Attracting customers in a continuous flow is essential for a company to remain in the market, but growing a business’s sales is not a simple task. If you want to leverage your sales, maybe it’s time to learn what a sales machine is.
The growth of a company depends on the joint work of different areas, such as marketing, sales, production and supply. Even more occasional factors, such as the COVID-19 pandemic and the need to adopt a home office, for example, end up interfering.
All of this affects your business’s relationship with the market and customers. Therefore, having a sales machine is essential to maintain the stability of your business.
This concept was created to help your company grow and stay in the market.
So, if this is your goal as an entrepreneur, read on!
What is a vending machine?
Sales machine is the expression used to explain the process of structuring a scalable sales model.
That is, this concept designates optimized actions and processes designed to support a constant volume of newleads in your company.
A sales machine must always be scalable and deliver solutions that really make sense for the customer.
In other words, it’s like a roadmap of steps your company should take to increase lead capture and retention.
The term was invented by Aaron Ross, in the publication of the book“Predictable Revenue”, and comes from English Sales Machine.
In the book, the author tells how he created a sales machine that earned more than 100 million dollars for the pioneering company of the strategy, Salesforce.
What Aaron did was to structure a lead generation growth process, continuously generating opportunities. This is what defines an effective sales machine today.
The vending machine is:
Scalable, as its objective is to increase the number of customers.
Profitable, because the objective of every company is the profit.
It’s predictable because it’s essential that your company’s projected future matches what’s happening in the present.
After all, you can’t imagine that your future will be billions if your company’s revenue hasn’t even reached the hundreds of thousands.
In that case, keeping your foot on the ground about your company’s growth is essential.
It is also essential that the vending machine is profitable. That is, your customers need to give a return greater than what was spent to acquire them (ROI).
This means that if you have a marketing campaign that costs 2,000, for example, and it only brought 2 customers, the cost of each customer was 1,000 reais.
In this case, the only thing that would pay for the campaign would be if both customers spent more than a thousand reais, which is unlikely in many scenarios.
In this sense, the CAC (Customer Acquisition Cost) must always be as low as possible, as this means more profit.
Therefore, the sales machine is the whole process and mapping to increase your sales numbers and profit more and more.
Scalability and sales machine
A scalable company is a company that manages to increase its revenue without necessarily increasing its costs. In other words, it is a growing company.
Every company wants to be scalable, have continuous growth and profit greater than its expenses (even if this is not always the case for all scalable companies).
There are two scalability models within a business: horizontal and vertical.
The horizontal scalability model has as main objective to make the company a reference in the market in general. In this way, the company seeks to maintain a varied range of customers and segments, with the objective of remaining relevant in the market as a whole.
We can give as an example of a company with horizontal scalability Coca-Cola, which in addition to the soda, today is also a brand of clothing, sneakers and much more.
In horizontal scalability, the company seeks growth within its specific market niche, focusing on the company’s specific products and services.
It is necessary to define which type of scalability your company wants to focus on before creating the sales machine, as this model intends to standardize its entiresales strategy in line with your company’s goals.
The goal of the sales machine is to keep the flow of customers continuous, just as the goal of scalability is to keep growing.
By putting these two concepts together, it is possible to create a sales machine that increases your company’s ability to scale in the market and grow even more.
Therefore, for those who want to increase the company’s revenue without necessarily increasing costs, creating a sales machine is paramount.
How to make a vending machine?
The vending machine takes its name because it is also composed of parts and gears. That is, there are several parts of a process so that the whole structure makes sense.
All parts of the company need to be engaged with the sales machine: the team, the metrics, the strategies, everything. For example, there is no point in having a structured and perfect process if your employees are not trained to execute it.
If the team does not understand the process, the process will not be used and therefore will be meaningless. That’s why everything has to be working properly for the sales machine to bring results.
Implementing a sales machine in your company necessarily means reviewing your business’ commercial approach. That is, review the sales strategies and techniques used by your employees.
So, before you decide to make a vending machine, be aware that this is a laborious strategy.
However, once the sales machine is working properly, all sectors of your business will be much more in tune with each other – and the flow of customers will inevitably increase.
Below, we will mention the main tips and strategies to make a sales machine for your business.
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Define a sales strategy
Defining a commercial strategy is essential to establish the sales machine and create your company’s profile.
A commercial strategy is the direction your sales team should follow when contacting new and potential customers.
That is, it works as a kind of alignment roadmap, so that all its employees have similar service.
This helps build your company’s image in the minds of customers. That way, whenever they get in touch with your company, consumers will already expect a specific treatment.
Thus, you build your company’s image in the subconscious of your consumers and pass on greater professionalism in contact with customers.
Therefore, if you still don’t have a sales strategy aligned with your team, it’s time to create one.
