Get More Customers, Make More Money and Get More Out of Business by Attracting, Selling & Wowing Customers

Chances are you’re a business owner who wants to grow, create leverage or simply make more money and have more time to do the things you love. We get it. Most small businesses are struggling because they don’t have enough customers, they don’t have enough sales or they simply don’t have enough money.

Tania Allen | Get More Customers, Make More Money and Get More Out of Business by Attracting, Selling & Wowing Customers

Let’s make it clear up front, not every small business is struggling. Some are thriving and want to build a better business, whilst others are literally surviving. We can therefore say small businesses fall into two categories. They either:

  • Need new life & are ready to get back on track and go from surviving to thriving or
  • They are thriving and are now ready to go to the next level

Regardless of whether you’re currently thriving and doing well or wanting to thrive, it’s important to look closely at the common problems that can arise in any business at any time and at any stage of growth. Generally speaking you do not have a solid system in place to help you thrive and continue to thrive most small businesses will always at some stage be challenged with:

  • Not attracting enough leads or prospects into your business
  • Not converting those leads into customers and
  • Not getting customers to spend more and more often.

It has been long known that in order to grow any business you either need to get more customers, get them to spend more with you and get them coming back more frequently.

This can be broken down even further by saying in order to grow any business; a business must focus consistently on:

  1. Increasing leads – attract the attention of potential buyers.
  2. Increasing conversions in other words turn those prospects into paying customers
  3. Increasing the average transaction – getting them to spend more with companion selling or upselling
  4. Increasing the frequency of purchase – encouraging them to buy again
  5. Increasing lifetime value – keeping a customer for longer
  6. Increasing profit margins and;
  7. Increasing the number of referrals from friends, family, colleagues and clients

So what does that look like for you and your business, so that you can easily and effortlessly create systems that will help accelerate your business growth? To fully create leverage, it’s important to understand the big picture view of your business.

A good place to start is to strategise your company’s Lifecycle Marketing strategies & tactics.

So what is Lifecycle Marketing?

The Lifecycle Marketing Model provides a simple framework you can use to design a marketing plan that will help you attract customers, grow sales and deliver an experience that wows your customers. When put into action, Ideal Customer Lifecycle Marketing will help you get more customers, grow revenues or put simply, make more money and ultimately it will help you create more time to focus on getting more out of business in general.

To grow any business it’s vitally important you know and understand and put systems in place to support the business in ATTRACTING more highly targeted leads who are eager to learn more about your solutions, SELL MORE and position your product or service as the obvious choice when customers are ready to buy and WOW Your Customers so they stay engaged come back for more and refer their friends.

Regardless of whether you are operating a service based or retail business it’s important to know your starting point. We like to start with identifying your ideal client.

Know Your Target – Who is Your Ideal Customer

Attempting to reach everybody with your product or service is not only inefficient; it’s also very expensive. That’s why it’s important to narrowly define your target customer, and focus your marketing dollars on the market that is more likely to buy from you than other markets. It’s also important to understand that it’s not about you or your product it’s about matching a solution to your prospects specific challenges, concerns, frustrations, desires and wants. You can clearly define your target market by taking a look at your current customer base, evaluating why they buy the product or service you sell, and more specifically why they choose to buy from you. It’s also a good idea to grouping them based on similar interests. Don’t be afraid to get specific!

Attract Traffic and Interest

It’s important to generate awareness of your company and your product or service before you can start capturing interested leads. The “traffic” may come to you through website visitors, phone calls, in-person visits, and more. Your methods of advertising and attracting interest will determine the quantity of leads, the quality of prospects, and the way they reach you. You may attract traffic with Pay-Per-Click ads on Google or Facebook, social media activity, partner referrals, print ads, networking, live events, or any number of other methods. Once you get the word out about your company and gain people’s attention, you can begin to capture their contact information and follow up.

Capture Leads & Nurture them by Educating and Adding Value if they Don’t Convert.

The most successful marketers understand that a customer once is almost always a customer again and strive to connect and build relationships with potential buyers. This comes from collecting the phone number, email or any other contact point for the customer so that you can offer free value, help solve problems and potentially sell more services to them in the future.

If your prospects don’t convert straight it’s important to develop and implement a lead nurturing program into your business. This ensures you have an opportunity to build a relationship with your prospects over time and allows you to educate them about what it is you sell and the benefits that will solve their challenges, concerns, needs and wants.

Offer & Close

I come across this time and time again. You’ve got to ask for the sale if you want the sale. You’ve got to offer the cake with the coffee if you want to increase your average transaction value and you’ve got to back yourself enough that you know and trust your product and service is solving the need and or want of your marketplace. Make the offer, ask for the sale and you will grow your business easily and effortlessly. Oh and one last tip on closing sales.   Success is in the follow through. If you are in a service based business follow up and follow up some more. This process can be a combination of automated follow ups and personal follow ups but no matter up the more you follow up the more you will increase your conversion rates.

Deliver, Satisfy & WOW, Get Repeat Business, Referrals & More

After the sale, it’s time to deliver the your products and or services and create happy customers or as we have heard before raving fans. Have a look at how you deliver your products and services. Are you wowing your customers? Are you delivering an experience they will never forget and will want to come back for more or refer their family and friends to. Don’t take your customers for granted, as the moment you do they might just go next door to a competitor. Deliver WOW and satisfy and not only will you get more repeat business, have more people referred to you, you will also watch your profits soar.

 

Serving is the New Selling

Serving is the New Selling

We all love to eat and drink and if you’re like me you may also love to observe certain trends in the marketplace I have noticed an increasing number of people who dine out and grab takeaway. Gone are the days where takeaway was for the Friday night people are eating out or doing the grab and go every minute of every single day.

So looking from a fly on the walls perspective, it would be common for one to make an assumption that the food and beverage is booming and is likely to be on the incline rather than the decline.  Is this an accurate reflection for this coming year? Some say yes and others say no. In fact, I was reading in a recent article where it was predicted that … there will be a slowdown of growth in the overall food and beverage market in this current year and therefore some challenges for the franchising sector will also be experienced.

Now I’m going to make a bold statement here, if we all built out businesses on predictions and the forecasts, the economy would be built on fear and most business owners would be closing the doors before they gave themselves a chance to shine.

So how do you shine? How do you maximize your potential?  How do you take control and steer your ship to where you want it to go regardless of the economy and regardless of all other outside influences?

Here’s some proven ways that will help you maximize your potential in your business providing of course, you do the right things, in the right order and, at the right time on a consistent basis.

Business gurus both present and past say there are many ways to grow a business and some ways are more complicated than others. Often times because of the conflicting messages out there it’s easy for any business owner to lose sight of what’s really going to help us produce short term results and long term benefit and gain.

Let’s explore the top 3 that will help you build momentum faster.

As obvious as they sound, I invite you to take some time to consider the below and see what changes you can make and what actions you can take as early as tomorrow to build a more solid foundation for increased profits and set your business on a more predictable path.

 Increase the number of customers.

Now this one sounds a little obvious and it’s what most business owners want more of every single day. What I would ask you to do however, is to consider what this really means.…

To increase the number of customers, you firstly need to increase the number of prospects coming into your business. We all know not everyone who walks into your business will buy, so your #1 aim is to ensure your business is welcoming and invites more people in and aims to provide a solution to your customers challenges, frustrations, concerns, wants or needs.

With the understanding that not all prospects will turn into a paying customer, it’s important to ensure you have a strategy and a process in place to ensure that the majority of prospects are converted into customers and the rest are nurtured so they eventually buy or perhaps recommend you to others.

There’s your business tip #1. Increase the number of customers in your business, and in order to do that you firstly have to increase the number of prospects interested in doing business with you, and then you must do whatever it takes to show value and benefit to that prospect so they naturally want to buy what it is you offer and sell and this is what we refer to as increasing your conversions.

There are other ways you can increase the number of customers and that’s through customer retention. Your aim in business should be to increase the number of customers coming through your doors every single day. It is however very expensive to build a business based on a new customer strategy only, so take some time to consider how you would go about retaining your current customers, in other words coming back to you over and over and also how you could reactivate past customers who haven’t purchased from you for a while.

