I’m Not A Salesperson, I’m An Entrepreneur

Written by patti8 Published in
Thought Leader & Chic Siren Level 3 Blog Post

How many times have you uttered that phrase to yourself or to others?  The truth is, being an entrepreneur automatically makes you a salesperson and as soon as you embrace this fact of entrepreneur life you will be well on your way to grabbing more of your market share, increasing your revenue and growing your business.
I spent most of my pre-business owner days in a sales environment and believe the skills I learned while pushing someone else’s wares are what have made me more competitive as an entrepreneur.  Those skills are not just for the extroverted or the aggressive—they are for all those that are passionate about what they are doing and can’t wait to share that with the world.  Yes, that’s you—that’s you Miss Entrepreneur, Miss Brand Ambassador.  
Here’s what you need to do to become your company’s best advocate and Chief Sales Officer:
Listen Before You Talk
Before you begin telling people how wonderful you are, listen to what they have to say—not only about your products and services, but about their lives.  What is their greatest challenge at the moment?  What is something that has recently made them happy?  No pressure on you to provide the right answers—you only to have ask the right questions.
Provide A Solution
Now that you’ve heard their stories, you will be able to see how your brand is relevant to their lives.  You are not selling a product or service, you are providing a solution—a solution that will help them be more productive, save money, be happier, be healthier, etc. 
Be Honest
One of my favorite client compliments: “You know what you know and you know what you don’t know.”  Be honest about who you are and what you can do and do not  try to be something you are not.  It won’t work and you will end up damaging relationships and your brand reputation. There is real freedom in being able to say “this is who I am and this is who I am not.” 

Follow Up
The very best sales skill I have brought with me into the entrepreneur world?  The art of the follow up.  Yes, that’s the secret ingredient—following up with people after you have had your initial introduction or conversation.  This doesn’t have to be anything fancy, just a quick email letting them know how much you enjoyed meeting them and maybe give them a link to an article you found that might be of interest to them (of course you will know what would be of interest because you did such a great job of listening).
Here’s to embracing your inner salesperson!

Patti Minglin is the Founder/CEO of Go Girl Communications. Go Girl Communications helps brands build relevant conversations with female consumers. They specialize in small businesses and entrepreneurs and offer effective strategies for building strategic marketing plans, organizing sales efforts and creating innovative content. 


Great advice, Patti -- and the second time today that I have read the recommendation to listen before you talk. The universe is trying to tell me something! I tried it in a meeting today -- a couple of times I was ready to jump in and clarify and show what I knew but I held my tongue. It was a game changer -- the meeting turned out better than I could have expected, and the other people in the meeting seemed to appreciate that I was hearing them out.

Laura Brady Saade of GiveMe10.info


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