Category: Small Business

Expand the Life of Your Business

Today I’m going to talk about the life cycle of a business and how to get the most out of
each cycle while also extended the lifespan of your business.
The four different stages of a business life cycle are:
 Infancy
 Adolescence
 Growing Pains
 Maturity
We’ll talk a little about what each of these cycle’s means and how they can each help
expand your business’ lifespan.
Infancy
This is generally consider the technician’s phase, which is the owner. At this point, the
relationship between the business and the owner is that of a parent and new baby.
There is an impenetrable bond that is necessary to determine the path your business
will follow.
The key is to know your business must grow in order to flourish. You cannot stage in this
stage forever.
Adolescence
In this stage you need to start bringing your support staff together to delegate to and
allow growth to happen. The first line of defense is your technical person as they need
to bring a certain level of technical experience. This cycle really belongs to the manager
though. The plan stage needs to start and a relationship should be built with the
entrepreneur to plan for the future.
Growing Pains
There’s a point in every business when business explodes and becomes chaotic. This is
referred to as growing pains. It’s a good problem to have, but a problem nonetheless.
You are often faced with a number of choices:
 Avoid growth and stay small
 Go broke
 Push forward into the next cycle

Maturity

The last cycle is maturity, though this doesn’t mean the end of your business. Your
passion for growth must continue in order for your business to succeed. You need to
keep an entrepreneurial perspective in order to push your business forward.
You see how all three of these cycles are connected and depend on a strong foundation
for each one of them for your business to be and continue to be successful. All three of
your key roles must also work together to work through these cycles.
If you’re having trouble putting together your business life cycles and figuring out which
of the key roles you fit into, try our GUIDED TOUR and work with one of our amazing
coaches.

Gather the Troops

Today I’d like to chat about the different types of support staff you need and what
makes them so important.
There are essentially three key roles that need to be filled to set your business up for
success:
 The Technician
 The Manager
 The Entrepreneur

All of these roles need to be played simultaneously by different people with the right
talents. It’s all about balance.
The Technician
This person represents the present and all that needs to be done for the physical
aspects of the business building process. They are the “doer”. This is usually the most
visible person of the entire operation.
The Manager
This person represents the past and works to fix problems through learning from past
mistakes. They are the practical side of the business and is in charge of putting together
the business and overseeing the planning.
The Entrepreneur
This person represents the future and the vision for the business. They are responsible
for the creative side of the business and are always considering ways to enhance
products/service, business image, branding and more.
All three of these characters are essential in the success of any business and to build a
solid foundation from the start, you need to work harder to find the right people to put
in these roles. Obviously, you need to be one of these key people, but ensure you find
the role that fits your skills and talents, not necessarily what you THINK you should be
doing.
This may be a hard process for you as you will need to relinquish some control over the
business and instill trust in people to allow them to do their jobs.
Remember, our business coaches can help you through this entire process and teach
you how to avoid falling victim to e-myths when you try our GUIDED TOUR.

Are You Aiding & Abetting E-Myths?

We are going to embark upon a journey through the world of e-myths and debunk them
to help you avoid falling into the e-myth trap.
First, let’s take a minute to talk about what an e-myth is. An entrepreneurial myth, or e-
myth, is an assumption that anyone can succeed at business with:
 Desire
 Some capital
 Projected a targeted profit

This sounds great, but it just not realistic. Think of starting a business as a marathon.
Sure, everyone starts out of the gate at record pace, but after a few miles people start
slowing and some drop out entirely. Building a successful business takes stamina and
agility.
The reality is that there are many different facets to a successful business and none of
them can be ignored if you plan to find success.
Let’s take a minute to talk about entrepreneurial seizure. This defines the roller coaster
of emotions that comes with starting, nurturing and the potential failure of a business.
The emotions that occur, in order, are:
 Exhilaration
 Exhaustion
 Despair
 Sense of self-loss

This is usually cause by the e-myths and assumptions we talked about. You can get your
hopes so high on instant success that even the smallest lag and you are sent into an
emotional tailspin. This is also brought on by the stark realization that you can’t do it all
and will need help in the areas where you don’t have the knowledge. Now, faced with
limited choices you may feel like you need to back out and hide, but don’t do this.
Use our GUIDED TOUR to get the business coaching you need to avoid feeling
overwhelmed and defeated.

Do It Like the Big Dawgs!