 Increase the transaction value

McDonalds have been famous for this. Using the traditional “would you like fries with that” approach to getting your customers to buy more.  Many a business owner believes they must increase market share and set out to achieve what is often times a deflating activity. What if I told you that you can influence the success in your business faster just by focusing on increasing wallet share and not just market share.

So what is market share and how do we increase it? Imagine a woman has $20 in her wallet to spend on food and beverage items for the day. She may walk into her local café and purchase a takeaway coffee for $4.20. Its lunch time and she’s undecided as to what she would like, so chooses to take the coffee for now. Meanwhile she’s walked out of your business and past another. By the time she decides what she wants for lunch, she’s well and truly gone. Will she turn back?  Highly unlikely. She is more than likely going to walk into another store and buy what she feels like at the time. This is a very simple example of losing wallet share.   She had $20 to spend, $4.20 was spent in your shop and possibly another $10 was spent in another store.

The key point for you to consider is, how do you get the customer to spend more in your business without feeling like you are following a script and doing the “would you like fries with that strategy” or worse still feeling like you’re squeezing the last dollar out of someone’s pocket just to fill yours with classic upsell and cross sell strategies.

Here’s a simple solution that will make everyone happy…..

SERVE DON’T SELL.  If you change your mindset and how you look at “upsells” and “cross sells” and increasing the transaction value, how you can “serve” your customer more then increasing the average transaction will become top of mind and will allow your business and service to flow. In fact I believe you are doing your customers a dis-service by not offering another item with their original purchase. The worst case scenario is your customer will say no. It’s that simple.

 Increase the frequency of repurchase.

An effortless way of increasing sales in your business is increasing the frequency of re-purchase. The key is to be mindful of how you invite your customers back more often. If you’re a retail store think about some ways how you would get your customers to come in more often. Perhaps it’s getting them on a morning coffee run pick up, offer an SMS ordering system, or perhaps you could send an SMS blast out to your customer base offering lunch time specials or afternoon delights.

As a service based business look at how you can package up your offers and get your clients coming back for more and of course more often. Regular automated touch points via email and SMS and phone provides a way for a well-balanced customer nurturing strategy.

Increasing this area alone by 10% can impact revenues significantly. Imagine what you could do if you increased this by more than that?

 Time to Take Action….

Knowledge is all but useless unless it’s applied so it’s time to get moving and implement some of these tips into your business to ensure you build momentum faster.

Take some time to consider how you will

  • Increase the number prospects into your business. Some ideas could include increase referrals, carry out consistent marketing, social media, running special events, special offers, promotions etc
  • Increase the average transaction value. Consider companion selling, what else will complement the original purchase. Is there an upgrade to what you are selling?
  • Increase the frequency of purchase. Take some time to think of ways you can invite your customers back sooner. Think about your offers and ongoing promotions.

Some say achieving business success is easy. I have to agree. The key to achieving momentum and maximising your potential is doing the right things in the right order and at the right time and more importantly on a consistent basis.

If you would like to learn more about how you can maximise your potential in business. Tania Allen is offering all readers of Business Franchise a Complimentary Road Map Strategy Session.

Is Overwhelm Sabotaging Your Success

How to get reduce everyday overwhelm and thrive in business

Remember when you first started in business, you thought it would be the most rewarding thing you’ve ever done. My guess is it’s also one of the hardest things you’ve ever done. At times, owning and running a business can be daunting, stressful and outright overwhelming and for some it becomes all too much. When you have more on your plate than you can handle it can derail even the best of us. If the overwhelm continues you can get to a point of really feeling stuck. 

Owning a business can doesn’t have to be this way. Some people say success is easy, you’ve got to know what steps to take and in what order to take them. When it comes to franchising you’ve been told it’s as simple as “following the system” but what if you’re doing all of that and you’re still stressed, filled with fear, worry and everyday overwhelm? How do you get out of overwhelm and into a place where both you and the business can not only survive but thrive.

It’s one thing to get overwhelmed, its another to stay overwhelmed and as much as we can probably admit to feeling stressed, overloaded and in a state of overwhelm more than once, what we don’t realise is staying stuck in overwhelm is literally robbing you blind of trying to achieve the dreams and goals you’ve set for your business and for yourself.

Overwhelm is simply a state of mind that can sabotage your long-term success. If you are someone who finds yourself very smart and capable but constantly in a state of stress and overwhelm then you are probably doing one of the most common triggers that cause you to become overwhelmed and keep you overwhelmed.

What I’d like to share with you today is 4 key triggers that cause you to get you overwhelmed and the things that keep you there, which ultimately can sabotage your success and then some ways you can overcome everyday overwhelm in your business and your life.

OVERWHELM TRIGGERS

1.     Busyness Addiction & Over Commitment. In other words biting off more than you can chew.

Busyness is literally when you are doing everything you can to move ahead, you are so driven and so compelled to do more and have more that you literally fill your life up with stuff

The key to stopping the busy addiction, is to understand the difference between being busy and being productive. Somewhere in your subconscious mind you haven’t realised that being busy isn’t getting you anywhere and being productive is what it’s going to take to move ahead. People who are busy addicted have a bad sense of time for themselves, they have low boundaries and have no system for doing or completing tasks and projects. Where do you need to say no and make a start to taking bite size chunks? You wouldn’t shove a whole block of chocolate in your mouth would you? My guess is you would break a square or two and eat it in smaller bit size chunks.

2.     Doing it Alone

When we start in business we can be wearing up to 10 or more various hats. We are looking after lead generation, sales, fulfilment, accounts, customer care, marketing and management and more. We become stuck in a rut and want to do it all ourselves and then when it comes to the time to recruit staff and delegate tasks and activities sometimes the mindset of “no one else can do it better than me” can lead to overload and overwhelm as we are trying to be everything to everyone. It’s important to understand that there will always be more to do than you alone can ever get done.

Doing it alone is one of the biggest triggers to overwhelm

Doing it alone for too long costs you and costs the business. It takes it s toll on you, your mind your body – your business. If you’re doing it alone and your business grows rapidly then it will implode on you or it doesn’t flourish because there’s so much going on and you’re doing it all yourself.

3.     Clutter and Disorganisation

If you’re currently spending countless hours looking for something in your office or desk or your environment is messy, cluttered and has no system or sense of order to it chances are you are overwhelmed in some way shape or form. When your environment is cluttered it’s like everything that’s going on in your environment is pulling at your eyes, there’s simply no opportunity to give your mind a break and work with ease.

Clutter in general can create chaos in your mind and your environment. That chaos is one of the biggest contributors to feeling overwhelmed. Take a quick look at the filing systems that support you both electronic and paper filing systems and be sure you make some shifts to clear up the clutter as your environment is dictating your outcome.

4.     Boundary Issues

One of the biggest triggers to overwhelm is not being able to say no and having weak or no boundaries. We do see this mainly in service based businesses but it can also happen in multi location businesses where the owner is managing more staff, attending more meetings etc.

When you don’t value your time, or what’s important to you its easy to lose your boundaries. They can get stretched or worn completely thin. Lose or no boundaries can lead to busyness addiction, complication and extreme overwhelm. There is an easy solution to this and that is stop being a yes person and know when its ok to say no.

 THE FASTEST WAY TO GET OUT OF OVERWHELM

 Overwhelm happens to all of us. What you do when it strikes you starts to sabotage your success. Let’s explore some ways you can eliminate everyday overwhelm:

 ¡         Create space and stop overcommitting.
If you make a standard in your business that you only have a certain number of meetings a day or you only work a certain number of days or certain times, then you will become more productive in the time that you do work.  Stretching your commitments out by a day or two will have a massive impact on your levels of overwhelm and will certainly make a big difference in your everyday.

