I am not afraid to admit my shortcomings… Sales
is one of them. I had always been in a fortunate position that what my company had to offer was so good, there was no need to talk up the product, food or service. All the folks I worked for did an awesome job of figuring out their customer’s needs/wants so that my job was simply to relay the information correctly. It was easy enough that when it came to time to do it myself, I quickly realised that I have more work to do…not going to lie…it’s a struggle.
Don’t get me wrong, I have no problem working and I believe in my product. It’s just that in the last 10 years of being an entrepreneur, I have succeeded in learning a great deal about owning a business, unfortunately just not how to run a financially successful one. But all that is going to change…because there is no other option. As my swim coach used to say, “Try is a 3 letter word for Fail!” so guess that means it’s time to kick some a$$.
My first hurdle is this advertising stuff. Cruising around town, getting to know local business owners and sharing with them what I have to offer…no problem. Closing a deal. Eh. What did excite me was sharing my experience with the world, so that has now become part of my strategy. I definitely feel the need to connect with the businesses who advertise with me. The relationship should be more than a monthly check. When we both feel that our efforts have value the end result will be success. Right? That made my first round of victims pretty easy to establish.
The day went something like this…
Drive to Ocean Palm Golf Course. The family has gone to play golf here a couple of times, and loved it. I have yet to go but am actually really excited to plan our next family outing there. I have never golfed before and this will be a perfect place to learn just how hard it really is. The bonus is they have a restaurant, Back 9 Bistro, so we can feed our faces after we sweat off our booties.
I pulled in to the parking lot, gathered my materials and walked right past the guy covered in dirt and instead approached the gentleman in the AC with my spiel. Total rookie move. As a business owner I am quite often found covered in sweat and picking up trash, not parading around fancy and glamourous. The man pointed me back outside where I had to recover from my blunder and quickly make amends. The owner and I shook hands and I promptly got to the point. The conversation went fairly well however, I did not get a “sure, this sounds awesome!” response. The reasoning was very logical and I am hopeful about a future relationship. They would be a perfect addition to the Flagler Surf family. So if you looking to spend some good family quality time…go play a round of golf and I wouldn’t mind if you told them I sent ya 🙂
So I got a “No,” not a problem, on to the next one. This business is also fairly new to town and one I have been noticing a lot on Facebook. I have several friends who love this little shop and I really fancy their name “Frankie Alice’s Beachside Boutique.” They are situated on south 2nd street, just across from the Farmer’s Market. It’s a stand alone building that used to be the home to Mason Music. I walked in the door and was greeted by a very warm smile from the owner, her name is Ingrid. Immediately, I began to look around “shopping :)” and started rambling on about friend’s posts I had been seeing and how’s business…blah, blah, small talk. Then I fessed up and said my real motive was to try and sell something. Uugh, salespeople. The owner actually seemed genuinely interested and our conversation warmed up. I cruised through the rest of the store making note of items I could put on my wish list and circled back to the counter with my paper graphs, handouts and talk of business stats. My attention turned however to these beautiful handmade cork wallets that I had noticed when I first walked in. I am a large fan of cork and these little wallets are so soft and just what I had been looking for. I purchased my favorite one and ended our business meeting with an agreement to talk again. I honestly feel really positive about the whole experience. I also stayed true to something I had learned when we owned the flowershop (Barefoot Florist) and that is supporting the small business you are attempting to sell too. It doesn’t take much.
About this time I’m hungry but still motivated. Who’s my next victim…Vessel Sandwich Co., located at 213 S 2nd St, Unit 4. I love the restaurants in Flagler Beach, I am part owner of one (The Island Grille 🙂 ) and this little eatery is a great addition. I like how the place feels when you walk inside as you are greeted cheerfully by the owners and staff. This is my third visit and I already know that I want the Lavender Tea and Kale Salad (so good I want to lick the wax paper.) I decided to round out my meal with the cornmeal fried shrimp Po’ Boy, so not on my diet but I couldn’t help myself. It was calling my name. My meal was delightful and by the end of it I had rallied the voice in my head and forced myself to make an introduction. I expressed my genuine fondness for their place and wished them the best of luck…chatted quickly about the trials and tribulations of owning a restaurant and then casually mentioned if they had any interest in advertising, I had a gig on the side. That was it. Funny though a couple days later I wanted to at least drop my info off to them and ran right into Haley (owner) in the street, getting her bread delivery. I dropped the folded paper in her pocket and wished her a great day. Darn, gonna have to pay them a follow-up visit and probably get an Avo Toast to go.
Last and not in the very least is a shop that I have been dying to investigate. It is in a cool old house, nestled between the Golden Lion and Sally’s Ice Cream, stepped back from the road at 409 N Oceanshore Blvd. They have started putting art in the yard and really amped up it’s curb appeal. I was not disappointed when I finally made it through the front door. The lady who greeted me is the resident artist and partner in the store. She was really nice and chatted with me about finding Flagler Beach and getting her artistic feet wet with the Handmade Market. I perused all the goodies they had to offer being interested in many of the items, as most are reclaimed and very well priced. I passed along my company info and was making my way out when I decided to take a second look at the clothing rack. They were these awesome, one of kind, hand sewn dresses and sweaters made by the artist herself. They were so cute that I encouraged the next few people I ran into to go see them for themselves. I plan on going back very soon and hopefully the Beachside Market will come aboard as advertisers too!
So that about sums it up. Adventures in Sale-ing.
I have to say it was quite painless although it did end up costing me money instead of the latter, however I consider it an investment in my future.
And that folks is looking bright 🙂
Just want to give a big Thank You to my current advertisers:
If you need a realtor…Call Vicki!
Cheers and thanks for being here!
Ready to advertise? Check here for the need to know info 🙂