Where do you find prospects?
People talk... all the time.... often more then they listen! Use this simple human truth to your advantage. Stop wasting marketing dollars and start creating remarkable ones.
Do a remarkable job and people will make remarks about you!
A word of mouth referral is far more powerful than any marketing material you will ever create! Here are three simple steps to get people talking about your practice, without spending.
Step 1. Review Who You Work With
Sit down with your (CRM) Client Relationship Management program or a piece of paper and a pen. It is not really important which one you choose. I am not about to have you create a massive spreadsheet of clients. Keep this process as simple as you can. Start by opening the client data in your system or listing on a piece of paper the first five clients which pop into your mind.
Now expand on your list. Create a list which includes much detail as possible regarding each of the clients noted. Think of each meeting, each call, really review and record everything you know about each person.
Step 2. Identify Your Hi/ Lo's List
Once you have the information collected on the first five clients you think of, begin thinking about why it is this particular set of clients popped into your head. What is it that made this set of clients, stand out for you?
List each of the positive and negative aspects (if applicable) of each encounter and communication with each of the clients you have taken note of. Answer the following question for each client. Why and how did your current customers purchase the initial product from you?
Step 3. Find the current need
Your current customer purchased a product which addressed a need for them. What else can you help your client prepare for that you may not have discussed during your initial sale? Is this solution something relevant to their life situation and goals? Review where the greatest amount of need exists in your practice based on the sample numbers generated from the list of five clients you have worked with. This may be a simple task if you have been focused on selling a specific product for the majority of your career.
Once you have completed Steps 1-3, describe where the opportunity exists in your practice by spotting which trends appear in the information collected. Create groups of clients based off of the similarities to help you clarify who you want to work with and how you can serve them best. Then serve in a "remarkable manner."
Subscribe today for additional tips to help you find the opportunity in your practice.
Joseph Moore was driving down the highway almost 15 years ago when a sneeze changed his life. Joseph joins the Technology = Equality Community for episode #64 to share behind the scene secrets of his Shark Tank experience the journey of building First Defense Nasal Screen. Listen in as Joe explains how persistence and having a "why" helped him to conquer the Shark Tank and build a global corporation.
How many people have these great ideas, but don't have the belief in themselves to follow through on it.
Strategy: Learn to appreciate what is, to clarify what could be. The road is long, hard and will never be what you expect; but persistence will serve you well.
Wisdom: Try new things and always dream big. Once you figure out what you want to do... believe in you! Make the decision to be all in on your choice and focus.
Wish: To increase the quality of life for millions of people globally.
Reach Out Via: www.filteryourlife.com
It’s time to say goodbye to the first quarter of 2017 and welcome the second quarter with open arms and new goals. How are you planning to increase your production this quarter?
We have all heard the phrase 'Time is Money', but why do we not apply this simple idea to our everyday lives?
As a financial professional, I’m sure you can agree that delegating tasks to a non-existent team member is impossible. You recognize your ability to generate more income with more time. You understand you need to delegate, but where do you begin?
How do successful sales professionals efficiently save time and generate additional income?
Sound too good to be true?
Consider this, on any given day you have an average of 75 emails to read and respond to, on top of conducting business as usual. Each email can take anywhere from 3-7 minutes of your day. With 75 emails to read and reply to, this is minimum 225 minutes or 3.75 hours of your day! Your 3+ hours daily could be spent on income generating activities.
So how do you reclaim your hours and money? Invest your time wisely! Start by creating an email 'read & response' strategy.
- Schedule your email into the day as you do all tasks. Stop checking your email anytime of the day, just because you can. Structure the time you check your email to complement how you structure your day. Reduce the number of times you check your email and batch the process of responding.
- Dictate an email. Worth the effort you ask? Without a doubt! Historically, dictation services have not worked as well as advertised. However, of recent, technology has advanced to the 'Jetson's Age'. Many dictation programs are built into your mobile device and adapt to your speaking patterns to improve greatly with regular use.
Dictation can save you almost 2-3 minutes per reply! With an average of 75 e-mails, only taking 1-2 minutes you are saving yourself almost two and a half hours. An additional 2.5 hours daily may not seem like much, but let's take a step out of W.I.N.O. mode (Working In Not On your business) and look at it the additional 2.5 hours daily from B.O.S.S. mode (Building Operations to Support your Success). In a week consisting of five business days, you have an additional 12.5 hours, or 650 additional hours in a year! With approximately 8 hours in a business day, the 650 hours becomes almost two and a half months of time saved! You now have the potential to dedicate your additional 2.5 hours daily or 2.5 months annually to income generating activities creating an instant “Personal Pay Day”!
If you need help getting organized with your sales practice, click here to schedule a strategy session today!
