By k | May 21, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in Sales

I have rarely, if ever,
made a sale
on the first try.
If I didn’t try again,
I’d never have any sales.

Monika Götzmann
shares

“one of the most harmful sales habits
is a tendency to give up too early.

If a sales person does not receive
a response to their initial outreach,
rather than calling it a day,
it often pays off to be persistent.
In fact,
some experts recommend
that you should make
at least five different outreach attempts
unless the person asks you to stop.”

In sales,
one ‘no’ doesn’t mean stop.
It means try again.

By k | May 20, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

Shobha Ponnappa
has written an awesome article
on creating content
for each step of the sales process.
I recommend reading the entire article
but here is a favorite snippet…

“By the time
your potential customers reach
the Middle of the Purchase Funnel (MOFU),
they probably know you reasonably well
and are somewhat ready
to take the next step
like subscribing to your mailing list
to stay in contact with you.
This is the stage
when “traffic” is not your #1 issue
as much as before,
but “conversion” becomes the focal concern.

Two pieces of content are crucial to this stage:

Your newsletters can be crucial
to this phase of customer hand-holding.

A spate of “how to” articles
that help customers get answers
to their pain points
are important here.”

I’ve been providing potential customers
with a variety of articles
serving different stages in the sales funnel
but this has been accidental,
not planned.
Based on this article,
I plan to organize my content
in different ways.

Are you consciously creating content
each stage in the sales funnel?

By k | May 19, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

You’ve mastered the startup stage
of business building.
You know the rules,
how to succeed at it.
You want your business
to stay there.

That’s not possible.
The startup stage of business building
is like school.

School is designed to prepare us
for the working world.
It is a temporary place.

Startup is a stage a business is meant
to pass through also.

Les McKeown
shares

“there’s nothing wrong with
adopting and holding on to
some of the features
of being a startup
such as flexibility, innovation
and creativity,
but encouraging the notion
of staying a startup
is plain wrong.

To thrive and survive,
every organization has to,
at some point, find its
profitable, sustainable market,
mine that market,
grow, and become
– gulp –
a mature,
can-chew-gum-and-walk-at-the-same-time,
post-startup business.”

Being a startup is temporary.
When it’s viable,
move your business into its next stage.

By k | May 18, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

One of my early business mentors
advised me
to always take responsibility
whenever I could.
The person who takes responsibility,
he told me,
is the person in charge.
That’s the person we respect.

Now,
when I see people blaming others
for their misfortunes,
I see weakness.
My respect for them is eroded.

If I see shifting blame
as a sign of weakness,
how many other people
see it this same way?

Lolly Daskal,
founder of Lead from Within,
shares

“The worst thing you can do
in leadership or life
is to shrink from responsibility
and blame others
for not having done your best
or met your own expectations.

As the saying goes:
If it is to be,
it’s up to me.

The place to begin is
always to be accountable to yourself
and responsible for the consequences
of your choices.”

Take responsibility.

By k | May 17, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

There’s a reason
why romance is the best selling genre.

Romance readers
are some of the most passionate people
in the publishing world.
A romance reader is more likely
to tell their friends and family
to read a book.

Why?

Because romance novels
have happy endings.
Happy endings make people…
well… happy.

So readers aren’t simply
recommending a book.
They’re seeking to make others
happy.
That’s a powerful mission.
Who doesn’t want to make people happy?

Romance writers and publishers
know this.
It is our job to remind readers
of their ‘mission’,
to show them that they ARE making
other people happy.

Terry St. Marie
shares

“Leaders have to step up,
and INSPIRE people,
every day.

That involves bringing in your passion,
and your heart.
It’s about inspiring people
to believe in the company
vision and values,
and to figure out
what’s really in it FOR THEM
– job fulfillment
and satisfaction.”

Give your employers,
your customers,
your partners
a mission
they can be passionate about.

By k | May 16, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

I had a healthy readership for a series.
I’ll admit that
I was getting a little cocky,
a little lazy with returning emails
and promoting.

