. Once your plan is constructed, give each of your sales team the assessment. Then implement your sales skills improvement plan with each team member. Note: There are many assessments on the market. Contact The Carruthers Group if you need a recommendation or would like us to administer one of our sales assessments.

Fix // Repair

Your score is strongly indicating that your Sales Team has challenges. This could be that they are ineffective at representing your brand, lack all of the tools they need to meet sales goals, or have some barriers that prevent them from closing opportunities. Other considerations are that they may have communication, attention to detail, and follow-up issues. Additional issues may be that your Sales Team is unclear on or doesn’t know how to follow a defined sales process. While coaching and professional development may be beneficial, your results indicate that your Sales Team may have concerns participating in these improvement initiatives. These are all revenue risks that need to be improved immediately.

As a reminder, your Sales Team is the dedicated team that is always available to interact with all of the leads and customers that are in your sales funnel. This includes leads that have just entered the top of the funnel that may still be relatively cold, the warm leads that are in the middle of the funnel, and the hot leads and customers that reside at the bottom of the funnel. Sales Teams need to be experts at explaining your value. They should be the physical extension of your brand and excel at building trust and rapport.

Action Items:

  • Meet with your sales team as a group and individually to determine why they do not feel they are the physical extension of your brand. Determine what the source issues are and address them.
  • List out the sales tools that the Sales Team currently has. Audit the effectiveness of each tool. Meet with your sales team as a group and individually to determine why the current sales tools are not being used or are deemed ineffective. Also ask the team about other tools that they would use, rank these tools in both sales generation effectiveness and probability of group and individual adoption.
  • Ask your best sales person to take you through his or her sales process. Ask him or her where there may be roadblocks. Validate these roadblocks and develop a plan to remove them. Conduct the following exercise with your other sales people if you found the initial exercise valuable.
  • Review at least one proposal from each sales person. Determine if each proposal accurately reflects your brand standards and the level of attention to detail. Then review your CRM to see if the level of documentation against the proposal is acceptable for your sales organization.
  • Either take a sales assessment yourself or have a key leadership team member take the assessment so that you have a first hand POV. Discuss these results with the assessment provider and review their recommended steps for improvement. If you believe this assessment would be a constructive tool for your organization, develop a sales assessment and sales skills improvement plan. Once your plan is constructed, give each of your sales team the assessment. Then implement your sales skills improvement plan with each team member. Note: There are many assessments on the market. Contact The Carruthers Group if you need a recommendation or would like us to administer one of our sales assessments.

Fine-Tune // Refine

Your score is indicating that your Sales Team is pretty effective at representing your brand, that they probably have many of the tools they need to meet sales goals, and that they probably have few barriers preventing them from closing opportunities. It also appears that they have acceptable communication skills, acceptable attention to detail, and probably follow-up well. You may have some issues with your Sales Team following a defined sales process, but most likely there is some process most of them follow. Coaching and professional development may be beneficial, and your team may be open to these types of improvement initiatives. All in all, your Sales Team is in a pretty good place and is contributing to sales success. Any steps you can take to improve your Sales Team, even small incremental changes, will increase sales performance and should generate more revenue.

As a reminder, your Sales Team is the dedicated team that is always available to interact with all of the leads and customers that are in your sales funnel. This includes leads that have just entered the top of the funnel that may still be relatively cold, the warm leads that are in the middle of the funnel, and the hot leads and customers that reside at the bottom of the funnel. Sales Teams need to be experts at explaining your value. They should be the physical extension of your brand and excel at building trust and rapport.

Action Items:

  • List out the sales tools that the Sales Team currently has. Audit the effectiveness of each tool. Meet with your sales team as a group and individually to determine why the current sales tools are not being used or are deemed ineffective. Also ask the team about other tools that they would use, rank these tools in both sales generation effectiveness and probability of group and individual adoption.
  • Ask your best sales person to take you through his or her sales process. Ask him or her where there may be roadblocks. Validate these roadblocks and develop a plan to remove them. Conduct the following exercise with your other sales people if you found the initial exercise valuable.
  • Review at least one proposal from each sales person. Determine if each proposal accurately reflects your brand standards and the level of attention to detail. Then review your CRM to see if the level of documentation against the proposal is acceptable for your sales organization.
  • Either take a sales assessment yourself or have a key leadership team member take the assessment so that you have a first hand POV. Discuss these results with the assessment provider and review their recommended steps for improvement. If you believe this assessment would be a constructive tool for your organization, develop a sales assessment and sales skills improvement plan. Once your plan is constructed, give each of your sales team the assessment. Then implement your sales skills improvement plan with each team member. Note: There are many assessments on the market. Contact Carruthers if you need a recommendation or would like us to administer one of our sales assessments.

