December 26, 2010

Karma – Good Things Come to Those Who Are Positive Towards Others

In the past we have discussed the principles of karma.  Karma means that for every event that occurs, there will follow another event whose existence was caused by the first.

Furthermore, the second event will be pleasant or unpleasant depending on those aspects of the first.  In other words, if the first event is positive, so will the second one be.  If the first one is not positive, so will the second one be.

Put in common business talk, this means that if you do something nice for someone, someone will do something nice for you.  The return act may not be an act of the person you helped, but it may be an act of someone totally disconnected from either you or the person that you helped.

In other words, if you do something nice for someone else, you will receive something good in return.  On the flip side, if you fail to act in a positive manner, you will not receive a positive return act.  Your negative acts will result in negative acts received by you.

From “out of the blue” something happens to you that is very good, making you feel so good, validating your actions toward others.  Maybe someone invites you to a new networking group, maybe someone refers new business to you, maybe you get an invitation to lunch; it can be anything.

Perhaps these things that come to you, good or bad, are the result of your marketing towards others; perhaps these things that come to you are the result of singular, spontaneous acts that you perform towards others.  It does not matter if these actions by you are part of your grand plan or just your normal way of operation; they all result in return acts towards you.

Do these resulting actions come from the people that you directly impact?  I repeat, not necessarily so; they can come in round about trails of varying lengths.  You may or may not receive these actions from the people that you directly impacted.  We have discussed often that the resulting actions may come from those that you “touch” directly or may come “out of the blue” from someone not even close to involvement.

As we move through this holiday season, let us all look for opportunities to engage in better behavior towards others, not because it may result in something good for us in return, but because it is the right thing to do.  In addition, it will make you feel better, in your mind and in your heart.  But do not confine this behavior to the holiday season.  Let it be your standard mode of operation, toward everyone, at anytime.

I always look forward to your calls or emails with your thoughts.  Have a great year end and get off to a positive, safe, and great start in the coming year.  If you ever want to chat about anything, email me at, or even better, call me at 360-314-8691.  I answer my phone, and return voice and emails.

December 19, 2010

Time – It Has a Role in Appreciation Marketing

Time, we have too much of it at times, but often we do not have enough.  What we do with time makes us who we are and what others think of us.

Some time ago, I met someone at a networking event who wanted to meet me for a chat so we could get to know each other better.  Since that is always my intent when I meet someone interesting, we set a time and place for the meeting.

Because I value the time of others I try to always be on time or early so that I do not appear unprofessional.  On the date for our meeting, I was sitting at the appointed place well ahead of the meeting time.

My meeting partner did not show up on time, and when she was 15 minutes late, I called her cell number, leaving her a message on her voice mail, asking if I had the time or location correct.  I was working on my laptop when she arrived 20 minutes after our appointment time, not apologizing for her tardiness.

During the next 25 minutes she answered her cell phone no less than 5 times, talking several minutes on each call.  Then she announced that she needed to leave as she had another appointment that she needed to keep.

I asked her why she had wanted to meet with me, and she informed me that she wanted to find out more about my business and about me.  I asked her if she had learned anything, and she then left for her next appointment.

What did I learn from this situation?  I learned that this person did not value my time, that she did not have control of her own time, and that she did not see any need to improve.  In short, was she someone with whom I wanted to establish a business relationship, or was she someone to whom I wanted to refer anyone from my business network?

Time is valuable to everyone; it is valuable to you, to me, to our customers, to our prospects, and to everyone that we may meet.  While you may never discover all the other people who someone else may know, you can learn how they value the time of others.

Appreciate the time of your customers and prospects.  Be on time for appointments; realize that they may have other meetings on their appointment calendars; stay on schedule.  Your customers and prospects will appreciate your appreciation for them, and they will reward you for your efforts.  Treat them like you want to be treated.

If you are going to be late for an appointment, call the other person, explaining your tardiness, giving them the option to wait or reschedule.  Don’t leave your phone on during meetings; let all calls go to voice mail and return calls after your meeting.  Don’t let the other person be aware that anyone is calling and do not hint that you would like to answer it.

Stay on schedule even if it means that your meeting will be shortened; don’t expect that the other person will allow you to take the time that you would normally have taken if you had started on time.  Be respectful of their time and offer to meet them again at a place and time of their choosing.  Be on time the next time.

Of course, you should send a thank you for all meetings.  If you were late, include an apology for your tardiness, even if they accepted your apology at the meeting.  Be sincere and make them understand that being tardy is not your normal operating mode.

If you value the time of your networking partners, they will value knowing you.  If you value the time of prospective partners they will want to be included in your network.  The better your network, the better your business future will be.

Please read “Appreciation Marketing” written by Tommy Wyatt and Curtis Lewsey.  I believe that you will find it as informative as I have.  Also, please leave me your comments and questions.  If you would like to meet and chat about any concept of Appreciation Marketing, call me at 360-314-8691, or send me an email at with your thoughts.

December 12, 2010

Random Acts of Kindness/Referrals – Together as Appreciation Marketing?

