I just finished this reading this book yesterday, and I have to say, I really enjoyed it. The author is a realtor, so it doesn’t not directly translate into my businesses, he does provide some real gems of insight into how you sell more, and even better, how you structure your organization to sell “you” more.
One strategy I adopted right away was Roberts’ Hour of Power, where you get a list together of 100 clients, associates, friends, strangers, etc and call them up just to say hi or let them know you were thinking of them, or ask them something about themselves and what’s been happening in their world. He recommends 100 calls a day, and of course, since my business is low volume, local clientele, it would be very difficult for me to sustain 100 calls every day. I have seen some interesting response from previous clients who I have not spoken with in several years. A few have even called me back (when I couldn’t leave a message, but my number was on their caller id) and one I had a really good conversation with. The whole premise, of course, is not to sell anything. Rather, you are boosting your “word-of-mouth” advertising by leveraging what Roberts’ calls the rule of 250 (that each person influences 250 people in their circle).
The other strategy I really like in this book is the idea of hiring assistants and building a team. I’m not ready to do this just yet, but if my plans work out, I should have staffing done by the end of next year – I really only need two part time people to do everything and my business will virtually run on it’s own, with only me there to wear the hat of manager. I have stuck my toe in the water, hiring a temper from a staffing agency to work on a marketing project – the results so far with the agency have been good, with their employee – not optimal. But, I simply haven’t been a boss long enough to make any real determination as of yet.
If you are in the business of selling xyz or make widgets or – well, if you are in business – then you are a salesman, whether you (or I) want to believe it or not. This book is a great leg up on the competition. I’m almost certain none of my competition in this area are following the strategies Roberts’ encourages (or any real strategy at all).