Do It! Marketing Blog: Marketing for Smart People™

Your Biggest, Nastiest, Stupidest, Most Expensive Sales Mistake

doit marketing, biggest dumbest most expensive sales mistakeOne of my favorite sales gurus is Scott Messer of Sales Evolution. Not only is Scott a good friend, he is a sales expert and master sales coach.

This post will help you solve Your Biggest, Nastiest, Stupidest, Most Expensive Sales Mistake... and give you several of Scott's brilliant sound bites to help you improve your sales success.

We're talking about a BIG sales mistake you probably made last week, will make again this week, and -- unless you heed Scott's wisdom -- will make next week again. 

All of which will cost you THOUSANDS if not TENS of thousands of dollars in lost sales. 

Scary, right? 

What is this big, nasty, pervasive, expensive sales mistake? 

Here it is: Not being a fanatic about collecting decisions from prospects.

Scott says selling is 100% about collecting decisions.

It's not about getting yeses, it's not about closing gimmicks. It's simply about being tenacious about taking prospects down a path (aka your sales process) to help them make a clear and definitive DECISION. As in "Yes" or "No."

Not "Let me think about it" - not "I'll get back to you" - not "circle back with me next week" - not anything other than a firm date and time on the prospect's calendar for you to hear "YES" or "NO." 

How do you do this? Simple - Scott recommends that at every step of the sales process, put a date and time on the calendar for a "decision call." Here's how to ask: 

  • Let's put a date and time on the calendar for us to discuss your decision
  • Let's put a pushpin in the calendar for us to reconnect about your decision
  • Because you and I are both so busy, let's put a date and time on the calendar so you can tell me "Yes" or "No" or to answer any final questions you may have for me

Scott recommends that you forget about your sales pipeline - forget about your number of first appointments, forget about your number of "hot leads" - there is ONE and ONLY ONE measure of how healthy your sales pipeline truly is. 

That measure is - how many decision calls are on your calendar? A decision call, by the way, needs to be not only on YOUR calendar - it needs to be on your PROSPECT'S calendar because it is their responsibility to make one AND communicate it to you on that call. 

Example: I had a prospect call me two weeks ago. Let's call him Paul (which is cool because his name is really... Paul.) 

All was going well. Then I got a little derailed when he asked for references. Ordinarily, I would set a decision call by asking him, "When will you make time to call my reference folks? Let's make a time to discuss your decision after that." 

But I goofed. I was in a hurry. I let Paul wander off with no decision date on the calendar. When I called him this morning to circle back, he told me that he had gotten "distracted" and had not called the references at all. He then said, "I'll get back to you within three weeks." 

I laughed. 

Instinctively, I said, "You'll get back to me in three weeks because you're the kind of guy who likes to take lots and lots of time to make a decision and have people like me chasing you endlessly and leaving message after message and email after email when the real answer is no." 

Yup, I said that.

Out loud.

Right to Paul's face. 

Why? Because to quote another Scott Messer sound bite - "You can't blow up a good prospect." 

Paul laughed and admitted that he did NOT, in fact, enjoy being chased endlessly. 

So I put Paul out of his misery and fired him as a prospect. Here's how that sounded: 

"Paul, I'll put you down as a "No" for now. If you'd like to revisit working together, you know where to find me." 

He was perfectly cool with that. So I knew the deal was dead.

I've used that "No for now" line in the past and GOOD prospects will jump in with "No, no, no I definitely want to work with you. I just need more time to..." and they put themselves back into the active prospect column.

What do I do then? You guessed it - we set a decision call on the calendar. 

Anyway, back to Paul... I wanted to put a nail in the coffin so I sent the following email after we hung up the phone: 



Because you are no longer an active prospect, please do NOT call the folks I sent as references.  

As I'm sure you can appreciate, references are precious and I do not want to burn out my reference folks by speaking with less than 100% committed prospects. (I probably should not have given you references this early in the process anyway. My mistake.)  

