New year, new sales goals.
Welcome back to the office. If you’re feeling a little overwhelmed with your sales goals for 2019, you’re not alone. But let’s face it, it’s never too late to get your head around a plan for the new year. Here are 16 sales tips to help you take advantage of your clean slate, set yourself up for success, and ensure that this year is your best year ever.
1. Start managing your time better
We’ve all heard the saying “time is money”; this is especially true for salespeople. Time management is one of the most challenging disciplines for salespeople to master because they always have several essential tasks competing for their attention at once. Short of adding hours to the day, here are a few solid time management hacks that’ll tell you how sales reps can effectively manage their days, months, and weeks, and can develop the habit of being proactive and overachieve results with ease.
2. Tide over sales objections
Most salespeople consider objections to be a bad thing, but that might lead to missing the bigger picture. When a prospect raises an objection, it isn’t necessarily bad. In fact, someone bringing up an objection means that you have a chance to find an answer for them. Prospects who are completely uninterested in buying your product would not waste their time objecting. Here are nine common sales objections salespeople face, and some ways in which you can successfully handle them and turn them into an opportunity for a sale.
3. Write winning sales proposals
Persuading people to do business with you can be tricky. It’s harder still when you’re not in the room, and you’re relying on a written sales proposal to secure a deal. How can you write winning sales proposals that will make them feel that working with you is the best way forward? Here’s a handy guide.
4. Optimize your sales process
Whether you are a large company or a small business, optimizing sales process takes a lot of work. It is one of the most important things your sales organization can design, build, and optimize. A well-defined sales process can be the difference between high-performing and underperforming sales organizations. In this post, we present four best practices used by high-growth companies when designing their sales processes.
5. Manage your sales pipeline better
In 2018, you probably used a few marketing strategies, ran successful campaigns, and did all that you could to load your sales pipeline with maximum deals. But what’s next? Do you know if the deals are converting or slipping through the cracks? If you want to increase your conversions, you need to manage your sales pipeline efficiently. To help you out, here are some tips on managing your sales pipeline better in 2019.
6. Make more effective sales calls
Sales calls aren’t always easy. However, it can be the fastest way to build a sales pipeline. And mastering it can be tremendously rewarding, lucrative, and exciting. Creating the right call flow is arguably one of the most important keys to successful selling. Here’s how you can do it.
7. Craft that perfect sales email
As a salesperson, you probably spend more than a fourth of your workday in your email inbox, making a crucial part of your sales communication. Now wouldn’t it be great if you could write emails that get read all the time? And wouldn’t it be even better if you could write sales emails that not only get read but also receive responses every time? Sounds like a dream, doesn’t it? But with over 150 billion business emails being sent around the world daily, the chances of all of the above happening are pretty slim. Here are a few simple tips on how you can make your sales emails stand out and swing the odds in your favor.
8. Create a successful sales cadence
One of the most important aspects of outbound sales development is creating the sales cadence. Whether you are building a sales cadence for your new SDR team or refining the processes for an existing team, there are a few different types of sales activities to consider. If you’re looking to create a successful sales cadence, look no further than this.
9. Prepare better and crush those sales meetings
The average salesperson spends 19% of his/her time on sales meetings. With this much time spent on sales meetings, you’re obviously closing deals left, right, and center, right? Unfortunately, that isn’t always the case. According to research by Marketing Wizdom, only one in 50 deals is closed upon the first meeting. So, it is only natural that you should make the most of every sales meeting that you can get. The next time you set up a sales meeting, here are some simple things that you can do instead of taking a fly-by-the-seat-of-the-pants approach.
10. Optimize your LinkedIn profile for sales
It wasn’t too long ago when the only way to generate new sales leads was to pick up the phone book, find a local business, and then call them to pitch your services. The internet, however, has changed everything. With the emergence of social selling, business relationships are moving out of the conference rooms and into social networks. In conjunction with other inbound sales tactics, your social profiles can make or break a deal. Optimizing your LinkedIn profile is the first step towards successful social selling in the digital age. If you’re wondering where to begin, we’ve got your back.
11. Learn more by reading sales books
It’s important that you dedicate yourself to continuous learning and self-development, especially when it comes to sales success. Reading sales books can help expedite your mastery of sales and improve all aspects of your sales techniques. Here is a comprehensive list of the best sales books every sales rep should read. These books are classics and can help make you a better salesperson.
12. Make the most of your commute by listening to sales podcasts
The average American spends 25.4 minutes commuting to work each day. Collectively, that’s a mind-blowing 29.6 billion hours spent on fighting traffic or waiting for the bus. Sales podcasts are a great way to learn from someone else’s experience and make that time count. Here’s a great list of sales podcasts that you can listen to, instead of humming along to the radio or trying to beat that candy crush score during your commute.
13. Motivate your sales teams with TED Talks
Viewed regularly by millions across the globe, TED Talks bring valuable new perspectives to the table. If you’re a sales leader, the beginning of the year is the best time to motivate your sales team. If you’re looking to do that, you don’t want to miss the Top 5 TED talks for salespeople.
14. Stay on top of your game by following sales influencers on LinkedIn
LinkedIn is a great platform to gather the latest techniques and best practices in sales from top sales influencers. From bestselling authors to sales coaches, these influencers have a goldmine of knowledge to share on day-to-day sales tactics, objection handling, building confidence, understanding the latest sales tools, trends, and more. If you are trying to become a better sales professional in 2019, these are the sales influencers you should be following.
15. Improve your sales strategy by reading sales blogs
As a salesperson looking to stay on top of your game, you need to constantly be aware of new strategies, tips and tricks, and tools that you can add to your sales arsenal. Whether you are looking for strategies on how to optimize your sales process or actionable advice on how to generate more leads, reading sales blogs is a great way to collate great ideas and actionable tactics. Here’s a curated list of sales blogs for you to get started with.
The beginning of each year brings new opportunities for you to shift your mindset and take your game to the next level. Let’s start 2019 right.
Cover image by Anandh Ravichandran.