Activity Tracking Tips to Reach Your Prospecting Goals

Even when you are on the top of your game, you will hear ‘NO’, many more times than you will hear ‘YES’ when prospecting. Here are some activity tracking tips to help you reach your prospecting goals, by staying motivated and on track.

If you know me at all, you know that I love a good challenge. And that I have never met a quota I didn’t want to meet or beat!

This has served me well as an entrepreneur and has certainly been a key component of my success. It keeps me prospecting, long after others have given up. But that doesn’t mean it is easy. Staying motivated and on track is always a challenge.

Here is a trick I use to keep myself motivated and to stay on track when prospecting. 

My ‘Workbook’

I have a mini spreadsheet with my goals, that I set up every week. In the left hand column, I list all the activities I need to complete to meet my quota. The key for me, is to include my weekly goal for each one, in the next column.

Then I have columns for Monday through Friday where I input the progress I made each day on each task. The last column is the total, the actual number I completed that week.

The simple act of setting the goals each week and then updating them each day, motivates me to work harder to meet and exceed those numbers!

Why this works

You have probably heard the quote, ‘What you Measure, Improves’ or ‘What you Measure, Matters’. This isn’t a new concept but it’s one that has helped me, and the teams I work with, stay on track and really deliver!

Why this works for ME

For me, setting the goals focuses my attention and watching my progress is a real motivator. All of us have more to do than there are hours in the day. This process helps me prioritize the tasks and actions that ensure I succeed.

Try it yourself! 

If this sounds like something that might work for you, click here for a free downloadable version of my ‘Workbook’, the mini spreadsheet I use to monitor and measure MY progress.

Your KPI’s

You don’t need to measure EVERYthing you do – actually, the whole point is to identify the KEY tasks that drive results and to focus on those. 

Those will be YOUR Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) and will differ from mine, based on your role, objectives and responsibilities. Modify your document to reflect your priorities.

Customize as needed

The weekly format works best for me but you can customize the spreadsheet to be monthly, to have each week in a month on a different sheet – you could even do it by day.

Don’t burn through your ROI!

As a colleague often says, don’t burn through your Return on Investment (ROI), monitoring and measuring your ROI. 

Defining my goals at the start of the week, filling in my progress each day and totaling the results at the end of the week works well for me. Try these activity tracking tips to reach YOUR prospecting goals. 

Experiment and adjust the timing to see what works for you.

Need help?

Do you need help identifying the tasks YOU need to complete to achieve YOUR quota? Need help completing those tasks? Not sure of what to actually SAY on a call?

Give us a call at 908.879.2911 – we can get you and your team set up and ready for success!

Need more motivation?

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Good luck and keep dialing!

Cold Calling Success Tips – The Tone of Your Voice is Key

At One of a Kind Sales, we talk a lot about LISTENING. But the tone of YOUR voice is also key to your Cold Calling success.

According to an industry statistic, “93% of the potential success of your cold call is attributed to the tone of your voice during the conversation.” 

How do you sound?

Confidence is AUDIBLE – make sure the client hears this. 

This is one of the many reasons we say that you should memorize your script. Knowing what you are going to say, without having to think about it, helps instill confidence. 

Having your rebuttals ready helps too.

And of course, PRACTICE! The more conversations you have, the better you will become.

Match their tone

And it isn’t just confidence. I also recommend that you match the prospect’s cadence and style of communication. If they are calm and soft spoken, speaking quickly and confidently may be a turn off or feel ‘salesy’.

Really LISTEN to what the prospect is saying AND to their tone. Then match their tone in your delivery. For more about this please see our post on Active Listening

What NOT to do

And for a humorous look at what NOT to do, check out this vintage Saturday Night Live skit with Chris Farley and Paul McCartney.

If you need help with YOUR delivery, give us a call at 908.879.2911 – we can provide you with the skills that will instill the confidence YOU need to succeed! 

How to Drive the Buying Process

You have probably heard the popular statistic that 70% of the buyer’s journey is complete before a buyer even reaches out to a company or sales rep.  

And have read that 95% of B2B buyers research companies online before making purchases (that was in 2014 – my guess is that has only gone up!) And 53% of B2B buyers are using social media to make buying decisions. I think that 53% sounds low, too. 

These statistics underscore just how much technology has empowered buyers to drive the buying process.  

But there are still a number of ways that we, as salespeople, can stay out front and in charge of the buying process. Here is how to stay in the driver’s seat when it comes to sales. 

Be first on the scene 

Cold calling is still one of the BEST ways to get your product and services in front of a prospect FIRST. 

If they are already doing their own research, you can be the first rep to contact them. If they are not yet ready, they will now be aware of your services, know YOU are the person to reach out to when they are and they will be in your database so you will continue to stay on their radar.  

Yes, I know that cold calling is probably your least favorite task. And I need to remind you that if you are NOT making Cold Calls, you ARE leaving money on the table!  

Give us a call – we can do your Cold Calling for you. Call me at 908.879.1322 to set up a time to learn more. 

And reach out again 

Have a plan in place to re-connect with prospects on a regular basis. Whether it is in 4 weeks or 3 months depends on your business cycle, but this allows you to be there, and top of mind, when they ARE ready. 

According to a buyer insights study, 91% of prospects don’t mind engaging with a sales rep in the early stages of their buying journey, including 34% of new buyers who are particularly interested in engaging with a sales person early on. Make sure that sales rep is YOU and not your competition! 

Be visible  

60% of B2B buyers actually WANT to contact a sales rep. Be sure that your website and social profiles are easily found during searches and that they include all your contact info. Having an established and active social media presence will also help ensure that they find you, or better yet, that they are already familiar with you.  

