Substandard sales training leads to substandard results.
This is why the sales training you provide your sales team is arguably the most important you’ll deliver throughout your organisation (although don’t let them know this, their egos are big enough!).
In the modern era, salespeople have to compete with saturated markets, consumer loyalty, online advertising, dwindling attention spans and pitch-savvy customers. The sales training therefore has to be current, robust yet segmented.
Here are some of the challenges facing present day sales training and what we can do to survive and soar!
Challenge 1: Keeping Your Sales Team Engaged
As we all know, sales departments are full of excitable and energetic personalities! It sometimes takes a lot to ensure your team is engaged and focused. In fact, over 60 percent of salespeople are more likely to leave their job if their manager is a poor coach. Keeping them engaged is essential.
Engagement in the current day is difficult due to the amount of digital distractions. Namely, smartphones and a little thing called the Internet! This is why it’s best to keep your sales training in short, sharp chunks.
It’s also advisable to mix up the formats a little. Employees are 75% more likely to watch a video than to read text. There are lots of vehicles you can use to train your sales team. A smattering of which include:
Challenge 2: Gamifying Your Sales Training
Gamification is the process of adding gaming elements to non-gaming environments. Examples include everything from fitbits to gamified toothbrushes! Gamification is a hugely successful way to battle dull sales training.
80% of learners are more productive when gamification is stitched into the training.
The great thing about gamification is that it’s self-motivated. You don’t need competition in order for it to work (but it is more fun that way!). Gamification in sales training can include sales badges, sales trophies and a sales leaderboard.
In the world of L&D, online gaming’s main attribute is not to entertain, but to teach. The fact it entertains at the same time is just pure luck! Our online games include arcade classics such as Whack-A-Mole and Bubble Blaster. As with all of our learning games, we embed company-based info in-between the gaming.
With our awesome game-based platform, Genie, you can tailor your online games to make them sales-friendly.
Additionally, nothing provides engagement more than a serving of healthy competition. For instance, you can promote in-house contests that log the amount of training consumed via company are logged via leaderboards. This is something we advocate on our own Academy LMS. Naturally, the more you learn, the more points you’ll earn!
This is a great way to train salespeople whilst making sure they’re engaged. We also offer digital badges (much like a cooler version of the Scouts).
This provides yet another incentive for your team, as they. You can compete to see who wins certain badges. This can be anything from a ‘sharing on social media’’ badge, to a badge for completing a health and safety module.
Challenge 3: Personalising Your Sales Training (Or as we say; Epic Meaning!)
To ensure your sales training stands out, we strongly advise personalising your material. 88% of US marketers reported seeing measurable improvements due to personalisation.
Some companies find it difficult to tailor their training, but it is an essential element. At Growth Engineering, we call this giving your content (or your overall learning solution) Epic Meaning. You can customise the names of your LMS levels to suit your company theme. Each can reflect the depth of your knowledge as you improve. In a sales-driven environment, the range of level names are endless.
- Level 1 – Cold Caller
- Level 2 – Big Deal
- Level 3 – Smooth Operator
Furthermore, you can design your level banners to match your business image. All these little touches will make your sales team feel more at home and part of an awesome well-oiled selling machine!
Challenge 4: Making Your Sales Training Social
Sales is all about the power of sociability. A famous sales principal by Dale Carnegie ranks being interested in your customer above everything else.
Carnegie states: ‘You can close more business in two months by becoming interested in people than you can in two years by trying to get people interested in you.’
The chances are, if you’ve chosen sales as your profession, you’re already aware of these fundamental principles.
As well as projecting the right social attitudes with your clients, this also has a positive domino effect on your colleagues who can use the LMS tools.
Tools include social ‘Clubs’ (focused discussion groups), Experts and FAQs and Live Chat (instant messaging).
Challenge 5: Keeping Your Sales Team Informed
Gone are the days of effective door-to-door selling, b2c cold-calling and junk mail. The ROI of these sales techniques are practically non-existent. Customers are switched-on nowadays!
Sales training has had to adapt with the times too. LMSs such as ours offer the opportunity to keep things moving forward. Having the ability to update your LMS with the latest company, product, and client info is integral.
You can choose to update your LMS content as little or as often as you like. As well as your initial training, it serves as a convenient refresher tool when your team requires it.
Sales has changed radically over the past two decades. No longer do people fall for Wolf of Wall Street’s cut ’n’ shut style of sales. You have to get to know your clients now and build trust. Sales training has moved with the times too. You can use our LMS to communicate your own sales strategy as well as the latest in sales techniques and company news.
Stoking healthy competition between colleagues via leaderboards and learning games is hugely beneficial for employee engagement.
To become a wizard at engaging your sales team (or any other team for that matter) please download our awesome Engagement Engine interactive workbook.