If you have ever heard 'There's gold in them there hills' then you should be pretty excited about the title of this blog. Believe it or not, we regularly uncover gold on behalf of our clients. Ironically, they have been sitting on this gold without even knowing it. Our clients come from the manufacturing and industrial space and are typically small businesses in need of business development help. When we begin an engagement, normally lead generation based, we always start with the same question. Where is the clients gold?Read More
Don't we all want the entire pie for ourselves? Of course that comes with ramifications, mostly around the waistline. In business, we all want a little more of the available pie. Who among us has all the pie (or market) that you want for your business? If you're saying "Me!," then you most likely have a lifestyle business. In short:
A lifestyle business is one that has been set up or has become a business that allows the owner(s) the ability to maintain a certain level of lifestyle they are comfortable with and have been accustomed to. There really is no desire to grow beyond that level of business.
I'm not saying there's anything wrong with a lifestyle business, but what if you do want to grow and get more of that pie? If we imagine the markets we serve as a whole pie, very few of us have the market share represented in the picture. More often than not, what we do have would barely be considered a full serving of dessert. The real dilemma is, how much pie is actually available in your market space?Read More
I'm not going to give you a top 10 list. I'm just going to cut to the chase. Every 4 years I hear the same thing, the same phrase, and in my opinion, the same excuse. Well, it's happening again. "I'm going to hold/cutback on any sales and marketing spending until we see how the election turns out." Let me ask you, how well has that strategy worked in the past? The economic winds don't change on a dime and for most small businesses we can control our future if we choose to do so. BUT, it is a state of mind. We primarily work with small businesses in the manufacturing, technology and technical space. As small businesses, we can control our destiny, but first let me remind you of a few interesting stats from the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM.org).Read More
As we progressed down the first 3 steps of this journey of demand generation, we discussed the importance of striking the right balance for your specific business development needs, managing data and systems and ultimately creation of compelling content. In other words there is no prescription for demand generation. It is about processes, systems and execution. Sound's a lot like manufacturing, doesn't it? Being and electrical engineer myself, this concept appeals to me. No one should be telling you that a new website and inbound program is all you need. On the flip side, outbound calling or outbound marketing efforts may not be the only solution. Careful evaluation of your historical efforts, balanced with how the market is changing and how people look for you, is the mindset you should take, especially as you evaluate your next steps. It is highly recommended to solicit input from colleagues and professionals in the industry to help you understand what strategies and tactics are available.Read More
If you've spent any time reading blogs, attending workshops or executing content-driven programs, I'm sure you've heard a key theme - present yourself as a subject matter expert in your particular area. But here's the problem: Everyone is becoming an expert. Who do you believe? Who do you follow? Who provides you with what you're looking for? It can almost be maddening. As a consumer of content on a regular basis, I love to learn. What I don't love is reading the same old blah, blah, blah. I need to learn something or I become disinterested.Read More
In my previous blog, I discussed the first easy step to demand generation - the thought process behind finding the appropriate balance in your efforts. By fully understanding your business, your clients and which channels you're deploying to generate demand, you can begin to execute a roadmap to success.Read More
I just returned from a national sales conference in Florida. This particular conference brings together over 200 sales and marketing professionals who focus on helping businesses in the manufacturing, industrial and technology sectors. It's always a great opportunity to share best practices, hear from guest speakers and share in both the successes and challenges we all face helping clients develop business. Over the course of three days, we immersed ourselves in role-plays and workshops. Throughout it all, a number of messages resonated, especially as they pertain to the business development goals of my clients and prospective clients in manufacturing and industrial services. Here are my three main takeaways.Read More
Traveling this holiday? On a plane? Lucky you. Here's a story from my trip last week.
We've all been there, especially if you're in sales. Packed in like a sardine, right next to the dreaded, shall we say, "unpleasant" passenger. I'm 6'4", 245 lbs., and have a window seat on an MD88. I've got no place to go and am just trying to survive a two-hour flight next to this person who immediately showed the proverbial chip on their shoulder to be the size of the state we're departing, Texas. I'll call them "Seatmate." I've got two hours with this rather unpleasant person, who, mind you, is maybe 5'4". I've been seated next to many people my size and somehow gotten along with them just fine. But oh no, not this bugger.Read More