The most overwhelming part of being an outside sales rep is building a brand new territory from scratch. Managing a territory is like running a business, you’re the one who decides if your territory succeeds or fails—and there are no days off.

Your territory plan is a blueprint explaining how you’ll turn your region into a profitable operation.

Your plan needs to show management that you can develop a territory like a real outside sales rep. A lot of new reps think they can improvise instead of creating a detailed sales plan. These are the same salespeople who get overly cocky and end up scrambling for deals at the end of the quarter.

This guide will teach you how to create a 30/60/90 day territory plan that will help you scale your new territory without missing a single step.

Instead of scrambling the next time you need a territory plan, download our comprehensive 30/60/90 day checklist.

30 Day Plan

Practice Product Knowledge

In your first 30 days, you need to learn everything there is to know about what you’re selling. Creating a SWOT analysis is a great starting point to figure out you why a customer would want to purchase the product.

Create a SWOT analysis for your product:

  • What are its strengths?
  • What are its weaknesses?
  • What opportunities does it create for the buyer?
  • What threats does it face from competitors?

Take the time to develop concrete answers to these questions. Keep in mind that customers are always thinking about cheaper alternatives, so driving home your product's value proposition is integral in closing a deal. A SWOT analysis is your secret weapon, learn it, memorize it, and you won't sweat when tough questions pop up. 

For more information on how to create a SWOT analysis and its benefits, Creating a SWOT Analysis is a great short, step-by-step guide to help you get started. 

Know Your Competition

Set higher standards for you own performance than anyone around you and the only competition will be with yourself - Rick Pitino

By understanding your competition, you learn why your market needs your product category. Examine your direct (and indirect) competition and think about the reasons your customers would choose your product instead.

Here are some areas to evaluate during a competitive analysis:

  • Positioning
  • Pricing
  • Reviews and testimonials
  • Use-Cases

It’s always interesting to see a competitor’s product features compared to your own. Go back to that SWOT analysis and focus on the threats. Why are those competitors actual threats and what can you do to minimize these threats? 

Your company probably has competitive analysis reports on the major competitors in your market. If they don't, you should take the initiative and begin building them out. Knowing exactly who your competitors are and how your product compares will put you miles ahead of them when it comes to preparing for deals. Competitive intelligence is worth it's weight in gold.

Get Creative with Collateral

Sales collateral saves deals. Educating your prospect helps them make the buying decision on their own, and they'll always prefer a seller who gives them all the information they need. 

It's also a powerful follow-up strategy - "what did you think about the brochure I left last time?" Now you can continue the conversation from a relevant point instead of starting over from scratch.

Here are some different types of collateral you can give to your customers:

  • Product brochures
  • Case studies
  • Demo videos
  • Customer reviews

Case studies are especially valuable. They provide social proof to buyers, showing them that other companies have been in similar situations and gotten value from your solution. Nothing moves a slow deal forward like external reinforcement, especially if it's from a well-known company. 

Case studies will also help you see where buyer needs and product offerings align. You'll notice particular types of clients finding value in similar features, giving you insight into future deals. If you realize one product feature is important to a certain type of client, emphasize that feature in your sales pitch.

Master your Sales Stack

Your company invests a lot of money into the resources you have available. Your CRM is a great example. Stay up-to-date on your sales stack and you'll discover creative ways to crush it during work. Nothing is fun to learn at first (especially a CRM), but mastering the tools in your arsenal separates rookies and professionals.

Sync your apps and other tools whenever possible. The less often you switch contexts the more effective you'll be. If you can streamline your sales process with tools, and minimize the time you spend jumping between them, you'll scale your territory much more successfully. 

Here are some tools you can grab today to enrich your sales process:

  • Badger Maps - for planning and growing your territory
  • Linkedin Sales Navigator - for finding and connecting with prospects
  • data.com - for finding sales data on opportunities

Besides the necessary tools, keep on reading blogs, articles and follow industry-related pages on social media. LinkedIn is a great way to stay in touch with your entire industry, as are some Facebook groups. Make sure to share some articles and blogs your own target group would be interested in, since this can also help you win some prospects.

Discover your Top 10 Accounts

You should immediately figure out who the most profitable accounts in your territory are. These may be accounts you've inherited or defined by analyzing your ideal buyer. Regardless, these accounts need to stay at the top of your priority list. The 80/20 rule is in full effect - 80% of territory growth will come from 20% of your customer base.

If you aren’t sure which customers to focus on, ask your manager. He or she will have an idea about who the top 10 accounts are in your territory. 

To maintain a steady relationship with your “golden customers”, get as personal as possible. Not only will they start seeing you as a friend rather than a sales person, they trust you and your advice - which means more sales.

Perfect Your Pitch 

By the second month on the job, you’re expected to be an expert on the product and know how to give the perfect sales pitch to all different kinds of customers. Make sure to master the price lists and some (hidden) discounts, as well as some easy solutions to real life problems your customers may experience with the product. You could follow the lead of some other sales reps who have been in the game longer - listen to their pitches and recreate your own version of them. Watch the way they non-verbally communicate with their leads and customers as well, since at least 55% of a sales conversation is conveyed by your bodily gestures. It’s not just sales talk.

Set Great Goals

Reverse planning is a great way to build a strategy for reaching long-term goals - by defining your end-goal first. It’s not much different from traditional planning and goal setting, except that you do it in reverse.

Get started by identifying your main mission. When you clearly know what your goal is, you can see what leads to it and what steps you must take to get there. The advantage of this type of goal setting is that you’ll notice when certain steps don’t make sense or your goal is way out of reach.

An example: 

“By December 2020, my territory will consistently generate revenue with minimal management. It will exceed quota regularly.” This is your main goal, so what milestone do you need to reach before this? 

