The Competitive Advantage
January 31, 2023
Get on a Plane… Go to a Conference
As I write this, I’m 30,000 feet in the air heading home to Nashville from Miami, where I participated in my first conference of the year – the Insights Association’s CEO Summit. It’s just my third conference in the past 12 months, along with Greenbook’s IIeX event last Spring in Austin and the Quirks Event in New York this past Summer.
And the result of attending all of these conferences? Exactly the same… and I mean that in a good way:Continue Reading
August 2, 2022
Stop Being Complacent… and Build ‘Other’ Relationships
Last year, I wrote a blog post entitled, ‘The number one reason why you lose clients? Arrogance!’ It was one of the most read posts in all of 2021. Today I want to write about reason #1A – and the one I hear about more than any other reason for the loss of clients – complacency! And the story (err… excuse!) goes something like this… “We had a great relationship with [insert Fortune 500 company name here]… and they were a great client for several years… but then our main contact left and we lost the business.”Continue Reading
February 9, 2022
A Great Experience with a Used Car Salesman… A Lesson for ALL Salespeople
‘Great experience’ and ‘used car salesman’ are generally not two phrases you see together, but in this case, it’s true… and the story provides some valuable lessons for all salespeople and seller-doers.Continue Reading
February 16, 2021
The #1 Reason Why You Lose Clients? Arrogance!
Sure, there are a lot of reasons why you lose clients… you messed up a project or a competitor dramatically under cut your prices or your key contact left the company. But the #1 reason why you lose clients is ‘arrogance.’
You assume that your good work is enough to solidify your relationship with the buyer. It isn’t.
You assume that your good work will keep you top-of-mind with clients. It won’t.Continue Reading
September 30, 2020
Stop Selling… Start Helping!
I generally empty my spam folder every day, but for some reason, I had skipped a few days… and had a mountain of emails to be deleted.
As I was looking through them and getting ready to hit the ‘delete’ button, I noticed a consistent theme across all of them. Other than a couple of “I’m a barrister in Dubai I need your help to claim $20 million,” every single one of them was a hard sales pitch: SEO services, website design, app creation and so on and so on. And most from companies I had never heard of.
Even though this was my spam folder, I think there’s still a lesson here… if you want someone to take notice of you – in an email, over the phone or in person – stop selling and start helping. Or as one of my clients likes to say, “bring value to the relationship.”Continue Reading
August 25, 2020
How to Build Trust with Buyers
One of the guiding principles of B2B sales is that ‘a buyer won’t buy from you until they get to know you… then like you… then trust you.” It can’t and it won’t happen any other way.
And of those, ‘trust’ is the most difficult to achieve. But ‘trust’ isn’t just about you. Your firm (and its staff and its services & products) also has to be trusted by the buyer. So, how can you help a buyer reach that level of trust in you and your firm?Continue Reading
March 1, 2020
“But we’re a really good partner.”
3 Steps to True Big-Client Partnerships
I had a conversation last week with a friend of mine, the well-known CEO of a large market research firm. He was telling me about the time when he first joined his firm and, as part of his onboarding, reviewed their top 10 clients. One of them was a Fortune 100 company, a manufacturer of consumer food & beverage products… a brand known around the world. He was excited to learn that this company was his firm’s largest client and that his firm was a “good partner” to them.Continue Reading
February 18, 2020
5 Reasons Why Former Clients Will Come Back to You
True story: Over the past two weeks, four different firms reached to me to ask about our services and how we might best work together. What makes this a bit unusual is that – at some point in the past – I had a relationship with every one of these firms.Continue Reading