4 Benefits of Segmenting Customers and Aligning Sales Talent

April 19, 2012 at 7:00 AM

World Class Sales Organizations that properly configure sales capacity generate 16% more revenue than those that do not

It is SBI’s belief that Sales excellence is equal parts the talent of the organization and the performance conditions upon which that talent is placed.  So what?  You can have the best processes with the wrong people and it will still fail.  The best way to ensure you have at least half the equation completed is to ensure you hire great sales talent and align that talent with your Top Accounts. The first step is defining what a top accounts looks like and structuring accordingly. 

Questions to ask to determine if a segment model would work for you?

Relationship Mapping

Benefits of Structure Segmentation:

1. Position Best Resources on Best Accounts - nothing drives results like giving your best people the best opportunities and accounts.  They will thrive in this scenario and exceed their quotas on a regular basis

2. Vision within Accounts - having dedicated account resources/teams allows you to gain intimate knowledge of what the future holds.  This improves forecasting accuracy, resource planning, and strategic alignment

3. Relationship Mapping - many direct resources struggle to reach the entire buying decision team.  By having dedicated resources focused on your top segment you are allowing resources to spread within accounts and form relationships to avoid becoming single threaded

Relationship Mapping


4. Resource Optimization - by aligning resources properly you overinvest on high potential accounts and lower your Customer Acquisition Cost on lower segments.  Some of the lower segments prefer to buy through indirect resources, inside sales, or e-commerce and you are actually burdening them with a direct resource that isn't adding value

Seg Hunter Farmer Blog

The graphic above illustrates an example of using a hybrid structure model to both segment accounts and specialize by selling activity.  In this scenario, Customer Acquisition Cost, Customer Lifetime Value, and the customer's preferred channel of procurement were the main criteria that led to this design.  I recommend determining the 3-5 key criteria that will feed into your future sales force structure decision now so you can begin to plan any changes that need to be rolled out prior to 2013.

Call to Action:
View the Sales Force Structure case study here for an example of an organization changing structure to over resource Key Accounts.  Then listen to this Sales Force Structure specific WEBINAR to begin organizing your thoughts around how your sales force should be organized going into 2013.

Also, please register to attend the 30-minute webinar in the ad below and receive a post-webinar recording. This will give you an in-depth 20-minute executive summary, as well as 10-minutes of Q&A to learn from peer questions.


Your comments and suggestions are welcome.

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Topics: Sales Force Structure, Go To Market Strategy

Posted by Scott Gruher

Scott Gruher
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