Business owners today are in the fight of their lives. The global economy is in shambles, they have no additional revenue sources they can tap into for financial support during lean times – and perhaps worst of all, marketing and advertising just don’t work as well as they used to. In fact, for many small business owners, marketing isn’t producing any results for them at all… and their financial situation is growing more desperate by the day.
As a business owner or entrepreneur, if you’re struggling right now to generate more leads and clients for your business, and you need to find immediate ways to dramatically increase your business’ bottom-line revenue, over the next few issues of SAVVY The Business Magazine I’ll show you how I can help you make all of these problems disappear forever.
Over the next few issues, I’m going to give you back door access to a series of powerful business growth strategies that are some of the most powerful revenue-generating strategies ever created.
So let’s get started.
More Leads – Marketing and Advertising
Let’s face it. The major hot button for most small businesses these days is the ability to generate leads. All small businesses want more leads, but few of them know how to successfully attract customers to their business.
As a coach, I have in-depth knowledge and skill when it comes to generating leads. So here’s the process I use to do this.
If you’re like 99% of the business owners I speak with, you may often feel lost or overwhelmed as you try to navigate through all the various options available these days. Websites, social media, SEO, email marketing, Facebook, pay-per-click and so on.
Let me do you a favor right now and completely remove that overwhelm from your life forever. Are you familiar with the 80/20 rule?
For business owners, it means 20% of what you do every day is generating 80% of your total annual revenue.
In other words, you’re only doing a few things daily that makes you most of your money. I can tell you specifically what makes up that 20%, and that’s all you really need to focus on.
There are 5 areas that make up that 20% – leads, conversions, transactions, pricing and profits.
To show you the potential impact we can have in these five areas, I use a tool called a Profit Growth Calculator. Do you by chance know the exact number of leads and sales you’ve made over the past 12 months?
No! That’s OK… let’s plug in numbers for a make-believe business. Let’s say your business generated 1000 leads in the past year… and your average conversion rate was 25%.
Let’s also say your customers bought what you sell 10 times throughout the year… and they typically paid on average around $100 per purchase.
Finally, let’s say your profit margin per sale is only 25%.
Notice at the bottom that you’re earning $62,500 annually. But, look what happens if we simply increase each of these 5 areas by a meager 10%.
You would see your annual revenue almost double from $62,500 to over 6 figures. By the way.
Most business owners would KILL to almost double their revenue, wouldn’t you agree? Now, watch what happens if you could increase each of the 5 areas by 50%.
Your business would skyrocket from $62,500 to almost half a million dollars annually. Now, you may be thinking 50% gains in each of these 5 areas would be next to impossible. Let me assure you, a 50% increase is possible, and I’m going to prove it to you right now.
When asked, most business owners tell me “word of mouth”, or more often than not “referrals”, are how they generate leads. Referrals are obviously an excellent lead source. In fact, it may be the best one by far, but the problem is you never know when you will get them. They’re not reliable and you certainly can’t generate them whenever you want.
99% of businesses today do have a website. Do you know for sure how many leads your website generates every month? Do you know for sure how many sales your website produces every month?
Can I show you why your website isn’t generating leads or closing sales for you.
Here’s the key to successful marketing. You MUST be able to enter the conversation taking place in the head of your prospects. Or, another way to look at it is to be able to address the number one question on your prospect’s mind at just the right time. So how do you do this? It’s actually quite simple when you know and understand the fundamentals of marketing.
The conversation that’s taking place in EVERY prospect’s mind revolves around two major points. There’s a problem they have, and they don’t want… and there’s a result they want but don’t have.
Now believe it or not, there is actually a marketing formula we follow that takes these two points into account and spits out a message so compelling it practically forces your prospects to buy what you sell.
It’s called the Conversion Equation, and it looks like this – Interrupt, Engage, Educate and Offer. The Interrupt is your headline – which means it’s the first thing someone sees when they visit your website, read any of your marketing collateral, or hear you speak. When someone asks you what you do, it’s the first words out of your mouth. That’s your headline… and it MUST address the problem your prospects have that they don’t want.
The Engage is your sub-headline – which is the second thing your prospects see or hear. It MUST address the result your prospect wants but doesn’t have. The Educate is the information you provide… either verbally or in writing… that presents evidence to your prospects that you and your product or service are superior in every way to your competition.
