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How to Make The Perfect Sales Pitch (8 Tips)

When approaching investors or potential clients, your company pitch is crucial to landing the job or getting investment funding. With only an elevator ride time to get the most important points of your business plan across, the perfect sales pitch can seem harrowing or nearly impossible to make. The bad news: Many people struggle with getting a pitch together at all, while others battle with honing their spiel or keeping it audience-relevant. The good news: Ramon Ray happens to judge spitch competitions from time to time, and has given us his insight into how to formulate the ideal business or sales pitch. Here are the top 8 things to consider so that you can form the perfect pitch: 1. Enter Pitch Competitions – Yes, these are a thing! In pitch competitions, you and other small business owners can toss around your business plans, ideas, and pitches and see if they are caught. Puns aside, these competitions serve as a great opportunity to not only practice telling people about your business, but you have the chance to actually reap the benefits of investment if you win! Pitch competitions include actual potential investors, meaning you could walk in to practice and walk away with funding for your small business. 2. Make Connections – With pitch competitions, you are able to make connections even if you don’t walk away with a win. Even if the judging investors don’t choose you and your sales pitch, there are typically investors present who may take an interest in you and your company. These connections could then lead to investments and funding to get your business off the ground. Aside from investors, you will meet other small business owners and will network with people going through the same things you are in the small business world. You can potentially toss ideas around and brainstorm with others, only improving your business along the way. 3. Personable Pitch – Make sure that you are making connections with your potential investors. If you have rehearsed your spiel so much that you sound robotic, you can’t connect with them and get them…

Why I Hired a Sales Coach & Why You Should, Too

Sales isn’t easy and it isn’t hard to find yourself questioning how to meet sales goals, and how to get sales through the roof. More than anything, it’s easy to feel alone and wondering where to go next. There’s no shame in getting a sales coach, whether you’re a beginner or a highly qualified expert. Deciding to get a sales coach was one of the best decisions I ever made for my business and my colleagues. Here are 5 reasons that I hired a sales coach to better my business: Motivation and Accountability – These go hand in hand, really. A sales coach will be there to push you harder no matter how motivated you think you are–there’s always room to grow. A sales coach is going to find what you need to address the most in your business plan and push you to go above and beyond what you are already doing to get there. It may be your weakest link, but with someone else’s eye, they’ll keep you on the ball at all times to keep things on the up and up. Working with a sales coach will allow you to set these plans into action and then work together to meet the goals along the way. Fresh Perspective – Once you get in the groove of things, having a fresh eye can be challenging and those minors details can blur out pretty easily. Even if a sales coach is familiar with your business or similar companies, they will still be addressing your business as a unique setup through a new pair of lenses with a brand new approach. This can lead to introducing new ideas and innovative techniques to grow your business. A sales coach could very well have the knowledge and resources necessary to introduce you to opportunities you never previously considered. Specified Training – You and your business will be a unique job for any sales coach. It doesn’t matter if anyone else in your field used this coach before so they have an idea of what your company is about. The unique experience and…

84% of Sales Leaders Don’t Believe They Have the Team to Succeed, Study Says

The 2018 Sales Talent Study from CSO Insights finds a full 84% of sales leaders don’t think they have the team they need to succeed. Even with these obvious talent issues, sales experts aren’t including all the metrics needed to get the best hires. Hiring a Sales Team Seleste Lunsford, Managing Director of CSO Insights, spoke with Small Business Trends to provide some insights on these challenges and what small businesses can do to solve them. “Managing sales from a talent perspective has always been challenging. It’s hard to find people, predict who will succeed and keep them,” she says. For Lunsford, fixing the disconnect is about changing and expanding the hiring focus. Expand Evaluations She says that despite all the technology available to fill spots on sales teams, hiring managers are still leaning too heavily on traditional benchmarks. “If someone is making their numbers, they must be good,” she says underlining how that mindset works. This approach doesn’t tell the whole story of what’s at play like if the rep has inherited a ‘sweet’ territory. The study found other issues with the hiring process . For example, the data reports it takes 4 months to recruit and 9 more months to bring a sales recruit up to full productivity. As well, small businesses rely on their top sales performers without assessing them properly to strengthen the individual and entire team. Cut a Deeper Swath Lunsford suggests evaluations need to cut a larger deeper swath. A talent strategy that incorporates science backed profiles including intangibles like grit and determination is part of the answer. Any criteria needs to include markers like education and experience as well, but more personal criteria too . “With attrition at 16% and average growth at 9%, a sales leader can greatly accelerate transformation within 2 years if hiring and developing the right people in the right way,” she says. Create Science Backed Profiles There are new tools looking to fill the gaps. These include online quizzes that measure previously hard to track skills like learning agility and change readiness as well as comfort with technology and perseverance. Velocity…

How to Find an Off-Season Niche Market for Your Seasonal Merchandise

Many products are easy to sell year-round like blankets, electronics, coffee, and office supplies. When you’re running a business selling seasonal merchandise, your sales will understandably drop during your off-season.… Read more » The post How to Find an Off-Season Niche Market for Your Seasonal Merchandise appeared first on Noobpreneur.com.

