Grow with Grunder: Sell more to your existing clients

(Photo: JonGorr / iStock / Getty Images Plus / Getty Images)
(Photo: JonGorr / iStock / Getty Images Plus / Getty Images)

In March, I did a training session with our salespeople at Grunder Landscaping Co. where we went over how enhancements can help us hit our sales goals and what they can do to find more enhancements.

Here’s what I shared with them:

If you assume there are 50 weeks in the year to sell — taking two weeks out for the end of the year, when we know it’s rare to close sales — we can pretty easily find another $250,000 in revenue by selling $5,000 in enhancement work each week.

That’s a doable goal and breaking it down into a weekly goal helps us to wrap our brains around it.

The activities needed to sell enhancements require salespeople to go out and be order makers. This means they have to be out in the community, walking the properties they manage and actively looking for ways to create work.

Here’s what I encourage them to look for:

  1. Safety issues. Is there anything unsafe on the property? Trip hazards? Low-hanging branches?
  2. Bare spots. Are there bare spots in the mulch where we could add additional plants to fill it in? Less mulch and more plants is a tip I learned from my friend, landscape architect and industry giant, Doug Hoerr.
  3. Usage improvements. Could we do something to improve the functionality of the property for the way that it’s used? We’ve had success selling retaining walls when they give a client more usable yard space.
  4. Aging or damaged plants. Are there plants that are damaged or deformed from the winter we could replace? Is there a tree or shrub that’s nearing the end of its typical lifespan?

Be an order maker

I emphasized to my team, and I’ll emphasize to all of you, that in no way do I want them to have commission breath or sell our clients work they don’t need. We don’t need to be overly pushy. Often, just making suggestions about what’s possible is enough to find additional work.

Our clients choose to work with us because they know we are experts in outdoor spaces. They want us to bring them ideas on what could be done on their properties. Often, our clients are grateful we brought things to their attention and love the improvements we suggest.

In sales, sometimes the orders come to us and we can be order takers — writing down what the client wants and then doing the work. Other times, the orders are slow, and we need to go out and create demand and make them.

In past years, salespeople could just be order takers and hit their goals. That’s increasingly unlikely this year. I hope that these tips help you go out and be an order maker this year.

If you’re looking for additional help with sales this year, either for you or your team, I encourage you to join us in May for our Virtual Sales Bootcamp 2.0. This event is a companion to our original Virtual Sales Bootcamp (although they don’t need to be taken in order) and will cover information sales teams need to know to close more sales in 2024 in six live online sessions.

Learn more and register at growgroupinc.com/virtual-sales-bootcamp-2.0.

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