Not making money in your business is down right painful. The agony of seeing more money flow out than come in can make the most stoic among us question their self worth. I’ve been there. Going weeks on end without a new client. Paying through the nose just to keep the business afloat or to make payroll. It’s sickening. But one day I took a step back and realized, I’m making some classic errors that can easily be avoided and corrected.
How many hours did you spend talking to potential customers today? Not How much time did you spend thinking about how to get more customers, but how many phone calls, tweets, and emails did you send to people who are likely candidates to become customers? If you answered 0, it’s clear where your problem lies. If you’re smiling because you put in the hours today, can you also honestly say you put in the same amount of hours everyday for the last 30 days? Probably not.
I don’t care what type of business you’re in, you need to spend a MINIMUM of 50% of your time on marketing and selling. Period. Doesn’t matter if you’re a solopreneur, are a hair stylist, or if you have a highly complex operational system going on, if you’re not generating income for the business now and you’re not spending the time in front of customers, kiss your dream of a 60 foot yacht and winter ski trips in the Swiss Apps goodbye! You see, a strange things happens when you spend time talking to potential customers: They listen. They absorb your sales message and learn about your company. Even if you have the most basic sales pitch and value statements, if you hit the phones enough, you’ll land new customers. Get to it.
Here’s another reason why you’re probably not making money right now and I eluded to it at the close of the last paragraph: Your delivery sucks. You’re probably as meek as a mouse hoping and begging potential customers to give you a try. WRONG! I’ve got a saying that boosts my confidence to a crazy level. It’s “Talk that shit C-Payne!” I know that when I’m in front of people, I need to be my biggest cheerleader. I’ve got to be the most braggadocious, over-excited, extremely smug Me there is. I’ve got to tell others “Yes, I am an expert. Yes my products are the best. YES, you will receive amazing results!” Claim those statements. Because if you don’t, the customer will see it as weakness and move on to the other guy who’s bragging his ass off.
If you feel like this isn’t in your character, then let’s do a simple exercise. Take out a piece of paper and write down all the reasons that YOU are the best person to sell/implement/perform/trust/etc. for a customer. Here are some questions that will help get the juices flowing:
– How long have you been in your current industry?
– What positive feedback have actual customers told you?
– How did you overcome your hardest challenge in business or personally?
– How hard are you willing to work if someone gives you a shot?
– What press (TV, interview, article, etc.) have you gotten in the past?
– What events have you been invited to speak at?
– What unique contribution have you made to your industry/products/services?
With all of this written out, you can now toot your own horn when you’re talking to potential customers. And don’t give me that “It’s not about me, it’s about them.” crap. Yes, it is about the customer, but in every sales process there will come a time (usually in the beginning) where the customer will subconsciously decide if you’re the real deal or if you’re just a scam artist. You want them to trust you, not your products and services, from the onset.
There you have it, two reasons that you’re probably not making money. If you’re in front of potential customers every single day AND you have a strong marketing message, give me a call cause you should be making money. Maybe your business model is just off…