Four simple questions to make your business known in a remarkable way

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OPINION: The bad news is that no matter what type of business you have, there are usually dozens of competitors selling similar products and services.

And a lot of these competitors are very good at what they do.

The good news is, you don’t have to be the “best” at what you do to get your business noticed and positively stand out from your competition.

In fact, you can be remarkably famous by asking four simple questions.

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Question 1: What is unusual, memorable or different about your business?

Question 2: What remarkable results are you getting for some of your clients?

Question 3: What common problems do you solve for your customers?

Question 4: How do you get many people to speak positively about your business?

No matter what your business, there are usually dozens of competitors selling similar products and services.

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No matter what your business, there are usually dozens of competitors selling similar products and services.

Let me explain how these questions can be used by a business selling physical products and also by a business selling a service.

Example 1: Business selling physical products

Giles and Lynette Stewart own a business called River Nile Linens in Matakana, Auckland.

River Nile Linens is owned and operated in New Zealand and makes quality bed linen that looks fabulous and fits your bed perfectly.

I had a conversation with Giles recently and asked him a few questions about his business.

I quickly discovered that there were a lot of things that could make her company and the products it offers outstandingly known.

Here are some of the things I learned from my conversation with Giles …

Question 1: What is unusual, memorable or different about your business?

What’s unusual about River Nile Linens is that they can make bed linen to fit any mattress size, and they do it quickly. By using whatever stock they have on hand, or they can do it on the spot in a matter of days.

This is important because bed sizes have changed dramatically over the past 10-20 years.

Twenty years ago, the majority of new beds sold were queen size. Today, the majority of new beds sold are actually king size or larger.

And a number of newer, larger beds sold today also have deeper mattresses. Which means that normal king-size bed linens don’t always fit well on those king-size or larger mattresses.

Something that is memorable about River Nile Linens is that they can, and often do, make bespoke bed linen for any type of boat bed. The beds on most yachts and boats are not of standard size, so you cannot easily buy bed linen for them. The solution is to have tailor-made bed linen that fits perfectly on your boat beds.

Something different about River Nile Linens is that they have a team of local machinists who can make custom bed linen in a range of yarns in a matter of days. You can even have custom bed linen tastefully embroidered with your company logo. A number of high end luxury lodges and hotels in New Zealand use River Nile Linens to personalize their bed linens with their logo etc.

Question 2: What remarkable results are you getting for some of your clients?

In chatting with Giles, he explained that research around the world has shown that most bed mattresses should be replaced every six to eight years. However, only a tiny percentage of mattresses are replaced that often. So most mattresses are well over eight years old.

However, you can often make your existing bed much more comfortable by simply putting a good quality mattress topper over your existing mattress.

And then combine that with brand new super high density yarn bed linen.

Many River Nile Linens customers have found that doing these two things has dramatically changed the quality of their sleep and made their existing beds much more comfortable and enjoyable.

Question 3: What common problems do you solve for your customers?

Due to supply chain issues and Covid-19 lockdowns, it looks like there will be a smaller range of products available for purchase for Christmas. Which means you might not be able to buy everything you wanted.

In other words, many people may find it difficult to purchase Christmas gifts for their friends and family.

Since River Nile Linens can manufacture custom bed linen on site in days or less, it is unaffected by supply chain issues. And because they offer contactless courier and nationwide courier delivery services, they can provide a wide range of handcrafted bed linens and other luxury goods.

Which means that they can quickly resolve the current donation problem that many people may be facing right now.

You don't have to be the “best” at what you do to get your business noticed, says Graham McGregor.

Provided

You don’t have to be the “best” at what you do to get your business noticed, says Graham McGregor.

Question 4: How do you get many people to speak positively about your business?

Giles told me that they have a wide range of products at River Nile Linens and some of them are very inexpensive. In fact, one of their very popular products is a $ 15 makeup remover cloth that their customers love. This cleansing wipe is often offered free of charge to customers who order bed linen. And because customers love it, they often buy more.

Giles also told me how some smart realtors in the luxury home market are using their bespoke bed linens. When they receive a new listing for a luxury home, they will get their client’s bed measurements. And then give them a set of custom-made luxury bed sheets and pillowcases as a thank you. Their customers love this gift. And many of those customers return to River Nile Linens and order additional sets of these deluxe sheets and pillow cases.

Now let’s take a look at using these same questions for a business selling a service.

Example 2: Company selling a service:

Greg Smith owns a business in Queensland, Australia called Send Handwritten.

Greg offers a service that helps businesses generate huge amounts of new sales using beautifully designed handwritten cards in a very smart way.

I chatted with Greg and asked him a few questions about his business.

I quickly discovered that there was a lot that could market his business and the service it provides remarkably.

Question 1: What is unusual, memorable or different about your business?

I first heard of Greg’s Send Handwritten business from one of my marketing clients in Australia. My client told me I had to talk to Greg because what he was doing was so different.

Greg basically helps his business clients generate massive increases in revenue from new clients and also existing clients. They do this by sending a series of beautifully designed cards with handwritten messages on each card.

Cards come in pretty envelopes with wax seals on the back. Greg then combines this series of handwritten cards with a carefully crafted social media campaign on Linked In at the same time.

And this can be followed by a number of discreet business phone calls to each person the cards have been sent to.

Greg’s business can also help a customer identify new customers they want to contact using this system, and they’ll get all the contact information they need as well.

Question 2: What remarkable results are you getting for some of your clients?

This is an area where Greg’s business is exceptionally good.

He showed me testimonials from a number of clients who have used his handwritten card service to generate new clients.

A large Brisbane accounting firm used Greg’s services and achieved $ 1.4 million in lifetime customer value using just 200 handwritten cards.

A well-known outdoor fitness organization invested $ 4,000 using Greg’s services and in the first six months this generated over $ 300,000 in new sales for them.

Question 3: What common problems do you solve for your customers?

A big marketing problem for many businesses today is getting their business noticed.

Greg has found that custom designed cards with handwritten messages work surprisingly well for getting businesses noticed.

Here is an interesting example. One of Greg’s clients repairs escalators.

This client used Greg’s services to send a number of handwritten Christmas cards to his clients thanking them for their past business. It wasn’t designed to make sales but just a way of saying that they value their customers’ business.

Fast forward six months and one of those customers stumbled upon the handwritten Christmas card that had been sent to him. He had stayed in a desk drawer. He then placed an order with the escalator repair company with a lifetime value of $ 250,000.

The escalator company was thrilled to see how much they stood out with these handwritten Christmas cards. Even six months later in this case.

Question 4: How do you get many people to speak positively about your business?

Again, this is one area where Greg really excels.

Because the handwritten cards he sends to his clients are so unusual and eye-catching people can’t help but share them with other people they know.

Greg sent me a handwritten map of Australia. I still have this card and this envelope a few months later. And I share it regularly with some of my own clients because it really stands out and is memorable.

Here is my challenge for you.

Ask these same 4 questions about your own business.

These questions will help you come up with many ideas on how to make your business noticeable and maybe even famous.

And if you need any help or additional ideas to market your business, email me.

Graham McGregor is a marketing consultant. His free marketing guide The Plan B Sales Solution is here.


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