Marketing Strategy: How To Get It Right And Fuel Company Growth

Your marketing will be a pillar of your success… or failure, depending on the exact marketing strategy you’ll be using to fuel the growth of your business.

But when it comes to your specific business, what’s the best marketing strategy?

There are a number of different marketing strategies you can use to grow your business.

  • Direct Mail Marketing
  • Search Engine Optimization
  • Social Media Marketing
  • Content Marketing
  • Email Marketing
  • Paid Media

In this guide, we’ll explore what you need to be discussing in terms of your marketing and we’ll help you decide where you should focus your energy.

What Is a Marketing Strategy?

I know you already know this, but we have to throw this in here for SEO purposes. A marketing strategy is going to dictate the different marketing activities you run and how each one of those marketing strategies contributes to the goals of the company.

Your marketing strategy should have clear goals that you want to achieve.

For example, if we’re going to spend $30K on content marketing, what kind of results can we expect once that’s implemented?

Now, the answer to that is going to vary from one business to the next, but you need to make sure your marketing strategies are a good investment.

What Do We Mean by Strategic Marketing?

Before we dive deep, let’s establish what we mean when we use the term “marketing strategy.” There are a number of different definitions that often get applied to this term, so we want to make sure we’re clearly defining the concept we feel is most important to you.

Marketing strategy describes the process of how businesses and organizations understand their markets and their methods for getting users to take action.

Straight forward for the most part, right? We want to keep it simple, so it’s all about:

  1. Knowing who buys your products and services.
  2. Knowing how you’ll motivate them to take action.
  3. Knowing your competitors who are trying to do the same thing.
  4. Knowing how to measure your marketing activities and optimizing/changing your approach based on the results.

Marketing Strategy vs. Marketing Tactics: What’s the Difference?

When most people think about marketing, they think about being more visible to their market. That could include anything from social media ads to billboards to television commercials to blog posts. This is what people commonly think equals strategy: the “stuff” that marketers create, rather than the planning behind it.

That’s fine for folks whose careers don’t hinge on them actually understanding how marketing works. For anyone reading this, knowing the difference between strategy vs. tactics is essential for success. If you want to rely on more than just luck and brute force, you’ll need to understand that your tactics are the execution of your strategy and not the strategy itself.

You Better Know Your Target Audience

Before you can build a solid marketing strategy, it is critical to know exactly who you plan to target. Who your target audience is will impact many important decisions that you need to make, from branding and pricing, right through to the messaging you use, and the specific marketing channels you choose to promote your products or services on.

The more defined your target audience is, the better your marketing strategy will be as you’ll be able to create all of the brand marketing content, messaging, and ads with them in mind. As time goes on, and you gather more insight, you will continue to gain a deeper understanding of who exactly falls into your target audience. So don’t be afraid to learn as you go, and be adaptable to change, as you might find you need to go after a different group of customers to those you originally set out to reach.

And no, before you ask, your target audience simply cannot be everyone. Unless of course, you’re Amazon, who after 26 years of establishing themselves as e-commerce royalty, have earned the ability to target everyone and anyone they want.

Building A Marketing Strategy You Can Repeat

Very few marketing campaigns are one and done – we want to create a marketing strategy we can use over and over again.

While your marketing strategy will need regular adjustments or optimizations, it gives you a template of where to start and makes it easier to see similar or improved results from each campaign without having to completely reinvent the wheel. It also creates stability and a sense of predictability within the marketing department.

Linda Bishop has a great analogy as she compares a marketing strategy to a menu; a menu is a repeatable process and a framework. Think about it, each menu item has a specific recipe you must follow to get the desired end result you want. While this recipe may add an item or take away one, the core of the recipe will stay the same. This can be applied to your marketing strategy just as easily. Although it may see tweaks here and there, the core remains in place.

For a service business, brand awareness, lead generation, email marketing, SEO (search engine optimization), and social media are likely a part of that core that remains the same.

While our recipes are adaptable and can be altered, the menu is more or less the same, allowing us to have more free time to spend on improving our recipes, rather than changing the menu each week/month/quarter/year.

Your Strategy Must Be Able To Scale

Once you have a solid marketing strategy in place that is repeatable, you can now also use it for scale. So in other words, you could share it with another employee, team, or division of the company. That way, the entire company is able to adopt the same marketing strategy for all of the products and services you offer. This will help to keep everyone on the same page and allow for consistency across all of your marketing campaigns.

We can go back to Linda’s menu example.

Christmas dinner is always a super busy time, let’s say you’re slammed and you hadn’t found the time to properly plan out your holiday dinner. Instead of making one on your own, you call your close friend and you decide to use their list. That’s going to save a lot of extra stress and time. Instead of having to focus on the why and what, you can now simply focus on the how. And if this menu was a success, then you might want to share it with others you know. Now this menu is helping many homes prepare great Christmas dinners. Imagine that!

Taking this back to your marketing strategy…

With an effective plan in place, that is both repeatable and scalable, you are free to focus your efforts on improving the strategy and making it work, rather than wasting a lot of time that you don’t have, worrying about what the strategy is going to be.

Competitor Analysis

Competitor analysis is a strategic method of determining current and future threats posed by other companies to the prosperity of your business. When done right, this analysis will evaluate many different factors with the goal being to highlight the strengths and weaknesses of a potential competitor and how they compare to your own businesses.

