Why email marketing doesn’t work!

Email marketing can be a powerful tool to grow your business, however, it needs to be done with care and professionalism. In this email I discuss what you should not do when doing email marketing.

I receive emails from people (almost daily) proposing to be email marketers and website designers, and it’s pretty clear to me they don’t know what they’re doing.

Let me tell you why.

The emails always start with, “Dear Sir/Madam, I have reviewed your website and we can…”

First, my name is all over my websites. If you do not use my name you did not look at my site. Second, I have many websites. Which site did you review? Please include the website in the email. Third, because you did not use my name or reference my website, I know it’s an email template and they are sending this out to everyone with a website. Nothing professional about this email.

I delete that email.

Next, if the email captures my attention, I look at the email address. If it’s a Gmail, Outlook, Live, Yahoo or Hotmail account, I delete the email. If you don’t have a website and yet you are telling me how great you are at website design or email marketing and you do not give me the info to see if I want to talk to you, you are less than professional.

Finally, If the message is all about you and all the great things you do (Java, PHP, and all your technical jargon that I don’t understand) and you don’t speak to me in a way that makes sense to me and tell me why it is important, I’m deleting your email message.

If you send a follow-up message, please don’t assume I read your prior email. If there is no context, I will delete this email as well.

So for all those people who are sending me emails about website design, SEO, SEM, Email marketing and all kinds of great things you do, please adhere to the above and maybe you’ll get a response.

Ron Finklestein
330 990 0788
www.akris.net

 

Powerful Lessons From a Mastermind Participant

Over 10 years ago I started a Mastermind group with one other gentleman. There was one individual I wanted to get to know better but we ran in different circles. I always respected this individual and told him that. I asked him if he would be willing to join me creating a group. He agreed and suggest he bring four and I would bring four (including ourselves).

We had many missteps in launching this group and creating the process we use now. We tried being a book club. That did not work. We tried using Dan Kennedy’s marketing material for discussion. That did not work. We tried being an accountability group. That did not work because we all had enough people to hold us accountable. We tried adding women to the group and that did not work (not sure why.) I tell you this because it would have been easy to throw in the towel and quit. It required open communication to work through the start-up issues and later the issues associated with creating a high performing group.

Here is what we needed to do to make the group work: Openness to give and receive constructive feedback, a willingness to be vulnerable (not easy for 7 middle-aged men), it required a commitment from all to play all out and a flexible format that allowed each person to play at the level that made sense for them that month (forgot to mention we meet monthly from 7-9 AM.)

We did turn over several people (for a variety of reasons) and we settled on a strong core of commitment members with the youngest member being in the group four years. Four of the members are original members.

At our last meeting, I asked them to talk about their biggest learning (both good and bad) they experienced in being a part of this group. Below is a summary of their answers.

“I learning how to asked good questions, not just questions.”

“I learned to be more interested in others and make myself less interesting.”

Several people mentioned the power of using “in what ways,” instead of “how,” and how it changed the both the quality of the question as well as the quality of the answer.

One gentleman spoke of how he would ask himself, “What question would the group ask of me when I share this with them?” We are his ghost accountability partners.

Another person spoke about how, “I learned to ask deeper questions and look for the connection between how someone feels about something and how they think about something.”

The consensus about the group’s success is around 100% ownership  of an issue and acting on that ownership.

One gentleman talked about the “power of transformation through the power of intention” with acceptance (not necessarily agreement) of each other and how he create lifelong friendship with each member of the group.

Others faced personal demons and with the help of the group, confronted them. Others made major life decisions (divorce, family priority, etc) based on feedback they received.

Finally, one person talked about how it is an oasis for him to be “self-reflective, force a pause in daily life and get clear on what is really important.” This allowed for a personal reboot.

I hope you understand that getting here was not easy. Beliefs were challenged, feeling were hurt, misunderstanding occurred, and  yet the group was committed to each other.

The most powerful change agent for me has been this mastermind group. I shared things I never shared before and I was accepted for all my flaws. It is a very powerful feeling to know such  respect and love.

I learned so much because everyone is a business owner or senior manager in a larger company. Sharing business problems and getting unvarnished feedback can be hard, especially if you are the problem.

There are many good groups out there. Some are business focused, some are marketing focused, and some are a combination of both. Some focus on the under 40 crowd and some on businesses with less than $10M in revenues.

Get clear on what you want from a group and visit groups you think will help. Look closely at the group’s culture. It might be a highly effective group, just not for you.   Are their members with more experience than you (you really want that, especially if business growth is your purpose.) The range of ages in our group is early 40s to late 60s.

Last resort, create your own group. Pick people who are different from you. It makes no sense to surround yourself with people just like you; how will you grow and learn without someone who not afraid to challenge you.

May Blessing Be Upon You!

Ron Finklestein
Marketing Strategist

www.akris.net
info@akris.net

 

What do Dogs and Marketing Have in Common

What do Dogs and Marketing Have in Common –  how not to get choked

I have two good size dogs (both greater than 50 pounds.) I installed an invisible fence to give them some room to run without hurting themselves.

An invisible fence shocks (via the collar) the dogs when they get too close to the fence. It is not  a harmful shock, just enough to let them know the boundaries.

Yesterday, I wanted to take the dogs for a walk and removed their collars so they could leave the yard. Neither dog wanted to leave the yard for fear of shock. I had to carry both of them across the fence line. One on the other side both had a great time.

How does this apply to marketing?

When to comes marketing many of us wear our marketing collar. When our marketing does not work, the shock we experience is lack of results, spending money, and wasting time. The collar limits what we might try; we say to ourselves, “after all I tried that and it didn’t work” or “what if it doesn’t work and I waste all this money (time)?”

I once had a roofing client and we were planning some marketing tactics. Every  tactic I suggest his response was the same, “I tried that and it didn’t work!” After the 10th suggestion I finally said, “these tactics have worked for thousands of companies but they don’t work for you, what is the one thing they have in common?”

He thought for a moment and said, “me!”

This gentleman was never trained is marketing and he made several fundamental mistakes that, if corrected, could have a big impact on his business. But his invisible fence would not allow him to try something different. His yard was pretty small and his company was suffering.

What is your invisible fence? Is it spending money on marketing or on marketing coaching? Is it trying something you never tried before? Is it fear of failing or not knowing who to trust? What is the shock you feel: shame for failing, embarrassment for not knowing, fear of being taken advantage of or not being in control?

Marketing can be easy and fun when you know what you are doing. And it doesn’t have to cost a lot of money because you can do it yourself. It is not that hard.

Let’s remove your collar or at least provide you the opportunity to remove the collar and learn a proven  marketing system that works to generate more leads, convert more leads to customers, get customer to buy more, sell value – not price, make more money, learn how to build a website that generates leads, learn dozens of up sell, down sell and cross sell strategies that your competition does not know or use, learn how to put your follow-up on auto pilot and so much more – all at your own pace.

For a free trial go to akris.net and download your free report, The Three Biggest Lead Generation Mistakes.

May Blessing be Upon You,

Ron Finklestein
International Author, Business Coach, Speaker
info@akris.net
www.akris.net

330-990-0788

 

 

 

 

 

What does trust have to do with it?

What does trust have to do with it?

Does trust play are in business? In marketing and sales? How about operations or finance?

According to The Trust Edge by David Horsaager, you can gain faster results, develop deeper relationships and create a stronger bottom line, when people trust you.

According to Horsager, trust is defined as a confident belief in a person, product or organization.

Trust should be congruent. It asks that you do what is right, deliver what is promised, and to be the same each time.

We know trust is important. People want to work with companies and individuals they know like and trust.

If you are not trustworthy people will stop buying from you (89% according to Horsagger.)

So how do you develop trust? The simplest way is to have trust transferred from a someone to you. The reason referrals work so well is a transfer of trust. If you trust me, and I introduce you to a prospect with the expectations that you can help them, this introduction goes a long way to building trust.

Likewise, if a referral is handled poorly, that impacts trust relationship for all parties.

In what ways can you develop trust, other than a personal introduction?

Marketing messages that are consistent and meaningful to the prospect and not lying to the prospect of the sales and marketing process.

Doing what you say you are going to do when you say you will do it.

Being consistent in word and deeds is important.

Being responsive is essential.

Honesty plays a big role.

My belief is that trust is given at first but must continue to be earned.

How do you build trust with others and how would you like others to build trust with you?

 

May Blessings be upon you,

Ron Finklestein

Marketing Site is www.akris.net

Consulting site is www.businessgrowthexperience.com

 

40th Anniversary Thank You Celebration

I have never promoted a product on my blog. My intent is to provide the highest quality content. I am going to break this rule.  I am happy to announce I will be celebrating my 40th wedding anniversary this month (April 2016). I consider this accomplishment my biggest achievement and I want to celebrate my success with you. The community of business owners I know and work with have helped me, and I want to share the wealth.

As a result, I am offering a 40% discount on my Marketing Elearning System, for a very limited time.

If you just want to check out the offer without reading the entire blog go to www.akris.net and sign up for your free trial. If you like what you see, use the discount code below when you register to take advantage of this anniversary offer.

40% Discount Coupon D8E1CD70AE

Let me tell you a bit about this system and why I am excited to provide this at such great price.

I am doing this because I want to share my good fortune – no other reason.

Why do you care? Answer this question. What would you say is the biggest problem you face today as a small business owner?

What Business Owners want to know how to generate quick cash flow so they can eliminate the gap between where they are currently and where they want to go.

They want to build their business systematically, so it generates $1 million in total revenue

They MUST build their business to its maximum revenue potential.

If you had to generate a minimum of 10 brand new leads by tomorrow morning, how would you go about doing it?

Strategy Is the Key. The key to building a successful business is implementing a successful strategy for your business that drives in a boatload of highly qualified leads so you or your sales staff can convert those leads into paying customers.

The E-Learning System provide our members with the strategies they need in the top five major profit centers where businesses can make the most money.

With the Marketing Elearning system, we can help any business increase their cash flow substantially within just their first 60 to 90 days.

Business owners make money one of two ways. The first is trading time for money. The second is or selling a product or a service.

When you trade Time for Money, you have a natural cap in earning. For example, if your Total annual revenue = $75,000, $75,000 / 2080 hours (hours in a year) = $36 per hour (your hourly rate).

To go to $1,000,000 / $36 = 27,778 hours. Unfortunately, one year contains just 8736 hours total.

This is where The E-Learning System will help. It will help with the-the three things a business owner wants:

  1. To generate immediate cash flow to remove the financial burden most of them are facing
  1. To generate the maximum amount of revenue their business can produce
  1. To build their business

The Marketing E-Learning helps them achieve all 3 through

  • Assessment
  • The E-Learning Roadmap
  • The Quick Start Program

The Assessment.

The assessment is a look and where you are now, and the system structures the first page to place the most important tasks first.

The E-Learning Road

The E-Learning Road shows you the shortest route to achieving your goals.

The Quick Start Program

The Quick Start 5 Step Profit Formula walks you through how to generate more leads, convert more leads to customers, sell at a higher price and grow your profits.

Here’s how the process will help you get results.

First, you MUST create a market-dominating position.

Next, identify and understand who is your ideal client.

Then, know and understand your ideal client’s decision-making process.

Now create a compelling marketing message.

Then convey that powerful message using marketing and advertising tools the

E-Learning Weekly Series provides.

