The answer is…drum roll please….BOTH!

It may sound silly, but there seems to be a dilemma as to which of these is more important.  So, for those of you who aren’t sure of what the difference is between the two:

Working IN your business concerns revenue-producing, product-fulfilling member activities.

Working ON your business means designing, planning, refining your business, but not directly producing revenue.

Working IN your business:

Working on the aspects of your business that actually produce sales is absoutely vital.  Once you have laid the foundation for doing business, ie: a website, pages and accounts in social media, visual branding, etc. you need to spend about 75% of your time on actions that produce tangible results.

Examples of this kind of activity are: cold calling, actively interacting in the most productive marketing channels to bring attention to your business and branding, consistently communicating with past and current clients to preserve that relationship, attending tradeshows, creating youtube videos or podcasts, creating a free report to entice new subscribers to your email list, speaking at a local chamber of commerce event, participating in networking events that are conducive to your niche and so many more.

When you create your task list for each day, be sure that you aren’t doing a lot of busy work.  Budget your time to specific tasks and stay within that budget.  Be sure to let family and friends know that unless it is an emergency (define what an emergency is, in your opinion, to be clear), since this is your business.  I’ve found that most people do not consider your business anything but a hobby when you work from a home office.  They would never consider calling you “at work” if you were working for someone else.

Set office hours, even if they are one or two hours a day and stick to them.  Being in integrity with yourself is absolutely vital to this process.  Successful entrepreneurs make appointments with themselves and honor those appointments as strictly as if they were an appointment with a doctor or attorney or another business person.  When someone asks you to hang out or wants to do something with them, simply reply: “I’m sorry, I have an appointment at that time, can we do it at (fill in the blank) time instead?”  When you get into this habit, you will find you will get more done and most importantly you will make more sales.

On a similar vein, you will want to make firm appointments to speak with potential clients and customers.  Make sure they know that you feel the appointment is confirmed.  “Thanks.  I’ve cleared my schedule for an hour on the 17th at 10 a.m.” for instance.

Have a plan for your time, whether you are a prioritized list person or you schedule blocks of time for specific tasks that are done on a daily or weekly basis.  Wandering from one task to another never really accomplishes what you had hoped.  One strategy I like to use is to reserve the last 15 minutes of my work day to plan the following day, so that when I set to work, I don’t have to wonder where to start.

Limit the time you spend in social media, unless that is where all your customers and clients are and even then, don’t waste your time posting and reposting things that are irrelevant to your business.  Save your social time with family or friends for after your business hours.

Get out from behind your phone and/or tablet or computer to have real conversations, whether that is a phone call or in person.  Personal attention is a lot more productive when creating business relationships and making sales than an impersonal text or email.  You will be surprised how many more clients or customers will show up when you take the time to pay focused attention to them.

Collect “Nos”.  Some of the most successful marketers I know start each day by setting a goal to collect a specific number of “nos” from potential clients or customers.  They know that out of “x” number of “nos” they receive “x” number of “yeses”.  This mindset prevents the business-killing fear so many of us have about presenting our business, product or service to potential clients or customers.  Instead of being traumatized by a no, they simply check it off and say, “That’s ONE!” and move on to the next lead.

Finally, always have somewhere to go:  When you create a great emailing list, or use lead-generating software or lead-generating services, you can be much more productive.  And when you don’t have anyone to talk to about your business, use your working IN your business time to find people to talk to.

If this all sounds like a lot of work, it is.  Don’t start a business if you aren’t willing to put in the time, effort and resources to make it work.

Working ON your business:

Working IN your business is important, but if you aren’t also working ON your business, you might as well pack it up and go home.  Foundations need to be laid, Plans must be made and all things necessary to your business must be organized and taken care of.

Probably the most important task when working on your business is setting up systems that work, that make your results more consistent, that serve your customers or clients more effectively, assuring that none of them “fall through the cracks.  In the beginning of a start up business, this can be all consuming.  Fortunately, thanks to tools like IFTTT and Zapier, and great organizational suites such as you can find at Google, this is easier than it ever was.

Whether you are a team of one or you have minions (mwahaha) who help you achieve your vision, starting with a plan and being sure you have ever needful thing for you business to scale and grow is vital to the success of your undertaking.

