Michael Port blogged about my son, Leon, who recently went from being a professional athlete to a corporate gig. Michael's right, I AM a proud parent, and really impressed with the quality of the article written by Brian Compton of NHL online.
Excerpted from Selling Power's Sales Management
Newsletter, 9/4/2007, Fifty Experts Share their Secrets, by Heather Baldwin -
"Wouldn't it be great if you could tap into the
expertise of 50 top sales gurus without the cost of hiring them all? That's the
idea behind Top Dog Sales Secrets, edited by Michael Dalton Johnson.
This new book collects the wisdom of 50 sales experts and
puts it into one place, organizing their advice under major topics such as
prospecting, cold calling, stalls and objections, sales skills, value, customer
relationships, and more. Here's a brief look at some of the insights experts
share in this anthology"
I've read this book, and HIGHLY recommend it for the inspiration AND the skills that one will learn or "re-learn". It is easy to read, entertaining, and very broad in topic selection. Kudos to Sales Dogs!
I encourage everyone to have a fun summer, but also to work on accomplishing business goals during the same time. As someone who works to do as I say, I am participating, for a second time, in Michael Port's and Mitch Myerson's Product Factory to create more e-products, and I am very excited about it.
Last week I saw Michael Port speak in front of about 1,500 at an international conference. (The same conference where I had the honor of being the "live auctioneer" and we raised $40,000 for a single item). Anyway, Michael is just tremendous. He is a master change agent, and inspires others to be the same. I was just thrilled that I had traveled to Dallas to be a part of this event.
So I got to thinking about it, and realize that an area of deficit for me is in products that reinforce my message to professional sellers and those learning to be a more professional seller.
It's not too late to join us. The next session begins on June 18th and here is the fantastic overview of what we'll do each and every week:
Module I - Research and Development Module I is designed to aid you in defining your product or program, assessing the needs in your market place and developing clear, compelling value-rich content that over-delivers on your promises to your customer.
Week 1: Create your Product Factory Big Picture Project Plan
Every successful businessperson knows that in order to produce a successful result, you must begin with the end in mind.
Week 2: 7 Simple Rules For Producing Remarkable Projects
You will learn proven product management principles that will guide and ensure your success on every project you do hereafter.
4 Strategic Steps for Developing Your Value-Rich Content
We take the guesswork out of content creation, the #1 biggest fear for most product creators, and lead you to an organized and effective framework for your project.
Week 4: Manage Your Work and Gain Momentum
The #1 reason people do not achieve their intended goal is a lack of consistent action and focus. In this week, we create a system that will ensure you stay on track.
Module II: Finalizing Your Content and Assembling Your Product Module II gets you into action around finalizing your content, designing an eye-catching package and choosing and setting up your delivery and fulfillment systems.
Week 5: Crafting Your Content with your Sales Strategy in Mind
At the Product Factory, our goal is to not only complete your project but to teach you how to MAKE MONEY with it. With that in mind, we'll teach you the psychology of sales as you develop your content so you're not left holding a product that won't sell.
Week 6: Making Your Packaging Stand Out
You only have one chance to make a first impression. We have enlisted some of the top graphic and production specialists in the industry to feed you resources that you can use immediately to package your signature product.
Week 7: Technical Considerations when Producing Your Product
To make sure you get your product to market FAST, we have enlisted the top technical experts in the industry to teach you everything you need to know about audio, video, digital delivery, self-publishing, professional publishing and more.
Week 8: Online and Offline Ordering and Fulfillment
Many new product developers often get confused around taking money and delivering products. In this session, we will demystify this topic and show you exactly what you need to do to earn money and deliver products worldwide.
Module III: Marketing and Manufacturing Your Product In this module you will learn how to effectively and successfully market and sell the products you create worldwide.
Week 9: The Copywriting Crash Course
In this session, you will learn our profit producing formula for writing attention-grabbing copy that sells.
The Product Factory Best Kept Offline Marketing Secrets
Let us show you the 7 Core Self-Promotion Strategies so easy to implement that you can hit the ground running with them immediately.
The Product Factory Best Kept Online Marketing Secrets
For our next book, we have interviewed 24 of the top online marketers in the world and have distilled the essential strategies and tactics that will ensure your product visibility throughout the internet.
Week 12: Affiliate and Fusion Marketing Strategies
A key to success in product distribution is creating powerful partnerships that exponentially increase the reach of your marketing messages.
The Product Factory Awards Ceremony and Product Unveilings, and Product Factory BIG Promotional Mailing
Celebrate the successful completion of your product or program with up to 1000 live potential buyers on this very special call, and see your finished product promoted to over 50,000 of our dedicated newsletter subscribers. More about this once your enroll
So, for more information, go here, and let me know if you did!
I have a client who is also a good friend of mine named April Brown.
April is one of the most successful charity auctioneers in the West, perfecting her craft for the past 13 or so years.
Last year she decided to expand to the worldwide market and widen her opportunities. One area she dived into is creating her own video - and actually has a studio set up in part of her home office. She has multiple cameras and has done live and archived shows - take a look and feel free to contact herdirectly if you want to know how to utilize the tools she is using.
