You launch a competition around sales opportunities and throw a nice dinner with a plus-one on top as an incentive. When the competition ends, the winner asks for cash instead. What do you say?
The “yes” scenario: Cash – it’s what most sales reps would say they want if asked, and you figure the winner in this case deserves it. So you hand over $200. Your sales rep then uses it to pay a little extra on this month’s credit card bill. What are the chances of this event becoming a happy memory?
On the other hand, let’s say you refuse in response to the cash question – you insist that a high-end meal is in your winner’s future. What will it be like for that sales rep and a significant other to go to dinner at one of the nicest restaurants around? We’ll tell you: They’ll embrace the fact that they have $200 to spoil their taste buds. They’ll remember it.
And so we arrive at our point: You can make sales incentives even more impactful by offering your team members something they wouldn’t typically offer themselves. Here are some examples:
1. Giving employees retail gift cards does not ensure they’ll purchase for themselves, especially around the holidays. Consider hiring a personal shopper instead. Most people won’t splurge this way, and that makes the experience even more exciting.
2. Rather than just telling a team member you’ll pay for a nice dinner out, assist in choosing the restaurant, too. Encourage something new, and make sure it’s high end. You could even take the extra step and book the reservation. The few additional minutes it takes out of your day will go directly toward ensuring that incentive makes an impact.
3. Tickets to local sports events or concerts always serve as strong incentives, because they offer an experience. If your budget allows, hire a driver to take your next competition winner and a guest to one of those events. Talk about an evening upgrade.
With that last example, we need to make a quick point. We preach over and over that sales incentives don’t have to be expensive to motivate. It’s important that you realize cost isn’t key here. It’s about taking that extra step before deciding on incentives to figure out whether you can turn them into things, or experiences, your team members wouldn’t necessarily offer themselves. It’s about making those offerings more memorable for more motivation.
To learn more on this topic and get additional tips on sales incentives, watch our 15-minute webinar recap video: “Sales Incentives: What You Need to Know to Really Motivate.”