December 31, 2016

New Year, New Ideas

Here we are again; the New Year is here and millions will be making resolutions to change the ways that their businesses operate. On the surface, this appears to be a good thing. However, are we making changes just for the sake of change or based on ideas that actually will improve our operations?

First, there are many business owners that will never change anything about their operations because they see themselves as perfect no matter the results of their business performance. They just keep working as they always have and accepting the same results that they always have received. This might be the definition of insanity.

Second, there are business people who will never embrace a different or new idea because they are afraid of change. Are they dumb or afraid, or a combination of the two? With a new idea we must research it and see how it should help us. We cannot allow our fear or ignorance to stop us from trying something new. If the new idea does not work, we must stop doing it and try something else.

Third, if we determine that we should be obtaining better results from our businesses, and we see new ideas that should help us improve those results, we must never allow our doubt, or that of naysayers that fall into the first two areas above, to impede the implementation of those ideas. We must devote our full support to the implementation of changes and allow them to build the results expected. If they don’t, we should perform more study to provide us the reasons.

New ideas can enable our businesses to grow and prosper. They can be very meaningful to the continued success that we may already enjoy, but on an expanded level. They also could have a negative impact on our business and impede the success that we already had. We must thoroughly implement the new ideas that we have researched and monitor closely the results that we obtain after implementation so that we can take immediate action if necessary.

Maybe we should try ideas such as appeared in The Costco Connection magazine this month. Michael Parrish Dudell, in his article “Stand Out in 2017”, suggests that businesses attempt to sell more to less people by concentrating on more specific niches. He also offers that businesses should improve their customer service by personalizing their operation at every point of service. Finally, he states that businesses need to refresh their digital marketing, making it more up-to-date and easier to use. See his article for more details.

A new year brings to us the belief that we must implement new ideas that should change our business results for the better. There are all types of pitfalls involved in this philosophy, and we must perform the correct research, both inside our operations and outside, to determine what we need and how it should provide results. Then we must control and monitor the implementation of these new ideas, keeping a close watch on the situation and any need for more change.

If we do not do anything new in our businesses for the new year, we must recommit to Gratitude Marketing, making our prospects, customers, clients, employees, former customers, and anyone else know in their hearts that we appreciate those with whom we have any relationship, or not, and will continue to do so. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

December 24, 2016

The Entrepreneur Mindset, Part 3

The entrepreneur must have a different mindset from that of a normal employee. An employee of a business usually does not have to think of the operation of the business, the marketing of services or products offered, and other agenda items. Granted, employees may have a direct impact on the success or lack of success of a business, but the entrepreneur has a more influential effect in what they do or think.

Entrepreneurs must consider various traits of business operation and keep on track in order to maintain the success of their business. They must think of the P’s of Business. The P’s of Business offers guidance to anyone who is getting their business off the ground or to someone else whose business may need a boost. For others, they might get the mind of an entrepreneur thinking which is always a good thing.

Operate your business as a professional. A business must be run as a business, and in a professional manner. The entrepreneur is a business person, not someone with a hobby. While the business may be one of love, perhaps even an offshoot of a fad, it is a business. Therefore, it deserves an attention to detail, a devotion to its operation, and a dedication to everyday needs. To be considered as a professional, act like a professional.

The second P is to operate a business with passion for it, and its services and/or products. Be a product of the business products or services. If the entrepreneur does not utilize the business offerings to market its services, why not? What type of example is set for customers or clients? If what is offered is good enough for prospects, it should be great for the entrepreneur. Credibility is a foundation of prosperity.

The third P means that the entrepreneur treats everyone as a person, not as a prospect or customer number. Everyone is a human being, with feelings, thoughts, and needs. If the entrepreneur cannot solve someone’s needs or wants, help them find someone who can. Help others get the assistance that they need to prosper and succeed. Karma will reward the entrepreneur in the long run. Personal contact and assistance is a lost art, and the entrepreneur will gain a great reputation, and new business, through practicing it.

A fourth P of business is persistence. This does not mean to keep hammering away at prospects until they buy just to shut the entrepreneur up. It means to keep working the business through thick and thin, on good days and bad ones, never quitting on a bad day. Maintain an adherence to the P’s of Business and other great customer service traits no matter the naysayers who proclaim negative thoughts.

Gratitude Marketing reflects these P’s of Business at their best, and they dovetail with every point that can be made about Gratitude Marketing. They are the basis for a successful business. Does a business need a pick-me-up? Does it seem to have gotten dull and boring? Do sales seem to be lagging?

Why not try to emphasize the P’s of Business and see if they make a business operation better. Happy clients make a business better; happy business owners make it even better. The P’s of Business will make us all proud of what we do and even more proud of our business accomplishments. That will make everyone happier. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

December 18, 2016

The Entrepreneur Mindset, Part 2

Everyone in business has relationships with others who are not our customers. These people may not have ever been our customers, or they may have been customers but for some reason, severed that customer association. It is imperative that entrepreneurs do not ignore either of these two types of people. Information is power for an entrepreneur, and these people have information that can greatly benefit a business.

First, let us examine the person who has not ever been our customer. Do we know why; have we ever asked the other person why they do not see themselves ever buying our product or service? What do they need to further their business, or what may they need that can make them more successful? Is it a matter of misunderstanding, financial means, the wrong time, or is there not ever a possibility of a customer relationship?

We must never put the prospect on the defensive when attempting to discover why they are not our customer. We must make them understand that we are not trying to make them justify their position. We must reassure them that we are just curious and need the information to refine our marketing and our offering to others. They can be an immense help to us, as we should be for them.

Second, there is someone who was a customer at one time, but they ceased doing business with us for some reason. We all lose customers; everyone may eventually stop doing business with us. They may die, go out of business, retire, change their business, or sell their business. There may even be financial reasons that others stop ordering from us. It will happen and does so every day to the best of operations.

Again, we must discover what information we can from this former customer. As always, we must do so without the other business person believing that we have put them on the defensive. We must make them understand that their information is valuable to us in becoming better partners in business for the future and that we support their decision making. Our networking relationship and partnership must continue to flourish so that we may both succeed.

We must contact the lost customer to discover why they stopped being our customer, asking them what changed. Did we do something wrong, did we not do something that we should have done, what could we have done differently, or did their situation just change? Sometimes someone ceases doing business with us for no reason that we can rectify. No matter what happened, we still need to know. Our future depends on our marketing and our performance, and all information is valuable for our future.

If we did something wrong, we must fix it, assure them that the problem is fixed, and apologize. Then, thank them for their business and guarantee that the partnership in networking should continue. Then make sure it does.

