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RANT The Supremacy of Selling

BrooklynHustle

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Recently started re-“reading” Ready, Fire, Aim by Michael Masterson (love this book :fire:), this time via the audio version.

In this chapter he makes the point that until you develop a system for selling your product or service profitably, you do not have a sustainable business, and so that should be your primary focus.

In other words...

Without sales, you have no business.

Seems simple, but so often ignored. What do you think?

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amp0193

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I've taken it to heart.

I try to outsource, contract, or hire anything that isn't sales related. And soon I'll be to the point that I have to hire out the sales.

I try to think of the value of my time input. If I'm in the warehouse packing boxes, my time is worth $10/hr. If I do a few hours of email and close a $3000 deal, my time is worth $1000/hr.

If I spend more time on $1000/hr tasks, then I'll be able to afford to hire more people to do the $10/hr tasks.
 

WJK

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I've taken it to heart.

I try to outsource, contract, or hire anything that isn't sales related. And soon I'll be to the point that I have to hire out the sales.

I try to think of the value of my time input. If I'm in the warehouse packing boxes, my time is worth $10/hr. If I do a few hours of email and close a $3000 deal, my time is worth $1000/hr.

If I spend more time on $1000/hr tasks, then I'll be able to afford to hire more people to do the $10/hr tasks.
Selling can take many forms. Make a good deal is a type of selling. Buying right is another. Serving a client or customer is part of selling to them. Some of these activities are hard to quantify, but they are important to the process. There are things I personally do that most people won't. They'll hire out thinking those activities are not worth their time. I have very good reasons for my choices.
 

amp0193

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Selling can take many forms. Make a good deal is a type of selling. Buying right is another. Serving a client or customer is part of selling to them. Some of these activities are hard to quantify, but they are important to the process. There are things I personally do that most people won't. They'll hire out thinking those activities are not worth their time. I have very good reasons for my choices.
Agree with some of this.

Selling is anything that will help generate sales It could be calling a customer, adding emails to an auto follow-up sequence, messaging 20 celebrities on Instagram.

But, there comes a point that even all this is not worth your time... and it does need to be hired out. Not that it's not important, it IS important. There are just even more important things to do.


When doing all of these things interferes with the ability to strategize and plan and chart the course for the future, it's time to hire. Everything I do can be outsourced. I am no-one special, and am completely replaceable. I try to keep that in mind.
 
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WJK

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Everything I do can be outsourced. I am no-one special, and am completely replaceable. I try to keep that in mind.
I don't know what you are doing in your business, BUT I am not replaceable in mine for certain tasks. If you can hire it out, fine. And I do hire people to do a lot of the "no-brainer" chores. I've never thought of myself as a "no-one" and I am not "completely replaceable." In those famous words, "The buck stops here" with me. I have seen so many businesses fail when the owner takes his eyes off of the ball...
 

amp0193

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You're limited by time.

How do you grow when the buck stops with you for the tasks you're doing now?

I can be the sales guy. Or I can be the guy managing 4 sales guys, making sure they're doing sales the way I do it.

Or I can be the guy managing the guys who manage the sales guys. Making sure they are managing the sales guys the way I would, so that the sales guys are selling the way I would.

In all scenarios I'm still the guy responsible for sales. My day to day tasks are just different and the scale is much larger.
 

YoungPadawan

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I've started to realize that sales/marketing is some of the highest $/hour tasks you can do in your biz.

You can find almost anyone willing to work for chump change doing any technical task (SEO, packaging, programming, etc)

The big dinero comes from the sales/marketing.
 

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I've started to realize that sales/marketing is some of the highest $/hour tasks you can do in your biz.

You can find almost anyone willing to work for chump change doing any technical task (SEO, packaging, programming, etc)

The big dinero comes from the sales/marketing.

Know how to sell and you can be successful in just about anything.

I entered an industry last year that I previously knew nothing about. I had to hire or outsource just about all of the technical work required to get rolling, and for day to day operation. I couldn't run my operations if I wanted to... I'd need at 10 years of on the ground experience. I'm no Elon Musk.

But, I know how to sell these things!
 

WJK

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You're limited by time.

How do you grow when the buck stops with you for the tasks you're doing now?

