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The Competitive Advantage

July 16, 2019

How to Maximize Your Time as a Seller-Doer

Does your firm subscribe to the seller-doer model for business development? That is, are there leaders and managers in your firm who, in addition to their primary roles, are also tasked with responsibility for revenue growth? If you answered ‘yes,’ then your firm is like the vast majority of others… the seller-doer model is, by far, the most popular sales structure in the MR industry among small and mid-sized firms.

Popular, yes. But also, incredibly challenging because…

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July 5, 2019

I just published my 400th blog post!

Yeah… it’s a little hard to believe, but this is the 400th blog post I’ve published since Harpeth Marketing opened its doors a little over 7 years ago. And it’s not just the blog posts… we’ve also published a dozen eBooks, numerous Tip Sheets, as well as delivered several conference presentations and a bunch of webinars.

There’s a ton of time and [some] money rolled up in all that content. Has it been worth it?

The answer is a big, unequivocal “YES!” And here’s why…

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June 25, 2019

Don’t sell to companies that can’t buy from you. Qualify your sales leads first.

Have you ever gotten deep into a sales conversation with a potential buyer – maybe even over the course of weeks or months – only to find out that they will never become a buyer? That your firm is just not the right fit with what they really need… or that they can’t afford your services?

Scenarios like that – which happen all too often – are incredibly frustrating. And a colossal waste of time!

So, what can you do? You need to qualify your sales prospects before moving forward. Here’s how…

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June 18, 2019

Why you “hate selling”… and what you can do about it.

“I hate selling!” It’s one of those phrases I hear often from seller-doers in our industry – the independent consultants, small business owners and senior executives at larger firms who have “sales” as a part of their job description, but don’t really want to be doing it.

But why is that? Why do so many non-salespeople hate selling? Their reason for the disdain of sales can likely be traced back to one (or more) of the following…

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June 11, 2019

All Clients Are Important, But Large Clients Matter More.

We like to think that all clients are important… and they are. Our goal is to do good work for all clients and deliver a high level of service to each of them… and we strive for that every day.

But the fact is… your large clients are more important than your small clients!

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June 3, 2019

Building Your Personal Reputation

A few weeks ago, I wrote a blog post about how the clients of small businesses aren’t just buying the products or services of that business, they’re buying the owner of that business, too.

If you believe in that premise, then, as a small business owner (or senior leader), you need to understand that your ‘reputation’ is a critical component in the success of your firm.

In this post, we’ll outline several different ways to help build your reputation and position yourself as someone that potential buyers will want to do business with.

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May 27, 2019

Does your sales presentation begin with…

… an ‘About Us’ section?

You know, those 3-4 (or more) PowerPoint slides about your firm – all of the great services you provide and your incredible staff back at the office. Most sales decks do. But here’s the problem with that…

The potential buyers listening to your sales presentation DON’T CARE!!

Sorry to spring it on you like that… but they really don’t! Those bleary-eyed prospects sitting around the conference table don’t care because they already know about you firm. If they didn’t, you wouldn’t be at the table in the first place.

So, skip the self-congratulatory platitudes and use your time at the head of the table to answer the one question everyone in the room is asking…

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May 22, 2019

What YOU think doesn’t really matter…

… it only matters what your clients & prospects think.

I recently stumbled across an online article from the Harvard Business Review, and though it’s several years old, its message is as true today as it ever was… maybe more so:

“Most companies are the centers of their own universes. It’s a natural enough impression; after all, the products and services they offer are on their minds 24/7. The trap is in those companies deluding themselves into thinking that they are as important to their customers as they are to themselves. This is almost never the case. This delusion interferes with understanding customers and their needs, and frequently leads companies to talk to customers in ways that seem foreign or confusing.”

The author sure hit the nail on the head with that one… that myopic perspective – that so many business leaders have – has been the cause of more business failures than virtually any other issue.

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