5 Reasons Sales Suffer and How to Fix Them

Filed in Sales & Marketing by on February 3, 2016 4 Comments

Looking to boost sales? Tweaking one or more areas of your sales and marketing strategy could do the trick.

During the International Builders’ Show, Meredith Oliver, Master CSP, MIRM, and owner of Meredith Communications, in Raleigh, N.C., and Jared Weggeland, of Focus Homes in Lakeland, Fla., shared some helpful tips and takeaways on ways builders can improve their game plan to increase sales.

Here are five problem areas they identified, and how to fix them.

Problem: Website lacks a sales-driven focus
Solution: Add high-quality or professional video and photography, detailed floor plans and a call-to-action to generate more interest and consumer engagement.

NRP Group Website

The NRP Group, 2015 Multifamily Pillars of the Industry Award Winner, Best Corporate Website

traditions

Traditions of America, 2016 55+ Best of Housing Awards Winner, Marketing, Best Project Website

Problem: Lack of social selling
Solution: Drive more consumer traffic to the website using social media. Oliver suggested starting with Facebook, and taking advantage of social tagging – or what she refers to as exponential networking reach. “When other people start selling your product, it’s pre-sold,” she said.

Taylor Morrison Homes promotional video with nearly 70,000 views on YouTube

Problem: Sales presentations lack context
Solution: “Customized, not canned,” is key when presenting information to clients, Oliver said. Providing information in a way that gives the consumer context for why something should matter to them. Timely, relevant and useful information generates more interest in a product and fosters greater motivation to buy. “Don’t assume they understand what those features mean to them. Give them a why, a so what, or a because,” she said.  It’s important also to give the right context to the right buyers. For example, you may want to shy away from talking about how great the neighborhood schools are to boomers.

Problem: Inconsistent follow up
Solution: “The more follow up you have, the more you will sell,” Weggeland said. And the best way to follow-up, he advises, is via high-touch, customized digital messages based on each consumer’s personal buying situation. Weggeland suggested using data-based outreach software, like Constant Contact or Lasso, to track the data (which is usually gathered either online or in person) and conduct targeted email and phone-based outreach to each constituency. “It takes a little upfront investment, but you get amazing returns,” he said.

email

Problem: Throwback sales center 
Solution: Use the latest technology to sell. “Visuals make a big difference in a person’s ability to retain information,” Oliver said. Setting up interactive displays that promote visual storytelling will help the “uber distracted” consumer hone in on the products being offered right in front of them.

Solivita New Home Sales Center, 2016 Best of 55+ Housing, Marketing, Sales Center (Over 1,000 Units)

Solivita New Home Sales Center, 2016 Best of 55+ Housing Finalist, Marketing, Sales Center (Over 1,000 Units)

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  1. Bushing Blog | October 14, 2016
  1. Ron Mattocks says:

    Good post. All spot-on issues to deal with. Some of them have been fundamental for years. It’s interesting how much of a factor technology now plays into the selling process today. What is supposed to be a means to make selling easier and more efficient has also created another dimension to contend with.

    Additionally, the Internet has in many ways put the home buyer in control. They will disqualify builders in their hunt for a home simply based on the builder’s site or bad online reviews, whereas before, if they were interested they would show up at a model home where the sales person at least had the opportunity to talk to them.

    This is the way it works today which means builders really need to pay more attention to their digital marketing program. The fixes offered here are generally good; however, step one is for the heads of sales and marketing to develop a digital marketing strategy that addresses, SEO, Social Media, buyer-centric content, UI, and lead-generation as a whole and how that strategy will support the larger sales efforts. Once builders have that in place, then it’s time to evaluate their website and marketing software to see if there are any gaps that need to be addressed. As opposed to some of the tools suggested above, a better option would be to look at a fully integrated marketing automation platform like Marketo or HubSpot.

    HubSpot for example can offer all the email capabilities, plus social media monitoring and management, personalized content creation features, refined audience segmentation, custom CTA for websites/blogs, SEO management, lead scoring to pre-qualify buyers before sending to sales, plus a strong analytics tool that lets you track things altogether. You can also link it to your CRM and see actual revenue from the digital marketing initiatives.

    Don’t get me wrong. Marketing automation isn’t the solution–the strategy is, but I think sales managers at most home building companies don’t realize the level of sophistication and corresponding results they can derive from a solid digital marketing plan. I’m not sure they understand too, that a return on marketing-spend can actually now be quantified in dollars and cents or that online leads with a good lead nurture strategy can yield better qualified leads at a much lower cost per acquisition than by traditional marketing means..

    Again, good article. Thanks.

  2. Thank you so much for writing about our program at IBS. It was a pleasure to present and hopefully attendees received information they can use to make more sales this year!

  3. I really enjoyed your article. It shows me you have done your research and you gained my confidence in your recognition of both the need of the Sales Counselor to “personalize” their demonstration for each Guest then execute tremendous effort in consistent quality follow ups!

    One other “fix” that I am sure you would agree with me, is the importance being “likeable” by creating an emotional connection with their Guest. First one must be likeable so the Guest will stay around long enough in so their Sales Counselor can earn the right to be “trustworthy”.

    I am sure I am preaching to the choir here! Looking forward to reading more insightful articles from you in the future.

    Today is a great day to be great, so make it a great day!

    Thank you!
    Michael

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