Today we’ll take a look at how the kings of industry wine, dine and otherwise cajole
prospects.
Most of successful professionals use a series of information based ads that build
emotion and a call to action. These are much more effective than a standard company
branding advertisements. The same principles that go into putting together a high
impact (and, often, high priced) ad campaign can be adapted to fit your needs with
similar results.
Here are some ways to put together and execute a professional, effective ad campaign:
1. Put together a short report that’ll you’ll automatically send to prospects when
they contact you. This should include a short description of your business and
what you specialize in. Don’t forget to include case studies, samples or other
proof of your success.
2. Develop value-oriented yellow page ads.
3. Consider newsletters as a way of educating and informing customers about your
industry and services offered.
4. Offer a free seminar, webinar or other lecture to build awareness of your
business, but make sure you make the information pertinent to your target
market and find speakers who are respected and known in the industry.
5. Buy an existing business, introduce better marketing and grow this new business
faster than a “from scratch” business.
6. Always test different versions of your ads to find the most effective ones.
7. Use direct mail marketing to grow your business.
8. Put together a database of previous customers and send them new information.
9. Offer incentives such as frequent purchasing benefits, loyalty programs, referral
programs or others.
10. Approach large firms who may need your services and negotiate a deal to be
their exclusive expert in your field.
11. Offer a 24-hour information line with a regularly updated recorded message.
Make this available to all past and future customers/clients.
12. Donate time or materials to local charities to show support in your area.

13. Offer public clinics for the general public to come along and discuss what they
need that’s free and approachable.
14. Organize seminars your customers/clients can pay to attend by putting together
a high-perception value package.
15. Approach local newspaper by offering to write a weekly column about your area
of expertise. Don’t ask for money, just a byline and bio.
16. Develop a weekend or other destination seminar for customers/clients, not only
does this give you an action-packed weekend with the most important people, it
gives them a tax-deductible business adventure.
17. Take a good seminar and turn it into written form as a home study, member site
program, audio or video program.
18. Approach large companies and offer to give seminars to their employees,
investors or management.
19. Be proactive with your marketing plan.
20. Barter for your marketing. Offer products or services in lieu of payment.
21. Be willing to bring in new clients, even if at an initial loss because it will likely pay
off later.
22. Regulate your marketing budget to maximize the potential income from them to
hit the next year and try to push back advertising costs for the next year to offset
your expenses.
23. Make offers to target markets or target market businesses to pay them for
referrals or shared databases.
24. Offer loaner products to replace equipment that’s be repaired or refurbished.
25. Give away something free to everyone who brings in a print version of your
advertisement. This is a great way to see which ads are giving you the most bang
for your buck.
26. Continually consider what new products/services you can offer to current
customers/clients.
27. Develop a mail order division of your company.
28. Offer a proposition to your competitors to trade customers/clients you were
both unsuccessful in selling to.
29. Use different marketing tactics as an excuse to attract new customers/clients
with new offers and goodies.

30. Offer a “you-choose-the-price” program. This is especially good for product you
just can’t seem to sell.
So, there are 30 great ways to market to other professional and businesses. Some other
great ways to get your name out there for little or no cost are:
 Get involved you in your community-volunteer, donate to local events, etc.
 Join your local Chamber of Commerce and attend the networking and other
activities throughout the year.
 Join a local, state or regional professional associates for further networking
opportunities.
 Become a board member of a local organization.

Advertising should never be your only method of marketing, there are a myriad of ways
to get your name out there in a way that feels personal to potential customers/clients.
“Effective advertising…must be used to get your name out to the public. If your name is
not familiar to people, they will not come to you.” Jay Abraham
If you’re not sure where you start with your marketing plan or how to reach out to your
local community, competitors, customers/clients and others who could influence your
business in a highly positive way, try our GUIDED TOUR to experience the tools and
resources we have to boost your business to the next level and beyond.

PR Equals Free Publicity

There are three key areas of public relations you can use to boost your advertising
results ten-fold over your paid advertising.
The key to public relations lie in:
 Public relation or publicity
 Merchandising
 Promotions
With a solid plan in place that encompasses all these areas, you’ll have a great approach
to use public relations in the best way possible.
Public relations include all that is the media. Don’t limit yourself. The attention of
newspapers, television, radio, magazines, bloggers, ezines and more are all equally
powerful. Online marketing is just as, if not more, important as conventional media.
Here are the steps to get noticed by the media:
1. Put together a press release for your company. The press release should be
relevant to your target market and address consumer interest, not just announce
your business.
2. Compact your press release to include one hook and one angle. Choose the most
attention-getting to make sure the media person you are sending it to is
interested in reading it.
3. Put your press release in professional formatting. With press releases you need a
dateline, the most important information at the top, facts, figures and wrap it up
with contact details including who and how. Print the press release on your
letterhead.
4. Send your press release to all television and radio stations, local and metro
newspapers, national newspapers, industry magazines, and any other form of
media that reaches your target market. Don’t forgot to include relevant blogs,
ezines, press release submission sites and to industry professionals.
More importantly than a perfect press release is to make sure you have addressed the
needs of your target market in the products/services you offer and made that clear in
the press release. If you are provided people a solution to a problem, a way to avoid a
problem and an opportunity to enhance their life the media and public will be
interested.

