Sales leaders are accountable for driving sales performance in good times and bad. What “good” looks like in each scenario can make it difficult to discern if your sales strategies are really working, relative to the market. The best sales leaders adapt to changing market conditions to drive performance, regardless of the landscape. Here are two tried and true strategies to revisit when navigating a tough selling environment.
Get more specific on your Ideal Client Profile (ICP)
An ICP is a detailed description of a company’s ideal customer, including information about the client’s size, industry, and specific needs or challenges.
The key thing to remember in a down market is that your ICP’s specific needs and challenges have likely shifted as they adjust to the market themselves. What are their current pain points, use cases, and who are the personas owning these use cases? What value are they searching for in this year?
Getting more specific on your ICP allows your teams to focus on customers who are most likely to partner with you based on the value your capabilities provide.
Add Relevance to your Value Proposition
Your Value Proposition is a statement that outlines the benefits your company can offer to other businesses. It explains how the company’s products or services can help solve problems, improve efficiency, or provide a competitive advantage for the other business.
A recession-relevant Value Proposition should focus on the current needs of your ICP. Update your Value Proposition to link your differentiators and the current use cases, pain points, and personas within your ICP.
For example, a software company might create a value proposition that says : “We help leaders at mid-market retailers drive retention and growth performance by capturing and transforming customer interactions into actionable insights through AI-driven processes and solutions.” This Value Proposition clearly communicates the benefits of the software and how it can help other businesses retain and grow results. It sounds especially relevant in today’s cost-conscious market.
It is one thing to revise and update both your ICP and Value Propositions – it is another to ensure your marketing and sales teams are jointly using these in motions and conversations. Sales Leaders should review and coach their teams to effectively execute the updated approach. Most of all, listen to your customers and prospects. They will certainly tell you if your approach is addressing their concerns.
Regardless of economic conditions, it is always a good idea for businesses to periodically re-evaluate their ICP and Value Proposition to ensure they are aligned with the needs and preferences of their target market. This alignment builds trust. By getting more specific on your ICP and aligning that to a more market relevant value proposition, a company can effectively communicate the value they offer to their target market and increase the chances of attracting and retaining business customers.