So, What's The REAL Cost?

We'll listen to any pitch. We've always thought that if you don't you run the Sales Pitch Image risk of missing out on the magic bullet that will drive customers to our clients. That's also a tip for you. Don't just wave somebody off.  Listen to the pitch; who knows, it might be magic!

We recently listened to a pitch about some online marketing.  It went like this: "Our customers get 70,000 impressions each month and it's only going to cost your client $500 each month."

Sounds like a heck of a deal right? Less than a PENNY per impression! But then you do the math: 70,000
impressions, divide that by their stated "click through rate" of .03 percent. That comes to 2.3 page views...before the industry standard conversion rate of 8% (Conversion rates mean converting a "looker" into a "buyer")

But, let's just go with 2.3 clicks onto our client's offer.  The cost now comes to $217.39 to attract each new customer.

Not bad if our client were selling $150,000 cars or legal work that could amount to $200,000 in billable hours...but our client, in this case, has an average ticket price of $45.

Marketing Tip:  Impressions do not mean sales. They mean impressions like in, "Oh, I see that."  Getting the consumer to then DO SOMETHING and convert them to becoming a buyer is a whole different discussion. 

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What's Your Value?

We've always believed that if you live by the price, and are a commodity, Man Value you'll die by the price.  However, if you build value into your business people will continue to ask you for...business.

There is always somebody out there that can match your price or, just for kicks, beat it.  However, if you build value into your product/service nobody can take away your customer.

Of course there will always be people who buy on price alone and couldn't give a rip about value.  And, those consumers are usually less loyal and can cause most of the trouble for your brand.

So, how do you add value to your product or service?  Exceed the expectations of your customer.  How do you do that?  By thinking of them...first.  If your focus is always on the bottom line if you are scrambling to make ends meet you're in a commodity business.  If you think, really think, of how you can bring extra value to your customer you'll have a transforming business.

High Value trumps Low Price

That's what we think.  How about you?

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Insight Advertising, Marketing and Communications is a full service advertising agency and is also the fuel that powers Insight on Business the News Hour.

Thanks for coming by!


Selling Value

I was having a conversation with a client the other day and we got Man Sales around to talking about different sales techniques.  He's seen companies that are selling value because they have high margins and high costs and he's been witness to companies that sell items like a commodity...low margins and low cost.

I asked him which, in his opinion, was the easier sell.

"I would much rather sell high-cost/high-margin products because it's easier for me to sell the idea of the value this type of product brings to the consumer."

He went on; "But, that's me.  I know sales people who like to sell on price only and, based on my experience, the sales professional who sells on price has a very hard time switching over to sell the idea of value for higher priced products."

I thought it was an interesting discussion.  So, what about you?  Is there a difference?  Do you think a salesperson who can sell value can also sell price?  Which is better?  Selling on value or selling on price?

Thanks for reading..

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Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications is a full service advertising agency that is also the fuel that powers Insight on Business the News Hour heard Monday - Friday between 5PM and 6PM on 1350-KRNT with our business interviews located on our Podcast Page

 

 

 


Sending Folks to the Competition...

The other day I was visiting with a sales and marketing professional who works in a very competitive industry.  He was calling on a perspective client, learning how they approach the marketing their product. Man Pointing Away

When the discussion came to "leads" the perspective client said, "This is the email I send out to individuals who have contacted us and want more information about our company."  The form email said, in part, "If you would like to see photos and find out more information please go to..." and at the bottom of the note were two live links to national websites that specialize in this industry.  No, not THEIR website...but sites that contain nearly every competitor in their business.

My friend asked, "Why would you send your leads to the competition?"  The employee had a "blank look" on her face and said, "Because it helps me get leads!"  My friend answered with, "But, Susan, you already have the lead in your hand.  When you send the person to a mega industry site that has nearly every competitor also vying for business your begging them to look elsewhere."

She still didn't get it.

Sometimes business people don't "get it" and just because they have always done something the same way, over and over...it makes it "right".

The question needs to be asked, "What changes can you make in your marketing/advertising methods that will improve your chance of closing the sale vs. sending your customers elsewhere?"

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Let's connect by email, give us a call or on Twitter it's @InsightADV and our advertising agency Facebook Page is right here.  Thanks for coming by!





Sometimes It's Just...Tired

We see this often.  A brand that enjoyed superior market share rests and  Jc penny logo starts to lose its way.  All the while the folks responsible for the marketing insist it is just a "blip" and things will turn around.  When they don't the folks in charge of the bottom line get involved and the heads roll...the brand has a new launch and...sputters.  Why?

