For trade and retail sales teams

1. To bring into existence, produce, evolve.

If I were to ask most people who call themselves salespeople what their job is, they would likely say something like ‘sell, satisfy people’s needs, help people to find solutions’  – something like that.

As I look at the current buying habits of retail and trade customers, and the new adventure of ‘showrooming’ and internet buying, it’s clear that the role and job of an inside salesperson is altering.  Maybe it’s beyond altering and has already changed, and we’re just slow to act.

Where that leaves inside salespeople with is a new definition of their job – which is to GENERATE sales.  That means to go and get them, rather than only assisting incoming opportunities to purchase.  Go and get them.  Because to wait for enough incoming traffic, that is sufficient traffic to produce sales to make goal, is to wait a very long time.

That also means that getting contact information, creating quotes, making appointments to return, calling quotes that are still unsold, calling after delivery, making outside appointments to sell, calling 30-90 days after the sale – all now required actions to incorporate into an inside sales checklist of ‘dollar producing activities’.

I can feel the reaction of ‘that’s not my job to create opportunities, that’s the job of ownership to provide leads via advertising and marketing’.  At some point in the distant past that might have been true, it just isn’t true any longer.  A sales job is to GENERATE sales, whatever and however that needs to happen.

The more you make it fun, make it a game, and enjoy the outward engagement, the more sales you will generate.  That’s how it works.

And so you know, I’m not just being bossy and am taking my own coaching today and ‘dialing for dollars’.  I have scheduled one ‘next step’ appointment for Friday, and made one on-site cold call to Mass Real Estate (no, they are not my target audience, but they are required to have CEU’s….which I offer….) IN MY GYM CLOTHES no less, and will pursue that avenue for speaking engagements.

The harder I work, the luckier I get.  Now let’s go get ‘em.


Loaning Fabrics / Making Appointments

Making appointments is one way to increase your personal traffic and to manage your time effectively.  Since Be Back appointments increase close ratio by 2x and double average sale, and House Call appointments increase close ratio 4x and the same multiplier for average sale, the purpose of making appointments when a customer requests to take a fabric home is to produce a positive result for you and the customer – an appointment.  The added benefit is that you get your fabric back at a time when someone is prepared to do something with the customer.

Fabrics being loaned are a way of getting appointments and allowing the customer to see the fabric in different lighting in their home, with the other pieces in the room.  It’s not about punishing the customer for taking fabric home.  If the customer is not committed enough to make an appointment to come back and continue the process with YOU, are they really committed enough to take the fabric home at all?  It’s not that they can’t take the fabric if you won’t make an appointment…that’s the tail wagging the dog.  I offer the BB or the HC as an option for the customer to choose from, not because it’s a hard and fast rule for appointments, but when offered as an option, the customer will usually choose one, and usually the BB.  And if the salesperson cannot make an opportunity out of going to the house, it’s about THAT not about the fabric sample or the rule of mandatory-ness.

Currently you may have salespeople who are not getting a deposit for the fabric AND not scheduling an appointment to return the fabric, and maybe not be getting contact information or putting the customer in the system as a quote – a lose/lose proposition.  Appointments are one way to reduce that behavior and those results and replace them with actions that produce new business at a time when it can be prepared for and managed.

With love and your success in mind,