The Four Things Buyers Want Most

August 20th, 2014

Four Things Buyers Want MostEveryone knows that buyers want the best products and the best service at the best prices. But that’s not all they want. And in fact, those aren’t even the most important things they want. What are the most important things buyers want?

Listen to my appearance on Breakthrough Radio with Michele Price. In this nine-minute segment, I share what these four items are and why they matter so much. When you provide these four things to your prospects and customers, you’ll gain a huge edge over your competitors.

To listen, just click on the link below. Or to download the segment to listen later, right-click the link and select “Save Target As…”

The Four Things Buyers Want Most: Don Cooper on Breakthrough Radio (mp3)

To learn more about Michele Price and listen to her interview other business experts on Breakthrough Radio (which I absolutely recommend), check out WhoIsMichelePrice.com.

Change Your Perspective, Change Your Sales

August 13th, 2014

Sales Perspectives 1

 

Suppose you’re checking into a hotel. You have a choice. You could have a room with the above view or….

you could have a room with this view:

Sales Perspectives 2

 

Which would you choose?

Odds are, you’d choose the room with the first view.

Of course you would. From the first room you can see sun, sky, water, trees, boats! From the second room you’re stuck looking at the adjacent building and some concrete rooftops. Bleah.

Here’s the thing, though:

They’re the same room.

See?

Sales Perspectives 3

 

This is an actual room I was staying in at a recent conference in San Diego. While I could have chosen to focus on the view to the right, I chose instead to focus on the view to the left. That’s the view I was grateful for each morning when I woke up.

How we choose to see things tremendously affects our mood, our energy, our thinking and our actions. Our perspective impacts our results.

Do you see challenges or opportunities? Are you trying to sell stuff or are you trying to help people? Are you bitter about what you don’t have or grateful for what you do have? Is your product really expensive or is it really good, with a price that’s commensurate?

Never in life are situations 100% perfect. The question is, are you choosing to focus on what’s wrong or on what’s right? Your weaknesses or your strengths? The fact that you failed or the fact that you can still succeed?

You get to choose how you see everything in your business and personal life. If you don’t like what you see now, perhaps you need to start looking at things differently. Change your perspective, and you’ll change your sales, your relationships and your life.

The Worst Sales Letter EVER

August 6th, 2014

Worst Sales LetterRecently my e-mail in-box was graced with the worst sales letter I’ve ever received:

Subject: Referral please – company contact

Dear Don:

I am hoping you would direct me to the right people within your organization to speak with. I have recently been assigned your organization as one of my named accounts. Thus, it is important for me to be able to speak with those who are responsible for a) lead-generation, b) demand-creation, c) sales support and d ) marketing programs. I would sincerely appreciate it if you would forward my letter to them or perhaps write me and give me the proper names.

I was recently hired and am very excited about my new job. I want to be able to dazzle my management with my ability to proactively get in touch with the right people. Thus, I have been doing a great deal of research on the web, going through Linked In, Google +, Xing and other similiar sites.

Over the past twenty years my company has worked with Intel, HP, Oracle, Microsoft, AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Google, Apple, Yahoo and hundreds of other Tier-1 firms. We provide a wide variety of services surrounding sales and marketing. If you have the time please give me a call to discuss same at 512.377.XXXX.

How bad is this letter? Let me count the ways:

1. There are 18 first-person references (I, me, my) and only five second-person references (you, your). That’s nearly a 4-1 ratio, and the opposite of what it should be. Because a good sales letter focuses on the prospect’s wants, needs, goals and concerns.

2. There’s no mention of benefits or results. Why should I be interested?

3. It dwells on what he wants and what’s important to him. I don’t care what he wants! I don’t even know him!

4. He’s asking me to do his job for him. Like I have time for that.

5. He states, “I was recently hired…” Which means he probably doesn’t know what the hell he’s doing and can’t answer my questions. There goes his credibility down the toilet.

