Should you do less cold calling? Three ways to get out of your printing sales comfort zone

Posted by Matthew Parker

Would you ever dare to order a meal for someone else?

This can be a dangerous thing to do. You may order something completely different than what the other person would choose. You may even order something that they dislike. And, naturally, not all people like being ordered for.

But I know I’m safe when ordering a curry for my wife

She will always choose lamb saag. No matter what is on the menu as the matter how long she looks at the menu, it is always lamb saag. She is not interested in any other dishes. She sticks to something tried and tested.

But that’s a dangerous state of affairs for print sales people to get into.

Are you a little too much in your comfort zone? If you want good sales results it's time to change things...

Are you a little too much in your comfort zone? If you want good sales results it’s time to change things…

Print sales people need to move out of their comfort zone

Print sales people who move out of their comfort zone will achieve more. They will find new ways to create great relationships with their prospects and customers. They will challenge themselves. They’ll also have a lot of fun along the way.

Print sales people who stay in their comfort zone will not find life so fun. They will be travelling along doing the same old thing. No matter how much you like doing this, eventually most people become stale. They will also be missing out on chances to find new ways to create good relationships. That means they may be missing out on the opportunity to achieve higher sales.

Here are three ways to avoid these issues. Here are three ways to get out of your comfort zone.

Use a brand-new channel of communication

It is very tempting to stick with the tried and tested methods of phone and email. However, sometimes these are not the most effective way to communicate with people. Some people react better when we communicate in ways that they prefer. Some people react better when we communicate with methods that they are not used to.

Either way, it is worth looking at mixing up the ways in which you communicate. Over the past months I have had increasing success by texting some prospects. Social media can also be a good way to communicate both with groups of people and with individuals. I am a keen user of social media but there are still plenty of new channels for me to try.

But it’s not just how we communicate, it’s also what we communicate.

Sell a new service

I’m not suggesting that you suddenly need to go and change companies. However, there may well be more that your company can do for its customers. Why not look at what you offer and see if you could offer a new value add for your customers.

Are you selling your design services, your web to print offering or your fulfilment facilities enough? It is often services like these that allow print sales people to increase their profit margins from customers

However, to get the best out of selling these type of services you also need to look at your pitch.

Use a new sales message

Trying some new ways to tell people about your company can be a very refreshing exercise. In fact, when I did this, I found that I had been underselling myself.

All sales people should take some time to sit down with somebody and get some honest feedback on their sales message. It is a very valuable way of making changes.

But some print sales people don’t see the need for change.

Why change? Things are working well for me as they are

I recently endured a sales approach from someone he sounded really bored. You could tell that he has been cutting out the same old sales message again and again. He had clearly been doing this for some time. As a result, he failed to convince me to try his company. And he wasn’t having any fun either.

This is an extreme example. However, I know that if I’m not challenging myself, my sales efforts can sometimes fall short. I suspect that this is the case for quite a few sales people

The old saying tells us that if it isn’t broken we shouldn’t fix it. But we’re not always aware that things are a bit broken.

Here’s how challenging things worked for one printing company

This company wrote a new sales message, specifically aimed at one sector of their customers. They decided to use direct mail, which they hadn’t used before. The results were impressive.

They ran a test targeting 60 prospects. To date, they have had effective conversations with one in three of these prospects. They have five new clients. And they expect more.

That’s pretty impressive results. But they only got these because they challenged what they were doing.

Here’s three action points to get you out of your comfort zone

  1. Commit to a new action
  2. Write it in your task list
  3. If you are changing your sales message, invest in “How To Stop Print Buyers Choosing On Price”

My wife recently changed her ways

She ordered a new curry dish. She was pleasantly surprised at how enjoyable it was.

Maybe you should look at changing your ways too. You might be pleasantly surprised at the change in your sales results.
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