Best of luck on your adventures and thank you in advance for respecting my wishes.  

-- David


So the lesson is - be relentless with setting your decision calls. There is no other single determining factor that's more important to your sales success.

Trust me - I make more money when I relentlessly implement Scott's "decision call" philosophy. And I make less money when I don't!

Tags: sales prospecting mistakes, big nasty dumb stupid expensive sales mistake, doit marketing, marketing speaker, marketing coach

WHAT DO YOU THINK? Use the COMMENTS area below to leave your advice, insights and recommendations on these ideas to boost your sales success...

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Tags: marketing for speakers, marketing for coaches, thought leadership marketing, marketing professional services, trusted advisor marketing, marketing professional services firms, sales rejection, sales prospecting, marketing coaching, marketing coach, success tips, marketing consultant, marketing for authors, marketing for consultants, doit marketing, do it marketing, doitmarketing, sales and marketing, frustration

Marketing Coach: Your Ideas Are Sold by Weight, Not Volume

doitmarketing five words recite

Ya dig?

Please use the COMMENTS area below to share your advice, insights and recommendations on packing maximum VALUE into minimum WORDS...

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Tags: marketing speaker, consulting firm marketing, thought leadership marketing, trusted advisor marketing, marketing professional services firms, marketing strategist, doit marketing, do it marketing, doitmarketing, content marketing, brand strategy

Fortune Cookie Business Book - Yours FREE

Happy Friday. 

A day worth celebrating with a free gift for you - a copy of the best book I never wrote: The Fortune Cookie Business Book.

the fortune cookie business book

Click here to download your copy right here, right now. 

Enjoy - and thank you for being a reader of this blog and a supporter of my work. 

(Psst... Want a hardcopy version? That can be arranged here.) 

Comments? Questions? Want to share what YOUR favorite Chinese meal is? (Mine is listed on page 187)... then please use the COMMENTS area below and...

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Tags: marketing for speakers, consultant marketing, marketing concept, thought leadership marketing, freebies, marketing professional services, professional services marketing, trusted advisor marketing, marketing professional services firms, marketing coaching, professional speaker marketing, marketing ideas, marketing coach, marketing for authors, marketing for consultants, doit marketing, do it marketing, doitmarketing, public speaker marketing

Gifts that Help You Be Remarkable, Remembered, and Referred

marketing speaker marketing coach personalized giftsForget about your cheap company pens... 

Trash your company logo coffee mugs...

Your personalized gift strategy is about to get a MAJOR upgrade so that YOU get 100 times more bang for the buck than you're getting now... 

And it's all about ONE simple shift... 

Watch the video to see how it works - PLUS you'll get three smart examples YOU can model from starting right now...

Tags: Marketing speaker, marketing coach, marketing tips, personalized gifts

What do you think? Please use the COMMENTS area below to share the most meaningful business gifts you've received - or sent!

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Blogging 101: 7 Ways to Write Less and Say More

doit marketing blogging 101

You'll remember from yesterday's introduction to this Business Blogging 101 series, I mentioned the three BIG problems keeping you from doing a better job of leveraging blogging into business: 

1. You are unable to write QUICKLY.

2. You are unwilling to write BRIEFLY.

3. You are inefficient at IDEA CAPTURE.

Good news for you - #1 and #2 are related and we'll solve them both for you before you're done reading this post...