6. He’s lying. He hasn’t done any research on me. If he had, he would know I’m the person to talk to. He would also know something about me, which he would mention in the letter. Since he’s lying, clearly he—and his company—cannot be trusted.

7. It’s spam. Ironically, what gives it away is the disclaimer at the end: “If you’ve received this letter in error, simply respond to the letter and put remove in the subject or click on the following link…”

8. The word “similar” is spelled wrong.

A great sales letter gets the reader’s attention, engages them with good questions, provides enough information to whet their appetite for more and closes with a simple yet powerful call to action. A terrible sales letter wastes everyone’s time and makes the company look bad. Which do your sales letters more closely resemble?

Four Questions That Will Boost Your Sales

July 29th, 2014

4 Questions that will boost your salesWhat’s the biggest key to increasing your sales? Asking the right questions. Although not necessarily the questions you think!

Listen to my appearance on Breakthrough Business Strategies Radio with Michele Price. In this seven-minute segment, I share four powerful questions that you need to be asking. Whether you’re a salesperson, sales manager, business owner or CEO, these questions will enable you to dramatically boost your sales.

To listen, just click on the link below. Or to download the segment to listen later, right-click the link and select “Save Target As…”

Four Questions That Will Boost Your Sales: Don Cooper on Breakthrough Business Strategies Radio (mp3)

To learn more about Michele Price and listen to her interview other business experts on Breakthrough Business Strategies Radio (which I highly recommend), check out WhoIsMichelePrice.com.

How Do Prospects (And Others) See You?

July 22nd, 2014

When we look in a mirror, we see ourselves one way. But others see us differently. Which is why so many of us think we photograph terribly. We don’t normally see ourselves the way others see us.

Yet understanding how prospects, bosses, employees and others see us is vital for achieving success in sales, business and other areas of our lives. As Sally Hogshead writes in her new book, How the World Sees You:

“Just because you perceive yourself a certain way doesn’t mean that your team or customers necessarily see you the same way (both positively and negatively). In a connected workplace, your success relies on understanding the impressions you create. It matters less how you see the world. It matters more how the world sees you. If you fail to understand what your audience truly values, then you can’t communicate yourself in a way that makes people want to listen and remember.”

That’s the goal of this tremendous book: to help you determine what others value about you, so you can leverage that uniqueness:

“People can outdo your strengths. But nobody can outdo who you are. Your personality is the only aspect of your work that nobody can copy. People can copy your product, your pricing, your actions, your recipe or program or formula. But they can never replicate who you are. Who you are is the greatest differentiator you’ve ever had.”

So who are you, in the eyes of others?

Drawing on her decade of research with 250,000 people, Hogshead delineates seven communication styles, which she terms “Advantages”: Power, Passion, Mystique, Prestige, Alert, Innovation and Trust.

Each of us has a primary and secondary Advantage. Combine those two and you discover your personality “Archetype.”

How the World Sees You describes each Advantage and Archetype in detail. But you don’t have to spend hours reading through every single description to try to figure out which ones fit you. The book includes a code you can use to take a free online assessment that removes all the guesswork. You get a custom, 16-page report that spells out:

• Your top two Advantages
• Which Archetype you are
• How the world sees that Archetype
• The top five words that describe your strengths
• The other Archetypes you need on your team to maximize your success
• A one-minute coaching tip for your Archetype
• And a sample “Anthem” (explained in detail elsewhere in the book)

For example, my primary Advantage is Prestige and my secondary Advantage is Innovation, which means my Archetype is the “Avant-Garde.” Here’s how the world sees me:

“Your mind works quickly to develop unconventional solutions. You are a prolific idea generator. You bring fresh interpretations of the same old thing. You tweak the game. You change the rules. You bring new ideas and execute them to a high standard.”

My top five adjectives are:
1. Original
2. Enterprising
3. Forward-thinking
4. Dashing
5. Commendable

The sample anthem suggested to me is “Forward-thinking creativity.”

As you can see at the top of this page, the tagline I created for myself several years ago is “Original thinking for boosting your sales.” So I’d say this assessment is dead-on.

