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Hot Tips

Cost Effective Brochure Distribution

  • Do you know a company, who is not a competitor, which regularly sends information to your customers or potential customers? Organise a joint mailing. This will be cost effective for both companies.

  • Email your brochure or newsletter and include it on your web page rather than printing a large number and mailing them.

Customers

  • When visiting customers do your sales staff have the right attitude? The attitude you want them to have? Do they wear a smile and greet people by name? Are they enthusiastic and confident about the products or services they sell? Customers pick up these things.

  • Customers buy from their emotions and rationalise the purchase with logic. For example the man who bought a Porsche because it has good fuel economy.

  • When thinking about potential customers, ask yourself "Who else can gain from the benefits of my service or products?" "Who else can use them?" The answers may be people in a different geographic location, or different group to target. For example if you sell musical instruments you can target grandparents and local schools.

Local Network

  • Join a local business network and attend their meetings regularly. It can be a good source of information, finding about local activities, competitor activity and referrals.

Office/ Reception Area

  • Your reception area needs to clean, and neat. Colours should be appropriate to your image and your target customers perception of good taste.

  • The right smells are important. Do odours of kitchen, toilets or production pervade the office area? Install exhaust fans, change the layout so that the atmosphere is pleasant. Aromatherapy burners can be useful.

  • Fish tanks, plants, posters, screens, lamps, art etc are cost effective ways to create the right image.


Staff Training

  • Each week or month, review an office procedure with staff. How can they eliminate the glitches that happen? Encourage staff to be creative with solutions to these impediments.

  • Reward staff for being creative or pro-active with customers, learning new skills, finding better ways to do their work. The reward can be simple. e.g. recognition in front of their peers, a dinner for their family, movie tickets etc..

  • Regularly analyse your client profiles. Train your staff to understand customers needs and how to communicate effectively with them.

  • Encourage your staff to work out ways that make it easier for your customers to buy from you. e.g. a vet might have a pet delivery service for clients who cant collect their animals.

  • If you are having particular problems, let your staff know. Youll be surprised at their suggestions to help the company.

  • Are your staff dressed appropriately if clients visit or they visit clients? Appropriate dress means clothing that fits with the company image.

  • Train staff to focus on rewarding your customers. For customers, dealing with you should be a rewarding and enjoyable experience. Make helping the customer the top priority in everyones job.


Tracking Competitors

  • If your competitors send out a mailing regularly, why not have an associate subscribe and pass it onto you. Alternatively you can be on their mailing list at a private address.

  • Why not visit your competitors and see what they are doing?

  • Look in trade magazines for advertisements and in newspapers for job ads to find out about your competitors. What image are they presenting to potential employees? How often do staff change roles?

  • Ask your customers and industry association what competitors are doing.

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