Is success in sales a matter of inputting activity and outputting dollars?
Many sales managers will tell you that is the case. Put in the work – and the output will be a successful career.
While I do not have anything against hard work, and I have done my fair share of it – I like to now try and work smarter rather than harder. I enjoy my time for many other pursuits – therefore I believe to make the best use of ‘Sales Activities’ one should use their mind. The chief argument for this is that if your strategy for success is based on outworking your competition – well you have a limited framework to succeed in. You are limited by your time available. You can only do so many calls, so many sales related activities.
If on the other hand you want to use your mind – there is limitless possibilities!
A couple key strategies that I believe are important for any sales persons. First is to build your personal brand – build up your reputation within your industry. This can be extremely powerful. A good image or brand can open doors, get people to accept your calls, ease the referral process and even have prospects calling you. Personal brand building can be done through networking, social media, connecting with the right people, writing articles and getting them published, having a business related blog and many other strategies. Find the one that works for you and start building up your image in the eyes of your prospects.
A second way to work smarter than harder is to use creative tactics. Find unique ways to carry your message, introduce yourself or your product, or create touches with your prospects and clients. Yes I am talking about marketing. Good marketing can be extremely cost effective and can produce excellent results. It can ease the sales process and even have people calling you.
The last way to work smarter rather than harder is to use the tools available to track and build better customer relationships. I have always been a proponent of using a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system in your organization and have taught classes on CRM usage and set up CRM systems for my clients. I feel that a good CRM system is one of the most underutilized tools in business today.
Don’t back away from work – sales results do take effort. But use some of that time and effort that you have to find ways to work smarter rather than simply work!