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The sources of the pipeline and tactics of development

The Seven Steps of Pipeline Management #5-7:

How to fill and develop the pipeline – sources and tactics

A sales pipeline is a summary of all sales opportunities that a sales person, business unit or company is pursuing with the aim of closing deals. A more detailed definition of the pipeline and a classification of its meaning can be found in this blog.

You can also read here which information you list in the pipeline and how you can identify the relevant opportunities based on the probability of success.

So now you know the basics and understand that pipeline management is important for your business. In the current blog series, we look at implementation in seven concrete steps.

The first step concerns the target setting. Carrying out all efforts in a goal-oriented manner and having a plan from the beginning increases efficiency enormously and also enables you to better self-reflect and learn more. Find out more about your sales target here.

The next step is about key figures and measurements. Here you need to question which corporate principle you are pursuing. Based on this, the third step is the analysis of the AS-IS-Pipe and the fourth step is the recognition of the GAP. The second part of the blog series summarizes these steps.

Now you have an exact overview of the status quo of your pipeline. On this basis, you can dedicate yourself to filling and developing your pipeline.

For the fifth step, you need to know the five sources with which you can fill your pipeline:

  1. offers
  2. current projects
  3. service level 1
  4. clients speak about a future problem / project pre-planning
  5. generating an opportunity by offering a solution

There are different tactics to use these sources and develop the pipe.

  1. Holding
  2. Building
  3. Growing

If you want to hold and strengthen your pipe, the most important thing is to maintain and support your opportunities. Customer support, customer loyalty and maintenance are the measures your company should focus on here. This is how you strengthen existing opportunities and mandates.

You can already find various tips for your relationship management. For this, consider the characteristics of an ideal account manager and follow the 10 commandments I have already described in the communication with your clients. You will also learn in my blog how to maintain your account properly and stay up to date. Furthermore, you will learn the difference between Price Clients and Relationship Clients and how to convince with articulated or implied knowledge.

If, on the other hand, you want to expand the pipeline, there are several approaches. Either you penetrate the market and develop more opportunities in the same area, expand and offer the same service in a new area or industry, or you develop your service and move up the value chain.

If your tactic is to grow the pipeline, you aim for the "elephants". These are deals that are at least three times larger than your average. You need to work on these at least 2-3 times a year to significantly increase the probability of success here.

The seventh step is ongoing maintenance, open communication and actions that will continue to help you manage and organize your pipeline. In this way, the pipeline offers you relevant added value for your company.