Resource Library: The Strategies To Increase Sales Library




Selling is easy once you know what the prospect wants and you use an easy, friendly and professional presentation to properly explain the benefits And why your solution represents incredibly good value. We've got plenty of practical "nuggets" to help you here.


How Much Are Your Prospects Worth & How You Can Sell To Them All

Include An RFP In Your Marketing Material

Dealing With Price Issues On The Phone

Two More Smart Ways To “Work” Prospects

When Someone Gets Something For Nothing, Someone Else Gets Nothing For Something!

Make Referral Giving A Deliberate Condition Of Doing Business With You

Yellow Page Advertising – The Internet Threat

A Strategy To Improve Your Closing Rates With Referred People

How To Boost Sales During The Off-Season

Four Words To Increase Sales

Why You Must Identify The “Maybe’s” In Your Marketing Campaigns

Devise Your Own Loyalty Program

Strategies To Improve The Conversion Rate Of Special Offers

When Things Go Wrong

The Humble Package Insert – A Cost Effective Sales Initiator

Guarantee Your Customers Peace Of Mind

Guarantee What You Can Control

“Outside The Box” Thinking To Get Yourself Noticed

Which Generation Do You Service?

A Test To See How Your Staff Handle A Price Objection

A Smart Sales Question

A Great Way To Conclude A Sales Situation

Retail Is Detail – Sweat The Small Stuff

Internet-Based Auctions - Another Selling Medium

Problem Versus Price

Use a “We Love Referrals” Sticker

Benefit From The Experience Of Others




How Much Are Your Prospects Worth & How You Can Sell To Them All


I’d like to thank Patti M, a Queensland retailer I met at a recent seminar for this next idea.

Patti was concerned that her three staff didn’t really appreciate the significance of people who walked into the store. On many occasions, the staff unconsciously steered the conversation into mundane non-sales areas, like the weather etc, and she knew this was opportunity gone begging.

She needed to jolt them into action and the first step was to get the staff to appreciate how much these walk-in people were worth to the business.

So, here’s what she did – and follow it closely because this concept may well apply to your business.

She divided the annual turnover by the number of days of trading (I won’t even begin to tell you what she thought of extended shopping hours!). Then she divided the daily sales total by the average number of people who walk into the shop which she obtains from an ingenious little recording device (and it’s relatively inexpensive as well) located near the door entrance.

Guess what? Each walk-in person is worth just a tad over twenty dollars and so Patti gets the staff to concentrate on just that fact. Everyone is worth $20 (in their lingo they’re known as “red ones” to reflect the colour of the twenty dollar note).

As a minimum, the staff work hard to get a sale of at least that amount and after they have expended all other selling attempts they know they can fall back on the special $19.95 package which was quickly put together following a brilliant suggestion by one of the staff.

Their selling line, uttered just at the point when the prospect is about to exit the store, goes something like this:

“Before you go, you might like to consider this special arrangement we’ve put together. It makes for a great gift and it’s less than a twenty dollar note. It is great value and we’ve sold plenty because people are impressed.”

This approach has worked gangbusters for Patti for two reasons:

The staff are focused on getting a sale every time and they’ve been forced to think about a last ditch sales attempt that will ensure their averages remain high.

How much are your prospects worth to your business? Could it be that your business is squandering prospects at present? What can you do to arrive at a $19.95 “special” like Patti did?

 Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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Include An RFP In Your Marketing Material


What’s an RFP?

It’s a Request For Proposal and an American company involved in office filing has made it a central part of its marketing campaigns to induce prospects to become first time buyers.

Their one page marketing letter describes their absolutely FREE “Request For Proposal” form which accompanies the letter.

The form, of course, gathers vital information about the filing problems they are having as well as a detailed description of what they would like so as to solve their problems.

At the bottom of the form they have a question with a YES / NO tick box:

“If you’d like us to assist you to complete this form and move you from your present chaos to a cost effective, stress free solution, just say “YES” and we’ll be over to help you.”

Here are the benefits of this marketing strategy:

1. Prospects “dream” about the solution. They are encouraged to visualize the end result.
2. The RFP is a psychologically more potent weapon than just a FREE Quote which everybody uses.
3. The prospects paint the dream without any reference to money. Then the salespeople “sell” the benefits of their dream.
4. The RFP looks more official than a quote. Whilst it has no legal standing, the prospect did fill in the “Request”.