If you’ve already given this direction to your sales team, you may want to review the strategies before adopting the sales machine.
After all, as we said before, the concept of the vending machine depends on several parts and gears, and it only works if they are all properly aligned.
Increase the number of leads
Now let’s talk about the interesting part: generating new potential customers.
Having the means to constantly generate good leads (potential customers) is the basis for the entire sales machine process.
For a company to continue operating, it needs to have the means tolead generation. Generating leads is usually a task for the marketing team, but there are many ways to increase potential customers for your business.
To increase your lead generation, you first need to understand what theprofile of your target audience, that is, the people most likely to buy your product.
That way, you’ll be able to think of increasingly efficient strategies to attract these specific people.
For example, what’s the use of running a marketing campaign focused on young people if your product is mostly purchased by adults?
In the same sense, knowing your target audience, you will understand which communication channels to use, how much to spend on each campaign and so on.
Knowing the behavior of your target audience will help you to increasingly focus on product campaigns according to the needs of your client’s profile.
Of course, for that to happen, potential customers need to become actual customers.
After all, it’s no use having a thousand leads if none of them buy the product or service you offer.
The quality of a lead is evaluated based on its propensity to buy. That is, how likely he is to make a purchase while going through the sales funnel.
That is, if leads go through the sales funnel several times and do not buy anything, something in the process is wrong, either with the types of leads or with the funnel itself.
The more assertive the qualification of leads is, the more profitable and easier the work of the commercial sales team will be.
Therefore, more than generating leads, it is important to generate qualified leads.
Have sales software
A sales software will help a lot in the sales machine process.
That’s because, with a sales software, part of this process will be automated.
That way, you won’t need to hire specific employees or waste time with this type of service, because the software will do it automatically.
There are several tools designed to scale vending machine processes. These types of software are aimed at increasing productivity and automating repetitive tasks.
In general, the software is divided between operation and management.
In the operations area, the software facilitates several different stages of the sales pipeline, including lead collection and qualification.
Another step facilitated in the operation process is the creation of cadence flows, which include tools for triggering emails and CRM, for example.
In the management area, sales software tools are usually focused on monitoring, analysis and management.
Of course, the advantages and tools will depend on the software chosen and the plan purchased by the company. Therefore, before choosing software, it is also good to consider your company’s needs.
For example, if your team’s difficulty is in qualifying leads, it is advisable to look for software that has good recommendations in this area.
So try profiling your company before deciding which toolset to choose.
Create metrics and strategies
The purpose of the sales machine is to keep the flow of attracting new customers. In this sense, it is important to create metrics and strategies to maintain this continuous flow.
To keep your sales team motivated, establishgoals that are related to the commercial strategy of the company.
Achievable and measurable goals, with defined time to reach and clear objectives, will give your team purpose.
In this way, the team will be aligned with the company’s objective and focused on maintaining the continuous flow of customers, which is the objective of the sales machine.
An unmotivated or lost sales team is a big problem, as your business depends on sales to continue thriving.
So always make sure your employees are focused and aligned with goals and sales.
To create achievable goals, you need to understand metrics. This is where KPIs, or Performance Indicators, come in.
KPIs indicate your team’s metrics and values, such as contact rate, follow-up rate, number of open opportunities, average sales cycle and many other important pieces of information.
It’s important to keep an eye on the KPIs to know how your sales team is doing.
Low ratings on the team could mean that the team needs training. We’ll talk a little more about that below.
Still on this topic, it is also interesting to establish a goal for the company.
Just as your salespeople have goals, your sales machine can too. For example, the goal might be to increase profit by 10%.
Of course, as we mentioned earlier, the sales machine needs to be predictable.
Therefore, it is good to establish a goal based on the real numbers of your company, always aiming for growth.
From there, it’s just a matter of creating strategies to achieve the set goal.
Set a hiring profile
As we mentioned before, creating a communicational profile for your company and keeping your employees aligned with this strategy will help your customers to establish a subconscious image of your company.
In the same sense, it is also good to profile the type of employee your company is looking for.
This strategy aims to keep all the cogs in the sales machine as aligned as possible.
Therefore, several selection processes today rely on psychological and technical tests. That way, you can get to know a little more about the candidate before moving on to the next steps.
The profile of candidates who best fit the vacancy are the most likely to prosper in the company.
Likewise, hiring an employee who does not fit the profile will result in the need for training and learning processes that other candidates might not need. This all costs money and time, which could be spent on sales.
Therefore, it is important to hire people who are already qualified and have the right profile for the company, which will depend on your type of business.
Try to outline your desired employee profile and use that as a basis for your hiring processes.
Of course, each employee needs to have a different profile from the other, since each one has a different function.
Depending on the role, different types of profiles are required. Therefore, define each employee’s role clearly and establish what each team member is expected to do.
