I know 6 tips you shouldn’t ignore:
1. Get your CEO and other senior level people on the road visiting customers.
Too many sales managers and even C-Suite officers hold off on visiting customers until it’s time to close the sale. In my book, this is a bad use of their time.
Get them out visiting customers now. The reason is simple. They have the ability, by nature of their title, to get into conversations with people and about things many salespeople can’t get. It’s their ability to have these meetings that will many times open up significant new leads.
The beauty is these new leads is that many times, they involve strategic opportunities your buyer or person you work with may not even be aware of.
2. Use the tail-end of 2011 and the first few days of 2012 to network like mad.
You should be reaching out to as many people as possible via email and the telephone. Your objective is to wish them the best and find out from them what they expect in 2012.
It’s good old-fashioned talking, but it’s one of the few times of the year when you can get many people to even talk to you. Don’t waste it!
3. Develop your plan now to go after the really big opportunities you have in 2012.
The sooner you start on the big ones, the more time you’ll have to actually land them. Too many salespeople start off the year going after the easy stuff, and then by the time they get around to the big leads, too much time has lapsed to be able to close the deal in the same year.
4. Build awareness early.
Make it a commitment to be aggressive in getting key information out to customers and prospects that will keep your name in front of them. I refer to this as seeding the farmland.
The method you use may vary, but the sooner you start doing it, the sooner the awareness can turn into actual business. Best thing of all is many times it means the customer or prospect will call you to do business. I like this, because in my book, a customer who calls you is a full-profit customer. They are motivated to do business with you.
5. Commit on your calendar a dedicated amount of time each week to prospect.
Don’t do it when you have time. Instead, create the time! Habits don’t happen overnight — they take time, and if you want to build your sales, then you need to spend time prospecting.
Studies have shown salespeople who have a dedicated time to prospect and have a process are more successful than salespeople who do not have either.
6. Feed your positive attitude.
If you don’t have a positive attitude, you need to get one. And once you have one, you need to feed it. Hang around motivated, positive people. Avoid people who are negative. Read and pay attention to material that is going to help you with your goals. Don’t get bogged down in bad news about the economy or your industry.
A positive attitude is not self-sufficient. It must be fed — by you!
Let’s make 2012 a great year. The only thing holding you back from having a great year is yourself.
Copyright 2011, Mark Hunter “The Sales Hunter.” Sales Motivation Blog.