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How to create a sales playbook to grow your business

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When you manage any business, you need to make sure that you have a plan to sell your products. Your business model depends on the money that you will make, and you cannot make any money if you do not have a sales playbook. Use these tips to build the playbook, to make it as simple as possible to use, and to cater to all the people that work with you. You must ensure that your SaaS sales plan works for your business, and you must train everyone to hold the company line, sell in a manner that is consistent with your company’s image, and provide customers with a level of service that they service.

What Is The Playbook Like?

The sales playbook has everything you need to work with leads, build customer relationships, and close sales. You also use the playbook to follow up with customers and provide them with service in the future. The book includes everything from sales scripts to customer personas that will help you understand who you are working with. The book is a bit like a business bible, and it should have physical and virtual copies that everyone in your office can access at any time.

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What Are The Benefits Of The Playbook?

The playbook that you use provides you with several benefits, including:

  • It is a training manual you can use for all your new hires.

  • It saves time because you can easily reference when you need to.

  • You can save time as you sell because it allows you to move from one step to the next very quickly. The book tells you everything you need to know. Research is not required to make a sale.

  • Everyone will use the same scripts and “tow the company line” because they are using the language and tips that are in the playbook. Without the playbook, everyone who works for your company would give your customers a different message.

  • Finally, the book allows everyone to see the most effective sales techniques. This makes it very easy for you to help your sales team learn to sell more effectively. You will not need to give your staff a “honeymoon” period of a few months because they can clearly see what they should do.

How Do You Write The Playbook?

The sales team that opens your business will start writing the playbook. You may not open with a playbook because you need time to learn what works. The team will continue to make contributions to the playbook until it has been fully-formed. You can produce the playbook and share it with the people that are hired once the business grows. 

You should include more than just the sales team when you want to complete the first version of the playbook. You might invite the:

  • Marketing team

  • Sales team

  • Product experts

  • Executives

  • Satisfied customers

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What Should You Add To The Playbook?

When writing the playbook, you need to add several sections so that you can use it as a training manual. If you have not added all these sections, the new hires will not have any idea what your company is about. You want the playbook to give people a good sense of the personality of the company, how the company serves customers, and how the company came to be.

Start with the history of the company and explain what it is all about. Everyone that works with you needs to know what the company is like, how the company operates, and the hierarchy within the company. This makes it much easier for your sales team to understand what the culture is like. If you have not explained the company culture or personality, it is difficult for your staff to know what you want from them.

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You should explain all the different jobs within the company so that new hires know how they can advance through the company. These employees also need to know the chain of command if they have problems on the job.

The rest of the book should include how you will work with leads, how you will sell, and how you can communicate with your clients. The playbook needs to spend some time talking about all the products that your company offers. You want your customers to know for a fact that you have options for them, and your sales team can easily reference all the items on the list. Without this list, your sales team is left to guess when they are offering products are services to clients.

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The process for selling should be included so that everyone who works for you knows what they are supposed to do. Your team needs to know what to sell and how to sell it. They need to know if they are allowed to strike deals with customers, and they also need to know how financing works if your company offers financing options.

What Are Buyer Personas Or Characters?

You need to know who your ideal customer is, and you need to know how they will pay for the products or services that you offer. Some customers need to be able to pay right now, and others might pay in installments or obtain financing. You need to know if you want customers with cash or customers who finance. You need to know what kind of business they run, how big their business is, and how many employees they have. You also need to find customers that are willing to work within your basic communication structure.

For example, some companies want to communicate with their clients often, but others want to wait for responses before inundating customers with more phone calls or emails. Once you have found the right kind of customer, you can sell them fairly easily. 

How Do You Communicate?

You must teach your employees how you want them to communicate with customers. You can lay out a basic plan for communicating with new leads, and you should explain why that communication plan works for your business. Not all companies can communicate in the same way.

Explain to your staff when they should email, when they should call, and when they should text. You can maintain a high level of customer service, but you will not communicate too much. At the same time, your staff learns how to follow up with customers to close the sale.

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Write a section with sample emails and phone call scripts. You can easily explain how to talk to customers in a way that works for your business. You can even require that a certain script be used. For example, one of the most popular fast-food restaurants in the world teaches all its employees to say “it’s my pleasure” when thanked by a customer. You know where you are, and you expect that level of service. You want to set a similar standard for your company.

If you use a CRM, you need to make sure that everyone is using it in the way that you want. You do not want your staff to create their own CRM style and upset the workflow within the office. 

How Are Bonuses And Commissions Handled?

You need to explain to your staff how you manage commissions. You also want to include the KPIs or Key Performance Indicators that you are looking for. Some people want to offer bonuses when reps close a certain number of sales in the week. You might offer a higher commission if the rep reaches a certain sales level, or you might offer a different commission rate when the sales are especially large.

You should also include a section that explains how sales reps can be promoted based on their sales. This should appear here and in the job description section noted above.

Add As Many Resources As You Can

You should add as many resources as you can when you want your sales staff to learn how to make the most money possible. You should also help your sales reps find more leads. You can use special lead generation programs that will provide you with more options, but you also want to give your staff a chance to find their own leads. You can fill up the resources section with companies in the area, customers that you might want to reach out to, and any trade associations you might want to work with.

Never Stop Working

You should never stop working because your sales playbook will continue to grow with your business. You can add as many steps to the playbook as you like. You can also enjoy the playbook as you add more items that pertain to the expansion of your company. You can allow your staff to add to the playbook when they have good ideas, and you can build in new positions that your company has created as your initial sales team gets promoted and expands the sales department.

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Written by Karina Collis, B2B sales expert


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