But fear not. Your sales pipeline is probably half as robust as it was last year, but by getting back to basics while integrating your efforts with the latest marketing and social media best practices, you can survive 2009 and get yourself positioned for strong growth in 2010.
What are the sales basics? It's easy to forget, but here are three, compiled by a great resource I read regularly, justsales.com.
1. Establish a relentless focus on talking with prospects and customers at every moment of each sales day. Sales requires contact. Make contact your first priority.
2. Be prepared with one to three absolutely solid statements that communicate the reasons someone should buy from you now – buy from you... now. These should be powerful statements that create a sense of urgency and make it clear why you and your offering are the solution to their situation at this very moment – scripted and rehearsed to a point where you can deliver these benefits with appropriate voice intonation, literally, in your sleep. (please remember: being the biggest, oldest, or "premier" provider is rarely a reason someone should buy from you... in fact, sometimes it could be the reason not to)
3. Be ready with an approachable, non-defensive method of responding to the top three objections you and your team hear each sales day. Again, these should be scripted and rehearsed to be delivered without hesitation.