Volatile. Unprecedented. Turbulent.
Whatever adjective you prefer to describe these times, one thing is certain: The staffing industry has never experienced anything like them.
Right now, people’s priorities are shifted. Employers and individuals are struggling. And you may logically ask yourself:
Is now really a good time to be selling?
In a word, yes. If you are in staffing, prospecting is an essential activity that can never be put on hold.
But how you prospect, well, that has changed.
Personally, I try my best to be open to all perspectives, and I don’t think there is one “right” way to sell that works for every salesperson…or every client. Sadly, the days of face-to-face meetings, attending trade shows, or even knocking on a door are a distant memory. Now, we need to find new ways to reach out, capture attention, nurture relationships, and convey our values.
I am sure in-person prospecting will come back at some point, but as one of my old sales managers said, “If you are not growing, you’re dying.” Until we can get back to a “normal” way of doing things, I suggest you try a few of the four strategies below. You may find that some of these methods could be the new normal when normal is normal again!
Send something via mail.
According to an article in NPR, the USPS decline in mail volume could be as much as 60% by the end of the year. “Many businesses have ceased to do advertising through the mail,” says Rep. Gerry Connolly, D-VA., “And as a result, mail volume has collapsed.”
The owners of our company told us that in the past three weeks, they have each received just two pieces of advertising mail at our offices. Now is the time to differentiate yourself from your competitors.
Use video technology in your outreach.
The average business person receives 125 emails per day, per a study done by The Radicati Group Inc. If you are looking to stand out from the 124 other emails that they receive, consider sending a video email.
In addition to video email, I recommend using one of the many video platforms to conduct meetings vs. phone calls. While you may be feeling Zoomed out and meeting by video is not perfect, the video gives you the ability to read a person’s facial expression and body language, which, as you know, is extremely important in a sales meeting.
Tighten up your value proposition.
If you are lucky, you get 30 seconds of someone’s time for them to decide if they want to hear more or if they delete your email, hang up the phone, or stop reading what you gave them.
If you have “softened the beaches” by first sharing some great ideas with your prospect or client to “sell” them, you must illustrate your value.
When you send an email, leave a voice mail, or write a letter, clearly convey your “why”:
Show how you help your prospects solve problems and how having a relationship with you will improve their business and their job.
Your “why” needs to resonate enough to take the conversation to the next step. Be careful not to muddy the waters by going on tangents. Do not try to sell on the spot. Do not leave a 3-minute voicemail with a sales pitch. Your goal is to convince the prospect to make time to meet with you so that you can have a proper conversation.
You can still sell staffing services in these times.
With the right approach and the right tools, you can generate meaningful conversations with prospects. Learn how you can help. And provide solutions that make tough times a little easier for employers.