Kids learn early about the need for marketing. Whether it’s cookie or candy sales, popcorn or knick-knacks or even holiday wrapping paper and cheese balls children learn what it takes to succeed.
Many of these school or youth organization fundraisers thrive on the sale of products to help fund certain activities, programs or a needed purchase.
These same fundraisers often reward the children for their efforts by offering increasingly spectacular prizes for those children who sell the most.
Armed with this knowledge, and a determined attitude to beat the snobbiest kids in school, children canvas neighborhoods and block incoming phone calls by contacting family members to see if they would be interested in purchasing German chocolate or a can of caramel popcorn.
Millions of magazines are sold this way every year. Many companies could not exist if it weren’t for the business they are able to do with charitable organizations in fundraising efforts.
Why is it so hard for adults to remember how they were able to make sales when they were growing up? For many it suddenly seems childish and inappropriate to contact friends and family when it comes to launching a new business. The contacts that we would have considered natural in childhood suddenly seem off limits as adults.
Why should they be off limits?
Shouldn’t friends and family members be the first on your enthusiasm solicitation list for what you are doing in business? Wouldn’t those same individuals be willing to be your cheerleaders in business? Don’t they have their own sphere of influence where they could further share your business information?
Internet and business online can only be enhanced by the same advice given in schools every year, “When it comes time to sell make sure to visit with family and friends first.”
There is a bonus to making this your first priority. By being intentional about contacting your friends and family you are likely to get the best possible feedback from those who care the most for you and your business idea. While you can receive negative feedback you can also receive some very positive words of affirmation and encouragement.
Your online business is important to you so sharing it with those who care about you most can be an important step in learning what type of responses you may receive from the general public.
Some family members and friends will be very supportive and want to sign up to be your first customer. Some family members will not understand and honestly state they feel you may be wasting your time. Others may be cautiously guarded in their enthusiasm. Most who know you best will be interested in how your business develops.
All of these responses are to be expected from the general public when you develop an online business.
I think there are times that it has become harder to earn the trust of consumers because they have seen so many brick and mortar and online businesses come and go they are a bit skeptical that any new startup will last.
Be patient and give customers every reason to trust you, When you make it through your first year expect the response to be more positive from family, friends and the buying public.
Scott Lindsay is a web developer and entrepreneur. He is t