Stay The Course // Look For Informed Pivots

Your score is indicating that your Sales Team is very effective at representing your brand, that they have most of the tools they need to meet sales goals, and that they have few barriers preventing them from closing opportunities. It also appears that they have solid communication skills, an acceptable attention to detail, and probably follow-up well. You may have some issues with your Sales Team following a defined sales process, but most likely there is some process most of them follow. Coaching and professional development may be beneficial to generating even more performance, and your team may be open to these types of improvement initiatives. If you do implement either coaching or professional development, make sure you have a well thought out improvement plan that assures and supports your team. You may also want to consider learning about effective change management so that these additional performance initiatives are seen as highly constructive. All in all, your Sales Team is in a good place and is definitely contributing to sales success. Any steps you can take to improve your Sales Team, even small incremental changes, will increase sales performance and should generate more revenue.

As a reminder, your Sales Team is the dedicated team that is always available to interact with all of the leads and customers that are in your sales funnel. This includes leads that have just entered the top of the funnel that may still be relatively cold, the warm leads that are in the middle of the funnel, and the hot leads and customers that reside at the bottom of the funnel. Sales Teams need to be experts at explaining your value. They should be the physical extension of your brand and excel at building trust and rapport.

Action Items:

  • Build or continue to build strong relationships with your sales team. We would recommend quarterly one-to-one meetings that are out-of-the-office. Getting breakfast or meeting after hours would be our recommendations – as you don’t want to take away from your teams’ selling time. Ahead of the meeting develop a specific micro-agenda so that your meeting has purpose, but make these topics relevant and valuable for both the sales person and your company.
  • If you really want to go the extra mile and focus on improving your Sales Team, list out the sales tools that the Sales Team currently has. Audit the effectiveness of each tool. Meet with your sales team as a group and individually to determine why the current sales tools are not being used or are deemed ineffective. Also ask the team about other tools that they would use, rank these tools in both sales generation effectiveness and probability of group and individual adoption.
  • If you are looking to better understand or improve your sales process, ask your best sales person to take you through his or her sales process. Ask him or her where there may be roadblocks. Validate these roadblocks and develop a plan to remove them. Conduct the following exercise with your other sales people if you found the initial exercise valuable. Use this data to create standardized, adaptable sales processes. Based on your culture determine the best way to move this initiative forward.
  • If you are interested in coaching or professional development for some or all of your sales team, then either take a sales assessment yourself or have a key leadership team member take the assessment so that you have a first hand POV. Discuss these results with the assessment provider and review their recommended steps for improvement. If you believe this assessment would be a constructive tool for your organization, develop a sales assessment and sales skills improvement plan. Once your plan is constructed, give each of your sales team the assessment. Then implement your sales skills improvement plan with each team member. Note: There are many assessments on the market. Contact Carruthers if you need a recommendation or would like us to administer one of our sales assessments.

Build // Rebuild

Your score is strongly indicating that your Revenue Process is incomplete. Most likely you lack a defined sales process, cultivation process, and the corresponding standard operating procedures. You may not be using a CRM or if you have one, it provides little or no value to your organization. Further, the results indicated that you may not use any Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to manage your sales activities. Additionally, you may not be performing any revenue analysis for win/loss opportunities nor do you analyze sales cycles or lead/revenue sources. This may make you dissatisfied with close rates.

Warning: You have a significant revenue risk that will prohibit growth and scalability. If you want to increase sales performance, you need to improve your Revenue Process immediately.

