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The biggest lever for generating thrilled customers

 

In some subjects, I find it remarkable that it always takes studies to prove an obvious fact (even if such studies sometimes reveal new nuances).

One such topic is the connection between the enthusiasm of the crew and enthusiastic customers.

(Attention: I deliberately do not use "satisfied" because that is not enough. If you don't even have satisfied people and satisfied customers, you won't survive with your business anyway).

A few days ago, the Harvard Business Review published the article "The Key to Happy Customers? Happy Employees", which confirms this thesis with a larger study.

Here are three conclusions from my viewpoint and my experience, which is relevant for most companies and teams:
  1. Enthusiastic customers. If you want more customers who buy from you again and again and who recommend your company to others, then you must actively inspire them. Important: Enthusiasm is an emotion, not a rational consideration ("Let's be thrilled now..."). So, you have to create emotional...
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Do you miss the future in sales?

marketing & sales May 23, 2019

It's no longer a secret. However, most salespeople and entire sales teams try to ignore this simple fact: Sales tomorrow will differ from yesterday, especially in B2B (Business-to-Business).

The reasons have been discussed a thousand times: Buyers are much better informed, take less time, have much more choice ("global sourcing"), etc. Yet many sellers still find it extremely difficult to adapt.

Instead, customer visits are carried out in the same way as in the past, hoping that the presentation of the products will motivate potential buyers to buy. It is still expected that the prospective customer will contact us because he has a "need." It is assumed that the prospective customer reads my emails and listens to my voice messages.

Here comes the brutal truth: Forget it! If you win a customer with these outdated methods, you have won the lottery. Congratulations! But you can't increase your revenue anymore.

So, what do you need to do? Here are three things you absolutely have to...
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How many chances are you missing?

marketing & sales Feb 28, 2019

"We finally have to improve the customer experience," rumbles the head of sales at the management meeting. "We simply can't do everything we can to sell our products at high prices and then have such shortcomings on delivery!" There was an embarrassed silence.

Only after some hesitation does the head of logistics notice timidly: "After all, we were able to reduce the delivery time by 10 percent last quarter".

Perhaps you are familiar with such discussions. The problem is that they miss the actual crucial point.

Change of scene: When I unpacked my new Apple Watch the other day, I once again noticed how much importance this company continues to place on customer experience, not abstractly, but quite specifically.

This means that a total of 20 steps may be necessary to unpack and start up the device (if you count everything). Each of these steps works right away, is emotionally charged and seamlessly moves on to the next step. After about 10 minutes, the Smartwatch is completely ready...

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Nothing new in sales

marketing & sales Feb 01, 2019

Sales is a fascinating subject: it is not only the oldest profession but also constantly evolving. It is about persuasiveness, self-confidence, psychology, value creation, knowledge of human nature and much more.

There is also hardly a topic, which is examined so variously by experts of all possible directions. You can read innumerable - often-good - books in this respect.

How different is the situation when I look into companies (especially small and medium-sized ones)? Often, people "sell" in the same way throughout their lives without questioning the methods, approaches, strategies and much more.

The result: market potential is not tapped, potential customers are disappointed, and margins are carelessly reduced.

There is another way! How? Here are three ideas:

  1. Fresh air. Bring new insights, fresh methods and unusual ideas to your sales team (and all those who deal with customers). Most have not even read a book on sales for years. That must change!
  2. Exercise. Have any customer...
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Are you too slow?

The other day I was looking for accommodation on Airbnb, and I briefly enquired with several providers. One answered my query within 3 minutes. Also, my further questions were answered in a few minutes quickly, but exhaustively. My action: I booked the accommodation.

I mention this again and again in my sales training: Speed is more important than many other factors. Why is that? Well, in addition to the significant gain in time, the speed of the sales process shows me, as a prospect, what I can expect later as a paying customer: provide quick answers to my questions.