A recent study showed that 65% of salespeople who use social selling, have a full pipeline – be sure that you are one of them! 

Listen and engage 

During this entire process, really LISTEN to the information they are providing. Confirm if they are, in fact, a good fit. If they are, engage and build a relationship.  

If not, ask for a referral and move on. 

Not every prospect is going to be the right match. Being able to identify who is and who is not, is a skill that will save you much time, money and aggravation. 

Yes, technology has empowered buyers to take control of the purchasing process, but that doesn’t mean that we, as salespeople need to take a back seat. Use these tips to stay in charge and to drive the buying process. 

Sales Tips for Success: Do What They Aren’t!

When asked for Sales Tips for Success, I always include the reminder that you should ‘Do what they aren’t’. By that, I mean, do what your competition ISN’T doing.

Don’t necessarily follow the crowd

Yes, stats may show that Cold Calling Success rates are 46% higher on Wednesdays than they are on Mondays but that usually just means that your prospects are now going to be bombarded by cold callers on Wednesday.

What to do instead

I suggest that you have a regular call schedule and that you call consistently, not haphazardly nor based on the last stat you read or heard. And I also recommend calling on Friday afternoons! Some people may be gone for the day but the people who DO pick up will probably be more cheerful. This is also true of the days before, and the ‘short’ weeks after, long weekends. 

Zig when they Zag

The concept of ‘Zigging when others Zag’ is not new. You see it in quotes, as book titles and in too many blogs and podcasts to count. It is used in fields as varied as financial investment to business leadership, in marketing and here, in sales. It is good advice but if you look around, you don’t usually see it implemented.  EVERYONE is using the same, salesy script and the same, robotic delivery. And now, because of that stat, they are probably doing it on Wednesday!

Be brave – take a chance and ZIG.

Coco Chanel had the right idea

One of my favorite quotes is from Coco Chanel. She said “In order to be irreplaceable one must always be different”. I would take it a step further and say that in order to be successful in sales, one must always be different.

When making Cold Calls, you don’t want to sound like every other sales caller. You don’t want to sound salesy and turn off your prospects before you even have a chance to qualify them. I always say that Cold Calling is about HAVING CONVERSATIONS, not making sales. Approaching your calls with this attitude will shift not only your mindset but the receptivity of your prospect.

Pick up the phone

The humble phone has lost its status as ‘most valuable sales tool’. There are so many other platforms and tools out there that are cheaper, more automated and easier to use that actual phone calling gets lost in the shuffle. I am not saying that you shouldn’t include some of these in your toolkit. I am a huge fan of my CRM (VanillaSoft – click here to learn more!) and social media can be invaluable for networking, building brand awareness and keeping you top of mind. But you still can’t beat the phone for making a real, PERSONAL connection. And personal connections are the foundation for closed sales.

Your Voice = Human Touch

With the prevalence of automated and robo calls, your voice can really make a difference. It can be the human touch and differentiator that helps you stand out from the crowd, making you and what you represent, irreplaceable.

Do you need more sales tips for success? Check out our blogmy podcast series ‘Conversational Selling’ and our videos. 

The Buyer’s Journey – Never underestimate the power of Cold Calling

I recently read an article on lead generation and how to drive sales and was surprised – no, I would  say SHOCKED! – to see absolutely NO reference to Cold Calling.

Granted the post was listing ‘4 ways’, not ALL ways, to generate leads and drive sales but I think it is a disservice to leave out one of the most effective lead generation tools out there – Cold Calling.

In the post, the author talked about the ‘buyer’s journey’ and focused on the different content needs for each step. I agree that content is needed to support each step in the journey and that the type of content is different for each step. I also think that Cold Calling is an invaluable addition to the mix!

Here are my thoughts on how Cold Calling contributes to each step of the buyer’s journey.

Step 1: Awareness – where we want to establish credibility

Having a set Cold Calling cadence where you reach out to prospects on a regular basis can definitely help establish your credibility and build trust.

And delivering ‘content’ via the human voice trumps any graphic or digital delivery method for establishing credibility and gaining trust.

Step 2: Consideration – where we need to define our Unique Selling Proposition (USP) and how we differ from the competition

I would argue that since most people aren’t bothering to make the effort to Cold Call, picking up the phone and having live conversations sets you apart (makes you ‘unique’)!

I also recommend approaching the call as a ‘Conversation’ rather than as a sales call and that too will make you memorable.

Step 3: Decision: where the client has made the decision to purchase

This step actually occurs long after the Cold Calling stage. But getting to this point requires STARTING with a call to qualify the prospect (making sure they are a good fit) and laying the groundwork for a smooth transition to a successful close.

Step 4: Action: where the client takes action

Like Step 3, this final step is supported and facilitated by ensuring you have qualified leads to begin with. An effective Cold Caller will identify and qualify leads at the outset so they will more efficiently move to and through your funnel.

So, when you are looking for ‘Lead Generation’, definitely start with a strong Cold Calling plan. An effective cold caller will properly and professionally represent your brand, ask the questions needed to determine if the prospect is a good fit for your product or services and will actively LISTEN to the responses to identify pain points and extract the information you need to streamline the path from appointment, through consideration and decision, to close.

Need help getting YOUR Cold Callers up to speed? We can help. Or better yet, we can make your Cold Calls for you!

Email me at leads@oneofakindsales.com or give us a call at 908.879.2911 to learn more about how our Cold Calling Services can set the appointments you need to get more prospects into YOUR funnel and started on their Customer Journey with YOU!