The economic indicators are starting to look better, and there’s hope in the air that perhaps we are truly at the bottom of the deep well we’ve been descending into for quite some time. This is a perfect time for you to be investing in your business. Here are three key tips for you to focus on to increase growth and profit and accelerate your business:
1. Work on your business, not in it. Think about where you need to be six months from today and ensure all of your actions are aligned with achieving those goals. When we’re busy working in the business, on a day-to-day basis, we sometimes end up doing activities that lead us astray from our real business goals.
2. Make sure you truly understand and can define what differentiates your company from your competitors. This not only includes companies that provide products or services similar to yours, but rather all of the firms that compete for the same customer dollars. For example, one of the successful entrepreneurs in my InnerCity Entrepreneurs class runs an HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) company. In reviewing her competitors, she realized that some of her prospects were deciding between spending money on a new AC system or a new swimming pool. That makes swimming pool companies her direct competition.
3. Remember that sales is not a four-letter word. Selling is about listening to your customers’ needs and addressing them clearly and thoughtfully. It’s not about telling somebody everything you know about your products and services. Good salespeople spend at least 75% of their time listening to their customers’ needs before talking. With a typical adult attention span of 15 to 30 seconds, that means you need to truly do your homework before you meet with a key prospect so the message you provide is clear, concise, and targeted toward providing them with a solution that is customer-focused.
Beth Goldstein President Marketing Edge Consulting Group Boston