Now is a GREAT time for you to make a plan to do MORE of the RIGHT activities. How do you know what ARE the right activities? Right activities are activities that lead to MORE sales opportunities or they FURTHER the conversations with existing buyers. This means you should do LESS of the activity you might be doing that does nothing to lead you toward more revenue. Don't do what you think is "busy work" - if it leads to more sales opportunities it is important.
I guess I'm asking you to use your brain more. THINK! Updating CRM is NOT busy work if you can elaborate on what the last conversation was with your future buyer. If you have tools that record your conversations and transcribe them - fantastic! It's time to roll up your sleeves and dig in to productivity Nirvana.
Work to be effective every hour of your work day. How? You can increase the right sales activity several ways. Here are some of the best:
Keep your Focus
When you are at work, be present at work. Revenue comes from activities that lead to sales - not activity that gets you away from sales opportunities. This doesn't mean that you can't think about your upcoming vacation - most of us spend much more time on this than we do on our business planning. It does mean that you should actually set a time in your calendar for personal planning. If you do this, you will not be interrupting your work day to make calls for doctor appointments or visit destination websites when you should be creating new sales opportunities.
Sellers lose track of potential sales opportunities for bad reasons. I know of many reps who use a spreadsheet where they list out their "suspects" - people who are not a prospect and it is not known yet if there is an opportunity. Because they use a spreadsheet, it does not trigger or remind them about when to follow-up. They do it manually. This might seem like a good idea in the beginning, but the more data you collect, and the more "probable" prospective customers the harder it is to manage your spreadsheet. Instead, put all of your suspects into your CRM system. If you feel you need to keep your suspects to yourself until they become legitimate prospects, consider having your own CRM system just for that purpose. It can also house all of your other personal contacts so is a good idea to have. We really love using the HubSpot CRM here at Score More Sales and encourage you to try one of the modern, social CRM systems for your personal use - it's WAY better than a spreadsheet.
Make a Plan AND Follow It
Do you know how many dials and emails it takes to have enough good conversations to hit your sales number? You should. For now, think about what your overall goals are - for revenue and for sales activity. Start being more conscious about how many conversations it takes with prospective buyers in order to find common ground and a win/win situation that becomes a legitimate, qualified sales opportunity. Newer reps typically bring many fewer sales opportunities to fruition simply because they don't have great insight on who their buyers are, what their buyers pain is and/or what their buyers aspirations are. Once they do, and they have products and services to help, they get in a groove and find better potential opportunities and therefore close more deals. Where are you in knowing how this works?
It is the simple things that make sales grow. Don't over-complicate it. Work the basics and grow revenues.
Lori Richardson helps mid-sized companies grow revenues by solving key issues in their sales department - like recruiting, retention, diversity hiring, process, pipeline and leadership. She speaks at CEO groups on topics of sales growth. Clients include companies in the technology, telecom, manufacturing, distribution, and professional services industries. Subscribe to the award-winning blog, follow her on Twitter
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