Stefan Drew - The Marketing Magician

FE, Education & Business Marketing: Quick, Effective, Low Cost Marketing

Stefan Drew - The Marketing Magician

Tag: business

Three Vital Business Questions

In Almost Every Business Situation There Are Three Key Questions To Ask

Asking these questions can decrease your workload and save you both time and money. In a sense this is about time management; but not in the traditional sense. 
So what are the questions and when should we ask them?
Well you can ask these questions at various times and in many situations. 
For example when you need copy for a poster, leaflet or website. Or when your accounts need preparing, or when you need to mass mail a thousand prospective clients.  In these situatiuons ask your self the following questions. 

Does this need to be done?

If it isn’t necessary then just stop.  Far too often we do things that are not a priority just because we have always done them.  Or we do them in the same way simply because that is the way we have always done them.  Iif we don’t think it though it can be time and money wasted simply because we have failed to ask if this really needs doing.  If in doubt …. stop it.
But is it does need doing try the second question.

When does it need to be done?

Is it necessary now or could it be done later?  Lots of jobs need doing at some stage but now might not be the right time.
Of course if it doesn’t need doing now, but you have time to do it now, then now might still be a good time.  Preparation, made with time on your side is a great thing. So don’t discount doing something now; especially if when it will need doing you might be busy.   
But whenever it needs doing there is a final clincher.  And this is the biggie.

Am I the right person to do it?

Time is money so think about this.  Do you need to do it personally?  Or could you outsource it to someone else? 
Of course, even if you decide to outsource the work, it may still require some of your time.  For example you might decide to get a book keeper to look after your books, but you’ll still need to collect together your receipts and invoices for them to work on.  But that may take minutes whilst the book keeping will take much longer.  So there is a logic in getting someone else to do it. 
And producing copy for  a website will probably mean you producing a briefing on what you want.  But writing a series of bullets is quicker than producing the full copy. 
An example of this hit me in the last few days.  I am pulling together a big launch for a client.  One thing we need is a lot of new webpages.  I’ve drafted what we need but is it wise, or economic, for me to spend days writing copy when i can hire a professional copywriter for a fraction of my day rate?   My decision is to use my client’s money, and my time,   cost-effectively and hire a copywriter. 
And what about producing transcripts of the video you made?  Outsourcing that overseas probably makes a lot of sense.
What we all need to understand is that our job is to run the business NOT do all the work ourselves.  
Even if we don’t employ any staff, getting help from other businesses or via websites like Elance, Fiverr, Odesk, or the hundreds of other sites offering support, is low cost and easy, PLUS it frees our time for what we need to do ourselves. 
The three questions are vital if we wish to Create Business Growth.

Good or Bad Customer Care; It’s Your Choice … and Future

Good Customer Care is Vital and Will Be Shared Banking the money but not the customer serviceWith Many People.  Bad Customer Care is Toxic and Is Shared with Millions


Picture the situation where a loyal customer, with just weeks to live, contacts you and says they need to make some changes to their business arrangement with you.

Do you…..

a) Send them a letter, with an out of date phone number on it, that meant their only option was to go into a branch


b) Offer to visit them at home, even though this isn’t standard service, and do everything you can to help them?

The Customer Focused Answer

Congratulations if you said “B”, you are compassionate and care about your customers.

If you answered “A” yours could be the bank that my friend Mike Seddon was loyal to.

If you read my blog last week you will have heard about Mike. Mike is a personal friend, fellow masterminder and Internet marketing guru.  Mike has terminal cancer and only a few weeks to live. 


What About the Uncaring  Financial Institution?

Mike wanted to add his wife, Barbara, as a signatory to an account.  He had a letter back, with an out of date phone number on it, leaving him with no option but to go into a branch.

Mike can barely walk and this bank gave no option to a dying man but to go into a branch.  

Well to cut a long story short, Mike explained the situation on Facebook and thousands of people now know the name of the bank he’s calling uncaring bastards.

Of course had they gone out of their way to help him.  If they had gone that extra mile.  Then thousands of people would have praised them.


Customer Care is a Marketing Essential. 

Sadly this bank don’t understand this small marketing fact.


The Art of Business Communication

Understanding Business Communication Processes is vital tool in running any business.


To learn more about The Art of Business Communications follow the series of articles on our Marketing Magician website.  You will see it is much easier than many people imagine.

Business lessons ………. from selling a property for full price in a week

I’ve just sold a residential property in a week for the full asking price. We’d bought it two years before and made a good profit on the sale, which was very satisfying when the housing market is in turmoil.


I’ve written about my property selling secrets in a previous article, but can the techniques I used be applied to any business transaction?


The answer has to be yes.


Read on to discover more

Rule 1. Have a sales strategy …. Before you buy.


The first lesson is that before you buy anything you need to think about how you might sell it. When we bought the property two years ago we did so with an idea of who our typical buyer would be … and this shaped our purchase decisions. This rule also applies to starting a new business; when you start a new business one of the first things you need to consider is the exit strategy. I’ve recently started a new business with a business partner and our strategy is to develop the business to enable us to sell it in five years. That impacts the way we will run the business and on a myriad of business decisions we will need to make over the next five years.


Likewise if you are buying products to resell either as they are, or after adding further value to them by processing or similar, you need to have a plan before you purchase.


Rule 2. Presentation is all


My second thought is that presentation is all. Our property was in pristine condition when we put it up for sale. We’d painted parts of it, decluttered and depersonalised it …. It looked like a showroom … and so did the outside of the property. It had “kerb appeal”, the approach to the property was excellent, the grass was cut and the gardens looked great .. in other words “first impressions” were excellent. In business terms that means if people are coming to your premises the approach and outside of the premises need to look great. We’ve all seen premises where the weed-ridden car parking is surrounded with sagging wire fences. It doesn’t present a good impression and you can lose a sale before your prospective customer even gets out of the car .. in fact they may not get out of the car!


If you don’t have physical premises or sell online the same first impressions can be a problem if your website looks cluttered, has poor navigation, is hard to read and doesn’t make it easy to buy. Poor websites are an excellent way to kill your sales!


It doesn’t matter how much you have spent on the website and whether you like it. How your website visitors react to it is what really matters. So you need to have a good reporting or statistics package on it. I recommend Google Analytics as it provides all the information you are likely to need, is quick and easy to install, and is free.


Rule 3. Think about benefits


Lastly let’s consider the product or service you are selling. Are you sure that your prospective buyers really understand how the benefits it confers match with their needs? That means you need to understand their needs and they need to understand the benefits. To determine their needs you need to ask a few questions and listen …. many sellers fail the listening bit and wonder why the sale fails. You also need to educate your prospective buyer about the benefits you can offer.


Selling houses, products and services is far from easy at the moment but these basic common sense rules make a huge difference. Ignore them at your peril.


Your next move


If you want to discuss any sales or marketing problems you may have please feel free to contact me via or on +44 (0) 1926 632794.