Now design or update your website, so it powerfully conveys that same message

Then create persuasion marketing using a specific marketing formula that’s proven and tested

Next, map out a sales process, your roadmap to wealth

We’ve invested more than $1 million dollars creating, developing and producing this program, and all of it’s designed to make business owners successful

We specifically designed it to give all small business owners total and complete access to every tool, resource, template, strategy, tactic and training video we’ve used over the years to help business owners worldwide to generate immediate cash flow to eliminate current financial burdens, build their business, so it reaches its maximum revenue potential reach that elusive $1 million dollar revenue goal

But, it must be “affordable” to all small business owners

Here are our costs:

  1. monthly licensing fee + IT team = $97 per member per month
  1. Weekly Group Coaching @ $495 per month (optional)

This system retails for less than $700 per month; this system offers all the tools, resources, templates, examples, strategies, tactics and Group Coaching support small business owners will ever need.

Because it is my 40th wedding anniversary, I am discounting the $97 a month fee, by 40%, to $58.20, and I will give you the group coaching at no charge as long as you are a member of the E-Learning system. This offer will not be up long so if this interest you don’t wait. To make it easy, go to www.akris.net and sign up for our free report, The 3 Biggest Lead Generation Mistakes Small Business Make. When you do, you will receive four emails that will walk you through the process, and you don’t have to spend a cent.

If you have a question, just send me an email at info@akris.net.

Please know this is not a marketing strategy to sell memberships. It is my deepest desire to share with you my success of being happily married for 40 years.

May You Be Blessed,

 

Ron Finklestein
330-990-0788

info@akris.net

ps. Because it is my 40th wedding anniversary, I am discounting the $97 a month membership fee, by 40%, to $58.20, and I will give you the group coaching at no charge (a $497 monthly value) as long as you are a member of the E-Learning system. This offer will not be up long so if this interest you don’t wait. To make it easy, go to www.akris.net and sign up for our free report, The 3 Biggest Lead Generation Mistakes Small Business Make. When you do, you will receive four emails that will walk you through the process so you can make an informed decision without spending a dime.

 

 

Why do people fail at marketing their business?

Why do people fail at marketing their business?

The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well the product or service fits him and sells itself. Peter Drucker

People fail at marketing for a variety of reasons. This list is not meant to be all-inclusive but here are the most common reasons I encounter:

  1. Never been trained in marketing
  2. Don’t understand the psychology of marketing
  3. Are not consistent in their marketing message
  4. Don’t ask for help because they don’t know who to trust
  5. Don’t want to do it for themselves
  6. Don’t know what works and do not want to spend the money

Let’s look briefly at each reason.

Never Been Trained in Marketing

Many of my clients have not been trained in marketing. They are engineers, cleaning companies, payroll specialists, merchant service providers or insurance specialist. They are experts in their field but not in communicating their value to others. The words they use reflect a lack of clarity in who they are and the value they provide. These small business owners are too close to see clearly their value. Because they are too close and cannot see themselves and their value as others see them, they talk in platitudes: many locations, peace of mind and financial security, without context.

Don’t understand the psychology of marketing

Marketing is nothing more then explaining what you do, why it is important and who should care. Always remember most people take action to avoid pain. Marketing is helping other understand how their life will be better when they buy your product, go to your restaurant, use your services.

Are not consistent in their marketing message

Marketing is about communicating your value proposition consistently. You cannot do a post on Facebook one time and expect to get results. One blog post won’t do it not will sending one postcard. It is about defining the buyers journey and walking with the prospect along the buyer’s journey.

Don’t ask for help because they don’t know who to trust

There are so many people who claim to be marketing experts that do not promote their product or service well. They love social media and expect others to see the same value. I can see why people are concerned about making a bad decision. I am appalled by some of the marketing messages that come across my desk by other marketers who want me to use their services.

Don’t want to do it for themselves

Many people know what to do and do not want to do it themselves. Dan Kennedy said it best, “do not outsource your marketing until you know what works. Otherwise, you are wasting money.” No one knows your business like you do. You may need some help with the message, strategy or tactics but you are the final decision-maker.

Don’t know what works and do not want to spend the money

There are so many choices a small business owner has when marketing his business. Ask yourself this question, “where does of my business come from today?” and do more of that. Don’t look for a social media expert, direct mail expert or SEO expert until you know where you should spend your time. After that continue to add one option until you know that works. Then consider outsourcing.

You comments are welcome!

May blessing come upon you,

Ron Finklestein

For a great system that helps you answers the questions above check out www.akris.net.

About the author. Ron Finklestein called the “Real Deal” by his clients, is the creator of the Business Growth Experience and owner of RPF GROUP INC. Finklestein is a consultant, business coach, international author, trainer and speaker. His eight business books include management and leadership, personal development, operations, marketing, and sales. His latest work: Make a Difference: From Success to Significance” was a 12-year study of 1000 successful small business owners and what they did to be successful.

 

 

 

Announcing Make Marketing Make Sense Mastermind™

Business Growth Experience Announces Make Marketing Make Sense Mastermind™

 According to SCORE, 68% of all business fail because they do not understand or value marketing!

 DON’T LET THAT HAPPEN TO YOU!

“Don’t Go It ALONE Anymore!”

 Start Generating More Leads in 90 Days or Less!

Solopreneurs, home based business owners, small business owners have been at a disadvantage, until today!

We all need advice, education, best practices, usable suggestions and accountability, just the same as owners of bigger businesses.

It is here now! The Make Marketing Make Sense Mastermind, based on the book Make a Difference: From Being Significant to Being Successful, allows participants to make better decisions and get results around your sales and marketing needs. The primary focus of this group is sales, marketing and business growth. The Make Marketing Make Sense Mastermind is dedicated to providing the best education, feedback, accountability and return on both you time and financial investment to help you create the kind of business and life you desire and deserve.

Why The Make Marketing Make Sense Mastermind?

Successful people understand that multiple minds and multiple experiences are far smarter, effective and efficient than any single mind or experience.  Simply put, better, safer decisions are made.

Who Uses The Make Marketing Make Sense Mastermind?

As a member of The Make Marketing Make Sense Mastermind, you will share your sales & marketing challenges & opportunities with other Solopreneurs. The profile of typical member includes:

  • Home based business and small business of 10 or fewer employees.
  • Focus is on increasing sales and improving marketing results through education, best practices, accountability, and feedback.
  • Test your ideas before spending money.
  • Accountability to move you forward on high return on investment activities.
  • Intelligent and objective feedback on challenges and opportunities to enable better decision
  • Want to take their business to the next level and are not sure how.

What Is In It For You to Use

 The Make Marketing Make Sense Mastermind?

By growing personally and professionally, there are seven primary benefits you can expect:

  • Education from your peers on what worked for them
  • Accountability for results
  • Great ideas to move your business forward
  • Reduced risk through better decisions
  • No competition
  • Focus on high return activities
  • Low cost of investment

How Does The Make Marketing Make Sense Mastermind?

Through a skillfully facilitated and structured format, each member of The Make Marketing Make Sense Mastermind has an opportunity to ask for and receive feedback and support on issues that are important to them and help others with issues important to them.

Why Does The Make Marketing Make Sense Mastermind Work?

As a member of The Make Marketing Make Sense Mastermind, you have the opportunity to implement successful marketing strategies and tactics that help you get the results you are desire. These strategies and tactics are proven and are well documented at www.akris.net and includes a focus on:

  • Getting more leads
  • Converting more leads to customers
  • Selling more (to both new and existing customers)
  • Selling value no price (think higher dollar value per sale)
  • Generating more profit
  • And so much more

Your NO Risk Guarantee!

Attend your first meeting at no charge or obligation. If for any reason, The Make Marketing Make Sense Mastermind is not right for you, you can stop and owe nothing. No Questions asked. It is that simple.  To learn more go to www.akris.net.

Get the Results You Deserve!

Take the first step and call to learn how you can prosper by participating in The Make Marketing Make Sense Mastermind. Call today for details.

Want Proof?

Go to http://businessgrowthexperience.com/testimonials/ to see what other members have to say!

Want to Talk to Someone?

Contact

Ron Finklestein

www.akris.net (try our free sample)

330-990-0788

ron@akris.net

How to Get RESULTS!

How to Get Results
Getting results is easy. Just take action. Most people act on the wrong things. It is about execution.

If you prefer video, I added a video link after each principle (where I have them) to make it easier. I have been a student of how successful people get results for many years. I once did an informal study of 1,000 successful small, business owners and determine they all did the same actions, all nine. This study took over seven years to fully understand the power simply changes in your thinking and behaviors can have on your success. If you read no further know the secret lies in execution.

Probably the most important concept is the first one: Enlightened Self-Interest (ESI). Enlightened Self-Interest is understanding what is in your best interest with the intent to choose and take action resulting in the highest value to the most people. When this is determined (and it can and will change) you are more effective at managing your time, energy and money by working with people who support your ESI.

How does ESI apply in your life and business?

In your family: Enlightened Self-Interest is being the best husband, father, wife, mother, etc., you can be and taking steps to grow and improve your skills were needed because it is in the best interest of your family for you to improve.

In Business: Enlightened Self-Interest is understanding your purpose for being in business and training your staff, implementing process and helping your clients understand you are there for them. When they understand you are there for them they will be there for you.

In Sales: Enlightened Self-Interest is understanding how you can enrich the lives of those you sell to so they see the value and they are will pay you for this value. We define enrich as changing your prospects opinion of you, your company, products and services so your prospects and customers know how you will help them.
Once we are clear on our ESI, you are ready to take action.

Below is a short YouTube video with Robert Schepens interviewing Ron Finklestein to help you understand both the power and simplicity of ESI.

In this video ESI is sometimes referred to as Intelligent Self-Interest.

Principe Number Two: People. We are dependent on people and is understanding that our success is dependent on how well you coach other to purposeful action (ESI).

If certain people thrive in our business, we must be disciplined in hiring the right people; people who support your ESI. By this, I mean putting the right people in the right seats and empowering them to take the right actions.

Principle Number Three: Results. If we know what to measure, we know if something is working. But, we must measure those processes that support our ESI.

Principle Number Four: Ownership. This is simple and powerful. We must own what happens otherwise we cannot change it. It is not your family holding you back, the bad economy, not enough customers or other excuses that hold us back. Usually, what holds us back is right between our ears.

Principle Number Five: Persistence. Persistence is defined as the continuation of an effect after the cause is removed. Persistence is fueled by our ESI. ESI/ISI helps us understand the interconnectedness we have with people we interact with regularly. ESI/ISI asks us to become the type of people we need to become to achieve our desired commitments. ESI/ISI asks us to take 100% ownership for what happens in our lives and helps us understand we can choose how to respond instead of reacting.

Principle Number Six: Focus. Focus is just two questions. Is what I am working on taking me closer to my ESI? If not, then why am I doing it? Do not underestimate the power of these two questions. They can be powerful in transforming your life if you apply them diligently.

Every day we need to ask ourselves if what we are doing is taking us closer to our ESI. If the action we are taking does not support our ESI, why do it. This is an example of how you can protect your time energy and money.

Principle Number Seven: Discipline. Discipline is taking the results that work and building measurable, repeatable and predictable processes give us the knowledge that all problems are handled the same way. This frees us to move to the next opportunity to grow the business.

Principle Number Eight: Ideas. When you get clear the number of ideas that you have will grow. This is both a blessing and a curse. A blessing because you will see things differently and with greater clarity. A curse because of the excitement of new ideas, you can lose focus. Be careful here. Put the ideas away for a few weeks and then if you are still excited it may be time to implement a few of them.

Principle Number Nine: Action. Taking Action is simply moving in the direction of your ESI.

All nine actions are documented in my book Make a Difference: From Being Successful to Being Significant, available on Amazon.com.

 


If you want some help implementing these concepts, please let me know.

May Blessings be Upon You,
Ron Finklestein
330-990-0788
ron@akris.net
www.akris.net

Do You Know How Much Each Client Is Worth To Your Business?

