Tag Archives for " business development "

CRM & Automation – Interview with Lindsey Pickles

Lindsey Pickles

In today’s episode of the podcast we are talking all things CRM and marketing automation.

I am excited to have Lindsey Pickles from Bright Dials on the podcast. Bright Dials helps companies get to grips with their customer data by implementing customer relationship management (CRM) systems and marketing automation tools as well as the processes to support their successful use.

Time stamp

1.03 Who is Bright Dials?

1.35 Definition and difference of a CRM and marketing automation system

2.34 Why is it so important for companies to implement CRM and Marketing automation? 

3.10 What would you say to someone who doesn’t have a CRM in place and doesn’t have customer data stored in one place?

5.27 How do you start untangling where they are at right now and what they need?

8.40 What does volume costs mean?

9.35 At what stage should an agency start investing in CRM and automation?

10.24 Efficiency gains from using these tools    

11:55 Understanding your numbers and data  

13:00 How do you select the best tools

14:14 What is your view on one tool that can do it all rather than using individual tools and integrating them together?

16:36 Example tools you can use  

18:49 If you are new, what should you do next?   

20:10 Customer journey mapping

22:45 Closing the leaky bucket

23:00 If you could go back in time and give your younger self, just starting out in business, one piece of advice, what would it be?

Useful links:

You can contact Lindsey:

LinkedIn

Website: www.brightdials.com

Terminology guide

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Thanks so much.

Business Development Strategies (part 3)- why you can’t rely on referrals

Rod Da Costa Business Development

In today’s episode, we wrap up this mini-series on business development. 

Today my focus on is why you shouldn’t rely on referrals and word of mouth for new business – especially in the current environment. I explore how to build proactive campaigns that engage with your target audience and move them through the sales process until they become a client.

Timestamp

1:10 Why doesn’t word of mouth referrals work as your major form of business development

1:35 The impact of remote working

2:00 The risk of relying on one form of new business

3:00 Most business development strategies have a medium to long term impact

3:30 One short term business development strategies strategy

4:00 The key is consistency and persistence

4:44 The importance of focus

5:00 My own experience with this podcast

5:50 The importance of niche and defining your ideal target customer

6:00 Meeting your audience where they are at

8:00 Addressing your ideal target customer’s “pains and gains”

8:25 Nurturing content

8:50 The 3 stages of your sales funnel

9:14 Don’t expect results in the short term but you need to start today!

10:08 Should you outsource business development?

11:15 Nurturing referrals and word of mouth 

Useful links:

eBook: Defining You Ideal Target Customer

eBook: Finding Your Niche

Download The Self-Running Implementation Book

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You can subscribe/follow on AppleSpotify, or directly from my website.

I would be very grateful if you left me a review too as they will help other people to find my podcasts and it's also great to read your comments!

Thanks so much.

Business development strategies (part 2) – Interview with Darryl Sparey

Darryl Sparey

In part 2 of the business development interviews, we chat about what is working and what isn't working in this new predominantly online world of doing business.

We explore some mistakes that agencies are making and how to avoid them.

Time stamp

1.05 Introduction to this week’s guest, Darrly Sparey from Hardnumbers

2.21 What changes have you seen in the business development landscape in 2020?

3.20 Why you should not be embarrassed to sell    

4.00 Don’t make it about you!

5.08 Earning the right to sell to your audience

6.14 Applying a similar right approach to your website    

8.10 Where does your website fit in the sales process

9.10 How you present yourself to a prospective client

9.42 Your point of difference

11:25 The Ideal Customer Profile

12:25 Should I be selling in this challenging time?  

14:45 Why you should not be cutting your marketing budget right now! 

15.39 As an agency owner, what should you focus your money and time on?

16:18 Create a list of your dream clients

17:00 Don’t just focus on existing clients

17:43 What does building relationships look like in this new ‘online’ world?

18:45 Using communities to build relationships

19:44 What is working and what isn’t working right now?

