Develop an Effective Thirty Second Commercial

Thirty Second Commercial

There is a reason to develop a thirty second commercial. Have you ever felt like you were caught off guard when someone asked you what you do for a living? Perhaps you responded with one sentence that included your title and your business name. The person who asked the question may have moved on to someone else, quickly dismissing you in their mind. Or perhaps you went to the other extreme and rambled on and on, providing way too much detail until their eyes glazed over. Every business owner has experiences such as this.

Develop an Effective Thirty Second Commercial

Making a positive first impression is an important key to establishing credibility with contacts, referral sources, and prospective clients. Being able to confidently deliver a short, compelling self-introduction can lead you to follow up appointments, referrals, and new customers. Below are some tips to develop a compelling thirty-second commercial:

Be strategic.

Rather than just “winging it,” take some time to develop your thirty-second commercial. Aim for impact, effectiveness, and results in your message.

Practice until you know it well.

Practice your short presentation until you can deliver it at a moment’s notice. You will have many opportunities each day to use your thirty-second commercial with people you meet.

Talk about benefits, not features.

Your features are what you do in your business: your services or products. Your benefits are how your products/services impact your clients’ lives: you help them make more money, give them more time with family and friends, etc. List some frustrations (client pain) that your clients experience and which your service/products eliminate. Below are examples of our business coaching benefits:

Client Pain

  • Tight cash flow
  • Missing family events
  • Can’t find good employees

Coaching Benefits

  • Owner making more money
  • Getting dates with spouse
  • Excellent, loyal employees

Develop some short stories that illustrate your benefits.

These stories are one of the ways that you educate your contacts and move them to a level of trust in you. Think about how you have helped your customers in the past. Write down four to five sentences to describe how you impacted their life. You may begin with one story. But keep in mind that if you cultivate your contacts, you will communicate with them on multiple occasions and you will need to demonstrate your expertise with multiple stories.

1. First five to ten seconds: introduction.

Say your name, your company name and a brief summary of the benefits your company provides to clients. For example, here’s my introduction: “””My name is Alan Melton. I’m with Small Business Coach Associates. We help business owners earn more income while working fewer hours.””

Next twenty to twenty-five seconds: tell a short story illustrating your introduction.

We were working with an HVAC company owner who had a large bad debt that was forcing him into bankruptcy. He was working 70 hour weeks and told me the number one thing he wanted was a date with his wife. We identified 12 areas of improvement that immediately increased his profits by more than $176,000 per year. Now he is working 50 hours per week and he has enjoyed a number of dates with his wife.”

Be flexible upon completion of your story.

At that point, your contact may ask you a question about your service. If not, shift the focus to them. “Joe, tell me about what you do…” or “Tell me more about what you do…” Remember to focus on your contact for approximately 2/3 of the time. Ask good questions and listen!

Discuss your Unique Selling Propositions.

Know what makes you unique and better than your competition. A couple of the USP’s for SBCA is the fact that our coaches have all been business owners themselves and we collaborate with one another to provide the best solutions to our clients. Some examples of that are our weekly coaching calls and the assistance we give to one another on coaching assignments. Recently Craig Reimer who formerly owned a construction company joined me on a business assessment with the owner of a construction company.

Expand your commercial to five minutes and twenty minutes.

From time to time you may have the opportunity to deliver a longer presentation to a networking group or other organization. You can easily expand your presentation by telling more stories to illustrate your expertise.

Give “thirty-second commercials” within any speaking or writing topic.

People are drawn to stories. Include your short stories any time you are communicating, and this will add to your credibility.

Questions about our small business coaching services?

Call us at 1-888-504-0777,

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Selling: Ten Things to Know and Do Before Making a Proposal

Ten things to know and do before making a proposal

Many small business owners simply “spout off” what they do with prospects, and lose the opportunity to win a new account. With selling, there are things to know and do before making a proposal.

Ten Things to Know and Do Before Making a Proposal

If you try to shortcut the process, you will likely lose the business. On the other hand, if you cover the following bases, you can move rather quickly to winning a new account. Below are the ten things to know and do before making a proposal to a winning business:

1. Know that you should have a good relationship with your prospect(s)

prior to making a proposal. Remember that people do business with people that they know, like and trust. If you have not moved to some level of likeability and trust, you will not likely win a proposal.

2. Do make a concerted effort to establish a strong bond and rapport.

You can only do this by asking good questions and listening well. Repeat back and summarize their answers to help them know that you are listening. Briefly relate to experiences and activities that you have in common. Give your 30-second commercial, but keep the main focus on your prospect(s).

