Last year I noticed a number of new sales strategies being employed by sellers worldwide. Some worked. Some didn’t. Regardless of your success I applaud you for trying something different last year. You are smart enough to recognize that the markets have changed and buyers have changed too. In order to succeed, sellers must change as well.
With that in mind, let’s look at 5 sales strategies used in 2010 that should be continued in 2011.
1) Social Selling. Social Selling is focused on building a community of buyers and nurturing that community using online and offline methods. Social Selling in NOT JUST Social Media. It includes, Live Chat, Social Media, Blogs, Newsletters, off line networking and using testimonials. The key is to meet your client’s where they are at. How do they want to connect with you? When do they want to connect with you? And how can you make it easy for them to connect with you? The most successful companies last year used an integrated approach to Social Selling. They combined 3-4 elements to provide a balanced connection strategy ensuring they always remained top of the client’s mind, without ever being a stalker.
2) Persistence. More sales were won last year by those sellers who refused to give up early. With conversion rates creeping up to 16 attempts per response, and close rates hovering around 2.6% from first contact to close, persistence is critical to success. Creatively balancing phone calls, emails, direct mail and face to face selling is the key to ensuring your persistence is professional. Remember, the more media you use, the more often you can reach out. The best sellers in 2010 where able to reach out to their clients 3X per week without being considered a stalker because they used multiple media types.
3) Proof. Sellers who use testimonials, case studies, and references improved their closing ratios by 30% last year. Need I say more? For an entire library of how-to articles visit: www.testimonialdirector.com . Three pieces of quick advice?
1. Ask for testimonials at every opportunity.
2. Guide the content of your testimonials to ensure they are compelling and credible.
3. Keep your testimonials current! Update your testimonials monthly.
4) Focus. The best companies in 2010 narrowed their focus to either specialize in a market or specialize in the delivery of a specific product or service. In doing so, they became the experts or authorities in their marketplace. When you become the expert, prospects seek you out; you don’t have to find them. When you are the expert, prices are less of an issue and your margins remain high. This year I encourage you to drop your poorest performing clients or products/services to make room for better quality and better profits. Identify your target market, the products that best serve that market, and create marketing programs to attract and retain targeted in your areas of focus.
5) Constant implementation. This year I saw a rise in the number of top performers joining mastermind and coaching groups and watched their sales increase 30% – 100% above 20910 goals! Success sellers are never finished learning and implementing. And implementation is what makes the difference between success and mediocrity. By all means don’t stop learning. Read, attend seminars, and join coaching groups. At the same time, implement new ideas each month. Test new sales strategies. Adjust the ones that don’t work. And try again.
Your market has changed. It’s never going back to “the way it was”. Make 2011 the year where you adjust fully to the change in your market with a change in your selling style. I know you have great success as a result!
Dedicated to increasing your sales,