Do You Know How Much Each Client Is Worth To Your Business?

The lifetime value of each client is defined as the total gross profit that you accumulate from a customer over their lifetime of doing business with you less the acquisition cost and marketing expenses over their lifetime.

When you know this value, you also know exactly how much money you can spend to acquire a client through marketing.

Do you realize the power that gives you as a small business owner? Did you know that by knowing your customer lifetime value, you can literally dominate your market and eliminate your competition in the minds of your clients?

What you need to know…

Most business owners know intuitively that it’s much easier to make an additional sale to a current client than it is to make that first sale that acquires that client. Unfortunately, they don’t do enough to figure out how they can sell more to their existing client base.

Why you need to know this…

It’s important to understand that a client who has had an exceptional experience with your product or service is naturally going to look to you to help them fulfill their other needs with additional products. They now trust you, and are happy with the relationship they have with you. You should take advantage of their trust and make an offer for another product/service immediately after their initial purchase, and schedule frequent campaigns to offer more to your client base.

The cost to you if you fail to act…

When your customers recognize that you provide them with value, they will continue to purchase from you. But, you can’t assume they will just call you up and ask you to sell them something. You have to make the effort to ask for their order.

So are you doing that?

Do you know how to do that?

Are you aware that all of this can be put on auto-pilot, and requires no further action on your part whatsoever?

This is easy to do and in most cases… costs you nothing except a little time to set it up.

How can you learn to develop these critical skills?

We’ll show you how. We’ll help you to develop these skills quickly and easily through our E-Learning Marketing System™ Coaching Program. In fact, we want to share our expertise with you and demonstrate our expertise.

For example, how would you like to fire the clients you hate to work with… and instead, build a successful business by hand selecting the type of clients you want to work with? With the help of our E-Learning Marketing System, we can help you quickly grasp this critical business fundamental and immediately apply its power to help you build your business to record heights. Listen to this exclusive webinar and we’ll unlock our vault to this proprietary members-only information.

To help you grow your business I am offering a free video called, “Everything You Were Taught About Marketing is Wrong.” To see this video visit http://akris.net

To your success,

Ron Finklestein

330-990-0788

info@akris.net

P.S. Please remember that at any time you feel ready and qualified to move forward and acquire the professional help that can enable you to build the business of your dreams, just visit http://www.akris.net and check out our E-Learning Marketing System™. It’s helping small business owners just like you get the answers and the help they need to build the business they have always wanted.

We created the E-Learning Marketing System™ with the perfect combination of online resources, tools and support to get you out of any financial distress you’re presently experiencing… help you get laser-focused on your highest income-producing activities… and help you develop and then apply the fundamentals that build multimillion dollar businesses. Http://www.akris.net.

 

Sales Has Changed

Sales Has Changed

 

The old sales process focused on the relationship only as it concerned getting the sales. We wanted the prospect to buy at all cost. In this model the sales representative holds all the power and it was not important if the client liked and trusted you. The sales person had the knowledge and the power.

The New sales approach flips the old process upside down. This had to happened. In the old model the sales person controlled all the power and the prospect had to see the sales representative to learn what was going on. The smart sales representative understands that power has shifted to the buyer and if the buyer does not like or trust you they will not buy from you.

Here is how it is working today. The true sales professional knows his business well enough to understand who he can help. He also understands that the prospect must want help. He asks questions to discover the need and evaluates the prospects’ willingness to share. He then assesses the opportunity to see if this is the best use of his time. He may walk from this opportunity.

If the sales profession chooses to participate in the sales opportunity, he begins gathering data to gain clarity on how to best help the client. At this time, he might discover it does not make sense to continue. All though the sales process the sales professional is helping the prospect understand the rules of how the sales call(s) will progress.

After all the data is gather the sales profession will present with the intent of closing the business. The success of the presentation is dependent on how well he gathered data during the sales process. After the presentation is made and the business is closed, implementation begins.

To Your Success,

Ron Finklestein

Info@akris.net
www.businessgrowthexperience.com

P.S. Check out our free report. Everything you knew about generating leads is wrong at Http://www.akris.net

 

8 Steps to Overcoming Adversity

8 Steps to Overcoming Adversity

Before we get started let’s define adversity, what it is and where does it come from. Adversity is defined as 1. adverse fortune or fate; a condition marked by misfortune, calamity, or distress: A friend will show his or her true colors in times of adversity. 2.an adverse or unfortunate event or circumstance.

It is a fact of life you will meet many adversities in life.

Everyone has experienced adversity. We have experienced adversity in our personal lives: death of a loved one, cancer, stroke, fire, theft, losing a job, divorce, accident, severe allergies, etc. We have experience adversity in business: partner theft, uninsured claim, lawsuit, losing our biggest customer, unexpected market changes, losing a key employee, etc.

What do I know about adversity?

A fair amount. My wife had cancer, I had a brain tumor removed, I developed food allergies that made me very ill and it took years figure this out, I lost my job and I could go on. None of that is really important because everyone could add something to this list. I am no different from you.

I work with small business owners who deal with adversity all day long. Most have never been trained in sales or marketing.  As a result, they don’t understand the difference. They wonder why sales are slow and they feel like they are wasting time. I am usually the last person they call because they think it is a sign of weakness to ask for help. Many of them sacrifice their family, livelihood and personal relationships to achieve business success.

Here is what is important when dealing with adversity, either personal or business.

8 Steps in dealing with adversity:

  1. Understand adversity is necessary to your success. Embrace it and fail forward! Adversity does not pick sides.
  2. Remember the reason you started your business. Being clear on your purpose is one of the most powerful tools you can use to overcome adversity.
  3. Define results to measure success. This allows you to get selfish with your time, energy and money. Nothing great was accomplished without wise choices concerning your time, energy and money.
  4. Take ownership. Know that no one will save you, you have to it yourself.
  5. Be Persistent. Keep your purpose in mind. The energy for persistence comes from your purpose.
  6. Stay Focused on the behaviors that drive your success. Your behaviors are the only thing you have control over. Results are always in the past. Stay focused on what you can control.
  7. Be Disciplined. It has been my experience that each of us know what needs to be done and we just won’t do it. We must remember item #4 and do those things we don’t want to do or afraid to do.
  8. Ask for help. Asking for help is not a sign of weakness. It is a sign of maturity and strength. I know of no one who created success by themselves.

To Your Success,

Ron Finklestein
info@akris.net
www.akris.net
330-990-0788

If you want help overcoming your sales and marketing adversity, we are there to help. Download a free report at http://www.akris.net

Sometimes You Can’t go Back (You Think you have Time)

Sometimes You Can’t go Back (You Think you have Time)

I was working for Fred Pryor (training company) teaching a workshop on dealing with difficult people. One of the options (there are several) I suggested was leaving the situation/relationship when you felt it unsafe.

There were almost 100 people in the room and I knew I was going to get some questions about this option. I always did. A lady raised her hand to ask a variation of the question others are thinking and did not have the courage to ask: “How can you ask me to leave my family? Would you do that?”

I told her this story.

When I was 19 I knew I needed to be in college. I did not know why. I build my entire life around achieving this goal. My parents were not wealthy and did not believe in college. After all my father dropped out of school after the fourth grade and my mother dropped out in high school. My father figured I could work three jobs like he did.

I choose a different route.

I worked nights as a janitor (11 PM to 7 AM) at a local high school. I did the locker rooms, cafeteria and the main hall. Needless to say it was not pleasant work. I left work and went to school from 8-3. I would try to catch a nap in the local lounge but I was not always successful. I did this for several months and as you would expect, I was tired. I can home from school one day and my father greeted me in the kitchen with this demand, “It’s time you pay rent.” His demand was reasonable – to him. He wanted me to pay $100 a month to live at home. I was only making $400 a month. I felt it was not reasonable to spend 25% of my income for this privilege. I told him if I pay rent I can’t afford college. He simply said, “Not my problem.” I then asked what would happen if I choose not to pay him rent. He just said, “Leave.”

So I did.

Probably not my best move. Not only was I broke living pay check to pay check, I have no place to live. It made my dream of graduating from college that much more problematic. I saved, I worked, I lived in a ghetto for years and I remember waking up in the middle of the night and knocking roaches of my arm. With the help of others, I was able to eventually graduate.

Never in my wildest imagining did I consider this a lifetime decision. Apparently my father did. Like most things in my family there would be a flare-up and a few days later things would be back to normal. Not this time. He specifically asked that I not come home again for any reason. I hurt his pride (or something.) Money was very important to him. As a result of this rash decision I spend several holidays alone, until I met the special lady who became my wife. That was a very difficult time for me.

Why am I writing this?

Several reasons come to mind. As a business coach who works with clients to achieve top line growth, I hear some of the most personal and intimate details of a persons’ life. Some problems are heart wrenching: divorce, death, drug addiction, aloneness, dementia, lack of self-worth, loneliness and so much more. All reasons why nothing is getting done.

As my clients came to trust me and share their deepest concerns, I noticed they became lighter, more productive and happier after some of more intense discussion. They started focusing on what was important and they started seeing some very good results. I came to realize that I was carrying this around as baggage, ashamed of what happened and not being successful in rebuilding the relationship.

I have nothing to be ashamed of. It is a story of what happened. As with any story there is three side: what I thought happened, what he thought happened and what really happened. I finally took the risk and shared this experience with some close friends. They could not understand what the fuss was about and they did not make any judgments about how I reacted. They accepted me and pointed out the inconsistency in behaviors and beliefs and how they were holding me back. I now experienced the same sense of relief my client felt and things started rock and rolling with my business. Even the coach needs a coach.

Some incorrect beliefs helped drive my decision to leave and what I really learned is that before I could grow my business I had to deal with what was holding me back. The story above was a big building block for me, a true defining moment. I since realized to help my clients achieve their goals we needed to get the other issues out of the way first. These other issues were driving their behaviors.

It is hard to focus on growing a business when your kids are doing drugs or your mother has need for 24×7 care. Sometimes there is no easy solution excerpt giving ourselves permission to acknowledge our anger, shame, insecurities, unworthiness and other feeling that dominate our thoughts and hold us back. Those thoughts of unworthiness hold us back from accomplishing what we want. “Why try, I’ll just blow it (again!)” Once they surface they lose some of their power over you and you can ow make a choice. The choice is simple: Will I continue to let this belief hold me back?

I am working with a very successful businessman. He has a strong need to be right. This works great at work because of the competitive nature of his market. It is also a problem in creating strong personal relationships when the other person always has to be wrong. It’s almost as if his self-worth is dependent on others being wrong. As we work through these issues he is starting to thrive outside of work and his relationships at work are better and as a result he is getting more buy-in and support from his staff. Strangely his business is growing again.

I worked with a plumber who business started growing after we started working together. When business improves I always asked what was done differently to get results. When I asked him this question he is what he said, “I realized I can’t stand my wife. I would rather work than go home.” This created a whole new set of issues we needed to address.

A good friend talked about his drinking problem. Another discussed how he and his wife were only best friends. They hadn’t had sex in over 10 years. Needless to say he was not happy with that part of the relationship. Since then I have heard directly from several people that this situation is not uncommon.

Another successful client was working 80-90 hours a week. He hired me to help him get his life back. He thought if he sold more at a higher price he could spend more time at home. Unfortunately, the more he sold the more he worked. His close rate went from 50 to 80%. Yet he still did not take back his life. We determine this work ethic was the results of only having a 10 grade education. He needed to prove himself. This is an ongoing struggle for him now but he now knows about it and he is taking steps to address this.

