Showing posts with label business authors. Show all posts
Showing posts with label business authors. Show all posts

Friday, March 2, 2012

100% sales. The ‘must read’ for business people who want more money and want it NOW!

by Dr. Jeffrey Lant
Author’s program note. I have the inestimable privilege of training some of the brightest business people on earth… people of wit, intelligence, good humor… and a fierce determination to be successful, climbing the greasy pole, making more money, and living just the way they want. I find this work enthralling, exhilarating… and (I’ll admit it) frequently frustrating… as I watch even the best and the brightest muff it.
And so, today, I am writing about the one essential thing these fine folks — and that now includes YOU — must do every single minute of every single day that you want more money. For, let’s not kid ourselves… if you understand this crucial article and follow its directives… you are going to make more money, lots more, and leave your lackadaisical and languid colleagues in the dust. And won’t that be sweet?
To put you in the mood for my insistent message, I have selected a dance number that once made you gyrate and awe… “I Want Your Love” by a group named Chic. It hit the charts in 1978, and it made its point early and often:
“I want your love. I want your love. I want your love. I want your love.”
In other words, they kept on message, driving home the point of their endeavors until even the most mentally challenged “got it”. As a teacher with a sledgehammer, repetitive delivery, I like that… I like it a lot.
And so to set the stage for what follows, look this tune up in any search engine now and move that overweight, arthritic body; because you’re about to recapture your alluring youth… and be the person who got what you wanted, oh yeah!
Painful, so painful.
It happened again yesterday… and it gets me, right in the solar plexus, each and every time I see this fundamental error. The sales person I was training was operating solo. In other words, they had progressed sufficiently far in their instruction to where they get to fly all alone. I am there, of course; I am always there… but I try to remain as silent as the grave and unobtrusive so that I am seeing the student and just the student. And make no mistake about it… this situation (as every parent knows) can make you as nervous and frustrated as all get out.
Lights, camera… think!
Picture the scene. All parties are on the ‘net. I am present in my video box, the student is in his… and the “real life” prospect enters… like a bull at a corrida. Everything happens in real time…. and has real world implications, for good… or for ill.
Ok… the student (and, remember, my students are established business people, not wet-behind-the-ears kids) goes into closing mode. This starts by greeting each and every prospect by name; then asking each prospect to watch a 20-minute video packed with the vital data that both excites the prospect and instructs her.
These steps are crucial… and the students know I am a stickler for ensuring that they occur. In other words, make SURE the prospect has the critical facts before any further action can occur.
The prospect is prepped… are you?
“As soon as you’ve finished the video, return to me for a spectacular one-time-only offer.”
These words usher in the next phase of the operation. We make it clear what must be done (watch video) and what is coming thereafter (spectacular offer). So far… so good.
Close but no cigar.
The first mistake the students make is to present the offer before the prospect has been adequately prepped. This is a critical error. Prospects must have the necessary facts… or they end up asking a ton of unnecessary questions; questions which have already been answered — and in precise, clear detail, too — in the video.
The video, the whole video, nothing but the video.
As soon as you have confirmed that the prospect has watched the ENTIRE video, proceed to the “Big rock candy mountain,” your scintillating offer. It IS scintillating, isn’t it? For if it doesn’t snap, crackle, and pop you’ve just thrown away a sale. Sales occur because the offer sizzles, excites, is just too thrilling to decline. You ARE making such an offer, I trust. And if you’re not, you’d better make its improvement “Action this day,” which is what Winston Churchill did when as Prime Minister of England he demanded instant attention and RESULTS.
And now… the critical moment that turns you into a master… and puts another sale in your pocket: 100% sales.
To remain an average closer, keep doing what you’re doing.But to fly high as one of the world’s sales masters you must set the desired goal… then do everything possible, everything necessary to achieve it.
That is… 100% sales.
Is this what you do?
Make your objective immediately clear to the prospect: “I want you to get the benefits of this widget… and I’m going to do everything I can to make it happen.” Don’t just say these words… mean them. Because once the prospect knows you’re serious, they can be serious too, working with you for fastest, most complete mutual advantage.
At this moment, the prospect may well start back peddling saying things like this:
“I don’t have any money.”
“I can’t do it today.”
“I need to tell the little woman. We’re a team.”
And so forth. Your job is to thrust these obstacles out of the way and CLOSE THAT DEAL.
To do this, you must remind yourself AT ALL TIMES that you have a 100% closing goal… and that you are going to make this close. If the prospect stalls or blocks you, keep things going by asking for the prospect’s undivided attention and for an all- important OPEN mind. Make sure the prospect understands what the offer is…. and if necessary improve it; always making it clear that this offer expires the second the prospect leaves. In other words, there is a premium for staying, working things out, but irrevocable loss if they won’t.
Now, gun it.
Keep in mind at all times, with the terrific offer you are making, the prospect will be better off… if… and only if… they take immediate action. It is your job to drive this home NOW… making it abundantly clear that action now is the only sensible course.
Do this, and do it with enthusiasm, gusto, and good humor, and you will not only want that sale… you will get it! For as Chic sang, “a better love you won’t find today…” or a better offer either.
*** What do you think? We invite you to post your comments below.