As a reminder, your Revenue Process is a defined series of steps associated with how your company interacts with leads and customers to generate sales and cultivate leads over time. It has two parts: Sales Process and Cultivation Process. A Revenue Process is a best practice decision tree that your sales team consistently follows to stay in touch with and create value for leads and customers over time.

Action Items:

  • Outline the most basic steps for a Sales Process and a Cultivation Process. A Sales Process is the decision tree or series of steps that you would want to take a lead on from the time they are interested in buying your product or service to the time they make a purchase. A Cultivation Process is a decision tree or series of steps that you would want to take a lead or a customer on from the time they are interested in learning about your brand to the time they enter your Sales Process.
    • Hint: A basic exercise to develop Revenue Processes is to take sticky notes and write down all the possible steps or experiences you would like a lead or customer to have. Then attach each sticky note to the wall and move them around into the different sequences that represent the possible journeys on which you can take these leads. Once you have these steps down, document these flows as your Sales or Cultivation Processes.
  • Learn more about CRMs. See what CRMs your sales and marketing teams might have used in other organizations. Ask your friends in similar businesses what they use. Do the research and learn how a CRM could improve your sales organization. If you already have a CRM, invest the time to improve adoption. One hint is to begin small and evolve from there. Our experience has been that all too often CRMs are overbuilt from the beginning, making the rollout time consuming and adoption difficult due to the initial complexity.
  • Review the last five deals that you closed and the last five deals that you lost. Look for trends, determine the origins of each opportunity, determine if you can find patterns or indications of sales cycles. Take this information and try to understand if there are learnings or opportunities for improvement.
  • If you have not started to use marketing automation, you may want to consider implementing a marketing automation program. This could help fill the top of your sales funnel and improve your warm lead cultivation.

Fix // Repair

Your score is strongly indicating that your Revenue Process is marginal or incomplete. Most likely you either lack or have an incomplete sales process, cultivation process, and standard operating procedures. You may not use a CRM or if you have one, it provides little or no value to your organization. Further, the results indicate that you most likely do not use any Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to manage your sales activities. If you do use KPIs, they are used inconsistently and provide sporadic value. Additionally, you most likely do not perform revenue analysis for win/loss opportunities nor do you analyze sales cycles or lead/revenue sources. If you do, it’s most likely inconsistent or incomplete. When it comes to close rates, you are most likely dissatisfied with your sales organization’s performance. These are all revenue risks that need to be improved immediately. These improvements should help you improve your current state of sales performance and serve as a leverage point for any future sales engine implementations.

As a reminder, your Revenue Process is a defined series of steps associated with how your company interacts with leads and customers to generate sales and cultivate leads over time. It has two parts: Sales Process and Cultivation Process. A Revenue Process is a best practice decision tree that your sales team consistently follows to stay in touch with and create value for leads and customers over time.

Action Items:

  • Outline the most basic steps for a Sales Process and a Cultivation Process. A Sales Process is the decision tree or series of steps that you would want to take a lead on from the time they are interested in buying your product or service to the time they make a purchase. A Cultivation Process is a the decision tree or series of steps that you would want to take a lead or a customer on from the time they are interested in learning about your brand to the time they enter your Sales Process.
    • Hint: A basic exercise to develop Revenue Processes is to take sticky notes and write down all the possible steps or experiences you would like a lead or customer to have. Then attached each sticky note to the wall and move them around into the different sequences that represent the possible journeys you can take these leads. Once you have these steps down, document these flows as your Sales or Cultivation Processes.
  • Learn more about CRMs. See what CRMs your sales and marketing teams might have used in other organizations. Ask your friends in similar business what they use. Do the research and learn how a CRM could improve your sales organization. If you already have a CRM, invest the time to improve adoption. One hint is to begin small and evolve from there. Our experience has been that all too often CRMs are overbuilt from the beginning, making the rollout time consuming and adoption difficult due to the initial complexity.
    • Note: The Carruthers Group provides a monthly webinar on CRMs that discusses the real world benefits, challenges, and best practices of implementing and running a CRM. Click here to sign up.
  • Review the last five deals that you closed and the last five deals that you lost. Look for trends, determine the origins of each opportunity, determine if you can find patterns or indications of sales cycles. Take this information and try to understand if there are learnings or opportunities for improvement.
  • If you have not started to use marketing automation, you may want to consider implementing a marketing automation program. This could help fill the top of your sales funnel and improve your warm lead cultivation.
    • Note: The Carruthers Group provides a monthly webinar on Marketing Automation that discusses the real world benefits, challenges, and best practices of implementing and running a Marketing Automation Program. Click here to sign up.

