Phone Sales isn’t Dead

As anyone who has watched Glengarry Glen Ross knows, sales is all about the premium leads. Where do those leads come from, and what are they used for? Another lesson from Glengarry Glen Ross, ABC…Always Be Closing: “Prospects don’t walk on the lot lest they want to buy”…once we close them in the tasting room, it is really just the beginning of the relationship, if we are doing our job right.

So the tasting room Prospects bought wine in the tasting room, becoming First Time Buyers, but may not have yet joined the wine club. That is ok! As we have learned from recent Commerce7 data, it takes an average of 4.17  interactions before a Prospect becomes a Repeat Buyer, often times in the form of joining the wine club. When we look at our databases, all too often we see that our Prospects are the least marketed to, the least personalized. One of the best ways to move Prospects further up the Buyer’s Continuum is to do personalized, targeted outreach by picking up the phone and calling. How is that best achieved?

Great notes about the guest’s visit makes this possible.

Did they make a reservation? How did they hear about us? Perhaps a member referred them, or a top hotel in the area. Maybe our print ad budget is working well, or they saw an ad online that drove them to us. What did they enjoy when they tasted? A new release, a library wine, that extra special bonus pour that was meaningful to those particular guests? Perhaps they mentioned an upcoming occasion, like a wedding or special birthday where they need wine. What is their role at work, are they in charge of holiday gifts for clients or employees? Beyond name and email address for their receipt, are we capturing this rich data?

Now that there is a robust profile, let’s use it!

It would be a shame to let those premium Prospects go to waste. If a winery saw 10,000 visitors per year, and converted 50% of them to First Time Buyers, that is 5,000 guests to target throughout the year to move up the continuum towards Repeat Buyer (and eventually, Loyal Fan). If 10% of those First Time Buyer’s converted to Wine Club, that is an incremental 500 new members, all by picking up the phone and following up.

How long does it take to make 5,000 phone calls? Figure on 8-10 quality calls per hour, per employee, that is roughly 500 labor hours spread over the entire DTC labor pool, over the course of a year. For a team of five DTC employees, that is 100 hours over the course of the year, or just two hours per week. In looking at recent metrics from WISE #116 Outbound Phone Sales, we know that conversion metrics are actually much higher than 10%, so individual winery results may vary.

As you can see, we are sitting on a gold mine when it comes to phone sales. And not only is a great phone program great for our winery income, it’s a great rapport-builder! People like to be called by their winery. It makes them feel special. This emotional trigger to buy is a win-win. The sooner we get our team making phone calls, the better.