4 ways to increase sales during COVID-19 without spending more on marketing
PUBLISHED: 17:43 11 June 2020 | UPDATED: 17:59 11 June 2020
Kieren O’Connor, CEO of Growth Stream, has been the driving force behind the disruptive sales consultancy business which has successfully generated £10 million in additional revenue for its clients to date.
We spoke to Kieren about what businesses can do to stay ahead in challenging times and why they need to ‘stop burying their heads in the sand’ when it comes to sales.
“The biggest challenge we’re seeing our clients face during the coronavirus pandemic is the reduction of budget for lead generation and marketing spend. With marketing budgets slashed, this means they need to get more revenue from the leads they are currently generating,” said Kieren.
According to Kieren, Growth Stream is ‘well placed to overcome this problem for its clients through becoming an extension of their sales teams’. Here he explains the ‘4-pillar’ process.
“Without a valid, functional structure in place, your business won’t flourish,” explains Kieren.
The ﬁrst part of the Growth Stream process looks in detail at every aspect of a sales team’s working day – from lead to opportunity implementation, call rate and the time taken from leads arriving to the potential client being called.
“We take all of the available data, break it down and use it to create a new, viable structure that optimises the eﬃciency and time management of the sales agents, allowing them to focus on what they need to do by illustrating how time should be their ally and not their enemy,” said Kieren.
If you’re not sure if you have the right structure in place Kieren advises asking yourself the following questions – if the answer is ‘no’ then you need to resolve putting the right structure in place.
- Do you currently have a clear daily structure in place that works alongside the daily targets and goals set by the business?
- Are you optimising each day and are you proactively going after prospects?
2. Touchpoint process
Do you currently have a clear touchpoint process in place where the sales team handles each lead effectively to give themselves the best chance to convert them?
“Touchpoint is about how many times an agent needs to ‘touch’, or reach out to a lead to get hold of them in order to convert them into an opportunity.
“We look at what is the current conversion rate from lead to opportunity and then the closure reasons and where improvements need to be made”, said Kieren.
Key questions to ask:
- How are your sales team handling leads?
- How many leads are you closing for unable to contact?
- Do you have a clear touchpoint process in place?
3. Follow up
“Follow up is exactly what it says it is. It’s about effectively following up any leads and clients in order to secure their business for your business.
“We examine how your sales team currently follows up by looking at the sales pipeline and understanding how long each deal is at each stage in the pipeline, go through how they follow up and if that matches expectations,” said Kieren.
“The industry average in 2019 states that ‘it took on average 5 follow ups to close a deal’.”
It’s about making sure that the numbers of follow up calls needed to close any potential deal are used properly and that an active, energetic and emphatic follow up system is in place in order for the sales agent to succeed and, ultimately, help their client.
Kieren’s tips for follow up are:
- Do you book the next step after a meeting/demonstration phone call for a specific time and day?
- Do you send a calendar invite and a recap email?
4. Follow back
This is focused around the deals that are slower to close, from 3-6 months or 12-18 month deals or longer.
Kieren explains: “A typical scenario is you’re in ‘pole position’ for a sale and everything is going right but then something happens which is out of your control such as; budgetary restraints, internal company issues, other priorities take over or the person you’ve been dealing with leaves the company.”
In order to achieve an effective follow back technique, Kieren advises asking yourself:
- How many potential deals are being closed or lost due to no longer interested?
- When was the last time your business implemented a pipeline review?
KIEREN’S BONUS TIP
“If you’re looking at how you can increase conversation rates right now here is a simple tip.
“In your CRM system put together a report over the last 6,12,18 months of all closed lost reasons to understand why you are currently losing deals. This could be price, competition etc. but this will give you the data to understand where you can start to increase your conversation rate right now.
“Then put together a script for every single objection you’ve had, start to provide weekly training and roleplay and monitor closure reasons on a daily basis - you will see your conversation rate increase by a minimum of 10%.”
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