By k | September 20, 2009 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

One of my email accounts is with Yahoo!
For well over a year,
Yahoo! has been trying to move users
to the upgraded email system.
Despite forced trial,
there is still resistance.

Why?
Because the classic version has features
that the upgrade doesn’t have.

If you face extended resistance
to an upgrade
(most people not liking change
will resist at first),
you have a couple options.

You can incorporate
the features the classic users cling to
in the next upgrade
or
you can split your product line into two.

What route you take
depends on your vision for the company
and how important that product is.

By k | September 19, 2009 - 6:00 am - Posted in Sales

According to a recent study
by Luca Tommasi and Daniele Marzoli
of the University Gabriele d’Annunzio,
72% of people turn their right ears
toward a person speaking.

They also found that
requests spoken into the right ear
generates more positive answers
than those uttered into the left ear.

What does this mean?
If you have to stand beside someone,
stand to their right.
Important messages, if recorded in mono,
should be recorded for the right ear.

By k | September 18, 2009 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

According to a recent survey
by Pew Research Center,
53% of American adults play video games.

23% of adults over the age of 65,
81% of adults between 18 and 29,
and a whopping
97% of teenagers.

The most popular device
to play video games on?
The computer.

If you want to reach teenagers,
consider video games.

By k | September 17, 2009 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

Standard wording of a ‘For Life’ contest
is to limit the number of years.
This disclaimer is
financially and legally prudent…

Unless your product’s selling feature
is that it extends life.

Jamieson Vitamins is advertising a
Vacation For Life contest.
They clearly state that
the ‘For Life’ really means
a maximum of 20 years.

I’m 38.
Having a vitamin company
tell me
that by using their product,
I’ll only live to 58
is NOT smart marketing.

Legal disclaimers are
part of the marketing message.
If they cause harm
to your brand,
find a new promotion.

By k | September 16, 2009 - 6:00 am - Posted in Corporate Games

In Carmine’s last post at Slow Leadership,
he writes…
“My last word is this:
the very best leadership,
I am convinced,
is engaging in
as few “managerial” activities as possible.
By this I mean creating plans and budgets,
setting strategies, setting up mergers and acquisitions,
discussing policies, holding meetings, marketing,
branding, analyzing data and the like.
Nearly all such actions get
in the way of real business
and lie at the heart of most problems
that leaders face.”

Though I don’t agree that all the listed activities
are useless,
I DO agree that a lot of time is wasted.

That’s
one of the reasons
I’m no longer in corporate.
I figured I could better use that time
on my own projects.

Ask yourself why you’re doing something
before you start doing it.
If you don’t have to do it,
don’t do it.
If you need it done
but don’t need to do it yourself,
delegate it.

By k | September 15, 2009 - 6:00 am - Posted in Sales

I called up my local bank branch.
I needed a special withdrawal.
I asked that they have it waiting for me.
I was told it wasn’t policy.
I realized that.
I asked that they do it
as a favor to me,
a frequent and long term customer.

I was told no.
She repeated that it wasn’t policy.

My loyalty to that branch
decreased beyond zero.
I now am working on
having the management there changed.

Favor is one of those magic words.
It is a relationship changer.
Most people don’t use it lightly
(I certainly don’t).
When you hear it,
think long and hard
about saying no.

If your customer service policy
doesn’t allow the granting of ‘favors’,
you may want to revisit it.

By k | September 14, 2009 - 6:00 am - Posted in Sales

Art Sobczak has a great post
on selling phrases to avoid.

One of my favorites is in the comments.
Using
‘but’

We’ve been trained
from an early age
to dislike
the word ‘but.’
It raises red flags.
“This is perfect for you but…”
“That would be correct but…”
It ranks way up there with ‘no.’
A fun killer.

cm suggests using ‘and.’
When writing,
I simply split the sentence,
avoiding the ‘but’ all together.
The simpler the sentence,
the easier it is understood.
A concept or even a problem
a prospect understands
is perceived as being trivial.

Keep it simple.
Avoid the but.

By k | September 13, 2009 - 6:00 am - Posted in Sales

If you want a call back,
leave your name, number
and the reason you called
on my voice mail.

Yes, this is so basic,
it is almost insulting
but this blog is all about reviewing the basics
and frankly,
very, VERY few people
ever leave their phone numbers.

Including sales professionals
like recruiters.
I shook my head at that voice mail today.
What was I supposed to do?
Look up her number?
Have it memorized?

If you really, really want a call back,
leave your number slowly TWICE.
I ALWAYS, ALWAYS return those calls.
Yep, 100% call return.
I’ve never not returned a call
with the phone number repeated.

I don’t think I’m alone
in this,
considering I always repeat my phone number
and have rarely not received
the return call.

By k | September 12, 2009 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

A buddy was working with someone
on an opportunity.
They worked long and hard
on it.
It didn’t work out.

My buddy had worked on opps before.
He knew that some didn’t work.
He accepted that this one didn’t.
He moved onto the next one.

His partner had hinged her hopes and dreams
on this opportunity.
She was bitter and angry
when it failed.
That happens.
Unfortunately she EXPRESSED
these negative emotions.

My buddy will never offer
another opportunity
to her again.

Opportunities come
and opportunities go.
If you want more opportunities to come,
don’t make too big a fuss
when they go.

By k | September 11, 2009 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

I recently read an article on romance novels
that was
plain and simply
wrong.
It was full of misinformation
and incorrect assumptions.

Wow, what a great opportunity!

Here was an expert in another field
who clearly had no expert
in my field
to consult with.
Ta da!
I offered myself up as the expert.
Suddenly a whole world
of possibilities opened up to me.

No one wants to look like a jackass.
The reason they currently look like one
is because they didn’t know
how to prevent it.
Offer your expertise.
Expand your influence.