If you have a connection (or the ability to get a connection) with a celebrity, this can
practically guarantee you’ll get attention. Make sure you are offered newsworthy
information, and then follow up with media outlets to make sure they are publicizing
that information.
“One of the most powerful techniques every business should use is free publicity. As the
name implies, there is no cost, just the time and effort required to attract attention to
your business.” Jay Abraham
Our GUIDED TOUR can show you how to put together press releases that work! Check
out how the pro’s do it and craft the perfect press releases for your business.

How Well Do You Know Your Vendors?

It’s extremely important to build relationships with your vendors and those around you can bring in new customers/clients and increase awareness of your company branding.
The people you work directly with on your products and services are really the ones with the most to gain when you find success. By taking the time to get to know them, you’ll find a whole host of opportunities you didn’t realize were there.
Look for great ways to offer your vendors rewards for helping grow your business and everyone wins. One of ways you can do this is by offering performance based incentives that are much larger than their normal charges.
Here’s the step-by-step process to putting together a partnership with a vendor:
Approach all the vendors you work with and offer an incentive based on performance.
Put the generous incentive plan together from their perspective, even take suggestions.
Develop a clear, concise and easy to track incentive plan, this will increase competition between vendors and therefore higher performance levels.
Encourage subsequent sales instead of focusing only on the initial sale. By doing this you can give away more of the profit from the initial sale to your vendors and make higher profits off the back end products. Encourage:
Future sales
Upsell better and more profitable products/services
Cross-sell to additional products

Create an incentive plan that’s irresistible to your vendors by offering generous, exclusive compensation.
Think of all the vendors you work with and the creative ways you can put together an incentive plan that entices them to be part of your business. Use their talents, capabilities and connections and you’ll both be winners.
Putting together an incentive plan doesn’t have to be a complicated process. Use our GUIDED TOUR to come up with some great ideas and put your incentive plan together for maximum results.

Telemarketing is NOT the Anti-Christ

Today you’ll learn how to use direct mail marketing and, yes, telemarketing to your full
advantage. I know, the word “telemarketing” might as well be four letters, but there is a
way to help customers feel like they are getting personal attention and keep them from
blocking your number!
With the success direct mail marketing has had and the availability of computers, these
can be used as a powerful marketing tool for your success. Telemarketing is best for
high priced, high margin products/services.
Here are the key steps to putting together a highly effective direct mail marketing
program:
1. List all benefits customers will get from the purchase of your products and
services.
2. Pick the single most powerful benefit out of that list.
3. Build an attention-getting headline around that benefit. Remember to use
emotion-fulfill the desire to be young, wealthy, desired, popular or successful.
4. Develop a sales letter using the headline you created to grab attention, provide
information and motivate customers to act.
5. Put together supplementary items, such as a brochure, order form, reply
envelope or note that encourages them to read the letter.
6. Rent or purchase a mailing list.
7. Compare cost of mailing vs. cost per order.
8. Continue to test and refine your direct mail marketing plan.
You can see how direct mail marketing can help you find a local or even country-wide
target market to send letters or postcards to and draw in new clientele and customers.
Fine-tuning your marketing campaign will bring better results and therefore lower the
overall cost of the campaign.
To be successful in telemarketing you need to:
 Put together a plan, so you know exactly what you want to accomplish during
the call.
 Develop a list of topics to discuss and the questions you want to present around
these topics.

 Input verbiage checking to see if you are calling at a good time.
 Include enough questions to keep the conversation interesting, but not too many
to sound like you are interrogating.
 Start with broad questions and narrow your focus as the conversation continues.
 Offer feedback to show them you are paying attention and appreciate their time.
 Don’t insult their intelligence or manipulate them.
 Listen first, talk second.
 Be relaxed and conversational.
Telemarketing doesn’t have to be the trauma it’s made out to be. You can put together
an honest, personal and effective telemarketing campaign that is endearing, informative
and gets the job done. Think of how you would want to be treated on a marketing call.
Ask your friends and family what they hate most about the telemarketing calls they get
and work hard to craft your plan in a better way.
“When selling by telephone, you have approximately thirty seconds to convince the
customer to listen to you. You need an opening statement that captures their attention,
conveys who you are, what you want and why the prospect should listen.” Jay Abraham
It’s easy to see how direct mail marketing and telemarketing can positively affect your
business by bringing in new customers and increasing the level of awareness about your
products, services and company branding. Our GUIDED TOUR offers the resources and
tools you need to work through these processes and put together the best marketing
plan you can.

Kick Start Your Marketing

Today I’d like to teach you about the three most important start up marketing tools you need to get and keep new customers.