Stay tuned as we celebrate a special Shark Tank theme to kick off quarter two!
Last week I hit the pause button on production as our family took some time to celebrate the life of my grandfather who passed away at the age of ninety-five, the morning of March 25th.
My grandfather was a great source of strength and inspiration for many. He left high school early and began working to help his family. He held various positions and often created his own opportunity. He sold wood by the bushel, washed windows and shined shoes to name a few. He learned the sheet metal trade in Somerville, Ma and studied photography at MIT. In 1938 at the age of 17, my grandfather joined what was known as the "CCC" the civilian conservation corps in Townsend, Ma.
The civilian conservation corps was a work relief program designed as part of the structure of the "New Deal" for the United States. The "New Deal" was developed to provide an economic stimulus to the general population after the Great Depression. The "New Deal" gave birth to programs providing relief, recovery, and reform to the American population with the implementation of programs such as Social Security.
Yes, that is correct, my grandfather was alive before Social Security was invented!
Just to give you a little perspective on the times he grew up in; my grandfather received a wage of $30 a month. This is just under $600 a month in this day and age. When he was growing up the mindset instilled in him was to create his own security.
He continued to work multiple jobs after the civilian conservation corps regardless of the distance he had to travel to find it. In 1942 in the midst of World War II, my grandfather decided to enter the US Army Air Force. He served as a Staff Sergeant stationed at Fort Dix, New Jersey and Tuskegee, Alabama. During his service, he was deployed to places like Japan, New Guinea, Luzon and the Philippines. He was honorably discharged having earned a host of awards including; the Bronze Star, a Victory Medal, and his favorite medal (the one all kids in the family, friends of the family, and random people at the supermarket heard multiple stories about over the years) his Sharp Shooters Medal.
My grandfather learned to play the trumpet in junior high school. He and my great-grandfather, who played piano, often held jam sessions with family friends. Inspired by his love of music, my grandfather organized a 40-piece all brass band while stationed in Tuskegee. The band eventually grew to a 72-piece band. This story, much like his sharp shooter medal, became a regular story line for all to hear! If you didn't know he loved the trumpet, you didn't know my granddad!
My grandparents had five children at a time when the internet and ease of life we enjoy today was just a dream. He turned the dream of easy living into a reality by putting in the work. Post his service in the Air Force, my grandfather didn't slow down, he had a family to provide for. He held a full-time position with Raytheon and opened his own photography studio on the side. He owned various residential and rental properties throughout the city and later took a position with the Boston Public Schools. He retired as head of the OSHA division within the school department.
He worked his butt off to have the ability to enjoy his life. He didn't just dream about it or hope that one day someone would change things for him. He thought about the life he wanted to provide for his family and the legacy he wanted to leave. He took action, at a time when the chips were stacked against him and hope was a distant memory for most in this country. Granddad was always looking for an opportunity to keep moving forward (even if his actions at the time felt like baby steps). At ninety-five he was still discussing the next property he was going to buy on the lake!
My grandfather enjoyed many years in his retirement and the life he created. He lived to witness five generations of his family blossom; five children, eight grandchildren, three great-grandchildren and one great, great-grandchild.
My grandfather was born before television became a reality. He witnessed the development of society as it is today and lived long enough to own and enjoy his own cell phone.
Granddad even created a new trend I like to call elderly dialing!
Granddad Thank You for providing us with strength, stability, wisdom and love.
You have left behind a legacy of hard work and pure happiness!
Edmund P. Strother
1921 ~ 2017
Let's try to reverse engineer your entrepreneurial journey. What is it that you would ultimately like to see as the future of your sales practice? It doesn't matter if you have just started your journey. Take a moment to imagine how you would like to see your sales practice running in the next couple of weeks, months or even years.
Ask yourself the following questions;
- How do I want to operate my business?
- How big will my business be in five years?
- Will I need a team?
- How do I want to communicate with my team?
- How will I track what goes on in my business, if I am not micro-managing every detail?
A long time ago, long before tablets & cell phones, I used to dream of being a business woman on the go with Star trek like devices running it all, no matter where I was.
That's no longer a dream.... Thank You Apple!
I took the time to think about how I wanted to see myself running the business. Had I never invested my time in getting organized, there is no way I could have created or maintained my practice as it grew! Getting organized in your practice can drastically change your production.
Once you have an idea of how your business will run, try to write out the details as they come to you. What will your production count look like? What color is your letterhead? How many clients do you see on a weekly basis? What product markets will you focus on? Try to clarify as many details about your future practice as possible.
I learned quickly if we want to increase numbers, I had to know how to process things in the fastest, most efficient manner possible. When I began working in financial services, I took notes on my every move and turned each action into a batch of processes as I navigated each new case. Eventually, I would take all of my notes and turn them into a procedure log for quick reference. To scale a process, you must understand every piece of the process.