Fine-Tune // Refine

Your score is indicating that your Revenue Process is operating at a relatively high level of effectiveness. Most likely you have a defined sales process, cultivation process, and defined standard operating procedures. Or you have some level of defined processes and are looking to improve or develop others. You most likely use a CRM and have some level of adoption and derive value from the tool. You may use your CRM to map to your defined Revenue Processes or the idea of using your CRM to map your processes as workflows is a consideration. Further, you probably measure sales performance or have plans to improve measurement protocols. You may perform some type of revenue analysis for win/loss opportunities, or analyze sales cycles or lead/revenue sources for effectiveness. If you do not yet perform that type of analysis, you are most likely interested in starting this practice. When it comes to close rates, you are relatively satisfied with your sales organization’s performance. However, you most likely want to find ways to improve. All in all, your Revenue Process is solid and is contributing to sales success. Any steps you can take to improve your Revenue Process, even small incremental changes, will increase sales performance and should generate more revenue.

As a reminder, your Revenue Process is a defined series of steps associated with how your company interacts with leads and customers to generate sales and cultivate leads over time. It has two parts: Sales Process and Cultivation Process. A Revenue Process is a best practice decision tree that your sales team consistently follows to stay in touch with and create value for leads and customers over time.

Action Items:

  • If you are looking to create or improve your Sales or Revenue Process, then outline the steps for your Sales Process and Cultivation Process. To help clarify the differences, a Sales Process is the decision tree or series of steps that you would want to take a lead on from the time they are interested in buying your product or service to the time they make a purchase. A Cultivation Process is a the decision tree or series of steps that you would want to take a lead or a customer on from the time they are interested in learning about your brand to the time they enter your Sales Process.
    • Hint: A basic exercise to develop Revenue Processes is to take sticky notes and write down all the possible steps or experiences you would like a lead or customer to have. Then attach each sticky note to the wall and move them around into the different sequences that represent the possible journeys you can take these leads. Once you have these steps down, document these flows as your Sales or Cultivation Processes.
  • Learn more about how you can get additional value from your CRM. For example, you should consider mapping your Sales and Cultivation Processes to workflow activities within your CRM so that your sales team can more easily follow documented process and your sales management can generate reports to better manage these activities. If you have low CRM adoption, then you might want to consider moving to basic best practices and simplifying your CRM Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). This will allow you to move to a crawl, walk, run adoption, improve the short term, and set you up for more success in the long term.
    • Note: The Carruthers Group provides a monthly webinar on CRMs that discusses the real world benefits, challenges, and best practices of implementing and running a CRM. Click here to sign up.
  • Review the last five deals that you closed and the last five deals that you lost. Look for trends, determine the origins of each opportunity, determine if you can find patterns or indications of sales cycles. Take this information and try to understand if there are learnings or opportunities for improvement.
  • If you have not started to use marketing automation, you may want to consider implementing a marketing automation program. This could help fill the top of your sales funnel and improve your warm lead cultivation.
    • Note: The Carruthers Group provides a monthly webinar on Marketing Automation that discusses the real world benefits, challenges, and best practices of implementing and running a Marketing Automation Program. Click here to sign up.

Stay The Course // Look For Informed Pivots

Your score is indicating that your Revenue Process is very effective. Most likely you have a defined sales process, cultivation process, and defined standard operating procedures. While you may want to evolve or improve these processes, having this level of infrastructure is a huge advantage. It appears that you effectively use your CRM and have some level of adoption and derive value from the tool. You most likely use your CRM to map to your processes as defined workflows. Further, you probably measure sales performance through the use of reporting tools and KPIs. You most likely perform some type of revenue analysis for win/loss opportunities, or analyze sales cycles or lead/revenue sources for effectiveness. When it comes to close rates, you are satisfied with your sales organization’s performance. However, you most likely want to find ways to improve. All in all, your Revenue Process is comprehensive and contributing to sales success. Any steps you can take to continue to improve your Revenue Process, even small incremental changes, will increase sales performance and should generate more revenue.

