Being an entrepreneur is tough.
There are so many business variables that often leave entrepreneurs confused in quiet desperation. To make matters more complicated, small business owners can easily make the mistake of trying to do everything themselves without a proper plan of attack.
When it comes to sales winging it won’t cut it. Just because you are passionate about your product or service doesn’t mean you are the best person to sell it. Here’s a look at five quick tips to ensure your sales efforts hit the mark.
1. Develop a workable plan.
You need a plan of attack, a sales strategy. Many business owners don’t focus on generating sales because of high initial organic sales. Just because you’re growing sales organically doesn’t mean that traction will last forever.
If you want lasting revenue you will need a well-thought-out sales strategy. “It’s easy to get carried away when promoting a product that you’re passionate about,” says Colin Behr, VP Business Development & International, Vungle.com.
“It’s important to first identify those individuals whose organizations will get you the most traction. Creating a list prevents you from spending time chasing targets who will do little to help you. Remember, it’s easy to get distracted, so stick to your goals, and be strategic.”
2. Delegate selling tasks.
Once you create a sales plan and document your sales process, delegate selling tasks accordingly. If you’re just starting out, bring on a sales intern or a part-time sales rep. If you have the resources, hire a full-time salesperson, sales trainer, or just an expert closer. The right sales consultant can come in and give you the confidence and edge you need to close a deal.
Delegating sales takes takes the pressure off you and allows someone with a fresh perspective to come in and review your buyer’s journey, the process you’ve created to-date and any gaps that may hinder you from getting the results you want.
3. Learn the true value of selling.
Many business owners put their sales strategy on the backburner when it comes to investing time and money into it. The truth is that a strong marketing plan, along with a sales strategy are key to revenue growth.
Balance product development with sales and marketing efforts. The goal is to “focus on target market customers and communicate with them in relevant, meaningful ways […] A successful sales strategy conveys this so that the sales force spends time targeting the correct customers at the right time [and place].”
4. Believe in yourself.
One major sales challenge many new business owners face is a lack of confidence. Especially if the business is slow to launch or missing major milestones. It’s vital to believe in yourself and your product.
I’ve worked with business owners who have passed up huge opportunities because they just didn’t think a successful outcome was possible. The truth is you will never know until you try. In fact, one sales training client told me “Ali, you are delusionally optimistic!” That’s what you want to strive for!
5. Keep it simple.
A major mistakes business owners make when trying to sell their product or service is overwhelming the prospect with too many technical details before qualifying the lead and gauging interest. This is a huge no-no; you will loose their attention and bore them immediately.
Just because you are passionate about the bells and whistles of your product does not mean your prospect is; they’re simply looking for a vitamin or a painkiller. A much simpler (and effective) approach is to focus on features and benefits instead.
This article has been edited and condensed.
is an accomplished Sales Master and Trainer. Starting his career in sales at 18, Ali quickly realized that he would have to become better because being terrible at selling was not fun. Since 2012, Ali has taken his passion for closing deals to teaching others how to close deals. Ali currently lives in Atlanta and travels the country helping companies increase their sales; you can keep up with him at his consulting firm.
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