Our first 2019 FEiST night focused on helping female entrepreneurs in small towns selling their products and services.  The goal was to give our audience insight, tools and solutions to be more confident with their sales funnel.

I remember when I left my job as a high school teacher and started working for myself, I found it really difficult to put a number value on the services I was offering.  It was even harder to sell my services.  I felt uncomfortable and regularly second guessed my value.  Due to my early days of struggling, I wanted to help other entrepreneurs find their confidence when selling.

I decided that our first night of the series would be dedicated to “How to Sell: Sales Secrets for Small Business Owners” so that we could bring experts to the table so they could share their stories and help give our audience confidence when selling.

Our sales FEiST night was a huge success because of the incredibly authentic and genuine FEiST panelists.  Entrepreneurs Stephanie Newman, Niki Hodgskiss and Melissa Eapen showed how selling does not have to be an uncomfortable and pushy process.  Instead it can be wonderfully rewarding when you do it right.

We learned how Stephanie Newman of Cheesecakery Bakery went from $0 to $104,000 selling cheesecakes in a jar in her first year and doubled by her second year.  Melissa Eapen of Improbable Escapes expanded her business six times the space by her second year and has been able to create experiences for audiences all around the world.  Niki Hodgskiss of Venture Food Trucks discussed how she saw a need in the market and pivoted from manufacturing hot dog carts to food trucks reaching sales over $250,000 USD and millions in overall sales.

Photo of Melissa Eapen of Improbable Escapes
Photo of Niki Hodgskiss of Venture Food Trucks
Photo of Stephanie Newman of Cheesecakery Bakery

We learned how these women overcame their sales struggles and individually shared their unique tools for success. What I loved most was how they related to their audience’s greatest fears and shared invaluable information on:

  • Simple tricks and tools to help overcome cold calling
  • The do’s and don’t when selling on the phone, in an email or in person
  • How to appropriately negotiate and to price your product
  • How to overcome your initial fear and close a deal fast
  • How do you stand out in a crowd selling the same product

For most of us, we fear failure.  Selling requires us to put ourselves out there.  The fear of the unknown can be daunting and debilitating for moving forward. We are so lucky to have a network of other female entrepreneurs that were here to help guide, inspire and most important celebrate entrepreneurs in our community.

A special thank you to our sponsor Kingston EcDev for supporting this evening, to our FEiST-y women for kicking off the 2019 series with a sales discussion and to everyone that joined in this incredible community dedicated to helping one another on the entrepreneurial journey.

Keep spreading your awesome,

Claire