Ahhh summer! While some are already in the water at La Madrague, singing Brigitte Bardot at the top of their lungs, others are preparing to be overwhelmed by a mountain of Out Of Office (OOO) e-mails.
Your prospects are nowhere to be seen, and your phone is silent, as if it had decided to take a vacation too!
August, that famous summer month, is often a dead month for commercial prospecting in Europe. Even the most prolific salespeople are not immune to the summer doldrums. This makes prospecting even more complex.
Whatif summer was actually a real opportunity to boost your sales prospecting?
We've put together a list of tips to help you avoid drowning under the wave - not of the Basque coast, but of OOO messages.
Of course, this can be discouraging, but let's not waste our time dwelling on things we can't control, such as automatic responses or slow returns.
Instead, let's focus on what we can do.
During your summer canvassing, you're bound to receive e-mails like these. And that's probably the best thing:
Even if immediate responses are slow in coming, don't underestimate the usefulness of Out Of Office (OOO) messages in your prospecting efforts, as they are goldmines of information:
In these messages, you can obtain the direct numbers of your prospects, information that your prospecting tools may not have been able to unearth. Take advantage of this opportunity to enrich your database and make direct contact with your prospects.
OOO responses can provide you with valuable information such as the e-mail addresses and names of your prospects' colleagues, direct reports or superiors. This information enables you to better understand the structure of their business and identify key people with whom you could interact.
OOO messages can contain clues about your prospects' interests, future availability or even the projects they're working on. By exploiting this information, you can personalize your future approaches and demonstrate that you are attentive to their specific needs.
Make a note of the person's return date and follow up three or four days after that date. It's better to wait so as not to find yourself lost in the middle of hundreds of e-mails received during the vacations, which your prospect will delete with a click when he or she returns. Send a message like "Hello X, I hope you had a good vacation...".
And above all, take care of the subject line, when your prospects start sorting through the mail, your mail will be more likely to go in the garbage can if your subject line isn't personalized, or even worse... the "read later" folder that they never read (in all transparency 🤭).
We agree, this period of slowdown isn't necessarily the best time to approach new prospects.
So let's take a look at last month's unsuccessful opportunities. Don't let them slip through your fingers! Go back to those leads, follow them up with a heartfelt message, because who knows, maybe they're ready to take the plunge this time. And don't forget those prospects who asked for a follow-up in the third quarter. Remember to stay on top of these deadlines, because it could well be the perfect time to knock on their door!
A clever little trick: customers who change jobs. 35% of people change jobs every year. Yes, that's quite a percentage, and it means you can quickly find champions for your product among these newcomers. These guys are already familiar with your solution, so they're more open to a conversation. Don't hesitate to get in touch!
Another tip: revisit lost opportunities. Yes, you heard me right! Go digging through your CRM and pull out those leads that didn't pan out because of timing, budget or other reasons. Time passes, circumstances change, and who knows, now might be a good time to re-book a demo.
Now let's talk about no-shows. Yes, some prospects just don't show up - frustrating, I admit. But that's no reason to let them down!
Simply add them to your no-show sequence. And then be direct in your message. Make it clear that you're not forgetting them, but that you want to know if it's just a question of timing, or if they've simply changed their mind. A little reminder never hurts!
Let's face it: it's often a challenge to completely switch off during the vacations.
We all have our smartphones or tablets close at hand, just for a quick glance at our e-mails or, above all, our social networks. And do you know what? Your prospects are in the same boat!
They can't help but stay connected, for fear of missing something important or that the world is spinning without them. As a result, they regularly go on social networks to keep up to date. Social networks also enable them to keep tabs on what's going on with their customers and partners.
That's when it gets really interesting for your sales prospecting! During the summer months, news feeds are less crowded, so you might as well take advantage of the opportunity to make a little space for yourself in the sun.
How do you do that? Well, by relaying your articles - and other valuable content - on your social networks. In this way, you educate your prospects while positioning yourself as a visible, accessible and recognized expert in your field.
This is the time to shine on social networks, to light your prospects' way with your expertise and show them that you're the person they're looking for to solve their problems.
A slowdown in business activity doesn't mean a prolonged break in the sun... Take this opportunity to take stock of the past year and the year to come!
Now is the time to implement winning strategies to boost your sales.
Why take stock at this time of year? Simple: it's the time of year when business activity slows down in every company.
As a result, you have more time to focus on internal issues and ask questions like: what can we improve in the short term in terms of organization, CRM or tools to maximize our sales results and boost customer satisfaction?
Sales, your mission, if you accept it, is to win over new customers. Account managers, your role is to retain existing customers. The manager, on the other hand, must ask himself an important question: are our sales and account managers working hand in hand for the good of our customers?
Summer is the ideal time to think about implementing a sales enablement strategy. sales enablement strategy.
Developing your skills is a long-term process. Take advantage of this downturn to be proactive, by listening to calls to identify the practices of top performers, and draw inspiration from them! Sharing best practices is a formidable (and necessary) lever for boosting sales performance.
Choose a theme, such as"How best to deal with objections?"
Withconversational intelligence, it is now easy to identify topics in the midst of a large number of customer interactions, making training much easier.
Keep going, it's the home stretch!
Reduced activity doesn't necessarily mean depressed sales.
This period of slowdown is a real opportunity to prospect in a slightly different way, to take stock, to audit existing processes and tools, but above all to train!
That's it for our tips on staying motivated in August.
And for the daredevils who already want to prepare for back-to-school, sign up for our newsletter- we've got some serious surprises coming up. 🎁