WWSBD?

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What Would Small Business Do? 

Sometimes the best advice to get more sales comes from the very customers you sell to.  

And I bet some of us sell and support Small Businesses.   Small Businesses are great teachers.

Let’s say a small business has a chance to have a very strong sales finish to this month, a chance to deliver results like never before.   Maybe you or your sales folks are in the same boat.

And let’s say it’s a big deal for this small business. The pressure is on.   Maybe their bank needs to see some strong performance before they’ll agree to extend more credit the business needs.  Maybe this small business is trying to attract investors as the owner knows he wants to open 2 more locations.  Maybe this small business is just trying to prove to itself and its employees that they are going to make it out of this recession healthy and strong.

We could learn a lot from what a small business would do with this opportunity.  Heck we have a business to run and sales to make this month too.

What Would Small Business Do? 

All Hands on Deck:  Grandma made the trip down from Maine to work the prep tables.  The high school kids got out of school last week (thank god) so they are both here to help at the lunch counter.  For us it’s simple; Be here.  Be present.  If you have folks who do the training, the accounting and the marketing, whatever- get them out and into the store and on the floor or in the field: everyone needs to focus on getting the cash register to ring.  Do whatever you can do.

Be Extra Nice and Extra Helpful:  “Pay attention to everyone that walks in today!  Smile, offer to help, make eye contact!  Don’t let anyone back out that door without saying hello!” the owner said before the small men’s clothing store opened.  You see he knows this week is a week you can’t just “wait” for sales to come to you, you have to make them happen.  For us, it’s the same.   Smile on that phone.  Listen real closely.  Get those calls before they sit for even a second in queue and don’t you dare let a voicemail go unreturned for more than an hour!   Amp up your “thank you’s”, your apologies, your energy, your tone and your passion.  Make it happen; don’t wait for it.

Have a Special:  Cousin Billy always has the good ideas so he went out front and changed the sidewalk sign to an auto detailing offer good for only this week.   That’ll draw them in!   You have to get creative and get attention sometimes to nail those dollars late in the game.  For us at we have those “specials” all the time; – tons of them.  It’s up to us though to get that sense of urgency out about them. “The month is almost over for this one so I’d recommend….”, “I don’t usually see this kind of offer, so my advice is to take advantage of it…”.  You get the idea; make this week, this month, a big deal for the specials you have going. 

Work Harder:  This family owned shop knows a lot about this already but this week they know it’s going to have to be at another level.  They’ll stay later and restock the shelves of this little grocery outlet every night instead of every other.  They’ll get in earlier and rather than wait till July, set up the outside produce display this week and maybe attract a few more folks to stop in.   For us at  working hard isn’t new but this week we know that that 40th  incoming call has to sound to the customer, like it’s your first call if you want to make a difference.  We know making 10 more outbound calls from 4:30-5:30pm than usually do or 3 more customer visits per day this week could make the difference.  We understand it’s a full court press of effort and yeah, it’s gonna be exhausting.

Till next time,

Grow The Business.

Mark

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