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How To Get More Clients & Increase Sales Right Now!

increase-salesWant To Increase Sales? There’s almost limitless methods for doing so. And all those methods boil down to one thing:

Be in front of your audience when they need you.

That’s it. That’s the key to increasing your sales. Think about it, when you’re at a restaurant, do you care with the bathroom is? Not til you need it, right? Or an ATM. You likely pass dozens of them every day and don’t notice them, right? But what happens when you’re out of cash? Every ATM comes into focus. What’s more, you might scurry to find one.

So many small business owners don’t consider this when they market their business. They work hard on their vision and business plan. Then they focus on their offer and how best to communicate that offer to a target market. Ideally, they’re wanting to position themselves as an expert in a select niche market.

But no one cares that you’re an expert until they need an expert. In other words, no one cares that you can solve a set a problems until they are faced with those set of problems. Then, they go out and look for a solution.

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Why Being Unreasonable Can Lead To Success

George Bernard Shaw once said:“The reasonable man adapts himself to the conditions that surround him… The unreasonable man adapts surrounding conditions to himself… All progress depends on the unreasonable man.”

If Mr. Shaw is correct (and I think he is) then all progress – hence all success – happens when you adapt your surrounding conditions to meet your specific situation.

Think about what that means in your business.

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How Do You Know If You've Truly Found Your Niche Market?

Niche market is one of those buzz terms that gets thrown around a lot. Just about any marketing book, article or blog post worth its weight talks about niche marketing. It’s so prevalent that most small business owners would say they’ve heard the term.

But just knowing about the term niche marketing doesn’t mean you know what niche marketing really is. Or how it applies to your business.

Most service-based business professionals I work with and talk to have some idea of niche market. Often, they think of it as the group of people their business serves or the market they target their services for. And while it’s true that your market is who you sell your products and services too, it doesn’t mean you’re selling to a niche market.

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Why You Shouldn't Be Afraid of The Economic Crisis

If you’re paying attention to the media you know that we’re are headlong into some hard economic times. Banks are failing, investment firms are in financial trouble and the housing markets across the nation are suffering.

Things are so bad here in Michigan, the state with the worst economy in the nation, that General Motors is talking about buying Chrysler – the Big Three become the Big Two.

So are these such terrible time economically? For some, yes. For others, and I’m not talking about the extremely wealthy, no. But that’s not how it’s being talked about. If you just pay attention to all the Henny Pennys writing for newspapers, magazine and the web and listen to their banter on TV and radio, our economic sky is falling.

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Small Business Positioning: What’s Your Market?

There are lots of keys to creating a successful business. Yet the one that I’ve found to be most important – and often most lacking in small businesses is positioning.

There’s lots of definitions of positioning because the term is often used along side branding. The definition that I gravitate to is:

Positioning is the space that you wish to occupy in your target audience’s mind, relative to your competitors.

In this short video, [Read more…]

Are You Having A Conversation With Your Niche Audience?

You’d think the latest question Liz asked me would be simple to answer. And on the surface it is. Yet, I’ve needed an extra day to think about where to take this one2one conversation next.

When you go around the Internet, what mistake do you see most often?

one2one-sm.gifThat’s her question. Think about it for a second. Do you see what I mean? I could answer this from so many different levels and perspectives that I’ve actually been stuck on how I wanted to answer it.

Since Liz is asking me for one mistake, I’m going to need your help. So let’s have a discussion in the comment box. I’ll start it off…

Having been a web designer for so many years, you’d think the mistake I’d see most often would have something to with visual design, site architecture, or layout. Sure, there’s plenty of poorly designed sites out there. And we all know plenty of blogs that are poorly organized and cluttered.

But the mistake I see most often isn’t in the way a site looks. The mistake I see most often is how a site owner uses their site to communicate with their audience.

I’m bias, that’s certain. And my bias leans heavily in the direction of conversation and relationship. Yet, I know from experience, that it’s conversations that lead to relationships that lead to business. People want to do business with people – not with businesses. In other words, they want conversation and relationships.

Most website owners, most business owners and a lot of marketing coaches simply don’t get this. They focus on slick or carefully crafted marketing copy that’s meant to evoke an emotional response to create action. I’m not saying that’s bad – not at all. I just think that there’s more.

So what I often see are business owners trying to fit themselves into a method of copy writing that’s not so much about building relationship and which I feel is unnatural. Pick a handful of business websites and read the copy. Tell me if you feel like the business owners want a relationship with you or do they just want your business?

I advise all my clients – even those working with copy writing and marketing gurus – to consider their websites as the beginning of a dialogue with a person in their target audience. Don’t just meet them where they are, engage them in conversation. Write as though you’re sitting with them over coffee, listening closely to the problems they face. And respond with an open, conversational tone.

This is easier to do on a blog because of the chance for conversation in the comment box. The blog has the advantage as well in that you continue to engage in that conversation with your audience each time your write a post. But you can do this on a static website as well. As you write, just picture yourself having a conversation about where they are.

Remember, people want to do business with people. So don’t be afraid to show who you are as a person. You can be a marketing professional and still be person. Anyway, you know from your own business interactions that connection, personality and temperament play an enormous role in successful business relationships. So why not build your personality into your marketing materials. Let people know who you are right out front. Let them see you as a person. Then invite them to sit at your table with their cup of coffee. Who knows what can happen next.

So I think not actively engaging people in a conversation that can build a relationship is the most common mistake I see in websites.

There are many others – certainly – even around content. So I turn my site over to you to share what mistakes you often see was you’re perusing the web.

And I have to be sure to continue our one2one conversation by asking Liz

What’s helped you go from just being a writer on a blog to becoming a conversational dynamo?

I can’t wait to see Liz’s answers. She is truly a master at writing conversational copy, if you ask me. But until she answers, let’s talk…