  1. In person: It’s essential you meet with customers/clients in person whenever possible. This shows you respect them and take the time to work with your clients to give personal attention to each of them.
  2. Follow up letter: Always take a moment to send a follow up letter about what you talked about, new agreements or partnerships made and to thank them for taking the time to meet with you. Likewise, you should always send thank you letters or small gifts to partners you find success with.
  3. Phone call: Use a telephone call to follow up with them to talk again about the matters you talked about in your meeting and offer any assistance you can to help their business run smoothly and more successfully.

None of these will work if you don’t have a quality product/service to back you up!

Here are the key steps for putting together your start-up marketing tools:

  1. Research potential customers, buyers, competitors and their preferred methods of distribution.
  2. Talk to potential customers. Take a hard look at your product from a customer’s perspective and see what it needs to be successful.
  3. Follow up with your 3-step process from above.
  4. Develop systems for contact follow through, quality control standards and customer service.
  5. Develop post-sale follow up system to keep lines of communication open is customers and build on your current relationship which increases future purchases.

“Marketing and innovation produce results; all the rest are costs” Peter Drucker, management consultant

Here’s another one I love from an icon:

“If there is any one secret of success, it lies in the ability to get the other person’s point of view and see things from that person’s angle as well as from your own.” Henry Ford, Founder of Ford Motor Company

This lesson has offered you the tools to put together a start-up marketing plan that can be used over and over again to help your customer base and business grow in a manageable way.

Stop Wasting Your Resources!

Today you’re going to learn how to find a target market of potential customers so you aren’t wasting precious resources on blitz marketing. So, the two questions you have to ask yourself are:
  • What do people really want to buy from me?
  • What related products are they already buying?
Once you figure this out you will know who is more predisposed to purchase your products/services. Then, you find other businesses with the same customer base who you can customer share with. Come up with an incentive and great arrangement to encourage both of your customer bases to shop at both of your stores. The basic concept is this: You want to find existing businesses who have the customer profile that you are looking for to market your products/services to. Then strike up a relationship with those business owners to work out an incentive for customers to purchase from both businesses. As a result, you have an audience to market to and they generate an added value from their current base. So, how do you figure this out? There is a great formula from Jay Abraham you can follow with great success. LV = (P x F) x N – MC Here’s what it all means:
  • LV is the life time value of a customer
  • P is the average profit margin from each sale
  • F is the number of times a customer buys each year
  • N is the number of years customers stay with you
  • MC is the marketing cost per customer (total costs/number of customers)
Once you know how much you need to spend to attract a new customer, you will know how much of an incentive you can offer to a business to help attract new customers. So, here’s your step-by-step process:
  1. Find companies who already have the customer base you are looking for.
  2. Negotiate an incentive for them to share that customer base with you.
  3. Focus your marketing resources to this group of predisposed customers.
If you need help working through this process, please contact us and we’ll set you up with the most comprehensive system of marketing tools and resources.

Educate Your Customers

Educate them about what, you may be thinking. Well, consider this, many businesses focus solely on attracting new customers, but you NEED to spend a good chunk of your time retaining current and former customers. These are people you already know to be a good sales potential…they’ve already bought from you!

Take the time to market and sell new products to your old customers and less time trying to sell old products to new customers and you will see a drastic change in your sales, customer quality and branding position.

Here are a couple of key elements to use to retain your current customers:

  1. Stay in contact: This means by phone, email, e-newsletter, in person-by pigeon if you have too!
  2. Post-Purchase Assurance: This means you need to follow up with customers. Your customers need to feel like they are being supported for their purchase and with the item they purchased. How many times have you purchased a product, then felt completely abandoned? Something as simple as a Thank You note with your contact or customer service information can go along way in retaining a great customer.
  3. Deals & Guarantees: Always offer your current customers the best deals and guarantees you have. Show them you appreciate their business or even come up with a club specifically to reward loyal customers. You can also do this with a preferred pricing option.
  4. Integrity: Using good business practices and simply upholding integrity, dignity and honesty go along way with customers. Let’s face it, there’s a lot of swindling and crap out there and the safer and more confident you make your customers feel, the more they will trust you and that makes for an amazingly supportive and loyal customer.

There are three cornerstone ideas to a successful business:

  • Quality product/service
  • Offering useful products/services that solve a problem for or enhance the life of a customer
  • Offer subjects your customers find interesting

Use this approach of educating your customers and offering them real information and insight and you will be rewarded with loyalty and success.

Stop wasting all your time on new prospects while your current customers fall by the wayside!

As Jay Abraham says, “Your best prospects are your existing customers. If you’ve been putting all your marketing efforts into acquiring new customers, stop and diverts some of your resources into reselling, upselling, cross-selling to those same customers. In every ways possible – through package inserts, regular mailings, special offers – stay in touch with those customers and get them used to buying from you.”

So, there it is! Remember, we can help you put together the resources and tools to do exactly that. We can help you educate your customers and you can watch the benefits pay offer many-fold.