There are a few, easy to implement sales ideas outlined below, that I have found to be successful when trying to increase the success of a business:
Don't give up on your bottom 80%
The rule of thumb has generally been that top 20% of your customers generate 80% of your revenues. However, due the slump, don't give up on your bottom 80% of your customers. Even if people have not been regularly spending money with your company recently, doesn't mean they never will again. Consider offers and deals to entice these customers back on to your books!
Map out a sales plan
Map out a timeline for every step in the sales cycle - giving a sales team a clear direction is more likely to lead them to the correct goal. Look at researching prospects, making initial contact, presenting the product and closing the deal. If you don't give your sales team a route to success, chances are they will get lost!
Get the CEO some face time
I've always been a proponent of getting the CEO out in front of clients so he or she really knows what's going on. It also sets a great example with the sales team. And nothing says "I really want your business" more than a CEO who makes the effort to meet with potential customers. People deal with people and clients are more likely to have confidence and trust in a brand where the CEO is involved and interested in their business.
Listening vs. Boasting
Successful salespeople listen a lot more than they talk. They're able to ask focused questions, such as "What is the greatest challenge you see your company will face in the coming year" and listen closely to the answers. This will likely reveal the customer point of pain which you and your company can address, giving a perfect opportunity for you to solve their problem. Or, on the flip side, get your potential clients to paint a picture of success and inquire what has stopped them from achieving their dreams. Figure out what you can do to help them get there.
Be realistic on what you can deliver
Your salespeople might be landing business at prices lower than your cost. Talk to your team and make sure they know they can go this low, but no lower.
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