Unfortunately, MOST businesses aren’t different from their competitors, and that’s why you MUST innovate your business to create what we refer to as a market-dominating position.
You MUST make your business unique… it MUST stand out from the crowd. It MUST make your prospects say to themselves that they would be absolute idiots to buy from anyone else but you – regardless of price. And finally, the Offer. You MUST create a compelling offer that makes it so irresistible your prospects can’t turn it down.
But, here’s another critical fundamental of marketing. Because of the saturation of marketing messages these days, most prospects have become numb to most marketing.
Following our Conversion Equation can dramatically overcome this, but even with this powerful tool in play, it will still take multiple “touch” points before your prospects will buy what you sell.
For most businesses today, it takes anywhere from 20 to more than 100 touch points before a prospect makes their buying decision. Following the Conversion Equation reduces the touch points to somewhere between 5 to 12 points of contact.
But here’s the key… most businesses don’t follow up with their prospects at all, and this provides a HUGE window of opportunity for ANY business that does follow up… to position themselves as the dominant force in their industry.
But, in order to have the opportunity to get your message in front of your prospects 5 to 12 times, you MUST find a way to collect their contact information, and that’s the purpose of your Offer.
Most businesses offer something that only appeals to prospects we call NOW buyers – prospects ready to make an immediate purchase. Unfortunately, NOW buyers make up less than 1% of the total number of prospects that are in the market to buy what you sell.
These businesses typically offer prospects a free consultation, a discount, a coupon, a free assessment, a complimentary quote, or the biggest mistake of all… CALL US!
For most businesses, all of their marketing material… their website… their business card… all list their phone number as their sole offer… and that ONLY appeals to that 1% of NOW buyers. The remaining 99% of viable prospects are “investigating” and gathering information about what you sell.
They’re searching for information because they want to determine who is offering the best value. You see, prospects DON’T shop price – they shop VALUE!
The only reason prospects consider price is that most businesses don’t give them any other value proposition to consider except price.
Remember what I said a moment ago about making your business unique – creating a market-dominating position?
Most businesses don’t do that, and since they… and all of their competitors… look exactly the same, prospects are FORCED to shop price. So, with these fundamentals in mind, let’s see how your website stacks up to them.
Let me tell you about a website we recently revised for a child psychologist so you can see what I mean.
His website was typical for his profession.
He had a very generic headline – Parenting Advice and Resources from Dr. John Smith
He has to have a headline like that because he’s attempting to be all things to all prospects. Basically, this doctor helps parents deal with adolescent problems. He had a list of the 9 areas he specialized in – emotionally disturbed kids, behavioral problems, teen pregnancy, peer pressure and so on.
So, let’s compare this site with the fundamentals we just discussed. First, you MUST create a market-dominating position. This doctor could actually create 9 of them by simply positioning his specialty in each of his 9 individual areas of treatment.
For example, let’s say he decides to start with the top condition on his list… emotionally disturbed kids. These are kids that yell, scream and constantly have a highly belligerent attitude toward their parents. They scream at them and are known in some cases to threaten the parents. These kids can’t be reasoned with and these poor parents have NO clue how to deal with this situation.
So, here’s what this doctor needs to do. Forget the website completely – this doctor needs what we call a squeeze page. This is a single page that’s online and specifically addresses ONLY this one condition. So, what should this page look like… and what should it say?
Remember the second fundamental – you MUST enter the conversation taking place in the head of your prospect. There’s a problem they have they don’t want… and there’s a result they want but they don’t have. This is where we implement the first two components of the Conversion Equation… Interrupt and Engage. The headline is the Interrupt and it must address the problem they have and don’t want.
We started with a new headline – Are You Sick and Tired of the Yelling, Screaming and Belligerent Attitude of Your Child? Does that address the problem these parents have and don’t want? Would you say that’s a 100% bullseye?
Now, for the Engage which is the sub-headline. It MUST address the result they want but they don’t have. We used – Now You Can Discover the Secrets to Controlling Your Child and Instantly Restore Peace and Quiet in Your Home. Would you say that’s bullseye number two?
Now, let’s look at the third Conversion Equation component… Educate. On the doctor’s original website he had a short video, because he’s trying to appeal to all prospects, his video said this – “Greeting parents. I want to welcome you to remarkable parenting. You will find tons of great information here with hundreds of pages of articles.”