Monday, January 30, 2012

The personal ad you’d love to post… but don’t have the guts!

Author’s program note. As far as I can tell, everyone in the world has either run a personal ad (mostly online), is running one at this moment… or will run one before you can say “Jack Robinson.” This means you. The question is not whether you will use personal ads… but whether they’ll deliver the exact person you are seeking. Sadly, the vast majority of personal ads cannot deliver the bacon (or the cheese cake or the beef cake). They just don’t provide enough detail and so are quite capable of delivering the Wrong Prospects. Witness the personal ad celebrated by Jimmy Buffet in the tune that made Pina Coladas mandatory Happy Hour fare as you bar hopped in pursuit of nirvana.
Start by going to any search engine and listen to Buffet’s anthem. It was written by Rupert Holmes and recorded in 1979. It’s official title is “Escape” but hardly anyone knows that except Buffet who became with each insouciant word the recognized master of la dolce far niente… or, since most of you know no Eye-talian, the art of doing absolutely nothing… and doing it with the utmost style and grace, but without ever breaking a sweat.
Buffet’s tune makes it clear why personals as currently structured are silly, pointless, absolutely certain to deliver people you wouldn’t be seen dead with. I mean, who doesn’t like getting caught in the rain (given the right person on your arm)… who doesn’t hate yoga…. and is hardly into health foods… but insists on champagne? Add long walks on a beach, making love at midnight in the dunes of the cape, and holding hands at the cinema… and you’ve got the personal ad in all its banal insipidity.
The wonder is not that they don’t work for most people investing hope, time and money in them; the wonder is that they work for anyone at all… but then there are people (one hopes not you) who can be fully described with a few generic phrases. Avoid them like the plague.
Time for rethinking the personal ad.
In the olden days when personals appeared solely in newspapers and a few progressive publications like the alumni magazine for Harvard and such finicky folk as insisted on making known their preference for classical composers, stock brokers, and obscure holiday destinations; in those days one paid by the word and through the nose. Publishers counted on your desperation and longing to fill their coffers. Even the august Times of London cleaned up with such ads, universally called the agony column and always run on Page 1: “Should the fine lady in the blue mantle with yellow sleeves exiting the horse cars at Grosvenor Square Thursday last at 10:59 a.m. desire the acquaintance of a gentleman of means…”, but you get the picture.
When writing such ads, where each word raised the cost, it was necessary to cultivate the virtues of laconic language, short, sweet, clipped. The objective was always to meet the person ardently desired but spend pennies, not pounds. As a result, it was understandable, even excusable when advertisers slashed words; robust clarity at all times was desirable… but unaffordable.
Enter the Internet.
The very first thing I learned about the ‘net was that it’s boundless, inexhaustible, absolutely unlimited. Thus, it can hold, maintain and preserve infinity. The implications of this fact are fathomless, too… not least on the matter of creating personal ads that get you the long-awaited apple of your eye. For now, since we have an infinity of space, there can be absolutely no excuse for writing and posting ads which are at once jejune, inadequate, and platitudinous in the extreme. They don’t work, can never work, and must be abandoned, jettisoned, abjured, forsaken and, in case you miss the point, tossed into the dustbin of history at once.
