Getting sales results is more about possibility thinking rather than “We can’t…” or “That won’t work” statements.
When developing a sales or marketing strategy, negative statements and thinking shut down the creative part of the brain, limiting the ideas we can come up with. This is caused by the fear of being seen as “way out there” or “just plain stupid”. To overcome this, the team needs a friendly environment where “risk taking” is supported and encouraged.
One of the keys to getting massive results in sales is to think “outside the square”. Getting creative and asking positive questions rather that limiting statements.
We worked with a bakery that was having trouble selling its new bread cob. They discounted the price from $3 to $2 and still were unable to make it a success. With a bit of lateral thinking, we instigated a “trade in” strategy, where if you bought in your old bread, we would trade it in for $1 when purchasing the new cob.
Not only did bread sales go through the roof, but the local press came out to see what was causing all the commotion!
The point is – Don’t make the statement, “That would never work for us”, rather ask the question “How could I apply that to my business?”
With that in mind, I have included some questions that I have used in the past to “break” my traditional thinking and get creative. Please use them and add any others that get your creativity going. Remember that no idea is a bad idea until it is proven otherwise.
Questions to ask yourself in developing a sales and business development strategy:
- What is my objective?
- What is the target we would like to achieve?
- If we needed to double the businesses revenue, what could we do?
- What other strategies no matter how outrageous could we consider (list at least 20)?
- What are the obstacles that we need to overcome?
- What outside assistance do we need?
- What structures can we put in place to measure the effectiveness of the strategy?
- How could we determine if the idea would work?
- Considering that we are in the people business, what can we do (outside of gaskets) for our customers?
- Knowing our business the way we do, what are our customers looking for (outside of the price/service area)?
What are our customer saying about…
- Their other suppliers
- Their Jobs
- The industry
- The market
For each strategy…
- Who are our target market?
- Where do they go?/What do they read?
- Which clubs or groups are they involved in?
- How do we target them?
- When is the best time to contact them?
- Why do they need us?
These are just a sample of guiding questions. Your limitations are based on your current thinking, in a “safe” environment creativity can boom…and so can business.
Brad Sugars founded the brand Action International in 1993 when he realized there was a disconnect between business advice and implementation. The answer was Action! Brad Sugars created a business coaching company so that business owners throughout the world can realize their goals in business. Today the company is known as ActionCOACH. To learn more about business, visit Brad Sugars Review blog!