Secret sauce for small business start-ups

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Now with the economy as it is, formulas, systems and processes to start up a business of your own are flooding email in-boxes and splashing on the cover of small business magazines.

Nothing wrong with that except for the glaring omissions in the advice, making it sound like a small business is so easy to start it’s like child’s play. We’ve covered the importance of transforming personal resources into business resources, market research, testing and implementation plans. But there’s still one secret sauce that doesn’t appear in these offers, books and articles written by gurus (gooroos), academics and instant authors, publishing hundreds of thousands of instant e-book’s each year.

That ingredient is so obvious that it’s left out or left alone because the authors seem to have no idea of how important it is.

Brian Tracy, a salesman and author of “The Psychology of Selling”, says the reason people fail in business is because they are not spending 80% of the time getting customers.

He puts it bluntly: “Your job is to ask people for money. When you get up in the morning the first thing you do is say, whom am I going to ask for money today?”

As he says, if you’re not asking for money, you’re your officially unemployed.

If you’ve been sitting in a company or corporate job or come from some profession such as teaching, healthcare or technical services, you need to learn about selling fast. It’s no use pouring into books on selling and scanning articles on the Internet because they are so many myths and simply untruths about selling.

The best advice comes from sales people who have been in the trenches, who have sold face-to-face to customers. Do you know someone who has worked in sales for a long time, someone who has made it their living? Their knowledge, expertise and know-how (a much harder skill to acquire) is valuable. An old-school encyclopaedia and insurance salesman taught me more about selling than any book or course.

Here’s a quick tip: find the best salesperson in your field and go buy from them, whether on the telephone, in store or online. Tape or record your conversation. Go back and transcribe your recording – see what it is that persuaded you to buy. You will learn more this way than anything I can think of.

If you don’t want to learn sales and marketing the hard way through years of trial and error, send me an email and let me know how I can help you.

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