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Novice can sell??

Hi I'm new to sales and marketing.
Through friends and their friends Ive received tons of advice and ideas on how to effectively sell a product, which after putting into practice has only left me more terrified than when I first began.(cold calling, mass email marketing with little or no interest, flyer hand-outs at traffic lights, (Its done a lot here in South Africa)

It hasnt all been bad though. Basically, I provide water dispensers and bottled water to offices, gyms, dance studios, homes etc, and currently have about 25 clients signed up and happy. Problem is the current 25 required a great deal of effort, embarrassment and time to close.

I feel I might be playing smart but not being clever!

I'd love to know what I can do to improve o my marketing strategy.

Big Thanks in advance bgwnk;

RyanC - by RyanC
What do you like and dislike most about your current marketing strategy? - by Jeff Blackwell
I like that the product promotes healthy living and doesnt cost an arm and half a leg. People understand this...right away.
What I dislike is the knocking on doors, cold phone calls and flyer hand outs..I feel its impersonal..People today dont just trust you because you're standing at their door with white teeth and eloquent words.
Since posting the thread, I have seen an increase in business through referals and one week sample offers.

Although cold calling is still done, Im experimenting with these new ideas too. thmbp2; - by RyanC
I like that the product promotes healthy living and doesnt cost an arm and half a leg. People understand this...right away.
What I dislike is the knocking on doors, cold phone calls and flyer hand outs..I feel its impersonal..People today dont just trust you because you're standing at their door with white teeth and eloquent words.
Since posting the thread, I have seen an increase in business through referals and one week sample offers.

Although cold calling is still done, Im experimenting with these new ideas too. thmbp2;
I do not believe we share the same view of "marketing strategy". I get the impression that you may be asking about how to generate new business. Is that correct? - by Jeff Blackwell
I suppose thats correct. But isnt that what marketing is ultimately aimed at? Generating new business?
I am by no means an expert..which is why I'd appreciate any insight into what you mean by 'marketing strategy'.

Like I said, i fear i may be playing smart but not being clever..(or the other way around)

Perhaps you could recommend a book written for people like me, with little or no knowledge about the difference between 'marketing' and 'lead generating'?

Regards - by RyanC
I am by no means an expert..which is why I'd appreciate any insight into what you mean by 'marketing strategy'
I found the definitions below at Wikipedia after a quick online search.

MARKETING: Marketing is defined by the American Marketing Association (AMA) as "the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large."
MARKETING STRATEGY: Marketing strategy is a method of focusing an organization's energies and resources on a course of action which can lead to increased sales and dominance of a targeted market niche.

A marketing strategy combines product development, promotion, distribution, pricing, relationship management and other elements; identifies the firm's marketing goals, and explains how they will be achieved, ideally within a stated timeframe.

Marketing strategy determines the choice of target market segments, positioning, marketing mix, and allocation of resources. It is most effective when it is an integral component of overall firm strategy, defining how the organization will successfully engage customers, prospects, and competitors in the market arena.
LEAD GENERATION: Lead generation is a marketing term that refers to the creation or generation of prospective consumer interest or inquiry into a business' products or services.

Leads can be generated for a variety of purposes - list building, e-newsletter list acquisition or for winning customers. Lead generation is generally generated through search engines, direct mail, email, or telephone.
- by Jeff Blackwell
Okay. I see the difference clearly now.

Many thanks Mr Blackwell - by RyanC
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