Be not afraid of growing slowly,
Be afraid of only standing still."
- Chinese Proverb
I just love the ancient philosophers! Who would ever guess that the wise words mentioned above also apply a thousand years later to YOUR BUSINESS?
Hey life is strange. One minute we are a babbling brook, brimming with fresh ideas and enthusiasm. This usually happens at the beginning - when you first open your business or first become a salesperson.
Then gradually, if you aren't careful - you become complacent and stick with what you have always done. And slowly, sneakily, the leaves, dirt and "crud" as my mother would say - turn you and your sales into a stagnant pool of ICK. You turn from a babbling brook into a smelly, slimy, flat, dull pond that a customer definitely doesn't want to experience.
Not exactly a pretty picture is it? But we have all seen it! In your childhood did you ever kill a goldfish because you forgot to change the water? I thought so.
So How Do You Go From Being Pond-Algae To A Rippling River?
1. You Need To Inject Some Oxygen.
There is only one reason water goes flat. The oxygen has been used up. Have a good look at what you have been doing lately. Which products or services need some OOMPH? Which customers would add some life back to your sales? But why would they buy from you? Do a customer survey and ask your customers what they would like to see from your company. They will help add some oxygen and ideas to your goldfish tank!
2. You Have To Clean Out The Debris.
Yes - all the gunk that clogs up a pond also happens to show up in your business. What has to go? Well -a product/service that doesn't offer any value to your customers should see the door as quickly as possible. Also - any customers that no longer fit your target audience should also be gently released. And last but not least - any out-dated and negative attitudes on your part need to get filtered out ASAP! Challenge yourself - what new projects, ideas, marketing strategies have you stretchhhhhhhhhhhhed yourself with lately?
3. You Need Daily Momentum.
This is the secret. You can't get stagnant if you are constantly moving - even slowly. Each day, ask yourself this question: "What did I do today to move my business forward?" Momentum is created by daily intention. Your customers need to have you "fresh" in their mind. In the advertising world - this is called "Top of Mind Awareness." If you aren't connecting with your customers in a new and refreshing way - you slowly start growing algae. Ugh. Step outside of your business and ask for fresh ideas if you want to keep pond scum away!
4. Let In Some Light!
Hey remember that the other reason ponds get smelly is they don't receive enough sunlight. We all can slide into "Busy Mode" within our businesses and forget that the things that excited and enthused our customers at the beginning have become boring or without value. As selling is really about relationships - make sure you book time each week to survey a customer, evaluate a product/service component and also what has been sitting on the back burner far too long. Let something or someone different see the light of day!
So jump in - the water is warm! This is the time for taking some calculated risks, being open to opportunities and attracting customers that will increase your sales and satisfaction. Your business will always benefit if you stir things up proactively! (and you will also smell a heck of a lot better to your customer).
About the author
Kim Duke, The Sales Diva, provides savvy, sassy sales training for women small biz owners and entrepreneurs. Kim works with clients internationally, showing them The Sales Diva secrets to success! Sign up for her saucy and smart FREE e-zine and receive her FREE Bonus Report "The 5 Biggest Sales Mistakes Women Make" at http://www.salesdivas.com.
Author: Kim Duke