Deck the Sales

Sales Excellence

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Year-end sales techniques for a prosperous close!

As we coast through the holiday season, many veterinary sales professionals face a challenge. There’s the echo of silence in offices, as many decision makers are on leave, budgets have been maxed out, and the overarching mood is one of rest and relaxation. But should veterinary sales take a backseat during the holidays?

In the retail world, the holidays are a gold mine, accounting for a hefty chunk of yearly sales. However, it’s a different story in veterinary sales where the month of December often witnesses a drop in close rates by up to 20%.


But my experience says it doesn’t have to be this trajectory. Here are five potent holiday prospecting strategies:

No. 1: Prioritize nurturing existing leads

Holidays are about cherishing relationships. Extend this to your sales approach. Dive deep into your leads database and identify those whom you might have neglected recently. It’s not just about selling, but revitalizing connections that once showed promise.

Set objectives to re-engage them. Adopt a comprehensive strategy encompassing emails, phone calls, and LinkedIn, and infuse your business proposition with the warmth and goodwill of the festive season.

How?

  • Craft relevant content. Recognize the current season and its implications. Tailor your messages to address year-end reflections, aspirations for the upcoming year, or even a simple gesture of gratitude for past collaborations.
  • Draft messages incorporating timely themes like year-end budgeting and future planning.
  • Personalize, referencing past interactions. The key lies in making your leads feel remembered and valued. A small note mentioning a previous deal or a shared experience can make all the difference.
  • Identify and act based on their immediate needs. This requires keen insight and understanding of your client’s current business position and goals. Align your proposition accordingly.
  • Offer special incentives. Considering the festive season, present limited-time offers or discounts as a token of appreciation and an incentive for them to re-engage.

Avoid:

  • Generic, one-size-fits-all messages. Each communication should resonate with the individual recipient’s past experiences and current needs.
  • Overwhelming leads with excessive sales jargon. Keep it genuine and relational.
  • Delay in follow-ups. The holiday season is fleeting, so ensure timely responses to maintain the momentum.

No. 2: Tap into end-of-year budgets

Many businesses have residual budgets they aim to expend before year-end. Be their solution. While competitors slacken, intensify your outreach. Engage in meaningful dialogues to understand their leftover budgets and tailor your offerings to match.

How?

  • Offer multiple solutions fitting various budget ranges.
  • Engage in a solutions-driven discussion, emphasizing time-sensitive benefits.

Avoid:

  • Premature pitches. First, understand, then propose.

No. 3: Plan 2024 appointments now

Capitalize on the holiday lull to schedule your January meetings. This ensures you hit the ground running as soon as the New Year chimes ring.

How?

  • Introduce a touchpoint centered around 2024 planning.
  • On encountering out-of-office notifications, make a note and follow up once they’re back.

Avoid:

  • Being rigid. Adapt to clients’ preferred tools or timings.

No. 4: The old-school cold call

While the digital age has introduced different ways to connect, there’s something undeniably genuine about a personal phone call. Not everyone is jetting off to snowy retreats like Aspen! Many decision makers harness the tranquility of December to strategize and prep for the upcoming New Year. These individuals present a unique opportunity for genuine, uncluttered communication. They’re your golden ticket.

The essence of sales isn’t just in the product, but in the human connection. A strategically timed phone call, rooted in genuine interest and mutual benefit, can not only expedite a deal but also lay the groundwork for a lasting professional relationship.

How?

  • Research before the call. Understand who you’re calling. Familiarize yourself with their business needs and how your offering aligns.
  • Structure your call methodically, ensuring you align your offering with their immediate or future needs.
  • Be proactive yet flexible, being mindful of their schedules and potential time constraints.

Avoid:

  • Making the call feel like a holiday or year-end intrusion. Instead, frame it as a timely opportunity.

No. 5: Initiate a year-end outbound campaign

The festive lull provides leaders the luxury of time. That means they’re reading their emails! Capitalize on this by launching an outbound sequence tailor-made for year-end reflections and planning.

How?

  • Use automation tools, weaving in themes of year-end budgeting and 2024 objectives.
  • Inject a sense of immediacy, maybe a limited-time consultation?

Avoid:

  • Overused festive clichés and gimmicks.

Concluding thoughts

The holiday season needn’t be a slow crawl for veterinary sales. If approached strategically, it presents a gold mine of opportunities. Engage existing leads, foster connections, and lay the groundwork for the upcoming year.

Remember, while others might see the holidays as a time to pull back, this is your chance to push forward, differentiate, and end the year on a high note. As emphasized in our sales seminars, it’s those who persevere and adapt, irrespective of the season, that truly stand out in the sales arena. So, take the holiday challenge head-on and transform potential quietude into bustling opportunities. Wishing you a prosperous sales season and a fantastic start to the New Year!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Brian Sullivan, CSP is Founder of PRECISE Selling and a member of the National Speakers Association. Brian is author of the books “20 Days to the Top” and “PRECISE Leadership.” To learn more about Brian’s cold prospecting tips and sales process, reach him at [email protected]

 

Image credit: istockphoto.com/PeopleImages

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