Archive for August, 2013

Questions to Help You Qualify a Prospect

In other articles I have spoken about how important it is to qualify your prospects so that you only spend your valuable time on those who have true potential to join and  help build your team.  Some people are wondering, what type of questions do you ask them to find out if they are a quality prospect?

Here are few examples of questions you can ask. 

Prospecting QuestionsHow many hours a week can you commit to growing your business?  If they cannot commit any time, then they are not serious.  They should not  give excuses.  If they say they only have 5 hours a week, then that is fine, that is what you work with, but they need to give a firm commitment on how much time they can spend, and not be wishy washy, or say they “might” or thy will “try”, they need to say they can and will!

How much can you invest per month in marketing and lead generation to grow your business? 

They need to have some type of budget, even if it is only enough to print and hand out fliers or to do $50 in pay per click a month.  They need to have some commitment.

How much do you want to make a month in your first 6 months? 

Set some expectations and see where your prospect stands, and if their goals are realistic in respect with the time and money they can commit.  You can reword this question to e 3 months, 1 year, 2 years, etc.  As a matter of fact it is best to get them to commit to several milestones.

There are many other questions you can ask or variations of the above.  The key is to get a feel for their enthusiasm and commitment.  But note, not all will be super enthusiastic at first, many will need to be more educated or have fears eased.  However, if they can give these base commitments on any level, and have goals, they are a qualified prospect you should continue to work with over time, vs. those who are simply looking to get rich overnight.


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How to Build Your MLM Business with Greeting Cards

Let’s face it.  There is no overnight miracle to getting rich and wealthy in MLM or anything unless you just get lucky and win the lottery.  No matter how much hype someone tells you about their MLM and how much money you can make, the fact is that it takes dedication, time, and investment to grow your business.  Each person has to determine how much of each thatGreeting Card Business they can dedicate to becoming successful, and then be consistent with it. If you can only dedicate one hour a week, then that is what you need to do and you need to maximize that one hour.  If you can dedicate an hour a day, great, but be consistent and maximize that time.

It does not matter what network marketing opportunity you have decided to pursue, you will still need to find leads and prospects for both your business opportunity and your products, and then follow up with those leads.  In most cases, you are not going to get a new lead, no matter how qualified, to sign up with you on first contact.  It is going to take some time to build relationships.  In fact sometimes it can take a month, months, or year to get someone to come on board.  That’s ok.  Why?  Because when they come on board you want them ready to work and build the business, right?

This is why it is important to build your relationship with prospects the right way, and the right way consists of being interested in them and finding out about them, and then using those facts and information to keep in touch over a period of time so that once they are ready, you are there.

One of the best ways to keep in touch is through physical greeting cards and Greeting Card Businesssmall token gifts.  Yes, an email or an autoresponder is helpful and great for handing masses of unqualified prospects.  But, once you have personally spoken to a prospect, it is then time to move them into a different category and treat them with a personal touch.

To do this, it is simple.  Send them an old fashion greeting card!  You can go to the store and pick them out, or you can do it a super easy, and easy to mange way, and end the cards online.  Yes, you can choose, customize, and mail your card online.  Not an eCard, a good old fashion card that your prospect will have to go to their mailbox to get!n When your prospect sees that you took the time to send them a physical greeting card through the mail, their will think of you differently and not as someone just trying to push them into a business or take their money.

 

One of the easiest ways to send greeting cards, and even set up campaigns so that your prospect gets one on their birthday, holidays, etc is to use CardsMadeSimple.com. Go try this out and you can see how easy it is to send greeting cards to engage your prospects.


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Getting Your Site Ranked in Google Places

If you do not already know, Google Places (formally Google Maps), is the google placeslistings in Google that pop up with the little red map marker or balloon, when you search for a local business.  If you service local customers, you NEED to be listed.  It is like free traffic and leads that you are throwing away if you are not listed.  It is pretty simple to get listed, but if you have a lot of competition you may want to hire a professional Google Places marketer to optimize and keep your listing fresh and in the top four.  But for now, how do you get listed?

