I have tried marketing my way to riches and you know what? It just doesn't work! It wasn't until I added a quality sales process that I actually saw big growth.
Let me tell you a story. I talked to a sales trainer the other day and one thing that came up in our conversation was that he thought everything I do for business development was reactive. Wow! I was a little insulted since I find myself to be a pretty proactive person. I do a lot of inbound marketing and a bit of prospecting through linkedin and a few calls. I know I need to be doing much more of the later items in order to see big growth in the last few quarters.
Is the social media prospecting that turns into a sales call is reactive? Reactive to lack of growth maybe. Yesterday I presented to a group of businesses. The goal was to set Brandwise up as a thought leader and then have some sales conversations with any qualified people. I'm not sure if this would be looked at as reactive or proactive. The point is everyone's opinion on the best business development techniques is different, but it made me think. It is important to re-evaluate your habits from time to time to see how they can be improved. The key is to always be doing something to engage and connect with people in order to have those sales conversation.
I will agree it is easy to fall back on building your brand through ongoing marketing (regular weekly blog articles, email promotions, social media shares and posts among other things). After all, this is what I do. This is not always the best bet if it is done in a vacuum. I know that marketing alone is not going to make you rich! You DO need to do some sales as well. What are you doing to improve your business development process?
So, many marketing firms will tell you marketing is all it takes. They say that if they're in no way tied to the bottomline. If they have to produce sales growth on their own, often times they will be dead in the water. So what can you do? Well the best bet is learn how to sell effectively and then add a strong marketing program to the mix.
Want to try something new? There is an interesting webinar tomorrow titled: Double Your Sales Using the Internet Without Blogging or Buying Expensive Software. If you want to learn how to generate some business you should check out the tips offered in this webinar. I know most people will walk away with something to try and probably some things that will help you reach a more successful sales game. Spend an hour a day doing prospecting and sales calls and how would this change your company. Is it really as easy as changing your habits? Yes! The Rainmaker Maker showed me how to change many of my own bad habits.