Get to know your value and communicate consistently for amazing sales results!

how-to-be-successful

 

This week, I had a coaching session with a client, who is using Kjiji to advertise and promote his mobile auto repair business…

Now, I am not knocking Kjiji, but…the customers that were inquiring about his services were all about price, They were bargain hunters, bottom line.

Here is how to sift through bargain hunters and it is pretty simple and not time consuming, just ask what their budget is?

What would they like to spend?

Once you get an answer you can decide to take the deal or perhaps, you need to educate them on your value and why your price may be a bit higher.

In this clients case, he comes to your location and can fix you car. That to me is worth the convenience alone. He does good work plus he has to do some pretty hard lifting…getting dirty, or underneath the car, making accurate assessments, ensuring the job and your safety is taken care of…all of these factors or benefits go into his price.

Your job as a business owner is to know what it is that you bring to the table or to know what the key benefits are.

When you can share them with the client in a way that educates and informs, I can almost guarantee, that your client will have an “Aha” moment and see the value in what you do and may pay the price you are asking and deserve.

Simply, ask what the client’s budget is, then assess, and share the benefits of what it is you do.

One other key to negotiating is to truly know your business. know your competitors, know what they charge, (Competitors), assess the pain your clients are in as well.

If you understand what your competitors charge, you can share that information and then go back to the benefits of what it is you do and ask the client if your offering and price seems fair.

If you can assess the costs of the pain or challenge your client is facing, you can ask that is your price relative to their needs, pain and challenge, that they must solve or fix is worth the price you are charging.

When costing or pricing issues come up with your clients, always remember your value…

Value is the sum of your benefits.

In business terms, there are 4 key benefits to focus on.

1. Service benefits. What are the benefits of your service?

2. Product benefits. What do your products do for those that buy it? What matters to your customers in terms of both your product or service?

3. Brand Benefits…is there a benefit in the brand? If you are looking for an example, think of Heinz ketchup, the benefit is the taste, the consistency…you would be hard pressed to go to the grocery store and buy, No name, Hunts, and E.D. Smith, brands…however, French’s ketchup is grabbing market share away from Heinz, especially in Canada, since they make it in Canada.

4. Relationship benefits…what is the thought in your customers mind when it comes to you? A good example of a relationship benefit is the TD Bank. Remember those 2 older guys in their commercials a few years ago? Wow…did they drive home the relationship benefit or what?

You knew, the TD bank was open late, then on Saturdays and then on Sundays too!!! What is the bank doing opening on a Sunday? In my day, it was closed!

As a customer if you needed the bank to go to on hours you need, well you had a trust that the TD bank would be open when you needed it to be!

If you are scratching your head about understanding the benefits of your offering, look at these 3 areas for inspiration.

  1. Past success stories with your clients. What results have you helped your clients achieve? Ask them, they will tell you why they bought from you and how you helped them.
  2. Industry data. Let’s say you are in a certain industry. Your trade association will have data and reports on the impact your industry has in the marketplace, Be a student of your industry and share that information with your clients, For example a home organizer or office organizer can save the average small business owner 9 days a year from not wasting their time looking for lost files and paperwork. Each industry trade association should have this kind of information for you to use in your marketing and sales messaging!
  3. Knowing what is you do to help a client and get clear on the outcomes your clients get after they have used your goods or services…also, know your own personal story and how it relates to what it is you do. Why did you get into this business? Why should your clients buy from you? What makes you better, cheaper, faster or more unique? Get to understand yourself.

So, the next time you get into a discussion on price. Get educating the client as to what it is you bring to the table, How you help, How it works? That is a major learning point as I close this post. When you can clearly state, “This is how it works” and share what it is you do in terms of the process that you go through when you work with a client, all of a sudden your value and worth go way up.

In your mind, the “This is how it works” isn’t even worth talking about, because we take for granted what we do for the customer, because it is so easy for us. It comes naturally.

But, when you break it down for the customer, and share openly as to how it works and why it works, your customer will have a different understanding of you, what it is you do and how you get them from point a…to point b.

Next time, don’t haggle over price, but be clear as to what you bring to the client and how it works and they will now know that the price your asking is so well worth it!

Happy Selling!

Cheers/David

Bio

David is an author, business coach and facilitator and was the former host/producer and creator of the Small Business Big Ideas Show heard weekly for over 9 years. David has taught thousands over the years in both the non-profit and for profit sectors and has coached hundreds of start-ups to make those important first steps. He specializes in teaching the 8 Keys to Success, How I got to Kiss the Stanley Cup and his new keynote called “A breakthrough-through the glass”- how to overcome the fear, plus he leads workshops in sales, marketing, market research, business plans, target marketing and customer service programs.

5 things you need to do to have Great Results at anything you do!

how-to-be-successful

 

Last month, I did the Walk for Memories, to support the Alzheimer Society of Toronto…I do this walk for a few reasons, one is that my late mom had Alzheimer’s, two is it is in January, it is an indoor 2 kilometers walk, it is not that strenuous…in fact my walk to get to the Metro Convention Center, from St. Andrew subway station was maybe just as long!

 

 

 

Pre-walk events at the 2017 Walk for Memories Event:

 

16252550_10154822184576745_4106912471957644575_o

 

I also do it to break up the winter blahs, it gets you out, socializing and doing something good in our community!

The walk happened on Saturday January 28th, from 10:30-11:30 with a registration and some festivities ahead of that, that began at 9 am.

When I set out to do the walk back in December, I did a couple of things that I would like to share with you today.

One was I set a goal, a fundraising goal. I had a goal of $500.00…

The key part to the goal was once it was in place, just put it out there and let go. I canvassed everyone I knew, that were good friends or family and work colleagues to donate. Some people in those circles came through and of course others did not, due to personal issues, or perhaps they are “giving fatigued”.

The key is to ask, ask, ask…

But in the end, the goal was surpassed. I had raised $770.00

They key is to have fun with the goal, lose the attachment and maybe, just maybe you have to remind people a few times.

 

The other key success factor in making good things happen is to have a buddy. I walked with my good friend and colleague, (Bob), he too walked in honour of his mom. He and I walked the walk together, plus we had a friendly fundraising competition between us and we cheered each other on to reach and surpass our goals.

 

One thing asking people for donations did, was it gets you connected to them differently, you can share your story of the connection you must Alzheimer’s and you can thank those that donate.

The other key success factor is make it fun…make any project, goal, challenge fun.

While on the walk route, I was high fiving the volunteers, having fun with them, engaging…

Plus, I was joking with my walking buddy along the way.

 

See the goal in mind, have a buddy to help you through it, make it fun, do it with the right intentions, and I promise you that whatever you want to accomplish you will!

 

So, remember this as I close…to achieve good results, you need to tap into the following recipe for success.

