Archive for marketing strategies

Do YOU Know the Marketing Keys?

marketing keysThe Marketing Keys to Success

Key 1 – Do Your Research

In marketing, hard data is everything. You can’t base your marketing on your gut feelings or assumptions you have about your market. These assumptions may not be accurate and, in fact, they could be completely wrong.

This is why we conduct market research. Research involves gathering objective data about your market so that you can use it to make informed decisions based on facts.

In years past, before the wonders of the Internet, marketers had to pay large sums of money and invest a great deal of time to conducting research. Traditional methods include focus groups, direct mail campaigns, surveys, and one-on-one meetings with customers. These methods weren’t cheap. The fact that companies invested so much of their financial resources toward this research shows you just how important it is.

You may feel that you have your finger on the pulse of your market, but the data your research yields may surprise you. Through this research, you need to not only pinpoint the exact demographics of your market, but also how your customers think about your products, your business, other brands they like, and how they spend their money.

There is only one place to get this information. You have to go straight to the source – your market.

Understanding Your Market

An essential part of your marketing plan is to identify your target market. You have to know as much as possible about the people who buy from you. You need to look at large-scale trends among your market as a group, as well as the thoughts and feelings of individuals within this group.

You can gain this data through direct communication with members of your market or through observation. Direct communication, such as conducting surveys or asking questions to members of your market, is very useful. But observation also has its advantages.

When you ask questions directly, a person may feel that they’re put on the spot. They may give you the answer they think you want to hear. Observation shows not what they say but what they actually do. It’s also very easy to observe your target market online through things like social media, online forums, blog comments, and so on.

What you need to research:

Customers. Get a clear understanding of the demographics of your market, their needs, and what factors influence their buying decisions. You also need to segment your market, dividing it into groups according to important differences within it.

Market Dynamics. This includes patterns in your market’s behavior that occur over time. These patterns could be seasonal, occurring at different times throughout the year, or they could be longer-term patterns that stretch over years or decades.

Products. Your research should include what products similar to yours are already on the market. You need to know where your products fit in to the overall scheme of things. It’s also important to know what your competitors are offering so that you can offer unique value with yours.

Industry. Through research, you should look for current sales in your industry. Each industry has benchmarks which state the best and worst performance level in that specific industry.

Suppliers and Other Businesses. Locate suppliers and other businesses you’ll need to rely on when your marketing gets underway.

Market research is ongoing. It’s not something you do just once and then forget about. You need to constantly research your market because it changes. You’ll need to incorporate these changes into your marketing plan.

Action Steps

  • Start with some basic research on the above list. Look at the overall economy and current marketing trends. Find out about the people in your market and create a simple profile. Learn about your industry.
  • Try to look for data that shows trends over time. This is important because you can often get an inkling of future trends by looking at past trends
  • Make points of contact with your customers and give them a chance to express their opinions to you. You can do this through forums, social media or other online groups.

marketing keysKey 2 – Hone Your Marketing Mix

Another important element of your marketing plan is what’s called the marketing mix. Your marketing mix includes the specific details of your plan. From these details, you can derive the strategies and tactics you’ll put into place to reach your goals.

This is referred to as a ‘mix’ because every business’s marketing is different, so you need a combination of factors in your strategy. To define your marketing mix, start with large business goals and work your way down to the smaller details. Each strategy and tactic is related directly to the attainment of one of your business goals.

An important part of the marketing mix is that it’s diverse. You don’t employ just one tactic and call that a marketing plan. When you have many diverse tactics, it multiplies your efforts and allows you to reach and effectively communicate with every segment of your market.

The 4 P’s

To help you formulate your marketing mix, you should think in terms of the 4 P’s:

PRODUCT – Your products or services; in other words, what you’re offering.

PRICE – The price at which you set the product. This price should conform to the market and its expectations.

PLACE – Where you can put your offer in front of your market. This includes distribution channels and all other factors involved in getting the goods to buyers.

PROMOTION – How you can promote the product and spread the word.

PRODUCT is the simplest consideration. This is what you’re offering. Consider the products’ features and how they benefit the buyer. Look at similar products on the market and determine how yours is different or better. Try to figure out which unique problem of your market it solves.

