The word ‘selling’ has be associated with a negative connotation for a long time now, which probably comes from the fact we’ve all been sold to in some way that felt a little gross, pushy or manipulative or had someone bounce into our DMs fake friending us only to slip in a one liner down about an amazing new product they can hook you up with hoping we’d take the bait.
After speaking with hundreds of mums in business, I know that making ‘sales’ and trying to ‘sell’ in business is something that a lot of business owners feel can be a soulless job because they don’t want to feel pushy, they ponder their worth or feel talking about ‘money’ is uncomfortable.
All of this can lead to burn out and failure in business.
So when the very definition of a business is to generate money what can we do instead and to avoid this?
In my 10 years of being a work at home mum and running my own businesses what I’ve found leads to fast growth and revenue is actually the opposite of what most people think.
It is not selling at all. Well in the traditional format anyway.
It is about switching from ‘selling’ and wanting to take from some body to ‘serving’ and wanting to give instead. The below are some of my best tips that I share with mums who are starting their online business with us and I also share loads of free advice in my Facebook group of over 14,000 like-minded business mums which is called Remarkable Business Mums. Come and join us by clicking here.
The Key Is Perception:
When we switch from feeling like we are ‘taking’ from someone and instead see it as we are ‘giving’ to someone it changes everything. It is all about knowing we can help someone get from A-B with our product/service. But here is the thing, you need to believe in your worth passionately because if you don’t believe in your worth, how can anyone else?
Also, with a smart online marketing strategy no soulless selling is required. Find your customers by working out where they are and inviting them into your home (aka website) with a nice tea and biscuit. Don’t bash them over the head with your products, ok? Instead get to know them and what their pain points, frustrations and triggers are. And when you know you have something that can genuinely solve their problem place your product/service as the solution on the coffee table in front of you both.
If you’ve done your job and served your audience, they will reward you with buying your stuff and it won’t feel soulless. It will feel like a beautiful exchange of value where each party is equally better off. In fact, when you know you’re genuinely helping and serving someone it can feel incredibly fulfilling.
I’ve been in sales since I was 19. One of my first jobs was working as a telemarketer where I would make hundreds of calls finding leads for a mortgage broker.
That job taught me two things:
- What the word ‘indicative’ means. ‘Yes sir, that interest rate is indicative only, can we pencil in a time for my manager to give you a call back?’
- How to connect with people and find the ones who you can help.
So here is the most important thing to remember. Sales (and money) is a natural by-product of helping and serving. If you lead in with genuinely wanting to help and serve before taking money; the money will flow on as a result. Most people try to sell and take first, and this is how it ends up feeling soulless instead of fulfilling.
Overcoming The Fear:
Along with the stigma of selling, it can also trigger a lot of our self-confidence issues, fears and emotions, it can make us question our worth and it can feel daunting putting ourselves out there.
However, selling is just a skill, in fact it is technically called online marketing and is all about a simple traffic > leads > sales strategy but we need to understand how it works and then implement.
We can’t expect to become a doctor overnight so learning how to develop our business skills is exactly the same. It takes time and practice.
Have you ever thought to yourself there just isn’t enough time or people out there to buy your product or service? Or that there isn’t enough room for you in the market you want to jump into because there are too many other people out there doing the same thing?
This is known as a scarcity mindset. It’s this mindset that keeps us feeling like we’re stuck, that we don’t have enough and, even worse that we aren’t enough.
Once we get into this pattern of thinking our brain starts to calibrate to look for evidence and then before we know it all we see and think are ‘not enough’ thoughts which can completely sabotage a business, because this scarcity-thinking drives how we set up our businesses, tackle our tasks throughout the day and clouds our judgement with fear. Which means we react and act hastily and from a motion of ‘not enough’.
So, what is the antidote to a scarcity mindset?
An abundance mindset.
Abundant thinking is an attitude and a mindset that focuses on what we do have and fosters possibilities rather than limits which can shift our perspective. Whenever I am feeling lost and feel myself starting to despair, I always revert to faith.
Being grateful also triggers dopamine in your brain, which allows you to feel happier, healthier and have a more expansive mindset. So, focus on what you do have and what you have accomplished. What is amazing about your life? Writing this down in a journal can help you strengthen your neural pathways and more easily shift into this type of thinking.
Faith is a tool I use that helps me come back into an abundance mindset and helps me feel inspired about the possibilities that can literally happen in a heartbeat. It is possible to go from feeling low and despair in business to receiving an email, or message or phone call that completely flips everything.
As the famous quote suggests: “The secret to having it all is believing you already do”.
The KLT Strategy:
The Know, Like and Trust strategy in online marketing is very effective, it goes like this:
Know: This step is all about visibility. Before you can even think about selling to someone, they first need to know you exist. An online business is just like a bricks and mortar stop in that it needs foot traffic. But the online version. It seems simple enough but for many business owners this is one of the biggest challenges.
As I share with my clients and members in the Business Jump family the first step is all about growing an ‘online audience’.
There are a million ways to do this – even if you’re an introvert like me!
Like: Ok, very important. This is not about getting everyone to like you. Because the reality is that just is not going to happen and as business owners, it is something we need to learn how to flow with.
There is a really simple trick to this one, do you want to know what is?
Just be yourself.
Nothing fancy, nothing different. Nothing fake.
Your full, authentic self. And look, I know that might sound scary as hell. But it is so draining pretending to be someone you’re not. So give yourself permission to just show up the way you are. The beauty lies in the polarisation.
Basically, it’s the idea that the most effective personality-based brands create polarization – people either love them or hate them which means you’ll create a loyal base of followers and repel the non-followers away.
Trust: People buy from people they trust and within your content marketing you’ve got to message why and how people should trust you.
You can do this by being consistent with everything you do, people trust the predictable and familiar. Ensure your branding and website is cohesive, if your website is pink, frilly and girly but on social media you’re more goth-like people are going to become confused and err away. Always deliver on your promises. If someone has signed up for something, make sure they get it.
Find Pools Of People To Tap Into:
Always remember traffic is key within an online business. Just like a bricks and mortar business needs foot traffic an online business needs digital traffic and it is your job to find people to have a nice tea and biscuit with.
But remember it is all about serving and giving value before asking for a sale so where can you best do this? Where is somewhere your potential customers hang out and where is also somewhere aligned with your strengths? Is it in a Facebook group? LinkedIn? Pinterest? Instagram?
Wherever they are, it is your job to seek them out, put your abundance hat on, remember your KLT and believe in yourself, what you have to offer and go out and pop it on the coffee table.