Wednesday, 13 May 2020

How To Boost Sales Results In a Poor Market

Copyright Henry James, www.propertycopy.co.uk 2020
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When things are tough businesses need to look at ways to take what they already have and make more from them.

This week's blog and the next few blogs will look at a few simple examples of how with no money needed you can boost responses from what you do. 

Whether you have a product or service just think about how you could apply the observations below to your business or situation. Let's get started:

Angles and Dimensions 

When you take on a  new property, or doing a home visit for a buyer client, you check measurements and sizes, You help paint the picture for the client or a prospective buyer using some specifics

You need to do the same with your copy - but in this case, your dimensions are:

  • your client's frustrations, their worries, and their desires 
  • your service or product features and the benefits they provide BUT you need to focus on the end benefit the user of your service or product will get = not the nitty-gritty of the technical spec of what you offer. 
  • Focus on the "Before" then focus on the "Afters" - not in the sense of most writers but how the user will emotionally FEEL after they have had the benefit of what you do or offer
  • specifics - make sure you are very specific about the end benefit they get
  • How do you REALLY add value to the user's life - decide that and dimensionalise it - make it real
  • Will what you offer, or what your service or product does make the user more efficient? Will it save them money? Is it cheaper than what they do now or from what a competitor offers? Will it make their life easier than they have it now? 
  • And for each one of those how much will it save them, how much more efficient were they: i.e "Before using xyz credit chasing system we were losing £1500 of payments a day that should have been in our bank account, not theirs. Now that we use ABC service we not only get that £1500 a day of delayed invoicing but have also made production gains of £200 a day on top, a more responsive client base to payment demands, and can recycle our cash more quickly." 
  • Just saying they "save money" no longer seems strong enough does it?
  • In the words one of the greatest modern copywriters, if not all time, sadly deceased this year, Clayton Makepeace, you have to connect the benefit to the "deepest resident emotion" i.e. how will your user personally FEEL after they have enjoyed your service or product benefit? 
  • It's a difficult one to get right but if you do you will benefit by responses: increases of 2x, 4x even 25x what you may be used too. 

Which brings me to the "Angles" part....


To get the right dominant emotion, you have to really understand your audience. Here are just a few examples of the types of things you need to know about your target audience:

  • What keeps them awake at night?
  • What do they know today they did not know yesterday?
  • If we were here in three years time what would have had to have changed to make them feel they have accomplished something in those 3 years compared to where they are now?
  • Age?
  • Occupation?
  • Their commonest fear?
  • Their strongest desire?
  • Their experiences of being to what you do, your competitors do?
  • Salary Brackets?
  • What do they read?
  • What do they watch?
  • What fears do they have about moving home?
  • Then you can create an "avatar" - a framework of your ideal customer.

Then you write your promotion, your video sales letter, your sales copy to that ONE person.

We all know the sales interview questions when the interviewer takes out a pen or pencil and asks the potential recruit to "sell them" the pen or pencil.

90% of salespeople will describe what they see rather than discover how it will be used i.e. they do not explore the "angles" relating to their prospect.
i.e. First Candidate: it has 5 sides.
As opposed to the Second Candidate:
Q: Where would you use it? A: On a train, in a cafe between appointments, on a plane Q: So, as this pen/pencil has five sides that means it will be very difficult for it to roll off the table or any foldable tray on a plane or train journey, so you won't have to embarrassingly fumble around for it, something I am sure you would find useful, right? A: yes...
Then you would move to the next feature and benefit you uncover.

Now, there may be lots of different features about what you and your business specifically do that give different benefits to your end-user. You have to decide which ones should take priority and relay those to your target audience by giving it and angle and a dimension.

If you get your "Angles" right and get your dimensions right too, your sales efforts, in print, video or face to face will be massively rewarded.

Until next time.....
Henry James



Tuesday, 21 April 2020

Experience Management - How is Yours?

Copyright www.propertycopy.co.uk. All rights reserved. 2010-2020. Feel free to publish or include any of these posts in your site, e-zine, or offline materials BUT you cannot charge for them, and MUST leave this copyright notice above attached. For more information on our services email info@propertycopy.co.uk or visit the website www.propertycopy.co.uk

Experience Management - How is Yours?

Over the last few weeks I have been out and about again (as well as helping a new start up with a fantastic product for home sellers), and consolidating some areas of my own works [as per last post]. 

If, like me, you are busy, then your "downtime" is very precious, not something you donate freely or without some forethought, especially if it costs money to do so. 

