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What Makes a Good Website Landing Page?

Posted By Rayne Provost, Thursday, October 10, 2013
Updated: Wednesday, April 9, 2014

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What Do Clients Need?

Posted By Rayne Provost, Tuesday, October 8, 2013
Updated: Wednesday, April 9, 2014
Servicing clients leaves me little time to find new ones. Is there a better way to market and attract clients to me to avoid the cyclical nature of getting business?

One way to attract new business is to give the client what they want. Author C.J. Haden writes, "Trying to get clients when you're not really sure what they need or want makes you an answer in search of a question. You're going to have to turn your key in an awful lot of locks before you find the one that it fits.

It's not enough for YOU to know why they should hire you -- THEY need to know. It's hard enough to find clients without also having to educate them on why they would want you in the first place. The needs that your service fills should be important enough that clients are already looking for a solution before you make contact."

Her advice?

  1. Find out what the "hot buttons" are for the people in your target market.
  2. What do they perceive to be the greatest problems they face, or the biggest goals they wish to achieve?
  3. Ask these questions of the people you serve and the other businesses who serve them.
  4. Read trade literature or special interest publications and educate yourself on the key issues in your marketplace.

TIP:C.J.'s final thoughts? "Don't worry if the most popular issues aren't the ones you most want to work on with your clients. Chances are that if you attract prospects by marketing to their perceived needs, you'll create opportunities to explore other options with them. But if you market something they don't yet know they want, you may never get to have that conversation." 

Click here to read full article.

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Voicemail Survival

Posted By Rayne Provost, Tuesday, September 24, 2013
Updated: Wednesday, April 9, 2014
Voicemail is big part of connecting with clients and prospects. Any tips on how to "survive" the voicemail black hole?

Mark Hunter is a speaker and sales consultant, and has written a great list on this subject. Some of his 15 Tips to Surviving (and Thriving) with Voicemail are:
  1. Never state in the message that you plan to call them back, or ask them to call you back at a certain time. This only gives them an excuse to not call you.
  2. Don't leave voicemails at odd hours of the night. The best hours to leave them are 6:45 am - 8:00 am and from 4:30 pm - 6:30 pm.
  3. That said, messages left on a Friday afternoon are the least likely to be returned. Monday is busy, so only high-priority activities get immediate attention.
  4. If you can't say it briefly, don't say it at all. Voicemail is not "story time". The optimal message is between 8 and 14 seconds.
  5. Leave your phone number twice, it gives them time to write it down. Never leave your website address as this gives them the chance to make a decision without calling you back.

Mark agrees that voicemails are a great way to introduce yourself. Be personable, professional and link your name to something that will interest the person you are calling. They may think you're a waste of time if you have no purpose other than getting your name in front of them.

TIP:If your goal is to get the phone call returned, don't leave information that would allow the person to make up their mind. Add a call-to-action by providing a key date or something of interest (another person or an event) to encourage them with a reason to call you back. 

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10 Worst Presentation Habits

Posted By Rayne Provost, Thursday, September 19, 2013
Updated: Wednesday, April 9, 2014
I've been asked to make a presentation at my industry niche association meeting. What are some things to make it a winner?

In his book, 10 Simple Secrets of the World's Greatest Business Communicators,Carmine Gallo, a communication coach, author and former anchor for CNN and CBS, lists his
10 Worst Presentation Habits.

  • Read from notes. Review your material, absorb it and deliver it without notes.
  • Avoid eye contact. Make eye contact with your listeners 90% of the time. Glance at your notes or slides from time to time, but just as a reminder. Speak to your listeners, not your slides.
  • Dress Down. Always dress appropriately for the culture, but a little better than everyone else.
  • Fidget, jiggle and sway. Simple solution? Don't! Videotape presentations or rehearsals to catch your flaws.
  • Fail to rehearse. Practice every component of your presentation - the material, flow of slides and when and where you may walk or interact with the audience.
  • Stand at attention. Move, walk, use hand gestures - be animated in voice and body.
  • Recite bullet points. Don't write too many words on a slide. Avoid more than 4 words across or 6 lines down. Tell stories, anecdotes and examples.
  • Speak too long. Do you spend 5 minutes saying something you could say in 30 seconds?
  • Fail to excite. Tell them why they should be excited about your content - why they should care.
  • End with an inspiration deficit. Summarize what you said in your presentation, but leave them with one key thought that makes an impact or makes their jaws drop.

TIP:Feel like you'd like to improve in this area? Consider the IMC Academy Webinar by popular business speaker Tim Wackel.

Anatomy of a Lousy Pitch: The 6 Worst Presentation Habits and How to Avoid Them! on Tuesday, September 24th at 1:00 pm ET. 
Click here for more details. 

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3 Keys to Attract & Keep Clients

Posted By Rayne Provost, Tuesday, September 10, 2013
Updated: Wednesday, April 9, 2014
Some consultants seem to have more referrals and repeat business than I do. What are some key ways to get ... and keep ... clients?

Think of the things that help you build personal relationships:
  1. You're share common interests.
  2. You like the person.
  3. You trust the person.

The same principles apply to clients who hire, retain and refer you.

  1. Clients Have to Know You.
    Obviously you need to market yourself for clients to know you exist. Show the value you offer and write newsletters, talk to groups, write articles or blog. If you create good services and content, word-of-mouth and viral marketing will happen.
  2. Clients Have to Like You.
    People love to tell others about bad experiences, so it is critical that clients have great experiences with you. Keep business contacts alive and fresh - keep the relationship going. Know about their families and dreams ... relate to them on a personal level to increase the value of the relationship.
  3. Clients Have to Trust You.
    Trust is built when you do what you say you will do. Don't overpromise. Meet deadines. Treat clients as you would like to be treated. Clients who trust you also refer and provide testimonials.

TIP:Take a honest look at these 3 points and how well you are working to have clients know you, like you and trust you. Is your marketing working - and people know you? Do you treat people in a way that they will like you? Do clients trust your work, your word and your actions? 

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