Video Killed The Radio Star

Video is everywhere nowadays – you no longer need a massive budget to shoot an ad and pay for prime-time TV slots. Even if you did, nobody’s really listening – most of us are so busy, we record what we want to watch and then sit down at a time that suits us – fast-forwarding through all the ad-breaks.

In today’s world, you can compete with the big boys simply with a creative idea, hand-held video equipment and the power of YouTube. The Internet allows your idea to spread like wildfire, creating impact to the people that actually do care about your message.
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Busy Being Busy

Leave her, she’s busy – course she is .. “Busy being busy” more like. Ever noticed when someone simply ignores what really needs to be done and looks for something to react or respond to?

E-mails, Twitter, Facebook – admit it, how often do you spend your time checking? How many times do you look for new texts on your phone, even though it’s not even beeped?

We are all guilty of it – spending time on the pointless alternative – something to distract us from taking initiative. The comfort zone has its name, well because it’s comfortable! How often are you spending time in your comfort zone? Busy responding to a tender you’ll never win, simply because you don’t want to pick up the phone and speak with a real prospect? Spending time buying and building servers to host your new application, even though you actually have no customers or have any clue how to obtain any?
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One Step at a Time

When creating a demand generation campaign, how much do you focus on the next step, rather than the product or service itself?

I see too many e-shots, direct mail pieces, even telemarketing calls that focus on trying to get a yes for the product, rather than a yes to move forward.

My background is B2B software sales. In this market, it’s very rare that you can sell a solution in one hit. It takes time. Time to gain momentum, to earn trust. This is where I see so many making mistakes – trying to sell the full solution in one go – talking about how they can reduce operational cost, increase efficiency. Every bland piece of marketing sounds the same – and guess what, they all get very limited results.

Instead, try selling the next step. A complimentary workshop, a breakfast briefing, a webinar, or better still a select lunch where a real-world client will share experiences of working with your product. Offer something of value first. Make it engaging. Get it right, and no doubt the sale will follow in due course.

Same Thing. Different Results.

How many times do you keep doing something because it’s the way you’ve always done it? Even if it doesn’t work anymore?

I’m amazed at the number of organisations still trying to sell like they did twenty years ago. Forcing sales reps to cold call, ringing people that don’t know you, or care about you.
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Front of House

Nowadays it’s very rare that I will call a hotel to make a reservation – most reputable hotels allow you to take care of everything on-line. The process remains faceless until you turn up and check-in. The service you receive on the front-desk sets the tone for your stay.

In our business, the salesperson was the face of our brand until the sale was made. The IT solutions we sold were complex, and often involved numerous consultants on-site to get the system live. I used to refer to this team as our “Front of House”.

After a sale is made, the next interaction a client has with your organisation is likely to be with your “Front of House”. You can employ the best sales team in the world, but if the follow-up contact is a negative one (inappropriate dress, poor attitude, bad timekeeping) then the whole thing is out of kilter.

All too often, in a business where a customer-driven culture isn’t instilled from the top down – or where freelance staff are used to supplement skills gaps, the customer can witness a radically different level of service from one team to the next. Your business appears inconsistent. Promises are broken.

The best organisations understand where their core business lies and work hard to build a company-wide team which adopt the same level of service, approach and commitment to client care; mission statements aren’t just some stuffy words on a website, they are the company mantra.

Showtime!

Making presentations is a core part of any business. With millions delivered around the world every day, it’s amazing how many organisations simply let their staff “get on with it”, rather than investing in the development of solid presentation skills.

I think presentations have become stagnant. I’ve made references in previous posts to being creative in front of a new prospect. My opinion is that this is now vital to succeed in today’s world.
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