As a reminder, your Revenue Process is a defined series of steps associated with how your company interacts with leads and customers to generate sales and cultivate leads over time. It has two parts: Sales Process and Cultivation Process. A Revenue Process is a best practice decision tree that your sales team consistently follows to stay in touch with and create value for leads and customers over time.

Action Items:

  • If you are looking to create or improve your Sales or Revenue Process, then outline the steps for your Sales Process and Cultivation Process. To help clarify the differences, a Sales Process is the decision tree or series of steps that you would want to take a lead on from the time they are interested in buying your product or service to the time they make a purchase. A Cultivation Process is the decision tree or series of steps that you would want to take a lead or a customer on from the time they are interested in learning about your brand to the time they enter your Sales Process.
    • Hint: A basic exercise to develop Revenue Processes is to take sticky notes and write down all the possible steps or experiences you would like a lead or customer to have. Then attach each sticky note to the wall and move them around into the different sequences that represent the possible journeys you can take these leads. Once you have these steps down, document these flows as your Sales or Cultivation Processes.
  • Learn more about how you can get additional value from your CRM. For example, you should consider mapping your Sales and Cultivation Processes to workflow activities within your CRM so that your sales team can more easily follow documented process and your sales management can generate reports to better manage these activities. If you have low CRM adoption, then you might want to consider moving to basic best practices and simplifying your CRM Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). This will allow you to move to a crawl, walk, run adoption, improve the short term, and set you up for more success in the long term.
    • Note: The Carruthers Group provides a monthly webinar on CRMs that discusses the real world benefits, challenges, and best practices of implementing and running a CRM. Click here to sign up.
  • As an additional exercise to give you additional insight into revenue performance, review the last five deals that you closed and the last five deals that you lost. Look for trends, determine the origins of each opportunity, determine if you can find patterns or indications of sales cycles. Take this information and try to understand if there are learnings or opportunities for improvement.
  • If you have not started to use marketing automation, you may want to consider implementing a marketing automation program. This could help fill the top of your sales funnel and improve your warm lead cultivation.
    • Note: The Carruthers Group provides a monthly webinar on Marketing Automation that discusses the real world benefits, challenges, and best practices of implementing and running a Marketing Automation Program. Click here to sign up.

Build // Rebuild

Your score is strongly indicating that your Performance Management systems and processes are incomplete or nonexistent. Most likely you lack accountability and oversight of your sales and revenue processes. You also most likely do not use a CRM or, if you have one, it provides little or no value to your organization. You may not be running sales or marketing reports on a regular basis to determine effectiveness. You may not be meeting with your sales and marketing teams regularly or reviewing their performance. You may not have a comprehensive performance plan that includes compensation plans, forecasting protocols, sales meeting processes and agendas, sales manager roles and responsibilities, review schedules, and accountability and oversight processes.

Warning: You have a significant revenue risk that will prohibit growth and scalability. If you want to increase sales performance, you need to improve your Performance Management systems and processes immediately. Further, by improving Performance Management you should be able to convert more sales from your current activities.

As a reminder, you can’t achieve goals unless you first know what they are and then measure them. Performance Management ensures your Revenue Process is being implemented in order to keep your company driving towards improved revenue performance. Top-performing companies have procedures that foster accountability, systems that provide actionable knowledge and oversight, and managers who improve human capital.

Action Items:

  • Determine the level of sales performance accountability and oversight you want in your organization.
  • Make sure you define your Sales Process, Revenue Process, and all associated standard operating procedures.
  • Learn more about CRMs and the different reports that they can generate. See what CRMs your sales and marketing teams might have used in other organizations. Ask your friends in similar business what they use. Do the research and learn how a CRM could improve your sales organization. If you already have a CRM, invest the time to improve adoption. One hint is to begin small and evolve from there. Our experience has been that all too often CRMs are overbuilt from the beginning, making the rollout time consuming and adoption difficult due to the initial complexity.
    • Note: The Carruthers Group provides a monthly webinar on CRMs that discusses the real world benefits, challenges, and best practices of implementing and running a CRM. Click here to sign up.
  • Create the baseline Performance Plan. This should include compensation plans, forecasting protocols, sales meeting processes and agendas, sales manager roles and responsibilities, review schedules, and accountability and oversight processes.
  • Learn about change management best practices and how they might be able to be used to help you evolve your sales organization to align to the level of sales performance accountability and oversight you want in your organization.