20:20 We are not working from home we are living at work

21:20 Be an enabler for networking for your clients & prospects

23:10 The benefits of being in a group/community

23:36 How do you cut through the online noise?

25:46 What is the one thing you would not recommend agencies doing right now

26:45 Consistency and persistence is key

28:45 Make your business development time non-negotiable

29:25 Revenue, strategy and admin

30:00 The importance of a CRM system

31:00 What advice would you give your younger self?

32:30 What is your notional hourly rate?

Useful links:

You can contact Darryl via Twitter @darryls and @hardnumbers

eBook: Defining You Ideal Target Customer

eBook: Finding Your Niche

Download The Self-Running Implementation Book

Subscribe & Review

Are you subscribed to my podcast yet? If you’re not, please do so to avoid missing out on any episodes!

You can subscribe/follow on Apple, Spotify or directly from my website.

I would be very grateful if you left me a review too as they will help other people to find my podcasts and it's also great to read your comments!

Thanks so much.

Business development strategies (part 1) – Interview with Brad Smith

Brad Smith

In a challenging world, word of mouth and referrals may be drying up as we do less face to face meetings so in this episode of the podcast I interview Brad Smith from Succeed.Digital and we talk all things business development.

Time stamp

2:26 Who is Succeed.Digital?

3:10 What are the biggest changes you have seen in the agency landscape in 2020?

Two types of agency: 

-      Those who went into lockdown mode and tried to hold out and their business has fallen off a cliff!

-      Those who used this opportunity to look at new ways at doing thing from their sector, type of work and service to clients

6.20 Word of mouth & referrals has dried up

There is no better way of winning new business by referrals because they are ‘warm leads’ so you should have a referral programme in place. However, this cannot be the only form of business development

8.00 Inconsistent consistency – you cannot base your business dev strategy solely on referrals. It should form a maximum 25% of your new business strategy

10.15 You have no control of when referrals come in or the quality of the referral or if they fit into your niche

12.00 New business strategies need to focus beyond the next 3 months. Sales need to focus on the next 12 months and use multiple channels.  . Most agencies are short term quarterly focused.

16:00 Introducing new services when you need more sales

Understanding your customer needs and researching and validating new ideas before you launch

18:00 5 questions to ask clients to build stronger relationships with your clients

N – Now:

“What is the most valuable service we provide you now?”

E – Enjoy:

“What do you really like/enjoy about working with us?”

A – Alter:

“What would you most like to alter about the way we work we with?”

D – Decide:

Decide: “What made you decide to choose us?”

S – Stay:

“ What would make you stay with us over the next 2 - 3 years and beyond?”

23:40 At what stage would you have these conversations with a client?

 24:40 Don’t assume you know what your clients want!

25:57 What 2-3 tips would you advise someone to do it they need new clients now?

29:50 Know me, Like me, Trust me, Help me

32:30 Outbound sales and marketing strategies

Useful links:

You can contact Brad at [email protected]

Validation guide for launching a new product or service

Download The Self-Running Implementation Book

Subscribe & Review

Are you subscribed to my podcast yet? If you’re not, please do so to avoid missing out on any episodes!

You can subscribe/follow on Apple, Spotify or directly from my website.

I would be very grateful if you left me a review too as they will help other people to find my podcasts and it's also great to read your comments!

Thanks so much.

Rob

Why you should not rely on referrals to get new business

Welcome to today’s episode of The Agency Accelerator Podcast.

If you get most of your business from existing clients and referrals then this podcast episode is an important one to listen to.

When I meet a new client or prospect and I ask them how they get their new business they will often tell me rather proudly that they get all of their business from referrals and existing clients and they have no other major business development strategy then they’re in for a bumpy ride. 

In this episode I explore what is wrong with solely relying on this strategy for your business development and why, even if it’s working for you now it probably won’t work for you at some point in the future. So, before you hit a deep famine period you need to put in a more proactive business development strategy that will provide you with a constant stream of ideal target clients.