She also created and is selling a very cool audio CD, called Money is Marvelous, that shows you step by step how to put on the most successful charity auction you've ever done - telling secrets that no auctioneer has ever divulged (that I know of) without paying them a handsome fee.
I ran into a few posts on moderating which I just haven't seen before. Being a moderator of anything -- a company meeting, an off-site, or a business event is a tough job. If you are working with panelists, they really get all the glory but you, as moderator have the toughest role, which is to keep everything moving forward, keep the discussion interesting, and basically interrupt people who are going on and on.
I've not met Frank Catalano, but know of him. Here are his tips for great moderation.
The reason this topic caught my attention is that this is a specialized task and so very important. The whole business event can go down in flames with a moderator who is not with it. Without preparation about the panelists - their possible issues and opinions, plus knowledge of what is important to the audience - it becomes a very boring event. I say this because I am traditionally not a big fan of panels, yet I help organize them for the MIT Enterprise Forum and elsewhere periodically.
It's just good to know that these resources are available when you need them - and even if you don't work as moderator, they are good to review to think about how applying some preparation can result in a fantastic event.
There are times when it actually is a benefit to live near Microsoft. You couldn't tell me that when I used to struggle with software or Windows compatibility issues in the past - knowing I could drive there, but without anyone to contact. Good news, though... on March 14, Microsoft is kicking off their Small Business Summit live near their campus - but if you are not in the Pacific NW, don't worry - you can sign up for over 25 webcasts on sales and marketing, financial management, productivity, mobility, and security.
While there are a couple of GREAT speakers like Jay Conrad Levinson and John Yokoyama lined up, I am disappointed that the Sales & Marketing track seems weaker than the others, though... (note to Microsoft COO Kevin Turner: you have good local resources at your disposal in this area.... hint.. hint... )
It isn't often that I feel Microsoft, my hometown mega-corporation, actually cares about small business - so it has been good to see the development of programs like this.
If nothing else - listening to Keith Ferrazzi of Greenlight will be valuable - (see my fellow All Biz blogger Lisa Haneberg's e-book 9 Lives of Leadership with a chapter on Keith) There are at least three or four additional potentially interesting webinars on a host of subjects. Check it out.
As either a business owner or a professional seller, conferences like this (including web-based ones) are a great way to see how large corporations market and how they create value for you to want to be involved. Keep in mind the offers, Microsoft SBS follow up emails once you sign up - and the whole brand and packaging of what Microsoft claims to be a big focus of their vision now - support of the small business owner.
Once again, I'm hosting a weekly no-charge tele-conference call (there is a long distance charge to your phone) that focuses on sales inspiration. This series begins today and runs through March 2006. The call lasts just 21 minutes each week, and 6 of those minutes are for your questions and comments. Our call begins at 11AM EST/ 8AM PST. Join in - just call (319) 632-1100, then dial 569212#.
Each week, we will talk about the inspiration, attitude, and mindset required to succeed in a big way in sales. If you are successful, then join us to share tips. If you are like most sales professionals and want to be MORE successful, then dial in and share what you know, plus learn a thing or two from others.
Professional sellers and business owners who wear the sales hat nearly always want to increase revenues and learn from past mistakes. Let's share to help support others - if you know of someone in sales, or who is running their own business needing sales, please forward this information to them, and "see" you on the calls. Mark your calendars - the goal is to make it a highlight of your week.
It's always amazing to me how some business owners and sales professionals are quick to put down their competition. The phrase "putting down" is mild - I recently attended a local event where I was an exhibitor. The speaker was an author who wrote a book about selling. Was this speaker "competition" to me? He was here from out of town, promoting a book on sales effectiveness. The audience was made up of local companies needing ideas on selling - otherwise they probably wouldn't have attended - and within hours, the speaker would leave. I saw it as a golden opportunity to remind attendees that there are good local resources to help them beyond the knowlege a book can offer. So while I at first might have been disappointed to not have been that keynote speaker, I stopped thinking about it as a competitive situation and instead how to make the most of it.
Think of ways you can climb onto opportunities like this one - the crowd came in for the national speaker - and my investment in being an exhibitor was very worthwhile. In fact, i donated a session on increasing revenues and the person who won it (through a front-of-the-room drawing) told me that someone offered him ten rounds of golf for it - so I know their were key qualified folks there wanting what I do. See how you can modify this idea, but read on about my feelings on competition:
While at this event, I met a sales representative who bashed two competitors within about 90 seconds. I even gave him an "out" by saying that I like to focus on my company's strengths rather than my perception of industry counterparts' flaws - but he wouldn't stop.
Discussing negative aspects about your competition, also known as your "industry counterparts" - has no place in your business conversation with prospective clients. Listen to an NFL coach talk about the upcoming game - they don't put down the other coach or the other team - they talk about what that team does well, and how they feel they are ready for the challenge. Whether you are into sports or not - take a listen next time you are listening to the radio or TV since it is football season - or find a sport of your choice. Professionals don't lambaste the competitor.