PRICE is fairly straightforward as well, but there’s an important point to keep in mind. Your price should be based on the perceived value in the eyes of your market, not the actual cost. This is why it’s good to look at the pricing and sales of similar products. Your customers expect to buy a certain type of product at a certain price. You need to price your product according to these expectations. Cheap is not necessarily good if your customers expect the item to have a higher price tag.

PLACE refers to the location online or offline where you sell your product. The idea is to find out where your target market is and likes to shop and to put your offer where they are.

Finally, there are many different things you can do with PROMOTION. The whole idea is to spread awareness of your product and brand, both online and off. Again, start with your target market. Consider many types of promotions, both online and offline, and determine which kinds would be most effective for gaining the attention of your customers.

Once you have each of these 4 P’s defined, test your marketing mix from a customer’s perspective. Put yourself in the shoes of your customer and ask questions such as these:

1. Does it meet the buyer’s needs? (Product)
2. Will your customers consider it priced fairly? (Price)
3. Will your customers find the product where they shop? (Place)
4. Will your marketing communications reach them? (Promotion)

Action Steps

  • Draft each of the 4 P’s for your business and its products. If you have a segmented market, you may want to do the same for each segment.
  • Test your 4 P’s from a customer’s point of view.

marketing keysKey 3 – Monitor Your Results

Just as you need objective data in order to formulate your marketing plan, you also need follow-up data to keep it current. You can obtain this data through monitoring. Monitoring your marketing shows you exactly what’s working and what’s not so that you can make changes to your strategy. Just as the objective data you discover about your market may surprise you and destroy your assumptions, so can this follow-up data.

Monitoring means not so much watching sales but watching your customers. Like every other part of your marketing plan, it should be based on your customers and their tastes. Once you start your campaign, pay attention to what they say, do and think in regards to your offering and promotions. Watch how they react.

You should also stay abreast of changes in the market or in your industry. These changes could be the cause behind changes in your customers’ behavior.

There are many tools available for monitoring the progress of your marketing plan. You just need a few that are good and reliable, and give you the specific data you need.

With these tools in place, you can monitor your marketing by setting goals milestones, and seeing whether your efforts reach these goals or not. They need to be measurable so that you can tell whether your tactics are working or not. Decide how you’ll identify success or failure based on these goals and milestones.

Where you encounter success, replicate your efforts and refine so that they’re even more fruitful. For example, if you find that posting a weekly blog increases traffic to your website, keep posting that weekly blog. You may even want to post two per week or add videos to the mix.

On the other hand, where you find results that don’t add up, this is where you need to change your tactics. If you’re placing banner ads on websites similar to yours and the trickle of traffic they’re bringing you isn’t worth the money you’re paying to place them, this is a tactic you should stop.

Look for weaknesses or gaps. Like your failures, there are areas that can be improved. You can tweak them until they’re in line with your marketing objectives.

Action Steps

  • Track sales, leads, visits to your website, and any other metrics that are related to your marketing goals.
  • Set benchmarks you can reach that will define success for you.
  • Put together a plan for following up with your customers after purchase. Ask them what they liked about the experience of why they left for a competitor.

THE 3 KEYS you’ve learned in this report offer just a basic outline of what your marketing plan should entail. There is much more involved in creating a good plan. You need to identify your unique value proposition, state your goal or vision, define your goals and objectives, and create a budget.

This is just a start. If you want to know how to craft a winning marketing plan step-by-step with more details and examples, please check out my course. It leads you through the process one section of your marketing plan at a time. By the time you’re finished, you’ve already brainstormed and sketched the major sections. Please check it out.

During this 4+-session workshop I guide you through a complete marketing plan development. You can you leave with your marketing strategy.

Dreading Cold Calling

If you are like me then you HATE cold calling!!

I hate, maybe more than hate, cold calling!  I just do not do it.

But, I KNOW that it could help my business!

But, what I know now, is that I can cold call via voice mail messaging and get people calling me! The dynamic is totally different.  When someone calls me back, they WANT to know why I called.  Yes! Read that again — they WANT to know WHY I am calling.

It’s kind of like magic!

When you leave a business or an individual a voice mail message, they are very likely going to listen to it OR they will call you back just from the caller ID.  Now, the dynamic is reversed.  Instead of rejecting a cold call, they are calling and so they are open to listening to what you have to say.