In either situation, Gratitude Marketing efforts can make the relationships flourish and all partners thrive. Just because someone doesn’t become or stay our customer, we still can have a great relationship and partnership with them. The karma from Gratitude Marketing will bring success to everyone. Again, if you have questions or comments, please email me at Jim@SOC4Now.com, or call me at 360-314-8691, so we can discuss them.

December 11, 2016

“Everybody’s In, Nobody’s Out” – Sam Brooks

Located in Portland, Oregon, the Oregon Association of Minority Entrepreneurs (OAME) provides a structure for all types of entrepreneurs to network with, learn from, and counsel each other. While the name of the organization includes the word “minority”, everyone in business is welcome to learn and contribute. One of the organization’s descriptive phrases is “Everybody’s In, Nobody’s Out”, repeated often by Sam Brooks.

OAME considers everyone worthy with whom to build relationships and partnerships. The organization knows that each person has value that should benefit someone else. Through building networking relationships and partnerships all parties can enhance their status and find success in their businesses.

Whenever we attend networking meetings we must never, ever disregard anyone whom we meet. We must never prejudge anyone as not “good enough” with whom to meet and attempt to build a networking relationship. We all are looking for that next prospect who we want to turn into a customer. However, not everyone will be a prospect who will become our customer, but we should not ignore the opportunity to network with them.

When we meet someone new in a networking meeting, we should consider that they will become one of four types of contacts. They will become either a prospect to be a customer, or a possible networking partner, or both. The fourth type of contact is one who cannot fit into any of the former three. They may be someone whom we cannot trust, who has business habits that we cannot support, or is just not ready to become one of the former three contacts with us. If they are not ready now, perhaps they will be soon

We cannot anticipate in which of these categories the people we meet will be a member. We must take the time to meet one-on-one with them and determine which type of contact they will be. Obviously someone might start out as one category but may move to be one of the other ones as time passes. As our relationship matures, the networking partner may become a customer as well. In addition, a customer may become a client.

Clients are customers who have escalated their relationship with us. They may have a recurring order with us, or they may initiate orders themselves. They may be ready to try additional products or services before we even market them, reacting to the news of some new offering from us. They trust us, refer others to us, and always have our mutual interests at heart. They are our partners in more ways than one.

When we practice Gratitude Marketing we show everyone how much we appreciate others and have gratitude for whatever these others do, whether those actions are directed towards us or other persons. Our Gratitude Marketing must apply to everyone, without any exceptions. In other words, “Everybody’d In, Nobody’s Out”.

Gratitude Marketing is the one trait that all business people can utilize and that will enhance their business success. Business people must reach out to everyone and join a revolution of kindness. The resulting karma will overwhelm them with prosperity and make them the type of people with whom others want to associate and build partnerships. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

December 4, 2016

The Entrepreneur Mindset

When we decide to start our own business, we must understand that the mindset of an entrepreneur must be very different from that of an employee. It does not matter if we are starting a business from scratch, opening a franchise of an established business operation, or assuming the ownership of a functioning business. We must think like a business owner, not an employee.

An entrepreneur must realize that if the business is to be successful, his decisions and actions will be the basis for that success. If it fails to be successful, he will be the reason that that failure. He might not be the person who is directly responsible, but his actions will lead to either success or failure. There is no one else. If he hires the wrong employee, he is at fault; if he buys the raw materials that make a product successful, he is the reason for that decision. That is the way of the entrepreneur.

Will the entrepreneur be right every time a decision is made? Will every choice be correct? Of course not, but the mindset of the entrepreneur must be that there will be success and there will be failures. Not every prospect will become a customer; and not every customer will stay a customer forever. Not every employee will be a great one, and not every product or service will be a winner in the market.

A major league baseball player is considered a great batter if they get a hit 3 out of every 10 at bats. NFL quarterbacks will not complete every pass they throw. The entrepreneur must understand that they will not be successful in everything they try to do, whether it be hiring employee, marketing to prospects, developing new products, expanding their business locations, or anything else.

The entrepreneur must understand that even though they research a problem before they take action, that they study how to market their services or products, or that they look for the advice of others, they will make mistakes. Show me a business which does not make mistakes, and I will show you a dull, boring business, which takes no chances, tries nothing new and different, and may not be a very rewarding place to work. A business must learn from its mistakes, and how they recover from mistakes may be their greatest form of marketing.

The entrepreneur must be able to believe in their own judgement, and their ability to base their judgement on research and study. Sooner or later they must be able to make decisions and take action, for inaction will usually lead to failure. Entrepreneurs must be leaders and examples for their employees. They must be people who do not let doubt rule their judgement and management. They must be able to manage their business, employees, prospects, customers, clients, and themselves.

Entrepreneurs must understand their relationships with everyone with whom they interface. This includes prospects, customers, clients, networking partners, employees, former customers, and total strangers. Practicing Gratitude Marketing means touching everyone in a positive manner, which will result in business success.

Gratitude Marketing is the habit that entrepreneurs must add to their mindset. It makes entrepreneurs better business owners, and the resulting great karma doesn’t hurt the bottom line either. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

November 26, 2016

The Gratitude Challenge

Showing our gratitude towards others is the basis for Gratitude Marketing. It is a proven truth that showing gratitude towards others for what they do for us or other people is so much better than our own proclamations about how great we are, or our businesses are, or our products or services are. Everyone wants, and likes, to be noticed and thanked for our actions towards other people.

Thanking others for what they do, for us or for other people, brings rays of sunshine into everyone’s lives. It makes people walk taller, smile more, and just feel better about themselves and the people who provide these words of thanks. Everyone can benefit from words of appreciation and gratitude, and no one dislikes hearing the magic words: “thank you”.

Obviously our customers should be objects of our gratitude. We should all show gratitude for our customers’ orders, their repeat orders, and especially when their order is a recurring one. Furthermore, we should show our gratitude when customers refer someone else to us as a prospect, whether or not that prospect becomes a customer.

Besides our customers other people who should receive our gratitude for their actions should include anyone who provides referrals to us. These referrals may come from people who will never order from us, but believe that we can help someone who they know. These networking partners will base their referrals on their relationships with us and how we make they believe that we are people that they can trust to treat their referrals well.

What about total strangers? We all observe acts of kindness every day being performed by total strangers who we may have never formally met, whose names we do not know, and who should receive some gratitude for their actions. These people who have done something which we have observed should be praised by someone, and we don’t believe that their actions should go without being noticed and applauded.

