Wasting time is one of the quickest ways to hurt your revenues and upset future customers. Smart Service focuses on making HVAC businesses more efficient and profitable with software for HVAC businesses. However, administrative inefficiency isn’t limited to the scheduling and dispatching of technicians. Sales professionals can also make mistakes, especially while prospecting clients.
Here are five major time wasters that your sales staff should look out for:
1. Getting Too Social
While being friendly and approachable is always important to help you position yourself as a problem-solver, spending too much time on the phone asking about your prospect’s family, recent Disney vacation, or any other irrelevant topic takes time away from making money. Keep social hour to a minimum by making a good first impression and asking questions that help transition into focusing on the prospect's problem.
2. Asking For Too Much Time
As a business owner, you know more than anyone the validity of the adage, “time is money.” When scheduling a sales call, keep another saying in mind, "it is better to ask for forgiveness than permission." Ask to schedule a shorter sales call, and you'll encounter less friction getting your meeting on the calendar. Even if you run over the allotted time during the sales process, you'll give yourself something to follow up about when you don't quite cover everything.
3. Pursuing Unqualified Leads
When too many prospective leads turn into dead ends, sales representatives end the month scratching their heads while trying to figure out why so much time was spent on prospects that didn’t pan out. Find out in the first conversation with a future client what the scope of their needs and problems are, what their budget is, and if your company is the right fit to fix the problem. Being too afraid of losing a lead, even a cold one, can waste time and resources and leave better-fitting potential clients high and dry.
4. Preparing A Rigid Sales Presentation
It is very important to come prepared to talk about the services you provide and what differentiates your business from local competitors. In the sales world, the saying goes, “if you don’t have a plan, stay in the car.” However, the urge to over-prepare with a lengthy sales pitch—one heavily laden with industry jargon—often leads to over explaining and squandering a client’s time. A good rule of thumb: if you’ve been talking for over three minutes without feedback from the prospect, it’s probably time to ask them a question. Remember: PowerPoint is not the end-all-be-all when it comes to software for HVAC businesses.
5. Chasing Unresponsive Leads
Fear of missing out is an epidemic in sales. With an increasing amount of information on the internet that allows potential clients to do their own research, it is up to you to make sure that “analysis paralysis” doesn’t set in. Fear of missing out doesn’t solely exist on the client’s side, however. Sales teams that perpetually chase unresponsive leads (who may have once seemed promising) can miss opportunities to pursue new upcoming prospects.