I could go on but what I have come to realize is that most business people know what to do, they just won’t/don’t do it. You can try to teach them all the skills in the world and until the underlying beliefs that are holding them back are effective dealt with, it is very hard to make progress. Sometimes the best way (or the only way) is to acknowledge them. Sometimes that is all it takes for them to feel free enough to make a different decision. At times professional help is both needed and useful.

One client is a perfectionist and has trouble implementing because it is never right. Another always did was more than promised because he did not know how to stop – he never wanted to deal with a client’s dissatisfaction with his work. It cost him a lot of money.

Most times we cannot go back and undo or redo the problem that got us here. But we must deal with the problems these beliefs, actions, or behaviors created for us: in relationships, business, financially, emotionally and others areas.

When you understand yourself, think of how effective you will be in understand your customer or your employees. From a marketing perspective you will relate to them like no other marketer. They will know you understand their problems and when they know you understand their problems they will reach out to you as your message responds to them. It is about being authentic. People are tired of marketing messages. They want to know you understand their problems, concerns and expectations.

I ran a business mastermind for many years (sometimes I had 10 different groups going.) In these groups we dealt with marketing issues, sales problems and the resulting personal problems. I sat in a room with business people who cannot stop improving their business, even when the time investment far out weights the expected rewards. They do it because it is fun, provides the feeling of control, it is safe, etc. I spoke to others who were unable to pick up the phone and make a call. Put yourself in your customer’s shoes. Think like they do because more than likely they have the same problems you do.

The process to address these problems are easy but it takes great intestinal fortitude to be honest with yourself and a great deal of trust in people you are using as a sounding board. For many of us we have not trusted that strongly or taken that big of a risk before.

The process is simple. 1. Admit you have a problem – what you are doing is not working. 2. Tell someone you can trust what you think the problems is and what it is doing to you personally and professionally. 3. Get feedback. To get feedback you must be open to feedback. Being defensive shuts people down. 4. Ask them for support in ways that works for both parties. 5. Ask them to hold you accountable to make the necessary changes. 6. Be specific. Be realistic and 7. Don’t make excuses.

There is no need to feel embarrassed, rejected, or weak because we had to ask for help. We have been taught to accept the unacceptable; that being seen as weak, tearful, unworthiness, fear of rejection or the hundred other emotions we are taught not share because they make us feel uncomfortable.

Expect false starts. Think of it as peeling back the layers of an onion – there is another layer to peel back. It is the same in business, whether it is sales, marketing or operations. Think of it as failing forward.

The older I get the more I realize what holds us back in business, life, and our relationships is our own head trash, our belief we are not good enough, rich enough, smart enough or any other not enoughness that you allow to control your life. You can’t go back to the source where the problem started but you can make a choice that you will not let your success be driven by fear or what others think. Remember, you don’t have time. If you choose not to do this work the very beliefs that served you so well when you were younger are the same beliefs that prevent you from achieving your goal now. Fail forward now!

It is hard – hell yes.

Is it worth it – hell yes.

Think of the relationships you will build; the friendships you will forge.

Think of the results you will achieve by becoming the type of person that achieves goals – making you a better father and/or husband (wife and/or mother/son or daughter) to others who are not directly involved.

Think of how good it will feel knowing you trusted someone with such real issues and they did not reject you, criticize or make you feel bad because you are human. You will learn how to respond when people come to you with tough issues.

Think of how your life will be different as you model the behaviors you want others to learn; the congruency in your thoughts with your actions will make living life much easier and less stressful.

The trouble is you think you have time. You don’t. Time is short and you can’t go back. He is my truth. I could not do this myself and I don’t think you can. Start now and make the changes that are necessary.

If you want to learn more on how to market your business differently, check this out http://www.akris.net and let me know how I can help.

To Your Success,

Ron Finklestein
330-990-0788
ron@akris.net
www.akris.net

How Do You Create Marketing That Really Works?

How Do You Create Marketing That Really Works?

You need revenue, and you need it fast. You spend all night writing an ad that beautifully describes your product or service. You include the fact that you’re convenient, have the lowest prices, the highest quality and have been in business since 1431 B.C.

You pay a small fortune to have the ad placed in your local newspaper, radio and TV. And what happens? The phone never rings… not even once. Why?

What you need to know…

Every business owner has experienced the frustration of spending hard earned marketing dollars and failing to generate any interest or response. That’s because you focused on the wrong things in your ad.

Don’t take this the wrong way, but your prospects don’t care about you in the least. They don’t care what the name of your business is or how many years you’ve been at your current location. They don’t care what products or services you offer, or how conveniently located you are. They only care about one thing…

What’s In It For Me! That’s it. Remember those 5 little words, and learn how to use them in your marketing. If you do, you will forever separate your business from your competition, and even eliminate them from the minds of your prospects.

Why you need to know this…

Most business owners today have no clue how to create a compelling ad that attracts prospects to their business. They create ads that are full of platitudes such as convenient location, low price, and the all too familiar “menu” of products and services they offer.

If that describes your current marketing, then you will never build the business you want. You will never attract your ideal clients that will make you the most money. In fact, you will be very lucky just to survive.

The cost to you if you fail to act…

Do you know how to create compelling marketing that actually makes money?

Do you know how to attract clients when you need them?

Did you know there is a “marketing equation” that when followed, takes the guesswork out of your marketing completely?

Do you consistently “invest” in marketing… and feel confident you will always see a positive “return on investment?”

If you answer no to any of these, you’re leaving money on the table. You’re losing market share to your competition every single day, and you’re working harder and longer than you should be? How much longer can you afford to continue to invest in marketing that doesn’t work? How can you survive if you DON’T invest in marketing?

We know and understand marketing. We recently wrote one single email for a doctor that generated more than $20,000 in just 10 days. We can teach you the exact same thing.

Learn these critical skills and you will position your business light years ahead of your competition, To learn more visit http://www.akris.net.

Then sign up for our report, The Three Biggest Lead Generation Mistakes Small Business Make and How to Overcome Them All.

To your success,

Ron Finklestein

330-990-0788
ron@akris.net
www.akris.net

P.S. Please remember that at any time you feel ready and qualified to move forward and acquire the professional help that can enable you to build the business of your dreams, just drop me a note. I love helping small business owners just like you get the answers and the help they need to build the business they have always wanted.

 

Five Steps to Grow any Business!

Five Triggers to Transform Your Business

Growing a business is simple when you understand the five trigger that impact growth and profitability.

The five triggers are:

  • Lead Generation: How many leads are we getting?
  • Lead Conversion: The number of leads that convert to customers.
  • Number of Transactions: The number of times a customer buys from you.
  • Average Dollar Value: This is average sale price.
  • Profit Margin: This is the profit I make on each sale.

So we are on the same page let me define marketing. Marketing is simply moving the buyer through the buyers’ journey to achieve specific sales and marketing goals. In our five step (triggers) process, when followed, you’re going to achieve your business goals and reduce the stress associated with growing a business. Going forward I am going to talk about the five triggers as a process I call the five-step process.

The five-step process is a way of doing business.

The five-part formula is so effective because it touches on each and every area of your business. It will improve, increase, generate and sharpen and strengthen everything that you and your employees do.

Once you complete a step, you’ll never go back to your old way of doing things again. This is a program for positive change and powerful results. The change is long lasting and the results are far reaching.

Choosing to begin the five-step process will have an impact on every area of your business:

Lead Generation Conversion Rates Number of Transactions Average Dollar Sale Profit Margins
Any strategy you use to get people to call or walk through the door. Any strategy you use to get people to BUY from you. Any strategy you use to get existing customers to buy from you more often, or stay loyal to your business. Any strategy you use to get customers to spend more money in a single transaction. Any strategy you use to maximize the percentage of the cost of each product/service that is profit.

Let’s get used to working with the basic formula that the five-step process is based on. You’ll want to post this formula somewhere visible, where you can see it on a regular basis.

# of Leads X % Conversion Rate = # of Customers

 

# of customers X # of Transactions X Average Dollar Sale = Revenue

 

Revenue X % Margin = $ Profit

As you can see, each of the shaded lines is a factor that influences the bottom line – your profit. Each of the shaded lines is a step in the five-step process. You will work on each line sequentially, and the impact on your profit will build over time.

A nominal 10% increase in each of the five factors would look like this:

Starting Point Goals (10% Increase)
Leads 4,500 Leads 4,950
Conversion Rate 30% Conversion Rate 33%
Customers 1350 Customers 1633.5
Transactions 1.3 Transactions 1.43
Average Dollar Sale $140 Average Dollar Sale $154
Revenue $245,700 Revenue $359,729.37
Margins 24% Margins 26.4%
Profit $58,968 Profit $94,968.55

If you don’t know, take a guess. The point here is to understand how little increases will have big impacts on your bottom line profits. We’ll show you how to start tracking your results at the beginning of each step in the program.

Starting Point Goals (10% Increase)
Leads (#) Leads
Conversion Rate (%) Conversion Rate
Customers (#) Customers
Transactions (#) Transactions
Average Dollar Sale ($) Average Dollar Sale
Revenue ($) Revenue
Margins (%) Margins
Profit ($) Profit

 

Starting Point Goals (20% Increase)
Leads (#) Leads
Conversion Rate (%) Conversion Rate
Customers (#) Customers
Transactions (#) Transactions
Average Dollar Sale ($) Average Dollar Sale
Revenue ($) Revenue
Margins (%) Margins
Profit ($) Profit

 

Starting Point Goals (50% Increase)
Leads (#) Leads
Conversion Rate (%) Conversion Rate
Customers (#) Customers
Transactions (#) Transactions
Average Dollar Sale ($) Average Dollar Sale
Revenue ($) Revenue
Margins (%) Margins
Profit ($) Profit

Step One / Lead Generation: How can you get more people to walk through your door, pick up the phone, and/or visit your website?

Your leads are your prospects or potential customers. They are people who have taken action in response to your ad or promotion, and have shown interest in your product or service, but have not become a customer because they haven’t purchased yet.

Lead generation is important because you can’t increase the number of customers you have. This is because customers are the by-product of two things:

# LEADS X % CONVERSION RATE = # of Customers

This means that you have to generate more leads and get more of those leads to make purchases in order to increase your customer base. Note; this is a very important step because your ‘cost of client acquisition’ (price you pay to acquire a new client) is the most expensive function of your business. Yours, ours and every business on the planet btw…

So lead generation is about finding ways to reach the people who need or want what you have to offer and getting them to act – to pick up the phone, visit your website or walk into your business. This is what the majority of marketing strategies are trying to do.

Step Two / Conversion Rate: How can you get the people who walk through your door, pick up the phone, and visit your website to BUY something?

Conversions are the second factor in the customer equation. A conversion rate is simply our leads divided by our number of transactions in a specific time period.

# TRANSACTIONS / # LEADS = % Conversion Rate

This is a key focus of your business and your staff’s time. After all, why spend time and money attracting tons of qualified leads if you can’t make them buy when they’re in the store? We call this “confusing being busy… with being successful!” Don’t let it happen to you.

Several aspects of your organization impact your conversion rate:

  • Your business image and the first impression customers have of you/your business
  • The strength and effectiveness of your sales team
  • Your sales process and staff training and development programs
  • The strength of your sales scripts (Do you want fries with that?)
  • The level of purchase risk involved in your product or service

Step Three / Transactions: How can you get your customers to buy from you MORE than ONCE?

The process of attracting and converting a customer is one that costs you money. Customers cost you money. They’re an investment that you need to make the most of to stretch your lead generation dollars.

You can reduce the cost of your customer by increasing the number of times that they purchase from you. This increases the total number of transactions in your business and the amount of money that flows in.