Once these systems are in place, however, it allows you the time and resources to work IN your business for the majority of the time.

 The importance of balance:

There is a lot said of balance as a way of assuring that you don’t stress out when dealing with your growing business.

That being said, there are times when you have to put more time into one side or the other of your business.  This is why prioritizing is so important.  When all is said and done, everyone has their own management style.  Where you spend your time needs to be in alignment with your goals, branding, strategies and the culture of your company.  Only you can determine how that happens.

Don’t allow shiny objects, bells and whistles and what “everybody is saying” get in the way of creating a business where you can produce revenue and improve your product or service in a scalable and satisfying way.

 

There are over 161 million photos and approximately 85 million videos on YouTube alone of cats and kittens on the internet.  Cats and kittens are entertaining, it’s true, but they also have the “awww” factor going for them.  That little tug of the heartstrings as we watch their antics, as we view those adorable and often comical faces feels good.  It’s like heart candy.  It’s become almost a cliche’ that if you want to get people’s attention, give ’em cats.

So what does that have to do with you marketers out there?  Why does it matter?  Because there’s a reason that cats and kittens, dogs and puppies tend to go viral online and you need to understand it.  People don’t generally buy with their brain.  They buy with their heart.  If you want to get their attention and keep it, you need to grab their emotions.  You need to capture their imagination.

Picture of an adorable kittenBut, Bonnie, I sell air conditioners!  Or I sell lawn-mowers.  They aren’t cute or cuddly.  I sell vitamins, they don’t make you smile when you look at them.  I sell knives, not exactly humorous or adorable.

The fact is, it’s all about emotion.  Nearly anything that anyone can sell has emotion attached to it in one way or another.  The trick is to find that little tug of emotion that can get people’s attention.  And the interesting thing is that it doesn’t even need to be a warm, fuzzy, positive emotion.  The insurance industry has used powerful negative emotions to sell life, health and accident insurance from the beginning.

So, let’s talk air conditioners.  Two emotions, one negative and one positive.  The negative emotion is that drawn out, nearly painful feeling of being entirely too hot.  How much harder it is to do things and how it saps your energy.  Then the positive emotion, that sigh of relief when you walk from the blazing heat into the relaxing cool of your home.  Make them feel that.  The frustration when your current cooling system doesn’t function properly and the satisfaction when your company relieves them of this irritation.

What about lawn mowers?  Negative:  How embarrassing it is to have an unkempt yard.  How hard it is to use their current lawn mower and what a pain it is to maintain.  Positive:  The pride they will feel when their lawn is meticulously manicured and with such ease!  Picture of a happy householder riding or pushing their excellent machine.  Maybe even a scene with the kids in the home arguing over who “gets to” mow the lawn today!

The point here is that when you include emotions in your marketing, you get attention.  This means great copy, great images and video.  This means testimonials that come from the heart.  This means giving them a reason to hear you out, because it will make them feel:

  • Happy
  • Fulfilled
  • Proud
  • Satisfied
  • Safe
  • Glad
  • Grateful
  • Pain-free
  • Relaxed

You get the idea.  And your product will help them avoid feeling:

  • Sad
  • Useless
  • Frustrated
  • Angry
  • Afraid
  • Concerned
  • Agitated
  • Stressed Out

And so forth.  You need to ask yourself the question:  “What’s so good about that?”  And you need to answer yourself with the positive emotions you can attach to your product.

The other question you need to ask yourself is:  “How will they feel without the benefit of my product or service?”  And you need to answer with the negative emotions use of your product or service will prevent.

Marketing messages that make people feel emotions are powerful.  They create desire either to continue a positive feeling or to prevent a negative one.  This is why slogans like “You deserve a break today.” create such movement in the marketplace.  Strong emotions are almost always followed by one kind of action or another.

This is why it is so very vital to know your ideal customer or client.  You have to understand their pain and how it connects to your product or service and how your product or service will alleviate that pain.  You need to find where they hang out and go there and listen to them.  Hear not only what they are thinking, but even more importantly what they are feeling.  This is how you know which emotions to express in your marketing materials.  This is how you can begin to empathize with them to the point that your conversations with them, your marketing messages, have real meanint to them that impel them to take action that will be meaningful to your brand, your product or service and your bottom line.