Anyone who has employees must practice these same actions in return for whatever our employees do for our customers, for us, and for anyone else. Their status as employees does not preclude that we should show them gratitude for what they do each and every day. Loyalty is an employee trait that will help build the success of any business, and showing gratitude for employees and their actions can strengthen that loyalty and performance.

How about a gratitude challenge? Why not over the next 30 days we all try to show our gratitude to as many people as we can? It doesn’t matter if they are prospects, customers, clients, total strangers, former customers, or employees; try to express gratitude to as many people as possible over the next 30 days. Then see what results are from all this Gratitude Marketing, because that is what it is.

Gratitude Marketing provides us the framework to build a business’ success. It makes us to become more observant of the actions of others, and it is the way to build that success through karma. Whatever we put forth in our lives is what we will receive back, good for good, and bad for bad. Before we know it, this gratitude challenge may even spread around the world and be the basis for a revolution of kindness. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

November 20, 2016

Simple Politeness

Previously we discussed that when someone does anything for us, or we observe someone doing something for someone else, we should thank them for that effort. People who perform a service for anyone should be recognized for that service, no matter who they are. To do so is an act of simple politeness.

If someone asks us for information that we provide to them, we have the right to expect a thank you for the information that we have provided. If the request is made in the form of an email rather than in a face-to-face verbal inquiry, the requestor frequently never thanks the responder for the information that they receive.

If their inquiry was made verbally in a conversation, would they just walk away without any reply at all? The use of an email for the original inquiry does not provide an excuse for not replying to the email which answers the original request. Simple politeness demands that we take the step to thank others for what they do for us.

What else do we not do in our business lives that would fall under the expected aspects of simple politeness? How about thanking our customers for being our customers? Shouldn’t we issue each customer a “thank you” when they buy from us, when they put money into our pockets? Gratitude for our customers’ business is so much more potent in the business-customer relationship than when we promote how great we are as a business or how wonderful our products or services are.

If one of our customers refers someone else to us we should thank the referring customer for trusting us to treat their referral as well as we did them. If the referred person does not become our customer, is that the fault of the referring person, or is that our job to make the referral work? We still should show our gratitude for the referral.

What about the customer who becomes a client who buys from us on a continued basis, who periodically orders, or who is on an automatic renewal with our company? They deserve special thanks and recognition. An expression of gratitude is not only appropriate; it should be expected. To do less is taking the customer for granted, the first step that will result in our losing the customer in the future.

Everyone likes to be noticed and appreciated for what we do. As business people we want to receive the thanks of our customers for offering such great products or services at such great prices. We also want to be recognized for making the customer buying experience as enjoyable as we can. Is it too much for our customers to expect some simple politeness from us towards them? Shouldn’t we treat them as we would want to be treated by everyone with whom we do business, or just encounter every day?

Gratitude Marketing provides us the means to show simple politeness towards others. It is not a new and complicated process. It is not revolutionary or a secret means of building a business. It is just doing what we want others to do, showing gratitude for those actions we all perform during the day. It doesn’t matter if we are the giver or the receiver of this great karma, we all can benefit from simple politeness and a warm thank you. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

November 13, 2016

Fighting to Get Customer Service

Anyone whose business is successful provides great customer service. If we don’t, we will fail eventually. Customers just do not have the time or energy to put up with anything less than decent customer service. What is the level of customer service that a customer will allow us to sink to before they take their business elsewhere?

Businesses may brag about their great customer service. They don’t ever say that they only give adequate customer service, and they will also never say that their customer service lacks anything positive. The big question is do businesses live up to their bragging about their customer service, or do they fail to address the problems with their service which disappoint their customers?

There are businesses with great customer service, and there are the ones with little if any customer service. Then there are businesses that fall somewhere in between the great and the ones who do not even know the definition of customer service at all. Why does any customer put up with anything less than receiving great customer service? Why does anyone support businesses whose employees do not even do their jobs?

Recently I had the occasion to complain to an international company about the service that I was receiving. I called their customer service representatives and stated my problem, which had been ongoing for some time. Previous attempts to resolve the problem were met with promises which were not kept, and I believed that I was being ignored. I had to demand to speak to a supervisor about my problem when the representative refused to deviate from the same marketing script which I had endured on several previous calls.

When I finally was able to discuss my problem with a supervisor, I threatened to take my business elsewhere if my problem was not resolved to my satisfaction. Since I have been a customer of this business for over 10 years, I believed that I was due to receive something other than a brush-off.

The supervisor listened to my problem, agreed that I should have not been ignored previously, made sure that I knew that he was sympathetic to my feelings, scheduled a service call at my home, at no charge to me, and responded favorably to my question if there was basis for reducing my monthly billing. After the service call, my problem was now resolved, in a professional manner, and I thanked and praised the service representative directly and to his supervisor.

While my problem was finally resolved, and my monthly billing now is less than it was previously, I still believe that the company needs to look at making changes to their customer service policy. They need to teach their representatives to listen to their customers’ problems, exhibit some sympathy to their customers, and offer solutions instead of a script of denials. A long term client should be rewarded, not insulted.

Through Gratitude Marketing we have the opportunity to build our customer base greater than we ever dreamed. We also have the opportunity to move customers to become clients and enjoy their referrals which will increase our success and prosperity. It is just good karma, but they should not have to fight to receive customer service of any level. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

November 6, 2016

Opportunity Knocks, Part 2

Previously, we discussed the opportunities which suddenly appear to us and are not a result of our own marketing efforts. These opportunities do not result from our planning, our prospecting, or our marketing in general. They may include chances to discover prospects which appear out of nowhere but who may make us more successful than we believed possible.

As a result of the previous blog discussion on these “surprise” opportunities, I had several conversations with various readers regarding how to recognize and respond to these types of chances for business. I must say that to my amazement, some business people with whom I spoke are just not as astute as I would hope all of us to be. Some people would not recognize a business opportunity if it walked up to them and slapped them in the face.

We all are very busy people, making plans, going to appointments, marketing to each and every person whom we meet. However, we really do not market to everyone in an alert manner. Actually we miss many chances to discuss what we do and inform other people of what our business actually does. The fact that we do not see these people as prospects does not mean that they may not know someone else who is a great opportunity for us. They may even be great prospects for our business.

I had the occasion recently to attend some meetings of groups with which I have never networked and nor do I belong to any of these types of group. I was stunned that some of the attendees were “distant” to newcomers almost to the point of rudeness. They did not introduce themselves voluntarily, refrained from engaging in any level of conversation, and never offered any effort to even say hello in many cases. It was not just me with whom they did not network, but other new attendees to their groups.

