October 22, 2014

Small Business News: New Styles In Sales

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Small businesses  are first and foremost about sales. Serious! Is there nobody who doesn’t know this? Sure it’s about relationships and branding and marketing and creating value everything else. But in the end sales and how you get them and sustain them is the key to whether your business succeeds or fails. More importantly, though, sales is changing. This isn’t your father’s sales funnel! And here’s a look at what’s new!

Basics

Why cold calling may not be for you. You’ve probably heard about this plenty of times already, however, this video from Chris Hamilton states it in a way that makes it easy to understand. What is the most effective way of increasing your sales and more importantly the number of sales meetings you book? Is there something better than cold calling? You bet! Give a listen. Sales Tip a Day

What makes a great sales person? There are probably lots of characteristics that go into the great salesperson, but Neil Jones has quite a collection here. Each one comes with a good explanation of how they work together. Do you have the characteristics of a great salesperson? Would you know how to hire one? Tweak Your Biz

Process

Advancing sales for your small business. You don’t need to be a salesperson for a big company to put these tips to work. They will help you get your foot in the door and to advance conversations that lead to a sale. And, unfortunately, they will help you recognize the conversations and relationships that are going nowhere. The Sales Blog

Keep your existing customers while you find new ones. Especially in the case of a new startup small business, it’ll be as important keeping the customers you started with as to expand and get new ones. And how exactly do you keep existing customers interested and coming back for more? Two words: customer service. Here are some more details to show you how. Self Employed Cafe

Blogging

Why sales people shouldn’t be blogging. Dave Brock has fairly strong feelings on this. Dave insists, “I’ve been reading a lot of opinions about sales people blogging–many favoring this. Frankly, I think this is dead wrong, from a business point of view, I’m not certain that sales people blogging is an efficient or effective use of their time.” What do you think? Partners in EXCELLENCE

Or maybe why they should. On the other hand, Koka Sexton argues, “Having a social and transparent company drives customer loyalty and generates new business. I think that companies that empower their sales people to use social media tools like blogs can exponentially increase awareness and drive lead generation and revenue for a company.” Could your business benefit from sales blogging? The InsideView Blog

Trends

Death of a Salesman. Whether you believe it or not, Todd Youngblood suggests that the need for sales reps to sell your product or service might be a thing of the past…soon! This is good news for the small business owner who can’t afford a sales force. But it could also be good news for the best of the sales reps…who could soon be small business owners of their own selling their own products online. Todd Youngblood’s “SPE” Blog

The future of sales: Some further discussion. It turns out Todd’s post above ignited quite a discussion online. <Did you get that? The discussion happened online.) Yet, some people still insist sales won’t be going there. Now we’re no prognosticators, but the insistence that if people don’t need a salesperson to share information about a product, they may need someone to help them make a decision seems a bit hard to believe given what we’ve already seen about how Websites convert. Where will the sales be happening for your small business? Sales Practice

Online

Want more proof of where sales is headed. This incredible projection says it all. Though the data specifically looks at e-commerce growth, let’s see what it says about the other side of the equation. As online sales go up, do we really believe that offline sales will stay the same? When figuring out where sales for your small business will take place in the future and what form they will take, consider the obvious trends. Are you selling online today? Capture Commerce

Growth

Sometimes it’s not about the pitch. If you want to grow your business and find new opportunities sometimes it’s about much more than booking more sales meetings or making more calls. Here are some other ideas you may want to consider that could broaden the horizons for your business and bring you more customers and clients. Go ahead and try a few of these on for size. ideationz

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