With peak season now in the rear-view mirror, you could be tempted to kick back and relax a little as you start the new calendar year. But, it’s also a great time to focus on maintaining the sales momentum you achieved in Q4 and during January.
If you’ve followed the goal-setting suggestions we offered in a previous column, Setting Goals for 2022 With a Growth Mindset, you are off to a good start. If you missed it, that post includes guidance about how to be SMART in developing your annual goals, the importance of making goals measurable and time-bound, and focusing on relevance (not just results).
To sustain your sales momentum, below are three insurance tips:
1. Listen to Your Customers
The new year is a great time to reach out to current or past customers and reconnect. You want to have a straightforward conversation about what you can do to keep them – or win them back.
If you did not close all of your 2021 deals (or even those that predate the pandemic), all is not lost . . . there’s always 2022. Reflect on what happened – or did not happen – to prevent those prior transactions from closing. What could you do now to turn things around?
Your outreach now could put you back on the path to success. One caution, though, be sure you do more listening than talking (there’s a reason why you have two ears and one mouth, as Judge Judy is quick to point out). When you listen, you’re bound to gain information that will help you in meeting your customer’s near-term or future needs.
2. Schedule Time to Work on Your Goals
If one of your goals is to reach out to X number of prospects each week, make sure you’re setting aside the time to do that. After your initial outreach, be sure to schedule time for your follow-up. That can be in the form of an email, a written note (a bit old fashioned, but often very effective), or another call.
If you reach out by phone, be sure you can discuss the value of working with you and selecting the product or carrier you’re recommending. Be prepared for your follow-up discussion.
Even if your initial efforts fell short, it’s important to follow-up. Maybe your prospect was not ready when you approached them initially. Maybe their situation has changed, and they will be more receptive to what you have to say – and what you can offer – now.
At the same time, it’s important to know when to let go. You don’t want to hound your prospects. Consider putting your follow-up on pause, and make a plan to reach out again later.
3. Consider “Deliberate Practice”
In his best-selling book, Talent Code, author Daniel Coyle suggests that “deliberate practice” can help you achieve your goals, whether you’re focused on increased sales or something else. In fact, the sub-title of the book talks about “unlocking the secret of skill in sports, art, music, math, and just about everything else.”
Coyle’s book will help you nurture your talents and ignite momentum in others. Even if you were not born a sales professional, he suggests you can become better through practice and modification of behavior through feedback. That can drive your momentum.
If you’re interested in Daniel Coyle’s book, it is available on Amazon and through other booksellers. To learn more about Deliberate Practice, visit James Clear’s website for a beginners’ guide. He discusses what it is and how to use it. Clear is the author of Atomic Habits, An Easy and Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones, another New York Times bestseller.
Word & Brown offers a variety of tools and resources to help you with your Q2 sales (and sales and prospecting throughout the year). Visit our website for a list of available resources and support services. You can also reach out to your Word & Brown representative or call (800) 869-6989.