That's a question that plagues our friends over at JC Penny.  In 2012, despite increasing their media spending by 14% to $504 million, the company posted a sales loss of 25%.  In the fourth quarter alone sales slumped by 28%.

We have a theory that the company simply waited too long.  They waited too long to re-brand the chain as "hip" and young.  They waited too long to adjust their media spending patterns to match the "new hip" JC Penny.  They had a "tired brand" and coming back is going to take...time and money.

So, what about your business.  No, you don't have the cash JC Penny does but have you seriously considered how relevant you are to today's market? Have you spent the time and money to sit down and review what you are doing and where you need to go?

You better...and while you are pondering your business future you might want to invite somebody who "reads consumers" to the meeting. They may ask the questions which will help wake up your brand.

What do you think?  What are some of the best moves to "wake up a tired brand"?  Go:

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You can connect with us on our Twitter Stream @InsightADV and/or our advertising agency Facebook Page which is right here.  Or heck...shoot us an email. Thanks for coming by!



Does It Matter?

I was in a meeting the other day when members of a business based non-profit were talking about their fund raising project.  The leader of the People Business Sleeping committee said, "The advertising spaces on the calendar just have not sold very well this year."

Advertising spaces on a...calendar?

I get it.  This is a fund raiser for a non-profit and the "advertising spaces" tend to really be a gift of support.  But (and this is critical for us to understand) even gifts need to generate something in return for the...gift.  And while selling ad space in on a calendar was a neat way to generate income...ten years ago...it ain't so hot today.

But here is the clincher.  The group leader went on and said, "One of the advertisers, who dropped their support, offered a coupon last year but didn't see much return."

Changing times create the need to change the way in which we sell...anything.  But, at the same time we need to be aware that WHAT we are selling must be relevant to the consumer.  If it is not...nobody is buying.

One of the biggest errors companies (profit and non-profit) make is doing the same thing over and over again.  Even when it is failing.  Rather than doing that wouldn't it make sense to sit down and examine the consumer base and then come up with something that matches their...needs/wants?

We think so...

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If you would like to leave a comment here...feel free.  You can also join us on our advertising agency Twitter Stream @InsightADV or our company Facebook page which is right here

 


Creative Thinking & Selling

I love it when we get to look at an issue, break it down into the realChild Magnifying Glass problem and then the real fix.  That's what happened early this morning during a client meeting.  The client said not enough sales were happening on-line and/or at special events where the products were showcased. 

I listened to about fifteen minutes of the discussion they were having regarding:

  • Branding - "Is it the right message in the brand";
  • Ads/Message - "Is our advertising/marketing plan on point";
  • Consumers - "Maybe nobody is buying because it's new";
  • Budget - "We really don't have more money to pour into advertising."

When they had exhausted each topic they looked in my direction and I said, "You've never asked consumers to...buy."

You could hear a pin drop and the three very bright people looked at each other and realized the "new guy" was right.  They've got all the cool social media thingys, they have a great product and they have the drive.  But...they have never "asked for the sale".  They just put it on the shelf and figured it would, because it's so great, "Sell itself".

Your take-a-way is this.  No matter how great your new product or service is, no matter how much marketing and advertising you do...unless you "ask for the sale" it's not going to happen.

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Thanks for coming by.  If you would like to leave a comment here, feel free or join us on Twitter @InsightADV or our advertising agency Facebook Page is right here.


Social Media ROI

One of the biggest perplexing questions most business people have isMan Question  the ROI of social media.  Our answer to the concern is that the return for not using social media correctly to engage consumers is a huge mistake.  We also have said the real ROI of social media is in...sales

Sure branding is important, so is consumer loyalty and so is all the information you can gather about consumer trends.  But, at the end of the day, most business people want...sales.  So, here is a sales story tied directly to social media.

Last week one of our clients attended a major sales event for a distributing company.  It was held in a motel conference room where buyers  listened to pitch after pitch from sellers...for twelve hours.  By the time our client got in front of the group of "middle-aged men" it was afternoon and the room was a little...."tired".  Our client made the pitch, showed off the product and talked about retail support the company is willing to give.  The buyers listened, said some nice things and dismissed them.

QR Code Video Then...just as they were leaving the room, they heard our spokesperson's voice from a "how-to" video.  The video can only be accessed through the use of a QR Code which is part of the point of purchase display we built for them.  Someone in the room said, "Wow, this is neat!".  Other buyers then started accessing the additional videos by activating the QR Codes on their smart phones.  They waved our client back into the room and wanted to know more about the technology, products and retail support.

In the end they placed a number of orders.