Think how ridiculous this sounds if I’m one of these parents with a kid that has a belligerent attitude. Do I want to read hundreds of pages of articles? Or, am I searching for a specific solution to a specific problem? Do you see why most websites these days are basically a total and complete waste of money? They don’t address the things your prospects are truly looking for. Here’s the new script we created for this doctor.
“As a parent, are you struggling to gain control of your child’s attitude and emotions? Is your child yelling and screaming at you, while often displaying a belligerent and sometimes threatening tone that no matter what you do or try… you just can’t seem to get under control?
My name is Dr. John Smith, and I help parents like you every day learn the techniques that will solve these frustrating and destructive behavioral patterns once and for all. In fact, let me prove it to you. Enter your first name and email in the box to the right, and I’ll send you a series of 60-second techniques that will immediately restore peace and quiet in your home.”
Think that just might get more prospects to respond to this message? And that brings us to the final component of the Conversion Equation… the Offer. Look at the doctor’s original offer. His original site was offering a free consultation. The only prospects that will accept that type of offer are those NOW buyers. Remember, they’re less than 1% of the total number of prospects looking for this type of help.
When your offer is to “call me,” that basically says “let me sell you” to your prospects. We are so used to getting non-stop sales pitches these days that we resist calling anyone with every fiber of our being. This type of offer is called an incentive offer, and incentive offers only work for common purchases, emergency situations and impulse purchases.
And remember, most prospects don’t buy until they have been exposed to your messaging somewhere between 5 to 12 times. If you tell prospects to “call you,” and most won’t, how do you keep marketing to them? Obviously, you can’t. The secret to effective marketing is to offer what most prospects truly want… INFORMATION!
Look at the last sentence in the child psychologist’s video script… “enter your first name and email in the box to the right, and I’ll send you a series of 60 second techniques that will immediately restore peace and quiet in your home.” That offer is ZERO risk to a prospect, and it offers them something they truly want… a solution to their problem.
They can receive it by simply providing their name and email address… WITHOUT having to speak to anyone… or be subjected to any type of sales pitch. That’s why the offer on this doctor’s squeeze page says, “Learn the Secrets to Gaining and Maintaining Complete Control of Your Child in Less than 60 Seconds.” Is that a highly compelling offer that would appeal to a majority of the prospects directed to this page?
And do you now see why we call this a squeeze page? There are NO navigation buttons on this page to distract the prospect. In fact, there is only ONE action they can take… enter their contact information. Otherwise, they have to close the page completely… and if they do, THAT is when we can redirect them to the doctor’s main website to see if there is something else that might grab their attention.
That informational offer provides them with proof that this doctor can actually get them the results they’re looking for, and then within that information is an offer for them to schedule a consultation with the doctor, which they are now more likely to do.
But consider these numbers for this doctor’s original website. He could easily generate 300 or more leads per month using a pay-per-click campaign on Facebook. Those leads are then sent to his original website. He will then average around 10% of those leads… or 30 prospects… will see his offer for the free consultation and will call to inquire about it.
Notice I said INQUIRE about it, NOT request it. Out of that 10% that will call… only 10% of them will actually consent to the consultation… which equals 3 prospects.
Fortunately, for most professionals like this doctor, they typically convert 100% of the prospects they get in front of… so those 3 prospects will more than likely become patients. Note that out of 300 leads, the doctor winds up with 3 new clients. That is the national average today – 1% of all leads generated will typically convert into a new client.
But, now let’s look at the doctor’s new squeeze page. First of all, let’s leave his number of leads at 300 per month. That squeeze page won’t impact that number whatsoever.
Do you think this new page will increase the number of prospects that will request this doctor’s secrets to gaining and maintaining complete control of their child? The doctor was getting 10% with his old site. What percent do you think would request this new, more compelling offer?
Most responses I get average somewhere between 50% to 70%. Well, suppose we stay really conservative and say that just 20% request the new offer.
That would mean 60 prospects would receive those secrets and actually see for themselves that this doctor’s methods really work.
And once they do, what percent of those do you think might request the consultation with the doctor? Remember, that originally it was just 10%.