When defining your company’s competitors, you must consider a number of key dimensions; however, you should always start with:

  1. The products the company offers 
  2. The customers they target

After this step, companies who have been identified as similar to your business in one or both of these areas would be split into two main categories:

Direct Competitors 

For direct competitors, this is going to refer to competitors that have the same core of customer needs as those you are targeting.

The customer segments that your direct competitors serve are the exact same as yours, their products are manufactured just like yours, serving the same functions, and they aim to market their products using the exact same channels as you.

For example, if you were the owner of ZEEL, then one of your direct competitors would be Soothe. Both of these companies focus on mobile massage and wellness services.

Indirect Competitors 

Just when you thought you had enough on your plate, in walk your indirect competitors. These are companies whose products or services are not the same as yours, but they are targeting the same segments of the population and satisfy the same need as yours.

For example, if you were the owner of Pizza Hut, then one of your indirect competitors would be Subway.

Now, your indirect competitor’s products or services can even be contradictory to your own. The pizza industry is indirectly in competition with the sandwich industry. So, if you are the owner of Pizza Hut, you will also need to monitor Subway’s business model to ensure they do not steal away your customers.

When you begin creating your strategy for marketing, you should list both direct and indirect competitors.

What Marketing Strategy Should We Be Focusing On?

When it comes to choosing the right strategy for marketing campaigns, we always make recommendations based on your competition. Building a strategy without analyzing the competition would be foolish.

It starts by asking the right questions;

  • Do our competitors use SEO or Google AdWords?
  • What social media channels do our competitors use the most?
  • What channels do our competitors use to find customers?
  • How is our competition positioning their products or services?
  • What type of marketing budget do our competitors have?

Truth be told, most business owners and marketing departments are not asking these questions. We’ve analyzed many companies over the years and we’ve found that most companies are just throwing anything out and hoping it sticks. This is not a winning marketing strategy – this is a strategy and decision that will not produce the best results possible for growth.

This is exactly why your marketing strategy should always be built based on what your competition is doing.

Most of you reading this are not in a brand new market, few are ever “early birds” to a market.

Before you hire an SEO agency, a content marketing strategist, or a media buyer, we highly recommend doing a competitor analysis.

Do I Need a Competitor Analysis?

There’s a wide range of reasons why every business should be doing competitor analysis, but the top reason is to make sure the marketing strategy you’re using is strong enough and differentiated enough to beat the competition. There’s one way to know for sure – you need to think like your competitors, see what’s working for them, learn what categories and areas are fueling their growth. You’ll want to review and analyze their marketing campaigns so you know what to focus on yourself.

Yes, it’s a lot of work but competitive analysis is key to correctly positioning your company and developing a marketing strategy that will be effective. Your competitor analysis will help you understand the marketplace where you do business, you’ll learn what works and what doesn’t.

Economically speaking, you can benefit from a clearer pricing structure and an ability to predict market trends, product development possibilities, and develop an understanding of what your customers will be faced with when making their purchasing decisions. If you can get this dialed in, it can be very beneficial to your company.

To be the best you can be, you need to stay one step ahead of your competition at all times. A competitive analysis will not only help you to understand your current competitors but will also give you the foresight to spot any future competition and adjust your strategy before they become a problem.

If you’re ready to start with a deep dive competitor analysis, be sure to reach out – here’s the link.

0 Read More

How To Improve Your Sales Process

Your sales process is the foundational bedrock of your company. If it’s not, it should be and we’re going to show you why. Static sales processes keep sales teams from reaching objectives, goals, performing at a high level. We’re living in a world where buyer demand is always changing and due to that, you have to constantly find what customers need, want, and align your company’s sales process accordingly.

Thought Transformation’s approach to improving your sales process begins with a deep understanding of your goals and objectives. We can help you design and develop a dynamic sales process that outlines the specific steps, decisions, measures, tools, and leaders you’re going to need to see improvements.

Our sales consulting experts partner with you to deploy your sales process, integrating it into your sales systems, and give you the sales playbooks and sales enablement tools you need to ensure long-term success.

Improving Your Sales Process With Sales Consulting And Management

Effective consultative selling starts by creating benchmarks and building a full sales system that’s specifically designed to accelerate the performance of your sales team. We do this by assigning objectives to our sales team. In order to build this sales process, you have to fully understand your customer’s buying journey.

How well do you know your customer’s buying journey? Make sure you’re investing the time, money, and energy to understand how your customers move from discovery to awareness, from awareness to brand loyalty, this is vital for you to understand. it’ll allow you to build a sales system that helps you meet the objectives of sales management at your company.

Let’s take a deeper look at the 6 steps your company can take to build a sales strategy and improve your sales process.

Developing Your Sales Strategy And A Better Sales Process

How many sales are you seeing today? The last 30 days? Think about that… what if you could improve that by 10 percent, 25 percent, 200 percent?

We’ve never evaluated another company and determined they don’t need a better sales process. Improvements can always be made, adjustments can always be made, you can have more sales than you have right this very second. By investing in your company and sales process, you’re going to learn how to analyze, evaluate, and adjust your sales system and process to build a stronger sales effectiveness framework.

The approach is simple, but powerful and produces results.