 ·         Learn when it’s ok to say NO .One thing I learned  in business is the more disciplined I am with my time, the more I get done. It’s important to know where your boundaries are being stretched. Most of us have very loose boundaries. New business or marketing ventures and other commitments require time and focus. If you have too many things to manage all at one time you simply won’t be at your best. Spread them out and be clear about how many you will say yes to in a month. Here’s a tip: ask yourself; “If I say Yes to this, how is it going to get me closer to my ultimate goal? How will this make me money? What will I be saying NO to if I say YES to this?”

 ¡         Set Higher Standards and Value You

A commitment to high standards will always serve and support you.

  • Self-care & Time Out. Make sure you get enough sleep and fuel your body with good nourishment and exercise every day.
  • Systems. Systems are essential to reducing overwhelm for you, your team and the overall business. What systems do you need to support you in operating at a higher standard
  • Under commit and over perform. Be willing to start under committing and you will be amazed at how your performance levels will soar.

          Stop Doing it Alone –Stop wearing all the hats in your business and be willing to get the right help to take the pressure off. Having others support you in the day to day operations of the business will support faster growth, increased profits and a reduction in overwhelm.

 ·         Set realistic expectations for how much you can get done. One of the Overwhelm Triggers is thinking that you can get everything done in a short period of time. Start looking at what’s already on your calendar BEFORE you set deadlines for yourself. If you have to double the time estimated on all tasks until you start truly knowing how long things actually do take then do it.

 ·         Simplify how you run your business. If you have a habit of complicating things then you might need help with simplifying your operations. Complication leads to overwhelm so it’s time to get back to Keeping It Simple Sweetheart. J Sometimes the simplest solution is often the best.

 ¡         Schedule tasks in your calendar. Develop a habit of scheduling your tasks from checking email and voice mails to completing other tasks. This will prevent you from running your day from your To Do List or worse still your INBOX.

 ·         Release things that no longer serve you. Letting things go be challenging until you realise that if it’s no longer in serving and supporting your bigger vision then it’s just holding you back. This can be staff, your emotions, your habits, your clients and even your family and friends.

 ¡         Start your day off right. One of the best ways to prevent overwhelm is to start your day with a exercise and or meditation. When you set your mind and body on the right frequency for the day your brain will hone in on better choices and your body will feel energised.

 ¡         Take time away from your business to recharge every week. One of the best ways to prevent overwhelm is to make you take time out every week to really to recharge your batteries.

 

Networking at Main Events – How to Get the Most from Your Time , Energy and Money

As a franchisor I’m sure you are familiar with networking and the importance of it among your peers (fellow franchisors), suppliers, associates and new contacts. You encourage your franchisees to participate in regular networking events, big or small, as part of their local area marketing. So how do you get the most from your time, energy and money when networking at events, especially big events?

Regardless of what size event you are going to, it’s important you know how to make the most of the event to get a good return of your time, energy and money. Here’s a Simple Networking

Formula that will give you the greatest chance of success:
1. Decide why & choose your event strategically. It is simply impossible to be at every event running on every single day of the year, so it’s important to choose the events you attend wisely, ensuring the event you choose
is in alignment with what you want to achieve. In other words, you have to know why you want to attend the event and what you want to get out of it. The clearer you are on why you are going, the more chance you have of
achieving it. Key outcomes may include: gain more knowledge; attract new prospects; more than likely outcomes will include attract new partners, colleagues and referral partners

2. Plan to connect with a certain number of people. Have quality conversations rather than quantity. If there are 50 people at the event, don’t expect to speak to all of them. Be content with a quality conversation with five to seven people who the next day will look at your card and remember you and what you spoke about, and more importantly remember you the next time they see you. If it’s a larger event and your objective is to connect with a lot more then be sure you have a plan on how you will connect with people, and know when it’s the right time to move onto the next person. When attending a big event such as a conference, be and stay organised and participate in as much as you can while at the event. Especially at a multi-day conference, people want to learn, grow and network so they’ll tend to be more open and approachable, ready to talk about their businesses but also ready to find out more about you.

3. Take plenty of business cards. Bring more than you think you will need, it’s better to have some extra than to run out. I like to write something on the card to help me remember something about the person I have just connected with. You will find it useful when you go to follow up with them.

4. Don’t sell your product or services at the event. Rather if a person expresses interest, suggest that you phone them to discuss further.

5. Prep your elevator pitch. You always want to be ready with a confident and compelling answer to the question “What do you do?” If you are a larger well known brand then most will have an assumption or knowing of what you do. As a smaller franchisor there may be some that are not familiar with what it is you do and offer to the marketplace so it’s always a good idea to have an elevator pitch ready. Rather than answering the question of what do you do with… “I’m a lawyer,” or “We sell burgers,” it’s always best to follow the elevator pitch formula which enables you to connect with the person you are talking to and flow with your response so that it allows the conversation to continue rather than stop dead in its tracks after you reply with I’m a… The easiest way to create an elevator pitch is when someone says: “What do you do?” you simply reply with… “Do you know how… (what follows is usually the problem in the marketplace your product or service solves) then you follow with… “What we do is… (and
then you complete this with your solution”) of course if you only have a brief 10 or 20 seconds to answer the “what do you do” question then simply summarise what you created in the
above into one short sentence.

Here’s our example for Vision Alliance…. when asked what do you do? We would reply with… “Do you know how most business owners, franchisors and franchisees are struggling to increase sales and profits, build more momentum and simply get more out of their business and their life, no matter what more means to them… well, what we do is… we work as an extension of yourteam putting programs in place to help you maximise your potential, enabling you to get more out of business, and more out of life.”

Our ten second snapshot version would be either… “We help business owners maximise their potential,” or “We are in the business of buildingpeople and building businesses.”

Your aim with any length of elevator pitch is to lead into the other person asking… how do you do that? Rather than having them say “oh ok i get it” and making their own assumptions about you.

6. Put a follow up system in place. I’m guessing some of you will have a great follow up strategy / system in place and some will not. It’s always a great idea to have a follow up strategy in place to ensure you know
exactly what your next steps will be when following up the individual. You may end up creating three different types of follow up systems. 1) for prospects, 2) for partners, 3) associates, peers and colleagues. Remember to incorporate a combination of email, phone follow up, social media using LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter or send out cards.

7. The best networkers are the best listeners. Anyone will speak to you for ten minutes if you are not speaking about yourself.

Success is always in the fo llow thro ugh

Being a great networker is just the beginning to successful networking. As the saying goes… “Success is always in the follow through.” Therefore it is equally, if not more, important to follow up with the people you have recently connected with. Here’s a quick five step plan to support you in becoming a successful networker.

1. Make Contact. 97 per cent of people who ask for my card never do anything with it. If your initial aim was to build new relationships and you want to drive the relationship forward,

YOU have to take the action. For me, a followup email, rather than a phone call, is one of my favorite ways to reconnect with the person and continue the conversation. Another effective way is to send a LinkedIn invitation. Either way, the person can reply back at a time that’s convenient for them. Following the next four steps, you’ll increase your chances of a response.

2. Jog their memory. It’s a good idea to reference your initial meeting so they remember who you are within the first sentence or two of the email. Even better is to show that you were a good listener by mentioning something they talked about. For example: “Jim, I enjoyed meeting you at the Chamber of Commerce networking event last Thursday, and hearing about the successes you’ve been having this month with your new product launch…”

3. Connect the dots. Next, say why you think it makes sense to continue the conversation. Do you have some ideas to offer, some resources or connections? Do you see some natural synergies and think there may be ways to work together for mutual benefit?
4. Propose a low-barrier next step.

Acknowledging most business people are time poor, rather than dive into a face to face meeting as the very next follow up, perhaps suggest a 15-30 minute phone call which is a lower barrier for both parties and to be honest can be just as effective if you have a clear agenda and process for the conversation.

5. Make it balanced. Be sure to position this next step as a way to get to know each other’s businesses and goals, and uncover synergies between the two of you. That way, the other
person will feel there will be something in it for them and it’s not so one sided.

