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The ' 3 Step' Sales Slump Makeover

Jun 08, 2021

In a slow sales cycle, it’s important to remember that your products or services are still as good as they ever were, or even better.

Your still doing all the right things you always did to obtain business, but maybe you have to do more of it or you have to do it differently.

A famous definition of insanity is describes it as “doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results”

Tough times have a nasty habit of changing the sales landscape, which is to say if you’re still trying to the same people, the same propositions as you did before – well you just might be crazy!!

Before you continue investing more time and energy for an uncertain return, give your sales funnel this 3 step makeover and get your sales moving again!!

Qualify (or Disqualify) Your Current Sales Forecast
Look at the Purchase Process in Each Target Account
Examine Your Value Proposition

1. Qualify (or Disqualify) Your Current Sales Forecast

Take a hard look at all of the sales opportunities on your current sales forecast. Be ready to be very critical in qualifying their likelihood of becoming real business.

a)      Business that Can Be Won in the Short-to-Medium Term if the Right Things are Done. These are the opportunities where there is still clearly a pressing need for what you have proposed, and the will and means to do business still exists.

b)      Deals that look doubtful given the recent sales slowdown. Some of your opportunities will probably qualify as “ nice to have,” as opposed to “must have,” in the minds of your prospect.  Be prepared to face the reality that they may not close for you until things start to look a little brighter.

c)      Dead Deals – Bury them!  Although it can be hard to walk away, you simply cannot afford a time and energy investment in hopeless cases. Save your time, energy, and resources for less hopeless cases – take them off your forecast.

2. The Purchase Process in Each Target Account

Now that you know which opportunities deserve your fullest attention, you must now determine what’s going on in those accounts! There are a number of reasons why your prospects are taking longer to make buying decisions but usually its due to a change in the internal decision making process. As things slow down, the decision making process changes dramatically.

If you find that your current account contact can’t tell you where your deal is in the decision making process, it’s likely that your buyer in no longer in real control.

You will need a lot of information on any changes that may have occurred before you can decide to proceed, however, at a minimum you must find out the following:

a)      Who else is now involved in the decision

b)      What, in the eyes of the new these new buyers, are the perceived risks of proceeding with your proposal

c)      How is your proposal currently perceived (nice to have, must have, ho-hum)

d)      What are their particular priorities (cost cutting, revenue improvement, strategic positioning)

3. Examine Your Value Proposition

Ok, so now you have identified the deals you want to go after, and, you have determined the internal purchasing structure and priorities, don’t go rushing in full steam ahead BEFORE you are sure that what you have to offer is going to appeal. When the buyer or purchase process in one of your key accounts or prospects changes, It’s key to know what you have to offer will stack up to the expectations of the new buyer.

Previous arguments and justifications for your proposal may have become redundant if they were not formulated to appeal to particular motivations of a new set of buyers.

It’s key that you position your offerings specifically to appeal to the new motivations

Even if your newly constituted value proposition is well positioned and financially justifiable, you could still be exposed if it suffers any element of ‘me, to”.  If it is not sufficiently differentiated from the propositions of other competitors who may be vying for the same business.  Don’t forget your basic marketing. Be sure that your proposition includes strong Unique Selling Propositions to put you head-and-shoulders above any potential competitors. Completely remodel your value proposition until you are satisfied that your “new” proposal will fly in the new decision making environment.

Best of luck!

 

James & Angela.

 

PS: If you want to know how to double your sales in the next 90 days, check out our upcoming workshop. Click Here>>

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