Sales outputs are closely aligned with activity. Hitting your targets is a lot harder when you aren’t taking enough calls and having enough meetings with accounts and potential clients.
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It isn’t only the volume of calls and meetings you are doing. Quality has a huge impact on successful outputs too. You need to be speaking to the right prospects at the right time. But if you aren’t speaking to enough of them, the chances of hitting targets reduces.
Viable sales leads don’t materialise out of thin air, and a pipeline without enough leads causes desperation to chase everything that moves. If you’re concerned about the state of your calendar, here are four ways to start getting more leads in the pipeline.
Four ways to increase sales activity
#1: Get networking
In most major towns and cities, there are several - if not dozens - of networking events. Strategic networking is an essential part of the sales process. Events come in various formats, from free through to membership and referral-based networking. Membership is rarely static, whatever the format, and everyone who takes is a potential sales lead.
In a hyper-connected digital world, those who put on a suit, a smile and carry a pocket full of business cards have the advantage. Get out there and network: you could soon find your calendar is busy again.
#2: Referrals and reviews
Assuming you’ve got clients - accounts you manage - that would be happy to refer others to your company, why aren’t you asking them? Unprompted and unexpected reviews rarely appear out of nowhere; asking takes away the uncertainty.
Referrals create immediate trust between yourself and a sales prospect. This dramatically shortens the qualification process and sales cycle. Even if a client doesn’t know of anyone to refer straight away, the fact that you’ve asked - and should ask again every 3-6 months - will prompt future referrals. Reviews - whether filled in online or over email - are equally useful for demonstrating what you can offer and the quality of service provided.
#3: Reconnect with cold leads
When times are busy, you can’t always follow-up with every potential lead.
Quieter times are the perfect opportunity to dust off a box of old business cards and see what new opportunities you can create. Reach out to potential leads via email, LinkedIn and phone. Talk to as many as you can, and if possible, offer a live demo. An easy informed way, on any device, to showcase your product/service, making it easier to qualify a lead and get more sales in the pipeline.
#4: Cold calls/emails
Whenever you’ve got a few gaps in the calendar, it’s time to start grafting. Calls, emails and social media interactions: Get your name and brand front-of-mind for potential sales prospects. Start booking as many accounts and sales prospects as you can for meetings and product/service demos.
Live demos are a great way to qualify a lead and showcase the product/service at the same time. No awkward software for them to download, and live demos work on any device. Instead of waiting for a demo call, you can save everyone some time on the first call - providing the prospect has time, of course.
With some extra effort, you can start to fill up a sales calendar. Booking calls and meetings safeguards your future success, ability to hit targets and earn commission. Sales is as much about numbers as relationships. If you aren’t booking in enough meetings, you won’t have a chance to build the relationships you need to make your number.