Timestamp

1.00 Do you get all your business from referrals and existing clients?

1.28 If so you are in for a bumpy ride!

1.51 What is wrong with this strategy?

2.27 You have no control as to when referrals come in, the frequency and their quality

3.17 Making your network your sales team

3.50 What do you do if you need new business NOW?

5.15 The concepts of a sales funnel

6.13 How NOT to use LinkedIn to build business!

7.00 How to sell a bottle of water

7.54 Nurturing your audience through the KNOW-LIKE-TRUST journey

8.27 Many agencies are poor at the middle part of the sales funnel

8.45 The importance of providing value to your audience

9.50 Why providing value 80% of the time and 20% selling is the right balance

10.25 The importance of building your mailing list

10.54 The 3 stages of converting a prospect to a customer

11.29 Why cold outreach doesn’t work

11.50 The importance of your website to generate leads

12.52 How I make this work on my website

13.18 What should you be giving away as ‘gated content’

13.55 The importance of building your mailing list – get started today!

14.25 How to come up with email content ideas (see link below)  

15.00 A simple marketing strategy

16.11 Your customers are ready to buy when they are ready to buy not when you want them to!

16.47 Do a few things really well and consistently – keep monitoring, measuring and refining

18:20 You need to start TODAY!


Useful links:

Blog on email marketing (you can also download the Content Twister I mention in the podcast here).

Grab a copy of my book (which in itself will provide a ton of value) and see how my email nurturing sequences works.

Subscribe & Review

Are you subscribed to my podcast yet? If you’re not, please do so to avoid missing out on any episodes!

You can subscribe/follow on AppleSpotify or directly from my website.

I would be very grateful if you left me a review too as they will help other people to find my podcasts and it's also great to read your comments!

Thanks so much,

Rob

Winning New Business In A Challenging Climate

closed

The world is in turmoil. That’s a hell of a statement to begin an article with but after everything that’s happened this year, you can’t doubt its truth. With a pandemic (yay COVID-19), race relation issues, wildfires, Brexit (sorry to mention that!) and an economy that is tanking faster than you can say “Where’s all my business gone?” the world has become an increasingly challenging place for everyone.

The workplace is no different and if you work in the marketing agency sector, you may find yourself faced with a variety of challenges that necessitate adaptation and transformation or risk finding your business heading the way of the dodo.

maze


But I’ve always believed that even in the most challenging of economic environments, it is still possible to win over customers and keep revenue flowing. We might have to work harder and, more importantly, smarter than we would normally but business doesn’t stop even if the world seemingly has. Over the years I’ve managed to fight through some of the most difficult times and come out the other side both wiser and relatively unscathed (I started my agency in a recession and started my coaching practice during the financial crisis of 2007!).

Here are a few tips so you can do the same:

The importance of building a mailing list

The importance of building a mailing list cannot be underestimated. Here is a really important point to ponder:

With a mailing list, you own the details of the people who are interested in what you do. Many marketers ignore keeping their own list in favour of social media. But the problem with social media is that in essence, it is ‘rented space’. You are only ‘borrowing’ the information of the people you come into contact with and at any moment it can be taken away. To highlight this let me tell you a quick story:

email list mailing list

Recently a story came to my attention of someone who had managed to accrue 10,000 followers on Instagram and was using this for most of their new business generation. 10,000 followers is a huge pool of potential clients and a great way to generate revenue. Unfortunately, this person got their Instagram account hacked and as a result, Instagram cancelled their account.

Overnight they lost not only 10,000 followers but 10,000 potential clients and their main source of revenue. If your main audience is based on social media, you need to actively move them to your mailing list to not only protect yourself in the event of a catastrophe such as in the story but to allow you to directly contact leads in any way you see fit.

email automation

Strategic Email Marketing that Gets Results

If you want to learn more about email marketing then grab your FREE copy of my indepth guide

You are your company’s best salesperson

Here’s a question, “Who knows your business better than anybody else?” Let’s follow that question up with, “Who do you think is the best salesperson for your company?” The answer to both questions for many businesses is most likely YOU!

