Recession-Proof Selling

13 Mar

The U.S. economy is in a funk. Have your phones stopped ringing yet? The “R” word–recession–is back. Housing starts are falling, the consumer price index keeps jumping, the stock market is like a roller coaster, massive layoffs occur daily, and renowned companies are declaring bankruptcy. The Fed has lowered its projection for economic growth. Is it 2001 all over again?

How do you tackle economic uncertainty? Cut advertising, travel, training, marketing, and discretionary expense line items? Cut purchasing? Ouch! The pipeline starts to dry up and the anxiety level goes through the roof. Many people think that since there’s nothing they can do, they should just do nothing. But “nothing” is futile thinking.

What if you could reach your market without hard costs–no marketing budget, no direct mail budget, no advertising budget, no trade show budget? The only budget you need to worry about is your “Time & Referrals” budget–simply your time…your time to ask for referrals!

You know about referrals. When a qualified prospect is referred to us, we get a new client a minimum of 50 percent of the time and typically between 70 and 90 percent of the time. Additionally, we are pre-sold, our selling time decreases, we have credibility, and we ace out the competition. There is no other business-development process that can claim these results. Results are the only thing that matters.

Here are five “Killer Steps” to accelerate your sales in a lagging economy, retain your loyal customers, and attract new business without increasing your cost of sales.

1. Broaden Your Perspective
What business are you in? Redefine and reinvent yourself. Is Starbuck’s in the coffee business or the people business? Build new alliances and consider alternate distribution channels. Don’t go solo. Assemble a group of advisors and get their input and creative ideas.

2. Be Nimble and Innovative
You’ll never have all the facts. Make quick decisions. Be fearless and make tough choices. Create new uses for your products. Why not a new business model?

3. Dazzle Your Current Customers
Your current customers need care and feeding. Don’t ignore them at the expense of new business, because they are your best source for new business.

4. Prioritize Wisely
The most important activity for any salesperson is to do what’s “closest to cash” the first thing every single day-whether it’s following up with a prospect, writing a proposal, or closing a deal.

5. Become an Expert
Companies hire experts because they can’t afford to make mistakes. Position your company as the expert with a specific product or in a specific market niche.

Bottom line: Sell more with higher margins, accelerate your “win” ratio, and take business away from the competition.

4 Responses to “Recession-Proof Selling”

  1. Patricia Weber March 15, 2008 at 11:13 am #

    In my 30 years of selling the key thing that ever affected me was listening to people that there WAS a recession. These times rarely affected my selling results. To your point three, dazzle your current customers, I love it. And just along with that would be to take care of yourself. If what you are doing doesn’t keep your sales at least level during talk of a recession, then do something else.

    Patricia Weber
    Sales Accelerator Coach for the Introvert, Shy and Just Plain Reluctant
    http://patriciaweber.blogspot.com/

  2. Patricia Weber March 15, 2008 at 11:14 am #

    In my 30 years of selling the key thing that ever affected me was listening to people that there WAS a recession. These R talk times rarely affected my selling results. To your point three, dazzle your current customers, I love it. And just along with that would be to take care of yourself. If what you are doing doesn’t keep your sales at least level during talk of a recession, then do something else.

    Patricia Weber
    Sales Accelerator Coach for the Introvert, Shy and Just Plain Reluctant
    http://patriciaweber.blogspot.com/

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Inquisix - Selling by Referrals » Blog Archive » Recession Proof Marketing - March 13, 2008

    […] Inquisix Blog – Accelerate your sales cycle thru trusted referrals < Back to Blog | Recession Proof Marketing « Recession-Proof Selling […]

  2. Inquisix - Selling by Referrals » Blog Archive » 8 Steps to Recession-Proof Your Business - June 25, 2008

    […] continue the theme of our March 2008 posting on Recession-Proof Selling, here are three more steps to accelerate your sales, retain your loyal customers and attract new […]

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