HAVE YOU COMPLETED YOUR PERSONAL 2016 SALES ACTION PLAN? It’s not too late!
6 Steps To Create Your Own Sales And Marketing Blueprint
A sales plan is a crucial tool for all salespeople, but few salespeople have or use one.
So, you’ve decided to elevate your game in 2016 —that’s great! But before you jump in with both feet, there are some key steps so that you don’t fall short. Even if you follow best practices, there will always be things that you can control (like your attitude and determination) and others that you can’t (such as the overall leadership of your sales organization, or market trends).
To set yourself up for a greater chance of success in sales and to implement your great ideas, you should at least create a basic sales and marketing action plan. It should include having a thorough conversation with your sales manager and colleagues about expectations, goals, sales targets and how you plan to achieve those goals through your individual marketing plans and efforts.
Your company should have a sales plan, and, if that’s the case, you should definitely make a point of learning and following it. And even if your company does have an overall sales plan in place, if you don’t have an individual sales plan, you’re missing an opportunity to succeed.
You could follow the SMART theory to assist in implementing your plan;
Specific: What, where and how? A specific goal is distinct, clear and defines as much of your goal as possible.
Measurable: How many and by when? Keeping you on track and lets you know when your goals are complete or needs attention.
Attainable: Your goals must be realistic and practical to your business. Based on available resources, knowledge and a timeframe.
Relevant: Is the goal consistent with your other goals and your organisational goals. Will the goals you set aid you in achieving your long term or annual goal?
Time Bound: Weekly, monthly, annually. There must be time frame for completion or achieving your goal.
Here are 6 minimum steps that I use to set-up my sales action plan to achieve my monthly and annual sales targets:
Your individual sales plan is based on your personal goals, not just the sales target that is handed out to you by your manager as your piece of the overall organizational sales pie. Your personal sales plan will serve as a constant reference point that will help to keep you motivated and focused. It should be short, simple and to the point, and it should start with your sales forecast or sales target. Then you need to create a detailed breakdown of the forecast—of the sales goals you plan to achieve by month, annually, by customer count and by product.
Your sales plan should also include two major components: the sales strategy (the overall plan necessary to accomplish your goals) and sales tactics (the specific actions and steps needed to execute the plan).
A sales plan is basically your own strategic and tactical blueprint for achieving or exceeding your sales quotas, with all types of clients; therefore, your personal sales plan should include strategies and tactics for acquiring new business, as well as growing your existing book of business.
Before you set out to reinvent the wheel and to start or improve on a personal sales and marketing plan, it’s most important to assess the current situation to know what you already have, if anything, as a foundation from which to build. Then develop a strategy for achieving your sales plan, and follow that by identifying specific tactics that will enable you to deliver the results you are looking for. Implementing a well thought out, comprehensive sales plan in this way will differentiate you from most salespeople out there, who just jump into selling without any concerted plan.
Having a detailed sales plan and tracking your progress against it gives you strategic control of your own destiny week to week, and it allows you to remain in control in the long term instead of winging it and playing catch up. To be successful, every sales and marketing plan must include a detailed timeline to achieve each tactic set forth.
You should also know your prospect and closing ratios based on how many out of every ten leads convert to customers, and ultimately per every one hundred. If you don’t know your prospect and closing ratios, you should immediately select a test period to research them. Start by monitoring your own prospecting and sales activity daily, for a month. How many prospects are you attracting each day from all sources? What percentage of those prospects are you converting each day for a total of closed sales at the end of a sales month?
|1. After contacting 100 potential customers by phone, email, mailings, in person or by any prospecting means, how many (what percentage) of prospects would result ________?|
|2. How many (what percentage) could be identified as hot leads________?|
|3. How many (what percentage) would you close actual sales with________?|
Without action, a plan is merely a dream! Your marketing plan contains the tactics and promotions that will drive results, so that you can achieve your sales targets. Your marketing game plan may include being active on social media (such as starting or using your own Facebook or LinkedIn page), publishing a monthly or quarterly newsletter, and advertising in local community magazines or papers. You should offer a basic referral fee to your family and friends to encourage them to refer business to you and help to grow your network. The bottom line here is to do anything you can to build your own portfolio of potential clients; don’t just wait for sales calls or prospects to walk through the door.
Finally after you’ve set up your sales and marketing plan, it’s important to have Use a contact management tool to record and track your prospecting and follow-up activities with clients. It’s impossible for you to keep track of all the details of each client. A good CM tool will prompt you with a daily work plan; enter all your prospects diligently and the CM tool will do the rest.
To recap, your successful sales and marketing action plan works together with a good CM system. Establishing your sales and marketing plan is the first major step but it must be backed up by data. Most sales organization should have a CM system tailored for their specific client base designed to prompt and remind their sales teams to do systematic follow up with all the prospects obtained from the sales plan.
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