Let’s get to the point.  If you don’t have sales, you don’t got nothin.  Everything you do has to be focused on generating a regular stream of sales.  You also need to make sure the price point you are selling at is at a level that ensures that you have plenty of cash flow and profits in your business too.  Without profit margins and cash at the end of the day (cash you can spend), you are digging a hole that your business will never surface from.  So sales is one of the most critical things you can master as an entrepreneur.  And yet, there are very few programs out there that teach you in detail how to set your business up successfully to have steady, reliable, profitable sales.  

Well, you are in luck.  We aim to provide just that here in Hautecelerator.

There are some of you who are already very comfortable with and good at sales.  If so, you are like Lisa.  She has been selling things since she was in elementary school, and is utterly comfortable with asking for the sale.  

If you are intimidated by sales, or uncomfortable with talking about money or your pricing/fees, you are more like Jessica.  Jessica has learned to get comfortable with sales, but it wasn't a strength for her when she first started out in business.  We will address both types of people in this module (natural salespeople and people who need extra help mastering that skill), to make sure everyone taking the class has information and tools relevant to how you are wired.  

We will be honest - when we started working on this course, we planned to deal with Sales on one day of the Sales & Network module week.  But as we dug into what we have learned and what we want YOU to know and master, we realized that the topic of sales deserves its own module and a full week.  So next week will be a continuation of this topic.  

This topic is also one that builds on the work you have already done on your Industry, Ideal Customer/Client and Competitors.  If you did that work, you should already have ideas about revenue models, delivery models and pricing.  We are going to take what you have discovered so far, and help you create a cohesive plan on how to sell based on that invaluable market data.

Next week, we will start to get into a more granular level on revenue streams, pricing, sales funnels, the sales’ cycle, and profit margins.  Today, we want to first address a common issue - the tendency for entrepreneurs to not really understand the difference between sales and marketing.  Having that understanding will really help you have clarity on what activities are directly related to sales (read: MONEY) in your business.  You have to make time for sales activity daily, so you can ensure the long term health of your business.

Sales v Marketing: A Primer

Sales - Definition: Activities that could result in actual sales, like sales calls, sending our proposals, following up with potential clients, working in a store or pop-up shop, presentations to groups that could include potential clients.

Marketing - Definition:  The process of teaching customers/clients why they should choose your product or service over your competitors and it includes everything that the client encounters when it comes to your business, from advertising, to what they hear, to the customer service that they receive, to the follow-up care that you provide, to studying the market and your competitors.  The focus is on helping your client or customer decide whether or not to buy from you or give you repeat business. Marketing activities bring awareness of your brand, including press and PR, or that bring in leads that you can potentially turn into sales.

It used to be that marketing was really a one-way conversation designed to get buyers aware of and interested in your product or service, and sales was the two-way conversation usually in real-time intended to result in a purchase or hiring decision.  (For a great article on this, check out an oldie but goodie:

These days, good marketing involves interaction between the business and potential buyers, especially because of the growth of social media.  In order to be an excellent marketer, you have to embrace those constant (daily) conversations with the buying public - it has to factor into your marketing plans and budget.  Sales is what happens once the person shows enough interest in what you are offering that they are willing to hear more directly from you - either via a phone call, a meeting, or the like, OR it could be by signing up for information on a digital or online offering.  Those conversations have to include an offer or a moment where you have to actually ask for the sale.  We will spend quite a bit of time on the details of this next week for sales, and in week 6 we will talk all about effective marketing.  For now, having a good understanding of the difference between marketing and sales is all you need for purposes of this program.

What are My Strengths in Relation to Sales and Marketing?

Entrepreneurs can often confuse the skills needed for sales with those of marketing - they are actually very different activities, although they impact each other.  We have created a quiz to help you see whether you are naturally wired more for sales or marketing.  Start the quiz below and follow the prompts.