Archives for May 2011

Marketing with the Blindfold off

Marketing is the ‘lifeblood’ of all successful businesses and ineffective marketing costs British Businesses millions of pounds every year.

Below are forty questions to help you to become more effective in your marketing.

1. Do you have a specific marketing budget, with specific targets?

2. Do you know how many enquiries come into your business each month?

3. Do you know specifically where these leads are coming from?

4. Do you know what percentage of these leads you manage to convert?

5. Do you know how much it costs you to win a new customer?

6. Do you know how much on average a customer is worth to you once you get them on board?

7. Do you employ strategies to get your current customers to buy from you more often?

8. Do you employ strategies to get your current customers to buy more from you each and every time they purchase from you?

9. Do you test the different aspects of your advertising in order to increase your response rates?

10. Have you tried pay per click advertising as part of your on-line marketing?

11. Have you tested the different elements of your direct mail campaigns in order to increase the number of enquiries you receive?

12. Do you win editorial in your local newspaper on a regular basis?

13. Are you and your team trained in the latest sales techniques in order ensure you close the maximum amount of sales from your marketing budget?

14. Is your pricing strategy correct, or could altering your price increase your income generation

15. Do you ever mystery shop your competitors?

16. When was the last time you looked at your corporate brand?

17. Have you used ‘blogging’ to increase hits on your website?

18. Do you use e-mail marketing on a regular basis?

19. Do you have at least six systems for winning business from referral?

20. Do you have a written sales & marketing strategy?

21. Have you tested using a telesales company and if so how well did it go?

22. Do you consistently will business from your website, or it is just another cost?

23. Do you have at least ten online systems for marketing your website and winning sales?

24. Do you have a newsletter?

25. Do your business cards clearly explain what you do?

26. Do you attend networking events on a regular basis?

27. Do you win business by attending these events?

28. Do you contact your customers to ask them for letters of testimonial?

29. Do you use your letters of testimonial in the marketing?

30. Do you have any strategic partnerships with other businesses who serve a similar market to yourself?

31. Do you go back to your past customers, and people who enquire about your services on a regular basis?

32. When someone enquires about what you do, do you have a system to get their details, contact them to follow up?

33. Have you tested the use of pictures within your marketing?

34. On a scale of 1 to 10 how good would you rate your current marketing to be?

35. Does your website gather the names of the people who visit in order to build your database of contacts?

36. How effective are you at cross selling your product or services to your current customers?

37. When was the last time you benchmarked your business against your competition?

38. Have you ever considered externalising your marketing to a company who have years of experience in making significant income for our clients?

39. Have you trained yourself in marketing?

40. Are you going you do anything as a result of reading this list and realising that you are not even starting to optimise your true marketing potential? If so contact Steve Mills on 0118 930 5700, or e-mail him at

A video from my new on-line LinkedIn Training Programme


Henley Management School – The home of Steve’s IFA Training Course

People without goals are condemed to spend their lives working for people who do.

A great statement from Brian Tracey

The 18 secrets of business success

What is wrong with most small businesses?

Watch Steve’s video, for some of the answers:

(No title)

10 ways to improve your sales conversion rates

So you convert five prospects out of ten. Does a 50% success rate mean you are wasting half of your marketing budget? Of course not. But maybe some sales training could boost your rate to 60% – and that would up your turnover by 20%!

In the meantime here are a few ideas that may prove useful.

1. Get yourself into the proper frame of mind. You can’t expect to do a good job if you are still fuming about the idiot who cut you up on your way to the appointment. Let go of the day’s frustrations and concentrate on the customer.

2. Find some common ground. Sometimes this means talking about (or letting the customer talk about) last night’s football or the awful state of the country before getting down to business. Just don’t let it get out of hand!

3. Clearly indentify the customer’s need. It’s a cliché but don’t try to sell the drill bit – sell the hole!

4. Use their words, not yours. Sometimes we get carried away with our own clever jargon. If the customer wants ‘plenty of loft space’, don’t turn it into ’30 square metres of unobtrusive storage solution’.

5.Paint attractive word pictures. Ask the customer to ‘imagine yourself driving through the countryside in your new convertible on a sunny day’.

6. Use positive reinforcement. When the customer himself talks about the benefits of ownership, don’t be tempted to add lots more features – (s)he knows what (s)he wants. So just agree and ask for the order.

7. Put yourself in their shoes. Try to see things from the customer’s viewpoint; ask yourself, ‘Would I buy it from me?’ If you can’t convince yourself…

8. When they suggest a feature they want, ask questions. ‘Why is that important to you?’ The more you ask, the more you will understand what they are looking for and the better you will be able to match your product to their requirements.

9. Always be credible. Don’t make outrageous claims. Most customers can spot them and the ones that don’t come back looking for refunds when they discover the truth.

10. Be prepared to say no if you believe they are making a mistake. It’s awfully hard to turn down a sale but they will thank you and probably become your most loyal customer in the future.

For further help with converting more leads into sales, more easily, contact me on 0118 930 5700.

Launch Date

The launch date for my On-line LinkedIn Programme is 1st June 2011. More info to come soon.

LinkedIn training on 24th May is now FULL

My training course on 24th May 2011 is now full. The next workshop is on 16th June.

Steve’s New on-Line LinkedIn Training Programme

I am just putting the final touches to my ‘Grow your Business using LinkedIn’ Programme.

I am adding the video’s and check the text ready for launch on 1 June 2011.

Raise your Game

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