No matter how innovative, ingenious, or incredible your product or service is, if you don’t know how to sell, your business might be over before it begins. Today I was honoured to serve as an expert advisor on Startup Canada‘s #StartupChats sponsored by The Coca-Cola Foundation (@cocacola_ca) and hosted by Lyndon Johnson (@THINK_Lyndon), Founder of Toronto-based COMMS.BAR, where we discussed the best methods to sell yourself, your services, and your products as an entrepreneur.
Here are the questions and my answers:
- First question! Why does every entrepreneur need to know how to sell?
Every #entrepreneur needs to know how to sell because you need to do it to create selling system that works, is documented and is manageable when you delegate to your Director of Sales.
- What are the basic tenants of sales for entrepreneurs?
1 Know & listen to your ideal prospect
2 Offer solutions to problems
3 Focus on benefits not features
4 Create a sense of urgency
5 Ensure your brand experience is a pleasant one
6 Under promise, over deliver
7 Keep in Touch
- What is a sales funnel and what tools, technologies and platforms are available to streamline the sales process for entrepreneurs?
#salesfunnel is a marketing/sales strategy that includes various steps to attract, build rapport, provide value and entice your ideal target to like and buy from your brand.
- What advice do you have for entrepreneurs on moving clients through their sales funnel?
#entrepreneurs who want to move clients through #salesfunnels need to focus on attracting eyeballs to the start of the funnel, building rapport, trust, authority, value and most importantly the relationship!
- What are some of the best approaches to selling online that entrepreneurs can implement today?
#entrepreneurs #sme #smes who want to sell online need to understand that other than early adopters, most people are not. Most people need testimonials or a free trial (or something that you can give away for free) to buy from you.
- Whare are some of the best approaches to managing an in-person point of sale?
A #CRM is a must have for any #entrepreneur #sme #businessowner with remote sales teams. Not only does it allow them to sell more effectively, it allows you to manage their performance & identify opportunities for optimization
- How can entrepreneurs leverage trade shows, pop-up shops and other temporary sales approach to sell? What are the benefits?
Tradeshows-tradition & virtual e.g. #WorldEventCenter, attract your ideal target to you & should be optimized and include stellar marketing materials, something to giveaway & incentive that will entice them to give you their email
- How can entrepreneurs sell to different levels of government? What tools and programs exist
#Entrepreneurs that want to sell to federal and provincial government need to educate themselves on their targets need and register here… https://buyandsell.gc.ca/for-businesses/selling-to-the-government-of-canada/register-as-a-supplier
#Entrepreneurs that want to sell to municipal government need to connect and educate themselves on their targets needs, ask for a copy of their strategic plans, and watch for opportunities to build relationships and partner with them.
- How can entrepreneurs improve their pitch to improve sales?
#Entrepreneurs can improve their pitch and sales by being prepared, creating and optimizing a pitch deck (powerpoint or slides) to keep them on track, and that can be easily customized to make it clear the problem your solution solves!
- Where can entrepreneurs go to learn more about sales, to improve their sales strategy and to drive growth?
#Entrepreneurs that want to learn more about sales, to improve their sales strategy and drive growth need to train with the masters e.g. @DaleCarnegie @Gitomer etc or educate themselves using the many online resources
- What final piece of advice do you have for every entrepreneur on how to sell?
#Entrepreneurs that want to sell need to automate. I put a few ideas here… https://suesutcliffe.com/sales-automation-software but there are so many. I’d love to host an online networking event to continue this conversation on #WorldEventCenter. If that sounds interesting to you, please email me via my website https://suesutcliffe.com/connect . I also think people might find this piece we did on #salesfunnels very handy… https://suesutcliffe.com/sales-funnels