Death of a (traditional) Salesman

Maid Service Salesman

It has been a difficult year for many of us.  Sales revenue is down, margins are down and the companies that were once dumb, fat and happy are now cash-strapped, frustrated and, well….still dumb.  Yes it’s a crappy economy and unemployment is at an all-time high, I will give you that.  But so what? Yeah, I said it – so what?!  Your market has shrunk, but so have the number of competitors.  Many businesses folded because they did not or could not find ways to add value to their core products and services.  They did not accept the fact that change was necessary.  It is not too late for your company to evolve its identity in this industry.  Here are thoughts to consider as you re-identify your company in today’s sales atmosphere.

What worked for your sales team last year, won’t necessarily work this year

The landscape is always changing and you need to adjust accordingly.  Hitting your sales projections last year was a great accomplishment, especially given the market conditions.  Pat yourself on the back…now move on.  You’ve got a lot of work to do.  What are the external conditions for this year and how will that affect your internal plan? Challenge your previous plans and re-strategize as needed.

TECHNOLOGY makes it easy for prospective customers to find you, contact you, and buy from you

I have customers to this day that do not embrace technology as they should.  They feel it discredits their services with inaccuracies and portrays the image of being impersonal and difficult to do business with.   They feel technology takes away from opportunities to build rapport.  Ironically technology builds greater levels of rapport more quickly.  I draw off of my experiences with our estimate tool technology: if our product automates the estimation process, doesn’t this open up more of your direct time from manually estimating?  Time you can re-invest to get in front of prospects for higher closing rates.  You will even have time to improve the quality of your services by spending more time with your customers.  Bottom line: the two groups of people closest to your business, your customers and your competitors, use it….you need to use it!

Diversify your promotional channels

Find various ways to promote your services and diversify the channels in which you promote them.  As I stated earlier, what worked in the past will not always hold true going forward.  Build up your arsenal of promotional channels now.  Step out of your comfort zone and rely more on technology to organize, automate and streamline certain aspects of your business.  This is a solid start for re-identifying your company in an ever-changing sales atmosphere.