These types of networkers are just the people who need to practice some Gratitude Marketing. They are literally practicing negative marketing and driving away any possibility of developing any relationships which might bring them referrals or new business of any sort. Not only would I never recommend any of them to anyone, I would also never recommend their meetings for anyone to attend.

Not recommending them to anyone else is easy since I never received any information from them. However, someone might attend their meetings with the aim of developing relationships with other newcomers who are also being ignored by the regular members. This would be like starting a subgroup of disenchanted people within the main group. Maybe that idea has some merit.

We all must be more aware of these opportunities which will appear “out of the blue” and take advantage of them. We would not want to appear rude and asleep when they present themselves to us. If nothing else, we should treat these chances to build our businesses like “found money” and know that they are a return on our karma.

Gratitude Marketing offers us the opportunity to build our reputation as caring, honest, ethical, and giving business people. It also brings us the karma of opportunities “out of the blue” which we may not ever anticipate in our planning. We must be alert to these chance happenings and never ignore them. To do so would be detrimental to our business and might even be perceived as rude by others. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

October 30, 2016

Standards

Recently I read an article about customer service standards by Michele McGovern regarding standards of customer service in various companies. The theory is that companies should have and enforce standards within their operations which promote great customer service. These standards may be what we should all expect or may be ones which address the little things that enhance the customer experience. Customers may never have thought of some standards, but they should find them all rewarding.

As business people we should all examine our operations and install a culture of standards that make our customers’ experience when dealing with our businesses more pleasant and rewarding. Someone may buy a widget from us at a great price that lasts forever, never needing replacement. What do we care about them after the purchase from us? They may never need another widget, but do they know someone who would also like to have one of our widgets?

What does that customer say about the buying experience that they “enjoyed” with us? Did we make it easy to purchase from us; did we may the experience fun and something that they would not shy away from in the future? What will they say to someone else who asks them how it was to buy from us? Will they offer favorable comments, or will they tell everyone to never, ever do business with us?

We all want to expand our customer base, but we must also expand our client base. We have discussed the difference between customers and clients before. A customer may make a purchase once from us, but a client should be ours for life. That client should be our objective; they should be that partner in business, that networking relationship which can make our business successful.

If a customer buys something from us that they may never need to replace, we should not write them off in our minds as lost. We must understand that they may know others who need whatever we offer. However, what does that customer say about the experience that they had when buying from us? Their experience should make them our marketing consultants, telling everyone that they will also enjoy their own buying experience.

Do we maintain standards that make us businesses with which others want to engage in buying from us? Do we deliver the same product in the same manner every time someone buys from us? Do we make that experience pleasurable? Do we even ask our customers how their experience was? Do our employees know our standards even if they are involved in all of them? Do they support our maintaining these standards? Do our standards cover everything from the initial prospect contact to recovery from business mistakes? Are they just for disciplining our employees?

In our Gratitude Marketing we have learned that we should appreciate and have gratitude for our customers’ business and their input to our business practices. We must establish standards that reflect this gratitude and maintain those standards all across our businesses. Through these standards we may obtain, retain, and enhance our customer relationships, making clients who are our best marketing branch. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

October 23, 2016

Opportunity Knocks

As business owners we must be aware of the opportunities which we discover each and every day. These opportunities may be the result of careful and extensive planning on our parts, or they may be because of pure unplanned chance. It does not matter why we find these opportunities; we must be alert to taking advantage of all openings that may lead to our bettering our business bottom line.

Business people are proud of researching ways of finding prospects and planning what we do when we locate these prospects in order to turn prospects into potential customers. We study, plan, study some more, and plan some more. Then we try to put our plans into action, adjusting as we go to refine the steps we take. We are not afraid of taking chances, trying new methods, and thinking “outside the box”.

Sometimes all this planning and thinking gives us great results. Sometimes it does not. We have learned that business success is not a given, not a promised result. It is gained through hard work, dedication to our business, and the service that we provide to everyone, including those people whom we fail to sign as customers.

On the other hand, we must be aware of opportunities that may present themselves “out of the blue”, which are not the result of our planning and business projections. Sometimes we just happen to be in the right place at the right time. These are the times in which we must be intelligent and alert enough to take advantage of the chance which fate has given to us and reap the benefit of the person who is right in front of through chance.

When is the last time that we reacted to a chance conversation with a stranger in a coffee shop? How about the guest speaker at our networking meeting? Did we engage the visitor to our Chamber of Commerce meeting? Do we listen to conversations that we overhear in public places (coffee shops, restaurants, on or while awaiting mass transit, doctors’ waiting rooms, or any other places where people gather)? We must be aware of these openings and act on them.

We spend money, time, and effort on developing opportunities for our business to gain new prospects. We should also take advantage of those which present themselves “out of the blue” and take action when they arrive. Do we deserve these chances to find new customers, or have we really “earned” them? Of course we have. Never pass up a chance which presents itself when we least expect one and believe that it didn’t result from our hard work. Of course it did; we just didn’t anticipate it.

As business owners we must not only recognize opportunities that arrive when we do not expect them, we must take advantage of these “found” chances to expand our business customer list. We also should learn to expect these chances to arrive and know that we have the intelligence and planning to act positively and add some unintended prospect to our customer base.

Gratitude Marketing means that we develop relationships with others, helping them to find whatever they need. It therefore adds to our reputation and will present us opportunities which we may not expect to expand our business. Not only should we be ready to take advantage of the chance opportunities, we should also learn to expect them because of our Gratitude Marketing. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

October 16, 2016

Time to Upgrade

Periodically we all must upgrade what we say and what we do in businesses. While we know that we must be consistent in our business dealings, we also know that fresh, new ideas require fresh, new discussion and marketing. We must be interesting and not boring when we market. We must not have our prospects “tune us out” when we attempt to market our ideas and attempt to explain our products or services.

Honest, truthful messages are the backbone of any successful business. Do not attempt to “put one over” on prospects. Just give others the truth in a straight forward manner, and allow sincerity to convince the public that we are what they need. Never make the buying prospects second guess marketing messages and believe that they are being deceived.

However, we must also understand that honest, straight forward marketing messages must be refreshed from time to time so prospects will not become bored with the our words and efforts. We must upgrade our messages to reflect changing products or services as well as the new and different times in which we market. New generations want new messages as well as products. Different people require a different approach from us.

