Kiley Doll, Goodman Lantern
It’s often easy for startups to lose sight of the basics. The many challenges startups face every day really blur the lines between priorities. It’s really easy to lose sight of what is most important.
You’ve heard of startups failing because they grew too fast, ran out of money, or failed to capture public interest. There are hundreds of articles out there that discuss these three common issues. The fact is that each of them can be traced back to poor sales strategies.
Startups often reach out for help with repairing their sales strategy. The best way to go about fixing the problem is to look closely at the way you’re talking to your clients. If you don’t talk to them in a way that grabs their attention, you’ll never get them to buy anything.
I have four methods that you can work through to turn your business around:
1. Hit the Ground Selling.
The best and brightest startup entrepreneurs often panic when they’re confronted with anything to do with sales. There are so many who lack confidence in their ability to sell, and it shows up in their work. The fact of the matter is that every single person is involved in selling every day. It doesn’t matter what your job title is, or what you spend the majority of your time on.
Every conversation you have involves selling in some form, whether it’s ideas, products, or services. Actual sales is no different. It’s a conversation that you hope will end in a sale. With this in mind, it’s important to remember that the best tactic to make people engage is to be truthful and authentic.
2. Create Actual Value.
When you realize that you’re always selling anyway, you need to give some serious thought to what it actually is that you’re selling. You need to realise the value that you and your product represent is far more important than the actual product itself.
Your clients aren’t going to buy from you unless your product offers the best value. That doesn’t just mean a low price point. You have to be better than your competitors in every way. They want to know what is in it for them. Are you saving them money, time, or simplifying their lives in another way? The most important part of this step is to make sure that the value your client sees in your product has to be greater than the price they paid for it.
3. Sell Really Well.
Innovation is fantastic. It’s an incredibly important part of every startup’s growth. The trouble is, it doesn’t always work. Most of the time it’s because the innovation you’re chasing doesn’t do anything to add value to your client’s experience. The trick is to listen to your customers, learn about their preferences, and give them what they want.
If you lose touch with your clients, you’ll be using all of your money and energy to supply them with things they don’t want or need. Innovate in line with your clients’ actual needs. They’ll know you’re paying attention and you’ll make money as a result. Think about your relationship with your customers like a friendship. Try every day to make a positive impact in their lives and they’ll thank you for it. It's a fantastic way to build loyalty.
4. Be Truly Useful.
Your startup’s success all depends on your sales performance. It’s a simple fact that carries a lot of importance. You’ll find it a lot easier to reach your goals if you break them down into a solid game plan. You need to track your sales and understand what your minimum sales need to be, what your optimal level would be, and how you intend to achieve these figures.
Ask yourself six basic questions, and you’ll find it a lot easier to figure your process out:
- Who are your clients?
- How are you finding them?
- How are you talking to them?
- Is your sales cycle too long?
- How many sales do you successfully close?
- How much does it cost you to reach each client?
You need to do yourself a favor and find the answers to each of these questions. Take some time to really work through these steps and you will see results. Bear in mind that it’s by no means a quick fix. You’ll need to regularly reevaluate your answers to these questions. It's easy to find time to make sure your goals are aligned with your strategy. It all begins with realizing that doing this will save you money and time in the long run.
Give it a try, and I know you’ll see the value of this process. Happy selling!