Posts Tagged ‘best referral’

Evergreen the Essence of Content Marketing

Content marketing is incredibly successful strategy and tactic for your buyers to begin to know you and trust you. To solidify this budding relationship requires fresh, relevant articles or what is called “evergreen.”

Can you bring a fresh and yet lasting perspective to what you are sharing?  What you don’t want is your marketing efforts to read or sound like the efforts of others or be seasonal as in the “best holiday marketing approach.”

Content Marketing Helps Buyers to Find You

Your potential buyers (think ideal customers) have specific wants and needs. In many instances, others have attempted to either meet those wants and need and have failed.  Their solutions were not sustainable.  The desired results were not achieved and probably not clearly identified during the sales process.

Your content marketing must demonstrate you have a fresh and sustainable perspective.  This is not the time for hot trends or the flavor of the month sales solution. Your ideal customers are seeking insight.

Evergreen marketing also relies on SEO. The inclusion of keywords not only in the article, but the rest of your website is essential.

How do you know if your content marketing is evergreen?  One way is to see how many times the article or blog posting has been viewed.  This article “My Best Referral Is Anyone with a Pulse” since its publication in February of 2015 has been viewed over 50,000 times and continues to secure monthly reads now 2.5 years later. LinkedIn is another marketing site that allows some limited statistics as do some article directories such as EzineArticles.

By reading and responding to comments from different sites where you have posted your articles, videos or podcasts is another way to learn if your content marketing reaches the evergreen status. The comments by others can provide you additional ideas in what your readers are seeking as well as what challenges are your readers facing.

Remember your content marketing efforts be them articles to videos to podcasts should have an everlasting quality to them. The question you may wish to consider asking yourself is “Will this perspective always be fresh and green like the evergreen trees or will it be green only part of the year?

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Your Third, But Not Your Final Step to Increase Sales

Sales is a process and one that is dynamic, fluid and yet still constant. To actually increase sales requires you to execute, take action after you have engaged in assessing and clarifying your direction.

What usually happens is many sales managers through their salespeople into execution, taking action while skipping the first two steps. This behavior then resembles as a colleague called it, Captain Wing-It who sprays his or her actions all over the place and then prays something will stick.

Read this posting about failed execution – My Best Referral (Sales Prospect) Is Anyone With a Pulse

Even the best strategy will not be effective if there is poor execution.  Exceptional execution will not happen with poor strategy.  Investing the time to assess where you are, where the market is and then clarifying where you want to go, where your customers are going is essential.

increase-salesTo increase sales requires exceptional execution followed by reflection or reassessing what has happened. Through this reassessing process, then re-clarifying happens along with potentially re-prioritizing goals and even action steps.

Reflection allows you to determine what went well, what didn’t go so well and how can you improve your actions the next time.  This reflective analysis is the fourth step in critical thinking. potentially provides you with a better understanding of your own gaps.

Exceptional execution happens because of your commitment to planning, to thinking before taking action.  President Eisenhower, a military strategist, said “Plans are worthless, planning is everything.”

Even during execution, your “increase sales” brain should be in full awareness mode so that you can make any course corrections in your sales conversation.  Sometimes the sales lead is ready to buy and yet the salesperson ignores all the signs because he or she is still in sales script behavior.

Yes to increase sales is relatively simple though not necessarily easy by these three  repetitive steps:

Assess – Clarify – Executive – Repeat

Consider connecting with me on my calendar if you wish to learn how the A.C.E. can be applied to your sales culture.

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My Best Referral Is Anyone with a Pulse

Last week I attended a well orchestrated business to business networking luncheon.  I was very impressed with those in attendance until I heard one small business professional tell the other 20 people in attendance the following:

best-referral“My best referral is anyone with a pulse.”

I had actually spoken with her before the meeting started and she appeared to have a somewhat cohesive marketing message.  When she said “anyone with a pulse,” I was taken back.

Her misspeak provided me the opportunity to say with a smile “my ideal clients must have more than a pulse.”  This response brought positive attention (chuckles and smiles) from others around the business to business networking luncheon table.

After being in business for almost 20 years, I have lost count of the times I have heard enterprising small business owners and sales professionals say “my best referral is anyone with a pulse” or “all of you are my best referral.” When these statements are made I know there is no strategic plan, no clearly defined target market and no ideal customer profile.

Beyond not having a strategic plan, when a statement such as “my best referral is anyone with a pulse”  is made, this presents a less than professional first impression.  Additionally, such a statement may indicate the salesperson has drunk some “Kool Aid” and is so enamored with the solution he or she thinks everyone should share that same belief.

Small business owners and sales professionals who have 100% clarity about their ideal customer or customers and their target market definitely have a competitive advantage.  Your Monday marketing mission if you decide to accept is to finish this statement so it informs and inspires others to immediately reach out to you:

“My best referral is….”

* * * * * * * * * *

Leanne Hoagland-Smith supports forward thinking leaders in bridging the gaps between today’s results and tomorrow’s goals in the key areas of strategic growth, people development and process improvement. She speaks and writes specifically to high performance sales people who require a tailored executive coaching solution and to small businesses under 50 employees whose challenges are more unique and resources more limited. Leanne can be reached at 219.508.2859 central time USA.  Follow her on Twitter or check out her profile on LinkedIn.

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