We live in the “information age” and yet most sales people operate with very little information. If you want to succeed, you must differentiate from the competition. In today’s fast changing world, you can gain a clear advantage over the competition by gathering more information and using that information to take specific actions.
So what does this look like for the independent merchant services sales rep? It means updating your CRM database religiously and then using lead nurturing emails and other forms of marketing automation to maximize your results. Today technology has advanced to the point where you can automate most of the lead nurturing process. Let’s talk about the various types of information you can gather in the field and what actions should result from that information using a CRM and Drip Marketing Program.
#1 – “Not Available / Stop Back Later / Call Back” – Obviously this would result in your coming back to the business later. I am amazed as I talk to many sales people to find they do not have this basic system in place. Make sure when you enter a prospect who requires a follow-up visit into your CRM that you create a task or event outlining this follow up visit. Also, make sure you create a new note outlining the conversation you had, with whom you spoke, etc.
In addition to this, make sure you get the email address if possible. Studies have shown you will be significantly more likely to sell prospects on the return visit if they hear from you in the mean time. Use a drip marketing email template campaigns on a marketing platform to send them high quality content with your contact information before your follow up visit. In this way they build more awareness of who you are and what you offer.
#2 – “Not interested at this time.” – I believe this is probably the most overlooked piece of information sales reps receive. When someone says they are “not interested,” this almost always means they are busy, in a bad mood, or just don’t know who you are. The prospect always feels a little guilty to send you away with an “I’m not interested.” Use that guilt to your advantage by gaining information like this: “I understand, Mr. Jones. Thank you for taking the time to speak with me. Would you mind if I just emailed you some free information about changes in the payment processing industry from time to time?” Get the email address; put it into your system; and add the prospect to one of our new lead nurturing campaigns to send them an email each week for ten weeks. Once a prospect clicks on an article or starts opening your emails, you could probably go back and have much better results.
#3 – Competitor Information – In my market I was always looking for information on my competition. I sorted my records based on who they currently used.
#4 – LinkedIn Profile – Whenever I connected with a merchant in real life, I also connected with them on LinkedIn (another reason getting the email address is so important, so you can send social media invites.) I would then take a look at this merchant’s local connections using the “Advanced People Search.” There you can search for connections of connections which are within a certain radius around a zip code using keywords like “Owner” or “President.”
This is just a small taste of the ways you can use data to your advantage. In order to use the data, you obviously need to collect it first! Get out in the field and make it your goal today to walk into twenty businesses. Also, make sure you update your CRM on every stop so you have the data you need to beat the competition in your market!
Make it a great day!
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