There is nothing quite as exciting as when sales are growing. Watching month after month of hitting higher numbers and breaking through sales goals can be a constant adrenaline rush…not to mention having the added benefit of increasing revenue. But sometimes you hit a wall. The pitches and techniques that worked for years don't seem to be increasing the numbers.
When your marketing isn't working and your sales force has hit the wall, it's time to rethink the way you do sales. Some people try to motivate the sales force with incentives. They set ambitious targets with rewards that are never redeemed. Others hire new sales people hoping that more staff doing the same wrong things will yield a different result.
If you truly want to boost your sales exponentially, you have to think differently and begin investing the time, money, and creativity to start the next growth spurt. Here are 5 tips to get you started.
1. Go see your customers.
Often when things have been going well, companies go with what works. But customers' needs can change. Get out of the office and out to meet your customers. They most likely don't think about you when you aren't in direct contact. A visit, meeting, or lunch can give you the opportunity to listen and understand their needs. You might also surface information about a competitor or change in the industry. At best you'll get the chance to enhance that personal relationship and remind people why they like doing business with you.
2. Say something compelling.
That clever messaging you used when your company or product was new may no longer be as exciting or unusual as it was 4 years ago. Perhaps your competitors have caught up, and no longer are your differentiators all that different. Evaluate the way you present your value proposition. Make sure your pitch connects empathetically with your prospects by helping them identify the actual pain you solve for customers. Get to the point. People are busy. If you're not talking about your optimal customers and their needs, they probably don't really care what you have to say.
3. Help your buyers help you.
Many times sales get stalled because of a choke point in the sales process. It could be in the communication or some other sort of procedural block that keeps your clients from closing the deal. Get your team to detail out the entire sales process from end to end. Try this detailed list of questions to analyze the blockage. Talk to customers and prospects to find out the real reason they aren't buying and then find a way to remove the obstacle from your process. A simple, efficient piece of marketing collateral might increase your sales dramatically.
4. Do something outrageous.
It's possible that you have reached the outer boundaries of your broadcasting capability. If you have saturated the market near you, it's time to get the word out to a larger market or get more attention from those within your marketplace. You may not have the resources to buy large email lists or run a massive direct mail campaign, so find ways to get attention. Try exciting PR stunts or clever videos that resonate with your potential customers and are worthy of being talked about. Wake up those prospects so they know you exist.
5. Fix your business model.
Just because you have something to sell doesn't mean that people will buy it. Perhaps your product or service doesn't fit the market the way it used to. Or maybe the price point needed to make a profit is too high for the marketplace. Get your team to commit time to investigate the competitive market and figure out where your industry is going. Explore ways to innovate in your sector and develop better products and services that will give you a true market advantage. Then you'll be back to the days where the customers beat a path to your door.
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