Increase your profit and turn your business into a highly saleable asset
In part 1 we agreed on the vision; so let’s make it happen:
2. Marketing Your Vision:
Ok, so you and your team now have a clear objective – its time to tell the world.
- What is it that differentiates your product or service from your competition?
- What makes it unique, better?
- Is your product cheaper, is it faster, is it lighter or smaller etc.
Whatever it is, make this your point of difference and make sure your target market is aware of it.
Define in a clear concise statement what your USP is:
Next, do a stock-take of your marketing collateral.
Look at it with the eyes of a potential customer; would you be interested?
- Does your marketing use the AIDA principles of Attract, Interest, Desire, Action?
- Do you have a presence on Internet?
- Is your webpage outdated or is it a live, up to date interactive experience?
- Does it have information to attract, get prospects interested, stimulate desire and importantly a call to Action?
For example you could offer a free “how to guide” about your industry, product reviews or a tutorial, available by entering your email address. This contact then becomes a potential lead and with the right systems in place will be followed up, e.g. by the use of a squeeze page capturing the prospects contact details and entering them directly into the CRM as a lead!
- Follow up is critical, how often do your sales team follow up on a lead or enquiry?
- How do you know?
A great tool which is essential to you being able to let go, to walk away knowing that KPIs will be met, is to implement a CRM, ideally one that is internet based allowing you the owner to log-in from anywhere in the world (e.g. from the back of your yacht) and check sales activity, orders, profits etc.
One such product is Sales-force and if you are in the manufacturing or service industries, there is a great product called Biz-linc from Cloud Sherpas in Brisbane Qld. It is based on the Sales-force platform and is actually a complete business process management tool, managing everything in your business. It can even be linked to your accounting package.
By the way, I am in no way associated with Cloud Sherpas, but after researching the CRM software available for a particular client of mine, I can say that it is perfectly suited to manufacturing/service oriented businesses & is affordable both in implementation and maintenance with no need for software updates and expensive SQL servers.
So, yes I definitely recommend it. Worth checking out – www.cloudsherpas.com
Whether you use a CRM or not it is imperative to measure every aspect of the sales process.
Do you know that by focusing on the following five profit drivers and measuring the results regularly in each you can transform your business?
- Increase leads: create and send newsletters regularly to your existing database of customers & prospects, ask for referrals and testimonials, join industry associations and local business groups. Attend networking events.
- Increase conversion ratio: develop scripts and follow-up processes.
Insist that your salespeople read this book:
- Increase the number of times a customer buys from you: Treat them as a VIP buyer, give them discounts, celebrate milestones with them, ask for feedback and act on it
- Increase the average sales value per customer: encourage your sales staff to up-sell, create a simple form that they tick off each of the options they have offered their customer
- Increase your Gross Profit: through the systemization and continuous improvement of processes discussed later in this guide it is more than certain that you can increase your current GP by 10%
For example you have 100 leads and a 20% conversion ratio, now let’s apply the 10% increase:
|Average Sales Value||$25,000||10%||$27,500|
|Average Customer Value||$125,000||Becomes||$151,250|
|Average Customer Value||$125,000||21%||$151,250|
|Gross Profit %||20%||10%||22%|
|Total Sales Increase||$2,500,000||46%||$3,660,250|
|Gross Profit % Increase||20%||10%||22%|
By focusing on each of these key areas and achieving 10% increases in each, we have increased profit from $500k to $805k!
Is this possible? Yes, I believe so, but even if you were to only achieve 5%, wouldn’t that still be worth the effort?
Remember also, that what gets measured gets results.
Focus on increasing the number of leads, the conversion ratio, the number of customers, their average sales value and the profit on each sale and you are guaranteed to get incredible results!
Exercise 3 – Sales & Marketing
- Leads/Enquiries per month:
- Is every enquiry captured?
- Closed sales/orders per month:
- Average sales value?
- No. of transactions per customer?
- No. of customers per year (i.e. who actually bought):
- Are your sales people active in networking groups, associations etc?
- Is your webpage updated regularly?
- Does it capture enquiry?
- Is there a follow-up procedure? Explain:
- What is the conversion ratio?
- Is there a newsletter or similar to entice prospects to send you their contact details?
- Do you monitor visits to your site with Google Analytics or similar?
- Is the content of your webpage optimized for search engines.
I hope that part 2 has been helpful, that it inspires you to act and that you achieve your goals.
Imagine again its 12 months or two years from now.
A potential buyer walks into your business and asks to see how things operate….
Will you be investor ready?
- Help your business grow by getting out of the way! Part 1 (johnnymaher.com)
- CRM Returns $5.60 For Every Dollar Spent (customerthink.com)