For Sales Trainers Only


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ESR CEO, Dave Stein, delivers a content-rich perspective on the sales training industry. Dec 7, 2011. MP3 and PDF available at

For Sales Trainers Only

  1. 1. The State of the Sales Training Industry For Sales Training Providers Only December 7, 2011 MP3 Audio and PDF available at This presentation contains copyrighted material. Quotation is permitted using the format below with a live link. Source: ES Research Group, Inc.
  2. 2. What We’ll Cover Today Graphics source for this entire PowerPoint presentation:© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 2
  3. 3. About ESR • Who We Are: – Research and advisory firm covering the sales training market – Founded 2005 by Dave Stein and Adam Rin, PhD. – Reputation for integrity, insight, independence, knowledge • What We Do: – Perform research and share knowledge, guiding sales training buyers – Perform research and share knowledge, guiding sales training providers.© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 3
  4. 4. For Sales Training Buyers1. ESR’s Research – subscription or à la carte – Reports – Briefs – Sales Training Provider Evaluations – Sales Training Course Directory2. Client Evaluations AchieveGlobal – Sales Training Provider evaluation and selection support – Merge Healthcare, Honeywell, Chevron, P R Newswire, HP-Fortify, Genie Industries, Kronos, MasterCard, No kia, and many others.© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 4
  5. 5. For Sales Training Providers • All ESR’s research: Reports, Briefs, Provider Evaluations • Advisory services – Growth strategies, marketing, lead gen, competitiveness, technology, social media, product development, partnerships, M&A • Monthly webinars • ESR Profile & Evaluation • Provide intelligence, advice, exposure and sales leads to our community of sales training providers. – Articles (Announcement coming…) – Blog – ESR/Alert Newsletter – Sales Thought-Leader Series • 2,000 leads distributed during October/November • New series begins in January (16 additional panelists)© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 5
  6. 6. ESR Presently Covers These Providers • 3g Selling • Revenue Storm Corporation • Accelerated Sales Training Inc. • Sales Excellence International • AchieveGlobal • Sales Performance International • BayGroup International • Sales Progress • ChannelEnablers Pty Ltd • Sandler Training • Corporate Visions • SEC Solutions • CustomerCentric Selling® • TACK-USA • durhamlane, ltd. • The ASG Group • David Kurlan & Associates, Inc. • The Brooks Group • Executive Conversation, Inc. • The Complex Sale, Inc. • FranklinCovey Sales Performance Practice • The Forum Corporation • Holden International • The Improved Sales Performance Group • Huthwaite, Inc. • The Next Level Sales Consulting • Imparta • The Richardson Company • IMPAX Corporation • The TAS Group • Mercuri International Group AB • TeleSmart Communications • Miller Heiman • Teneo Results • Performance Methods, Inc.(PMI) • Think! Inc. • Pivotal Advisors, LLC • ValueSelling Associates • Prime Resource Group • Wilson Learning Corporation© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 6
  7. 7. The Sales Training Industry© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 7
  8. 8. 2011 in Review (1 of 4) • Sales training spend up during first half, down during second half. – Some big deals still happening during second half – 63% of companies we surveyed spend less than $3k per rep/year – Economy rendered ESR’s June 15 predictions inaccurate.© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 8
  9. 9. 2011 in Review (2 of 4) • More companies cutting back on travel, requiring virtual training alternatives – ESR’s report on Virtual Sales Training • Strategic Acquisitions – Mercuri International  Celemi – Miller Heiman  Channel Enablers – The TAS Group  InfoMentis • Larger providers going broader • Smaller providers going niche…© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 9
  10. 10. 2011 in Review (3 of 4) • Sales trainers continue to be (relatively) ineffective marketers, Richardson and Miller Heiman as notable exceptions • Training companies want/need leads, leads, leads • Demand increasing for: – Coaching – Selling to the corporate procurement function • Research showing status quo in sales effectiveness • Differentiation (from the buyer’s perspective) a challenge • Little progress on selling in a Web 2.0 world…© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 10
  11. 11. 2011 in Review (4 of 4) • Who/What’s “hot” – Jeffrey Gitomer: ASTD’s Sales Training Drivers – Tom Searcy: Geoffrey James’s Sales Machine – Geoffrey James: – A few good new books, e.g. The Challenger Sale – Significant focus from some experts on social media. Lots of followers, but are they buying? • CustomerThink • Focus • Quora • LinkedIn Groups • Twitter.© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 11
  12. 12. Who Are The Leaders? • Why it’s is important for you to know who the leaders are • Partial list for each category • Assessment required to match provider to unique customer requirements • Based on extensive ongoing research, not voting/popularity contests, after all, what can someone really learn about you from your website? • Consider your perspective before judging.© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 12
  13. 13. Partial List: Who Are Some of The Leaders? (1 of 3) • Innovation – Richardson, The TAS Group, SPI • Technology – Dealmaker Partner Network, White Springs, 3g Selling • Skills – The Brooks Group, Richardson, Huthwaite, Imparta, CCS • Methodology – Performance Methods, Richardson, Kurlan Associates • Marketing – Miller Heiman, Richardson, Huthwaite, SPI, Rain Group • Talent Management/Assessments – Revenue Storm, Richardson, Kurlan Associates© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 13
  14. 14. Partial List: Who Are Some of The Leaders? (2 of 3) • Small Provider, Big Value – Teneo Results, TeleSmart Communications, Sales Progress • Gaining Mindshare – SEC Solutions, Imparta, Corporate Visions, Ninety Five 5 • Global Power – Mercuri International, AchieveGlobal, Miller Heiman, Richardson • The Procurement Challenge – Think! inc., BayGroup, Huthwaite, ValueSelling • Return on Training – Brooks Group, Complex Sale • Breadth of Solution – Miller Heiman, AchieveGlobal, Mercuri© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 14
