By Bob Berting, Berting Communications
Because of their value to the publication, it’s very important to focus on the performance of the sales team. While many sales managers will lament about the sales force and their inability to build advertising sales, the critical problem is that the salespeople are simply not motivated. In my experience as a large suburban newspaper sales manager, then executive, and current newspaper marketing consultant, I find the following points to be valid in coaching the sales team:
Enthusiasm breeds excitement
We always like to be around someone who truly enjoys what they do. Our prospects and customers enjoy working with salespeople when they are enthusiastic. Enthusiasm is a sign of belief that people can sense. The axiom “To be enthusiastic, you must act enthusiastic” can be applied for good results. The enthusiasm of the sales manager is important. If the manager is low-key, aloof and too reserved, this could affect the enthusiasm of the sales team.
Self esteem creates greater self worth
This is probably one of the great assets of a successful publication sales team. They believe in themselves, and they don’t worry excessively about what people think of them,
The subconscious mind helps to achieve excellent attitudes
Salespeople can program themselves to set goals and beliefs. The sales manager has to instill a good team attitude by his or her attitude every day. If the sales manager is perceived as someone who is constantly pre-occupied with worry and negative beliefs, this will have a negative effect on the attitudes of the salespeople.
Investing in the sales team
Positive thoughts need to be projected every day and this can be done by the development of a reference library of self help books, DVDs, and podcasts. Listening to podcasts while driving to and from work, as well as between sales calls is an excellent way to develop “spaced repetition”, by repeat listening of the same podcasts in spaced intervals.
Having more fun
One of the greatest forms of motivation is to lighten up and work at making things fun. The use of humor in advertising campaigns is powerful. The sales team needs to brainstorm in sales meetings how they can effectively create more humor.
Avoiding comfort zones
Although it’s very easy for a very experienced salesperson to get into a comfortable rut, newer salespeople can have the same problem, although sometimes to a lesser degree. The sales manager has to ensure that their salespeople are learning something new on an ongoing basis.