When I have some downtime I tend to go somewhere I know I will not have any hassle - a growing trend I have discovered, partly due to daily stresses and partly due to the lesssons of the last recession where you only spend money on sure things - where the "known is known" and also to be applied when we are back in a post Covid world. 

So, let's look at a business that needs to boost its "Experience Management".

It started with a recently taken over UK Hotel Chain - but we did not know that at the time of booking.

The Trigger? My anniversary.  

Location: Brighton
Summary: SABENA (Sodding Awful Bloody Experience Never Again). 

Where to start on this one.....I will not bore you with all the details. Four Star Hotel (allegedly).
Booked months in advance. Clever up sell on the 'phone. My wife took a sea view room, as a result. We arrived in Brighton early to take advantage of the Hotel Car Park for the day.

Dumped the cases and the car. Went to lunch at English's...3rd time, excellent. Walked around Brighton. Beautiful day. Returned to Hotel to our "Premium" Sea View room .....couldn't see the sea view without looking through a mist of dirt, grime, and coastal bird pooh!  Complaint #1 as that was to cost us an extra £75 for each night. 

12.30 a.m. There was such a rowdy crowd out the front from the Hotel's own bar so no chance of sleep, even on the 3rd floor. Time for a room change Complaint #2 (got to sleep @ 01.45!)

Breakfast next morning: 5-7 minute wait just for milk and juice at the buffet and no one to serve/ask for tea or coffee 'til we prompted. Seated under shelving full of months old dead plants. Oh well, just grin and bear it. We just want a nice anniversary. 

Walked to Brighton Marina (pouring rain) then had lunch, coffee, walked to Hove (had fantastic ice cream at Marrocco's - look it up if you are on the Front). Back to Hotel. 

To make amends the hotel had left us, as agreed, some Champagne (except it was Sparkly White, not the Champagne, they said it would be.... hey ho!). Unfortunately [lack of detail to check] for them and us, they left it in a leaking champagne bucket so not only did we not have Champagne, the wine was luke warm and we had a nice wet, dripping chest of drawers! Thankfully having changed rooms we did not have any clothes in the Chest of Drawers, they were still in the case.

The next morning for breakfast: still the same dead plants, but we did not have to wait for the milk or juice, but did get an extra bonus in my cereal of Muesli - a nice chunk of chipped china that nearly cracked my tooth.  

And when we came to check out because of the room changes - we ended up with two bills to pay in the end - our pre authorised card did not follow us... so after a further 3/4 hour wait at check out until that was resolved. 

Needless to say, they failed on virtually every TouchPoint imaginable. Even though we were offered a FREE night there is no way we will be going back. 

The moral of this little tale is to make sure in your business you have a "touchpoint plan" to make sure that whether you have a client giving the most wonderful testimonial or a customer like me where they failed at every level imaginable to put right what went wrong, that you have a plan for it. 
Until next time, Henry. 
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About the Author:

Henry James is an adviser, copywriter, author, marketer and consultant in the fields of Sales Staff Training, Staff Profiling and Performance Enhancement, Marketing Training and Marketing Strategy and Tactical Development i.e. he helps companies like yours make more money!



Tuesday, 14 October 2014

TouchPoints Of Choice

Copyright Henry James, www.propertycopy.co.uk.All rights reserved. 2010-2020. Feel free to publish or include any of these posts in your site, e-zine, or offline materials BUT you cannot charge for them, and MUST leave this copyright notice attached. For more information on my services email info@propertycopy.co.uk

TOUCHPOINTS 

In the summer holiday [2014] I had a "light bulb" moment which made me realise my successes had all stemmed from the same thing, that, no matter what my job title had been; solving problems clients and employers had had with client service, sales, or account management issues was what I was best at.

Yes I had sales and marketing director titles, yes I had operational roles but it was the ideation, the restoration and finishing and closing a myriad of loops to create a better process that I succeeded at best, especially in smaller, new firms or those with a specific "one-off" big issue in larger firms.

Since 1994 I have provided services to employers and client firms large and small covering:
  • Video Marketing
  • Mobile Marketing
  • Internet Marketing
  • Customer Experience Management
  • Sales Recruitment
  • Sales Timing Strategy Training
  • Thinking Improvement with Axiological Profiling
  • Group Move Management
  • Marketing and Sales advice to Destination Service Providers and Relocation Management Firms
  • Copywriting
  • Content Creation, Email Campaigns. 

However, my little 2014 epiphany was the realisation I gained boosts in results, account management and sales by taking each key decision "moment" a buyer, customer, relocatee or employee may make and turning that into a positive move to contact, talk too and buy from my clients business or act in a different way.

