(Read the last paragraph first, then come back here…we’ll wait…it’s important)
Okay, good, let’s go…
If you took a peek at your latest PnL, you might be freaking out over your numbers and looking for a way to boost your VoIP/UC sales in order to finish both the quarter and the year strong(er).
Now, I’ve often heard from sales reps that November and December are ‘dead’ months. However, as a sales rep myself and a sales manager, I’ve often had my best sales months in December which came from great ideas from higher up. Let’s look at some of these and see if we can jump-start your brain into some good end-of-year sales ideas for your VoIP/UCaaS business.
- End-of-Year Promotions. This is an easy one. Find a promotion you can put out there. Think of two segments: existing customers and prospects. For existing customers, you want to get them to do some upgrades, to either services or hardware. Consider offering deferred payments or discounts for those. Do the same with new prospects. You can often entice these prospects to jump on board by offering great trade-in deals for existing hardware or by offering deferred payments for installation until next year.
- Re-energizing old opportunities. Have each rep go back through those closed-lost and closed-no response opportunities and see if there’s anything out there that can be re-energized. Really, this should be part of any good rep’s monthly activities, but it often becomes lower priority. Also, try to do an analysis of all the old opportunities and see if there was something in common, like price, desired features, embedded/old equipment, etc. You might find something you’re willing to offer them to get them to move before year’s end.
- Leveraging budgets and tax laws. Budgets are fun this time of year. Many companies whose fiscal budgets match the calendar year will be doing two things: spending money (use it or lose it money) or planning new money for 2018. This can be a great way in the door: “Are you making budget decisions right now? Let me help!” Also, make sure you know your tax laws. Talk to your CPA or CFO and see if any capital spending benefits will be expiring soon.
- Go back to the well. Your customer already love you. Show them ‘thanks’ by offering some awesome, cheap upgrades. Offer to add IM or presence or call center features at a great rate. Did you release a new feature or device this year? Remind ’em! One announcement to your customers would yield a pretty good holiday bump.
- Sales competition. Given that I’m not your typical rah-rah type of sales manager or rep, I’m not a huge fan of cold calling or door-knocking blitz competitions. However, the holiday season can actually be a good time to get a hold of those decision-makers because everybody else is out of the office. So, it can be a really good time to pick up the phone or walk in the door, especially early in the day. That said, you can also just create a competition based on upgrades, specific services, or most deals closed on those dormant opportunities. Get creative and have fun!
Don’t let the holidays stall your sales or rain on your annual target numbers. Sit down with your team (or your Pitch consultant!) and brainstorm some ideas to give your end-of-year sales a shot in the arm.
And remember the good old Rule of 78, which means the stronger you start off 2018 in January, the better your year is likely to be overall. That means, a good end-of-year push for sales in 2017 can have a huge impact on 2018.