10 Expert Tips to Creating Repeat Business

There’s good evidence pointing to the fact that existing customers are easier to sell to than new ones. In fact, over half of a small enterprise’s business comes from client you’ve already sold to before. How to Create Repeat Business Here’s 10 expert tips to creating repeat business. Stay in Touch with The Customers Your Already Have Ivana S. Taylor is the CEO at DIYMarketers.com. She says getting repeat business is about being thorough. “Getting repeat business is an exercise in staying top-of-mind with your customers.  The best way to do that is to send emails to existing customers about any special offers that you have,” she says.  “If you have the kind of business where your customers appreciate appointment reminders this is a great opportunity to use text messaging.” Email newsletter platforms like MailChimp are a great way to stay touch through email marketing and get repeat business. Keep a Database Taylor also suggests a good CRM tool is indispensable. She says these can help you to keep track of what customers have already bought and send them notifications when you’ve got new inventory. Here’s a list of the best ones for this year. Create memberships This is an outstanding way to increase the number of loyal customers. Creating an offer that brings in more business can be as simple as a free meal with a discount for a second person for membership in a restaurant. “This will incent the current customer to come back and bring a new customer with them,” Taylor says. Provide Excellent Service Having a good customer relationship team can mean the difference between a one off and repeat business. For many small businesses, how you talk to the customer is just as important as what you say. It’s important to stay away from jargon and use a friendly even tone. Even a customer with some kind of issue who is dealt with properly can become a repeat client. Ask for Feedback Using surveys is one of the best ways to find out what you’re doing right and what you’re doing wrong so customers come…

10 Ways to Drive Holiday Sales on Pinterest

Stand out from the competition and reach holiday shoppers that are already looking for brands like yours. We’re still at least two months away from peak holiday season—when retailers start blasting their holiday playlists and offering their steepest deals of the year. But on Pinterest, holiday shopping has already begun! That’s right: Christmas-related searches and saves on Pinterest start ticking upward as early as September (two times earlier than when shoppers tend to begin exploring products on other platforms). So, why does this happen? Because shoppers use Pinterest to help them decide what to buy (finding the perfect holiday gift or tracking down the ingredients for a festive recipe). And here’s the best news: Most of the inspirational ideas that people find on Pinterest actually come from brands—87% of people on Pinterest say brands help them find the right products when planning for the holidays. So, what’re you waiting for? Here are 10 easy wins to help you reach more holiday shoppers on Pinterest this season. 1. Meet holiday shoppers where they’re at We’ve identified four main types of holiday shoppers on Pinterest: The time-saver, the gifter, the guest and the planner. Check out our holiday shopper insights to learn who they are, what they care about and how your brand can reach them with tips on relevant messaging and creative. 2. Tune into what your customers really want this holiday season Log in to our Audience Insights tool (you’ll need to have a business profile) to find out what they’re searching and saving. You’ll also be able to find data on your audience’s age, gender, location and device use to help you decide what products to feature in your ads. 3. Like gift shopping, it’s best to start earlier than you think Since holiday shoppers primarily use Pinterest to discover new ideas, it’s important to launch your holiday campaigns on Pinterest earlier than you might on other platforms. If you can reach people as they start making that list and checking it twice—before they’ve decided on a brand or product—you’re more likely to pop back into their mind when they’re ready to make a purchase. As a general…

Shopping on Instagram (and Beyond) – What to Expect

Instagram as it stands is crucial to the development of businesses everywhere. Whether it’s paying Instagram influencers to promote brands, managing user-generated content campaigns, or purchasing Instagram ads, Instagram has developed as one of the premiere apps for businesses looking to increase their brand awareness. Since the 2016 launch of the “Instagram Business Profile,” in which Instagram began to offer analytics data and a user-friendly advertisement creation system, the number of businesses marketing on Instagram has risen from 1.6 million in 2016 to 15 million in 2017 to a whopping 25 million today. According to Instagram’s internal data 80% of Instagram users follow business accounts, and according to eMarketer, 71% of businesses in the United States have Instagram accounts. Instagram Business users have been employing tools such as branded hashtags (hashtags increase engagement by at least 12.6%), user-generated content campaigns (users are 4.5% more likely to engage with your brand if you employ influencers), and Instagram analytics and public data that reveals information such as top-performing post-types (tip: photos with faces get 38% more likes) and the 80/20 rule (20% of content should be promotional and 80% should focus on engagement) to gain followers and increase brand awareness (https://sproutsocial.com/insights/instagram-stats/). Now, Instagram has developed a method to translate that brand awareness directly into sales. According to The Verge, Instagram is in the process of developing a tie-in shopping app that allows Instagram users to browse the goods of businesses they follow and directly purchase them. This app intends to make it easier for users to reach and purchase content they already enjoy, and in turn makes it easier for businesses to remind individuals who enjoy their content that they are more than just a page with great content, but a brand with products users can take home. This app will be particularly helpful in promoting small businesses in the world of online shopping, which attracts 79% of shoppers in America. Online shopping for small businesses has been historically dominated by websites such as Amazon that bring products of all different types together on an accessible platform, but that does not promote individualized content…

