When you are pregnant, sometimes you can have the strongest cravings.
Well, at least, I did.
I remember one night, I just had to have a fish sandwich. It was like my taste buds were tormenting me. The commercials that I had been seeing all week were Burger King commercials advertising the Burger King Big Fish Sandwich. So, I guess you know where I went–straight to Burger King.
Let me tell you.
I could not wait to get in my car and hand the drive-thru cashier my debit card. I anxiously sat there, plastic in hand, and when it was time to roll-up to the second window, I gratefully paid. Yes, I was ready to satisfy my craving and willing to pay for Burger King to assist me in the process.
That is the same way your prospects must feel about you.
Your product or service solves a problem, pain, or predicament, right? Well, just because you make a product or service available does not mean that every prospect will be ready to purchase it at that moment. The moment they are ready to purchase is called a trigger point. There will be some event in their lives at some point that will cause them to pull out their card (just like I did) and purchase the product or service.
Now, whether they purchase the product or service from you will depend upon how many times you have “touched” them. That’s right, touched them.
Touching Your Prospects
When you touch your prospects, you place yourself in the forefront of a prospect’s awareness. In other words, you make sure that you are providing helpful information on a consistent basis related to the problem, pain, predicament/fear. The more the prospect sees you or hears from you, the more they begin to trust you. The more they trust you, the more they are willing to pay you. They pay you because they believe you have the remedy. Point blank…period.
There are several ways you can touch your prospects on a consistent basis:
Engaging in conversations in social media
Providing how-to videos
Long videos with detailed trainings
Short Audios with tips
White Papers or Special Reports
Q & A Sessions on Conference Calls
Direct Mail Campaigns (Monthly Contact right into their mailboxes)
Email Newsletters (Ezines)
When your prospects come in contact with you and experience your expertise on a regular basis, you get inside their minds. You become the respected “expert” or “solution” that comes to their minds, immediately, when they are seeking that remedy.
How Will You Touch Them?
Your job is to figure out the best ways to touch your prospects and then create an action plan for doing it consistently. Choose 3 ways that you can commit to and then just do them. You will become more comfortable with each one as you commit to them. Your audience will grow and grow and before you know it, loyal clients will form.
If you need help with your action plan, click hereto review this sample one that I provided for subscribers to Brande a few weeks ago.
Your Take Away
Be the person your prospects/ideal clients immediately think of when a trigger event happens that moves them from a looker to a buyer. Do that by touching them with your compelling message and relevant information on a consistent basis. In other words, let your constant presence be your commercial.
You interact with your network on a regular basis, but still you aren’t receiving enough traffic from those sites to your home base from the people you have been called to serve.
You need a strategic social media marketing plan that will attract clients & increase your bottom line.
To learn more about effectively using social media as a solo entrepreneur, I interviewedGail Z. Martin, the best-selling author of 30 Days to Social Media Success: The 30 Day Results Guide to Making the Most of Twitter, Blogging, LinkedIn, and Facebook.
As usual, I asked Gail the questions that I thought you might want to ask her if you had the opportunity–questions that would get right down to the root of using social media marketing in the best way.
So, Gail, your bio is so impressive and it is apparent that not only are you good at what you do, but you are passionate about it. When did you realize that being a marketing expert is what you were called to do?
Gail, you are known as the “Get Results Resource” for marketing that works, helping small and start-up businesses, consultants, coaches, authors, and solo professionals succeed through affordable publicity. Tell us about a specific client you coached who had more time than money to invest in his or her marketing budget but were still able to meet their business goals.
Gail, I love the fact that you refer to your book as The 30 Day Results Guide. You say that we will see our social media marketing go from zero to full speed if we apply the RESULTS approach for the next 30 days. Please break down the RESULTS approach for us while we take copious notes.
Gail, I think it is so important that we now go back to the basics and by that I mean we need to discuss what you call the most powerful marketing tool—the business plan. Unfortunately, there are small business and solo entrepreneurs who are in business without a plan. Give us your take on what should be included in our business plan.
The next important document that you layout in the book is the action plan. On page 41 you say, “Your action plan is the key to the rest of your 30-day success because it’s your map and your to-do list.” Let’s say that one of Molly Marketer’s business goals is to increase her list of subscribers to her ezine from 200 to 2000 in the next 12 months. What would her to-do list possibly look like for just the next 30 days?
Gail, you have been selected to be a member of my debate team. We affirm that social media is a marketing essential for the small business or solo entrepreneur. What would be three of our arguments to support this stance?
Gail, you cover the gamut of social media in your book, including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Squidoo, Digg It, YouTube, Flickr and blogging. Now, Pinterest, Instagram, and several other new sites can be added to the list. What would you say to the entrepreneur who feels pressured to be on as many sites as possible?
