Sales Plans

As a sales-driven organisation you should be crystal clear on two things: where you’re going and how you’ll get there. An SLP sales plan offers clarity on both fronts.

Creating a sales plan or a sales strategy might seem like a given – something every business must do. But the day-to-day reality of running your business can see the task forever pushed down the priority list, leaving your organisation at best ticking over and at worst rudderless, drifting wherever the prevailing winds take it.

Sales is a hyper-competitive field that is constantly in flux. Buying behaviour evolves, new sales trends emerge and competition is always trying to outdo you. Without a plan your business will inevitably fall behind.

You need to realise the importance of strategy and fully commit to sales planning. You must set time and resources aside to develop and implement a solid plan, or revisit and rework your current plan.

At SLP we’re experts at developing clear, adaptable and effective sales plans and growth strategies, then training your team up to implement them. We’ve built a reputation for helping business owners, CEOs and other key stakeholders develop, refine and implement sales plans that chart a path to a level of growth they’ve never seen before.

At SLP we know that salespeople who plan the fight don't fight the plan. Where most sales companies go wrong is in developing sales strategies and plans at management level, then asking the sales team to execute. Rarely does this approach result in true buy-in and peak performance. Your salespeople are speaking with prospects every day, so it is critical that they are involved in developing the plan, to ensure both performance and buy-in.

What is a sales plan?

SLP sales plans are strategic documents that describe how a business will improve its sales results. They cover a specific period, feature specific targets, outline exactly how those targets will be achieved and calculate the resources the plan will require.

An SLP sales plan is a guiding light for business leaders, managers and salespeople alike. It offers a big picture view, outlining major sales and revenue goals, and also goes into detail, explaining how these results will be achieved by sales teams. It gives individuals an understanding of business priorities, and outlines exactly how they can contribute to this overall success.

The best sales plans, like those developed by SLP, consider every factor that will contribute to sales results, including:

  • Identifying and recruiting for sales talent gaps.
  • Giving your team clarity on things like targets, territory, market and role.
  • Investing in professional development for your sales team.
  • Foreseeing possible issues and developing contingency plans to overcome them.

It should be noted that a sales plan (or sales strategy) differs slightly from a business plan. A business plan can be thought of as the ‘what’, while the sales plan is the ‘how’. The two are closely related, and work toward the same end, but an SLP sales plan is more explicit in exactly how the aims of the business will be achieved, and focuses more specifically on sales.

How do I make a sales plan?

The responsibility of crafting an effective sales plan can be overwhelming, particularly if you don’t have much experience in doing so. That’s why so many businesses answer the question ‘how do I make a sales plan?’ by choosing to partner with SLP’s sales planning experts.

At SLP we have spent years guiding businesses on developing clear, actionable and ultra-effective sales plans and strategies that help you to achieve your goals sooner. We know that every organisation is different, with unique needs, objectives and circumstances, so we take an adaptable approach to sales planning.

At a base level, an SLP sales plan includes the following information:

  • The development of 90-day strategic priorities. 
  • The development of a budget forecast factoring in recurring revenue, forward orders, churn and the share of wallet (SOW) vs new business growth required. 
  • The establishment of the number of calls, conversion rates, meetings and proposals required to achieve your goals (reverse engineered from your budget forecast).
  • The clarification of strategic growth intent. 
  • Clarity on the target markets, including factors like industry, geographical location, business size and more.
  • Clarity on the target audience: the decision makers, gatekeepers and influencers in your target markets.
  • Strategic messaging, positioning statements and unique value propositions (UVPs) your team will use when approaching your target market, to increase the chance of getting a meeting and winning against a similarly priced or lower priced competitor.

At SLP we’re experts at distilling the complex task of sales growth into a plan that is simple to understand, practical to execute and designed around realistic yet ambitious goals. We guide you through the steps of forming your sales strategy, delivering an active and integrated plan of attack that ensures you and your team are accountable and ultimately successful.

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What is a sales plan template?

Developing a sales plan from scratch can be quite the challenge – it can be hard to know what to include or where to even start. A sales plan template takes the weight off your shoulders and the guesswork out of sales strategy development. Your sales plan must be unique to your business, sure, but it should always include a few key components. There is an approximate formula for success, which means that a template can be very useful.

At SLP we’re passionate about helping you simplify your sales life, making things as streamlined and on task as they can be. To this end we’ve developed a series of sales templates that offer our clients a foundation from which to work. These templates are designed to give you the framework you need to develop a clear sales plan.

How you use an SLP sales template is up to you. You can work with our expert SLP team to fill in and develop the template, or you can simply download our template as a starting point and do it all in-house. Whichever way you choose to go, we recommend that you:

  • Use simple language to make the plan as clear, simple and actionable as possible.
  • Be as specific as possible in terms of goals, targets, KPIs and responsibilities (without making it needlessly detailed).
  • Share information in whatever format works best: text, lists, charts, tables, graphics, graphs and screenshots all have their place.
  • Develop a plan with your team that can be understood across all levels of the business.

What is included in a sales plan?

What exactly does an effective sales plan look like? The answer will depend on your business, your industry, your current situation and your future objectives. Ultimately a sales strategy gives you a purpose to work towards: it’s a guideline, a map, a plan of attack, and one that we can help you define.

We look to integrate the following elements into every sales plan we help our clients to develop:

  • Sales process development
  • Business plan development
  • Role clarity for the sales team
  • Clarity on target market and who your ideal client is
  • Defining your distinctive capabilities and how you use them to differentiate value over your competition
  • Territory management
  • Development of key metrics
  • Sales incentives/compensation development
  • Sales recruitment and onboarding process
  • Support implementing or customising CRMs for sales growth

The key difference with SLP? We don’t just help you develop a sales plan then walk away. We provide ongoing support and training to ensure you are able to follow through on your plan and reach your goals.

Our ongoing, integrated sales training is designed to become part of your business DNA: the foundation upon which your success is built. We ensure that your sales team is capable of delivering every step of your sales plan. Your people are your greatest asset, and investing in them can generate an unmatched return for your business.

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