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Sales Strategies for Today: How to Stop Losing Deals and Win Instead

Struggling to win deals in today's challenging market? Here's how to redefine your approach and secure more wins.

There seems to be a consensus that win rates are low. From the data I have seen, it doesn’t look like they have much farther to fall. For a number of years, we have implored sales leaders and sales managers to focus on sales effectiveness and increase their win rates. The future of sales is not going to look like our past, which was driven by a high-demand economy. As the Baby Boomers retire and birth rates fall to historic lows, demand will also decline.

As often as possible, we warn sales leaders and sales managers to give up on approaches, strategies, and techniques that are proven to fail. Teams that are stuck in the past will struggle to reach their sales goals. Even after failing to hit their targets, they return to the same strategies that cost them their goals.

Sales Leadership Strategies to Stop Losing Deals

There are a number of things sales leaders do to make it more difficult for their sales force to succeed. To improve your results, you will have to choose new strategies over ones that cannot ensure success.

  1. Rethink Pipeline Coverage Strategy: Having more opportunities will not ensure that each salesperson can reach their goals. If this strategy worked, the data on quota attainment would look a lot better than it does now. Pipeline coverage is not a viable strategy. The opportunities you don’t convert make no contribution to your revenue or your goals.
  2. Recognize Buyer Behavior Changes: Too many sales leaders and sales managers believe that the current environment is no different from the one they remember when they were selling. Decision-makers and buyers need more help making the rare, strategic decision to change. This is truer than ever in our ACDC environment, which is defined by accelerating, constant disruptive change. In an environment of uncertainty, decision-makers seek certainty. If you have enabled an approach that will have your sales reps create certainty and confidence, you will be the first of your kind.
  3. Adapt to the End of the Solution Era: You may not have noticed that after focusing on your solution for two decades or more, most contacts are less interested in it. The legacy approach wore out the approach dominated by “why us,” and now the approach focused on solutions has followed. It is more than likely that your contacts believe your solution and your competitors’ will work equally well.
  4. Train One-Up Sales Reps: In Elite Sales Strategies: A Guide to Being One-Up, Creating Value, and Becoming Truly Consultative, you will find the concept of being One-Up. Few sales leaders spend time developing their sales force to be experts and authorities in their industry. No decision-maker wants to buy from a person who knows less about their problem and the decision they will need to make in the future. Ask yourself if you would prefer a salesperson who shares their solution or one that can ensure you will get the decision right on the first attempt.
  5. Avoid Outdated Sales Methodologies: It’s easy to understand why a sales leader will stick to what they know. This is especially true when the sales leaders succeeded using what worked for them in the past. It is unfortunate that the past is over. Every methodology was designed for the current environment, not for the future. We know this to be true because we used all of the methodologies when they were highly effective. It is odd that a group of people who help others change refuses to make changes that would improve their own results.
  6. Prioritize Sales Effectiveness Training: There seems to be no appetite for sales effectiveness, the one thing able to improve your win rate and ensure you reach your sales goals and hit your targets. Unless and until sales leaders focus on the one thing that would make it much easier to succeed, they will struggle with low win rates and quota attainment. If you want a theme for the future, there is nothing more important than win rates.
  7. Be Wary of Underestimating Competitors: If you live in the Red Ocean, your blood paints the water red, or your competitor’s blood leaves a scarlet trail in the water. You don’t have to obsess about your competitors, but you do need to beat them for the deals you and your team are pursuing. You can’t do anything about your competitors, but you can do something about your sales team.

Practical Steps to Win More Deals

The list above is a good start to help you stop losing and win deals instead. Instead of focusing on pipeline coverage, invest your time increasing conversions. Recognize that buyers and decision-makers want and need experience, one that enables a decision to change. Few have recognized that the era of solutions is over, giving way to the era of decision-making.

You would do well to manufacture One-Up salespeople. You need salespeople with the knowledge and experience to lead your clients to the results they need. You can enable this with B2B sales training if you can find a group that understands the dynamics of this highly effective sales approach. If you haven’t looked at new methodologies, you should explore new strategies designed for this time. Make sales effectiveness your number-one priority to increase your win rates. By doing this, you will have little trouble beating your competition in competitive deals.


Sales 2024
Post by Anthony Iannarino on May 5, 2024

Written and edited by human brains and human hands.

Anthony Iannarino

Anthony Iannarino is an American writer. He has published daily at thesalesblog.com for more than 14 years, amassing over 5,300 articles and making this platform a destination for salespeople and sales leaders. Anthony is also the author of four best-selling books documenting modern sales methodologies and a fifth book for sales leaders seeking revenue growth. His latest book for an even wider audience is titled, The Negativity Fast: Proven Techniques to Increase Positivity, Reduce Fear, and Boost Success.

Anthony speaks to sales organizations worldwide, delivering cutting-edge sales strategies and tactics that work in this ever-evolving B2B landscape. He also provides workshops and seminars. You can reach Anthony at thesalesblog.com or email Beth@b2bsalescoach.com.

Connect with Anthony on LinkedIn, X or Youtube. You can email Anthony at iannarino@gmail.com

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