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The Competitive Advantage

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January 15, 2019

I’ve Got an Accountability Partner… and You Should, Too

One of the primary responsibilities of a business owner is ‘accountability’… to make sure our employees are doing their jobs and making progress toward company goals. We hold our project teams accountable by getting feedback from clients. We hold salespeople accountable by monitoring selling activity and – of course – tracking revenue. We hold our financial team accountable by requiring timely completion of P&Ls, balance sheets and AP/AR reports.

But who holds us – the owners – accountable?

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January 8, 2019

Marketing & Sales for ‘Old’ Business Owners, Part 5

“I don’t have the money!”

Edging out “I don’t have the time!” as the primary reason ‘old’ business owners are not actively engaged in marketing & sales is “I don’t have the money!” Or “it’s too expensive.” Or some other money-related ‘excuse’ – yes, it really is an excuse!

For these owners, I have a few thoughts…

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January 1, 2019

Marketing & Sales for ‘Old’ Business Owners, Part 4

“I don’t have the time!”

After “I don’t have the money!”, the second most common excuse I hear from ‘oldsters’ like me for not engaging in any real marketing & sales efforts is “I don’t have the time!”.

To that, I have two responses:

#1. Bullsh**! The reason you don’t “have the time” is because you’re not “making the time”… and the reason you’re not “making the time” is because it’s not a “priority” for you.

It’s that simple.

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December 22, 2018

The Top 9 Marketing & Sales Blog Posts from 2018

Over the past 6 1/2 years, we’ve published more than 350 articles in this blog… with close to 50 of them in 2018. And, not surprisingly, some enjoy much higher readership than others. So, in case you missed them earlier this year, listed below are the most widely-read blog posts from 2018. Enjoy!

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December 18, 2018

Marketing & Sales for ‘Old’ Business Owners, Part 3

“Sales doesn’t work for a company like ours.”

Or “Sales doesn’t work in our industry” or any number of other anti-sales statements. Why is it that so many “old” business owners say those kinds of things? Why is there such a bias against “sales” people?

I think their responses are driven by one of three things:

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December 11, 2018

Marketing & Sales for ‘Old’ Business Owners, Part 2

“Do I really need to be on social media?”

Spoiler alert… “Yes!” Yes, you do need to be on social media.

When I talk to oldsters (I can say that… I’m 60), their feelings about social media are generally like this: LinkedIn is just for job-hunting… Facebook is for looking at pictures of friends & family… and they don’t have any idea what Twitter is about.

Allow me to simplify and make the case for all three of them. Social media platforms are marketing channels through which you can communicate to clients and prospective clients. By doing so on a regular basis, social media allows you to build and maintain a level of awareness in the markets you serve, develop connections and engage with those buyers, and position yourself as a Subject Matter Expert or Thought Leader.

Let’s do a quick review of each of the platforms…

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December 4, 2018

Marketing & Sales for ‘Old’ Business Owners, Part 1

The first in a 5-part series on marketing & sales for ‘seasoned’ professionals.

I’m really lucky. I get to work with small business owners and managers all across the country. And many – if not most – are my contemporaries… same age range (50s-60s), same stage of life, same stage of business, etc.

And one of the obstacles I face is that these ‘old’ people (I’m 60 – so I’m allowed to say that!) have a blind spot when it comes to marketing & sales. They often don’t want to do it, don’t like to do it or don’t know how to do it. Yet, oddly, they do know that some kind of marketing & sales effort is important to their business.

It’s for this group that I’ve decided to write this blog series addressing the most common questions I hear from this ‘veteran’ group…

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November 27, 2018

Look left and right for revenue growth!

When you think about the growth of your company, 99% of the time, you think about how to increase revenue for your core business. That is, how do you sell more of the kinds of products & services you’re already selling to more of the kinds of clients you’re already selling to? And you should think like it… that is your business, after all.

But before you set in stone your growth plans for next year, you need to consider two other ways to grow your business.

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