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Propane Gas Marketing: 3 Reasons Your Propane Company Should Hire a Salesperson
Guest Post by Bill Morrow
As a leader of a small propane company, you’re probably used to wearing many hats. You handle operations, customer support, sales proposals, scheduling deliveries, and more:
But beware: you’ll hurt your bottom-line if you’re not able to give sales enough time and attention.
Growing propane sales requires a deliberate approach
Word of mouth is always good for sales, but it’s not enough. You can’t expect new prospects to start calling because you’ve delighted a few talkative customers. Growing your propane business requires a more deliberate strategy.
In your B2C market, you can increase sales with an online marketing strategy that includes tactics like improving your search presence, local landing pages, special offers, and even a referral campaign.
But one resource that can help tie all your efforts together is a dedicated salesperson.
A dedicated salesperson can add value to your propane business by taking a more targeted approach to converting your leads into customers.
3 reasons to hire a salesperson for your propane gas company’s marketing efforts:
Short sales cycles need fast action
The buyer has an immediate need for propane; they do research-based on price and service, then they call a few providers. They are most likely to sign with the first company that they feel meets their needs.
For this reason, the person you have on the other end of the line matters.
Many companies have a receptionist or customer service rep who answers the phone. While a customer service rep provides helpful information and a friendly human voice on the other end, they aren’t skilled at closing sales.
A salesperson uses their specific training and skills to persuade the potential customer to sign with your propane company because you’re the best option.
A salesperson will be more direct in asking for business and closing the sale. Salespeople are skilled at identifying the opportunities in a call by:
- Connecting with the customer’s pain point
- Positioning your service as the best solution
- Setting you apart from the competition
A good sales person with a solid sales process will increase conversion rates as much as 100% more than a customer service rep. A salesperson will try to turn that lead inquiry into a sale instead of letting them slip away.
Follow-ups win more business
While salespeople can close sales more efficiently, not every sale is closed in one phone call. This is why following up with leads is important.
But, customer service reps don’t often follow-up with leads on a regular basis. They wait for the prospect to call back.
The problem here is that the prospect might not call back at all. If you don’t reach out to them, they will more than likely forget about you.
A salesperson makes sure your leads don't forget you.
A salesperson has “lead nurturing” built into their DNA. They are programmed to follow-up and push a chance call into a future sale by calling back a prospect that might have needed a little more time.
That follow-up call will probably mean a lot to that prospect if they’re still not ready to buy. The salesperson might be able to change that by answering their questions/objections and distinguishing your propane service from the rest.
A Customer Relationship Management (CRM) will help you keep track of customers and improve follow-up. Better follow-up will help you win more business, by up to 30%.
Certain CRMs can also help automate quick follow-up and responses for leads that come in through the website.
Build relationships that lead to repeatable revenue
The salesperson can also build your brand with partners that can generate more business. A salesperson can create relationships with other businesses and associations that become referral partners for your propane gas business. For example, building relationships with:
- Home builders
- HVAC companies
- Fireplace companies
- Mobile home parks
- Agriculture industry
Anyone of these cross-industry partnerships can help you win more referrals and bigger accounts. For instance, winning a new development can bring in more customers and more revenue in one shot.
A salesperson will proactively seek out and target these types of businesses. This can include cold calling, taking someone out to lunch, or going up to a construction site and introducing themselves to the developer.
These opportunities will be missed if you’re juggling other business operations on your own. But with a salesperson in the field, these partners can market your services to the same clients they served.
Propane providers need salespeople to thrive in the B2C marketplace
At first glance, the fast transacting B2C market may seem like it doesn’t need a salesperson. Especially in the industry of a product as simple as propane.
But, you’ll find a well-directed salesperson can take advantage of the fast-paced nature, flipping prospect inquiries into closed sales. Not to mention, they’ll tack on sales for tangential services, such as inspections or cleanings, customers wouldn’t have otherwise known about.
The point is, customer service “helpers” or administrative “message takers” aren’t going to look at every incall as an opportunity to increase your bottom-line. It’s not what they’re paid to do, or even want to do.
A salesperson wants the chase. They want to convert and close a prospect whenever they’re given a chance. You’ll accrue more revenue by having a salesperson on your front-end, and you sure won’t complain about the increase in your bottom-line.
About the Author
Bill Morrow is a seasoned sales leader with over 20 years of successfully driving growth in companies of all sizes. As a managing partner of Empirical Consulting Solutions, he creates high functioning sales organizations that exceed expectations.
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