By k | September 20, 2007 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

I worked for a Fortune 500 beverage company.
We were coming out with a new product.
In my plans, I planned for capital investments.

But not in the first year.

In the first year,
we planned to have a co-packer
make the product.
This co-packer would supply the equipment.
This meant leaner margins, less profit.

So why this strategy?
Because we weren’t assured of success.
And until we knew that it was,
we weren’t investing long term.

If a Fortune 500 company bootstraps new products,
so should the untried entrepreneur.

By k | September 19, 2007 - 6:00 am - Posted in Sales

Hearing no is part of sales. 
Learning how to deal with objections
is a must for any salesperson. 

Brian Tracy in this book “Be A Sales Superstar”
suggests using the Feel, Felt, Found method. 

“When a customer says something
like “It costs too much,” you can say,
“I understand exactly how you feel. 
Others felt the same way
when they first heard the price. 
But this is what they found
when they began using out product or service.”"

By k | September 18, 2007 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

In today’s information culture,
it is pretty much impossible to hide your past. 

There are two basic ways to approach the “bad” bits. 
You can try to keep them a secret and
hope they never surface
(impossible to do if you are ever in the media spotlight)
or you can be open about them. 

Jay Leno? 
He puts a star on them.  
The placement of his Walk Of Fame star is
on the site where he got arrested for vagrancy. 

By k | September 17, 2007 - 6:00 am - Posted in Sales

We see it in retail all the time. 
The single-invoice mentality. 
What is it? 

Stan Adler in “The Zen Of Selling” explains…
“This store is full of single-invoice mentalities. 
It’s pathetic, but it’s also your advantage. 
Most salespeople don’t follow up for two reasons: 
first, because it means more work, and
they probably got a sales job in the first place
because they didn’t like hard work and,
second, they don’t have confidence in what or
how they sold the customer initially,
so why should they call the customer
and risk confronting a problem? 
That’s the working premise of a nonseller.

What the average salesperson doesn’t understand is:
If the customer hasn’t already called you,
whatever problem there is can’t be urgent.”

So follow up,
solve the small problem and be a hero.

By k | September 16, 2007 - 6:00 am - Posted in Sales

I recently saw an entrepreneur pitch ownership
to a possible investor. 
The investor, of course, counter-offered
and the entrepreneur walked away,
refusing to negotiate. 

You, as a vendor or potential partner, 
may be entering a boardroom
to pitch a product or a deal
but your prospect is there to negotiate. 

Expect it, prepare for it. 
Run through what if scenarios in your mind. 
Don’t walk away from a possibly better opportunity
because you have another one stuck in your mind.

By k | September 15, 2007 - 6:00 am - Posted in General

Recently I was being pitched by a financial advisor. 
He assured me that managing my money
would be a priority for him. 
That he would give me 100% of his attention. 

Then… he got a message on his Blackberry. 
Instead of ignoring it or excusing himself,
he suggested that I “keep on talking”
while he answered it. 

I considered sending him an email
(which obviously he gave higher priority to). 
Instead I left his office. 

Louise Fox, owner of The Etiquette Ladies,
says the number one etiquette blunder
is the improper use of technology. 
She reminds people that the person they are with
should be most important. 

I agree. 

By k | September 14, 2007 - 6:00 am - Posted in Sales

I spent a lot of time in the rink,
having grown up in a family of hockey players. 
Today, I can pick out a hockey player off the ice
by the way he walks. 

I was watching Tyra a few weeks back and 
she exclaimed to the tv star guest
“You play the guitar.”  
He looked surprised and asked how she knew.  
Tyra told him because of his fingers. 
Long time guitar players have fingers
on one hand shorter than the other.  

How do these seemingly trivial matters help with sales? 
Sales is all about establishing a connection. 
As soon as Tyra pointed out her observation, 
her guest immediately relaxed,
his shoulders lowering,
his smile becoming genuine.   

By k | September 13, 2007 - 6:00 am - Posted in Corporate Games

Publicity hungry Kanye West has accused
MTV of exploiting Britney Spears
Because the execs put her on stage
before she was “ready.” 

Back when I was young and arrogant,
I did a sales presentation before I was ready. 
Like Britney, I didn’t practice before hand. 
Like Britney, minutes into the presentation,
I knew I made a mistake.   
Like Britney, the reaction was horrible and
could have ended my career
(my manager said if I ever
pulled a stunt like that again… ). 

I also knew who to blame. 
The difference is it sure wasn’t the execs. 

By k | September 12, 2007 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

I often get flack from
other new business development gals
for openly saying great ideas are easy to find. 

Shhh… they tell me,
that’s part of the magic. 
Revealing the great idea. 
Watching the wonder on jaded executives’ faces. 

That’s also the fun part of the job. 
Its getting that idea in customer’s hands
that will make you wanna
stick a sharp object in your eye. 

Seth Godin’s awesome suggestion
Release the extra ideas freely into the universe
and let others implement them.

By k | September 11, 2007 - 6:00 am - Posted in General

One of the ways that I save time
is to accumulate similar tasks
like answering email or sending snail mail 
and complete them all at one time. 

Brian Tracy in the book Million Dollar Habits says
“Efficiency experts calculate that
if you have ten similar tasks to do,
and you do them all at once,
one after the other,
by the time you get to the tenth task,
you will be working so efficiently
that it will be taking you only 20 percent of the time
it took you to do the first item on the list.”