3 Ways to Build and Grow a Successful Business in 2020 Shanda Sumpter, founder and CEO of HeartCore Business, outlines lessons to help any entrepreneur find success.

By Randy Garn

entrepreneur daily

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Maskot | Getty Images

Shanda Sumpter is the founder and CEO of HeartCore Business, a training company that gives entrepreneurs step-by-step systems to help them build successful businesses. It's all about getting founders out of the daily grind — and into a life they love.

"Going to college, working for a big corporation and climbing the ladder used to be the route to success," Sumpter says. "These days, entrepreneurs are changing the game. Stats show that people don't relate to learning from big names or four-year colleges anymore. They're more interested in a workshop to master email marketing than spending four years in school."

RELATED: The #1 Secret to Building Your Perfect Personal Brand

Sumpter speaks from experience, having transitioned from a corporate career to life as a struggling entrepreneur to, now, the CEO of a thriving, eight-figure company. How'd she do it? In part, by keeping these three invaluable and universal lessons in mind.

1. Be relatable.

"We spend way too much time trying to be perfect — creating the right content or the right product — but we forget about being relatable," Sumpter told me. "But nobody buys "perfect.' What they buy is a relatable story. When I make a video, I recall emotions of when I went through a challenging time in my life, personal situations in which I've cried many times. It gets me into the right frame of mind to be relatable. That's why so many of them have over a thousand shares almost immediately! As an entrepreneur, ask yourself this question: How do you make your story more relatable and how do you relate it to your service or product?"

RELATED: 3 Critical Sales Touch Points to Grow Your Business

2. Focus on "warm traffic."

"The truth is, you want buyers, not followers," Sumpter says. "People who are addicted to how many "likes' and followers they have on social media. We're so consumed with our posts and who commented or liked it, we've moved into wanting to be famous rather than being successful. Build your business by focusing on warm traffic: referred traffic, affiliate traffic and by building something called "buyers lists,' which you can get from others in your niche. And while I love social media, remember: You're at a huge disadvantage when your focus is on social first. Many entrepreneurs who come to me have these huge platforms, but they're not making serious money. That's why you build your business first. It's better to be successful than famous."

3. Control your business by controlling a sales department.

"Don't outsource sales," Sumpter urges. "Everybody wants to focus on marketing and being popular, and they forgot about the conversion part about being profitable. One of the things we've done right at HeartCore is to build our own call center. People always ask me where we find such great salespeople, and I tell them: from our clients and our email lists. What better place to find salespeople than from those that already have successful relationships and connections with you? If you can take someone whose life you've changed, and make them an offer where they will make incredible money and have a great experience working for you, it's a win-win. If you control your sales in-house, you won't worry about cash flow. And whenever there's a hiccup in the market, you put yourself in a great position because you control your money."

Randy Garn

Entrepreneur Leadership Network® Contributor

Investor / Entrepreneur

Randy Garn is a passionate entrepreneur, speaker, and New York Times best-selling author. He has mastered the art of customer acquisition, marketing, sales and how it relates to overall lifetime customer experience for many top experts, CEOs and influencers today. 

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

Editor's Pick

Related Topics

Business News

A Billion Dollar Startup Is Trying To Resurrect A Woolly Mammoth — And You Can Watch It Happen

Filmmakers will go behind the scenes of billion-dollar startup Colossal Biosciences, which uses genetic engineering for de-extinction projects.


SMART Goals May Be Holding You Back — Try This Effective Goal-Setting Technique Instead

Everyone suggests SMART goals, but this framework is flawed. Learn why and how to create goals properly — ones that you can actually achieve.

Business News

Woman Allegedly Fired for 'Theft' After Eating a Sandwich That Was Leftover From a Meeting

Gabriela Rodriguez worked as a cleaner at Devonshires Solicitors in London for two years.

Growing a Business

The Owners of This Texas Farmers Market Took a Big Gamble. Here's How It Paid Off Bigger Than They Dreamed.

A Texas farmers market educates customers about the importance of shopping local for a healthy lifestyle and an even healthier small business community.

Business News

A 29-Year-Old CEO Quit Microsoft To Build His Startup — And Just Scored A Deal on Shark Tank

Aabesh De tapped into a niche need during the pandemic and founded Flora, a houseplant care startup.