Take individual risk out of the equation by selling in your territory from a franchisee’s point of view. Successful franchises have a solid support structure. The franchisor (the company you sell for) does all the testing, makes the costly up-front mistakes, takes the risks, and establishes the marketplace. Today, dynamic relations between the franchisee and franchisor must exist to promote the growth of the business and to allow external trends, customer experience, and territory knowledge to flow both ways. Both parties must share commitment to the company vision as they both drive values, foster brand development, create corporate culture, set marketing directions, and achieve profitable worth. Everyone must be working together toward the same winning goals.
Success of the franchisee and franchisor is dependent on the success of each other. It’s a symbiotic relationship that thrives on a willingness to prepare for success. Through consistent training, they strive to improve and to increase the TEAM value. But each must be willing to invest in the other.
A Seller that adopts that mentality stands a greater chance not only to succeed, but to blow away the number. Don’t run your territory alone. Build a team of franchisee’s. Share with them your goals or vision, and share your view of successful behaviors, skills and effective action. You are going to ask the team to make an investment of sweat equity, so you need to properly prepare and get everyone excited! Outline a plan and deliver it to them with some passion. Believe in it so they can too.
Prepare To Plan
Most sales professionals leave the plan development up to the manager, or the company direction. I think this is a mistake. By all means, follow the direction of management, but tailor it to fit your needs. You sell for the company (the Franchisor), it wants you to leverage the resources that are available to you, and needs you to identify the pieces that are missing. Put some thought into it, and create a set of actions and responsibilities that allow you to break the patch down and cover it systematically. You do NOT want scattershot. You likely have a team of resources…identify them, meet with them…share your ideas with them. Do this weekly.
Don’t be like MOST. Separate yourself from the pack. This isn’t new thinking, but a lot of people avoid this because it’s a lot of work. But I urge that if you are really trying to achieve a lofty target, a little pre-planning in the beginning will yield much when it’s crunch time. Consistent, weekly meetings where you track progression is key.
It’s a good thing to be anxious before weekly meetings, it helps you focus.
Establish Your Franchise Team
Your team might include:
- Business Development/Lead Generation Resource
- Inside Sales/PreSales Resource
- Technical Sales/Subject Matter Experts
- Marketing Resource
- Channel Partners
This is your Unit. You are one team and you rely on each other to achieve a target. It doesn’t matter if each members KPI/Metric is somewhat different…the end result should be that if you are successful driving revenue, they should be able to achieve their desired results. You need to understand them and agree on a direction that you all can follow. This is why collaboration and consistent, deliberate communication matters.
Establish a Communication Schedule Early
All too often, I see the willingness and desire to do the hard work of building a plan. Unfortunately…when things start to get complex, momentum stalls. There isn’t enough time put into understanding the details of the plan, the territory, or into developing a process that fits everyone involved. I get it…It’s very hard to do. But when you get to this point…and you will…don’t let it stop you.
- Double down and force yourself through it.
- Schedule the weekly calls – especially when they feel broken.
- When things break – Share with the team – Pivot
- Make adjustments…because you have to.
- Pull your list of accounts or targets and prioritize them.
- Identify current customers and rank them
- If available – pull purchase history
- Identify Key White Space Targets – by business or industry
- Prioritize targets + next steps (for example…what sales plays can you run?)
- Divide Accounts & Contacts (all members) – if you are light on contacts..spend the time to profile the accounts collect the info
- Identify a series of touch points (Scripted Calls, Email Mktg, Webinar Invites, Relevant Case Studies, Relevant Use Cases, Articles, Blogs, Marketing Materials, Social Selling activities, etc…) and set the schedule. You want to be reaching out every week
- Define Weekly Cadence and Agenda to drive touch point activity and progression activities
- Determine Success Metrics (Ex – how long did it take to do the first 3 actions? Is everyone participating on the scheduled call? How long is it taking to start doing the outbound activities? How effective is each touch or deliverable? Is anyone responding? Act on the information – Good or bad.
Chart a course and stick with it. Don’t quit too soon. Success is right in front of you.
Sit back and remember…you have a plan, and it’s not perfect. At least now you know the parts you DON’T like about it. Don’t throw it all out…just pivot around it.
- Review your plan. What activities are not working? If we eliminated a painful one, what can we replace it with? What impact does it have on your schedule?
- How is the weekly review on action items working out? Is everyone participating? Maybe the scheduled call is not so “scheduled”. Why not? How can you make the experience more meaningful for the team?
- Take stock of your current workload…what are you spending most of your time doing, and is it driving your pipeline? What can you offload?