We are in an economic slowdown. If you have not felt it yet, you will in 2017…I GUARANTEE IT. How can I predict this? Because we finance truckers, ($150,000,000+ per year of them) and they carry the freight that drives the American economy. Our clients are slow and getting slower, and that means people are not buying as much. I have seen this pattern 3 times in my 21 years in business, and it is repeating itself now. What makes my perspective unique, is that trucking is a leading indicator, therefore, I get my information about 6 months before most other industries begin to feel it. The question is will you expand or contract? In my world, you are either growing or dying, so we will expand.
Here are my 6 UP’S program to help you and your entire team get through any economic condition and thrive.
- Skill up – Who are you listening too? What books are you reading? What training videos are you watching? The best in any industry understand the importance of getting better and learning new skills. Constantly be on the lookout for new ways to be learning.
- Follow up – Without question, the single greatest activity you can do to make more sales is to follow up more. Most salespeople stop after the second follow up call, yet data tells us that it takes 7 or more follow ups to make a sale. Most people stop following up way to early. Remember, follow up comes in many different methods today. Phone, email, text, video, links, articles, or a simple handwritten card are all wonderful ways to follow up with your prospect or client.
- Leverage up – Who do you know who knows your prospect? Leverage their relationship to help you get in front of the proper decision maker. In the old days it was called a Rolodex. Today it is called a lot of things, but LinkedIn is a great place to start.
- Offer up – Weak salespeople are “takers”. Great salespeople are “givers”. Constantly be giving your prospects and clients information. Have you read an article that might be interesting to them? Great…email OR snail mail (yes, I said snail mail) to your clients with a note that says, “when I read this, I thought of you.” During your next follow up, reference the article and the content within it. Always be giving ideas, concepts and information along the path to a sale.
- Ask Up – “Never assume…always ask” is something that my sales team hears every day from me. Many salespeople, begin to make assumptions vs simply asking the prospect more questions. This is a trap the many salespeople fall into around month 3. They listen to everyone and ask a ton of questions in the first 60 days of any new venture, and success starts to trickle in for them. Then…around month 3, they stop asking and start assuming and sales plummet. Even if you know the answer, make sure to ask the prospect questions that confirm your assumption. Assuming answers will cost you deals.
- Close ‘em up – ASK FOR THE SALE. Too often salespeople think the customer has received enough information to make their buying decision. Maybe the customer has…but if you don’t ask for the sale you will never know. Asking for the sale is part of the closing process but it is not the end of the sale. If you ask for the close and the customer says, not…keep questioning to better determine their needs, and ask for the close again.
- BONUS UP: PLAY UP…NEVER PLAY DOWN. Never ever, play down…always play up. This means challenge yourself. Never feel comfortable because you beat someone who ranks below you. Be challenged to play up and beat the person ahead of you.
These tips have served me well, and they will serve you well if you put them into place TODAY.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Matt Manero is the Founder and President of Commercial Fleet Financing, Inc. (CFF) located in Dallas, TX. CFF is celebrating its 21st year in business and provides financing for commercial fleet vehicles such as box trucks, cargo vans, big rigs, tow trucks, dump trucks and construction equipment. CFF is a 3-time winner of the 2014, 2015 and 2016 Inc. Magazine Top 500/5000 Fastest Growing Private Companies in America. Matt has helped dozens of employees and thousands of small business owners move closer to the money they deserve. He is the author of, “The Grit”, and his forthcoming book, “I NEED MORE MONEY” will be out in 2017. Learn more at www.cffnationwide.com or call 972.247.8447