(1) Buyer Journey

The buyers of the modern era are smarter and expect more from sellers than ever before, which means sellers need to invest in understanding how buyers move from their status quo through awareness and consideration to making a decision to becoming loyal customers. The buyer journey is more complex now, we invest in assessing current buying and selling processes to design and implement a clearly defined buyer journey to make sure your organization engages in effective sales management.

(2) The Sales Process

Using what we’ve learned from assessing your buying and selling processes by conducting research and interviews with sales leaders, top performers and customers, we build and execute a sales process, to provide a roadmap and playbook to change the way your sellers behave while providing a common language and giving you a tool to measure your progress. By aligning to a common and dynamic sales process, you’ll begin to see effective sales management grow at your organization.

(3) Marketing, Sales, And Service

As you begin to see the buyer’s journey develop, the line between organizational teams will begin to cross. Marketing, sales, and customer service are (3) different departments that have (3) different roles. This is why it’s important to have clear roles in each department.

You want to make sure every part of your organization that engages customers has defined roles to ensure the company is optimizing lead generation, lead conversion, and lead databases. By aligning these functions around the buyer journey, the sales process will make sure that every customer-facing professional contributes to creating a seamless and positive customer experience from start to finish.

There’s a lot of different marketing strategies you can use to reach your customers, from direct mail marketing and social media, to SEO and paid media, the strategies you choose to go with are going to be dependent on your specific audience.

(4) The Right Roles

Do you have the right people in the right roles?

We have the ability to help you identify gaps in your sales and service departments, understanding where you may have missing roles or have roles that require changing. We then pull together a well-developed, data-driven talent strategy to make sure you have the right people in the right roles for truly effective sales management.

(5) Your Sales Team

Your sales team better know your buyer’s requirements and expectations – it matters! You want to know your perfect customer better than you know yourself. This is why we recommend investing your time and money so you know your buyer on a deep personal level.

Once we know your customer’s journey, we can assign also helps us optimize the shape of your sales team, making sure we structure your salesforce against market opportunity, funnel stages and conversion rates, as well as how each role delivers against business metrics.

(6) Messaging And Communication

Messaging and communication is key to your success as a company. You should already know your customer’s journey because if you don’t, your messaging and communication is likely off. This could be why you’re struggling.

Our messaging and communications should be centered around that journey your customers have with your brand. It should be aligned throughout your organization. When you do a deep dive into this buyer persona, you’re going to know what to say and when to say it – but you have to know the journey.

In Closing

Now that you know how we work with companies to build the “right” sales process based off your buyer, do you think your sale process is optimized as it should be? Do you think your marketing, sales, and messaging are on point? Do you think you have the right people in the right roles?

If not, and you’re looking to get your sales processes dialed in, be sure to reach out to our team.

0 Read More

10 Tips for Marketing Storytelling

Since the beginning of time, storytelling has been viewed as an important pillar in human life. Stories have a way of enticing, intriguing, and connecting. They are the bedrock of day-to-day human interaction. Telling stories helps you interact and find people that may be going through the same thing.

Storytelling is not just important for human interaction; it can be critical to your business and marketing strategy. Selling your brand not only means getting good advertisements out, it includes you giving your target audience a story they can remember, something they can connect and resonate with. If you can tell a story that combines well with your audience, you have passed the first hurdle.

What Is Storytelling?

Storytelling is using narrative and facts at the same time to tell your audience something. Some stories are factual, and some are improvised or embroidered to explain the core message better. It is a beautiful method of strengthening relationships with your audience and keep them engaged. Though there are different ways of defining storytelling, it goes back to one thing; getting your message passed with impact and meaning.

Why Should You Tell Stories?

There’s a number of reasons why storytelling is important.

(1) They Are Easy to Remember

It is easy for someone to remember something they emotionally care about, and you want people to remember your business.

(2) They Make Complex Concepts Simple

Some products might be more complicated than others, and even if they are not, it can be challenging to say something clearly in a way that connects with the market. Stories can be an excellent copywriting tip to help you avoid technical jargon and give people the facts and tell them how a product benefits them.

(3) They Unite the Audience and Market

No matter your religion, language, race, location, age, or wealth, stories have a knack for speaking to everyone. When your market has a shared goal or pain, it gives them a chance to feel appreciated and heard. A terrific story makes your customer feel emotional and understand what is in it for them.

Storytelling Tips

As we have already established, marketing is always giving your stories to audiences. To make your marketing-strategy work, you need to connect with your audience. However, what makes a story stand out even if the product is not that interesting? Here are ten tips you can use to make your story-telling better:

  1. Remember the Main Point

It might seem like an obvious thing; it is vital to keep in mind the crucial parts of your story. Think about it this way, a character you always remember makes a terrific plot point, right?

This means if you have a story with so much information or meanders a lot with no start or a proper conclusion, you might get confused and even unsatisfied with the story. Put in your account’s most critical elements in your mood board or other content projects you are working on.

  1. Learn from the Best

Study up on storytellers who have been done the same thing you are trying to do. It can range from directors, actors, playwrights, fiction and non-fiction writers, directors, and even copywriters.

Try finding out what has made them tell their stories. Finding out their past and knowing their processes can also be a plus. Get a few ideas from their patterns, methods, and even quirks. If you can, you can engage a few of them to find out why they are successful and borrow what you can from them to make better copy.

