What Do You Do When There Are Zero Sales?
If you are an entrepreneur or an inventor, then you are person with a dream. The product you’re working on or the business you’re trying to launch is something that you have lived with for a long time. You have put your heart and soul into bring it to fruition. Finally, launch day arrives. You have read all the books about marketing. You have networked with every online and social media site that you could find. You have set all the gears of promotion and publicity in motion, including offering deals and discounts for your product. You get the product to market and continue to push. The day comes when your first sales figures are due. You look at the page: zero, nothing—you have not made a single sale. After all of the hard work you’ve put into creating and marketing your product, you have nothing to show for it. Not even all of the people who congratulated you on Facebook have actually bought your invention.
Facing such a reality can be grim. But it is the first test in determining the kind of business person you’re going to be. It is easy to sulk and become discouraged about your initial sales figures. Doing so may be the natural response. However, it is not a rational one. Few persons who are offering new products make a success overnight. All of the stories you’ve heard about a product or business going viral are quite misleading. They misrepresent what happens in the majority of cases.
Most new entrepreneurs attain only moderate success after very hard and prolonged effort. If you are to succeed in business, then you cannot allow your invention to go to waste. First, just because people are unwilling to buy it today does not mean they will be unwilling to buy it tomorrow. Keep tinkering and adjusting until you have something that is more marketable.
Second, you should leverage the experience and knowledge you’ve gained in developing your product. Indeed, inventing something new gives you license to brand yourself a thought leader. You should turn your experience and expertise into a second career that includes writing and speaking on the subject. Writing for online magazines and other sites is a way of building up such a portfolio. After a while, you may even be invited to speak at certain events. And you can use this experience to eventually start asking for fees. All of this can be combined and developed in a way that gives you a second career.
At the same time, you should not give up on marketing your product. The more publicity you can get for yourself the better positioned you’ll be to sell your product. Getting yourself out there and using your specialized knowledge will also enable you to tap into networks and marketing channels that you may not have known about before.
The bottom line is that you should not allow poor sales figure to get you down or encourage you to give up on your business dream.