My recommendation: Check your company or team (or yourself) for speed and accelerate! Here are three steps:

  1. Mental work. Most people have not yet realized that speed is important in every customer interaction and the internal processes. Work on the mindset yourself and with your team: It's great to be fast. Period!
  2. Behaviors. If you are fast, you will not only be more successful, but you will also get things off the...
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How to make your customers (and other people) fall in love with you

marketing & sales Oct 11, 2018

One of the critical success systems (in contrast to anecdotal success) is the principle that people - including your customers - are always keen to get involved with you.

In other words: If you get other people to come to you because they love you, you'll have less to worry about both missing customers and job applicants.

The big question is how do we attract others and keep them coming back (and buying)?

Besides many ideas, there are three crucial human drives you can take advantage of. If you "feed" these drives, everyone will be happy to deal with you.

  1. Certainty. This is an absolute basic need. If you provide your customers with exact certainty, many will prefer to buy from you. Attention: Each need for a decision creates uncertainty for the customer. The same with unclear communication. Make every interaction simple and clear. The customer will feel safe as a result.
  2. Belonging. We all want to belong to a group. If you create a community among your customers they like to...
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The summer slump myth

 

"I can't reach anybody in summer anyway!" 

"People are all on vacation anyway!" 

"In July and August, we can take things a little easier. In September we'll be taking off again!"

Do you sometimes hear such statements from your people (and from yourself)? Well, here comes another uncomfortable truth (you're used to that from me): the most prolific people never say such things. They step on the gas just when the others are relaxing.

"But you can't ignore the facts," I hear you say, "there really aren't many people in the office!"

Attention: You hear me, again and again, warning you about the myths that we constantly tell ourselves. Only this doesn't make them true!

Here are three ideas on how to deal with the so-called "summer slump":

  1. Mindset. Many "facts" only emerge in our minds if we say them long enough. If we keep telling ourselves that we can't reach a customer in the summer, for example, that's how it's going to be. Believe it or not, you produce the results you...
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And again, a World Cup!

 

Why is soccer so popular in many parts of the world? Here are three ideas and one conclusion for your business or team:

  1. Strong identification. In principle, anyone can play or at least imagine playing soccer. That's why everyone can sympathize if something works or not.
  2. Fighting spirit. At least in good games, we feel the fighting spirit of the team and the will to win. In good teams, there is no discussion about fighting for victory.
  3. Clear goals and simple rules. Every player on the field and every spectator knows the simple rules (except the offside rule perhaps) and above all the clear goals: Whoever has more goals after 90 minutes wins.

So, now the question: How good is your team or company in each of the three success factors?

First, do you offer your team members and customers a strong sense of identification? Do you make your products or services simply "experienceable"? 

Second, does your team have the fighting spirit to win? Do all members have the corresponding...

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Right now!

 

At the moment, many companies are running like clockwork: Sales are growing, production and delivery capacities are running at full speed, and the outlook for this year at least is very good.

And this is precisely the trap for sustainable success maximization: This good situation is largely caused by external influences, at least in most companies. This means that these companies are going down just as quickly as demand is dropping.

Here is the recipe for success of sustainably outstanding companies and teams: they invest in their strategies and tactics to maximize success exactly when no one really needs it and no one has time for it. That's why they keep on rising even when the others are shrinking.

Here are three topics you should invest in, especially when things are going well: 

  1. Sales. "I sell more than we can deliver," I often hear from salespeople in booming times. However, as soon as things get worse, they usually sell less "than we can deliver". Therefore: invest in...
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The power of videos

 

Today is a somewhat unusual post: You get access to over 40 short videos to increase your success, for free!

That's what it's all about: My new YouTube channel is live, with over 40 videos right from the start. Click here to subscribe to the channel.

Why are videos important?

Well, I keep recommending to my clients the increased use of personal videos (with them in front of the camera) for internal and external communication, mainly for three reasons:

  1. Clarity. If you want to communicate a message to others via video, you must first be clear about what should stick with the viewer. "What are my three learning points?" could be your question before the recording, for example. My recommendation: record videos with your smartphone, even if you don't use them afterward. It forces you to organize your thoughts.
  2. Conveying emotions. The only thing that motivates people to act is emotions. There is no better medium than video (besides the live performance of course). When you record...
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