Business Blogging 101: 7 Ways to Write Less and Say More

  1. Think fortune cookies - you don't need to write an essay to share a key nugget that occurred to you while you were driving or in the shower.
    Example: 101 Success Tips in 3 Words  
  2. When you have a lot to say, say it in shorter, sharper chunks. Like a series. Call it something snappy like "Business Blogging 101." See?
  3. Use quotes, stats, visuals, videos, and graphics. These are not only easier for your blog readers to absorb, they're MUCH more likely to be shared, thus driving more traffic and Google juice back to YOU. 
    Example: Marketing Concept: 12 Home Page Must-Haves
  4. Great blogs do NOT persuade, explain or convince. Put your opinions out there - the sharper, the better. Give your readers something to agree or disagree with.
    Example: The (REAL) Idiot's Guide to Social Media Marketing
  5. Stop being so nice. It's OK to piss people off. Too many blogs take both sides of any given argument and end up sounding like a high school essay instead of a pointed, share-worthy piece of thought leadership.
    Example: 5 Signs that Your Prospect is Giving You Too Much Bullsh*t
  6. Master the 20-minute blog post. Give yourself 20 minutes on the clock. Set a timer. Write. Revise as you go. When the bell goes off, hit publish. Truth: Even if it sucks - which it won't - you're better off posting it than if you had posted nothing that day. Honest.
  7. Steal these blog titles: 7 Ways to... 5 Keys to... Top 10 Strategies for... 3 Biggest mistakes of... 11 Secrets of [topic] revealed... 7 Questions to ask yourself... 13 Quick tips on... 
  8. (Bonus) Use numbers in your titles
    Marketing Coach: 17 Ways to Drive More Traffic FAST
  9. (Bonus) People love lists of key points, mistakes, lessons, examples, templates, strategies, tactics, tools, secrets, and so on. 
    Example: 23 things to say when you're asked for free consulting
  10. (Bonus) People love free resources. People love when you point out other cool people, other great blogs, and things they need to know about, use, read, or buy to make them more successful in your area of expertise. 
    Example: Why Your Business Needs to FLOP
  11. (Bonus) People love bonuses. Underpromise and overdeliver and you'll keep folks coming back for more. Like sharing 11 points when you initially promised just 7. Priceless!! 
What do YOU think? Use the COMMENTS area below to share your business blogging advice, inights or questions and...
business blogging 101, marketing speaker, marketing coach

Grab your FREE copy of the Social Media Traffic Boost Cheat Sheet!

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: marketing speaker, marketing success, thought leadership marketing, web marketing, blog, trusted advisor marketing, blogging for business, marketing expert, marketing professional services firms, writing, marketing ideas, marketing coach, marketing consultant, marketing for authors, blogging 101, doit marketing, do it marketing, doitmarketing, business blogging, marketing tips

Marketing Coach: Top 10 Nifty Excuses for Marketing Failure

doit marketing excuses marketing sucks1As a marketing speaker and marketing coach, it makes me mad - like really REALLY mad - when business owners, entrepreneurs and executives responsible for sales and marketing results start to whine about how hard it is to generate leads, cashflow, customers, clients and revenue.

Guess who is NEVER to blame for failing in these scenarios?

Yup - you guessed it: THEM.

I recently read an article in the New York Times about a management consultant whose business - and I quote - "was drying up." In another part of the same article, the writer said that this consultant was "running out of work as a management trainer."

Really? There's no more work to be done? Corporate America is all fixed now? Hmmm... someone should send a press release. That's pretty big news.

"Work drying up" and "running out of work" are both terrific euphemisms for... YOU suck at marketing.

And/or you are unwilling to make changes, get help, partner, delegate, outsource, or innovate.

And ALL of these shortcomings are 100% your own damn fault.

So without further ado, here are the Top 10 Nifty Excuses for Marketing Failure. If you promise to ERASE these from your vocabulary starting immediately, you will be on a much better track to MAKE your numbers, IMPROVE your cashflow, and firmly PLACE responsibility for your failure OR success exactly where it belongs - 100% on YOU. 

1. Business is drying up.

2. We're running out of work.

3. The industry has changed.

4. All my old clients have retired or moved on.

5. Our prospects and customers no longer have a budget for what we do.

6. Competition is tougher than ever these days.

7. The economy has had a major impact on our revenues.

8. We're selling sugar - it's a total commodity and our customers know it. 

9. All prospects care about is price.

10. It's impossible to get through to anyone anymore - everyone hides behind voicemail and email and we can't even get a first conversation.

