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Maximize Your Resources – Part 3

Posted by adamvital

Maximize Your Resources – Part 3Maximize You Resources

In the last post, we talked about three more ways you can work on maximizing your current resources. They included:

  • Reveal your business’ soul
  • From breaking even to breaking the bank
  • Stand up and stand out

 

Today we’ll talk about the last three areas you can work on to maximize your current resources. They are:

  • An offer they can’t refuse
  • Would you like fries with that?
  • Stay away from the edge of the cliff

An Offer They Can’t Refuse

The secret to success is to stay ahead of your competitors- maintain the competitive edge. To do that you need to make it easier for your customers/clients to say “yes” rather than “no”. You do this by eliminating all the psychological, financial, physical, emotional and other roadblocks they may have.

You can take the risks for them by offering warranties and guarantees that make the customer feel more confident in you, your business and your products/services. You also must be serious about your offer and follow through if a situation does arise.

Would You Like Fries With That?

It’s the oldest trick in the book. I mean, really, how many times a week do you fall for it? Every time you sell a product or service, you need to offer an add-on, upgrade or back-end product to go with it. These products must be complementary to the original product being purchased and must create higher perceived value.

Avoid the Edge of the Cliff

Continuing to test and measure your systems, products, marketing methods and all other aspects of your business. This process allows you to see problems before they happen and therefore avoid falling off the edge of the cliff.

Here are a few specific areas you can test for potential improvements:

  • Marketing
  • Sales Copy
  • Customer Service
  • Sales Letters
  • Sales Presentations
  • Employee-Customer Interaction

Through testing these different areas you will find products/services where you can raise the price, maybe others where you can lower the price or offer that product as an incentive item, and find many others areas for improvement that will better utilize your current resources.

This wraps up our series on how to maximize your current resources. If you need help working through any of these or the previous areas, contact me at (281) 817-7391 or adam.vital@avbgs.com.


Maximize Your Resources – Part 2

Posted by adamvital

Maximize Your Resources – Part 2

Last time we talked about the first three areas to work through in maximizing your current resources.  

They were:

  • Recognize the obvious
  • Unconventional breakthroughs
  • Face the facts

Today we’ll cover the next three, which are:

  • Reveal your business’ soul
  • From breaking even to breaking the bank
  • Stand up and stand out

Reveal Your Business’ Personality

Every business has a personality and you likely felt it the strongest when your business was just starting. It’s that passion, newness, and momentum you had at the very beginning. Sometimes that can get lost along the way as your business gets stagnant and set in its ways. You have to break out of that rut and get back to your business’ true character.

The philosophy of putting your client’s needs above your own is the true key to success. You need to serve your clients not sell to them. They want to build a relationship based on trust, not a used car. Add to these responsibilities your ability to solve problems, handle special situations, be a friend to your clients and focus on offering valuable, high-quality products/services. Only then will you get back to the basics and find you have more resources than you thought.

From Breaking Even to Breaking the Bank

One of the classic and most used ways to attract clients is to offer them a ridiculously low price on their initial purchase and lock them in for future purchases. You see this approach with movie or book clubs and even credit card companies who offer lower interest rates for the first six months.

Essentially, you are offering them a deal on their first purchase and then you offer them back-end and add-on products along the way. These are naturally higher prices and will bring them into more of an intimate relationship with you and your company.

Stand Up and Stand Out

You need to stand out from the pack among your competitors. The only way you can do this through consistency and value. You do this by discovering what your USP (Unique Selling Proposition) is and perfecting it. Here are some tips to help you find and develop your USP:

  1. Look for unfilled needs in your industry.
  2. Use preemptive marketing.
  3. Use a technique that is clear and to the point.

This wraps up this post. These three areas we just covered give you a starting point for how to utilize your current resources to their fullest potential. If you need any help with your strategic or systems analysis, contact me at (281) 817-7391  or adam.vital@avbgs.com.


Maximize Your Resources – Part 1

Posted by adamvital

Maximize Your Resources – Part 1Maximize Your Resources

Over the next few articles, we’re going to talk about how to take a hard look at your current resources and get the most out of them. This can help your capital go further and increase your profit margin.

Today we’ll cover three different ways to maximize what you already have. These include:

  • Recognize the obvious
  • Unconventional breakthroughs
  • Face the facts

Recognize the Obvious

Sometimes when you are too close to something, you can’t make out the big picture. Just step back and really take a hard look at the resources you currently have in front of you. You may be surrounded by opportunities that can boost your career and help your business become more successful.

Unconventional Breakthroughs

Don’t sit around waiting for breakthroughs; you need to create them yourself. A breakthrough is merely a new or more efficient way of doing things for the same or better results. You should be having regular brainstorming sessions, encouraging your team to come forward with breakthroughs or ideas any time they have them.

Some great examples of breakthroughs are:

  • A health and beauty company discovers a side effect of a product that can be re-marketed and sold.
  • A company creates a roll-on deodorant inspired by the shape and size of a ballpoint pen.
  • The founder of Nike poured rubber onto a waffle iron and created the most innovative and successful running shoe ever.