What’s the value in this knowledge? As Hogshead points out:

“When you clearly understand your differences, you can escape the gloomy, gray world of the lowest common denominator and start to shine. And outshine the competition. The more you can amplify your innate Advantages, the less likely you are to be a commodity, and the more likely you are to be heard and remembered.”

That’s a huge key to boosting your sales and your overall success.

How the World Sees You is a must-read for salespeople, mangers, CEO’s, heck, just about anybody in business. Think of it as another mirror—one that can give you a more detailed and accurate view of who you are and the value you have to offer to the world.

14 Sales Tips from NSA ‘14

July 9th, 2014

As a professional speaker and sales trainer, I am—as you might expect—a member of the National Speakers Association. Which means that last week I was in San Diego for the 2014 NSA Annual Convention.

More than a 1400 of the world’s best professional speakers gathered for four days to learn from each other. The result was a tremendous outpouring of business ideas and insights.

Here, in no particular order, are fourteen of the best:

1. “If you want to sell fire extinguishers, first you have to show the fire.”—David Newman (@dnewman)
People don’t buy products and services. They buy solutions to problems and tools to help them achieve their goals. What’s the problem your product solves? Or what’s the goal your service helps people achieve?

2. “When people meet you, they’re wondering ‘Do I like them? Do I trust them?’”—Christine Cashen (@christinecashen)
Before people will buy from you, they need to feel comfortable with you. That means building rapport. Smile, shake their hand, treat them with respect, ask questions, and—most importantly—listen to the answers.

3. “Building interactivity into your presentation makes it more memorable.”—Judson Laipply (@JudsonLaipply)
The more your sales presentation resembles a lecture, the more boring it is and the more quickly it’s forgotten. Make your presentation interactive by engaging your prospect in conversation and asking them questions. Make it tactile by allowing your prospect to touch your product or materials. Make it an experience by providing food and drink to incorporate smell and taste.

4. “Forget your limiting beliefs.”—Jim Kwik (@jimkwik)
We all are hampered by limiting beliefs, whether they’re about our prospects (“They can’t afford this.” “They aren’t serious buyers.”), our products (“This is too expensive.” “Nobody will like this color.”), or ourselves (“I can’t close.” “I’ll never win a sales contest.”) The key is to recognize them when they run through our head and realize what they really are: negative beliefs that have no basis in reality. Then we can move past them.

5. “It’s not enough to be different. You have to be different in a way that creates, demonstrates & delivers value.”—Toni Newman (@toni_newman)
Your product or service may be different from your competition. It may even be better than your competition. But what does that difference mean for your buyer? How does it benefit them?

6. “Make your message as simple as possible. The more elements there are, the harder your message is to comprehend.”—Bill Bachrach (@billbachrach)
Too many salespeople load their presentations up with every piece of information possible about their product or service. This results in bloated, boring presentations that cause prospects to tune out. Aim for shorter, more focused presentations. What are the key points? What’s most important to communicate?

7. “Write music you can’t play.”—Mike Rayburn (@mikerayburn)
If you want to grow, personally and professionally, you need to create stretch goals. Big goals. Outrageous goals. Goals that both scare and inspire you. It’s amazing what you can accomplish when you challenge yourself.

8. “There’s no point sending information until you know what the prospect’s budget is.”—Katrina Smith (@KeynoteTalent)
I’m constantly amazed how few salespeople ask prospects what their budget is. If you don’t know this critical piece of information, you’re wasting your time.

9. “Scarcity and exclusivity are powerful psychological motivators.”—Jay Baer (@jaybaer)
People fear missing out, so if your product or service is in short supply, prospects feel more incentive to act now. Also, scarcity and exclusivity imply high demand, which bolsters buyer confidence.

10. “Great today doesn’t mean you’ll be great tomorrow.”—Scott McKain (@scottmckain)
Markets change. Technologies change. Competitors change. If you aren’t constantly changing, adapting and improving, you won’t continue to be successful.