Now, could this… or a variation of it… work in your business? YES | NO

Who would be responsible for acting on this idea?

Final suggestion: Before you gloss over this idea, run it past someone else in your company and simply ask them this question: “Could we adapt this idea in our business?”

Adapted from “To bid or not to bid, by Jack Hauber, on the Small Business Advocate Web Site as reported in Positive Business Newsletter


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Dealing With Price Issues On The Phone


Over the years, this issue has come up a number of times and it pains me greatly to see business people spend literally tens of thousands of dollars on advertising (yellow pages, in particular) only to see their staff “bomb out” after the first question which your prospect, responding to the advert, asks.

You know what it is: “Can you tell me your price on ?”

To which our hapless, ill-trained, don’t give a damn staff member says “the price is $X”.

Sheesh! Pull the chain on another opportunity…and an opportunity that has cost you considerable money to obtain!

Besides, you know that the minute this phone call concludes, your staff member will go back to work thinking that s/he has just spoken to another inconsequential “tyre kicker” – no big deal, because it’s not their money or their opportunity, or their business! Pay-day is still pay-day.

Perhaps I might be a little bit harsh here, but truly this is an issue we all need to heed.

But, back to the phone call from the price-shopper.

You know that once the prospect has concluded the call to your business, s/he will immediately phone one of your competitors. Think about it, you are educating your prospects to become price shoppers! Is that really what you want?

This is happening all the time and if it’s happening within your business then you, dear reader, may care to do something about it. The answer lies in the question!

If nothing else, implement the following phrase and make it mandatory for every staff member to use when you get the call that starts off with “can you tell me your price?”

“So that I can help you best, may I ask you some questions on that?”

Got it…it’s as simple as that.

When the prospect says “yes” (which they do on 95% of occasions), the issue of price has been deferred and your sales staff member now has the opportunity to probe for needs and wants.

Now, I won’t bore you with the follow up questions because every subscriber will have a different slant on this, based upon their products and services, but surely, it is imperative that each business has a written list of probing questions that deal with each product or service that you represent.

But here’s a tip: the probing questions you ask are designed to help people solve their problem and truly, their problem isn’t finding out what your product costs. So, think of your probing questions with the Magnificent Seven in mind (hey, you can tell I’m a baby boomer can’t you when I can remember a movie that old!).

Instead of Yul Brynner and company, I’m talking about – what, which, when, where, how, who and why.

Is phone price shopping and issue for your business? YES | NO |

If yes, who was responsible for implementing the solution and when will this occur?

Who ________________ When ___________

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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Two More Smart Ways To “Work” Prospects


The very great majority of businesses do not properly work the prospect responses they get to their marketing and advertising efforts. Sadly, quite a number don’t even bother to contact the prospect in the first place. That’s lost opportunity and just plain dumb.

Then again, 95% of businesses who do follow up the prospects do so half-heartedly and are easily put off by flimsy excuses.

Even when the prospect says “no”, that only means “no for the moment”. At some point in time, the opportunity may resurrect and it will do so for those savvy businesses that make it a habit of going back to all prospects at some later date to investigate whether their circumstances have changed.

Why not make this a necessary part of your marketing follow-up process? That is, at an appropriate time after a prospect has been initially “worked”, say three months after, follow-up that prospect to see if anything has changed with their circumstances.

Here is another smart way to properly utilise prospects. Even after a prospect has rebuffed all of your various offers, there is one final strategy; contact them with just one question, “what I got to do to win your business?”

Okay, if you are resonating to the common sense message in this article, what are you going to do about it in order to make this a part of your normal sales process? What are you going to do to train your sales staff to routinely stay in contact with prospects and to ask that one vital question?

As a manager, how are you going to monitor whether the sales staff are actually doing this?

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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When Someone Gets Something For Nothing, Someone Else Gets Nothing For Something!


All of us have advanced knowledge, even specialised knowledge, maybe “cutting- edge” knowledge about a particular area, process, circumstance or product.