This is your opportunity to start a conversation.  That is your goal, a conversation.  Making the sale is not the goal yet.  You have to start with a conversation.  This is where it is critical that you have a plan.  Message — SCRIPT, what to say when they call back.  Two scripts — one for those that listened to the message and one for those that did not listen to the message.  In those scripts, you need to have outlined your process. What is the next step?  A demonstration? A meeting?  Another call?  Your goal is to get the person to that next step or call.

Outline that next step. Create a script and a plan.  When you strategically use the Direct Voice Mail Messenger service to drive calls back to you then you need to have clear steps in place for that call back.

It is exciting to turn cold calling upside down and turn it around so that it is working for YOU.

More info??

Complete the form below and I will be in touch.


Why Mastermind? Why Join a Bootcamp?

What is in a Boot Camp or a Mastermind that helps your business?

As a CEO or business owner, training, personal development are both important to your success.  Many small business owners try to go it alone, and in that process they miss critical pieces that could have accelerated their success. The input of other people, the ideas, the skills and the resources that are gained from collaborating, masterminding or consulting with other people is what’s truly valuable in a mastermind or bootcamp.

It starts with an expert facilitator, someone that has a great deal of expertise in business and marketing.  They can bring together a group of business owners, even if they are all struggling, the group combined with expertise will provide you with much needed inspiration, personal growth and information.  When all of these combine, it is amazing what results you can generate. It is not just information that we each need. Yes, there is learning and personal growth to do.  But there is also the need for rejuvenation, inspiration and motivation that keep the whole thing moving forward.  Business can be tiring.  When you are working, working, working you fail to take that step back and really LOOK at the business and see what is happening.  You are to deep IN the business.

The mastermind or consultant or both, brings fresh eyes onto the scene that can help you see your business from a new perspective.

businessmastermindMasterminding is in my opinion, one of the most valuable things you can do.  It is the coming together of a group of people to share, listen, learn and grow together.  Often there is an accountability piece that keeps you on track and honest.  (Why can’t we do that for ourselves?) Suddenly the things you had been reaching for over and over again are happening.  But it also brings together years and years of expertise that can shift you and your business.  The ideas that get shared, the input, and feedback and even questions all contribute to you being more successful.

Bootcamp is when you dive deep into a topic and really wrestle with it and master it.  For many business owners, marketing is what they need to wrestle with.  Its something that they don’t do well.  They try but it just doesn’t happen.  Marketing is that thing that you found out you have to do but you didn’t really want to do.  You went bootsinto business because you loved your craft whether it be massage or lawyering or retail or chiropractics or dentistry or…. and you believed that “if you build it they will come”. And they didn’t.  Then you had to figure out the marketing puzzle. Suddenly you are in over your head but you are already all in.  You have to figure it out.  Bootcamp helps you to do that.

Add consulting into the mix and you have an incredible opportunity.  Expert consulting gives you that personalized one on one for your business with a marketing expert that can either help you figure out what to do or can do it for you!!

When you find all of these together it is a powerful combination.  The last key to figuring out if it is the right program for you is simply talking to the facilitator.

  • Are they somebody you can listen to?
  • Do they have the expertise that you need?
  • Is the program affordable for you?  A stretch is ok because that can be motivating.  Too much — going in the hole is not okay.  So make sure its a good fit.

2016 is starting off to be a great year.  Make sure that you are setting yourself up for the best success you can have!!

And of course, be sure to check out our Marketing Bootcamp and Mastermind!

It’s Show Time! 6 Sales Demo Tips from Stage Performers

Originally from:

Marketing your small business tactically is necessary. Utilizing a critical strategy could raise your leads, conversions and also earnings. Constructing a system indicates you are creating a plan that works every day.


Author: Chris Gillespie

As Shakespeare wrote, “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players.”

Sales demos are like shows, with salespeople as the main cast. Some are interesting, some are boring, and some blow you away and leave you hanging on th…

Company techniques that work is the trick. The secret is being strategic in how you place your advertising and marketing into activity.

Could Your Marketing Be Wrong?

Could There Be More To Marketing Than What You Know?

What if what you have LEARNED about marketing was all wrong?  What if the money you are spending, the time you take to carefully build your brand and your exposure — just wasn’t cutting it?  Marketing is like reminds me of my sailboat — a hole in the water that I threw money into….BUT, it doesn’t have to be that way.