When strategizing for a breakthrough there are some key objectives you need to keep in mind:

  1. Look for the hidden opportunity in every situation.
  2. Look for at least one cash windfall for your business every three months.
  3. The more value for your client, the better your breakthrough.
  4. Create multiple streams of ideas to find the best breakthroughs.
  5. Effective breakthroughs remove all risk or resistance.

Face the Facts

Before putting your breakthroughs to work you need to face the facts of the processes and systems that are not working for you and then either correct or get rid of them. System analysis is a good way to do this. Further, once you have a good understanding of your strengths and weaknesses, you need to compare those to the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors.

There are some questions you can present your team to get a handle on where your business is right now:

  1. Why did I first start this business? Why am I in this industry?
  2. What products/services did I offer then? Which were the most popular?
  3. Why are my customers/clients buying from me right now?
  4. How did I generate new customers/clients then?
  5. Which of my marketing efforts were bringing in the best results?

Once you’ve got some answers to these questions, you’ll know better how to maximize your strengths and address your weaknesses.

These three areas we just covered give you a starting point for how to utilize your current resources to their fullest potential. If you need any help with your strategic or systems analysis, contact me at (281) 817-7391  or adam.vital@avbgs.com.


5 Killer Mistakes – Part 3

Posted by adamvital

5 Killer Mistakes – Part 3

The two previous articles covered four of the killer mistakes you can make that will not only have you lose business but could jeopardize your entire company. Today, we’re going to talk about the fifth killer mistake: Not having a plan to manage cash flow.

Sound cash management is essential even when business is good; however, you must always be prepared for slow sales or a surge in expenses. One of the keys to your cash flow is to get clients to pay on time. This is absolutely essential to a successful business.

Here are some tips to speed up the payment process:

  • Always send invoices on time and make sure your invoices are correct before sending them out.                                            Business Mistake
  • Understand how the client processes payments on their side and find out precisely where to send invoices.
  • Find out who is in charge of processing orders and payment, so you know who to contact if needed.
  • Have a follow-up procedure in place, just in case.
  • As a last resort, call your contact to ask questions.

You also need to make sure your cash flow is optimized:

  • Always know which accounts need to be paid and when.
  • Negotiate with your suppliers for the lowest cost possible.
  • Have a bank contingency plan in place.

 

In summary, you must always exercise diligence in protecting the cash flow of your business; prepare for client transitions, increased expenses, and slow sales.  These are the ways you can help avoid the killer mistakes that can cause you to lose it all. If you need help with any of the information I have just shared, contact me (281) 817-7391  or adam.vital@avbgs.com


5 Killer Mistakes – Part 2

Posted by adamvital

5 Killer Mistakes – Part 2Killer Mistakes

In the last post, we covered the first two of the 5 biggest mistakes you can make in dealing with large clients. Today we’ll cover the third and fourth ones: Taking on More Than You Can Handle.

When you take on too much, your business can’t keep up and therefore you can easily lose control of everything and find yourself barely functioning. You want your business to be successful, no doubt, but you need to have a plan for how you will handle the growth. Your clients expect great customer service and high-quality products/services; they don’t know or care about your behind the scenes operations to get those things done.

Look for these signs that you are taking on more than you can handle:

  • Clients’ needs aren’t being met.
  • Employee morale is low, clients are upset and you’re in a panic.
  • You have to react in emergency mode to save
  • Your current clients are suffering from trying to keep up with new business.
  • Profits are going down.
  • You are just trying to pick up the pieces of your business.
  • Your clients/customers leave.
  • Resources are being reallocated.

There is a plan that can help you react positively when you are facing some or all of these things and help you get your business back on track. This plan will do the following:

  • Help increase sales in a short period of time.
  • Alter your products/services for the better.
  • Fulfill promises you made to your clients.

There are six steps to this plan:

  1. Bring in your best team and have them all help to meet the client’s needs.
  2. Review your operational system.
  3. Anticipate future problems better.
  4. Communicate better.
  5. Include costs in your quotes.
  6. Always have a backup plan.

Furthermore, you cannot allow your company to become dependent on any one client. Eventually, there is going to be a slowing down period with your big client. In order to stay in the game, you need to diversify.

If you’ve ever mishandled an important client, you could drive away potential business as well. In order to keep balance and prepare for a strong future, there are a few things you can do. These include the following:

  • Stay in the loop and try to know what’s going on inside your large client’s company.
  • Constantly reinvent yourself and stay at the top of your industry.
  • Stay exclusive.
  • Try to secure multi-year commitments and contracts.
  • Spread your contracts out.
  • Price your products/services correctly.

Finally, you must work to reduce your dependency on your large client. This can generally be measured in sales or profits.

These are the ways you can help avoid the killer mistakes that can cause you to lose it all. If you need help with any of the information I have just shared, contact me (281) 817-7391  or adam.vital@avbgs.com