Helping you sell your business
In the 1930’s Time Magazine suggested that Elmer Wheeler was the most successful salesman in the world, a big claim, but one that had more than a grain of credibility. But can he help me sell my business?
Who is Elmer Wheeler
Perhaps Elmer’s best know saying was “Don’t sell the sausage – sell the sizzle” he knew that the secret to successful selling is not to advertise the sausage, after all the list of ingredients in the typical sausage is far from appealing, but advertise the sounds and smell of cooking a sausage. That’s how to get the juices flowing!
I would be the first to accept that this has a great deal of relevance in marketing, but how will it help sell my business? Clearly the benefits and attributes are part of promoting your business, and aspirational and exciting messages are important. Does it however have any relevance when it comes to selling your business?
When it comes to selling your business the sausage, itself, I feel is now equally crucial – if not more so – than the sizzle. In the world of social media, where sharing and storing information that influences the buying decisions and desirability of products, services, even businesses. Potential buyers are now influenced more than ever by recommendations and factual data from trusted sources, especially from new social feeds and platforms. No matter how attractive all your forms of marketing are the potential buyers can now easily validate the product or service claims across a wide selection of options. If the excitement and attraction, is not as claimed, it is now almost inevitable the review process will reveal all and is likely to result in a negative outcome.
So in this new, connected, world in which we operate how do I sell my business?
- Maximise trading profits and if possible show a rising trend over 3 years
- Improve recurring revenue – purchasers regard contracted business as more secure
- Reduce undue reliance on a small range of customers, suppliers and employees
- Establish clear processes and management responsibilities – demonstrate that the business can function without you
- Demonstrate that decisions are based on sound information and management accounts
- If necessary, initiate an annual business planning process.
- Ensure that there is clear ownership of any critical intellectual property
- Sell any non-relevant assets, such as property
- Ensure any industry/supplier accreditations are in order and up to date
- Ensure HR practices are fully compliant with current regulations
By following the checklist, and ensuring that all the actions have a proof point and can be validated you can ensure that your sausage will have a list of ingredients that will be acceptable to any potential buyer.
All you have to do now is get out there and create some sizzle!
If you would like to discuss how CMC can help you prepare for a successful sale you can arrange an informal meeting with Richard Lloyd by calling on 07973 415351.