The Balancing Act

How to cr eate balanc e in the franchisor /franchis ee relationshi p It’s one of those areas that we know will never be perfect, and it’s one of those areas that if not right in the early development days of your  franchise network it can spin out of control quite
quickly with some, all or usually with just a select few.

So how do you achieve balance within your franchisor/franchisee relationship and how do you close the gaps in your current foundations to ensure the existing network of franchisees and your new incoming franchisees experience that same or similar relationship and culture?

Th e power is in your house!

Have you ever really taken the time to look at a light bulb that’s turned on at your front door or porch? What did you notice? I’m sure you would see what I see, an array of bugs and moths flying and crawling around the light? Have you ever wondered why they do that? It’s simple. They are attracted to the light. The brighter and more powerful the light, the more bugs and flying insects you will see around the light. In other words the bigger and more powerful the light in your business, in your team
and in your franchise network culture, the more positive people you will attract.
All too often I come into a franchise group and see and feel too much negative energy.

When negative energy takes too much power from your light, not only do you fail to attract good things, you are also pushing away or rejecting or even leaving no room at all for the good energy. When you apply negative energy in your network or when you fail to recharge your network with positive energy, you become disempowered and you also disempower people in your network.

When you intentionally apply positive energy in your franchise network, you become empowered and you also empower your franchisees who are attracted to and want to tap into your positive light.

So how do you keep your light bright? How do you maintain that positive bright energy within you and your franchise network as a whole?

The main thing to remember is that you must stay consistent in being empowering with everything you do. Simply by being empowering, you are generating more positive energy and adding more power to your light. Empowering is not something you be, it’s something you do every day – that’s blended into every interaction you have with your franchisees, colleagues and more.

It’s your ultimate responsibility as a franchisor to make sure that your batteries are always full of power so you can keep your light bright. Always remember: it takes energy to maintain energy, so if you are not adding to your positive energy, it’s automatically seeping away. WITH GREAT POWER COME S
GREAT RESPONSIBILITY

Understanding the three dominant relationship types

Before you can move into building and maintaining the ideal franchisee/franchisor relationship, it’s important to understand and identify with the three primary relationship types.

The dependent franchisee /franchisor relationship

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By looking at the illustration, the two lines represent two people in the relationship – usually the franchisor and franchisee. The dependent relationship is where one person is constantly holding up the other person and when one person places responsibility on the other person to fulfill his or her needs.

Generally, in a franchise relationship, this is usually the franchisor holding up the franchisee and the franchisee placing full responsibility on the franchisor for his or her success.

The franchisee becomes demanding and negative and nothing ever seems to please him or her. Over time the franchisor discovers there’s just not enough energy (time, money and resources) to hold the other person up because the dependent person is disempowering. No matter what the franchisor does, the dependent franchisee will still always place the responsibility on the franchisor for their overall success.

The franchisor generally feels the need to move away from this situation as a result of continual frustration and overwhelm, and support the franchisees that have a better attitude, a better commitment to the network and more positive
energy.

The challenge with this is, if the disempowered franchisee remains in the system, they will eventually steal and drain the energy from others within the network. This drain usually impacts other franchisees which results in total unbalance – not just in the initial franchisee/franchisor relationship but total unbalance in the network. So what’s the solution with this type of relationship? It’s important for the franchisor to start adopting more ways to empower the head office team in order to help empower the franchisees who are dependent to take responsibility for their overall success and happiness.

It’s also a good idea to review your recruitment process and truly identify who your ideal franchisee is so that these naturally disempowering franchisees just don’t make it
through the recruitment process.

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franchisor relationship
Now we know a dependent relationship is when one person places responsibility on the other person to fulfill his or her needs for success

What if both people in the relationship depend on the other person to make sure everything happens smoothly and everyone’s happy. This is a co-dependent relationship. The two figures in the illustration represent the franchisee and franchisor existing in a co-dependent relationship.

The challenge with being in a co-dependent relationship is that it doesn’t stay in balance. The illustration looks balanced, with each person holding the other up, but that’s not what actually happens.

One person is usually more demanding and needier than the other at different times. So
both sides are constantly drawing energy from the relationship, which is weakening it from both sides These are the franchisee/franchisor relationships that feel if they each give 50 per cent to the relationship, then their relationship will have 100
per cent. Here’s the problem with that: there’s still 100 per cent missing. What it really means is that there are two disempowering people in the same relationship.
To move past this stage of a relationship, you must again review your foundations of
expectations, the consistency of ongoing support and training and where the co-dependency started.

Perhaps it started with a lack of communication, perhaps a lack of follow through with regards to compliance or perhaps as a result of not setting the expectations and empowering each party to be responsible for the part they play in the relationship.

The empowering franchisee /

What makes a strong franchisee/franchisor relationship work is when you have two
empowering parties who take responsibility to make sure they are happy within themselves and are responsible for the part they play in the relationship.

The franchisor is responsible for ensuring they are empowering the network, fulfilling their responsibilities, following through on their word and their actions and ensuring they are coming  to the party when it comes to providing the right amount of support, ongoing training, tips, knowledge and insights.

The franchisee, on the other hand, is responsible for the part they play in the relationship. They have bought into a system, it is their responsibility to implement and follow that system, take the necessary actions consistently every day to ensure their success and to achieve their outcomes.

Just because the franchisor has provided the system doesn’t mean that the franchisee will be instantly successful. The franchisor fulfills his responsibilities in that role and then the franchisee must fulfill his responsibilities in his/ her role. You will see in an inter-dependent relationship there is a connection, there is a balance and each individual is responsible for the energy, the attitude and the actions they bring to the relationship.

Each individual is 100 per cent responsible for their role, duties and obligations in that
relationship. By empowering yourself and then empowering others to be 100 per cent
responsible for the energy they bring to the relationship and for the actions they take which are necessary to create successful outcomes, the relationship becomes more balanced and sets a solid foundation for a long and happy journey.

So as a franchisor, how do you move towards creating more balanced inter-dependent
relationships? Well the only thing in the entire universe we have control over, is changing ourselves. So it starts with you.

Ti me to Ta ke Action

In order to move towards building and then maintaining empowering franchisee/franchisor relationships, it’s important you get started straight away, taking the right actions and steps in the right order.

If you are an established franchisor it’s important to look at this from two viewpoints. Firstly, in the franchisee recruitment phase when you first start to engage with your prospective franchisees and secondly, with your current network of franchisees. As a new franchisor this will be something you must embrace right from the get go.
1. Review what is! Looking honestly at your franchise network, it’s important you identify exactly what types of franchisor/franchisee relationships exist within your network. Once you have identified what is – it’s important to then;
2. Decide what it is you want! How do you see your future relationships with your franchisees? How do you see the dynamic between each franchise unit? How can you empower your franchisees more to assume responsibility for the part they play in the relationship? How can you do the same with regards to the part you play in the relationship? Be sure to write this down or pop it up on a whiteboard with your team.
3. The difference between what is now and what you want to exist in the future is what we call the GAP. Knowing your GAP is vital in determining what steps you must take and in what order, and at what time you take them.
4. Re-educating your existing franchisees and introducing a new relationship culture won’t happen overnight, it’s therefore important you prepare a 90 – 180 day action plan that incorporates the delivery of some new innovations, communication and support models that encourages responsibility, empowers and inspires action and reduces reaction among the network. Your action plan should also allow for a complete change in your recruitment process, to ensure the new incoming franchisees are developed in an empowering way and understand the dynamic and type of culture you have right from the time they first make their enquiry with your franchise group.
5. If you feel the GAP between where your current relationships are and where you want them to be is large, then give priority to revamping your franchisee recruitment process with a vision of getting it right at the beginning of the relationship for new incoming franchisees.

6. Once you have a plan in action for your new incoming franchisees and your existing
franchisees, then may I suggest you put in place a 12 month change management, training and support program to ensure you create a long lasting result. It’s not always going to be perfect but I guarantee that you will create more balance within your network as a whole. A balanced and more empowered network will
ultimately influence the net worth of your group, so it’s something that’s well worth spending some considerable time on this area.

