“It doesn’t matter what your age, or even what your product is, you have to get the sales process down first.”
Tanya Moss, Founder, Tanya Moss Jewelry
“You have to know how to sell to be a successful entrepreneur,” says Tanya Moss, Founder of Tanya Moss Jewelry. “It doesn’t matter what your age, or even what your product is, you have to get the sales process down first.”
Selling is being able to pitch your business, to demonstrate what makes it unique, to your audience. Whether it is a distributor for your product, a potential investor or a customer, entrepreneurs are always having to tell their story in a meaningful and compelling way to achieve success.
While studying graphic design in Mexico City, Tanya pursued her true passion of designing jewelry. But to turn those designs into actual jewelry, she needed to persuade artisans to create them. Before even graduating from school, Tanya successfully got her designs made and launched her own jewelry line. She started out selling her jewelry directly to people in their homes, similar to Avon’s distribution model. Today, Avon is a client, selling her jewelry throughout Mexico.
When Tanya shifted from direct selling to operating her own “stores within department stores”, she found that the sales techniques she had honed from door-to-door sales were critical for generating sales in the store environment, where people often tend to browse without buying. Up until the COVID crisis, Tanya had 30 stores all over Mexico.
With the pandemic, Tanya has shifted her focus to online sales. While the channel is different, Tanya has found that her sales experience from in-home and in-store distribution models has helped her maximize her ecommerce sales. Her online store has doubled in sales since the pandemic started.
“A lot of selling is about listening to the customer and helping that customer solve his or her problem,” says Tanya. “A successful sales person is able to match the product’s benefits to the customer’s needs.”
While selling is a natural ability for Tanya and something she enjoys doing, she credits retail author Harry Friedman’s book, No Thanks, I’m Just Looking: Sales Techniques for Turning Shoppers Into Buyers, for helping her to refine her sales techniques. Now, she is now using the techniques she has developed over her career to train her sales team of over 50 people.
Tanya likes to say that her most successful “sale” and hire was an ex-banker, who visited her store during his downtime, and eventually joined her team. He initially met Tanya when she was trying to sell her merchandise to a new retailer, so he witnessed her sales technique first-hand. Today, he is her husband and CEO of the company – Eduardo Stolkin, who holds an MBA from
Columbia Business School. She and her husband discovered that their skills complemented each other, and continue to do so to this day. He focuses on the financial aspects of the business while she focuses on creative design, marketing and sales.
Tanya now wants to expand into the US market. To do that, she will need to find the right partners. Selling them on the benefits of investing in her company will be just another day at the office for Tanya.
If you would like to see Tanya’s jewelry designs, check www.tanyamossjewelry.com.
(c) 2020 Emelie Smith Calbick and Betty Wong