Doubtless, it took plenty of hours of research, study and training to acquire this advanced knowledge base and anybody wanting to have a similar information base as you would have to invest heavily in money and time.

Why then, do we give this vital information away for FREE?

You see, one of the universal truths is that people can get value only when they assign value to that which they are getting.

When they are given advice for free…they equate that advice to the words of a well-intentioned person. But, since they paid nothing for it, they’ll value it at zero or close thereto.

Even if they really did like it, guess what, they’ll keep asking for your gratuitous advice because they know they have nothing to pay and therefore no obligation.

My very strong recommendation this month is for you to commence the new financial year with a commercially realistic understanding of just how valuable your knowledge and information is.

At the very least you must reduce this to a healthy hourly rate based upon the value and benefit you can impart to the listener by virtue of your words of wisdom.

Because of your advanced knowledge, customers and prospects will make money, save money, identify new opportunities, have peace of mind, reduces stress, improve their relationships and a whole series of other benefits.

Naturally, as a salesperson (and we all are) you should be pointing out to the prospect or customer just how vital your information is and what it can do for them.

Okay, there will be times when is necessary for you to deliver your expert advice at no cost. That doesn’t mean you should demean the value of that information and one very practical and workable solution is to actually deliver an invoice to the customer or prospect for the value of your information, but put a big line through it saying “this one’s on me”.

Alternatively, state the true dollar value of providing your information and then put a line through that amount and mark it back to “Zero, with my compliments”.

This is a great way to remind them of the added value you have provided.

Then again, do as Dick Gelderman, Australia’s top vet does, write a book around the common reasons people try and suck his brain on. It has a recommended retail value of $19.95 and it’s then his choice whether he gives it to them or sells it to them.

So, what is your hourly rate and how are you going to build value into the information base you possess? Part of the answer lies in improving your self-belief of how good you really are.

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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Make Referral Giving A Deliberate Condition Of Doing Business With You


One of the very best ways to generate a flood of referrals to your business is to make the referral giving process a deliberate condition of doing business with your company.

So, the next time you get a new customer, explain upfront that part of the customer’s responsibility in the relationship is to provide three quality referrals within the first 90 days. Simply say “Mr/Ms customer, it is our intention to make you deliriously happy with our service and the results we provide. In return, we do ask that within the first 90 days you refer to us three quality people just like yourself. Is that okay by you?”

To make this strategy more formal, you may wish to give the new customer an A4 sheet that clearly sets out their obligation to you in this respect. Then again, it could be part of your welcome letter or pack which you give to the new customer.

As with all these ideas, and there isn’t a business for whom this wouldn’t apply, the rubber hits the road when you take the good idea and do something tangible with it. Why not make this idea an absolute, ironclad condition of doing business with you beginning NOW?

Oh yes, I nearly forgot, spend the requisite time educating the new customer on whom or what represents a quality referral. The clearer they are with this “ideal person or business”, the better the quality of the referrals you will have to work with

By the way, recent research suggests that only 37.5% of businesses get their sales people to ask every customer for referrals. This is a pretty good indicator that there are very few solid systems in place out there in business-land.

In another bit of interesting research, a survey asked 464 sales managers how frequently salespeople ask for referrals. It found 22.4% rarely asked, 31.5% did so occasionally and 8.6% only asked top customers. Just think of the opportunity they have been missing!!

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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Yellow Page Advertising – The Internet Threat


According to famed American yellow page marketing guru, Dr. Lynella Grant, traditional Yellow Pages are in big trouble. That’s because fewer people are using them every year and the young adults, many of whom now control “household spend”, have never used the hard copy service. Contractors and tradespeople, in particular, are reporting significant declines.

Dr Grant believes that we are now very close to seeing half of all prospects go to the Internet first to find product information and sources - even if they intend to spend their money locally. That’s why businesses simply must take a position on the Internet Yellow Pages (IYP) or equivalent where usage is growing at 25% a year.

Dr Grant’s suggestion is that the time has come for all businesses that rely on yellow pages to seriously study the current buying habits of their prospects and begin to move some of their marketing spend away from YP to mediums that will reach the new prospect.

