Local Businesses in the North Coast
5 Marketing Moves for Business Success
Marketing has traditionally been broken down to a formula known as “the 5P’s” – the five factors that make up an organization’s marketing strategy. If these are done consistently, well, and for a long enough period of time, these 5 factors also become part of their brand. So far, so good. But the problem is that no one can seem to agree on exactly which 5 P’s are important, so the list typically includes: people, product, place, process, price, promotion, paradigm, perspective, persuasion, passion, positioning, packaging, and performance. Wow. Sounds complicated, huh? I’m going to try and simplify effective marketing into five moves – five concrete actions – that you can implement immediately.
Your challenge: try one or more of these NOW. Move 1: Move Up Want to try something different? The next time you’re speaking with a prospect, when the question of price comes up, DOUBLE your normal price and see what happens. Am I crazy? Maybe, maybe not. The other side of the coin is that maybe YOU’RE crazy for not charging for VALUE, but instead competing on PRICE. Businesses that compete on price lose.
Period. The easiest thing your competition can do is undercut your price. In fact, the first thing they will copy is your price. It takes no imagination, no creativity, no innovation, no market leadership, and no vision to lower the cost of something. And it hurts all parties involved. Lower prices always mean lower profits. Studies have shown that a 1% drop in price leads to an 8% drop in profit. What happens when you double your usual price? Several things. Prospects perceive: * An increase in the value of your product/service * An increased level of prestige in owning/using your product/service * An increased level of trust in you – and all your other offerings (the halo effect) * An increased level of confidence that your product/service really works A marketing consultant that I respect once gave me a very valuable piece of advice. She said, “Be expensive or.
be free.” Being one of the most expensive providers of a service is remarkable – people talk about their $200,000 Italian sports car or $21,000 platinum-plated cell phone. Nobody talks about their $19,000 GM sedan. I’ve helped companies double their prices, with great success, and I’ve helped independent consultants double [and in one case triple] their fees. In each of those cases, they got more clients, not fewer. Details on how to do this in Move 3. And perhaps this means you’ll lose a few unprofitable clients along the way. If you don’t lose some unprofitable clients, you won’t have room to serve the more profitable ones when they come along. It’s professional suicide to continue focusing on serving a market sector “that can afford” to pay your old (low) prices. Price doesn’t find clients.
VALUE finds clients. And those clients that value your work should – and will – pay according to that value. Free is also a powerful price point. And, of course, free is remarkable. Which is another facet to moving up – you move up when you give VALUE first. For free. Got a great idea for a prospect? Great! SEND IT TO THEM. Even better, got a business lead for them? Hand it over! Did you come across an article, a profile, or a piece of research that directly impacts their business? Clip it and mail it to the top person with a brief note. That prospect’s door is now open. Move 2: Move In Moving in means moving closer to the customer.
Live in their world, think about their problems, and think about their clients and prospects. What’s the first step? Research. Preparation. Homework. Industry, regional, business, and company news is now at every salesperson’s fingertips on the Internet. If you’re not intelligently researching your prospect’s issues, challenges, and pressures, how can you possibly come in with a credible solution? Don’t like sitting at the computer all day? An even better idea is to hit the street. Visit businesses, talk to your contacts in the fields you serve, get some firsthand information about what’s going on in their world – what are their challenges, perspectives, obstacles, priorities; what are their dreams, their “only-ifs,” and their biggest aspirations? Is this a lot of work? You bet. Do the majority of salespeople put in this kind of effort? No way. Which is exactly why YOU should.
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