Does it seem like your sales team is forever playing catchup throughout the season? Why do you think that is?
The plan is to be at certain percentages by opening day to make sure the goal will be hit. What is the goal you are striving for? Corporate partners should be at 90% by opening day if they plan to hit goal. Premium is the same. Group sales should be at 80-85% from true estimates with deposits. And season should theoretically have hit the goal, as everything after is prorated. At the very least, season should be at 90%, with prorated taking them to 100%.
So how do we do this?
- Start before the season ends. Bringing people aboard before the season ends gets you ahead of the game. If the season ends in September, then late July and all of August should be focused on deposits for new season, bringing potential corporate partners and premium seating people on board for an experience, and bringing potential group leaders to a game.
- Engage with them. I’ve seen so many sales reps bring new people for a look and then never visited them during the game. This is sales 101. If you have people there that are potential buyers for the upcoming season, then the team must be committed to covering your quarter/inning while you sit by them and discuss possibilities. Not sitting next to them and pointing out opportunities, throwing out ideas, says you really aren’t that important. Make sure they are important.
- Set the next meeting. Don’t just let them leave with a ‘see you soon.’ Make sure they are aware of the follow up: when, how, etc.
- Where does the staff need to be by month? Sit down with the staff 2 months before the season ends and have them plan the numbers they need to sell each month…usually knowing Thanksgiving to December is a rough time. Get their input. It’s so much easier to know by month then to look at the total by opening day.
- Where does the staff need to be by week? Once the staff sets the monthly goal, then set the weekly goal and have it in front of them. One chart should be to weekly/monthly goal The other should be to opening day.
- Business strategies. It is imperative that the staff write business strategies that begin once the season ends This is their guide to success. For instance, if the season ends in September, who is their market for October? What will they do that’s different to get in front of people? How can they create sales events not just community events?
- Make sure community events have a sales goal. It’s nice to attend hundreds of events in the off season, but if there is no sales expectation, then why are we doing them? Of course we will do some, but I have found some teams that base their entire off season on community events with no sales expectation. Decide which should be sales events, set a goal, and create a plan. What can you do to entice them to buy?
- Leaders need to guide them, but staff needs to have ownership. Monthly sales staff meetings should be run by a different rep each month. This person should ask for the who the team will be going after to hit their monthly goal, the how, and then the detailed plans. Meet with them midway through to make sure it is working and if not, what can we do differently?
Playing catch up is not fair to your staff. It’s not true salesmanship, but rather panic sales. Build trust with your team when you make them part of the business. Work together to get where you want to be. Starting early will make sure that the goal will be hit. You can identify problems early on, create strategies to fix them, and go into sales with more confidence.
Where will YOUR team be by Opening Day?
To learn more about goal setting, strategies, influencing, relationship building and execution, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Already in January we have 4 teams that want to get to that next level with their staff. Will you be next?
Kathy Burrows, Sold Out Seating
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