10 Proven Sales Strategies From Top Entrepreneurs and Startups

You want to make more sales so that your business brings in more revenue.

How do you do that?

It’s more than just deciding you want to. That kind of magic doesn’t happen on its own. It takes a dynamic sales strategy that you must develop and follow.

Good sales strategies base their success on sales principles. These principles have worked for others, too. But you need to customize them for your business as it exists now.

You have to keep up with your sales process and customer needs. What sales techniques will you use to rake in revenue?

Small businesses and B2B sales alike, you need a sales strategy to grow your company.

What is a Sales Strategy?

It’s time to get back to the basics. You can’t continue with your sales strategy without knowing what it is.

A sales strategy is your method or plan to reach your sales goals. They can overlap with your marketing strategy, too. But they vary in certain ways. That’s because there are many factors that fluctuate within your market. You have to develop your sales plan according to your company’s needs.

Here are some questions that an effective sales strategy has to answer:

  • What are the products or services you sell?
  • Who makes up your target market?
  • How do you sell your products or services?

Your sales strategy gives meaning to what you offer. It has a lot of detail so that sales management, sales reps, and your whole team have a streamlined process.

Sales strategy might look different for every business. But they all share some common factors. They have to detail your:

  • Target audience
  • Competitors
  • Market trends
  • Marketing and selling techniques

When Do You Need a Sales Strategy?

You need a sales strategy as a business, period. Otherwise, you won’t sell and generate revenue.

There are a couple of factors that play into a compelling sales strategy. That’s because there are two different types of sales strategies: inbound and outbound.

An inbound sales strategy is customer-centric. It looks at what the customer needs, their pain points and how you can help them achieve their goals. Here, a sales rep won’t harass your customer to buy something they’re not interested in. They cater to the individual customer journey instead.

Their sales pipeline analyzes customer and business data. A sales rep then uses that data for a custom-fit buying experience.

Outbound sale strategy is a more narrow approach. Companies that use these focus on themselves. They use sales tools like cold-calling instead of letting the customer come to them.

Inbound or outbound, you need a sales strategy when you:

  • Have to help your customer core achieve specific needs
  • Want to generate a higher ROI
  • Hire and retain top talent

Sales Strategy Steps From Experts

The great news is that you’re not alone. You might:

  • Have a new business
  • Need to make a big organizational change
  • Or want to target a new market with a new product or service

No matter what, we are here to help. And you have a lot of experts to base your sales strategy on. Here, we go through 10 proven sales strategies from top entrepreneurs and startups. Let their success be your success.

Set Up Your Sales Strategy1. Set Up Your Sales Strategy

We said it earlier and we’ll say it again here. You want to boost your revenue and increase profits. But your sales strategy must have a very specific goal in mind. It can’t just be “make more money” or “multiply cash flow.”

So as you set up your sales strategy, have a goal that you can track with data as it develops.

When you have a definable goal, you see whether it works or isn’t worth your time.

Take your time when you set up. Make sure that you brainstorm and blueprint the strategy. Consider where your business sits in the market right now.

Look at previous sales reports. Think of these points and measure them with last year’s reports:

  • Number of sales
  • Amount of revenue and profit from the sales
  • Customer retention vs one-and-done customers
  • Sales cycle length
  • Number of elite sales reps
  • Most frequent and profitable buyers
  • Growth opportunities

Collaborate with your staff members. Get their input as you set up your sales strategy.

2. Create Targeted Customer Profiles

Reference current customers to build your targeted customer profile. Then answer some questions:

  • Which customers generate the most revenue for your business?
  • How much do they spend per average sale?
  • What is the total amount they’ve spent with your business? 

You’ll see what they want from your products or services and if they reach those goals.

Analyze data to understand what you offer them, what product or service they prefer, and if what you offer achieves their personal goals.

Your customer profile has many benefits. It:

  • Generates high-quality leads. Once you know your current target customer, you can enhance marketing and sales strategy for potential ones
  • Gets you closer to sales goals. You’ll know how to communicate with and sell to potential customers so your sales team closes the sale
  • Boosts retention rates. Customer churn diminishes and you keep internal top talent for longer
  • Raises the number of referrals. A targeted sales funnel brings about a happy customer. Happy customers tell other people about their good experience

You can interview your current customers to identify pain points and success stories. Compile the information for comprehensive data. Use it for your targeted customer profile.

3. Focus on Market Segmentation

If you’re a startup, you might not know all the technical terms. That’s okay. We want to make your sales strategy as simple as possible for you.

Market segmentation is when you separate potential buyers into specific categories. The categories are made up of buyers who have similar customer profiles. They react to marketing strategies in the same way.

You should focus on market segmentation with your sales strategy. It allows you to create a tailored environment for your customers. They feel like you care about their needs instead of their monetary value.

Spend time with a smaller market segment. It gives you a competitive advantage. What are their pain points? How can you direct sales efforts to those pain points?

