Much of the job growth in today’s economy is spurred by start-ups. Entrepreneurial ventures often have the energy, talent, and passion necessary to run with creative new ventures. While a good idea and a dedicated CEO are essential to start-up success, corporate culture—the tone and atmosphere of the overall organisation and the relationship between its employees—is also essential. Many fresh-faced entrepreneurs overlook corporate culture, figuring it will work itself out once things get up and running. But experts agree that being intentional about culture is one of the best ways to ensure success.
Social media in its various forms is now a mainstream way of communicating and building relationships with your prospects, clients and advocates. But how do you measure the effects of social media and calculate your return on investment? This post carries my hand-curated links to a treasure trove of excellent articles that tell you almost everything you need to know about social media metrics, measurement and ROI. I hope you find it useful. Enjoy! […]
This post is about charging what you’re worth, with a great lesson on pricing from the Late Pablo Picasso. Too many products or services are seen as being very similar to others and as a consequience are treated as commodities. When that happens your prospects and customers will shop around and whoever charges the best price for that product or service tends to win the business. But if you can set your product or service apart from all the others out there, you can charge what your product or service is really worth […]
In this post I want to share with you the most touching of the many tributes I’ve read following Steve Jobs’ sad passing. It was a eulogy written and delivered by his biological sister, Mona Simpson, during his memorial service on October 16, 2011 at the Memorial Church of Stanford University. What can I say about this amazing eulogy? It was one of the most powerful, touching, intimate and heartbreaking pieces I’ve ever read. It is a must-read piece that almost ranks right up there with Steve’s own famous Stanford address […]
Do you ever allow yourself to get distracted? Do you ever allow others to set your agenda for the day? Do you ever find your day being consumed by tasks that take you no closer to your end goal or objective? Do you know which tasks are important for reaching your goal? For that matter, can you even state your goal? I ask because I read a superb post today on Quora by Chris Wake the founder of Spotwag a new startup in the San Francisco Bay Area. His piece is titled “Hidden Habits of ineffective people” and I couldn’t resist sharing it with you […]
After many requests I’ve finally written this article on how I use Twitter. It covers such things using Twitter to add to my knowledge and learn from people; the tools I use constantly; the topics I tweet about; how I plan my content sharing; who I follow and why; how I follow; and how I deal with spammers. So here goes … I use Twitter as a news source, to add to my knowledge, to maintain cutting edge awareness in my areas of expertise and to discover, learn from and engage with people globally who share similar interests. I also use Twitter as a publishing tool to share knowledge and information I come across which I believe will be useful to any aspiring market leader, entrepreneur, or anyone involved in […]
This is the third in a series of well received posts on how to grow your business using LinkedIn. It focuses on: setting up your personal profile; connecting with people you know; giving and getting recommendations; setting up your LikedIn company page; and joining selected LinkedIn groups. LinkedIn, just in case you’ve been hiding under a rock for the last few years, is now by far the world’s largest professional network. It has rightly been said that if you’re in business and not on LinkedIn you may as well not exist. The fact that 499 of the Fortune 500 companies are represented by director-level employees and above just reinforces that point.
Do you automatically accept every connection request you receive on LinkedIn? I hope not because the value of LinkedIn comes from the quality of the connections you establish, NOT from accepting every connection request that comes your way. In a world full of potential spammers, there are several things you should look for whenever someone tries to connect with you. It should start with a personalised connection request that gives a good reason for connecting […]
America’s No.1 sales authority Jeffrey Gitomer recently received an email from me. He says the email gave him no choice but to read on. His interest had to do with the subject line, the headline, the design of the content, and the copy. He liked the email so much that he wrote a widely syndicated article spelling out the 11 factors that compelled him to respond. He kindly allowed me to reproduce the article here, and he makes some great points as he analyses what made the email work […]
Internet psychologist Graham Jones recently sent out a simple “tweet” saying he was off to give a presentation that would warn people not to use Twitter for business. Within moments the broadcaster and communications consultant James Lush had replied saying he’d be fascinated to know why on earth Graham would say such a thing. Later that day Graham rose to his feet and suggested the un-suggestible. People in the audience were perplexed because plenty of companies make money using Twitter. But therein lies the twist in this tale […]
People sometimes say “There’s a born salesman!” But have you ever read or heard in the news of someone who gave birth to a sales person, or for that matter a lawyer, a doctor, or a criminal? Birth is given to boys and girls; everything after that is down to choices that are made and skills that are learned. And sales skills are life skills. Many people would never view themselves as a sales person. Yet There isn’t a single area of your life where you cannot benefit from sales skills. Teachers use sales skills every day. Preachers use sales skills. Police officers use sales skills. Mother Teresa used sales skills. And sales people use sales skills […]
We put out the following message on Twitter one afternoon: “Have created 3 stunning websites in 2 days. Used to use vastly expensive web design co who took 6 months to achieve fraction of the same result.” That immediately excited massive interest. People clamoured to know how we did it. A professional web designer responded “Impossible … send URL’s please,” so we did. This popular post explains how it came about, what we did, and how you could do something similar yourself […]
What’s your definition of marketing? To a lot of people marketing is marketing is about running an ad tomorrow so you can have sales the next day. If only it were that simple! On one level effective marketing is about seeing everything from your customers’ perspective. On a deeper level it impacts every area of your business from identifying and attracting customers to getting and keeping customers, the only sustaining force in any business. In fact every single role in your business falls within the deeper marketing definition. Marketing should therefore be at the epicentre of your business.
