The Basic Principles of Trigger Based Selling

Sales Pro Source
September 12, 2012 — 1,283 views  
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Ask any sales professional about the toughest parts of their job, and
they will likely mention reaching the right avenues and recipients for their
messages. Whether online, over-the-phone, or in-person, all resources spent on
those who aren't currently in the proper position to make a purchase are, at
that time, wasted. Similarly, the time and money spent on research to determine
the suitability of potential prospects could be put to more efficient use. To get
the selling process off the ground, the right prospects must be engaged at the
right time. Automating the recognition of this consumer (or business) status is
the basis of trigger based selling. 

The most straightforward way to picture trigger based selling is as a binary
switch that begins a certain part of the marketing process. When a high-quality
potential prospect is recognized at a time that is less than ideal, the trigger
is in the off position. A certain action or condition must then arise before
that switch is turned on. This, in essence, is the trigger. In
business-to-business sales it might be a change in management personnel or
reaching a certain financial mark. For consumer sales, it could be a new
membership or a website visit. 

In the real world, the actual condition that the trigger watches can vary
widely. Sales and marketing firms keep immense databases with an array of
prospect information. Any individual piece of that information might become a
trigger. Thus, an essential part of the setup process for trigger based selling
is to find those triggers that increase prospects' propensity to purchase most
significantly. A company selling gag gifts, for instance, might use the
beginning of the holiday season as a general trigger for all prospects and
birthdays stored in their information pool as triggers for individuals. 

Within the selling process as a whole, multiple triggers can be placed nearly
anywhere to maximize the return on investment of sales resources. Envision a
selling process with an automatic trigger for initial contact and subsequent
triggers to determine the specific steps that are subsequently taken. Without
continuous research or effort, it automatically gives the sales professional a
sense of direction on how to proceed. 

A well-defined selling process demonstrates the substance a given company's
marketing strategy. With triggers inserted, the when and to whom parts of
particular steps in that strategy are defined as well, moving the entire
process one big step closer to becoming an optimized selling method. In
combination with strong, personalized marketing messages and a useful
information database, trigger based selling can be an extremely powerful tool
to help sales professionals reach and surpass their goals.

Sales Pro Source