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Sales: Building the business

Posted on October 27, 2014 by Rich under Business, Sales and Marketing
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Selling in other services to existing clients and contacts may sound like a simple job, and if you have a regular, flowing relationship then it will be. However, it is simply not feasible to maintain this level of relationship with everyone, because it’s extremely time-consuming. So when you have new services to tell people about, be prepared to backtrack a little and re-educate people with regards your existing set-up and sometimes even how you came to know them in the first place.

You will be amazed at some people’s inability to recall initially meeting you and why you’re contacting them. Such is the nature of things and whilst painful, it’s a process that must be endured in the best light possible. The flip side is that you have more practice with your sales patter and the more fluent you sound, the more effective you become at this side of the business.

Of course, you need an expanded portfolio to tell these people about and importantly have a good reason why you are offering new services, aside from the projected income you hope to gain. Expanding your product or service range is a great idea from a financial income perspective, assuming it does not cost the earth, but it’s important to consider the workflow and resource requirements on the business. Do you have the capacity to offer this service and how will this affect the quality and customer service around the existing work?

The more work you do, the more visible and hopefully attractive you become to agencies and representatives who will want to have a shot at touting your work. Using an agent has it’s obvious benefits, not least having someone to take some of the PR and management workloads off your back, but there are several things to consider:

  • Are their motives purely financial or do they genuinely understand your creative process and outlook?
  • Consider who else they represent and how you fit in as part of that wider portfolio.
  • Do their objectives align with your business goals?

This fits neatly into your sales strategy and targets which are an important gauge of how your business is performing. It may be that your sole objective is to cover say fifteen weddings a year and supplement that work with one-off events and family portraits. Or cover corporate events and nurture your wildlife passion into one day receiving briefs for National Geographic.

Whatever the personal and professional goals, setting out six monthly and yearly targets in order to achieve those goals is vital. Making sure you are ticking off smaller, short-term goals will steadily advance the business and your development to the bigger dreams you originally started out to reach.  Make sure these are SMART objectives too; Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Timely.  That way you can judge your businesses success.

 

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