You still have time to reach your sales goals as the year-end approaches. You don’t have a lot of time to close new business, but you certainly can implement a few strategies to increase the probability that more of your business will end up on the books this year instead of next.
Sell more to every customer.
Review your customer purchases and look for gaps in products they could be buying from you. Ask yourself, is every one of my customers buying everything they could be buying from me? The answer may surprise you.
As you meet with every customer, include a discussion of all the products you sell to determine if in fact they use those products. If you simply ask the question, “Are you buying all the products you could be buying from me?” you are asking your customer to know all the products you sell. He doesn’t know this.
Instead, group your products into categories. Then describe the categories you sell to your customer. Then ask if he uses any products in any of those categories. If you sell insurance, there are many types of insurance products. You would list all the product categories you sell from workers comp to E & O insurance. Then ask if that prospect is the buyer for any of the categories.
Your existing customers already know you and trust you. You’ve already set them up to buy from you so there won’t be any delay to serve them. Your existing customers are the easiest prospects to quickly put more sales on the books now.
Do a checklist.
Of all the prospects you have, now is the time to focus on the prospects that are most likely to close this year. You can determine which prospects to focus on with a quick analysis.
Do you know what your ideal prospect looks like? I certainly hope so. If not, now is the time to determine your ideal prospect without delay. Look at your last 10 deals whether you won or lost the sale. Now develop some criteria to describe those deals. Criteria could be deal size, urban or rural location, which department you started the sale or other characteristic of your business. Determine which types of criteria best describe the deals you have won based on the criteria and the results you see. Do you tend to get sales with large accounts? Large account size is a characteristic of your ideal prospect. Do you do better when you start in engineering instead of purchasing? The entry point of engineering becomes a characteristic of your ideal prospect.
Now look at the prospects who haven’t closed. Which ones most closely resemble your ideal prospect? Start working exclusively with them in the time you have left this year.
Begging is a strategy.
Begging is a strategy when all else fails. I hesitate to suggest this because it’s the weakest way to get new business. I have used it when I needed to. I have asked my customers if they could buy an extra load one month to meet a goal. You could ask your customers if they could help you out if you are close to reaching a sales goal, but just need a few more orders. Most satisfied customers are happy to help you when you’ve done your work to help them with their business.
December 31 is right around the corner. Doing nothing to inject some life into your sales is not an option. You do realize that the sales clock is running out. It’s time for you to punt. So you can reach your sales goals.