The Numbers Game/1

In my years as a salesman, sales manager and business owner, one of the most important methods of measuring sales activity, has always been to monitor the pipeline process.

Why?

Because I had learned for years of experience that a given level of activity would invariably produce a given level of sales.

Of course - results from the same level of activity will increase as the salesperson becomes more skilful. Sales efficiency will always increase with improvements in skills knowledge and attitude.

If the performance of my sales people dipped, it was always worth checking the pipeline. Usually the problem would be obvious - a lack of pipeline process activity(appropriate activity) in earlier months resulted in poor results in later months.

So…

What are the process activities in your pipeline?

What needs to be done
now to feed the pipeline process (and create sales) for next month, or the month after.

Because successful sales activity really only consists of two things:

  1. Communicating with enough people (The numbers game).
  2. Communicating with them in a consistent and organised way.

How well do your salespeople feed the sales pipeline (on a daily basis) to ensure that there are enough potential sales coming through the pipeline.

Something to think about?
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When is giving paper away good for business?

Special stocks - give them away!

One of the uglier characteristics of many of the print businesses that I visit is the section of the stock room that contains customers special order stocks. These are stocks that the printer would never normally carry, but at some time or other has ordered for a specific customer’s job.

The temptation (of course) is to print the job, then put any left over stock on the shelf thinking “I’ll sell that to someone else”, and (also of course) you almost never do.

Hopefully, the customer will be paying for all the stock that was ordered anyway. So instead of cluttering up the stock room with odds and ends that will never be sold - why not do this…

Offer the customer a deal that will use all of the stock. This is only common sense, and will enhance you reputation with the customer.

Or - If the order was for letterheads, offer the customer a deal on compliment slips printed at the same time.

Or - Offer the customer a quantity of plain continuation sheets for “free”!

Or - Offer the customer some “free” jotter pads - or anything else you can think of - made from the surplus stock.

Any of the above could be offered at little or no cost to you. Doing so would certainly help to improve your relationship with the customer…

…and just think of the space you’d save!
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