Always be closing.

An old age adage indeed. And yet this very advice is as relevant now as ever before.

No one is asking you to promote pushy, aggressive sales tactics, but ‘always be closing’ (applied with a lot of emotional intelligence) should, without exception, be at the back of your mind if you’re an agency leader or founder, and yet so many continue to shy away from it.

I really enjoyed this short but sweet article from Zara Deegan from EXT MKTG in which she concisely covers pricing strategies and closing strategies.

You can read the full article, here, but I’ve summarised the main points below for ease.

Sales strategies:

  • Who you are as a brand and your business’s core values in combination will dictate who you work with and vice versa;
  • Who you want to work with will influence the brand’s tone of voice.
  • A good sales plan needs to be ‘SMART’ and rigorously monitored to keep you accountable to it.
  • If the sales plan is well designed but sales are not converting, it is usually because the business is not staying on top of its leads, pipeline and deal closing.
  • You will know your weaknesses and if you need to outsource tasks or even the writing of it, make that decision for your business, to help you get to your three year goal.
  • You must make time for your sales!
  • Make time to research and cold call new prospects, make the pitch relevant to their business, ask open questions, chase up proposals, chase up leads and catch up with your network.
  • Get on top of all SQLs and MQLS – you’ll be glad you did!
  • If you’re losing more than that 50% of proposals sent, look into why and always ask when you have not been successful (but don’t take it personally, there’s always something to gain whether it’s a contact or knowing they aren’t the client for you)

Pricing Strategies

  • Know your value and stick to it.
  • Be consistent.
  • Know what you are and what you are not.
  • Do not try to be what you are not – it will dilute your brand and reduce the effectiveness of your client delivery.

Closing Strategies

  • Use the term ‘always be closing’ – but apply emotional intelligence
  • Once you have a client, it’s up to you to keep them loyal by constantly reaffirming why they work with you through the value you consistently add.
  • You are done. No need to say more, no need for small talk – so many get the sale then talk themselves out of it with irrelevant chit chat. Do not commit this cardinal sin, instead: be professional, concise and above all respectful of their time and your own.

Every business leader needs to have an idea of where they want to be in three years, even if it’s just the ‘back of napkin’ plan, but something to aim for will give you two key things: 1) an aspirational end goal 2) a position to work back from to where you are now and allow you to envision the steps necessary to get there in reverse order.

A great little read and reminder.



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