At Asher Strategies sales training seminars, we like to marry classic, tried-and-true sales techniques with cutting edge information to ensure attendees get as many tools to boost revenue as possible. In addition to our proprietary curriculum, we curate the best data from research papers, business magazines, marketing websites, and other leading sales professionals for a balanced picture.
With that being said, for today’s post I decided to share a few great tidbits you can use to increase your revenue in a very short time.
1. Work for your prospects, not just your customers
Alex Goldfayn of Evangelist Marketing Institute tweeted this gem recently:
I work for my prospects, even if they don’t know me yet, because they would benefit greatly from working with me. https://t.co/WRjZjix7bD
— Alex Goldfayn (@alexgoldfayn) February 20, 2017
One excellent way to build trust with a prospect company is to consider it a client already, and do some work on its behalf. This could mean preparing a report showing how it compares with the competition based on your market analysis, writing up a 10 step program for improving their website, preparing customized sales training seminars curriculums, or referring a few of your best clients.
You have to consider the potential ROI of your activities so that you are expending your valuable time and resources only on the very best prospects. However, you will find that if you are sincere in your actions and truly help before you get something in return, you will trigger what many sales training seminars and experts refer to as the Law of Reciprocity.
This law states that when you give something to someone, they tend to feel obligated to give something back. In other words, we all try to return favors. Give enough to build a good relationship over time, and you will eventually get something in return – even if it’s just the right to ask for an appointment with a decision maker.
Think about how you could transform your business by providing value to a few key accounts right now, rather than waiting for a closed deal which could take months to achieve.
2. Add more income streams
Very few companies can afford to be one-trick ponies. It pays to diversify your income streams. In an article in Entrepreneur, Shore Consulting Founder Jeff Shore calls this a revenue ladder, one of the key ingredients to his firm’s 400 percent growth rate in four years.
Shore has eight rungs on his revenue ladder, and he shares the caveat that, “If any one of those revenue sources is not strong enough to support our future growth goals, we kill it.”
A few tips for adding income streams:
- Additional income streams should make sense for your brand. If you sell high-end printers, and want to add, say, web design services – it probably makes more sense to run that as a subsidiary with a completely different brand name, website, marketing collateral, etc. This will reduce confusion and brand dilution.
- Don’t add too many different revenue streams at once. If you sell accounting software, you might add tax consulting services one quarter, a video training series on maximizing tax deductions the next, and a paid magazine subscription for accounting professionals the final quarter of the year. This way, you can focus your attention on each addition to maximize its chance to succeed.
- Avoid cannibalizing staff and resources from your main moneymakers to launch new products and services. Hire new people, or take only a select few from existing departments – or you could collapse them.
- Pay attention to which products and services where existing customers repeatedly request referrals. Could you develop your own offering and keep the sale in house? Or establish a profit sharing venture with your busiest referral partners?
3. Hire a few top guns using the APQ Sales Aptitude Assessment
One of the biggest coups sales managers can pull off is “stealing” a top performer with a large book of business from a competing firm. Most hiring managers know to be wary of any non-compete agreements their recruits might have signed, which would prevent them from bringing clients to their new firms. However, another factor to consider is whether the top performer really has what it takes to generate sales at a new company. In other words – do they possess a high sales aptitude?
Here is something that happens quite a bit: a “top” salesperson leaves a company only to fall flat on her face at her new firm. What this usually means is that they were “fed” the business through excellent marketing, support staff, or even nepotism at their prior company. Lacking the same setup at the new company, they struggle to drum up clients. For the new company, which probably paid a handsome signing bonus to acquire the talent, this can be an expensive disaster.
The best way we know to hire top guns with “the right stuff” to make it in most sales environments is to test them using a very specific exam: the Advanced Personality Questionnaire.
A refinement of the highly successful Craft Personality Questionnaire, the APQ tests compatibility for a variety of sales roles, from outside “sales hunters” to inside “farmers” to sales managers to customer service representatives. Only those who test compatible should be hired and participate in sales training seminars.
In the sample below, this test taker shows high compatibility for an outside sales position. However, several traits fall outside the idea range for the job. For example, “Interpersonal Trust” is in the yellow zone, and nearly red.
Fortunately, the APQ features several reports which provide more insight into these traits, including coaching tips to help the test taker s-t-r-e-t-c-h their personality into a more desirable range. Here you can see a few of the recommendations to help raise the “Interpersonal Trust” trait in the above test taker:
There are many more parts to the APQ, but above should give you an idea of its power. Imagine what it would do to your revenue if you hired a few top guns with provable natural talent as shown by the APQ – and then had them attend world-class sales training seminars to refine their skills, and backed this up with personal coaching. I can tell you that I have seen dramatic changes in companies who implement this exact prescription.
I hope the above tips inspire you to make some changes in your company which result in greater success. If you would like further help with your company’s revenue issues, please contact me.