During one of my business development days in Zurich last year, I met with an old friend and former colleague.
He is one of the best salespeople I have ever met. He simply loves selling.
He told me about taking over a new business as the CEO two years ago and growing it to 15 employees with operations in Switzerland and Germany.
We talked about business and the old days when we worked together in sales. He told me that he loves cold calling decision makers and sell them the services they offer.
I personally never enjoyed it, but I can see that he loves the game.
However, building a business only on selling without marketing is extremely dangerous. It’s a trap I see many business owners fall into, no matter if they are in business for 6 months or 30 years.
Marketing vs. Sales
A few months ago, I worked with a very smart and talented Strategy Consultant who has been in business for 30 years. He came to me because he was tired.
He could not remember the last time he took a vacation. He was earning very good money but was spending most of his time cold calling potential clients and trying to persuade CEOs to buy his services. Once he finished a consulting gig, he had to start from scratch all over again.
When he started his business, this was simply the way you did business. You picked up the phone and dialed until you got somebody on the phone. And then you pitched them on the phone until somebody agreed to a meeting. And then you sold to them until they said yes.
He had enough. He no longer wanted to do this.
So we started working together to first, make his communication tailored to what his potential clients actually wanted and second, develop a sales and marketing system that would make sure he never has to make another cold call ever again.
Marketing and Sales are a bit like a happily married couple. Without each other, they do great at the things they are good at. However, when they are together, everything works more in harmony and life becomes easier, more fun and more rewarding.
At a recent workshop I did with coaches and consultants to help them become the go-to experts in their market, I asked the participants “What’s the purpose of marketing?”.
I believe a major purpose of marketing is making it easier for somebody to say “Yes” to what you have to offer.
So marketing basically makes sales a whole lot more effective and easier. It’s hard to call up a stranger and try to sell them something without having any trust or likability.
How different is that from having somebody call you about which one of your services would be best suited to help them overcome their challenges and achieve their goals?
Starting at Zero Every Day
My friend that I mentioned at the beginning of this post has to start the sales process from scratch every single day.
Even if he has talked to a potential client before, the next time he calls, they hardly recall who he is. He has to call exactly at the right time at the right day and say the right thing to get a new client. His conversion rate from his calls to who becomes a client is extremely low.
In my business, I have built a marketing and sales system that attracts potential clients so I never have to chase them. They come to me when they are ready to start working with me because I have become the go-to expert in that market. Therefore, when I actually talk to a potential client, my conversion rate is high because they already know and trust me.
I’d rather talk to a few people and convert a lot of them into paying clients instead of spending all my time calling up people and trying to sell them something.
Fact is that if you are building a business on selling without doing proper marketing, you have to start from zero every day. Even worse, it’s a house of cards with no solid foundation and if the wind blows a little harshly, it can easily fall apart.
Your Brand Equity
Your brand equity means how many potential clients like and trust you and know what you have to offer. If nobody knows about you and what you have to offer, you constantly have to be out there, hustling to get your next client.
I’d rather build brand equity so potential clients come to me when the timing is right for them.
It’s a fact that people buy from people they like and trust. If nobody knows you, nobody can like or trust you.
By building brand equity, you let marketing do the hard work for you. You create a brand that works for you even while you sleep. It creates more awareness and brings more people into your circle of influence without having to do more work.
Who wants to spend the next 30 years selling their services by doing 100 phone calls that convert into 1 paying client?
Wouldn’t it be nicer to create brand equity that grows your list of potential clients and has more people out there talking about you and your business every single day?
Screw Cold Calling
In July 2015, I hosted a LinkedIn marketing workshop and the 20 spots I intended to fill sold out in no time.
When I surveyed the participants on what their biggest challenges were, the message was clear: “Selling myself and attracting clients without having to cold call or spam people.”
So I made it my mission to create a game changing training program to address these challenges.
Most LinkedIn trainings focus on optimizing your profile and spamming your network with sales messages.
I wanted to create something different, something that would allow you to sell your services and products by making real human connections instead of hard selling people. I wanted to create a program that would allow you to become the go-to expert in your market so clients come to you instead of you having to chase them.
In a few weeks, I will launch “LinkedEvolution”. This will completely change the way you do business on LinkedIn.
Sign up for pre-launch access here to be the first who gets notified when we launch.