7 Tips For Sales Success

winning new businessHow confident are you that the election will give you a sales boost for the remainder of  2017? If you’re not sure (and who can be!), now is your chance to put all of your abilities into action. Prove to yourself what fighting spirit and creativity you have at your command and mobilise all your energies to win new business. Below you will find some specific suggestions as to how you can achieve the goals you are aiming for - or even surpass them.

Our sales training expert Richard Stone has put together the following tips for you. It is important to get off to a good start as the more you can get done during the next few weeks, the easier the task for the rest of the year.

1. Start by checking your present situation.

a) What does the target-performance comparison for your sales look like, seen as a whole?

b) What about contribution, comparing targets with performance? (This shows whether you have been working for your firm at a profit or as a loss!)

c) How does the previous 12 months target-performance comparison for sales and contribution turn out in the individual customer classes (A to C or D)? This comparison is particularly important in the case of the “high performers” (Classes A and B) who – in accordance with the Pareto rule – account for 80% of your sales. You have to concentrate on these customers in particular.

2. Draw up a checklist (width wise across a sheet of A4 paper or equivalent) of your most important customers.

Take note of the following criteria:
a) Name and class of customer.
b) Target-performance comparison in pounds.
c) Capable of further increase (“above target”) in pounds.
d) Pound score in last annual customer contest.
e) Special visit plans.
f) What particular actions are feasible during these first few months?

3. What additional incentives can you employ during the next few weeks. For example:

a) Special payment periods and exceptional conditions.
b) Call orders with a call date limited in time.
c) Extra service performances for a specified period of time.
d) Discounts in kind.
e) Special advertising and sales promotion measures.
f) Special sales training (general and in particular for “customers”).
g) Small gifts (particularly effective when witty and given at an unusual time, e.g. yours or customers anniversary).
h) Special tour of firm.
i) Invite the management to an annual exchange of interests or a “bosses’ dinner”.
Warning: Make it clear to your customers that these additional incentives are the exception, not the rule! Customers soon come to regard special incentives as the norm. So – whenever possible – link your offers to increased sales!

4. Have you already activated all your “helpers” in the customer firm? For example:

a) “Silent helpers” such as secretaries, accounts, warehouse, technology, engineers and other staff.
b) “Spheres of influence” (those who have an unofficial influence over purchasing).

5. Are you up to date with all your important customers?

a) Have all requested offers been submitted?
b) Have all offers submitted been followed up?
c) Have all letters and emails been answered?
d) Have all outstanding questions and complaints been cleared up?

6. Have you made enough of an effort to win back lost customers?

Make it your objective to win you back lost customers to your firm. You can do this by presenting a convincing new advantage to them.

7. Get ideas from others

Finally, you should also talk to your colleagues, the sales manager, your customers, or even delegates at sales training events about possible additional measures that they use and benefit from their ideas. Our open course "Getting New Business" can be a good source of ideas.