Success Requires Lockstep Collaboration and CommunicationWhether you are an inside sales rep, an outside rep, a marketer, or a sales manager in the financial services wholesale business, you know the challenges teams face in successfully getting your product in the hands of as many advisors as possible. Ultimate success as a team depends upon the ability to consistently collaborate effectively using standardized best practices and clear and concise communication.
Consider this familiar scenario:
- You are an inside sales rep for the wealth management division of a large bank, responsible for helping sell a portfolio of mutual funds and annuities to financial advisors within a specific region.
- You work closely with an outside sales rep; you are responsible for eliciting interest in the product and setting appointments and your outside partner then meets with advisors in person to further educate them on your line of products and convince them to recommend them to their clients.
- One of the challenges you and your partner face is staying in lockstep about the disposition of the engagement. On top of that, your sales manager sets quotas and demands results, but doesn’t have clear insights into why your team isn’t closing more deals.
- Add your marketing team into the mix, and you have yet another resource to help devise campaigns and cadences, but there’s still a lot of finger pointing happening when it comes to designing and implementing best practices across the board.
Consistently CollaboratingCollaboration implicitly means that teams are working together toward a shared goal. Unfortunately, there are times when the goals may be shared, but there are gaps between the efforts and activities of team members. Closing these collaboration gaps is the first step in having a successful team. There are unique aspects of financial services wholesaling that make collaboration and communication even more difficult– and more essential–than other industries. When it comes to financial services wholesalers, collaboration can be hindered by:
- The volume of prospects (over 350,000 financial services advisors in the U.S.)
- The variance in the profiles of the organizations that employ advisors (from small groups aligned with insurance companies, to affiliates of large funds, to divisions within banks, etc.)
- Rapidly changing market trends that impact the attractiveness of certain products
- Executive Level Involvement. Collaboration is a cultural value that must be steeped into the culture of the organization, and this starts at the top.
- Transparency. This means that clear metrics and the methods for measuring them are transparent to the entire team.
- Visibility. Not only does the team need to know what the metrics are, but they need a system and tools that give them full visibility into all the activities being done to push deals forward in the pipeline.
Content, Cadence and Communication in Financial Services WholesalingLet’s consider the wholesale team from our previous scenario implementing a collaborative and strategic game plan for meeting their quota.
- The sales and marketing teams have a solid working relationship where they meet regularly to be educated on product lines, analyze pipeline data, identify ideal customers, and plan for capturing market share.
- They use data from existing customers to identify the best fits between their product line and prospective advisors, and devise multi-faceted and targeted campaigns to market and sell to them.
- The marketing team delivers high-value content in a persistent cadence.
- The inside sales reps know who to call and when. They know what the advisors need to hear about the product line to be convinced of the value of an appointment with the outside sales rep. When they set an appointment, they make a clear introduction to the outside sales rep, which creates explicit expectations for the appointment.
- The outside sales rep knows exactly when to meet, with whom, and everything the inside sales rep has learned from the call. This information is critical for the outside rep to meet the prospect’s expectations and ultimately close the deal.
- The entire team has easy access to the full disposition of the deal (and what steps to take next).
Closing the Loop Leads to More of Your Products in the Hands of More AdvisorsDropped balls, open loops, interceptions … Whatever metaphor you use to describe missed opportunities, they all are a result of a failure to collaborate and communicate effectively among the sales and marketing teams. Being in lockstep requires the right technology—a sales engagement tool that fully automates cadences, provides actionable insights to drive more results, and has mobile functionality so that outside reps can communicate clearly and in real-time about the disposition and status of deals. Salesvue provides the technology to seize more opportunities:
- Captures and records prospect information
- Tracks communications with customers and prospects
- Logs sales calls, face-to-face meetings, and emails with a single click
- Provides reliable reporting system to know how and when to best communicate with prospects
- Allows automated follow-ups and customizable campaigns to make sure that no lead or prospect goes untouched or falls off the radar
- Measures success rates based on a number of factors—from the campaign, to the sales representative, the timing, the form of communication, and more
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