The SNIPER Sales Method

We all remember the adage – good sales people are like spear throwers whilst marketing casts the net.

Spear throwing is so 90s – it may as well be Neolithic.

In this age of modern technology – in my experience, most sales people start out more like machine guns.

They lack focus and often pick too many targets, many of which are not the right ones.

This can often lead to longer ramp time, countless burnt leads and a non-structured approach which is hard to measure and even harder to repeat.

Gradually as sales people mature, I think they become more like rocket launchers.

They become more effective in closing deals but often there is a certain amount of fall out in every deal. This is visible in:

  • The handover to customer success showing signs of weakness
  • Customers being left confused over features that were misrepresented or not mentioned in the sales process
  • Some internal stakeholders may feel off put by the conduct of the lead sales person and may not want to work with them again
  • Salesforce or other CRMs are likely to have incomplete records– making attribution almost impossible
  • Key points of contact on the customer side may also feel the sales person was less experienced or careless – diluting experience and brand equity

There is a certain point where the level of expertise lifts as a rep matures, with my my best sales people evolving to become revenue ‘snipers.’

They demonstrate an extraordinarily ability to research, select and close business in a way that you can rely upon.

For ease of explanation – I’d like to introduce the SNIPER methodology, with the following acronym being extremely helpful in teaching and practising the approach:

Select

A sales rep carefully takes the time to make two key selections.

The first is choosing which account to target based on extensive research – these days most of which can be done online via public data.

The second and most commonly forgotten step is to conduct a second degree of selection as to which POCs (point of contacts) are most likely to exhibit the problems which are conducive to successful conversion.

A SNIPER generally updates the CRM to reflect both of the above to personalize subsequent engagements.

Negotiate

We must not forget, that in most situations we seek to avoid conflict. That is why a SNIPER must exhibit supreme skills in negotiation – making the client feel as if they are being heard and that compromises are being made on both sides.

Individualise

Elite SNIPERs are known for having a trademark; the signs of their involvement are always clearly visible.

For me I like to prioritise the physical – wearing a cowboy hat and attending meetings with unique clothing. Other ways to differentiate oneself include the way you speak, professionalism, subject matter knowledge and punctuality in replies.

You want to be remembered and to differentiate yourself from the other 99 sales people who come knocking on the door

Personalize

Every effective SNIPER takes the time to tailor a strategy based on the specific characteristics of each target they select.

Although the SNIPER methodology remains a consistent framework for producing these outcomes – each engagement should be unique in the way the approach is tailored to create interest and service the needs of the prospect.

Taking time to cater one-to-one emails, proactively avoiding common vendor assumptions & consistency in making the effort to meet in person are all signs of a SNIPER constructing a highly personal approach.

Execute

Execution separates the good from the best. Often the steps above can be followed directly – yet still most people have something missing when it comes to the close.

SNIPER’s attempt to complete the mission at all costs. The reason for this is that they only select opportunities which are fully qualified, as predicated by the first step – select.

In the unlikely event that despite following this method something occurs dynamically which may stall the deal; such as a merger or acquisition – they are ready to abort immediately and move on to a target with a higher chance of success.

Repeat

SNIPER’s are different from standard performers in that they reliable follow this method to succeed, time and time again. Stopping only to make minor technique modifications – they generally build further pipeline velocity through the efficiency created.

Additionally – they become perfect future mentors for new hires and as potential managers due to their methodical approach.

Would you rather hold onto the spear or do you believe that the SNIPER method has a place? Let me know in the comments below

About The Author

Dailius Wilson

Dailius Wilson is the 24 year old founder of WolfofYorkStreet.com – helping the world's top SaaS companies to optimise their sales and marketing efforts. Dailius is currently a Director at TrustRadius and a digital blogger at increasemyonlinebusiness.com. Dailius was named as one of the Top 30 Entrepreneurs in Australia for 2015 by Anthill Online and was ranked in the Top 100 SEO Experts in the World. Dailius has also been a guest on the Ellen Degeneres Show and has over 10,000,000 views on Youtube