For example, a hire for the sales team needs to be an extrovert, with good argumentative skills and good diction (especially in telephone sales).
When hiring, you already know what you are looking for these characteristics.
The process is the same for other functions in the company: see which role this profile should fulfill, and look for someone who fits the requirements.
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Define sales indicators
As we mentioned earlier, KPIs are important metrics to track the performance of the sales team.
It is through these indicators that the business manager can measure, validate and correct the entire operation andsales strategy.
That is, it is by analyzing the KPIs that it is possible to know what is working as a strategy and what needs improvement.
Therefore, it is always important to analyze these indicators to keep the sales machine working properly.
In this sense, there are already technological tools that perform the analysis automatically and make the data available to the team.
This way, it is possible to know much more easily what needs improvement and what is already working.
Therefore, if you intend to make a sales machine, it might be interesting to consider implementing software for sales indicators in your company.
As we have already mentioned, well-aligned and standardized communication is very important for your company’s image.
That’s because, with a standardized service, you show professionalism and commitment.
Therefore, creating sales scripts can be a great solution to keep your customer flow in the sales machine.
The script establishes the sequence of contacts and approaches that must be carried out by its collaborators.
That way, a good sales script has an answer to every possible question and an argument for every possible denial.
With a sales script, your employees will have standardized company communication and show much more professionalism.
Of course, not everything has to be done literally, and employees can wing it in the customer conversation.
This strategy is more intended to help the employee than to immobilize and condition him to automatic and cold responses.
In this sense, the script helps the employee with arguments and intelligent answers to the customer’s questions, but the ability of persuasion and the humanized touch of the employee are also essential for closing the sale.
The sales script also helps the salesperson stay up-to-date on the product.
For example, if a lead has a very specific question, it may be that the seller, not being an expert on the product, does not know the answer.
This is where the sales script comes in, which usually contains a question and answer area possibly asked by customers.
That way, the employee can refer to the script and offer an answer even if they didn’t know how to respond before.
Thus, it is not necessary to transfer the call and tire the customer, and the employee even learns more about the product or service.
Choose a channel
Knowing which communication channel is most used by person who seeks your product is also important to define your sales machine process.
After all, what’s the use of trying to sell your product or service over the phone if your target audience only buys online, for example?
Therefore, it is important to pay attention to the preferences of your leads and draw up your sales strategy based on that.
Today, there are several ways to contact a customer, such as email, social media, phone and even WhatsApp message.
The most effective way to do this will depend on your product and your company’s target audience.
After deciding on the best channels, you need to engage the team, always hiring people according to the desired profile, as we’ve already seen.
In this sense, if the main channel used is email, there is no point in hiring someone who is good at telephone sales.
Having just one sales channel is enough to create a sales machine.
This, of course, doesn’t mean you necessarily have to exclude everyone else.
But when it comes to communication channels, the best strategy is to have a different approach in each place.
Provide training to your sales team
Of course, for a company to continue making a profit and for the sales machine concept to work, it is necessary to align with various areas of the sales funnel.
But, without a doubt, a high-performance sales team is the fastest way to high profit margins and good performance in the market.
Therefore, the sales team needs to be always aligned and well trained.
The more ownership your salespeople have in the market, the more they know about the target audience, the product and the sales process, the more qualified they will be to close a purchase.
Therefore, for the sales machine process to work and be profitable, it is important to keep your sales team with improved skills.
To achieve this goal, offer product-focused sales training, as well as workshops, lectures, and even courses that help your employees stand out from the competition.
This way, your team will become more and more qualified. In addition, with the right training, employees will be able to grow within the company.
That is, the more internal opportunities you offer your team, the more people will want to work for you.
There are several types of training that can be administered between teams today that go far beyond traditional courses.
In that sense, always try to diversify. It is possible to offer on-boardings, mentoring programs, conversation circles and even learning games. After all, it’s salespeople who build your company’s relationship with customers.
Therefore, the more aligned with your company’s language and image your team is, the more your customers will recognize it.
To offer training relevant to the needs of your employees, try to map out what the main difficulties of the team are. You can do this by analyzing performance indicators or simply asking your employees.
Listen to customer feedback
Another important indicator to understand the difficulties and qualifications of your sales process is to always pay attention to customer feedback.
This way, you will more easily understand which areas of your company need more attention, which can influence the hiring of new people, the sales strategies used and even the necessary training for the team.
Thus, your sales process will become more and more efficient, and the sales machine will become more and more profitable.
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Constant improvement is the rule
Be aware that creating a sales machine is also understanding that this process will never be completely finished.
After all, the market constantly changes and evolves, so it doesn’t make sense for you to keep a fixed model for a long time.
Customer demands are always changing. Therefore, it is also important to be in constant change and evolution, always attentive to future trends.
