Whether you’re just starting out in a new sales territory or you are trying to grow your current territory, there are a couple steps that guarantee success. Strategic planning and attention to customer relationships is key!
What’s the most invaluable asset to an outside sales rep? Time. In order to meet with the most customers and leads, you must have efficient time management. Make a strategic plan based on data analytics, mapping tools, and territory awareness. Nowadays, routing and mapping software can do a lot of this work for you automatically. Below are some tips to help you manage your time and examples of useful software to assist you in being efficient.
Step 1: Review your Sales Territory - If you want to optimize your sales territory, you must be knowledgeable about it. This includes knowing the location of your current customers on a map and how close or far they are from each other, along with daily traffic in your territory, what your customers’ storefronts look like, etc. Having this info willcut so much wasted time from your day off the bat, leaving you with more time to spend on your customer relationships.
Step 2: Delve Deep into Your Prospects - Now that you can visualize all your customers on a map and have a better idea of your sales territory, it’s time to get analytical. Knowing which customers to check-in with and when to visit them is key in optimizing your sales. A useful strategy is to rank your clients based on reliability and expected sales. Specifically, you should assess the potential of your clients in order to allocate your time most efficiently. Then, you can spend the most time with the most important clients and less time on the less reliable ones.
Step 3: Route Planning - After obtaining this information, you can strategically plan out routes between customers so you limit unnecessary travel time. In outside sales, travel time is the biggest obstacle to overcome. But, by taking a little time to plan a route and stick to it, travel time is no longer a problem. This is a huge step!
Step 4: Know Your Product & Be Persuasive - Once you have your schedule for the day, it’s all about closing that deal face-to-face. That’s what Outside Sales is all about, right? You’ve already done the hard part of prioritizing your clients and planning an efficient route to get to them. Now, it’s all about promoting your product and getting to know your clients! You want to build an emotional connection with your prospects by first identifying a problem they have that your product can fix. Focus on building trust and a sincere relationship, because these are the customers that will refer you to their friends and help grow your territory.
Step 5: After You Close That Deal - So, you’ve closed a deal with a prospect. That’s great,but now you want to grow your territory by finding new prospects. It may feel like you’ve sucked your territory dry, but there are methods you can employ to find leads you never even knew existed. One approach is to use your existing satisfied customers to help you out. Maybe host a client appreciation event for customers who have referred you to others. You can also offer up a special deal for clients that refer you to their friends. This way, you’re cultivating customer relationships but also encouraging lead generation.
These simple steps will surely increase your sales, but in order to make the most out of this advice, you must be willing to go above and beyond your routine. Think before you act. This means be strategic, informed, and plan ahead to ensure that you are using your time most effectively. This is easy with the help of the new technologies and routing softwares that are available. Badger Maps is a great option, as it is an all-in-one software that optimizes your routes, generates leads, and integrates with your CRM.
Start using these tactics today and you’ll see the unbelievable difference it can make in your outside sales career!