Finding new customers is one of the great challenges of running a business. While data often shows that upselling existing customers is a more reliable way to increase sales, only new leads will bring in the repeat sales of the future, so it’s absolutely necessary to be proactively identifying new sources of revenue. Your future accounts may seem like a mirage in the distance when confronted with the task of finding them, but discipline and stick-to-itiveness will make new clients real.

Improve your tactics

Sales is the fastest paced area of any company. Account Reps don’t hit their targets by sitting around thinking. Dialing contacts in the customer relationship management system (CRM) and pitching customers they’ve already made sales to is simply more dynamic. While this approach makes a company feel like it’s moving and grooving, it can ultimately be window dressing that hides the fact that new business isn’t being developed. It also enables a company to run on automatic without a more realistic sales strategy.

Analysis is what drives growth

It can be hard to win the argument that performing research is going to ultimately be more profitable than foraging through leads as fast and long as you can before the end of the day, but getting to know the customers you already have will help you to identify future prospects who have the same needs. It’s the approach that a market research firm would use If you hired one. The good news is that you don’t have to make that kind of investment. It’s possible for you to gather this data yourself. Sending questionnaires to everyone presently doing business with you is the best way to begin. There are a slew of survey apps at your disposal to make this process manageable and easy to integrate into your sales software, so it isn’t as daunting as it might sound. Find out what value you bring to the companies who already buy from you so you can offer it to businesses just like them that need the same thing.

Sales training

Sales reps can be so high-energy and cock sure that it’s difficult to discipline them. Independence is what most prefer. Managers tend to give sales execs with the highest numbers freedom to keep doing what they’re doing based on the assumption that if it isn’t broken, there’s nothing to fix. Managers tend to not want to stifle the magic powers that top account execs seem to have either. By implementing ongoing training programs, however, even the highest grossing sales talent can benefit from being more methodical. The power of persuasion and a great set of teeth can be tools too. No one’s negating this, but onboarding is not the only time that sales reps wraps should be learning how to sell. Training should be constant. Giving even the most successful sellers on your team an idea of where future sales opportunities are in your industry guarantees that your company’s moving toward the future and not lagging.

Join forces with other companies

Companies compete, but they also form profitable partnerships that are mutually beneficial. If your business can rise above the idea that your sole mission is to beat your competitors, you can join the ranks of some of the biggest and most successful firms in the world who decided that cooperating was better than fighting for market share. A wedding planning business and a store in the local mall that sells bridal accessories is a match made in heaven. A hotel chain and a tour operator is another. Instead of trying to pull rabbits out of an empty hat, consider partnering with a company that has already penetrated a market that you can’t reach. They’ll probably be in desperately need of an expertise that your company has that they don’t want to waste time or invest in developing. Doing the necessary research will facilitate your ability to find this potentially lucrative partner. Customers who want what you sell are out there. They’re both local and global. All you need is to create a winning plan that puts your products or services in front of them.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            By:  Walter Bodell