Changed your product or service offered lately? Do your marketing messages reflect you new offerings? What about a new, and different, generation of prospects; your marketing must reach out to them in a language that they understand? Do you even understand the language of your prospects, the inclinations, the verbiage, and the need for communication? Do you understand the marketing methods that you can use?

What about the marketing messages that worked so well in the past and still apply to your current offerings? Have prospects “tuned us out” of their minds? Should we still utilize something that is not meeting our needs? If I attend a networking meeting where I introduce myself in turn with everyone else, I always attempt to make myself stand out to the point that others will want to meet with me and get to know me better. I also try to mix up the message and use new, fresh thoughts and words in my introduction.

Of course, that introduction is just the means we use to get a meeting with someone to start building a business relationship. There we apply Gratitude Marketing to discover what we can do to help someone else find what they need in their business. Just upgrading what we say to them when they ask what we do may be the ticket to developing a new prospect. We do not want them to believe that they have heard the story before from us or someone else. We must explain what makes us different and better.

Gratitude Marketing means that we develop relationships with others and discover what we can assist them in obtaining that will bring them success. We must understand that while our message may be truthful, sincere, and direct, it can also be boring and dull. We must understand changing generations and prospects who need to be excited as we are about what we offer. They will then actually hear what we have to say and understand more about our offering that will benefit them. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

October 9, 2016

How It Should Work

Over and over again I have suggested, implored, and taught business owners to meet others one-on-one and get to know them before attempting to sell them anything. People purchase from those whom they know, like, and trust. They also refer business to those whom they know, like, and trust. How can anyone fit into that scenario if we don’t get to know them and allow them to know us first?

In the past weeks I met another business person on LinkedIn who is not located in my immediate geographical area. We had a great conversation via telephone (yes, we actually spoke with each other in lieu of texting) and agreed to meet face-to-face when I was planning to travel closer to where he is located. He was definitely in agreement with the philosophy to get to know each other better without “selling” to each other.

So, we planned, and executed a coffee shop meeting in his geographical area and had an excellent chat with each other. We talked about how we came to where we are in business, our personal lives, and what we were looking to accomplish in our futures. We discussed common ground areas in business, business philosophy, and how we deal with mutual challenges. We got to know each other better than we could have otherwise.

We did share the details of what we do in business and gave each other examples of opportunities which might interest each other. These included networking opportunities, actual business opportunities, and shared knowledge about specific items of importance. It was an excellent example of the type of meeting that should always take place between business people who have recently met and want to build a relationship which should help move each other to have success.

This type of meeting requires some work on the part of the participants. We did some research on each other prior to the meeting, including reviewing each other’s LinkedIn profiles, websites, business history, and any other material available. Based on what we learned from this research, and our previous telephone conversation, we had a running start for our one-on-one conversation.

As business owners, all of us must develop new prospects and move those prospects to the category of customers and even further to become clients. Can we benefit from people who are not our customers, perhaps not even prospects for whatever products or services that we offer? Of course we can; they can become networking partners who advise us, suggest opportunities to us, and refer others to us who are prospects for us and whatever we do offer. This is just the group to which Gratitude Marketing is so applicable, in addition to being appropriate for our customers.

Gratitude Marketing means that we develop relationships with other people who may be prospects for our businesses and who can benefit from whatever we offer. Gratitude Marketing also means developing relationships with those who may never become our prospects or customers but will assist us in building our business success. They are our networking partners and our mutually benefiting relationship is the essence of great business. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

October 2, 2016

The Professional Touch

Recently I attended a trade show where there were many businesses showing off their products or services with booths staffed by their representatives. There were large booths with several people speaking with attendees of the show, and there were smaller ones with 1-2 people present. There were grandiosely decorated booths and simpler ones.

We have all either been an attendee at one of these shows, or we have been one of the booth owners. There are several common sense guidelines that should be followed when being in either position. Anyone might benefit from being in either position if one follows some of these guidelines and treats the show as a business situation.

The attitude of an attendee or a representative of a booth holder is very important. This is a business event and should be treated as such. This is work and an opportunity to market ourselves and our businesses. Just like any other networking event, we can make it a successful opportunity by our attitude and our actions, or we can fail to take advantage of the situation by our attitude and behavior towards others.

We must be active. If we are attending an event, take the initiative and speak to everyone in their booths. Treat them as if the conversation was taking place in their office. Be professional and find out about what they offer and what they might need. The same holds true if we are the person in the booth representing the business in question. Be professional, answer questions, and try to build relationships.

Everyone who visits a booth will not necessarily need or want what the business offers. However, they may know someone who does, or they may realize a need at a later date. The visitor may have information about other opportunities for the booth holder to market their products or services that may help the business better themselves. The very limited time spent in conversation may reward either or both parties in ways that they may not anticipate. Remember information is powerful.

A booth holder must have a representative in their booth who is actively working to market the business. Sitting behind a table, reading a book, and passing time is not going to bring success. An informational booth with material for visitors to take, without someone there to greet them, will never be successful. (I passed up 3 such booths at the event I attended.) If we are working in a booth, we cannot be alone. We must have someone to assist us for breaks and other reasons.

We must have materials which will enable a booth visitor to take with them for later reference. If we are attending a show, we must be willing to provide information for the booth representatives to follow-up with us. A lack of such material does not show professionalism on either part, and we must have a sufficient supply for the entire show. Many subsequent contacts have been made through information contained in such material, and it must be complete, especially with contact information.

Gratitude Marketing does not mean that we must give away the store at a trade show type event. It also does not mean that we must sell to everyone that we meet. If we conduct ourselves in a pleasant, professional manner, whether we may be an attendee at a show or the representative of a booth holder, we can reap success. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

September 25, 2016

Apples Versus Oranges

We all know other businesses who offer us examples of how to operate successfully. We have our networking partners who provide us advice and support when we need it. We also can attend seminars or webinars on the steps to take to improve our businesses and lead us to greater success. There is a world of books, articles, and other reference material which can teach us what we are doing wrong and what we should do to correct our errors.

With all these sources of information that should enable us to move our businesses to better numbers of sales and success, we must learn to how to utilize that information. If we attend a seminar on business, we must actually attempt to apply the methods learned. The same may be said when we read books or receive advice from our networking partners. All the information is useless until we apply it.

However, there is another pitfall which we must avoid above doing nothing with what we have learned. We must apply the correct information to our business. Does the data that we have actually apply to our business, its employees, or its customers? We must avoid the “apples versus oranges” trap. Is the advice from someone who is a realtor the best plan for us? Is the example of operating a hamburger shop the best model for a direct selling business? We must apply the argument of “apples versus oranges”.

