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2008
The meaning of the adjective radical is "not bound by traditional ways or beliefs." Here are the "must dos" of a seasoned business unit's radical salesperson and marketer.

By Profit_Repair

No stone goes unturned in your search for new leads and clients; no sales idea is too silly or stupid to try; you sell to everyone, every day, no matter what their size; you sell more than you market; you utilize yield management techniques; you just do not leave collateral, you collect a database for follow-up; you go down swinging and then get back up for another round; you are always in "selling mode;" you network, not just talk to people; you are "it," no one but you can make it happen; when you fail, you succeed by learning from it; you start your day with a goal and focus on its achievement; you look for ways to sell to prospects that others are not; you carry your business cards with you everywhere; wherever you go you see a future client; no matter how many no's they have given you, you write down phone numbers from passing businesses on the street; you see customer obstacles as an opportunity to get testimonial referrals from them by meeting their expectations; you work on the probability theory; you radiate confidence and bring direction to clients; you take ownership of your sales 100%; you are out finding new revenue generation that your competition never knew existed and selling to them before they do; you see doors of opportunities, not slammed ones in your face; you are asking for the sale every time, in all possible ways, with each client you communicate with; you are a relentless "door knocker" and grass roots marketer; you look at your sales reports for new business that purchased from you; you drive the desire and passion for each sale with every presentation; you fight tooth and nail to retain a client and make new ones every day when you come into work; you smile until it hurts just to go to bed and wake up to attack your business leads all over again tomorrow.

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Are you ready for the challenge? Are you ready to become a radical salesperson and marketer for your business unit? Why not? Are you afraid to get a little emotional about your sales and marketing? Only emotional selling sells to clients on a regular basis with consistency. No one wants an order taker in their sales department; your product line is not that special to afford you that luxury. If you are not emotional about the product line that you represent, your sales will never reach full capacity.

Keep it (sales and marketing campaigns) simple (KIS theory) for the biggest bang with the fewest bucks! Oh, by the way, the above sentence is the longest sentence in this blog. Do you know the reason why? Because it is aggressive and unconventional and "not bound by traditional ways or beliefs," just like what a radical sales and marketer for your business unit needs to be.

 

Go be radical today!

 


http://theprofitrepairman.com/

 


Dedicated to the Mission!

 


Tom Marquardt, The Profit Repairman®
(239) 561-2591
(239) 561-3589 (fax)
tomm@theprofitrepairman.com
http://www.theprofitrepairman.com
SBC Team

Green-ward To Success

Posted by SBC Team Jul 22, 2008

There are more resources than ever available to America's eco-friendly entrepreneurs. Take advantage and help your green business stand out from the pack.

 


By Max Berry

 


It's common knowledge among small business owners that going green has a positive effect on the environment. Perhaps less known is how to successfully manage your green business in a world where more and more entrepreneurs are laying claim to the word. The secret may lie in the acknowledgement that words alone will only get you so far. "Anyone can say they're green," says Joel Makower, Executive Editor of Greenbiz.com. "These days, to gain marketing penetration to a significant level, you have to have a system as well as a standard."

GreenWardtoSuccess_v2.jpg

Indeed, with so many businesses branding themselves as green, simply wearing the color is no longer enough for those looking to stand out. You need to prove, to your employees and associates as well as your customers, that the green you wear is more than just fashion.

The first step to success in any business, green or otherwise, is a devoted team. And a little green never hurt morale. "Going green is valuable when it comes to attracting talent," says Makower. "People want to work for a ‘good' company, and they can get frustrated if their employer isn't doing all that they can." Doing all that you can is one of the surest ways to earn the loyalty and respect of your employees. It's also a way to build a valuable network of connections in your field.

