The Art of Influencing and Selling tagged posts

My personal case study in world-class customer service delivered by local company Greenserve

As the author of a best-selling series of sales and marketing books published by Kogan Page in the UK, USA and India you’d expect me to have high expectations from those that I’m willing to employ to deliver products and services. And of course you’d be right!

Unfortunately the majority of tradespeople I come across don’t pay enough attention to the little things, for example, in how they do their business by answering messages when left and generally interacting with the customer.

A common mistake often made by small businesses is to overlook the customer experience which can be just as important as fixing a broken pipe or rewiring a broken fuse box.

GreenserveSo I’m absolutely delighted to share with you my experiences of dealing with a great small British company called Greenserve who c...

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What can marketing do to help a small business flourish?

Chris-FroomeA common misconception often made by small business owners is that marketing is for larger, more established businesses.

I had a chat about this with John Ponsford who spent four days last week completely rewiring all the lights in our house.

I asked John how he gets referrals and he explained that all of his work is through recommendation and word of mouth. He’s nervous about spending money on marketing and unsure what results he could achieve if he went down this route. He doesn’t advertise in the Yellow Pages but doesn’t know what he should do or where he should start.

I commended him for the way he and his father quietly got on with the job; how pleasant they were in how they didn’t get in the way of the family; their courtesy and how we appreciated that they always tidied up whe...

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Top 5 reasons why customers walk and Top 10 tips of making them stay

exit-sign

Ever had the sinking feeling that you’ve done all that was expected of you to entice the customer or client to come back but they simply leave without making a purchase or don’t bother returning your call?

There are five key reasons why customers tend to walk away and not come back:

  1. They die (1%)
  2. They move (3%)
  3. They are lured by a competitor (14%)
  4. They are unhappy with the product, service or price (14%)
  5. They are unhappy with the way that they’re treated (68%).

Whilst sales and marketing professionals have possibly little influence over the first four reasons why customers do a runner, salespeople and business owners certainly have complete control over at least 68% of the customers who leave.

As such, it’s in your best interests to ensure that your sales and marke...

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What rock ‘n’ roll can teach today’s marketers about audience engagement

bowieIt may not be obvious, but the world of rock ‘n’ roll knows a lot more about how to connect with consumers in a powerful way than many multi-national companies with multi-million budgets to match, a point I make in my latest book, The Art of Influencing and Selling.

And I don’t mean by connecting with consumers through iTunes and the mobile internet, although of course that’s a proven way of reaching music fans. What I want to talk about is about ‘rendering authenticity’ in order to connect with the next generation of consumers and fans.

The term was conceived by James H Gilmore and Joseph Pine, two US academics that at the turn of the 21st century wrote about how the global economy would move from service to experience...

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“You have part of my attention. You have the minimum amount.”

the-social-networkThat line came from the Hollywood movie The Social Network and gave credence to the view that the old interruption model of brand communication doesn’t work anymore.

And by that I mean advertising.

Check the stats. The average consumer is exposed to a minimum of 3,500 marketing messages in a day and 99% of these ads fail to have any impact.

It’s marketing overload and marketing clutter. Consumers’ brains are now programmed to screen out – not screen in – messages. It’s a nightmare if you still continue to cling to ‘high decibel’ marketing techniques.

Old style media owners got fat by selling mass audiences to advertisers. They were able to aggregate millions of people into one place and blast them with commercial messages...

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The science of attraction

mindThe psychology of online persuasion is one of the fastest growing marketing disciplines in the world today. There are now more than 1 billion websites and this is expected to exceed 2 billion by 2015. Studying  online consumer behaviour is critical for marketers seeking new ways to drive  sales of products and services.

Attracting the right kind of customer or client to a website isn’t simply a matter of whether or not they can afford to purchase your product or service, as important as this is. It’s  more scientific than that. In fact, it’s neurochemical.

Scientific research explains that your customers experience the world through each of the five senses, translating sensory information into thought processes; both consciously and unconsciously...

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Increasing global power of women consumers

women-powerDid you know that women and economic growth is a reality that has played out quietly for centuries to the point now that women globally are a market segment bigger than Facebook?

Yes, really. And large enough to rival China or India. A real, not virtual, economic superpower in their own right, dubbed the ‘Third Billion’ by analysts at Booz & Co.

Whether this reality has taken place in the world’s most advanced economies or those that are beginning to emerge on the world stage, one constant remains – the participation of women in economic activity keeps the world spinning on its axis.

As a result, the influence of women as the world’s most valuable customer segment is causing global brand owners to chase the ‘gender dividend’ in recognition that they are the most dynamic and fastest...

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Are you stuck in ‘transmit mode’?

In my 20-year plus career within journalism, public relations, marketing and social media I’ve been very fortunate to have worked with some of the most successful global organisations in the world including Andersen Consulting (Accenture), Disney,  BBC,  The Scout Association, Shell, Ferrari, the International Cricket Council and the Defence Academy of the United Kingdom.

Very often it’s been my job to train chief executives on how best to put across their messages to audiences ranging from several hundred employees and millions of TV viewers.

Whilst all of these communication skills are very important – what we aren’t taught either at school or indeed when we work within our respective professions is how to actively listen.

Photo and captionAnd this was the theme of my talk, based on the resear...

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