Erica Cosminsky Shares Her Story And Sales Savvy!

Learn what to do (and what not to do) from someone who’s been there!



 

Erica was so generous. She was open and honest and tells what worked, what didn’t work.
She also tells us about her sales success on twitter (it’s not what you think either) and how to do it for yourself.

Links mentioned on the call; you’ll want to check these out!

Connect with Erica here: www.cosminsky.com

Her business sites:

The Small Business Transcriptionist

The Invisible Office

Hootsuite

Follow Erica on Twitter  @Cosminsky

Questions for Erica?

Interested in sharing your story?

Let me know in the comments!

 

Overcome Your Fear Of Sales And Selling

Fear stops you just when you need to take that next step.
The one that is going to make a difference in your business and your bank account.

For most of us, the fear comes from two very real places.

The fear of rejection – that someone will confirm that our work, our stuff isn’t good enough.
Secondly, the fear that we’ll offend or be seen as pushy, self-promoting and greedy.

But what if you shifted your lens ever so slightly?

Can you for a moment, embrace the possibility that what you fear isn’t really sales or selling at all?
I’m not saying your fear isn’t real.
I’m not telling you to just get over it (as if that ever works) or ignore it and do it anyway.
What I’m asking is for you to be willing to look at the issue with a new perspective.

I decided to check with a few experts on the subject.

I asked them to define sales and selling.
Here is what they had to say.

Seth Godin

“The salesperson’s job: Help people overcome their fear so they can commit to something they’ll end up glad they invested in.” Taken from his post titled: Selling vs. Inviting
Seth Godin has written thirteen books that have been translated into more than thirty languages. Every one has been a bestseller.

Carol Roth

“Sales has evolved: it used to mean trying to convince someone that they needed your product or service.  Nowadays sales (or at least effective sales) is about listening to customers or potential customers and educating them on how you can meet their needs and pain points.”
New York Times best selling author of The Entrepreneur Equation. Carol Roth has worked with hundreds of companies on all aspects of business and financial strategy.

Tom Hopkins

“Professionally using a person’s desire to own the benefits of your product, then blending your sincere desire to serve them in order to help that person make a decision that’s truly good for them.”
Since 1976, Tom Hopkins International has been dedicated to providing the finest sales training strategies and techniques to individuals and companies alike.

Pamela Slim

“Sales is delivering a solution you are passionate about to a customer who finds it the perfect resolution to her problem.”
Pamela Slim is a seasoned coach and writer who helps frustrated employees in corporate jobs break out and start their own business.

Bob Burg

“I’ve heard a number of definitions of sales, and many are excellent. So, while mine is far from the only definition, it would be: Sales: “Helping someone to own what they want, need or desire.”
Co-author of the national bestseller, The Go-Giver, Bob shares information on topics vital to the success of today’s business person.

Steve Kloyda

“If you had the cure for cancer, how many cancer patients would you approach each day and ask to purchase your cure? As many as you could! Sales is real simple. Identify a problem and provide a solution. A professional sales person helps a prospect or customer make a decision that is good for them and always leaves that person better than they found them.”
Founder of The Prospecting Expert, Steve helps his clients attract more prospects, retain more clients, and drive more sales.

James Clear

“You can’t make anyone take a certain action, but you can make it much easier. That’s what sales and “selling” is all about. In my experience, there are two pieces to the sales puzzle. First, you need to make it known that you’re selling something. Interestingly, the first part is the one that drives most people away because it makes them feel “awkward” or “scammy” to push a product or service. But the reason the feel that way is because they don’t understand the second part of sales, which is the psychological piece. You need to understand the psychology of buying a product in order to sell it. You need to get to know your customer, get inside their head, discover their problems, needs, and desires. If you do that, then you’ll realize all of the ways you can help you customer by selling to them and you’ll help them realize the benefits as well. That means more sales for you and more benefit for the customers — all while sleeping soundly at night.”
James runs the Passive Panda website making it easier for you to earn more money every day.

The common thread?

Selling isn’t something you do TO someone, it’s something you do FOR them!

Each definition mentions the customers best interest.
Selling includes things like listening, serving, solving.
Shifting to that perspective opens the possibility of helping not pushing; conversations instead of convincing, being a welcome resource.

Here’s my definition.

“Making an offer and giving someone the chance to say yes!”

Now, it’s your turn. How can embracing a new definition of sales help you? Leave your comments below.

SoundAdvice Sound Stage

Teresa Cleveland accepted my offer to be my first interview, but turned the tables and interviewed me instead!  We talk about sales (what else) my new title: Salesologist and the sometimes elusive concept of confidence.

Let me know if you’d like to share your story. I want to highlight amazing people who are making a difference doing what they love!  If that’s you – leave a comment and I’ll be in touch!

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Sales Questions And Solutions

Time To Answer Your Questions

I promised to to do a video response – and here it is.  My editor (and best husband ever) was out of town today and I decided to post this as is – just me chatting with you about a sales question.

 

More questions?  I’m happy to answer yours.

Post them here in the comments or email them!

The Sales Number And Your Marketing Happily Ever After

You can’t sell your products and services to everyone.

