26 February 2009

The MOST Important, Least Understand Sales and Marketing Skill

There is a skill..actually a set of skills..that often gets neglected in all the trainings, systems, webinars, seminars, etc...Can you guess what it is? This skill is what makes decent sales people become great ones. It is the key to giving value and the most essential aspect of developing relationships. It has nothing to do with product knowlege or blogs, forums or PPC. You are either really curious now..or you've guessed it.

The skill is LISTENING. Real listening is very different than just hearing what a person is saying. Real listening is active, it is engaged..but it is not necessarily engaged in the expected manner of most conversations in our society. Start paying attention when you are speaking with someone. See how often you are just LISTENING compared to how often you are already thinking about what you are going to say next, while the other person is still talking. True listening can be called "active listening" or "reflective listening".

Certain people are trained to listen in the manner. Psychotherapists are a great example, as are some doctors, social workers and others in the helping professions. Really great business coaches and sales people also know and use this skill of active listening. Here is how it works:

You focus all your attention on what the other person is saying. Instead of approaching a conversation ready to impart your own agenda, you enter into it ready to go along with your client's or prospect's agenda. As they speak you reflect back to them what you heard them say. You reframe or restate the content of what they said..thus letting them know that they are being heard and allowing them to correct any misinterpretations on your part. As you do this it will become obvious to you, their needs, their problems, their interests, etc....

It is by approaching conversations like this that you glean the most important kinds of information from the person you are speaking with. People love to be truly heard. Often the best relationship building technique is listening. You'll be amazed how much people will be attracted to you if you listen to them with an open mind and an open heart. It takes some practice to do this well. In marriage therapy couples often spend a few weeks just practicing this as a skill set, before using it to have an in depth conversation about their real issues. (Sometimes listening to each other is the real issue and they can move on once they learn this skill).

Before going out and trying this with your prospects, practice with your friends and family. Pick a really easy topic. Ask the other person to speak for two minutes about her favorite food and why she likes it. When the two minutes are up it's your turn. Start with: "So, what I heard you say is.____" And then, "It seems that you like__________ because________________. " After a few rounds of this you'll get the hang of it. When conversing in the business world, you can do this same thing. You can also summarize the last few paragraphs and add.."Am I hearing you correctly?"

This is the most powerful relationship building skill that there is. It requires no special tools or aptitudes. Just the desire to truly connect with another and hear what they have to say.

How Great Customer Service Can Cement a Business Relationship

I had a most unusual experience yesterday involving an online company. I was working on this company's website starting to set up a particular lead capture page so that I could explore all of its functions. I already have a system set up with them and this was supposed to be a very simple and free addition.

I followed all of the instructions multiple times and still the process would not work correctly. Technology details being my least competent skill, I finally gave up and sent a support ticket to the company. In the past few weeks I have sent other tickets to them with more minor questions and have been impressed that they have always replied by email within a few hours..the next day at the latest. Anyway, about 20 minutes later my phone rings and it is the CEO of this company. He was calling to personally apologize because they were working on the system that I was trying to use, which is why I could not set it up. He then told me that they had taken the liberty to set it up for me and asked if I had any other questions.

Because of some other business situations I am involved with, I did have questions and we spent the next 30 minutes on the phone talking. At the end of the call he gave me his direct phone number and email for future contacts.

The reason I am writing about this is because I was so impressed. This man has been running his company for almost 10 years. They have recently developed a new product to hook into their existing products. It is not a small or quiet operation. Yet this man had the good business sense to notice a frustrated customer and the courtesy to pick up the phone and make it right. This is the type of customer service that I expect from long-term shop-keepers in my little town of 1500 people. I think it is highly unusual to have this service like this from an online company who basically deals with faceless names in a data bank.

The moral of the story is that my feelings and impressions about this company have gone from basically positive, but with no real sense of connection to very positive with a strong feeling of wanting to be a part of what they are doing. Not only has this man's actions created a loyal customer..but they created a story that is now going to be told about his company. We should all take note, as old fashioned person-to-person service and connection like this can boost your bottom line in ways you may not have even imagined.

(Oh..you want to know what company it was?? Here is the link directly to their homepage. I use them a tool for my primary business and as an additional income stream.)

