As any closer knows, making a sale is often about being in the right place at the right time. You need to be there when the prospect starts doing their research for new software, office furniture, fitness equipment, or whatever else you may have to offer. And you absolutely need to be there when they drop their RFP.
While there’s no way to automate perfect timing or a install a killer instinct for when a prospect’s ready for an exploratory call, you can @@“set it and forget it” once you get that RFP in your hands with quoting software.@@
From the RFP response to the signed quote, a configure, price, quote solution ensures real-time follow-up throughout the most sensitive and tricky part of the sales process. By helping you reply immediately to most inquiries, a CPQ solution can help you close more deals in less time and with less manual labor.
The secret to comedy is… timing! (Secret to sales, too.)
Just a like a comedian knows how long to wait before delivering a killer punchline, a sales rep should know how long to wait before sending a killer quote. In the former case, it’s usually one or two beats; in the latter case, it all depends.
Short deals, small deals, deals that take a week to close, that proposal should be on its way as soon as soon as you have all the info, which you should be gathering on your first (and, ideally, last) sales call. “That sounds great, Mr. Prospect. You should see my proposal in your inbox… now.”
If you’re using quoting software with preconfigured pricing and products, templates, and other automation tools, “now” is the standard. If you’re using Excel sheets and a Yahoo email account, welllll… good luck to you.
For larger deals with more decision makers — the ones that involve more calls, a demo, sometimes a proof-of-concept — you should never send a proposal until you have identified THE decision maker, the one whose Yay/Nay carries the most weight. Last thing you want is for your hard work to end up in the wrong, “not able to sign dotted lines” hands.
After the RFP gets its P, leave it to CPQ
They requested a proposal, and you sent one. Now you just sit back and wait.
Sounds like terrible advice, right? But when you’re running quoting software — especially when it’s CPQ integrated with CRM — you really don’t have to do too much heavy lifting.
The automated system lets you know when to reply. The templates ensure your replies are ready to roll. The system’s sales analytics tracks and report on any possible bottlenecks. At the start of this post, we mentioned “set it and forget it,” and that’s what it’s time for.
So what should a rep do now? How about go make more calls, get some more quotes into the pipeline, and use that time for what he or she does best: making sales.
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