As a solopreneur there is a limit to how many people you can reach, sell to and serve.
If you offer services this is especially true.
Your time and creative ability are limited.
You can hire others to help and automate steps to make things more efficient.
You can package services to streamline your offerings.
Creating an information product, book or reproductions are also a great way to add revenue and sell what you do to more people.

It’s critical to know your numbers.

I know you’re creative and big picture and spreadsheets aren’t your thing.
Which is why it’s even more important to understand this concept.
Here’s a way to start.
Get some paper and a sharpie and a calculator.

Write down how much you’d like to make each month.

Is it more than what you make now?
Maybe it’s a lot more.
How much do you charge per hour or per piece of art, or web design or per page of copy written?
Your current rate.
Is it physically possible to work the number of hours each month? (for now just assume the customers will be there)
Could you actually do it?
If you’re like most, the answer is no.
Now what? Raise your rates? Contract out? Add additional revenue sources?
Maybe all of the above.

Put a plan in place and start implementing.

You won’t get to that number you just wrote down without a game plan.
Let’s get back to the whole idea that you can’t sell to everyone.
The fastest, easiest way to get to your number is by knowing who is looking for what you do and marketing to them.
A bunch!
With options.
Multiple ways for them to hire you, or buy what you have.

But it means you have to decide exactly who those people are.

Your marketing will get so much better when you talk to just those people.
Don’t be afraid to be specific.
Do you have lots of designers or doctors in your client list now?
Start there.
Talk to them – address the issues their industry faces in particular.

Here’s an example: Let’s say you design websites.
You’ve worked with a few financial planners and people who work with high wealth individuals.
They have tons of regulations about what they can and cannot say.
You learned this from your previous clients.
You can address their fear about compliance, keeping things legal and still being unique and original.

You talk their language.

You understand the restrictions about what they can and cannot do.
Your marketing talks about how to attract high wealth individuals with design.
You offer a free resource that tells people in the financial industry how to brand themselves starting with great web design.
You have relevant social proof in your portfolio and client testimonials.

See how that works?

Now deciding how to write and talk about what you do is easier.
Finding the people who understand what you’re talking about is easier.
Learning where to reach your audience becomes so much clearer and less time is wasted broadcasting to the those who aren’t going to “get” you.

I promise if you start here and get really clear about who you want to work with – really understand this part, the other steps will become so much easier to take! You’ll be hitting your goal in no time!

What about this works for you?  What doesn’t?  I’m here to help.

It’s time to hit your number! Schedule your one hour session to jump start your sales.

The other side of the Right People equation

You’re crystal clear about who your right people are.

 You have a detailed customer description.  You educate, inspire and love them. As a business owner or solopreneur – your motivation and intentions are righteous. Helping your best people is why you do what you do. It’s what gets you up in the morning and motivates you to tweet, and skype and engage until the wee hours.

 You’ve spent time and energy making sure you understand your right people. You ask for feedback, you design programs and write e-books about things they need. And want. 

Are you getting the results you need? And want?

Are you missing the other side of the equation?

In a recent conversation with Tami who writes at Targeted Traffic Strategies she asked “What do you want to be known for?”
Could it be that your right people can’t find you?
You may be sure about who you want to reach, but are you certain about you?

I recently wrote about being an expert. We often resist the designation out of a sense of modesty or discomfort with self promotion.
But the resistance is misguided. Being clear and intentional about what you do and who you serve is the only way your right people are going to recongnize you when they show up!

It’s the other side of the equation to client attraction.

They need to be as sure about you and what you offer as you are about them. Finding you will be easier. Connecting will be simpler and moving them from contact to client will be the natural next step. For both of you.

What do you want to be known for?

Do The Work Your Follow Friday SoundAdvice

Do The Work
by Steven Pressfield



Get a copy of the book today.
Right now.
It’s been made available at no cost to you. (see below)
You have no excuse.
Anyone who has struggled to get things done – big things – your dream things – will find your internal weapon to resistance.

Find out how to start, how to finish and how to just keep the hell going!

“a child has no trouble believing the unbelieveable, nor does the genius or madman…it’s only you and I, with our big brains and tiny hearts, who doubt and overthink and hesitate.” Listen to your dream, and work hard to beat “resistance” and “rational thought.,” that inner voice that chatters with all the reasons why you can’t.

With chapters titled: Start Before You’re Ready; Stay Primitive; and Swing for the Seats – this isn’t just an intellectual exercise, but a map for getting your stuff – your work – done.

A way to push past all the reasons why not and the method to cling to the reason why.

The book is an easy read. I followed the suggestion in the forward and read it through, stopping just once.  I went back and read it again – this time, noting things that really resonated with me.  I suspect this is the type of book that I will read again when I’m in a different place in my life and I’ll glean other bits of wisdom that make sense to me just then.

The kindle version of the book is available at no cost thanks to GE.
No kindle? No problem.
Download the free Kindle for PC and then claim your free copy of the book.
Or go old school and buy a copy.

Steven Pressfield’s book Do The Work is part of the Domino Project. Created by Seth Godin and “powered by Amazon”. The concept is simple. The name is from the idea of the domino effect; that powerful ideas spread quickly and easily from one person to another.

Follow Steven on Twitter

What part of the book speaks to you?