Personal Attributes For Success

If you were given a magic wand and had the opportunity to wave it over your  business and your life what would you change? What things would stay the same?

Most successful people when asked what the secret to their success has been have responded with: it’s in the uncanny ability to channel focus in a singular direction. To focus is a two-part process: it’s a clear vision, and it’s waking up as the person who can make the vision occur.

Lets explore some of the key personal attributes for success.

Know what you want

It appears to be an obvious one however you would be surprised to learn that a very small percentage of business people know exactly what it is they want and stay focused to it’s achievement.  Most have a few options available to them and therefore fail to take the necessary actions that help them realize their goals faster. Not being 100% clear about what you want can open yourself up to falling short.

The first place to start is take a pen and paper and write down exactly what it is you want. Be sure you write down what you want in all key areas of business and in life. It’s important to be balanced in this. Writing down what it is you want will help clarify and solidify in you heart and mind whether it’s really what you want.

The best way to predict your future is to create it!

How you write down what you want is very important, so as you begin the first step of writing down your goals, make sure your outcomes meet the CREATE Critera.

C- Clear and Concise

R-Realistic

E-Ecological

A- As if Now

T- Timed and Toward What You Want

E- End Step/ Evidence

In short it is important what you want is expressed in a clear-cut way. It must be clear, specific and concise. Remember we don’t get what we want, we get what we expect, so it’s important when writing your goals be sure you set ones that are realistic and you know you can achieve them. It is a good idea to run an ecology check on your goals, which simply means looking at the consequences of achieving that goal. You can do this simply by asking yourself: is this outcome good for me, good for others and good for the planet?  Be sure to always write goals in the present tense as once the mind has fully imagined something, it makes it far easier to accomplish it. Although you will write your goals in the present tense you still must put a future date or time to your goals to indicate when you wish to achieve this outcome, even if it’s tomorrow or something small. The T in CREATE also stands for toward what it is you want. Your goals should always be stated in a positive way. State what you want rather than what you don’t want. Finally it’s important to know what the end step is for your goal. The end step or evidence is the last thing that has to happen so that you know for sure you have achieved your desired outcome. E.g. by 31 march 2014 you want to attract a new client therefore you may see yourself signing the agreement and banking the deposit.

Now that you  have clarity around how to write goals it’s time to implement it. Take action and come up with a good two week, one month, three month, six month and 12 month goal that will move you closer towards your vision and achieving what it is you want.

What You Focus On Really Determines Your Reality

Warren Buffet, believes what contributes to overwhelming success is…. “what we focus on and equally important what we choose not to focus on contributes to whether one achieves success or not.”

A successful person is one who has developed the ability to focus and maintain that focus on clearly identified and specific goals. Successful people also understand that for them to reach their targets they need to take consistent action to bring them closer and closer to where they want to be. Without action, nothing will be achieved.

Success is always in the follow through. How well you plan wont determine your success. Your success will always be in how well you execute and implement your plan.

You’re results are clearly determined by what you focus on.  This means you have every opportunity to change any and every aspect of your life, starting right now!

You Must Assume 100% Responsibility For Your Success

If you want to be successful, no matter what success means to you, you have to assume 100% responsibility for everything. There are no excuses. There may be set backs or economic down turns, or problems that affect your business. There may be situations you don’t like, peers within the network may irritate you, and the direction of the business may turn a corner in the opposite direction you were hoping for. While those things definitely have an impact on you, the way you do business and the sales you make, it is important to realise that regardless of everything, it is up to you, and you alone, to accept responsibility for the success of your business and do what it takes to make it a success.

Who are you blaming right now for your short falls? We never want to look at where the real problem might be, but it’s important to start to realise that your attitude towards your success starts with you.

Take some time right now to think about yourself just for a minute. It’s time to stop looking outside of yourself for the answers. What you sow, so shall you reap. If you are reaping well from the seeds you have sown then that’s fantastic. Think of some new ways to challenge yourself and reach new heights of success. If you are just not happy with what’s happening in your world right now, you MUST assume 100% responsibility for everything; your attitude, your beliefs, your actions, your wins and your shortfalls.

 

Model The Change You Want To Be

Modeling is something you have been doing your whole life without being aware of it. The only problem is that most of us model haphazardly without conscious awareness.

There are two types of modeling: inside and outside modeling. In the simplest form modeling allows you to access the tools, strategies, and mindsets of successful people so that you can expand your references and play a different game of life on a larger and more exciting playing field. Fake it til you make it is a long held paradigm for success. Far from being dishonest, this principle simply harnesses the power of the mind for accelerated change. Your mind does not know the difference between something that has happened and something you vividly imagined. By identifying new beliefs, values, attitudes and decisions that have already worked for someone else you get the inside knowledge of the rules by which to play your new game. Then you can set out to master the same skills and employ the same strategies. Why reinvent the wheel when you can learn from the best? These individuals have become masters because they have crafted their rulebook and congruently communicated their vision to the world. They have been clear about who they are, whey they stand for, and what they want to achieve, and they have confidently expected to achieve it. You can do the same.

Discipline

Once you have decided what it is you want to achieve, you have your vision in place and you know how you are going to achieve it, a disciplined approach must be part of your every day.

Have you ever wanted to shift a few kilos, get fit or accomplish some other goal, only to find you have lacked the discipline to see it through? We expect everyone else to be disciplined in their workday so that they can achieve as much as they can, so it’s important to expect it from yourself.

Daily planning will help you maintain discipline. Knowing what steps and actions you need to take and knowing they are moving you closer to achieving the bigger picture (your desired outcomes) will make it easier to stick to your plan.

Adopt An Attitude For Gratitude

One of the best ways to start changing your attitude is to start adopting an Attitude for Gratitude. It’s very hard to bring good into your life if you are not grateful for what you already have. There is always going to be someone else in this world worse off than you are. They may be a competitor, a friend or a complete stranger. Start each day by saying thank you! Giving thanks for what you already have will open the doors for you, and faster than you think.

Being critical of others, blaming, complaining, feeling tension, rushing, choosing to be in a bad mood are all signs you are not being grateful. Gratitude can transform your life. Stop allowing minor things to get in the way of your transformation and the life you deserve.

Adopt Unwavering Self Confidence in Yourself

Most successful people have a certainty and willingness to do whatever it takes to achieve success, however it often comes across as brash. Success has nothing to do with luck, to be extraordinary takes vision and a willingness to work harder than most people would ever dream of doing. This is the attitude of every highly successful person. What people might perceive as arrogance isn’t always boasting. It can come from a strong commitment to yourself and to your dreams. That’s the foundation of your certainty, your belief, and your patience. The key of course is to balance it all with humility.

Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway

Now I am not just throwing this phrase out there because alot of gurus use it. Fear is a real contributing factor to many business owners not realising their true potential, including me. What is important to realise is FEAR is simply False Emotions Appearing Real. Once you acknowledge that, and take control of those emotions and manage your way forward through that fear to a place of power, energy, enthusiasm and success, you will never look back.

It’s important to also let go of all fear-based attachments. I have been working on this with one of my own coaches and it’s one that successful people before me have done. To be successful it’s important to release the fear-based attachment to certain outcomes and of being, doing or having anything that you don’t perceive to be currently in your world. It’s about releasing the fear and having patience, living in the moment and pouring your passion into every minute of the day.

TIME TO TAKE ACTION

Define what success means to you.

Decide what it is you want.

Be sure to write it down clearly and concisely.

Start catching your ANTS- automatic negative thoughts.

What new attitudes can you adopt? Write them down.

Adopt an Attitude for Gratitude. Start keeping gratitude journal and write in it daily.

Be clear about your vision.

Be sure to write it down clearly and concisely.

What can you do to ensure you stay disciplined and focused on achieving your desired outcomes?

What actions will you take over the next 30 days to help you move closer to your dreams and goals?

