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Effective communication with sales agents and representatives is a key element in successfully exporting to the United States. Get practical advice on how to manage sales agents and representatives, and how to sell in the United States.

We need always to keep in mind that the United States is a market as large as all of Europe. It is inconceivable that one or two sales representatives may cover the entire market. Certainly, it is advisable to start with only a few representatives; then again expansion needs to be taken into consideration in a second stage. Depending on the product, coverage of the US market means a sales network made up of 10 to 16 sales agents / representatives. In such a situation, effective communication and coordination with sales agents and representatives is crucial for selling.

Motivating the sales network and providing incentives for selling

  • Create informational material on the product that is simple, clear, intuitive, comprehensive, easy to consult and always kept up-to-date.
  • Make the transmission of information to the salesman/agent easier, so that information can be later transmitted to the retailer during the sales visit.
  • Make filling in the order as easy as possible. If the salesman has to look prices up in the price list, then refer to the catalogue to determine the product code of the item, and later find the order form and fill it out so as to complete the order….. Well, that's not such a good start!
  • Fix a level of commission on sales higher than the average, and maybe also envisage bonuses for the sales agents and representatives that reach certain sales targets. Be realistic: you will unlikely have a promotional and advertising budget to invest for supporting the sale of your product in the United States. Thus, consider these above-the-average commissions as your advertising investment to sell in the United States.
Minimizing the number of documents - Being practical and efficient

Sometimes business agents must seize the moment when they visit a customer: a "buyer" sees the product, he/she likes it, and, becoming curious, asks for information. If the information on the product cannot be found right away, the "magic moment" is lost when, maybe, it could have led instead to closing a trial order.

The password to sell in the United States is:

  • Providing complete and very easy-to-use information
  • Minimizing the number of forms to be filled in to close the order
  • Communicating in an efficient manner with sales agents and representatives
  • Motivating the sales network