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Taking Your First Step Toward Successful Retail Sales!

Nov 22, 2007
Retailing your products/services is what feeds your income. If no one sells anything, no one makes any money, right? So how can you make certain you take the right first step so you become successful at retailing your products or services?

The first step to successful retail sales is to accurately target your market. Target marketing is essential and it is when you narrow that target market that you become a stronger potential solution provider for that market you are targeting.

When coaching marketers about retailing their products/services, I always ask a simple question - "Who is your prospect?" The most common answer is "everyone!" I usually respond with a statement like, "So if everyone is your prospect, why is it that nobody is the only one buying?"

Think about it! Think about your own business. Who is your best prospect? What are you doing to make certain you are targeting the right target market of prospects?

A key component to increasing one's sales is targeting your best prospect - the people most likely to buy from you. This is where relevant and narrowed niche focusing is critical in becoming more efficient in your marketing effort. While we would like everyone to be our prospect, the reality is we do need to narrow that focus to allow us to focus on the target and make more sales.

Having a well-defined target market will allow you to identify potential prospects better. This will also allow you to define your qualifying measures needed to sort and sift through the prospects, in order to connect with those most likely to buy what you offer.

To be effective in any marketing activity, there is what is called the marketing mix. The marketing mix consists of: 1) the target market, 2) your message, and 3) your method of marketing. All three must be in balance.

Who are your best prospects? Your best prospects are the people who are most likely to buy your products or services. Don't consider everyone as your prospect, unless you want to waste time, money, effort, and want to be frustrated in the process.

Instead, narrow your target market for greater success at retailing your products or services. How do you narrow your target market? Markets fall into two categories; a chosen market and a natural market.

A natural market is a market that you are already tapping into and are marketing in. These markets exist from previous experience, connections, and current customers. Look at your current customer base and create a profile of the characteristics of your top 20% of your customers.

A chosen market is one you decide to market to. Basically, it is a market where you see an opportunity and a need you can fill with your product/service. You can market to either types of markets or both. The choice is yours.

Here is a brief exercise to help you identify your target market:

1) Of the product/service you want to market, list the three main benefits one receives from your product/service.

2) Out of the three main benefits, chose one benefit to focus on. Pick the one benefit out of the three that you feel most people would want. You can survey friends and family on this as well.

3) With the one benefit in mind, ask yourself, "Who would most likely benefit the most from this benefit? That is your target market group.

4) Define the characteristics of your target market group. List no less than 5 characteristics.

This is the start of your market profile. Keep in mind as you market, the key element of your strategy is to focus on your prospect's primary want. Learn as much as you can about your target market and their primary wants and needs. Concentrate the majority of your marketing effort in generating leads from that target market.
About the Author
Jeff Zalewski is a Certified Training Consultant & CEO of Direct Selling Academy, Inc., your training & performance improvement resource, where he intertwines his knowledge & in-the-field experience. Subscribe FREE to his Direct Selling Pro eNewsletter at http://www.directsellingacademy.com
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