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By Eric Morse December 19, 2012

Sales Coverage Strategy for Sales Success and Effectiveness

There’s an equation we use for successful selling. It is focus + segmentation = higher win ratio at a lower cost. Focus and segmentation can be outlined in a sales coverage model, which we believe is one of the most important tools for any successful sales organizationAt first glance, the sales coverage model may seem basic but used properly it can become the basis for your sales success. 

Sales Coverage Strategy Fundamentals

A sales coverage model must be defined and transparent, and it must contain the following:

  • Goals & targets: Clear targets and monetary goals must be delineated for net new business and existing targets. The more defined these are, the better. These numbers should be divided up quarterly and/or monthly. Each quarter/month will be different, as it will account for different variables (ex. your busy season, customer’s buying process).
  • Right people: Can your staff handle these goals? You’ll need trained, certified individuals who can do the job quickly and effectively. If you have a high turnover rate or an under-qualified staff, it’s time to do something differently. Turnover, as we all know, is very expensive and can be taxing on an organization.
  • Groups: Once you have the right people hired, divide up leadership and sales people into groups. Each group will have targets and quotas. Over-quota each group by about 10% to keep everyone motivated and most importantly, to make sure the company makes its number.
  • Account segmentation: Examples of segments include new business, installed base, SMB, large accounts and small accounts, and each should be covered differently. Decide how to handle customers and segments based on their value, as different accounts have different profitability. If there are too many segments for your team to handle, you may want to consider covering some of them with partners.
  • Resources & budget: Competitive compensation plans are needed for everyone from VP of Sales to inside sales that are relative to the goal. This ensures that everyone makes their quota and pulls their weight. Do you have the budget to go after the goals you set?
  • Organization: The sales coverage model should be organized in a way that makes sense for your selling process and playbooks. This could be vertically versus horizontally, new versus existing accounts, geographically, etc.
  • Priorities: Just how Rome was not built in a day, most companies cannot afford to undertake all new initiatives at the same time. Prioritize what you want to accomplish in the sales coverage model. Make sure you get buy-in to ensure its success.

Once created, the sales coverage model can only provide value if used properly. To meet your sales goals, a structured sales process with key activities and steps should be in place, as well as a playbook that WORKS and a CRM database for close monitoring of all prospective and current sales. The sales coverage model should be examined on a monthly basis with very structured reviews of each group, and sales person if necessary.

At the end of the day, sales leadership needs to make their numbers. This can’t happen without support from the entire sales organization. Do the math and implement a sales coverage model for increased sales without breaking the bank. If you need a fresh perspective to create your sales coverage model this year, contact us for a complimentary 30-minute consultation with one of our expert sales consultants. 

Topics: Sales Success, Sales Operations


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