You built your business from the ground up and understand everything there is to know about it. As a result, you are the person best placed to explain it to others and extol its many benefits and virtues. Who else has as much passion for what you do as you? You can hire dozens of sales professionals to help sell your marketing business but at the end of the day, they will never be as good as you at selling your company.

Qualify leads to save time, effort, and money

Every business needs a way to make money. To make money you need conversions or sales. To get conversions you need leads. That’s how simple running a business is. Marketing is no different. The problem is, leads are not always easy to come by and when they do arrive, you may find that many end up in a frustrating dead end. That’s why you need to qualify your leads properly to prevent wasting time, effort, and more importantly, money. In a difficult climate like the one we currently find ourselves in, it is even more vital that we focus our energy on those avenues that will actually generate revenue for us and not the many blind alleys we come across.

qualifying

How do you qualify leads?

To understand how you can qualify leads you need to understand what lead generation is in the first place. Simply put, lead generation is the act of gathering information, such as names, addresses and email addresses, of people or companies that could benefit your business and, hopefully, generate sales. The goal of lead generation is to attract users to you, whether that means getting them to call you, talk to you in person, or visit your website and download something in return for their email address. But not all leads have the same value, and some may bring nothing but wasted time and effort to your business.

Knowing which of the many leads you come across to focus on and which should be left alone can be incredibly difficult. That’s why you need to find the right qualifying strategy to stop you chasing up blind alleys. Here are a few tips to get started.

Find a way to score your leads based on quality

Lead scoring is a great way to figure out which leads mean more to your business. Giving a value to each lead based on the information you have and how likely they are to convert allows you to focus on your best leads first before moving on to lower scoring ones later. How you score the leads will differ by business but will generally be based on the information collected. For instance, if a client has previously purchased marketing services from you or has shown an interest in a marketing field you specialise in, then they may score higher for you. You might score someone higher who has repeatedly interacted with your brand by filling in forms, making comments, or sharing and liking your content. Engagement with what you do is a great indicator that a client is interested in your services.

Get the right balance of information from your leads

The more information you have about a potential client, the easier it is for you to qualify them as a lead. If all you have is an email and a business name, you have no indication of how likely they are to buy into your services. But getting the right amount of information is not easy and there is a fine balance between getting what you need and overloading the customer with demands. Too many questions will turn away potential clients before they get anywhere near giving you their information. Make sure the questions you ask are pertinent to what you need while being as succinct as possible. This will allow you to figure out if the potential customer is worthy of your time or whether it would be better to prioritise efforts elsewhere. Once you have this information you can also assess the quality of your lead based on how much they interact with the email sequences that you will add them into once they have given you their email address.

balance

Use a prescribed lead qualifying strategy

There are several different strategies for qualifying leads correctly, each with their own merits. Here are a few to try out for yourself:

CHAMP (Challenge, Authority, Money, Priority)

Champ is a way of looking at a client’s needs first and foremost and seeing if you have the right tools to help them, before moving on to asking, do they have the means and motivation to work with you? Here is a breakdown of the strategy:

Challenge

What are the challenges, needs, and pains of the client? How can you help them, and do you have the skills they need?

Authority

Is the lead authorised to purchase your services? If they aren’t, can you find someone who is? If not, is the lead worth pursuing?

Money

Does the potential customer have the money to buy from you? If there is any doubt in this area, move on to the next lead.

Priority

How urgently does the client need your services? If they are desperate and enough ‘pain’, they are more likely to buy. But you also need to ask yourself if you have the means to fulfil the order in the time frame they’ve set.

FAINT (Funds, Authority, Interest, Need, Timing)

The Faint lead qualifying technique prioritises money (that is, can the customer afford your services?) first and foremost before looking at the other aspects of qualification. Here is a breakdown of the technique:

Funds

Does the potential client have the necessary funds to purchase your services. If not, then don’t waste your time.  

Authority

Is the lead authorised to purchase your services? If they do not, can you find someone who is? If not, is the lead worth pursuing?

