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Recognising the good stuff

Discussion in 'Get productive' started by Robert Gerrish, Jan 12, 2009.

  1. Robert Gerrish

    Robert Gerrish Administrator Staff Member

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    Hi all, I'm just back from a yummy holiday in Hawk's Nest, NSW and raring to go for the year ahead. Well, maybe not raring as a good part of me is still on the beach!

    In tomorrow's newsletter, and in response to commentary regarding pulling back a little in difficult times, I've written about the risk of stopping doing the things that work.

    Too often I observe businesses that in a bid to minimise expenditure, actually stop the very things that help business thrive.

    One thing is for sure, 2009 is not a year for 'business as usual'. What does the 'good stuff' mean in your business and what do you think we should all be keeping at the top of our 'good stuff' list?
  2. LeelaCosgrove

    LeelaCosgrove Member

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    So true Robert!

    One of the big mistakes I see businesses make ... they go along to seminars, learn new stuff, implement it - but stop doing the stuff that works! This is just plain suicidal.

    What works for me - networking! And phone sales. Basically, anything where people actually interact with me. No one can sell my business the way I can sell my business - because in many ways, my clients are buying me (especially when it comes to consulting and coaching work).

    I can't afford to scale back on going to events and making cold calls - because that's how I get most of my work.

    I also can't afford to stop MEASURING everything I do (in an almost obsessive way) - because that is the ONLY way I know what is working and what I can and can't afford to scale back on.

    For everyone else - I think it can be different for each person. I sell very well in person and over the phone, but that may not work for everyone. The one thing we should ALL be doing is TESTING and MEASURING. Everything else may be objective ... but testing and measuring is NOT.
  3. Warren Cottis

    Warren Cottis Well-Known Member

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    It’s a time to Focus and be Passionate.

    I believe that businesses that are passionate about their marketing in the coming year will develop incredible loyalty. They will not only be one of the few in their industry investing in their growth but they will also emerge on the other end of this recession bigger, better and much more profitable

    Be passionate about getting to know your customers much more intimately. Get to know what they buy, what they read, what they watch on TV and on the Internet. Get to know them like you know your best friend.

    Be passionate about giving out more good, solid content and advice in your marketing materials. Solve your customers’ problems especially in your sales materials so they are not just seen as sales pitches. They have to contain really solid content.

    Make a plan to be different this year with a passion!
  4. Lisa Murray - Biz Coach

    Lisa Murray - Biz Coach Member

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    I agree with Leela - test and measure, test and measure, test and measure!

    I also obtain most of my clients as a result of 'meeting them' in some way - so in addition to my usual marketing strategies (networking, speaking, articles etc) I am exploring lots of joint venture opportunities for 2009.

    When things get tight, it's worth finding opportunities to partner and leverage complementary skills and resources. I'm hoping this strategy will offer more opportunity for things like: generating referrals, product development, sharing access to mailing lists, running combined events, swapping expertise etc...

    If you have any amazing ideas for working in partnership with a business coach with diverse skills, I'm all ears - feel free to contact me!!

    cheers
    Lisa
  5. Danette

    Danette Member

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    In my opinion, many solo entrepreneurs simply try to 'do what everyone else does' - at what price? Competition!

    This competition exists when customers or clients look at you, then look at others and compare the two of you against each other. You're probably seen as an equal - but that's 'game over'. Competing against others creates an internal struggle which leads to negative feelings like anger, resentment, inferiority and worse. You can't win this way.

    Instead of playing the game everyone else is playing ... don't compete, but instead 'CREATE'. This will enable you to win at everything you do.

    Find, discover, invent or originate something new. Do things differently, more creatively, and in a more beneficial way than others currently do them. Try to come up with new solutions to problems and do things in a way that immeditely separates you from the competition in the minds of your prospects.

    Being a creator rather than a competitor will enable you to stand alone in the mind's of your clients.

    It's easier to stay part of the crowd, but you must be willing to cut yourself off from their mentality - be willing to take risks, be vulnerable, open yourself up to criticism, be willing to work through the doubts that will inevitably bubble up as you experiment with new and better ways to help others get the results they want.

    I love this saying - "Creativity makes you unique ... uniqueness makes you indispensable ... indispensable people have no competition"

    Now, you can always recognise the good stuff.
  6. Burgo

    Burgo Renowned Member

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    When I started my Fashion Agency 30 years ago I thought I had competition and I did.

    When I started my carpet cleaning business 23 years ago, although there were a number of established carpet cleaners in my area I had no competition, I still have no competition. I say this to any small business person , If you believe you have competition you will have, if you believe you have NO competition you will never have.

    It is very pleasing to see young people in their own business', that change the way they think about the word competition, they start to grow.

    Competition does not exist it is in you mind, and once you can think outside the square you have NO competition
  7. The Office Witch

    The Office Witch Member

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    I agree with Danette, be unique in your field, and think outside the square as Burgo says.

    I believe that in tough times we have to work harder to find new clients, they are out there waiting for us to find them.

    I thought that January is going to be a quiet month for me; instead it turned out one of the busiest.

    I used my creativity, contacted all my existing clients, individually summarised what we have achieved in the last 6 months (BAS and tax issues) and made a point for improvement which is a structured office system. To my biggest surprised they all came back with a positive attitude. Clients requested an appointment to identify, discuss and find resolution to the areas they neglected in the past.

    The feedback is incredible; I am fully booked till end of February.
  8. LeelaCosgrove

    LeelaCosgrove Member

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    So true!

    When I first started my writing business, I saw other writers as my competition - but over the last 3 years I've learned that I have no competition. My particular skill set, the way I think, the way I do things is completely different to the way other writers are doing things.

    It's a subtle mindset shift - but an important one.

    I don't compete for clients. No one else can offer them what I offer them, so I don't need to.
  9. Heidi Price

    Heidi Price Member

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    I agree!

    One of my favourite quotes from Justin Herald, founder of the Attitude clothing brand, is:

    "Be the bar"

    that is, dont just do what everyone else is doing. Do, and be, the absolute best you can. Set your standard, and let everyone else fight to catch up.

    :)

    Heidi
  10. linkartist

    linkartist Member

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    This is so true, especially in creative & service industries where the point of difference is really about the people, and not the service.

    I never go in with the presumption that every potential client is fair game for me & my business, and I think that it is more about having similar outlooks and communication styles and being compatible, than purely winning a sale.

    I have had projects in the past where people really don't get what I do, or don't communicate in a similar way, or whatever... and it usually results in a bad design, funnily enough!

    And strangely enough, a lot of my "competitors" are also my friends! It really is about the right fit for the project in my business, I think... and whilst in down times it is VERY tempting to go gun-ho and take on projects you wouldn't ordinarily... it more often than not ends with a client that is not 100% happy...
  11. Lucki

    Lucki Member

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    I agree with Danette, be creative and stand out! Be bold and do something different. Trying to compete with your competitors will only be an ongoing battle you'll never win.

    You only have to check out Apple and Microsoft. Apple instead of competing with microsoft decided to completely change tactic and now has the market on ipods and all in one pc's.

    I have an apple and have to say it's much user friendly :)

    Lucki

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