June 18, 2019

Email Marketing Tips for Salespeople Everywhere

Email Marketing 300x199 Email Marketing Tips for Salespeople EverywhereFor people in sales, I’ve found a great way to stay in touch with customers and prospects on a regular basis.  Over a year ago, a sales representative friend suggested using Constant Contact for email marketing campaigns.  I took her advice, signed up for a free 60 day trial and ended up subscribing to the program.  Now, each month we send an email newsletter to our list of contacts featuring different product lines.

Do-It-Yourself Newsletters Made Easy

Constant Contact makes it easy for salespeople to produce do-it-yourself newsletters.  The program has professional looking templates that allow you to customize the look of your newsletter.  And it’s easy to upload pictures from your computer to give it a personal touch.  Like anything else, it takes some trial and error to get your newsletter to look just right.  If you run out of time, simply save your drafts and come back later to edit your email before sending.  The end result is your emails will have more visual impact compared to text only messages.

Target Marketing

Salespeople can make separate email lists for different target markets.  For example, we use a different mailing list for each one of our manufacturers.  With one click of the send button our newsletter goes out to over 450 targeted buyers, dealer salespeople and prospects.

Email Marketing Achieves Sales Results

Our Constant Contact email campaigns have achieved results.  We’ve seen an increase in inquiries, appointments and sales that can be directly traced to specific campaigns.  Constant Contact automatically tracks the number of clicks, opens and forwards for each email and lets you know who performed each action.  This information is helpful for following up with those people interested in your products.

Four Reasons Constant Contact is a Great Tool for Salespeople

1.  Saves Time – One click of the button sends your message to hundreds of people.

2.  Saves Money – Low cost do-it-yourself professional looking templates.

3.  Increases Exposure – Sending email newsletters keeps your name in front of customers and prospects on a regular basis.

4.  Generates Warm Leads – Pre-selling through email marketing makes it easier to set-up appointments with people in need of your products or service.

In summary, if you’re a salesperson looking for an effective way to stay engaged with customers and prospects, I recommend using Constant Contact.  It works for our sales business and could work for you.

5 Ways to Maximize Sales at Trade Shows

Furniture Rep Friends High Point Market 300x225 5 Ways to Maximize Sales at Trade ShowsI just returned from the High Point Furniture Market in North Carolina.  According to the High Point Market Authority here’s some interesting facts about the semi-annual furniture market.

-  Over 85,000 attend including; buyers, interior designers, exhibitors and sales representatives.

-  There are over 188 showroom exhibitor buildings with a capacity of 12 million square feet.

-  There are more than 2,000 exhibitors with tens of thousands of new product introductions.

With so much competition at trade shows, salespeople in a variety of industries are probably asking themselves the same questions.  How do I attract buyers to my space?  How can I increase sales to customers and prospects attending trade shows?  Here are five ideas that may help you answer these questions.

1.  Prepare – Prior to the show, make a target list of dealers and prospects.  Send out emails and make phone calls to your target list to determine who will be attending.

2.  Promote – Mail invitations and send personalized emails to your target list to create a buzz about your manufacturer’s new products.  On your sales visits prior to the show, talk about your company’s new product introductions.  Create excitement.  Gather as many cell phone numbers from buyers and prospects prior to the show as possible.  During the show send short text messages encouraging them to come to your space.

3.  Appointments – For key customers and important prospects, set-up a specific time to meet at your space.  You may not get a specific time commitment, however, if you can narrow down the day and time, the chance of them stopping by the space increases dramatically.

4.  Plan for Trade Show Appointments – After you’ve made your appointments, it’s time to start planning specific recommendations for each buyer.  For example, in the furniture business there are regional style preferences and nuances for each store.  Think through what you’ll recommend for each customer and prospect.  A focused presentation will save you and your buyer valuable time.

5.  Follow-up – Memories fade, so it’s important to make notes on your buyer’s comments, likes and dislikes.  Referring to your notes later will help you plan your follow-up sales call and help close the sale when you’re back in the territory.

Follow these five tips and watch your sales grow.  If you already follow these steps, congratulations, you’re well on your way to maximizing your sales from trade shows.

Product Demonstration the Old Fashioned Way

history 1935 trailer Product Demonstration the Old Fashioned WayMy Grandpa Chuck showed by example that there’s nothing like a great product demonstration to help close a sale.  Back in 1933, Grandpa carried a desk up five flights of stairs to sell a buyer at a department store in Dayton, Ohio.  He had a carrier made on the back of his car where he secured the desk for travel.  Later, he had a custom trailer made which became his traveling showroom that he used to show furniture products to dealers around the country.

I wonder what would happen if more salespeople today used product demonstration techniques from the old days.  Rather than showing your buyer a picture of your product, why not show them the real thing?  Product demonstration is so important in closing sales especially with new prospects.  Imagine how effective it would be to carry your product into a buyer’s office to show how it works.  Do you think your closing ratio would improve?

The next time you question whether or not you want to go through the hassle of lugging your product with you on your next sales call, think about Grandpa Chuck and his commitment to product demonstration.  Grandpa’s techniques helped him close more sales and they could help you too.

A Winning Attitude is Important in Selling and Sailing

Sonars in Wisconsin 164 300x219 A Winning Attitude is Important in Selling and SailingWhat do successful salespeople and sailors have in common?

A winning attitude.

A winning attitude includes consistently applying good habits such as:  pre-call (pre-race) preparation, practicing your sales presentation (boat handling) skills, setting goals and establishing a game plan.

A winning attitude includes having the ability to be flexible and modify your plans when selling (sailing) conditions change.

A winning attitude is what helped a group of sailors from Wayzata, Minnesota overcome long odds to win a team racing championship off the shores of Lake Michigan.  The team practiced for weeks leading up to the regatta.  They played out a variety of team racing plays for different sets of competitive scenarios.  And they set a goal to win the competition.

The day of reckoning arrived on a windy August day last summer.  And like a sales call that goes awry, the first round of races did not go well for Wayzata.  After day one they were in last place.  Any hope of making it into the finals would require major adjustments.  Wayzata team members debriefed and decided to change their starting strategy.  On the second day of competition, with a revised plan and renewed confidence, Wayzata won three races in a row to eliminate the Canadian team and make it into the finals.  In the finals, their goal was finally realized when Team Wayzata defeated Team Sheboygan to win the Team Racing Championship.

As salespeople we can all learn from these sailing champions.  First, never give up no matter how dire the selling situation appears.  If a buyer raises objections, consider it an opportunity to learn and tailor your sales presentation to better meet their needs.  Second, change your sales technique if it’s not working rather than doing the same thing and expecting different results.  The assumptions you made going into the sales call maybe weren’t accurate.  Recognize it and move on.  And third, keep an eye on your objective.  The road to closing a sale usually has bumps along the way.  It’s important not to lose sight of your end goal and push onward.

A winning attitude of perseverance, flexibility and focus worked for the sailors from Wayzata and can work for all of us in the world of selling.