Do you know what all 10 of these are?

1. Excuses

2. That rare Japanese mushroom that Guy Kawasaki calls "Bull-Shitake"

Here's what they really mean - if you're interested in decoding them:

1. Business is drying up = Because you suck at marketing and can no longer rely on business that just falls in your lap.

2. We're running out of work = Because you haven't landed a piece of new business in over three years and because of that, your pipeline is as empty as a bead bucket on Mardi Gras.

3. The industry has changed = Because you haven't and it's so unfair that your outdated products, services, and programs are no longer relevant or valuable to today's buyers.

4. All my old clients have retired or moved on = See #2 above.

5. Our prospects and customers no longer have a budget for what we do = See #3 above.

6. Competition is tougher than ever these days = Because your competition has shifted, improved, streamlined, repositioned, repackaged, and innovated their way into your customers' hearts (and wallets) -- while you've been sitting on the sidelines watching the show with popcorn and a megaphone to amplify your whining.

7. The economy has had a major impact on our revenues = Because your successful competitors are saying the same thing -- only in a POSITIVE way -- as they've reinvented their value proposition to be MORE relevant, MORE valuable, and MORE necessary under the current economic climate than ever before. Hmmm... there's a good idea!

8. We're selling sugar - it's a total commodity and our customers know it = Because everything you DO and everything you SAY reinforces that impression. If YOU can't articulate the specific, tangible value of what you do vs. your competition, don't blame your customers. This goes way beyond what you SAY and how you say it - it impacts the very nature of your business, including what you DO and how you do it. 

9. All prospects care about is price = Because you've failed to articulate and distinguish your product or service to the point where they know any better. Experts win on value. Generalists die on price. If you look the same, sound the same, and act the same as the competition, then you have only yourself to blame for the endless stream of tire-kickers, price shoppers and broke-ass losers who are wasting your valuable selling time. 

10. It's impossible to get through to anyone anymore - everyone hides behind voicemail and email and we can't even get a first conversation = Because you're using old school interruption-style marketing and stupid sales tricks like cold calling and email spam. You need to integrate FOUR WORDS (embedded in the following two rules) into every marketing and sales strategy you deploy: 1. OFFER VALUE. 2. INVITE ENGAGEMENT. Do that -- and you'll get through.

Final word of advice - all of the excuses above can be summarized in one of two ways (both very fixable) - Your business is in trouble because of:

a. Failure to market and sell in new ways that are high-value, immediately relevant and sharply prospect-focused.

b. Failure to adapt, evolve and innovate your own mix of products, services, programs, and solutions.

Zen saying: A bend in the road is never a dead end. Unless you fail to turn.

What do you think? Have I pissed you off? Made you think? Made you money? Please use the COMMENTS area below to share your thoughts...

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Tags: marketing speaker, marketing strategy, marketing success, consulting firm marketing, thought leadership marketing, marketing professional services, professional services marketing, trusted advisor marketing, marketing professional services firms, marketing coaching, competitive analysis, professional speaker marketing, marketing coach, marketing strategist, motivational speaker marketing, speaker marketing, marketing consultant, sales and marketing, marketing tips, inbound marketing

Marketing Coach: Your Product Development Strategy

doit marketing coach product development strategyLet’s talk about YOUR product development strategy. This is about creating products with intention. And let me back up a step and define what I consider “creating a product” to be.

It could be you wanting to write a book, produce audio, video, or online assets, package a coaching or consulting program, or otherwise "productize" your expertise. It does not necessarily need to be a product you hold in your hand, although sometimes it certainly is.

Quick story. I was working with one of my clients who was a very gifted speaker who had been working a long time in her niche. She would go from keynote to keynote, seminar to seminar. Finally, she got tired of having 100% of her income tied to her personal time, attention and presence.

