This Thanksgiving, Get in the Spirit of Building Client Relationships
By Erica Stritch

strategic account management

It's the perfect time of year to give thanks and show appreciation for the people in your life who help you succeed—friends, family, colleagues, and clients. When it comes to the relationships you have with your clients, thanksgiving isn't the only time of year you should work on appreciating and building them. You should always be looking for ways to strengthen your business relationships.

Why is building these relationships so important? Put simply, it's less expensive and easier to sell to already-established buyers. Bain & Company reports that retaining current customers costs 6 to 7x less than acquiring new ones. Repeat customers also spend 67% more on average.1

Yet, most organizations are not effective at developing the relationships necessary to grow their existing clients.

If you are looking for tips to build your client relationships during the holiday season and all year round, check out these 5 articles on how to strengthen relationships and grow your existing accounts:

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Want Better Sales Results? Take Your Sales Process to the Next Level
By Mike Schultz

sales process

In our study The Top-Performing Sales Organization, 40% of respondents said "Improving sales opportunity approach and planning" is a top priority for the next year. Along with two related initiatives—improving ability to communicate value (41%) and optimizing sales processes (32%)—these represented three of the top four sales initiative priorities altogether.1

No two ways about it: sales leaders are planning heavy focus on their sales process and activities directly related to it.

Recently, however, there's been backlash against sales leaders focusing on improving their sales processes. The following was published in the Harvard Business Review.

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[New White Paper] Increase Win Rates & Beat Your Sales Goals in 2016
By Erica Stritch

sales goals

Top-Performing companies are winning 62% of their sales opportunities. The Rest? Only 40%.

While quite a bit of research has been published on what separates top sellers from the rest, there’s relatively little on what organizations are doing to achieve high win rates.

To find out, we studied 472 sales executives and sellers representing companies with sales forces ranging from 10 sellers to 5,000+, and published the results in The Top-Performing Sales Organization Benchmark Report. We analyzed what organization factors correlated to higher win rates—and the results are significant.

In this white paper, RAIN Group Presidents Mike Schultz and John Doerr share highlights critical for enabling sales leaders and sellers alike to increase win rates, beat annual sales goals, and reach Top Performer status in 2016.

Download Increase Win Rates & Beat Your Sales Goals in 2016 now.

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12 Questions Sales Leaders Must Ask to Improve Sales Opportunity Management
By Mike Schultz

sales opportunity management

If you've spent any time in complex sales, you know there's been a significant shift in how you win sales opportunities and grow accounts.

If sellers want to win in this new environment, they must plan to win from the start. Anything short of this and they set themselves up for failure.

The sellers and sales organizations that consistently win get sales opportunity management right. They focus maximum energy on their most important opportunities and develop winning strategies for each sale.

If you want to join their ranks and improve your approach to sales opportunity planning, start with asking yourself these 12 critical questions.

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5 Elements of a Sales Opportunity Plan
By Mike Schultz

sales opportunity plan

Sellers who win consistently plan to win from the start. They're methodical. They carefully match their sales process to the buyer's, set goals for every meeting, and do an exceptional job of communicating value.

Top sellers build strategies to drive sales opportunities, and use planners to help guide them through to the win.

RAIN Group's Sales Opportunity PlannerSM, made up of 5 core elements, has been seasoned over years of use at client sites. It's proven to be effective in increasing win rate.

The running theme of the Sales Opportunity Planner? Read on to find out.

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