Operations

Yes, You Must Do It All

Anuj Patel
Posted on April 9, 2019
You can't be satisfied with doing one thing in your sales process.

You can't be satisfied with doing one thing in your sales process.

At this moment, I think the product we sell is one of the most difficult sales in the entire service industry.  

In ground transportation, people have more options than ever at all price points. An entire system with plenty of choices serves the riding public. It doesn’t matter what market segment you fall into anymore. Everything has changed, and it’s getting harder to sell and promote our product to new clients.

Invest In Your Sales Process

The number one reason I love this industry so much is because it’s challenging and evolving at the same time. We have been disrupted. Everywhere you look, the correct decisions must be made, from choosing the right affiliates that represent you correctly to how you target and approach companies for their business. You must make a big investment in how you choose and design your sales process. 

If you don’t have a proven track record of success in some areas, hire some good help. Build a strong team. Admit you were wrong (even if it’s just to yourself), and move forward making the correct move. Allow it to humble you. It will make your team stronger and you a better leader.

An unrealized loss many don’t see or measure is time versus money spent. For example, are you the person who tells your salespeople, “I want to get all the road shows! Let’s hit up all the hotels and don’t’ take no for an answer! Let’s go get shuttle work!”?

Really? Have you gone out and tried to sell to motels and hotels lately? Have you ever done a road show? Do you know what it takes to operate a corporate shuttle? Have you done the research on how the hotel market has dynamically changed post TNC era? Are you approaching new potential accounts the same way you have always been?

Time is money and if your sales team is following a broken or out-of-date approach, you are losing in more ways than one. If you are making decisions without looking at your analytics or studying the newly formed marketplace, you are shooting yourself in the foot.

So far, in most of my experience developing business in Chicago and New York City, it’s been more of a long-sale style for the most part, not a short one. It’s been about developing relationships, communication, and education. It takes a lot of time and even more effort. I actually think the term “sales” is really just out of date in our industry. It’s all about development and partnerships, one client at a time. If you think your online digital campaign, mixed with your Facebook ads, email marketing, and social media posts are all it will take, you are wrong.

Now more than ever, you must do it ALL to win. What really makes you different is not how you kick ass in search, but how you win over the customer who inquires to convert from the search. Always remember your marketing game only takes you so far. This is why it’s so difficult. It’s not just one thing. Every part of the process has to be perfect. 

There is no room for error anymore. Everyone’s smarter, faster, and stronger — not just our competitors, but the customer, too. We are dealing with the smartest, most cutting edge consumer with all the tools in their hands to find the EXACT fit for them. To me, nothing is ever that easy while nothing is ever too difficult. There is always a way.

Together, we will get through these same difficulties. Take advantage of all you learn at the LCT trade shows to help make your daily business grind a little less difficult.  All the tools and people you need for success are available.   

Anuj Patel is the director of strategic development for Pontarelli Worldwide Ground Transportation. He can be reached at [email protected]

Related Topics: customer service, Sales & Marketing, selling techniques

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