Fix // Repair

Your score is strongly indicating that your Performance Management systems and processes are marginal or incomplete. Most likely you either lack or have little accountability and oversight of your sales and revenue processes. You most likely do not use a CRM or if you have one, it provides little or no value to your organization. You may not be running sales or marketing reports on a regular basis to determine effectiveness. Or if you do, these reports or the frequency you use the reports are inconsistent and most likely provide sporadic value. Additionally, you are most likely not meeting with your sales and marketing teams regularly nor are you reviewing their performance. If you do, it may be inconsistent or incomplete. You may have a performance plan, but it may not include or only partially includes the following: compensation plans, forecasting protocols, sales meeting processes and agendas, sales manager roles and responsibilities, review schedules, and accountability and oversight processes.

Warning: You have a significant revenue risk that will prohibit growth and scalability. If you want to increase sales performance, you need to improve your Performance Management systems and processes immediately. Further, by improving Performance Management you should be able to convert more sales from your current activities – generating more revenue from the team you already have.

As a reminder, you can’t achieve goals unless you first know what they are and then measure them. Performance Management ensures your Revenue Process is being implemented in order to keep your company driving towards improved revenue performance. Top-performing companies have procedures that foster accountability, systems that provide actionable knowledge and oversight, and managers who improve human capital.

Action Items:

  • Determine the level of sales performance accountability and oversight you want in your organization.
  • Make sure you define your Sales Process, Revenue Process, and all associated standard operating procedures.
  • Learn more about CRMs and the different reports that they can generate. See what CRMs your sales and marketing teams might have used in other organizations. Ask your friends in similar business what they use. Do the research and learn how a CRM could improve your sales organization. If you already have a CRM, invest the time to improve adoption. One hint is to begin small and evolve from there. Our experience has been that all too often CRMs are overbuilt from the beginning, making the rollout time consuming and adoption difficult due to the initial complexity.
    • Note: The Carruthers Group provides a monthly webinar on CRMs that discusses the real world benefits, challenges, and best practices of implementing and running a CRM. Click here to sign up.
  • Create the baseline Performance Plan. This should include compensation plans, forecasting protocols, sales meeting processes and agendas, sales manager roles and responsibilities, review schedules, and accountability and oversight processes.
  • Learn about change management best practices and how they might be able to be used to help you evolve your sales organization to align to the level of sales performance accountability and oversight you want in your organization.

Fine-Tune // Refine

Your score is indicating that your Performance Management systems and processes are at a relatively high level of effectiveness. Most likely you have some level accountability and oversight of your sales and revenue processes or you are looking to increase these elements. You most likely use a CRM and have some level of adoption, derive value from the tool, and may use it to generate performance reports or plan to begin to use this functionality. You probably run sales or marketing reports on a regular basis to determine effectiveness or have plans to improve these protocols. You are most likely meeting with your sales and marketing teams regularly, and routinely review their performance. If you do not yet meet regularly or routinely review performance, you are most likely considering starting this practice. You most likely have a performance plan that contains all or some of the following: compensation plans, forecasting protocols, sales meeting processes and agendas, sales manager roles and responsibilities, review schedules, and accountability and oversight processes. All in all, your Performance Management is solid and is contributing to sales success. Any steps you can take to improve your Performance Management practices, even small incremental changes, will increase sales performance and should generate more revenue. Further, by improving Performance Management you should be able to convert more sales from your current activities – generating more revenue from the team you already have.

As a reminder, you can’t achieve goals unless you first know what they are and then measure them. Performance Management ensures your Revenue Process is being implemented in order to keep your company driving towards improved revenue performance. Top-performing companies have procedures that foster accountability, systems that provide actionable knowledge and oversight, and managers who improve human capital.