11. “Just because things could be worse doesn’t mean you don’t deserve better.”—Kat Cole (@KatColeATL)
There’s a fine line between being grateful for what you have and settling for less than you deserve. Don’t get trapped into excusing those things, circumstances and people that aren’t good enough. That goes for clients, employees, bosses and everything else in your business and personal life.

12. “There are more than 300 million executives around the globe with LinkedIn profiles and a new profile is added every second of every day.”—Sam Richter (@SamRichter)
If you sell B2B, LinkedIn is a powerful source of sales intelligence. It’s also a fantastic resource for getting introductions to the people you want to meet.

13. “People will not be moved unless your words touch something inside them.”—Nancy Duarte (@nancyduarte)
All buying is emotional. All. Even B2B and B2G. You may have facts and logic on your side, but if you want to move your prospect to action, you need to tap into their emotions.

14. “How much time are you investing each day getting better at your craft?”—Eric Chester (@eric_chester)
Whether you’re a salesperson, a professional, a manager or an executive, you need to be constantly improving your skills and adding new ones. How much time are you allocating to do that?

For more ideas and insights from these great speakers, click on their names to visit their web sites or click on their handles to follow them on Twitter. (Click here to follow me.)

Need an exceptional speaker for your next event? Check out the NSA website or your favorite speakers bureau. (Or just click here.)

To Boost Your Sales, Don’t Sit Down

June 24th, 2014

Years ago when I dabbled in improv, we had a few rules that we tried to follow when we performed. One of them was “Never sit down.”

Improv almost requires performers to be in constant motion. When you’re standing, you have more physical options than when you’re sitting. While sitting was easy and comfortable, it limited what we could do. So, as much as possible, we avoided sitting down to prevent ourselves from becoming “trapped.”

The same thing can happen to salespeople, professionals, managers, even CEO’s. Doing what’s easy and comfortable can prevent us from moving in new directions. Routines can easily become ruts.

That can cause us to miss out on new opportunities and increased sales.

The solution? Keep moving.

Avoid the temptation to become complacent. Actively look for new ideas, approaches, markets, uses for your product, partnerships, ways to wow your customers, charitable endeavors, and other opportunities. Experiment, adjust, adapt, discard, improve. Just keep moving.

Because in business, if you sit still, someone’s going to outperform you.

Failure IS an Option

June 16th, 2014

It’s an iconic moment in the movie Apollo 13: The flight team at Mission Control is trying to figure out how to get the ill-fated astronauts back to Earth and Flight Director Gene Kranz states flatly, “Failure is not an option!”

It’s a stirring scene, and the line has become a staple of managers, business gurus and motivational speakers.

There are only a couple of minor problems with the famous line:

1. Kranz never actually said it.

2. Failure is always an option.

It may not be a desirable option, certainly not the preferred option, but it’s always an option. And to deny that reality is simply ludicrous.

Almost everything we ever try—whether in sales, leadership, relationships or any other aspect of our business and personal lives—carries the risk of failure.

And that’s not something to be afraid of. Failure teaches us valuable lessons. Failure can give us great ideas. The Apollo 13 mission was itself a failure, yet it resulted in tremendous improvements in America’s space program.

When you tell yourself or others “failure is not an option,” you’re saying failure is unacceptable. Which by extension means experimentation, innovation and change is unacceptable. That belief will stifle growth and success like nothing else.

So if you want to experience better results from your sales team, your business or yourself, embrace the idea that failure is an option. And when you or others fail, celebrate the effort, the courage and the lessons learned.

That will lead you to further success.

17 Reasons People Will Say Yes

June 5th, 2014

Too many of us are afraid to ask for the things we want. Whether it’s asking for the appointment, asking for the sale, asking for referrals, or anything else we might want in our business or personal lives, too often we hold ourselves back.

Why?

