"When it comes to hitting your sales targets and improving your performance, you need to be able to rely on data throughout the entire decision-making process."
ST Report Rising Stars 320

Sales Quota: How to Crush Your Monthly Goals

Reaching your sales quota is consistently what matters most in B2B sales. As a sales manager, you are measured by it, which is why you must do everything in your power to make it happen. Sometimes, you may fall short of your quota for various reasons; maybe the set goal is unrealistic, maybe you’re working with low-quality leads, or even using questionable selling tactics. Either way, course corrections and improved productivity are necessary. You can complain about difficult prospects, lousy contact lists, and so on, or instead be proactive and do something about it. What’s it going to be?

Smart choice. Let’s take a look at what you can do to crush your sales quota on a monthly basis.

Set SMART goals

Before we dive into the finer aspects and objectives of sales quota, a quick word about goals: A SMART goal is usually defined as one that is specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and timely. In other words, it lays out a guideline on how to achieve your set goal. The key is to be more detailed-oriented, as specific actions or subgoals underline the effectiveness of reaching your goal (in our case, actionable sales quota numbers by strategically selling the company’s various propositions to new prospects) within a particular period.

SMART goalsSource: LinkedIn

Get your business intelligence right

When it comes to hitting your sales targets and improving your performance, you need to be able to rely on data throughout the entire decision-making process. A report from Deloitte showed that customer-centric companies with data-driven insights are 60% more profitable compared to their counterparts that don’t rely on data. Equipping yourself with proper CRM tools will grant you the ability to bridge the gap between your customer and market knowledge, and allow to meet your monthly goals in a timely manner.

With a CRM tool firmly in place, you provide better customer satisfaction through an organized, systematic approach. This opens up the possibility for upselling and cross-selling, which, in turn, adds to your customer revenue. In addition to engaging with prospects, CRM also lends a hand with lead qualifying. If you are not qualifying leads properly or qualifying out ones that won’t close, you can benefit immensely by figuring out where real opportunities lie and stop wasting time.

CRM will also help you organize contact information and build highly targeted lead lists so you can always get the right person in the organization, as well as improve internal communication and enable you to better work as a team. B2B customer research doesn’t have to be difficult due to lack of information. Before you even make that first move toward approaching a contact, you’ll have all the necessary data in front of you for a successful sales pitch.

Employ social selling

Social selling is slowly but surely stepping out of the hype zone and into reality. Using social media to directly interact with prospects acts as a form of lead prospecting and nurturing, where sales reps provide value by offering buyer-relevant content and answer their questions until they are ready to purchase. In fact, sales reps involved with social media are 6 times more likely to exceed quota than their colleagues with rudimentary or no social media skills. On top of that, a study conducted by International Data Corporation (IDC) found that 75% of B2B buyers, along with 84% of C-level or vice-president level executives use social media to make purchasing decisions.

social salingSource: LinkedIn

In today’s environment, finding quality prospects is getting harder, especially for those relying heavily on traditional methods like cold calling or e-mail outreach. This is because B2B buyer tendencies are changing, and they are venturing far deeper into their research. According to Sales For Life, 90% of B2B decision makers don't respond to cold sales outreach. That means only one in ten sales reps makes a contact or you need 100 calls to get 10 sales meetings. The stats just keep on confirming that social media is a huge, almost omnipresent factor that can be utilized in B2B sales for identifying prospects, generating new leads and, ultimately, making sales.

Be diverse and persistent

While it might be tempting to use a “one size fits all” approach, especially if it’s working, don’t. Sales quotas differ in terms of verticals, the type of company you are selling to (is it a small, medium, or large enterprise), and so on. For maximum effectiveness, both your sales pitch and strategy should be different and in accord with different scenarios. Let’s take social selling as an example. Sometimes, creating a post here and there with your product or service features explained can do the trick. Still, that’s an obvious tactic for most savvy B2B buyers, so you should engage with them by providing valuable expertise and insights to help steer them in the right direction during their buyer’s journey.

Equally important is the follow up. Research suggests that out of 50 sales, only a single one is struck at the first meeting, with the majority of salespeople giving up after just one or two tries. To be more precise, 92% of them give up after four "no's" before that crucial fifth time. The sales tip here is to just keep at it, get in front of your prospect as many times as necessary until you get that final bit of valuable sales context to close the deal.

One sales quota coming up

For sales managers, present challenges include adapting to advancing technology changes in the B2B sales world, as well as understanding customers’ behaviour, needs, and demands. By focusing on data-driven processes, much of that trouble goes away. Bad habits disappear, the pipeline grows stronger and you’re free to enjoy your results month in and month out. Don’t wait for someone else to tell you how to crush sales quota on a monthly basis. By using these tips, you’ll be closer to a perpetual deal closing cycle.