What it boils down to is that, although you may not put kittens in your next marketing video or your sales pitch, when you create empathy with your brand by embedding relevant emotions into your marketing materials, media and messages on all your brand’s marketing channels, you will not only get your customers’ attention, but you will get their loyalty and they will take action in your favor.

 

Einstein once said:

“Compound interest is the 8th wonder of the world.”

Most people don’t even understand what that means when it comes to finances, but when it comes to marketing online, I don’t believe most people even knows how it connects.

The Value of Doubling

To start this discussion, let us consider this principle first from a financial perspective and then we will discuss the same principle from the point of view of marketing.  We will also discuss how various companies have created empires using this simple principle.

To save time, and for clarity, the following video should give us a good starting place.  It is short but very much to the point.  It covers a famous mathmatical story that has been told in many ways over centuries, dating back to medieval China.  The video is only a few minutes long but definitely worth your time.  It is the tale of the doubling penny.

 


After watching this, you may thing we’re talking about money here, and in one sense we are, but actually, we are going to apply this principle to how to grow an empire by harnessing the power of word of mouth.

Giving to Get:

The Hotmail Strategy: One line at the bottom of an email…

In 1996 I was exposed for the first time to a company known as Hotmail.  The premise was simple.  They provided free email service for anyone who applied for an account with no limits or restrictions.  The only think about Hotmail is that at the bottom of every single email you sent there was a couple lines urging you to get your own free email account.

Over a very short time they had increased their customer list to hundreds of thousands of avid Hotmail users.  When they eventually sold their service to Microsoft only a little over a year later for $400 million, they had millions of users.  At that time, $400 million was a worth a lot more than it would be now, but for a simple start-up business, it did very well.

Why was that?  Unlike today with a world population of over 4 billion online, there were only 36 million users in 1996.  Today MSN Hotmail has over 400 million users and it isn’t even the most used email service provider.  The users in Hotmail are worth billions of dollars in revenue to it’s shareholders because of their marketing potential.

Not a bad return for adding one line at the bottom of an email, right?  The brilliance is that they started with a very small client base and leveraged that to get maybe one new customer every several emails that went out.  Then they had the original layer of customers still emailing away and a new layer who each brought in an occasional new user because they received an email from a friend.  That new layer was then added to the first and second and so on.  Compounding interest doesn’t only work with money, as you can see, but it also makes money as it is applied.

The Paypal Strategy:  Pay the sneezers…

Seth Godin refers to those who pass on information about products or services they love as “sneezers”.  They sneeze on a friend, who sneezes on another friend and so forth, which is how viruses are spread.

When Paypal was launched as an ecommerce platform back in 1998, they had a bit of a different approach.  Affiliate marketing was in it’s infancy, but Paypal, back then didn’t even create an affiliate network.  They spread the love to their entire customer base.  The idea was this.  They announced to their customers that every time they referred a new client to Paypal, Paypal would give them $25.

Many of these early adopters made some significant incomes and as a result of this early strategy, Paypal now averages upwards of over 5 million transactions per day.

Takeaways:

So how can you use strategies such as this to create a compound interest result in your business?  Ask yourself:

  • Is there something valuable I can give away that will encourage people to share with their friends and will point back to my business and a way that encourages a chain reaction of referrals?
  • What percentage of the value of a current customer is worth them referring a friend or family member to my product or service?
  • What kinds of rewards can I give that won’t kill my bottom line and can be used perpetually to attract new buyers?

People are tired of advertising.  More and more I hear in social media and private conversations with friends and family that they tend to ignore random advertising, but when they receive an avid recommendation from friends and family, people they know, like and trust, they listen and often act on it.

Social media is, well, social.  There are more ways than ever that you can take advantage of the compound interest mindset (compounding the interest of your current customers to bring you future customers).  How will you implement these strategies in your business?  What new and interesting ways can you reward your current customers and fans for bringing you business and how will you perpetuate it?