  15. 15. Partial List: Who Are Some of The Leaders? (3 of 3) • Measurement – Complex Sale, PMI, Revenue Storm, Richardson, SPI, TACK, Corporate Visions • Reinforcement – Revenue Storm, SPI, Richardson, The TAS Group, Huthwaite, Brooks Group, Sales Progress Note: This is a partial list. More information about these providers and others and their strengths in these areas are available to ESR subscribers.© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 15
  16. 16. Who Is THE Leader? That Depends… 1. How do their customers buy? 2. What do they sell? 3. How do they sell it? 4. How well do they sell it? 5. Why do they win? 6. Why do they lose? 7. How long is their sales cycle? 8. Is it a complex or transactional sale? 9. Do they sell to committees or individual buyers? 10. What resources are required to support a rep? 11. How do their buyers buy? 12. Who are their competitors? 13. What’s their go-to-market strategy? 14. How are leads generated? 15. What percent of market share do they own? 16. What are their business goals and objectives for the coming quarter, year and three years out? 17. How well is the sales team performing? What percentage of sales reps are at or above quota? 18. What processes and tools do they currently have in place? 19. What geographic territories do they cover? In what languages? With what local cultural requirements? 20. How is the company structured? 21. What about their sales channels? 22. What compensation and incentive approach do they employ? 23. How well do the first line managers manage? 24. What gaps exist in management skills and capabilities? 25. Do they coach effectively to a process? 26. What analytic and measurement systems are in place? 27. How well is sales integrated with other functions within the company especially marketing and service? 28. What is their propensity to change? 29. Are the corporate leaders ready for a business transformation? 30. How much time, resources, and money are they willing to invest in it? 31. Which vendors have already been engaged with this company? 32. What learning mechanisms and tools are in place? 33. How diverse are individuals within the sales team with respect to experience, skill, effectiveness, business savvy, age, learning preferences, etc.? 34. What are the company’s annual revenues? 35. How much are they willing to invest in a sales effectiveness initiative? 36. What technology, if any, is currently supporting the sales function? 37. Are they thinking about training strategically or tactically? 38. Who is currently providing training? 39. What do they think their biggest sales challenge is? 40. What special skills, if any, are required for sales effectiveness? This question alone requires discussions with many diverse stakeholders and is a critical component of ESR’s discovery process.© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 16
  17. 17. Changing Buying Patterns for Sales Training • Brand recognition is an important factor • Smaller companies looking for cheap training/motivation • Larger companies taking more time to evaluate • Training companies not willing to work with procurement • Harder to penetrate new vertical market • CRM connection/integration growing • Buyers are more interested in talent management • Still a disconnect between corporate L&D and Sales • Social media an increasing factor • Impact of technology on sales training – Individualized training decisions/curricula.© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 17
  18. 18. Impact of Technology on Sales Training Training expenditures have decreased: • Live Classroom Training: -24% • On-Demand Virtual Training: -10% • Live Virtual Training: -10% Use of all three modes has increased: •25 to 30% of respondents reported that use of all modes increased. Analysis: Overall, companies are using more sales training in all three modes, but they are spending less, especially for live classroom training.© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 18
  19. 19. Challenges for Three Tiers of Training Companies < $1M – Build equity though books, virtual learning, etc. – Have enough $ to invest in marketing – Get past the $500k ceiling $1M to $15M – Growth strategy: services, products, geog., markets – Seek professional management – Investment in technology – Get invited to more evaluations – Life-style > $15M – Innovate – Seek market domination – Slow down old customer attrition – Maintain margins – Leverage alumni.© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 19
  20. 20. Bad News: Sales Training Sales Reps Need Help • We have observed, and our clients tell us, sales training company salesreps not doing a good job; principals are much more effective – Arrogance – Incompetence – Forcing buyer away from their process • Sales training buyers are different from any other buyers: They need to have you sell to them in a way that they want their salespeople to sell.© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 20
  21. 21. 2012 and Beyond • Continued price pressure • More new entrants into the training market • Fight for dominance at the highest levels • Pressure for virtual solutions • More training, less revenue • More social media marketing and learning content – Leave the job to social media experts? • More consolidation.© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 21
  22. 22. Summary • No dominant player, fragmentation continues • Economy curtailing sales training spend • Technology creeping (or rolling) in • Still challenges in L&D • Challenges for training firms of all sizes • Are you serious about growing your firm? • Watch for Sales Thought-Leader Series in Jan/Feb.© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 22
  23. 23. Questions?© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 23
  24. 24. Thank You for Your Time and Interest. ES Research Group, Inc. +1 (508) 313-9585 © 2011 – ES Research Group All Rights Reserved© 2011 – ES Research Group, Inc. 24