Getting warmed up for the walk at the Walk for Memories Event:

16402870_10154822184571745_5503943944287559885_o

 

 

Goals:

 

Have an end or goal in mind, keep the focus on not only getting to your goal, but surpassing it!

 

Reason:

 

Be clear on your reason! Be clear on the why or the intention of why you are doing something. When you are clear on your why, and you remember that or remind yourself of that, you will overcome the challenges and obstacles much easier…

 

Enjoy the process:

Enjoy the journey! Make it fun, lose the emotional attachment and the notion that you must achieve the goal, but let the goal happen…just be in the state of enjoyment, whether it is work, a project, a challenge…seek to enjoy.

 

Ask for help:

Ask for help…ask for donations, ask for guidance, ask for support…it will make doing the work you need to do a little easier! Or get a buddy, or a team to join you, get that team involved, get an accountability partner to help you through it

 

Thank often:

For those that do help you, for those that do come along your journey, be sure to thank them. The other key people to thank were the volunteers that helped. One of my good friends was a volunteer, he told me he got up at 4 am to be at the Convention Centre for 7:45 am. It is so important to thank those along your journey, not just the people that donate money, but the people that are involved in your work, project, or challenge…

I say, have an “Attitude of Gratitude”!

 

When you add these all up, you get “GREAT” results!
Good luck on what it is you want to achieve in the year, days and months ahead!

Cheers/David Cohen

 

 

 

David is an author, business coach and facilitator and was the former host/producer and creator of the Small Business Big Ideas Show heard weekly for over 9 years. David  has taught thousands over the years in both the non-profit and for profit sectors and has coached hundreds of start-ups to make those important first steps. He specializes in teaching the 8 Keys to Success, How I got to Kiss the Stanley Cup and his new keynote called “A breakthrough-through the glass”- how to overcome  the fear, plus he leads workshops in sales, marketing, market research, business plans, target marketing and customer service programs.

Note: The picture of the mountain climber was taken from Google Images…it’s purpose is to re-inforce successful thinking and not for commercial gain.

Ahh, it is winter and the living is “EASY”

 

beat-back-the-winter-blahs

 

John Lennon once wrote and sang, “Whatever gets you through the night” and as we are now fully into the winter season, I would like to adjust the lyrics to that great song title slightly to this, “Whatever gets you through the winter.”

Let’s face it, winter in Canada or even the Northern West, Central and Eastern parts of the United States, face some tough winters weather wise.

Plus, even though more light is returning, it is still fairly dark out and somewhat cloudier when we do have day light hours.

So, how can we get through this season, With our health, sanity and optimism for spring to arrive still intact?

The answer is EASY…so to speak, here are some life affirming ideas that can help you make it through the night but also the winter season! 

 

Exercise:

To me, one of the key things you must do is to exercise. There are no exceptions, you must exercise, even for 30 minutes a day. Do a walk, ride an indoor stationary bike, stretch, do a yoga or Tai Chi class, swim, just do something to get your heart and endorphins going. Those endorphins help adjust your mood…and you will notice a bit of a high after you have done something physical.

I need to add the importance of eating right too…make sure you eat your veggies and fruits, take your vitamins, watch the carbs or they will be there next summer when you go to the beach and ask yourself, my oh my, how did my legs get larger?

 

 

Assist others-give back:

 

When you give to others, it tends to make you feel good. Do you notice that when someone you help smiles back and thanks you? Isn’t that worth the while? Find a cause that sparks your interest and give some time to others during the winter. (For the rest of the year too)! Do something you have passion for, for example, you can be an assistant hockey coach, mentor youth entrepreneurs, help seniors who need assistance in their day-to-day living, you can help at a hospital, a day care, a non-profit organization to assist the people they serve. Trust me on this though, it does your heart and mood good to give back a little…even a day or half day a month helps someone or an organization so much!

 

 

 

Sleep Get your Rest:

This is vital, especially this year, with a higher than normal flu season, get your rest, make sure your resistance is built up and you aren’t worn down. If you aren’t sleeping soundly, then talk to your doctor and maybe book a sleep study to determine why you aren’t getting enough sleep. I don’t mind a nice nap too on the weekends…it is winter, it is time to hibernate a little and a nap is a mini-hibernation and kind of like a mini-vacation too in a way.

YES! Say yes to 2 new things to start the year!

 

I have a confession to make. I have just said yes to doing two new things this year…one is I registered to take an improv class and my goal in one to three years is to begin to perform improv…even at my age, I believe you must and can have fun and I find the true art of improvising, taps into your creativity, communication skills and helps you learn. I said YES, to taking improv this winter and it starts at the end of January.

I am also saying yes to meeting a friend or colleague once a week (Sunday’s) for coffee. This gets me out of the house and out there…once I am out, I can exercise at the gym, do some errands and yes, I may have to layer up and dress warmly to beat the cold and give old man winter a good “what for”!

Say yes to something new this winter/year and see how your life improves. Challenge yourself to take a course, learn, meet someone you like or love over tea or coffee once a week. Make some social goals easy, fun and part of your week and life!

 

take-life-easy

 

 

Can we make it through winter? YES, we can and it is “EASY”

 

Exercise

 

Assist others

 

Sleep-get your rest

 

YES-say yes to 2 new things (that must be fun)

 

 

 

David is an author, business coach and facilitator and was the former host/producer and creator of the Small Business Big Ideas Show heard weekly for over 9 years. David has taught thousands over the years in both the non-profit and for profit sectors and has coached hundreds of start-ups to make those important first steps. He specializes in teaching the 8 Keys to Success, How I got to Kiss the Stanley Cup and his new keynote called “A breakthrough-through the glass”- how to overcome the fear, plus he leads workshops in sales, marketing, market research, business plans, target marketing and customer service programs.

I am all about having a big vision and being bold, but you may need a dose of reality too!

tap-into-the-field-of-your-dreams-in-2017

Have a Mighty Fine Vision, but be sure to take those little steps along the way

As this new year begins, and you have taken time to set some kick ass goals this year…it is also important to know that although you might have a big vision in store for 2017, that sometimes you have to modify the vision. You just might have to scale back—at least for a little while, especially when you are just starting out.

For example, you might dream of opening a retail gift store but with that comes a lease, inventory, advertising costs, heat, hydro, phone, Internet, packaging supplies—the list of your costs is as long as your right arm.

So, you’ve got to ask yourself if you can afford it all. And if you just can’t then scale back, start smaller, consider a joint venture—team up with someone else who might be open to sharing their space and contacts; they might even be open to sharing the costs of your start-up.

I worked with a business owner who had a big vision to open a gift store but the costs and the challenge of finding a good location were big obstacles to overcome. This client had money to invest (about $35,000) and could obtain financing at a bank but when it came down to the concept for the store or the kinds of gifts she’d focus on she drew blanks.