When Marketing Is Set Up Wrong — Then The Results DO NOT Happen…

There are systems that DO work for small businesses.  They are different from what works for BIG corporations.  The “BIG BOYS” have a lot of money to play with. They CAN throw money into the hole.  they can afford to market over and over again, spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on their marketing.

There are several strategies that work well for small businesses. The first key is strategy.  It needs to be complete.  Not just a one off tactic, but a complete strategy.  From beginning to end… lead generation —>> through the buying process and to the close or acquisition of a new customer.

For instance — if you are using a website and there is no opportunity for the prospect to become a lead, then the website is not an effective tool for adding new customers.  Websites should have more than a phone number or a contact us form. There needs to be an informational offer and a way to request that offer.  Then the website becomes a lead generation tool.  BUT, it doesn’t stop there.  Because you also want to have a follow up system.  For leads on the web, it is easiest to have an email system that provides the informational report and then continues to follow up with the person.

Multiple Touches Are Needed in Marketing

Remember it takes 7-10 touches or connections before an individual is ready to buy.  That means that your email system needs to provide additional ways for the person to get to know you.  Follow up articles, resources, tips and strategies are each good ways to continue to connect with the individual.

If you are using networking in person as a strategy, then you need to be sure that your USP or 30 second elevator pitch is solid and gets people talking to you.  Your business card needs to be a lead generation tool just like your website.  Your business card should offer people your informational offer (on the backside).  Then it gets people onto your email list and now you are following up with them via email.  Because you met them in person, you can also follow up with a phone call, a post card, or personal note and other media forms.

Multi step follow up is a key to an effective marketing strategy. It does not work to just run an ad.  You want information from the person in order to continue marketing to them.

Learn more about how to market your business at our upcoming webinar:


Can’t make the webinar?  Then schedule your 45 minute business turnaround.


Business Networking for Business Growth

business networkingNetworking as a business building strategy

Networking is a great business development strategy when done right! But many business owners fail to have a complete strategy for networking!  There are several keys that make networking work better!

Networking Key #1:

Messaging.  Have a compelling message and call to action when you do your 30 second or 60 second intro.  Many business owners say their name, their company and what they do, but they don’t say how they solve the prospects pain.  You need to get to the pain and leave some intrigue so that people will want to talk with you.  Your goal is to enter into a conversation!  When you have a compelling message — then people will walk up to you and say I need to talk with you!!  That is what you want. Check out the resources at Compass Rose Consulting and download the template for a highly effective elevator pitch.

Networking Key #2: Your Business Card

The second key is to have a business card that is a lead generation tool.  When you buy business cards you are buyiing your very own piece of advertising real estate.  BUT, many do not fully utilize that real estate.  Include a call to action on the back of the business card that people will want.  This is where you can add your special offer.  The offer should be an informational report that they can download from your website… which brings us to Key #3; but be sure to download the business card template on the resource page as well: CRC Resources

Networking Key #3: Landing Page With Offer

The business card is leading people to your website or landing page with a compelling offer on it.  A special report or informational report that the individual can download.  This gets the person on your mailing list and you now have the opportunity to continue to market to them. I have a template for the report on my site as well as the landing page.  A landing page is a 3 page website.  The page with the offer, the optin confirmation page and the thank you page.  The only thing that a person can do is to optin or leave.  Most websites are big branding sites that fail to have an offer on them or a way for people to be in touch other than a number and contact us form.  Neither of these work effectively.  When you add a compelling offer to the site, then you increase your leads and can work on converting leads to clients.

Networking Strategy Key #4

After the optin, you need an email marketing series that goes out to people automatically. This is called an auto-resonder. There are many great programs for auto-responders   – Aweber, Get Response, Zoho Campaigns etc.  Email follow up is the first step in your followup strategy.  But you need a follow up plan along with scripts for you and your staff.

The three steps for using networking effectively are also available in a video training series.  You can access the video training series from my Marketing Center.  I offer these videos for free at the marketing center on the home page.  The Entrepreneur’s Marketing Center itself is a comprehensive training resource that provides a one stop shop for marketing strategies with a focus on the five step profit formula.  Everything that we have put together guides you through putting a strategy into action for your business.  The resources from ads, to templates, to video training are all there to benefit the members.

