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Bill Farquharson

The Sales Challenge

By Bill Farquharson

About Bill

As a 30 year sales veteran, Bill has the perspective of a been-there, done-that sales rep in the commercial print arena. Following sales fundamentals and giving unapologetically "old school" advice, he writes and speaks in an entertaining fashion to make his points to sales people and owners who sell. "Bill Farquharson will drive your sales momentum."


While You Were Sleeping

I heard you lost a customer. Sorry to hear that. You are shocked that your customer would leave you after everything you’ve done for him/her. Where’s the loyalty?

It’s certainly not like the old days. Customers were yours from cradle to grave and you had to really mess up in order for someone to switch to another printer.

Or, maybe it happened while you were sleeping.

Maybe you assumed that the customer’s needs were all taken care of. After all, you hadn’t gotten any phone calls so everything must have been OK.

You heard that a new vendor came in and redesigned that big job that was coming up for a reprint. How can that be? No one said anything to you about being dissatisfied with the piece. Customers are crazy.

I heard that you don’t make any sales calls on Friday afternoons. You believe it to be the worst time of the week to be prospecting since no one wants to hear from a sales rep just before the weekend.

I also heard that your competition doesn’t believe that assumption. I heard that she is scooping up business left and right by going against the grain and working hard on Friday afternoons. Maybe she’s just slashing prices. Maybe she’s just lucky.

Or, maybe she’s working while you were sleeping.

I heard that you throw it into cruise control between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Apparently you believe that all business takes a holiday after Turkey Day.

I heard that your customers started to wonder where you are and that they are accepting appointment requests from your competition. Maybe you assumed incorrectly.

Or maybe you should be working instead of sleeping…and making assumptions.

Your customers are not OK just because you haven’t heard from them. Your customers are OK when they tell you that they are OK because you not only regularly call them to find out if they are OK, you also called to review an upcoming order and see if that particular print solution still meets the needs that it once did.

Your prospects phones are quiet on Friday afternoons because your competition is making the same assumption you are. Would you rather call on a day that everyone else calls, too, or would you rather call on a day when the phones are quiet?

The days between Thanksgiving and Christmas afford the perfect opportunity for you to perform client reviews and ask your customers where they are going in 2013.

Constantly remind your customers why they do business with you. Sit on your assumptions all you want, but know that your competition is circling like a great white shark in the surf at a Cape Cod beach. You will lose business and, quite frankly, you deserve to lose business.

And it will all happen while you were sleeping.

Check out Bill and Kelly’s new Tuesday eWorkshop training programs on Time management,” “Where to Look for Prospects,” “Beating Voicemail” and “Overcoming Objections.” Go to or call Bill at 781-934-7036 for more information.

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