Obsessed With Your Success

Empty asphalt road towards cloud and signs symbolizing success a

I recently saw a local business van around town that caught my attention, so I took a picture of it.  Later that evening I tweeted the picture and had this unbelievable reply from the company:

I smiled as I thought to myself, “Now there’s a business owner who gets it!”

How would you feel if you walked into a business and without anyone saying a word YOU KNEW that business was obsessed with your success? How would that culture cause employees to behave toward customers? How would that culture motivate bosses to treat their employees? At every level of the business, people obsessed about the success of others.

From what I’ve heard from employees at Specialty Business Supplies  and from what I’ve personally experienced from owners Steve Maclin and Dave Pyne, I believe they’re building a culture day by day that says to their employees and their customers, “We are obsessed with your success.”  In this environment, the employees feel safe to ask questions, they are empowered to make decisions, their ideas are valued, and as one employee whom I randomly met said, “They are great bosses to work for…they really seem to care!”

I think that says it all!  Keep up the great work guys, you are tapping into something that few people take the time to discover and fewer yet take the time to nurture.

What are you doing to obsess about the success of others? What difference has your obsession made?  Wealth Builders Connect is building a team of passionate leaders who share this same mantra. We’d love to have you join us as we build a tribe of leaders, “Obsessed about your success”!

Are You Selling What People Really Want To Buy?

iStock_000016252078Small

 

When it comes to the products you sell, it’s easy to get caught up in a flurry of activity about features, packaging, words, colors, and minute details thinking those things are what will bring the dollars rolling in. But what is it that people really want to buy?

I believe the answer is YOU!  People want to buy from people they know, like and trust.  And they buy from those people before they buy products with fancy packaging, ornate words, and eye-catching colors. People buy people first, then they buy products and services.

If I had an opportunity to set up a booth and market my products or services, I would spend time preparing to sell the one thing people want to buy, ME. I would do my best to prepare myself to be the most engaging, authentic, welcoming person people have ever met. The only real factor that I can control in the sales process are my perceptions of people, my actions toward people, and my engagements with people.   So I would focus there first!

When I arrived at my vendor space, I would stand to the side of my vendor booth and intentionally extend my hand confidently to people. I would smile and welcome people to the event as if the event were my very own. I would look people in the eyes when I talked to them, and I would intentionally make every person feel like a honored and distinguished guest in my living room

Why? Because people really want to know that they matter and when they do, they’re more likely to want to get to engage with me. And when they engage with me, they’re more likely to get to know me. And when people realize that I care about their needs, they’ll more quickly begin to like me. And when I approach people from a place of authenticity, they will more likely begin to trust me. And these, my friends, may be the very keys that open the doors to many great sales today and in the future.

I suggest the following three things before you “Sell your products or services”:

1.  Approach people as you would want to be approached.  Be genuine, friendly, and focused on others.

2.  Engage people in conversations about themselves.  Ask them open ended questions that help you discover needs that you can possibly meet.

Questions like:

  • What are you hoping to get out of this event today?
  • What are some of the best opportunities facing you today?
  • What are some of the greatest challenges that if met, would move you or your business to a more satisfying place?

The answer to these questions may open doors of opportunity and reveal real needs that you can meet. Meeting real needs will leave a more lasting impression on people…listen and learn. You might be surprised what you discover.

3.  Make every person you meet feel like they’re an honored guest in your living room…and really believe that they really are!  Take the initiative to welcome people and to invite them in.  Make them feel at home. This vendor space is your home for the day! Own it and own the results that you create.

People like to buy from people they know, like and trust. Before you sell your products, sell YOURSELF! That’s what people really want to buy. And if you don’t believe me, push your products onto people and spend time talking about yourself and your products before you listen. Go ahead, try it and let me know how that works out for you. (I mean it, I really want to hear from you).

Leave me your comments, ideas, and suggestions below.  I look forward to hearing how these ideas affect your sales and your interactions with people.

 

Creating A Winning Sales System

Creating a winning sales system turns the dreaded work of cold calling into a process that teachable and effective.  Without a system, we’re left to the task of making more calls,  knocking on more doors, and hoping for better results.  If this was an effective method for growing your business, why hasn’t your boss offered to pay you for each new call you make or each new door you knock on?  May it be that they realize that more cold calling without a wining sales system isn’t really the most effective way to go about sales?

“Over 80% of decision makers absolutely will not buy from a cold call.”                                                                                                                                                 -Kenan Flagler Business School, University of North Carolina

How do we create a winning sales system?