Now you can write this all-important ad without being hobbled and restricted. You are at last permitted, nay empowered and directed to write what must be written, the ad, the whole ad, and nothing but the ad.
… but this will take careful thought and planning, for it is doubtful ere now that even one personal advertiser has written the magnificent advertisement you are about to write, edit, post, and benefit from for a lifetime. As such the most scrupulous planning is de rigueur and cannot be stinted.
Two people, two parts.
A good personal ad, which is to say an ad that accomplishes the desired objective, must be divided into two parts: half about who you are; half about what you desire in the person you wish to present the key to your (probably much bruised) heart.
Brainstorming, musing, total honesty.
Now, we all know that everyone, absolutely everyone lies in their personal ads. Excess pounds disappear as if by magic; years are thrust in the dresser drawer; educational degrees are now cited from institutions which scorned the pleasure of your company; financial net worth up, all manner of imperfections down; spouses of decades unmentioned, and the eight darling children, too. This is the nature of the beast… until now. Now you have the space to tell everything… and complete details on the extenuating circumstances. Yes, you were flunked out of Alma Mater, but it was most assuredly not your fault… and you insist upon making the full dossier available right here and now. You have the space; honesty is desirable; and your bringing up the subject at all proves what a gem you are.
Thus instead of lying about the pounds you haven’t lost, cite the reasons why. Honestly own up to the fact that your dietary habits are lax; list all your favorite foods… and the rate you consume them. List your last month’s worth of dinner menus… and be scrupulous, entirely above board with everything you consumed, the kind of dishes on which you served the repast, and exactly what you did with the left-overs. You want your soon-to-be beloved to know you, fully, completely and so ardently; for after all, honesty is the bedrock of every meaningful relationship, don’t you agree?
The desired one.
Once you have gathered all the critical intelligence about yourself, proceed at once to Part 2 of your ad, the absolutely crucial verbiage about the person to whom you wish to extend the glorious honor of sharing bed and board. Your complete and total focus is required. Again, brainstorm every desirable point, giving equal attention to what you do not want and cannot abide, and what you must have, a deal killer if not readily available, and in the desired quantity, too.
Starting this list is easy, almost effortless. You either want a smoker… or you don’t. You either can accept pets (even the most exotic)… or you can’t. But make it a point to move beyond these obvious points. Consider such matters as the odor you desire in a mate; how many showers per day; the kind, frequency and intensity of bodily hygiene. Honesty is required, and so honesty there must be. And if the length of your ad grows long and weighty, what of it? What you are doing here impacts the curvature of two lives, so no apology is necessary.
Post at once, reap your reward.
First, you are to be congratulated. You are a pioneer, a model of integrity and rectitude. Now it’s time to reap the inevitable rewards which must come with posting. Mind, it may take a little time to get the single response this ad is meant to generate, for so thorough have you been that there can only be one response… from that extraordinary person daft enough to put up with you…and love you anyway.
*** We invite you to post your comments to this article below.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

You SAY you’re in business, but that proposition is dubious, as this article reveals in shocking detail.