Action Items:

  • If you are looking to improve your Performance Management practices, you may want to revisit the level of sales performance accountability and oversight you want in your organization. Then conduct a quick gap analysis of where you are today to where you’d ideally like to be. Based on the level of discrepancy, you may want to learn about change management best practices and how they might be able to be used to reach the new target level of Performance Management.
  • Begin with the end in mind. Meaning, determine what outcomes you want to measure and then work backwards to evolve your defined Sales Process, Revenue Process, and all associated standard operating procedures to generate these outcomes. Document these workflows in your CRM and create reports that provide you insight into the level of performance.
  • Learn more about CRMs and the different reports that they can generate. See what CRMs your sales and marketing teams might have used in other organizations. Ask your friends in similar business what they use. Do the research and learn how a CRM could improve your sales organization. If you already have a CRM, invest the time to improve adoption. One hint is to begin small and evolve from there. Our experience has been that all too often CRMs are overbuilt from the beginning, making the rollout time consuming and adoption difficult due to the initial complexity.
    • Note: The Carruthers Group provides a monthly webinar on CRMs that discusses the real world benefits, challenges, and best practices of implementing and running a CRM. Click here to sign up.
  • Review your current Performance Plan. Look for areas that don’t align to your goals and places that could use improvement. This should include compensation plans, forecasting protocols, sales meeting processes and agendas, sales manager roles and responsibilities, review schedules, and accountability and oversight processes. Based on what you find, make the appropriate adjustments.

Stay The Course // Look For Informed Pivots

Your score is indicating that your Performance Management systems and processes are very effective. Most likely you have accountability and oversight of your sales and revenue processes. While you may want to increase or improve this accountability and oversight, having this level of infrastructure is a real advantage. It appears that you effectively use your CRM and have some level of adoption, derive value from the tool, and probably use your CRM to generate performance reports. Further, you probably run sales or marketing reports on a regular basis to determine effectiveness or have plans to improve these protocols. You most likely meet with your sales and marketing teams regularly, and routinely review their performance. Your organization also has a performance plan that contains all or some of the following: compensation plans, forecasting protocols, sales meeting processes and agendas, sales manager roles and responsibilities, review schedules, and accountability and oversight processes. All in all, your Performance Management is comprehensive and contributing to sales success. Any steps you can take to improve your Performance Management practices, even small incremental changes, will increase sales performance and should generate more revenue.

As a reminder, you can’t achieve goals unless you first know what they are and then measure them. Performance Management ensures your Revenue Process is being implemented in order to keep your company driving towards improved revenue performance. Top-performing companies have procedures that foster accountability, systems that provide actionable knowledge and oversight, and managers who improve human capital.

Action Items:

  • If you are looking to improve your Performance Management practices, you may want to revisit the level of sales performance accountability and oversight you want in your organization. Then conduct a quick gap analysis of where you are today to where you’d ideally like to be. Based on the level of discrepancy, you may want to learn about change management best practices and how they might be able to be used to reach the new target level of Performance Management.
  • Begin with the end in mind. Meaning, determine what outcomes you want to measure and then work backwards to evolve your defined Sales Process, Revenue Process, and all associated standard operating procedures to generate these outcomes. Document these workflows in your CRM and create reports that provide you insight into the level of performance.
  • Learn more about CRMs and the different reports that they can generate. See what CRMs your sales and marketing teams might have used in other organizations. Ask your friends in similar business what they use. Do the research and learn how a CRM could improve your sales organization. If you already have a CRM, invest the time to improve adoption. One hint is to begin small and evolve from there. Our experience has been that all too often CRMs are overbuilt from the beginning, making the rollout time consuming and adoption difficult due to the initial complexity.
    • Note: The Carruthers Group provides a monthly webinar on CRMs that discusses the real world benefits, challenges, and best practices of implementing and running a CRM. Click here to sign up.
  • Review your current Performance Plan. Look for areas that don’t align to your goals and places that could use improvement. This should include compensation plans, forecasting protocols, sales meeting processes and agendas, sales manager roles and responsibilities, review schedules, and accountability and oversight processes. Based on what you find, make the appropriate adjustments.
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