By now you know it by heart: ‘a business can not exist without sales, and business strategy is the lifeblood of any company because it gets the business the sales it needs to survive financially speaking.’ This is a fundamental truth of the business world today, but did you know that having the right business strategy can help your business sell more? This is because business strategy is all about aligning your business’s objectives, mission, and goals with its business processes to help it create the sustainable competitive advantage that will help it get the sales necessary for it to survive in its respective industry, both in the short and long-term. You will learn all about these strategies in this article.
- Sell your customers a bunch of benefits that will improve their lives and not products or services. Ultimately, whether you like to hear it or not, customers will buy the product or service which your business sells only if they perceive that it offers them benefits which will change, improve, or transform their lives for the better. It makes sense: your customers work hard for their money and they would not buy a product or service that actually created more problems for them, or introduced more pain into their lives? Why would they? After all, nobody wants more pain and misery in their lives, especially not your customers. If you want to sell products and services to your customers, you need to make a list of the benefits that the people in your target market are looking for and incorporate the solutions that will offer those benefits in the products and services that your company makes. That is the only way your company will survive both in the short and long-term.
- Know who your customer is. It may seem obvious, but many a business failed because its management team and owner did not know the likes, dislikes, or buying personality of their customers. You can make sure that your company is not one of these companies by creating a buyer persona, or a psychological profile of the average person in your target market. You create this persona by defining their age (people of different age groups buy different products and services), their gender (men obviously buy different products and services than women do), if they have kids (families have different buying needs and preferences largely because of the wants and needs of their kids – you also need to remember that your buyer persona will be different for a family with a baby, versus a family with teenagers), their annual income (obviously people who make more buy more expensive – and usually higher quality – products and services because they can afford to spend more), and their educational attainment (people with more education buy different products and services than people with less education for obvious reasons).
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- Identify and define the problem that the product or service is solving clearly. You need to do this because no one will buy your company’s products or services if they don’t have a clear understanding of the benefits they will deliver them or the problems the products or services will solve for them. You may need to do some primary and secondary market research to identify these problems if they are not completely obvious to you because you only get one chance to impress your customers, so you better make sure that the impression is a good one! For the record, primary research is field research. You actually go to where your customers are and have them fill out surveys which ask them the benefits they want from the products or services that your company makes, and the problems that they want your company’s products or services to solve. Secondary research occurs when you read the research that people and organisations who have gone out and done primary research have published. This category of research tends to be frowned upon in business because it is not seen as being as accurate, clear, or relevant to business owners. Additionally, the research and information these publications contain may be outdated. You don’t need outdated research to base the design and function of your products and services on because doing so will definitely put your business out of business!
- Develop your competitive advantage. It should be completely clear to you as a business owner that they products and services which your company makes and sells create the competitive advantage your business needs to survive in the short and long-term. If this is not obvious to you, you really need to do something else for a living because you will never make it as a business owner. The competitive advantage is the reason why your customers will want to buy the products and services that they need from your company and not from your competitor in the first place. Therefore, the competitive advantage has to be specific and offer customers certain results and benefits they value. For example, if you own a computer business, you could come up with a word processor program which is easier for people to use than MS Word is, which always has professional templates which are easy to customize, and which will always impress their customers. Such a word processor program would be sure to outsell MS Word.
- Content and social media exist for you to connect to those in your target market. While you may love to read Facebook for the interesting posts your friend’s posts, and the news articles which have an interesting slant regarding world problems, you can actually use Facebook to connect to people in your target market whom you would never be able to reach using traditional or conventional marketing. The best part of Facebook is that most business advertising is free! So why not use it? Facebook (and other social media platforms) were made for content sharing and that is what marketing in the digital era is all about. So you could create a killer marketing strategy for putting unique content that is awe-inspiring on various social media platforms and have a leg up over the competition by that alone! The best part about social media platforms is that you can link your website and your blog to them – this will draw customers and website traffic in like never before!
So now that you know some of the business strategies in terms of marketing and general business processes and strategy that really work, you would be a fool not to use them in your own corporate strategy today!