She said to me, "David I need products. And I have a crazy busy schedule coming up over the next 2-3 weeks with good opportunities to be in front of LOTS of potential prospects."

Mind you, she was NOT speaking to audiences of thousands – her typical audience was probably like yours – between 50 and 250 people at state and regional conferences.

She asked me, “What’s the easiest product I can create?” And we decided that the easiest product for her wasn’t a product at all – it was to package and sell access to her time and expertise. Later, products could be developed as a standalone revenue stream. 

So we created a single 8.5 x 11 piece of paper. Long story short, she emerged from those 2-3 weeks of speaking engagements with over $20,000 of coaching and consulting clients.

The point: your product strategy needs to fit YOU – your personal strengths, preferences, and the needs of your particular business.

If you love writing strategies, focus on writing products.

If you love coaching and consulting, develop coaching and consulting products.

If you love training, develop training products.

If you love video, develop video products.

The key to your product development game plan is to make it Easy, Effortless and Enjoyable.


Want to kick your product development into high gear? Good news - the next Product Development Toolkit program launches on March 5 and we still have a few open seats remaining at Early Bird prices. Program details and registration info are online for you here

Tags: marketing for speakers, marketing speaker, marketing for coaches, thought leadership marketing, marketing professional services, trusted advisor marketing, marketing expert, marketing professional services firms, marketing coaching, product development, marketing coach, marketing strategist, marketing for authors, doit marketing, do it marketing, doitmarketing, content marketing, product development for experts

Marketing Coach: 6-Step Secret Sauce for Awesome Email Subject Lines

doit marketing coach email subject linesMarketing Coach: 6-Step Secret Sauce for Awesome Email Subject Lines

Guest post by Corey Eridon

How many emails do you receive every day? And across how many accounts? The Radicati Group reported that 1.9 billion non-spam emails are sent every day. Most people aren't reading every one of those emails (do you?), and the way people determine which ones to open and which ones to trash is by looking at the email subject line. It may be one of the smallest components of your email marketing strategy, but it's the keeper between the reader and your message. That's a pretty hefty 50-something characters.

As one of the most crucial parts of your email message, you should dedicate serious time to crafting that copy. But if you know the secret sauce for writing an awesome email subject line, you'll find you need less and less time as you practice and learn what resonates best with your audience. Next time you draft an email message, use this recipe to formulate a great email subject line that will help you get your message in front of more eyes.

The Ingredients

  • Deliverability
  • Actionability
  • Personalization
  • Clarity
  • Brevity
  • Consistency

The Recipe

Step 1 - Check for deliverability. There are two kinds of filters you need to get past: actual SPAM filters, and your readers. Readers have a BS detector up when checking their inboxes, and it's as sharp as a bloodhound's nose. Avoid spammy words like "free," "act now," and "limited time." Don't yell at the reader by using all caps, like "REMINDER," which is another spammy word that should be avoided. Also, steer clear of excessive use of punctuation marks such as dollar signs and exclamation points at the end of sentences.

Step 2 - Make it actionable. To have an actionable subject line, ask yourself one thing: does the reader know what he or she can do in the email? An email subject line is similar to writing a call-to-action; using verbs helps create the sense of urgency and excitement you want them to feel when reading your subject line. For example, a well written email subject line reads, "Meet the Legendary Ming Tsai at Blue Ginger," versus the less actionable "Ming Tsai at Blue Ginger." With the first subject line, I know I could do something in this email to help me meet Ming Tsai, as opposed to the second, where for all I know, Ming Tsai just went to Blue Ginger last night.

Step 3 - Personalize. The only way you can provide value to your email recipients is by knowing them...even just a little bit. And if you've segmented your subscriber list like every email marketer should, you do know something about your recipients! Your email subject line should reflect that you're sending something thatthey want. For example, a realtor may have a segmentation just for renters looking for an apartment in a certain zip code. Reflecting this knowledge in your subject line, such as "View a Vacant 2 Bedroom Apartment in Muskegon" will drive up the value of that email for the recipient.