In this case, it is worth remembering that your competitors are also always looking to evolve and overcome your product once and for all.
Therefore, it is important to monitor what is to come.
Keep your sales machine always updated according to market demands and always seek to maintain the quality of your product and service.
No company can maintain its identical sales strategy for a long time, so it is always necessary to innovate in order not to fall into oblivion.
For this, know that your sales strategies and training needs will always be changing, and your sales machine will never be 100% ready.
But do not worry!
Over time, this process of change will become more and more intuitive, because thanks to the tips above, you will understand your client more and more and, consequently, it will become easier to decipher their desires.
Advantages of creating a sales machine
Now that you know what the main steps are to create your company’s sales machine, find out why implementing this strategy in your business can be a good choice.
Below, we mention the main advantages that a well-implemented sales machine can bring to your company.
Improves return on investment
This is the word that interests every entrepreneur. After all, what return will the sales machine bring to your business?
Know that the biggest advantage of this process is precisely the ROI, Return on Investment.
That’s because, with a properly functioning sales machine, you’ll have much more organization over your company’s entire sales process.
In this way, the sales machine will help to solve the problems that prevented your business from closing a sale – which, consequently, will bring better results.
That is, there may be a silly problem in your sales strategies that prevents you from selling more and nobody noticed. In this sense, the sales machine appears precisely to point out these errors and correct them.
Prepares you for market changes
The market is always developing and changing. As we saw before, adaptations to stay relevant are always necessary.
In that sense, the vending machine can also help a lot to predict what’s coming. This is because the vending machine was designed precisely with the aim of maintaining a continuous flow of customers.
Therefore, thanks to this strategy, it becomes more difficult to be surprised by market events, as was the case with the COVID-19 pandemic.
The sales machine works as a kind of “recipe for success”, a roadmap to keep attracting customers.
So as long as you keep the strategy up to date with market needs, you don’t have to worry too much about external changes.
And, if you need to make any changes, another positive point of the vending machine is its easy adaptation.
In other words, you just need to remodel your ready-made model according to your customers’ needs and take advantage of the stability that this concept can bring to your sales.
Generates new opportunities
With a sales machine properly implemented and aligned with your team, you can take the opportunity to create new opportunities in the market.
That’s because, with a sales team aligned in the process, all the tasks performed in your company will be done much more effectively and easily.
In this sense, there is practically plenty of time for you and your employees to focus on other tasks that do not involve day-to-day sales.
All of this gives you more opportunities to discuss new campaigns, think about new products and sales strategies, and much more.
That is, the sales machine will make your entire process much faster and more effective, which will enable new opportunities for your business.
Brings greater organization and planning
With an effective sales machine, your company will be an example of organization and planning. This is because, as we have seen previously, this process takes into account several metrics and performance indicators.
Therefore, if you are aware of your company’s indexes and the results that your team presents, it means that you have an organized plan.
The more organized your company’s data is, the easier it will be for you to understand your company’s numbers – profits, investments and expenses.
The sales machine will help your company organize these numbers and keep you aware of what needs cuts, investments or changes.
In the same sense, the vending machine will also help in the future planning of your business.
With this model, it is much easier to understand and, in a way, predict the profits of the following months.
Therefore, creating a sales machine is important to maintain your sales stability and understand what to expect for the future of your business.
Get clearer results
Thanks to the organization and planning that the sales machine imposes, it will become much easier to see your company’s results.
In addition to knowing what to expect for future profits, the organization of indicators will also help you understand how much your company has profited in a simpler and more objective way.
In this sense, we can also mention the ROI again, which is a clear indicator of the results of this strategy.
Therefore, in addition to having the entire sales process mapped, you will have a much better view of your company’s capital.
As much as this can be a difficult model to implement, the advantages it can bring to the effectiveness of your business are many.
Once implemented, the entire sales machine model will help you understand your strategies and processes much more clearly and understandably.
What used to be a messy and complicated process, thanks to the sales machine, becomes easy to visualize and understand.
Do you understand why a sales machine is an indispensable model for anyone who wants to increase the company’s growth?
In this sense, it is worth remembering that there is no point in creating an impeccable sales machine process and not implementing it for your employees.
For the model to work properly, all areas and teams in your company need to be integrated into the process. This, of course, focusing its main efforts on the sales team, who are primarily responsible for the buying process and contact with consumers and potential customers.
But, don’t leave the other teams aside. Your marketing is important for lead empowerment, and customer success is important for customer feedback, for example.
Therefore, each employee on your team plays an important role in the sales machine, and everyone needs to be a part of it so that you can have a clear view of the results of this process.
Don’t waste any more time! Start now the process of implementing a sales machine on your team to improve your company’s sales and make the whole process much simpler and more adaptable.
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