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Sales contests have been the go-to of most sales leaders for years. But the very best ones today are much more strategic and purposeful than any that came before them. The effect of a modern, data-driven contest is amplified tenfold using the right mix of account-based marketing (ABM), clever KPIs and incentives, and real-time scoring updates. If you’re looking for a way to encourage your sales team to work harder, then hosting a contest is one of the best ways to do it. They’re fun and effective at challenging reps at all levels of the organization and allowing you to get an accurate picture of their skills. 

Sales contests are a great way to encourage your team to perform at peak levels and crush their goals. They offer an opportunity for reps to flex their sales skills while having fun with their teammates and helping you generate engaged sales activity throughout the year. Sales contests are a great way to inspire your sales team’s performance. But it’s important to choose the right type of contest, as well as the right time frame and duration. You can’t just pick a fun idea and expect it to work. Sales contests need to be strategic choices that tie directly into your overarching business goals. They should also be carefully crafted so they create the most value possible while staying within your budget.

Here are some ideas you can use to run your own successful sales contests.

The Idea Behind Creating a Sales Contest in Your Sales Department

Creating a sales contest in your sales department can help motivate sales personnel to accomplish specific sales objectives and generate larger orders per sales call. The idea behind creating a sales contest is to incentivize employees in order to increase performance. 

Sales contests are a proven way to increase sales and business, but you need to make sure that your program has a positive impact on your business. Sales contest ideas that actually work means more than just setting up another contest without a strategy.

With sales competitions, you have the benefit of creating a light-hearted atmosphere while also getting your sales team focused on one particular goal. Sales contests help to bring the team together and get them working towards something. 

Sales competition isn’t just about increasing the sale of one single product. It’s about focusing your team on a particular goal, getting them to focus their efforts and competitive spirit on that goal, and creating an environment where everyone is working toward it together.

Why Should You Run a Sales Contest?

A sales contest is a fun, dynamic and effective way to motivate your sales team to be more productive or adopt new processes or technology. Sales contests are just as effective as sales compensation plans to drive home desired behavior. Make sure that you incorporate a winning element into your contest. It’s no secret that prizes help to encourage an enthusiastic response from participants.

A sales contest can be a great way to motivate your sales team and build a strong team culture. Sales contests are excellent methods for motivating your sales team to be more productive or adopt a new process or technology. They bring a fun, dynamic aspect to a sometimes mundane daily routine.

Boost revenue within a defined time period

Sales contests can be a great way to motivate your team members to hit their goals. They can also help you meet your revenue targets and improve your bottom line. If you want more sales in a specific timeframe, holding a contest is a great way to motivate your team members to hit their goals. It’s also an effective way for them to see how their sales efforts contribute to the overall revenue picture at your company. Choose the timeframe of your sales contest very wisely. It has to be long enough to drive the desired behavioral change you want but not so long that your reps lose interest in the game. Monthly competitions typically work very well.

Sales contests are an excellent way to drive increased revenue and sales while also promoting employee engagement and recognition. 

When you’re entering a new market

Sales contests are a great way to motivate your sales team and boost your bottom line. They also help you make more money by helping you get more customers.

When you’re entering a new market, you want to make sure that you can sell as much as possible. In order to do this, you need to get people interested in your products and services. Sales contests are one of the best ways to do that because they give your employees something to work towards.

When you launch a new product or service

When you launch a new product or service, it’s important to get the word out about it as quickly as possible. Running a sales contest can help you do just that by creating an incentive for employees to sell more products or services. It can also be great for generating leads and boosting existing customer relationships.

When you launch a new product or service, it’s important to get the word out. You can do this through social media, email marketing, or traditional advertising. However, a sales contest can help boost your brand awareness and increase sales.

Why Should You Run a Sales Contest?

Sales Contest Best Practices

Let your team focus on specific objectives

The goal of most sales contests is not necessarily to create more sales or increase revenue, but rather it is simply a way of encouraging behavior that will help grow your business in other ways as well. With sales contests, you can set specific objectives that are clear and measurable, which will allow you to measure how successful the contest was in achieving those goals.

Sales contests are great for increasing the focus and motivation of your team. They are also a great way to increase your sales velocity, which is the number of new leads or customers you generate per day. Sales contests work because they help you set specific targets that can help you achieve those goals.

Track and measure your team’s progress

If you want your salespeople to be engaged in your contest, they need to know where they stand and what they need to do to win. Provide regular updates on the progress of your competition, including how many leads have been submitted, how many have been closed, and how many deals have been won. This will keep everyone motivated and engaged.

It helps to keep the sales team engaged through regular updates on their progress and where they stand in the competition. Frequent communication can help generate a sense of urgency and focus that helps drive performance while keeping you informed of team activity.

Provide autonomy to your team

Regardless of the sales contest you’re running, best practices include embracing autonomy and allowing reps to help define the specifics of a contest. This can be as simple as rep-selected rewards or making sure they are involved in defining their own targets.

