The old adage “work smarter, not harder” is one that savvy entrepreneurs embrace. That applies to sales – especially if you’re a business owner who doesn’t particularly enjoy selling. Use these strategies to increase sales without breaking a sweat.
Strategy 1: Let Your Customers Sell For You
Who says you need a giant sales team? Your customers are your best salespeople. And happy customers refer others; to the tune of 65% of your business – if you let them.
How to Do It: First, start by making your customers really happy. Deliver the best possible products and service. Then, encourage them to tell others. Invite them to review you on Yelp, pass along your email newsletter or get a special savings if they refer a friend.
Strategy 2: Leverage Online Marketing
Marketing and sales go hand in hand, so make sure your online marketing efforts are helping you meet your goals.
How to Do It: You can use your company blog to provide useful content to attract your target market, email marketing to get customers coming back for irresistible offers, and social media to stay engaged with your customers. Spend time developing relationships through your marketing here, and sales will follow.
Strategy 3: Keep Delivering Value After the Sale
Your sales efforts don’t end once money has exchanged hands – especially if you sell products that customers buy again and again. If you continue to develop that relationship after the sale, you’ll stay on top of the mind of your customers who will come back for more.
How to Do It: Make sure your customer service team is well-trained to keep customers happy and minimize returns. Have your sales and marketing teams work together to get repeat customers coming back to buy again. All processes should start with a customer entering your funnel, and then spinning in a perpetual circle where they continue to make purchases from you.
Strategy 4: Be Smart about Networking
Another technique that will make sales easier is networking the right way. It’s not enough to simply attend a local networking event. Go into it with the right mindset; not to sell outright, but to forge new relationships that you can nurture over time. Pass out your business card and engage in solid one-on-one conversation, and then follow up – that’s the essential component of good networking.
How to Do It: The day after an event, send a quick email to the people who you met. Say that it was nice to meet them, and mention some personal detail you remember – like wishing their kid good luck with that sports tournament. Also, connect with them on LinkedIn and other social sites.
Stay in touch, sending the occasional note, and maybe even invite them to coffee – you never know where that relationship will go as it grows. That person might not end up becoming a customer, but he or she may be able to refer new business to you.
As you can see, there are other ways to get sales other than cold calls and knocking on doors. Be smart with your sales, and watch those dollars roll in.
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Andrew Patricio is the founder and CEO of BizLaunch, a company that trains, advises and mentors entrepreneurs. Andrew has written two books on small business, started seven businesses, and has helped thousands of entrepreneurs in Canada get their businesses up and running.
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