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Summer: school’s out, the weather’s warm, and the kids are off to camp… And yet, for some reason, your boss still expects you to come into work every day, and… keep working? But weren’t we all taught growing up that summer was the time to not work?
Here’s the big secret: while we all know that adult life means working through those dreamy summer months—most people still take the mental break. And in sales, that means there’s a whole lot of room for you to make money moves. Do you know why the say that August is historically one of the worst months for the stock market? One theory says that that’s when most traders go off on vacation. And when they start to try and unplug… they just get antsy. And then they get nervous. And then they start selling off their stocks, hoping to cut off any losses at the pass.
The moral of the story? While it might seem like most people “go away” for the summer, the gears of business are always churning forward. And you can either be there to catch the windfall, or you can be sitting at the beach—blissfully unaware of all the opportunities you’ve missed.
If you want to turn that summer heat into a hot streak, we’ve got a list of things you can be doing right now to boost your sales numbers from Memorial Day to way past Labor Day. Check it out!
All the above aside, it’s okay to admit that the speed of summer sales cycles is different. People take “summer Fridays” extended weekend trips, and really do check-out from time to time. June and July aren’t going to look like January and February. So why would you try and accomplish the same goals?
The team over at Teneric offer this prescient wisdom on resetting goals during the summer months (and beyond): “Use this time wisely and review the areas that drive the most profits in your business. It may be time to shift focus, or it may be time for a new approach altogether.”
Take a look at what existing clients may contracts expiring soon, or prospects that may be more open to buying during the summer months. Solicit as much advice as you can from your team and from clients who are willing to take the time to chat.
“Don’t be afraid to ask for input and listen carefully to what everyone has to say,” Teneric go on to advise: “You may just be overlooking something you hadn’t considered before.”
One out-of-the-box way to boost your summer sales can come from running a promotion or “sale” on your product.
As the folks over at Ballantine point out, “Some businesses have found that pop-up or flash sales that only last a short period of time generate excitement and boost sales; others will allow for a one- or two-week cycle. Think about your long-term goals.”
As consumers, we don’t often think about sales in the middle of summer—but when activity is low and you need to generate urgency around closing some new business, putting a discount on your product can pay off in spades.
When you think of summer—more than vacations, or even time off—what do you think of? Activities. Whether it’s going on more hikes, trips to the beach, barbeques, or the never-ending neighborhood pool parties, so much of what we love about summer comes down to a seemingly bottomless serving of events. So why not start one yourself?
Writing for Forbes, Marcia Layton Turner reminds us that events are a great way to capitalize on the summer fun, “You might schedule a… demonstration by one of your suppliers,” she suggests, or even “set up a silent auction to benefit an area charity, or give prizes to the first 25 attendees through the door.”
What’s important to remember is that events work for you in two separate ways: for starters, they increase your immediate traffic of prospects and potential sales that you may or may not have been aware of. Secondly, they generate buzz for your business.
In a much less guarded environment than typical sales events, you’re showcasing your product to a whole slew of potential customers—all while giving folks another excuse to get out and enjoy those long summer nights.
Wouldn’t you rather the next networking event on your calendar be a beach BBQ? Why not.
As we mentioned above, summer is a really easy time to fall into the vacation-mode mindset. Employees check out, and allow their numbers to slip—expecting that big fall boost. But what if you took the focus off of fall and put it into the now?
The easiest way to jolt your team out of a hot summer malaise is to, well, make them compete—in a healthy way. Enter sales contests. Offering a sales contest to your employees can keep the focus on summer while still promoting a healthy sense of competition that drives everyone’s performance upward.
And while you’re at it, remind everyone of how great summer can be even when you’re working: rather than simply pitting your employees against each other—trying to out-ego everyone with the highest numbers—offer incentives and rewards that get them out of the office and onto the beach.
Whether it’s half-day Fridays, long weekends, or just a giant tub of sunscreen, there are plenty of ways to recognize your top performers that can make them feel like they’re getting the best of both worlds.
As we all know a little too well, you spend all year waiting for summer to arrive, and it always passes you by in the blink of an eye.
We can talk all day here on the blog about how much of a difference-maker a big summer can be for any sales rep. But if you’re not careful, it’ll be August and you’ll still be in the planning stages of your big summer strategy.
Don’t wait for opportunities to come knocking. Summer calendars fill up fast, so make sure that your prospects calendars are being filled up by meetings, events, and closing deals with you.
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