How to Have a Record March to June Period in 2024
In Australia, the new year really kicks back into force after the first week of February when school is back in full swing.
In a lot of businesses I work with, while there’s some focus on preparing sales pipelines for next year, there’s usually a sense of ‘acceptance’ and businesses tend to cater for slower starts in Jan-Feb. Often, February is a month of ‘re-starting’ the engine and finding momentum again after the break.
So many businesses suffer from taking their foot off the pedal as they approach a holiday period without adequately preparing for the following period.
And I hear too often, complaints of the feeling of having to start again and equally, not knowing where to start!
There’s no excuse
December comes around at the same time every year, so there is no excuse to not being aware of its looming.
Whether you, your frontline staff, or your business development team are responsible for bringing in new business, it is a crucial time to push this up the priority list and ensure you’re taking simple, disciplined and strategic steps to supercharge your 2024:
How to ensure you hit the ground running
Begin your new year with momentum and purpose, and benefit by:
- Knowing that your new year is already waiting for you
- Enjoying your holiday
If you are a business leader or manager, here are my 3 steps that you or your team should implement, immediately.
Caveat: If you are one of my many readers outside of Australia, then these same rules apply for your summer holidays.
Set a recurring yearly calendar appointment for the 3rd and 4th weeks in November – call it “February Follow up”. Ensure it is set to be an ‘all day’ appointment, so the banner sits above your week.
Use your CRM to report 2 lists:
- Anyone you have had a first sales meeting with in the prior 4 months
- Anyone you have an open deal/opportunity with that is yet to be “closed-won”
**If you don’t have a CRM or need to learn how to extract value from your CRM, reach out and I’ll be happy to have a conversation with you and advise.
First point to note:
“You are NOT going to be calling these people to wish them a Merry Christmas/happy holidays etc.”
Unless they are friends of yours, then a phone call just for this, is weird!
The strategy is to call these people in late November, BEFORE the Christmas season is among us.
Here’s what you’re aiming for:
- As with all follow up, if you haven’t spoken to your prospect in 3 months, it’s been too long. If you don’t call them in November, your next chance is February… and you’ll need to reintroduce yourself then 😉
- Find out how they are tracking with deciding to work with you as a ‘tidying up’ / discipline activity. Your CRM should have accurate notes as to their decision-making process and timing, and make sure you use sales techniques like strategic silence to allow the prospect to lead conversations so they are more willing to propose or accept the next step.
- Agreement to pick up the contact again in the new year by scheduling a meeting for a date in February.
- Send a Calendar appointment.
It’s important for all sales teams or anyone responsible for sales to always have a pipeline of meetings months in advance. Doing this is a great way of ensuring you are staying in touch with your network, and you are actively being guided by their decision-making time frame.
Here’s what to say
When you make the call, here is something you can try:
Hi there (name),
It’s Julia Ewert here. (pause) How’s things?
Things have been pretty great with me as well, thanks for asking.
I wanted to call you today for 2 reasons. Is that ok? (pause)
First, when we last spoke, you had mentioned that a (insert your services here) was something you wanted to speak about again (or around this time) and I just wanted to make sure I’m following up with that before the end of the year.
May I ask how that’s working out for you?
Given the end of the year is looming, I wondered if we should make a time to pick up the conversation again in the new year. That way, we can kick off the year with a purposeful conversation together.
I’ve got my calendar handy, do you have yours? When are you back from leave (allow a bit of time for settling back in)?