Reps: Do You Know Your Clients' Top Stressors?

Your prospects and customers have plenty of distractions as the holiday season cuts into regular business dealings between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. But, in the coming year, they may still be distracted and short of time. As you plot how to make the most of the time you spend with clients in 2016, read exactly what stresses them out in the State of Marketing Report published by Workfront. Then, put a few key practices in place to win over these clients.

The last thing you want to do is irritate a prospect. Putting them in a bad mood reduces your chances of getting a contract signed. Here are a few of the activities that marketers say get in the way of completing their work:

  • Wasteful meetings 64%
  • Excessive emails 61%
  • Unexpected phone calls 39%

In our always-​on world, 56% of marketers say they are checking email outside of standard business hours on a daily basis.  52% of these folks say they’re trying to get ahead of their work by reading email in their off hours.

Workers are finding other ways to keep their jobs from encroaching on their work-​life balance. Only 35% take a full hour or more for lunch. That means 65% of marketers are not taking a sufficient break in the middle of the day and may be starving by mid-afternoon.

It all comes down to feeling overwhelmed. 37% say they have too much to do. In fact, only 36% of a typical marketer’s work week is devoted to the primary job responsibility. When asked about solutions, workers would like to have uninterrupted blocks of time to get their jobs done. Given this scenario, prospects and clients aren't going to welcome a cold call or drop-​in meeting from their sales rep.

If you’re selling to harried, distracted marketers you need a plan. Start taking notes about when your contacts prefer to get a call from you – maybe even store this information in your CRM – and stick to the schedule that suits your clients, not you. Be respectful of your prospect’s time. If your manager is hounding you to send follow-​up emails at regular intervals, point out the details of this study, and agree on a schedule that keeps your name top of mind without bombarding a prospect with requests about where she is in her decision-​making process.

Finally, think about fun ways to multi-​task. If your client is glued to his desk through the noon hour, offer to buy him a cup of coffee or lunch. Lure him out of his cube, get him to relax and then make your pitch. If you can’t convince her to leave her desk, find out what she likes to eat and bring a treat to your scheduled meeting. A fed and relaxed prospect could turn into a happy client.

Kathy Crosett
Kathy is the Vice President of Research for SalesFuel. She holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Vermont and oversees a staff of researchers, writers and content providers for SalesFuel. Previously, she was co-​owner of several small businesses in the health care services sector.