Small Business Minute #44- Want More Sales? Follow Up!

Small Business Minute #44 Want More Sales- Follow Up!

One of the simplest ways to increase your sales closing ratio is by simply following up with your prospects in a timely manner.

All too often I encounter entrepreneurs who lament at how difficult business is or that they just don’t get sales even though they are pitching and quoting.

Digging a little deeper quickly uncovers one of the main reasons for their poor sales performance, they don’t follow up. It is estimated that 85% of sales contacts are never followed up.

When I enquire as to why they don’t follow up, I usually get the same answer- “I don’t want to bother them or come across as pushy’. To this I typically respond by saying “they asked you to quote, so a few follow up calls is not considered pushy, if done in a professional manner”

People Are Well Intentioned

When you consider that people lead busy lives and although well intentioned, they sometimes need a little friendly nudge in order to take action. I can’t tell you how many times a prospect has thanked me for following up with them- which is certainly in contrast to what we would expect.

By following up, it also gives the serious prospect the opportunity to ask questions or get answers to things they thought of since our last meeting and more often than not, if it doesn’t result in an immediate order, it certainly moves the process along and keeps me in contact with the prospect.

So if you want more sales, follow up.

I’m Greg Weatherdon and this has been your Small Business Minute.

You may also enjoy No Sales, No Business or The 80/20 Rules For Sales

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Copyright © Greg Weatherdon 2017

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Small Business Minute #43- Wisdom Of The Ages

Small Business Minute #43 Wisdom Of The Ages

experts

Successful people are always on the lookout for ways to improve themselves and their businesses. Unfortunately, with the advent of Social Media, there are now an overwhelming number of so called experts promoting the latest and greatest way to take you and or your business to the next level.

Scream Loud Enough

I get the sense that they believe that if they scream loud enough or post frequently enough, people will automatically assume that they are experts.

Rarely however, have these denizens of success achieved the level of achievement they proclaim that you can attain. Just because they say so, doesn’t make it so.

I like to say “that most of the people making money on the internet are those individuals selling you courses on how to make money on the internet”. Buy their book, sign up for their course, and you too will become successful.

Granted, there are some individuals that have actually achieved success in their chosen field and are now sharing and yes, capitalizing on their knowledge they gained over a lifetime and you know what? That’s okay. Unfortunately, they’re in the minority.

Get Experts To Help

A simple and effective alternative, is to find someone in your community that you admire, that has done their time. and is successful. Offer to buy them a coffee or lunch to get some insight into their successes and failures.

It has been my experience that truly successful people are willing to help and share and most don’t care how many likes, followers or friends they have on social media.

Their strength and knowledge comes from experience. Or as an ancient proverb says “Age is the price of wisdom”

I’m Greg Weatherdon and this has been your Small Business Minute.

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Copyright © Greg Weatherdon 2017

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Small Business Minute #42- Successful People Do The Hard Stuff!

Small Business Minute #42 Successful People Do The Hard Stuff

No one likes doing hard stuff. It’s far easier and requires far less motivation to do the things we like. Great concert pianists produce wonderful music in what appears to be an effortless manner. Top ranked Olympians appear to have superhuman abilities and successful entrepreneurs have an air of quiet self-confidence.

What We Don’t See

The one thing all these individuals have in common, is that they put in the time and effort required to develop and refine their skills. What we don’t see is the hours upon hours, year in, year out that the pianist has spent practicing at the keyboard. Nor do we see the Olympian training long before the sun comes up, when they’d rather stay in bed.

The successful entrepreneur is not excluded. What we don’t see is the copious amounts of information they consume in their off hours or the mental gymnastics they perform as they try to distill this new knowledge into an actionable strategy all the while keeping up the daily demands of their enterprise.

Believe me, these individuals would prefer not to have to work so hard, given that there is no guarantee of success. But they do!
Regardless of the repeated disappointments and failures, they just don’t quit!

They just pick themselves up and keep on grinding it out, with only their thoughts to keep them company, because successful people do the hard stuff.

I’m Greg Weatherdon and this has been your Small Business Minute.

You may also enjoy Small Gains, Big Rewards

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Small Business Minute #41 – Why Be An Entrepreneur?

