hen it comes to creating a solid foundation for your small business, having the right sales strategies is key. Having the right ones will ensure everyone on your team is aligned on business goals and empower everyone to do their best. Plus, it helps to keep everyone engaged and believe that the business's success is theirs too.
Sales Strategy, Explained
In a nutshell, a sales strategy is made up of goals, decisions, and actions you take that help your team solidify a direction to head towards. The idea is to ensure your business’ products or services are positioned to get new customers. It is also a guide for your sales team to take action towards clear goals and objectives when it comes to positioning your product or service, the sales process, and how your business compares to others in the same space. Although most sales strategies have detailed plans of processes and best practices, the most important part will be ones that focus on your customer. That’s why implementing one that’s the best fit for your business may look different from another organization.
8 Proven Sales Strategies
Now that you have the gist of what a sales strategy is, let’s take a look at 8 proven sales strategy aspects to help your business thrive.
1. Understand Your Prospects
No matter how good your sales strategies are, it will fall flat if you’re targeting the wrong audience. To ensure your best chances of success, work with your team to properly research and qualify prospective customers before moving onto the next step. Doing so ensures that your business is more likely to close on the sale and have an easier time with sales conversations. To start, clearly define how your team will be able to tell if someone is most likely to be a customer. These criteria can be based on how someone engages with your brand, all the way to certain demographics.
2. Get Clear on Your Sales Pitch
Even if you’ve identified someone as most likely being a customer, having a poorly executed sales pitch will lead your prospects to run the other way. What’s important to remember when refining your sales pitch is that customers are looking for a certain end result, and how purchasing your product or service will help them achieve that is key. Think of it as how it’ll help them do what they do best, save time, and even make more money. Depending on your product or service, personalizing the benefits for each prospect will help you close the deal. As in, what is valuable to them, and how will your business provide that? For instance, if you’re selling software that helps businesses keep track of their inventory, it’s a good idea to talk about how this will save time and money from hiring extra staff to track inventory manually. It’ll show your prospect how they may be able to use the money they save to grow other parts of their business. The point here is to be super clear on what results your product or service will provide — paint a picture in someone’s head so that they’re ready to buy.
3. Leverage the Power of Social Media
Social media is a popular way to reach prospective customers since a large number of people consume information through this medium. Plus, you’ll be able to leverage the data from these websites to help inform you of future strategies. When it comes to your business being active on social media, stick to a few platforms so you’re not spreading your team too thin. It’ll allow them to properly engage with audience members who may become customers one day, and time to be more strategic. The social media platform that’s best for your business will depend on where your target audience will be. Take the time to research where they’re the most active and align your tone, content, and overall strategy to connect with them.
4. Prioritize Inbound Leads
If you have someone contacting you, it means they’re already interested in what your business has to offer. Prioritizing inbound leads means that you’re more likely to close the sale — why wouldn’t you make sure to engage with them as soon as possible? Contacting them quickly will also show your prospect that you’re on the ball with excellent customer service and increase the chances of your team closing the sale on the first interaction.
5. Become a Thought Leader
Sharing your expertise will build more credibility to your business and your brand as a whole. By offering value in the form of solutions to others, you’ll gain the trust of prospects, who will be ready and willing to buy down the line. When creating thought leadership content, think carefully about what your audience wants to hear. Then, craft content that’s both helpful and on-brand.
6. Be Flexible
When it comes to prospects, you’ll find that some will have unique needs. In these cases, make sure you know how to adapt and tailor content and sales pitches so that you can accommodate your customer.
7. Be Confident
Being confident when closing the sale is important because it shows that your company knows that what they're offering will be the right solution. This means being clear, concise and firm when it comes to these sorts of conversations. Work with your team to practice various techniques that work, and if something didn’t, break down the conversation to see what needs to change.
8. Nurture and Follow Up with Customers
Making sure customers are happy after you make the sale will ensure that they’re loyal and take advantage of upselling or crossing opportunities. Plus, enthusiastic customers will act as brand ambassadors of sorts for your company. Word of mouth marketing is free and one of the most effective ways to grow your business.
Grow Effectively With Proven Sales Strategies
These may seem like a lot of strategies (and perhaps a lot of work), but it’s worth it. Start by planning what you’ll do, then implement them incrementally to see what works and doesn’t. Don’t forget to review and reflect on what you’ve done so far so that you can continue to refine and improve your sales strategies. Your business depends on it.