There are a myriad of reasons, including:

• Fear of rejection
• Fear of being inappropriate
• Dislike of feeling indebted to someone else
• Guilt
• Feelings of unworthiness
• Not wanting to appear pushy
• Not wanting to be perceived as needy or helpless

But asking for what you want is an essential ingredient for your success, not just in sales, but in every area of your life. If you don’t ask for things, you’re denying yourself the opportunity to achieve your goals.

And the reality is that lots of people are perfectly willing to agree to our requests. Here are 17 reasons why someone might say yes to you:

1. They like you
2. They trust you
3. They want what you’re selling
4. They want to be polite
5. They want to be helpful
6. They want to avoid conflict
7. They like trying new things
8. They don’t want to disappoint you
9. They don’t want to lose your business, trust or respect
10. They see an upside for themselves
11. There’s no good reason to say no
12. Obligation
13. Guilt
14. Appreciation
15. Desperation
16. Curiosity
17. Fear of missing out

Note that any given person might actually have several of the above reasons to say yes. But if you don’t ask, you don’t give them the opportunity.

So make it a habit to ask for things. Try asking for everything you want for a whole day. Then try it for a week. See what happens. You’ve got nothing to lose but your own fears. And literally everything to gain.

What other reasons have you found why people will say yes to you? Share them in the comments below!

Everybody Has Competition

May 27th, 2014

I often hear salespeople brag, “We don’t really have any competition.” They believe their product or service is so superior to everyone else’s that they’re truly in a category of one.

This is a dangerous mindset, because it’s patently false. No matter what you sell, you have competitors. And ignoring that reality will cost you sales.

Your competition includes:
• Products and services people perceive to be similar to yours.
• Alternative ways your prospect could achieve their goal.
Anything else your prospect could spend their limited budget on.
The option of doing nothing.

Online dating services compete not just with each other, but also with speed dating services and professional matchmakers. They in turn compete with bars and nightclubs. Who compete with hundreds of other recreational activities a person can engage in. And all of them compete with staying home alone watching a movie on the couch.

If you own a pizza place, your competition isn’t merely every other pizza joint in town, but every other restaurant in town, plus the option of cooking at home, plus the option of skipping a meal altogether.

What does this mean for you?

It means if you want to boost your sales, you need to recognize that buyers aren’t going to come flocking to you just because you happen to think you have a “unique” product or service.

You need to make the case for why your prospect should want or need what you’re selling in the first place. And then you have to persuade them that your product or service is better for them than any other option they could buy instead.

In other words, you have to market and you have to sell. Because every day, that’s what your competition is doing.

What’s Your Value?

May 14th, 2014

Do you know what the real value of your product or service is? Can you articulate your value to a prospect so they understand it? Have you ever wondered why some people immediately appreciate your value while others just don’t seem to get it?

Listen to my appearance on Breakthrough Business Strategies Radio with Michele Price. In this nine-minute segment, I discuss the reason so many salespeople and professionals undervalue what they sell. You’ll discover how to determine your real value and how to effectively communicate it to your prospective buyers.

To listen, just click on the link below. Or to download the segment to listen later, right-click the link and select “Save Target As…”

What’s Your Value? Don Cooper on Breakthrough Business Strategies Radio (mp3)

To learn more about Michele Price and listen to her interview other business experts on Breakthrough Business Strategies Radio (which I strongly recommend), check out WhoIsMichelePrice.com.

 

How to Make Smarter Decisions

May 7th, 2014

Whether you’re a salesperson, a small business owner, or a CEO, you have to make decisions every day. Some are small and some are big, but you’d certainly like as many of them as possible to be good ones.

Yet for a skill we all have to use multiple times a day, we’ve never really been taught how to do it. In his new book, Figure It Out: Making Smart Decisions in a Dumbed-Down World, Robert Wendover aims to rectify this oversight.

Wendover argues that decisions have become harder to make—due to radical increases in choice and information—while the pressure to make the “right” decision—quickly—has grown dramatically. If you’re in sales or management, I’m sure you can attest to both.