Step 4 - Scrub for clarity. You know what your recipient will get if they open the email, but try to step out of your own shoes for a moment. Is it clear to an outsider? If your subject line is too broad, it won't resonate. This often happens when email marketers try to be witty with subject lines. If you can find a way to be clever and straightforward, go for it, but never at the expense of clarity. Can you further help recipients identify what the email is about by putting identifying keywords in the beginning of the subject line, alerting someone that their favorite item is on clearance? Include it at the beginning of the subject line.

Step 5 - Edit for brevity. You could write a haiku to your recipient, but it's to your benefit to keep the subject line as short as possible. A good rule of thumb is 50 characters or fewer. Not only do you want as much of it as possible to display in the email pane (especially on mobile devices), but people are quickly scanning their inboxes to decide what to read, and what to delete. The shorter your subject line, the less likely you are to get glossed over.

Step 6 - Ensure consistency. What the subject line promises should correspond with what is delivered in the email. Think about getting an email with a subject line that promises 75% off men's clothing, only to find out that it only applies to men's socks. The old bait and switch frustrates people and leads to lower open rates, lower click through-rates, and higher unsubscribe rates.

As with any recipe, testing is required for best results. Experiment with different verbs, reorder your words, and try different offers to see which ones resonate the most with your recipients.

Have you tested your email subject lines?

Use the COMMENTS are below to share YOUR email subject line secrets of success!

email subject lines doitmarketing

Tags: marketing for speakers, marketing speaker, marketing success, thought leadership marketing, trusted advisor marketing, marketing expert, email marketing, marketing professional services firms, email marketing campaign, professional speaker marketing, marketing consultant, small business marketing, marketing for authors, marketing tips, email blasts

Marketing Coach: 7 Steps to Guess-Free Product Development

7 steps product developmentIf you are looking to write a book, produce audio, video, or online assets, package a coaching or consulting program, or otherwise "productize" your expertise, keep reading... you'll like this post. 

You're getting a simple, repeatable process for guess-free product development that ensures you only create products that your target market will be eager to buy.

Here is your 7-step process in a nutshell: Scan, Survey, Analyze, Productize, Test, Package, Deliver.

Scan is step 1 and it's simple – do a competitive scan and see what else is out there that solves – or claims to solve – the same pains, problems, heartaches and headaches as your brilliant product or program. We’ll come back to that “claims to solve” issue a little later. But you have to know what alternative and competing products are out there. Otherwise, you’ll have a very hard time with articulation and distinction.

Survey is step 2 – you must survey members of your target market. When I work with folks individually or in groups, we do a very detailed survey step and you get models and templates of surveys that I’ve used and my clients have used with great success. The questions are simple – which of these aspects of the problem are most urgent for you? What are you looking to solve? What have you tried to solve it so far? Why hasn’t that worked? What would a “dream solution” look like that addresses everything you need solved?

Analyze is step 3 – this is where you collect and collate all the data you’ve received using simple tools like Survey Monkey or I also strongly recommend more personal interviews during the analyze step where you can spend quality time with folks in your target market and learn more intimate details of what they are up against when dealing with your area of expertise. You need to go deep here – find the issues behind the issues. Surface the deeper needs that lie beneath the waterline of the iceberg that everyone else is claiming to help them with. This will put you miles ahead when it comes to offering what I call the “Ah, at last” solution.

Step 4 is Productize – this is where you start to put the pieces together. There are 2 parts to productize – one is writing zero-draft marketing copy. This is the skeleton of bullets, sound bites and short phrases that capture what your product does, what it means to them, why it’s FSB – faster, smarter, better than anything else out there. The second half of productize is to put the skeleton product out there – what I call the bones of your product – the snippets, scripts, tools, templates, worksheets, checklists, forms and other raw material – powerpoints, pdfs, whatever you have to throw at this thing, just make a big folder and put it all in there. Just do THAT, and your product will be between 50%-80% done.

