There’s a lot of talk about territory management in sales. “You’ve got to manage your territory.” “Have you re-evaluated your territory recently?” “How’s your territory looking?”
But what exactly does territory management mean? You’ve got a geographical area in which you make sales calls. That’s a territory. And managing it? Well…you try to see clients who are more-or-less geographically close to one another and try to spend as little time in your car as possible.
Well, sort of.
There’s a lot that goes into territory management. Gone are the days of just hopping in your car and hoping for the best. Welcome to the age of strategic travel.
Know Your Territory
Dallas and Fort Worth roughly 30 miles apart. If you drive 60 miles per hour, you’ll be able to go from city center to city center in 30 minutes, so you should leave for your 2:30 appointment at 2:00.
Not a chance.
If you’ve been in the Metroplex for more than ten minutes, you know that 183 is under construction all the way from Dallas to Bedford. And that nearly 15 miles of I-30 are under construction just north of Arlington. Even I-20 is has ten miles of construction with another seven set to start by mid-2019.
Knowing that a 30-mile drive will take more than an hour is critical in managing your day.
Know All of Your Contacts (Not Just Your Clients)
You know where your clients are. You may even be able to spout off their addresses from the top of your head. You know where the money is and you cultivate that relationship very carefully.
But don’t forget what is between your clients – prospects. Don’t become so hyper-focused on getting from one big client to the next that you forget to stop by and visit the up-and-comers. Keep a map handy (either digitally or on paper) and have that visual on hand so that when your 11a appointment finishes early, you have a few minutes to drop into that new advisor down the street who you’ve been meaning to introduce yourself to.
Are you the type of person who is always ten minutes early? Or are you the guy who is consistently five minutes late? Do you like to stop in the lobby of a building and get your materials together before walking into an office or do you pull a Dwight Schrute and go through a ritual of psyching yourself up before a big meeting?
Regardless of what you do or how you do it, be honest with yourself and know what you need to do to have a successful meeting. If that means leaving a few minutes early so you can walk in without being frazzled, then plan on doing just that. Or if it means knowing an alternate route through a neighborhood to avoid that intersection that gets backed up so badly, then make sure you know it well.
The ESA Advantage
Executive Scheduling Associates believes strongly in territory management. So much so, in fact, that it’s a part of our service to you.
Using mapping software and your contact list, we create large zones of contacts. We then break those zones down into sub-zones in order to keep your days geographically centered. Finally, as we are calling through your lists, we sort your contacts by zones and sub-zones so that we are making calls that are nearby to one another.
We also take into account what you have to tell us. We may not know that the corner of Main and 1st is under construction, but with your help, we will make an note of it and give you routes that take you around the congestion.
Tell us about your between-meeting strategy in the comments below.