As a result of that epiphany, I have felt incredibly energised and incredibly focused on making sure each one of those "TouchPoints Of Choice", those crucial seconds of a potential customers abandonment - or spend - worked in favour of the companies I work with.

I have now engineered all the key elements of what I do into one integrated approach to business improvement called TouchPoint1*.

Those of you that know me have often commented: Sean you have "too many plates spinning", or "doing too many different things at once".

This new approach has all stemmed from now knowing my sense of place, what I am really here for!

I now know where I can add value to a prospect's business, how I can help them improve every decision moment, every TouchPoint they have internally and externally with every potential buyer and current customer they have and every member of staff they have to help them deliver 1st class service, sales and customer experience. The TouchPoint1 framework can be applied, when appropriate, with all the other aspects of www.propertycopy.co.uk

If that makes sense with those of you that know me, let me know.

And if that makes sense to you and know anyone who could do with that kind of help it would be helpful for both them and me to know about each other, so do your bit and connect us together!

Until next time,
Henry
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About the Author:
Henry James is an adviser, copywriter, author, marketer and consultant in the fields of Sales Staff Training, Staff Profiling and Performance Enhancement, Marketing Training and Marketing Strategy and Tactical Development i.e. he helps companies like yours make more money!

Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Fully Mobile? Fully Video?

UPDATE.........UPDATE.........UPDATE

Copyright Henry James. www.properycopy.co.uk All rights reserved. 2010-2020. Feel free to publish or include any of these posts in your site, e-zine, or offline materials BUT you cannot charge for them, and MUST leave this copyright notice attached. For more information on our services email info@propertycopy.co.uk

Well, as you can see from my last post, it has been a while :-) since the last visit......been very busy.....and delighted to announce the fruit of all those labours. 

So.....net result is as follows: 

Have You Gone Fully Mobile Yet? 

Mobile is growing rapidly and a service needed by every local and not so local business. We have added a full Mobile Web Site Development Platform to our service range. 

We can provide either:  
   [A] "Done For You (DFU)" Services where we do everything for you, and create your mobile web site, or mobile landing page, or
   [B] "Do It Yourself (DIY)", where you can access our complete platform and create, via a password protected area, your own "Do It Yourself (DIY)" Mobile web sites and landing pages. 

If you don't know why you should have specific "landing pages" for your business then give me a ring to discover why you should. The system comes with a total CMS [Content Management System] and you create and manage your own mobile web site and SMS. 

Just click the logo below to go and have a look. Note we have not gone the "mobile responsive template" Wordpress route many others are advocating with this service, as we perceive, ultimately, people like Google will not view those the way they do now in terms of rankings.

www.mobileplatformpro.co.uk
Our Video Offering Has Been Spun Out and has a new home of its own: 

As you will see from a couple of the blogs below I have been advocating the use of Video for quite a few years [since well before 2009 but only wrote about it then]. This year, 2014, I have decided to put my money where my mouth is and have created a JV with a past client where we provide a whole range of Video services to my core market - businesses in the property sector. 

Its called PropertyVideoTV. Just click the image to go and have a look. If you would like Video working for your property business just give me call direct on 01635 917373 or the number on the site.
www.propertvideotv.co.uk


In Conclusion: It is not usual for me to "self promote" our services via the blog, as it is intended to be a hints and tips and advice channel but, we have made so many changes over the last 24 months it was time to update everyone and let you know where we are and what we are up to. 

Normal service on hints, tips, advice and other experiences will be resumed at the end March 2014. 

Until then we will be very busy with bedding in PropertyVideoTV and MobilePlatformPro.  And, if you need any sales, copy, marketing, recruitment, web tools, web marketing or of course, mobile or video services, you know where I am. 

Until next time, 
Henry.
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About the Author:
Henry James is an adviser, copywriter, author, marketer and consultant in the fields of Sales Staff Training, Staff Profiling and Performance Enhancement, Marketing Training and Marketing Strategy and Tactical Development i.e. he helps companies like yours make more money!



Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Focus and Systems

Don't forget this is a sales and marketing blog, with tips, ideas, comments and observations to monster up your business. Feel free to publish or include any of these posts in your site, e-zine, or offline materials BUT you cannot charge for them, and MUST leave this copyright notice above attached. Copyright Henry James, www.propertycopy.co.uk

DO YOU HAVE A "WORD SYSTEM" THAT GETS YOU MORE PROFIT?

Large and small, new or old, if you ain't got systems you don't have a scalable or value making business - especially word systems.