3. Know that you and your prospect should have an “out clause.”

Both should have the ability any point to walk away. Many salespeople are so eager to make a sale that they lose their dignity and the prospect’s respect during a proposal. The prospect may mislead the salesperson about their true intentions after a proposal is made. Eventually, the prospect stops returning phone calls and a lot of time is wasted by the salesperson.

4. Do confirm your “out clause” with your prospect.

Do this early in your discussions. To remain on equal footing with your prospect, lead them to an understanding that either you or your prospect has the right to walk away if either one of you determines that there is not a good fit between the two of you. Agree with them that either party will immediately inform the other should that occur, and neither one of you should feel offended if that should happen.

5. Know who the decision-makers are.

Many salespeople spend a lot of time talking and making proposals to people who don’t have the authority to make a decision. In larger businesses is it not unusual to have more than one person or even and committee that makes spending decisions. Prospects may not reveal that they don’t have the authority to make a decision. Ask the following question: “In addition to you, who else will be involved in making the decision?”

6. Do make your proposal to the decision-makers.

Always ask for a meeting with all of the decision-makers. Meeting with all decision-makers will be easier if you invested the time in getting to know each person prior to making a proposal.

7. Know the “pain points” of each decision-maker.

Understanding the prospect’s pain points may be the most important part of making a successful proposal. How can you help a prospect if you can’t relate to their problems? You need to know three to five pain points and how much money this pain is costing them. For more on this topic, see the coaching tip “Winning the Business: Focus on the Prospect’s Needs.”””””

8. Do address and solve their pain points in your proposal.

This is where the rubber meets the road. If you can clearly articulate the prospect’s pain points, the costs associated with the pain points, and how your product or service can save them money and make their pain go away, the decision to go with you will be a no-brainer.

9. Know the amount in the budget.

Knowing the amount in the budget will help you to determine whether to make a proposal. Although many small businesses do not use a budget to run their companies, many mid-size to large companies operate on budgets. Always strive to determine the amount of budget dollars available for your service or product. Sometimes your prospect may try to evade the question. You can ask, “In round dollars, how much is your budget for this service?” Or “What’s a ballpark budget range for this service?” Another approach is: “I’m trying to determine which package to propose to you. Would you say that your budget is closer to the $5,000 to $10,000 range or to the $15,000 to $20,000 range?”

10. Do tailor your proposal to the available budget dollars.

This goes without saying. But you would be surprised to know how many salespeople just throw out proposals that are way too high. Or even worse a salesperson will leave money on the table because they proposed well below the amount in the budget.

As you can see, if you do the extra due diligence before making a proposal, not only will you increase the chances of success, you will put more in your pocket. Go for it!

Questions about our small business coaching services?

Call us at 1-888-504-0777,

or 

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What is the One Missing Key to Your Business Success?

business success

Just like humans, every business has weaknesses. In some cases business owners simply need to work on one or two areas to propel their business to amazing growth and profits. What is the one missing key to your business success?

One of my business ventures was a small service company with 130 employees. Our largest customer was a Ritz Carlton hotel, and the hotel chain was involved with the Malcolm Baldrige Process, a way for organizations to achieve outstanding results. Our leadership team decided to get involved with this process at a state level, and we hired a business coach to help us identify areas of improvement. We grew our profits by more than one thousand percent!

What is the Missing Key to Business Success

There are seven keys to business success according to the Baldrige criteria. Over the next few blog articles, I will be writing about these seven keys. How is your business doing in these areas? Growth normally requires things like small business loans and access to business credit lines but without these 7 keys you will not be managing that growth as effectively and efficiently as you could.

1. Leadership.

Most small businesses are strong in the area of leadership. It takes strong leaders to start and run business. However once your business is going, how do you keep the momentum going? Do you communicate a clear vision, strong values and a compelling mission? Is your team growing, learning and adjusting to the business environment?

2. Strategic Planning.

In my work with small business owners, many do not have a current business plan. That is a huge mistake, especially in this volatile business environment. For example, you would be surprised how many businesses are fortunate enough to get a small business loan but then they don’t use the funds for revenue-generating initiatives and the end result is just more debt and no new clients or business. Every business owner should have short and long term goals, and every employee should understand the goals. Consider all your stakeholders during your planning.

3. Customer Focus.

This area is also a strength for many small business owners. But as a business grows it is easy to lose touch with customers, and without customers your business is dead! Do you have ways of measuring customer satisfaction or dissatisfaction? Are you improving?

