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Sales Prospecting Question

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Jonny Blaze

Contributor
Aug 18, 2016
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Hello all,

So I have posted to this forum before about my personal clothing brand, so far I'm very pleased with the support and interaction I have been getting with social media and in-person events. So I decided to try and get a job at a local print shop so I could work on my screen printing and get better at creating products for my clothing brand.

I got a job at a local startup, basically, they cold called my mom and she sold me and I had an interview the next day and got hired. The start of the business was strange, I had a boss and a co-worker who I'm almost absolutely sure was hooked on some heavy drugs, not sure which, but pretty sure. My boss told me that within a month or two we would have our own equipment and we would probably have me manage the whole production side of the print shop. Then we brought on these two ladies (partners in the business/ old friends with my boss) who just kind of F*cked around and didn't get shit done. They fired my original co-worker, and one of these two lovely ladies decided to hop onto sales with me.

My job was to hop on the phone and find people who needed shirts, hats, business cards, or any logo apparel. My boss also runs a business where he sells leads, so that's pretty helpful. I mainly targeted contractors and blue-collar industries to try and get larger orders and would make around 350 calls a day and that lead to me finding about 35 people/businesses a day that needed shirts.

The only problem was that lady wasn't closing shit, and the other one who was in charge of ordering shirts and sending them off to the company we were outsourcing production to, was messing up orders left and right. I got so frustrated because we were sucking! I hate sucking! I called my boss up and asked him if I could just start closing deals myself. He said he was just as frustrated as I was, and told me to go for it.

Now I am not posting this to brag. There is nothing to brag about, but I did actually start closing deals and my boss realized he really didn't want those two ladies anymore. He fired them and wanted it to be just me and him running it, but unfortunately, he suffered some heart issues and needs to take it easy. So now its just me running the whole shop. Ive been doing pretty decent, this month alone Ive gotten about $8k in sales, and we are atleast at the point of breaking even and going up a couple hundred each month.

My daily schedule goes a little something like this:
8AM - Arrive at the shop ( I live about 35 minutes away from the shop)
(8AM-9AM) - Handle orders, check on production, order shirts. If I have to do artwork for a client I could go until 11AM sometimes, It just kind of depends on the artwork.
(9AM-6PM) - Prospecting, returning phone calls, emails, setting up appointments, following up, and trying to close deals

I leave the shop, go home, and watch sales training videos on youtube and try to consume educational content that can benefit me. and rinse and repeat.

My biggest struggle is my 9AM-6PM block. I really try to keep my pipeline full but sometimes prospecting for me is the hardest thing for me. I am inconsistent with my results. Some days I can prospect for hours, others not so much. I'm sure we've all ran into this. I would like to scale this business and I know It just means I need to keep hitting the freaking phones, what do you guys think are some things that could help me be more consistent with prospecting?
 
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Late Bloomer

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Apr 17, 2018
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Hi Johnny, what a dramatic soap opera at the shop that led to your being in charge! Wow!

I would like to scale this business and I know It just means I need to keep hitting the freaking phones

You have one way to get new clients, which requires a lot of manual labor. You need to add additional ways to get clients, which are scalable. I recommend you look at information from marketing gurus like Dan Kennedy and Jay Abraham. If you can learn how to run ads, put up social media posts, send out sales letters, do something to get publicity, joint venture to provide shirts through other businesses etc. to get people calling YOU, then you can escape the endless outbound calling grind.

It sounds like your original goal for the job has gone? You wanted to improve your production skills and get more product ideas. But in your current schedule, you say you only check on production. Instead, you've become a plate-spinning jack of all trades with a heavy emphasis on telemarketing. Is that still useful for your original goal?
 

AdamMaxum

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Apr 30, 2011
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sounds like you should probably hire someone and start 'managing' instead of 'doing' everything yourself

put together a sales process, cold call script, etc and then train someone until they can handle that part and then focus on other activities that would scale the sales process/results while managing
 

BD64

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Check out Jeb Blount's book, fanatical prospecting. It's fairly comprehensive for what you're doing and should shed some light on things.
 
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