People do business with people


I was at a funding event recently where one speaker talked about how investors decide to invest – or not to invest.

It has very little to do with the financial forecasts, or the potential return.

It has everything to do with the people. Investors will not invest in businesses if they don’t like the people involved.

Many years ago I worked with a venture capitalist who told me they would rather invest in a great team than a great product. The great team will fix the poor product and the poor team will break the good product.

When I am advising clients who are entering into corporate transactions – buying or selling businesses – I always stress the personal aspects. You won’t sell your business to someone you don’t like, or at least get along with. You certainly won’t buy a business unless you like the people involved.

When a customer buys from you they are making an investment. That’s partly financial – they exchange money for your goods and services – but more importantly it is an investment of trust. They trust you to provide goods / services that meet their needs.

That’s part of the reason why it is so much easier to sell to a past customer than it is to sell to a new prospect. The past customer, at some point, trusted you. With a prospect you have to establish that trust. With the past customer you have only to re-kindle the relationship.

Do you have a sales and marketing mix that helps create the trust that prospects need to move forward? Do you have the testimonials from people like them? Do you have relevant case studies?

Does your sales team focus on creating the relationship?


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