Sales plan development is critical to your success. As the saying goes, “a goal without a plan is just a wish.” If it feels grueling and time-consuming, hang onto your hat! We are taking you on a fast ride through the why and how of developing a sales plan. Our sound, tested strategy will deliver you quickly to your destination every time.
Why develop a sales plan? First and foremost, research shows that a well-written, vivid concept of your goals motivates action, inspires purpose and unites your team. A plan will help everyone know how to chart a course to your goals – and prevent them from veering off the road. You want everyone heading in the same direction, with a shared vision. Getting colleagues and leadership on the same page equals getting them the same map. One of the most significant time and money drains on productivity is a misalignment between the company goals, department goals and individual goals. A must to avoid! Ask yourself key questions to help define expectations. Importantly, clear expectations will reduce everyone’s stress and anxiety about what comes next and gives you a clear barometer for whether an idea fits the goal.
How do you develop a sales plan?
1. Determine Your Planning Approach. Who should be involved? What steps are you planning to take? What are your timelines for completing the plan?
2. 3-5 Goals. That’s it. Keep it simple. More than this, and you’ll likely lose focus. How do your goals align with your organization’s goals?
3. Make Lists to Inform Your Thinking. List your Positives, Potentials and Concerns (PPC’s). Then list your Wishes. That’s as simple as it sounds! How many can you (and your planning team) think of.?
4. S.W.O.T. Analysis. What can you do to support your overview with evidence? Your Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats chart should be well researched and polished.
5. 3-5 Key Strategies. How are you going to accomplish your goals? With well-articulated strategies that correspond to your goals.
6. Assets, Packaging and Pricing. What are you selling? What’s new? How are you packaging and pricing?
7. Review Your Sales Process. What are the concrete steps you’ll take to sell? No wishing and hoping and praying here. You need to present actionable steps.
8. Identify Some Prospects. Who are you selling to? Your research should shine in this step.
9. Milestones and Timeline. A good approach is to reverse engineer. Once you’ve hammered out the details and you know where you want to go, ask yourself what steps, in reverse, will be required to get you there?
10. Write and Present Your Plan! Compile all the valuable information you’ve developed into your complete plan. Sharing this with a wider network in your organization will reinforce its value.
Sales plans answer questions. It’s that simple! There is no need to get lost along the way; sales plans are a concrete roadmap to a clear destination and a guarantee of smooth sailing. If you want a comprehensive look at how to develop your plan, subscribe now to receive The Complete Guide to Developing a Sales Plan.
About the Author
Paula Beadle is the CEO of Caravel Marketing, a national consulting company specializing in sponsorship marketing, and the founder of Sponsorship Mastery, an annual summit and programming dedicated to improving individual and organizational sponsorship performance. She is a results-driven trailblazer with a proven record of developing smart strategies and creatively connecting the right partners. Paula has helped iconic events and major brands achieve their goals through innovative sponsorship initiatives, generating incremental revenue and successfully coaching thriving teams, executives and boards.