To become a better decision-maker, Wendover asserts you need three things:

1. An understanding of the big picture—the context within which you’re making decisions
2. A framework for decision-making—a simple, step-by-step process
3. To perform a “self-instill”—adopting the habits that lead to consistently good decisions

Wendover delves into each of these three areas in depth, illustrating his points with real-world stories. Along the way he discusses:

• Why you need to get to neutral and how to do it
• The critical role confidence plays
• Why multi-tasking leads to poor decisions
• The Five Cs for sound decision-making
• And much more.

One element in the book, however, is particularly valuable for anyone in sales. In Chapter 9 (“Clarify the Problem”), Wendover shares 22 questions to ask yourself as you’re analyzing a problem. The beauty is, most of these questions are perfect for posing to your prospects! The book is worth buying for this one chapter alone!

Figure It Out is easy to read, with short chapters and a conversational style. In addition, each chapter contains a QR code that links to bonus video content that dives even deeper into the subject at hand. Figure It Out will not only help you make smarter decisions, it will enable you to help your buyers make smarter decisions as well.

A Pricing Reality Check

April 29th, 2014

Pricing unquestionably affects sales. But what exactly is the “right” price?

Are you charging enough? Too much?

Is it time to raise your prices? Are you constantly being pressured for discounts?

If you struggle with any of these issues, check out my appearance on the Reality Check Podcast with Craig Price. In this 30-minute interview, Craig and I discuss the challenges so many professionals and business owners face when it comes to pricing their products and services.

To download the episode, click here.

While you’re at the Reality Check Podcast site, be sure to download some of Craig’s other fantastic interviews with a wide variety of business experts. And for Craig’s contrarian insights on business and personal success, follow him on Twitter.

Ten Networking Mistakes that Hurt Your Sales

April 22nd, 2014

Networking is one of the best prospecting tactics around. Like any tactic, however, it can be used effectively or poorly. Poor networking isn’t just a waste of time, it can actually hurt your sales, because over time, you’ll develop a negative reputation.

Here are ten big mistakes to avoid when you’re networking:

1. Not spending enough time doing it
Like other marketing and prospecting tactics, networking requires consistency. The more you do it, the better your results. If you’re not actively building your network, you’ll lose sales to the competitor who is.

2. Going to the wrong events
But just going to events isn’t enough. You need to network strategically by attending the right events—the events that your ideal prospects attend.

3. Talking to people you already know
Nearly everybody has a fear of talking to strangers. (Thanks for the incessant warnings, Mom and Dad.) It’s so much easier to talk with your friends at an event. That isn’t what you’re there for, though.

4. Spending too much time with each person
Again, because we fear talking to strangers, once we do introduce ourselves to someone new, the temptation is to talk with them as long as possible. But doing that prevents us from meeting others. (And one of those others could be your next customer!)

5. Talking too much
Everyone loves to talk. But talking doesn’t build rapport. Listening does. When you ask questions and listen to the answers, the people you meet feel more comfortable and begin to like you. By contrast, when you monopolize a conversation, people stop listening to you and begin thinking, “How can I get away?”

6. Trying to sell
Networking is not selling. Let me repeat that: Networking is not selling. Nobody wants to meet somebody at an after-hours mixer and immediately be given a sales pitch. It’s the kind of thing that gives salespeople a bad name.

7. Failing to ask for cards
If you don’t get a card from the people you meet, you can’t follow up with them. You might as well have not met them in the first place.

8. Bringing too few cards
And when you ask for a card, you had better have one to exchange. Few things say “unprofessional” more than not having a card at a networking event.

9. Getting drunk
One thing that does say “unprofessional” more than running out of cards, is getting slovenly drunk at a business event. If you’re looking to ruin your reputation and become a laughingstock, getting hammered at a networking event is a sure-fire way of doing it.

10. Not following up
To a lot of salespeople, business owners and professionals, networking ends when the event does. Savvy businesspeople, however, know that networking is about meeting people and building relationships. And building relationships occurs after the event itself. If you’re not following up, you’re not really networking.