  1. Understand Your Audience

You are setting yourself up for failure if you do not get the basics right. Do some research, if you have not, and get to know your target audience, explain your buyer’s personas, know their pain points, and how and where they will be when they get the story. With this information, you can correctly determine the stages of your story.

  1. Talk to Your Customer One on One

During your research, set some time to speak to customers, be it in person, on the phone, or even in a focus group. After all, it is the customer who knows what they want. Be curious to know how your products help them; how did they know about the product? Can they stay without the product? This will help you understand the critical benefits and how to craft the best strategy.

  1. Tell the Truth

Honesty is important if you are going to tell your story about your product. You do not want your brand to be associated with dishonesty. Though it is okay to appear enthusiastic and optimistic in marketing, do not improvise too much to get attention from your audience.

  1. Avoid the Obvious

Sometimes, the best way to tell is a story is through a different perspective. Avoid taking the road everyone has taken while telling the story about the same products you sell. Instead of a regular video, try out different perspectives like a child advertising the product. It will make it more fun and easier to remember.

  1. Use Data to Tell Your Story

Take the data and the changes that happen and try to determine what is causing this effect. This will be able to tell you what is working and sell that in your story. Use this data that you have analyzed and a story that will leave an impact.

  1. Avoid Feature Lists

Though using a list or table can be an impeccable way to tell the most crucial features, the most important thing a customer or prospective client care about is why they need to pick your product and not its features. How will the product make them feel? Does it give a picture of how things in the future will be? The answer will probably be no. Instead of giving your audience homework to find out where the value is, give it to them instead.

  1. Be Consistent

Being consistent is essential, and repetition will make you be remembered. This means keeping the core message the same, whether in a billboard, social media ad, video, webinar, or event. If you mix up the story, then you will likely make it diluted or make it lose impact and fail in its purpose.

  1. Put Yourself in Your Customer’s Shoes

It is essential to be authentic and put yourself at the same level as the customer. Position yourself as genuine and show that you also get their goals, pain points, and barriers. Achieving this requires you to blend the right language and message carefully. It is not what you say but how you communicate.

0 Read More

Why I Gave: Direct Mail Strategy Ideas for Non-Profits

If you are like me, you believe it is important to give back to your community by providing worthy non-profits with financial support. But because you give, you get lots of solicitations, and over time, you start to see patterns in the direct mail. Some are very business-like and formal, while others take a story-based approach to show how the nonprofit is helping. Others include some small gift, like a notepad or address stickers, to invoke the principle of reciprocity: I receive a positive action (a gift), and I’m compelled to respond with another positive action (supporting the organization).

Recently, I got a solicitation from the Atlanta Community Food Bank, one of my hometown organizations. It was one piece in a stack of mail, and nothing about the envelope, other than the logo, made it stand out. In 2020, I gave more to the food bank because, in Atlanta, a lot of people make their living from hospitality and tourism – and we all know what happened to that in 2020!

The solicitation came in a normal, letter-sized envelope, but it felt more substantial in my hand. When I opened it, the brightly-colored insert instantly caught my eye. It turned out to be a four-page newsletter, folded into letter size. In the moment, I just gave it a quick scan, but one glance of the content was enough to convince me to open my wallet and donate. The newsletter seemed to have enough value, though, that I set it aside and promised myself I’d take a closer look at it later in the day.

Later in the day, I was at my desk, working on a direct mail project for a client. The newsletter was still lying on my desk, and when I picked it up, I had an “aha!” moment. The newsletter was the catalyst that made me think about the Atlanta Food Bank and decide to give. It was that content that caught my eye and opened my wallet – but why? After all, 62% of mail received by American households is marketing mail, so a direct mailer has to really be special to stand out from the crowd.

The newsletter had several traits that made it particularly attention-grabbing and appealing: it was visually attractive, had images to make me aware of what my dollars would do, and educated me about the good done by the organization. All of these things increased my commitment to give.

Strategies like this are great for non-profits, but it also works for other organizations. The average lifespan of a piece of physical direct mail is 17 days, so give recipients something to really spend time with! Put a newsletter in a letter and get the word out. After all, everyone has content — repurposing it always makes sense, saves time, and tells a unified story of your brand.

0 Read More

Show Love with Paper Hugs

Emails, social media posts, and virtual conferences. Brands, looking for ways to stay connected with customers who were quarantined at home, have increased the use of digital tactics.

Families are also adopting new digital tools to stay connected with grandparents and extended families. But screen time does not always satisfy the need to show loved ones that you care. A new movement has emerged – the “send a paper hug” trend, giving children a fun crafting activity and a unique way to interact with distant friends and family members without using a screen.

Paper hugs are keepsakes. If you receive one in the mail, it sends a cue, activating positive associations that make you feel special. As marketers plan for the coming months, the concept of a paper hug can work well for a brand, too.

The Trip to the Mailbox

When opening email inboxes, few people get excited by electronic advertising. We quickly skim messages and discard most, even those sent by favored brands.

The daily trip to the mailbox tells a different story. Most people look forward to seeing what has arrived. When a preferred brand sends a catalog, information, or a special offer, we find enjoyment in looking it over.

As you plan for the second half of the year, paper hugs could be the tactic you need to nurture and convert your best leads, prompt current customers to keep buying, and generate revenue from new sources.