The coaching she got was to scale back. I suggested she begin smaller. I advised her to begin with a gift basket company that she could run out of her home and steadily build a client base. Once that client base hit a critical mass then she could begin to look for a location for her clients to come to.

A home-based business was still along the lines of her vision but the expenses and risk were much lower. She would have the ability to “grow” into the big vision over time without risking her assets and possibly her confidence.

You see having a vision isn’t all just airy fairy stuff…it’s about tapping into your own inner wisdom to know how far you want to go. Take baby steps, know your risk tolerance, have a plan and set little goals along the way.

Even if you are aiming for a personal goal, like losing weight, you lose a pound a week and guess what? 52 weeks from now is 52 pounds!!!

If you’re driving from one end of the country to the other you don’t expect to get there immediately. You make the trip in with time outs to stop and get a Tim Horton’s coffee along the way, stopping, enjoying the trip and all the towns, the scenery and the people.

What is that question? How do you eat an elephant? (Not that you should)…but you eat one bite at a time!

So for sure, dream big in 2017…but be realistic too…grow into your new goals…stay focused, follow your heart, tap into your joy, take care of today and plan what needs to be done tomorrow…it will all work out, I promise you that!

Now go make 2017 a truly happy new year!

WORKSHOP

Ok, it’s time to do some work…

1.   How can you create time for more balance in your life?

2.   Who can you get to help you with the various aspects of running your business that you don’t really have a passion for or care to do?

3.   Who can mentor you?

4. Who can assist you on those personal goals? Who can help you?

5.   When will you have completed these three things?

BIO:

David is an author, business coach and facilitator and was the former host/producer and creator of the Small Business Big Ideas Show heard weekly for over 9 years. David has taught thousands over the years in both the non-profit and for profit sectors and has coached hundreds of start-ups to make those important first steps. He specializes in teaching the 8 Keys to Success, How I got to Kiss the Stanley Cup and his new keynote called “A breakthrough-through the glass”- how to overcome the fear, plus he leads workshops in sales, marketing, market research, business plans, target marketing and customer service programs.

A new year of success awaits, if you follow these 3 things!

 

 

What goes into being successful in life? To me, a heck of a lot! These days we bump up against so many challenges and curves…so how do we stay on track?

To begin the year with success in mind for 2017 there are 3 ingredients for success to happen for you in your business or work is as follows:

Here are your 3 success strategies to use this new year ahead!

 

 

1. Have a vision and mission…know the outcome and you want to achieve and make a commitment to make it happen. Whatever you do in life, work or in business, know what you want into the future, decide on it, write it down on paper, then visualize it happening and then act on it, do the actions that line up to your vision and mission. For this program that I run, my mission is to make it the best youth entrepreneur program in the City of Toronto!

That is a lofty goal to fill…but then the actions you take to make that happen must co-relate to having that outcome take place. Every action and strategies you do and take on have to come back to the very thing you wish to have happen and to be!

The vision in this case is long term…the vision is really out there and encapsulates the body of your work, life, and what you ideally want to be recognized for after your life, work, business is complete. In this case personally, I live by helping small business owners succeed…whether as the Boomer Business Coach, or as an author or radio show host…and now as a program coordinator for a youth entrepreneurship initiative. It is all about serving entrepreneurs…even these articles and posts are in line with my vision.

What is it that you are up to being in your vision, who do you serve, what is that long term outcome you want to see realized? These are some critical questions to ask yourself.

In terms of the mission, this more about being in the here and now! What do you want the immediate outcome or experience to be like for those that you serve? Then you focus your energy and actions into making your mission come alive!

It could be a mission for a dinner party even…for example you might want all of your guests to enjoy scrumptious food, have fun, connect and leave happy…with that in mind, you will put your love and passion into the food you make, you will create a warm welcoming vibe to make your party and guests feel and be welcome and you will encourage connection and do something fun so that your guests will leave feeling happy…

This is how your mission works…you declare the outcome ahead of time and do the actions that line up to what it is you want to have happen…

Success takes a Village!

 

2. It takes a village. Get a supporting cast around you to help. If you are having a dinner party, you might someone to help clean up, someone to make a good mix CD or download of great music to play in the background, you might need to buy a succulent dessert…or get a great bottle of wine. If it is work related, you need the right people on your team to help make your mission and goals have happen too!

In my case I am so blessed to have great co-workers that add immensely to the success of the program! There are 2 in particular, that totally keep me sustained and supported…but then there are teachers we bring in, volunteers, specialists, to help the program live into the goals and mission we’ve chosen!

If you are in business or at work, make sure you have a good supporting cast. Love them, recognize them, thank them, and treat them well, because you need them as much as they need you!

The third success factor is this…

3. Be in integrity in your work, life and business. For anything in life to happen and come into being, you must lead your life as the true leader you are!

This means doing the actions each day, that have you show up powerfully in your life and work. Be that positive force that you are, be that leader you are, be that successful mission and outcome you are!

Be it! Do it and you will for sure have what you want.

I find when you live in integrity, the bullshit of life disappears! You are focused on what matters and not focused on the drama of life. You may have to make some bold moves to let go of people, things and actions that don’t serve you, that block you from being your best!

Your life may look, very boring and simple. For me personally, I go to bed early and get up early to meditate, give thanks in my gratitude journal and to post my affirmations, then I work in exercise in the morning before I head into work, I am set emotionally, mentally and spiritually for the day!

The focus for me is to serve and do my best to help entrepreneurs…in order for me to do that I need time to myself, my family, social time, lazy time, learning time and then once those various aspects of life have been met, then I am clear to do my work, run my business and make money doing so!

Sometimes, for success to happen

you must be a good self-manager of your life, of your time and can focus on what is most important for you to live a great life.

I break it down into 5 key categories. We all need time to have fun, play and enjoy, so each week or day, set aside some social time, then you need to work or run your business and that is work time!

You then need “you time” I call this “Inner” time…time to learn, pray, meditate, read, this time helps you have balance and calm when life or work gets a bit sticky!

Next, you need time to plan your financials…whether you are in business or work, you always need to look at the financial picture. Whether it be saving for a yacht, or a trip, or cutting up a credit card, or saving for an RRSP…you need to take care of yourself and family and have a financial goal and plan…

The other aspect of your life is the Taking care of part. This is the stuff in life you need to take care of and to me it includes your health family and home.

When you add these up, they spell SWIFT…

You want to live a Swift life! Empowered, balanced, focused, healthy, real and fun!

I have created a SWIFT Chart to help me set my most important goals for the month and stay on track to what matters…

I post up a post it notes (3 of them) under each category and set 3 key goals each month, once that goal has been achieved, I pull of the post it note and then replace it with a new goal or initiative.

You can try this for yourself!

To conclude, for you to be successful, do your best to live life in integrity and do the things that truly matter to you, invest in your life, enjoy your life, keep your life as simple, balanced, meaningful and fun as you can.

