Commentary

Ya Gotta Talk-The-Talk

According to Corporate Visions, Inc., polling business-to-business marketers and salespeople from around the globe, 85% of companies agree their sales teams’ ability to articulate value messages is one of the most critical factors in closing deals, yet only about 41% implement formal strategies to ensure an effective presentation.

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In fact, an alarming 34% of respondents indicate no one is responsible for coaching and certifying that salespeople are proficient in delivering their company’s value messages at all, says the report.

Respondents were asked to rate to what extent they agree with the statement: “Our sales team’s ability to articulate our message is one of the most critical factors to closing deals.”

  • Strongly agree (53.8%)
  • Agree (31.6%)
  • Somewhat agree (12.5%)
  • Disagree (1.7%)
  • Strongly disagree (0.4%)

 Respondents were then asked if they expect salespeople to practice delivering company value messages in role-play or stand-and-deliver settings, with the following results:

  • Every time (12.3%)
  • Most of the time (28.8%)
  • Sometimes (44.1%)
  • Usually not (12.2%)
  • Never (2.6%)

 When asked to identify who or what department is responsible for ensuring that messages are practiced and coached, allowing respondents to select more than one option, response included: 

  • Their managers are responsible (49%)
  • The training organization is responsible (36.3%)
  • No one inspects messaging proficiency (34%)

Tim Riesterer, chief strategy and marketing officer for Corporate Visions, says “… everyone believes that salespeople with their lips moving is a company’s most powerful weapon for communicating value, but reasonable practice and inspection of competency is not a requirement… ”

He followed up by saying that “… even leaving it to sales managers… is essentially a hit-or-miss proposition… given the pressure for pipeline and deal forecasts… (and) the distributed nature of sales teams.”

 Finally, respondents were asked how often they require salespeople to submit videos of themselves delivering the messages for coaching and feedback:

  • Never (33.1%)
  • Usually not (36.6%)
  • Sometimes (21.3%)
  • Most of the time (6%)
  • All the time (3%)

 Riesterer added that this is “… a missed opportunity for companies to differentiate themselves in the market by being more purposeful in sales messaging practice, coaching and certification… salespeople learn best by doing… practicing in front of an audience to… (get) feedback and receive coaching advice in environments that most closely resemble where sales conversations actually take place… ”

 For additional information from Corporate Visions infographic, please visit here; or for the press release http://corporatevisions.com/blog/2015/04/14/q1-2015-survey-release/. go here.

 

 

 

3 comments about "Ya Gotta Talk-The-Talk".
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  1. Juli Schatz from Image Grille, April 14, 2015 at 9:33 a.m.

    Neither of the links to the Corporate Visions site work. They take you to the site but bnot the page and I get an error message. Sloppy!

  2. Hanna Gryncwajg from Hanna G, April 14, 2015 at 9:57 a.m.

    The art of training sales executives is no longer what is was.  Turner was (and probably still is) the best training ground back in the 90's for formally training sales executives.  It was a tough process which required you to understand research and present to managers on a regular basis.  It produced the best in class AE's, many who are leaders today.  I agree that understanding the message of the mission, combined with knowing the research (not just talking points) is essential.  Practicing the presentation in front of your peers and managers brings it all together.  All organizations big and small should participate in this training process.

  3. Jack Loechner from Mediapost Communications, April 16, 2015 at 5:14 p.m.

    sorry Juli... there were some changes made after the Brief was posted... the new URL didn't catch up with them... try this... jack

    http://corporatevisions.com/blog/2015/04/14/q1-2015-survey-release/

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