Step One:

Go to  www.google.com/local/add/businessCenter and choose to add your listing.  Then simply step through their form following these tips.

Your business or company name. Make sure your company / organization’s name is listed exactly as it appears in the offline world. Do not include additional keywords such as the city because this violates the guidelines. You DO NOT want to violate the guidelines. Play by the rules!

Step Two:

Add your phone number. Make sure it is the phone number you want potential clients/ customers to reach you at.  Add any toll free and fax numbers you have as well. The more contact information – the easier you can be reached.

Step 3:

Your email address. Do not use your personal email address, use a business email address.  If you do not really have one, get a free gmail account.

Step 4:

Add your website. Include http:// as well when you add your website.

Step 5:

Categories. Include all the categories that are relevant to your business. Do not be deceptive and add your most desired ones first.  Some people recommend only adding 4 to start and then going back later, as there is an approval process.  Don’t keyword stuff!

Step 6:

Hours of Operation. This is obvious, put your hours of operation. If you are not open to the public, choose that option.  Google sometimes changes the form, and sometimes it looks different from person to person if they are beta testing new ideas, so if something differs from this checklist, simply follow Google’s lead.

Step 7:

Payment methods. Do you accept Mastercard, but not American Express? That’s something you may want people to know before they come to your business. Also, the more payment methods you accept, the more professional and the more flexibility your customers have.

Step 8:

There is a section that allows you to display additional information about your business. If you have something unique that will make a customer select you or might interest them, put it in there.

Step 9:

Photos. This is important, put a couple in, but it is not critical to add a bunch or even a video right at the start.  Actually, many professionals say to just put the basics in, get approved, get your pin code, and then go back and add more once you are listed.  This actually can help you get listed higher over time as it shows an active listing.

Step 10:

Reviews.  These are important.  Once your google listing is up, email some customers and ask them to review you.  Give them your link.  Ask them for an honest  review.  If you have a large customer database, only ask a few at a time.  You want reviews over time, not 50 at once.  It needs to look natural.  A couple reviews a week to start is fine.

That’s all there is to it – go get listed!

 


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What is Relationship Marketing?

Simply put, relationship marketing puts the word custom back in customer.   It seems pretty simple , right? It seems to be a no brainer, but relationship marketing relatively rare in  business and marketing circles.  The focus now is on attracting customers rather than keeping them – a term referred to as offensive marketing.  It is absolutely crazy that businesses no longer have a focus of keeping existing customers, or even a balance between generating new customers and keeping current ones. Relationship marketing will make all the difference in the world, not to mention it can save you and your business money.

Relationship marketing evolved from direct response marketing in the 1960’s, emerging in the 80’s to become a system that places emphasis on building longer term relationships with  customers rather than simply a single transaction.  This marketing philosophy means that you understand the customer’s needs as they change and go through their buying life cycle.  Put another way, offering a range of products/services, as your customers need change and they actually need those products or services.

Why is focusing on your existing customers be more profitable?  Many reasons. If you’re constantly spending money and resources to land new clients, you aren’t paying attention to your loyal customers – the ones who are keeping you in business now.  This means you are losing out on their business, and the referrals they can send your way.

This is called churn and burn, or the customers who won’t come back to you if you alienate them.  Another term for trying to keep customers and increase their loyalty is called defensive marketing. Customers who have already bought something from you are your bread and butter, your key to continued profitability. Bottom line?  You NEED them and can’t afford to lose them.  They are your assets.  And you value assets and treat them accordingly. Customer loyalty is worth A LOT of  money to your business, since the cost of keeping an existing customer is only about 10 per cent of the cost of getting a new one.

The key here is to pay attention to your current customers, use greeting cards, post cards, Facebook updates, and more to do this.  It needs to be a mix of ALL of The Above, not just  FB, email , or something free.  Take the time to drop a card in the mail a few times a year.  You can do this very inexpensive, and it will get opened, and the results are fabulous.  I have many articles on using greeting cards to build your relationship marketing strategy and new business referrals.  Read them.  Implement them!


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