The Top 10 Powerful Business Tools for Growing Sales Through Creating Connection
Copyright 2005 Bea Fields
Your mission as a business owner is to develop a marketing strategy which offers your potential clients/customers a way to improve their situation in a certain way, solve a problem, provide more value, or open new opportunities for them which will motivate them to pick up the phone and buy from you. This requires that the focus of your marketing plan be placed on your customer...NOT ON YOU! Taken from The 90 Day Marketing Marathon Blunders from A to Z these ten powerful tools will support you in creating meaningful connections with your clients/customers and providing real time solutions to their challenges of the today.
1. Custom Assessments
By using a tool such as Assessment Generator (http://www.AssessmentGenerator.com) you can build custom assessments which will allow the visitors to your website the opportunity to engage with you while providing value which is memorable. With Assessment Generator you as the business owner will receive the basic results of the survey to see if clients are where they want to be in their lives or their businesses. For an example of a custom built assessment enter here.
2. Online Survey Tools
A well designed online survey can greatly empower business, academic, and charitable organizations by finding out quickly what is on the minds of your current and prospective customers/clients. Creating an online survey can be extremely simple and convenient with a free survey tool such as Advanced Survey (http://www.AdvancedSurvey.com). By designing a survey and sending this to your database, you can poll targeted groups quickly and in detail while obtaining real time results.
3. "Feedback" hot links
As you update your website, author articles, or launch new products and services, add a "feedback hot link" to your site or to your e-mail signature. This link can state "Send me feeback" or "Send me your comments" and will automatically link to an e-mail which can be used for your website visitors to provide you with insight into what is working and what is not with your products and services.
4. Weblogs With Comments
A weblog is a simple yet compelling online environment which will allow you to put your thoughts, ideas, and experiences on the web via a journal, photo album, or diary. With a tool such as Typepad (http://www.TypePad.com), you can provide your clients and customers with access to your online journal AND allow them the ability to comment to your posts. If you are blogging around a topic which can engender discussion or a topic which can generate ideas for your new products and services, you will find that blogging with a tool which allows for comments can take your products and services to a more advanced and sophisticated level quickly and with support from your customers/clients.
5. Client Scenarios Which Create an Emotional Tug
What are the typical challenges of your clients, what do they complain about to others, and what do they really want in life? Do they say things such as:
- I am a CEO, and I cannot seem to motivate my team
- I am a pet owner, and I am looking for a Veterinarian I can trust
- I am a Solo-preneur who is working for a lunatic
- I am a business owner who is looking to invest my money to double my financial wealth
- I am a new college graduate, and I am looking for the career of my dreams
By honing in on what is most important to the visitors to your website and actually posting these for the world to see, you will begin to connect with these folks in a way which calls the emotions to be tapped. List these client scenarios in bullet form on your website, and link each scenario to a very tangible benefit of what you can offer. Example: If you are marketing to pet owners who are looking for a Veterinarian he/she can trust, link this client scenario to a special report on "The Top Ten Questions to Ask When Hiring a Veterinarian for Your Pet." For an example of client scenarios visit here.
6. Data Driven Landing Pages
Landing pages, also known as "jump" pages in the world of marketing, are self-contained web pages that visitors are driven to for a specific purpose (usually for the purpose of collecting e-mail addresses). Landing pages are very focused and usually contain a message, in most cases to allow you as the web host to determine what visitors click on as well as other statistics. A data driven landing page contains a form requesting the user to enter contact information, usually in order to get something, such as a free special report, newsletter, or to register for an upcoming event. By including a question on this page such as "What is the thing you most want in the area of _______________" (fill in your industry here), you will be able to see trends of what it is that folks most want, which can be key to the growth of your business.
7. A Research and Development Team
A Research and Development team is a group of folks who you invite to join you in developing your products, programs, and services. Your R & D Team may be as small as ten people or as large as 1,000 people. It is recommended that you call on your R & D team at least two times per month, as they will provide you with valuable information about what is working/not working in your business, and they will tell others about what you are up to. As your business grows, you will want to continue to add people to your list so that you have a cross section of people, ideas, and perspectives from people from all walks of life and all corners of the globe.
8. A Mastermind Group
The purpose of a mastermind group is to share thoughts, ideas, opinions, and information. To be successful in business, it is important for this group to be supportive and to care enough about you and your business to provide you with honest feedback about what they see is possible for your business. Spend at least one hour per week with your mastermind group, and use the feedback gained to grow your life, both personally and professionally.
9. A Product/Service Development Team
Are you ready to develop a new product or service, and you just don't know where to begin or how to make it happen? If so, invite ten of the coolest people you know to support you in developing the new product or service in exchange for a slice of the pie once the product/service is launched. People love to share their wisdom, especially when they know that they are involved in development of something which will be financially rewarding in the end.
10. Risky Business
One time per month, add one product or service which is out of the norm or a little bit risky for you and your business. Why? Because it will keep your mind moving and will allow your customers to sample something which is cutting edge and exciting! Example: You are a bookstore owner, and you host a "Mystery Night." Invite the public to preview the 12 hottest mysteries by attending a masquerade party on the premises of your bookstore...loads of fun, intrigue, and excitement. A suggestion/comment box can be situated near the door, inviting guests to contribute feedback and ideas for the next big event for your biz.
About the author:
This piece was co-authored by Business Coaches, Bea Fields and Alicia Smith, who can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com, or visited on the web at http://www.FiveStarLeader.comor http://90DayMarketingMarathon.comBea Fields and Alicia Smith are the authors of the 90 Day Marketing Marathon, the Powerhouse Program for Coaches, and the Fusion Coaching Program.