In the modern marketing and sales world, there are a plethora of available mediums through which to showcase our brand, show off our capabilities and convert our audience into buyers.
The power of social media means we can get in front of our ideal buyer with highly specific, targeted ads that reach the core of who we are wanting to impact. There is a smorgasbord of offline networking events, workshops and meetings for those that prefer the belly-to-belly approach and online stores make it easier than ever to receive money without ever having step foot behind an actual shopfront counter.
Fascinating time to be alive as a business owner, isn’t it?
But this modern marketing and sales playing field comes with it an unexpected difficulty, one that we really should be grateful to have, but one that can be confusing nonetheless.
And that is the danger of having too many options for the marketing and selling of our service.
We can fall into the trap of seeing in front of us such a large plethora of avenues to reach our ideal buyer, that we struggle to know if we’re taking the right approach – and whether the approach is achieving the desired outcome upon use.
Marketing and sales strategies can be applied without knowing where exactly they sit in the big scheme of things, and what their overall purpose is… other than just to ‘help us with our marketing and sales’.
So let’s clear this one up and put it into a clean, three step system for sales and marketing success:
Step 1: Building Awareness:
Most business owners are great at building 'awareness’ about their brand. It’s one of the easiest steps because it doesn’t necessarily require the business owner to generate a tangible, measurable result yet. Instead, the ultimate goal of this stage is to have people walk away knowing one thing and one thing only: That we exist, and our business does (insert the main function of the business here). For example: “I’ve heard of Jenny Smith, she’s a Chiropractor”, or “I’ve heard of John Taylor, he’s a consultant”.
That’s all – it doesn’t need to be any more flashy than that, in any way. We only need people to be aware that we exist, and to have some basic idea of what it is we do, the outcome we help people to achieve, or the problem we help people to solve. If that is being achieved, then the Awareness stage of the process is being taken care of and will continue to be taken care of as long as our strategies are being implemented consistently.
We may not always be able to directly measure the Return on Investment of our Awareness building efforts – and this is why so many people actually stop after getting the ball rolling for a month or two, if only they knew the power of awareness marketing and what it allowed business owners to leverage into the future!
If you’re wanting to build awareness of your brand then consider the following options, keeping in mind we always want to build awareness in the places our market is hanging out:
- Posting content on a Facebook business page
- Writing a blog - Recording and sharing videos
- Recording and sharing interviews with ‘Influencers’
- Starting and harnessing relationships on social media messaging platforms such as Linkedin and Facebook
- Posting to Instagram to share content and tell your story
- Billboard marketing
The next stage, which can naturally be a little more difficult to achieve for business owners, is giving the opportunity to their now-highly-aware audience to engage and buy from them, which takes us to step 2…
Step 2: Turning Awareness into Curiosity
This next stage requires a little more, shall we say… finesse.
After we have built a strong level of awareness with our market, our next goal is to engage those who are even more curious about how they could potentially work with us. We want to take them beyond the stage of “That’s Jenny Smith and she’s a Chiropractor” further towards “That’s Jenny Smith, she’s a chiropractor and I’d like to talk to connect with for help with my back pain… I like her style!” or in the case of our consultant friend, our buyer would be moved from “That’s John Taylor and he’s a consultant” further towards “That’s John Taylor, he’s a consultant and I think he might be the one to help us with our marketing strategy next quarter, given by the content he’s been putting into the Facebook news feed its clear he knows what he’s talking about!”
And ultimately, when our potential buyer is thinking this about us, we want to give them the opportunity to connect further with us in a way that doesn’t require them to fully commit to paying us right now, but allows them to take a step closer towards us if that interests them. It should be mentioned that at this stage, the clarity of the ROI of our efforts will start to emerge at this step and we will be able to measure more directly the impact of our efforts, what’s working and what’s not.
Examples of marketing and sales strategies we can implement to encourage and invite curiosity in our ideal buyers are:
- Landing pages with opt-ins or ‘lead magnets’
- Product giveaways (e-books, videos) in exchange for details
- Webinars to attend
- Workshops or events
- Free trials of products or services
- Books for sale
- ‘Tripwire’ strategy give away (low cost, high value item purchased by the buyer initially, to build trust)
Upon curiosity being taken care of, our buyer will be at the point then of knowing whether or not they are a match for us and our services. This then moves us to the final stage of the marketing and sales timeline, where the rubber really hits the road…
Step 3: Turning Curiosity into Conversion
Although this stage is ultimately the most important when it comes to practically and pragmatically building revenue for our business – something it critically requires for survival – it is actually the most straightforward part of the entire process.
When it comes to converting our ideal buyer into a paying client, we want two things to be present as a minimum: a compelling opportunity to connect with us to have a sales conversation, and a sales process that we can follow to move our buyer from highly curious to converted.
The first will usually come at the end of the practice or offer that allowed our buyer to adhere to their curiosity needs and desires! Examples would include: - A pitch at the end of a webinar to speak personally with us about additional services and products on offer to solve their problem.
- A pitch at the end of an event or workshop to sign up for additional services and products on offer that would extend their journey with us
- An offer at the end of a free trial to continue receiving the value they are already enjoying for free
- A page at the end of a book that invites them to speak further with us about additional products and services on offer
- A persuasive, long form sales letter selling a high-end product
By giving our buyer these opportunities, those that have received significant value upon serving their previous curiosity needs will be eager to speak further about how they can continue their business relationship further with us.
This is the point at which we want to know we have a sound sales process that we can follow. A credible, consistent and predictable system that allows us to conversationally take our buyer from Point A where they haven’t bought yet, all the way to Point B where they are a happy buyer, eager to get started working with us.
If you don’t have a system that helps you achieve this, please feel free to tap straight into the Cognitive Dissonance for Sales model taught to the room at the TPM ‘Code of Selling’ Masterclass available right here on YouTube:
And there we have it – we’ve taken our buyer from aware that you exist, to curious about how they could potentially work with you, to then being a converted buyer that is eager to get started working together.
Ensure you are taking care of all three steps of this process and the likelihood of a steady, consistent flow of clients coming your way can only rise. Of course, if there is any extra information you’re looking for when it comes to this model or the TPM ‘Code of Selling’ Masterclass in the video above, just say the word and we’ll make sure you’re taken care of.
Darcy J Smyth is the lead trainer of the Tonal Persuasion Method for Sales, the methodology designed to ensure you’re predictably closing sales without the need for the dreaded ‘Hard Sell’ that turns so many buyers away in the modern business landscape.