The Value of August

It’s a steamy 92 degrees as I write this and yet another triple H day (hazy, hot and humid) drones on. Personally, I believe this is the single hardest selling month of the year, what with vacations and covering for others. However, this is not a lost month. There is a great value to August and the choices are many. Here’s my thinking:

First, set a goal
As I point out in my PI column (The Countdown to Blastoff), we are knocking on the door of the three most important selling months of the year. Your goal should be defined as “Where do I want to be on the day after Labor Day?” and then clearly spelled out in as much detail as possible.

Next, consider your options
So, what are some useful things you can do in August? Here’s a list, all oddly beginning with R:

1. Reconnect—The number one reason why we lose an account is that the customer thinks we are ignoring them. Soon, some other suitor comes knocking and voila, the account is gone. Why not check in with some existing clients?

2. Read—I am halfway through “The Four Hour Work Week.” I recommend (another R word!) that you pull up your BS hipboots and check it out. If you can wade through the self-congratulatory writing style, the author makes some excellent points, especially concerning Time Management. Improve your sales skills by relying on the words of others.

3. Research—Why not spend some time on the Internet, looking at companies you’d like to call on and devising a plan of attack?

4. Rethink—your sales approach, that is. Are you calling on the right kinds of accounts? Are you saying something of value when you call? Are you able to overcome objections successfully? Why not use this relative quiet time to think through who you are approaching and what part of your prospecting plan needs an overhaul.

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."
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