When I first started selling media, I had a sales manager whose mantra was to always get new business. So one of his expectations was that each week, each seller would make 20 new business calls. Even as a new seller, I knew this was not the best use of my time, so I asked how he would determine these calls would be completed. His solution was that we deliver a business card. Simple enough.
So once a month I would take one day and hit strip shopping centers or malls collecting enough business cards that I could meet his expectations. It was a waste of time but he was happy and after a few months, I was able to recycle business cards so that I didn’t even have to do my daily once a month routine.
Disingenuous? Perhaps. But my job was to create sales not collect business cards.
The point is, not all new business is created equal. The business that calls in and wants to spend $5000 for their going out of business sale is not as productive as a target prospect that is making their first buy with you with a well thought out integrated solution to a key marketing challenge. The time spent chasing down the owner of a hardware store that spends $1000 once per year with a competitor but shows up on a media monitor is not time spent as wisely as trying to learn more about a key account that could lead to $10,000 more for you.
This is not to suggest that we don’t expend any time selling “low hanging fruit." However, I am suggesting that you ensure you understand where your priorities are and that the time priorities of your sellers are properly allocated.
So don’t send your sellers on a wild goose chase or have them spend too much time on every piece of new business, regardless of its size or importance.
Because not all new business is created equal.
Uncovering the needs of prospects and clients is very important. Spend your time wisely and download the Needs Analysis Record.