The #1 Key to Business Growth: Look for Sales Opportunities EverywhereIn services firms, especially in PR and marketing, there really is no such thing as “low-hanging fruit.”

Sure, you can always find some quick opportunities to market your firm or find buyers for your services.

But you probably aren’t going to meet your sales goals with these “easy” sales alone.

And sometimes, especially in B2B sales, the “easy” sales or the can’t-miss new business opportunities are misleading.

They often turn out to be more complicated, costly, and time-consuming than they’re worth.

Stop waiting for low-hanging fruit to fall into your lap.

Instead, learn how to be a strategic sales instigator.

Create good business growth opportunities by finding the right clients who are the perfect fit for what you offer.

All it takes is honing a few of the right sales skills.

You can identify, uncover, and create good business development opportunities for your PR firm almost anywhere.

You can fuel your business growth by making a few changes to your everyday routine.

Here are a few unconventional sales skills and techniques you can use to accelerate your business growth.

Broaden Your Network

We’ve all been there.

You go to yet another networking event and you walk into the room and see all the usual suspects.

Instead of business prospects, it’s mostly competitors in your industry who are trying to find new business growth opportunities.

Instead of networking with other people in your industry, try to branch out and start networking more proactively in your customers’ industries.

For example, register to attend a trade association meeting for one of your biggest clients’ industries.

This is a great way to meet people in that industry who might need PR help.

Your industry experience is a marketing advantage when you go directly to the people in that industry who need your expertise.

Get More Out of LinkedIn

I continue to be surprised at how many business people are not using LinkedIn.

Then there are those who are not using it in the most effective way.

LinkedIn is not just about posting your resume and reconnecting with old colleagues.

It’s about joining conversations every day about vital issues that affect your industry and your clients.

This, in turn, can boost your reputation as a thought leader.

Join LinkedIn groups for your industry or your clients’ industries.

For example, my company founded a LinkedIn group about B2B sales and lead generation that attracted thousands of members.

It’s also important to share content on LinkedIn.

Yes, you might not get as big of an audience as you might on Twitter, but the people on LinkedIn are more likely to be well-connected professionals who are the right people you’re trying to reach.

Also, use LinkedIn for client research.

Before you pitch a new business opportunity, you can use LinkedIn to really dig down and figure out who you know at that company, whether they’re the right fit, and how to craft your sales pitch in a way that resonates with them.

Casual Conversations

Don’t be afraid to turn everyday encounters into sales opportunities.

That person who’s standing in line next to you at the coffee shop might have a need for PR help or might know someone who does.

PR people often tend to be outgoing, energetic, magnetic people, so use that to your advantage!

Work on your “elevator pitch” so you can quickly sum up and explain—in 30 seconds or less!—what you do and why it matters.


Upselling doesn’t have to be clumsy or aggressive.

It can be simple, easy, and elegant.

“Suggestive selling” is one of the oldest tricks in the book, and the truth is, people love it!

People like to have some additional options suggested to them as part of a sales transaction.

Think about the last time you were at a restaurant and the server offered a glass of wine or a choice of dessert with your meal.

If you’re running a PR firm, the job of upselling additional services is a bit more nuanced, but it can be done.

Just make sure you’re always looking for more opportunities to help your client.

If they need help writing news releases, maybe you can “upsell” them on an additional package of services, such as planning a conference.

Upselling professional services is especially rewarding because you’re not just selling “add-ons,” you’re ultimately deepening the business relationship by focusing on the client’s needs and working together in more complex ways.

Take Charge of Your Business Growth

There are many great opportunities to grow your business and expand your reach.

Whether you’re a solo PR practitioner or the owner of a larger PR and marketing firm, it helps to adopt a broad-minded sales mentality.

With the right attitude and the right adjustment to your routine, you can start seeing great opportunities almost everywhere—and this is how to generate big results.

Gregg Schwartz

Gregg Schwartz is the vice president of sales and marketing at Strategic Sales & Marketing, a lead-generation firm based in Connecticut. His company helps technology companies and various startups and small-to-mid-size businesses in the business-to-business sales category generate sales leads and improve their sales processes.

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