Business Growth Fundamentals

Acknowledging there is no one size fits all approach to growing your business, it’s important to constantly review the strategies and tactics you are implementing in your business on a month to month basis.  There are lots of other key areas that contribute to the overall success of your business but for the purpose of this article as I am limited in what I can include I review for you a simple formula that will help you consistently grow your revenues.  Revenues are what most business owners focus on so I trust focusing on this area is ok with you. Of course I can also only skim over this so should you want more comprehensive info and support please feel free to contact me.

As a business owner after you have laid your foundations and you are ready to grow your business. There are nine fundamentals that must be focused on and worked through in order to grow your revenues.

The nine are listed below so may I encourage you to consider each point and how each one relates to your own business.

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Part One requires you to have a look at who your ideal client is. Your business will be more profitable if you deal with the customers you want to deal with and who are the best for your business. Now there is a process one must go through to really determine the ideal client profile for your business but for the sake of this article in short when putting together your ideal client profile be sure to work through and understand the elements such as:

  • How They Think
  • Why They Buy  (Want’s vs Needs)
  • What They Want -Hot Buttons  (remember people don’t buy what they need they buy what they want)
  • Who to Target – (Decision Makers & Influencers)

Part Two is all about Lead Generation and Your Sales Process. How do you drive hordes of customers to your business for the least amount of money? Lead generation is not just about the advertising and marketing you do it’s about ensuring you have a solid sales process  in place that covers lead generation, how and where do you find the best prospect s for your product or service, then leads into qualification of that lead and ensuring not only are you adding value in educating your prospect of the benefits of dealing with you, your sales process should also highlight the steps to follow when converting your lead and of course nurturing the lead that didn’t convert.

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Only 4% of leads are ready to buy now. That means 96% are not ready. If you don’t have a process in place to nurture your leads you could be wasting your time and your money.

Part Three is all about Lead Conversion. This area of focus should include how you communicate to your target market, what marketing strategies you will use to communicate your message and then how you will make your sale. If you are in retail your distribution channel is of course retail but if you are in a serviced based business you may choose a couple of distribution channels which could include direct sales, online sales and phone sales.

 

Now’s the time to review your plan or create a new one for the coming year. Take some time to create your roadmap. Make sure it includes:

What level of revenues do you want? What products and services will they come from? What does your ideal client look like? How will you communicate with your ideal client and what message will you communicate? Remember your communication is very important. Your focus should be on the benefits and not all about how good you are. Your communication should speak directly to the decision makers wants and not needs.  Be sure your plan also includes what steps you will  follow in what order to make sure you either convert the lead or nurture the lead until they buy from you.

 

Maximising Your Potential… Continuing the journey

Last issue we started the journey in maximising your potential in business. By now you should have a clear vision of where you are headed, you’ve assumed 100 per cent responsibility for your success and have worked to adopt and maintain a positive mental attitude helping you hold the right beliefs, take the right actions and produce the rights results for you.

This article kicks off focusing on an important area of business: Your Ideal Client. Then we will move into the Seven Key Areas that will have a direct impact on your profits .

Target Your Ideal Client to produce results

No matter what stage of development your business is presently in, all small business owners want more revenue. That is ALWAYS priority number one – and to be honest, it should always be. Without Sales and Marketing there would be no business. So it would be fair to say that Sales and Marketing are the lifeblood of every business. As Peter Druker once said ‘Business has only two functions – marketing and innovation’.

The key to dramatically increasing your sales and marketing results is totally dependent on your ability to attract – not just more of any client to your business – but more of your ideal clients.

Your ideal client is the one who not only buys your product or service, your ideal client is one who buys your product or service and raves about it again and again. They literally share your passion for what you do. These are clients who really want what you have to offer – instead of just needing what you offer. They don’t just use your product or service, they love your product or service.

Ideal clients mean fewer headaches, returns and complaints. They’re a pleasure to deal with and they’ll not only buy from you once, they’ll keep buying from you forever, or if you offer a one off product or service, your ideal client will be willing to tell their friends and family to buy from you. These are the type of clients who will spend more money with you than the average client ever would.

They’ll send you boatloads of referrals and will offer you unsolicited testimonials. They’ll brag about you on all the social networking sites – which garners you tons of free publicity.

When you properly and specifically identify your ideal client, you’ll soon find you’re working less and earning more – a lot more.

So how does this impact your business in the long term? Well, it has a huge impact on any future products or services you develop, and any future sales and marketing activities you implement.

Because you want to deal with more of your ideal clients, you will find yourself developing more products and services that your ideal clients want. You will develop sales and marketing pieces and processes that will attract more of those ideal clients rather than just any client. In fact this is an important point to make: Is your current marketing targeting just anyone with a pulse that may just buy your product and service? Or; Are you truly targeting your marketing to reach not only your target market but the ideal client within that target group?

If you can get this part right, you will be setting your sails in the right direction. In that I have discovered is the major reason for the tremendously high failure rate of small businesses today. Businesses are simply targeting the wrong type of clients. They are working harder not smarter.

Here’s the challenge

Every small business owner I work with on a daily basis wants to immediately develop their marketing program so that they can ultimately increase sales and profits. When

I speak with them, they’re already putting together various pieces of marketing collateral such as postcards, brochures, flyers and of course, their website.

Unfortunately, when I assess their business and compare their product or service with their ‘ideal client profile’, in the majority of cases the marketing they’re planning to use or are currently using will never reach the clients they are truly trying to reach.

The benefits of knowing who your ideal client is:

• Helps define your niche market

• Makes your ideal client easier to find

• Makes it easier to sell your products and services to

• You get a greater return on your marketing dollar

• The lifetime value increases.

Time to take action

• Take some time to write down and identify who your ideal client is.

• Define your niche market

• Know what your ideal client wants. People don’t buy what they need they buy what they want.

7 Ways to Increase Profits

Now this is an area I could write a book on, in fact I have! If you would like to learn more about this or, in fact, any of the key points outlined in this article or the past issue, then visit www.vision-alliance.com and purchase a copy of my book Franchise Profits. In the meantime let’s have a quick look at how you can start focusing on these areas in your business.

1. Increasing Leads. Leads are prospects or potential customers. Before you can increase the number of leads, it’s important to know what your numbers are. How many leads are you getting every day, week and month?

What marketing activities are attracting the best leads and what are producing none at all? By knowing the numbers, you can start to measure the results and will soon be able to direct your business to where the best leads are.

2. Boosting Conversion Rates. I am sure you understand what a conversion rate is. For those that don’t, put simply, your conversion rate is the difference between those who could have bought and those who did buy your product or service, or the percentage of people who did buy against those who could have but didn’t. Most business owners believe they have a high conversion rate, however, when measured, they are horrified to find out their conversion rates are not as high as they had originally thought. It’s hard to boost anything if you don’t have a starting point. So start measuring your conversion rates before you start thinking you don’t need to increase them.

3. Boosting the Average Sale Value.

McDonalds are great at this. Their ‘would you like fries with that?’ message has made them additional millions each year. Think of some ways that you can upsell, cross sell, offer larger units, or package products together to boost the average sale value every time a customer buys from you. You will be amazed at the difference it makes to your dollar results.

4. Increasing the Purchase Frequency.

How can you get your customer coming back to your business for more and more often? Those who can think of more ways to get their customers coming back again and again will dramatically impact their bottom line for the better. Most retail stores have their frequent buyer cards now, perhaps you can offer product upgrades, develop a back-end or even develop an ongoing membership club to get your customers coming back more frequently.

5. Margins. Your margins are the percentage from each sale that is profit. Your profit is what’s left after ALL costs have been taken out. There are many ways that you can increase your margins. They include: reducing expenses, increasing prices, outsourcing, using low cost or no cost distribution channels and increasing overall productivity.

Focusing on all or just one can impact your bottom line.

6. Lifetime Value. Most business owners underestimate the Lifetime Value of a customer. Lifetime Value refers to the amount of revenue and profits the business owner expects to receive from their clients over the term of their relationship with them. By knowing the Lifetime Value of your client, you will begin to know how much you can spend to attract a client and will possibly determine where you will spend your marketing dollars in order to attract your new client.