Then I killed a beloved secondary character
and 66% of that readership went away.
Gone instantly.

A writer is only
as good as her most recent book.
A business is only
as good as its most recent product.

The customer could walk tomorrow
and we should be conscious of that.

Michael Binstein,
CEO of Binny’s Beverage Depot,
shares

(this entire interview
is well worth reading)

“Somebody wants your business.
Every single day,
somebody wants your customer.

The reality is,
we may sign 99-year leases,
but we have day-to-day
employment contracts with
every single one of our 7 million customers.

And if a customer decides to fire you,
you don’t get two weeks’ notice.”

Don’t take your customers for granted.
Stay hungry.
Stay grateful.
Continue to put in the work.

By k | May 15, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

You’re working, working, working
on building your business
and nothing seems to happen.

Shouldn’t success happen quickly?
That’s how it happened
for XYZ company,
according to the media.

The media doesn’t cover
normal everyday business building.
The story of the average successful entrepreneur,
a person who has many failures
before her big success,
who works for years
with little results
before breaking out,
isn’t usually covered.
That story isn’t thrilling enough
for readers/viewers.

Yet it is reality.

Steve Case,
co-founder of America Online (AOL),
shares

“I used to joke that
AOL was a decade-in-the-making
overnight success.
We just would not give up.
Our investors almost forced us
to sell,
but we convinced them
to stick with it.

Finally, we broke through.
We were the first Internet company
to go public (in 1992),
and the best-performing stock
of the 1990s.”

Perseverance is one of the key components
of success.
Keep working.

By k | May 14, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

When many people think of kindness,
they equate it to
never saying anything offensive,
never saying anything to make another person
uncomfortable.

That’s not kindness.
That’s being a chicken sh*t.

It isn’t kind
to say nothing
when a loved one who can’t hold a tune
says she plans to try out
for a TV singing competition.
The KIND thing to do
is to suggest she first take singing lessons
and hone her craft
so she’s the best singer
she can be
at these tryouts.

Jim Rohn
shares

“We must not mistake
weakness for kindness.

Kindness isn’t weak.
Kindness is a certain type of strength.

We must be kind enough
to tell someone the truth.

We must be kind enough
and considerate enough
to lay it on the line.

We must be kind enough
to tell it like it is
and not deal in delusion.”

Aspire to kindness.

By k | May 13, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

The biggest mistakes I’ve made
in my professional life
have occurred
because I took on projects
I didn’t truly believe in
and
I knew I wasn’t suited
to participate in.

It was idiotic of me
to say ‘yes’
because there were
hundreds, thousands
of other opportunities
that I was perfect for.
I should have had the balls
to say ‘no’,
to wait.

Dr. Henry Cloud
shares

“Successful people never again…”

“2. Do anything that requires them
to be someone they are not.

In everything we do,
we have to ask ourselves,
“Why am I doing this?
Am I suited for it?
Does it fit me?
Is it sustainable?”
If the answer is
no to any of these questions,
you better have a very good reason
to proceed.”

Don’t try to be someone
you’re not.
You’ll never be as good
as someone
who is truly that type of person
and there are
plenty of opportunities
where you can be you
and succeed.

By k | May 12, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

I always knew
I wanted to develop a business
involving the romance reader community.
I love being with romance readers.
I love talking with them.
I love their belief
in happy endings,
in hope, optimism and love.

It took me a while
to understand what my place would be
within this community
but I knew I wanted to serve it.

And serving it
makes me very happy.
It is also making me
successful
in all of the other ways
a business can be successful
(recognition, financially, etc.).

Tony Jeary
shares

“Here’s the secret
to getting everything you want
in life:
Find people who are hurting,
and help them.
In the world of business
we call this “adding value.”

I call it common sense
and being a decent human being.
Every successful business,
every successful career
and every successful organization
exists only
because it serves others.

Here’s how to figure out
who to serve:
Look at the people
you love to be around.
The people who energize you
and fulfill you.
Ask them what keeps them up at night.
Ask them what hurts in their life.
Ask them how you could help.”

Whom do you wish to serve?