Why sales and marketing strategies won’t grow your business

Written by Joel Gerschman

I’m really sorry.

We’ve misled you. Not deliberately or maliciously, of course. I think most sales and marketing consultants are good, honest people who are just trying to help.

But when we fed you specific strategies to help you grow your business, we probably misrepresented what it takes to truly grow.

You see, many people think that growth is about diving in and implementing a range of practical sales and marketing strategies. Like distributing brochures, email campaigns, print media, google ads, SEO, social media, lead magnets and so on.  

Well, I’ve got news for you: if that’s all you do, don’t be surprised if you see limited results.

So what does it take to truly grow your business? What does it take to increase sales and revenue?

Clarify your business strategy

Don’t get me wrong: you do need to dive in and implement practical sales and marketing strategies.

But before you do that, you need to be clear on your overall business strategy first.

You see, many business owners begin implementation without really thinking about their underlying business strategy: who their target market is, what their unique, driving needs are and how they’ll meet those needs better than the competition. Those are foundational strategic questions.

And though it’s much easier to ignore this strategic step, it’s also a recipe for limited success.

Take the classic case of Michael Dell, founder of Dell Computers. As a teenager, he famously became the most successful paper delivery boy in Chicago’s history. How?

His strategy was simple but powerful: rather than take a random, door-to-door approach (which had a 10% success rate at best), he looked up all the newly wed couples in the Births, Deaths and Marriages register – and only visited their houses. His success rate was astronomical because many of them had just moved into a new home – and that’s exactly the kind of person who’s in the market for a newspaper subscription!

How did he do it?

Answer: he didn’t start with a practical strategy like knocking on doors. He started with deliberate, well-considered business strategy – he identified who his target market was and only then did he begin implementation.

Can you see the difference?

5 questions to fuel your growth

If you want to achieve real growth, you’ll also need to start by defining your overall business strategy. In particular, you’ll need to ask yourself 5 critical questions:

  1. Purpose: What impact do you you want your business to have on your customers and stakeholders? If you think of growth as journey, your business purpose is the engine that powers you along that journey.
  2. Clarify your Values: What attitudes and behaviours are critical to achieving your purpose? Like a compass guides a traveler along their path, you need clear business values to guide you and your team along your growth journey.
  3. Create your Vision: What will the future look like if you’re successfully fulfilling your purpose? Which markets will you target? What products or services will you sell them? Where geographically will you sell them? What will the result be? Set a destination for your growth journey, so you know where you’re heading.
  4. Differentiate your business: How will you differentiate your business and stand out from the crowd, so you can achieve your vision? Give customers a reason to choose you over your competitors.
  5. Set Strategic objectives: What goals or objectives will you set to track your business performance as you move along your growth journey? Without metrics to measure your success, you’re flying in the dark.

If you can answer those 5 questions thoughtfully and honestly, you’ll have a rock-solid strategic foundation to fuel your growth. If you’d like more guidance on how to apply these questions to your business, try our Growth System program for free right here.

All the best,


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