April 1

57 Ways To Take Control Of Your Time And Your Life

57-ways-book

This is a book review of Jim Meisenheimer’s book 57 Ways to Take Control of Your Time and Your Life.   What a long title, but the book remains succinct in length.

I like how the author redefines time management in this book.  He puts it in a different perspective.  You can not manage time, but you can manage yourself to be more efficient with the use of time.

I really didn’t expect much but a list of tactics used to improve your productivity however this book does more than that.  It goes beyond tactics and includes some strategy, guidelines, and scenarios.  A typical book includes a lengthy introduction, history, inspirations, anecdotes, and even fluff that’s off tangent.  This book does not – it is succinct with almost every page being noteworthy.  It is actually better than a few longer productivity books I could not get into such as “Getting Things Done” by David Allen.

Even though this book focuses around sales talk it is useful for speeding up your day-to-day accomplishments. You’ll find tips  on better planning, delegation, productive traveling, directives, talking with prospects, and semantics.

January 15

Integrate PayPal Button with Contact Form in WordPress

my-wordpress-logo

[UPDATE: 04/01/2015 Paypal re-direct revision. Added test form with auto-redirect after form submission.]
[UPDATE: 10/26/2013 Addition of the ‘on_set_ok’ action handler for the “Additional Settings” section.]

This is a tutorial I wrote to demonstrate how you can add a PayPal button to a WordPress site by integrating it with a contact form.

It works by allowing the visitor to submit a form and having the Paypal button appear automatically. The updated version, re-directs to your paypal payment page instead.

I’ve seen too many websites that offer a service with no request from the user and only a payment.  We know you want to get paid for your service, but most likely you need some input from a client. This is how to improve your payment process.

The requirements are: WordPress, Contact 7 form plug-in, and PayPal.
Continue reading

December 31

Essential Tips for Closing Cold Calls

make me feel important

MOTIVATION

This is the important word that comes to mind when thinking of sales.  I’m writing this article on my journey of really getting to know the sales approach.  The “Go Getters” are good people.  People change their state of mind frequently but there is always hunger for more.  If the product is just right and I can find a market to desire it, I can sell it.

Focusing on the positive things determines the outcome of your sales calls.  You truly want and should have the desire to help people. Feeling this way you and your voice will be congruent thus improving your chances of a sale.  Do not think you will sale just to make money.  This will come through your conversation as a sign of desperation.  Make all your calls with this frame of mind to build integrity and momentum.  Even though your energy might drop, the next sale will come just at the right moment to feel refreshed.

If you feel queasy from initiating contact with strangers then it’s going to take practice.  Say to yourself “I will find the right people to hear me out and they will like talking to me.”  That’s the first step to get your mind focused and DO SAY it out LOUD.  Write your pitch before your calls and make notes between pauses to listen to the prospect on their reaction.  Think of selling as problem solving. I have been told my voice is monotone, but nonetheless the information I present gets heard and sticks when I mention what it’s worth.

Don’t talk to people who are not looking for improvement, because they will only criticize you. Your outcome should be the result you’re trying to achieve.  Just remember the formula because anything can happen during a sale that can interrupt your thought process.

Here’s the formula: Quick Self Intro > Acknowledge The Challenge > Identity with Your Prospect > Offer the Solution

In this order you will built rapport with your prospect to understand him/her.  It places your communication on the same page so the prospect opens up to a free flowing conversation.

 

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December 13

Necessary Strategic Sales Objectives You Need To Know

When thinking about commerce the World Can Be Flat such as the book by Thomas Friedman.  However in sales I recommend starting to reach out for prospects locally than reach further out.  I say this because it’s likely you believe “word of mouth” is the best type of marketing.   It’s is the social proof that people follow.

Newspapers and media are the second most powerful driver of commerce at the local level.  Even though tactics work to makes sales by numbers, you as the producer will want to focus on strategy.  This is long-term thinking but if you are the “sell-and-bail” type forget about strategy.  The majority of people also think in the present for that quick and easy satisfaction.  Remember that you create rapport and loyalty with strategy which increases your customer retention. Continue reading

December 3

Why Education-Based Marketing Sells

Why use education-based marketing sells is because today just about anyone can research a product before buying it.

In the old days you had to trust the salesman because they knew most about the product and there was no access to internet.  The only resource you had is knowing someone who already bought what you wanted.

Years ago I’ve actually thought that marketing was lame and useless because whenever you had the desire to find something just search for it (google it).  A great product (or service) should sell itself, right?  But what if nobody hears about it? And how is your target audience going to find it in a massively competitive market?   So marketing is actually crucial.

Many people go about marketing the wrong way and that’s why 80% of new businesses fail.  The ones that cold call and direct mail asking people directly to buy their product/service have the lowest conversion rate and put us (consumers) in a defensive and resistant mindset even though we may benefit from what they actually have to offer.  These are tactics used by sales people only to achieve a short-term goal (buy the product).  However, at any given time  only 3% of potential buyers are buying right now.

A strategy is much more important for success, because your line of communication is more effective in reaching your target buyers.  It involves the 7% of people open to the idea of buying and possibly the 30% of people not thinking about it.  Imagine the your services is present, set up and marketed ideally (let’s take the example of Improv training in this scenario).  The 30% of people who are interested but not thinking about it, become interested because they heard about your service from a satisfied friend or saw an ad in business magazine to become a better presenter.

They decide to research your service to find a fantastic up-to-date website with students’ testimonials cheering about how they laughed more in one class than they have all week at their stressful [insert occupation here] job.  Not ready to buy they decide to sign-up for your newsletters which you send out descriptively stating anecdotes how your student Daniel Tosh moved to LA and got a TV job after taking your course.  Another letter explains how Harry became the office manager after improving his speaking skills in your class.

However, that 30% crowd is still unconvinced they should enroll yet, so you put up some video clips of class doing the Sensei game where everyone breaks up in laughter.   Okay, now that crowd wants to buy because they saw that video during their half-hour lunch break, but they don’t have time to drive to the stage and pay because of their busy schedule. Neither do they know if the class is full, but scrolling down the website, they notice a big “register” and pay button.  So they pay online and are thrilled to experience the benefits which await them.

In the end you’ve achieved success by tripling your 3% of “buy now” people to 9% or even greater.