If you’re making any of these mistakes regularly, the good news is they’re all relatively easy to correct. (Except number 9. If you struggle with that, get professional help. Seriously.)

A little planning, a little courage and a little practice can make a huge difference in your networking. Which can lead to a huge increase in your sales.

How to Deal with an Angry Customer

April 8th, 2014

We’ve all been there. (And if you haven’t yet, you will at some point.) Whether because of our mistake, or through no fault of our own, a customer is angry. Beyond angry—furious!

And whether you’re a salesperson, a customer service representative, or the business owner, you get the pleasure of dealing with it.

How do you calm someone who is yelling, screaming, even threatening a lawsuit? How can you repair a relationship that seems hopelessly damaged?

Listen to my appearance on Breakthrough Business Strategies Radio with Michele Price. In this seven-minute segment, I share exactly what to do when confronted with such a nightmarish situation. You’ll discover how to calm a person down, how to prevent angering them further, and how to salvage—and even strengthen—the relationship.

To listen, just click on the link below. Or to download the segment to listen later, right-click the link and select “Save Target As…”

How to Deal with an Angry Customer: Don Cooper on Breakthrough Business Strategies Radio (mp3)

To learn more about Michele Price and listen to her interview other business experts on Breakthrough Business Strategies Radio (which I definitely recommend), check out WhoIsMichelePrice.com.

53 Things Buyers Want Less Of

March 31st, 2014

In a recent post, I listed 54 Things Buyers Want More Of. But buyers also want less.

Sometimes buyers want less of some things in addition to more of other things. Other times buyers are only interested in less. (This is especially true of people who tend to be negatively-focused rather than positively-focused.)

So what does your company, product or service offer your customer less of? (Or “fewer of” as the case may be.) Here are 53 ideas:

1. Uncertainty
2. Hassle
3. Pain
4. Loss
5. Effort
6. Downtime
7. Paperwork
8. Criticism
9. Fear
10. Worry
11. Frustration
12. Rejection
13. Expense
14. Risk
15. Additives
16. Embarrassment
17. Maintenance
18. Side effects
19. Disappointment
20. Stress
21. Waiting
22. Shrinkage
23. Errors
24. Unwanted attention
25. Waste
26. Calories
27. Fat
28. Trans Fat
29. Sugar
30. Caffeine
31. Artificial ingredients
32. Guilt
33. Confusion
34. Loneliness
35. Theft
36. Wasted time
37. Pollution
38. Insecurity
39. Work
40. Delays
41. Failure
42. Boredom
43. Chaos
44. Headaches
45. Emissions
46. Interruptions
47. Trouble
48. Punishment
49. Distractions
50. Wrinkles
51. Bullying
52. Toxins
53. Discomfort

Use this list (as well as the list of what buyers want more of) as you create or revise your marketing materials or sales presentations. Determine which specific items your prospective customer wants less of in their life or business and how your product or service diminishes or eliminates them.

Do that and you’ll make more sales with less effort, frustration and rejection.
.
What else do buyers want less of? Share your ideas in the comments section below!

Two Diabolically Opposite Sales Strategies

March 20th, 2014

Is there a right way and a wrong way to sell? An old way and a new way? A slow way and a fast way? Or perhaps a risky way and a safe way?

Listen in as Dino Dogan (co-founder of Triberr) and I debate and discuss two radically different approaches to sales on Breakthrough Business Strategies Radio with Michele Price. Toward the end of the show, Geoff Livingston (founder of Tenacity 5 Media) joins us to add to the conversation. It’s like a two-hour graduate course in sales and marketing!

Be Advised: The complete show is two hours long, so you’ll probably want to download it to your favorite mobile device. To do so, right-click the link and select “Save Target As…”

Two Diabolically Opposite Sales Strategies: Breakthrough Business Strategies Radio (mp3)

To learn more about my fellow business experts featured in this program, click their names above to follow them on Twitter or click their company names above to visit their web sites.

