Are you stuck in those sales doldrums, the bane of even the best salespeople? You know what I’m talking about. Everything has come to a standstill. You’re not even hearing from your good customers. You are not getting any answers on those quotes that looked so promising when you sent them. You are sitting at your desk, or in your car wondering, what’s next? You are stuck in a rut and don’t know how to climb out of it.
We’ve all been there right? We all know the feeling. There is only a week left in the month and you’re starting to feel like the month is lost. That you are not going to make your numbers for this month, now the quarter is looking shaky, and now even your year is in serious jeopardy?
You’re starting to panic so much that you’re actually frozen in a quagmire of inactivity.
So now what? What are you going to do next? What are you going to do to kick start your day, your week, your year?
No worries. Here are five things you can do right now…today, to get things moving again.
- Call customers you have not heard from in a while. The orphans, as my friend Bruce has so accurately dubbed them. These customers used to do business with you. You know that you are on their AVL. Some of them were even your friends so chances that they will take your call are good. Just pick up the phone and call them to find out what’s going on with them. Why haven’t they ordered anything from you in a while? If there was a problem, by talking to them you are taking the first step towards solving that problem. If your contact is no longer in the position they used to be, she can refer you to who is and even do an introduction to grease the skids. Even if the news is bad, you will have learned something and most importantly done something to break you out of your inactivity.
- Double check on your outstanding quotes. Remember the most important sales adage of all time is always, always, always “no news is bad news.” Our job in sales is to keep the ball rolling forward at all times. We can never sit back and wait for the business to come to us. We are the ones who want something, we want their business, we want their orders and the best way to do that is to follow up on your quotes. Never be afraid to bother people. Never be afraid to be gently persuasive. They have something you want and you have to let them know you want it more than the other guys.
- Email your contacts. Create a short but provocative email about your company and your products and services and send out emails to your contact list. Make them personal, and send them out one by one. This kind of email is not a newsletter but rather a “reach out and touch someone” kind of thing to remind people you are still around and ready to serve them. Look for some bit of news about your company to relay in these emails. Your company bought a new piece of equipment. You have developed a new technology. You have hired a new Quality manager. And then relate to the people you are emailing what that bit of news means to them. And always make sure that you include a call to action. Set up a phone call or an actual in person visit. Or just a return email. Whatever, just something that will engage the person receiving the email.
- Do some lead generation. Do some research on Linkedin and Google to find some new prospective customers. Create a simple template of your ideal customer profile and use it to find the right target customers on Linkedin or Google. Here is something you should know. There are thousands of possible target customers out there waiting for you to find them. This step alone can fill in any extra time you have right?
- Get involved with social media. If you don’t already, set up a business Google account, a Linkedin account, a Twitter account, Instagram and all others. If your company already has one, contribute to it. If not, or even if they do set up your own as well. It’s pretty simple. The more you get your name and your company’s name out there the more chance you have of being found. Social Media provides an excellent marketing opportunity for everyone and every company no matter how large or how small. The great thing about social media is that it is the ultimate equalizer. As far as the social media world is concerned, all companies are equal so that your effectiveness on social media is based entirely on how you post, when you post, how often you post and most importantly what you post.
Now that should keep you busy for a while; five solid, logical, effective and easy things to do when you find yourself stuck in the sales doldrums. It’s as easy as that. Print this out and keep it handy for the next time you start out your sales day with no idea what to do. It’s only common sense.