Take the networking strategy and see if you are maximizing it for your business. Download the templates in the resource area — they are absolutely complimentary… and tweak what you are doing.  Let me know the results that you have.  If you need some help — schedule your mini marketing audit with me:  Meet With Donna

Offline Marketing — Strategies Essential

Stop reading right now if you already have all the customers you need.

Still here? Good. I want to talk to you about your marketing efforts. I’m sure you’ve covered many bases when it comes to marketing. But have you covered it all?

Unless you’re actively looking beyond the Internet

BizologyBuzz Magazine: The Business Card Challenge!

BizologyBuzz E-Magazine: The Business Card Challenge! The Buzz About Business | A Publication of Compass Rose Consulting In this Issue: Quote of the Day: Expert Article: BizologyBuzz Radio: No Show This Week! From Donna Price Advertising With Us! Quote of the Day: Vacation — provides respite from […]

Evaluating the Web Marketing Company

If Internet marketing was easy to handle and put into practice in the form of different strategies, there wouldn’t be so many web marketing companies selling their services for very good money. A reality of the electronic market, web marketing consultancy is often the element that makes the difference between business success and business failure. The thing is that the world wide web is incredibly complex and all sorts of creative and technical aspects have to be covered, which is not exactly part of the average developer’s skills. Advertising, design, web development and sales, these are distinct fields of activity that require separate knowledge and experience.

How many of the business owners that activate online have marketing or web design studies? Very few. The rest of entrepreneurs either try their luck on their own with rudimentary tools and information they play by the ear, or they rely on the expertise and professionalism of web marketing companies. Experts study the market, the business they have to promote, the eventual competitors and come up with the strategies made to increase the return on investment rate (ROI) and enhance the number of relevant visitors. Such progress would inevitably translate into more money for the business in question.

Web marketing companies work will all sorts of experts, from marketing specialists to web designers and IT software programmers. The complexity of professional teams is understandable given the multitude of tasks required to make an online business profitable. When people choose the services of web marketing companies to build the web site from scratch, everything will be covered from the web design part to the search engine optimization and the permanent monitoring of the business performance. What would be the role of the business manager in this context? Although it is simple to leave all the work to experts, a good manager will always want to be in control.

Web marketing companies provide services patterned according to one’s business needs. The business manager is the authority that receives updates and is constantly informed on the evolution of the company. Moreover, no agency or service provider can take decisions for you unless you give them this right by contract. It seems that the highest rate of success comes with people who although uninitiated in the secrets of web marketing, still make efforts to learn about the basic mechanisms and are able to understand strategies and methods when they are exposed to them.

Using Web Advertising Agencies

A web marketing agency is a company that provides various types of marketing services to web developers that need business support. The majority of services available revolve around marketing web design, search engine optimization, pay per click campaigns, marketing and advertising strategies, email marketing and lots of others. All businesses will more or less need to go through these stages of development if they want to grow, but difficulties could sometimes come from the indecision about which web marketing agency to work with. There are lots of companies that advertise online, but there is often a trust problem when it comes to collaborations.

First of all, a web marketing agency that you find in the first results of search engine pages has already got the web developer’s attention by the very top ranking. A company that can be promoted at the best traffic level will very likely do the same thing for you business. There is already a success story in page ranking. Yet, you should not stop at the first web marketing agency you come across. Run a more complex search, carefully read their presentations on the websites and than narrow down the list of possible collaboration to five or six companies that seem more promising to you.

Once you’ve got at this stage, it is time to select only the possible choices that you can contact in face to face meetings. It is not advisable to choose a web marketing agency that works exclusively on the Internet. Being able to discuss directly with the people who are going to take care of your business is very important and conclusive. This is the best way to find out who your clients are, what business history they’ve got, what great results they’ve achieved so far and how they can help your company to increase profit.

Look for specifics in the plan they may suggest. Do not trust or believe a web marketing agency that will promise you a 100% boost in sales. Moreover, discuss link building and see how many they can create and from what web pages. Also inquire about the strategies the company would use to increase traffic. Such elements are essential to understand the professional dimension that a web marketing agency has to offer. And last but not least, never skip references. Facts not words should convince you. Ask for former clients and contact them for more information and a direct look at your potential collaborator’s achievements.