1.  Define

Describe the individuals, businesses and industries who most benefit from the products, services, and ideas you are selling?  Define and describe your ideal client?  Who are the people and businesses you’ve had success working with in the past?  Why did these customers do business with you in the past?  Did they share a common need that you were able to meet?  Did they have certain level of relationship with you prior to doing business with you?  What is it about you, your approach or your previous customers that caused them to do business with you?

Once you clearly define your ideal customer, make a list of the ideal people, businesses, and industries you want to connect with and keep that list updated and with you at all times.  Be prepared to answer the question, “Who are you looking to meet?  Who can I introduce you too?”

Once you have a clear understanding of your ideal customer, show up at the places where those customers frequent.

2.  Connect

See yourself as a resource to others and connect with them by showing up at the places and events where your ideal customers will be.  Proactively position yourself as a resource to others,  and listen for opportunities to meet the needs of those you want to do business with.  If I were moving to a new community where I knew no one and where I had no previous connections, I’d find the most active Chamber of Commerce I could and I’d attend every networking event they offer.   Rather than waiting for your phone to ring, actively position yourself to become a valuable resource to the people and businesses with whom you want to connect.

3.  Nurture

Ask yourself how you’d like to be approached, treated and engaged by a sale person you’ve just met.  Make it your goal to treat each person you meet with respect and gentleness.  You’re there to be a valuable resource, not to be a sales machine that can’t be stopped!

When you meet a person who gives you their business card, this is your opportunity to engage the person in conversation that focuses on the interests, needs, and preferences of the other person.  You do this by asking open ended questions that you may want to anticipate in advance.  Questions like, “How long have you worked in that industry?”  “How did you first get involved in XYZ industry?”  “What do you see as your greatest opportunities and your great challenges in this industry?”  “As I’m meeting people each day, how will I know when I’ve met the ideal person to refer to you?”  Questions like these create conversation that enable you to identify possible areas of need that you can help meet.

After the meeting is over, this is your opportunity to nurture the potential clients you met.  Create a follow up process that is both personal and doesn’t smell of a disguised sales pitch.  This is not the time to sell, this is your time to nurture the relationship, to build trust and to connect with the person in such a way that they when they’re ready to buy, they’ll want to buy from you!

The follow up process that I’ve found helpful consists of a personal handwritten note card that is two-three sentences in length, it ties back into the conversation we had in person, and in it I re-iterate my willingness to be a resource to the person when I can.  In addition, I communicate with the person via articles, like the one you’re reading now.  I forward these articles to potential clients letting them know that the article made me think of them and I hope they find the article helpful.  I then contact the potential client and I ask for their permission to plan a 20 minute “exploratory” visit with them.  During that visit I focus on their needs that I’ve learned about during the meeting and other conversations that may have occurred, then I show them how my products and services may be a solution to their needs.

People today want to be nurtured, cared for, and involved in the process whenever possible.  Anything less and you may be marginalizing people and missing great opportunities.

What are you doing to nurture the potential clients you meet?  What systems do you have in place that work well for you?  What are you doing to grow your database?  How have you effectively nurtured the people in your database so that they want to buy from you?   I’d love to hear your thoughts and your ideas.  By creating a winning sales system, we’ll learn how to more effectively reach potential clients, nurture a relationship with them, and turn them into clients who want to buy from us.

I look forward to hearing your ideas and your experiences.  Share them with us so that we can learn together!

3 ProActive Ways To Win Potential Customers

 

Having a well written vision and mission statement tucked away in a file in the office, boxes of shiny new business cards, or even a building in a great location may be another disappointment waiting to happen.  The problem is that while these things may be important and in many cases necessary, they are not a promise for business or personal success.

The problem is that we can easily busy ourselves with these helpful tools to the point that we begin to hunker down and hope that someone who needs our products and services will one soon, find us and approach us with a readiness to buy.  The reality is that we can easily be overlooked and even bypassed if we fail to position ourselves to win.  Many people will choose to hide behind good and necessary business practices while relegating success to those who choose to differentiate themselves among the masses.  If you are determined to win the trust and eventual business of new customers, then here are some ways to actively position yourself for success today.

