2013 is almost over...
And here's a tough question for you:
If your 2014 ends up just like your 2013, would that be acceptable to you?
If you want to accelerate your business beyond where you've been - perhaps significantly so - then you'll need to master these 5 key skills and behaviors:
Our first Accelerator conference call is scheduled for this Thursday, December 5th. And before the doors close on this kickoff program, I wanted to invite you to consider if this program is right for you...
There are 6 more spaces available and then the program is CLOSED...
You are warmly invited to take a peek at everything you get - all designed to give you MORE momentum, MORE focus, MORE clients, and MORE revenue.
There are TWO ways to join - a monthly option with zero obligation (cancel any time) and an annual option that gives you additional savings and benefits.
Looking forward to the possibility of YOU joining us... just in time to accelerate your progress and your revenues in 2014 and beyond.
p.s. FAST-ACTION BONUS: If you register at the bottom of this page by Thursday December 5, you'll get TWO 60-minute private mentor sessions with me personally to work on your marketing, sales, and business growth game plan for 2014 and make sure you're positioned for success ($720 value). We'll schedule one in December and one in January. Don't miss out!
Do It! Marketing Blog: Marketing for Smart People™
Tags: marketing for speakers, marketing for coaches, thought leadership marketing, marketing professional services, professional services marketing, trusted advisor marketing, marketing expert, marketing coaching, selling professional services, marketing coach, marketing consultant, marketing for authors, marketing for consultants, doit marketing, do it marketing, small business marketing coach
"Excuse me?" or "Yech..."
I can hear you already...
If you know what KLOUT is (www.klout.com), then you might think it's the web's version of a superficial popularity contest.
If you don't, you may chalk it up to more internet marketing mumbo-jumbo, the latest buzzword or a piece of jargon not worth knowing about...
And in both cases, you'd be wrong.
If you want to increase your online and offline influence, impact - and income - then you need to know about KLOUT.
The best KLOUT resource I've found is the great new book KLOUT Matters by Terry Brock and Gina Carr.
Recently, I was lucky enough to interview my friend, Hall of Fame speaker and technology expert Terry Brock.
Here's the video for you. Listen in to Terry's lively advice - with many high-value nuggets and takeaways for YOU as you build your marketing game plan for 2014 and beyond:
Please leave a comment below and share your thoughts about KLOUT, Twitter, Facebook, and social media engagement as a measure of genuine influence. Are you a believer? A skeptic? Somewhere in the middle? Let's discuss...
Entrepreneurs who START a business typically exhibit these traits:
- Independent - they want to be their own boss.
- Self-Reliant - they want to know they're 100% responsible for their own results
- Hard-working - they're not afraid of hard work, long hours, and the toughest boss they'll ever have (see #1 above!)
Entrepreneurs who SUCCEED in business typically exhibit these traits:
- Dream big but dream focused. They want to create something that is substantial and that makes a real contribution. But they are also focused enough and disciplined enough to distinguish between opportunities and distractions.
- Lifelong student. They're willing to learn, experiment and try new things. They regularly challenge their own assumptions and explore outside their comfort zone.
- Willing to ask for help, delegate, and outsource. Most entrepreneurs are better at helping than being helped. But if you’re not willing to ask for help or delegate to others, you severely limit your growth.
- Will break through obstacles. Entrepreneurs always get stuck. Whether in dire straits financially, facing a tough new competitor, or dealing with internal headaches, the entrepreneurial journey is almost always turbulent. Successful entrepreneurs expect this and have learned to "secure their own oxygen mask before assisting others."
- Resilient. They face disappointment with courage. And more important, they bounce back. Again and again and again. And again!!
- Have patience. Things rarely work out for entrepreneurs as quickly as they'd like. Successful entrepreneurs have come to understand that sometimes the "shortcut" is the long way.
Tags: marketing concept, thought leadership marketing, trusted advisor marketing, entrepreneurship, marketing coaching, small business marketing expert, small business coach, professional speaker marketing, marketing coach, motivational speaker marketing, success tips, small business marketing, do it marketing, small business marketing speaker, sales and marketing
These rules were originally tweeted by Emma Coates, Pixar’s Story Artist.
