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The Competitive Advantage

tag: strategy

March 30, 2021

Why don’t research firms conduct research on themselves?

We’ve all heard the saying that “The cobbler’s children have no shoes”… which means, in business terms, that some companies are really good at doing things for their clients, but not so good at doing those same things for themselves.

And there’s no escaping that predicament in the Market Research industry.

For the nine years we’ve been in business, we’ve worked with scores of market research firms across the U.S. and around the world… and with relatively few exceptions, none of these firms conduct any research on themselves. Specifically, they’re not doing any post-project customer satisfaction surveys.

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March 16, 2021

Your Clients Don’t Know What They Need!

Alternate title: ‘Don’t Be an Order-Taker’

I received a call from a client last week. He said he wanted to talk with me about our sales training workshops. Great! Love to do those!

In my younger days… I would have hopped on the phone call and told him everything about our workshops, all the topics we covered, key takeaways for his employees and what makes it different than any other sales training workshop in our industry. It would have been awesome… at least that’s what I would have thought back then!

But I’m not that guy anymore… I’ve learned a few things.

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March 9, 2021

The 3 Keys to Your Personal Brand

Last week, I wrote a blog post about how your company’s brand is impacted by nearly everything it does. Well guess what? The same thing applies to your personal brand, as well! And yes, just like a company, whether you want to or not, you do have a brand out in the markets you serve. And just like a company’s brand, the market will determine what yours is… that is, what they think of you when they see you or hear your name.

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March 2, 2021

What can impact your brand? Absolutely everything!

When you hear the word “brand,” what do you think of? Most people think of logos, colors, fonts… the graphical representation of a brand. But that’s not it at all.

Your brand is determined by your buyers and prospective buyers. Your brand if what they think of when they see or hear your company’s name. You don’t get to determine what your brand is. Your brand is what the marketplace says it is. Period.

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January 19, 2021

It’s a New Year… What Are You Going to Blog About?

blogHere 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!

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November 24, 2020

Generating Sales Leads is a Waste of Money… If You Don’t Follow-up

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.

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November 17, 2020

Your Sales & Marketing Focus Is All Wrong!

current clients

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.

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November 10, 2020

The Hardest Thing To Do When Selling

proof sourceWhether 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.

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