Successful sales campaigns require continual momentum to a plan or a target. That is why many sales campaigns fail; the people behind the process do not have the plan to keep them on track. They may also lack the discipline to focus on the daily activities required.
Time is your resource of great importance in moving ahead in sales and in business today. Using your time productively to a plan will help you get ahead.
The rules to set up a sales campaign involve some key decisions including these below:
- Identify those ‘rainmakers’ in the sales team that are proven performers. They should be given optimal latitude in driving more business and sales from the client base.
- Determine the priorities that apply to the selection of ‘Key Accounts’ in your market and industry. Populate those segments from existing clients and prospects in your territory.
- Track the clients that are serviced by your competitors. They will require special attention to get leverage and encourage them to move.
- Some clients will be prioritised for repeat business as well as volume sales. Discounts can be applied depending on volume or sales stability.
- Set the rules for Major Accounts as opposed to Ordinary Accounts. Interact with both segments based on the applied rules.
- Create rules that take a new account into the pipeline of conversion and elevated sales over time.
- What are the delay factors that will apply to orders and supply? Always prepare for the known factors before anything else.
Top sales people are highly motivated at a personal level. The only way to achieve that is through focus and directed effort. It takes time to get there, however the rewards are many.
One of the biggest challenges in business and in sales is in breaking old habits. If we cannot change old habits then we are trapped in the past and nothing will change for us as sales professionals. Every year the market, the competition, and the customers we work with will change circumstances and buying patterns. For this very reason, we need to change as salespeople, or improve on our daily efforts. Redundancy is not far away for those that cannot change their business habits.So why is it so hard to change old habits? It is quite simple to understand; we have had years of preparation and routine to set habits in place, so when you find that you are in a new market or challenging business situation, the change that you need to implement to adjust your focus is so hard to pull-off. Most salespeople can’t do it or lose focus quickly and return to their old ways.
This factor of reality can be a good and a bad thing, and here is why:
- It is good because most of your competitors will find it equally hard and time consuming to change their business plans and habits.
- It is bad because the effort and focus required by individuals to change their habits and approach business differently can be a difficult task for most.
A process of constant improvement and mindset to support it will usually take you to the top of your market. It all comes back to our ability to change in the right way and produce the results that the industry and market requires.
Given all of this, here are some tips to help you create change in your business and build some real momentum on a daily basis:
- Define what the market or your business needs now by way of change, and determine the habits that are required to deal with that.
- A small number of habits are easier to implement than a great number at once.
- Pick three new habits from your list of required changes, ensuring that those three habits are the most important in your list.
- Organise your day around the three habits. Without fail these three things have to be done regardless of anything else. At the start of every business day, the three habits should be implemented before anything else is attempted.
- Keep telephone calls and clients away from you at the start of the day so you can get these major and important issues underway.
- Track your progress when it comes to these things. When you track numbers and ratios, you can see when progress is starting and how valuable it is for you.
- It takes about 3 weeks to implement the required changes of habits for most salespeople.
Top salespeople in any industry know the value of action and focus. In reality, habits are precisely that; decide what will take you forward and start taking the required action. In a few weeks you will be seeing the results that you need.
If you are looking to improve your business model, sales, or market share, have a good look at the number of times that you call your customers or prospects on a regular basis. Persistence pays when it comes to opening up opportunities in sales with your clients.
Why Make Contact?
Prospects are always on the lookout for tips and ideas to help them do things at a better price or a lower cost. For this very reason you can be a solid source of knowledge and information relative to your industry. If the competition is not serving their clients well or keeping in regular contact, you have an opportunity in waiting.
Far too many sales people stop the contact process after just a few approaches; if they can’t get the prospect or client to move to the next step in the sales pipeline, they shut down the contact process and simply move on.
Top salespeople keep the contact process going with real and relative ways. Here are some ideas to help with that:
- Use different techniques of contact so you can be real and relevant in each approach.
- Be memorable in a positive way. That will mean some relevance and importance to the client.
- Have different comments to use in each approach. Practice dialogues for seasonal sales and shifts in market trends.
- Do not show desperation in any approach or client contact. Prospects and clients can sense it and will close the door on your approach. Clients like to deal with ‘winners’.
- Ask the client or prospect if you can remain in regular contact into the future.
- Keep your database accurate and up to date in all respects.
- Get to know the Key Clients of the competition so you can disrupt and disturb their market or dominance.
Do you know what your ideal client looks like? Do you know what your client wants by way of product or service? Do you know when they want to buy or sell? Key questions like this will help you tap into the right people at the right time.
When it comes to your career in selling anything, the skills that you develop in lead generation are really important to the outcomes that you get with customers and ‘Key Accounts’. In itself, lead generation can be an entire system or process that you use in your business every day. If you get the system right, you will have a steady pipeline of leads and new clients. Consistency is the key to lead generation.
Without this ‘lead’ system, your business or customer base will eventually contract and shrink over time. Customers will leave you for all types of reasons. So of those reasons you can control, and others you cannot.
So here are some tips and ideas for building a system of contact that will help with future leads and prospects for you and your business:
- Understand you market by both type and location. Exactly where do your customers come from and why do they come to you? When you know the answers you will know how to improve the rate of enquiry or opportunity.
- Who are your customers? You will need to profile your customers into segments of value and relevance to your business.
- Why do your customers come to you? What are the top 5 reasons most of your customers come to you?
- When do those customers come to you? Seasonal selling can be a real challenge if the space or time between selling seasons is quite long.
Taking all of these facts into account you will find that a profile of you customer can be built. The demographic of the ideal customer can be inserted into your sales team business plan and prospecting strategy.
Here is a very important question for you. What is the difference between a basic customer and a ‘Key Account’? There should be a real difference of response and service when it comes to helping a ‘Key Account’ in your business.
‘Key Account’ customers can impact your business in a major way; the loss of a key customer can be devastating to the cash flow. Far too many businesses operate with a small number of key accounts, and that then exposes them to great risk with competitors continually chasing their key account for new business.
So the message here is clear. Find new leads for your business by developing a system of contact, and then move the basic customers through your contact pipeline to convert them to ‘Key Accounts’. Over time this basic process will strengthen your business base and market share. Service your ‘Key Accounts’ with the due care and relevance that they deserve.
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