“By December 2019, 80% of my territory will have full coverage, and 20% of my time will be spent prospecting.” 

“By September 2018, half of my territory will have full coverage and the other half of my time will be spent prospecting for high-value accounts.” 

If you work backwards the full strength of your territory plan will become increasingly clear. You'll notice if things seem unrealistic, and you'll be forced to adjust your goals or approach to make it work.

60 Day Plan

Set Great Goals 

Reverse planning is a great way to build a strategy for reaching long-term goals - by defining your end-goal first. It’s not much different from traditional planning and goal setting, except that you do it in reverse. 

Get started by identifying your main mission. When you clearly know what your goal is, you can see what leads to it and what steps you must take to get there. The advantage of this type of goal setting is that you’ll notice when certain steps don’t make sense or your goal is way out of reach. 

An example:  “By December 2020, my territory will consistently generate revenue with minimal management. It will exceed quota regularly.” This is your main goal, so what milestone do you need to reach before this?  

“By December 2019, 80% of my territory will have full coverage, and 20% of my time will be spent prospecting.”  

“By September 2018, half of my territory will have full coverage and the other half of my time will be spent prospecting for high-value accounts.”  

If you work backwards the full strength of your territory plan will become increasingly clear. You'll notice if things seem unrealistic, and you'll be forced to adjust your goals or approach to make it work.

Go Beyond Your Top 10

Now that you're an expert on your sales territory, with a plan to conquer it, start selling beyond the top 10 customers you met in your first month. You should also start prospecting regularly. Invest the time into developing your territory early and you'll avoid any unpleasant surprises as it scales. 

Analyze the market segments in your territory. What should be prioritized in your sales pipeline? This will give you a clear overview of your territory's growth potential. Set deadlines for territory expansion, but be realistic. A deal doesn't close in a single meeting.


Locate New Leads

Leads will be the driving force for your sales pipeline, but you need a systematic approach to generating and closing them to avoid overwhelming your pipeline. 

The best way to develop a better lead generation process is by maintaining a strong customer base. If you take care of your existing customers they'll refer you to other qualified leads who will be much more likely to close.

One great customer can become a well of leads for years. Your goal should be to enrich all of your existing relationships and uncover the potential referrals  a mutually beneficial state of value.

Build your Route Schedule

By your second month, you’ve visited a good amount of prospects and customers. Following up with them regularly is the best way to maintain and grow your relationships.

Create a regular routing schedule based around your core customers and opportunities. A schedule will ensure that your deals develop at a steady pace, preventing you from missing any critical portions of your territory.

You can scale your routes as you scale your territory. Search for leads near existing opportunities and you'll slowly develop a system for opening, closing, and maintaining deals.

But if you’ve been traveling without a good route planning and optimization software, you’re wasting valuable time. As a flourishing outside sales rep, you need to invest in a sales mapping software.

Badger Maps helps you schedule appointments and create efficient routes. On average, users sell 25% more and spend 20% less time in the car. The app accomplishes this with traffic sensitive route optimization and a built-in lead generation tool. It’s the best app for territory management.

90 Day Plan

Run the Numbers

Your territory plan should be solidified by the third month. Your most important accounts, sales goals, and your schedule for reaching them, should be set for the rest of the year.

Design your plan around your personal life and responsibilities. Don't overload your schedule without taking your personal life into consideration. It's easy to get overwhelmed in a new territory. 

There are many online aids for territory planning that help you target the right customers, set goals, and overcome the challenges of territory management. In the final 30 days of your plan, it’s time to forecast your numbers for the rest of the year. Where do you see your territory going?

You can use this formula to project how fast your territory will develop: Contacts to make x appointments to set x average close rate x average revenue per deal = % to quota

Check-in with your Customers

Keep track of your meetings. Nothing is worse than missing deal-critical details. By logging each of your customer interactions you're helping your future self stay ahead of your pipeline. 

It’s important to keep a record of your history with every account. Jot down any information that seems relevant. You might uncover objections before they're even brought up. For example, if a customer has already talked to you about an issue he had with your product, and now he’s trying to reach you again, you can ask follow-up questions about his old problems and see if they’ve been solved for good.

This information will help you manage the many relationships you make in the field. Building strong customer relationships will help you close more deals, get more referrals, and increase productivity.

Sync your Schedule

Chances are that your calendar is going to be slammed in the first few months. In the third month, you should make it your mission to have your schedule under control. 

You want to avoid overlapping appointments. An overwhelming schedule prevents you from prioritizing important customers. Even worse, your appointments might fall on different areas of your territory, forcing you to waste time (and gas) driving to two wildly different places.

Make sure to add a sales routing system (like Badger Maps) to your CRM. Your customers will appreciate that they’ll always be able to reach you.

Manage Management Reports

Managing how you report your time is an important aspect in sales. And it's often overlooked. You'll be disconnected from your home office a majority of the time. It's useful to check-in often and provide feedback on your progress. 

Here are some important tips for reporting the activity in your territory.

Don’t make assumptions. This can apply to any situation, but make sure that you understand the context of the sales situations you find yourself in. Make sure you and your manager are on the same page when discussing deals. Have open conversations about how your pipeline looks, and any deals you've forecasted already. 

Each quarter of the year you should project your revenue. Do this by looking at your territory and all of the active deals in play. It gives you and your manager an overview of how your revenue has grown and what goals are achievable next quarter.

Communicate frequently. Adjust expectations actively, your results are connected to your company's growth. There is no such thing as "overcommunication" in outside sales.

Make sure to follow the steps in this template. This template can help you feel more at ease in the first few months. It’s also a great checklist for the onboarding process.

If you feel like making things easier for yourself, make sure to check out Badger Maps. Badger Maps is the #1 sales app in the app store and helps you with route optimization, territory division, customer relationship management, and much more.

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