I can be the sales guy. Or I can be the guy managing 4 sales guys, making sure they're doing sales the way I do it.

Or I can be the guy managing the guys who manage the sales guys. Making sure they are managing the sales guys the way I would, so that the sales guys are selling the way I would.

In all scenarios I'm still the guy responsible for sales. My day to day tasks are just different and the scale is much larger.
So, you are important to your business. Years of experience, coupled with personal relationships with your customers, lead to specialized knowledge that you can't JUST hire out. You can never make sure that anyone else does things just the way you would. You own the business. You have a personal interest. They are earning a paycheck. If they were that diligent, they would the owner of their own business. Our greatest disappointment in the world is when we expect others to do what they cannot do. I hope you upgrade your view of yourself and your importance.
 

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I think people can be capable of a lot.

Sell the dream, sell the purpose. Doing good in the world. Changing it for the better.

I used to be a teacher, and I always found it fascinating how the same kids would go to the moon for some teachers, and wouldn't do jack shit for others. If I want more than I'm getting, I look in the mirror at what I can do differently.

Idealistic and naive... possibly. Maybe I'll change my tune in a few years.

I realize I'm important. Not because of my skills, abilities, or experience, but because I made the choice to do it, and no one else did.

There are people much more qualified to do almost every aspect of what I do. And as it makes sense, I'll hire them.
 

WJK

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I think people can be capable of a lot.

Sell the dream, sell the purpose. Doing good in the world. Changing it for the better.

I used to be a teacher, and I always found it fascinating how the same kids would go to the moon for some teachers, and wouldn't do jack sh*t for others. If I want more than I'm getting, I look in the mirror at what I can do differently.

Idealistic and naive... possibly. Maybe I'll change my tune in a few years.

I realize I'm important. Not because of my skills, abilities, or experience, but because I made the choice to do it, and no one else did.

There are people much more qualified to do almost every aspect of what I do. And as it makes sense, I'll hire them.
You're right. And by working your business, you gain the skills, abilities and experience factors. You will start to see the world differently. You will plainly see patterns where others see chaos. You'll know what people are going to say before they open their mouths. You will make it look easy. Everyone will think they can do your job. That is the point where you are an expert.
In the meantime, hire those who know more and get them to teach you. Be humble, while you soak up everything like a human sponge. Trade your knowledge for theirs. Ask questions & talk in proportion to the ratio between your ears and your mouth-- 2/1.
Good luck!
 

Walter Hay

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I consider that Michael Masterson is too limited in understanding of what he calls "Marketing." See the first sentence in the page appearing in Post #1 above. For example, he separates marketing from product development.

I completely agree with the no-brainer that "Without sales, it is very hard to sustain an ongoing business".

But.....

Marketing is much more than advertising and salesmanship. See my post here: https://www.thefastlahttps://www.thefastlaneforum.com/community/search/22452988/?page=2&q=advertising&o=date&c[user][0]=26072neforum.com/community/threads/the-process-of-creating-a-real-product.54128/page-3#post-664805 dealing with the definition of marketing.

Walter
 
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Know how to sell and you can be successful in just about anything.

I entered an industry last year that I previously knew nothing about. I had to hire or outsource just about all of the technical work required to get rolling, and for day to day operation. I couldn't run my operations if I wanted to... I'd need at 10 years of on the ground experience. I'm no Elon Musk.

But, I know how to sell these things!
Agreed!

Given how critical it is, why do you think so many aspiring entrepreneurs avoid it at the start?
 
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BrooklynHustle

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I consider that Michael Masterson is too limited in understanding of what he calls "Marketing." See the first sentence in the page appearing in Post #1 above. For example, he separates marketing from product development.

I completely agree with the no-brainer that "Without sales, it is very hard to sustain an ongoing business".

But.....

Marketing is much more than advertising and salesmanship. See my post here: https://www.thefastlahttps://www.thefastlaneforum.com/community/search/22452988/?page=2&q=advertising&o=date&c[user][0]=26072neforum.com/community/threads/the-process-of-creating-a-real-product.54128/page-3#post-664805 dealing with the definition of marketing.

Walter
The link appears to be broken, unfortunately. I’d like to read this post.
 

