People start businesses for any number of reasons. Some of these include to get more freedom, to build a legacy, to give back to their community, to fix a looming social concern, or simply for the love of what they do. Another reason is often to achieve financial security but, surprisingly, this is often the least of their motivations.
While most aspiring entrepreneurs do relate success with monetary gain, making money is rarely on the top of the list of reasons why businesses get started. In fact, money is often an afterthought. This is evident in the manner in which the average aspiring entrepreneur develops his or her business model. Think about your own start-up journey. If you are like most entrepreneurs, in the beginning you probably undervalued yourself, your products, or your services. You most likely charged too little and underestimated the true cost of doing business. Not thinking about the money from the start is a big mistake that often leaves struggling entrepreneurs to join the four out of five businesses that fail within the first 5 years of operation.
How do you avoid becoming a statistic? The answer is to focus on increasing your sales. The bottom line is that you need money to survive. Businesses get money by making sales. There are two primary ways to make more money using sales. The first is to increase your margin. Margin is the amount of profit left over after costs per each sale you make. You can do this by either cutting costs or raising prices. An effective strategy combines both of these methods to arrive at a cost-effective, competitive sales prices that reflects your true value.
The second way to make more money using sales is to increase the volume of sales. To increase sales, small business owners must reconsider your marketing conversations that you are having with your customers. This will be the focus of the three activities you must do to increase sales.
3 Must-Do Activities to Increase Sales
- Tap into your passion. Your sales conversion rate is heavily reliant on the amount of passion you have when speaking about your product or service offering. Passion lets prospective customers know that you believe in your offer and helps fuel the emotional connection you make during sales conversations. Think about why you love your products and services. Why are they important to you? How have they changed your life for the better? Connect with your “why” so you can speak authentically about your offer. People don’t buy products and services. They buy you. Passion helps them to see who you are.
- Create stories. Storytelling is so important to increase sales. Stories demonstrate value to prospects by showing them exactly how your offers will help them. Prospective customers can actually “see” themselves in your stories as you tell them. To develop stories, you must actually use your products or services, or collect user stories from your existing customer base. The stories you tell should be true, relevant, and specifically showcase how your offerings have helped solve a problem by either decreasing pain or increasing pleasure. Coupled with passion, stories are a powerful method to increase sales because stories reach and resonate with every type of learner, be they audio, visual, or kinesthetic. Stories clearly tell prospects “what” they will be getting.
- Develop relationships. We have covered your “why” and the “what” so far. This activity covers the “who” to increase sales. People buy from those that they know and trust. You can only establish knowledge and build trust through relationships. You must become a network marketer. Network marketing is the art of communicating value through relationships. When most people think about network marketing, they think about multilevel marketing companies like Mary Kay or Paycation. In fact, every business owner is a network marketer. In my book, Why YOU SUCK at Network Marketing, I explain the importance of establishing relationships with your dream customer. Real relationships involve two-way communication in which you and the customer authentically exchange value. People don’t like to be sold to but they do love to buy. Establishing authentic relationships transforms your sales conversations into valuable shared resources. From this perspective, prospective customers will be thankful for the useful information you provide whenever you share your offers.
Your business will only survive if it makes money. To make more money, you will need to increase sales. You can increase your sales by tapping into your passion, creating relevant user stories, and developing authentic relationships with your dream customers. If you’re still not sure exactly how to do do this, feel free to request a free strategy session.
How do you increase sales? I would love to hear your thoughts so please comment below. If you found value in this article, make sure to share it with your network.