I get this question from clients all of the time.  The simple answer is that marketing has never been easy and in many ways it is much easier than it ever was, but to begin, let’s find a good definition of what digital marketing actually is:

Definition of digital marketing. The marketing of products or services using digital channels to reach consumers. The key objective is to promote brands through various forms of digital media. Digital marketing extends beyond internet marketing to include channels that do not require the use of the internet.”

The interesting thing is that digital marketing is actually not as difficult as we tend to make it.  It really boils down to learning to use the digital channels (such as social media) available to us to create relationships that feel personal but actually have a potentially huge reach.  For instance, how easy would it have been even 15 year ago to run an international business with thousands of clients world wide?  At this time, anyone with some foundational understanding and basic technical skills can reach individuals all over the world in a very personal way, with a much tinier budget than we ever could before.

Examples of “digital channels”:

  • Blog 
  • YouTube
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Instagram
  • Forums
  • Groups
  • Oganic Search

And these are only the obvious ones.  There are also, digital televisions channels (did you know you could own your own digital channel?), digital ad platforms, email, mobile messaging and so much more.  No wonder so many get confused when considering all of the things they need to do to promote their business online.

The good news is that there are so many tools created to allow you to manage your channels and your work that it is like having a virtual assistant.  Also, the option to hire a virtual assistant to manage daily promotion tasks has never been more affordable.

I think the disconnect comes because of “snake oil” promises we have come to accept as fact.  Buzz words that have become part of the jargon of marketing and are deceptive include, but are not limited to:

  • Put Your Business on Autopilot
  • Set it and Forget it
  • Push Button Riches
  • One Click (fill in the blank)
  • Newbie Friendly
  • 1 Hour Work Week

When you see these in an advertisement touted to send thousands of targeted leads to your website with little or no effort on your part, it is what I call “a unicorn”.  It doesn’t exist.  It is very easy to find yourself spending hours setting up a product that doesn’t deliver on its promises and in turn makes your goal of creating a viable, sustainable, profitable online business seem farther and farther away.

As the old saw goes: “If it seems too good to be true, it probably is.”  The fact is that creating and promoting any business (on or offline) requires vision, understanding and an investment of time, energy and money.  Although this isn’t what most want to hear, it is a fact

 That being said, with the tools available for promoting your business online, you can accomplish so much more with so much less time, energy and investment than ever before.  The trick is to have a guide and mentor to show you the ropes and help you lay the proper foundation.

Just as you would never start to build a house at the roof, your marketing plan needs to have a proper foundation.  Although laying a foundation is often the most time consuming part of a building, without it, nothing else works and once the foundation is laid, the rest of the building seems to go up faster and the end result is a building that is stable, strong and will stand the test of time.

Starting from the blueprint and moving forward with the right tools and materials, an expert builder can create building after building, even soaring skyscrapers, using the same blueprint, only altering it slightly to take into account terrain and location.  By the same token, the amateur builder may struggle to even build a simple doghouse or storage shed.

This is where expert guidance, tutoring and mentoring come in.  I founded the Notions Into Motion Business Builders internet marketing training platform for that very reason.  I have created a platform that not only gives our members the tools and the plans to create sustainable profitable online marketing solutions, but also give the strategies, techniques and resources, as well as the direct and personal mentoring necessary to untangle the digital marketting dilemma.

If you want to build a successful business, you’re going to have to do your due diligence.  Otherwise, you might as well just spend your money on lottery tickets.  The odds are about the same.

 

We had an event at my church last night, an evening of home made soup and board games.  And, of course, as we played, we talked of this, that and the other.  As we sat and chatted over many topics, family stuff, home renovations, hobbies and accomplishments, the topic of social media came up.  I spent most of my time listening to what the others were saying (listening is one of a marketer’s most important skills).

What came out in the discussion were the following:

  • People don’t like ads being sprung on them as a surprise in a video they’re watching.
  • All of them agreed that they tend to watch videos with the sound off.
  • All of them hated being sold to.
  • They each agreed that although they may search for a specific product or service in social media (mainly YouTube and Facebook), they didn’t want to be sold to unless they were actually looking for something.
  • …And they did have relationships with commercial pages on Facebook and YouTube, based on their needs, interests and wants.