Set your mission and vision, live it, do it, make it happen!

Surround yourself with good supports in your life…friends, family, associates, mentors, a mastermind team or an accountability partner.

Then, live your life in integrity…but remember allow for some give and some room to just let loose, the idea of Swift isn’t about being on all the time, sometimes we need to just let go and let loose…it’s called life…but then get back up and on and choose to really live your best life, work and business!

 

Make it a fabulous new year!

 

Happy Holidays…it’s been a while…so here is my gift to you…a list of the fun, free things to do this winter!

 

 

Have a Holly Jolly Season!

 

Hi and Happy Holidays…I wanted to share something with you that hopefully will help you add a little fun and joy all winter through!

If you follow some of my posts you will see that each summer I share a list of the fun free things to do…for those in business for themselves…it is cool to still have fun and not have to break the bank!

For those who work, it’s not a bad idea to save a few dollars and again, still have a good time…

All set? Let’s jump into some fun, free or low cost outings you can do this winter!

I hope you enjoy the list and may you have a great Holiday Season and winter ahead!

Cheers/David

 

 

  1. Free Skating:

You can skate til your heart is content or your toes freeze, at Nathan Phillips Square and Mel Lastman Square all winter for free! Plus there are some other inner city ponds to put the blades to!

Etobicoke’s winding Colonel Samuel Smith Park skateway, the versatile covered rink at Greenwood Park, and the list goes on. Throw in privately-operated surfaces such as the lakefront Natrel Rink at Harbourfront Centre and the pastoral Evergreen Brick Works ice pad, and maybe Hogtown should be re-nicknamed Skate City.

Nathan Phillips Square Skating Rink. Photo by Steven Joniak

 

2. The Canadian Opera Company has a free concert series at Noon or at 5:30 pm…what a nice idea to do in the middle of the day or right after work! From Classical, to Jazz, there are a few music styles to enjoy! For more info Log onto: http://www.coc.ca/PerformancesAndTickets/FreeConcertSeries.aspx

3. Craving greenery? Why not take a stroll through Allan Gardens-Allan Gardens is located on the south side of Carlton Street between Jarvis and Sherbourne Streets. It is accessible from the College TTC station by taking the Carlton streetcar East or from the Sherbourne TTC station by taking the Sherbourne bus South. Limited free parking is available off Horticultural Avenue.

Taken from the City of Toronto Website:

4. What about a stroll to the Distillery District? For the Toronto Christmas Market…

Toronto Christmas Market

Toronto Christmas Market, one of the world’s best Christmas markets, returns to the Distillery Historic District, November 18 to December 22, to bring the spirit of the season to life. Now in its 7th year, Toronto Christmas Market has quickly become the city’s favourite holiday tradition and was ranked among the best Christmas markets in the world by Fodor’s Travel, USA Today and Mashable, among others.

Guests are invited to rediscover the magic and romance of Christmas by taking in stunning light canopies, enjoying unique shopping experiences, traditional music and dance performances, and activities for the whole family to enjoy. Foodies will also have the opportunity to taste traditional European street-style food and delicacies.

Celebrations/Holiday, Family/Children, Food/Culinary, Holiday Events


When: Every Saturday November 22, 2016 – December 22, 2016

Event Time(s): 10:00 am – 10:00 pm

Please note that the Toronto Christmas Market is closed on Mondays. However, the Distillery Historic District is open 7 days a week.

Where: Distillery Historic District

55 Mill St.

 

5. DJ Skate Nights

Toronto’s best winter block party returns again this season! Top local and international DJs rock the Natrel Rink while you skate and dance under the stars. This year, warm up and have a delicious snack or some craft beer rinkside at the new Boxcar Social location. This is happening at Harbourfront Centre…

Skating at Harbourfront-From the Harbourfront Centre website…

 

6. Looking for a fun New Years Eve event? What about a Skate at Harbourfront too!

Count down to the new year with the whole family at DJ Skate Nights: A NYE Ice Skating Jam Named Saturdays, as DJ P-Plus serves up the hottest hits. No posing, no pretense, just real music!

7. Tap into local culture in February for Black History Month…at Harbourfront in February…it is the Kuumba festival on February 3-4th and 10-11th…Join us as Kuumba 2017 explores the theme of “Black History and Culture in Canada” through music, discussion, comedy, dance and family activities for all ages. Building on over 20 years of tradition, Kuumba has sparked discourse and conversation around current and historical debates within the African-Canadian community.

 

8. Need a little art? The Urban Gallery is hosting an exhibit featuring artworks by Meghan Thomas…called Luminosity on now until January 14th, 2017. Log onto www.urbangallery.ca for more information!

 

9. Don’t forget the Varley Art Gallery in Old Unionville too in Markham! It is always free to get in and it is a touch of culture on a cool winter’s day! Log onto

http://bit.ly/2h623Uf to learn more!

 

10. Looking for a music fest? Got the blues? Tap into the Winterfolk music festival, right in Toronto! Log onto http://www.winterfolk.com/ For more info:

11. Why not unearth some treasures…right in our city! The Archaeology of the North St. Lawrence Market

The Market Gallery presents the exhibition”Unearthing Toronto’s Oldest Marketplace: The Archaeology of the North St. Lawrence Market”, which will showcase the history and ongoing archaeology of North America’s longest continually running food market in the exhibition.

The exhibition runs from November 19, 2016 to March 18, 2017.

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12. Why not take in a TV show or Radio Show Taping? There are a bunch of shows to catch as a member of the studio audience…here is a list!

  • Cityline with Tracy Moore
  • The Social
  • Rick Mercer Report
  • The Marilyn Denis Show
  • CityLine on City TV
  • MuchMusic’s New.Music.Live
  • The Comedy Network shows
  • Because News Radio Show on CBC with Gavin Crawford

Log onto this article for a breakdown on how you can get seats!

https://reelrundown.com/film-industry/How-to-Get-Free-TV-Studio-Audience-Tickets-in-Toronto

 

 

13. The first week of February is Winter Carnival in Richmond Hill! Lot’s of activities and things to do with the whole family! Log onto http://www.wintercarnival.net/ for the whole low down…

 

 

14…Want a laugh? Each week, the Bad Dog Theatre has live comedy and Improv...and it is fun for under $12.00 a person, Log ontohttp://baddogtheatre.com/calendar/ they have free improv drop in classes or very affordable fun Saturday Nights out With some theatresports!

 

15. Don’t forget The Toronto Marlies Hockey at an affordable price or the Mississauga OHL team and the Oshawa Generals too!

 

 

16. Winterlicious is yummy too…for a fun local flavour meal and dinner out…log onto

January 27 to February 9, 2017

Winterlicious, Toronto’s favourite culinary celebration, is the perfect opportunity to enjoy the city’s culinary scene through delicious three-course prix fixe lunch and dinner menus served at more than 200 restaurants. The culinary event series offers a variety of experiences including cooking classes and demonstrations, dinner theatre, tastings and pairings, intimate chef dinners and more!