All that’s left is editing, pruning, organizing and sequencing. Again, we have a system and a method for doing this, which you’ll gain access to if we work together. You’ll get more details on that later. (No pressure - I'm not selling it to you. It just happens to be awesome.)

Step 5 is Test. Testing is critical for 2 reasons – first, you’ll test your beta product with real, live prospects. The sound bite is this – "I’m in the process of developing a new product to address problems X, Y, and Z. Because you’re someone whose opinion I respect, may I send you the beta or draft product? I’d love to get your advice, insights and recommendations on how to make it better and more valuable."

You’re doing two things in this step – you’re doing live ammo testing AND you’re doing pre-marketing to folks in your exact target market. Sweet!

Step 6 is Package. The packaging step is both internal and external – internally, you are packaging up the final product. Edits, revisions, improvements based on your surveys and feedback. You’re making important enhancements that will make your product both more saleable and more valuable.

Externally, you’re working on the physical packaging if it’s a product (things like book cover design, CD or DVD packaging, graphics, and so on) and the marketing packaging. You’re revising your Zero-Draft marketing copy and making adjustments to what you’re promising to solve based on the feedback and the urgencies and priorities you’ve uncovered in your target market.

Finally, Deliver is Lucky #7. It’s game time – you’re primed, your pumped, your packaged. This is where you begin to offer your product for sale. It’s back of the room sales, online sales, you start to bundle and supersize your product with other products or programs you’re already selling. And, of course, if it’s a coaching or consulting package then you are literally also starting to DELIVER the program with your first batch of clients and customers with whom you’re working.

This process is simple – but not easy. Each step can take you anywhere from a week to a month, or sometimes more. You may need various people on your team to help speed the process. A ghostwriter, editor, graphic designer, web master, audio or video editing folks, a fulfillment company. When I work with people in the Product Development Toolkit, we work through all of this together to take away the overwhelm.

Another bonus that you’ll often find is that as you work through this process, you’ll sometimes come out the other side not with ONE product but possibly with TWO or THREE products.

The process lends itself to that. Maybe you end up with a version for men and for women. Or for salespeople and sales managers. Or for leaders and team members. There are often two or more sides to any type of product or program and these naturally emerge from the product development process as you’re going through it.

I’ll give you an example from my world.

When I wrote my first book, it was called Relish. It was a book about success in different areas of life - personal, professional, business, career, relationships, etc. As I was writing it, it started getting very top-heavy on the business side. I then realized I had enough content for two books, not one – so I published Relish and Relish for Business.

Same thing happened a few years later when I wrote my book Unconsulting. It was written for consultants, entrepreneurs and executives. Then I realized, I was writing and talking a lot with executives who hired consultants. So the second book project emerged, and this was actually my first book with a real publisher, HRD Press. That collection of advice to executives became The Manager’s Pocket Guide to Using Consultants. So just remember to be open to that possibility of your second or third product naturally emerging from your work on the first one.

Good news - and shocking coincidence: The next Product Development Toolkit group program begins February 5.

But it's not for you.

You wouldn't like it.

So don't even bother going over there to that page.

It is meant for OTHER people, not you.


Whew - that was close!! Now please feel free to LEAVE A COMMENT below to share your experiences with developing high-value information products that package and promote YOUR expertise...

Tags: marketing for speakers, marketing speaker, thought leadership marketing, trusted advisor marketing, marketing expert, marketing professional services firms, marketing coaching, marketing coach, marketing strategist, marketing consultant, marketing for authors, thought leadership

Marketing Coach: 3 Ways to Get Corporate Sponsors NOW

get corporate sponsors sponsorship strategy blueprintYou're invited to join me December 19th for the Sponsorship Strategy Blueprint. This is a FREE teleseminar training call.
Register here

Corporate Sponsors: 3 Ways to Get Corporate Sponsors NOW

You've heard of sponsorship - they're everywhere. From professional sports stadiums to your local chamber of commerce golf event to most everything you see on TV. Awards shows have sponsors. NASCAR has sponsors. Non-profit organizations have sponsors. Conferences, tradeshows and conventions have sponsors. 