Look them over and see how many of them apply to YOUR story - specifically, your marketing story that you're trying to articulate (first, for yourself and then for your prospects, clients, and customers!)
Number 9 on the list - "When you’re stuck, make a list of what wouldn’t happen next" – is a great one. So is number 12 - "Discount the 1st thing that comes to mind. And the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th – get the obvious out of the way. Surprise yourself."
Use the COMMENTS section below to share your favorites and how they impact YOUR thinking about YOUR marketing, sales, and business development success.
- You admire a character for trying more than for their successes.
- You gotta keep in mind what’s interesting to you as an audience, not what’s fun to do as a writer. They can be very different.
- Trying for theme is important, but you won’t see what the story is actually about til you’re at the end of it. Now rewrite.
- Once upon a time there was ___. Every day, ___. One day ___. Because of that, ___. Because of that, ___. Until finally ___.
- Simplify. Focus. Combine characters. Hop over detours. You’ll feel like you’re losing valuable stuff but it sets you free.
- What is your character good at, comfortable with? Throw the polar opposite at them. Challenge them. How do they deal?
- Come up with your ending before you figure out your middle. Seriously. Endings are hard, get yours working up front.
- Finish your story, let go even if it’s not perfect. In an ideal world you have both, but move on. Do better next time.
- When you’re stuck, make a list of what WOULDN’T happen next. Lots of times the material to get you unstuck will show up.
- Pull apart the stories you like. What you like in them is a part of you; you’ve got to recognize it before you can use it.
- Putting it on paper lets you start fixing it. If it stays in your head, a perfect idea, you’ll never share it with anyone.
- Discount the 1st thing that comes to mind. And the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th – get the obvious out of the way. Surprise yourself.
- Give your characters opinions. Passive/malleable might seem likable to you as you write, but it’s poison to the audience.
- Why must you tell THIS story? What’s the belief burning within you that your story feeds off of? That’s the heart of it.
- If you were your character, in this situation, how would you feel? Honesty lends credibility to unbelievable situations.
- What are the stakes? Give us reason to root for the character. What happens if they don’t succeed? Stack the odds against.
- No work is ever wasted. If it’s not working, let go and move on – it’ll come back around to be useful later.
- You have to know yourself: the difference between doing your best & fussing. Story is testing, not refining.
- Coincidences to get characters into trouble are great; coincidences to get them out of it are cheating.
- Exercise: take the building blocks of a movie you dislike. How d’you rearrange them into what you DO like?
- You gotta identify with your situation/characters, can’t just write ‘cool’. What would make YOU act that way?
- What’s the essence of your story? Most economical telling of it? If you know that, you can build out from there.
Tags: marketing concept, thought leadership marketing, professional services marketing, trusted advisor marketing, marketing expert, marketing coaching, small business marketing expert, marketing coach, marketing for consultants, doit marketing, do it marketing, small business marketing speaker, small business marketing coach
- Be more courageous.
- Stop prospecting blind.
- Tune your radar.
- Listen more deeply.
- Action creates traction.
- Try new things.
- Hang in there.
- Get better daily.
- Begin with enthusiasm.
- Finish with flair.
- Celebrate small wins.
- Eliminate wasted steps.
- Aim higher sooner.
- Never stop learning.
- Give, give, give.
- Plant seeds relentlessly.
- Stop wasting time.
- Hound dogs bark.
- Alpha dogs buy.
- Value + Time = Trust.
- Do your homework.
- Bring home bacon.
- Seek higher ground.
- Stop the crazy.
- Start the money.
- Give awesome gifts.
- Keep it real.
- Start fresh today.
- Be the hero.
- Write that letter.
- Prove your case.
- Trust the process.
- Seize the day.
- Solve prospect problems.
- Make others shine.
- Ask better questions.
- Think WAY bigger.
- Focus your energies.
- Now beats later.
- Let's play nice.
- Zig don't zag.
- Never sell alone.
- Stay the course.
- Don't get distracted.
- Always ask "Why?"
- Amp it up!
- How doesn't matter.
- Invite and engage.
- You're already there.
- Enjoy the ride.
