Are you ready to increase sales?
The most vital skill you need as an entrepreneur is your ability to sell. Just because you have a great product or service is not enough. In fact, it may sit on your shelf for years if you don’t have the ability or skills to sell it. Selling is what ensures your success as an entrepreneur and sustainability and vitality of your business.
Creating a system to increase sales with people capable of carrying out the plan makes the business more sustainable over time.
Here are 5 effective techniques to increase sales:
- USE YOUR PHONE: The phone is the most cost effective and efficient method for finding new customers. YES, we’re talking — COLD CALLING. It can be the hardest strategy to get started and one of the most fun once you get going. Here are a few keys to make it work:
- Write out a script for your calls and practice. Do NOT wing it!! When you “wing-it”, you have no way to fix it. You have no way to teach it. When you have a script that works you can train your team to use it and refine it when it doesn’t work.
- Briefly introduce yourself, your company and the purpose of the call. Share a short benefit or answer the “What’s in it for them” question.
- Plan for objections and have a strategy to address them. Identify at least 7 objections that you might hear and create your script and approach to each. By planning ahead you are ready for objections and have a better chance of overcoming them.
- You initial goal is NOT to sell but to schedule another meeting or action that you have pre-identified. Don’t “wing” these calls. Have a plan, a purpose and a process.
- BE AN EXPERT: As an entrepreneur you are always looking for new customers. Being an expert at seminars, speaking, teaching, trade shows, writing articles, appearing on podcasts, TV, radio, on social media are all ways to “show your stuff” and build your credibility as an expert. Toastmasters is a great resource for developing your speaking skills and there are local groups all over the world.
- LISTEN MORE/TALK LESS: Most sales people talk, talk and then talk some more — all in trying to make the sale. YOU need to listen, hear the “pain”, so that you know HOW you can address it. Find out what the person’s goals and challenges are. When you solve a problem, you have just found a customer.
- AVOID “PRODUCT DUMPING”: When you dump your products or services on people that need/want them, it is a short sale. you might make the sale but you will lose credibility and the possibility of a long term client and future sales. Remember — nothing adds more to your credibility than a referral from a satisfied customer.
- KEEP TRACK OF YOUR NUMBERS: Selling is a numbers fame, and you need to learn your “selling ratios.” This means know the number of prospecting calls you make each day or incoming leads for calls that you receive. The next number you need to know is how many touches does it take to get a meeting. How many meetings does it take to get the sale? This gives you the ability to predict your sales but it also gives you the ability to track whether changes you make to your process increases sales or decreases them. Once you have a handle on the numbers you can manage your cash flow by forecasting your sales. It also gives you information about how many calls you need to make to increase your sales.
Selling is one of those essential and challenging areas of business ownership. And, it is totally achievable. By using these simple strategies you can increase your sales. Take each one and use it consistently for the next 30 days and assess the changes that happen within your business.