Ask any salesperson out there, there is a lot to do each day. From calls to emails to meetings, the daily schedule of a salesperson can be pretty hectic. So much so, that often salespeople feel like all they are doing is chasing a never-ending stream of tasks, but they can never really catch up, or get ahead of the work.
Sales productivity is, in the end, all about how effectively your time is used as it relates to closing sales. A salesperson certainly needs to spend a good amount of time talking and meeting with prospects, however, there needs to be a balance between that and administrative/prep work. It’s all about being efficient with each task and making sure you are spending your time wisely.
So in the spirit of looking ahead, and finding little things that can make a big difference, we have put together a list of some key tips that can help just about any salesperson. No matter your industry, from Aerospace to Merchant Cash Advance, these 6 tips should help any sales rep increase productivity and get a better handle on their workload.
1. Productivity On the Go
Depending on your industry, you may be frequently traveling for customer meetings and can’t easily sit down in front of a computer. Having the right tools to stay connected, and be productive in between meetings, and without the need of a computer can seriously boost your efficiency. The right tools, such as Salesforce 1, can connect your CRM and your phone, allowing you to stay on top of your pipeline and projects from just about anywhere.
2. Avoid Distractions
Being 100% productive all the time is not only impossible, but it can take a bit of the joy out of your job. We all need a few minutes from time to time to get up, stretch, make idle chat around the water cooler. However, too many distractions can have a bigger negative impact than you think. I fact it can take up to 25 minutes to get your focus back after a big distraction. Making better habits here is the key. When you need to really focus, little things like putting your phone on silent, putting in headphones and setting your internal messenger to “busy” can keep you in the zone and productive.
3. Manage Your Emails Better
Business professionals receive an average of 85 emails per day (that’s almost 600 emails each week!) and they spend more than 1/3 of work time reading, organizing, and replying to emails.
If you don’t have time to thoroughly read ever email in your inbox, chances are the people you are emailing don’t either. So when writing emails, keep it short and concise. Get to the point, have a goal for each email, and leave the recipient with a clear call to action or next step.
And when it comes to fighting with that overfull inbox, don’t let yourself chase every new email that comes in. If possible, give yourself a few designated times during the day to just respond to emails. This will keep you focused during the day, and you be more efficient when it comes time to respond.
4. Improve Your Follow Through
Talking to someone once or twice might seem like enough, but 80% of sales require 5 follow-up calls after the meeting and 44% of sales reps give up after 1 follow-up. Stay persistent and don’t give up after a few failed attempts. Or, if your sales team is stretched a bit too thin, consider an AI sales assistant that can be directly integrated to your CRM and help lighten the load.
5. Qualify Prospects Better
Nothing can be more deflating that chasing around prospects that turn out to be a bad match. Taking an extra 15 minutes for qualifying that lead can save you hours in the future. The more information you get at the beginning, the better.
If your marketing team has access to lead scoring and engagement tools, you can further improve your prospect qualifying. Lead qualifying and scoring automation, like those available through Pardot, can give you smart rules to define who is a good lead and who isn’t. The automation runs in the background, taking care of a large portion of the prospecting legwork.
Then you get notified when your prospects reach a certain score threshold—so that you can follow up with people who are more likely to convert.
6. Automate Your CRM
If you aren’t automation as many procedures as possible, you are going to fall behind. With today’s rapidly evolving technologies, smart automation is everywhere, and all of the best CRM’s, especially Salesforce, are taking advantage. Automation can trigger tasks, events, or approvals while artificial intelligence can go one step further by recommending actions, uncovering the right insights (automatically), and making sure you don’t miss any important details.
-Ryan and the CloudMyBiz team