- How to Sell to Market Research Buyers, Part 3
- How to Sell to Market Research Buyers, Part 2
- How to Sell to Market Research Buyers, Part 1
- 5½ [behind-the-scenes] Marketing & Sales Activities You Need To Do in December
- Got something to say?
- Running a small firm? Who holds you accountable?
- Marketing & Sales Success Begins with a Simple Step… Thinking!
- Your Sales Forecast Doesn’t Have to be a Guessing Game!
- Lead generation is a 3-step process.
- Measuring Sales… it’s Not just about Revenue
- 7 Selling Behaviors Seller-Doers Must Employ to be Successful.
- Can you really be “all things to all people?”
- 12 Marketing & Sales Activities you Gotta STOP this Year!
- How to maximize the impact of your marketing investment.
- Revenue Growth? Try the ‘5% Challenge’… it’s Brilliant!
- Should you ever walk away from revenue?
- Get Ready for 2017 with these 6 Marketing & Sales Activities
- 20 Marketing and Sales Concepts Business Leaders Need to Know, Part 2
- 20 Marketing and Sales Concepts Business Leaders Need to Know, Part 1
- 10 Guidelines for How to Be Successful at Sales
- Strategy Before Tactics!
- 6 Marketing & Sales Lessons Learned in our First 4 Years in Business
- The Sales Presentation: Stop Reading the PowerPoint Slides and Tell Your Story
- Content Marketing not working? Eh, don’t worry about it!
- Marketing Measurement: 3 New Methods You Have to Try in 2016
- The One Thing You Must Include in Your 2016 Marketing & Sales Plan
- Not using LinkedIn? Are you kidding me?!
- Is it OK to fire a client?
- Take Charge of Your Own Success… Stop Relying on Others!
- Getting first-time clients to take a chance on you.
- 9 Ways to Build your Business During the Summer Slowdown
- The Top 10 Ways to Build Awareness
- The 13 Most Common Website Mistakes
- The Most Important Part of Exhibiting
- Content marketing isn’t a one-time thing… it’s an all-the-time thing.
- THINKING! A framework for creating better business plans in 2015.
- Not happy with your marketing & sales? Then make just one change in 2015!
- For Beginners: Should I Tweet Daily? Yes… and here’s how.
- Got your Marketing Plan for 2015? No?! Now’s a good time to start…
- How to Connect with Booth Visitors – An Exhibitor’s Worksheet
- Not getting the email results you want? Make sure you’re following these 7 email marketing guidelines.
- 10 Ways to Get Clients to Sell FOR You (and they won’t cost a dime!)
- Do you know where you’re going? Why Strategy should drive your marketing & sales.
- 11 execution tips to help you exceed client expectations
- How to Turn First-time Clients into Repeat Clients
- 15 easy, low-cost marketing and sales tactics for 2014 – Part 2
- 15 easy, low-cost marketing and sales tactics for 2014 – Part 1
- 13 Lessons for Researchers Who Don’t Want (or Like) to Sell
- Social media marketing success in 30 minutes a day
- Get it right! You can’t manage what you don’t measure.
- It’s not that complicated! A common sense approach to the marketing & sales process.
- How MR firms are blowing it with new customers: Lessons learned while secret shopping
- Management or sales… you can’t serve two masters.
- Prove it! Nine ways to convince prospects to work with you for the first time.
- Five everyday ways to grow your business
- How that ‘one great client’ could doom your firm
- Six marketing and sales mistakes MR firms make every day
- Eight proven ways to build awareness – and why you should!
- Suspects, Prospects and Clients: Is your firm focused on the right target?
- A Checklist for Conducting Your Own Marketing & Sales Audit
- Learning to play the game: What football can teach us about marketing
- Differentiating your firm in a crowded marketplace
- 25 low- or no-cost ways to grow your business
- 15 Reasons E-mail Still Matters in Sales and Marketing
- Come prepared, dress the part and follow up: 10 dos for exhibiting at MR trade shows
- No rookies, no gum and no Frisbees: 10 don’ts for exhibiting at MR trade shows
- How to see yourself as clients see you
- Marketing 101: It takes Work to make it Work
- Use the 8 Ps of Marketing when Setting Strategy
- Integrate the 4 As of Marketing into Your Planning
- Size Does Matter: 4 Approaches to Growing Your Business
- The 12 Guiding Principles of Marketing (part 2)
- The 12 Guiding Principles of Marketing (part 1)
5½ [behind-the-scenes] Marketing & Sales Activities You Need To Do in December
This is the time of year when many firms are thinking ahead to next year… creating their sales and marketing plans, establishing budgets, thinking about developing new products or services and so on. And you should be doing that – it’s critically important.