Do You Discriminate Enough?

March 13th, 2014

I recently read about a restaurant in Alexandria, Virginia called The Sushi Bar. Even before it opened, it received a lot of publicity for an unusual reason: The restaurant bans all children 18 and under.

Owner Mike Anderson wanted to create a dining experience that would enable adults to eat without children around. He envisioned a place that would give parents a break from their kids and would be a perfect “date night” destination for couples.

Naturally the policy has generated a storm of controversy, with many parents decrying the “discriminating” approach and vowing never to eat there.

Others, however, have heartily supported Anderson, both vocally and by packing the restaurant nightly.

Because not only are the food and service terrific, but because the restaurant discriminates.

Discrimination isn’t always illegal. And it isn’t always wrong. Curves is a women-only gym. Retirement communities only allow residents above a certain age. Hooters doesn’t hire men to work as wait staff. Numerous vacation resorts around the world are “adults-only.”

What do all these businesses have in common?

They each create a distinctive experience, one that is different from their competitors.

Keep in mind that the word “discriminate” also means “to distinguish” or “differentiate.”

So how are you distinguishing yourself, your company or your product? How do you differentiate from your competition? And how are you discriminating among your potential customers?

Because you can’t be all things to all people. To be successful, you need to be the ideal solution for your ideal customer. Which means you need to have a clear idea of who your ideal customer is:

• What are they like?
• Where are they?
• What do they want?
• How are they motivated?
• What are their problems?
• How much will they spend?
• What are their values?

Being the ideal choice for your ideal customer means being an unappealing choice for those who aren’t. If you want your ideal prospects to say “yes” to you, you need to say “no” to others.

So who are you willing to say “no” to?

Five Ways to Increase Your Sales

March 4th, 2014

Every salesperson, business owner and CEO wants to increase their sales. The question is how to do it?

Listen to my appearance on Breakthrough Business Strategies Radio with Michele Price. In this eight-minute segment, I share five simple strategies that anyone, in any business, can implement quickly and easily. Whatever your position, whatever your industry, I guarantee you’ll be able to use at least a couple—if not all five—of these strategies to give your sales a boost!

To listen, just click on the link below. Or to download the segment to listen later, right-click the link and select “Save Target As…”

Five Ways to Increase Your Sales: Don Cooper on Breakthrough Business Strategies Radio (mp3)

To learn more about Michele Price and listen to her interview other business experts on Breakthrough Business Strategies Radio (which I highly recommend), check out WhoIsMichelePrice.com.

54 Things Buyers Want More Of

February 20th, 2014

Human beings are never satisfied. Which is a good thing, because it’s that trait that causes us to continually progress. We want bigger, better, faster.

We want more.

Whenever we buy something, it’s because we’re looking to attain more of something in our life or business.

So what does your company, product or service offer your customer more of? Here are 54 ideas:

1. Taste
2. Information
3. Entertainment
4. Capacity
5. Energy
6. Flexibility
7. Attention
8. Security
9. Time
10. Money
11. Features
12. Accuracy
13. Power
14. In-depth analysis
15. Options
16. Excitement
17. Support
18. Uses
19. Coverage
20. Seating
21. Freedom
22. Certainty
23. Opportunities
24. Consistency
25. Productivity
26. Storage
27. Praise
28. Choices
29. Attendees
30. Reach
31. Battery life
32. Growth
33. Protection
34. Influence
35. Love
36. Sex
37. Confidence
38. Ability
39. Results
40. Fun
41. Space
42. Insight
43. Control
44. Advantages
45. Reliability
46. Connection
47. Mobility
48. Convenience
49. Energy efficiency
50. Comfort
51. Health
52. Capabilities
53. Perks
54. Success

Use this list as you create or revise your marketing materials or sales presentations. Identify which specific items your prospective customer wants more of and determine how your product or service provides them with those things.

Do that and you’ll achieve more sales.

What else do buyers want more of? Share your ideas in the comments section below!