A few weeks ago, I’ve ran an analysis over my CRM. I was doing this in order to understand what business sectors are most people with whom I’ve made contact.
The results were predictable. Most are in digital publishing, some are software developers and some are coaches, trainers and speakers. A light-bulb went off then, lighting the entire room in which I was working.
Ding. This analysis is false. These people are not trainers, speakers or digital publishers. These are only the products they are selling, the value they create to the marketplace. Every single one of the people in my CRM list with a C-level position was in the same field – sales.
Now you may tell … “Uhm, sorry Razvan, that doesn’t sound right, unless all your contacts are salespeople”. I wouldn’t blame you for thinking this but the truth is – every single person I know is selling. That’s his or her business. The CEO is selling ideas to investors and partners. The manager is selling the plan to his employees. The freelancer is selling his time to potential customers.
Every single person that is self-employed or is in the leadership position of an organization is doing the same thing 90% of the time – selling. Yes, some may sell ideas while others may sell products or services but the same is true, nothing ever happens until person A persuades person B to act on something.
I’m a direct response copywriter. What is my job? For people outside of this field it may be to write. For me, it is selling. 90% of everything I’m doing involves selling something to someone. I must sell to my customers on why they must hire me and pay me quite a lot of money. I must sell them my ideas as they can be rather unorthodox and unreasonable sometimes and not easily accepted. I must sell their products through the sales pages and sales funnels I’m writing. I must sell myself on the concept of working hard, through good and bad times, in order to deliver maximum value.
Everything I do is sales. Words are a medium but as opposed to a creative writer or to the profession of a writer by default, I’m a salesman. All people who own companies are. CEOs have more in common with a door to door salesman than they have with a sophisticated economists. This is because, be it at the lowest level or the highest floor, nothing ever happens until someone sells something. Without selling, there is no money, without money, there is no company and this is the end of story.
Why am I’m telling you this?
Because you’re not a coach. You’re not an author. You’re not a trainer. You’re a salesman. Your purpose is to get people to take some form of action in their best interest. When you’re giving a speech, you’re selling the idea behind that speech. When you’re writing a book, you’re selling a philosophy of living. When you’re coaching someone, you’re selling a usually highly skeptical person on doing things that are out of his or her comfort zone, for his or her own sake.
Any business in which ideas or human interaction are exchanged is based on sales. Your success in any field of this kind is based on your ability to get people to buy into your ideas, into your leadership, into your books, products, website, videos, Facebook posts and everything else. ROI is directly tied to your ability to get engagement from someone else be it a like on your Facebook post or a purchase of a $4997 coaching program.
Now I know that sales and persuasion are not the same thing but as you can see, I’m not saying that this is about convincing your children to clean up after themselves or going to sleep. I’m making it clear of how in most service based businesses, that are either sole operated, the ability to sell and get a desired action is the life-force that makes everything else happen.
The old adage of “build a better mouse-trap and they will come” is false. This saying becomes even more inaccurate the more options your prospect has. When there is only a single option available, then he is forced to do business with you. When there are 485 competitors on a 100 kilometers radius, then you would better have a good sales process in place, otherwise, you are left with the bread crumbs.
This leads me to my next point – sitting next to the table and picking the bread crumbs is not a viable competitive strategy or a strategy at all. I know many businesses that exist only because their competitors have run out of capacity to serve the marketplace, because they are too expensive or simply because they don’t want to work with that given niche. These businesses attract what other businesses do not want and have a very low profit margin, these customers tend to be high maintenance and overall, there are not many to begin with.
Let me give you an example. Before moving to Asia, I was living in London but before London, I was living in Romania. Romania is a beautiful country and there’s more to it than vampires. One problem in Romania are taxi drivers. Most hot spots have way too few taxis for the traffic there. This means that it is almost impossible to get a taxi in the city center of Bucharest at rush hour unless you order an Uber or a BlackCab (and these tend to be over-capacity too).
Yet, you will find some cabs, cabs that look the same but cost about 2.5X more than the normal fare. These cabs stay there to take advantage of people who are really in a rush and can not find any other alternative and which are willing to pay 250% the market price in order to get to their destination. The problem with them is that while I encourage the free market, nobody in his right mind will invest in one of these cabs as long as they can get a normal priced one, as they’re not superior in any manner whatsoever. This is the breadcrumbs strategy and while it works, you can clearly see the downsides it has.
And honestly, unless you invent a product that sell itself (which is quite a difficult feat) you either learn how to sell or you must satisfy yourself with the breadcrumbs. You are in sales, no matter if you want it or not. You’re either selling yourself or you have a sales team but the process of lead generation and lead conversion is true in virtually all service based businesses.
I’ve thought that for a long time, I need to get better at writing headlines and marketing bullets. This is a false assumption. The only thing I’m judged for is how many sales I make for my customer. I’m not a branding copywriter. I don’t build brands. Nor am I am Madison Avenue copywriter. I don’t write copy with the purpose of it being descriptive. I’m writing copy because I’m selling with my copy and I’m proud to know that when I write copy, I’m helping my customers, the people who pay me while at the same time, I’m helping countless thousands or tens of thousands of people who are going to buy, by persuading them to take a good decision, in their favor. A doctor feels proud when he convinces people to give up smoking or eat healthier and he has all the reasons to be. I’m proud when I’m selling products for you because I’m convincing people to invest in themselves and in their life.
Can I do the same thing for you? At this moment, there at least five ways in which I can help you sell more. I can identify these five ways usually within the first ten minutes of a conversation. So let’s have this conversation and I’m going to tell you, for FREE, five ways in which you can sell more.
How can we do this? Please use the link below to enjoy a complimentary 30 minute needs analysis session. This session is 100% obligation free and you can book a slot in an convenient time zone.
The Self-Improvement Copywriter