24 February 2009

Where Are The Jobs For Retired and Laid Off Workers?

With massive layoffs and cutbacks occurring across the US, many are looking for a way to get back into the work force or to increase their reduced income.

According to AARP Magazine, March/April 2009 issue, direct sales through home parties and home business is a growing area.
Direct Sales Businesses Boom As Economy Tightens

AARP also sees Internet Marketing as a place to make money right now, for women specifically, but men as well.
Sweet Times For a Web Based Business

AARP, the American Association of Retired People is at the forefront of what going on in the job market because of how much retirees and those nearing retirement age have been effected by our economic down turn. There are people in the manufacturing industry who have been at the same job for over 30 years, nearing retirement, used to a very good salary and now they are jobless without the skills for something new.

Direct Selling through the network marketing model (done correctly) could put money back into the pockets of people like this. The idea of getting involved with a reasonable product that can be shared with friends through home parties or social gatherings, is a concept that can appear user-friendly to those needing to earn money in a new manner. Many people in the over 45 generation are now more open to learning to use a computer as well..opening other doors in the marketing arena.

People already involved with network marketing / MLM, particularly those with easy products, everyday items or those that do not need a lot of explaination would be wise to open their hearts and minds to potential prospect in the older generation. Even those already retired are presently feeling the pinch of reduced pensions or 401K's that have taken a big hit. These people might welcome an offering of a fun way to bring extra cash and also social engagement into their lives.

19 February 2009

What Is This VALUE Thing We Are Supposed To Be Giving?

No matter where you go today, particularly in the online marketing work..."giving value" is the buzz phrase. Those in the know talk about it..those who don't give it are reprimanded on sites like BN and Twitter. My question to you is..do you really know what "Value" is? How can you tell if you are "giving value"? Is there a particular thing that defines "giving value", or can it only be determined in the negative..Such as, "pitching your opportunity is NOT giving value"?

Having been (hopefully) "giving value" online for a few years now, I have some answers..but would love to hear yours as well. Feel free to post comments at the end of this post.

When you give value to others, you are offering services or information that addresses what THEY are needing, wanting or looking for. Your focus is on your audience, not on yourself. You may be an expert in PPC...but if you start blabbering away about PPC and CTR and conversions to someone who wants to know how to write an ezine article..then you are NOT giving value (to that person at that moment).

In conversation it is easier to figure out how to offer value than it is in writing. Why do I say this? Because when you are speaking with someone you have the opportunity to truly listen to what they are saying and to discern their needs. In fact, you may have heard that the best sales skill in the world is Listening. There is no way you can adequately relate to, nor assist someone unless you take the time to really listen to and HEAR their problems and concerns. (The art of good listening can be an entire book...so maybe I'll write it when I'm done here.)

It is harder to offer value when you are writing in forums, blogs, social media, etc...because you have to assume you are addressing topics that your audience is interested in and wants to learn about. This is where it is important to define your target audience. Before you put pen to paper, or fingers to keyboard, take the time to get a clear picture in your mind of who it is you are speaking to. Write it down. Think in terms of categories and try to separate out a number of smaller niches in your broad categories. For instance:

Women Network Marketers..
single women network marketers with kids
retired women network marketers with large social connection
women who want part time income for fun money
Women who need a substantial income in order to quit their job and be a stay at home mom.

You get the idea...Once you have these niches you can then further develop your mindset by listing the potential needs or problems that this group may have. When you write or post or create a video, keep your target niche and their possible issues in mind the entire time. By doing this you will be more likely to be offering value to them in what you create.

18 February 2009

Duplication 123 vs. Web Prosperity

The key to network marketing success is Duplication!! Some of the tools that you need to do this online are one's that are often found in separate places, thus making the newbies life very confusing. The guys at Duplication 123 have solved this problem. Actually they have addressed three different facets of MLM success all in one system.

Now, this is where many of you are going to be saying..this seems just like Web Prosperity. At first glance maybe..but in reality, not at all. Web Prosperity was an amazing example of viral marketing on steroids, but in the end the product did not come close to what people were expecting.

Here with Duplication123 we have a company that has been in this business for 10 years, creating excellent landing pages and back office systems for a variety of companies. What they have done now is to take all that they've done in the past, combine it into a more extensive offering, add some cool tools to the back office and monetize for you.

