Most businesses don’t do much in the way of sales and marketing. For those businesses that do, I’ve often found that they’re not doing things nearly as effectively as they could.
If you’re a business owner, that should be welcome news. Why? Because if you’re currently not doing much in the way of sales and marketing—or not doing it effectively—you’re in a great position to start reeling in more customers once you commit to taking action.
So, how do you take action? How do you know if your actions are taking you in the right direction?
I’ve compiled 10 tips to help you get the most out of your sales and marketing efforts. They not only provide some of the most important big picture considerations, but also some practical ways of getting more leads and increasing conversions.
1. UNDERSTAND THE BIG PICTURE OF SALES & MARKETING
When it comes to sales and marketing, there are really only five areas you need to worry about:
- Number of Leads: How many potential clients do you attract?
- Conversion Rate: How many leads do you convert into clients?
- Average $ Sale: How much do they spend each time they buy?
- Number of Transactions: How many times a year do your clients buy?
- Margins: What is the gross or net margin your business achieves?
All sales and marketing efforts can be tied, directly or indirectly, to improving one or more of the above areas.
As a business owner, your goal should be to improve ALL of the above areas—not just one or two. Even if you just make slight improvements to each area, you’ll see massive results due to their collective impact.
For a more in-depth look at improving these five factors, including some exercises you can do, please visit my free tools page and select Sales & Marketing.
2. GET MORE SPECIFIC ABOUT YOUR TARGET MARKET
Your target market consists of the people who are most likely to buy from you. A lot of businesses have only a rough idea who their target market is. And therein lies the problem.
By knowing which individuals are most likely to buy from you, you can concentrate your firepower on targeting only them. That way, you won’t waste money blanketing an entire city with ads when only a small group would buy from you anyway.
Don’t cast your nets across an entire river if the only fish you want to catch are along the banks.
Once you know your target market inside and out, you’ll start to figure out what neighborhoods they live in, what publications they read, what websites they visit, what establishments they frequent, and so on. You can use this information to go where your best prospects are and target them there.
You can also divide your target market into various segments. For example, if you sell both high-ticket items and low-ticket items, there’s a good chance you’re dealing with different groups of buyers. You’ll want to pursue these groups using different strategies.
In sum, get more specific about your target market and you’ll start landing more customers.
3. CREATE A SALES PROCESS AND FOLLOW IT
Think about the entire “customer journey” people have when dealing with your business. This customer journey spans from the time people are cold prospects all the way until after purchasing from you.
Decide how your business should be engaging with customers at each and every step along this journey. Don’t just guess what the best approach is at each step. Instead, verify what actions work best.
Once you’ve mapped out your entire sales process, document it in writing and make your team learn it backwards and forwards. Use workshop-style training sessions to have your team practice these scripts.
You’ll need to continue refining your sales process over time to maximize your results. Getting a defined sales process off the ground can be challenging, but it can pay huge dividends.
4. EXPAND YOUR SALES & MARKETING FOOTPRINT
How do you currently generate leads? Think about all of the different “channels” available to you: print ads, online ads, television, radio, website, social medial, direct mail, live events, media coverage, etc.
A lot of businesses only take advantage of two or three channels to generate leads. Expand your current efforts by trying out new channels.
There are two key reasons for doing this. First, you’ll be able to reach more individuals. Second, if one of your current channels becomes unavailable or not feasible to use anymore, your business won’t take such a big hit when that day comes.
5. EMBRACE THE DIGITAL AGE
Does your website look like it was built in 1997? Or does it only include some basic contact information and one or two pictures? Do you use social media to promote your business? Do you serve ads to specific types of customers you’re trying to target?
Digital marketing is no longer a “should” but a “must” for your business. Don’t wait to get on the bandwagon or you’ll get left behind for good.
TO READ TIPS 6-10, GO TO Part 2…
You can also check out my free tools page and read the Sales & Marketing presentation located there.