High Grade Customer Growth for Sales Teams

In any profession you need clients.  It takes time to develop them, serve them, and then over time they will leave.  It is a simple fact of business that your clients will eventually develop a new focus or requirement.  They will move on.  It really does not matter how strong the relationship is today; they will one day have a change of circumstances and they will move on.

This then shows us that we should have a solid plan and system to help us find new clients.  Every day the plan has to occur.  You have to improve your client base and database.  We call it the sales pipeline.

Many salespeople struggle with all of the things that they have to do every day.  The list of tasks can be overwhelming.  A typical day for a sales person will include:

  • Talking to current customers
  • Finding new customers
  • Following up on orders
  • Paperwork
  • Customer service
  • Placing new orders
  • Meetings
  • Talking with management
  • Reviewing product information
  • Entering customer detail into the database, etc

It’s a long list; you can probably add some things to the list yourself.

Without a day system, without some form of control you will struggle.  When a salesperson is struggling, the business and client base suffers.

Out of all of these things in the list above, the most important is ‘finding new customers’.  Everything else ranks below that key issue.

So how can you shift the bias of the day so you get to create some more clients?  The simple answer is that you shift your priorities and make prospecting number one in your diary every day.

It is a well-known fact that most salespeople do not like or easily accept the discipline of the job.  They would rather be ‘socialising’ with current clients and talking to the people that they know.  Whilst this is a part of doing business, it still ranks behind the issue of finding new clients.

When you understand this problem, it is easy to do something about it.  You simply shift your mindset to one of client growth and new business.  Every day you make new calls to businesses and people that you have not spoken to before.  It takes about 3 weeks to see some momentum, but eventually you break through the problem and new clients start to evolve.

If your income depends on your sales and your customers, it is a good choice to shift your mindset to this new way of doing things.  Develop the new habit of connecting with the right people.  Sales success can be yours.

Fast Track Your Sales and Market Share

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:

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. Track the clients that are serviced by your competitors.  They will require special attention to get leverage and encourage them to move.
  4. Some clients will be prioritised for repeat business as well as volume sales.  Discounts can be applied depending on volume or sales stability.
  5. Set the rules for Major Accounts as opposed to Ordinary Accounts.  Interact with both segments based on the applied rules.
  6. Create rules that take a new account into the pipeline of conversion and elevated sales over time.
  7. 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.

Qualifying Questions and Sales Strategies

When you first approach a prospective client you never really know where the conversation will head, or if they have a need or an interest in your offering.  This is particularly the case when it comes to cold calling and basic drop in canvassing.

For this very reason you need to be very flexible and conversational in getting the connection going.  If you sell a service as opposed to a product, it is better to be biased towards building trust before you get to the real point of the approach.  In a few words I can summarise this as ‘reducing the pressure’.

In business today, most clients and prospects do not like to be ‘sold or closed’.  The days of manipulative selling are well gone.  Information and trust are the keys to moving the conversation forward.  Today, it could be called ‘relationship’ selling.  As to how long the relationship should be, really depends on the product and the service that you offer; the relationship required can be from a few minutes to months or even years.

Get to the Facts

To qualify a client or prospect you need to know the right things relative to their business or personal situation.  Here are a few tips to do that:

  1. Check to see if you are talking with the decision maker.  There is no point talking with a person that has no relevance to your product or service.  Asking questions will help you here.
  2. Find out what the prospect has now or if they have used similar products or services over the years.  Do they actually understand what you are about to talk about?  This is really important in a complex product or service offering.
  3. If the prospect has used that product or service before, was it helpful in their business or personal life?  Working from a base of previous experience will help you connect with the situation for them today.  Be aware that the situation may have changed for them; there is no point selling a concept, product or service if they have a changed business situation or circumstances.
  4. Could the prospect see the same solution occurring again or will it be helpful for them today or in the future?  Previous experiences that the client may have had with your product or service help you relating to the situation today.

These questions will lead you to information that can help you proceed with moving the conversation forward.  From all of these concepts, take the time to really listen to the facts and responses from the other person.