In Federal Sales, Make Every Impression Count

“Every impression is important in federal sales. Track every encounter and give yourself points as you hit milestones on your journey toward a win.” -Eileen Kent, Federal Sales Sherpa

Many companies ask me how many times it will take to reach out to a client before the opportunity is closed and my answer is always, “It depends.” It depends on the type of market you’re calling on, what type of product or service you sell, the timing on when contracts come to an end, and whether or not the bid is already on the street. It’s all depending on the relationship you build with the agency, who knows you, and whether or not they know, trust and love you.

So how do you approach this marketplace? The goal is to use every angle you can to get to know your customers but you need to make every call, voice, mail, email, proposal, conversation, capabilities briefing, networking event, casual meeting, formal meeting, social media posting, article, interview question, industry day, pre-proposal walk through, and debriefing count. It takes a long time, and a great deal of patience, perseverance and passion to win over federal clients and to win proposals, so you may not realize each and every interaction makes an impression on the client about your company. From the initial sales call, to the questions asked during the bid process, to the first kick-off project meeting, to deliver and billing. Every interaction with your company makes and impression.

Meanwhile, an un-trained federal sales person is usually putting themselves out there, making cold calls, sending emails and floundering as they don’t know what to do next and they don’t know how to take the conversation to the next level.

With that in mind, I’ve created a simple point system – that a sales person could easily follow and the goal will be to hit 250 points every day – and if the sales person meets that point-per-day goal, they should start to see some positive return on investment for their time.

Impression Points Scorecard
Download Here

My goal is to have a 250-point day – every day – your goal may be different.
So here’s how a couple of daily scorecards may look:

Number of

Activity

Points Earned Today

50

New Names x 1

50

50

Voice Mails x 1

50

10

Conversations x 5

50

1

Proposal x 50

50

1

Award x 100

100

TOTAL MONDAY

300 Points

Number of

Activity

Points Earned Today

2

Proposals

100

1

Email Blitz

1

1

Posting on LinkedIn

1

5

Phone One-On-One

25

100

New Names Found @ Agency

100

100

Emails sent with Capabilities

100

TOTAL MONDAY

327 Points

Imagine if you were able to track your impressions and give yourself some sort of worth for those impressions. Then you’ll get smart – fast and start to conserve your time towards sales activities instead of marketing activities (such as email blitzes and grabbing names off of lists). The goal is to start to make personal impressions and to talk to people. For example, if you had 5 phone calls where people actually answered, wouldn’t you ask for a chance to have a meeting or appointment with them as soon as possible so you could turn that 5-point call into a 10-pointer maybe that same day? Then in the 10-pointer call if there are more than 2 people in the room or on the line, you could ask to send a proposal- and then you turned that 10-pointer into a 50 point impressions score! It encourages you to take the conversation to the next level. It gives you a step-up goal to the next level….from leaving a voice mail and sending a capabilities statement to actually booking conversations and asking for the business. Whatever it takes to make a great impression on your clients, by giving yourself a mini point system, if it takes a while to actually win business and collect money, this little program can keep sales people focused on the end game which is to develop relationships with as many key contacts as possible and to close business. May every day be a 250-point day!

Author:  Eileen Kent is known as “The Federal Sales Sherpa” and helps companies with Federal Sales Training, Proposal Training, A Competitive Analysis, and a Federal Sales Action Plan.  She also hand-picks clients who have been through her “Three Step Program” and works with companies weekly in her elite and custom “ Sherpa for a Year” Program.  As a GovFlexregistered consultant Eileen and her company are available to provide services via the GovFlexplatform.

The views expressed in GovFlex blog postings are solely those of the author.

By | 2019-08-07T15:20:47+00:00 August 5th, 2019|Uncategorized|0 Comments