In my seminars and workshops I’ve referred for years to a couple of “million dollar” copywriting tips which, at a stroke, can dramatically transform the effectiveness of everything you write. Both tips are incredibly simple and easy to apply, but less than one in a hundred written pieces even begins to get them right. My first tip is to write as you speak. Be you. Use everyday language. Give your writing a human voice … and let your passion shine through. My second copywriting tip—a golden rule for effective direct response copywriting—is such a simple concept, yet it will have a profound impact on how your written communications are received […]
If you’re in business there’s a good chance that you’re either a member of LinkedIn, or have at least been invited at some point to join. Lot’s of people join LinkedIn but really don’t really understand what it is for; how to use it; what it’s good for; what the benefits are; or how to leverage it. The aim of this post is to give you a simple understanding of what LinkedIn can do for you and get you up to speed quickly on the absolute basics to save you time when you use this powerful online networking tool […]
Discounting can kill your business. Few business leaders or entrepreneurs realise that the biggest cost in their business can be something that doesn’t even show up in their accounts. When you’re doing a lot less business than you should be doing, it’s all too easy to push the panic button and offer discounts just to get more people through the door. In most cases these discounts make no difference to the number of people who come through the door. But even if they do, these, or any other form of discounting, can turn into a serious and very expensive mistake […]
Isn’t it amazing how often you express interest in a product or service, but never hear from the person or company again? It happens all the time. Research shows, amazingly, that only 20% of sales leads are ever followed up … in other words 80% of potential opportunities are lost without trace simply due to lack of follow-up. Interestingly, only 2% of sales occur when two parties meet for the first time. And 80% of sales occur only after at least five continuous follow-ups. You therefore must follow-up at least five times.
Why do so many senior people struggle to delegate key tasks even when they know they are limiting growth by being the bottleneck in their business? The latest scientific evidence shows that it’s not only down to skill; it’s their brain getting in the way. There is always a lot more to be done in a day than you can achieve by yourself, and the key to success is knowing what to let go of. But letting go creates uncertainty, and your brain hates uncertainty almost more than anything else.
Your website is one of the most important components in your business these days. But to be effective it needs to meet the needs and provide the information needed by any of your prospective clients when they’re researching the alternatives. A lot of websites, unfortunately, fall well short of this in ways that include: failure […]
A friend from Argentina, Exequiel Delgado, recommended this video on breakthrough creativity and innovation. He suggested that I check it out. He was absolutely right. I love it. It’s amazing. It explains where good ideas come from and why hunches need time to incubate and turn into breakthroughs. It’s in English with Spanish subtitles. Everyone should watch […]
This is a short story I always used to tell in my 3-day Quantum Leap workshops when talking about customer retention and complaints. It was always well received, so I thought I’d share it with you here: I’m a nice customer. You all know me. I’m the one who never complains, no matter what kind […]
Can you imagine trying to persuade Lady Gaga of anything? She is, after all, a clearly determined and opinionated individual. You would be facing up to a fairly formidable personality – you don’t get to be an international superstar by being quiet and open to persuasion. Maybe the reason that Lady Gaga is successful is she prefers tea to coffee. Lady Gaga is one of several […]
Every day, your customers, prospects, and employees are inundated with information from e-mail, voicemails, spam and memos. So how do you get your important messages across to them in a way that doesn’t get lost in all of that noise? The answer is podcasts. Podcasts are the new way of distributing audio content. They are audio or video recordings that your prospects and customers can subscribe to, receive, download, listen to, or watch using a computer, iPod, M3 player, iPhone, iPad or smartphone […]
Unusually for me, this post is not about marketing strategies. Instead I want to tell you about an amazing and inspiring person who has touched my life and left an indelible impression. Her name was Beryl Miller. She was someone we can all learn from. She was my PA in my first two businesses, and a short while ago, sadly, she lost an 18 month battle with cancer. Beryl was a remarkable person. Although she can’t be with us any more, I hope her example will inspire you […]
This excellent guest post by Jill Konrath, author of SNAP Selling and Selling to Big Companies, hits the nail on the head. She perfectly describes the challenges you face when trying to sell to businesses in today’s pressured world. And she kindly agreed to share the piece with you here. So is relationship selling dead? It sure […]