My experience in sales has taught me many things: how to ask questions that will evoke the answers I’m looking for, how to make someone truly feel heard, how to deal with rejection, and how to prioritize my tasks and goals. But most importantly, being in sales has taught me a huge lesson in not settling all my efforts on one big sale.
When you settle your sight and focus on one large customer, closing the business is a big win — but afterwards the repercussions of ignoring your pipeline catches up with you. Chasing down that one big sale allowed your pipeline to dry up, and now you’re back at square one with no prospective leads or sales in sight.
If you haven’t heard: the best time to market your business is when it’s in demand. There’s a sort of confidence that comes with your pitch when your company and its services are thriving in its industry. Plus, that success will make you much more marketable to prospective clients.
So, how do you keep your pipeline full while still focusing on closing those big deals?
Don’t Limit Your Resources
Just because cold calls have worked for you for years doesn’t mean that should be the only tool at your disposal. Email lists, newsletter blasts, social media connections, press placements and speaking engagements are just the tip of the iceberg. As industries continue to digitize, sales teams need to equip themselves with all the tools at their disposal.
An added bonus? A lot of these new tools — like newsletter blasts and CRMs — actually end up saving time.
Here at Pacesetter, sales associates have benefited from using our newsletter as an added value to our customers and new prospects. Social events at speaking engagements have also proven to be very productive adding new potential clients into the sales pipeline that have formed new relationships and produced new business for the sales associate.
In order to ensure prospecting happens and yields results, you need to create a routine and stick to it. This could be anything from setting aside time every day to prospect for new clients — even if you’re currently working on closing a big one — to getting more granular and defining what that prospecting process actually looks like.
Make sure you create a process and if you stick to it, you will create a good habit that will produce results. The more disciplined you are, the easier that process becomes. Making yourself comfortable and confident in these processes is key to actually feeling good about using them.
Say you reach out to a potential lead via email and you don’t hear back — what happens next? Do you move on? Absolutely not.
Prospective leads may need to be contacted through multiple channels — email, cold calls, newsletters, social media — before you finally get a positive response. Staying motivated to close the deal means approaching it from different angles and understanding the best way that prospect can be reached.
One overlooked way to stay motivated? Take a harder look at lost leads. What happened? What could have been done to save that sale? What processes can be put in place to prevent it in the future? Instead of letting the feeling of rejection wash over you and your sales team, turn it into a learning moment.