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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A Strategy To Improve Your Closing Rates With Referred People


When seeking referrals from clients, why not have them write a small note on the back of your business card. Something like “, have a chat with . You’ll find it rewarding, Regards, .”

Then, send this card to the referred person, perhaps with a small covering letter which will heighten the interest.

There are two reasons why this strategy works:

Firstly, the referred person can quickly see that a good friend of theirs has taken the time to write them a note about a person (you, the businessperson) who can help them. This is far, far stronger than a cold call.

Secondly, presuming the referred person hangs onto your business card they will always know that you were referred by the person who wrote the note on the back.

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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How To Boost Sales During The Off-Season


Any florist can make money on Valentine’s Day or Mother’s Day but what about all the other days?

One smart florist working on the very correct premise that people will always spend money to solve a problem before spending money to improve something uses a small road sign to alert passers-by to the problem.

Signs such as;

* “How mad is she? Make up with flowers” and
* “Forgotten something? Flowers will make it all right” and
* “Needing something tonight? Flowers are the answer.”

Well, these signs really do “pull” business and apart from offering a solution to the problem of the passer-bys, its success can also be attributed to timing. That is, a solution was offered at the precise time when the prospect had the problem.

What solutions to problems can you offer today? And, how could you immediately let thousands of people know about your solution?

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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Four Words To Increase Sales


For the want of an “ask”, countries have been defeated, battles have been lost and businesses have gone bankrupt.

Sales can be massively increased with just these four words which are uttered once the customer has made the first acquisition (and they are continued to be asked until the customer says “no”):

"Was there something else?"

This isn’t been pushy, you are just helping the customer to think

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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Why You Must Identify The “Maybe’s” In Your Marketing Campaigns


If you're only giving your customer the option to tick a "yes" or "no" box on your order form or other marketing material, you are missing potential sales.

By including a third "maybe" option, you can get some prospects or customers who aren't sure of the offer at the moment. They need more convincing or maybe the timing isn’t right.

You might, for example, add a box that says something like this:

[ ] I'm not ready to order right now, but please keep me updated with new information about your .

The next time you approach the customers who tick that box, they will already be "warmed up" to your offer, and you'll have a better chance of getting them to say "yes".

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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Devise Your Own Loyalty Program


Lifetime relationships with profitable customers are what create successful businesses and loyalty programs, properly structured, reward the longevity of the relationship and volume of business.

But, I know more than a few subscribers have struggled with how to implement such a plan and so, I’ve sourced a few generic examples which I know have worked for other businesses.

Volume rewards are fairly straight forward to work out, but there are two other categories. Study the following examples and see if you can adjust them to your circumstances.

* A 1% loyalty rebate for each year of active custom, commencing at the end of the first year.

Example: At the end of year one, customers will get a 1% rebate on all purchases in year two and at the end of year two, customers will get a 2% rebate on all purchases in year three etc up to a maximum of 5%.

* A Special Event Rebate to reward past loyalty and to encourage extra sales

Example: Customers are entitled to a special rebate in the month of the birthday of the business proprietor

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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Strategies To Improve The Conversion Rate Of Special Offers


If you use coupons or special discounts to encourage new business think about these two strategies which will literally double your take up rate.

Strategy One
Follow up the coupon with a reminder. That’s right, send a copy of the coupon with a reminder that the time dated offer expires soon. This second reminder will prompt action. Some words: “Recently we issued you with a special offer and this is a courtesy final reminder that the expiry date is almost upon us.”

Strategy Two
Instead of issuing a coupon, send them a Statement of Account with a credit balance reflecting the amount of the special offer you are making. This strategy works because of our desire to cash in that which appears as a credit to ourselves. Naturally the wording of the statement of Account can ensure that the offer only refers to a specific marketing campaign which will be reversed unless taken up by a certain date.

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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When Things Go Wrong


We’ve recently had air-conditioning problems and several repair people have tried to rectify the situation. The first guy failed to solve the problem, but it was the approach of the second guy that impressed me.

He didn’t try and cover up the failure of his colleague and he didn’t bag him. His opening comment was “At this point we can’t explain the problem, but we can certainly apologize for it and let you know that we are on the case to get it right.”

Yep, he took “ownership” of the situation and provided a sincere commitment to keep on trying. Surely, this is the most important thing a customer wants when matters get sticky.