You need to understand why the pieces are what they are and where each piece fits into the process as a whole.
In my experience, new financial professionals are concerned with generating income and gaining the first or next client. They keep general information for each customer but neglect to keep this information organized in a manner they can easily refer to.
Once you have several ideas on paper, begin thinking about the resources you currently have available. Which resources do you currently use to support your practice and why? Consider which resources work best together and how they will assist you in the growth of your practice.
Technology is changing daily and the last thing you want to do is have you business scramble to keep up. Review your long-term idea of your sales practice and think about what programs (ex. Client Relationship Management System) you may need to accomplish your vision. Is there a particular operating system you may want or need to implement to improve what you currently do or may do in the future? Always consider the return on the investment of any actions taken or programs used. Begin implementing the programs and systems that have the potential to decrease overall production costs as early as possible.
F.Y.I.- Free is not always the best option!
- Your software
- The time creating your procedures!
It is 2017 and there are numerous workflow and procedure applications to choose from. Be sure the software you purchase is compatible with how you want to run your business. Consider the following;
- Is the software accessible in mobile format?
- How easy is the system to learn and operate?
- Are there any mobile limitations with the software?
- Did you try a demo version?
When starting your sales practice, get as organized as possible as early as possible. Map out step by step actions you need to accomplish to create the practice you described above. If you begin documenting all of your processes and what you would like them to be, scaling your practice, will seem like a walk in the park!
Isabelle Mercier-Turcotte, one of North America’s Top Small Business Influencers, TEDx Speaker, best-selling author and TV show host takes a moment from her extremely busy schedule to join the Technology = Equality Community for Episode #62. Listen in as Isabelle shares insight on how to begin finding your X-factor.
“I would have needed more courage for me to get a job.” ~Isabelle Mercier-Turcotte
Strategy: Watch & Learn- Isabelle’s parents each built individual sales practices while raising her. She often helped her mom and the entrepreneurial spirit developed into a passion during childhood.
Wisdom: Bubble Time, as Isabelle calls it, is the ticket to reclaiming your time! Structure your time to provide the unstructured time.
Wish: To provide a global, seamless, evergreen process for interested clients to enroll in the Built To Rock program.
Reach Out Via: Build To Rock
In my last post "How To Perfect Your Client Retention Plan for 2017" I promised you a couple of strategies to ensure you can seamlessly create time for taking thorough notes. As previously discussed, your appointment notes can serve as a gold mine for your practice. The list below is a set of actionable steps you can take today to ensure you never miss an opportunity and your client relationships continue to grow.
1. Collect your thoughts.
Take a moment to collect your thoughts before you meet with a prospect. Ask yourself the following;
- What do you already know about the prospect?
- Why are you planning to meet with them?
- What is it that they need your help with in the grand scheme and how can you deliver this?
- How will you make your prospect see the value in your solution?
Taking a moment to breathe will allow you to have a clear mindset as you begin to collect the next set of familial details.
2. Schedule it in
Seriously, make time in your calendar to take the notes. I know it may seem silly, but if you schedule it in, it is far more likely to get done. Yes, I am talking about physically adding time to your weekly calendar. I want you to take a look at your upcoming appointments for the month. Review where you are most likely to have down time and add in the time to take notes for the previous 1 - 3 appointments. The more frequent your appointments, the more frequent you should take down notes. There is no magic frequency nor is there a level of detail, just try to make it a routine. The more you do it the better you'll become at capturing each bit of information mentioned.
3. Create a summary Prepare a list for yourself separate from the agenda for your appointment. This list should contain all of the information you would require when completing the application for any product you feel may be relative to the opportunity you intend to discuss. When your appointment is completed this list will serve as a checklist of the items you have discussed. Use this list to quickly create your appointment notes.
4. Use your technology
The majority of financial professionals actively producing in 2017 carry or make use of a cell phone or tablet device. There are a million audio recording and dictation apps on the market. Download one now and dictate your notes post your appointments to avoid forgetting anything.
***BONUS TIP*** If you own an iPhone your recording software is already built-in! Set your audio recorder on your home screen or in the toolbar for easy access.
Marcia Bennett re-joins the Technology = Equality Community for Episode #61. Listen in as Marcia and I discuss mastering self-assurance with baby steps.
"There's no pressure to make this perfect." ~Marcia Bennett
Strategy: Visualize the end project and start by preparing your book formatting first.
Wisdom: Take baby steps..... they'll continue leading until you say mush or stop.
Wish: Marcia would like to realize that nothing is absolute. Not everything has to be black and white; sometimes Grey works just as well.
Useful Tools: Are You In It To Win It?