Interest

How interested is the lead in working with you? Do they seem keen or are they standoffish?  

Need

Can you meet the potential customer's needs and have you the tools to deliver wat they want?

Timing

How quickly will the customer commit and if they do have you the resources to do the work they need?


Your customer is ready to buy when they are ready to buy

An important point to remind ourselves is that your customer is ready to buy when they are ready to buy not when you want them to buy! 

Now, of course, you want to create a sense of urgency for your clients to try and get them over the conversion line but based on the fact that it should be their timescales, not yours, emphasises the importance of building your mailing list and having regular communications to nurture them so you are still front of mind when they are finally in enough pain and ready to buy.

In conclusion

When times are tough like they are right now, money can still be made and new clients found but to do so you will have to work extra hard as well as extra smart to find it. If you maintain a healthy mailing list, sell your business yourself, and qualify leads effectively, nothing can stop you from being successful. Not even COVID.

sales funnel

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LinkedIn Learning – Interview with Tracey Burnett

Linkedin Learning

Linkedin is a great platform to engage with your ideal target customer yet there are many who use it poorly and don’t get results they hope for so move on to something different.

If you've been trying to use LinkedIn to support your business development activities but haven’t yet got results, then listen to today’s episode of the podcast.

Today I am delighted to chat with Tracey Burnett, who is a Linkedin specialist and we're talking all things Linkedin; how you can hone your profile as well as a number of invaluable tips on how to maximise the use of LinkedIn to engage with your target audience.

[2:07] Introducing Tracey Burnett - a LinkedIn specialist helping businesses find new clients on LinkedIn.

[3:41] Tracey talks about how you can create an appealing Linkedin profile.

[8:37] 5 tips on how you can maximise the use of LinkedIn to engage with your target audience.

[12:18] Measure performance, improve engagement & grow your audience on Linkedin with Shield (Tool for analytics).

[13:33] 5 tips on how you can maximise the use of Linkedin for reaching out to your target audience. (continued).

[22:47] Do’s and Don’ts for reaching out to your potential new audience on Linkedin.

[28:28] Tracey's one piece of advice that she would like to go back in time and give to her younger self.

Website: www.traceyburnett.com/
Linkedin: www.linkedin.com/in/traceyburnett/

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Subscribe & Review

Are you subscribed to my podcast yet? If you’re not, please do so to avoid missing out on any episodes!

You can subscribe/ follow on iTunes, Spotify or directly from my website.

I would be very grateful if you left me a review over on iTunes, too as they will help other people to find my podcasts and it's also great to read your comments!

Thanks so much,

Rob

Interview with Dan Englander – New Businesses & Lead Generation

Episode 29 - Dan Englander

DID YOU KNOW?

Building your agency based on referrals is like jumping into cold water!

Also, if you think Lead Generation is nothing more than picking up the phone and setting up meetings, then you're wrong!

In this week's episode of The Agency Accelerator, I'm excited to have Dan Englander. He is the CEO and founder of the Sales Schema, a lead generation firm for boutique ad agencies, and a fellow podcast host of the Digital Agency Growth Podcast. He is also the author of Mastering Account Management, the B2B sales blueprint.

We are going to be talking about new businesses and lead generation

[0:47] Introducing Dan Englander.

[2:10] What does Sales Schema do?

[4:01] My conversation with a potential client that built their business based on referrals.

[4:48] Building your agency based on referrals is like jumping into cold water.

[5:43] Dan's advice to agencies that have realised that relying on only referrals isn't going to be enough to help them grow.

[7:42} Importance of niching.

[9:08] Why are agencies today scared to commit to Niching?

[12:41] The question you need to ask yourself to find your niche.

[13:54] Dan's point of view on the impact of ongoing pandemic on businesses.

[19:28] Importance of Email Marketing.

[20:39] Under appreciated facts about B2B sales & marketing.

[21:14] Importance of having an authentic approach across all communication mediums.

