One of the most enjoyable things I get to do is work with sales teams in the set up and selling of annual campaigns as part of their acquisition program or forward sales project. These days most media groups see this as core revenue.
The challenge most sales people face is where to source the necessary database of prospects and how best to qualify those prospects to make closing easier. In doing this they have to make a judgement call and to use an old phrase that’s when the fun begins!
Too many times sales people make the wrong call
They decide based on nothing more than a personal opinion that the offer won’t suit the prospect. So many times I’ve heard the phrase “this isn’t for him” – yet surprise, surprise when the time comes to present the offer the prospect laps it up often buying the largest package on offer.
Why does this happen?
That’s the million dollar question! Why does it happen?
I believe we become complacent and don’t have a solid business conversation with our prospective clients, as a result don’t really know what’s going on in their business. What are the real pain-points, challenges or opportunities? From there we simply guess what they like or dislike.
The fix is simple
Become more open minded about every business you speak with. Don’t guess.
Ask great questions to uncover their needs. Questions such as:
- “What have you found to be the most effective campaigns in the past?”
- “When you plan your advertising what steps do you put in place to monitor it?”
- “Do you use branding as well as tactical campaigns?”
- “How often would you like to sit down with me to discuss the direction of your media campaigns?”
By conducting a proper face to face uncovery or diagnostic meeting you’ll suddenly have all the information to know, not guess what suits a business.
About the author
Stephen Pead is a media industry veteran of 30 years with significant experience in direct sales, sales management and general management. He is based in Sydney and specialises in helping SME’s market their businesses more effectively and providing training for salespeople and sales managers.
He can be contacted at [email protected]