As many know I have a new primary business that is lauching in April, plus a number of other income streams. I definitely was not looking to add anything else to my plate. But Duplication 123 came highly recommended from someone I trust, so I decided to take a look. It appears that the tools offered might make it easier to manage all my connections and emails for every business, from one location. The system can act a funded proposal as well as a means to market my primary business using specific industry landing pages. And instead of just a straight affiliate program, there is a matrix compensation that could bring in some nice dollars.

I'm thinking with my new company that Duplication 123 will be an awesome tool to plug my down-line into, especially during the period when the full marketing efforts for the new biz are not yet in place. I've spoken to a few people who's primary biz has a less than decent landing page and they plan on using the Duplication 123 landing page for their specific industry instead. There are many option. I think it's a good tool...and a good choice.

Click Here Now For Duplication 123 Website

Remember: To Get Started You Must Begin

17 February 2009

Your Success Map

Your Success Map
To reach your goals you need a business and marketing plan, Much like you need a map to drive from New York to Oklahoma. It's All Success (Creating Abundance From Home), is a company that works personally with you to develop your unique plan. Our niche is working with those in the network marketing industry, looking to expand their online marketing focus.
Success Mentoring--Create Your Personal Map

To make a video like this one, visit Animoto.com . Put in Referrer Code "yezuincm"
in the code box on the sign up page and receive $5 off your All- Access Pass...then start making videos from your photos or stock photos!!

16 February 2009

Why Use Video Marketing?

Video Marketing is unique in the online marketing world. Why? Well because people can see you and hear you rather than just read printed words that you have written.

People have been marketing using print/words/static pictures forever. But think about the difference between seeing an ad for a product in a magazine and watching a TV ad for the same product. There's different feeling and connection level, isn't there?

Video Marketing is similar. Right now you are reading about why your customers or prospects will like seeing your videos and why videos will bring you more traffic and more interest. But now you are going to Click On This Link and watch a video that gives you the same message in a different form. When you're done, come back and write a comment telling me which was more engaging and powerful for you, and why.

14 February 2009

Duplication 123

There's a new kid on the block. Want to meet him?

The key to network marketing success is Duplication!! Some of the tools that you need to do this online are one's that are often found in separate places, thus making the newbies life very confusing. The guys at Duplication 123 have solved this problem. Actually they have addressed three different facets of MLM success all in one system.

1. Suite of tools for online marketing success. (See website for details)
2. An additional income stream from $219 up to almost $6000 per month. (PDF of payment plan on website)
3. A Lead Generation system for your primary business. People who want to use Duplication 123 are people who you want to talk to and get to know. This is another way to meet targeted prospects using the internet. From there, you will pick up the phone and begin creating a connection.

It's easier for you to take a look at this yourself, than for me to write a summary of what is on the website. So click here now to be redirected. Contact me with any questions. I am going to use this tool to help build my primary business. You can do the same...or just enjoy the income from Duplication 123.

06 February 2009

Serious Problems At Zrii

The following paragragh is taken from a press release in the Salt Lake Tribune dated February 6, 2009.

"The groups claim that, disregarding its co-founders' mission and ideals, Farley has saddled the company with unnecessary debt while using it as his personal piggy-bank, and that continuing to work with him under the circumstances would represent a profound betrayal of their individual integrity and personal relationships as well as Zrii's founding principles."

Read the entire press release here.

This is sad indeed for all those who have poured their hearts and souls into this company over the past 18 months. So many people love and have benefited from the Zrii product. It would be a shame to see all the time, energy, investment and research end up for naught.

Many people in the field are distraught and wondering what they should do next. They are trying to determine their personal course of action amidst varying stories and rumors. Some are looking at other companies and opportunities in order to have an alternative plan.

Perfect MLM By Design is just one alternative, but I mention here because it was developed over the last 7 months precisely to combat and prevent many of the issues that we see today in Zrii. It also offers no conflict with Zrii with regards to product or niche..thus people can explore it as an alternative and still remain committed to their Zrii business as they watch to see what unfolds in the next few weeks and months.

New FTC Guidelines

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