Here’s how you can quickly calculate the Lifetime Value of a customer:

Lifetime Revenues

100 (sale amount) x 4 (#of time they purchase) x 5 (the number of years they stay with you) = $2000

Lifetime Cost of Goods

20 (cost of product or service) x 4 (#of time they purchase) x 5 (the number of years they stay with you) = $400

Lifetime Profit

Lifetime Revenue $2000 – Lifetime COGS $400 = Lifetime Profit $1600

By understanding the Lifetime Profit alone you will begin to understand exactly what you can spend to attract the right clients to your business.

Your Lifetime Value is the difference between the Lifetime Profit and the Lifetime Marketing Costs. (you will need to work this figure out also)

Lifetime Profit $1600 – Lifetime Marketing

$600 = Lifetime Value $1000

7. Increasing Referrals. To really maximise the potential in business, it is vital you have a number of raving fans, (ideal clients) associates, friends and family referring business to you. To drive your business with referrals it’s important you actually have in place a solid referral program which allows you to proactively build your business through referrals, rather than just waiting for them to just turn up. Some ways to drive more referrals to your business could include: reward programs, two for one offers, new customer thank you letters, paying referral fees, and customer recommendations just to name a few. Start thinking today about how you can implement a proactive referral program into your business.

Maximising Your Potential in 2014

For some, 2013 was a year to forget and for others it was a year where businesses flourished and business owners achieved more then what they had anticipated. Now is the time to start planning what your year will look like in 2014

So why did some slow down? Why did some fall over completely, and how are they different to those who managed to maintain momentum in the turbulent waters and even thrive in such an uncertain time?

Working with many business operators both in and out of the franchise sector, we have noticed that those who consistently do the right things, in the right order, seem to stay on track to building the business of their dreams. So I thought I would take the opportunity in this article to briefly share some of the key areas that seem to help business owners maintain momentum and help close the gaps between where you are and where you want to be, FASTER.

Remember though, knowledge is all but useless unless it’s applied. So may I encourage you to implement what you read, or, if you have in place most of the points outlined in this article, may I encourage you to review these elements of your business and work towards strengthening them as much as you can to help you maximise the potential in your business. Not just today, but over the next year, two or three.

I have come to realise there are two types of business people in the world today – one is committed to their success the other interested in success. Those who are interested simply do what is convenient to them. Those who are committed to their success do whatever it takes to succeed – no matter what.

Which one are you?

Vision

“A vision without a plan is just a dream. A plan without a vision is just drudgery. A vision with a plan can change the world.”

-Old proverb

No matter where you are and what stage you are at in your business, it’s important to have a strong vision. A vision paves the way, provides clarity of where you are taking your business. Without a vision, there is no focus and without focus it is easy to get off track and start heading in a direction that can set you back months and sometimes even years.

Building the business of your dreams starts with creating a big enough and bold enough vision. If you have never sat down and taken the time to create a clear vision for your business and your life, then may I encourage you to take some time to create a clear direction for where you want to go in your business. This is the first step in creating a solid foundation for your future success. It is the core centre that provides the direction and purpose for the entire business. For those who do have a vision in place, be sure to review it to see if you are on track or if it or the actions you are taking need revising.

TIME TO TAKE ACTION

• Review or create your vision. Be sure it’s big enough and bold enough and something that’s worthwhile.

• Be sure to write your vision down.

• Be sure to set a clear plan of action to take so that you do, in fact, achieve your vision.

Taking 100 per cent responsibility for your success

“You must take personal responsibility. You cannot change the circumstances, the seasons, or the wind, but you can change yourself. “ -Jim Rohn

If you want to be successful, you have to take 100 per cent responsibility for everything you experience in business and in life. This seems simple – but for most of us we have been so conditioned to blame something or someone outside of ourselves for all the shortcomings in life and when things just don’t go right. With such a long term conditioned habit, it’s sometimes hard to look at perhaps the real problem – ourselves.

As a franchisee you have bought into a system and a brand. In order to be successful and truly build the business of your dreams, it’s important to partner with that system and brand and take consistent daily action to produce the results you want. Spending so much time and energy on focusing on what’s not working will only result in poor results. Maximising the time you spent on taking daily action, focusing on income producing activities, focusing on going the extra mile with your customers and assuming 100 per cent responsibility for your success will produce the long term results you want and is the very reason you bought into a franchise in the first place.

TIME TO TAKE ACTION

• It’s time to stop looking outside of yourself for the answers.

• Give up blaming and complaining.

• Start assuming 100 per cent responsibility for your life and all your results – both successes and failures.

• Learn to replace complaining with making requests and taking action that will achieve your desired outcomes.

Adopting a mindset for success

Your mind is a lot like a parachute. It works much better when it’s open. If you were to take an honest look at your life and your business, is it everything you had planned, imagined or hoped it would be? In order to start building the business of your dreams, it’s important to create a mindset for success.

Once you have started to assume 100 per cent responsibility for your results, you can move into looking at your thoughts and beliefs. Our mind is the most powerful tool you have. It can either work for you or against you.

Successful business people all over the world have mastered how to develop and maintain a positive mindset so that it works for them.

New thoughts lead to new actions. If you are not happy with your current results, then it’s important to understand that how you think, what you believe to be true and your existing habits have all got you to where you are today. If you want to change your results, you’ve got to adopt a positive mental attitude, some new thinking habits so that you will take some new actions in order to produce different results.

Small business owners have been mentally conditioned to behave a certain way. They have specific beliefs such as: ‘in order to make more money, you have to work harder’;

‘Money is the root of all evil’; ‘No pain, no gain’; ‘Money doesn’t grow on trees’; or, ‘If I don’t do it myself, it will never get done.’

Their belief leads to a specific action which is to work more hours and put forth more effort in a vain attempt to increase revenue and profits. That leads to specific results, which are feelings of being overwhelmed, anxiety and frustration, so more and more effort is required, even though results don’t seem to appear.

If this sounds like you, then may I suggest you start to change your thinking. Once you understand how to change your thinking you will be amazed at how quickly your results will change.

The easiest way is to start to focus on what you want rather than on what you don’t want.

Now it’s not enough to think new thoughts – you have to be sure to take consistent daily actions. Be sure you focus on income producing activities and not just any activity.

Try delegating the activities that don’t earn you money, or you are not good at, and it will free up your time so that you can focus on the activities that do produce income and that you enjoy. A key point to make here is that there are people who play and activities that you have to work hard at.

Delegating these tasks will free up your time and your mind which will ultimately allow you to build momentum in your business faster.

TIME TO TAKE ACTION

• Start becoming aware of your ANT’s.

Automatic Negative Thoughts.

• Learn to create Automatic

Positive Thoughts.

• What do you WANT? Once you know, write it down review it daily.

• Start focusing on What You WANT! Do not focus on what you do not want.

• Start saying ‘positive statements’ daily like I am a successful business person.

• Start taking ‘Consistent Daily Action’ so you can achieve your goals.

• C all Vision Alliance for additional support.

These are just the first key areas that you can start focusing on over the next couple of months. By the time the next issue of Business

Franchise arrives you will be ready to move onto the other key areas. Key areas that will continue to help you maximise your potential including: Your Ideal Customer, 7 Ways to Increase Profits & Networking for success

Increase your Chances for Success

You have just started in your new franchise. You completed the training with flying colours, and you are confident that success is just around the corner. It has to be doesn’t it?

So often I see new franchisees thinking that because they’re part of a franchise network, the systems and the brand will do it all for them. This level of thinking is quite common and blows me away every time I hear it.

Perhaps you have been in your franchise for just a few weeks, or perhaps more than a few months and the initial rush and buzz has wound down and it’s starting to become more challenging than you thought it would be. You are possibly now thinking more business, increased profits and more free time would be nice. So how do you achieve that? How do you guarantee your success, how do you ensure long term sustainable success?

If your franchisor could wave a magic wand and suddenly change something about your business what one thing would you have them change? Would you have them provide you with an easier way to contact more, better qualified prospects,
and would you want those prospects as well as your current customers to view you as even more of a professional, or maybe even an expert in your field?