So instead of continuously chasing down leads and converting them to customers, increasing transactions is about keeping our existing customers loyal and coming back to spend money.

Step Four / Average Sale: How can you get your customers to buy MORE from you each time they buy?

Your total revenue is the product of how many customers you have, how many times they purchase from you, and how much they spend.

# CUSTOMERS X # TRANSACTIONS X $ AVERAGE SALE = $ Revenue

Increasing the average amount of money customers spend with you is the final way you can increase the amount of money that comes into your business. It’s amazing how small increases in this value can have big impacts on your revenue. If I were to come into your business tomorrow and you IMMEDIATELY needed to increase profits – this is the first place I would look and the easiest area to make a large improvement in your profits.

You’ll have to show your customer that they needed or want more than what they purchased. The amount that you are able to increase will depend on the type of business you are in – it’s easier to sell gel pens than an additional dishwasher – but generally every business can find opportunities to increase this figure. There are many ways to accomplish this.

Step Five / Margins: How can you make more profit off each product and service you sell?

The last opportunity you have to influence your profit is your profit margin. Your total revenue times your margin as a percentage equals your total profit.

$ REVENUE X % PROFIT MARGIN = $ Profit

Essentially, your goal here is to make your profit margin as high as possible. As the final factor in the profit calculation, increasing your margin is a vital step towards maximizing your profits.

If your margins are too low, you’ll never make any money – regardless of how many customers you have, how often they buy from you, or how much they spend. Your revenue will perpetually go back into your business and be spent on costs.

There are three ways to maximize your margins:

  1. Increase prices
  2. Cut operating and product/service costs (operating costs include rent, leases, salaries, commissions, and office supplies)
  3. Increase gross profit margins (gross profit is revenues minus labor, materials and overhead related to the product/service)

Alarmingly, many business owners do not genuinely know their weekly/monthly/annual profit – you need to go into the business of generating a profit (this will be a paradigm shift for many – it is not about greed, it is about looking after those you care about. The more money you make, the more you can provide for your family, charity, your church etc…) and work towards increasing that profit each and every day, week, month and year.

Now that you have a good grasp on how the five-step formula works, and an idea of the marketing strategies you’ll learn to work with, take a few moments and set yourself up for success.

If this is of interest you can go to www.akris.net and learn more. We have a complete system to walk you through this process at your own pace. Optional coaching is available if you want help and accountability.

The best way to get started is to start paying attention to your current numbers and tracking systems.

Now that you have an idea of what factors and figures you’ll be working to increase, start paying attention to what those numbers look like now. If you have tracking systems in place, run some reports and get an understanding of your current situation. Think about these questions:

  • where do your customers come from?
  • what marketing campaigns work the best?
  • what lead generation strategies work the best?
  • how many of your customers buy from you?
  • how often do they buy from you?
  • how much do they buy from you?
  • what do your existing profit margins look like?
  • what percentage of your items are high margin, and which are low?

Now that you have an idea of where your business is going, let’s start mapping out how you’re going to get there. Contact me if you have any questions.

Congrats for tuning in,

330-990-0788
ron@akris.net
Check out my credibility: http://businessgrowthexperience.com/testimonials/
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The Three Biggest Mistakes Small Business Make When Marketing Their Business…And How To Avoid Them All

The Three Biggest Mistakes Small Business Make When Marketing Their Business…And How To Avoid Them All

It  has been a while since I wrote anything significant. There is a good reason. I have spent the last six months implementing a elearning systems to help any small business get unlimited leads, at no cost for marketing. This article will explain how to do that. I’m going to reveal to you the three biggest mistakes small business make… and show you how you can overcome them all.

Here are the three mistakes. Mistake #1… they fail to get professional help.   Mistake #2… they don’t know the fundamentals required to successfully market their business and attract as many new clients as their business can handle.  And mistake #3… they have no idea how to use their marketing to generate immediate cash flow. Let’s explore these three in depth, and show you how you can easily and systematically overcome them all.

Mistake #1… small business fail to get professional help.  Can you name me just one professional athlete who does NOT have a coach? There aren’t any. Tiger Woods has 9 coaches guiding him in everything from his golf game to his financial investments.  But do small business owners really need professional help? Remember the TV ads we previously discussed? Those ads are created by “professionals.” Unfortunately, those professionals have no clue what they’re doing.  Everything they’re doing in marketing and advertising today is wrong! But let me prove that to you right now.

If you currently use any form of marketing such as a print ad, brochure, postcard, flyer… or for that matter… your company website, take it out and look at it carefully.  And if you don’t have any form of marketing right now, stop this presentation for a few minutes and take out a sheet of paper and sketch out what you think would make for an effective ad for your new business.  It doesn’t have to be anything formal or fancy…  just create a basic outline of the ad and where you would locate the various elements on the page.

Now that you have your ad… or a mock up of your ad sitting in front of you, let me provide you with the little known secrets that produce more leads than your business can handle.  99% of all marketing professionals DON’T know the lead generation secrets I’m about to reveal to you.  This information is so powerful and compelling, it will position you in the top 1% of all lead generation professionals today.  This example will show you why every small business start-up should acquire our step-by-step roadmap as they start to generate leads for their new business.

Here’s what a true marketing professional will know… and help you implement into your marketing.  It’s known as the “marketing equation.” Our marketing equation will make sure you NEVER have to compete on price.  Instead, you will start selling your product or service for what it’s really worth the moment you open your doors for business.  You’ll drive in more leads  than your more established competition… and increase your initial advertising response by 10 to more than 100 times.   You will convert a higher percentage of those leads and dramatically increase your number of sales.  You will get a bigger bang for your marketing buck.  The bottom line is this…  you will literally create a profit faucet that you will have TOTAL control over.

But first, you MUST understand what marketing is supposed to do. Its purpose is actually three fold.  Its first job is to capture the attention of your target market.  Second, it must give them the hope that reading or listening to your marketing will give them enough information to help them make the best decision possible when buying whatever you sell. In other words, train and teach them how to recognize the true value of your product or service… and conclude that you… and you alone… offer the best value versus your competition.  Marketing’s third job is to lower the risk of taking the next step in the buying process… and if necessary… continue to educate the prospect regarding the value you offer.

Marketing that accomplishes these three objectives will result in your prospects and customers coming to one single conclusion…  that they would have to be an absolute fool to do business with anyone else but you, regardless of price. It’s estimated that as many as 96% of all small business start-ups fail within their first 5 years. The main reason for this tremendously high failure rate has to do with the lack of expertise when it comes to generating leads and making your phone ring.

Most small business start-ups don’t know anything about those three things we just discussed that marketing is supposed to do. But there’s also an additional problem to consider.  Most start-ups use a tactical marketing approach instead of a strategic approach. Let me explain.

Running an ad in the local newspaper… sending out an email or direct mail letter… airing a radio or TV ad on a local media station are all examples of tactical marketing. Now don’t get me wrong… the newspaper, radio or direct mail can be successful marketing channels… IF you’re marketing message is powerful and compelling. But that’s the problem… the message is the strategic side of marketing… and yet, it’s the most neglected.

This distinction between strategic and tactical marketing is huge and one you need to be acutely aware of anytime you start talking about generating more leads.  Many start-up businesses mistakenly assume that when you talk about lead generation, you’re automatically talking about tactical lead generation…  placing ads, sending out mailers, joining a networking group, attending tradeshows, implementing a prospect follow up system and so on.

They fail to realize that the strategic side of the coin, what you say in your marketing and how you say it is almost always more important than the marketing medium where you say it. If you fail to make this distinction, then you risk becoming jaded towards certain forms of marketing and advertising that should be a part of your tactical plan, but you eliminate them from consideration because they haven’t worked for you in the past.

When lead generation results are less than optimal, small business start-ups tend to almost always blame the marketing medium… like the newspaper the ad ran in or the postcards they sent out. They blame the tactical part of the plan… without any regard for how good or how bad the strategic messaging in that marketing piece was. New business owners often say things like, “we tried radio and it doesn’t work for our kind of business,” or “we sent out 50,000 pieces of direct mail and only generated 3 orders. It just doesn’t work.”

Just because it didn’t work, don’t assume that it won’t work. Most new business owners don’t have the evaluation skills or the know-how to judge whether poor marketing results from poor strategy or poor tactical execution. This is where our step-by-step roadmap can generate more leads than your new business can handle.

For example, most start-up businesses rely heavily on platitudes in their marketing. They say things like…  we have the lowest prices…  the best service…  we’re family owned and operated…  we offer convenient hours…  and the best value. Look at your own marketing that I asked you about earlier. How many platitudes did you use in your own marketing?

By the way, this is NOT your fault. Most, if not all small business owners have been conditioned to think this is the proper way to market their businesses… since most advertising follows this same pathetic marketing formula… including the Fortune 500 types.

As human beings, we’re all after just one thing when we buy something… the best deal!  Unfortunately, when you use platitudes in your marketing, there’s absolutely no way to tell who is actually offering the best deal. Everyone says they have the lowest prices, the highest quality and the best rates. So who do you believe? There’s only one way to know… and that’s to research every single business that offers what you want to buy. How many of us have the time or patience to do that?

So most of us just automatically assume that everyone is pretty much the same, and therefore we default to calling on the business that offers us the lowest price.  When you can’t communicate the true value your business offers, you’re doomed to forever compete on price.  Our marketing equation will change all of that for you forever. It’s going to be the backbone of your strategic marketing plan right out of the gate. It’s the foundation on which everything else we build for you is based. Let me give you a quick overview and then spend some time going through it with you in detail.

Our marketing equation has four main components.  First, we must interrupt your prospect. We must get your qualified prospect to pay attention to your lead generation marketing. Simple enough to say, but a lot more difficult to pull off in real life unless you understand what you’re about to learn here.  The interrupt is done through your headline if your marketing is in print… or it’s the first thing you say if you’re marketing through radio or TV.  The second component is engage. Once your prospect is interrupted, it’s critical we give your reader the promise that information is forthcoming that will help the prospect make the best buying decision possible. In other words, it must help facilitate their decision to pick you over anyone else.  This is the job of our subheadline.

The interrupt is our headline that highlights a specific problem that your prospects are looking for a solution to… and the engage is our subheadline that promises them that you offer a solution to the problem we mentioned in our headline.

The third component we need to include is educate. Once we’ve interrupted and engaged your prospect, we have to give information that allows them to logically understand how and why you solve the problem they’re facing.  This is accomplished by giving detailed, quantifiable, specific and revealing information.  This is typically done in the body copy of your ad. When we educate, we need to reveal to your prospects the important and relevant information they need to know when making a good decision, and that your business… and yours alone… provides it to them. The interrupt and engage hit the prospects emotional hot buttons. Educate is the logic they need to justify picking up the phone and calling you.

The fourth and final component of our marketing equation is your offer. Now that we’ve interrupted your prospect based on problems that are important to them… engaged by a promise of the solution… and they’ve examined the educational information that makes your solution real and believable…  the last step we need to take is to give them a low risk way to take the next step in your sales process.  We do this by offering a free marketing tool, such as a report, brochure, seminar, audio, video or something that will continue to educate them.  Your offer will allow your prospect to feel in control of their final decision to call and buy from you.

So our marketing equation is interrupt, engage, educate and offer and together they equal market domination. Now here’s the problem.  Most marketing today only contains two of these components.  They interrupt by throwing something at you that’s either familiar like Tiger Woods… or unusual like a monkey or talking pets. Sometimes they like to use both, as in the case of the E*Trade baby.   Then once they grab your attention, they make you some type of offer such as “call now for whatever.”  They have left out the engage and the educate, and marketing seldom succeeds when that happens.

