3 Sweeping Changes That Will Improve a Startup’s Struggling Sales

If you don’t like the results, don’t trust the process

Joe Procopio
6 min readJul 7, 2022


image by wayhomestudio on freepik

For a young, up-and-coming startup, the sales cycle, for lack of a better word, sucks. It’s the single biggest hurdle for any new and unproven company — struggling to land those first few sales and then turning that into significant revenue and the first stages of growth.

Most of the time, the struggle is soul-crushing, the fix is drastic, and what’s more, it can only be found by turning over every rock, from first contact to final close.

Who has that kind of time? Especially in mid-flight.

Luckily, I’ve found that there are three distinct areas where you, the leader of your company, can start making some of those drastic changes.

How Do We Get Those Elusive First Customers?

This is a real question and answer from my side project, Teaching Startup, where our members (startup leaders) ask questions about building and growing their business. The answers (now hundreds of them) are published in a members-only newsletter so that all members (again, hundreds of them) can benefit. My mission is to bring expert, affordable startup advice to any startup leader, and on their own time.

This was a highly rated answer from last month, and if you all like these, I’ll publish one here every few months.

Question: I am running [an industry] tech startup. The MVP was launched a little less than 2 months back. However, to date, I have not been able to get even a single customer on board.

I have tried connecting with them, forwarding them a one-pager, sending a short video of app features, as well a brief description about the app. Still, no traction at all.

Would it be possible for you to guide me where I am going wrong? I am sure the solution I am providing is a requirement for customers because a competitor providing similar services is able to get good customers.

OK, your sales process isn’t working. Now what? Change it. Change anything and everything. There are a billion reasons why you don’t sell a product, and when it’s a new product, it’s a…



Joe Procopio

I'm a multi-exit, multi-failure entrepreneur. NLG pioneer. Building TeachingStartup.com & GROWERS. Write at Inc.com and BuiltIn.com. More at joeprocopio.com