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Sales Reinvented

We at Sales Reinvented are on a mission to change the negative perception of sales people. Each week we will be interviewing experts in the field of sales and sharing their knowledge, ideas and expertise with our listeners. They share with us in our vision of a world where selling is a profession to be proud of. The aim of our formatted show is to provide ‘snackable’ episodes that are short enough to listen to in one sitting but long enough to provide real value that will help you in your sales career. Welcome to the Sales Reinvented Podcast.
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At Sales Reinvented, we are on a mission to change the negative perception of selling. Welcome to the Sales Reinvented Podcast.

Jan 5, 2022

If you are a sales leader, how do you go about planning your organization’s sales territory approach? Whether you’re dealing with geographic territories or industry niches and companies within those niches, you need to use every resource available within your team to establish your territories wisely. Brynne Tillman has a wealth of insight into this sort of planning and specializes in using LinkedIn to find the best territorial fit between the target territory and the sales professionals on your team. Listen to this episode to get all the details from Brynne’s experience.

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:18] Brynne Tillman: The LinkedIn Whisperer
  • [1:16] Territories help with organization and sales networking
  • [3:44] Brynne’s ingredients for the perfect sales plan
  • [5:36] A bonus for those establishing sales territories
  • [6:33] What makes a great territorial salesperson?
  • [9:43] Brynne’s DO’s and DON’Ts for sales territory planning
  • [13:57] A favorite territory sales planning story from Brynne (and the lesson learned)

Territorial sales planning can make a bottom-line difference

Strategically approaching your sales territory planning will yield tremendous results if you take the time to do it. And those in leadership within sales organizations especially need to learn how to establish and assign territories for maximum impact. Brynne says that when doing so, every element that goes into creating a lead list should be very focused. When you can define not just what to do but with whom to do it, you can be much more productive and focused. This is where Brynne’s expertise with LinkedIn shines.

She suggests that sales professionals search their ideal buyers (titles, positions, companies) and their geography using LinkedIn. Even the free version can perform searches like this on a granular level. You’ll be able to build a sizeable list of leads to qualify and approach using the advanced search functionality offered on the platform. When you do this, you don’t waste time cold-calling people who aren’t a good fit for your offering. That results in more targeted conversations, which will impact bottom-line sales. 

What is the most effective way to sell what you sell?

Many sales leaders grab a map and set of pins to begin their sales territory planning, but Brynne says that’s one of the least effective ways of going about it. She suggests that you examine your existing book of business to first, understand who your target market is and what they typically buy from you. Using that data, look at the territory in question and find the companies and organizations that possess what you might call a “look-alike” profile. In the end, you want to ensure that the filters you’re using to create your territorial sales plan produces a list of prospects that are achievable for the sales rep, both in terms of profile and geography. Brynne calls this “the planning before the planning” and says it’s a huge step toward empowering sales reps for success.

The ingredients of an effective territorial sales plan

Too often, sales leaders don’t consider their sales team’s existing relationships when assigning territories. Brynne says this is a huge mistake. As a sales leader, you can do your own research to ensure you are assigning the right sales rep to the right industry niche or geographic territory using Linked In. First, ensure you have connected with the sales rep yourself. Next, use LinkedIn’s search functionality to research your sales rep’s connections by industry and geography. You may find that a rep you intended to assign to a specific city has very few existing relationships there while another on your team has many. A successful sales rep rises and falls on relationships so don’t leave out existing connections when devising your territory strategy.

Brynne’s DOs and DON’Ts for territorial sales planning

DOs

  • Ensure that your LinkedIn profile clearly speaks to your target buyers
  • Sales leaders: Search your rep’s contacts to ensure they fit the territory
  • Talk to your reps to ensure they fit the territory you’re assigning them to

DON’Ts

  • Don’t use a map and pins to assign territories
  • Take an account-centric approach, not just account-based
  • Allow for flexibility when assigning territories because of relationship opportunities

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Brynne Tillman

Connect With Paul Watts 

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