Gail, one of the most intriguing concepts that you explain is the “touches and trigger points” concept. What are touches and trigger points and how do social media play a role in them?
Gail, this is my favorite part of the show—the part where the expert gets to consult with an entrepreneur live. Today, we have Stevii Mills, the Shepreneur’s Best Girlfriend of www.juststevii.com. Stevii would like to get your help with developing her social media marketing plan. Would you take her through the process you outline in chapter 2 and then give her some advice on how to best align her social media marketing efforts with her business goals?
Gail, after that amazing mini-consultation I am sure that someone listening would love to work with you or have you speak to their organization. How might they get in contact with you and what kinds of programs, products and services do you offer?
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Writing is still one of the most powerful forms of communication on the planet. Thankfully, there are many different ways that you can use it to connect with your target audience.
In the video tutorial below, I share five major ways that you can connect with your target audience through writing. If you choose three to consistently implement, you will begin to build relationships with those you have been called to serve and establish your reputation as a thought leader in your field.
Be prepared to take notes and pause for a moment. This tutorial is 13 minutes long. Enjoy and pay it forward!
The Video Tutorial
This is the series that is not about you. This is the series that is about your calling. There is a specific group of people who need the services and products you provide to address their problem, pain, or predicament and it is time for you to care enough to communicate with them. In this video, I will share 5 major ways that you can connect with your target audience through writing. Now, let’s get started.
Now, I want to take you back to the little red school house. You know the one that had all grades K-12 in one big room. If you are watching this video, I am sure you didn’t experience a little red schoolhouse education but perhaps you have seen Little House on the Prairie or some old school movie about the new frontier, pioneering days, so you can relate. Well, in those times, there were three fundamentals of a basic education called the Three R’s—reading, writing, and arithmetic. Being literate, mastering written communication, and knowing how to do the math were the three things that separated the haves from the have nots, the rich from the poor.
Today, it is no different. Reading, writing, and arithmetic play a strong role in our daily interaction. Writing is still very important in creating contractual agreements (when something really matters all parties want everything spelled out in writing) in email, texting, and even participating in social media. No matter how advanced we get with video technology, there is still nothing like the written word.
That being said, let me reveal to you the five effective ways that you can connect with your target audience and build a relationship with those you have been called to serve on a consistent basis. They are 1) Blogging, 2) Email Marketing, 3) Direct Mail, 4) Article Marketing, & 5) Publishing. Ultimately, these are ways for you to create content, establish yourself as a thought leader, and stay at the top of the minds of your niche. Now, go ahead and get a sheet of paper because I am going to briefly review each one and then ask you to choose three as part of your marketing plan.
I want to share a true story with you. In February of 2012, I received a voicemail message on the Ask Kellie line. I returned the call and it happened to be a woman who had never responded to one blog post, but when we talked she let me know that she’d created a folder and put my blog posts in it. She also informed me that she read every single book of every author that I’d interviewed on Books That Transform. She said she couldn’t remember how she found me but she had been following me for quite some time.
Just last week, she emailed me after I wrote a blog post about the fact that I am writing a book and told me that she was so excited about what God was doing in my ministry. She said she couldn’t wait for my book to come out & that she was also writing a book. Now, think about that. Without even knowing it, I have been building a relationship with that wonderful woman. When I returned her call, we had the best conversation for about 20 minutes.
We talked about my branding programs, her business, and after a few moments, it was not as if two strangers were on the phone. I don’t know about you, but I think that is powerful. That is the power of blogging.
So, Let’s briefly talk about the who, what, where, when, and why of blogging. A blog is a website that allows you to build a relationship with your target audience through frequent, consistent updates.
According to expert blogger and founder of the Blog Squad, Denise Wakeman, it is the place where you educate, entertain, engage, and enrich the readers. You see, the more frequently you blog, the more you demonstrate your own stability, consistency, belief and commitment to what you have been called to do by sharing your experiences, your views, and your expertise with your readers.
Think about something that you do every single week that involves at least on other person. It might be watching your favorite tv show which for me is none other than Shark Tank. It might be meeting your best friend for lunch every Wednesday or going to choir rehearsal every Thursday night or playing golf every Friday morning with your colleagues.
In the same way, that you look forward to connecting with that special person or that special group of people, your readers begin to look forward to connecting with you. So, if you choose to connect with your audience through blogging, commit to it. Don’t leave your target audience hanging, wondering when oh when you are going to share another post. After a while, they will not wonder anymore. They will just lose interest and move on.
