Going at it alone nearly always requires support. Where can I get help and advice? Where can I promote my product or services? Where can I get early sales for my start-up business? These are all valid questions, and you can find them answered among your peers.
It's About People
Ultimately a new business is about people; they can offer advice, access to opportunities, and most importantly, sales. People buy from people, and nearly every small business made their first sale to someone they knew.
People you know and trust become the ultimate ally when growing a new business. The foundation of a successful and sustainable business are very often members of Old boys' clubs, people you meet at networking events and similar occasions. People buy from people, and that will never change.
Peer to Peer Marketing: Is it a worthy tactic?
MLM programs worldwide have leveraged peers' power, but it leaves a slightly sour taste in the mouth for many. However, in a conventional business model, peer-to-peer marketing is perhaps the most important and noteworthy marketing strategy.
Social Media has toppled email marketing as the most popular tool for raising brand awareness. But neither of these is as personal as contacting someone you know directly. The key takeaway from peer-to-peer marketing is that there is an increase of 70% to 80% in the chance of a sale or positive outcome when dealing with a peer. Digital marketing strategies cannot offer this.
Peer to Peer for B2B
Social media gives Insight into the people you know, LinkedIn, especially, and to a lesser degree Facebook. This Insight tells you where they work and whether they run their own business or have a decision-making role. These are the first valuable clues to identifying your peers for those all-important B2B sales.
Some of the best-known products and companies gained their first and most loyal customers using peer-to-peer engagement. Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff went back to former colleagues to get his first sales and gain credibility, and it worked. Stewart Butterfield "begged and cajoled" friends in companies to at least try their software, and it worked.
Get into enterprise accounts
It's not what you know but who you know. This is a true statement, but using someone you know from a large company isn't always a guarantee that you will get a sale. Contacting people you know in small businesses and start-ups generally yields better results for one simple reason. Large corporations have policies and processes, and even if you know a person at the top, they have to follow the company's rules.
Smaller businesses, especially companies with less than ten employees, tend to have less red tape. However, this should not stop any entrepreneur from considering large companies. Especially if someone at the top is well known to them, a simple nudge may result in new sales.
Further Insight on your peers
Knowing someone of influence or running a small business is one thing; getting critical information about their business is another. Armed with these facts, you can speak with confidence and increase your chances of a sale.
Topic: Startup Companies