Your sales representatives are the lifeblood of your company, and deserve the best training manuals you can provide. Here are a few tips to get you started.
What to Include:
1. A contacts page. When your sales reps are out beating the streets, you never know what kinds of questions they are going to get, or that they themselves might have. Make sure, then, that they have access to the contact information of the members of your team that can answer any sales or product-related questions that may come up during the course of the day. You might also want to have the contact information of all the reps there too, so they can share tips with each other.
2. A strategies page. Include a list of proven selling points and methods in an easy to read and understand format (perhaps color coded and bulleted) so your newer team members can refer to it whenever necessary. This page can be updated as needed with new products, press clippings, and testimonials.
3. Plenty of photos and other graphics. Don’t simply include photos of the products, show them in use by satisfied customers if at all possible or appropriate. If your products entail any sort of learning curve, give a down and dirty point by point example of its proper use so your sales force knows what they are dealing with. Get the best photographs that you can, and make the images large, clear, and appealing.
4. Competitive Information. It goes without saying that you should be up to speed on what your competition is up to, and your sales force should be as up to speed as you are. The better prepared they are with such information as pricing stats and the like, the stronger they are able to make their counter pitches.
5. Price Guide. This should be as up to date as possible, naturally. Price increases put added pressure on your sales force, but if they have a good understanding of why the increases have taken place, they can make a stronger argument with their clients. It is fairly unlikely that you will make unnecessary increases if it is competitively dangerous to do so, but the more information your reps have, the better equipped they are to keep their clients.
6. Policies. You don’t need to go into as much detail as you would with an employee handbook or something of that nature, but there should be at least a rough outline of what is expected of them, and of you, while they are out in the world.
1. Looks and Functionality. Make the book as easy to follow and read as possible. Attractiveness counts, too. If you have designers and writers on staff, put them on the case. If not, just do the best you can. Find an example of a manual you like, and imitate it to your heart’s content.
2. Organization. Make the sections clear and easy for your staff to find. Color coding and tabs are great for this.
3. Binding Style. There are a few options here, such as the tried and true 3-ring binder, but a system like the GBS Proclick provides a more attractive option with both the durability your reps will need, and the ability to place new and updated pages in the book when necessary. These machines are inexpensive and easy to use, so it’s a great idea to have one on hand to use whenever you have the need to create or update your sales training manuals, reports, or presentations.
If you are interested in more information about how ProClick Binding Systems can help you make a great sales training manual, you might want to visit MyBinding.com. They offer a great price on these machines and they even give you Free Shipping on orders over $75. Plus, they carry a full line of GBC ProClick Supplies, in a wide array of colors and sizes.