Seems like that sponsorship gravy train is chugging mightily along throughout our economy. The only place you might not think of sponsorship is... 

For you. 

And your business. 

And perhaps this post (and the free call on 12/19) will change that. 

If you are a speaker, author, expert, entrepreneur, or sales and marketing executive, obtaining a corporate sponsorship may be easier and more lucrative than you imagine...

Three examples and three quick ideas for YOU: 

Example 1. A few years ago, I partnered with a company called HRWebXpress - they were a software company targeting the same small and medium businesses that I was serving with marketing consulting and speaking/seminar services. We put our heads together and produced a sponsored seminar series for small business owners that focused on growing both the people side of their business (HR software) and the revenue side of their business (strategic marketing and smarter selling - aka me). We did a series of three of them. They got quality face time with their clients and new prospects and I got leads for additional speaking, private onsite seminars and consulting. 

Question 1: What companies are potential partners for you in completely different and unrelated industries who are going after (or who already HAVE) the EXACT same clients and prospects YOU are dying to meet? Find them. Connect with them. Discuss. 

Example 2. Seven years ago, I was a member of a suburban Philadelphia chamber of commerce whose programming VP befriended me. She was frustrated by the quality of their small business education program. And, frankly, she was sick of all the work required to put on mediocre programs with low attendance. Short story: we entered an agreement where the Chamber sponsored us to produce their small business seminar series. Brought in professional speakers. Raised registration fees by 500% (from $25 to $125 per program). Rebranded it as "Chamber Learning." Did a series of 20 seminars over the next 2 years for them, and won a national award from the ACCE (Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives). Since then, I can DIRECTLY trace over $40,000 of business to that series of "low fee" events.

Question 2: Which partners or organizations have urgent, pervasive, expensive problems (or gaps or unmet needs/aspirations) where you can solve those problems in creative ways by connecting them with your people, your products, your services, your programs, your expertise? What's their "missing piece" and how can you position yourself to help them complete their puzzle? THAT is a sponsorship opportunity!

Example 3: Last year, I partnered with Steelcase to sponsor a seminar for their small and medium sized AEC (Architecture, Engineering and Construction) firms. These smaller firms were an underserved distribution channel who frequently recommended or purchased Steelcase furniture and office systems in their clients' buildings and renovation projects. Steelcase was already doing great with their larger, national partners. They were saturated. The next opportunity? Get smaller AEC firms to recommend and install Steelcase products much more vigorously The best way to influence them? Educate them and help them grow THEIR small businesses! The answer? We did a win/win/win program where Steelcase made a positive and much appreciated impact on 24 AEC firm owners and salespeople, Steelcase relationship managers got a great reason to reach out before the event and to follow up after the event, the AEC firms got instant-action marketing advice, strategies and tools, and I got in front of 24 new prospects with whom I would otherwise have no reason to cross paths. 

Question 3: Which potential sponsors come to mind where you can help THEM help THEIR clients, prospects, customers, partners, suppliers, vendors, dealers, distributors of franchisees? Put yourself in the sponsor's shoes and ask the question, "Who do we need to impact so that we get more leads, more opportunities, or more sales in OUR world?" If you can partner with them to make THAT happen, that's a profit-rich sponsorship deal in the making!

REMINDER: You're invited to join me December 19th for the Sponsorship Strategy Blueprint. This is a FREE teleseminar training call. Register here

Tags: Small business marketing coach, professional services marketing, marketing strategy, corporate sponsorship

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Tags: marketing speaker, marketing strategy, marketing professional services, professional services marketing, marketing professional services firms, corporate sponsors, professional speaker marketing, small business marketing coach