So what does this teach us?

It’s still all about relationships.  People actually want you to sell to them, but on their terms.  One of the men at the table said, “It’s like when you go into a store and the sales person won’t leave you alone.  I want to look around and then ask for help when I need it.  I don’t mind if they come up to me and say something like: ‘I’m here if you need help.’ and then they walk away and let me shop, but I hate it when they’re hovering.  Sometimes on social media it feels like that.”

That being said, he added that he tends to shop where he knows people or where his friends have recommended a particular service provider or retailer.

This applies to online marketing as well.  Just as you wouldn’t go to a party where you didn’t know people and immediately start the conversation with:  “Hi, I’m Bonnie Dillabough.  I’m an internet marketer and you should buy my amazing internet marketing training program.”, you shouldn’t do this in your marketing either.

People expect ads in the sidebars of websites even in social media, but they don’t appreciate people littering their newsfeed with posts that are just another advertisement and they especially don’t want people they don’t know well tagging them in purely commercial posts.

It comes down to the old saw: “Give to get.” or “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”  Both are good advice when it comes to proper marketing netiquette.  Consider a blog that gives good information about your niche, but doesn’t come right out and sell anything.  As people come to appreciate and respect the information you provide, they are more likely to sit up and take notice when your recommend a particular product or service, even if it is your own.

I know many people who have built complete empires on the trusting relationships they have created with “tribes” they have gathered around them.  One of my favorites is the master marketer and one of my mentors, the man who gives marketing advice to the 900 pound marketing giants like Google, Seth Godin.  I have read pretty much every book he’s ever written and follow him daily on his blog.  When he comes out with a new book, I just go out and get it, usually without even reading much about it, because I trust the content he provides.  He can sell me just about anything.

So how do you go about this in social media?  A good example of this is the Facebook group created by Mike Sellick, The Crochet Crowd – Stitch Social With over 100,000 members, Stitch Social is one of the most active groups I’ve ever seen.  Most posts by members recieve hundreds of likes and often as many as several hundred comments.  So how does “Mikey” (as group members refer to him) make money with this group?

  • He provides free crocheting patterns for the members.
  • He answers crocheting questions and interacts with the hundreds of group posts that occur daily.
  • He creates free tutorail videos that help members to hone their craft.
  • AND THEN…he sells them yarn, patterns and tools from his sponsors and no one minds a bit.  Every member of the group knows it’s how he makes his living and not one is offended by it.

He has built his YouTube channel, his Facebook business page, the group and his website all on the concept of service.  He has become a celebrity in his niche and is well paid as a direct result of his willingness to give value to his community, his tribe.

Success leaves clues.  Can you follow this pattern in your business?  This approach takes serious effort and means an investment of time, energy and money, but ask yourself, “What do I want to accomplish with my business?  Do I want to have to constantly tweak my marketing strategies and outlay huge amounts of money to attract new clients and customers?  Or do I want to create a tribe of raving fans who come back to me again and again and gladly share my valuable social assets with their friends?

What do you want to build your brand around?  Ads or magnetic attraction?  Following the rules of social media netiquette, creating relationships or “driving traffic” (which sounds a little agressive when you think about it)?

Just as you wouldn’t put your feet up on the table in a fine restaurant or wear a tall hat in a movie theater, social media posts and videos that are a blatant ad that are placed randomly without regard to the audience involved, are major social media faux pas.  So…be polite…be kind and share instead of sell.  That pretty much wraps it all into one great package, don’t you think?

 

 

 

Roadblocks happen.  Detours are inevitable.  However, there is one magic word I have found that seems to vanquish every obstacle, not only in my life as an online marketer, but in every aspect of everything I do.   Persistence.  An oft quoted poem sticks in my mind, often attributed to Goethe, although many believe it was written by W.H. Murray, regardless of who wrote it, it speaks to my heart.  It goes like this:

“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back– Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth that ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way. Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now.”

Persistence is the essence of commitment.  When we are committed, we don’t ignore challenges.  We acknowledge them and devise a plan to work around them, plough through them or eliminate them.  This makes us stronger, more capable and gives us confidence.

