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Do Business Owners Have Self-Imposed Barriers?

When clients come to me for small business advice, I like to watch out for self-imposed barriers – which are held thoughts or beliefs that block you from seeing an opportunity. These beliefs are in the business owner’s head.

A common example of a self-imposed barrier is when the business owner is sure he or she already knows their customers’ needs and frustrations. I often hear, “I have been in this business a long time. My customers and I know each other well. They know what I offer.”

This barrier is known as the Offerings Barrier. The business owner believes all their current customers are aware of every product or service that the business offers, but in reality the customers do not.

Are you confident all your current customers are aware of your complete business offerings?

I would like to challenge that assumption and ask you to consider whether it could be a self-limiting belief. Or more descriptively – a sales-limiting belief!

Try this: Assemble a list of each type of product or service you provide. Survey your customers to ask what products and services you provide. Then, present your business offerings from the customer’s point of view by explaining which needs or frustrations your products or services address.

After talking with as few as 5 current customers, I bet you’ll identify some unmet needs or frustrations. Educate those same loyal customers about how your services can help them, and I would be surprised if your survey didn’t convert into a sale. I have tried this on my own client base and I was surprised how few of my clients know they can turn to The Business Therapist® for small business financial help or wealth management.

In some very easy and friendly ways, small business owners could look for ways to test the assumptions about customer needs by communicating with them directly. What do you think might happen? You could learn something new about their customer’s needs and frustrations? You won’t know for sure unless you start the conversation yourself with your customers.

Lift the sales-limiting beliefs from your business mindset and open up to potential sales to these customers. Let me know how it goes.

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