Zee2A's Marketing Edge Blog

March 8, 2010

Do You Need More Clients F*A*S*T ?


Save £100 by signing up to our new Jumpstart programme before 31 March 2010 and get the quick-fix you need.

CALL or email us NOW to schedule your start date, and remember to quote “Blog £100 off.”

* International or other ‘out of town’ clients have their sessions over the telephone.

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October 6, 2009

What Makes a Great Brand?

Do you understand the common elements of all great brands?
(Here’s a secret: a logo isn’t as important as you think!)

Would you like simple tools to begin crafting your own brand?

Our FREE five-part eCourse will help you to do just that!

Find out more, and claim access HERE

June 30, 2009

Customer Service No-No’s

I noticed two interesting news headlines in the last few days.
Firstly, the OECD say that we are ‘at the bottom’ of the current economic recession – actually a positive thing, because it suggests (without promising) that things may begin the slow climb back to prosperity in the near future. The second indicated that the UK economy suffered a 2.4% shrinkage in the first quarter of 2009 – 0.5% worse than predicted and the worst for 51 years, apparently. Again,
although it may not at first blush seem like it, this is good news.
These type of figures are by definition retrospective – they look back at a period we have already lived through. There are many signs of recovery, mostly in the form of a slowdown in bad news!

In this week’s Marketing Edge (out for publiction tomorrow) we are re-running what was one of the most popular articles of 2008 – a critical look at customer service no-no’s. Remember that everyone struggles in a recession, but those who take customer service lightly will continue to struggle even when conditions improve. So take the key points to heart and root poor customer service out of your organisation. When you do, your customers will show their appreciation via longer, more profitable business relationships.

Sign up for your free subscription at: www.zee2a.com and make sure to verify your request before midnight tonight!

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June 26, 2009

How’s your game?

Today’s feature article has been guest authored by fellow Sales Coach and contact of Vanessa’s, Adrian Miller. In it she tackles the issue of dropping the ball while networking. Our clients and seminar delegates will know that here at Zee2A we use the analogy of a relay race and talk of ‘dropping the baton.’ The principles are exactly the same.

For more top tips on getting the most from your networking why not take a look at our best selling Performance Tuned Networking ‘Seminar-in-a-Box’. It contains over three hours of powerful instruction you can work through at your own pace, and really start ramping up your results in this area!

 

Don’t Drop the Networking Ball!

(Guest authored by Adrian Miller)

Dropping the ball in the game of networking is akin to not catching a fly ball in baseball. Others are counting on you to successfully execute the play and keep the game going. Let the ball drop too many times, and you’ll be booted off of the team.

Networking is entirely about follow through. Just like in baseball, a networking introduction is like a spectacular ball that is heading right for you. You need to keep your eye on it and reach out if you’re going to make the most of the opportunity.

Too often, individuals get busy and forget to make contact with leads that were given to them or don’t follow up with the individuals who facilitated the introductions. Both slip ups are grievous errors in the realm of networking and can really tick off those who have put time and energy into helping you. If you’re guilty of lack of networking follow up and follow through, don’t be surprised if you’re given the “three strikes and you’re out” treatment from your colleagues and acquaintances. No one is going to continue to help someone who isn’t appreciative.

Don’t let yourself be demoted to the minor leagues of networking. Follow these tips and stay in the game:

Say Thank You

As soon as you obtain a lead from someone who has facilitated an introduction, thank them! Don’t wait for a week to go by, and don’t blow it off as something of little importance. A networking lead is a gift, so be gracious even if you don’t think it’s going to amount to a new business opportunity. Write a hand-written note or offer to take them to lunch. Don’t just send a lame, half-hearted thank you email. Remember, no one is going to go out of their way for you if you’re not enthusiastic in your response!

Keep Organized

Use a system for keeping track of your leads and who has provided them to you. Don’t let the information get buried in your email or on your desk.

Follow Up Promptly with the Lead

Develop a rule for yourself for the maximum amount of time you will take to contact a new lead. Ideally, it shouldn’t take you longer than 24 hours to make that first contact.

Follow Up Promptly with the Facilitator

Your work is not done once you’ve had that initial conversation. Now, you need to contact the person who facilitated the lead and give them an update. This step is frequently forgotten but vitally important to maintaining good networking relationships.

Reciprocate

Networking is not just about you receiving new contacts. It’s also about you reciprocating the favors bestowed upon you. Be generous about helping others, making introductions, and offering assistance whenever you have the chance.

Adrian Miller©Adrian Miller. Adrian Miller is a sales trainer, consultant, speaker and author. She launched her firm Adrian Miller Sales Training 21 years ago and works in a vast diversity of industries providing real world solutions for real world situations, on-site and through webinars and teleclasses. She recently started Adrian’s Network, a virtual business networking community that is gaining new members every day. Adrian can be reached here.

June 19, 2009

Is your business the best-kept secret in the industry?

Many small businesses like yours are able to deliver a far more personal, tailored service to clients than your larger competitors, and have very satisfied customers because of it. Unfortunately nobody else seems to know, so prospects go to the competitor blissfully unaware that they could get a far better service from you for a very similar price! If only you could develop branding like theirs to attract prospects!

But why not?

Would you like to know how you can develop a powerful brand that will make your sales cycles shorter and close more deals at list price?

Our free five-part eCourse will help you to understand the common elements of all great brands (no, they don’t include a fancy logo!) and will provide you with simple tools to begin crafting your brand.

Learn more about it and claim your free access HERE and you could begin the process of lifting your service offerings out of the ‘commodity morass’ and into Premium Brand territory today!

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June 12, 2009

Online vs Offline?

