The Competitive Advantage
January 19, 2021
Here are two methods to make sure your blog posts hit the mark!
About this time each year, many firms are looking at their newly minted marketing plan and getting excited about the upcoming possibilities. Then, they look at the plan’s timeline and it reads, “Write the January blog post.” Instantly, that excitement turns to fear.
“Oh crap… what do I write about?” Don’t laugh, we’ve all been there!Continue Reading
November 24, 2020
Sales leads are the lifeblood of any growing business. In the good ‘ol days… they came from networking at a conference, meeting visitors at your trade show booth and cold calling. Today, they come from hosting webinars, leveraging LinkedIn connections and creating downloadable gated content.
But here’s the problem (today and back then)… the vast majority of those sales leads are never followed-up on. It doesn’t matter if the guilty party is a full-time sales rep or a part-time seller-doer… this is where the sales process breaks down. Happens all the time! I don’t know if it’s because the sale rep gets lazy, gets distracted or gets busy.Continue Reading
November 17, 2020
When you think about sales & marketing, what comes to mind? For most business people… it’s about acquiring new clients – about building awareness in the markets or industries they serve, then generating sales leads that lead to new business.
And that’s wrong!
The fact is, when you think about sales & marketing, your first priority – the primary focus of your strategies and planning – should be to maintain and grow your current client base.Continue Reading
November 10, 2020
Whether you’re a professional, full-time salesperson or a newly-minted seller-doer, it doesn’t take long for you to figure out that the hardest thing to do when selling is convincing a company to do business with you the very first time. That is, to acquire a brand-new client.
Think about it… first, you’re ‘stealing’ them from a competitor, one where they presumably have had a pretty good relationship for a period of time. And two, your sales pitch – by definition – is basically, “I know you’ve been working with my competitor for a long time and have a good relationship with them, but I want you to forget about that and take a chance with us… a company you have absolutely no history with!” OK, I’m exaggerating… but not by much.Continue Reading
October 20, 2020
If your firm is like 99% of all other firms, your business in 2020 is not what you thought it would be when you were planning for it a year ago.
Clients are placing a ‘hold’ on projects or canceling them altogether. Some of your clients might have gone through layoffs and are not spending a dime. Perhaps you work in a certain industry vertical that has taken a real hit this year (travel, restaurants, etc.).
And when that happens, as business leaders and managers, we are obliged to take a step back and ask, “Should we pivot and be looking outside of our core business for other opportunities?”Continue Reading
September 30, 2020
I generally empty my spam folder every day, but for some reason, I had skipped a few days… and had a mountain of emails to be deleted.
As I was looking through them and getting ready to hit the ‘delete’ button, I noticed a consistent theme across all of them. Other than a couple of “I’m a barrister in Dubai I need your help to claim $20 million,” every single one of them was a hard sales pitch: SEO services, website design, app creation and so on and so on. And most from companies I had never heard of.
Even though this was my spam folder, I think there’s still a lesson here… if you want someone to take notice of you – in an email, over the phone or in person – stop selling and start helping. Or as one of my clients likes to say, “bring value to the relationship.”Continue Reading
August 4, 2020
Hint: It’s almost never the sales rep’s fault.
There is an all-too-common occurrence among Market Research firms. It seems that when they finally summon the nerve (and resources) to hire a full-time, 100% business development professional (i.e. a ‘sales rep’), that sales rep fails (and is subsequently fired) almost every time. And pretty quickly, too. I can count on one hand the number of firms I know where there has been some level of success with this structure.
The question is, “WHY does it fail?” What is going on at all of these research firms that almost predisposes the sales rep to failure?Continue Reading
July 28, 2020
Congratulations! With the extra time you’ve had on your hands recently, you and your colleagues decided the time was right to launch a new service. Not just a small upgrade to what you’re already doing… but something entirely new. That’s terrific news.