Cross-Channel Prospecting

According to Campaign Monitor, the average email open rate is 17.8% – which means that 82.2% of emails are NOT OPENED on average.

According to the Data and Marketing Association (formerly the DMA), 77.2% of recipients DO LOOK at mail, and advertising mail is kept for an average of 17 days after it is received.

These statistics do not indicate we should return to old-school, spray-and-pray direct mail tactics. Instead, they tell savvy marketers that a certain percentage of leads are opening emails. One way to use the paper hug tactic is sending direct mail to email openers who haven’t converted, using this additional touch as an extra nudge to convince fence-sitters to take action.

Personalized with Data-Driven Messaging

Every organization has data. Using existing data to create better messaging offers many benefits.

  • Data-driven marketing increases communication relevance
  • Higher degrees of relevance demonstrates a deeper understanding of a customer’s needs, strengthening relationships
  • Using highly targeted communications can increase marketing ROI while reducing overall spend

If you want to personalize messaging in a campaign but are hampered by data that is too basic to be useful, data appending could be your solution. Data appending services match your existing data against a more extensive database, and it works for either B2B or B2C marketing.

Here’s one more idea. If you are planning direct mail with an informal vibe, consider using a handwriting font. It is a fun design choice, and it is perfect for paper hug marketing.

Last Thoughts

As we all adjust to a new normal, it is a good time to remember your best customers are your competitor’s best leads. Consider sending long-time or high-value customers a simple card, wishing them well without asking for anything in return, letting them know you care.

Could you send the message by email? Sure. Would it have the same impact as a paper hug? Maybe not, and as every marketer knows, it costs more to find customers than retain them.

0 Read More

UX Copywriting – What Marketers Need to Know

What is it?

Years ago, “going online” meant scrolling endlessly through giant blocks of text, squinting blurry-eyed at blue underlined hyperlinks, and pulling at loose informational threads to find that one bit of information you needed. If the internet were a planet, those initial web spaces would be its single-cell organisms.

Today, the online experience is immersive and uninhibited by the constraints of HTML and AOL trial CD-ROMs. Users are not merely consuming content online; they are perpetually engaged in swiping, reacting, sharing, and buying. The internet has spawned its own vernacular. Every billboard has a URL associated with it. QR codes and augmented reality apps have made “going online” an obsolete term – we are always online. Every experience is a user experience now.

 

How do we create content for this new, more connected landscape?

User experience (UX) copywriting refers to the way marketers use language to create branded experiences that are easy, enjoyable, and valuable for users. UX copywriters understand that people go to websites for a purpose. If one brand’s website doesn’t do the job, there is certainly another that will, and it is waiting just a click away. Like a seasoned dance partner, well-crafted copy will lead a user gracefully through a positive experience and an ideal outcome for both user and brand.

 

Why is it different from other forms of copywriting?

 Whereas traditional marketing copy may tend toward the catchy and bombastic, well-crafted UX copy is hardly noticed by users. UX copywriting requires a different skill set than that of a traditional copywriter. Here we are not concerned with building brand image, storytelling, or even selling. UX copy is instead tasked with seamlessly guiding a user to their destination. The path should feel frictionless and instinctive. The job is ultimately to get users from A to B in as few words (and clicks) as possible. Good UX copy reduces the number of seconds that a user spends reading a given page or paragraph. The best UX copy flies totally under the radar.

 

How can thinking like a UX writer help you with: 

 

Direct mail

Even in tried-and-true direct mail marketing, UX writing’s core principle – encouraging the user to move from A to B quickly and intuitively – is as important as ever. Whether you’re sending postcards, brochures, catalogs, or any other marketing content in the mail, here are some ways thinking as a UX writer can help:

  • Splashy Headlines

Think about it: when was the last time you read every word of a piece of mail? The “father of advertising” David Ogilvy once claimed that headlines are read five times more often than body copy. Use those precious few seconds of your reader’s attention by asking questions, including benefits, and appealing to the reader’s emotions since many purchases are driven by emotions, not logic.

  • Succinct Paragraphs

Okay, you’ve grabbed your reader with a splashy headline. Of course, there’s much more to communicate. But remember: UX copy is all about guiding a user toward a goal, not move them with your artful prose. Don’t be afraid of white space since too much text will overwhelm your reader.

  • Obvious and Urgent Calls to Action

You’ve delivered some essential information to the reader. They want to take the next step. An effortless call to action with some urgency (“Offer good through…,” “Limited Time Only!”).

 

Email

According to Smart Insights, email is the most effective marketing channel today. Not surprisingly, a growing number of brands are implementing UX techniques into emails to boost conversion rates. To avoid your user scrambling for the “Mark as Spam” button, think like a UX copywriter in these ways:

  • It’s All About the Subject Line

In less than three seconds, email users decide whether to continue reading or ignore an email. Be sure to front-load email subjects with keywords. Make it personal and include content in your subject line that entices the reader to want to know more.

  • Follow Web Conventions

Email has evolved. There is now little difference between a well-designed email and a website’s landing page, at least aesthetically. Buttons should be clickable; hyperlinks should be underlined, and headlines should be bolded. The movement from email to webpage to purchase should be seamless and easy.