- Fascinate to dominate.
- Write it down.
- Keep on truckin'!
- Love your clients.
- Ask for help.
- Never give up.
- Make prospects friends.
- Sharpen your edge.
- Bang it out.
- Serve to sell.
- Speak your mind.
- Expand your circles.
- Love your numbers.
- Consider crazy alternatives.
- Not so fast.
- Go for no.
- Blow 'em away.
- Make miracles happen.
- Stretch your possibilities.
- Kill your ego.
- It's about them.
- Speak their language.
- Earn their respect.
- Don't shy away.
- Give more generously.
- Don't be scared.
- Buy this book.
- Freshen it up.
- Redirect dumb questions.
- Anticipate common roadblocks.
- Full color proposals.
- Pictures trump words.
- Thank your heroes.
- Respond, don't react.
- Invest in yourself.
- Seek the truth.
- Avoid the obvious.
- Birds gotta fly.
- Fish gotta swim.
- Relationships are perishable.
- Make that call.
- Track your progress.
- Decisions drive momentum.
- Take notes everywhere.
- Look further ahead.
- Stop playing small.
- Sell the dream.
- Deliver the goods.
- Never shortchange yourself.
- You're so ready.
- DO IT. Now!
And then leave a comment below with your questions, thoughts, and advice on the ideas above.
Are you a DO IT freak? Welcome to the club!! Please use the social media buttons at the top of this post to share it with your network. YOU are a rock star!
Tags: thought leadership marketing, professional services marketing, trusted advisor marketing, marketing coaching, selling professional services, marketing coach, doit marketing, do it marketing, sales and marketing
Have you ever wondered why your prospects DON’T buy from you? Especially when you can see as plain as the nose on their face that they DESPERATELY need what you do and could benefit from it HUGELY?
Well… as with most marketing - it’s not about YOU.
It’s about THEM.
And your prospects are not actually idiots - but IDIOTS is a good acronym for the six biggest reasons that your prospects DON’T buy.
I’ve done a lot of thinking about this because MANY of my 1-on-1 marketing coaching clients experience precisely this problem when we begin working together.
And solving it for them immediately puts money in their pocket. Just like it will for YOU.
Here are the six parts of the IDIOTS acronym:
- Ignorant of their problem
- Denial of their situation
- Indifferent to your brand
- Overwhelmed with choices
- Terrified of making a mistake
- Suspicious of marketers/salespeople
Let’s unpack these one at a time. And you’ll also get specific ideas for what to DO to punch through each of these six obstacles and close more sales - better sales - faster sales.
1. Ignorant of their problem. They “don’t know what they don’t know” about what’s wrong, missing, broken, too slow, too inefficient. And you can’t sell someone on the fact that they have a problem. Never works. Just pisses ‘em off.
What to DO: Use the following language: “Is This You?” and then cleanly and crisply articulate their pains, problems, heartaches, headaches, challenges, and gaps in language that they will instantly recognize - because you’re entering the conversation that’s already happening in their head every single day.
2. Denial of their situation. “Me? Problem? No, no, no - that’s impossible.” This is actually a WORSE problem than mere ignorance. It’s awareness plus a determination to avoid, deny or minimize the problem. This is also commonly referred to as the “head in the sand” syndrome.
What to DO: Call out the elephant in the room (the denial) and skillfully weave in stories of other people in similar situations who emerged from their denial, made some tough choices, and came out victorious in the end. In order to avoid insulting them, use language such as, “Many folks in your situation prefer to address the surface issues rather than deal with the problem head-on. That makes perfect sense because this can be messy, expensive, and painful. Using our [product/service/whatever you’re selling], our clients find that it’s not nearly as bad as they feared - and once it’s done, everything gets better in the areas of X, Y. and Z."
3. Indifferent to your brand. “Who are you again? And from what company?” Early in my entrepreneurial career as a marketing speaker and marketing coach, I called on a client and we had a very cordial 20-minute meeting. He seemed ready to move ahead. Until he thought to ask me this question, “If you’re so good, how come I’ve never heard of you before?” OUCH! 12 years ago I didn’t have a good answer. (Today, I would take a copy of my book from my briefcase and slap him upside the head with it before leaving an autographed copy on his desk and seeing myself out.)
