Why You Should Sell to Fewer People to Increase Your Sales by Bruce Eckfeldt
Most early stage companies chase anyone with money. However, if you truly want to scale you need to learn how to say ‘no’ to a lot more prospects.
People hire me to scale their businesses. And they’re not just looking for 10 to 15 percent growth a year. My clients want to grow 50 to 100 percent a year or more. While this kind of growth is not easy, it’s very doable for many businesses. The challenge is that if they want to grow at these rates, they need to change the way they do things. And that change can be tough.
One of the toughest changes they need to make is who they prospect and sell to. Typically, I find that most businesses with one to 10 million dollars in revenues use what I call chameleon selling. This is where they hunt for leads and then customize and adjust their products and services to the needs of whatever prospects they find. While you can build a good business this way, you won’t build a scalable business.
In order to grow systematically, you need to focus on a small, limited set of products and services that serve the needs of a target set of customers. This is the only way you can hone your processes proficiently, find talent efficiently, and train your people effectively, and consistently deliver a quality product or service.
When working with companies who want to scale, I typically start by defining their ideal customer by looking at past customers and finding companies who have been profitable, easy to serve, and promoters for the business.
Once I have a good set of example ideal customers, we can ask a series of questions that define our ideal target customer. Any prospect who doesn’t fit this profile should be de-prioritized in the funnel, regardless of how attractive they look.
1. How would you pick your ideal customer out of a crowd?
The first thing we look at is demographics. What does your ideal customer look like externally. What car do they drive, what school did they go to, how big is there business, in what industry are they, or in what geography are they located? These are things I find in industry reports or through some good Google searching.