It’s common for sales managers to put prospecting on the back burner in December. After all, sales reps need to concentrate on making their quota before the end of the year. Besides, there are just so many other things to do in December, including forecasting, budgeting and holiday lunching.
Plus, prospects are not around anyway. Right?
History shows that companies that continue to focus on prospecting in December start out January in a very strong sales position, while those who stop prospecting don’t start selling again until February. That’s a whole month lost.
One company we work with in the software industry predictably sees sales appointments tick up beginning in October, along with the prospecting response rate. Since the company continues to prospect in December, January appointments are their highest of the year.
There are several reasons why December prospecting works:
- While inside sales reps may have fewer conversations with prospects in December, when they do connect the prospects tend to be in a better mood, their tasks are winding down and they are thinking about how to succeed next year.
- December prospecting sets meetings that take place in January. At that time, sales reps will be past the year-end quota frenzy and will be ready to get the new year off to a strong start. They will have meetings already set for the month, which will make January a high-performing month.
- Lead generators, whether inside the company or outsourced, are tasked with generating return on investment. Idling this resource naturally will negatively impact ROI.
Still not convinced? Ask yourself: would I tell sales reps not to sell two months each quarter because they only close sales during the last month? That would have sales reps sitting idle eight months out of the year. Just as the sales effort taking place throughout the quarter leads to reps making their quota, prospecting in December positions the company for a top-performing January.
Author: Jenny Vance is president of LeadJen, a B2B lead generation company that uses unparalleled data and insight to drive prospect interactions that convert to sales. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @jennyvancyindy.