by Kendra Lee
We’re coming down to crunch time for the sales year. Either you’re going to make your sales target or you’re not. Whether you’re a sales person or a business owner, this time of year is no fun if your revenue numbers aren’t where you want them.
You have just weeks left. It’s still possible to work magic and pull a rabbit out of your hat, but now is when you have to buckle down, focus on sales, and make it happen.
You have to look for every possible way that you can find a new opportunity to close. And, you have to look at every opportunity in your pipeline, no matter how stale, and figure out what you can do to close it.
My first year as a sales hunter I didn’t make my quota until the last days of the year. It was painful and I vowed it was never going to happen again.
Don’t let it happen to you.
The good news is, there’s still time!
As the end of the year approaches, there are three very effective sales prospecting conversations that you can use to find immediate opportunities that will close quickly.
End of the year budget spend. It’s not just enterprise sized companies that look to spend their remaining budget at the end of the year. Even small companies will frequently have budgets. If there’s money left in the budget, they may be looking for ways to use it.
With small and medium size companies it doesn’t mean that they lose the budget next year. Nope. In those size companies, they can never be certain that next year is going to be as good as this year. They want to spend the money now to get long anticipated projects complete, in a year that is flush, versus taking a chance to see if the money will be available next year.
Holiday free time. While you may be crazy busy trying to make your sales quota, some companies actually experience a slow-down during the holidays. This is their opportunity to get projects completed that they haven’t had time for all year.
One of the best examples is CPAs. They’ve just completed the October deadline for business taxes and the new crunch doesn’t start until January 1. Now is when they can get anything done that they need to do before their new year crunch time begins.
There are many companies that look at using the holidays as an opportunity to get projects done. That makes these next few months an ideal time for you to be talking with them to implement something quickly.
Anticipatory tax avoidance spend. Savvy financial managers are watching their bottom line closely in Q4. If they’re projecting an unusually high net income, that translates into a significant tax bill.
In privately held and small corporations, business owners will take actions to reduce their tax bill and avoid taxes. That means they’re going to look for spending opportunities – which creates revenue opportunities for you.
Many managers will look for projects that can be completed before the end of the year. They are on a fast track to not just spend their money, but to get the work related to it completed. This is where selling products, managed monthly services, and small projects can be very successful.
Some executives will invest in projects that can be started and paid in full before the end of the year, even if they can’t be completed until January or February. So even if the project you recommend is bigger than the amount of time left in the year, you may still be able to move forward. Just have a good plan with a solid timeline.
While you only have a matter of weeks left in the year, the fourth quarter of a sales year can reap big rewards for you if you know what types of opportunities are available. Reframe your sales conversations around these three talking points and you’ll quickly identify new opportunities you can close, well – quickly.
Kendra Lee is a top IT Seller, Prospect Attraction Expert, author of the popular books “The Sales Magnet” and “Selling Against the Goal,” and president of KLA Group.
KLA Group is a Sales Consulting and Training firm focused on helping clients get more customers in the Small and Midmarket Business (SMB) segment.
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