Winterlicious Chef…from the City of Toronto Website

 

17. Lastly, check out your local library’s too! They have movies, talks, business networking events, workshops, and more…well worth making use of the library!

Log onto http://www.torontopubliclibrary.ca/ for more information on what is happening at your local library!

This is our list for now…check your various location, city events pages and tap into your local community newspapers as to what is happening in your area…

Who says winter can’t be fun and not overly expensive, make it a plan to embrace the season ahead!

Have a very Happy Holidays and a Good New Year ahead!

Cheers/David

 

 

BIO:

David is an author, business coach and facilitator and was the former host/producer and creator of the Small Business Big Ideas Show heard weekly for over 9 years. David has taught thousands over the years in both the non-profit and for profit sectors and has coached hundreds of start-ups to make those important first steps. He specializes in teaching the 8 Keys to Success, How I got to Kiss the Stanley Cup and his new keynote called “A breakthrough-through the glass”- how to overcome the fear, plus he leads workshops in sales, marketing, market research, business plans, target marketing and customer service programs.

When you know it is time to change…3 keys to being brave about moving forward!

 

The 3 (1)

 

 

When do you know it’s time to change? This week, we look at how to take note of the clues and respond to making changes!

This week, it hit me…something just drained out of me…that it is time to change things up and re-focus my energy, time and commitments…

So how do you recognize that is time to change? What begins to show up?

Well first of all, you lose that passion and joy a little…I remember during a time of hosting the radio show I did on CKDO radio in Durham Region for 7 years, walking out into the parking lot towards my car one Sunday morning after the show and this incredible confirmation overcame me…that yes…it was time to leave the show behind…

This was in May of 2009 and by October 1st, of that year I had done my last show. Logically, emotionally and intuitively it felt right. I had nothing left to give it. What also came to me in that moment in the parking lot, was that if I did continue doing the show, that I would probably mess it up or “sabotage” it somehow.

It was a joy to do for 7 years but I just didn’t feel it anymore. I wasn’t prepared to muscle my way through another season, or the joy would have turned to hate, dislike, and disdain…those aren’t healthy emotions.

You have to understand, when doing your own radio show, you’re on the hook and responsible for getting advertisers, guests, coming up with show ideas, being there week in and week out on Sunday mornings at 8:00 am for a 9 am start time and commuting in to the Durham Region week in and week out from North York, about a 45 minute drive on a good day…

Needless to say, I didn’t have the passion or energy in me to do this for one more year or even one more day.

Not that leaving something behind was a Joyous occasion, in fact it wasn’t. I went through a bit of a depression for a few weeks after the show ended that October 1st, in 2009.

What was I to do Sunday mornings? I didn’t know what to do for a few weeks following that last show. I didn’t have to prepare a show, get up early on Sunday, drive into Oshawa, nothing…and so I felt at a bit of a loss…

This is not a great place to be in, but if this happens to you, you have to feel the feelings and trust that it will disappear eventually. You will adapt soon enough and begin to fill your calendar or life up with something else…in my case I went from hosting a show Sunday mornings and interviewing great people like the late Dr. Stephen Covey, Jack Canfield, or Michael Gerber to doing my house cleaning on Sunday mornings…quite the difference eh? (smiling)

But how do you know? How do you know when it is time to change and let go? This is what this week’s “Weekly Three” are about!

1.Notice the feelings and emotions that come up…if you feel it is going to be work, effort and a struggle to continue doing what you’re doing, then that to me is a fabulous warning sign, that change is on the horizon! Feel the feelings, it is okay, do your best not to bypass them, by masking it with a bad habit, or by saying to those in your life, that you’re okay. A loss by choice or not by choice is still a loss. You have to go through the stages of loss…and remember to take stock of the great things you have accomplished, done, seen, experienced and shared with others along the journey…and trust that that is still inside you to do again, somewhere else, in some other way!

2. Somehow be okay with letting go even though it might feel difficult or you’re unsure about what is next? You have to literally trust that when you let go, eventually something else will show up. This is not an easy feat, because we all want to know what’s next. You may go through an emotional dip, or you may feel lost for s time, but that is perfectly cool…just breathe into it and allow the feelings, emotions or the not knowing to be there with you…don’t try to fix things, or replace it…allow for life to sort itself out and the “What’s next” of it all to show up…it usually does,.,trust me it does!

3. Allow…and give life the time it needs to re-group. I mentioned I went through a dip after I chose to step away from doing the radio show (by the way I hosted/produced a talk show for Small Business Owners, a success talk show)…I needed to go through that dip and not rush back into the fray!

Besides I had other work going on besides just doing the show and needed the break. Had I rushed back in to do something else, I clearly would have burned out. You have to listen to your body too!

Your body needs rest, it needs to slow down too sometimes, you can’t be running on all cylinders without having to stop on the side of the road for an oil change…

Get that rest, mentally, emotionally, physically…re-group, and once you get that “Mojo” back then you can’t jump back into creating something new for yourself!

With change or loss, it is a sad thing to go through for sure…but there will be a time, where you will come out of that part of change or loss and you will be ready to take on the new!

Trust the process…change is about letting go, feeling the feelings, being okay with it, trusting and allowing whatever it is you’re going through to be experienced and that eventually when you are rested, ready and willing, that you will create something new and even better to do next.

Concluding thoughts:

I hope you learned something from this week’s lesson…if you are giving something up though, I hope you don’t have to replace it with doing house cleaning on Sunday mornings like I did…(smiling)…may you replace it with something a bit more fun and dazzling than that!

Oh…2 last points…2 years after doing that last radio show, I re-launched it…but at a new time and in an online radio show format…when I left the show 2 years prior, I didn’t have it on the agenda to do again, so trust the ebbs and flows of life, trust you will know when it is time to let go and change…usually a good indicator that change is on the horizon is when it seems like a struggle and you are “muscling” your way through, or you have lost the passion or zip!

The other point is this…

This week, I realized that I need to leave behind doing these weekly articles I have been writing and posting on Linked In…and on my blog…I have done 107 of them, each week pretty well, for over 2 years and it’s time for change…

I want to write still but change it up a bit and maybe write for a publication…

I will miss not sitting still and silent, coffee in hand on Saturday mornings to write them. However, I trust I will fill the time and space with something else, I just hope it’s not more house cleaning!

Please stay in touch!