What to DO: Buyers don’t buy you, your product, your service, or your brand sight unseen. So the answer is easy: GET SEEN! Use 3PR strategies to maximize your influence and impact in the right places in front of the right prospects for the right reasons. Keep showing up as a person (and company) “of value” and soon, they’ll be coming to YOU, not vice versa.
4. Overwhelmed with choices. Your buyers are lazy, busy, and befuddled. I don’t need to convince you any further of that, do I?
What to DO: Market to the LAZY - What can you OFFER that’s easy, fast, and free? Market to the BUSY - What can you DO to be heard above the noise? Market to the BEFUDDLED - What can you SAY that will immediately resonate with your best prospects because it shows that you “get” them?
5. Terrified of making a mistake. Yup - your buyers are risk-averse. Scaredy cats, in fact. As they should be because they’ve probably been burned by people who looked a lot like YOU in the not-too-distant past. What should you offer them? Guarantees, success stories, testimonials, and proof.
What to DO: Show them specific names, specific companies, and indisputable points of proof that you have a strong, clear and compelling track record of making those people happy. Let's face it - one BIG reason people don't want to buy is because they're putting their own relational capital (aka reputation) on the line. And that's risky. If you can remove the risk of the sale, you will open the floodgates to getting more and better clients for life. Hint: They won't believe YOU. They WILL believe your clients, references, referrals, and people who have given you money in the past and been thrilled to do so. Print up a sheet called "Client Success Stories." Put in 5-7 specific success stories with the right names to drop and the right stories to tell. Bingo! Instant sales breakthrough.
6. Suspicious of marketers/salespeople. Yes, of course they are. And you are, too. Salespeople and marketers have a long-standing (and sometimes accurate) reputation as liars, shysters, slimeballs, and fraudsters. That’s the stereotype you’re up against no matter how expensive your suit, how specialized your services, or how sincere your approach.
What to DO: Position yourself not as a salesperson OR a marketer. Position yourself as an expert - a thought-leader - a trusted advisor. In my marketing keynotes and seminars, I show a slide that has this text in a giant 288-point font: VALUE + TIME = TRUST. That’s the key. Deliver value - relevant insights, resources, advice, recommendations. Do this over time and become known as a person of value - and a company of value - and then over time, your prospects will begin to seek you out and you’ll be positioned as the obvious go-to choice for what you’re offering.
That’s the antidote to prospect IDIOTS who don’t buy from you. (Again, no offense - remember, it’s an acronym!)
Want to apply for your Speaker Strategy Call to see how you can IMPLEMENT some of these concepts right away? Apply for your call here.
Tags: marketing success, marketing concept, thought leadership marketing, professional services marketing, trusted advisor marketing, small business marketing expert, professional speaker marketing, marketing coach, do it marketing, small business marketing speaker, doitmarketing, sales and marketing
Like you, I get a lot of offers every day.
Not just “offers” to buy things - those are easy to say no to. Rather, I’m talking about offers to read something, download something, review something, offers to get introduced to people, offers to speak, offers to connect.
The key to success - and to moving swiftly through these hundreds of micro-decisions we all face daily - is to say no fast.
Naturally, that also means you need to develop the ability to say yes fast.
But no is harder.
Saying no triggers all sorts of irrational thoughts in your brain, like:
- I’m missing out
- I’m being a jerk
- I'm letting them down
- They’ll think I’m rude
- They’ll hire a competitor
- And on and on and on...
None of those are true.
And most choices are reversible.
But the key to success in marketing - and in business - and in life, really - is to develop this one muscle: your DECISION muscle:
- Do I stay or do I go?
- Do I opt in or opt out?
- Do I connect or do I pass?
- Do I read or do I delete?
- Do I say yes or no?
If you want to exercise this muscle right now (with completely no pressure and no consequence), then pop down to the COMMENTS section of this blog and post the word YES or NO. Super simple. It’ll take you 10 seconds.
Next level up from that exercise - go to your email inbox. Look at the first 20 messages. Don’t READ anything.
Just decide what to do with the email.
