Nothing happens in the world until something is sold.
As a sales and marketing professional and in my role as the manager of sales teams this was one of my favorite sayings. It is a comment that I used to motivate. Who wouldn’t love to be at the beginning of all activity in the world or the company? I know sales people whose egos certainly reveled in the idea that they were at the cutting edge of all activity in the company.
I work with entrepreneurs and small business owners, I love what I do, I love their energy and enthusiasm for their business and the work they are doing. What intrigues and fascinates me is the gap that exists between their business ideas and their marketing plan. That is assuming that they even have a marketing plan.
Truth be known, most entrepreneurs are lousy sales people, plain and simple. For some reason there is a “build it and they will come,” belief. Hopefully they are creating a product that they themselves would buy, however I have met entrepreneurs who wouldn’t buy their own products. Yep! REALLY!!!
Here is the deal, minus the sugar coating and the enthusiastic encouragement you get from your loved ones.
- You can’t sell a secret. People won’t buy what they don’t want.
- Pitching to your family and friends is not the way to gauge the potential success or failure of your business.
- Do your market research; even when you think you have a winning formula understand that it could all change. My business underwent a number of changes and product shifts until I hit on a successful formula. The trick is to be flexible, not precious.
- Write a marketing plan. It doesn’t have to read like war and peace, you just need to have put thought into it. I would hope that this goes without saying, but when the marketing plan is written, follow it!
- Measure your results. This information will form the basis for future marketing efforts, making this data incredibly important.
- Create an elevator pitch. This is a short 30 second or so, statement about what you do. Practice it, so that it rolls off your tongue comfortably. This is not a sales pitch, this is an information sharing statement. Oh! And feel free to make it memorable.
“I put money into small business owner’s bank accounts.” I have been known to use this a time or two, and the reaction has been priceless.
Or a more mainstream elevator pitch I use is:
“I help small business and entrepreneurs find clients and grow market share.”
- Step outside your comfort zone and start meeting with potential clients, create networks, share what you do. Measure your results and gauge people’s responses to your product.
- Develop a millionaire’s mindset to money and how it is managed in your business. For more on this see the article that I have written for Australian Content Magazine.
- Never stop learning and developing your marketing and sales muscles. I have been in the industry for over 30 years, and I am still fascinated by the process and the new and not so new techniques being used to create sales. I have shared some of my marketing truths here.
I believe we are heading into an exciting and equally challenging time in the business community. It is essential that we develop an entrepreneurial mindset, small and micro businesses are the way of the future. The people creating the products will also be the sales and marketing team.
If you are struggling to get your business generating the revenue you know it should be, I would be delighted to offer you are FREE Rich, Happy and Rocking It Strategy Session. I will share more marketing and revenue generating tips with you in 30 minutes than you are likely to find in a month of google searching.
I would love to hear your thoughts. What is your biggest struggle when it comes to promoting and selling your business?