Profits On Purpose | What’s your sales strategy?
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What’s your sales strategy?

We’re two months in to a new year and the question on many business owners’ minds is how you’re going to grow and by how much? Who are you going to call on and what will your sales people say when they get there? A very smart person once told me sales is really an emotional process and that people only justify a purchase intellectually after the fact.

The truth is that people buy differences, not similarities. So, here are 3 things that should define your sales strategy and execution going in to a growth year.

1) Define your core customers and prospects. Who are they and where are they?   Try and define which have both characteristics of being an attractive client or prospect and also have a high likelihood of doing business or continuing to do business with you. An understanding of how you’re different from your competitors will give you insight in to why your clients buy from you now and in the future. Try to avoid clients or prospects that might not be attractive or have a low likelihood of doing business with you.

2) What products and services do your clients need to solve the problems in running their business? Generally, your clients use your products or services to solve 2-3 problems in their business. Find out what pains your clients are experiencing and what gains they can experience by using your products and services. Even better, you might determine that you have unfair advantage over your competitors because you have something that can’t easily be bought or copied. If you do, be sure it’s included in your messaging.

3) Do you have a brand promise? Geico says they can save you 15% or more on your car insurance. BMW is the ultimate driving machine. What about you? A strong brand promise is one that connects your purpose, your strategy, your people and your customer experience. Again, it often connects you emotionally with customers and can differentiate your brand from competitors.

Once you have determined the three items above, executing it is hard. “How much, by when” is what previous bosses have told me when referring to calling activity or sales goals. It’s important that you know how many calls it takes to get a proposal and how many proposals it takes to get a client and what your average order is in units or dollars. One of those former bosses once told me, “The level of activity you’re willing to adopt will be a limiting factor in your business.” That’s so true. We all want to work smarter not harder. Hopefully this article will be helpful in framing your sales strategy and execution for the coming year.

Bill McDermott
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