June 9, 2022

#48 - Timing and the Economy - Get ready!

Things are about to get harder. We're seeing some worrisome signs in the economy...and it's a signal that you can't choose your timing, but you can increase your chances of success. If you're prepared.

And being effective at sales is one of the best investments you can make. In this quick <8 minute chat, Brendan and Bob discuss how you should think about these ominous market forces, and some steps you can take to improve your readiness.

Things are about to get harder. We're seeing some worrisome signs in the economy...and it's a signal that you can't choose your timing, but you can increase your chances of success. If you're prepared.

And being effective at sales is one of the best investments you can make. In this quick <8 minute chat, Brendan and Bob discuss how you should think about these ominous market forces, and some steps you can take to improve your readiness.

To learn more about B2B sales and get regular updates, sales tips, templates and other resources, sign up for Brendan's newsletter here. And to purchase Sales Craft: Proven Tips, Practices and Ideas to Advance your Sales Success, click here.


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 📍 Okay. And so in this episode of Let's Chat Sales, 

Bob and I are talking about the economy and timing and how you got to think about it. 

And I think it's kind of fun.  I hope you enjoy it and let's get started.   

Okay, Bob, guess what? It is another episode of Let's Chat Sales. Yes, it is. 

And this time, for the founder crowd out there, and  really for anybody, let's talk about timing. 

And how important it is. And how much of it is  really outside of your control.

I would say timing is about 99% outside my control. 

So the thing about timing is, you can't choose it right? The market is ready when the okay. First 

Brendan, I'm sorry. Can you explain what you're talking about? Because I'm not sure everyone's tracking with us.

You and I had a little side discussion. 

Yeah. Okay. That's a good point. I like to jump in the middle. 

As a startup, when you get going, you got an idea, you get it out there. One of the things you're at the mercy of is what's the receptivity of the market.

 How ready is the market for what you do? And your timing is such a critical ingredient and  oftentimes you don't have any choice over... you come up with a great idea. 

You know, you don't, you don't have the ability necessarily to sit back and wait for the market for it.

And I mean, a good example. 

Uh, I'm not sure you could even know exactly when the market's right for us. You 

don't, until you get, oftentimes you don't know how receptive the market is because so much of it is... 

are you able to get early adopters and at what level? Right. 

And the examples that I like to use are my MySpace is just Facebook too early.

And the Palm pilot is the iPhone just too early. 

 There are people listening to this that don't even know what the Palm pilot is by the way. 

And the Newton, right? The Apple Newton. Right? Why is, was the iPhone too early? 

And by the way, about 10 times the size. So you don't know what the market is.

I worked for a company, uh, years ago that had a great idea for healthcare and engaging members using AI, but it was just too early. 

Now those things are, you know, really starting to churn, really starting to hum. You know, there are opportunities like that. 

And so That timing as a startup founder is a challenge because it is one of those ingredients.

You don't have a lot of choice. You don't even have control over oftentimes, 

But it's not a reason not to go forward. No. And market research, you're way out of timing or into timing. 

I've talked to a couple of founders over the years for like, This is really great. 

I'm going to wait two years because in two years this will happen or that will happen.

No, that's right. Like the economy right now.

Which we'll get to in a second, we'll get to that in a second. But before we get to that, I want to talk about the timing. 

So what, what can you do to overcome timing issues like  market readiness meditation. Yeah. Right. 

But in addition to that... maybe something more impactful might be sales. Again, if you're able to find early adopters.

I think one of the things as a startup founder is you want to stay a float. You want to stay viable. 

And the best way to stay viable is to find customers. So can you pivot either way? Uh, you can get funding. 

You used to you still, you still have to find customers.

I think you still have to find customers. There are companies out there that  get funded without customers for a long period of time. 

And, they're waiting out the, uh, the market hopeful, the market comes along. But the best way is if you can, if you can find early adopter customers, 

so you might have to pivot a little bit, you might have to make some concessions.

You might have to change your product structure or product offering to do that, to get customers. 

But I think it's really one of the very few things you can do to overcome the obstacle of being early to a market. 

And getting to the point about the economy...

this, this is. This is a real consideration right now, because I think the economy is poised to slow down. 

That also creates new opportunities.  I've talked to a couple of startup leaders who are like, well, 

we're going to really hold off until fall to do anything big because we think 

the economy is going to go down and, you know, I don't know about you, 

but I feel like Brendan, every day someone's either it's going up or it's going down and no one knew.

And there are opportunities and down economy, and you can change your product offering. 

You can change your pricing structure, you can do things to deal with the economy. 

Yeah, I don't know. I think this is one of those areas where I think we disagree. I, I think it's quite clear that the economy is in for a rough row.

We're in for a rough period of time ahead. And that means you have to figure out ways to compete and get customers at a time when it's going to..... the money's drying up. 

Uh, I think it's going to be a lot harder to get funded. And I think the decision-making process for purchases is going to get more stringent and more selective.

And so I think sales is probably the best thing you've got going for you. That and money management.

You know, managing your money and being effective at sales at this point in time

is going to be really, really important because I, I think it's going to get tougher. 

So it'll be interesting to see how this all plays out, but for companies that are just getting going... 

the best thing you can do is manage your costs, keep your costs down and then drive revenue. 

And the best way to drive revenue is going to be with sales. Is going to be with direct sales, especially in the B2B space. 

I think because even in a down market, to your point, you can find customers that need you.

And that can spend money. The sales cycle is probably going to be longer.  

They're going to be more selective. They may be more cost-conscious. 

Those are all things that being good at sales can overcome.

Well, and that down the economy really shakes out a lot of players in the markets.

And so if you're a good one and you've got what people are looking for, it can be a real opportunity. 

Yes. It can, especially when I still 

want people to think, oh my God, it's all coming to an end. I've got quit. And you know, 

not saying that, yeah. I'm just, I'm saying that some people were here at that way.

Oh yeah, we, yeah. Well, I guess, and 

well, over your career, you and I have experienced two or three up and down 

the county, so yeah, certainly 

if that's a minimum. Yeah. I've still been gainfully employed my whole career. 

And the mortgage rates have gone up and down and price of gas is going up and down and yeah, it has an effect, 

but it doesn't deter me from going out and doing what I do.

I don't feel, oh, gas prices are over $4. I'm not going to work. 

Yeah. And so this goes back to the point...  it's timing. These things happen. Cycles happen. 

So it's... how are you resilient  in moments like this, where the timing's not in your favor? 

In this case, I think there's warning signs and we're starting to see it.

So the point I would make is... it's an interesting time to be in the market with a product with the company. 

It's not the sort of thing you can just give up. So if you're not going to quit... what are you going to do? 

I think it's going to go back to, hone your sales skills, get more aggressive on the sales side that drives revenue.

And this is one of the things we say all the time, revenue solves a lot of problems. 

If you're generating revenue,  everything gets a little bit easier. 

I like that. That's a great way to leave it, I think. 

Yep. All right. Let's do it again. All right. 

Thanks. It was great.

See you, Bob.  

Okay. So that was another episode of Let's Chat Sales... kind of big picture this time, 

but I think important, especially given the circumstances. And so I hope you enjoyed it and 

check out this one right here. All right. I think it's, I think this is good. This is a good one. I think.