If you have followed this website for long, you will know we are passionate about marketing. Marketing is important in business to produce sales, yet most people we work with are not too happy about ‘selling’. I believe it is a mindset that we have created based on our understanding of what sales is and what sales people are like. We have all experience pushy, slimy sales people that you simply can’t trust. That’s exactly what we do not want to become. I agree, we should never be like this in our business and we shouldn’t need to be, if our marketing process does it job well. I believe we need to change our understanding of what sales is in order for our marketing to produce the results we want it to.
Decide exactly what you want in your business. Discover what price you need to pay in order to produce what you intend to produce. The reality is you need to pay the price first, before it produces the results you desire. It’s the basic principle of sowing and reaping. You need to sow first in order to reap.
Turn strangers into friends
Build relationships with customers and care for them as a person and their needs as a customer. More often than not it’s about the relationship, not the product that you sell therefore our marketing strategy should encourage relationship building. If you focus purely on the sale in every marketing piece, you will often fall into the trap of competing on price alone. While this may produce a quick profit for your business, your customers are likely to buy once and never return, the loyalty will be almost non-existent. If you focus your sales and marketing strategy on relationship building you will create loyalty. While this may not produce the quick profit that a purely sales driven piece would, long term you will build a loyal customer base of repeat buyers.
When you have genuine care for you customers you will only ever sell what you believe to be a fantastic solution for your customers. We are all sick of sales guys who are in for a quick buck. I can recall many times, I have advised a prospect not to take a particular website package because I felt it wasn’t the best fit for their business even though it would have produced a quick profit for our business.
You have got to believe in your product or service. You need to be able to love your solution so you believe it is the best solution for your customers. People will see through dishonesty. To turn your customers into friends you need to be honest with them and also yourself. Let me make a confession, a few years back I was asked to quote on a custom created website for a new business. The prospect sent me his business plan and how he intended the website to function. I felt at the time it was a poor quality business idea and I wasn’t at all confident it would be a success. Knowing this, I convinced myself it was okay to go ahead with the project. I quoted and won the job. We completed the work and would have launched the website. That business still to this day has not produced one sale and the website wasn’t at all cheap. If I had my time again, I wouldn’t have completed the project and advised the customer of ways they could test there business plan before investing thousands of dollars into a website. Yes, it produced a profit for us and it wasn’t really our fault it didn’t work however I still feel I should have handled the situation better. The biggest fool is one that tries to fool himself, in this case it was me.
It is good to have ambition and a desire to sell, provided you are selling what you believe to be a fantastic solution for your customer. Self confidence and self esteem are important for your sales people who follow up leads generated by your marketing. It’s difficult for anyone to be confident if they don’t believe passionately in your product or service. Most people see straight through the slick salesperson these days however, they pick up and engage with passion.
Create your own strategy
Set goals for your sales and marketing. How much do you intend to profit this year? Your goal should be realistic yet challenging. What volume of product or service do you need to sell per year to achieve this goal? From there you can work out your monthly, weekly and daily goals and create a strategic plan. It helps to map it out, step-by-step into achievable tasks. Make it a game. It may be that you need to make 10 sales calls per day to achieve your result. Maybe you need to release a newsletter once a month. Maybe you need to do a mailbox drop once a week into different areas. Create systems and set up your own sales and marketing strategy.
Something fascinating happens in your sub-conscious when you set goals. Most leaders agree, setting goals is single most important thing to achieving success. The same principle is true for sales and marketing. To motivate yourself you should firmly set reasons why you want to achieve your goals. You need a strong reason why your business exists. Perhaps its simply to live the lifestyle you desire, or it could be to support a cause you believe it passionately.
Success in business is built on hard work, commitment and passion. You have got to believe passionately in your product or service. As the leader of your business, you must remain motivated and enthusiastic. If you love your product or service, you will be fanatical about it and that will rub off on your staff and your customers. We often hear about people who made ‘quick’ money in a business. We hear these stories because they are very rare and interesting but the reality is most successes are built by investing time and effort into your business.
Choosing the right product or service for your business is critical. Some people are fantastic at selling tangible products, some are fantastic at selling intangible products. Intangible products are those that involve ideas. Tangible products are those that are more concrete, physical. If you are building a team, it’s important to hire the right people who fit your business model.
Be committed to the process
Without a vision it is difficult for you and your team to remain committed to the sales and marketing process. The sub-conscious uses pictures and words to seek out solutions for what it is searching for. You need to see yourself being successful and pre-empt positive results. For your team, you need to communicate your vision so they take hold of the vision for themselves. There is a transfer of enthusiasm for any great leader. If you are not enthusiastic about your product or service, your customers and team members will not be either. Will power and determination are critical for any business leader. Be prepared to pay for success in advance. This is difficult to do if you are not confident in your business and committed to the process. Rev yourself up psychologically so that rubs off on the people you influence. As the leader of your business, its important that you set the tone. Confidently expect to succeed. Take responsibility for any failures and find ways to turn them into greater success.
Keep on reviewing your processes. What did you do well? What would you do differently next time? How can you tweak your sales and marketing strategy to potentially produce a better outcome. Focus on what you are doing well and celebrate the successes.