Have you managed to set up a structure that supports your current business, but that’s also ready to meet the challenges of the future?
After finding a product-market combination, setting up a scalable business model is the next step. That's not limited to just one level of your business but extends across every level, from marketing and sales to customer service.
The story starts with marketing. A good marketing team puts its efforts into a well-thought-out marketing mix of advertisements, content marketing and more. You can no longer simply invest in a single channel, because your competitors aren't doing that either.
Think about the ways you can make your marketing more flexible. Are you working with marketing automation? Does your website have personalized landing pages? The question is in particular: What are you doing right now, and what are you prepared to change?
Start at the foundation: how many qualified leads does your marketing team deliver and at what price?
The average costs per lead can be pretty high, especially at the beginning, however a company with a healthy budget can take that. The value of a customer is quite a bit higher than his first invoice.
Give your marketing team Lead Velocity Rate as a target. Can they deliver 10% more qualified leads than last month? This is the best performance indicator for marketing and the most predictable growth indicator.
Do not forget to give feedback to your marketing mix: Which channels produce the most valuable customers at the most attractive price?
Is your team growing? Attract the right profiles for branding, conversion and content. You are about to discover why such a division of tasks is useful.
Allocate the tasks
Have you got the first leads? Try then to immediately recruit two sales reps, for internal and external sales: inside sales and outside sales.
The first one straightaway does the talking to new prospects, categorizes them and plans (online) appointments for the other one. The other person is 100% focused on closing deals.
Using two sales reps at the same moment helps you to determine the best procedures for your sales. Look, compare, and keep what works.
At the same time, that specific division is very logical: one person is very rarely brilliant at prospecting, closing deals and managing a customer portfolio. Prefer specialists over generalists wherever you can. That brings rapid rewards!
Sales Qualified Leads, Sales Cycle Time, Sales Acquisition Cost and Monthly Recurring Revenue: these are the evergreens of your sales organization.
How many qualified leads are your inside sales bringing in? How long does it take to convert such a lead to a new customer? What are the costs of your sales process? What turnover can you expect from your business each month?
Your second line of sales
As soon as a lead commits to buying your product or service, your dream team shows up. You need to commit 10% of your annual turnover to your customer service.
That is a winning investment: good customer service prevents your brand new customers from pulling out. In addition it leads to opportunities for cross- and upselling. Customer services are called your 'second sales' for a reason.
Is your sustainable customer service rock-solid? Then immediately lay this down as your procedure. A clear guide is worth its weight in gold for new customer service employees.
Another issue that's relevant for your customer service team is MRR - Monthly Recurring Revenue. Can they make your monthly predictable turnover increase in terms of percentage? To put it differently: are they succeeding in keeping the numbers that pull out to a minimum and maximizing your upselling and cross-selling?
Here too, you divide the tasks whenever that's possible. The one employee handles complaints and questions; the other's responsible for upselling. This only makes the customer experience more positive.
A difficult moment?
Of course, there are difficult moments when setting up a scalable organization like this. Encountering a phase in which growth seems to be stagnating is rather more the rule than the exception.
At those moments, you have to keep believing in the strength of your business and the value of your product. If you have made the right strategic choices, you'll get through those phases. The flexibility that you've built in helps you to anticipate any future bumps in the road.