Author’s program note. One of Broadway’s happiest and most enduring musicals is “How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying.” Written by Frank Loesser; it was released in October, 1961 to immediate acclaim — and a Pulitzer Prize to boot. Most recently it was revived with Daniel Ratcliffe — famous for his eponymous role in the Harry Potter films — starring in the lead role originally done to mischievous perfection by Robert Morse, simultaneously menace and mastermind.
I have selected one of the lesser tunes from the production for the occasional music to this article. It’s called simply “Coffee Break”, and you should go to any search engine now to listen to it. It’s about how the absence of coffee — and therefore the coffee break — raises more anxiety and lamentation than a plague of locusts and completely stops the whole company, convinced that the end of the world as they know it is at hand. Oh, my! So much grief for one missed cuppa. However, the real shock is not that the coffee was late for the company coffee break, no indeed; the real shock is that more time, trouble, energy, irritation, and anger was expended on this event than on anything else that entire day… including the company’s business they were hired to transact…until the outrage about the coffee break was surpassed by certain stale items on the lunch menu… thereby diverting everyone’s outspoken attention to this even greater snafu.
The sad part is that this kind of ludicrous “crisis” and massive waste of time does not occur solely or exclusively on Madison Avenue or in Broadway shows… it is most likely the way you are running your “business” and why it doesn’t prosper.
That’s why today, I am going to put you and your “business” under the most minute scrutiny, the better to help you understand that your business, as you currently organize and run it — cannot make the desirable profits of your imagination… until such time as you rethink everything — absolutely everything — so that the focus of your energy and action every day is NOT the coffee break… but actually doing BUSINESS. And as this analysis develops right before your very eyes, you are most likely to be chagrined, embarrassed, and horrified – and that’s just for openers.
On the acute need to perceive what you are really doing every single day.
You say you are in business, correct? You say you want substantial, increasing profits, correct? You say you are a hard worker; indeed that the sun never sets on all the work you do, the tasks done, the challenges confronted, correct?
In short you are about as swift, intelligent, able and valuable a business person as business has ever seen and that your DNA should be donated to the nation so that generations yet to come may have the benefit of you and your unmatched business expertise and execution.
You, of course, are even now nodding your head in sage agreement with this flawless description of you and your business acumen. Modest though you are, you cannot but admit that you are the very paragon and model sketched above… just like Kansas City, you’ve gone about as far as you can go.
It is this proposition swallowed hook, line and sinker by the overwhelming majority of business owners of every kind that keeps you trapped in a business that doesn’t grow, expand, prosper and that does not make and will never make the profits you consistently and repeatedly say are the reason you are in business to get and enjoy.
YOU and your business under our microscope.
Now, it’s time to knuckle down to the important, sure-to-be-shocking analysis of what you do during your “business hours”… for you cannot improve your business until you know precisely what you do and precisely when you do it.
Business is about two things and two things only…
Quick! Can you guess what they are? The correct answer is 1) the generation of qualified prospects and 2) contacting these prospects, making them the most lavish, persuasive offer ever, then closing the deal forthwith. This is the two- step dance that keeps you in business, expands your business, and leads to money, money, money… yours, all yours.
Now let’s see just what percentage of your average day focuses on these two key points… and what percentage of your business day goes to anything but these two essential tasks.
You’ll need a pad, a watch, and total honesty.
To make this crucial scrutiny work, you will need to be clear about what you do, when you do it, and how long it takes to do it. In other words, you must start by creating a detailed picture of your average business day… and why it either works to produce the prospect leads and orders you need… or why it doesn’t. Give this essential project which can launch the most profitable epoch for your business your fullest attention. Nothing will come of this project unless you are careful, thorough, and complete.
Your first task is to list all the things you do during your average business day. These will include but will certainly not be limited to
* all breaks, kind and duration;
* non-business related telephone and other communications;
* time spent “surfing” the Web, especially at sites unsuitable for visits during business hours;
* gossip with friends and co-workers;
* writing ad copy;
* creating offers that make sales;
* time on the telephone etc where you connect with prospects, and either upgrade them to be qualified prospects, or close them by making sales.
Get the picture? What you’re trying to do is this: show yourself in unanswerable detail what you do on the average day that has absolutely nothing to do with the identification and closing of prospects… and how much time and effort you expend generating prospects and closing them.
Reforms must follow identification of what you are doing wrong, over and over again.
Chances are, you will be shocked and abashed by what you discover, for instance now seeing that you spend far more time surfing the Web and gossiping on the phone than you do on that same phone contacting prospects and closing deals. Such pernicious reality must be dealt with at once, for it is costing you money every single day.
Start today.
Do you care whether your business succeeds or fails? Do you care whether you make more money than less? Do you care whether the limited time you have on this planet is transformed into the maximum amount of coin of the realm, and so serenity, security, satisfaction?
That is why you must do this necessary exercise, and do it today. For you see, succeeding in business without really trying makes a dandy theme for a witty musical… but can in no way be regarded as a truth to build your ever more prosperous business by. That truth will be vividly apparent to you as you implement the recommendations of this important article.
*** We invite you to post your comments to this article below.

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