Especially in business, the value of committed persistence is invaluable.  You will run into obstacles, no matter how clear your vision, no matter how diligent you are, no matter how many times you have done it before.

That being said, as we persist, something magical happens as we continue to move forward.  Doors open.  New ideas are born.  The need for new systems become evident.  We begin to see our business with new eyes.  The long term benefit of persistence is that overcoming those obstacles empowers us to do more, to grow more and to win more frequently.

It is said that “Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.” (Seneca)  It is important to realize that we can prevent many obstacles and smooth our route a great deal by laying strong foundations for our business (and our life).  This requires ongoing learning and giving attention to the opportunity to learn new things and strengthen our core skills.

I once had a framed quote that hung above my desk by President Calvin Coolidge:

“Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not: nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not: the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. “

Persistence combined with knowledge and consistent effort make success possible.  My own personal mantra is:

“Be consistent.  Be persistent.  Do it now.”

It’s actually fairly simple, but it isn’t easy.  Nothing worth doing or having ever is.  That being said, I do believe in working smart, reducing the number of steps necessary to get things done and simplifying in every possible way I can.  It all works, if YOU do.

More About Bonnie Dillabough, AKA The Web Woman

Bonnie Dillabough

Bonnie Dillabough

Bonnie Dillabough, AKA The Web Woman has been making a living online since 1996. She is an internet marketing specialist teaching owners of small businesses how to market their products and services online successfully. for more info: NotionsIntoMotion.com

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Marketing a business or marketing a product can be darned hard work, mainly because we just don’t know how to market online.  Website promotion can be tricky at best, especially when you feel like a city-slicker in the jungle, without a guide and without a map.

But what if it could be fun?  What if you had a guide who could guide you past the pitfalls and point you toward the perfect path through the jungle to some exotic city of riches and adventure?

As I pondered the mechanism we learn by, I realized that people learn more, learn faster and remember better when they do what they are taught as the learn and when they are having fun.  I did a complete redesign on Notions Into Motion and now we are ready to launch with some real power for our online marketing students.

Allow me to introduce the New and Improved, Notions Into Motion – Business Builders program.  As a member you get:

  • Weekly Strategy Sessions with The Web Woman, featuring tactics, tools and tips on how to market your business, how to market your product in a self-paced, tried and true sequence that will bring you to the top of your marketing game.  Each Strategy Session comes with it’s own set of resources to allow you to create real online assets to promote your business on and offline.  Action Steps with each workshop that take you step by step through the process necessary to fully implement the strategy from the workshop.
  • A private Facebook mentoring group to allow you to network with your fellow students, get your questions answered and keep you “in the know” about all of the cool new features, new courses, new Strategy Sessions and even Celebrity Guest trainers available onlye to Notions Into Motion Business Builder members.
  • A library of courses to learn how to do a lot of the technical tricks to applying the strategies you will be learning in the Strategy Session workshops.
  • The “Mission Accomplished Game” that allows you to play your way through to marketing success.
  • New features and new resources are added on a continual basis to keep you up to date on the latest trends and techniques in the marketing world, both on and offline.

So, are you ready to play?

BTW, if you are already a member, please go to your Member Account page to get all the details on the New and Improved NIM program and take a moment to share this with someone you know who is struggling with their online business.

It costs a lot to get a customer client the first time.  Whether the cost is in elbow grease, actual advertising costs, persistent effort, trade shows, networking or just a huge amount of your time, if your entire focus is about getting new customers, you are leaving money on the table when you don’t take care to retain the customers or clients after you get them.

There are a lot of ways to do this, but most importantly, you need to have a plan right out of the gate that says you will continue to surprise and delight your current clients and customers throughout their experience with you and your product or service.  This means making sure that they know you don’t take their custom for granted.  Each business has a different way of doing this.  It’s kind of like the “mint on the pillow” when you come back to your hotel room and the bed is made and the room is clean.  Obviously having the room clean is part of the expected service and the mint costs them almost nothing, but that little extra gesture is a happy surprise that tells you they intend to go out of their way to give you an excellent experience.