Again, most responses I get average between 50% to 70%. I would tend to agree with those numbers, but we know he originally converted 10%, so to be really conservative, let’s just leave that conversion rate the same… 10%.
So, out of the 60 prospects requesting the doctor’s secrets, 6 of them now request the consultation. And let’s assume like we did originally the doctor converts all 6 of them into patients. That’s an additional 3 patients per month, isn’t it?
Now, let’s say this doctor only charges $800 for his services. $800 times 3 new patients is an additional $2,400 per month… which is an annual increase of $28,800. That’s obviously a dramatic increase in revenue considering we’re being conservative… and all we did was make some slight changes to this doctor’s site.
So, let me ask you this. Do you think we could get similar results for your business? How many leads have you generated in the last 12 months?
How many leads would you estimate you’ve generated this month? How many of those leads requested your offer? If we could create a similar process for your business… and offer compelling information to your prospects just like we did for the child psychologist… do you think more prospects would respond? By what percent?
Could we conservatively agree that a 10% opt-in rate is easily a no-brainer? Do you realize just that one change alone would double your current sales revenue?
And that’s assuming we don’t increase your number of leads or your final conversion rate… which we will. If you said your last month’s revenue was $25,000… then just this one change alone adds an additional $25,000 to your bottom line.
But consider this!
That additional revenue is NOT just a one-time increase. That’s revenue the business will generate year after year after year.
If you would like more help on this you can contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org, or check out what our E-Learning Marketing System has to offer in our GUIDED TOUR.
Get my Momentum Training Series for FREE HERE!
Business Development Coach
Today we’ll talk about the last three areas you can work on to maximize your current resources. They are:
An offer they can’t refuse
Would you like fries with that?
Stay away from the edge of the cliff
An Offer They Can’t Refuse
The secret to success is to stay ahead of your competitors – maintain a competitive edge. To do that you need to make it easier for your customers/clients to say “yes” rather than “no”. You do this by eliminating all the psychological, financial, physical, emotional and other roadblocks they may have.
You can take the risks for them by offering warranties and guarantees that make the customer feel more confident in you, your business and your products/services. You also must be serious about your offer and follow through if a situation does arise. The quickest way to the bottom is to play games or take back a warranty or guarantee.
Would You Like Fries With That?
It’s the oldest trick in the book. I mean, really, how many times a week do you fall for it? Every time you sell a product or service, you need to offer an add-on, upgrade or back-end product to go with it. These products must be complementary to the original product being purchased and must create a higher perceived value.
Avoid the Edge of the Cliff
Continuing to test and measure your systems, products, marketing methods and all other aspects of your business allow you to see problems before they happen and therefore avoid falling off the edge of the cliff.
Here are a few specific areas you can test for potential improvements:
Through testing these different areas you will find products/services where you can raise the price, maybe others where you can lower the price or offer that product as an incentive item, and find many other areas for improvement that will better utilize your current resources.
Last week we talked about the first three areas to work through in maximizing your current resources. They were:
Recognize the obvious
Face the facts
Today we’ll cover the next three, which are:
Reveal your business’ soul
From breaking even to breaking the bank
Stand up and stand out
Reveal Your Business’ Soul
Every business has a soul and you likely felt it the strongest when your business was just starting. It’s that passion, newness and momentum you had at the very beginning. Sometimes that can get lost along the way as your business gets stagnant and set in its ways. You have to break out of that rut and get back to your business’ true soul.
The philosophy of putting your client’s needs above your own is the true key to success. You need to serve your clients not sell to them. They want to build a relationship based on trust, not a used car. Add to these responsibilities your ability to solve problems, handle special situations, be a friend to your clients and focus on offering valuable, high quality products/services. Only then will you get back to the basics and find you have more resources than you thought.
From Breaking Even to Breaking the Bank
One of the classic and most used ways to attract clients is to offer them a ridiculously low price on their initial purchase and lock them in for future purchases. You see this approach with movie or book clubs and even credit card companies who offer lower interest rates for the first six months.
Essentially, you are offering them a deal on their first purchase and then you offer them back-end and add-on products along the way. These are naturally higher prices and will bring them in to more of an intimate relationship with you and your company.
Stand Up and Stand Out
You need to stand out from the pack among your competitors. They only way you can do this through consistency and value. You do this by discovering what your USP (Unique Selling Proposition) is and perfecting it. Here are some tips to help you find and develop your USP:
Look for unfilled needs in your industry.
