Sales Hacks

It's 5PM Do You Know Where Your Best Sales People Are?

I'm with you, in recent years it's been tougher and tougher to get through to DM's (decision makers) to schedule that first appointment.  In some cases it's taken me a hundred plus calls and many years of trying to get the DM on the phone.  The good thing about the 100 plus calls is that by the time I do get the DM on the phone they definitely know what I'm calling about.

Gatekeepers are better than ever, and the thought of potential phone scams keep them vigilant in their quest to not let you through.

There's much talk in sales about building relationships and that's all well and good as long as you can make contact with the DM. You can't start or build that relationship until you've made first contact.

You can't sell everyone is something you always here in sales, and I believe it's the same for building relationships. Not everyone you meet or greet is going to want to build a business relationship.  Thus it's the numbers game that can really increase your opportunities and your potential business relationships.

So where are your best sales people after 5PM?

1) They're still out in the field making cold calls!  One thing that I've noticed is that many gatekeeper leave in between 4:30PM - 5PM.  If you're in the field making calls after 5PM, it's a good shot the doors will still be open.  Most likely you'll trip over the DM as you scout your way around the office to find someone.

Instead of starting your day at 8AM.  Why not start your day at 9AM and work still 6PM, with the last two hours of the day dedicated to calling on those that you can't land the DM on the phone. It makes sense right?

2) Other sales peeps are attending and working at charity events.  There's nothing better than meeting that influential person while they're volunteering their time for a great cause.  Remember the six foot question? That's when you get within six feet of someone that you strike up a conversation and one of your questions is "where do work"? Of course then continue the conversation asking about what their roll is within that company.

3) Still at their desk or parked in a parking (by the beach) lot trying to squeeze in a couple of extra calls on their cell phones after 5PM.  You just never know who will pick up the phone.  Think, if this were your business, wouldn't you be working whenever and wherever you can? 

4) Continuing their education with reading sales books and or learning more about their industry. The web is a great tool because it's open 24 hours a day.  It's those rainy weekends that can give you a great kickstart to the week.  Been there and done that.

5) Continuing education not for sales people but for Professionals such as attorneys, architects, engineers, surveyors.  Each month these associations meet to deliver educational courses to their members so that they can stay up to date for state requirements.  Most associations will accept speakers (as long as they pay for booze or dinner) allow you to speak for 15 minutes and maybe have a small table.

6) Some are even sending emails late into the night.  Can't sleep, nothing will get a DM's attention more than an email sent at 2AM.  That DM can only wish they had that sales person with their company.

It's more about doing the extra work than it is about having fancy lines, trinkets or lame cold call gimmicks.  You need to be where the DM's (decision makers) are and interact with them. Not every stop in will generate a lead or build a relationship.  But from years of experience I can tell you that being in front the DM's if much better than not.

-=Good Selling=-

Special thanks to our friends at Polek & Polek for sponsoring tonight's blog, please make sure you check out their site and their awesome products for copiers

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The Quest for $200K "Still Time to Network"

In one of the previous Quest for $200K blogs I stated that my appointment for this AM had cancelled and was moved to Friday of this week.  That was a good thing, because tomorrow morning (Thursday) I need to present our proposal to upgrade seven devices with another client.  

I had no idea that it would take me hours to complete all of the data and the docs this morning.  In fact I was not able to finish the order doc and the lease in time. Not a problem I thought, I can create those tonight from the home office. 

After countless hours of updating this site tonight, I was able to create order doc and the lease for my client.  That's when I realized I was out of paper!  Argghh To boot there's not enough time to get paper in the AM.

My only is option is to load the files on my DropBox account and access them when I get to the clients office.  I'll then print them off on one of the Ricoh devices with Ricoh Mobile Print.  It'll be a little awkward, however I'm sure I'll manage.

Nothing really to speak about this AM. I did develop an opportunity for a 25ppm A3 black device (printing and scanning not needed). Not sure if I'll get that or not, the prospect is also looking at a re-furbished copier for $1,800.  Which got me to thinking about the word"re-furbished"  and how that word is thrown around.  

For me, re-furbished means that you strip the copier down to the mainframe and then clean and rebuild with new and used parts.  Stripping a copier down the frame can take hours and hours, then the cleaning, the replacement or worn and used parts.  This is quite a task for any technician, my best estimation ( I used to be a tech ) is that it would take at least twenty hours from start to finish for smaller A3 copier.   That's quite a bit if in house shop time right?

That sales person called that $1,800 copier "re-furbished".  I doubt that very much and conveyed that to the client.  Our prospect agreed that the system is could not be re-furbished, it's just a used copier with new PM parts (maybe).  If it sounds to good to be true it usually is.

I have nothing I could offer the prospect for under $2,000 used.  I told the prospect that maybe they are better off buying a Brother inkjet copier that can print/copy 11x17.  You can buy then for about $300 bucks or so.  Trying to dig a little deeper I asked if there as anything else that was required for the new system.   That's when the prospect told me that they also needed zoom reduction and enlargement.  I thought what?  I haven't heard that need in years. Well, I was back in the game with my A3 black device.  Just thought that was interesting today.

