Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Losing It

Do you know how many times your business has lost potential business because they had the wrong person dealing with the public?

A couple weeks ago, my friend Amber made the following comment on Twitter:

If your receptionist isn't friendly when I call or visit, I won't call or visit again.

What Amber stated is not profound, or new.

She simply stated what most everyone feels.

If you are going to skimp on employees, you are probably losing more business than any advertising and marketing program can ever generate, because now with the power of Social Media, those bad experiences have an audience.

Fix it today.

Fix it now.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The 80/20 Rule

If you are not familiar with the 80/20 rule, it goes like this:

80% of your business comes from 20% of your customers.


80% of your business comes from 20% of your sales staff.

Go ahead and examine those figures in your business and see if it holds true.

Let's say you have 10 sales people and 2 of them are doing all the heavy lifting, 2 are paying their own way, but the other 6 are not.

How long are you going to keep those bottom 6?

Do they truly have the potential to pay their own way and become one of your top dogs?

Are you hanging on to them because you feel you need the "feet on the street" even though they aren't cutting it?

And why aren't they cutting it?

Is it a lack of training? A lack of ____________ that can be fixed?

Or is it time to trim the fat and become leaner?

Before you get rid of those that are struggling due to your lack of ____________, make sure you do an honest evaluation.

Then if you need to cut them loose, do it.

It will help you in the long run.

The group of radio stations I worked for recently did this a few years ago. We went from 25 to 6 on our sales staff.

The result was we reversed the 80/20 rule and then slowly added 1 new salesperson at a time.

Do you have the courage to make the hard choices?

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Too Easy or Too Lazy?

Or just afraid?

This is about sales.

On May 12th I received the following email:

Hello Mr. Howard,

My name is Name ReMoved, and I’m with the Name Removed Ham Company of Ft. Wayne. I was writing because I realize that there are times during the year, where you may need to order lunches. If that’s the case, would it be okay for us to email over some information regarding our program?

We have a wonderful catering program with boxed lunches, buffets, platters and more. Our ham is our classic sandwich option, but we also have a variety of other great sandwiches, including turkey, roast beef, chicken salad, vegetarian options as well as some amazing specialty sandwiches. Chips or Deli-Sides come with every meal, and we also have amazing dessert choices as well.

We can deliver it right to your door, and always provide complimentary set up. We’d love the opportunity to work with you, if we can.

Have a great weekend, and please let me know if I can be of any assistance. Oh, and please keep us in mind for those end of year Gift ideas.

A month has passed.

I have not contacted him, he did leave me his email, phone number, cell number and fax number.

I have never met him and I doubt that I will.

If his only method of reaching out to me to get me to do business with him is one long email, we both loose.

Because as I re-read his email, the food sounds good, but the only reason I read it more than once is because I knew that this would make a good lesson for all of us.

And that Lesson?

Follow up.

Make a phone call.

Send another email.

Contact them on Social Media.

Do what it takes to get a yes or no.

It's too easy to hide behind an email campaign, if you were to call this one, which it really isn't, since it is just one email and nothing else.

Or is it just being lazy?

Don't let fear hold you back, and don't be lazy and only do the easy stuff.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The Power of Hype

Last month the rapture was to have occurred according to Harold Camping.

It generated enough attention that it was the top trending topic a few times that week and weekend on Twitter.

CNN, CBS, and the other networks all spoke of it both before and after.

Most people did not believe the hype, but had fun making fun of the hype.

When the Hype for an event, product, service, or person is bigger than than the event, product, service, or person; credibility is lost.

You don't have to do something on the scale of a rapture prediction to create Hype.

You can create an incredible offer, promise or guarantee.

Just make sure you can back it up.