If you want some good advice, listen to the American tennis player Arthur Ashe, who said, ‘Start where you are, use what you have, do what you can’. When it comes to developing new business, this is sound advice, particularly when so many people are looking for a magic bullet that will get them off to a flying start. Often, the answer is actually much closer than you imagine and comes from utilising what you already know.
Doing what I do, I often stand at the starting line with a new client, looking down the track we have defined to be his new target market. People laugh when I tell them that despite putting together a sound strategy, in reality we don’t really know how it will go until we start. This can be a little daunting for companies wanting return on their investment. The process of developing new business is slow by definition, as you are venturing into markets you where you are not known, and that is not an easy concept for the board to come to terms with.
So, what can you do to try and speed things up?
The answer to that is threefold. Using the words of Arthur Ashe:
- Start where you are: This applies to the strategy stage when it is really important to use your current market knowledge to propel you on to the next market. If you are already successful with hospitality, you may want to look at a related market such as facility management rather then going for insurance. This means that your current success will be easier to demonstrate and your market understanding will be much more relevant.
- Use what you have: The key to an accelerated sales process, is using known contacts who can introduce you into the new market you are developing. It might sound obvious, but I don’t actually meet many people who do this. It’s much easier to buy a database and call everyone but results will be much slower. Get everyone in your company considering old contacts they may have and referral partners who can help; you will amazed by the value of what you can gather using your own resources.
- Do what you can: So many people I meet give up too soon. Getting into a new market is not easy and you may feel that you are better off staying where you are, which is fine. But if you are going for a new market, make sure you are prepared to chase people and keep following up until you get a sensible answer.
I hope this is helpful and will make some difference to your plans for achieving world domination this year. If you need some help with additional resources, a good plan or lead nurturing, check out our website or get in touch