If you don't pay as much attention to the "word" systems in your business as your IT systems, I can guarantee you are missing out on £££ that should be yours. And, as you may approach any future exit, whether that be tomorrow or in 10 years, the cumulative effect means you will get much, much less for your business when you sell up and exit it than if you did.

Systems for - verbal, behavioural, presentational, written, web, face to face interactions.

Take McDonald's. Take KFC......where they can get inexperienced staff following a system, and in each case have created multi-billion £ businesses. Systems.

Ahhhh you say, they are food franchises - you can't apply that type of structure to my business!?

Well, that's one view you can take. BUT....focussing on word systems can boost the real value of your business - whatever your business.

If you have a full range of word systems in your business I guarantee they will:
a) make you more money NOW and
b) they will make you higher multiples of those higher amounts on your p/e ratio when you sell and exit.

Word Systems - What do we mean? 

If you take in-bound phone calls, whether you run a dental surgery or vets, from a legal firm to an estate agent, an MOT centre to the main dealer garage, from the florist to the landscaper, the nail bar to the new bar down the road, every single "touchpoint" of your business is a sale point.

That "sale" may simply be the very 1st impression of your brand, it may mean a X-sell, an upsell, a down-sell, on any one of the many touchpoints your business has every day with your clients, suspects, prospects.

If you serve tables, staff shown the best words and ways to sell an extra dessert, bottle of wine, champagne or other food, or a "today's special", will make you more money.

Fortunes can be made from key phrases, key behaviours, key processes and systems of how you present your business, and your sales message, your product or service to the world. For example, one simple change in how a property firm managed a "lull" in its in-home presentations boosted conversion by double. A simple change of two words boosted the results of forecourt item sales by 250%.

For "personality" driven businesses, where prospects/clients want a specific person to look after them (law/accounting/agency/health etc), or where a figurehead drives the business day to day unless you replace reliance on that one individual with a carefully crafted "system" your business has no scalability and you damage its true potential value.

To maximise the exit value of your business focus on scalable, repeatable, teachable systems

Systems and processes - verbal, behavoural, presentational, written, web, face to face that are scalable, repeatable, and teachable are very profitable, and will massively boost your business success.

Think of how your staff use WORDS, word patterns, repetition patterns, greeting patterns, handle buyer remorse, handle complaints and so much more.

Imagine what a boost your profits would get if all your sales staff were like your stellar performers. Patterns, words, materials, techniques, most of which can be taught, get all your sales staff to be consistent - every pitch.

And we are not talking NLP. Nor anything "manipulative", just the right words, delivered in the right way for what you are selling and to whom you are selling it.

Think about it.

Focus on the areas of your business that can most easily be fixed with new words, new patterns, new pathways to scalable, repeatable success. And let me know so we can share them on the blog.
Until next time,
Henry
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About the Author:
Henry James is an adviser, copywriter, author, marketer and consultant in the fields of Sales Staff Training, Staff Profiling and Performance Enhancement, Marketing Training and Marketing Strategy and Tactical Development i.e. he helps companies like yours make more money! 

Friday, 6 May 2011

Teachers & People in Whitecoats

Copyright Henry James, www.propertycopy.co.uk.All rights reserved. 2011-2020. Feel free to publish or include any of these posts in your site, e-zine, or offline materials BUT you cannot charge for them, and MUST leave this copyright notice attached. For more information on our services email info@propertycopy.co.uk

AUTHORITY, AUTHORITY, AUTHORITY

I arrived, worried, concerned, what would it be like?

Then the introductions started. This is Mr. Janes, this is Mr. Holmes, this is Ms. French......

These people were all experts in their field....initial impressions suggested they should all be respected.

But....Ms. French and Mr. Holmes...well they had knowledge, but they lacked authority.

They were poor in the totality of their craft. Mr. Janes, on the other hand, had full control of his subject matter, and more importantly, his end-users - me and my friends and new classmates.

He entertained, advised, informed and told us what to do, and told us what we could not do too.

That was, well, 41years ago [at time of writing] when I first went to secondary school. But why did it crop up today?

I took one of my cars in for an MOT and walked back through town. As I did so, on the bridge, under which I was passing, I thought I saw Mr. Janes [it wasn't him but that does not matter for this blog]. As I walked along my thoughts turned to: Why "Mr. Janes" and not "Derek", his Christian name.

There I was, at 52, still referring to someone by the title they had when I was at school. Why did my memory take me straight back to his "authority"?

As usual, I started to think of that in marketing terms.

Authority [using someone else's analogy] is:

"We all walk around looking for someone, or somewhere to plug our umbilical cords into".