Small Business Minute #41 Why Be An Entrepreneur

Why would anyone want to be an entrepreneur? Why would you want to have to constantly worry about getting business, hiring employees, making payroll, covering rent, dealing with grumpy customers, finding customers, firing customers, firing people, sending out invoices, collecting payment, marketing, fixing the computer, quoting on jobs, preparing presentations, working too hard, sleeping too little, meeting with lawyers, meeting with accountants, explaining to bankers, being rejected, losing customers, out guessing the competition, managing your time, trying to be creative, managing people, selling, being late, shipping, receiving, paying bills, getting home, getting home on time, prospecting, closing, reporting, profits, networking and deadlines?

Why The Heck Not?

On the other hand, maybe the question should be, Why the heck not? When done right, the freedom and rewards far outweigh the alternative.

I’m Greg Weatherdon and this has been your Small Business Minute.

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Small Business Minute #40- If Not Now, When?

Small Business Minute #40 If Not Now, WhenSitting down with a cup coffee, you look at your financials and you realize your annual projections are not unfolding quite like you planned. Revenue is down, expenses are up and profitability is just a flicker on your Profit and Loss statements. You know that the longer you wait, the harder it will be to make up the shortfall. It’s time to step up your game and maybe even get outside your comfort zone and do some business development. Because you know that if you don’t act now, things are just going to get worse.

“You already have a relationship with them, take advantage of it!”

So here are five things you can do to hit those goals and get the business back on track or to the next level.

Business Development

#1 – Call your dormant customers. Look at all those clients you’ve served during the past 18 – 24 months and the ones you haven’t heard from in the past 12 months, give them a call to let them know you’re thinking about them. Use the opportunity to tell them what new offerings you have. You already have a relationship with them, take advantage of it.

“This exercise will help you free up the time you need to be more visible”

#2 – Up your visibility! Get in front of your target market whether as a guest speaker or attend an event that your prospective clients may might be participating. Consider volunteering within your industry association or a business group like a chamber of commerce. Get out in front of people and let them know what you do.

#3 – Delegate an important task to one of your employees. Give them direction and set expectations then get out of their way. Don’t forget to establish some milestones by which they need to check in with you. Let them know that you are available for discussion but expect them complete the assignment. This exercise will help you free up the time you need to be more visible in front of your customers. It will also help you to learn how to delegate.

#4 – Go have a coffee with 5 of your current clients and ask them how you’re doing? What do they like and dislike about doing business with you? Ask them what you can do to make doing business with you easier?

#5 – While you’re talking with your existing clients (point 4) and your dormant clients (point 1) ask them who they know that could use your product or service.

Earth shattering ideas? Not! But most businesses are run by doing a whole bunch of straightforward activities that should be done everyday. So why wait any longer? Because if not now, when?

I’m Greg Weatherdon and this has been your Small Business Minute.

You may enjoy Delegating Is Easier Than You Think

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Small Business Minute #39 – No Rear View Mirror

small-business-minute-39-no-rear-view-mirrorA very common trait of successful entrepreneurs is that many don’t have rear view mirrors. By that I mean, they rarely dwell on the past mistakes. They know their future lies ahead and not behind. The past is the past and mistakes happen.

“Once distilled, they let it go and move on…”

That’s not to say they pretend they never made a mistake, to the contrary. They acknowledge their mistake, analyze what went wrong and distill those learnings, notice I say learnings, into usable information. Once distilled, they let it go and move on because they understand that theirs is a journey of successes and failures, generally with more failures than successes. Those failures however, must be let go otherwise they become burdensome and limiting and would extinguish the fire in all but a few hearty souls.

“They realize not to take errors or failures personally.”

Although it’s easier said than done, successful entrepreneurs have come to realize not to take errors or failures personally. They understand they made an incorrect decision based on the information they had at the time and nothing more.

Much like driving a car, when running your business, you need to look down the road to where you’re going because you can’t make any progress looking in the rear view mirror.

I’m Greg Weatherdon and this has been your Small Business Minute.

You may also enjoy The Blame Game

Copyright © Greg Weatherdon 2017

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