4. Measurement.

Speaking of measurement, do you know your business “stats?” In the same way that sports teams know statistics about players, coaches and their offense and defense, you need to track important information. Nearly everyone tracks sale and profits, but do you know the value of your business? What are your key business success factors? Do know how your numbers compared to competitors? You should.

5. Workforce Focus.

Many business owners struggle with finding good employees. Your employees are critical to your business success. Cutting edge leaders believe that their employees are more important than their customers. How do you attract and retain good people?

6. Operations Focus.

The way you deliver your product or service can make you or break you. If you can provide excellent products and services consistently every time, your customers will likely stay with you. Otherwise, you are “rolling the dice.” Wise business owners develop measurable processes that ensure a great customer experience with few exceptions.

7. Results.

This, of course, is the bottom line of all your efforts in business. Once you have determined what is important to measure and have established measures, how are you doing? Are your “stats” improving? How do they compare with your competition or industry? Are your sales and profits growing, or are you struggling like many small businesses? Is your business value growing?

Conclusion

After reviewing these seven keys, what are the top one or two areas that could use some attention in your business? Focus your efforts on the area where your business needs to improve. If you need help, don’t be afraid to seek it out.

Questions about our small business coaching services?

Call us at 1-888-504-0777,

or 

Enter your information below to start growing your revenues and profits today…

small business coach

What is the One Missing Key to Your Business Success?

business success

Just like humans, every business has weaknesses.  In some cases, business owners simply need to work on one or two areas to propel their business to amazing growth and profits. Entrepreneurs can benefit from the services of small business coaches, who can assist them in identifying areas that require improvement while also guiding them toward business success.

One of my business ventures was a small service company with 130 employees. Our largest customer was a Ritz Carlton hotel, and the hotel chain was involved with the Malcolm Baldrige Process, a way for organizations to achieve outstanding results. Our leadership team decided to get involved with this process at a state level, and we hired a small business marketing coach to help us identify areas of improvement. We grew our profits by more than one thousand percent!

Seven Keys to Success in Business

There are seven keys to business success according to the Baldrige criteria. Over the next few blog articles, I will be writing about these seven keys. How is your business doing in these areas?  Growth normally requires things like small business loans and access to business credit lines but without these 7 keys, you will not be managing that growth as effectively and efficiently as you could.

1.  Leadership in Business.

Most small businesses are strong in the area of leadership. It takes strong leaders to start and run business. However, once your business is going, how do you keep the momentum going? Do you communicate a clear vision, strong values, and a compelling mission? Is your team growing, learning and adjusting to the business environment?

2.  Strategic Planning in Your Business.

In my work with small business owners, many do not have a current business plan.  That is a huge mistake, especially in this volatile business environment. For example, you would be surprised how many businesses are fortunate enough to get a small business loan but then they don’t use the funds for revenue-generating initiatives and the end result is just more debt and no new clients or business.  Every business owner should have short and long term goals, and every employee should understand the goals. Consider all your stakeholders during your planning.

3.  Customer Focus in Your Business.

This area is also a strength for many small business owners. But as a business grows it is easy to lose touch with customers, and without customers your business is dead! Do you have ways of measuring customer satisfaction or dissatisfaction? Are you improving?

4.  Measurement in Your Business.

Speaking of measurement, do you know your business “stats?” In the same way that sports teams know statistics about players, coaches and their offense and defense, you need to track important information. Nearly everyone tracks sale and profits, but do you know the value of your business? What are your key business success factors? Do know how your numbers compared to competitors? You should.

5.  Workforce Focus in Your Business.

Many business owners struggle with finding good employees. Your employees are critical to your business success. Cutting edge leaders believe that their employees are more important than their customers.  How do you attract and retain good people?

6.  Operations Focus in Your Business. 

The way you deliver your product or service can make you or break you. If you can provide excellent products and services consistently every time, your customers will likely stay with you. Otherwise, you are “rolling the dice.”  Wise business owners develop measurable processes that ensure a great customer experience with few exceptions.

7.  Results in Your Business.

This, of course, is the bottom line of all your efforts in business. Once you have determined what is important to measure and have established measures, how are you doing? Are your “stats” improving? How do they compare with your competition or industry? Are your sales and profits growing, or are you struggling like many small businesses? Is your business value growing?

Conclusion

After reviewing these seven keys, what are the top one or two areas that could use some attention in your business? Focus your efforts on the area where your business needs to improve. If you need help, don’t be afraid to seek it out.

Questions about our small business coaching services?

Call us at 1-888-504-0777,

or 

Enter your information below to start growing your revenues and profits today…

small business coach