As an entrepreneur, sales are the lifeblood of your business. Sales put money in your pocket, food on your table and fuel in your (literal and figurative) engine. (Oh, and sales also show you’re making the impact you’re meant to make in this world, which is no small thing.)
Unfortunately, sales is also one of the hardest entrepreneurial skills to master. Trust me when I say I’ve coached hundreds of entrepreneurs and one of the trickiest hurdles is creating consistent sales, month after month, year after year.
So if you’re struggling to bring in a steady cash flow and keep yourself in the black, I want you to know you’re not alone.
I also want you to know what you’re doing wrong so you take some different actions, fast.
If you’re ready to pull yourself out of your sales rut, read on and let’s see if you’re practicing any of the five fatal sales flaws that are killing your income.
1. You Aren’t Aligned to Your Ideal Clients
What do I mean by aligned? Aligned is when you are totally “in your element” in your business. I mean that you’re grounded in who you are and what you offer. And I mean that you have confidence you can bring your ideal clients the transformation they deserve.
When you’re aligned, ideal clients can literally feel it through everything you do, post, create or sell.
But if you’re not aligned? If you’re trying to force it, fake it or white knuckle your way through it? Well, it shows. How so? For one thing, your iPhone is silent. Your inbox? A ghost town. When you show up to networking events, people seem to avoid you like Ebola.
And worst of all? When you do connect with a prospect, everybody has a new (and usually very creative) excuse not to work with you: they’re not ready, they’re in overdraft or they simply aren’t interested.
This leads to you feeling overwhelmed, stuck, confused or just plain frustrated. And the cherry on top: broke.
2. Yuck, You’re Stuck in Mental Muck
Let’s be honest: we ALL experience mental muck at some point or another.
What’s mental muck?
It’s ANY dark, heavy, sad or taxing feeling that shows up when something crappy happens in ANY area of your life.
Maybe a pet unexpectedly passes away. Maybe you have a less-than-awesome coffee date with a relative. You name it, if it upsets you or negatively rocks the status quo, it can create mental muck.
We all know that when things go haywire in your life, it can bring up major self doubt and kill our business mojo. But even if your “stuff” isn’t business-related, your mental muck can (and usually will) spill over into your empire.
The way you do one thing is the way you do everything, so if one area of your life is in a funk, your business will likely end up right there with it, too.
3. Overwhelmed with Marketing Mayhem
Have you ever heard yourself saying, “I don’t know where to market my business! There are so many options!” or, “How in the world am I going to master all these social media platforms when a new one crops up every day?”
Yup. I bet you have. And that’s completely normal.
But it could also be hurting your sales.
I know. It feels like you’re doing the right thing by running around trying every latest tech tool to manage your biz, but in reality it’s just stressing you out, lowering your vibration and repelling clients.
The truth is it’s better to do a few things amazingly well, than a million things, well, not-so-great.
You do NOT need to have a million things in place to start making more sales like, yesterday. You do NOT need the upgraded tech or the next big system. (I’ve spoken to a couple of millionaires who didn’t even have a website. True story!)
Focus on 1-3 systems/marketing channels and rock them if you want to create consistent leads without going crazy.
4. You Don’t Know How to ‘Warm Up’ Your Prospects
Do you feel like selling just “isn’t your thing” or you’re “not a salesperson”?
If you find yourself thinking, “I don’t even know what to say to people to get them to say yes,” then you are literally creating your reality with those words.
Systematizing your lead generation (see above) is a must, but knowing what to say to someone when you connect with them is even more important.
You should be able to walk into a room, chat someone up and have them walk away feeling like your BFF (and a million bucks) OR, get someone on the phone and move them from not-sure to -ready-to-roll before they have time to finish their morning latte.
The good news is that if you weren’t born insanely charismatic, you CAN learn how to build rapport easily and quickly.
5. You’re (Too) Focused On Yourself
Remember that famous Carly Simon song, “You’re so vain, I bet you think this song is about you?” (Yes? No? Maybe? I’m a Gen X’er and my parents used to listen to that one on repeat as a kid, but anyway…)
The one thing you DO NOT want to do when putting your feelers out for more fabulous clients is turn the focus inward on what you can get out of the conversation (read: a sale).
I get it. It’s SO easy to get caught up in whether your prospect is gonna say yes that you totally forget about being present for them.
If you’ve ever found yourself wanting to fast forward through a sales consult or tuning out during calls and dreaming up things to say to “convince” them to work with you, you can bet you’re engaging in “vain” thought patterns that will ultimately send your prospect running (and you beating your head against the wall wondering, “What did I do wrong this time?”)
Staying present and listening with your ears and your intuition is imperative in sales. Take the focus (and pressure!) off trying to impress or rush your prospect toward that heck yes and just relax into your center. You’ll be amazed at how ease-y (and sometimes even fun!) sales can become.
So there they are, the five fatal sales flaws! Are you guilty of committing any of them?
If so, don’t fret. We all make mistakes. It’s when we become aware of our flaws that we can actually take the time to create change. Now’s your chance!