Spring Clean Your Sales Pipeline
Spring is a natural time of year to get motivated to clean out your closets, garage, basement, and to get those stacks of paper that need to be filed or shredded off your desk. As nature renews itself for another growing season so can you. Not just at home though – spring-cleaning is also an essential to-do at the office.
One of the biggest obstacles for sales professionals is organization. A disorganized sales rep will miss deadlines, lose out on identifying new opportunities and always under perform when compared to more organized colleagues. April 13 – 17 is National Organize Your Files Week. And even if it means spending a long nights at the office this week, use it as motivation to spring clean your sales pipeline and selling approach.
To start, sales people should evaluate what they are good at. Create a pro-con list about yourself. Where are you successful? Where do you need to improve? What skills do you lack that need nurturing? Once you have identified the areas you need to target you can begin.
For example, if you know that the majority of your potential and current customers spend at least three hours a day on social media and the last time you updated your business-focused Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn accounts was three months ago, that’s a spring cleaning item that should be at the top of your list. To help make social media a successful habit, begin by researching what your competitors or successful colleagues regularly post. Create a simple calendar of bi-weekly topics you can post about and remember that quality is more important than quantity. Then, create a calendar reminder to trigger you posting until it becomes second nature.
Another great task to get done this week is creating a follow up system. Organize a schedule for daily, weekly, monthly and yearly follow ups that you need to accomplish. Set alerts to remind you to send follow up emails, make follow up calls and mail thank you letters. Order personalized stationary that you can use to write and post a quick letter to loyal customers on important dates and anniversaries. Never under estimate the power of a handwritten note.
Finally, organizer yourself for future successes and spend some time simply thinking. Turn off the computer, smartphone and television. Go for a walk if necessary. Anything to help you focus your mind and free it up to be able to get creative and come up with new ways you can reach out to leads that will grab more attention. Create a list of new markets you can target, new sales tactics you can try and then set a goal of trying one of these new tactics every month. If you discover one of your ideas pays off, then put it into your regular rotation. By taking this one week to reflect on your current performance and prepare for success in the future you can make an impact on your results for the rest of the year.