Renie Cavallari, the founder of Aspire Marketing, a hospitality sales and marketing training company in Scottsdale, gave a wonderful, entertaining session on how, and when, to acquire sales leads. For more than 20 years, Cavallari has presented imaginative and powerful speaking and workshop programs, motivating people to tap in and "step up" to their own potential. Cavallari stressed the importance of being proactive in good times, to do the real work before trouble hits. It is easy to get lazy with current business retention and referrals, but you should be sure to prospect and search for new business every day.
Prospecting does not equal cold calling, and as we know, cold calling does not work. Cold calls are only good for collecting information. These are opportunities for you to be a rapport builder, and build a connection with your prospects. When we think of prospecting and making sales calls, we tend to just move and jump right into it. It is important to follow TPM - Think-Prepare-Move. Think about what you are going to do, have a plan and then move. Look at things in bite-sized pieces so the process is less overwhelming. Instead of dreading sales calls, look at them as opportunities to make new friends and set a goal for how many you would like to retain.
Following through with TPM, it is integral that you have a plan. If you don't have a smart plan, you are doomed. Cavallari provided a few key steps to follow:
1. Get your head in the game - Mindset is huge. What comes out of your mouth is what you are thinking.
2. Set time aside - It is important, but not urgent. Set a time for prospecting and lock into it.
3. Open up your eyes -Take a different way to work, look at what opportunities are out there that you otherwise would not have seen.
4. Discipline (Pipeline) of New Business -The best sales people are disciplined. Sloppy and lazy = low standards.
5. Proposal - After you have built up a rapport with your prospect and determined your prospect's needs, develop a custom proposal outlining how you can satisfy those needs.
6. The Close - When it is time to close, do not "jam and slam."
A special thank you to Renie for a wonderful session. to our gracious hosts at the Glendale Civic Center and to Continental Catering for the wonderful breakfast