Business Artikel

Sales Eye - 'Tis the Season (Dec 13th, 2004)



'Tis the Season

13th December 2004


It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas everywhere you go.


Traditionally, for many, this is the time of year to start winding down, to reflect on the year's performance and finalize plans for next year's sales strategy. We say: "Bah Humbug!" Don't miss this golden opportunity. While getting customers to make decisions during the holidays is sometimes harder than it is for Santa to fit down a chimney, here are some helpful hints and ideas that you and your company can use to push along the decision-making process.


1. Special holiday promotion

Make a special holiday offer that is only good if purchased before the end of the year. Offer your product or service at a special discount so the client can clearly see that they will lose money if they delay in making a decision. And make sure your sales reps call their entire client list to tell them about it.


2. December buyers are more serious

In many industries 'closing rates' are highest during the holiday season. Take, for example, sales of homes- there may not be as many buyers out there, but there are not as many sellers either. The buyers who are looking on the market are serious and are ready to make a decision.


3. End of the year budgets

Every year about this time, we get a few dream calls. Our clients, who have been happy with our service, call to inform us that they have to use up their budget or they will lose it. This requires fast action and immediate meetings with your client. Don't just make them a random offer to help them spend their money. Instead, intelligently discuss their upcoming plans for the first quarter of 2005 and see if you can recommend something that will help them use their money wisely.


4. Offer something free

In the spirit of Christmas, offer something free to your clients with each purchase. It doesn't have to be too expensive, but sometimes a free gift is perceived at a higher value than just another discount. Banks are the leaders in this area, with constant year-round giveaways to try and convert individual customers to use their services.


5. Give it away

Something as simple as offering fast, free delivery during the holidays might convince someone to buy. Again, perceived value for the client with the added value of convenience.


6. Buy now, pay later

Using the same philosophy as credit cards, you can offer extended-payment terms during the holiday season. Clients benefit from making the decision now, but receive an extra bonus by delaying payment till later.


7. Be prepared

When calling prospective clients to set up meetings or sell your services, be prepared for the response: "Call me after the holidays." This is a classic delay tactic, and you should just be ready with an answer. Have your holiday message and your holiday offer ready at the beginning of the call. This way you can avoid the holiday objection before it ever comes up.

These ideas are not limited to just the holiday season, but can be used at special times throughout the year to give your sales a boost.

They say it is better to give than to receive; use this advice, and you will be giving your clients all the reasons in the world to fill your Christmas stocking with holiday cheer.



From Warsaw Business Journal by John Lynch, Matt Lynch -"The Sales Brothers"