 

Social Posts

Developing an effective user experience amid a sea of social media posts can be tricky. After all, you’re fighting against the user’s instinct to scroll, scroll, scroll, barely noticing what they’re reading. As a UX copywriter, your job is to interrupt their swiping and scrolling for long enough to guide them to the outcome you (and they) desire. Here are a few ways to do it:

  • Audience is Everything

UX copywriting places a premium on making content personal. Focusing on a particular audience will allow you to tailor a message that more efficiently gets your user from A to B.

  • Pair the Written with the Visual

On social media, it’s often the image that draws the viewer’s attention. When the perfect image is paired with persuasive text, it’s a match made in UX heaven.

 

And of Course, the Website

The great paradox of effective UX copywriting is that it goes mostly unnoticed when you’re doing it well. It is essential to use non-intrusive yet helpful microcopy in pages, buttons, menu headers, pop-ups, and instructions on websites. Here are a few ways to do it:

  • Short Sentences

Users typically go online to get something done rather than read for leisure. Keep sentences brief and maintain a direct yet friendly tone to help users happily achieve their goals (and yours).

  • Plain English

Some things never change. Language that is engaging and easy to understand always has been and always will be a hallmark of persuasive writing. Remember, your goal is to have users understand your message the first time they read it. Write clearly,  conversationally, and concretely.

  • No Wasted Words

Ease is the name of the game in UX copywriting. Every word counts, and the extra few seconds on superfluous verbiage could be long enough for the user to second-guess their instincts.

 

Conclusion

Today’s digital landscape is crowded. UX copywriting is all about choosing the right words, in the right order, to guide the user to the right outcome, both for them and for you.

By Brent Hill

brenthillcreative.com

 

0 Read More

8 Sales Strategies To Sell More Products NOW!

Finding new people to buy your product or service is an important part of the entire sales process. It may be tough for some people, but if your goal is to increase sales, you better figure out which sales strategies are going to be most effective for your target customers.

Do you have a great product but aren’t gaining the right customers to buy it? That’s okay, these strategies are going to help.

Are you not sure how to approach your customers or have a confusing sales message? That’s okay, too. We’ll show you a few helpful tricks for that.

Use the following sales strategies, tips, and techniques to gain more of the right customers who WILL gladly buy your products and services.

Before we start, if you haven’t already, be sure to pick up Linda’s new book: Selling Strategies For Perpetual Winners

(1) Define Your Perfect Customer

We can choose the right sales strategies without knowing exactly who we’re going to sell too. Think about it, who would be most likely to buy your product or service? Customer avatars are a great starting point to identify who your perfect customers are.

Make sure you’re asking the right questions.

  • Are they male, female, or both?
  • Are they children, teenagers, or adults?
  • What type of education do they have?
  • What type of income do they make?
  • Did they go to school? College? Degree?

(2) People Buy Benefits, Not Products

This one is great for giving you the clarity you need to focus on the right “copy” for your product or service. After all, people don’t buy products, they buy the results your product or service delivers.

This exercise is simple, just write down all the benefits your product or service gives customers. Once you have the list, make sure you’re using it!

(3) Give Clarity Around The Big Problem

What big problem is your customer trying to solve? If you’ve been able to build your customer avatar, you should know exactly what this big problem is.

In some cases, the problems are obvious. If you break your hand, you know what the problem is and you know you need to get to a doctor to solve it.

In other cases, the problems are not obvious and clear. For example, let’s say you’re trying to grow your business and you don’t know what to do next. You sign up for a webinar and you learn your messaging is off and you need to change it to attract new clients.

Now, if the customer doesn’t realize they have a problem, they’re not going to buy your product or service.

(4) Using Powerful Presentations

Presentations are a great way to educate your market on the products and services you offer.

From Zoom calls and webinars to in-person events, there’s a lot of different ways you can present powerful content to your perfect clients.

Video is the most powerful of these tools because we can utilize video in every stage of the sales process.

(5) Leverage Social Media

Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, SnapChat, what do they all have in common? Well, besides all of them being social media platforms that you can publish content on, they’re also great platforms to find your prospects.

Your prospects use social media, open the playbook and go find them!

A lot of entrepreneurs and companies fail on social media because of (3) big things;

  1. The company is not consistent with their social media marketing
  2. Your messaging and communicating is wrong
  3. You don’t have the infrastructure in place to do follow up with potential customers

If you’re missing these on social media, you’re likely missing these in your marketing and sales.

(6) Use Search Engine Optimization 

Search engine optimization, also known as SEO, this refers to the process of getting keywords to rank on the first page of search engines.

Google is the biggest search engine in the world, it controls over 60 percent of all global searches. This is why Google SEO is a necessity.

There’s a lot of different SEO ranking factors, but if you focus in on the most important, you can see substantial ROI from your SEO investment.

The (2) most important ranking factors are on-site SEO content and backlinks, 2 of what is thought to be hundreds of ranking factors. If you can create great content on your website, do outreach for link building, you can see solid progress on your own.

If you want to take it next level, you can bring on a SEO agency and work with them to maximize your organic results.

(7) Your Competitive Advantage

Why should I choose your product or service versus another? You’d be surprised by how many business owners can’t answer this.

Let me help you with this because it will be huge to your business.

Your competitive advantage should be the results, outcomes, and benefits you can deliver to your clients.