Cheers/David

Listen…do you want to know a secret? Listening is one of the most important skills you need to turbo charge your sales success

 

 

the-weekly-3-3-ideas-to-help-you-in-life-and-in-business

 

 

For the past 2 weeks, we have been looking at the 3 skills you need most to achieve sales success…and this week it is listening…

For the purpose of fulfilling our weekly 3…the 3 skills are:

1) Research

2) Asking the right questions

3) Listening…is the third skill…

In my research for this week’s post…I thought I would share an interesting fact and visual of how we adults spend our time communicating…this might even include the time we spend communicating at work, in social settings, at home, and even on social media…if you think of it social media is totally a form of communication isn’t it…but…the research fact I want to share with you is this!

Adults spend an average of 70% of their time engaged in some sort of communication, of this an average of 45% is spent listening compared to 30% speaking, 16% reading and 9% writing. (Adler, R. et al. 2001).

Find more at: http://www.skillsyouneed.com/ips/listening-skills.html#ixzz4Jqd1Rmue

Listening from a skills point of view impacts you at work, at home, or in business…especially in business…

Imagine at home if your kids or spouse didn’t feel like you had heard them…they’d feel dejected…that they don’t matter or worse you don’t care about them. What if your teen aged daughter said, “I am going out on a date with Johnny and will be back by 2 or 3 am! You’d listen then…because you don’t want your daughter going out until that hour and truth is you don’t really like this Johnny fellow…

She got your attention, you are now actively listening.

But often times, we are not engaged in the listening process…people might complain about the same things and truth is you’ve heard it before…or you might like someone enough to give them your fullest attention. This kind of listening response is what is called filters…you have filters. Filters to me is about, having judgement around what others are talking about on a daily basis…

You become immune to what is being said and you tune out, or judge ahead of time…you know because I am sure it is happened to you, for example have you ever responded this way to someone when they talk?

Say it is your client, the one who likes to complain about the economy or how bad it is or if Trump get’s in, he’s moving to Canada…you know that kind of customer, the complainer…

So, when we talk to him to engage about his wanting your product or service, you know ahead of time, you are going to get an earful of complaining…and because of the very real complaints you might not even get the sale…

A good active listening idea would be to politely (because you don’t want to get your customer agitated) ask and probe why the economy affects your client, Check to see how they feel about it, what would they like to see changed perhaps, how does the economy affect you and he doing business? If the economy is truly worrying him, ask to see how your company can help him allay his or her fears while still being able to do business with you?

You might discover, that your client has some serious fears about the economy and the complaint is really masking those fears. Maybe he or she is truly afraid about losing their job one day, or fears about survival, managing money, going without really start to come up.

Let your listening shift, take off the filter and response of …”Here we go again, Bob is just complaining” but probe and ask Bob deeper questions so he can be a cause in his own change, behaviour and transfromation!

By listening with a pure heart, losing the filters and judgement you can get to some valuable solutions with Bob…maybe if Bob losing his job, might be a blessing in disguise…maybe he has always wanted to paint or play the banjo! Losing that job might allow Bob to finally do that.

By actively listening and asking questions and going deeper, you might discover some key truths that will help you get the business or just plain help your child,, spouse, colleague or friend.

I love what coach, speaker and author, Jim Fannin suggests in his work…it is called the 90 Second Rule…where you give someone that matters to you your individual attention for the first 90 seconds you see them…fully listen, fully engage, be with them…totally…losing your filters and your own agenda!

One other key to great listening is to let go of your needs or agenda…Often it is us that wants to do the talking, to share what is in our mind…but what if you shut off your agenda for a moment and just listened…give it 90 Seconds…watch what happens…

Here is a 7 minute active listening video on the 90 Second Rule, by Jim Fannin. I chose Jim, because, I like his message…I also know him, he has been a guest on my radio show a few times, he wrote a testimonial in my book and I have met him and seen him speak a few times…I think you will enjoy this 7 minute video, it is worth the watch!

 

 

 

How else can you become an effective active listener?

By becoming a better listener, you will improve your productivity, as well as your ability to influence, persuade and negotiate. What’s more, you’ll avoid conflict and misunderstandings. All of these are necessary for workplace success!

The key way to be an active listener is to practice the 90 second rule…let go of your own stuff and just be there with someone while they talk…

The way to improve your listening skills is to practice “active listening.” This is where you make a conscious effort to hear not only the words that another person is saying but, more importantly, try to understand the complete message being sent.

In order to do this you must pay attention to the other person very carefully.

You cannot allow yourself to become distracted by whatever else may be going on around you, or by forming counter arguments that you’ll make when the other person stops speaking. Nor can you allow yourself to get bored, and lose focus on what the other person is saying. All of these contribute to a lack of listening and understanding.

This is tough to do…so practice, one small conversation at a time. Then…when you are ready you can do this with your clients…and can imagine how they will feel when they truly feel listened to? Wow…are your competitors doing that? I bet not!

Another important active listening skill is to acknowledge that you are listening, a simple nod or uh-huh or even repeating back what they said shows you are engaged!

Remember our complaining client Bob? Here is what you might want to reflect back during your conversation together…”So, Bob, What I hear you say is that the economy really worries you, what would you do if you didn’t have that worry”?

Acknowledgement can be something as simple as a nod of the head or a simple “uh huh.” You aren’t necessarily agreeing with the person, you are simply indicating that you are listening. Using body language and other signs to acknowledge you are listening also reminds you to pay attention and not let your mind wander.

You should also try to respond to the speaker in a way that will both encourage him or her to continue speaking, so that you can get the information if you need. While nodding and “uh huh” says you’re interested, an occasional question or comment to recap what has been said communicates that you understand the message as well.

5 other valuable tips for better listening include:

  1. Pay attention! Let go of your own inner dialogue, concerns, worries and judgement!
  2. Just listen and show that you are listening…
  3. Provide and ask permission to offer feedback…this feedback in a sales capacity…might mean you sharing an idea or solution to give to your client!
  4. Treat the person that is talking with respect and respond appropriately!
  5. Share from your heart, not your head…when offering ideas, feedback, solutions…

 

If you work on these 3 key sales skills we have been writing about over the past 3 weeks…(For those just reading this post the skills are…)

1. Research or know your market and your value, 2. Ask great questions and 3 Listen and then reflect back to your clients…I guarantee you will have less sales stress…where you don’t have to know it all or have all of the answers. These 3 skills will bring better sales results, because you will truly be able to serve your client in a manner that is vital to him and or her!

Make it a great week!

Cheers/David

 

 

BIO:

David is an author, business coach and facilitator and was the former host/producer and creator of the Small Business Big Ideas Show heard weekly for over 9 years. David has taught thousands over the years in both the non-profit and for profit sectors and has coached hundreds of start-ups to make those important first steps. He specializes in teaching the 8 Keys to Success, How I got to Kiss the Stanley Cup and his new keynote called “A breakthrough-through the glass”- how to overcome the fear, plus he leads workshops in sales, marketing, market research, business plans, target marketing and customer service programs.