There are some basics of marketing that apply to all businesses. Be professional in operating a business; do not operate a business like a hobby. No one will take us seriously unless we do so ourselves. Be passionate about a business and be a product of our product. If we do not believe in what we offer, how can anyone else? Be personal and treat everyone else, whether they are prospects, customers, clients, employees, or networking partners, as human beings and with courtesy and gratitude for whatever they do for us and others.

An on-line based business may, or may not, need guidance for leasing office space. A floral shop may be able to learn from a hamburger shop, but they might not need guidance on overnight retail operations. The same employees required for a sheet metal manufacturer might not the same as when we need to hire an in-house legal team. However, there may be some general guidelines that we may learn from hearing and seeing them in operation or just hearing about them.

We must be able to discern what information may be able to help us make our businesses better and which will not. It will amaze the onlooker what we can gleam from someone else who isn’t in the same industry as we are, and what we can emulate which may give us greater success. Showing gratitude for our employees should provide us their loyalty and their continued higher work ethic, just as it should affect our customers and networking partners.

Gratitude Marketing has a never ending list of results that can assist us in improving our businesses. It can be applied to everyone whom we reach every day of our lives. It is not something that we “turn on” on special occasions but is a lifestyle that is useful in both our business and personal lives. If we give it a chance, it can make us much better people with whom to associate and do business, and that makes everyone’s life better. If we try some of that Gratitude Marketing, we will discover that we like it. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

Apples Versus Oranges

We all know other businesses who offer us examples of how to operate successfully. We have our networking partners who provide us advice and support when we need it. We also can attend seminars or webinars on the steps to take to improve our businesses and lead us to greater success. There is a world of books, articles, and other reference material which can teach us what we are doing wrong and what we should do to correct our errors.

With all these sources of information that should enable us to move our businesses to better numbers of sales and success, we must learn to how to utilize that information. If we attend a seminar on business, we must actually attempt to apply the methods learned. The same may be said when we read books or receive advice from our networking partners. All the information is useless until we apply it.

However, there is another pitfall which we must avoid above doing nothing with what we have learned. We must apply the correct information to our business. Does the data that we have actually apply to our business, its employees, or its customers? We must avoid the “apples versus oranges” trap. Is the advice from someone who is a realtor the best plan for us? Is the example of operating a hamburger shop the best model for a direct selling business? We must apply the argument of “apples versus oranges”.

There are some basics of marketing that apply to all businesses. Be professional in operating a business; do not operate a business like a hobby. No one will take us seriously unless we do so ourselves. Be passionate about a business and be a product of our product. If we do not believe in what we offer, how can anyone else? Be personal and treat everyone else, whether they are prospects, customers, clients, employees, or networking partners, as human beings and with courtesy and gratitude for whatever they do for us and others.

An on-line based business may, or may not, need guidance for leasing office space. A floral shop may be able to learn from a hamburger shop, but they might not need guidance on overnight retail operations. The same employees required for a sheet metal manufacturer might not the same as when we need to hire an in-house legal team. However, there may be some general guidelines that we may learn from hearing and seeing them in operation or just hearing about them.

We must be able to discern what information may be able to help us make our businesses better and which will not. It will amaze the onlooker what we can gleam from someone else who isn’t in the same industry as we are, and what we can emulate which may give us greater success. Showing gratitude for our employees should provide us their loyalty and their continued higher work ethic, just as it should affect our customers and networking partners.

Gratitude Marketing has a never ending list of results that can assist us in improving our businesses. It can be applied to everyone whom we reach every day of our lives. It is not something that we “turn on” on special occasions but is a lifestyle that is useful in both our business and personal lives. If we give it a chance, it can make us much better people with whom to associate and do business, and that makes everyone’s life better. If we try some of that Gratitude Marketing, we will discover that we like it. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

September 18, 2016

Keep It Up

So we listened to the experts and started going to networking meetings. There we met lots of other business people who were seeking to build relationships with other attendees. All of us have learned that referrals are the lifeblood of the business success and that these networking partners will also give us advice and suggestions which will prove valuable to our business marketing.

We followed the advice that we should schedule meetings with these networkers and get to know them. We also did not try to sell them what we have but worked to discover what these other people needed or wanted. Then we attempted to help them attain whatever that was or introduced them to others who might know someone else who could help them.

It was a great plan that we developed, and it brought us very productive karma with lots of business success. We took what others have taught us, applied all the steps, and developed relationships which have brought us great results.

Then we stopped going to networking events, stopped meeting with the people whom we met there, and stopped building the relationships which we needed. To make it worse, we did not maintain the relationships which we had already built. We broke off all contact with anyone who was not a prospect, who we believed we could sell our products or services.

Did we think that this garden of success would just maintain itself? Did we really believe that the effort that we put into developing these contacts and relationships was a one-time effort? Did we misunderstand that all these people would remember us if we forgot them? We ourselves would think that we had been taken for granted if we didn’t hear from someone for a period of time, especially when we had developed a relationship which seemed to benefit both parties.

How many fair weather friends have we known in our lives? How could we expect others to not believe that we were just that type of networking partner when we act like we don’t have the time or an interest to keep a networking relationship moving forward to even more success? We fall into this fair weather category when we stop maintaining our relationships and stop helping others.

If we attend a seminar and never try to apply whatever we learn there, we have wasted our time and the money that we paid for the seminar. If we receive a referral from one of our networking partners, and never follow-up on the information, we have wasted the referral and maybe damaged the relationship with the referring partner. Allowing our work that we have spent developing networking relationships to be wasted is just as wrong, just as stupid. We have to keep maintaining the garden and reaping the results.

Gratitude Marketing is a great philosophy for the success of any business. We can reap great success from applying it to our prospects, customers, clients, and former ones. We also can reap great success from the application of Gratitude Marketing with our networking partners and keeping those relationships strong and viable. We must never waste the work that we have spent establishing networking relationships with laziness or smug inaction. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

September 11, 2016

Feedback

“Feedback is the breakfast of champions.” - Ken Blanchard and Spencer Johnson. 

Every business person should welcome feedback from their prospects, customers, clients, employees, networking partners, and everyone else who know. This would include everyone in their world, even casual meetings, but especially former customers. I have always said that I have learned something from every meeting that I have attended and every time that I have met with anyone one-on-one.

Feedback may take many formats. It can be direct, the results of a survey, answers to direct questions, or advice from networking partners. Feedback may be positive or negative. It may be welcomed, or it may be feared. It can be truthful, or it can be an attempt to sabotage our business future. The provider of feedback could be a trusted friend or our enemy. It is our job to discern the truth and the intent of the provider of the feedback.