Use SWOT Analysis if Necessary

4. Use SWOT Analysis if Necessary

SWOT is an acronym that lets you identify your business’s:

  • Strengths
  • Weaknesses
  • Opportunities
  • Threats

Go through each one. Once you record your thoughts, analyze them.

How can you use your strengths to improve your weaknesses? What are your opportunities and what threats stand in their way?

Strengths and weaknesses always wax and wane. Opportunities and threats pop up on a daily. So take an honest approach. Put your finger on assets and issues alike so that your sales strategy drives success.

Strengths are anything your company does well, like:

  • Customer service
  • Teamwork
  • Sales positioning
  • Social media presence

Weaknesses are where you can improve. It includes:

  • A low budget
  • Poor team retention
  • Shoddy website design
  • Improper sales training

Opportunities are any external elements that give you a competitive edge, such as:

  • Popular demand for your products and services
  • Less rivals in your marketplace than others
  • Top talent who wants to work for you
  • A new sales tool that could increase your revenue

Threats are external risks that could hurt your company. Some examples are:

  • A global pandemic
  • Increased cost for materials you need
  • A rival company that recruits your top talent
  • New laws that affect your business

5. Listen to Your Prospects

Prospects are any potential customers that could be your next lead. How will your sales strategy work if you don’t know the ins and outs of what your prospects need?

You have to listen to them.

Your products and services can’t just have features. How do your features turn into benefits for your prospects?

First, know your customers and their goals. Research them to answer some of the following questions:

  • What do they want as a business or person?
  • How long have they been buyers or businesses themselves?
  • What stands in their way?
  • Have they succeeded in conquering those hurdles?
  • Where can they improve?
  • Are they already customers somewhere else?

They’ve probably already said what they need. You just have to listen. Check out their personal or business pages.

Listening to your prospects is a part of having a conversation with them. Don’t be one-sided when you do so. Be an active listener. Let them tell you their goals and obstacles. Address their pain points and provide solutions with your sales strategy.

6. Develop an Action Plan

An action plan is where you turn your research and ideas into a sales plan. It has to benefit your whole business. That includes the employees in your company.

As a part of your sales strategy, the action plan gives everyone a shot at success. Your sales department knows how to deliver a proper sales pitch. Your sales funnel is refined and detailed.

This is very helpful when you work with inside sales. It encourages everyone in the office environment to work together and go to each other for help.

Your action plan template is something everyone can use for a standard and streamlined selling method. It paints a big picture so your sales reps can add on their own unique selling strategies. When your action plan focuses on the big stuff, it can focus on customer success.

Create a Detailed Buyer Persona7. Create a Detailed Buyer Persona

Do you have a buyer persona? Whether you have a new product or service to market or want to up your financial gains, you need one.

A buyer persona is a made-up customer profile. It looks at your ideal customer’s characteristics. Here are some questions to answer when you create your targeted customer profile:

  • Where do they live?
  • What do they do for a living?
  • How much money do they make?
  • What is their education level?
  • Do they have a social media preference?
  • What are their hobbies?
  • Are they married or single?

Use market research to compile the data. You can create surveys or host interviews with current clients. You can also draft new buyer personas when it’s appropriate, modify them as you grow and reference old ones as you need.

8. Differentiate Your Company/Business

You know as well as we do that you work in a competitive world. You have to know why you’re different from your competitors and share that with your market.

Unique qualities are an advantage. Your competitors might not think about certain areas that your customers want.

Modern buyers know that they deserve the best products and services available. They demand the best, too. Give it to them with differentiation.

You can stand out with:

  • A positive brand image because of excellent customer service
  • Better prices than your competitors
  • Luxury goods
  • Original ideas for your products or services

Take the example of a holistic and all-natural beauty company. There are a lot of cosmetic and self-care brands. But a lot of them don’t sell clean products. Recently,  companies came out with clean beauty lines that challenge their industry rivals.

9. Be a Master Negotiator

Negotiation is a vital sales strategy. You have to negotiate to close the sale.

Some great negotiation skills include:

  • Communication
  • Patience
  • Willingness to learn and change
  • Persuasion
  • Organization and planning
  • Trustworthiness
  • Conflict management
  • Decision-making
  • Problem-solving

10. Don’t Forget to Follow Up

Were you ever a new buyer with a new company? Say you bought one of their products a while ago. Now imagine if they never followed up about your customer journey or success with the product. You probably felt like they didn’t care. You might even forget that you bought the product in the first place.

But respect their boundaries. If they say they don’t want any more follow-ups, don’t pester them.


Our experienced team at Selling Revolution focuses on marketing and sales strategies to grow your business. For tips and advice for all of your business needs, head to our blog.

Selling Revolution provides you with techniques to generate more effective leads. We also help you recruit, retain and train top talent.

We know that sales strategy can be tough and a prosperous business is tough to handle alone. So if you want to skyrocket your business to the next level with a successful sales strategy, book a call with us today.