Philip Rosenthal sent Vanessa an email asking:

‘How much effort should a consultant put into their online presence versus offline face to face networking?

It may be different for different consultants, but how do you decide how much time to put in or what mix of time to put into different areas? I am concerned that online marketing is a potentially endless sink of time and am not sure what the returns will be compared with traditional marketing.

Also, I have been on [a particular online networking facility] for less than a month and have about 30 connections – some of whom are people I don’t really know but are members of professional societies of which I am also a member and live in the same city as me – I hope to get to know them better this way. Any suggestions?’

Hello Philip,

Great question, and one which I’m sure many other Marketing Edge readers are wondering about. You raise three separate points, which I’ll address one by one:

Online vs offline networking

How much time you decide to spend in one area versus the other depends entirely on where your prospects are and you may have to do some research of your own to find out where that is. As a business owner with many commitments you simply cannot afford to waste your time, money and effort in activities that have minimal impact.

Are your prospects researching and making buying decisions from behind their PCs? If so, are they building relationships with potential suppliers through social networking, or are they using search engines to find information on specific services? (Two distinctly different approaches!) Or are they making those decisions on the golf course? Do they read specific trade journals or attend business to business shows and exhibitions? Find that out, then find a way to regularly get in front of them.

The returns compared with traditional marketing

Any marketing you do – whether online or otherwise must fit in with an overall strategy. They cannot be adhoc events or activities that get done on a whim and without proper forethought and planning. Remember too, that not all methods work for everyone. You have to test it and measure it. If it works, do more of the same. If it doesn’t work, or doesn’t work well enough, change tactics.

For example: Just because you’ve always had an advert in the Yellow Pages doesn’t mean you should just keep on renewing it. Do you know how much business you actually get because of that advert?

The same principle applies to your weekly networking breakfast; your brochures; your website; etc. Don’t blindly keep doing something just because you think you should, or because you think that ‘doing something is better than doing nothing.’

Getting to know your contacts better

Well done for creating an online profile and getting active in making connections! (For some top tips on creating and maintaining your profile, see my article Revamp Your Online Presence in Four Easy Steps.) It is important that your connections have substance and that you can add value to each others’ networks.

What is the point of hundreds of connections that are just there to boost your numbers, but you know nothing about each other and never interact? It would be just as ludicrous to collect hundreds of business cards at face-to-face events and stuff them into an overflowing business card folder that never gets opened again, other than to add more cards!

Your approach to connecting with fellow members of professional societies you belong to and people who live in the same town as you is a good place to start. May I suggest you take the initiative in arranging a meet-up to build those connections into REAL relationships. Perhaps something like meeting for a drink after work – invite all thirty connections and see who turns up. Not only will you benefit from getting to know them better, but they will benefit from meeting each other too. (By the way: This suggestion works equally well if applied to that over-stuffed business card holder too!)

Thank you for your question,

 

Other readers with questions are invited to submit them here and we’ll do our best to answer them in an upcoming issue.

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March 17, 2009

Publicity and Feedback from our VIP Reception

The following write-up was published in the Basingstoke Gazette last Thursday (12 March 2009):

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And here’s what some of our guests had to say:

I wanted you to know how much I enjoyed your talk yesterday.  It was very inspirational.  I don’t think I will look at a coke bottle the same again!!

 

Rita Veitch (www.childlawpartnership.co.uk)

 

Thank you for inviting me to your VIP Reception. It was engaging throughout and with some useful lessons in brand awareness and how branding can affect one’s image of a company. The use of well-known international brand names and logos to illustrate the presentation was most useful.

Keith Green (www.andersonmoore.co.uk)

The Business South Show was bigger than I expected and I managed to achieve my 3 key objectives when I attended (network, find a web provider and find someone to possibly engage in a strategic partnership with). Your presentation was professional and engaging. I most appreciated the upbeat tone to marketing, which made it seem possible for me, unlike the seminar I’d been to earlier in the day which was not inspiring at all….

Dr Georgina Slaven

March 5, 2009

Pics From Our VIP Reception Yesterday

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What a tremendous time we had at Business South yesterday – the highlight of which was our 2nd annual VIP Reception.  Thank you very much to all the guests who came along, enjoyed the drinks and snacks, did some serious networking, and (given the feedback) really enjoyed my mini training session on how to create powerful branding for your business.

 

I would also like to give a special word of thanks to Richard Garfield, Business Editor from the Basingstoke Gazette for taking the time out of his hectic schedule to join in the fun at our reception.

 

Take a look at some of yesterday’s photos HERE

March 2, 2009

See You On Wednesday!

capacityWe’ve had a phenomenal response of RSVPs to our VIP Reception taking place on Wednesday, at Business South in Southampton.

 

We have filled our quota of 50 guest places and have got a large list of folks on our waiting list for next year.

 

Look out for your Marketing Edge later this week – which should have some photos from the event.  And if you missed out and would like to get on the waiting list for next year, then please subscribe to the Marketing Edge at www.zee2a.com as our subscribers always get first dibs on invitations (not to forget all the free sales and marketing advice, and complimentary downloads….  Learn more about the FREE STUFF here).

 

If you are coming on Wednesday – I’m looking forward to seeing you!

February 15, 2009

14 VIP Places Left – Grab one FREE Now!

36236 49 Guests representing the following industries:

      Law

      Accounting & Bookkeeping

      Web Development & Graphic Design

      Human Resources

      Training & Coaching

      Business Brokers & Advocates; among others

have already confirmed their attendance at our VIP Reception at Business South on 4th March 2009

 

Grab one of the remaining 14 2 free tickets at www.zee2a.com/vip2009 while you still can!

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