As a business owner, you are the leader of your sales efforts, whether you like it or not. Much like the act of purchasing an Apple product conveys the feeling of being connected to Steve Jobs, it’s your reputation, innovation and expertise to which clients and employees are attracted.
Collaboration’s Business Development expert, Christin Frederick, shares her 3 Keys to Success for business owners to drive their sales:
1. Connect to Your Ideal Client Profile
“It takes some time to narrow down what that profile looks like, and then to learn where they network and figure out how to connect. But if a business owner can make a shift from thinking they need to be salesy in promoting their business to just reaching out authentically and wanting to have a conversation with someone, then it’s a natural step.”
2. Create a Strategy to Build Relationships
“Business owners will mistake a short term or inconsistent advertising campaign for their marketing or business development plan. It’s only a piece of it. Advertising can’t replace relationship building, and that’s where a lot of business owners will stumble.
“Relationship building begins with a conversation, with listening and trying to understand someone’s story. You need to connect them with the value you provide. For example, I do that by sharing articles I discover that address specific issues a potential client has expressed, or by inviting them to attend a particular function I think would benefit them. I’m aware of their needs and of how I can help.”
3. Be Fearless
“Don’t be afraid to ask for a meeting – or whatever the next step in your sales process is. It’s the act of building the bridge between the general public and your company. One of the keys of a really strong business development plan is to know what the appropriate next step is for that potential client, and if they are your ideal client profile and you’ve built a relationship with them, you will know. Sometimes opportunities are missed because you expect a potential client to make the next move, but it doesn’t happen that way. You have to be proactive.”
Don’t make it harder than it actually is. Get active and make your business known. The more you connect with people, the more present you will be in their minds when they do need your product or service and the easier your sales process will become.