Use preemptive marketing.
Use a technique that is clear and to the point.
This wraps up this post. If you need help with any of these areas and techniques, try our GUIDED TOUR to access a wealth of resources and tools.
You can also get our special Momentum Series training that focuses on helping you become clear on your goals and then showing you the path to get there. Right now I’m offering that program for Free to my readers at: Momentum Training Series.
Over the next few posts we’re going to talk about how to take a hard look at your current resources and get the most out of them. This can help your capital go further and increase your profit margin.
Today we’ll cover three different ways to maximize what you already have. These include:
Recognize the obvious
Face the facts
Recognize the Obvious
Sometimes when you are too close to something, you can’t make out the big picture. You need to step back and really take a hard look at the resources you currently have in front of you. You are surrounded by opportunities that can boost your career and help your business become more successful.
Don’t sit around waiting for breakthroughs, you need to create them yourself. A breakthrough is merely a new way of doing things or finding a new thing to do for the same or better results. You should be having regular brainstorming sessions and encouraging your team to come forward with breakthroughs or ideas any time they have them.
With our current situation with COVID-19, this is more important than ever.
Some great examples of breakthroughs are:
A health and beauty company discovers a side effect of a product that can be re-marketed and sold.
A company creates a roll-on deodorant inspired by the shape and size of a ball point pen.
The founder of Nike poured rubber onto a waffle iron and created the most innovative and successful running shoe ever.
When attracting or strategizing for a breakthrough there are some key objectives you need to keep in mind. They are:
Look for the hidden opportunity in every situation.
Look for at least on cash windfall for your business every three months.
The more value for your client, the better your breakthrough.
Create multiple streams of idea to find the best breakthroughs.
Effective breakthroughs remove all risk or resistance.
Face the Facts
Before you can put your breakthroughs to work you need to face the facts of the processes and systems that are not working for you and work to correct or get rid of them. System analysis is a good way to do this. Once you have a listing of your strengths and weaknesses, you need to compare those to the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors.
There are some great questions you can present to you and your team to get a handle on where your business is right now. They are:
Why did I first start this business? Why am I in this industry?
What products/services did I offer then? Which were the most popular?
Why are my customers/clients buying from me right now?
How did I generate new customers/clients then?
Which of my marketing efforts were bringing in the best results?
Once you’ve got some answers to these questions, you’ll know better how to approach your weaknesses.
These three areas we’ve gone over give you a jumping off point for how to utilize your current resources to their fullest potential. If you need any help with your strategic or systems analysis, try our GUIDED TOUR to work with one of our amazing business coaches or join our Inner Circle Mastermind.
In two recent posts I covered the first four of the killer mistakes you can make that will not only make you lose your fish, but possibly your entire company. Today we’re going to talk about the fifth killer mistake: Up Cash Creek Without a Paddle.
Even when business is good there’s still a chance of running out of cash flow. You have to always be prepared for a slow in sales (such as many businesses today with the impact of the Corona Virus) or a surge in expenses. One of the keys to balancing your cash flow is to get your clients to pay on time. This can seem like a nightmare, but is absolutely essential to a successful business.
Here are some tips to speed up the payment process:
Always send invoices on time and adjust your records for potential audits.
Learn how the client processes payments on their side and find out precisely where to send invoices.
Find out who’s in charge of processing orders and payment, so you know who to contact if needed.
Have a follow-up procedure in place, just in case.
As a last resort, call your contact to ask questions.
Always make sure your invoices are correct before sending them out.
You also need to make sure your cash flow is protected. You can do this by:
Always know which accounts need paid and when.
Negotiate with your suppliers for the lowest cost possible.
Have a bank contingency plan in place.
Build your own inventor network.
These are all great ways to protect the cash flow of your business and prepare for fish transitions and slow sales. These last few lessons are all about finding and catching your big fish clients. These clients are essential to your success and your need to take the time to work through each of these steps carefully and correctly for the best success.
If you need help with any step of the process of catching your fish or subsequent big fish clients, try our GUIDED TOUR for access to a wealth of great tools and resources as well as our business coaching staff.
Join our Inner Circle Mastermind to join our weekly call with success-focused people looking to help one another fund success.