Perhaps you run a retail business and you would like to be a more effective sales
person and deliver more superb customer service. Perhaps you are in a service based business where you would like to be a more effective presenter, or more effective at closing sales or handling objections. Or is repeat business more important to you?

The list of questions could just go on and on. As a Franchise Coach I am often asked all these questions and more. In a nutshell people want to know how they can be more successful. How can they get more out of their franchise that they have either just bought, or have been running for a while. The systems show you how to run the business and that’s great. What can you do though, to take your business to higher levels and beyond?

The key point to make right here is the only person who should be responsible for waving the magic wand over your business is you. Sure you have bought a franchise and that should make you instantly successful right? Well not really. There are a few other ingredients you need to mix with the proven franchise system and the tools that your franchisor has given to you to make things the way you want them to be. Your goals for your business will always be different to another franchisee in your network, so it’s important to look at the other ingredients and combine them with the tools provided to create the ultimate success you not only desire, you deserve.

Throughout this article I will be discussing some areas and other factors that are critical for you to realise real business success. We will explore some of these key areas that you can begin to put to use immediately to help you improve the results in your business and your life. I could write a book on this topic so these key areas will get you started and perhaps look out for the book in the New Year, I might just have to write one. Take these general ideas and start focusing on those areas in your business.

For more comprehensive information on how to be more successful in your business feel free to email me for more information.

Start With The Right Mindset

Whether you make it or not in business, success comes down to one fundamental
characteristic, one vital ingredient. That ingredient is you must have a mindset of a successful business person. Study successful people if you have to. Look at the greats and what characteristics they had that kept them on track, that kept them persevering through the hard times and driving them forward in the
good times. If you don’t have the right attitude and the nose for business you will struggle.

Changing Our Thoughts

We all have thoughts. Everything you have done from birth to this moment is based on thoughts. It’s these thoughts that control us
and affect the way we feel. Over time these feelings create your belief systems, which include your feelings about “who you are” and “what your place is in the world.” These can be negative or positive. Our feelings and beliefs are what determine our actions. We tend to act consistently with the beliefs we have developed over time.

So our thoughts, create our beliefs, which then determine our behaviour. It is then our behaviour which determines the actions we take and it’s the actions we take which determine our results in life and business be that positive or negative.

If you want to develop your own freedom and personal responsibility for your life and business success, it’s important to make a conscious decision to do so.

The Business You Are In

If you do not take anything else from this article, remember this…
You are in the Sales & Marketing Business. Until you completely understand this, your business will be no better than, or no different to, any of the other choices your prospects and customers can select to do business with.

There are more and more franchised brands coming to play in the market, so it’s vital to understand that you are not in the business of selling coffee or making burgers or cleaning pools or mowing lawns. You are in the sales & marketing business. It’s what your product or service does for the customer and not the actual product or service itself.

The marketplace you operate in is so fiercely competitive, so cutthroat, and so unforgiving that you absolutely must do something to differentiate yourself from your competition. It could be just that little something you do to make the customer feel they belong with your company. Remember your customers names, offer that little extra, invite them to come back and make them feel welcome are just a few ideas. How many times have you done business with someone who really doesn’t make you feel welcome at all. Do you go back… No. Why would you?

Taking Action Makes the Difference

Most people I talk to they believe that knowledge is power! I believe they are only half way there with this statement. Only Applied Knowledge is Power. It’s not what you know it’s what you do with what you know that counts! Start Today, Take Action not just in your business. Take Action in your life as well.

Goal Setting

In order to take Action you need to know where you are headed. Success requires Goals! Some laugh at the old saying: “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” Maybe you think goal setting is not that important. I urge you to Think Again!

Clearly defined goals and strategy are the single most important structure in long-term effectiveness, profitability and sustainability in your business. They need to be constantly revisited, refocused, and re-shared with those who implement it in the real world.

If you are too busy to spend time with your strategy, you are too busy to succeed and will ultimately fail. You only have to look around at others who have failed this lesson.

Focusing on one’s goals helps make business enjoyable, and lessens that feeling of being torn apart at the seams. After all life should be fun and enjoyable. When you have a direction and a plan then you don’t have to worry about so many unknowns. The benefits of goal setting are enormous, and there are meaningful values to be gained from practical goal setting. Goals direct us, they help us achieve higher results, because they are focused on results. Just remember: your goals should be SMART goals.

Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time Bound.

Eliminate Procrastination

It’s a word that we all understand from first hand experience. In business, procrastination costs time, money and sometimes the goodwill of a customer or a fellow worker. So how can we stop putting off what we need to do? Sometimes a task or a project seems mind boggling. Plot it out on paper to make it more manageable. Break the project into smaller chunks. Decide on a deadline to complete each task and block in time on your calendar to do it.

As you jot down your project schedule, figure out your most productive work hours. Set aside at least a couple of hours at your best time of day to grab the project by its horns. If you work in an office, you are probably interrupted an average of every six to nine minutes. So, put a note on your door saying “quiet time” and ask your staff not to interrupt.

Keep these tips in mind. Don’t just plan. Start NOW. Do something, anything, to get the project going. Work at least ten minutes and chances are, you will get involved and keep working Furthermore you might finish sooner than
you think.

The Most Profitable Thing You Can Do In Your Business

Follow Up With Your Current And Past Customers With An Unrelenting Vengeance

The most effective, the most cost-efficient, the most profitable thing you can do in your business is to create a database of your current and past customers and follow up with them. It doesn’t have to be an elaborate system, plan or strategy and it doesn’t have to cost you a fortune either, it does have to be well thought-out, planned and tailored to the unique wants of your customers if you want it to be overwhelmingly successful.

This one strategy is the most overlooked, yet most effective marketing tool you have in your “toolbox” for getting your customers – current or past – to buy from you more often, extending their buying lifetime with you and getting them to refer others to you.

Closing The Back Door
How to Keep Your Customers For Life!

For the most part, your financial and business success is largely dependent on two factors:

1. The amount of income you receive, and
2. Your ability to control expenditures.

The first factor, your ability to generate income, is perhaps, the most important
activity you can pursue on a daily basis.

Income, or the amount of money your business takes in, makes everything in your
business possible. The creation of revenue dollars for your business can be divided into two sections:

1. The acquisition of new business, and
2. The retention of existing business.

The retention of, or reselling to existing customers is much more profitable than
acquiring new customers. It is far easier to sell additional products or services to existing customers – people who already know you, like you, and trust you, than it is to new prospects.

The average business spends six times more to attract new customers, than it does to keep its existing customers on the books.

So Why Do Customers Quit?

It seems almost futile for a business to spend the time, effort and money to bring a thousand or more new customers in the front door each year, only to lose nearly that many out the back door. Yet that scenario is all too often experienced by too many businesses each year.

Why is it that so many people leave one business, and begin trading with another?People who, at one time were so happy with the company, business, advisor, or
salesperson they dealt with, the product or service they purchased, or the price they were paid for it, but left to go somewhere else and start up an entirely new relationship with another salesperson and company. Why do people do that?

The correct answer to that question is critical, and will pinpoint the problem.
Once identified, you can begin to develop a solution. Your implementation of that
solution will determine the amount of your renewal or repurchase income.

A survey on “Why Customers Quit,” revealed some interesting statistics:

  • 3 percent move away
  • 5 percent develop other friendships
  • 9 percent leave for competitive reasons
  • 14 percent are dissatisfied with the product
  • 68 percent quit because of an attitude of indifference toward the customer by the owner, manager or some employee.

Start getting feedback from your customers, perhaps have a questionnaire they can fill out, start measuring the numbers. What ever you do though make it a point to call and follow up your existing customers and ask them for their
feedback. This will show your customers that you care and take their comments seriously.

Where to from here? As I said earlier in this article this is a topic that I could write a book on. You have been exposed to just a few areas that are available to help you become more successful. Ultimately it’s up to you. Just
being exposed to them is not enough. You must do something with them.

Start planning, take action and you will be amazed at your results.