There is great value in defining how a potential customer is handled from the initial moment of inquiry to the close of a sale. This is especially true when multiple people are involved, which is the case in most businesses.
Additionally, a well-run sales process reduces the “brain power” people need to use on a daily basis and increases the likelihood of success!
So how does one define a process? The easiest way to do it is simply envision yourself as an inquiry to your PSS and write down EVERY STEP, from beginning to end. Your process may start in a similar way to the example below:
As with this example, keep in mind that potential customers might be inquiring in different ways. Ask yourself if that information changes any part of your process (because of the variation) and adjust accordingly.
The process you create should include five overall phases:
Each of these phases has multiple steps. However, each step and its order will depend upon your particular PSS and the way that you, your environment, and your staff wish to execute the process.
The Value of Sales Integration with Other Profit Centers
If your PSS is a part of a larger facility, integration with the other areas of the facility will be a key component of your process. Likewise, you will want to ensure that the PSS is included in the other areas’ sales efforts as well.
There are great advantages to ensuring that the PSS is integrated (or cross-functional) with the other areas of your facility. For example, if you include a short tour of your facility’s health club and mention the advantages of a family club membership as a part of signing up for the Parisi program, you might close a sale for multiple areas. Not only will the family membership sale produce more revenue, but it also increases this client’s connection with the facility because the whole family becomes involved! You have just increased the retention of your athlete two-fold! Keep in mind, our Game Time program is a terrific “add on” to the “Family Membership” in a larger facility as it functions as a feeder program for the sports performance programs.
It is also worth mentioning that integration can move beyond the sales process. Many successful PSS’s have combined marketing efforts, targeted Parisi marketing to members with kids, developed specific program offerings that cater to facility membership, or even offered adult programming in the Parisi space (during down time) to add exposure. However, you decide to integrate your PSS into your larger facility is up to you, but integration is essential. It is an easy, potential customer base right at your fingertips.
Conduct Successful EFT and Session Sales
Once you implement a working sales process, it is time to turn your attention to the quality of the content. Recall that the process includes the following five phases:
Let’s break down each of these phases and examine its critical components.
The Quality of Your Sales Process Contact
Think of greeting the customer and gathering information during inquiry as the first impression of your PSS. Most likely, the potential customer is apprehensive about inquiring at all. Many people are afraid when inquiring about a potential purchase because they “don’t want to be sold.”
It is important that the greeting is friendly, relaxed, and inviting. If the front desk at your facility is designated as the greeter, remember to stress the need for the assigned staff member to take the necessary time to ensure the potential customer (whether on the phone or in person) feels comfortable. In many cases, a scripted inquiry form can be useful when handling a phone inquiry.
The same is true when obtaining information from the potential customer. “Fill out this form and bring it back to me when you are finished” is NOT a good way to get the required information from a customer. A more conversational approach (one that identifies the reason behind the need for the information) will yield better results.
As a Program Director, it is also important that you specify what inquiry form and information you expect employees to gather before turning the potential customer over to you. How far you expect the greeter to go should be defined as part of the specified sales process.
The Impact of Using an Athlete’s Evaluation/Goals to Close
The evaluation is a fundamental part of every PSS sales process. Did you know that network wide, Parisi typically closes 80% of all sales that include an evaluation?
The evaluation should be positioned as an essential tool in determining the “best program” to reach each athlete’s goals. While pricing is often brought up as a deterrent to booking an evaluation, you must put yourself in the shoes of your potential customer – you would probably want to know prices too before you invested an hour plus of your time!!!
When this is the case, very simply give the potential customer a range of the pricing your PSS offers and state that to be more specific would be impossible without the results of an evaluation. Stress that there is no obligation beyond the evaluation, and that the results will be valuable regardless of whether or not the decision is made to move forward with Parisi.
Prior to conducting an evaluation, take a few minutes with the parents and athlete to discuss the challenges and goals that led them to your PSS in the first place. Goals can vary widely (depending on the parent and athlete) and often can be different between the two! Whether it is a lack of agreement or over-inflated goals, you might have to use your “diplomat hat” to reach common and realistic goals everyone can agree upon. Don’t skip this important step, because it becomes the foundation for successfully closing the sale!
Finally, remember that most parents will want to watch the evaluation – and this is a good thing! This is your opportunity to not only show off your school and the Parisi training system, but also your interest, enthusiasm, and concern for the child.
You will win a child with the environment and evaluation…
You will win the parents with your attention to their child!
Once the evaluation and presentation are complete, it is CRITICAL that you relate the evaluation to the goals set earlier to recommend a solution to the parent and child. You need to explain what the evaluation is telling you about the child and how you will go about having the child reach those goals using the particular program you are recommending. This recommendation should be followed up with the pricing and available payment options.