[24:08] Getting under the skin of your clients. 

[27:08] When your clients ask for ‘A’ but they actually need ‘B’!

[31:55] The biggest ingredient for a successful business is consistency.

[33.38] It takes 13 months for someone to come into my world, learn with me and to buy from me. 

[38:01] Dan's one piece of advice that he would like to go back in time and give to his younger self.

[39:04] Where can you find out more about Sales Schema?

For more info on Dan's agency, Sales Schema, visit the website.

Also to learn more about niching, you can download my e-book 'Defining Your Niche'.

Subscribe & Review

Are you subscribed to my podcast yet? If you’re not, please do so to avoid missing out on any episodes!

You can subscribe/ follow on iTunes, Spotify or directly from my website.

I would be very grateful if you left me a review over on iTunes, too as they will help other people to find my podcasts and it's also great to read your comments!

Thanks so much,

Rob

Business Development Strategies

Business Development Strategy

Are you struggling to convert leads into prospects, and prospects into customers?

Have you depended on referrals & word of mouth as your only source of generating new business? It might seem like an easy way to win clients, but there are some major flaws to it too (as have been highlighted during this pandemic!).

In this week's episode of the Agency Accelerator Podcast, I talk about why relying on referrals & word of mouth as your major business development strategy can be a fatal mistake, and talk about some key proactive marketing & business development strategies you should always be focusing on.

[1:58] The two major flaws about relying on just referrals or word of mouth

[3:19] Understanding Your Target Niche

[3:54] Identifying your Ideal Target Customers

[4:19] Marketing advice to agency owners

[6:32] Moving your audience through 3 stages of getting to know, like and trust you to buy from you

[7:39} Recognising that the Sales Cycle rarely very short

[8:27] Creating Value-Added Content

[9:35] Taking a Value Selling Approach

[10:11] Converting Leads to Customers

[11:51] An idea for a re-engagement campaign with past clients to generate some immediate business

[13:13] Using LinkedIn as an outreach platform

[14:39] Interviewing Dan Englander in the next week's podcast

Subscribe & Review

Are you subscribed to my podcast yet? If you’re not, please do so to avoid missing out on any episodes!

You can subscribe/ follow on iTunes, Spotify or directly from my website.

I would be very grateful if you left me a review over on iTunes, too as they will help other people to find my podcasts and it's also great to read your comments!

Thanks so much,

Rob

Writing the winning pitch or proposal

Be your own heavyweight Champion

How much time do you spend writing a pitch presentation or proposal? Probably a lot – especially if you want to have a chance of winning the work! But how much time do you spend really getting beneath the surface and understanding what the client wants (beyond the brief)? Pitching and proposal writing is fraught with challenges and politics that we often don’t know about unless we are prepared to dig a little deeper before putting pen to paper.

The first thing you need to establish is if you are a good fit for the client and vice versa. There is little point investing a ton of time into the pitching or proposal process if you don’t feel you are a good fit or can deliver what they want. Next you need to go into ‘fact find’ mode and learn as much about the client and what they are looking for BEFORE you start pitching. This is a stage that is often overlooked and businesses go headlong into the proposal process only to find they were wide of the mark.

The price is right

An important point to remember is that the client isn’t usually looking for the cheapest option so don’t lead with this. Instead demonstrate you really understand the client, their market and their challenges. Also establish what their real requirements are – speed of delivery? Creative solution? Empathy with your staff? Experience? And last and often least, pricing.

My final piece advice in this short blog is to only agree to write a proposal when you have qualified the client. Do they have a genuine need? What are their time scales? Do they have a budget? Why now? Too many businesses are excited to get the opportunity to pitch so go blindly into it without proper qualification and end up giving the client some great market research……… for them to use somewhere else!

If you want to learn more about this time consuming and challenging process then come along to the Brighton & Hove Chamber’s bite-sized learning event on June 18th on this very topic. We ran this workshop last year and it was so popular, we are running it again!

Also look out for a new whitepaper I am writing on this topic.

 

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