Logistics and Technology

“We knew we could provide expertise and bottom-line value to our customers, but we were having problems initiating and closing sales.”

“After a year and a half of poor sales performance we brought in Sales Overdrive to help us figure out what was wrong. Sales Overdrive brought focus to our efforts. The results have been immediate and sustained. In the first 90 days we closed three major new deals and doubled the pipeline. They reduced our sales cycle time by 40%. Thanks to Sales OverDrive, in 2003 we went from almost zero revenue growth to $26 Million in new top line revenue and are on track to do over $200 Million this year. Sales Overdrive’s world class sales processes and great people are the reason.“

Senior Vice President
Newgistics, Inc.
Ken Johnson

About the Client

Based in Austin, Texas, Newgistics is the premier provider of intelligent returns management solutions for the retail, medical supplies, healthcare, service parts, telecommunications equipment and computing industries. Newgistics has developed the most extensive returns management network in the industry that spans the entire return cycle and includes dynamic barcode integration with customer data at the point-of-sale, advanced returns notifications, optimized return transportation and customized reporting for inventory management, processing and disposition.

Situation

For over 18 months the company had experienced significant difficulty in accessing key targets, initiating sales dialogues and closing new sales. While the sales team was experienced in retail and logistics, and had experience selling in other environments, they struggled to reach senior decision makers and to communicate the Newgistics value proposition in a compelling way.

As a result, the company gained no new top line growth and very little growth in existing accounts during this period. Management struggled, but was unable to isolate or quantify the root causes of the problem. The Newgistics value proposition, while based on a shared revenue model, paled in comparison to the cost and organizational pain of implementing the Newgistics Solution, which directly impacted up to five client technology platforms.

Considerations

The sales executives failed to team effectively with the organization’s technical and industry experts. Since the sales process was incomplete and sales executives were unable to sell abstract services and solutions at the C-level, they sold mostly on price at lower levels in the prospect organization. The lack of effective sales processes made it impossible for the company to capture and repeat any sales successes and best practices they might come across.

No inside sales resources were used to leverage the sales executives’ time and little or no effort was devoted to effective lead identification, opportunity identification and qualification. In addition to minimal sales process, there was no account management process or cohesive strategy linking sales, marketing and post-sale client management. No business cases or customer focus groups were used to support product development activities. This resulted in an increasing loss of customer confidence in the company’s ability to deliver product releases that responded to their stated needs. Although Newgistics had an excellent management team and had employed several prestigious marketing and sales strategy firms, the company was unable to identify the underlying problems and take the necessary steps to “break the code” and jumpstart sales.

Solution

In November of 2002, CEO Gabe Gabriel turned to Sales Overdrive for sales consulting strategy to jump start sales and accelerate market share capture in a tough and complex business-to-business environment. Overdrive analyzed the market and developed a new go-to-market strategy, positioning, and value propositions to appeal to senior executives of large, multi-channel retail organizations.

To ensure that the optimal go-to-market strategy, supporting sales processes and the best utilization of resources were in place, Sales Overdrive performed a proof of concept analysis to validate the effectiveness of this new and unusual Overdrive strategy and the client-facing sales tools. This allowed Newgistics to redefine its strategy and its sales, marketing and product development processes, putting them in proper alignment with the agendas of its prospects’ key stakeholders. Overdrive then implemented the Overdrive sales process and a variety of new supporting sales tools and techniques needed to drive the new strategy. Next, Overdrive optimized the company’s allocation of resources, augmenting the sales team with pre-sales executives, inside sales professionals and additional sales executives. Sales Overdrive sourced, screened, recruited & trained the new sales team on the Sales Overdrive processes and added an Interim Sales Leader to assist the existing VP Sales in driving the new processes.

Sales Overdrive selected and implemented an improved sales force automation tool which management then used to measure performance, identify and institutionalize best practices and design more appropriate training and coaching protocols. Next, Sales Overdrive built a comprehensive account management plan and processes, compensation models, and measurement and reward systems that tied the activities of sales, marketing, product development and account management together. This created greatly enhanced teaming, performance and accountability. Once the sales and account management teams were deployed, Sales Overdrive provided ongoing advice and field coaching to drive results. Sales Overdrive also trained the sales staff and provided ongoing coaching and mentoring for the Sales Leader’s sales staff.

In the first 90 days following implementation, the firm closed three major deals and doubled its pipeline. In less than a year, Newgistics gained numerous landmark clients, developed a predictable pipeline of realistic opportunities, shortened it sales cycle by 40% and increased new top line sales from almost zero to $22 Million.

By the end of the second year, Overdrive had helped Newgistics reach $44 Million in new revenue and over $80 Million by the end of the third year. Newgistics now commands the largest share of the dedicated return business in the multi-channel retail industry.

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