“£25,000 for one sale?!”
I was in complete shock while racking my brains thinking of ways to grow Lara’s business.
She had left out an integral sale she had made two years prior to working with me.
Lara casually mentioned “It was just luck that I managed to bump into someone at a conference who owned a massive company with 220 workstations. I managed to close a sale a few months later.”
While building out Lara’s ideal customer profile I realised that she had been focusing solely on smaller businesses. Lara was concerned that by targeting too large a company she would be inundated with orders which couldn’t be fulfilled.
My reaction. – “Let’s cross that bridge when we come to it. Okay?”
This section of the book is to encourage you to think much bigger than you are doing right now and how to build rapport with businesses which would never even know you exist.
The chances of Lara closing “too many” large deals all at once were slim because the sales cycle was longer than most.
We dedicated a whole side project to targeting her Dream 100 client list, larger B2B businesses which could afford to pay her massive sums of money in comparison to her average sale price.
Sales like this dramatically helped with cash flow and even getting one every four months meant the world of difference.
We used a few online directories to target specific companies matching her dream list. They had to have 200-300 employees and be turning over a particular amount per year.
In total we acquired a clean list of 390 B2B companies which were a perfect fit for Lara.
Within this group we could guesstimate there were about 3% ready to buy right now, but sending out one sales letter wasn’t going to attract their attention.
They had no idea about her company and were too busy to pay attention.
It was decided that we would publish a printed newsletter to establish a consistent pattern of contact and build familiarity.
The newsletters had no sales pitch whatsoever and maintained the feel of a publication.
A simple four page document, filled with industry news, stories about Lara’s business and market data which would actually be of value to our dream customer.
These publications were sent out twice a month and every fourth mailing was accompanied by a lead generation product and an irresistible offer sales letter, touching all five steps of the buying process.
Of course we had a handful of requests to be removed from the mailing list which we promptly addressed.
We were making contact four times a month via printed newsletter, pitching services which contained the irresistible offer and five step buying process and making one call a month to follow up.
After six months Lara had closed more dream customer orders than during her whole time being in business, doubling the previous year’s profits and with less effort. Handling fewer clients at a higher price point gave Lara much more room to breathe and fulfil the orders.
If you continue to market to someone with a product that would truly benefit them and their desired outcome, here’s what will happen.
They’ll either tell you to piss off, which you will do.
They’ll politely continue to say no until eventually they move from not knowing who you are, to knowing exactly who you are and feeling almost obligated to do business with you.
As long as you have a solid product, most dream clients are not that difficult to get. Whether through pity or genuine admiration, your dream clients will end up working with you, but you need to maintain a solid and consistent form of contact and diligent follow up.
Quick tips for newsletter publication:
Make it so valuable that they shut themselves away and read it alone. Consumption is king!
Refer to your customers in your newsletter to show that you’re doing well in business.
Include testimonials and photos of you with your clients.
Stats reinforce that you need to maintain at least nine touch points with your dream client in 18 months to create a lasting impression in their mind. Junk mail is infrequent and impersonal.
Maintain the same delivery date each month to build consistency.
A great way to get online traffic is through articles. Your newsletter will be a print version of your blog and therefore perceived as a publication and not an advertising piece.
If you write a publication you’re considered an authority or an expert. You immediately become an expert through publication in the eyes of many. People will be happier to pay an expert more money than a generic salesperson.
The opening article of your newsletter should be about how the lives of others has improved since you became a part of their life and how others benefit by being around you and your business.
Make your content scannable by using strong sub-headlines along with a table of contents. Allow people to scan through your content and decide if it’s right for them to then read the whole thing.
Newsletters should follow consistent portions of 40% relevant, 30% semi-relevant and 30% non-relevant content. This creates a publication and not an advertising piece. Here are a few ideas for each portion:
- Customer spotlights. Talk about them, achievements, relationships, make it fun. Customers love it when you highlight them.
- Highlight employees, dogs, cats, family etc.
- Q&As / FAQs
- Find questions on forums and answer them.
- Take photos of people who read the newsletter, proving consumption.
- Include “What you missed” for people who missed the previous issue.
- Demonstrate customer referrals, highlight referrals in your newsletter and give credit to customers who recommended you.
Hold a contest and then talk about the people who took part in it from the previous issue.
- Find trivia, jokes, cartoons, crosswords, Sodukus, etc
- Calendar events, holiday exhibitions and conferences, seasonal events and themes like Xmas.
If you have nothing in place prior to sending out these mailings, you’re going to be making more work for yourself.
Set up the system I outline in this book and use these newsletters to simply drive dream customers to them.
The Dream 100 List is basically you creating your own platform for publication. Creating a machine which only you can advertise on and bring customers into your world (Value Ladder).