How to adequately account for it in taking your sales team design to The Next Level

What would you answer if you were asked by your superiors, without notice, about the dollar value of the cost of a sales visit executed by members of your sales team?  Would you quickly divide an average Sales exec salary by a hasty mental estimate of the annualised visit rate?  Good effort to do that on the spot.

Better still, we find that when the full cost of sales and cost to serve the customer base, amortising the costs associated not only with salary of sales team members, but also the full costs to the organisation to fully mobilise the sales team along with the costs of other functions that directly serve the same customer base that the sales team are selling to, can be a bit of an “oh shit” experience for many a B2B sales organisation as they ponder their sales team design and full cost.  Our data across a range of B2B sales organisations shows a skewed bell that features a  mode of around $150 per visit.  But for the more technical sell and longer visit duration, it can easily go well into $200-300, and not infrequently beyond.

B2B Sales Execs can tend to become blasé about the true value of the visit.  Once it is properly costed and explained to them, we often see a different perspective emerge.  A clever sales manager we know of uses colourful expressions like “treat each visit like a little nugget of gold”……..”plan your sales visits like you have $250 to place on the stock market………once invested you’ve placed your bet, and you live with the outcomes”.

Certainly the value equation can be used to place renewed focus on a number of the sales team design elements we mentioned in last week’s post………..  Visit design, programming, partnership planning, visit capacity of the team; headcount/structure/deployment; classified customer base targeting benchmarks; profiled prospect pool targeting benchmarks.