3 Sales Productivity Tips for Your Green Industry Business


3 Sales Productivity Tips for your Green Industry Business

By Chad Reinholz

It’s football season. In the past, that meant that I spent weekends either watching my alma mater win in person, or watching college football on Saturday and the NFL on Sunday. I literally logged 20 hours of football watching per weekend. I thought about starting a local chapter of Footballaholics Anonymous.

But then life slowly intervened. Marriage. A child. A job that required weekend work. Throw in that the time it took to complete a football game was increasing - especially college games - and there just wasn’t enough time in the day to satisfy my lust for football.

But then technology intervened. The NFL released NFL Game Rewind (now called NFL Game Pass), and I could watch a game in 30-45 minutes. NFL Game Rewind stripped out all the non-football parts of football - the commercials, the huddling between plays, the TV timeouts, the gratuituous shots of cheerleaders dancing. It showed only the plays.

I was suddenly much more productive on the weekends, yet I was watching more football games than ever before.

Which got me thinking: What can a green industry business do to improve sales productivity - and increase sales? Here are three tips to get you started:

Take real-time notes in the field.

I’ve always believed the key to successful selling is knowledge. The salespeople that know more - what the buyer wants, what’s motivating their decision, what they value - will more than likely make the sale. The more data you have about your prospect, the more likely you are to be successful.

Which is why it’s always baffled me that sales reps in the green industry rarely take notes - or if they do it’s in a poorly organized notebook when they return to the office after a day of selling.
You need to take notes electronically in the field immediately after your conversation with your prospect before you drive away. If your sales reps are like most sales reps, they experience a high after they talk to a customer. They’re replaying the conversation in their head, figuring out next steps, understanding the buyer’s motivation. You want them capturing information in the middle of that high. That’s when they’ll have the greatest recall and capture the most relevant information.

So invest in a field service sales CRM that your sales reps can leverage on their phone - or better yet, tablet - immediately after their conversation to record important data. They can then use that data later in the sales process to better prepare themselves for follow-up conversations.

Schedule electronically.

We sell field service software to green industry businesses. One of the things our software does is help businesses electronically schedule and route their crews and technicians. It drastically improves productivity in the office and the field. For instance, our average irrigation business customer can squeeze in as many as 1 to 2 more jobs per technican per day because of the efficiencies smart scheduling and routing introduce to their business.

Yet, I’m always surprised at how few customers extend that scheduling and routing to their salespeople. It’s a significant productivity gain for their business, yet they don’t see the value in electronically scheduling and routing their salespeople.

With our solution, your sales rep never really needs to go to the office - which means he or she can spend more time out in the field bidding and selling. For most green industry businesses, the sales process is similar. A prospect calls or completes an online form. Your office manager writes down the information and hands it to the sales rep. The sales rep calls the prospect back and schedules a meeting, then goes to the site. It could be days or even weeks before the salesperson is on the prospect’s property.

With a paperless solution, when the prospect calls, your office manager can look at the sales rep’s schedule. Our software shows when in the future the sales rep will be in the neighborhood. The office manager can pick the date and time right there on the phone and schedule the appointment. Then, that information syncs to the sales rep’s tablet, which he or she can view in the field. It’s a simple, elegant solution that will get you on the customer’s job site faster, increasing your likelihood of earning the sale.

Leverage the power of email.

In many cases, the frequency with which you touch your customer will win you the sale. For example, when I was shopping for a pest control business, the business I ended up choosing contacted me multiple times. After my initial form submission, they sent me an email saying it was received, but after hours, so they’d call me in the morning. Then, they called me the following morning. I had a follow-up question and talked to them again.

The number of touches is important. If you can automate those with email, do it. For example, in HindSite’s sales process, we use our service business marketing solution, HindSite Connect, to send an appointment confirmation e-mail when our sales rep schedules a demo. Then, after the demo, we automatically send another email with more useful information about HindSite. By automating those touches, we ensure that our message is clear and consistent - and that they’re happening.

If you can, automate emails to deliver useful information to your prospects. It will help reinforce what you do and improve your odds of selling.

Need more sales and marketing tips? Check out our free eBook, 15 Sales and Marketing Tips Guaranteed to Grow Your Green Industry Business, today!


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