A few weeks back I wrote a four part series entitled “Why People Don’t Buy.” One of the four articles looked at “No Time/Urgency” as one of the four reasons clients or customers don’t end up doing business with you. As we enter Spring and watch the opening week of baseball, let’s look at the sales interaction seasons that most business owners or sales professionals deal with.
Many people in professional services will rationalize their poor results with certain excuse seasons. “It’s really tough to pin down people during the holidays” is the season that creeps in the week of Thanksgiving and is used for the next six weeks until the New Year. This may be the ultimate excuse season but usually can be offset by some extra persistence by the sales professional as they are chasing a year end goal. Also, many businesses or consumers may want to make purchases in the current year for deductions.
Another excuse season is “business is always slower during the summer months” which rationalizes poor performance from June (usually when kids are out of school) to Labor Day. Many sales organizations will combat this by putting the end of their “president’s year or awards year” in the summer. This is also smart because it typically ignites two big pushes throughout the year for their business development teams… the summer to hit their “president’s club” contest goals and then at year end to hit their annual goals. If you are in charge of a sales team and not posting a second “quota” contest that runs from July to June or August to July, you may want to try so this year.
Labor Day to Thanksgiving is a primetime for sales professionals to come out of the summer recharged and ready to connect with people after they are done with their summer vacations, the kids are back to school and the back end of the year. The January 2nd to April 15th can be good but many times people are more focused on getting business than giving business.
But perhaps the greatest selling season is approaching us. It’s the “after tax time” but “before the summer” season. In certain parts of the country, the weather gets better and people tend to be in a more optimistic and open mood. Also quarter one of the year is over where the clients or customers can see how they are starting off the year. Lastly, many people will be receiving tax refunds that can be used to purchase your services.
Remember, there is typically never a “perfect” time for professional service sales so having a consistent process and using language to beat your prospective client or customer to the excuse is key. This will help get the help from you sooner and more effectively.
“John, I know that the summer months are approaching and coordinating our schedules then will be difficult. I am reaching out to pencil in a meeting in late April to connect.”
Eddy Ricci, Jr., has been labeled as “the emerging expert in developing Gen Y sales professionals” by the chairman of Publicis Kaplan Thaler and is also noted as “understanding what motivates Gen Y sales teams. He is on my radar and should be on yours” by international speaker and NY Times bestselling author, Erik Qualman. Eddy is the director of a unique training and development collaborative platform that services financial planning firms in the northeast where he has arguably worked with more Gen Y financial professionals than anyone in the country over the past four years. He is the founder of The Growth Game, LLC. ,a professional development company and has authored a book that holds the same title. Eddy is a certified coach and specializes in helping professionals develop sales skills, leadership approaches and implement business development activity systems.