Luxury Coach & Transportation

May 2019

Magazine for the professional limousine, charter and tour industry.

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LUXURY COACH & TRANSPORTATION MAY 2019 29 are liking or talking about, and looks to see if people she knows have made any new connections. She also reads Crain's Business Journal for Cleve- land and Akron to see what's up and coming in the business world in her market. She also checks out plenty of local Facebook groups for weddings and meetings and event planning. From these sources, she gathers a new list of potential clients to pursue. "My flat list at this point has close to 300 people on it, and I add every day. If I sell somebody, they're off my flat list. ey go to the hot list. I'm constantly adding to the point where I may never 'finish' going through the list. But that's what you always have to be doing." She keeps five notebooks on her desk with fresh prospects, and when she's contacted them, moves them to a spreadsheet in Excel. On average, she adds 20 to 30 new contacts a day. Of these, 10 are people she's formed some connection with and the other 20 are new. She attends one network- ing event a day, but can go to up to three depend- ing on what's happening that day. She has a 40% closing rate. A Few More Notables You can't be intimi- dated by the word "sales," Parson says. "Too often, people think 'I don't know how to do that,' or 'I'm shy,' or 'I don't know how to contact the right people.'" Anyone can be themselves. at, along with a genuine desire to get to know the other person and help them, is what selling is all about. "Never be afraid to take a top chauf- feur with you on sales calls. ey often have knowledge you don't and can help you answer your prospect's questions." When you feel comfortable and have plenty of connections with people inside and outside of your industry, you may want to take the initiative like Parson did and set up your own networking events. She and a few other professionals started one for women. ey used social media to get the word out and sold out both events they've hosted so far. — if you don't want to be known as "that annoying salesperson": • Don't be pitchy — No one likes a tele- marketer, so don't act like one. • Don't go in blind — Understand who you are selling to. Do your research. It's easy in this day and age with Linke- dIn and other social media platforms. • Don't conduct sales calls just to meet a quota — Even if you only get one done, get it done perfectly. Just because you made 10 doesn't mean they were good or productive. A Day In The Life Of A Sales Star e first step Parson takes is Linke- dIn. She searches for topics people they need to learn and use it as part of their sales." People often don't know there's a service aspect besides getting in a car and being dropped off at a destina- tion, Parson says. For those you're booking a lot of business for, price isn't their number one worry. You need to find out what their number two, three, and four concerns are instead of going straight to price. at approach just lumps you in with everyone else. Every current and po- tential client differs. You have to cre- ate a profile for each. Devise different points you'll talk about with them. Finally, no matter how small or busy you are, you need to find at least 30 minutes to an hour a day to focus on sales. How NOT To Be A Sales Star Here are some things to stay away from RIGHT: Nina Parson, director of sales for Company Car & Limousine in Cleveland, Ohio spends a great deal of her time out of the office at networking events to meet as many new prospects as she possibly can.

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