How to Build a Strong Sales Infrastructure

Mar 24, 2023 | Listen

How to Build a Strong Sales Infrastructure

The success of a business is highly dependent on its sales infrastructure.

A well-designed and properly implemented sales infrastructure can help you hit all the important data points in your business: increase revenues, achieve its goals, drive sales, and stay ahead of the competition.

However, building such an infrastructure requires strategic planning and execution.

In this episode, our guest Eric Balis and I discuss the essential steps you need to take to establish a sales infrastructure that can propel your business forward.



Timestamps for this week’s episode

  • 02:13 What does it mean to have a sales infrastructure?

  • 04:49 Content marketing’s role in educating buyers and supporting sales efforts in service-based businesses

  • 16:39 What personality traits, attitudes, and qualities do successful salespeople tend to have?

  • 24:17 Common mistakes businesses make when handling challenging projects alone instead of hiring a consultant or expert

  • 28:35 Actionable step to take to improve your sales infrastructure

What does it mean to have a sales infrastructure?

To have a sales infrastructure means having the right sales process in place, starting with a touch plan for contacting leads through phone, email, text, or social media, and recording conversations at every step.

The focus should be on educating rather than selling, with the goal of answering how the product or service can add to revenue, decrease costs, or improve operational efficiencies.

The salesperson’s job is to educate the buyer on how and why the solution is different, starting with answering “why” your product or company is better than others.

"The sales process today is really not about selling, it's about educating; and that's the best thing, you're telling people exactly what your product or service does for a problem.

Content marketing’s role in educating buyers and supporting sales efforts in service-based businesses

Content marketing and sales go hand in hand.

A service-based business needs to create a “demand and seed harvest” strategy. This involves educating the market on how the service-based business’s product or service can solve their pain points. By providing informative and value-driven content, a business can establish credibility while showing why its product or service is superior to others in the market.

While still a major part of the sales process, outbound outreach efforts may require between 8 and 12 touches before a potential buyer shows interest. This is why businesses must create informative and valuable content that speaks directly to the buyer’s pain points and addresses their concerns.

Once a potential buyer shows interest, it’s important for the business to establish a relationship and continue building credibility. This can easily be done by answering questions about the product or service and providing evidence that demonstrates how it can positively impact their business.

When the market is educated enough about your products and services, it will take just a tiny push for them to buy.

“It’s always great to win and celebrate (a sale) for that moment. But we have to learn from our losses too…and the losses are actually more important than the wins at times because you find out what you did right – and what you did wrong so you can improve on that.” – Eric Balis

What personality traits, attitudes, and qualities do successful salespeople tend to have?

Successful salespeople are usually competitive with a strong desire to win. However, when faced with a loss, they use it to diagnose what went wrong and improve their performance.

They are active listeners and attuned to their customer’s needs, so they can offer the best suggestions to address those pain points. Successful salespeople are also quick thinkers yet take the time to think before speaking.

The most common mistake businesses make is when they don't know what they don't know because they're so insulated in their own environment. And don't have somebody to ask the questions that will really cause them to think about what they really need.

Common mistakes businesses make when handling challenging projects alone instead of hiring a consultant or expert

  • Following a generic plan, maybe from a book, not tailored to their needs and goals
  • Not having a clear roadmap as to what to do or where to go can lead to wasted time, missed opportunities, and even higher costs in the long run.
  • Not know what they don’t know because they don’t have someone with fresh eyes who can ask the right questions and guide them through the process.

Ultimately, investing in the right consultant or expert can bring a unique perspective, customized roadmap, and valuable experience, leading to a more successful outcome for the business.

Actionable step to take to improve your sales infrastructure

Focus on one area within your sales structure at a time and work on improving it, for example, training your salespeople.

You can also consider bringing in a third-party advisor who can provide an independent view and help identify areas for improvement.

Keep investing in your sales and marketing efforts as it fuels business, drives growth, and is an investment that will pay off in the long run.


Summary

  • A sales infrastructure is made up of a well-defined sales process, including a touch plan and cadence, that educates potential customers on how and why a product or service solves a problem related to revenue, cost reduction, or operational efficiency.
  • Content marketing supports sales by creating valuable content, establishing credibility, and demonstrating their product or service’s superiority. These will make it that much easier for a customer to convert.
  • Successful salespeople are:
    • Competitive
    • See defeat as opportunities to improve
    • Active listeners 
    • Quick thinkers
    • Think before they speak 
  • Companies usually make the mistake of not hiring an expert to give them guidance to handle challenges, ultimately losing time and money.
  • Some steps to take today to start building your sales infrastructure:
    • Train your sales team, either in-house or through online training companies
    • Bring in an independent advisor to evaluate and provide an unbiased view
    • Note that sales and marketing are crucial drivers of a business and should be viewed as an investment, not a cost

Transcript

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About guest – Eric Balis

Fractional VP of Sales and Founder

Top Tier Sales Advisors

Eric is a Fractional VP of Sales and Founder of Top Tier Sales Advisors who helps founders realize the maximum value of their company by accelerating their revenue production and helping their sales team achieve excellent and repeatable results.

He concentrates on helping small and mid-size companies optimize their sales strategy, process, and education.

Eric helps companies transform their sales culture, implement new sales processes and procedures, and instill best practices. He focuses not just on the strategic level but also on the tactical level to help companies achieve record-breaking sales results.

LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/eric-balis-0a170a1/

Website – https://salesxceleration.bullseyelocations.com/salesxceleration/advisors/eric-balis/31190015

Take the Free Sales Agility Assessment – https://salesxceleration.com/sales-agility-assessment/?locationid=31190015


About host – Kathy Svetina

Kathy Svetina is a Fractional CFO for growing small businesses with $10M+ in annual revenue.

Clients hire her when they’re unsure about what’s going on in their finances, are stressed out by making financial decisions, or need to structure their finances to keep up with their growth.

She solves their nagging money mysteries and builds a financial structure with a tailored financial strategy. That way they can grow in a financially healthy and sustainable way.

Kathy is based in Chicago, IL and works with clients all over the US.

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