In fact, the only time this type of marketing does succeed is when you can afford to run the ad over and over nonstop for an extended period of time. Plop, plop, fizz, fizz… melts in your mouth, not in your hand… and things go better with Coke have literally been rammed down our throats by Fortune 500 types.  After hearing these slogans thousands of times, of course we’re going to remember them.  But how can a small business start-up like you… that doesn’t have a billion dollar marketing budget… successfully market your business. The answer… you can’t… UNLESS you follow our entire marketing equation. Here’s a simple example to prove this to you.

Years ago there was a moving company that was on the verge of bankruptcy. They were paying $3,000 per month for a full page ad in their Yellow Pages directory. They were averaging just 70 calls per month, and their conversion ratio was only 16%. So out of 70 calls every month, they were only getting 11 moving jobs. No wonder they were starving.

The reason their ad wasn’t working was their failure to follow our marketing equation. In fact, the only marketing equation component they had in their ad was an offer, and that offer was “call us”… and then they listed their phone number. They had no interrupt at the top of their ad whatsoever, just the name of their company.  Then they listed all the generic and “me too” services that every one of their competitors also listed in their ads.  Things like local and long distance, residential and commercial, reliable and careful, fully licensed and insured, free estimates, quality service at reasonable rates, complete packing services, local, regional, national and so on. Then at the bottom of the ad was their phone number.

Again, look at your own marketing that I asked you about earlier.  Does your marketing format look exactly the same as the one this moving company was using? Did you place  the name of your business at the top…   list your products or services in the middle  along with a layer of worthless and meaningless platitudes such as lowest prices, highest quality and best rates?  99% of all small businesses follow this EXACT format, and then they wonder why they aren’t generating any quality leads.

If you want your phone to start ringing… then you MUST follow our marketing equation of interrupt, engage, educate and offer.  So using our equation this moving company redesigned this lead generation ad, and here’s what happened.  First, they identified the biggest problem their customers had when moving.  Without hesitation, it was DAMAGE! 72% of all moves result in something being damaged. That’s the area they need to focus on then, and create what we call a market-dominating position around that hot button issue. But why is damage such an important issue…  since all moving companies listed in the Yellow Pages say they’re “fully insured.”

It turns out that all movers MUST be fully insured…  but that the general public has NO idea what “fully insured” really means. When you hear someone say they’re fully insured, don’t you automatically assume that means that if they break your $5,000 HDTV, they will reimburse you $5,000? I certainly would.

Well, it turns out that in the moving business, that isn’t what fully insured means at all.  Legally, a moving company can claim they fully insure their customers belongings based on “per pound of damage.”  The national average is 40 cents per pound. So in other words, if a mover destroys your $5,000 100 pound HDTV… they’re only legally obligated to pay you $40.  Unfortunately, the poor unsuspecting customer doesn’t find that out until AFTER the damage has taken place… and they receive their miniscule reimbursement. But for this specific moving company this policy was never an issue because they didn’t believe in this deceptive industry practice.

They actually provide their customers with what’s known as “full replacement value” insurance. If they break your $5,000 HDTV, you’re reimbursed $5,000… no questions asked. But how could they afford this much more expensive insurance?  It was due to their extraordinary 3 step packing process that ONLY their company offered, and thanks to this process… their actual breakage and damage totals were below 3%.

And what little damage did occur typically involved a broken dish or plate… relatively minor items that had little to no replacement costs… and certainly no sentimental value that would create an emotional situation with their customers.  Their unique packing process allowed them to carry a $5,000 insurance deductible, and their premiums for this superior insurance were actually lower than their competitors paid for the inferior and deceptive insurance.

Their 3 step packing process… coupled with their superior full replacement value insurance coverage… became their market-dominating position.  All that’s left is to position that information in their ad and follow our marketing equation.

Let’s first create a headline for the top of their Yellow Page ad that interrupts. This must address the main hot button issue or problem that their prospects are looking to solve… in this case… damage!  So the headline should say something like this… “Last Year, More Than 4,000 Damage And Negligent Lawsuits Were Filed Against Moving Companies By Outraged Homeowners!” Think that headline will grab the attention of prospective movers? You bet.

But let’s not stop there. Next, let’s engage the prospect by promising them a solution to the problem we referenced in the headline… in this case, damage prevention.  What do you think of this subheadline? “Ask Any Mover These 2 Questions To Insure You Won’t Be Victimized Or “Ripped Off” By Deceptive Industry Practices.” Now, when a prospect reads this subheadline… do you think they will want to immediately find out what those two questions are? Of course they will.

Now let’s educate them by providing them with two questions that the prospect can ask any mover they choose to contact. What about these two questions…  do you follow a minimum 3 step packing process for every item you place in your truck… and second, do you carry full replacement value insurance? We already know that their competitions answer to both of these questions is no, since this mover had previously surveyed all of them.  This ad educates prospects on the realities of what actually takes place in the moving industry, and highlights this moving company’s market-dominating position that makes them the obvious choice to do business with.

Their offer was a free moving company comparison checklist that highlights the survey they did… showing the prospect that they were the ONLY moving company in town that offered all of these desired benefits. This will make them the no-brainer choice in the moving industry, and the results they generated from this new Yellow Page ad sealed the deal.

Instead of averaging just 70 calls per month… their new ad averaged 955 calls per month.  Instead of a 16% conversion rate, their rate jumped to 68%. Their new ad generated so many new clients asking for their services, they had to partner with 4 of their competitors to handle the increased volume. And listen to this.  Those 4 competitors bought this company out 9 months later for $2.3 million dollars.  All of this from simply changing the strategic message in their Yellow Page ad… and without spending an extra cent.

This is why every small business start-up needs to seek out our professional help. But finding professional help is often frustrating… and at times, a crapshoot at best. That’s why I wanted to teach you our marketing equation of interrupt, engage, educate and offer.

The moving company trained their prospects on the relevant and important issues they needed to know when moving so those prospects knew what to ask for when they sought out the services of a mover. Now you know our marketing equation… and you can use it when seeking out the professional help you need for your new business. A true marketing professional will know this equation, and if they don’t… run away as fast as you can!

And by the way, did you notice that in the information we just discussed we also covertly covered mistakes #2 and #3.  Earlier I said that the second biggest mistake small business start-ups make involved the fact that they don’t know the fundamentals required to successfully market their business and attract as many new clients as their business can handle.  Well, now YOU do know the fundamentals… and you can use them to out-market and outsell your competition right from the start.  First, create a market-dominating position for your business…  and then insert that position into your marketing by following our marketing equation to the letter.

And the third biggest mistake small business start-ups make focused on the fact that they have no idea how to generate immediate cash flow.  When you follow our marketing equation in every form of marketing you do… from your business cards to your company website, the financial results are instantaneous and immediate. Consider the following example.

Consider a recent situation involving Dr. John Smith… a child psychologist who specialized in helping parents with out-of-control kids. You know the kids I’m talking about don’t you? The ones at the store that are yelling, screaming, throwing a tantrum and completely out of control. These kids range in age from 6 years old up to teenagers. Dr. Smith’s original website had all of the classic mistakes that are typical in small business today.  He had the name of his practice at the top of his site.

The only thing even resembling what you might call a headline said “Parenting Advice & Resources From Dr. John Smith.” Does that headline really appeal to a parent who is dealing with a screaming, out of control kid? Would that headline hit their emotional hot button? Do they really care anything at all right now about “advice and resources?” Or… are his prospects looking for a solution to their problem?

Remember, you must always start your marketing with an Interrupting headline that’s focused on the problem your prospects are experiencing.  Then you must have a subheadline that engages the prospect by promising them that there’s a solution to that problem. Remember our first two Marketing Equation components… Interrupt and Engage. That’s the job of the headline and subheadline. And this applies to every form of marketing, including websites.

Dr. Smith’s website headline… “Parenting Advice & Resources From Dr. John Smith” does NOT address the problem his frustrated parents are experiencing with their child.  And to make matters worse, his website has no subheadline whatsoever, so there is no way for him to engage his prospects to keep them interested.

In fact, it’s doubtful that any prospect visiting his site will stay here more than a few seconds. The latest research shows that the typical prospect visiting a website remains on the site for just three to five seconds. If during that brief period of time they don’t find something that looks like it will provide them with a solution to their problem, they’re gone for good.

The third component of our Marketing Equation says to Educate the prospect. This simply means that you must educate them with what it is that makes your product or service so much better than your competition. On a website, this is done with either body copy… or in Dr. Smith’s case, by video. Just make it short and sweet when it’s the point of first contact. You can then offer much more information once you have them compelled to want to know more about what you do.

And the final component of our Marketing Equation is your Offer. A low risk… or better yet NO RISK offer gets them to take a specific action such as request more information, take a test drive, and register for a free thirty day trial, an educational presentation or similar offer. The key here is to make the offer so compelling that it’s literally irresistible to the prospect. In fact, you want them to be thinking to themselves that they would have to be an absolute fool to NOT take your offer.

Dr. Smith’s offer was a white paper titled… The Secret for Parents: a special report on how you can learn the secrets of nurturing well behaved children. Here’s the problem… his prospects don’t have well behaved children. They have one that’s screaming, yelling, cursing, belligerent, back-talking and completely out of control. Nurturing a well behaved child is NOT the solution they’re looking for. Getting their kid under control RIGHT NOW is what they’re looking for.

Can you see why Dr. Smith’s website failed him in every area? This site wasn’t building his business. It wasn’t helping him generate leads, attract new clients… or generate additional revenue for his practice. It simply doesn’t follow our Marketing Equation. So Dr. Smith changed his website so it did follow our proven step-by-step roadmap.

He placed a headline at the top of his site that said… “Are You Sick and Tired Of The Yelling, Screaming And Belligerent Attitude Of Your Child?” Would you say that headline hits the major hot button for virtually every prospective parent that comes to this site? Do you think that these prospects… the moment they read that headline… will immediately think to themselves that they have just come to the right place where they can find a solution to their problem?

In other words, did this headline just Interrupt Dr. Smith’s prospects? Of course it did.  Now let’s Engage those prospects by promising them a solution in the subheadline.  It says… “now you can discover the secrets to controlling your child and instantly restore peace and quiet in your home.” Isn’t that what his prospects want… and will do almost anything to get? Absolutely.  See how the headline and subheadline work closely together to Interrupt and Engage every single prospect who comes to this site?

Now that they’re Engaged,  the video can spend one to three minutes reinforcing the fact that our good doctor has the solution they so desperately seek,  and his offer has been changed so it’s not only more relevant to the prospects situation, but so compelling it’s virtually irresistible. The offer says… “Learn the Secrets To Gaining and Maintaining Complete Control Of Your Child In Less Than 60 Seconds.”

Show me just one prospective parent visiting this site that WON’T download that report. They all will. And when they do, Dr. Smith captures their contact information so he can continue to keep his prospects informed until they’re ready to buy his services.  This revised site exploded Dr. Smith’s business to unprecedented levels. And best of all, our marketing equation can work for your business as well… producing immediate results. So to quickly recap.

The three biggest lead generation mistakes people make when looking to get started in business are #1… They fail to get professional help.  #2… They don’t know the fundamentals required to successfully market their business and attract as many new clients as their business can handle.  And #3… They have no idea how to use their marketing to generate immediate cash flow.

Our marketing equation contains the fundamental components you need to insure your new business is successful from the very start. The marketing equation will make your phone ring and position your new business as the dominant force in your market.   It provides the marketing foundation that will enable you to generate immediate cash flow.  And as you get started, you can use this information as a minimum standard when seeking out professional help for your business.

When you can overcome these three biggest lead generation mistakes, you will generate all the leads your business can handle… and turn your dreams of owning your business into reality. Want proof?

