For a long time, what set a good salesperson apart from the rest was his ability to master the entire sales process. If a professional could approach another person from scratch and turn him into a customer, he was considered a top-notch salesperson.
However, over time, this perception changed. Society has evolved, so has the market, solutions for the same problem have grown and competition has increased. Presenting something innovative and a competitive speech in the market became very difficult, and the sales process needed to evolve.
As with all areas of knowledge, the salesperson also had to be trained, develop their skills, know their market in depth and, more than that, specialize. And the result of this need for specialization was the segmentation of the sales process.
Basically, that notion of the handyman salesman fell apart and gave way to prospectors, SDRs, closers…
Here, on the OTB blog, we’ve already talked a lot about this segmentation. But things are not always clear.
So, in this text, I’m going to explain to you once and for all who’s who in the segmented sales process. Come on?
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- Segmentation of the sales process
- Hunters and their functions
- Closers and their functions
- Why define these roles?
- And then in your company, who is who in the sales process?
Segmentation of the sales process
Talking about the sales process is nothing new. After all, it is as old as the existence of society.
From the moment the man started working, he started to trade. Each person focused on an activity and, in the end, the products were exchanged to get what they needed to survive. Fish for skins, water for meat.
Learn more here: [Infographic] Sales History: Understand how everything evolved!
Okay, okay… That first barter wasn’t exactly a sale. But it appeared soon after when the man realized that not everything had the same exchange value and that he should receive more for his product.
And so the seller was born, considered someone with intrinsic, almost genetic, convincing and persuasive characteristics. Besides, of course, a person with communication skills and logical reasoning.
These abilities, as you can imagine, have remained. What changed with the evolution of the process was the notion of specialization.
Before, having a team of experts, it was to have vendors able to perform all functions of prospecting to close. The problem is that all-around salespeople do very well in one role and fall short in others.
The idea of segmenting your sales team came precisely to solve this failure. You will still make each of the team members an expert but in a single role.
With this, everything that was once done by a single person is now divided between two new figures: the hunters and the closers. I will now explain what roles each and who is who in the segmented sales process.
Hunters and their functions
Hunters are responsible for the first half of the process. They will prospect, connect and qualify your leads.
Hunters are always looking for and generating new sales opportunities
In this category, we have Commercial Intelligence, Prospectors, and SDRs. Business intelligence finds leads with a profile similar to your persona, prospectors make the first contact, and SDRs (sales representatives) qualify the lead until it is ready to make the purchase decision.
Also read: Business Intelligence: the strategy beyond prospect lists
As they are at the base of the process, hunters work with a greater flow of companies. Therefore, they need to know their market niche well, so as not to waste time prospecting leads that do not have a real fit or interest in the proposed solution.
Hunters must get in direct contact with decision-makers within the prospected company, showing the solution to be offered and trying to understand the customer’s pain. The main objective is to bring the lead’s attention and arouse interest in the solution offered.
The reason to talk to the decision-maker is not to get lost in an endless loop of fruitless meetings. Furthermore, knowing this person makes it easier to identify the pains that the solution can remedy and increase the chances of a sale.
Once the decision-maker is found, attention and interest is earned, and the pains are identified, it’s time to pass the baton to Closer. This passage must be made very clear for the lead, in order not to lose a sale due to a breach of trust or credibility.
Closers and their functions
Closers are responsible for the closing, sales executives specializing in making the lead sign the contract. The final handshake is due to the closer
This work is facilitated by Hunter, which delivers more mature leads that are open to the solution, as they already recognize their own pain and feel the need to remedy them. In addition, they have Hunter’s feedback on the pains of that particular lead.
It is up to Closer, then, to awaken the desire for its solution, showing how to acquire it will optimize and evolve the lead company’s processes.
To validate this solution, he can do a demo. In this demo, cases of application of your solution in companies with similar pains are presented. The objective is to show that what you have already done for other companies, you can also do for them.
Finally, it is also up to Closer to generate a proposal for working together. This is a delicate moment because values are quoted, all financial planning is reviewed and the lead really visualizes the commitment he is making.
However, the advantages presented so far by Hunter and Closer tend to overcome these obstacles and thus the sale is closed.
Why define these roles?
Now that you know who’s who in the segmented sales process, I’ll explain why defining these roles can make all the difference in your business.
First, the conversions generated by this model are much larger than the archaic single-vendor model.
The rate of flow requires a constant supply of leads that will turn in their process and maintain a predictable and stable target. In the old process, the single salesperson, upon finalizing a sale, has to re-prospect a new lead. In other words, it wastes time instead of keeping up with sales.
Second, because segmentation makes it possible to train specific skills and generate greater focus at each stage. Your process needs to be dynamic and fast to serve today’s market, something a handyman can’t keep up with. In the end, he ends up doing more or less everything and you can’t identify the gaps in the process.
All of this is not an extremely innovative proposition. As I mentioned at the beginning of the text, the natural evolution of humanity involves segmentation and specialization. The sales process could not be different.
What really happens is that companies, whether out of fear or inability to innovate, still do not apply this new methodology. As the results are indisputable and easy to show, companies that still bet on a handyman salesperson will be left behind.
And then in your company, who is who in the sales process?
Now that you know who’s who in the modern sales process and why invest in this segmentation, I want to know your opinion!
Tell me in the comments if it was clear the roles of each team member in a segmented process and how is the division of roles in your company.
Anything, send me an email: firstname.lastname@example.org. It will be a pleasure to answer you!
And, to understand step by step how to structure your team, download our ebook to build an Outbound team by clicking on the image below.