 


Green Networking

Whether you're new to the world of green business or a seasoned pro, making yourself known to your eco-business brethren is never a bad idea. There are countless industry-specific associations committed to introducing, educating, and uniting green business owners. The Organic Trade Association (ota.com) bills itself as an "association for all sectors of the organic industry, from farm to retail, and for all other types of products." The International Ecotourism Society (ecotourism.org) is a non-profit organization providing similar services for the most eco-conscious members of the travel industry.

There are also more general resources available for those with earth-conscious business models. Green Options Media (greenoptions.com) provides a network of blogs focused on sustainable businesses in all industries. Makower's own Greenbiz.com offers blogs, case studies, and environmental news for all forms of green businesses.

Taking advantage of services like these-or taking part in any other activity that helps you stay in touch with like-minded entrepreneurs and keep abreast of the latest green innovations and trends-will supply you with ideas to help you maintain your own patch of ground on the green landscape.

 


Getting to the Customer

Once you've surrounded yourself with a reliable network of cohorts and colleagues, the next order of business is the customer. And there are just as many resources available for green-minded consumers as there are for eco-friendly entrepreneurs. Green J (greenj.org) and Eco Firms (ecofirms.org) are search engines designed to connect consumers interested in greener products and services with the businesses they seek. Also available are similar industry-specific services. Eco Hotels of the World (ecohotelsoftheworld.com) is, as the name would suggest, a database of the world's greenest hotels. Green Home Guide (greenhomeguide.com) provides the same service for those looking for eco-friendly home and garden products. Registering your business with a consumer service like this will make it easier for the green-minded customers you're after to find you. Taking the time to associate your business with this sort of network will also be an indication to consumers that you are serious about your commitment to sustainable business.

 


B2B: Consider Certification

Business-to-business firms face even more pressure to prove their commitment to sustainable business practices, as their clients, considering the needs of their own end consumers, are becoming more aware of the demand for environmentally safe goods and services. "In some industries, being green is table stakes, says Makower. "It's the price of entry, so you have to say it. But in a B to B, you have to prove it."

The problem then becomes how to go about proving it. As Makower concedes, "We don't have a definition of green business. We don't have an answer for how good is good enough."

One way to assure your buyers of the ecological integrity of your product or service may be to have it certified as environmentally sound. OneCert (onecert.net) is a certification service, accredited by the USDA, which gives an official stamp of approval to qualifying organic agricultural products. This kind of federal certification does not exist for every industry, but many local governments offer similar certification programs for green businesses. As Makower points out, all nine of California's San Francisco Bay Area counties offer certification programs for sustainable businesses.

As a nation, we have not yet reached the point where this type of certification is federally and comprehensively regulated. But seeking some form of certification (greenj.org offers a list of certifiers) will, in the worst case, show you ways in which your business can do more to help the environment. And bearing the endorsement of an outside agency will demonstrate to customers that you are serious enough about your commitment to greener business to invest the time in proving it.
SBC Team

Green-ward To Success

Posted by SBC Team Jul 21, 2008
There are more resources than ever available to America's eco-friendly entrepreneurs. Take advantage and help your green business stand out from the pack.

By Max Berry

It's common knowledge among small business owners that going green has a positive effect on the environment. Perhaps less known is how to successfully manage your green business in a world where more and more entrepreneurs are laying claim to the word. The secret may lie in the acknowledgement that words alone will only get you so far. "Anyone can say they're green," says Joel Makower, Executive Editor of Greenbiz.com. "These days, to gain marketing penetration to a significant level, you have to have a system as well as a standard."

GreenWardtoSuccess_v2.jpg

Indeed, with so many businesses branding themselves as green, simply wearing the color is no longer enough for those looking to stand out. You need to prove, to your employees and associates as well as your customers, that the green you wear is more than just fashion.

The first step to success in any business, green or otherwise, is a devoted team. And a little green never hurt morale. "Going green is valuable when it comes to attracting talent," says Makower. "People want to work for a ‘good' company, and they can get frustrated if their employer isn't doing all that they can." Doing all that you can is one of the surest ways to earn the loyalty and respect of your employees. It's also a way to build a valuable network of connections in your field.

