Sales & the ghost of Christmas past
Is your sales process haunted by the ghost of Christmas past?
A recurring theme we have seen all year long is that more and more clients are spending less time in the branch and conducting more of their business online or over the phone. What all of this means of course is we are having less opportunity to discuss financial matters with them in any real and meaningful way.
What hasn’t changed are the financial issues facing many people:
- Not prepared as well as they should be for retirement
- Credit cards out of control and worried about paying off debt
- Not happy with the returns on the investments they do have
- Concerned about how they might be able to help their kids with their post secondary education
- Putting up with inferior or unfriendly service at a competitor’s FI
- They still need our professional help in order to maximize their financial situation and prepare them as well as they can be for their future.
Have You Updated Your Sales Process?
Unfortunately, we see too many financial institutions struggling because they have been slow to adjust their sales process to adapt to these new world realities.
Clients need more help than ever but are spending less time in the branch for us to to be able to give them that help.
A reactive sales process that waits for the client to come into the branch and ask for help is outdated and ineffective. Clients are too busy and there are too many other ways for them to conduct banking aside from going into the branch. We need to seize every opportunity possible to try and slow clients down and help them identify some of their financial concerns before it’s too late.
Does your team have any of these nasty ghosts from Christmas past?
- Letting anyone in the branch answer rate inquiries by simply handing out posted rate
- Not having anyone trained or coached in the art of converting a rate inquiry into an appointment
- Switching accounts for clients that are in the wrong one up at the front counter instead of in an office.
- Assuming that if the client needed something they would ask
- Not calling renewals, or calling renewals and only asking about the renewal product and not inviting them into the branch
- Calling renewals weeks after a letter has been mailed - after the client has already shopped around
- Feeling like we have no right to ask about the client’s financial well being
- Assuming that if you don’t have the best rate you won’t get the deal
- Waiting for clients to call us instead of calling them
- Focusing only on the product the client came in for and assuming they don’t want to talk about anything else
We all have seen branch traffic drop off. These ghosts of Christmas past just don't fly in today's environment. Give yourself a gift of higher performance by retiring them before the New Year.
Have a strong finish to the month and all the best for 2015!