Winding Down for Christmas
December is often regarded as a “wind down” month for sales and marketing activity, particularly in the period between Christmas and New Year. Many business owners either use this time to take stock and plan for the coming year or close completely.
But should we really wind down at all in December? What is the logic behind this, and does it fit the facts?
Where your marketing activity involves meeting new prospective clients the logic is typically that fewer people will be available to meet with you and that any effort you put into trying to meet with them is therefore wasted. To a degree, this may be true.
The flaw in this logic, though, is the idea that just because some people will not be available to meet with you, this applies to everyone. It does not mean you have to reduce the number of new prospect meetings you have. There are actually very many people you should be meeting if you want to continue growing your business, or even stop it from shrinking. Even if you worked 24/7 there would simply not be enough time in the day to meet with them all. Some of those people will be available in December.
Look carefully at your marketing activity and see what you can do to keep up your normal momentum. Perhaps there is a different category of new prospects you don’t normally get a chance to see – and maybe you can squeeze some of them into your December diary. Or simply devote a little more resource to finding those prospects who will meet with you in December. If, of course, you use an appointment making service such as ours you don’t even have to devote any more resource to it – simply pass on that burden to us!
Some of you may think at this point “why should I devote more resource to finding prospective clients in December?” A good question!
Firstly, take a good hard look at your previous years’ business. Go back over the past two or three years. Look at your sales in January and February. Were they as high as they could have been? Could your business have handled more sales in those months? Be very honest here!
Most of you probably answered that higher sales in January and February would have been very welcome. If you have a good January, that sets you up well for the rest of the year. But a bad January can really hit profits. It can literally take months for your business to recover from that hit.
If you maintain a full diary in December, meeting as many new prospective clients as you can fit in, you should find the sales from those meetings begin pouring in during January and February. Every new client you meet in December could be another sale early next year which you would otherwise never have made.
There is another good reason for keeping your prospect meeting diary filled in December, and that is because it is the “season of goodwill”. Have you noticed how many people become more open and friendly as Christmas looms ever closer? How much better to be presenting to an open and friendly prospect than to one who is sitting there close minded and with folded arms! You are more likely to create a good, long lasting relationship with a client you met in the right state of mind – and you will tend to find more such clients in the Christmas season than at other times in the year.
You may even decide to meet with prospective clients between Christmas and New Year. And why not! A great time to get in front of those prospects you have wanted to meet for some time but who always seem too busy to give you an hour or two to convince them they need you on their team. You could find that “gap” between Christmas and New Year is the one time you can meet them.
So this year don’t “wind down” for Christmas. Try “winding up” instead, and see just what a difference that makes to next year’s profits!