The Product or The Sale
This is a quandary not unlike the chicken or the egg question, “Which comes first?”. Do you focus on creating a superior product and continue to develop superior products or do you shift focus from the product to the sale prior to fully developing the line, or schedule of services?
In the study of business start-ups, there are a tremendous number of entrepreneurs who created or found marvelous products and yet were unable to crack the marketplace. All of us have seen TV shows with warehouses of goods that just sit and are never introduced to the consumer.
Without demand, there are no sales. Without sales, there is no success. It is easier to create for the sake of self-expression, than it is to find a way to effectively share the creation.
A visible example of the power of marketing was the throng which was attracted to New York by “The Gates” in Central Park. During the time it was on display when travellers, were asked why they were going to New York, they invariably said they were going to see The Gates. But once viewed, visitors and New Yorkers said that they resemble short shower curtains – the colour of pale Velveeta. Looking down from a plane or one of the tall buildings that surrounds Central Park, the saffron coloured winding trails brought to mind a flow of sorts that was totally lost when viewed from the ground, but people continued to flock to Manhattan in droves to see the work.
How to create your own buzz….
- Develop one core product with a great name.
- Look around and see if there are other businesses or events you can attach your name to that would help you with your launch.
- If not, write and send out your own Press Release. Get Press
- Once you have started to court the press, keep sending out Press Releases on a regular basis, but make sure you always have something that is both new and worth saying. It’s often the perspective or the timing that works to capture the spotlight. Be merciless in your persistence but keep your sense of humour!
- Call on your most successful competitors to determine if they will share with you the story of how they got started. They may even refer clients, if they have moved to the next level.
- Call up a company you want to work with and ask them for their buying criteria. Make an appointment to go in and ask for their advice on your product/service.
- Go big or go home! Don’t hold yourself back through lack of confidence in your own sales ability. If you believe in the greatness of your product or service, then call on businesses you know would benefit, regardless of their size.
- Avoid becoming reckless. Don’t get so excited by a positive response that you start to manufacture enormous amounts of product or make commitments to buy a large volume of supplies before you have a contract that guarantees a sale.
- If someone recognizes the uniqueness of your product and sees the value of doing business with you, they will be interested in making a commitment. Make sure the terms you agree to are ones you can meet and still make money.
- Your product or service does not have to be perfect. It just has to find a niche and then be marketed to that niche as it continually evolves.
The product may come first, but if sales don’t follow right away, don’t give up. Persistence is a key element in any venture and marketing to a clearly defined niche makes it easier for your customer to find you.
It’s also easier to make sales if you find the market first and tailor the product to fill their needs and wants.
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