Value Vs. Valuable

Don’t you hate wasting time and money? I know I do. You may be doing just that with some of the services or products that you consider “value adds” for your customers.

Why? What you may consider as providing more value, may not be seen as VALUABLE by your clients. Such things as newsletters – nobody reads them – or at least maybe 1% tops – and you can spend HOURS writing them, and in some cases printing and sending them.

Other companies provide consulting, or simple low cost services in a bundled package with a larger service. Many times your customers simply want what they paid for and don’t see the extras as valuable.

In some cases the extra value up sell, isn’t providing the returns they were expecting.

Another example. I am a member of a regional business organization. They up sell that new members who attend the monthly business breakfast will get a chance to introduce to the entire crowd – normally 200 -300. What ACTUALLY happened was that all the new members were asked to stand, and their names and company names were read. Then we all sat down.

What would have been VALUABLE to me was to let each of the new members intro THEMSELVES and give us each 10 seconds to tell people what we do. That would have provided REAL true value (and happier customers for simply adding 90 seconds into the agenda.)

How do you know what if you are wasting time and or money?

Do a survey to see if people are truly USING the extras, or enjoying the insights. What would they like to see more of – or less of. What are you NOT doing that they would appreciate? This is best done by a 3rd party that can provide the feedback to you – and get more honest answers from your clients.

You will never know unless you ask. It could save you from wasting valuable resources you can put towards more profitable initiatives.

Did you get some value?

I hope so, because each week I put my heart into making sure you get some amazing ideas and strategies to Rock Your Business, while creating a life you love.

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Prospecting Business Owners

Every company wants to target business owners to sell their products and services – and why not, they have many needs and disposable income. The million dollar questions are where do you find them and how do you grab their attention.

First, let’s get YOUR head straight on business owners. They are not “targets”, “prospects” or “statistics” – they’re PEOPLE – humans with emotions, families, thoughts and concerns. Their focus is building their companies, enjoying time with their families (wishing it were more) and exit strategies to enjoy the fruits of their enormous sacrifice and labor. They wake up every day with a lists of tasks to concur – and tight schedules.

What you don’t see in the description above “like (or the time) to be sold stuff”. In fact, I find it annoying as hell when approached by an attacking sales person. I instantly close down and walk the other way. Treat them as PEOPLE, respect their schedules and you will at least get a sliver of focus.

Attracting them TO you

Business owners ARE always looking for ways to improve, organize, cut costs and increase revenues. They look at technologies and innovative ways to solve new and old problems. Get what I just said – INNOVATIVE ways to solve OLD problems.

Every company has the same issues, employees, sales, conversion, cash flow, growth – what does your company do to help solve one of these pains? Moreover, what cool, new, INNOVATIVE way do you solve these problems? How do you do it differently than everyone else – in less time – more efficiently – with lower costs – or higher returns? If these differences don’t come across in less than 10 seconds – you are forgotten…to many things to do – so little time.

Moths to a light

The difference in your company and everyone else needs to be GLARING obvious. In your marketing, in your website, the way you walk and talk – and the knowledge you spread across the internet.

Business owners spend time watching videos, reading blogs and tapping feeds. They follow influential people gleaning from their expertise – and putting into action. Are you providing such knowledge? Can they find read your blog, or even better, watch your videos (my preferred choice) to learn how to do something bigger, faster, stronger?

Share your knowledge, give away some of the cow. Gasp! I can’t do that right? Yes, you can for business owners are BUSY. If you give them some insight, show them some of your tips and tricks, they will HIRE YOU to do it FOR THEM. They don’t have the time or desire to do what you do; they just want it done. So give away some of your secrets, show them what you know, provide case studies and success stories and you will draw them in like moths to a light.

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3 Smart Strategies for Networking

Shaking hands and kissing babies at networking events is a marketing staple of small and large businesses. Networking at association events, expos and mixers can be a huge source of new customers and higher sales. But why isn’t your sales Team flooded with new quality prospects? Why isn’t every event a home run?

Here’s a snippet from our Rock Your Networking – Contacts to Customers Online Course on the top 3 Tips to Crush Networking Events.

1.  See People NOT Targets and Prospects

Everyone at the event large or small has a life. They have children, pets, families and loved ones. They also are dealing with issues – whether it’s about their job, business, family, animals, politics – whatever it is they have a million things going on in their personal lives. They also have emotions – and most people BUY from people that they like REGARDLESS of price.

Many sales “pros” attend events and see the room as targets, prospects or numbers. They try to be slick and it comes across salesy and slimy – turning people off immediately. Some just hand out cards like they are passing out candy at Halloween. Trust me 99% of those cards go right in the trash.

When you stop seeing numbers and see people, you start building relationships, trust and opportunity. When people see you actually care about what THEY say, their feelings and what’s happening in their lives – they are much more open to your help.

2. Don’t Try to Sell At The Event

Raise your hand if the reason you go to networking events is that you have something to SELL. Keep your hand up if you go to networking events to BUY something.

99% of hands went down. Virtually no one goes to networking events to BUY stuff. So why is your sales team trying to sell there? Stop selling and start asking questions to build RELATIONSHIPS.

As mentioned in #1 – these are people – and If you show interest in who they are and what they do, they will tell you what they NEED.  Ask questions, find connectors that you can talk to people about. Hear an accent? Ask them where they are from? Do they have dogs, cats, children? What type of business do they have? Who are the customers they want – that you may have in your database? Make it all about them – and they will be more open to hearing more about YOU – and what you do – and what you sell.

One last tip under here: Don’t hand people large fliers or catalogs at events and expos – 95% of those end up in the trash. I joke about loving that they give me a bag at trade shows – I can take out the good free stuff and throw everything else away all at once.

3. Follow Up Follow Up Follow Up

I see so many desks and drawers with stacks and stacks of business cards – I’ve even seen a 5 gallon bucket full of cards that had been collected – and then forgotten. I’ve seen companies pull fish bowls full of cards out of containers housing their trade show display they used at LAST year’s show. Why waste hours of your life or thousands of dollars on displays if you never follow up with anyone. 95% of people Don’t Follow up.. so don’t feel bad – let’s fix it.

FOLLOW UP IS THE GENESIS OF OPPORTUNITY.

Follow up multiple times with people. Everyone is busy, they may not see your sales person’s 1st or 7th email. This is where MOST sales people fail – they send a sales letter once – which you shouldn’t do at all – and if there is no response – they never follow up again. Wasted opportunity. Connect with them on social media. Don’t be a stalker, but most people are open to connecting with nice people and other professionals. Use automated email programs and create a systematic way to send and track opens, clicks and responses.

Business owners and sales managers: If you are not tracking how your sales team is following up with people, you are losing thousands or millions in sales. Trusting your Team to do a great job at converting contacts into customers with managing that process is a huge liability and easily fixed.

Networking can be a low cost – high reward marketing strategy for small and enterprise level companies. Whether you are B2B, B2C or B2G converting your sales Team into Networking Ninjas with books full of leads, sales and referrals will multiply your sales, decrease marketing expenses and improve profits.

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