If it’s junk, delete it.
If it’s important, file it.
If you’re not sure… A-ha! Gotcha!!
THAT is the muscle you need to develop.
The certainty muscle - the confidence muscle - the ability not only to MAKE decisions but to TRUST your own decisions.
- In or out?
- Yes or no?
- Black or white?
- Boxers or briefs?
- Chocolate or strawberry?
- Hardback or Kindle (couldn't resist!)
- You get the idea...
As soon as you STOP “thinking” and start “deciding” - everything in your business gets easier.
You start getting unstuck.
You start building momentum.
You start implementing, moving, and acting.
And in marketing - it’s ACTION that gives you TRACTION.
So go ahead… Say yes. Say no.
Decide! Act!! Do!!!
That’s the key to your entrepreneurial success.
Let me know how I can help. (Or don’t! See how this works?)
What do YOU think? Please use the COMMENTS area below to share your advice, insights and recommendations on saying no fast and trusting your decisions...
There's a nice group of folks coming together for the next "Simple Marketing Success" 10-week group coaching program that begins October 8.
In fact, you have about 24 hours to catch Early Bird pricing that expires tomorrow (9/21).
I'm talking with a lot of entrepreneurs, small business owners, and independent professionals about the program.
Some are a great fit for the program and will benefit hugely.
Some are not. I will almost always catch these people during the application process and weed them out.
This is one such story...
This entrepreneur emailed me the following question:
I hope you are having a great weekend! After some debate, here's the verdict: I want to take the course, I believe, you see, I'd make a great student - but money is an issue for the household if you know what I mean.
So here's a question: Would you feel comfortable giving us a 100% satisfaction guarantee? If at the end of 10 weeks I have not been able to get a solid booking(s) to at least cover the cost of the program, then you'd give us a full refund. But if I have been able to get a solid booking(s) at the end of the 10-week period, then we call it a major success and both parties are happy, including my wife. Can we do that?
I won't bore you with pointing out the half-dozen red flags with this prospect. You can probably see them all for yourself.
This post is about guaranteeing YOUR consulting, coaching, or training outcomes.
My policy - I don't do it.
And neither should YOU.
Here's what I replied to this fellow:
If you're looking for some kind of guarantee, the problem is that I can only guarantee MY program.
I can't guarantee YOUR results.
Here's what I guarantee:
- I'll lead 10 weekly calls
- You'll get 10 weekly assignments
- You'll get digital audio downloads of 10 calls
- You'll get word-for-word transcripts of 10 calls
- You'll get 280+ pages of tested small business marketing strategies, tools, templates, and ideas
- The ideas and tactics you'll get have been proven with over 300 entrepreneurs, small business owners and independent professionals
- I'll be available for UNLIMITED email support and respond to you within 1 business day, usually much sooner
- You'll get TWO 30-minute private 1-on-1 calls with me which you can use for any purpose
- You'll get full access to the online Group/Forum website for asking questions, seeking feedback, and posting responses and assignments
- I can't guarantee you'll be on the calls
- I can't guarantee you'll listen to the recordings
- I can't guarantee you'll do your weekly assignments
- I can't guarantee you'll read the transcripts
- I can't guarantee you'll read the book
- I can't guarantee you'll implement a single strategy or tactic
- I can't guarantee you'll email me when you need help or guidance
- I can't guarantee you'll set up your 2 private coaching calls
- I can't guarantee you'll follow my advice
- I can't guarantee you'll participate in the online forum
- I can't guarantee you'll work hard (or at all) to make this program WORK for you
And I'm not in the business of "convincing" people with feel-good guarantees.
I don't work with hundreds of people at a clip. I work with a very small, very dedicated group of entrepreneurs, business owners and independent professionals who are committed to their own success and want to accelerate its timetable and expand its scope.
If that's you, then terrific. Let's do this thing.
If not, no hard feelings.
What do YOU think? Please use the COMMENTS area below to share your advice, insights and recommendations on using guarantees in YOUR coaching, consulting, training or professional services business. And if you use a written guarantee, feel free to post the link and a quick plug for your services, too!
