What do you think is the essential skill that any business owner must have if they are going to succeed? Financial literacy perhaps? Management, maybe? How about leadership?
Well, they all help, but it’s none of those – it’s selling.
Whether you are just starting out, or you have an existing business, if you can’t personally sell what your business makes or does, then eventually it is going to fail. Sure, you might employ a whole sales team to actually close deals with your customers – but it’s you who is going to have to get them so sold on the company’s offering that they can bring in the orders.
And in the early stage of the business, if you aren’t willing, and able, to ask your customers for the order – simply, confidently, and effectively – then you’re going to go broke without even getting off the blocks.
There has been an argument raging for ages between marketers and salespeople: which is most important, sales or marketing? To me, the answer is simple: the purpose of marketing is to deliver prospects that are interested, and the purpose of sales is to get them to actually buy. Marketing without sales is rather pointless; and sales without marketing is very, very hard work!
Of course, marketers will tell you that if you do your marketing right, you won’t need to sell. You might have heard how Marketing Engineer Robin Adams puts it: “Cold calling is the punishment for those without a marketing plan.” And he’s right – if your marketing can attract prospects who are interested enough, that final sales conversation can be really quite easy. But it’s still selling.
So, sorry, if you thought as a business owner you could avoid having to sell, it’s time to think again!
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