Suppose we could provide you with professional help…  teach you some basic fundamentals that will allow you to market your business successfully and help you to attract as many new clients to your business as you want…  while simultaneously helping you to develop compelling marketing that will generate immediate cash flow for your business?

And suppose we could do all of this for you for free…and do it in just 7 days… just to prove to you that everything I’ve said in this is 1000% true? Go to http://www.akris.net and enter your name and email address in the box on the right, and I’ll send you 4 videos over the next 7 days that will do all of this… and more!

Each video is short and to the point…  but the results you will experience will astonish you.  We’ll even show you how to monetize the information we’ll send you so you can see an immediate increase in your revenue and profits. I promise you won’t be disappointed.

So don’t wait.  Go to www.akris.net and receive your videos today. Ask if you qualify for our $5000 grant to cover the cost of this program. Enter your name and email address right now, and we’ll show you how to out-think, out-market and out-sell your competition.

 

Ron Finklestein
330-990-0788
info@akris.net

Is Coaching Effective?

It has been a few months since I posted any content on this site. II have been writing but it has been for several other site. I wanted to share a recent excerpt found in Entrepreneur Magazine.

“A business coach will enable you to pinpoint your strengths and weaknesses, and they will help you build a road map for success. This can be absolutely critical for people who have never run a startup before, and it will also give you the necessary tools to properly manage current and future employees. An industry study found that CEOs who consent to business coaching are able to improve their working relations by 77 percent, and this ultimately leads to a 53 percent boost in productivity and increased profits of 22 percent.”

Is this true? Yes…but. The issue is whether the individual will act on what they learn. Here is an example.

Just finished a coaching engagement with a client that had his best commissioned month ever in the sixty years his company has been in existence ($98K). He likes to give me credit but he did all the work. I have clients who learned the same action who did not get the results because they did not implement what they learned. It is all about action.

Here are some of the article I recently published.

This article discusses how minor changes can lead to massive results.

http://blog.hershpr.com/-one-degree-difference-become-a-sales-leader-and-grow-sales

This article is a case study of how the correct in bound marketing implementation can transform a business.

http://businessgrowthexperience.com/what-you-should-know-about-inbound-marketing/

This a link to download my latest book free. It is call Ron Finklestein’s Sales Pursuit: How to REALLY Win at the Game of Sales. Enjoy! There are three bonus modules to help you grow sales.

http://businessgrowthexperience.com/how-to-win-at-the-games-of-sales-right-sales-skills-right-sales-tools-right-sales-leadership/

This article is about how to find cash in your business to use for training.

http://businessgrowthexperience.com/how-to-create-cash-attention-employers-with-2-100-employees/

Lastly, here is an article on create an inbound marketing strategy.

http://businessgrowthexperience.com/does-online-lead-generation-work/

Enjoy and I look forward to reading your comments. Feel free to share these articles and help others.

To Your Success,

Ron Finklestein
ron@businessgrowthexperience.com

Why don’t people buy from me?

Did you ever ask yourself, “Why don’t people buy from me?”

The Biggest Marketing Challenge WE All Face

The biggest challenge we’re dealing with today is change. Things are changing so fast. As a result of this rapid pace of change people do not know who to trust!

There are six questions your prospects want answered before they will buy from you. These questions are designed to allow you to think like your buyer and speak with them so they know you are the right and safe choice.

Why the Six Questions are Important

When I started my business back in 2001, I lacked trust. What I really mean is that I did not know who could help me get clear on my ideal client. Every time I ask someone they said things I did not understand. I was confused and a confused mind does not take action. This is what we’re dealing with.

Stick with me as I talk about things you may not have thought about before. Keep an open mind because, to grow your business, you need to find someone you can trust.

Remember we stated earlier that “trust” is the biggest marketing issue we need to address. This is what marketing is about – helping our prospects to trust us so we can start the sales process.

Let’s jump right in.

The Six Questions

Question 1: What Do You Do?

What do you do? What would you tell me?

If you answered, “I am a financial planner,” or “I am an accountant,” or “I fix computers,” then you got it wrong. This is not what you do; it is how you do it.

People want to know what you do before they want to know how you do it.

For example, if you are a financial planner, here is what I would hope to hear: “I help people make the right choices about their money,” or “I help them make wise money decisions,” or “I build, protect and transfer wealth (my favorite).”

People want to know what you do before they want to know how you do it.

Question 2: Why should I care about what you do? Or, “What’s in it for me?”

If I asked a financial planner how he is different, what would he say? This is really important because there are thousands of financial planners that want my business. Why would I hire one over the other?

If you’re a business owner and looking for customers, you have prospects who are asking, “What’s in it for me?” Your job is to marry your skills and the outcome you provide to the prospects that have that need. Don’t make your prospect figure it out, tell them. That’s all your prospects want know. Don’t make your prospect guess.

Question 3: Why are YOU the Right and Safe Choice?

They’re going to want to know the answer to this question: “How do I know you are the right and safe choice for me, right now?”

The question of why you are the right and safe choice addresses a very powerful question for your prospects: “Can I trust you to do what you say you will do?”

They want to know how you will make them more effective and productive, how you make them right and how would you make them look good?

Business owners have a strong need to be more effective and more productive. Here is what you need to know. Simply ask them what they want to achieve and tell them how you will help them achieve that goal. When they understand how you’re going help them achieve their goal and how you can make them more effective and more productive, they are on board.

 

Question 4: What do you do better than anyone Else in the World?

You are unique. There is no one like you. The uniqueness you bring to the business is a great example of how to answer this question. It is not the only answer but it is a great place to start. Let’s look at a specific example.

How many people have heard the Southwest Airlines commercial where they discuss “bags fly free”?

What does Southwest Air do better than anybody else in the whole world?

Fun?

Yes, Southwest is fun to fly, but what do they do that no other airline does? “Bags fly free.”  That’s really all it is. They are the only airline that does not charge for bags. This isn’t rocket science.

Question 5: Why is that Important to my Prospects?

Why is what you do better than anyone else in the world important to me?

When you answer this question, you’re moving into allowing the customer to buy from you. This is actually the beginning of the buying process.

Will you:

  • Make them more money?
  • Give them more free time?
  • Create more value?
  • Reduce risk?
  • Save them money?

This is the beginning of the business case of why you are the right person or your company is the right company.

It’s just that simple.

Question 6: Why Buy From Me? Or Prove It.

So here’s the last one question. Why buy from me? This is really the fundamental question; this is where the proof exists. Do you have the credentials? Can you say that you’ve done this for another company and can do the same for me? Do you have endorsements from others who will vouch for you?

If what you are doing is not working as well as you would like. Try this process. It works. The answers you create can be used to craft a killer 30 second commercial, create actionable contents for your web site and make it easier for prospects to understand why they should be from you.  There are 16 modules on answering the six questions. To make it easy you can purchase or rent this course at https://gumroad.com/l/6-questions

Ron Finklestein is an international author of four business books and the creator of the Business Growth Experience. To learn more go to www.businessgrowthexperience.com.

 

Did you have a Sacred Moment Today?

Did you have a Sacred Moment Today?

An elder woman and her coworker are working at a newsstand and there are 30 people demanding their attention. They all want their newspaper – now.  The coworker is frazzled and frustrated because everyone wants her attention. She cannot keep up with their demands.  She is getting angry because no one is patient – she can’t keep up. The elderly women next to her is so serene in dealing with each interaction and her coworker cannot understand how she keeps her composure with so much going on around her. She decided to ask her coworker how she cannot be angry or frustrated by the demands of the job.  She asks, “How do you not get frustrated and flustered by so many people demanding your attention?” The elderly lady replies, “When I am attending to a customer no other customer exists for me. I am taking care of one person and trying to make their day special by giving them my undivided attention. I know there will always be someone wanting my attention but the person in front of me is the only person in the world that I pay attention to. You are not seeing the person you are working with, you are seeing all the people you are not working with.” The elder woman learned that each interaction she has is a sacred moment.

We are blessed to have sacred moments every moment of our lives, if we allow ourselves to recognize them.

Before we go too much further, let’s become purposeful and define what I mean by a sacred moment. A sacred moment is simply a moment of truth with a customer, a customer interaction (this is not the only time we can experience a sacred moment): a telephone call, an email (yes, an email interaction if well thought out can be a sacred moment when the customer reads it,) a face to face meeting to review a project or determine next steps or simply selling them a paper or a cup of coffee.

Many time we do not interact with our customers unless there is a reason. Something is wrong, they need information only we can provide, something changed, or an emergency occurs. Something happens that requires you or your company to address a situation for your customer.

You can do what Google does and ignore their customers (who made them billions.) I have not been successful in finding someone from Google I can talk with. This is both frustrating and counter-productive.

Or you can do what Zappos does. I recently purchased some shoes from Zappos and the customer experience was delightful. The customer service representative listened, responded as needed and as a result his efforts, I experienced a sacred moment. I did not have to fight, argue or wait on hold.

How you treat each interaction with your customer can make their day and yours. It can be a sacred moment to them and to you. They want to be heard and you need to hear them. They want to be understood and you need to understand them. That want something that typically only you can provide.

You have an opportunity to positively impact someone in a powerful way, and in that moment, a sacred way.

What does this mean for you?

It means your customer feel heard and understood. They will be loyal. I left Google and went to Microsoft because I could talk to a person.

It means when they talk about you they remember how you made them feel. They become advocates and will become word of mouth marketing machines for you.

Anyone one in sales knows they your prospect does not care how much you know until they know how much you care.   They will be loyal and buy more.

Our family members want to feel heard and understood.

Our friends want to feel heard and understood.

Our customer are no different.

It is about being present and listening. It is about follow-up.

It is about doing what is right.

Is it a simple concept? Yes. But it can be difficult to implement. Why? Because we are inundated with people demanding our attention. We are distracted by Facebook and Social Media. We have someone else demanding our attention, there is the phone ringing, the email flashing, and the next text message to address.

It is about making each interaction a sacred moment for both you and the person you are with.

Ron Finklestein

330-990-0788
ron@businessgrothexperience.com

Ron Finklestein is an international author, sales coach, trainer and consultant helping companies grow sales and increasing revenues. His company has been selected top sales training company for 2013 and 2014.

Sales Tip 11 – Hey, What’s up

Hey, what’s up?

Someone who bills themselves as a social media & LinkedIn expert (her words not mine) asked to connect with me on LinkedIn. I accepted this request.

The email I received from her had only this question, “Hey, what’s up?”

Maybe I am showing my age but I have no clue how to answer this question. Is she asking about work, my family, what I am doing right now, what I do, or who I do it with? It left me feeling confused and wondering if she thought she was on Facebook (I perceived Facebook communication to more informal.)

I replied, “I do not know how to answer this question,” trying to gain some clarity in what she was asking.

I get the reply, “what do you do?” This made we wonder if she read my profile since it clearly states I help companies grow sales and increase revenues. I replied, “I help companies grow sales and increase revenues with sales training, coaching and consulting.”

Her reply, “do you have a web site?” Again, if she read my profile she would know that. I replied, “I have several of them.”

This whole process could have been shortened if she did a little homework (such as read my LinkedIn profile.)

If you want to engage me in a dialog please be clear. Tell me what you do and why I need your service. Don’t send me an email and ask “what’s up?” I do not know you. Tell me why I should invest in a relationship with you.

If you think you can help tell me why. You could say something like, “I looked at your web site and here is where we can help.” Please specify which site you are referring to as I have several. If you do not mention the site I will assume you did not look or you would be specific. This is important because this is where the sales process begins.