Tags: marketing for speakers, marketing for coaches, marketing concept, thought leadership marketing, marketing professional services, professional services marketing, trusted advisor marketing, marketing expert, marketing for trainers, marketing coaching, marketing coach, marketing consultant, small business marketing, marketing for authors, marketing for consultants, doit marketing, do it marketing, doitmarketing
How to unlock, unblock, and unleash LinkedIn Groups...
If you're a thought-leading executive or entrepreneur, chances are excellent that you are actively using the Groups feature in LinkedIn. (And if you're NOT - well, you're missing a tremendous opportunity to add value to your prospect base, find new clients, and build new relationships - but more on that in another post!)
I belong to 50 LinkedIn Groups and of those, I own or manage three of them.
Today's topic is in response to the following email I got from a member of one of my groups:
I have tried to submit comments at least twice now on discussions that have been started by someone else in the group. When I hit the submit button, it tells me my comment is pending review.
Is there something I need to do on my end to get my comments to go through? Am I being blocked for some reason?
And then the SAME THING started to happen to ME in other groups I belonged to...
It was both a real headache and a real mystery to figure out how to solve this... til now.
Take a look... [Click the Enlarge icon in the lower right for a better view!]
What do YOU think? Please use the COMMENTS area below to share your advice, insights and recommendations on managing and profiting from LinkedIn Groups. And if you own a Group, feel free to post the link and a quick plug for your Group, too!
Tags: marketing for speakers, marketing for coaches, thought leadership marketing, linkedin, marketing professional services, professional services marketing, trusted advisor marketing, marketing expert, marketing coaching, small business coach, professional speaker marketing, marketing coach, marketing consultant, small business marketing, marketing for authors, marketing for consultants, small business marketing coach
I see broke people...
Here's a reimagined scene from one of my favorite movies, The Sixth Sense...
As a business owner, entrepreneur, or service professional, see if any of this sounds familiar to YOU - and if so, please share your experiences and advice in the COMMENTS area below...
I want to tell you my secret now.
Malcolm blinks very slowly
Cole takes an eternal pause. A silent tension engulfs them both
...I see people.
Malcolm just gazes quietly.
I see broke people...
In your dreams?
Cole shakes his head, "No."
When you're awake?
Cole nods, "Yes."
Broke people, like beggars?
No, walking around, like business owners... They can't see each other. Some of them don't know they're broke.
They don't know they're broke?
Malcolm becomes completely motionless. Works to hide his shock. He and Cole stare at each other a long time.
They tell me stories... how they used to land big clients without doing any marketing... how they wasted a fortune on a fancy PR firm... how they went into credit card debt to pay for a get-rich-quick internet marketing seminar...
Malcolm's words are extra-controlled. Revealing nothing.
How often do you see them?
All the time. They're everywhere.
You won't tell anyone my secret, right?
Will you stay here till I fall asleep?
Malcolm nods, "Yes." Cole pulls the covers up to his chin and turns to the window in the room. Malcolm is very still and stares at Cole.
MALCOLM'S EYES -- slowly turn and survey the room. They find nothing. Malcolm returns to watching Cole.
COLE'S EYES LOOK AROUND THE ROOM WARILY... WE MOVE IN ON THEM -- TILL HIS EYES FILL THE FRAME.
And then we see what he's staring at. Through Cole's hospital room window we look across onto a run-down housing project.
Rows of small offices are visible. In the windows are broke business owners... SOME OLD, SOME YOUNG... SOME ARE DRESSED IN MODERN NEW CLOTHES... SOME WASH THEIR NEW CARS...
p.s. If you want to STOP seeing broke people and build your marketing, sales, and business development muscles, we still have a few open seats for the Simple Marketing Success 10-Week Virtual Bootcamp experience that starts October 8, 2013. Let me know you're interested (email or call me 610.716.5984) and I'll forward you the application materials and program guidelines right away.
Tags: marketing speaker, consulting firm marketing, thought leadership marketing, marketing professional services, professional services marketing, trusted advisor marketing, marketing professional services firms, marketing coaching, small business marketing expert, professional speaker marketing, marketing coach, marketing strategist, small business marketing, doit marketing, do it marketing, doitmarketing, small business marketing coach