Most people react well to authority, to someone looking out for them, giving them not just advice, but what to do with that advice and how to apply it.

The same may apply when you go the hospital, or respond to men and women in uniform. You respond to authority, or perhaps in rebellion against authority.

Authority or rebellion are at opposite ends of the spectrum but either could be a positioning strategy for your business - depending on what you do.

Robert Cialdini refers to it in "Influence - Science & Practice", as do Ries & Trout in 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing (Law 3 The Battle Of The Mind, Law 4 The Law Of Perception) and Ries & Ries in the 22 Immutable Laws of Branding (Law 6 - Credentials) as does Jay Abraham when talking of his "Pre-Eminence Strategies".

So, the question is: What are YOU doing to make you, or your business, the "Go To Authority" for your market of service:
a) have you thought about your "authority" as opposed to your competitions?
b) have you thought of the stages you will adopt to get from where you are now to where you want to be in the authority stakes?
c) have you thought about which platforms (networking/seminars/webinars/book/newsletters/direct mail/email etc etc) you will use and how you will use them to be seen as "The Authority" on your chosen subject matter?
d) are there JV channels you can go down to do the same?

There are many ways you need to think of and apply, to be the business, firm or service, people come flocking too.

So, think of the teacher that made you respect them, what environment they created to earn that long-lasting, infallable respect, then think how you can create long-lasting, infallable respect in you and your business.

Think of brands or suppliers you see as "the Authority". Ask yourself why you see them that way and how could you emulate what they do for your business.  And let me know if it makes a difference.

Until next time, happy marketing,
Henry.
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About the Author:
Henry James is an adviser, copywriter, author, marketer and consultant in the fields of Sales Staff Training, Staff Profiling and Performance Enhancement, Marketing Training and Marketing Strategy and Tactical Development i.e. he helps companies like yours make more money!

Thursday, 24 March 2011

What's stopping you?

Copyright Henry James, www.propertycopy.co.uk.All rights reserved. 2010-202020. Feel free to publish or include any of these posts in your site, e-zine, or offline materials BUT you cannot charge for them, and MUST leave this copyright notice above attached. For more information on our services email info@propertycopy.co.uk

In a very busy connected, world it is very easy to:

a) get stuck behind your PC or laptop and/or use it as a barrier to actually getting some real work done
b) allow "things" to get in the way - people, minor events, distractions - all of which lead to days where you wonder "where did that day go!"

If you end up feeling that way more than once a week you have a problem "habit" - and a bad habit at that. It means you have programmed yourself to work in such a way that you stifle your own productivity....and you are allowing the behaviour of others to dictate what you do too.

Actually bad for them (yes really) and potentially very bad for you.

So...what can you do to get "time" back and get more action out of your day?

1. Do not change anything....yet

2. For the next 2 weeks write down what you spend time on and how long, who interrupts you, what with, what priority it a) appeared to have and b) in reality, it really had,  and for how long...and how you "feel" at the end of each day, about each day - both about the goals you did achieve and those you missed and the effect achieving/missing had on you and others

3. Once the two weeks are over, review each item, give them a ranking of 1,2,3 to 5.....5 being most important in terms of your work objectives

4. See how many low ranking items or disruptions you allowed to take over your priorities, and their impact on you and others - and who from

5. For the next two weeks, for everything you have to do, put it on an item list the night before AND how long you budget, in time, in chunks of 10 minutes, that item will take to do

6. Following those two weeks:
a) you will now have a better handle on what has disrupted you
b) who to manage better to stop them disrupting your goals
c) the effect if you succumb on you and others, both in measurable and emotional terms
d) better item time management so you can actually get more done.....and lastly
e) if you chunk together similar items to do at the same time...it makes things much easier.

7. You will also see what to delegate out to someone else that is better suited to manage that work/person.

Sounds like a right pain I know, needs the discipline to do but, those 6 weeks will probably make you 30-40% more productive, more assertive and get you much better results for the remaining 46 weeks of the year - what a difference that could make.

In summary:
  • Don't do things that take you away from your goals.
  • Don't allow others to "put upon" you as that disrupts your goals and they can only do that going forward, after you have read this because you let them - don't.
  • Let me know how you get on.
Now....just go do it. Til next time,
Henry
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About the Author:
Henry James is an adviser, copywriter, author, marketer and consultant in the fields of Sales Staff Training, Staff Profiling and Performance Enhancement, Marketing Training and Marketing Strategy and Tactical Development i.e. he helps companies like yours make more money!