Holidays can be brutal for quite a few sales teams who struggle to make their number in an already packed month. Last Fourth of July, Outreach was not one of those struggling. In fact, we drove a 28% increase in sales accepted leads in a week. Now, there is nothing so great about us. Our sales reps don’t have magic phone scripts. In fact, any team can do what we did and see the same excellent results. What we did do was prepare and execute. There's always another holiday around the corner (that's how they work, I'm told;), so here’s how to hit your numbers despite holidays.
• Use downtime to prep. Yes, it’s a fact that on holidays, many of your prospects will be out of the office and unavailable to chat. But that’s why it’s doubly important to prep for the remainder of the month. At Outreach, we used Monday’s dead day to double down on prospecting and sequencing. We got our accounts tuned up, cleaned out irrelevant contacts, and queued up our sequences. Rather than just leaving voicemails, we focused on what could make us most productive.
• Implement training. With holidays putting a speed bump in front of your reps, make sure to maximize the opportunities you do have. For us, we have implemented daily call training to make sure our sales messaging is as crisp, sharp, and consistent as it can possibly be. The holiday meant few or zero live calls on the third and fourth day of the month. Call quality can atrophy quickly and with fewer days in the month, you need to maximize every connect.
• Launch a special incentive. We rolled out a summer incentive to the team to get them jazzed, focused, and ensure we keep hustling. We have regional incentives in place so each team can earn something meaningful to them. In Tampa, we have the opportunity for the team to get in a round of golf when they crush their goal. In our Pennsylvania office, we have gift card shopping sprees at stake. In Seattle, the winning team can earn a new pair of running shoes. On top of that, we put a kicker on rep’s monthly commission. Money talks, and incentives ensure that your teams are motivated to push through the holiday softness.
• Cut out internal meetings. Salespeople need time to sell. Internal alignment is important, but sometimes you have to get creative. For us, this meant canceling our normal internal meeting in favor of a few short huddles. This minimized time away from the phone and made sure alignment was achieved without taking away precious selling time.
More than any of these tactics, it was the fact that we planned and prepared for the holiday weekend in the first place. Everyone knows a holiday is coming… it does come every year, after all
Do you use that as an excuse or an opportunity? The answer will determine whether you are truly on the road to sales excellence.