Entrepreneurship IS NOT overnight success! The key to success is consistent and calculated effort. So far in our mission to redefine entrepreneurship we’ve spoken about the characteristics and mindsets of entrepreneurial people at the beginning of their journey, now we want to explore what it takes to build the vision.

What helped people like Gary Vaynerchuk stay consistent through almost a decade of posting videos about business & entrepreneurship before being recognised as the global success we know today and allowed Jeff Bezos to keep growing Amazon for over a decade until in 2015, it surpassed Walmart as the largest retailer in the United States.

An often underappreciated talent of entrepreneurs is salesmanship. The real talent of a saleswoman or man is their ability to find potential buyers, even more so, in today’s internet flurry. Whether it’s customers, team members or employment that you’re looking for you have to develop a sense for who’s going to buy what your selling and figure out how to sell it to them. Basically convince people of yourself and/or your idea; this usually takes a little trial and error until you get it right but it’s important to start building a pipeline early that’s to build consistency.

Jeff Bezos says, “There are two ways to extend a business. Take inventory of what you’re good at and extend out from your skills. Or determine what your customers need and work backward, even if it requires learning new skills. Kindle is an example of working backward.”

Note, in this case a business can be a person and either way, there’ll be some figuring out involved but you’ll never know what works until you start testing your ideas. Once you’ve written your ideas down and set clearly defined goals, here are some practical first steps to take.

People are everywhere, yes, including online but rather than exhaust yourself trying to get 10,000 followers on instagram or pay lots of many on a fancy marketing campaign right away, why don’t you first try figuring out where the people you’re seeking hangout (on and offline)? Start by building a database of people / companies your interested in selling to or working with. Include as much detail as you can about contact names, details, addresses and so forth (or as much as is relevant). Tip: Make a section for notes and do a bit of research; see if they might be attending any events, do they regularly tweet / post about something your interested in that you can maybe start a conversation with? You have to get tactical about finding the right people and when you do, make direct contact. Make sure you’re being clear about who your are and what you’re after, always.

“No matter what you do, your job is to tell your story.” Gary Vaynerchuk

Once you’ve done this you’re first few times you’ll immediately start to see what things have or have not been working for you. Don’t feel disheartened, this is your opportunity to do better! If you’ve managed to connect with some people, figure out how you can repeat those results and make your offering better! If you don’t start seeing results then try re-adjusting your goal or your approach. The point of building a pipeline is that you’re creating opportunities to try again and get new customers (or job offers!)

“If your customer base is aging with you, then eventually you are going to become obsolete or irrelevant. You need to be constantly figuring out who are your new customers and what are you doing to stay forever young.” – Jeff Bezos

A successful pipeline takes into account both growth and retention and is usually represented in the form of sales funnel – shown below. The funnel, simple puts into perspective the balance of finding new opportunities to grow and keeping your current customers, employees and/or employer happy.

As Gary Vaynerchuk puts it, “Without hustle, talent will only carry you so far.”

Once you start building your pipeline (ideally in an excel sheet or some kind of management system), it’s good to be aware of where along the funnel your prospects are. Segment and build a separate list for those that have taken action; remember to make existing relationships a priority too!

If you’d like to learn more about this, let us know in the comments 👇 sign up to our mailing list or write to us: info@agtgroup.co !