By 2PM I was off to my 3PM appointment with an existing account. That account was having a ribbon cutting ceremony at 4PM for their new location.  I was invited to stay for food and beverages and to hob knob with the Mayor of one town, a County Superintendent, along with the Executive Director of the local Chamber of Commerce.  Of course I brought business cards and made sure everyone got one, in addition I made mental notes of those I meet.  I'll be reaching out to them tomorrow via LinkedIn.

I did have time to meet with the DM, things were hectic because of the 4PM start, but I as able to move this opportunity to a point where I maybe able to close this late next week.

Tomorrow's a big day.  Luck is for rabbits and looking forward to making things happen.

-=Good Selling=-

Five Hacks That Will Help You Sell More Copiers (tre)

It's late, just about 11PM here on the East Coast and I'm watching/listening to the Nationals & Cubs do or die game.  Let's Go Cubs!  Not that I'm  a Cub fan, but more of a hater for the Nationals.  I guess that's what happens when you're a lowly NY Mets fan.

K, so I have no idea where I go this next hack from. I do know that it was not one of my ideas.  Thinking I read about doing this from some sales book that I read many moons ago.

Decision Makers

They come with many different titles.  In most cases we are meeting with C-Level execs with titles of CFO. CEO, CIO and probably a few others.  Most of us understand that in the first five minutes of any meeting, the Decision Maker is sizing us up.  How we dress, what we wear, how we walk, how we talk, how we look, are all taken in to account in those first five minutes.

However, it can also be about what we read. 

You're probably thinking how can the Decision Maker know anything about what we read?  True, the Decision Maker does not have a clue about what you read unless you perform a subtle hint.

K, that subtle hit would be to carry a copy of CFO Magazine in your bag.  Years ago,  I subscribed to CFO Magazine and to this day I still receive the magazine in the mail.  Each month I'll replace the old with the new and take a quick read to see if there are any interesting articles that pique my interest.  In most cases there may be one or two that I'll read.

Thus, when I'm off on a new appointment and I know I'm going to be meeting with a CFO. I'll make sure that I pull the CFO magazine out of my bag and lay it on the side of the table as I'm looking for my notepad or brochure. In some cases I may just leave that in my bag, making sure that the CFO header on the magazine is showing.

I can't tell if the magazine has ever helped me garner a sale, but I can assume that the Decision Maker did see the magazine and drew a conclusion from seeing it.  In most cases I would assume that the Decision Maker would have thought, "interesting, this sales guy must really be in touch with what I do". 

Over the years, there have been some articles that I've read from those CFO magazines that have increased my knowledge about the duties of a CFO.  Thus, when you do have that C-Level discussion there will be times when you will understand their language and their duties.

My point is, if that's all you want to do is to carry around the magazine and use if for show and tell, it probably won't help that much.  However, if you do read an article here and there and do the show and tell you'll have a much better conversation with that CFO.

You can also do this with CEO magazine, CIO magazine and any other C-Level magazines that you can find.  Again, the key is too read the articles from time to time.  You'll be amazed at how much this can help your career and those first five minutes.

-=Good Selling=-

Five Hacks That Will Help You Sell More Copiers (Uno)

With many athletes practice makes perfect.  It's that repetition of completing certain tasks over and over again the create muscle memory.  That muscle memory then becomes an instinctive reaction when that athlete puts those skills in motion. 

Since I'm pretty familiar with baseball, it's the day to day tasks of taking batting practice, long tossing and fielding that builds the muscle memory of the athlete.

Over the years, there are many tasks that I perform daily, weekly and monthly that have helped me to be successful in the copier industry.  In many cases, I'm not thinking about the tasks that I perform. It's just that I've been doing them for so long that they become my muscle memory for my sales processes.

Thus, I'd like to share some of these tasks and I guess you can call them tips that can help you sell more copiers.

1) Many times, it's hard to connect with a net new prospect via phone, social media and or in person.  Most of us understand that before we call that prospect that we should also pay a visit to their website.  Visting their website enables us to get a better understand of what that company does and who some of the decision makers may be. 

On many occasions, I will scout the "contact us" page to see if there is an email contact form. If there is I will send my intro email through their website. It's definitely going to get read and makes a cold call on the phone a bit easier when you can tell the receptionist that it's in reference to an email I sent through your website.

Now, there's another little trick that works from time to time when you're on that companies "contact us" page.  While on that page you may be able to capture the email address that is being used for that contact form.  In most cases that email address is usually used by a person that has some authority within the company.

You can capture that email address by "right clicking" on your mouse.  You'll then see a pop-up appear on your screen.  You want to find "view source", once you've found it you want to click view source. You will then the source code or the HTML that was used to create that page.  Now, somewhere on that page, there may be that email address that we're looking for. The quickest and easiest way to find that address is to type the @ sign in the search field and then press enter.  All of the @ signs on the page will then be highlighted.  See the picture below for exact instructions.

email address hack

I'll be posting the rest of these in the next couple of days, getting late now and I need to get ready for tomorrow. Only two days left in the selling month and quarter. 

-=Good Selling=-

 
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