In your marketing, communications, and sales, you need to articulate this. You need your prospects to vision living this outcome, benefit, result.

In return, it can also discuss the benefit, result, and outcome they won’t enjoy if they choose a competitor over your product/service.

(8) Your Sales Message

Since we’re on the topic of sales and messaging, you better have a clear sales message.

You just learned you want your marketing, communications, and messaging to focus on what?

  • Outcomes
  • Benefits
  • Results

Can you have multiple benefits, results, and outcomes? Absolutely! When you do, it changes the way you need to communicate to a customer.

If my product/service helps you X10 your company sales, what are the benefits?

  • More sales, more revenue
  • Less financial stress
  • More customers, more opportunities

In my sales message, these are 3 benefits but each needs a specific message.

When you have multiple results, outcomes, and benefits, it requires you to have multiple sales messages to give your prospects clarity on that specific benefit.

(9) Get Them Through The Door

How can you get the attention you need from your prospects?

You give them value without asking for anything in return.

Your prospects are more likely to buy your product/service if you give them the opportunity to try it for free.

If you’re a SAAS company, you could offer a free 14 day trial.

If you’re a digital marketing agency, you can give them a strategy that will help them find 5 new customers.

You want to make sure it’s valuable and needed, think about something you can give them that’s going to help them take steps forward.

Once you have their attention, you’ll have the opportunity to articulate why your products and services are better.

(10) Utilize Graphics And Signs

For those of you that have physical locations, make sure you’re using graphic designs and signs to build attention.

Let’s focus on your physical location first, then we’ll cover using graphic designs and signs outside of your brick and mortar business.

What do graphic designs and signs do? They get “attention,” the first step in a process of getting a new customer or client.

Custom Signs

There’s a wide range of custom signs you can choose from, from awe-dropping customized neon signs to channel letter signs, the type of sign you choose is going to depend on your specific business.

If you own a bar, night club, or any business that operates at night, neon signs are a great option.

If you own a retail store, pharmacy, autobody shop, you may want to go for a channel letter sign versus a bright neon sign.

Graphic Designs

There’s a lot of different ways that graphic designs can be used to grow sales.

You can graphic designs in your marketing and prints, they can be focused on attracting new clients or they can be focused on bringing current customers back.

Graphic designs can be used for events, meetings, recruiting, and throughout company locations.

In theory, the more advertisments you put out, the more attention you’re going to attract. It’s another tool you can use to fill your funnel with prospects and leads, ultimately converting them to paying customers.

In Closing

Like it or not, sales is the foundation of any business. If you’re making sales, your company can grow and prosper. IF you’re not making sales, your company will struggle. It’s not pretty, but it is straight forward.

If you’re struggling to grow your sales and you’re looking to get support in that area, be sure to reach out.

You can reach us via phone by calling 770-846-3510 or you can use this contact form.

0 Read More

10 Places to Look for Leads in 2021

Do you need new leads for a new year? Explore ten options.

  1. Do a little digging around in the lost business graveyard. Past customers can be great prospects for future business.
  2. Take the “twin” approach. Find enterprises similar to those customers who currently buy. For example, if your best customer is a bank, find other banks to call on.
  3. Use LinkedIn. Keyword search functions allow you to locate companies and decision-makers.
  4. Business intelligence websites like Hoover’s, ZoomInfo, Jigsaw, Manta, and others are excellent lead sources. Many are fee-based, but you can find free information if you dig around online.
  5. The Internet is a gold mine of information. Search for key attributes like “Corporate Headquarters for software companies near me” and see what pops up.
  6. Keep up with the local business news online.
  7. Read the want ads on hiring websites, such as the LinkedIn jobs section, or by checking out other job posting sites.
  8. Purchase a list of names.
  9. When you visit customers, determine what other companies are located in their neighborhood.
  10. Swap leads with co-workers. Buyers who didn’t click with a fellow salesperson may click with you, and vice versa.

There are plenty of leads out there, but here is a best practice to maximize revenues. Contact current leads before you invest time in collecting more. Who knows? An email today might be what it takes to put you in the right place at the right time for a big opportunity.

Good selling!

Download the PDF

0 Read More

5 Reasons To Hire A Sales Consulting Firm

When we first started Thought Transformation, one of the first questions I asked myself, “Why would someone want to hire a sales consulting firm?”

Sure, a company looks to hire a firm in sales consulting to improve results, specifically sales. However, in 2020, the benefits of having a sales consulting firm goes way beyond just improved KPIs.  Below are 5 reasons to hire a sales consulting firm and why a good sales consulting firm should be your first choice when looking to improve sales results:

Sales Consulting Firms Can Bring A Fresh New Perspective

When you’re running a company, you see things through your own lens, that is especially true for those of you that have been running your company for a long time. After years, even decades, your perspective on your company is often one-sided. Now, that’s not saying it’s a bad thing, but you wouldn’t believe the magic that can be unlocked getting a fresh pair of eyes on your company.

Our sales consulting team here at Thought Transformation is trained to find the “gaps,” trained to identify the key areas that need improved in your sales process. Yet, it’s not only sales we excel in, we’re trained to find the gaps in your marketing and communications as well.

Your Company Is One-Of-A-Kind

A lot of sales training is focused on a one size fits all approach. While that may work for 95 percent of the companies out there, what about the other 5 percent that need a customized sales consulting solution?

