• January 24, 2017
  • Mark LaCour
  • 0

Oil and Gas Sales Strategy 2017

All right. This is one of the blog posts we do every year that people really look forward to. This is Oil and Gas Sales Strategy 2017, Pulling Out of the Downturn.

All right. Number one you have to have a sales plan. You know I harp on this every year, that planning is vital to your sales success.  You need to understand exactly who your targets are, why they buy from you, what differentiates you from competitors, who are the people that you need to go out after first, who are the companies that are waste of your time to go after, and  all this needs to be put in your strategic sales plan.

Now, sales managers out there for large sales organizations, don’t make your sales guys do some 30-page PowerPoint presentation and then just put in the drawer for the rest of the year and you never go back to it. You’re better off with five or six bullet points and this simple plan is something you reevaluate every quarter. Your sales plan has to be actual, it has to be real rubber-hit-the-road type of stuff. So, number one plan for Oil and Gas Sales Strategy 2017.

Oil and Gas Sales Strategy 2017 You Have to Know Digital Marketing

Number two for pulling out of the downturn in oil and gas sales strategy of 2017, you have to understand digital marketing. We’ve been looking at this as a trend for years and we have watched what started off as sales being on one end, and marketing being on the other end. Well they have slowly come together, and we think this is the very beginning where sales people have to understand digital marketing.

Now, I’m not saying you have to understand how to run Facebook Ads. What you have to understand is what is your digital presence? How do you tell your story online? Because sales is changing in oil and gas, and the first thing people are going to do is check you out online. This is vital for Oil and Gas Sales Strategy 2017.

Even if your company is large and you have a whole marketing department, you yourself as an individual sales person make sure your LinkedIn profile is up-to-date. Make sure that you have relevant social accounts that reflect what you’re an expert at and what you’re good at. This is all very important, and as we go through time this will be even more and more important for salespeople to understand the digital marketing.

Number three, budget for success in 2017. I know budgets has been tight. We’ve been through about two-and-a-half years of low crude prices. I know people don’t want to spend money. That is getting ready to change, especially on land we’re getting ready to start things ramping up. And you need a budget, you need a budget for support, for collateral, for materials, for marketing, for prospecting trips, for expos, all that sort of stuff.  So, put the budget in place so you can be successful in 2017.

Oil and Gas Sales Strategy 2017Here’s a big one. Number four, know your customer’s journey. Literally how do they originally find out about you to the point that they buy from you. And everything in between. The old days of you meeting somebody at some expo, or you’re on some approved vendors list and you close deals. That’s disappearing and it’s going to disappear completely in a little while. You have to understand why your customers buy from you, how they buy from you, and how they get there. Once you understand that you can then accelerate that process and make it easier for people to find you.

This is the big one. This is Oil and Gas Sales Strategy 2017 number five. Find the bottlenecks in your sales time. Everybody’s busy especially, if you work for a large company. They tend to want to make you do a lot of stuff that’s non-sales time focused. You need to push back on that. Every second that you can just be out in front of prospects, in front of existing clients, gathering intelligence, figuring out the proper ways to get in front of new business is unbelievably important. And don’t let yourself be that sales guy that gets stuck in office the whole week filling out reports. That just won’t work anymore. So, make sure you have you find those bottlenecks in your sales time.

Then, number six. Don’t spend too much time on acquisition. Because we’re pulling out on this downturn, you have an existing client base that may be small. But in your existing client base, 80% of your business comes from 20% of your clients. Yes, new clients are important, yes, it’s good to find new prospects, but make sure you focus on your existing clients. As their business grows, your business will grow too.

Then, study your competition. Go out there and see what your competitors are doing. Why would you need to reinvent the wheel? See what they’re doing that works, see what they’re doing that not working.  If they have an e-mail sign up list, sign up for it. Now, of course use your personal e-mail so they don’t know who you work for. But, see what they’re doing. It’s one of the best ways to kind of leapfrog ahead of your competition, is knowing what they’re doing. And then the other thing is about your competition, is they’re really not competition if you know their business better than they do. And this is another way for you to learn that for Oil and Gas Sales Strategy 2017.

Then, this goes back into understanding digital marketing. You need to do more content marketing. If you don’t know what content marketing is, look it up, it’s very easy to learn. If you’re watching this blog post, this post is modalpoint doing content marketing. This sort of stuff you can do whether you’re on your own or you work for large company. You can have your whole company involved, you have your marketing team and your sales team or you can do it for yourself. But you need to get good, useful, relevant, easy to consume information out there about how you can help people. That’s basic content marketing, and that’s going to be big in 2017. And it will continue to grow.

Then, you need to sit down and review your sales process. I know a lot of companies out there have been selling in oil and gas for twenty, thirty, forty, fifty years and their sales processes are antiquated. They go into the trade shows, grabbing the fishbowl full of business cards, go to cocktail events, host networking events, and all of that has its place. Twenty years ago, it was a great way to make money. Now it’s not, not at all. You need to understand your current sales process and see where it needs to be improved.

Then, number ten. This is a big one. You have to understand how our industry is changing. It is fundamentally changing like I’ve never seen in twenty years, and it’s all for the better. But it is changing. So petrochemical are crazy hot right now. Midstream is looking like they may get their business model change basis on legal stuff that’s going on. You have the entire very senior workforce has left the industry. And they’re not coming back, unlike other downturns.

The new young people that are coming in to the industry aren’t going to have the mentorship of the senior people. But at the same time they’re not going to pick up their culture, like the resistance to change, or their risk aversion. I’m seeing it right now. These new guys that are coming in and they’re looking for drillstem or pipe or valves, so they Google it. That’s never happened before. The amount of search queries for supply chain in oil and gas is going through the roof, and if you don’t understand how it works you’re going to get left behind. Now, if you understand how it works, you will be way ahead of your competition.

If you want to understand what some of that stuff is, we did a our oil and gas prediction 2017. We’ll throw a link in here so that you can understand, but this is how you do oil and gas sales strategy 2017.

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So, folks I hope this helped. We will see you next time.