Our clients, and our networking partners, should have our best interests at heart when providing us feedback. Our prospects may just be trying to tell us that they are not interested in what we have to offer or may not understand what we can provide for them. Customers, unlike clients, may just want an excuse to stop buying from us. Former customers may provide very interesting feedback that can be very important to our continued success.

We should always want to know why someone stopped doing business with us. Was there something that they believed that we should have done that we do not do? Was there something that we did that they believed that we should not have done? What did they believe that our product or service would provide to them that it did not? Did they just not need what we offered, or did they reach a point where it did not work for them? Bottom line, why did they end their relationship as a customer with us?

We may not want to hear the opinions from former customers, but we should consider their information and see if it means that we erred somewhere in our operation. We should take their words as information, analyze it, and determine if we need to change something, anything about our business. If so make the change; if not, don’t change anything. That decision can bring us success or mean that we will lose other customers.

Our friends and the general acquaintances that we meet may have several intentions for their feedback. They may have our best interests in their minds, but they may not be our best friends when they offer advice. “You will never succeed at that venture”. “No one makes a success of that”. We have all heard those naysayers at some point. It is up to us to take their “advice” and determine if it is valuable or not. Is any part of what they say relevant or even true, or are they just trying to keep us at their level of life?

Gratitude Marketing might prevent us from losing customers or make us gain new ones. Given the right level of relationship with everyone that we meet, do business with, or add to our world of networking partners, we should be able to obtain feedback that will assist us in building our business success. Our ability to obtain feedback must be abetted by our ability to analyze it and use what we learn. Don’t be surprised if your Gratitude Marketing brings you praise and feedback and results in strengthening your belief in it. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

Feedback

“Feedback is the breakfast of champions.” - Ken Blanchard and Spencer Johnson

Every business person should welcome feedback from their prospects, customers, clients, employees, networking partners, and everyone else who know. This would include everyone in their world, even casual meetings, but especially former customers. I have always said that I have learned something from every meeting that I have attended and every time that I have met with anyone one-on-one.

Feedback may take many formats. It can be direct, the results of a survey, answers to direct questions, or advice from networking partners. Feedback may be positive or negative. It may be welcomed, or it may be feared. It can be truthful, or it can be an attempt to sabotage our business future. The provider of feedback could be a trusted friend or our enemy. It is our job to discern the truth and the intent of the provider of the feedback.

Our clients, and our networking partners, should have our best interests at heart when providing us feedback. Our prospects may just be trying to tell us that they are not interested in what we have to offer or may not understand what we can provide for them. Customers, unlike clients, may just want an excuse to stop buying from us. Former customers may provide very interesting feedback that can be very important to our continued success.

We should always want to know why someone stopped doing business with us. Was there something that they believed that we should have done that we do not do? Was there something that we did that they believed that we should not have done? What did they believe that our product or service would provide to them that it did not? Did they just not need what we offered, or did they reach a point where it did not work for them? Bottom line, why did they end their relationship as a customer with us?

We may not want to hear the opinions from former customers, but we should consider their information and see if it means that we erred somewhere in our operation. We should take their words as information, analyze it, and determine if we need to change something, anything about our business. If so make the change; if not, don’t change anything. That decision can bring us success or mean that we will lose other customers.

Our friends and the general acquaintances that we meet may have several intentions for their feedback. They may have our best interests in their minds, but they may not be our best friends when they offer advice. “You will never succeed at that venture”. “No one makes a success of that”. We have all heard those naysayers at some point. It is up to us to take their “advice” and determine if it is valuable or not. Is any part of what they say relevant or even true, or are they just trying to keep us at their level of life?

Gratitude Marketing might prevent us from losing customers or make us gain new ones. Given the right level of relationship with everyone that we meet, do business with, or add to our world of networking partners, we should be able to obtain feedback that will assist us in building our business success. Our ability to obtain feedback must be abetted by our ability to analyze it and use what we learn. Don’t be surprised if your Gratitude Marketing brings you praise and feedback and results in strengthening your belief in it. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

September 4, 2016

Customer Service

While sitting at breakfast recently I began a conversation with another patron of the restaurant, and we shared information about our work and lives. It was so refreshing to hear his stories that reinforce my beliefs about customer service and follow-up. It does not matter who we meet or chat with, we can find other people who share our beliefs about businesses, and how they should operate.

This particular person told me that he formerly lived in the area and returned recently after moving away for several years. Before he moved he had favorite restaurants, one of which was where we were eating, and other preferred businesses. He told me that he had that morning driven 30 miles round trip to a shop for a haircut. That action defines customer loyalty to a business.

Why would he drive that far for a haircut? The business is the same one he patronized before he moved away and returned. He really liked the proprietor’s haircuts, but more so, he loved the customer service that he received, over and above the haircut. He loved the way that the business made him feel when he went there. He loved the buying experience.

The television show Cheers showed us a neighborhood bar which valued its customers. They made people glad that they came into the bar and made them feel at home. We all want to go where they make us feel comfortable and where we can enjoy ourselves. We may even like that people remember our names. Who wants to be known as Account #12345 when we can be referred to as “Norm”?

The person who was sharing stories with me over breakfast was impressed by the fact that the barber remembered his name, how he wanted his hair cut, and welcomed him, even after he had been gone for years. The fact that they were appreciative of his business, showed gratitude for his coming into their shop, and made him enjoy the experience overshadowed the distance that he had to travel to obtain service.

While we were discussing the great customer service that he received, he told me that he worked for a software vendor who had him scheduled to be on call the rest of the day in case a specific client needed assistance with their operation. This was a Saturday, not your normal work day. While he would have preferred to not be working later that day, he also understood that customer service dictated that someone needed to be available if needed. Offshore customer service was not good enough for his firm.

We all dislike receiving mail addressed to “Occupant”, “Resident”, or “Our friends at” followed by our address. (If you are my “friend”, you know my name.) Maybe we should all take a page from our own preferences; maybe we should just use some common sense and stress customer service in our businesses. If we make our buying experience pleasurable and enjoyable for our customers, they will stay loyal to us. Even better, they will tell others how great we are, and they will send clients to us.

Maybe we all should review our operations and see if Gratitude Marketing might make a difference to our customers. Maybe we can get someone to travel out of their comfort zone physically to obtain what we offer. Maybe we can get someone to rave about what we do, and how we do it, to total strangers. Wouldn’t that be great marketing for any business? Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

August 28, 2016

Perception

Often what we think to be true is not actually correct. Our perception of reality may not be what is really accurate. We must work to make the perception held by our prospects, customers, clients, and everyone else to be factual about our business and what it offers. Anything else will not bring us success.

