Business Development: Don’t You Want ROT?

March 15, 2009 at 6:06 pm | Posted in entrepreneurship, Marketing, Networking, sales, Sales & Technology, Sales Training, small business | 1 Comment
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Business owners and accountants are constantly crunching numbers to determine their company’s return on investment (ROI). For many salespeople, this general accounting concept can be somewhat foreign. But, instead of ROI, ROT should be at the forefront of their minds. What is ROT? It’s short for ‘return on time’ and it’s a figure that must be considered with every customer contact and connection.

As salespeople, we all figure out ROT naturally in our heads each and every day. It’s just part of what we do. Prospects who quickly convert into customers have better ROT than those that require major amounts of hand-holding through the sales process. Customers who reorder without repeated reminders and follow-ups have more desirable ROTs than those who you end of calling over and over again for a sale. The concept isn’t difficult to understand.

However, the aspect that is often overlooked is our own role in improving our personal return on time. Yes, we all play a role in this rate. How we follow-up and follow-through directly affects our ROT for every customer and prospect. Simply put, if you’re not taking the opportunities to stay connected with those who are buying or might be buying from you, you will never be in the position to get any return on your time.

Simple strategies for improving your ROT:

Research and Ask the Right Questions

Finding out about a potential customer early in the sales process provides ample ROT. The more you know upfront and the more you can gather directly from them before you invest hours of your time on presentations and sales calls will help you tremendously with fine-tuning your message and making a sale.

Be a Resource

Your ROT will diminish as more and more vendors appear on your prospects/clients radar. Don’t be “just another salesperson” who is trying to make a sale. Instead, invest in the time to become a trusted resource for information. By adding this to what you have to offer, sales come quickly as a natural part of your business relationships.

Cross Sell and Up Sell

Cross selling and up selling both provide better ROT than always chasing after new business. Look for opportunities within the organizations that you’re already selling to and probe for new avenues for making sales.

Don’t Stop

Finally, don’t stop once you you’ve made a sale. A little time investment will demonstrate that you are still attentive and available for when your customer wants to purchase again. You will always have the best ROT for those who become loyal, repeat customers. 


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