Prospecting is a needed but often difficult part of the sales process. Knowing where to begin and then starting are the hardest parts of the process. Looking across the cityscape of your area it is easy to become overwhelmed by the vast opportunity or depressed about the vacuum all depending on your perception. It is in this area that the ability of discernment becomes crucial and can make the difference between success and mediocrity. Successful sales people must learn to recognize and distinguish markets (forest) as well as understand and connect with individual businesses (trees) as part of the prospecting process.
On a recent trip to a major metropolitan city I was reminded of the vast potential that exists for AMSOIL products. In addition to the millions of vehicles traveling the highways and byways, there was a seemingly endless supply of commercial and retail businesses that were potential AMSOIL accounts. The forest was huge! It was full of hundreds of types of trees each with variations of shapes and sizes. In such a place it is easy to become overwhelmed by the sheer numbers of types of opportunities and become shell-shocked or overly busy without being productive.
What is needed first is to segment the forest into the types of trees, so you have manageable groups of trees or in the sales persons’ case, markets. A first and natural division is commercial versus retail. Under retail you can divide it into convenience store, auto parts, garage, quick lube, truck center, etc…. you can even subdivide that into chain vs. independent. Categorizing will help to really see the markets in the forest and allow you to see the potential that exists and develop an easy step by step plan that you can work that provides a steady stream of prospects into your sales funnel.