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October 8, 2019

Setting 2020 Sales Goals? That Big Revenue Number is NOT Enough!

For those firms that take the time to set annual sales goals, they generally think in terms of a BHAG… a Big, Hairy, Audacious Goal! That is, “What lofty revenue number can we achieve next year?” And that’s fine. Employees need that target to work toward. To inspire and drive them.

In fact, it was about this time, last year, that I wrote a blog post on how to set those annual sales goals. Click Here to read it.

But those big goals are not enough!

While big sales goals give you something to shoot for, it’s the smaller, more specific goals that actually will spur action to help you get there. So, as you’re starting to think about your 2020 sales goals, consider drilling down a level or two and getting into the ‘smaller’ goals. This blog post will outline several ways to help you do that.

In the world of selling, we know that “activity breeds results.” So, consider setting some business development activity goals for your sales team. This might include things like:

  • Number of leads generated at a conference
  • Number of in-person sales calls made
  • Number of capabilities presentations delivered
  • Number of demonstrations delivered
  • Number of bids submitted

And since you can’t control the size of a project or the revenue a new client might bring in, maybe it’s better to think in terms of ‘units,’ for example:

  • Number of projects won
  • Number of new clients acquired
  • Percentage of existing clients retained (hint: Want to have a really big impact on revenue next year? Make this one a very high priority!)
What’s the easiest, most direct way to have a big, positive impact on revenue next year? Simple… focus on retaining existing clients! Click To Tweet

Consider, too, setting goals on where your revenue comes from. For example:

  • Revenue from each vertical or market served
  • Revenue from each service or product line
  • Revenue from existing clients vs. new clients
  • Revenue generated by each sales rep (and yes, each of your sales reps should have their own sales goals and plan)

For many firms, 40-50-60% (or more) of their business comes from just 2, 3 or 4 clients. So, make sure you’re setting goals for those “key accounts” to maintain and grow them:

  • Special activities planned (and delivered)
  • Revenue per key account (by service line, if diverse enough)
  • Percentage of ‘total available business’ earned

And lastly, from a management perspective, think about the big strategic sales goals you’ll want to achieve next year. Things like:

  • New sales rep(s) hired and their realistic impact
  • New product (s) launched and the amount of revenue generated from it
  • New industry(ies) or market(s) penetrated and the amount of revenue generated from it

There really is not just one way to set your annual sales goals… but the more granular and transparent you are, the more everyone understands what needs to be done and what they need to do, the more likely you are to achieve those goals.

Good luck and good selling.

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