By: Kathy Kent Toney, President of Kent Business Solutions
A Four-Part Series: Part 3
Meeting Immediate Needs is the Name of the Game
How many of us who are in Sales roles are stymied on how to sell our services during these crazy times?
What to do?
Breandan Filbert, Managing Partner of SalezWorks, has some great tips for us. And Breandan knows her stuff! If you’ve been enjoying my newsletters, you can thank her in part—as my Sales coach, she’s been the driving force to help kickstart my prospecting efforts in high gear!
You may be thinking—“Sales, that doesn’t apply to me.” If that’s you, I encourage you to hang in there with me. All of us, at times, are selling our capabilities or our ideas to others. So, these tips can work for anyone!
Kathy: Breandan, thanks for joining me today! What can companies do right now to not only survive, but thrive during our current economic climate?
Breandan: there are three things I think that are really important:
1. Stay Close to Your Current Clients.
Try to understand and serve their needs. It’s almost guaranteed that something has significantly changed in how they do business to keep their customers safe and continue business operations. Find out what those necessary changes are and serve them during those changes.
2. Uncover the Necessary Pivot
Find alternative products or services to offer current clients rather than to start from scratch with new prospects. Cash flow is of vital importance right now, and getting to the bank quicker with each opportunity should be the first priority with any sales attempt.
3. Recognize Everything is a Campaign
Getting an instant sale when you reach out isn’t often reality. Cultivate your prospects by identifying issues, proposing solutions and then continuing to solve problems for them through your services. Each interaction should provide value and be part of your campaign to solve problems in their organization.
Remember to keep in mind when you’re doing this: the buyer journey normally takes 8-22 interactions with your brand or business prior to doing business with you.
Kathy: Wow, that’s a lot of touches. But reflecting on my “wins” I’ve had, I’ve experienced that myself.
I really like the idea that interactions can be a campaign in itself, and also the importance of pivoting to fulfill immediate needs. Do you happen to have any examples of combining the two—how pivoting your offerings can result in a great campaign for a company?
Breandan: Yes, there are a lot of examples out there right now. I like the story about one local company that typically manufactures in-store shelving for retailers. As you can imagine, retail has been hit hard right now. Retailers aren’t really thinking about upgrading their shelving or display units—they are more concerned with protecting their frontline workers. So, they pivoted their operations to manufacture sneeze guards for cash register workstations and PPE for healthcare and frontline workers.
They started this whole new effort by first volunteering to make PPE for health care workers. This resulted in a lot of great press for them—their brand interactions happened with customers who heard about the good things they were doing in their community. This is all about building emotional equity with others who want to do good things as well.
The end result? They are now servicing the healthcare vertical, which is a new avenue for them.
Kathy: I love that! Not only are they helping their business in the short-term, but they’re building potential for future business through positive press.
Do you have any closing comments?
Breandan: Yes, I always like to challenge people to take action based on what they are learning. My question for you is this: what will YOU do to maximize opportunity during this downturn?
If your readers would like more insights, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or connect with me on LinkedIn.
Kathy: Thanks for your advice, Breandan! I think my readers will really benefit from it.
Breandan: I appreciate the time invested in reading!
Stay tuned for next week’s topic on Digital Transformation.
With the fall-out of stay-at-home orders on organizations and uncertainty around how businesses will operate in the future, it’s so important to begin shifting the way we do business towards more online platforms.
You don’t want to miss my interview with my Alliance Partner, Michael Cantu’. He’ll share best practices on doing that!