What’s Your Insight? Highlights from the Volaris Sales & Marketing Summit

September 27, 2016 Mark Miller

How can sales and marketing work together to find insight about customers and give prospects true value? Two weeks ago, Volaris held our first Sales & Marketing Summit in Montreal, Quebec. We brought together sales and marketing leaders across 25 of our business units to learn how to move beyond top of funnel activities and sell based on value, not price.  

For this summit, attendees were put into groups based on their business unit and they had to develop a plan to close a current opportunity, focusing on the key individuals they would need to target to mobilize the deal. To help the teams with this task, workshops were held that focused on the art of customer discovery and how to find that consumer insight that you can leverage to truly distinguish your company from competitors.

So what did our attendees learn from the summit? Here are the three key takeaways.

1. Small is Beautiful

By focusing on vertical markets, our businesses target very niche industries to solve specific customer pain points. With some of these markets being limited in terms of size, it’s ok to have small, agile business that becomes a sustainable leader in that market over the long term.

Often small businesses tend to do well because they have a team of highly dedicated people. Even when there’s only 30 people in the entire unit, they have to work together for the common goal.

Larger companies have their merits as well – for at Volaris our business units range in size in terms of head count and revenue. But it’s important to not discount small business units either.

2. Be a Personal Trainer, Not a Bartender

To start the workshop focusing on the art of discovery, Trapeze Group’s Ted Gilkey asked all the salespeople if they were bartenders or personal trainers.

Bartenders are relationship builders. They listen to your problems and share your pain but at the end of the day their goal is to sell you a drink. They don’t care if the next day you wake up hungover and regretting the decision.

Personal trainers, on the other hand, coach and challenge the clients to reach their goals, solve problems, and do more than they thought possible. Most importantly, they show and convince prospects to make the right decisions.

The more salespeople you have that are personal trainers, the more you will be able to get out of your customers and build stronger relationships with them for the long term.

3. Find Your Insight

Figuring out what value you can give your customers that is truly unique, valuable, and proven isn’t an easy task. It takes analysis and thought to determine your differentiator.

A differentiator is not a feature generic to the market or the outcome of using a product. Companies tend to think that descriptors such as customer centric, environmentally friendly, market leading, or innovative are differentiators, but  they are not.

Also, they are not technologies or solutions – instead a differentiator is solving a customer’s pain point that they didn’t realize they had. Often that differentiator isn’t glamorous and is basic so you can’t afford to ignore even the littlest details that you might otherwise overlook.

Last Thoughts

The two and half days in Montreal were very intensive, but everyone came away with learnings they could start implementing in their business immediately.  The summit reinforced the idea that sales and marketing teams need to work together through the entire buyer’s journey. Our business units are doing some great things and I look forward to seeing what they will accomplish in the future. 

About the Author

Mark Miller

Mark Miller is the Global CEO of Volaris Group and Trapeze Group. In addition, Mark is the COO at Constellation Software – Volaris Group’s parent company. He began his career as a software developer and it was during that time that he co-founded Trapeze Group in 1995. Mark has a passion for software technology and building innovative businesses that last forever. His goal is to help intrapreneurs and entrepreneurs surround themselves with a great team so that they can be leaders in their industries.

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