One of the biggest challenges in business is keeping that constant flow of new customers in the pipeline. How you brand yourself and your company is imperative in producing growth and recurrent revenue.
Johanne Wilson is co-founder of a Florida-based design agency called COOL Creative. COOL stands for Create Out of Love. Their branding comes from a creative and design standpoint.
Every company experiences challenges when it comes to sales. Understanding those challenges and learning effective ways to overcome them can increase your sales. It can also clarify your target audience and reveal how to best go about reaching them.
Find effective ways to pitch so you can have a healthy flow of clients and client work. When you do, you’ll create active, recurrent clients that return again and again.
From a fashion standpoint, offer enough product and keep it updated and fresh. The customer will keep coming in to purchase product and will create recurrent revenue.
Change product release times and inform the customer of new releases to keep him engaged..
Strive for constant communication with the customer in order to drive sales.
Maintain consistent growth within your business.
On the agency side, COOL Creative developed a growth plan that would move the sales needle.
For example, making an investment in the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program provides tools for creating an effective growth plan.
Johanne realized that she was spending too much time on client work and not enough on the sales side of her business. As the business leader, she realized she was spending a lot of time on design because she was comfortable with it. She was not investing enough time in the sales side.
She learned that in order to be a good business person, you have to become a good sales person as well. You must familiarize yourself with the aspects of the business that you aren’t comfortable or familiar with.
On the fashion side, pushing more on advertising, marketing, social, communication, and partnerships with influential people like celebrities can all help drive sales. Right partnerships can lead to other agencies funneling clients your way.
Work smarter, not harder. Identify the areas that need more attention and push toward making those a priority.
As an entrepreneur, Donald neglected the sales facet. But once he made sales a priority, everything else fell into place.
As a business leader, sales is a necessity.
Nobody knows your business better than you. Nobody can sell it better than you.
It can be hard to let go of the things that got you into business in the first place. Identify the areas of business that aren’t as strong. Invest more time and energy into those areas.
Business will become healthier and you will be able to serve clients better.
Understand your clients’ issues and the strategies you will use in solving them. Then attach a price tag to those solutions.
When you and the client see amazing results from something you helped him with, it’s rewarding. Bringing a client’s idea to life or bringing a business objective to life makes it all worthwhile. Create Out of Love (COOL) speaks for itself when these instances occur.
Growth is always a good indicator for having made positive changes.
You don’t have to do anything drastic: small changes can have big rewards.
What are you focusing on? If your head is always down working on the deliverables, which is important, you must make sure there is a strong person on the sales side to keep the engine moving.
Speaking to the creative entrepreneur, don’t forget why you are in business. While it is the creative piece that got you started, you have to get good at the business side, too. This includes sales, accurate bookkeeping, and meeting with other professionals to make sure that the business stays in good standing.
This episode is brought to you by the TSE Certified Sales Training Program. If you put in a lot of hard work in 2018 but weren’t able to close many of your deals, we can help you fix that. We have a new semester beginning in April and it would be an honor to have you join. Visit thesalesevangelist.com/CST.
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On today’s episode of The Sales Evangelist, we talk to Matt Hernandez about the changes in the marketplace, and how the ability to find local partners has helped him drive more revenue for the businesses he serves.
In his work with small-to-medium businesses, Matt has worked to figure out new ways to deal with leads because people have become more resistant to cold calling.
He believes that, although cold-calling can work, it must exist in the right circumstances. The key is better lead intelligence.
Matt doesn’t struggle with recruiting or interviewing salespeople. The key, he says, is to be very upfront about the challenges of the role and hire the right type of people.
Hire open-minded people who aren’t super particular about their activities and who often aren’t as needy. [7:15] They’ll be more coachable.
Also be very honest about the type of role you’re hiring for, the challenges it will present, but also the benefits of the role as well.
In the past, sellers would have a name and a phone number and they could attack each cold lead with different opens or different hooks. Now, he says, people are numb to that approach.
Instead, his company looked to generate inbound leads and lukewarm leads.
Matt’s company uses a program called “Local Partners” that pays contractors to feed them warm or hot leads from local areas. He pointed out that using pure commission models doesn’t change your cost structure. [9:14]
He does acknowledge that you must make sure the payment is in line with the revenue goals. You must make sure your customer acquisition costs aren’t too high.
Matt’s company has seen strong results from the move away from cold calling. He estimates that the effort now accounts for 5 to 15 percent of their deals.
He predicts that this kind of effort would likely work in a variety of industries.
Companies just have to be creative to figure out how to scale in a cost-effective way. Buying leads can be very expensive, but a pay-for-results model can work if the infrastructure is set up properly. [11:10]
Begin by listing as on Craigslist in the cities you’re interested in. State what you’re offering and decide ahead of time how much you can afford to pay.
Decide how much you’d be willing to pay someone if they were to generate meetings or contracts. For longer sales cycles, you might have to pay per demo. [12:09]
In shorter sales cycles, you pay based upon generating contracts.
In your ad, provide a range of income that interested parties could generate per month.
Then you could interview over the phone or in person or over video.
The effort is super cheap, super easy and really scrappy.
Be creative. Sales requires consistency and training and the right effort for the right amount of time. Without it, you’ll never see meaningful results or data you can measure. [14:54]
Seek objective advice and make sure you’re giving your new ideas time to work.
If things aren’t going the way you want despite your effort, don’t be afraid to pivot and try new approaches. Be willing to try something different.
The marketplace changes rapidly, and technology does, too. You have to be willing to adapt.
Local businesses are the best candidates to benefit from Fivestars because they are traditionally underserved in their marketing efforts. They often face huge competition from groups of businesses that pool their resources. [15:59]
Think of a small coffee shop competing against Starbucks, who has millions of dollars to spend on advertising.
Fivestars has created a software that costs pennies on the dollar because the cost is spread across 10,000 merchants. It’s an incredible solution for anyone who owns a local business with a physical location.
This episode is brought to you in part by Maximizer CRM, a personalized and robust CRM with the capability to organize your company and effectively line up not only your sales, but your client’s success. Go to TheSalesEvangelist.com/maximizer for a free demonstration.
We are also brought to you by prospect.io, a powerful sales automation platform that allows you to build highly personalized, cold email campaigns. It has changed the way we prospect.
Take advantage of the risk-free trial they offer specifically for the TSE community. First three months at half-price? You can’t beat that! To learn more, go to prospect.io/tse. Your prospecting will never ever be the same.
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