How To Survive In Sales During A Bad Economy
Corporations and consumers are reacting to this poor economy with sizable cutbacks in spending. Salespeople are looking for sales tips, strategies and advice on how to survive in sales during this poor economy. This is serious so I’ve organized this article as follows:
- A) Present Condition of Sales In This Poor Economy
- B) Expected Future of Sales In A Bad Economy
- C) Keeping Your Sales Job During This Down Economy
- D) Sales Strategies, Tips And Advice To Survive And Thrive In Sales During This Slow Economy
Let’s get started!!!
A) Present Condition of Sales In This Poor Economy
Corporations are taking down their forecasts for expected revenue projections. They are also downplaying the amount they expect to spend in the foreseeable future. Businesses don’t expect to earn and spend the money they thought they would spend just a few months ago. This is serious and hits salespeople right in their pockets. Salespeople need a foolproof strategy to survive in sales during this poor economic climate. The key is to uncover how to close more sales when few are doing any buying.
Banks are not lending and credit is tight. Salespeople that sell high-ticket items that require financing to complete the deal (Leases, Mortgages, etc,) are in the grips of a tight vice. Conditions are not any better in the retail and B2C environments.
In short, the present condition of this economy leaves much to be desired.
B) Expected Future of Sales In A Bad Economy
I’m trying to give you my honest assessment of this situation and all I can say is that things are not looking good and no one knows when things will get better. I’m struggling with this assessment because I’m an optimist by nature… but the facts are the facts.
Plan for job cutbacks in sales organizations. Corporations are telling Wall Street that they expect to sell less so naturally, they need fewer salespeople. Expect reorganizations because these job cutbacks will also hit middle management. After all, if you have fewer salespeople, you need fewer sales managers. This is not a pretty picture and only the strong will survive in this economy.
C) Keeping Your Sales Job In This Down Economy
If you are doing well in sales, stay humble. If you had a great sales month, be thankful and quickly park your ego. Don’t think you’ve earned the right to relax for a week or two. Your great sales month will soon be a thing of the past.
Be a positive role model and team player. By helping others to succeed you become a valuable resource in your office. Pick up the spirits of all that are around you because that type of salesperson tends to last longer. You must bring value to the entire organization. Also remember that even your sales manager can use a little encouragement in economic times like this one.
Don’t over forecast. You may be tempted to over forecast as a way to buy time but it could be a fast way to a pink slip. Sales managers are under great pressure to hit their forecasts so they’ll remember the reps that put them on the hot seat by inflating their forecast projections.
Don’t pack your funnel with prospects that will never buy from you. Any sales manager worth their salt will quickly see through that deception. Instead, use your prospecting skills and cold calling techniques to discover qualified prospects that can and will buy from you. That’s how to become a top sales rep in this, or any other economy.
In the final analysis, the one true way to hold onto your sales job in this economy is to bring in business and to do so, you’ll need a sales strategy for a poor economy. Things may be grinding down but they are not grinding to a halt. You can sill make money in sales during a poor economy… but only the strongest will survive. So, here are some sales tips, strategies and advice about surviving, if not flourishing, during a poor economy.
Major accounts are key to success in every economy, good or bad, so never “wing it”. Insure you have a major account sales plan and major account sales strategy for every opportunity. Your focus must always be on solution selling.
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D) Sales Strategies, Tips And Advice To Survive And Thrive In Sales During This Slow Economy
Stay close to your customers. Expect your hungry competitors to go after them so you must play defense. When possible, sell your clients longer-term contracts as a way to reduce their costs. Your margins may decrease but in this economy you must protect your revenue.
Close fast and quickly get “ink on paper”. Once a prospect decides to go with you, have your contracts or order forms ready and quickly seal the deal. Do this and you’ll protect yourself from a competitor’s “lower price” counter offer. Pay special attention to your sales closing skills.
Focus on qualifying. You don’t have time to spend with people and companies that don’t have funds to spend and this is just part of selling in a slow economy. You must only work on opportunities that have a high probability of closing in your favor.
Focus on “cost justification”. If you can save a prospect money or enable them to be more productive, you need to financially detail those benefits. In this economy, purchases will only be made when they are based on a financially sound decision.
Stay motivated. Don’t allow this economy to crush you into a coma. Instead, use every day to crush your competition. Remember, there will be less “feet on the street” so you’ll have less competition. Work hard and smart because you can flourish even in this poor economy.
Last and most importantly, bring your “A Game” to every sales opportunity. This is no time for amateurs or to get sloppy. Remember to follow all the steps in the sales process because there is no room for shortcuts.
The sales process is the key to selling in any economy. Only the salespeople with the best sales skills will survive and even thrive in this slow economy. You need a foolproof sales strategy for every opportunity and you must execute the sales process with exact precision. There is no other way, period. Get the right sales training course.
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This is a great time to brush up on you sales techniques and sales strategies to insure you approach every opportunity with the sales skills of a Superstar. Some powerful, yet inexpensive, sales training could be the difference between success and failure in this economy.
I invite you to learn more about our sales training DVDs/CDs. We also offer a CD program on sales prospecting skills. I’m confident these sales training programs will help you sell more in a down economy.
My best to you always, and make it a great day.
Nick Moreno, Sales Trainer
National Sales Center, Sales Training Company