So when things go wrong on a particular arrangement:

(1) Admit the situation and genuinely apologize
(2) Provide evidence that you have taken “ownership” of the situation
(3) Update more frequently than you normally would so as to reassure the customer
(4) Provide a small gift as a way of saying “we understand your situation”. Let’s talk about this point now.

Do you think a bunch of flowers sent by the air-conditioning company during the middle of our problems had a settling impact on my wife? Of course.

What strategies do you have in place to cater for the “problem job” where things just don’t go right (and let’s be honest here, we all have them from time to time)?

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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The Humble Package Insert – A Cost Effective Sales Initiator


Just ask any direct mail expert what is the first priority of any direct mail piece and they will answer “to be opened”.

Whenever you send out a product dispatch from your business you are almost 100% assured that the package will be opened. This situation is a direct mail experts “heaven here on earth” because once the prospect has opened the package they are then exposed to a powerful message which may result in another sale.

Why then do 95% of businesses not utilise their product dispatches as a vehicle to carry new offers, bonus offers and general information about the other range of products and services?

Answer: Either they’ve never thought about it, or they are lazy.

Here’s the Damien Parker marketing pitch that will make you money and yet, the costs are close to zero. Never, ever let another product dispatch leave your business without being accompanied by a little “ride-along”. It could be as simple as an A4 one colour flyer – production costs of about 2 cents a sheet.

Now, the people who have attended my Turbo-Charge Your Marketing Super Workshop will know that my approach to these matters is to set out an entire twelve month program, in advance, and with different offers that are heavily time sensitive.

Sure, this approach takes a bit of brain power upfront, but once it’s done it becomes a “set and forget” marketing program that will quietly generate results.

Worth thinking about and for mine this should be a part of everyone’s normal marketing.

Oh yes, some of you might be thinking that because you don’t send out product dispatches, this doesn’t apply to you. Well, if you send out monthly statements, then you have the same opportunity. Seize it…and bank the proceeds.

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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Guarantee Your Customers Peace Of Mind


Last month’s article dealing with identifying the primary frustrations which customers feel towards the industry in which one operates, certainly stirred some interest. The building industry and its tradespeople, in particular, got a serve.

Then again, one Melbourne builder called me to task by saying “how can we make ourselves different when many of us are at the mercy of suppliers and sub-contractors over whom we have very little sway.”

A great comment and one which I’m sure will resonate with many subscribers, so let’s explore it.

But firstly, let me back up on my advice from last month and it was this:

Be different by identifying the primary frustrations which the great majority of customers feel about your industry and then take massive steps to eliminate them from your business. Next step: actively market the fact that doing business with you avoids the usual frustrations. Better still; put a guarantee in place to demonstrate you are serious about meeting your obligations because this will eliminate the customer’s primary fear – the fear of making a wrong decision.

So, back to our builder who builds and sells medium price homes (for competitive reasons, I can’t name him so let’s call him Bob). After some discussion we agreed that what the customer wanted was “peace of mind”. In fact, whatever your industry, you can be ensured that, above all else, your customer seeks “peace of mind”.

In the Bob the builder’s case, this meant:

Peace of mind about escalating costs
Peace of mind about shoddy work
Peace of mind about the completion date
Peace of mind that the final product is what was represented.

I then challenged Bob to look in the yellow pages and the newspaper adverts to see how many builders addressed these issues in their marketing…and with guarantees. The answer: very, very few.

But Bob was concerned with issuing a guarantee when he couldn’t totally control the time frames of his sub-contractors. Now, this is a systems issue and stripped of all the facts, this is largely a planning and communications exercise. The greater the communication with the “subbie” about the upcoming job, the more likely they will respond. We’ll talk about this in another issue.


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Guarantee What You Can Control


But Bob can guarantee a number of simple things which he controls (and you can too, when you think about the issue). Here are three examples:

What guarantees can Bob give (and remember a guarantee needs only say what you can, with certainty, provide – it’s all in the wording)?

Our Guarantee To Communicate
“We guarantee to communicate promptly and openly on all aspects that affect your new home. Upon contract date, you will be given the mobile number of your works supervisor and he is contactable at any time, day or night, during the construction phase.”

