The most successful sales reps that I have worked with aren’t using a stand alone phone strategy.
Yep, its time to go there and you can unclench your fist because I have no intention of stirring up the cold calling is dead debate. I feel it has a place in an overall sales mix.
When I say “sales mix”, I mean a well balanced, well orchestrated sales campaign inclusive of any combination of
I’m also talking about content such as:
Articles (ones you have written and brand agnostic ones you pass along), blog posts, podcasts, Linkedin group discussions (starting and contributing) E-Books and white papers. Events based content such as webinars, lunch and learns etc.
Before we continue, we need to understand something. Everyone has their own preferred method of communication and if we cling to any one method, we might be limiting our results.
Utilizing a well thought out mix also helps you to demonstrate your creativity and keep you from getting burnt out and mechanical.
So how does one do get to all this “Sales Mix” stuff?
Presenting The 1-7-30-4-2-1 Plan
Note: I have blatantly ripped off this concept from Ann Handley & C.C.Chapman’s awesome new book Content Rules and have modified it for sales!
1 = Daily
What activities in your sales mix will you do on a daily basis?
Do you feel phone work is a daily thing or do you feel more productive having a day or two each week for outbound calls?
How about your social networking activity? You should be keeping up your appearances and demonstrating your expertise. No? Million dollar question; is this a scheduled event for you or does it happen if it happens? When it does happen, do you sort of “egg timer” it to keep you from clinging to a safe activity?
How about your status update? How about commenting on someone else’s status updates? This needs to be done daily!
Don’t forget Twitter. What’s your plan to show up there daily? Do you have a few tips thought out? Are you giving thought to your message or are you going all seat of your pants on us?
Here’s a crazy one: Your goal each day is to find a way to make a client look like a rock star. Don’t ever hit your pillow at night without having your plan for that set for the next day!
While your racing to that appointment how about jotting down the names of the businesses you pass on your way?
When you run an appointment, how about a T Formation which is simply knocking on the doors to the right, to the left and across the street.
7 = Weekly
What activities in your sales mix will you do weekly?
Could you dedicate some time (off hours) each week to sending out some thank you cards or how about hand addressing and sending some mailers, requests for info etc.? Already do this? Do you have it scheduled?
If you write a blog, how many blog posts will you write each week? Do you think out your message in advance or do you write when it comes to you. Oh, and you can’t just show up once in a while, you need to train your readers to visit you regularly.
One absolute must in your weekly activity list is to take 5 of your online relationships and move them to real time (phone, meet for coffee etc)
Something else to think about . . . make sure you play matchmaker each week by introducing people who need to know each other in your network. Don’t just give me an AMEN broseph, do it!
30 = Monthly
Every 4-6 weeks you need to be sending a resource out to your entire network (client base too) that keeps you on the radar screen and continues to prove your value. I love the term “brand agnostic” meaning, not just the things that tout your wares.
Depending on your style, you may want to call back certain prospects every 4-6 weeks, others you will have on a quarterly frequency. Have you ever thought about how often to call or do you just haphazardly schedule a follow up call in your CRM and race to the next call?
If you are on the 4-6 week frequency, have you thought about your message or do you say the same thing time after time? If you are doing the same thing over and over and at predictable times, perhaps you are conditioning them to say no.
How about something creative every 4-6 weeks? Are you changing it up? Trying different things?
Are you calling your clients to “check in” . . . that was a trap by the way. Don’t ever call a client to “check in” . . . it’s lame! Instead call them with an idea, a thought based on something you see going on in their world. Bonus points if you tie it to something you found in your meticulous pre call planning. Did I mention never call to “check in”?
How about hosting a Social Mixer?
What types of activities should you be doing quarterly?
Perhaps you could type up a quick down and dirty E-Book to demonstrate your personal expertise?
How about a Lunch and Learn at your business?
When was the last time you got someone out for lunch and while we’re at it, don’t forget the dudes/dudettes in your office who help you look like a rock star.
Are you in a position to give a speech somewhere?
2 = Twice A Year
How about hosting your own networking event or Tweetup?
How about inviting clients and prospects to a networking event?
How about calling all those people who told you “NO” at some point during the year? Things change dude!
Is there an event your company could host for your clients?
Is there something you could time each year around certain holidays?
Is there a way for you to contribute to one of your client’s annual events?
So here’s the deal folks. This is in no way complete nor is it the definitive plan for all. Its merely a guideline to get you thinking so you can
1) Give your cold call some company. I’m thinking it might be lonely.
2) Get your activity on some type of plan instead of going with what feels right when that contact alert pops up in your CRM.
Today you are cordially invited to mix it up!
Go get ‘em!