A formula for building up sales

 

We haven’t had good experience turning things over to salespeople. We give them leads and they don’t turn that into business. Later on we find out that they didn’t do a good job on following up. Or they followed up but couldn’t turn the lead into a sale. Not sure how to better manage this.

Thoughts of the day: Your job includes managing both salespeople and sales activities. Make sure that you have the right people in place doing the right job. Save time and effort by knowing the profile of who you want to sell to. Get salespeople involved in the effort so that they place greater value on the leads. Check out the ROI on sales activities.

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Make your business unique

We need a differentiator; as an industry we’re being commoditized. We won’t be able to stay in business forever unless things change.

Thoughts of the day: Offering something unique boosts profitability and chances for survival in any small business. Avoid price wars. Turn away some buyers in order to create value. Don’t get complacent. Be nimble.

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Sell things for what they’re worth

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Our salesperson likes to discount things, especially add-on services, which are a really big profit margin for us. He’s even told some clients we would do it at cost. We need to fix this now because he’s starting to make headway in sales. Bigger accounts are coming in and we could end up losing a lot of profits.

Thoughts of the day: How much does your salesperson know about how your business makes a profit? Is your salesperson calling on the right class of customers? Equip your salesperson with an effective information-gathering approach. Check that everyone is clear on what the goals are. Use reporting to evaluate and learn from results. Make sure there’s a plan to get more referral business from the best customers.

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Learn to Sell Yourself to Beat Competitors

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We are absolutely getting beat out on jobs. Even with referrals we are losing bids to a competitor who is doing shoddy work, making mistakes on estimating, installing the wrong materials and billing clients for significant upcharges. Obviously we need to be doing a better job selling ourselves. Help!

Thoughts of the day: Figure out if you’re calling on the right prospects. Help prospects discover your value through questions. Make sure you’re working with prospects who will do more than collect bids. Ask your referrals to get involved in more than vouching for you.

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Brace yourselves, growth is coming

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A major referral source for us is gearing up for a big summer push. That’s the good news. The bad news is that they are worried if we can we keep up. This is a great problem to have, but we need to solve it. How do we assure them that we can meet their needs? This will be a big leap forward for us.

Thoughts of the day: First, make sure you want the influx. Assuming you do want the work, build plans to gear up and assign people to implement those plans. Put someone in charge of monitoring workflow and quality. Meet with your staff to fill them in on what’s expected. Build in time to celebrate successes and let off steam.

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