Finally, don’t make me work at understanding what you do or why I should care. If you don’t know your business well enough to answer that question, get some help. Especially if you are selling social media marketing services. If you can’t market yourself how would I expect you to market my services?

We are all busy people and we want and need help that will take up closer to our goals. I think we appreciate being approached with a meaningful well thought out message.

LinkedIn is a powerful marketing tool. Use it with the respect and responsibility the members deserve.

With that being said, I invite you to go to <a href=”http://www.businessgrowthexperience.com”>www.businessgrowthexperience.com</a> and download my free report on the Six Questions Prospects want Answered BEFORE They Buy. It will help you answer my questions above.

If you would like a free sale assessment please fill out the form below:

Ron Finklestein

330-990-0788
ron@businessgrowthexperience.com

Sales Tip # 10 – Perception is Reality

Perception is Reality!

In this short video (57 seconds),  you will see the impact perception has on another person’s reality. If you are dressing, speaking, or doing things that are not congruent with other’s expectations of you (in your job), you can be perceived at not trustworthy and loose opportunities.

Leave me a comment if you have experienced this problem. Share your experience below.

Sales Tip # 9 – Stop Thinking

Sales Tip # 9 – Stop Thinking

Stop Thinking

Just stop thinking.

You did the analytics. You did the risk analysis. You know what can go wrong. You know you need to take action but you can’t stop thinking about what can go wrong, about what you may have missed.

You know you need to make that cold call but all you can focus on is the rejection. You cannot stop thinking about all the ways someone can reject you.

You want to call your accountant (financial advisor, friend, business associate) and ask for the referral. You can’t stop thinking about how asking makes you feel weak or what they might think of you for asking.

I could go on but you get the message.

There are things we want to do, we have to do, to get the results we want. Yet we don’t take action. We are afraid. We are afraid of what others might think, what they might do, or a whole host of others fears that are unlikely to happen.

Stop thinking and just do!

When I think about doing cold call I starting thinking of every reason someone won’t talk to me and I make every excuse to not pick up the phone. When I stop thinking about calling and just do it I have no problem picking up the phone.

When you see that beautiful girl, don’t think about it – just ask her out.

When you go to a networking event, don’t think about it – just introduce yourself to someone and find out how easy it is.

Here are some thoughts and beliefs I use to help and you might find them useful:

  1. If I am uncomfortable about something I assume there is a special gift on the other side so I just do it. Be reasonable. I am not talking about jumping out of a plane without a parachute.
  2. If I feel this way others do too. I am not alone. Others have overcome their fears and I can overcome mine.
  3. I surround myself with others who support reasonable risk taking.
  4. I ask for feedback and question the reason for the fear with my coach and advisor.
  5. I try to do something daily that makes me uncomfortable. I take action and when I am successful I wonder what it was that I was afraid of.
  6. I look for reasons it can and will work.

I was recently at a networking event and I received a great testimonial from one of my clients. Shortly thereafter I received a call from a business associate who wanted to know how much it was to join my program. I did not answer the question. Since I know him I asked him this question: You like to think. If you are willing to stop thinking and take action you will do well in my program. Are you willing to stop thinking?

His response was, “That will be hard for me.”

I love his honesty. He is joining and he knows what he has to do.

Can you be that honest?

Stop thinking and answer the question! No excuses!

To your success,

Ron Finklestein
Contact me now for your free sales assessment: ron@businessgrowthexperience.com
330-990-0788

 

 

Sale Tip # 8 – Why are you different?

Sale Tip # 8 – Why are you different?

I received a call from my nephew and he asked me this question, “Why are you different?” What is was really asking is, “Why are you different from your brother?”

As I answered the question I realized he was asking a fundamental question about sales and marketing as well.

Each prospect wants to know, “Why are you different than your competitors?” and “Why is that difference important to me?”

Why are you “different” than your competitors?

Most people talk about how good they are and they do not tell the prospect why this is important.

For example, I am a sale trainer and coach. People ask me how I am different than my competitors. I explain to them how everything we do is research based, market tested and results oriented. I then ask them if they want to work with someone who read the book or the person who wrote the book (since I have written six books.) Having written six books on business growth is a powerful differentiator. All my material is in the public domain allowing them to check it out to see if it resonates with them. It also allows them to explore my depth of knowledge.

This makes is easy for the prospect to understand my uniqueness in helping him solve his sales issues.
The next part is just as important because here is what they really want to know: Why is your differentiator important to me?
They are really asking if you will create more value, make them more money, save them money, save them time, make them more productive, make them money or reduce their risk. That is what most business owners want. Can you position your product or service in a way the prospect can understand and act upon?

Let me give you an example.

We help companies (what we do) increase revenues, grow sales and shorten the sales process (why it is important) putting you back in control of the revenue generation portion of your business. (We are different) than our competitors because our program is research based (our books), market tested (proven by existing clients) and results oriented (grow revenues/increase sales) and what we teach will not only help you grow sales and you will use it to improve nearly every type of relationship you are involved in.
We need to stop marking our prospects think so hard about what we do and why that is important to them. In a book called Achieving Sales Excellence the author researched 8,000 business owners and the owners said the most important part of the sales process (39%) is the ability of the sales rep to effectively communicate the impact your product or service will have on the company and help move the prospect through the sales process.

How successful you are in sales is dependent on many things but these are important:
1. How effective you are in communicating your value in a way the prospect understands
2. How effective you are in helping the prospect through the buying process
3. How easy you make it for the prospect to understand why your unique value proposition is important to them.

Be sure to check out the other sales tips at http://www.ronfinklestein.com

To Your Success!
Ron Finklestein
330-990-0788

 

 

Sales Tip # 7 – Be Honest!

Sales Tip # 7 – Be Honest!

People need to trust you before they buy from you.

I am planning a big event for September and I was shopping hotels ball room. I found one I like and the price was right and I asked them to give me a formal proposal.

I was floored when I saw the document and was more than flummoxed when I heard their response.

EVERYTHING was 30% higher than what they told me!

The projection screen – a 22% service charge – for pressing a button to lower the screen.

The room – a 22% service charge – not sure for what. I was already quoted a substantial room fee. Was this 22% to turn on the lights?

The food, already 20% higher than the competition – a 22% service charge. Was the 22% to carry it from the kitchen to the room?

I could go on. The 22% service charges was on everything. Why didn’t they give me a price and add 22% to the total price? Why not address it up front?

The other 8% was taxes. I get that. But telling me one price and then delivering a quote 22% higher. Naturally I looked at everything closely because I did not feel they were honest.

Was this good business? Must have been for them since they felt they could do this.

When I asked about this they simply said (my perception) take it or leave it. In addition to the 22%, they were arrogant in how they handled it. I walked away feeling lied to and mistreated.

I felt ES (their initials) was not honest, less than ethical and not forthright.

If marking everything up 22% is an industry standard – they should have told me. It this markup is standard, why not include it in the price? Why spring it on me as an afterthought?

I am a big boy. If I don’t like a prices I will go elsewhere. But why try to hide it? Did they think I would not notice a 30% difference in price?

The only thing we have is our reputation. It we soil our reputation, this damage can stay with us for years.

I should really thank ES for this learning opportunity. I need a topic to write about this week. Thanks ES for providing it.

Be honest. It is far easier than dealing with the consequences of lying.

Ron Finklestein

ron@akris.net

ps. Check out my new site Make a Difference (I call is MAD for short) and learn how to make a difference selling, in leadership and personal development.

Sales Tip # 5 – Don’t be Stupid

Sales Tip # 5  – Don’t be stupid!

Sometimes in our haste we do something stupid.

I received this email, “If you are still in business call me?” That was all there was to the email (I withheld the signature and company name – I will tell you he sold merchant services.)

No greeting.

No first name or introduction.

He did not tell what problem he was trying to solve for me. Was he trying to help me grow sales, increase revenues or reduce my expenses?

He did not tell me who he was or what he did.

No – this is how we can help you – just “are you still in business?”

Was he lazy or just stupid? I really don’t know but the impression he made was less than stellar.

If he wanted to talk to me why didn’t he ask me for a good time to call or the best phone number to reach me or ask me if I to talk to him?

My opinion of this email is that it was the most arrogant email I have ever received.

I, like most business owners, work hard. We have bills to pay, our family to feed and house payments to make. AM I STILL IN BUSINESS???? He did not research on me or my company. He had no idea of the industry I was in or if I even needed his services.

Do you think I called him back? NO!

Do you think I responded in any way? NO! (I did respond to tell him that his email as arrogant.)

Did I think he was either desperate or lazy? YES!

Did I think he had my best interest in mind? NO!

Sometimes we get careless or forgetful of proper email protocol. Sometimes we take shortcuts. Mistakes happen. I get that. But…

In today’s world of social media I could put his name and company name all over the internet as an example of what not to do. Instead I write a blog post.

We need to slow down and remember that sales is about the relationship (as short as it may be.) Basic courtesy is still necessary: Respect is still necessary and people skills are important. When the relationship is there people will buy-it all starts with respect.

When doing email marketing keep it short and to the point. Create an eye-catching subject line. Tell me what you want and WHY I SHOULD TALK TO YOU! Get me a link to learn more if I am interested.

It is about staying focused on the end results. There is only four things business owners like me want from you when you market to me: 1. How to increase revenues. 2. How to reduce expenses. 3. How to increase my productivity. 4. How to add more value to my clients. If your email does not address at least one of those issues – save time and do not sent the email.

To Your Success,

Ron Finklestein
330-990-0788
ron@ronfinklestein.com
p.s. We are launching a new web site that provide high quality training and a very low price. Check it out. WWW.MADPPV.com. We focus on sales growth, personal growth and leadership on this web site. BTW, MAD means Makie a Difference.

Tip # 4 to Grow Sales – Buy on Price – Buy Twice

Buy on price – pay twice!

Many years ago, while I was remodeling a house, I needed a specific tool to finish the job. It was a fairly expensive tool, $99 on the low-end up to $400 at the top end. Naturally I chose the $99 tool and finished the job.

After several uses I realized I purchased the wrong tool – it didn’t do everything I needed it to do. I bought the tool because of the price. Since then I have spent a lot more time and money trying to use the tool for things it was not designed to be used for and decided to buy a higher quality tool more suited to my needs. I purchased the second time, not on price, but on value.

I bought on price and I paid twice.

How do you help your prospect buy your value and not your price?

It starts with a well-defined sales process. Each step in the process is designed to add value to the prospect. Here is the process I use:
1. Rapport strategy
2. Define problem
3. Explore impact of the problems
4. Collaborate with the prospect and jointly create the solution
5. Get the order
6. Ask for a referral
7. Conduct a review of the call to determine what worked and what did not work and make the necessary changes

The rapport strategy is designed to help them like and trust you.

Defining the problem helps you understand the symptoms and cause of the problem.

The exploring step help both you and the prospect understand the impact of the problem and what happens if the prospect does nothing.

The collaboration step allow both you and the prospect to build the solution together. It is very hard for the prospect to reject a solution they helped build.

The outcome of a well-designed process is the order, concerns, or a “no.” It is a natural outcome of the process. Each can be dealt with since each party now knows the issues.

After the order is signed the next step is to ask for a referral. The more specific you can be the better the opportunity to get the referral.
Finally, review the sales transaction and change what did not work and continue doing what did work.

Sales is not an art, sales is a process. When the sales process is both well designed and executed even people who do not perceive themselves as sales representatives can do quite well at sales.

DefinitiveSalesFinal032513You can learn more from our book, The Definitive Sales Play Book: How to Grow Sales and Create Lifetime Customers – available at Amazon.com

Ron Finklestein

330-990-0788

Email me at ron@businessgrowthexperience.com to schedule your free assessment sales assessments.

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