Archives for July 2019

How to Create an Effective Sales Follow Up Process

By Evan Lamolinara | 07/07/2019 | 5:57 PM | Categories: Current Affairs

FollowupA report published by Salesforce shows it now takes an average of six to eight touches to generate a sales lead. Of course, material handling companies must then convert the sales lead into a customer, which requires following up with the sales lead. If you don't follow up with sales leads -- or if you use the wrong followup approach -- you'll struggle to generate sales. You can optimize your material handling or logistics company's sales follow up process in several ways.

Use the Sales Lead's Preferred Method of Communication

You're more likely to reach a lead if you follow up with him or her using their preferred method of communication. Some material handling buyers prefer using email, whereas others prefer phone calls. However, be careful as the sales lead may automatically say email as it may be the easy choice, but not necessarily the best choice.

After you had an initial phone call, and (hopefully) you’ve created the next step in the sales cycle, you can ask if they agree with the next step you’re suggesting. For instance, “Based on our conversation, I’ll email you the information and give you a call on Thursday. This way it will give you a chance to review the information. Is this a good plan for you?” With the open ended question, you can begin to better understand their level of interest and why they are choosing the preferred method of communication.  

Don't Give Up After a Single Follow Up

Statistics show nearly half of material handling sales reps give up after just one follow up. In other words, when a lead rejects their offer during the first followup, about half of material handling sales reps stop pursuing the lead. You should be persistent with your follow up strategy by not giving up after just one failed attempt. If a lead rejects your sales pitch, you may or may not find out what's holding him or her back from purchasing your material handling company's product or service.

This is where you need to find additional contacts within the sales leads company. How? By using Salesleads’ Target Account Sales Intelligence database, you’ll be able to get all the information you’ll need on the sales lead. Enter in the company name, and you’ll get all of the contacts from multiple departments. You can further refine your search by location and/or title. Now that you’ve identified others within the department or the sales leads’ direct report, now you can call and dig deeper into the sales potential and eliminate any barriers to moving forward. Want to see how it works? It’s free to check it out.

Try to Follow Up Within 5 Minutes

Time is of the essence when following up with leads. The sooner you follow up with a lead, the greater the chance of it going into the sales cycle. According to HubSpot, sales reps who follow up with leads within the first five minutes are nine times more likely to connect with them. The sales lead still has you fresh in their minds…and most importantly, they are available by their phone! I must admit, I always call within 5 minutes. I reach the sales lead 9 out of 10 times, have in depth conversation and always end with a next step.

Follow Up by Phone Between 7:00 AM and 9 AM

You may not always be able to follow up within 5 minutes. The next best time to reach a sales leads by phone, call between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 9:00 a.m. You can experiment with other times for your followup calls, (such as 6:00 a.m.) but you'll probably discover these hours offer the best results. Several studies have found that material handling buyers are more likely to answer the phone during these hours. And once you've got a lead by phone, you can begin to qualify the lead by understanding their business need, how your material handling company’s solution can solve their problem and continue to nurture the lead into a paying customer.

How to Answer the Sales Objection: “Your Price is Too High”

By Evan Lamolinara | 07/07/2019 | 5:42 PM | Categories: Current Affairs

ClockAsk any material handling or logistics sales rep and he or she will probably agree: The price of a product or service is one of the most common reasons a prospective buyer objects to an offer. If a prospective buyer believes a product or service costs more than what it's worth, he or she won't buy it. As a material handling sales rep, however, there are ways to overcome most sales objections, including price objections. By addressing price objections directly, you can often convert these productive buyers into paying customers for your material handling company.

Wait to Mention the Price

First and foremost, you should wait to mention the price of your material handling's product or service when communicating with prospective buyers. If you initially open with price, it may deter the prospect from continuing to communicate with your material handling company.

So, when should you talk about the price? It depends on the length of your sales cycle. If it’s a long sales cycle, 6 months or more, price should not be a consideration until after the needs analysis is complete and accepted and you are ready to go into the proposal stage. However, during this time, it is the responsibility of the material handling sales rep to begin trial close questions that contain questions about price. Now you’ll have a better handle on where you stand on price.

However, if your sales cycle is short, less than 6 months, then according to Gong, sales reps have the best chance of converting prospects into customers when they mention the price of their product or service at 13 to 20 minutes into their communications.

Research Your Competitors' Prices

Another tip to overcome price objections is to research your competitors' prices. If a prospective buyer rejects your offer, he or she may have found a competitor's product or service at a lower price. By researching the prices of your competitors beforehand, you can tackle these objections with greater ease. How? First compare your product or service offering with that of your competitors. Many sales leads don’t necessarily know how to compare the differences or what makes your product better.

You can create a checklist or a comparison chart of your product and/or service and that of the ‘leading’ brand(s). Of course, you want to do some of the obvious comparisons, but you also want to insert line items that make your product unique in comparison. The benefit of the checklist or comparison? You’ve created a business case for the person who needs to gain approval. Now they clearly know why they should purchase your product even at a higher price.

Convey the Monetary Value of Your Product or Service

Perhaps the most important tip to overcome price objections is to convey the monetary value of your material handling’s product or service. In other words, tell prospective buyers how your material handling product or service will increase their business's revenue. (This can also be addressed in the checklist mentioned above). You can do this by showcasing case studies of previous buyers. If a previous buyer was able to increase his or her business's revenue by 10% after using your material handling company's product or service, turn this into a case study so that you can present it to prospective buyers.

Drop the Price - Strategically

You don't have to lower the price for all prospective buyers. Rather, offer an exclusive one-time discount for select prospective buyers. If the prospective buyer is on your strategic account list, then you may want to consider it as an option.

Get Control Early On

In order to get control of the sales cycle early on, you need to be in at the conceptual stage or planning / design stage of the project. Once they go to approvals, the price of what they’re willing to pay for the project stays constant. It’s tough to find out about those projects…well not for SalesLeads. That’s what we do. We uncover projects and notify you as soon as it’s been identified. This way you can help influence the project from specification to installation to price. Take a look for yourself.

The opinions expressed herein are those solely of the participants, and do not necessarily represent the views of Agile Business Media, LLC., its properties or its employees.

About Evan Lamolinara

Evan Lamolinara

Evan Lamolinara is president of SalesLeads, Inc., a company that has been around for over 60 years, generating high quality sales leads dedicated to the sales & marketing professionals in the industrial marketplace. Mr. Lamolinara, an entrepreneur and competitor, purchased the legacy company in 2014. Since then, he's redeveloped its core software delivery platform and grew the company over 400%. Evan graduated from Mount Union College with B.A. Business Management and honed his competitive skills as a 3-year letterman on the College football team.

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