No matter how good your business is, it will experience a slow season for one reason or another. Most businesses go through some of a dry spell – a time of year when sales drop off.
It may be because of the weather, or a really bad economy, or in the case of B2B companies, a month or a season with lots of holidays. Whatever the reason, no business is exempt from this dreaded event, and certainly no businessman looks forward to the dip in revenue.
There’s a silver lining to this. The period when business regresses from running to jogging to just doing a brisk walk is the time during which you should be even more active in maintaining existing sales leads, as well as working to generate new leads. In business, taking this time off is simply squandering these opportunities.
The methods you would use to generate sales during your peak season are probably going to be markedly different from those which you would employ in the slower part of the year. Despite this, a resourceful lead generation team should have no trouble coming up with an approach to gaining leads during the lean season, and leads collected in the off-season could lead to sales during your peak period.
As is always the case, knowing the problem is half the solution. The other half is listed below.
Taking a New Approach
During the period when sales are down, it doesn’t mean that your customers just ceased to exist—they are still out there, and are likely planning their future purchases. It may not be coming for a few months, but by getting to your customers first, you can create an impression that will stick with them and translate contacts now into sales later.
Countless marketing and sales research firms, publications and thought leaders in the B2B industry, including Eloqua, RainToday.com and SiriusDecisions, report that
75% of the leads that don’t show solidified buying interest at the present time will go on to buy related services within the next 24 months. tweet this!
So while these leads may be dormant now, they have full potential for revival into primed leads (and, ultimately, satisfied buyers) when the time is right. This is why you must motivate your sales reps to pay attention to those dormant leads. They must keep your company in mind and in sight – because within 24 months, that now-primed lead is ready to buy… and you want your company to be the one they think of and go to first.
Build trust and create your own pr armies through good customer service. Here’s an quintessential guide in building your business followers in Malaysia.
Getting To Know Your Current Customers
The dry spell between peak seasons offers a chance to get to know and better understand your customers. You can explore your customers’ demographics, find out what they like about your product and what attracts and drives them.
During this slow period, spend some time really getting to know your current customers. What do your current customers have in common? What demographic do they come from? What similarities do they have? Who is really in your target audience – the people you expected or a whole new genre of customers?
To get an idea of how to draw in new customers, take a look at what brought your old ones to the company. Which marketing strategies worked best? What helped set you apart from the rest of the competition when it came to landing that particular sale? By exploring your customer base, you may even discover an entirely new demographic to whom you had never before even thought to market.
Tap new demographics and industries you think will be profitable to target. We found out that we have strength in generating leads for IT and software industries so we give focal attention to them. Fortunately the gamble was all worth it. Here are some proven ways of generating leads for IT services Malaysia that we have mastered and applied to our own campaign. There’s no harm in trying though. As a marketer, shortcomings are inevitable and it’s just up to you whether you stop and your find other ways.
Check out how we formulated this 5 to 5 Calling Rule for Inbound Leads (That Generated Over 40% Increase in Sales).
Give it a Personal Touch
The slow season offers a chance to not only get to know what type of person buys your product, but who they are specifically. Most of us are attracted by a friendly and personal touch. In addition, by getting to know your customers more personally, you can tailor your approach to what attracts them on an individual basis. In this way, you can make sure that a previous customer will be come back, peak season or not.
You could spend your off-season getting to know both the prospective and existing clients’ needs. Send them a personal email. If the contact information is available, give them a random call. Send a corporate card on their birthdays. Any of these extra efforts will go a long way and ultimately really set you apart from the competition.
Generating Buzz Through Discounts
Another approach you can take is to offer promotions during the off-season. There are always companies who are always on the look-out for cheaper deals, and offering special rates during a period when a product is less in-demand is the proven method for attracting them.
Not only can offering a special deal drive sales during the slower parts of the year, but it can help drive sales later when your product is back in season. The buzz that would be generated by a customer attracted by a discounted price can help to attract more off-season customers, and these same customers can help to draw in more buyers later, as well as be return customers themselves, literally multiplying your business.
This strategy also has the potential to jump start your post off-season sales. The word-of-mouth created by your special deals might help bring in premature leads and get you out of your slump sooner than anticipated.
Use the Off-season Wisely
The off-season is a challenging time for many businesses. Just because the leads aren’t pouring in right now doesn’t mean they won’t be replenished in the near future. Use the down time to generate as many leads as possible and nurture the ones that have potential. Rather than lying dormant during the months when sales are slow, utilize this time wisely – don’t miss opportunities for off-season sales, and likewise don’t miss the chance to lay the groundwork for future sales. Take this time as a chance to explore your customer base, get to know current and prospective buyers, and don’t overlook chances for sales that you might not have expected.
After all, a missed opportunity is still a missed opportunity regardless of the time of year.