The first question a majority of us ask while looking for a field salesman is ‘Is he a good salesman?’. A common question for any manager wishing to have soaring success in sales. It is so common that there are researches and articles with data backing their case, proliferating on every nook of the web. This almost makes us believe that having a team of good salesmen is the only way we can achieve a mighty number of sales.
But think again. Has that really been the case? Sure, you hired a good salesman with an exceptional track record. He joined your force and started proving his mettle week after week. For a good number of months, he achieved all of his targets. You were satisfied.
Until one day, while siffling through monthly reports, you were surprised to see the real trend. The true picture started taking shape right in front of your eyes. Your good salesman, exceeding targets month after month initially has been in fact deteriorating in performance. The trend that you believe should be going up is instead pointing downwards.
Shocking indeed. What’s even worse is, you are not alone. There are countless managers who stay surprised at this downward trend, one after the other. To date, the majority have not been able to figure out the real reason. The real reason why your excellent salesmen with impressive track records end up missing their targets down the line. The reason why they ultimately call it a day and leave.
This is not only the case with your best salesmen but also the average and underperforming ones. It’s another big question many of you ask on a regular basis.
Why? Why do your salesmen turn awry? Why do your salesmen surrender?
There are many reasons that break your salesmen’s spirit. But the major one, which all others revolve around is lack of engagement, a lack of bigger motivation.
Look at it this way. The intrinsic nature of a salesman is competitive. They thrive on excitement, on the thrill of achievement. That achievement is their motivation. It is the reason why your good salesman achieves and exceeds targets month on month.
For a beginner, a simple cash incentive on exemplary performance will be a good motivator. It will add to the thrill of achievement. For a seasoned salesman, however, your simple incentive scheme will not be impactful. The reason being, the thrill of such achievement has already worn off.
To top it, they are expected to pull off new orders from untapped markets and create new retail outlets. All the while, targeted motivation remains the same- a certain amount of cash incentive. It brings them to the same question they keep asking themselves; the question you should be asking as well.
Is it enough? Is a regular cash incentive scheme enough for your salesman to keep accomplishing the same tasks every day?
Let us break the ice here and say, no. No, a regular cash incentive scheme is not enough.
Studies have shown that the biggest indicator of motivation is dopamine – an important neurotransmitter in the brain that influences feelings of reward and motivation. High dopamine is an indicator of a motivated salesman. And we are long past the stage where regular cash incentives would raise the dopamine level, i.e. motivation level.
Science suggests our dopamine levels spike when we are playing a game. This happens in response to the challenge a game presents and the thrill of achieving the goal.
The same is witnessed with gamification – a technique that brings game mechanics to a non-game environment, such as your sales field. It has proven to keep employees excited, immersed and engaged. When introduced in the sales field, it does wonders for salesmen’s spirit.
To bring it into the application, you start by turning pipeline tasks including first call, total productive calls, total units sold, new outlets created and much more into reward points up for grabs. Make every daily achievement bring instant gratification by crediting reward points directly to their kitty, in real-time.
Don’t stop there. For the real flavour of gamification, let the match run live. On your entire sales team’s screens. Let them see who is winning. In real-time.
The essence of gamification for the sales team materializes in a true sense when a communicative, real battleground like the setup is created. Where immersive techniques are used to make the experience more lively and connectable.
Take the example of FA Battleground. It brings a real battleground like setup with leaderboards, badges, reward coins, social feeds and other interesting segments for sales teams to stay engaged with public recognition, immersed with insights on numbers, and excited with contests and rewards.
How does gamification impact salesmen productivity and brand loyalty?
- 22% increase in daily productive calls
- 1 new outlet identified daily
- ~20% increase in total calls
- 23% increase in total retail time
These statistics have been derived from FA Battleground for a leading hygiene brand engaging their salesmen with personalized, FA powered gamification.
Your team of good salesmen are willing and ready to deliver, much beyond set targets and expectations.
The question is, are you willing to keep them engaged, immersed and excited?
You must connect with our success enablers for all the tested ways to keep your salesmen engaged and productive. Get in touch.
Stay tuned for more reasons why the salesman surrenders. If you know one, we would love to hear.