What might have happened if they had not used this social media component?  If sales are the real ROI of social media...are you there yet?

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Who Owns The Sale?

Last week I called Qwest (Soon to become CenturyLink) about my firstQwest Logo  "Complimentary Account Review".  I just wanted to make sure what their business says our business has...is what we have.  At the end of the conversation the customer service representative said, "I see we've got you at a 7mb Internet speed.  We can move you to 12mb at no extra charge and no service interruption."  Me: "Really, no charge and my equipment will work?"  Qwest: "Yes sir!"

We Pulled The Trigger...

I was told it would take three days to make the switch.  On day three Insight had no Internet Service...zip, nada...nothing.  I did the CenturyLink-Business standard "pull the plug, do a little dance, count to sixty" reset.  Nothing.  Called Qwest visited with Wendy who said,"Hmmm, shouldn't be doing that.  We'll get somebody in Tech to look at it."  Meanwhile I contacted my friends @TalkToQwest on Twitter.  (We've found, over the years to receive much better service if the communication goes through Twitter...no joke.)  They bounced back and said they were on it.  A few hours later...nada.  But, they are friendly...

Day Two...

See "We Pulled the Trigger"...same story.  Then, through Twitter, we got hooked up wth Joe, Louis and Mike in Boise, ID. who said, "That modem won't work with that new speed."  Problem identified.  The solution was to head to Jordan Creek Mall and pick up a new PK-5000 from Carrie...who was delightful.  Then it was on to re-configuring all the computers to the new modem.  And we were golden.

Who Owns The Sale?Man odd

Which bring us back to the start.  Who owns the sales transaction at your shop?  Sales people should have some great product knowledge and when (and if) sales, customer service, support and tech all communicate.  Guess what?  Magic.  In this case some folks didn't own the sale or had some lousy information.  

In the end some folks did their job and patched us up.  But, if we had a handle on the problem...last week.  Think of the savings in time and energy.  Share information people...with everybody.

Want to leave a comment?  You can here, drop me an e-mail, let's connect on Twitter @MichaelLibbie or @InsightADV or our agency Facebook Page is right here.  Have a great day!

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Fourth Quarter Marketing Tips

Yesterday Insight on Business with Michael Libbie covered the recent story coming out of the Nielsen Wire regarding Holiday Sales.  In aWoman Santa Helper  word...flat.  That got us to thinking about what you should do NOW...TODAY to gear up for a better fourth quarter and a better holiday sales season.  And, if you would like the read the research from Nielsen, for backup, here is that article.  Good stuff...and yes, there are winners and losers in the mix.

Here's what we think you need to do NOW in advance of October 1st:

The Social Media Angle- If you are not using some form of social media in your marketing plan you're...going to lose.  It's that simple.  Social Media is a tool that helps you build a tribe, a following, helps you learn consumer trends and builds sales.  There are many roads in SM, our favorites include the Business Blog, Twitter and YouTube.  If you don't know how ask somebody but get started...today.  If you don't want to ask me...contact my friend Mike Sansone or Nathan Wright...but DO IT.

Review Your 4th Quarter Ad Spend - And then double it-  I know, "But, Michael YOU'RE not writing the checks."   I realize that however to get noticed and to boost sales you are going to have to be more aggressive.  As you can tell by the research, shoppers are making fewer shopping trips it's your job to make sure they plan a trip to see you and if they don't know about you...guess what?   Remember it takes money to make money.  It's still true.

Listen to Your Consumer Base - Where are they?  What draws them to your product or service?  Do you know?  Do you ask them?  If you don't honestly know where your consumer/customer is how in the world do you find them?  Better yet how do you know you've got a product or service anybody wants or needs?   Starting today...make it a point to dig into the shopping habits of your customers.  These existing customers are just a fraction of the folks you could impact...if you knew where they are.  Ask.

Review Your On-Line Experience - While you might think you've got a snazzy website what does it do for consumers.  Read the research, "Consumers with incomes between $70,000 to $100,000 will shop on-line more this year."  If their digital experience with your product or service sucks...you will not get the sale.  Get some help...today.  Again, ask a professional about your site and the digital experience it offers consumers.

Bonus Tip - "Trust & Value" -  These are the two biggest words you need to include in your marketing and in what you do.  Take that to the consumer and you'll win.

That's it.  Now, stop reading and get to work.  Four things...just four things you need to focus on today to make sure we can have a great conversation in the Second Quarter of 2011.

Thanks for reading and you can connect with me on Twitter: @MichaelLibbie or @InsightADV, leave a comment here, send me an e-mail or connect on Facebook

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