Previously, we discussed random acts of kindness and the role they play in Appreciation Marketing.  Last week, we also discussed the art of referrals and their role.

Can these two facets of Appreciation Marketing go together and show that you appreciate others?  Yes, these two can definitely exist together and can show that you appreciate others and what they do.

I regularly attend networking events where there are anywhere from 10 – 100 attendees.  I have met most of the regular attendees at these events and several of them for coffee chats outside the event.

I have received several compliments from people with whom I have met as to my professionalism, my passion for networking and helping others, as well as my personable attitude and drive for superb customer service.  More than once recently, I was pleased to hear someone, in public, praise my drive for networking with others and for my business specifically.

Do you have any idea how much these types of compliments make me feel?  Some of these people are my customers, and some are not.  Some of them are people of whom I am a customer, and some are not.  It does not matter who compliments you, the fact that they do, and sometimes publicly, is what matters.

Not only do you hear the compliment, and feel good as a result, but when others hear the public compliment, they will want to know more.  The compliment establishes you as a person who is well known, maybe as an expert on a subject, or perhaps as someone with whom others want to identify.

Maybe compliments will bring you more business; maybe they will only bring you more publicity.  Either way, you will benefit.  Either way, thank that person and try to return the compliment with another act of kindness, either for them or someone else.  After all, karma is what we all practice, isn’t it?

As a believer in Appreciation Marketing, you should actively look for opportunities to pass compliments to others, especially so that other event attendees can hear them.  If you believe that someone else has helped you, don’t wait for the facilitator of the event to ask for testimonials.  Give them freely without prompting.

If you are not in a position to pass on a testimonial, but you appreciate someone else’s support, advice, or kindness, pass on a compliment.  Give it directly to the person at the time you receive the assistance.  In addition, pass on a testimonial in public, where others can hear your words and realize that the recipient of the compliment may be someone with whom they should be acquainted.

There is another result of passing compliments or testimonials in public.  You, as the person who compliments others, will be come well known, and also known as someone who appreciates the efforts of others.  Better yet, you become someone with whom others may want to be associated.  Isn’t that one of the results of networking that we desire?

As always, I welcome your comments and questions.  If you would like to meet and chat about any concept of Appreciation Marketing, call me at 360-314-8691, or send me an email at with your thoughts.  Also, I appreciate your support and interest.

December 5, 2010

Referrals - The Two Way Street of Appreciation Marketing

Quick, what is a proper referral in business?  Is it when you tell person A about person B who needs what person A has to sell?  Is it when you give to person B one of Person A’s business cards?  Is it when you tell person A that you heard of a business with which they might be able to do business?

Well, you are wrong, wrong, and wrong, on all three answers.  A proper referral is when you tell person B about person A’s business, and then give person B all the contact information for person A.  Then you tell person A all about why you think person B would be interested in person A’s business and give person A all the contact information for person B.  You also tell each of them that you want to know what happens with the referral, and you follow up if you do not hear back.

If you hear back from A and B that they have contacted each other and have met to discuss their offerings and needs, you should ask for the result of the meeting.  If they actually do business with each other, that is great.  If they do not do business with each other, you want to know what went wrong so that you can better gauge your referrals in the future.

You do not “sell” person A to person B or person B to person A.  You recommend that they meet and discuss their needs and offerings with each other.  You are not the marketing representative for either one; you are the person who puts them together so they can communicate with each other.

Of course you need to know enough about persons A and B so that you can make intelligent referrals to both.  You also need to know that you can trust both of them to be professional, passionate about their businesses or lives, and personable towards others.  You must be assured that they will treat each other professionally, even if they do not do business with each other.

How do you reach this level of trust?  Referrals are a two way street.  You must get to know each of them before you can refer them to each other.  You must be able to trust each party and believe that they will do right by the other party in the referral.  After all, it is your reputation on the line here; it will be your fault if one party does not treat the other one professionally.

Hopefully, your referrals will show to your networking partners that you are a person who is willing and is capable of making their lives better, both professionally and personally.  After all, referrals can work for our personal lives also.  Hopefully, your referrals will result in your networking partners passing referrals back to you also.  After all, that is the essence of karma.

So as we enter the holiday season, think of the best gift that you can give to one of your networking partners.  Get to know them and pass referrals back and forth with them.  Use their services or products as gifts to your family, friends, prospects, and clients.  Also, give them the gift of solid, valid referrals that will enhance their bottom line.

If you are lucky enough to get the benefit of someone’s referral, or their consultation, that enhances your business, thank them, letting them know that their effort is appreciated and means so much to you.  Then go out and pay them back with a referral, or consultation, of your own.  Sometimes the best referrals that we can give may be our own business given to one of our networking partners.

Once again, please give me your feedback, suggestions, and comments.  Call me, 360-314-8691, so we can get together and chat, or send me an email at with your thoughts.  Maybe you can contribute your experiences to this blog.  Thank you for your interest and thoughts.  I answer my phone, and I return voice mails and emails.