Three of the most important sales skills in order to master the art of selling! (Part 2 of 3)

 

 

the weekly 3 (3)

Last week’s post was about the 3 keys you need to master the art of selling, we covered the first key, which was “Research” and how that doing it well can totally enhance your marketing messaging and the kinds of conversations you have with clients and prospects alike!

This week, we will cover the second skill…

The second is your ability to ask really good questions…

2. The ability to ask great powerful open ended questions

Asking questions is the key to what is called, “Consultative Selling”

Consultative Selling is a lot easier than just asking for the business…think of the duct cleaning company that calls you at dinner…wanting to sell ducts…they don’t know you, they just pitch ducts! You might live in a condo, or have a duct cleaning company you prefer, chances are you will just say no to that company calling you at dinner time…

This is a totally hard way to sell and it doesn’t work in this day and age. The consumer is wary of sales people and so the best way to sell is in a consultative manner…

Consultative Selling:

  • Is a process by which the sales rep and the customer 1) agree that their relationship is paramount and must survive any single transaction, 2) focus first on discovering and defining a need or problem independent of the product or service, and 3) create a set of solutions to resolve the problem which may incorporate the product or service.
  • This process won’t work with every customer, however, those customers with whom you can achieve such a relationship will probably be your most loyal and most profitable accounts.

Here is a great 3 minute video on consultative selling…

Good video huh?

Simple isn’t it?  What did you learn from this? Do you see the importance of asking the right questions? What does asking questions do to help facilitate the sales process?

Do you see how knowing your stuff about your business and your clients situations (The Research) and then asking the right questions can help you get way better sales results?

The beauty of asking good questions and knowing your stuff is that it isn’t hard selling, it is about discovering what your clients want, think, how much money they have, what level is their pain at, how badly they want help with their problems, what matters to them, what they’d love to have happen, what they want in a vendor (you) and then if you can get to know them on a personal level and cement the relationship, you are usually good to go!

  • The key to this is to make sure you seek to understand your clients…
  • You’ve got to ask great questions…

What are 5 questions you want to know about your customer/prospect?…team up and come up with 5 good questions to ask…

1.____________________________

2.____________________________

3.____________________________

4.____________________________

5.____________________________

 

Here are a few questions I love to ask a client:

  • Have you used this service before?
  • Are you using a provider now?
  • How happy are you?
  • Would you be open to change?
  • Are you open to an alternate provider in case they can’t deliver what you need?
  • What would we have to do to get your business?
  • Do you see using our services in the future?
  • If so when?
  • When is a good time to follow up with you?
  • How would you like us to stay in contact with you?

 


When I took my coaching certificate…

We studied with Dr. Marilee Adams, she developed the Learner Judger Model…

Learner/Judger™ mindset distinctions and model allows people to shift from blame-focused questions that impede success to solution-focused questions that facilitate it.

Based on brain-based knowledge about the importance of questions in thinking and communication, QUESTION THINKING™ empowers you to close the gap between what you know needs to happen and HOW to make it happen. Intentional and sustainable change always begins with changes in thinking. Changes in thinking always begin with changes in questions. This is the “sweet spot” that QUESTION THINKING™ skills and tools provide.

Asking the right questions can solve conflicts, help you understand others (your customers) shows you care, shows that you just aren’t there to sell, but to really know what motivates and excites your clients.

So, we know that asking the right questions can get you great selling results, right? However, something holds us back from asking questions, especially tough ones…that something is “FEAR”…if you don’t make a client really think and go deep on some issues, you won’t get your client to make a change.

In some cases when you ask a tough hard hitting question, your client may sit in silence with the question you just asked…do not break the silence, because you won’t get the sale…someone once taught me, “He or she who breaks the silence loses”…be with the silence, because you just hit a nerve for the client and that nerve is what really needs to be worked on! If you have a solution to that pain, chances are you get to serve the client and win the day!

 

  • Asking questions does not mean you lose control of the call
  • It shows you are interested, and care to learn about the company and the client
  • Get the customer to talk—information is key
  • It shows genuine concern
  • You can then tailor the solution for the clients
  • Asking questions in a learner mindset allows for flow, openness and solutions thinking

Consultative sales is a selling method in which the salesperson spends time with the customer to understand the problem the customer is trying to solve and then recommends a solution that will specifically address that problem.

Practice asking good questions, get good at it…

In the sales process there are a few key times you ask questions…one is when you make a prospecting call and the client says “No”. When they say no, ask permission for time to probe the know and do some market research, assess where the client is at with respect to buying the kinds of products or services you sell and if they’d be open to hearing from you in the future…

My goal for a prospecting call is to get the meeting, not make a sale, I cannot sell on the phone or I fast become a tele-marketer, selling ducts!

What I want is a meeting to see the client, meet them, ask questions about their current situation, their goals, hopes, budgets, needs and dreams…

The meeting is the next key time for you to go in and ask questions…

By asking questions it takes the pressure off of you having to know it all…you don’t need to have all the answers, but you need to understand where your clients are at so that you can provide answers, insights and solutions to offer back to your clients/prospects…

Here is a consultative selling Process to help you focus.

This the process you need to follow in order to build business and get new customers:

  • Prospecting-this includes cold calls, social media selling, doing trade shows, writing, speaking, networking…it is the actions you take to get yourself in front of your customers so you can book that meeting with them..
  • Diagnosing customer needs-this the goal for prospecting! Once you establish a need from withing your customer/prospect for what it is you do…you want to meet with your client and ask those “Good Questions” to assess their needs!
  • Crafting a potential solution-This is the presentation phase…when you listen to the client and go back in for a second meeting to present your ideas, quotes and solutions…
  • Establishing value-In the presentation you want to share the value, or the “What is in it for them”. What benefits will your clients derive from working with you or buying from you?
  • Bargaining for access to decision-makers-You may need to get to the decision maker…you might be dealing with someone within a comany that is the “gate-keeper” and not the decision maker…
  • Positioning proof, ROI and the total solution-You may need to reinforce your solutions if you get push-back or objections…ask your client what they want in terms of their objections? What would get them to buy? Under what circumstances would they like to see, that would pave the way for them to buy from you?
  • Negotiating a win-win solution-Once the client tells you the circumstances they will buy from you, you then can decide to accept or reject their wants…this is where negotiating comes in…you may need to trade off what they want for what you want…if you can reach an agreement that is win-win, then you have a successful negotiation!
  • Following up to ensure customer success-Oh I can’t urge how important it is to follow up with your customer and stay in touch with them…make sure after they buy, that it isn’t “Bye Bye”!!!

Next week we will talk about point number 3…

3. Your ability to listen and then turn the information gained into ideas and solutions for your clients…

Have a great week ahead and a good Labour Day Weekend!