That way, reps know exactly what they have to do, and they feel like they have a personal stake in the game. But it goes beyond this point: Your salespeople want to play. They want to win. Having clear, definite goals set by themselves is one of the best motivators you can give them.

What’s more, their buy-in starts at the planning stage, which means you cut down on the number of cases later on when your reps feel confused about what they are supposed to be doing. If you leave it up to them from the beginning and then follow through with your end of the bargain (i.e., a fun competition), you’ll likely reap benefits for years to come.

Sales Contest Prizes Ideas

Sales contests are one of the best ways to get your team motivated. They’re also a great way to get everyone on the same page and to work together as a team.

The key is to choose contests that align with your company’s culture, values and goals. For example, if you’re looking for more sales from new customers, then maybe a contest where reps have to call on five new accounts would work well for you. If you want reps to focus on closing opportunities instead of just collecting leads, then perhaps a contest where they have to submit four proposals would be more effective.

Sales Contest Prizes Ideas

Sales contest prizes are a great way to incentivize your reps and get them fired up about hitting their goals. If you’re looking for some inspiration, here are some ideas for unique contest prizes:

    • A vacation to Hawaii or Las Vegas for top performers.
    • A weekend getaway for the whole team if they hit certain metrics.
    • A prize from Amazon or Groupon for the rep who sells the most in a given period of time or hits a specific sales metric.
    • A day off with pay if they hit a certain sales goal or close a big deal.
    • An Apple Watch or other wearable device if they hit their quota.
    • A new laptop if they exceed their quota by 10% or more (bonus points if it’s an Apple laptop).
    • A GoPro camera if they exceed their quota by 20% or more (bonus points if it comes with accessories.

These prizes can be further subdivided into various categories, which can help determine the scope of the budget for the sales competition as well as the difficulty of the contest itself.

Monetary prizes

The most common type of sales contest prize is monetary, which makes sense since we all know money is motivational. The amount of money that you give out as a prize is up to you, but it should be enough to motivate your team members to win the contest. The more money you offer, the more likely it is that someone will win it.

Monetary prizes can come in a variety of forms: cash, gift cards or merchandise from your company’s catalog. The key is to make sure the prize is something that will motivate your team members and doesn’t cost too much of your budget.

Prizes for teams (a nice way to show appreciation for teamwork). Teamwork is often overlooked in sales organizations because it’s not always easy to spot who’s doing what on an individual level, but it should be recognized nonetheless! Give away prizes such as gift cards or tickets to an event that everyone can enjoy together as a team.

Recognition prizes

Recognition prizes (recognize top performers with awards). Recognition prizes are great motivators because they help boost employee morale while also building recognition within the company. Recognition prizes are often overlooked by companies who are looking for bigger-ticket items. But they can be incredibly effective at motivating your employees to perform better.

For example, if your company has an annual award ceremony to recognize top performers, consider giving out recognition prizes such as plaques or pins that employees can display on their desks or wear on their uniforms. These small tokens go a long way toward making employees feel appreciated and valued by the company, and they may even encourage other employees to perform better just so they can be recognized as well!

Recognition prizes that elicit the admiration of the entire team. These could include:

    • Awards, trophies, or plaques that recognize outstanding performance in the area of sales or customer service.
    • Catered lunches or dinners with their peers and/or management team. This is a nice touch because it’s not just about giving away free food; it’s also about showing appreciation for their hard work and dedication.

Inclusion prizes (trips, events, becoming a member of private groups)

Some businesses use inclusion prizes as their primary incentive for sales contests. These include trips, events, or opportunities to become part of private groups. For example:

    • The winner of our 2023 sales contest will receive a trip to Hawaii!
    • All winners will receive free tickets to our company party — no more paying for drinks!
    • You’ll be invited to join our exclusive VIP group for business owners who want to network with other successful entrepreneurs!

Status Prizes

Status prizes are things like titles (manager, vice president) or promotions (team lead). They make people feel important and valued, which helps them perform better at their jobs. Studies show that employees who feel promoted are more likely to be engaged with their work and perform better on the job.

Status prizes are rewards for sales contest success. You can offer them to reward specific achievement levels in your organization or just to thank your top performers for a job well done. These rewards are often attractive because they don’t cost much, and they look great on an employee’s resume.

These sales contest ideas not only offer a host of creative and fun ways to host a sales contest but also invite your sales team to get involved in the process to make it their own, as well as highlight their individual strengths. As a result, they’ll enjoy participating and feel more motivated to achieve success during the contest.

While the way you determine winners and doling out prizes can vary, the key takeaway is to make sure your sales contests are not merely a boost in motivation or morale but part of one cohesive business strategy. Sales contests are only worth it if they are carefully crafted to improve your performance and sustain long-term results. Beyond that, keep these factors in mind when considering how to design your sales contests. 

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