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Wednesday, August 25, 2010

SALES AND MARKETING: 10 Actions That Grow Revenues: Part 1

Sales and Marketing with Bill Doerr

15 Second Executive Speed Read

Last month I introduced ten (10) actions that will definitely grow your revenues. They take place in a context based on three things:
  1. Objective . . . to grow revenues

  2. Strategy . . . involving prospects, clients and COI's

  3. Goals . . . ten (10) actions to do to achieve your objective

This month, let's look at the first five 'actions' this suggests:

1. Articulate Your MISSION
This is as critical as almost anything else you may do to bring about your objective.

What you want to do is to provide a ‘sound bite’ that reveals the ‘Beneficial Difference’ you can create in the life of a qualified prospect for your services.

Keep in mind this should reveal both WHO you want to work with as well as WHAT you can do FOR a client –– not how you do it. For example:

“I help Business Owners . . . to have a company where their employees are happy, their customers are loyal and their competitors are nervous!”

“I help Pet Owners . . . to have a pet who will live a long and healthy life”

The ultimate ‘test’ of a good ‘Mission’ statement is that, after hearing it, a qualified prospect for your services will tend to say, “Hmmm. And HOW do you do THAT?!!”

2. Define Your ‘Ideal Prospect’
Once you have your Mission defined, you’ll find that not everyone will care about it (i.e. ask, “HOW do you do THAT?”). However, SOME people will be more likely to say that than others. The person who responds to your Mission is your Ideal Prospect.

In general, you’ll want to use ‘identifiable characteristics’ to define your Ideal Prospect. Why? Because you’ll use this profile to have other people help you identify people who are more qualified than others for your services. Unless you can tell them what to look for, it’s likely that they won’t be able to help you as well as you’ll like.

The better profiles I’ve seen are based on two key kinds of information:

1. External Characteristics
  • easily observable facts about a prospect

2. Situations
  • easily observable circumstances a prospect may be in when they need you

3. Profile Your Problem-Solving Capabilities and Services
Have you ever heard, “People don’t buy products and services … they buy solutions!” How right that is. And that’s why it’s so important that you know what your services can do ‘for’ a client. Profiling your services makes this possible.

What’s involved? Thankfully, fairly little. But it’s all essential.

Basically, you want to complete a ‘profile’ of each product or service you offer in terms of the following:

Name pretty obvious, isn’t it? ‘-)

Features the ‘hard’ characteristics … e.g. “3 sessions”

Benefits the ‘beneficial difference/s’ this makes in a client’s life

PAINS the ‘consequential damages’ people have without your service

Prospect the person/s who can relate to the kind of PAIN/s just described

Market the connection . . . the location . . . where prospects are found

Having done this . . . for each service you offer . . . will do much to make promoting and marketing your services much, much easier and far more effective.

4. Identify and Build Alliances with Your Centers-of-Influence
Unless and until you join forces with other people, you’ll never achieve the kind of marketing results you want. Why? ‘Leverage’. Working with and through other people will afford you the means to literally be in ‘two places’ at the ‘same time’.

If you don’t already have some COI’s in play . . . or in mind, get them!

My suggestion is that you think of all the people who know you . . . like you . . . and trust you . . . both professionally and personally. Then approach them with a suggestion that you meet periodically to discuss ‘who’ they might know / have recently met who could appreciate your Mission. Note: you don’t want (but you won’t refuse either!) them to think of only people who ‘need’ your services. Just people who fit the profile of your ‘Ideal Prospect’. Why? Because there’s a very good chance that these people aren’t ready to be receptive to you, your services or your Mission . . . at this time. If they are, great. But most of the time (sniff, sniff!) this isn’t the case. So what you really want is to be able to be introduced to these Ideal Prospects using the influence and prestige of the person you both know in common –– your Center-of-Influence.

By establishing as many ‘alliances’ as possible with people who have two things you want and need to build your practice . . . 1) small business clients and 2) an existing relationship and potency with these clients you’ll do quite well. (I suggest CPA firms!!)

If you can build a ‘stable’ of some 20 people who can serve you in the capacity of COI, you’ll find that you’re identifying (and, meeting!) a LOT of people who are fairly good prospects for your services. Used in conjunction with other forms of prospecting and promotion, you’ll find this fills your ‘pipeline’ pretty well. Now you’ll like that I know!

5. Develop Collateral Material
At some point, you’ll need some kind of ‘written’ material to market your services. Many people use these either ‘too early’ or ‘inappropriately’ in the sales process.

My suggestion here is to have the following ‘basic’ Collateral Materials:

• business cards
• stationary (letterhead & envelopes)
• note cards
• post cards
• personal / services brochure (a tri-fold that can double as a mailer)

The keys here are that there should be a ‘visual feeling’ that unifies all your materials. Graphic design folks call this ‘continuity’. As for copy, that’s a whole different report. But I can suggest the following:

Business cards / Stationary
Crisp, clean and read-able ¬¬–– i.e. forget the smallish print

Note Cards
I like a ‘buck slip’ shape (1/3 of an 8.5 x 11 sheet) with a photo of you and information on how to contact you . . . a ‘tagline’ ain’t bad, either!

Post Cards
You’ll use these for promotional mailings of all kinds . . . so it’s best to simply have them designed so you can ‘drop in’ copy as you need it. I would also suggest that you consider ‘oversize’ cards –– 6” x 9” as they tend to stand out from a pile of mail.

There are many ‘formulas’ you can choose from for this kind of document. I suggest it is something that you’ll use AFTER a meeting with someone rather than before. Therefore, it should be used to reinforce rather than introduce . . . the ‘Key Ideas’ you want someone to know about you and your services.

Next month, we'll finish up these 'Top 10' actions that support your strategy and achieve your objective. Until then . . . good marketing!


Bill Doerr is a partner at SellMore Marketing. He helps professionals and other service providers to market their problem-solving expertise simply, effectively and affordably. You can reach him at, or by phone at 860-798-6964.

For more information, please visit Bill's TNNWC Bio.

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