Our Guarantee To Deliver A Sparklingly Clean Home
“We guarantee to deliver a sparkling clean home that will suit the most fastidious person. Our commercial cleaners will “triple-spring-clean” the home so that your day of mover in will truly be a day of joy.”

Our Guarantee To Keep The Gardens Under Care & Tender For 3 Months
“We know that you’ll be busy organising things in the first three months, so we’ll undertake to keep your gardens under care and maintenance. This means that each week, we’ll visit and …”

Maybe Bob the Builder might like to tackle some of the more contentious guarantees and carefully worded, why not? For example:

Start Date Certainty
“You can be assured that we will use the strength of our building systems and the leverage of our relationships with our suppliers our sub-contractors to ensure we start the project on time and failing that, that we will use our best endeavours to catch up any time lost.”

Completion Date Certainty
“In the unlikely event that we cannot make the nominally stated completion date (and this happens periodically and always because of reasons beyond our control, like unavailable supplies) then we guarantee that you will always be kept fully informed on all progress towards the completion date.”

Moment Of Truth
What can you immediately do to raise the profile of how your business can offer customers what they want – peace of mind?

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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“Outside The Box” Thinking To Get Yourself Noticed


In business, it’s so important to standout from the crowd … and this applies particularly to your marketing. You may be able to get some inspiration from a book published by Virgin Books. “Do Something Different”.

It contains a number of short case studies of businesses that have been transformed because they adopted innovative marketing strategies that set them apart from their competitors.

Here are a couple of examples:

BigStar
BigStar is an online video and DVD retailer that wanted people to trust them as though they were a bricks-and-mortar company - even though they had no stores. So they paid to have the BigStar logo painted on several hundred trucks belonging to different companies in Los Angeles, San Francisco and New York.

BigStar didn’t have any delivery trucks either - they use a major parcel delivery company - but suddenly people started seeing “BigStar” trucks everywhere.

The Lawn Jockey
The Lawn Jockey is a gardening service. To increase their business, they printed signs to stick in lawns that they hope in the future to care for. The sign said, "Keep Off The Grass" and below, in small type, "Give us a call, and you'll never have to set foot on your lawn again”.

How can you apply some of this “outside the box” thinking to your marketing campaign to get yourself noticed?

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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Which Generation Do You Service?


Subscriber Barrie Allen emailed me recently to ask whether I had information about the various generation groups which are referred to often in the press. Yep…and here they are:


Generation Age in 2004 %
Y (1980 – 97) 7-24 30%
X (1965 – 79) 25-39 21%
Boomer (1945 – 64) 45-59 28%
Mature (<1945)< td> 60+ 14%


According to David Wolfe, author of “Ageless Marketing”, each group has distinctively different marketing requirements. For instance, the boomers and the matures require more visual evidence and less wordage. Further, they like to see themselves represented as how they were – so imagery of a healthy person some ten years younger stirs their interest.

Want proof?
Well, an American gym increased its class size by 30% by changing the name of its class (and its attitude to the attendees) from “Senior Aerobics” to “Ageless Aerobics”. Whether they knew it or not, they were now speaking the language acceptable to their marketplace.

On the other hand, the generations Xers want to appear polished, mature and successful so they relate to slightly older models.

All of this prompts these questions:

What generation do you largely service?
Do you know specifically what interests them, what they are looking for and what marketing messages (and language) you need to display in order to excite them?
Would it be wise to re-consider whether your messages are connecting with your prospect audience?

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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A Test To See How Your Staff Handle A Price Objection


If you sell a product or service that is not the cheapest in the marketplace, at the very least, your salespeople – in fact all of your staff – should be able to satisfactorily complete this sentence:

“Even though we’re not always the least expensive option, people buy from us because …..”

Now, if they flub the answer, how do you think a potential customer would react?

If they give non-specific “bull dust” such as “our customer service is better”, draw them by asking this one question “which means?”

Make it your responsibility to have every staff member be able to satisfactorily answer this question by the end of this month.

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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A Smart Sales Question


When talking to a prospect that is not yet ready to do business with you because of a strong relationship they have with one of your competitors, ask this question:

“What do you like about your present supplier and what more would you like to get from them if you could?”

