What exactly is a TIP, and how does it work? In his book Getting the Second Appointment
, author Anthony Parinello describes this sales weapon as, "a tool that helps you to eliminate individuals and organizations that are likely to waste your time." TIP stands for Template of Ideal Prospects, and it works to qualify your sales leads by comparing your current prospects to the qualities you see in your top current customers.
Here's how you can create your own TIP sheet:
- Take your company's current customer list and study it very closely. You may need to break the list down into sub-groups, industries or niches in order to get the best understanding of what lies at the core of each company.
- Ask yourself: What do my company's best, biggest, and most profitable current customers have in common? Then write down your answers this question for each top current customers, being very detailed and deliberate about what you record.
- Develop a worksheet that lists these common factors, along with a way to record whether your prospective customer meets that criteria (see sample TIP sheet below). The longer the list of common factors, the more accurately and completely you will be able to prequalify your prospects.
Once you have created your TIP sheet, you can begin filling it out for your prospects. In the beginning, it is best to only spend your energy pursuing the prospects that meet all of your criteria. Remember, the criteria you have established was gathered from your top current customers, and offers a reflection of the type of companies you want to do business with. Don't compromise on what you deem to be most important.
If you have been wasting your time tracking down lukewarm leads and prospects, this TIP sheet is sure to give you a fresh perspective on landing hot sales.