Sales drive everything else about your company. If your sales are low, no other “upgrade” makes sense. Here are a few successful tips from Fortune 500 companies that will help you keep the revenue flow that creates the freedom to expand your business and try new ideas.
Connect Your Sales Team With Your Marketing Campaigns.
Sales and marketing should be a two-way conversation. Too often, companies “promote” a high performing sales associate to the marketing team. The marketing team then uses this leverage to dictate to the sales team rather than work with them. Regardless of the individual’s role in the company, the front line sales associate is the one who sees what marketing techniques work firsthand. Although your marketing team should have more experience and think from a 3,000-foot view, the sales department must always be able to critique the scripts, paraphernalia and market analysis of the marketing team, otherwise, you risk becoming out of touch with your target audience.
Set Higher Sales Goals.
If management sets a sales goal that does not challenge the sales team, that team will eventually become complacent. Low sales goals show a low respect for the team, and this is another subconscious barrier to a higher revenue every month. Let your team know that you expect a high standard of results. This will get your team hustling. Even if your team does not meet the goals one month, they will try harder to do so the next month. In the meantime, your revenue goes up instead of down.
Let your sales team know that you will pay for techniques that improve the efficiency of the entire office. For instance, if a sales associate has programming experience and creates a program to automate some aspect of your CRM for everyone, this is as good as a sale. However, make sure that you reward these innovations only if they actually lead to more sales. Who knows; these proprietary techniques may eventually become another product to sell. Maintaining equity for the company in these employee innovations may be something you want to include in your employment contracts. Think ahead.
Invest in CRM.
You may choose to keep your customer relationship management in house or outsource it to a professional third party. Take note of your budget when choosing between these two options. However, the option that you choose must prioritize the convenience of the customers that you have already won over. Customer acquisition costs around nine times the amount of money and manpower that customer maintenance costs. A monthly payment to a software package or a CRM specialist is nothing if you keep your baseline loyal.
Give Rewards Intermittently.
Rewarding a special effort from your sales team intermittently may be a bit manipulative – you are using some advanced psychology when you do this. If you always reward a certain effort, your sales team will become used to receiving the reward for that certain action. It becomes attainable and therefore boring. However, if you reward special efforts without a schedule, you excite your sales team, who will be unable to tell what the reward might be or when one of them might get it. This effect is subconscious. You do not have to announce that you will be rewarding the team intermittently. The mind has a way of responding to patterns as well as uncertainty. Keeping an uncertain pattern creates excitement that you can leverage to create higher efficiency in the sales room.
Ask for Ideas.
In most cases, your sales people simply want to know that they are being listened to. Asking your team what might improve their experience is a great way to keep them engaged with the company and with you personally. Part of the excitement of being a salesman is impressing the boss, but the boss has to be something worthy of respect. No one earns more respect than a person willing to accept good ideas from the outside.
The tips above will definitely get your company moving in the right direction in terms of sales. However, your number one revenue generator is your ability to read the business landscape. Take note of new techniques that you find and do not be afraid to experiment. Set aside an appropriate amount of your budget every month for sales research and development. Build your sales techniques as technology improves, and consistently raise your sales goals in order to stave off complacency.