When we have dealings with others we must discover what their perception of us is. What do they believe that we do as a business, how do they believe that we perform our business tasks, and what do they believe that we offer to the public? Do they believe that we are fair and honest business people; do they even know what we actually do as a business and what our buying process is? Is their perception accurate, or is it flawed in some manner?

Who are these other people whose correct perception is vital to us? It includes prospects, customers, clients, networking partners, lost customers, and anyone else that we know, have ever known, have ever met, or may have some knowledge of our business, or us, in any manner. Of all the people in the world, this group includes anyone who may have ever had any information about us in any way possible.

How do we discover what the perception of others is of us? Obviously the most direct manner is to ask them, actually have a conversation and obtain detailed and factual data that allows us to determine what the other person perceives. Some companies ask people to complete surveys, with preconceived questions that are either true/false or multiple-choice. This is not conducive to obtaining information that is detailed or even factual, and may be tainted by what the requesting party already thinks is true.

What would anyone say if you asked them what they thought of you and your business? What would they say if you asked them what they thought of your products or your buying process, your website, your employees and their manner of marketing, or your customer service and follow-up? What would they say if you asked them why they stopped doing business with your company? These honest answers would be very informative if asked in the proper manner.

Sometimes we must face the facts that we don’t like. If people have the wrong perception about any part of our business, we must correct that fact. It doesn’t matter how wrong the perception of us may be, we must fix that perception and do so quickly. Otherwise the perception will spread to others like a wildfire in a dry forest. To fix that situation must be our objective as soon as we can.

Gratitude Marketing means that we do our best to treat others as well as we can. We must appreciate our relationships and business with others. We must make sure that others perceive us as the best people with whom they can do business and that we appreciate our relationships with others. If their perception of any portion of our business is incorrect, we must fix that error as soon as possible. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

August 21, 2016

Be Positive, Have Fun

This past week I spoke at a luncheon meeting and advised the attendees to be positive as they went through their daily functions and to have fun in whatever they do. When we work in a positive atmosphere, it is more enjoyable for others to interface with us. This makes everyone’s day so much better and so much more pleasant.

Every day we all should try to do something that will help others be better than when we first meet them. We should support them, advise them on ways that they can be more successful, give them helpful tips of how their business may fulfill its potential, or introduce them to others who may need whatever they offer or may also be partners as we are. We must be positive and supportive instead of negative or demeaning.

We should stop being sales people. We must become advisors, or partners, who learn what the other person needs, or wants, and helps them obtain that object of their desire. We must stop trying to sell whatever it is that we offer and help others obtain whatever they need or want. Then we can become networking partners with others and build relationships that benefit us all.

Actually this atmosphere makes us better to connect with, better to relate to, and better to communicate with. It makes us more pleasant to be around, in the same meeting or place, and be in a relationship. Knowing us in this manner makes us more popular and enhances our reputation as someone who others want to know, spend time with, and refer to others. We also are perceived as more authentic in whatever we say.

If we are not having fun in our everyday lives, no matter what we are doing, we must either change how we perform our daily functions or change whatever it is that we do. I have learned how miserable I could be when I was not having fun at work. I also learned how miserable the people who worked with me were when I was not fun to work with. It was like a disease.

When we are not fun to work with, no one wants to spend time with us, much less buy from us, or listen to our advice. In the past we have discussed that we must make the customer buying experience enjoyable for everyone involved. When our customer enjoys the buying process they will tell everyone that they know about it and recommend us to others. If we make the lives of others more fun, we will benefit.

Want to be known as the grump who only wants to sell someone whatever you have to sell? Want to have others tell everyone that doing business with you is no fun, that you don’t really care if what you offer is best for them, and that you only want to make a sale for your benefit? If so, you will realize that your success will suffer accordingly.

Start being a positive person each and every day. Be positive in your dealings with others and with yourself. Then make sure that you have fun in everything that you do and make sure that others with whom you interface also have fun. Gratitude Marketing means that we appreciate the relationships and business with others. Make sure that they enjoy the process and appreciate doing business with us. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.

August 14, 2016

Warm Fuzzies

Many years ago one of my staff told me that she loved to get “warm fuzzies” when she completed an assignment or project. If she knew that she did her best, that the product was the best that she could have produced, and that the client department was receiving the most for their investment, she felt these “warm fuzzies” inside.

We must apply this same philosophy to our daily businesses and the relationships that we build and maintain. We must do our best to provide the best product or service to our customers and build the best relationships with everyone, even our non-customers, that we can. What is our best? Is it best for us, or is it best for our partners? Maybe we should make everything the best for everyone involved.

Are we always going to be the best for our customers? Of course we cannot. We may not be able to provide the best product or service depending on what the other person needs. We may not be able to provide something for the best price. We must strive to do our best to be the best vendor to as many other people as possible, giving them the product or service that is best for their need, at the best price we can.

Someone else may provide a more appropriate product or service for a better price. We cannot always have everything that everyone may need, and we cannot always have the lowest price. We should always do the best we can with the offerings that we have, making the effort to supply the most appropriate offering for the customer’s need, at the price that is fair to them and to us.

It does no one any good to go out of business by discounting prices. We should charge a fair price for our offerings, and not enter into a bidding war to get a quick sale. We must refrain from offering everyone a new deal and becoming known as the “cheap” business who charges whatever the public demands if this compromises our ability to back up the sale with great customer service.

Is it possible for our Gratitude Marketing to provide “warm fuzzies” to all parties involved? Of course it is possible. When we provide a great product or service for a fair price, with a marketing process that makes the customer know that we really have their best interest in mind, and top it off with great follow-up and customer service, everyone can get “warm fuzzies”.

When customers get “warm fuzzies”, they will become clients who have standing orders or upgrade their orders, and they will bring us referrals for our continued success. They tell others about their great experience with us, about our wonderful customer service, and our follow-up. They become our marketing partners and contribute to our continued prosperity in more ways than with just their purchases.

We must strive to have “warm fuzzies” from our marketing processes. We must also strive to give “warm fuzzies” to our customers and to everyone we meet, even if they do not become customers. Our Gratitude Marketing results in others knowing that doing business with us is rewarding, fun, and a true great experience. Then they will tell everyone else that they know about us. Please leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@JimTeasley.com, or call me at 360-314-8691.