Source: The Competitive Advantage as reported in Positive Business Newsletter


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A Great Way To Conclude A Sales Situation


End each customer contact by asking them if there is anything else you can do for them. This lets them know that you are not rushing them and it often creates an opportunity for an additional sale.

Source: Exceptional Customer Service by Lisa Ford, David McNair and Bill Perry as reported in Positive Business Newsletter


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Retail Is Detail – Sweat The Small Stuff


When it comes to retailing, Jason Lea of Darryl Lea Chocolates, is one smart cookie. This probably explains why he was the keynote speaker at the National Independent Retailers Association (NIRA) Conference in 2004.

The following are some of the more thought-provoking ideas he outlined. They also apply to those of us who are not involved in retail, so read on:

Retailers bank dollars, not percentages, so concentrate on selling more products.

Customer service is mandatory; so love your customers, under-promise and over-deliver, be nice, be kind, smile, be helpful, give compliments. (Come to think about it, this is exactly what dear old mum told us so many years ago.)

Be different to the competition. If you don’t have uniqueness about you, find one fast.

People are curious and love to explore new stuff. So make it easy for them by establishing a new products section with the appropriate signage to match. “Just arrived”, “The very latest” etc. As Jason does say, retail is theatre so entertain them.

Retailers are paying for all of the space they occupy, so they should use it, particularly the wall and roof space. Danglers and hangers can result is sales, so get them up there.

Try and employ experienced people who love people. Jason points out that he’d rather employ people with enthusiasm, passion and energy but with no skills. That’s because you can teach them the skills, but you can’t teach them enthusiasm, energy and passion.

Finally, this point is interesting. Something like 50 per cent of the Australian population is now over 50 years of age. Pensioner discounts or discounts exclusively for this age group may enduce more sales as they have plenty of disposable income these days.

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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Internet-Based Auctions - Another Selling Medium


The recent Sensis e-Business Report indicates that there has been huge growth in the number of small and medium enterprises that buy and sell goods and services online. Selling products via auction sites such as eBay helps to reduce the costs associated with starting a new business. A number of establish businesses has also used this medium to quit slow-moving stock. But a word of warning: Prospective entrepreneurs should note that the Australian Taxation Office now accesses data on major eBay sellers in order to counter tax avoidance. Be ye warned.

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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Problem Versus Price


Everyone in business is selling a solution to a customer’s problem and there is a universal rule of thumb which associates the problem and the price, and it's simply this:

1. Simple problems require low price, off-the-shelf solutions.
2. Large, complex problems require sophisticated, high-value solutions.
3. All customers see the problem as a simple problem unless the extent of the complexity is explained to them with clarity. The better the job which the salesperson does in explaining the complexity the more willing is the customer to pay a higher price.

Never apologise for what you charge. All you're asking for is an equitable share of the extra value you've created for the client.

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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Use a “We Love Referrals” Sticker


Now this is a simple idea – and best of all it costs next to nothing.

Order a batch of colourful “We Love Referrals” stickers and then stick them on every piece of paper you dispatch from the business.

Maybe this idea could apply to other areas where you need feedback – such as customer feedback “Tell Us How We Are Doing!” or “Your Improvement Suggestions Gratefully Accepted”.

It’s also a good way of saying thanks – “We Appreciate Our Relationship” or “Thanks For Your Support”.

Of course, for the emailers of the world – there is no reason why you can’t adopt the same approach by making a small comment at the end of the email.

There…another simple, yet cost-effective, idea that you won’t learn at business school!

Source: Positive Business Newsletter


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Benefit From The Experience Of Others


The Wall Street Journal literally spends millions and millions of dollars seeking subscriptions and has done so for many years. In all the time they’ve been marketing, they’ve found that subscription offers ending in a “7” out pull all others.

To see if you can cash in on this secret, test your current pricing this way: if your current price is $19.95, try $19.97. If you presently sell at $69, try $67 or $77.

Source: The Competitive Advantage, USA as reported in Positive Business Newsletter





Business Revamp  l  Phone: + 61 (0)3 9551 7742  l  E-mail: info@businessrevamp.com.au










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