 

Green Networking

Whether you're new to the world of green business or a seasoned pro, making yourself known to your eco-business brethren is never a bad idea. There are countless industry-specific associations committed to introducing, educating, and uniting green business owners. The Organic Trade Association (ota.com) bills itself as an "association for all sectors of the organic industry, from farm to retail, and for all other types of products." The International Ecotourism Society (ecotourism.org) is a non-profit organization providing similar services for the most eco-conscious members of the travel industry.

There are also more general resources available for those with earth-conscious business models. Green Options Media (greenoptions.com) provides a network of blogs focused on sustainable businesses in all industries. Makower's own Greenbiz.com offers blogs, case studies, and environmental news for all forms of green businesses.

Taking advantage of services like these-or taking part in any other activity that helps you stay in touch with like-minded entrepreneurs and keep abreast of the latest green innovations and trends-will supply you with ideas to help you maintain your own patch of ground on the green landscape.

 


Getting to the Customer

Once you've surrounded yourself with a reliable network of cohorts and colleagues, the next order of business is the customer. And there are just as many resources available for green-minded consumers as there are for eco-friendly entrepreneurs. Green J (greenj.org) and Eco Firms (ecofirms.org) are search engines designed to connect consumers interested in greener products and services with the businesses they seek. Also available are similar industry-specific services. Eco Hotels of the World (ecohotelsoftheworld.com) is, as the name would suggest, a database of the world's greenest hotels. Green Home Guide (greenhomeguide.com) provides the same service for those looking for eco-friendly home and garden products. Registering your business with a consumer service like this will make it easier for the green-minded customers you're after to find you. Taking the time to associate your business with this sort of network will also be an indication to consumers that you are serious about your commitment to sustainable business.

 


B2B: Consider Certification

Business-to-business firms face even more pressure to prove their commitment to sustainable business practices, as their clients, considering the needs of their own end consumers, are becoming more aware of the demand for environmentally safe goods and services. "In some industries, being green is table stakes, says Makower. "It's the price of entry, so you have to say it. But in a B to B, you have to prove it."

The problem then becomes how to go about proving it. As Makower concedes, "We don't have a definition of green business. We don't have an answer for how good is good enough."

One way to assure your buyers of the ecological integrity of your product or service may be to have it certified as environmentally sound. OneCert (onecert.net) is a certification service, accredited by the USDA, which gives an official stamp of approval to qualifying organic agricultural products. This kind of federal certification does not exist for every industry, but many local governments offer similar certification programs for green businesses. As Makower points out, all nine of California's San Francisco Bay Area counties offer certification programs for sustainable businesses.

As a nation, we have not yet reached the point where this type of certification is federally and comprehensively regulated. But seeking some form of certification (greenj.org offers a list of certifiers) will, in the worst case, show you ways in which your business can do more to help the environment. And bearing the endorsement of an outside agency will demonstrate to customers that you are serious enough about your commitment to greener business to invest the time in proving it.
SBC Team

Fwd: to Sales

Posted by SBC Team Jul 10, 2008
Using promotional emails and newsletters to market your small business

By Chris Freeburn

Few technologies have yielded as much benefit to small business owners as the Internet. Beyond the obvious benefits of e-commerce and professionally designed websites that can make a small business look like a big player in its industry, the Internet permits small businesses an unprecedented opportunity to use email to sidestep expensive marketing campaigns and stay in touch with customers long after a sale is made at a tiny fraction of the cost of traditional mail or advertising campaigns.
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Indeed, according to a recent study by the Direct Marketing Association, email marketing campaigns returned as much as $57.25 for each dollar spent, compared to $22.52 for each dollar spent on non-email internet marketing campaigns and just $7.09 for each dollar spent on printed catalogs.