If your services and products are unique, do you think that one size fits all approach is going to help you? Nope! Due to years of experience, we know this and this is why our sales consulting company has been overwhelmingly successful helping companies in this rare bucket.

It Opens The Doors Of Opportunity

For you company owners, do you really have the time to face your challenges head on? Most of you are going to say “no,” and you’re right, you don’t! Your busy running a company and doing what you do best. Even if you’ve found the time to “find” your sales problems, it doesn’t mean you can provide corrective guidance also.

Sales consulting firms are designed to handle complex sales processes, trained to help you improve sales and performance. While we can’t speak for other consulting firms, our approach opens the doors of opportunity for you and your staff.

Sales Training Is Important

Our sales training is built off real world results and if your company wants to improve sales, you must improve your sales team. We’re training to evaluate your whole sales process, identifying what works, what doesn’t, and exactly what needs to be improved to reach your target KPIs.

In many cases, it’s as simple as following “best” practices. We’ve vetted these sales practices for more than a decade. In fact, our founder Linda Bishop, she’s been in sales for nearly 3 decades. You’re going to have a lot of opportunities for growth if you hire the right sales consultant, right sales consulting firm.

Sales Organizations Are Deeply Complex

While we’ve worked with companies on every end of the spectrum, the majority of these sales organizations are deeply complex. This is why a lot of company owners are not able to improve sales, they just don’t know what levers to push.

The right sales consulting firm can help you dive deep into your sales and help you identify the bottlenecks in your sales processes. Furthermore, they can help you navigate the complexity of your sales organizations so you have a much better understanding of how it works.

The right sales consulting company can be the difference between success and failure, your opportunity to grow your business or not. Sales are the lifeblood of any company, now it’s time to start treating it with the respect you know it deserves.

Here at Thought Transformation, we believe reliable revenue growth requires a repeatable sales process. The sales force should know what to do, and execute on that relentlessly. Marketing supports the process, providing the sales team with effective meeting bait that attracts prospects, and all the tools required by sales to move selling cycles forward.

If you’re struggling to grow your sales and you’re looking for help in that arena, don’t hesitate to reach out. Give us a call at (770) 846-3510 or use this online form.

0 Read More

Sales Consulting: Everything You Should Know Before Hiring

While sales consulting can represent a lot of different layers to sales, ultimately it would be defined as using sales strategies and processes to help a company grow sales.

Every company wants more sales, every company needs more sales, but how do you achieve it? If you want to achieve sales growth, hiring a sales consultant can be a great investment and deliver positive ROI.

Here at Thought Transformation, we’ve worked with numerous companies and organizations, giving them the tools, resources, and knowledge to optimize their sales.

We have an amazing team, one with decades of sales experience, so our sales consulting experts are able to deliver results by putting the right people in the right roles. Our sales processes have been tested over time, in short, we know what works and what doesn’t. This gives us a massive advantage and allows us to improve sales in a relatively short period.

With more than 20 years of sales consulting experience across many different industries, we drive change in compensation and territory alignment, sales process improvement and talent optimization. Thought Transformation is uniquely qualified to transform your sales and service organization from the ground up, because experience has taught us exactly what those processes look like.

Do I Need Sales Consulting?

If you feel your company could be selling more products or services, you should at least be having the conversation.

You likely know how effective your sales process is or is not. If you know that your sales process can be improved, the right sales consultant can build an action plan based on the needs of your sales department.

A sales consultant uses their skills and experience to help businesses increase sales by suggesting specific improvements in the company’s processes. The consultant might work for a consulting firm or they could be self-employed and work directly with clients on a contract basis.

What Does A Sales Consultant Do?

A sales consultant can hold a wide range of roles depending on the type of sales consulting service that is offered. These can include but are not limited to;

  • Responsible for training sales representatives to use technology and software to improve sales conversions
  • Create and maintain mutually beneficial relationships with the client base
  • Improve product knowledge and understanding of the market and competition to help sales representatives find the most effective selling strategies
  • Management for junior staff and hiring additional sales professionals
  • Setting appointments with prospects and follow-up via phone, email, social media, etc.
  • Teaching sales reps to keep detailed, organized records and notes
  • Assist in the creation of procedures and protocols designed to increase conversion of leads into sales
  • Work with the marketing department to help improve brand awareness and online presence

Hiring A Sales Consultant

Before you jump the gun and hire a sales consultant, make sure you do your due diligence.

Anyone can go to Google and begin that process. I’m not going to hire a sales consultant expert without reviewing reviews, social media profiles, etc.

Here at Thought Transformation, we prefer to speak with you via live video or via Zoom, even over the phone if that’s something you prefer. Whatever contact method you prefer, these conversations can help give you crystal clear clarity on what you need to increase your sales.

In our conversation, we’re going to discuss your sales and where you need help the most. We’ll begin to understand the systems you have in place, as well as the processes you have implemented. After our deep analysis, we’ll be able to pinpoint every area that needs work and strategically implement proper sales strategies moving forward.

If you want to learn more about how we can increase your sales, or how our sales consultants can help, feel free to reach out. You can reach us directly at 1-770-846-3510 or you can use our contact form.

 

0 Read More
page 1 of 2
Contact Us

We're not around right now. But you can send us an email and we'll get back to you, asap.