You Only Need 1 Thing to Increase Sales

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Most of us already have our goals in placed to increase business by 5 or 10 percent or maybe if you are a young company you might be doubling or tripling sales this year. We have Created our Lean Scale-Up Budget, and now all we have to do is manage the plan or if that fails iterate our canvas a few times.

We may be sophisticated enough to understand that we have to create a difference in our structure to be able to change our position in the market place. We may decide on one or several of the following to achieve better sales penetration:

  1. Introduce ourselves to more people by holding webinars or other learning events
  2. Make more face to face interactions
  3. Establish better connections through representation or brokers
  4. Reassign people to new territories or make territories smaller and bring in several new people.
  5. Expand the roles of successful people and reduce the roles of non-successful people
  6. Increase social media and other communication channels, online and offline
  7. Creating influence with people in different networks
  8. Change compensation structure that reinforces our strategies and objectives
  9. Use technology better (my favorite because this always works)
  10. Change leadership because ultimately they are always to blame anyway.
  11. Increase education (a computer for every child, right?)

All these steps can be simplified in the notion that we must increase sales by increasing our sphere of influence. More about this in the blog post Increase your Innovation Capacity: Manage your Sphere of Influence. Our sphere of influence needs to be strengthened or increased. The questions become how do we exert more influence?

One of my thoughts that centers on the thinking of Service Dominant Logic is that we must increase and become better at delivering our value proposition based on that three-legged stool of value, Functional, Emotional, and Social. You can read more about this in the blog post, Sales Discovery Questions for Value. What I enjoy doing is mapping the different scenarios I think must happen to achieve these new goals by the use of the BACKS Outcome-Based Persona. This process allows envisioning how you can increase your value proposition to your most significant partners.

When we concentrate on people/organizations that we have the ability to influence, we understand what behavior change we need to create (short-term, medium-term and long term outcomes) to drive the desired impacts in the end beneficiaries of our product/service. Value creation happens as a result of our network. If we try to co-create directly with beneficiaries, without those being in our sphere influence, we will fail miserably. Our innovative capacity is increased because we are not looking in the marketplace for solutions rather we are participating in the marketplace and are part of the solution.

Now, you might say; this is what you do by iterating through a canvas. I do not disagree when you are viewing changing your Business Model that this may not be the correct procedure. This is an influencing model, not a business model. This has little to do with product/market fit but more about understanding the influences of the value you provide to both new and existing external networks. This is a people thing, not a product thing.

What is that one thing to increase Sales? Influence!

Discover the Why before learning the How of Mapping

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Republished with author's permission from original post.

Joseph Dager
Business901 is a firm specializing in bringing the continuous improvement process to the sales and marketing arena. He has authored the books the Lean Marketing House, Marketing with A3 and Marketing with PDCA. The Business901 Blog and Podcast includes many leading edge thinkers and has been featured numerous times for its contributions to the Bloomberg's Business Week Exchange.

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