By Stuart Dantzic Managing Director, Caribbean Blinds
Within a matter of months, the coronavirus has torn through the global economy and forced businesses UK wide to alter operations and pivot any long-term growth strategy.
For those in manufacturing, engineering and construction, the recent ease to Lockdown would have come as a welcome change, enabling activity to re-commence onsite and providing employees with the opportunity to return to work, providing social distancing measures are in place.
However, after two months of disruption and even closure for some, many business owners have returned to site with minimal revenue or potential income, resulting in the requirement for a new or revised sales strategy.
With the Treasury forecasting that an extension to Furlough will cost in excess of £100bn and experts predicting a serious economic decline for Q2, many business leaders remain cautious about how or who to sell to.
The answer lies in focusing on the solution that your product or service provides, as opposed to launching an aggressive sales strategy.
Knowledge is Power
Since 1987, we have worked hard to establish Caribbean Blinds as the UK’s leading provider of external shading. Although identifying multiple revenue streams has been fundamental to our success, it is our unique approach to sales that has actually cemented our reputation as a brand.
Over the last 30 plus years, we have never once used the typical ‘sleezy salesman’, who pesters until the desired result is achieved. We have always focused on showcasing our industry knowledge with the use of Surveyors, who can deliver technical information and discuss the benefits of investing in external shading.
Now more than ever before, business leaders need to adapt their sales strategy to showcase their product or industry knowledge to engage potential customers and create trust. This ‘expert knowledge’ needs to be integrated throughout your sales and marketing process, from the copy on your website and the valuable content published via social media and marketing materials, through to how your sales team speak and engage with potential customers.
Remember, each sales conversation should be focused on demonstrating why you are the best at what you do, as opposed to just telling people that you are.
Find your Niche
The word ‘pivot’ is rife in the business community right now, as organisations nationwide have been forced to review their existing product or service offering and re-focus their sales and marketing activity.
One of the key reasons Caribbean Blinds was founded and has since experienced consistent and sustainable growth, is because we were clear on our market niche from the outset. We have zero competitors who focus solely on the manufacture and provision of external shading products in the way that we do, enabling us to build an industry leading brand, renowned for product quality.
As customers become increasingly selective with how and when they will part with their money, you need to ensure that your product or service is front of mind when your target audience are looking for what you offer.
The best way to succeed is by refining your market niche and positioning your business as the ‘go to’ provider of that particular product or service. For example, for windows and doors installers, your niche could be the material or the types of buildings you work with, such as large residential developments.
We all want to work with the best when investing in a product or service. Honing your niche and positioning yourself as the industry expert will not only attract more customers, but it will also attract the right ones.
Currently, the UK economy is in a fragile state, meaning we as business owners need to step up and get it moving.
A focused and aggressive sales strategy might not feel the right move for many businesses at the moment, but refining your market position and demonstrating exactly why your customers should buy from you, will not only drive revenue now, but will continue to pay dividends in the future as you establish industry authority. This, for any business – regardless of sector or size - is invaluable.