7 Ways Inventors Can Market Themselves (and Their Products)

Inventing an ingenious product is only the first step to having it be recognized and appreciated. If you’ve invented a product but no one has access to it, how will you be able to create an impact? Getting comfortable with the art of marketing is a vital skill that all inventors must hone. Here are 7 tips to help you start marketing your products: 1. Know Your Customers One of the easiest traps to fall into when you start to market a new invention is assuming that your product is for everyone. While it may reach wider audiences as time goes on, your marketing power lies in starting with a smaller customer base. Think about the purpose of your invention. Who is the ideal customer? That is where you want to start. Begin by using marketing strategies that will target your base customer. Once you start building a following of loyal users, you will be able to expand your target range. But remember: your original customers give the best indication of your product’s value and impact. 2. Start Narrow Make your marketing plan specific. This ties in with knowing your customer base. Rather than trying to reach every person in a certain radius, identify specific characteristics like gender, age, occupation, interests, and send your product marketing their way. When you start narrow, you’re able to grow a certain client base which is more likely to be a consistent and solid foundation. With an established following, your product will gain more credibility. That way, when you decide to branch out, potential customers outside of your original target group will be more interested in learning about your product. 3. Iterate, Evolve and Listen to Your Superfans Be willing to go back to your product time and time again to see what can be improved. Your initial prototype may be the best possible version in your eyes, but once it hits the market, the people using it will offer you valuable insight into how you can enhance your product’s significance. This is where your superfans come in. You’ll know them when you see…

Apply These 4 Techniques to Improve Your Understanding of the Sales Process (INFOGRAPHIC)

Being a good salesperson is key to running a business. Even if you don’t directly deal with customers, as a business owner knowing the tools of the trade will help you better manage your employees as they look to close their next deal. A new infographic by Garret Norris, founder and CEO of Business Coaches Sydney, titled “4 Foolproof Sales Tips for the Business Owner” looks to improve your sales skills and in turn make you a better business owner. For small business owners who have to deal with all aspects of their operations, getting a better understanding of the sales process is a valuable asset. According to Norris, “To become a great business owner means that you’ll have to cultivate more than just your leadership skills — you also need to be knowledgeable about the numerous aspects that a company has so it can function correctly. Perhaps one of the most important of these is sales, and therefore, you need to become a great salesperson to become a great business owner.” Small Business Sales Tips Norris starts by recommending owners review the sales cycle. This includes becoming familiar with the seven stages of the sales cycle to better manage the process and not get overwhelmed. Once you have become familiar with the sales cycle, Norris suggests customizing the process so it fits your requirements. The next tip is to understand your audience. When you have a good understanding of who your audience is and you have identified their needs, your chances of closing the deal will increase. You have to ask the right questions and be part of an in-depth conversations so you can get more out them. When you have identified what their needs are, the next step is to focus on the relationship. While the ultimate goal is to make the sale, building a relationship which will create a long-term and loyal customer is more important. Small business owners should focus on customer retention and this requires establishing and building trust as part of the relationship. According to Norris, this requires patience and positioning. You have to…

LinkedIn Launches Pipeline Management Kit for Your Sales Team

While digital technology has improved commerce, it has also increased the complexities of the sales funnel. LinkedIn has introduced a Pipeline Management Kit for salespeople so they can remove blind spots from the modern sales process and manage the difficulties of B2B sales. LinkedIn Pipeline Management Kit The new Pipeline Management Kit is a free resource with an infographic, a video, and a 16-page digital pocket guide. And along with Sales Navigator Deals, it will make pipelines more transparent. According to LinkedIn, sales professionals can be blindsided by hidden pitfalls which derail promising prospects. These have negative outcomes for everyone involved from the marketing and sales teams to the organization as a whole. For small businesses with limited resources, identifying where the blind spots are to minimize the risks is even more important. Companies with small marketing and sales teams can ill afford to be surprised after putting in many hours of work cultivating a prospect. LinkedIn Product Marketing and Demand Manager Vivian Chan, writes in the LinkedIn Sales Blog, “On the road to closing deals in B2B sales, a similar dynamic is at play. The complexities of today’s buying cycle yield hidden pitfalls that can cause a promising engagement to veer off-course.” She then points to some disturbing statistics: 24% of anticipated deals go nowhere, 25% of sales reps may not be at the same job next year, 20% of buyers also play musical chairs annually. Chan adds, ” These realities lead to wasted time, mismatched contacts, and outdated CRM data. But like a safe driver, sales professionals can consistently check blindspots in their pipeline and minimize risk..” ? Key to Not Being Blindsided The infographic says sales teams should identify all key stakeholders to gain increased visibility of who the decision-makers are in a deal as well as recognizing any missing players. By keeping their CRM system up to date, team members can view relevant data about any deal. However, this requires a proactive and a hands-on approach to ensure information is being added, deleted or amended in a timely manner. While a CRM platform is an invaluable…

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