 

BIO:

David is an author, business coach and facilitator and was the former host/producer and creator of the Small Business Big Ideas Show heard weekly for over 9 years. David  has taught thousands over the years in both the non-profit and for profit sectors and has coached hundreds of start-ups to make those important first steps. He specializes in teaching the 8 Keys to Success, How I got to Kiss the Stanley Cup and his new keynote called “A breakthrough-through the glass”- how to overcome  the fear, plus he leads workshops in sales, marketing, market research, business plans, target marketing and customer service programs.

Three of the most important sales skills in order to master the art of selling! (part 1)

 

 

Last week, we talked about marketing…ideas to help you attract, retain and re-activate past clients…

This week, let’s look at how you can be the most effective with the clients you have coming to you once your marketing has done the trick to attract and retain them!

In sales…the 3 actions and skills you need to master are as follows:

1. Research

2. The ability to ask great powerful open ended questions

3. Your ability to listen and then turn the information gained into ideas and solutions for your clients…

1. Research skills:

Let’s dig in a little deeper…when it comes to research, you need to really know thyself…you must know how your industry and what it is you do that impacts your clients in a positive life or business affirming way?

Ask this of yourself…

What are some of the outcomes a client or prospect would get from working with you?

In order to begin a conversation with any prospect you’ve got to let them know what you do for them and share a few key benefits with your prospects and clients.

How do you impact or improve a clients life or business now?

Do you have research that helps to support your business case?

For example…

A Professional Organizer has research that states the average business owner wastes 9 days a year looking for lost files and paper work

A business machine/computer cleaner and repair guy knows that there are more germs on a computer keyboard at work then there are on a toilet seat!

When you talk to a prospect and share studies, stats and information like this…it get’s the prospect to listen with a curiosity…they want to know more!

Knowing your stuff…doing research positions you as an expert too…and that is how you want to show up for your clients…

Another example of knowing your stuff is this example…

A vitamin company used a Harvard Study that states we are getting 30% less nutritional value in our daily in take of fruits and vegetables each day…this is the tactic that Goji Juice used in their marketing when they launched the product…

Why this tactic? Well, no one doubts a Harvard study, Harvard has a perceived “built in” credibility…the other reason is, this is a key problem…the solution was Goji Juice…the study set you up to have an immediate interest and response…it hooked you in…where as if Goji Juice said…we are the best…or we have all of these nutrients…that might not have worked so well…because it is making you work to validate their claims…

Goji just used a Harvard study…it almost immediately validates the marketing claim…I mean Harvard can’t be wrong, can they?

What facts, data, studies and research do you know about your industry that you can put into your sales conversations and or marketing messaging?

To really begin to know the benefits of what your business does for  your clients…look towards research, market data, industry data, Google, or ask your current clients why they bought your goods/services?

Know your value too!

Value is the sum of your benefits minus costs…

For example their are 4 key benefits you need to hone in on…the 2 most important are Service and or Product Benefits…what does your service or product do to help your clients…

Product Benefit:

A great example of a  Product Benefit is Spinach…Spinach actually, eliminates free radicals, anti-oxidants, prevents cancer, it has vitamin K which is good for your eyes, it is a green super food, very healthy, nutritious, inexpensive…Popeye loved it.

When you know this about spinach, does the price or cost of it concern you do much? Probably not. The value, the benefit you get from eating spinach minimizes your concern about the price…that is why knowing your value is key to your success in selling…

Know your stuff! Research is key…

Service Benefit:

An example of a Service Benefit is FED-EX, they’re old slogan went like this “When it absolutely positively has to get there overnight, next day delivery or else”?

Ask yourself, who else am I going to use to ship my package to Montreal for 9:30 am tomorrow? Of course your using Fed Ex…the key benefit is that their service will allow you peace of mind, knowing your package is in safe hands…(if Tom Hanks shows up to take your package, maybe hold off on Fed Ex…smiling)

 (NOTE…FEATURES TELL, BENEFITS SELL)

Two other key benefit areas for you to know about and begin to work on are having a Brand Benefit (this takes time and money, but you can do it)…and having a Relationship Benefit…this is constant!

Brand Benefit:

A Brand Benefit takes time to build…big companies are good at it because they have the marketing and advertising dollars..-Does anything speak more loudly than the Golden Arches or Coca-Cola and even Heinz…I mean you see that logo and you know what you’re getting…your 2 year old knows McDonald’s by site I bet?

There is a built in benefit to using their brand…
As for us small business owners, make sure your logo, business cards, post cards, website all look the same…keep being consistent in the look, feel and the messaging of what it is you do for your clients…that is the best way to build brand!

Relationship Benefits:

Your  Relationship Benefits are about the perception you want your customers to have when they think of you…nothing says Canadian more than Tim Horton’s…or TD Bank…open until 8 pm, Saturdays and Sundays too? What happened to the notion of when you got to the bank it was closed?

People know that they can count on TD to be open when they need it…what do you want your clients to count on you for?

You need to always work on the relationship in selling…do those little things before, during and after the sale is made!

Researching is so vital in mastering sales…you have to know what you can do for your clients inside and out and you have to know about what is going on for your clients too!

Ask this and find out more information on your clients…

What is happening with your clients?

What are the key frustrations and pain that they are in?

What’s happening in your industry? What are some success stories? Who in your sector is succeeding and why is that?

What is their mindset? Their business model? The recipe? What are they doing that you need to be doing!

—Think of your top 3 clients…what do you know about them now?

—How does knowing this information help facilitate the sales process?

—What are 3 new bits of information you want to know about these 3 clients?

Who is your ideal client?

What makes them ideal?

Is there a niche client that you really love to serve?

Who has the greatest need for your services?

What are their characteristics?

What are your clients challenges and problems that you solve?

When you can approach a client knowing ahead of time what it is they struggle with, your initial sales conversations can be focused on their challenges and what your company does to help clients move past those challenges…

This is gold!

Because you’re not pitching how great you are…you are uncovering needs and pain and offering gains, ideas and solutions…your clients/prospects will be impressed with your know how…and that you have ideas, solutions and truly want to share how you can help them achieve their goals!

I am going to look at asking questions and honing your listening ability next week…I think you have some good information here in this week’s post…

I will leave you with a video…it is Harvey Mackay…author, speaker and owner of the Mackay envelope company…he asks each client 66 questions, some personal, some business…but he really wants to know his clients inside out…

In this video, he is speaking to a group of tele-com sales reps about how knowing about your customer led to a multi-million dollar client…

Make it a great week!

 

 

BIO:

David is an author, business coach and facilitator and was the former host/producer and creator of the Small Business Big Ideas Show heard weekly for over 9 years. David  has taught thousands over the years in both the non-profit and for profit sectors and has coached hundreds of start-ups to make those important first steps. He specializes in teaching the 8 Keys to Success, How I got to Kiss the Stanley Cup and his new keynote called “A breakthrough-through the glass”- how to overcome  the fear, plus he leads workshops in sales, marketing, market research, business plans, target marketing and customer service programs.