How long have you been waiting for the opportunity to have the biggest sales increase your company has ever had? In my 40-plus years in this business, I’ve never seen a sales year like the one we’re about to enter. Three of the most opportunistic “sales moons” have aligned perfectly.

First, we have a price-driven marketplace, which makes every company look just like its competition. Everyone is trying to sell their products at the cheapest price, with the belief that’s what attracts business when all it does is bore farmers. Only value attracts customers.

Second, the competition is as weak as I’ve ever seen. During the past few years, companies have discovered which of their sales reps can sell in this marketplace and which ones can’t. What most found is that very few have the social skills needed to close the sale.

Third, farmers look for companies that offer real value strategies to help them increase production — not just save money. Those who offer that kind of value will attract farmers, like honey attracts bears.

If you’re wondering whether your sales reps are prepared to take advantage of this opportunity, answer the following:

  • How are they going to get farmers to order before harvest this year, if they couldn’t do it last year?
  • What are they going to say when the farmer says it’s too early to order, and he doesn’t know what he’s going to do yet?
  • What are they going to say when the farmer objects to the price of their products?
  • How are they going to sell the varieties they need to sell and not just what the farmer wants to buy?

Do you want the biggest sales increase your company has ever had? Get your people trained on how to sell seed to farmers, which requires specialized training. Teach them what to say and how to say it to control the conversation and the sale.

This year will be one of the easiest sales years for those who are trained. However, this year will be the greatest sales nightmare for those who aren’t. The time to choose the route you want to take is now. As Dr. Phil says, “The greatest predictor of future behavior is past behavior.” Don’t become a victim of what you know you could have prevented. Instead, blow this sales year wide open.

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