  1. Get More Personal.  There are plenty of companies large and small who appear more self-serving rather than caring enough to make other people and businesses great.  They take a hands off approach that communicates a lack of customer service that genuinely cares about people and their needs.  If you want to position yourself to win potential customers, look for ways to engage potential customers in conversation about their needs, their concerns, and ideas that will most benefit them.  Win potential customers by setting yourself a part as a person or business that cares enough to ask great questions and listen for the real needs that your products or services will then be able to address.
  2. Engage New People.  Identify networking groups, business associations, leaders groups where you can invest the best of your time and energies meeting and engaging new contacts in conversation that sets you a part from the masses.  Show up at the events with great energy and positive attitude that communicates to others that you’re here to add value, you’re here to be a resource to those you meet, you’re here to connect people with the people they most need to know and meet.  When you attend an event and approach people with an, “I’m here to learn about you so that I can be the best resource to you that I can be” attitude, you will create opportunities for others to seek you out to learn from you and ultimately to become your new customer or to your refer you to your next customer.  Go where the people are and engage them in conversations that most interest them!
  3. Making Your Follow Up Personal.  Plan how you will follow up in advance of the meetings where you meet potential customers then execute your follow up plan in a timely manner after the event.  Just as you were uniquely personal and engaging in the event, make sure your follow up continues to position you as personal and engaging.  Some ways to make yourself personal to those you’ve met might be a handwritten note that reminds the person of some detail of the personal conversation you had with them at the event.  Do not follow up with standard sales letters, we all know where those letters get filed.

In initial meetings with potential customers, set yourself up as a valuable resource who enjoys engaging people in meaningful conversations about their business, their wants and their needs and continue that engaging conversation in the follow up plan that you implement after the event.  Rather than hiding  in the comforts of your office and files, get yourself out of the office and into the events where other business people go to network and learn.  Train yourself to engage people in ways that are personal and beneficial both during the event and afterward.  Ultimately, your success depends on you and the people you engage, so engage them intentionally, often and in personal ways!

Marketing Your Business On A Small Budget

As business owners, we recognize the need to get the word out but we often wonder how to market strategically for the best results.   For many, we simply avoid marekting because we fear we don’t have the budget necessary to make it work.  Our greatest misconception is that marketing must be massive and therefore marketing will be expensive.  The truth is that we can effectively market our business on a small budget, but in order to do so effectively, there are few key questions to ask.

What goals do you want to accomplish in this marketing campaign?

Take the time to seriously consider how you will measure the success of your marketing campaign.  Do you want to brand your business and get the word out that you exist or are you hoping to bring in new clients and potential new business?  And if so, what are your expectations before you begin your markeitng campaign.  Being crystal clear about your goals will help you to focus on the advertising mediums that can best help you achieve your goals.

What one item or service brings the majority of people into your place of business?

This is where you want to take an honest look at your products and services and understand why people really come to your business for the first time.  When they arrive, what product or service do they most often come in to research or purchase?  Do not overlook this detail, because this may become your unique marketing proposition.  And remember, this may not be obvious at first, so take a serious and honest look at the patterns of people who visit your business.

What is your competition doing now that’s different from you?

Understand what your competition is currently doing well, what product or service are they currently marketing, and what product or service are they most known for in your community.  Once you understand what your competition is most known for then you can focus on the product or service that is the entry point for people who visit your business rather than attempting to win customers from your competitor.

With this knowledge, you’re well on your way to discovery a marketing plan that is right for you today.

 

2 Reasons Why You Need to Buy Your Name Online

Here the top two reasons why buying your own yourname.com is essential to your own personal success.

1. You are a cog until you are a brand.

Some of the smartest people on earth contribute nothing to to themselves other than a paycheck. Their work all contributes to a brand that they have no control over and a brand that could dump them at a moments notice. Jobs, customers, clients…nothing is secure in this economy. Unless you own your own brand, you are merely a cog in someone else’s brand. Building someone else’s brand doesn’t secure anything. Your clients can still leave, your job can still disappear…anything can happen.

3. Are you getting found? No brand? Then probably not.

Google has changed the world. Before Google, search engines existed and filled the need, but Google brought forth a new way of discovering information. It helped to unleash the information age and allows any sort of information to be at our fingertips. With it, has come a new method for finding people, products, and services. If you can’t be found it’s because someone else is being found online instead. Branding is the answer to this problem.

There are dozens of Ryan Payne’s scattered around the world, and yet I am the one that owns the only piece of real estate on the web that bears our awesome name. When people search for Ryan Payne, they find me. This isn’t significant unless you consider and recognize the true value of branding. Branding sets you apart from everyone else. If you are a brand, you are in control and you are an expert. It’s an image that can never be fired.

Republished with permission from Ryan Payne.