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What sales are to a business is what oxygen is to a person.
I think sales are that important.

For some reason they don't seem to get enough attention and respect from beginning entrepreneurs.

(TMF doesn't make that mistake though)
 

Black_Dragon43

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Some good pointers, I've read Ready, Fire, Aim too.

Based on my experience in helping others sell their stuff online, there is one critical factor that influences sales a lot, but which Masterson doesn't really mention... and that's having a product/service which is high in relative value, taking advantage of some gap in the market.

I can tell you that the hardest clients to deal with (I run a direct response agency) and satisfy are the ones with me-too products which aren't REALLY differentiated much at all from the competition. Sometimes these clients will tout their product's greatness to no end, and will refuse listening when you attempt to point out superior products and that the product/offering should be rethought.

For a direct response agency (my business) sales is everything. Sales is how you get clients. Putting your name out there, calling people, email marketing - that kinda stuff. But I would say that for MOST businesses out there, this isn't as important.

Rather the most important thing is developing/sourcing a product that is high in relative value & identifying a market gap. That should be the MAIN focus. If you do that step right, more often than not, selling the product is the easy second part.

That's what entrepreneurship is about... fulfilling needs. It's no use having the best sales skills in the world if you can't fulfill any need and improve on anything. I actually think that Masterson's emphasis on sales risks distracting you from the core of what matters: solving a pain-point/need.
 

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What a great thread and contributions!

I will never forget how easy Seth made it for people to rank with a "Squidoo Lens"..I mean I literally threw up a site after a product and put "Review" after it then bookmarked it and made a sale and it was a software so it was recurring..and that blew my mind at the time. Others were on forums talking about marketing and I had monthly income from a few mins work! Hug you Seth...the good old days haha.
 

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Recently started re-“reading” Ready, Fire, Aim by Michael Masterson (love this book :fire:), this time via the audio version.

In this chapter he makes the point that until you develop a system for selling your product or service profitably, you do not have a sustainable business, and so that should be your primary focus.

In other words...

Without sales, you have no business.

Seems simple, but so often ignored. What do you think?

View attachment 21965
Agreed
 

Black_Dragon43

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But without a product that adds value (solves a pain-point) above and beyond what the competition is doing, you have no sales... :p - you can't really get sales without adding value first, unless you lie and cheat.
 

Walter Hay

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Another factor that is grossly overlooked, although it gets a mention in some other marketing books other than Michael Masterton's is the importance of the buying process.

Profits begin with buying.

You may find a wonderful product, but unless you have bought it at the best possible price, you are leaving money on the table.

As a general observation on Ready Fire Aim, I posted an explanation of the real meaning of marketing in the thread: "The Process of Creating a Real Product " . A great many marketing gurus, including Masterton tend to put emphasis on that part of marketing that is their forte, but neglect to deal with the complete picture. See that post quoted below.

A lot of people in eCommerce, whether selling on their own site or on Amazon have little understanding of marketing.

Most people think that marketing = advertising, but that is only a part of the marketing process. According to the American Marketing Association, "Marketing is the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large."

I would like to expand on that definition to remove the cloud caused by the jargon used.

That definition fails to specifically mention market research, but that would be included in "activity, set of institutions, and processes." Also included should be logistics, from product development or acquisition, to delivery to the customer.

Creating is another way of saying developing the concept, i.e., the idea of a product or service, but also understanding how that product or service provides value in the marketplace, otherwise the concept would have no value.

Communication means advertising in its various forms. What is omitted here is that advertising is far more comprehensive in meaning than just PPC ads, posting on IG, FaceBook etc. It extends to design of listings on sites such as Amazon or eBay, and design of eCommerce websites.

I admit that my hobby horse relates to labeling and packaging. The term "Private Labeling" is grossly misused and misunderstood. Most often it is taken to mean putting a label on a generic product so that people will know that it's yours, not your competitor's. ("Just slap on a sticker.")

Instead I suggest that it should mean building a great brand through use of distinctive labeling and packaging that take into account the entire marketing and advertising process. That means designing both labels and packages to convey the most appealing message to your target market.

From time to time on this forum various parts of the marketing process get a mention, but marketing should always be considered as a whole.

Walter
 

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