3 Tips to Make Your Marketing (More) Effective

October 1, 2011 at 3:03 pm | Posted in sales, Sales Training, Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Great Brand?  Check!

Awesome website?  Check!

Robust involvement with social media?  Check!

Marketing initiatives galore?  Check!

Yep, sometimes you have it “all” covered but don’t seem to be opening enough doors and winning enough new business. What’s wrong with this picture?

Well, there’s everything wrong if you’re not paying equal attention to your sales process, pipeline management and persuasive selling skills.

Yes, these 3 P’s are critical for your sales success.

Process:  What are you doing with the leads that are generated by your marketing efforts? Are you following up with them in a timely manner and do you have your sales team ready for action? (And if your sales team is..well..just you, are YOU ready to get into the ring and start selling?) A structured sales process can mean the difference between success and failure and getting ROI from your marketing efforts or not. Take the time to develop or refine your process BEFORE you start marketing. If you market first you just might not be ready to handle the inquiries, or to proactively reach out and connect with segments of non-responders.

Pipeline Management:  Unless you are involved in a very transactional business, most leads need to be nurtured and your sales cycle can be months and even years. You must keep your sales pipeline filled with leads that are in various stages of being “worked.” A skimpy pipeline means that at some point in the future you might not have enough active business to keep you afloat. Look at your pipeline on a monthly basis and if you see that the volume of prospects is skimpy, make certain to get proactive and start to prospect for new business.  And, most important, don’t allow your existing prospects to forget about you. Practice exquisite touch point management (connect with me and I’ll share the “3 I’s,” a strategy that works every time!) so that you stay on the grid.

Persuasive Selling Skills: Are your sales competencies as sharp as they need to be?  Are you confident that you and/or your team are skilled in presenting value and benefits, effective probing, overcoming objections, closing…and more? If you have even a smidgen of a doubt then I highly suggest that you make the effort to refresh or enhance those skills so that you are certain to get a return on your marketing investment.

A great brand and marketing program are just the beginning. It’s important to know how to execute on the marketing strategy. Do it ineffectively and your marketing is for naught.

Do You Want Fries With That?

July 18, 2008 at 5:41 pm | Posted in Customer Service, sales, Sales Training, small business | Leave a comment
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When you order a burger and the salesperson asks “Would you like fries with that,” you’ve experienced a marketing tactic called cross-selling.  This strategy encourages customers to purchase additional products and services that are related to the item they are already buying. Cross-selling doesn’t just work with fast food; it’s also a highly effective technique for any type of sales.  Here are a few ideas to help you achieve cross-selling success:

 

Service with a Smile

The success of cross-selling depends not only on the quality and value of the product, but also the customer service provided.  Customer service begins with the very first encounter, either in person, through email, or on the phone. It’s true that you only get one chance to make a first impression.  Every customer should always be greeted with enthusiasm and respect

 

Listen to the Customer

Many sales opportunities arise by just listening to the customer.  The simple skill of listening demonstrates that you are helpful and approachable.  A good salesperson should be able to take information from the customer and inform them of all the products and services that would be benefit their needs.  Customers appreciate being informed of additional products and services that could provide an added benefit to the item they already intend on purchasing.

 

How Well Do You Know Your Product?

Product knowledge is the key to successful sales.  Successful salespeople know every detail of their products from how they work to when to use them.  It’s essential that this knowledge be relayed to the customer to help them understand why they can benefit from your product.  The product you are cross-selling should either be related or complementary to the original item the customer purchased. It’s unlikely to sell an add-on product or service that offers no additional value to the original product.

 

Don’t Forget to Ask

Many customers walk out the door without ever being asked whether they could benefit from related products.  It should go without saying, but it is necessary to ask the customer whether they are interested. Even the best products and services won’t sell themselves.  Sales must be initiated. 

 

Follow-up

Numerous cross-selling opportunities are lost because the salesperson didn’t take the initiative to contact the customer regarding their original purchase.  A quick follow-up call shows the customer that you truly care about their needs and not just the initial sale.   This is a perfect time to find out whether they could benefit from related products or services. This simple act will open the door to a long-term sales relationship.

 

 

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