But, there are a number of other important – though not quite as ‘sexy’ – things you also need to be doing in the background so that those plans, budgets and products can have the most impact in the new year. This includes…
1) Analysis. Look back at your marketing & sales from the previous year. What worked and what didn’t? Go through all of your analytics, metrics, KPIs, CRM reports and so on to learn. For example… What kind of Subject Lines got the best email ‘open rates?’ What topics on your blog got the highest readership levels? What kinds of social media posts got the most likes, reposts or comments? What was your conversion rate for bids and were there any commonalities among the winners and losers?
Not doing much in the way of tracking your marketing & sales? Then use this month to set-up those basic tracking systems and use them throughout the coming year – so next December, you’ll be in a position to make smarter decisions.
2) Data clean-up. Having clean and complete data records in your CRM is critical for supporting your sales effort, not to mention the efficacy of your email marketing. The easiest way to do this is to export the main fields of data from your CRM – name, title, company, phone, email, address, type of firm – into an Excel file and scan it for errors, omissions, improperly formed email addresses and so on. Two items that can help:
- Pay attention to your email marketing bounce-backs. ‘Soft’ bounces are generally a temporary issue, but ‘hard’ bounces usually mean a bad email address. Follow-up to find out what the new email address is.
- Key an eye on your LinkedIn feed… as client and prospect contacts change jobs, use that information to follow-up and then update your CRM with the new job info.
3) LinkedIn. When the last time you spruced up your LinkedIn profile? Do you need a new head shot or background image? Have you added a ‘summary?’ Are all of the fields complete? Are there any videos or publications you can link to from your profile? Has it been a while since you joined any new groups (new and relevant ones are forming all the time)? Have you started publishing on your profile yet? And don’t forget about your company profile… what kind of shape is it in?
LinkedIn has this neat little tool called the “social selling index.” It shows you how you to compare to others in your industry and across your connections in your use of LinkedIn as a selling tool. To find your SSI, go to: https://www.linkedin.com/sales/ssi
4) Website. When was the last time you took a serious, objective look at your website? If it’s been more than a couple of years… it’s probably time. Your website is still the number one place that prospective clients will go to do their due diligence on your firm… so it needs to be really good.
- A sharp, modern professional design says something very positive about your firm. Not sure what’s hot in design? Just Google “2018 website design trends.”
- Your navigation needs to be “stupid simple.” Visitors should be able to find whatever they’re looking for easily and logically and with just one or two clicks.
- Make it easy to get in touch with your firm – in the way that your visitors want to get in touch (not just what’s easiest for you). Include your phone, email, an online form, fax, mailing address and, of course, all of your social media sites.
- Missing any key content? Many firms in our industry skip important sections like Our Team (always include photos), News (key happenings at your firm), Why Hire Us (how you’re different than your competitors) or a regularly updated Blog (which showcases your expertise and gives visitors a reason to keep coming back).
5) Editorial calendar. You know the drill. It’s time to write your regularly scheduled blog post, so you sit down at your computer and then… just stare at the screen! “What am I gonna write about today?” Ugh…its nerve-racking! This December, sit down and create an editorial calendar for 2018. Think about what your clients and prospects are interested in, what problems they have and how you can help them solve those problems… and write about that. Or think about trends and technologies in the Market Research industry and in the industries you serve… and write about that. Still not sure? Conduct a simple survey of your clients and prospects and ask them what kinds of topics interest them.
Once you know what you’re going to write about, it’s time to lay it out in a calendar format – what you’re going to write about when. And maybe even who, if writing is a team effort at your firm.
If you really want to do this right… next to each topic that you select, write down the 3-5 key points you’d like the reader to take away after reading the post.
5½) Get smart. Here’s a little bonus tip for December. Find some marketing & sales resources to subscribe to and read through them every day or every week. There are so many good, free ones available (this website included) that committing to reading through a few of them on a regular basis will make you much better at business development heading into 2018.
Not sure where to start? Try this… I use Google Alerts and have search results come to my inbox every morning on topics like ‘sales management,’ ‘marketing strategy’ and ‘email marketing.’ And if you commit to scanning these emails – then reading the relevant articles they link to – it’s like getting a free MBA in marketing & sales.
2018 is just around the corner. Don’t wait until the last minute to start thinking and planning for it… take charge of your marketing & sales and commit to implementing even a few small things that can have a big impact next year.