Sales

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Cheater Cheater Pumpkin Eater!! | Extraordinary Business

Playing cards

How having superior information impacts your business development activities

Imagine this: you know someone who cheats obsessively. No matter what they do, they find some way to cheat. And they win. It is infuriating because you put every effort into doing the right things the right way. The worst part of it is that they always seem to get away with it. They always seem to win.
I think that when I play Go Fish with my kids.  Either they are psychic or they have somehow figured out a fool-proof way to win.
Either way, I lose because they have more information about the game than I do. Not only do they know what is in their hand; they seem to know what is in mine. That information gives them a leg up every time.
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Cheater Cheater Pumpkin Eater!! | Extraordinary Business

Playing cards

How having superior information impacts your business development activities

Imagine this: you know someone who cheats obsessively. No matter what they do, they find some way to cheat. And they win. It is infuriating because you put every effort into doing the right things the right way. The worst part of it is that they always seem to get away with it. They always seem to win.

I think that when I play Go Fish with my kids.  Either they are psychic or they have somehow figured out a fool-proof way to win.

Either way, I lose because they have more information about the game than I do. Not only do they know what is in their hand; they seem to know what is in mine. That information gives them a leg up every time.

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If You Aren’t Catching Anything – Perhaps You are Fishing in the Wrong Pond

Business Development – ensuring that you are approaching the right target

I remember going to the department store as a younger man. While walking through the appliance area, it was almost inevitable that a sales person would approach me and say, “May I help you pick out a refrigerator?” I would think to myself, “Why would a need a refrigerator? Especially the $2,000 refrigerators they would want me to purchase?” I was not their customer. Perhaps someone that looked just like me at the time, but not me.

As you know, that isn’t an uncommon scenario; many times, people in your target markets aren’t going to be ready to purchase what you are selling when you are ready to sell to them. So if we know who our customer is and how to communicate with them, the next thing we need to work on is narrowing that list down to those who will have need for our services. As opposed to those who have immediate need for our services.

Think about some of the travel companies. They know that most of the time, most people aren’t going to be ready to take a vacation right now. Yet, they offer flash sales and discounts almost all of the time. What they are actually doing, if you think about it, is solidifying in your mind that they are the company to go to when you are ready and that you will more than likely be able to find some discounts on where you are going.

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If You Aren't Catching Anything – Perhaps You are Fishing in the Wrong Pond | Extraordinary Business

Business Development – ensuring that you are approaching the right target

wrong-customer
 
I remember going to the department store as a younger man. While walking through the appliance area, it was almost inevitable that a sales person would approach me and say, “May I help you pick out a refrigerator?” I would think to myself, “Why would a need a refrigerator? Especially the $2,000 refrigerators they would want me to purchase?” I was not their customer. Perhaps someone that looked just like me at the time, but not me.
As you know, that isn’t an uncommon scenario; many times, people in your target markets aren’t going to be ready to purchase what you are selling when you are ready to sell to them. So if we know who our customer is and how to communicate with them, the next thing we need to work on is narrowing that list down to those who will have need for our services. As opposed to those who have immediate need for our services.
Think about some of the travel companies. They know that most of the time, most people aren’t going to be ready to take a vacation right now. Yet, they offer flash sales and discounts almost all of the time. What they are actually doing, if you think about it, is solidifying in your mind that they are the company to go to when you are ready and that you will more than likely be able to find some discounts on where you are going.
 [···]

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Managing Business Development

Capitalizing on managing your company’s business development activities

Growing any business requires an effective business development strategy.  Your company will leverage this strategy to meet its financial and growth goals.  While it seems that businesses should grow simply by hard work, predictable and sustainable growth requires a business development strategy to reach specific strategic goals.

If you aren’t using everything in your arsenal to help your market understand why you are uniquely able to help them accomplish their goals, you haven’t done your job.  Trying to make a square peg fit into a round hole will leave you questioning why you aren’t getting the business that you feel you deserve, or working harder than you need to in order to get it.

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Filling Your Pipeline | Extraordinary Business

Building a Successful Lead Generation Strategyimage

Since Aepiphanni opened in 2005, I have had a lot of time to evaluate the small business marketplace.  I’ve heard a lot of talks, attended workshops, read articles and the like on lead generation.  Many people have told me that there are certain, specific things that have to be done in a very specific way that everyone is doing and therefore, I should do it, too.

My frustration has always been that “if everyone else is doing it, there is nothing unique about my approach, therefore, my results cannot be more than mediocre.”  It appears like fishing for trout in a shark tank – everyone is trying to get the trout – including the sharks, so success has got to be dismal at best.

Simply put: this method isn’t sustainable, so I “went to work.”

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Close More Deals | Extraordinary Business

Components of a Successful Sales System

According to Dave Kahle, of the Kahle Way, a sales system is “a set of principles, processes, strategies and tools that are put into place to bring the company results day-in and day-out.”

Steps in the processEssentially, what this means is that the company has a specific set of steps to find, nurture and convert leads into sales.  The problems that many businesses face are two-fold:

  1. They have no specific process or tools in place to do get sales (no sales system) and all of the sales people do seems is right in their own eyes
  2. They use a single tactic to find and pursue leads

By not having a specific process and set of tools in place, it is very difficult to predict what your sales might be and to tell what is actually working.

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Increasing Sales | Extraordinary Business

Why businesses need to take a strategic approach to building their sales systems.

Increasing sales is nearly always a topic of conversation when we work with business owners.  Business leaders constantly seek out ways to connect with their audiences in such a way that people are willing to buy.  With the recent recession, many consumers’ buying habits have changed.

imageCustomers purchase based on a number of criteria; pricing and promotion are not the sole drivers of sales, except in the commodity markets where there is little differentiation between products and mass marketing is the norm.  Typically  companies will use techniques such as the loss leader – a product priced artificially low to get you to come to a store and hope that you will purchase other items while there, coupons, sales fliers, unique products such as high quality store-brand products, etc..

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Getting it Done…or Not! | Extraordinary Business

Measuring Effectiveness of Business Development Activities

imageAs business leaders, we are probably in the mode of trying to determine how we will get and close the next sale.  It might look like setting up a web page, purchasing an SEO and maintenance package, tweeting, blogging, posting to LinkedIn, joining other social networks and purchasing advertising.  Then sitting back and wondering what is working and what is a waste of time and money.

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