You can do the equivalent of this in your business.  Happy little surprises.  An example for me that took them less than a penny to do was when I received the vitamin supplements I had ordered and when I opened the package, on the bottle was a sticky note that said:  “We appreciate your trust in us.  Please call us at (phone number) if you have any questions or need any assistance.”  I never needed to call that phone number, but a hand-written note made me feel valued as a customer and I have ordered from them again and again.

So what can you do?  Try one of these:

  • Add in a special “free report” that wasn’t included in what they ordered
  • Give them access to a private Facebook Group that connects them with other customers and adds a special layer of support.
  • Make a follow-up phone call to make sure they are getting the value out of the program or course they bought from you.
  • Send them an added bonus in the package of the product they bought.
  • Get their birthdays and send them a special Birthday Present (it could be a digital product)
  • Make a 2 minute video that is addressed to them personally, thanking them for joining your program or becoming your and offering continued support.
  • Offer a free 15-30 minute consultation when they reach a certain level of your coaching/mentoring/training program.

I think you get the idea.  Here’s our Marketing Moment with The Web Woman – Episode 2 – Making the Cut.  Enjoy:

Exciting new feature.  5 days a week (Monday – Friday) I will be adding a 3-5 minute video with a marketing tip called “Marketing Moments with The Web Woman.  Topics you can expect to see:

  • Email marketing
  • SEO
  • Social media marketing
  • Sales letters and sales pages
  • Marketing outside the search engines
  • E-commerce
  • Web design strategies
  • Managing a membership site
  • Best marketing tools
  • Best wordpress plugins
  • Best marketing books
  • Best marketing resources
  • and lots more

We are very excited to present to you, Episode #1 – The Foundational Principles

Join us tomorrow for Episode #2 – Making the Cut.  To be sure you don’t miss an episode, Subscribe below:

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It’s natural for you to be excited about your product or service, about the business you’re building.  After all,  who wouldn’t want to do business with you?

The reality?  Most people really don’t care about your product, your service or your company.  Most people only ever consider you or your company when they need what you have and even then, you are not as unique as you would like to believe.

So what DO most people care about?  They care about their own needs and the needs of their family.  After that, they care about their community, their causes and their recreation and relaxation.  So how do you get their attention?

Make it about THEM.  If you have done your research and you know and understand your ideal customer or client, then you know:

  • What drives them
  • Where they hang out
  • What they’re talking about
  • What they worry about
  • What they wish for
  • Who is important to them
  • Who they listen to
  • Who they follow
  • What gives them pain
  • What brings them joy

In other words, what motivates them.  When you speak to these needs in a meaningful way, they will listen to you.  When you understand these things about them, you know how to talk to them, where to find them and what you have to give to them that will make them want to be associated with you, your product or service and what will, over time, make them brand advocates who share you with their tribe.

It’s really pretty simple, but not always easy.  When you show you care about them, they are willing to listen to you.  When you put a piece of sales copy together, start asking yourself, “What can I tell my customer today that will make their life better because they listened to me?”  It sounds altruistic, to be sure, but it is one of the most important things you will learn as a marketer.  Putting your customer first before and after the sale is the foundation that great companies are built on.

For example, Google, was not the first search engine.  When I first got on the web in 1996, Google was a baby search engine.  Most people used Alta Vista and Yahoo at that time.  But Google seemed to have an instinct for giving their customers what they wanted, oftentimes before they knew what they wanted.  They were willing to temporarily ignore advertisers in order to set the searcher, their true customer, as their priority.  They set the precedent of continuing to constantly upgrade their algorithm to exclude spammers and blackhat sites from skewing the search results and as a result, their users grew to trust the results they got.

When they finally did start actively attracting paid advertising, they did it in a way that was readily transparent to their users, so you could tell the different from an organic search result and paid placement.  Because of this they became a trusted resource and due to the fact that they knew their “tribe” well enough to give them exactly what they wanted, they surpassed all other search engines very quickly.

One of the major players in the marketing world (he teaches Google how to market) is Seth Godin.  Take a look what he had to say in this amazing TED Talk.

Your business, at whatever stage it is in currently, can become a leader in your industry by making your customer the center of everything you do, instead of always putting your product on center stage.   Changing your focus in this way may very well be the missing piece in your marketing plan.