Email marketing is one of the strongest potential tools in your small business's marketing arsenal. It offers a cost-effective way to keep your business securely in your customer's minds even when they are not considering a purchase. Using email, you can advise customers of new products, promotions, sales and discounts, or company news, for just pennies per message. Your business can reap the value of email marketing campaigns regardless of whether your company conducts ecommerce or not. An email marketing campaign can also permit you to gather demographic information about your customers for far less than the cost of hiring a marketing firm to do that for you.

Determining the fit

"Including email in your marketing mix isn't as simple as transferring traditional message formats into electronic formats or abandoning more expensive mediums in favor of email delivery," warns John Arnold, author of E-Mail Marketing for Dummies. Determining how email marketing best fits into your business's overall marketing strategy, and how well it compares against other parts of that strategy requires a certain amount of trial and error, Arnold says. "Delivering your messages by combining different mediums is an effective way to market your business, but you'll probably find it more affordable to lean on a few communication mediums where delivering your message results in the highest return."

It is important to consider each of the marketing elements in your current campaign to determine how email can compliment them. Obviously, email cannot completely supplant other advertising mediums, like print or even Internet advertising, which are important for drawing new customers to your business. Email campaigns are best used to target existing customers and to build and enhance brand loyalty to your firm by fostering a personal relationship with your customers.

Putting together your email list

In order to use email effectively, your customers must provide their email addresses and allow you to send them email. Sending unsolicited commercial emails is illegal, and is known as spamming (CAN SPAM Act). Be sure to seek legal council to ensure that you're in compliance with this law. Getting your customers to part with their email addresses, and perhaps a little demographic information, can be relatively easy.

  • Create a form on your website that allows customers to sign up to receive promotional emails.
  • Offer something to induce customers to provide their email addresses - a small discount on products or services, or a free sample or item.
  • Try to collect more than just the email address. Ask for names, zip codes, gender, and age range. This is important demographic information that can be used to aid your entire marketing effort. But keep the questions general and few in number. Don't ask for too much information, or for highly personal information, like exact ages, since that may annoy some customers, causing them to abandon the effort. Also offer customers the option to skip the questions altogether, which will likely result in more actual email addresses obtained.
  • Offer value. Let your customers know that signing up to receive your emails will give them something useful, like special discounts, or early notice of events, or sales at your business.
  • Allow subscribers to your company emails to easily unsubscribe from your list. A stream of unwanted emails will alienate potential return customers, and anti-spamming laws require you to remove people who no longer wish to receive your company's emails from your email list.

Beyond simple selling: E-Newsletters

Company e-newsletters are a good way to promote your business while providing useful information about a subject your customers are already interested in. An e-newsletter differs from a standard promotional email by offering news, advice, or information that isn't strictly sales related. Customers are more likely to read something that they believe is providing useful information instead of just trying to sell them a product or service.

 

A garden supply company, for instance, might offer a quarterly e-newsletter with seasonal tips on planting and gardening. While this may require more effort to create than a simple promotional email, it will go a long way toward cementing the relationship between your business and your customers. If customers come to see your business as a source of helpful information, it will help build brand loyalty and encourage repeat business.

 


Things to keep in mind

 


Before your launch your company's promotional email or e-newsletter campaign, make sure to follow a few guidelines:

 

  • Make sure your company's name is part of the email address from which the email is sent. For instance, mike@mikesautorepair.com. Many people receive a lot of email every day and have developed a habit of simply glancing at the sender's email address and deleting emails from source they do not instantly recognize.
  • Make sure your company name is in the subject line and clearly visible in the text of the email. This also insures that customers receiving your email will easily identify you as the sender and associate your company with the email.
  • Use the same company logo in your email or e-newsletters as you do on other promotional materials, like business cards, printed brochures, print ads, receipts, mailings, invoices, or your company's website. Consistent use of your company's logo reinforces your brand.
  • Make sure that your email or e-newsletters use consistent fonts and layouts that are easily readable.

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