Focus on Best Probabilities
Qualifying is important. So is disqualifying. Sometimes we invest a lot of time and effort into a qualified prospect only to discover that there are reasons that the prospect does not actually fit the ideal customer profile. But at that point we have invested so much time and energy that we don’t want to abandon the effort. Either cut your losses or put that prospect into follow up system that requires little or no time/resources. If you want to increase your sales, spend more time in front of prospects that meet the criteria to be an ideal customer. Focus your energy on the highest probability for meaningful sales.
Identify and Focus on the True Decision Maker
Typically we spend too much time with people who cannot say, “yes” or sign a deal/check. Build a relationship with the real decision maker and stay engaged with them through each step of the sales cycle. When appropriate, further build the relationship by connecting with them outside of the sales process: personally is best -- social media can be a strong support or alternative (to work your way to direct personal contact).
Spend More Time Selling
I’m not talking about typical problems with time management (e.g., procrastination), I’m talking about increasing efficiency in those areas in which you already feel you are doing an good job. for example, typically a strong salesperson spends about 10% of their time researching prospects. Try to intelligently reduce that time. Is there someone else in the organization that could do that research? Can you better use technology to become more efficient and reduce your research time? The more time you are interacting directly with prospects and customers, the more sales you will make.
Stop Chasing the Newest Shiny Object
We all like to believe that the newest, latest, improved, etc. sales tool is going to make our lives easier while increasing our sales. In many cases this is a correct assumption, but most take time to implement properly and sometimes you are not fully up-to-speed with one when the next one comes along. Once you are effective with the programs and technology to which you have already committed resources, then you can consider upgrades; but stick with upgrades that are most focused on building targeted prospects lists and converting those prospects to customers.
These are just 4 of the many ways that you can make your sales organization more efficient and more effective. Feel free to add (in the comment section below) areas in your sales system that you have addressed to make your sales effort yield higher results.