Oh, Email! Oh, Email! Do they really need another? You may be thinking, people need another email like they need a whole in their heads. And, guess what? You are exactly, right. If you choose email marketing which is a great way to build a relationship over time, you will have to find a way to get into the recipient’s email inner circle.
What is the email inner circle?
The email inner circle is the group of people whose emails the recipient WILL open AND according to Nielsen NetRatings, there are only 16 people in that group. Now, how in the world do you get in it? It seems that you can only get into that inner circle if you publish a free, valuable ezine or online newsletter.
This means that you will need to provide good information that helps people. When people begin to see you as a trusted adviser or expert in your field based on the content of your ezine, they will click when they see your name in their inbox. Your ezine should go out once a month at the bare minimum & weekly at the very best.
Feel free to invite them to purchase your products or services but use the 80/20 rule—80% great content, 20% sales related. Now, you can maintain your position in that inner circle by sending updates in between the ezine issues, but keep the content level very high. Do not send an email just to “stay in contact”. Have a specific purpose in mind.
When was the last time you went to your mailbox and found postcards of all shapes and sizes from Papa John’s, a local realtor, Kohl’s, Stride Rite, or even Direct TV? It was probably recently. That is because direct mail is still one of the most effective ways to communicate to and then attract clients.
If you choose to launch a direct mail campaign, using a postcard as opposed to a sales letter or brochure is going to be more cost effective. You will also need to commit to mailing a postcard 9-12x per year.
Because marketing research says that a person must see a message at least 9x before he or she makes a purchasing decision. When you show up in the mailbox on a regular basis, when the prospect is ready to purchase what you offer, they will undoubtedly think of you.
Writing articles is a wonderful, non-threatening, non-salesy way to communicate with your target audience. It allows you to once again provide helpful information while developing trust. People are sick of being sold to, so it is no wonder that they trust articles more than advertisements. When you write an article, you are not focusing on yourself, but you are focusing on the reader. By providing news they can actually use, you enhance your credibility and keep them coming back for more.
If you really want to get your target audience’s attention, publish. Publish a book, an ebook, an audio book (which has hit the billion dollar status), a special report, a white paper, a home study course, a manual, a guide, a blueprint–anything that builds your reputation as a thought leader—someone who knows what he or she is talking about and is willing to share it. If promoted correctly, the book will also open up the door to seminars, workshops, keynotes, radio and television shows, and various speaking engagements that will take your message to the masses.
In this video, we skimmed the surface of 5 major ways you can connect with your target audience through writing. Your job now is to educate yourself on them and then choose just three to put into action. Remember that connecting, developing trust, and building relationships take time and unless you care enough to communicate, consistently, you will not reach those you have been called to serve.
If you are a small business entrepreneur who is struggling with aligning your business vision with your divine purpose…if you are not quite sure how to build a brand that resonates with your target audience, I invite you to learn more. Access your free Personal Branding Toolbox and let me help you build your brand one step at a time.
Until the next video, I’m Kellie Gardner encouraging you to keep watching & keep walking in your divine personal brand.
Solo Small Business Entrepreneurs, you are in for a treat!
Jeanna Pool, author of Amazon’s #1 Bestseller, Marketing for Soloswas on Books That Transform, today. What a blessing she was! She shared so many tips with us on how to become effective marketers and thereby attract more clients to our businesses. The time just went by entirely too fast.
In case you are not familiar with Jeanna, here is her bio:
Jeanna Pool is the author of the Amazon #1 Bestselling Book, Marketing for Solos® which has been praised by 11 of the world’s top marketing experts including: Jay Conrad Levinson, C.J. Hayden, John Jantsch, Dan Kennedy, Bob Bly, Ali Brown, Yanik Silver and others.
Jeanna has been called “One of the world’s foremost experts on marketing a one-person small business successfully.”Jeanna is a rare breed, in that she’s an expert in both marketing that actually works and design that actually sells—two disciplines and competencies that very, very few can bring together successfully.
Today, Jeanna owns and operates Marketing for Solos® which is her own, highly successful, award-winning, marketing and design firm in Denver Colorado.
She works exclusively with solo small business owners all across the United States, Canada, Europe, Australia and around the world. All of Jeanna’s clients have one thing in common—they are really good at what they do, but sometimes really struggle to market their services successfully as a solo.
Jeanna is in the trenches day in and day out, putting into action marketing strategies that she preaches about and teaches others to use. With Jeanna there’s never any fluff or theory to what she teaches about marketing. Instead, she focuses only on marketing that actually works in the real world.
Her love and passion is helping other solo small business owners be as outrageously successful as they possibly can be. For more information about how Jeanna can help your solo small business attract more clients on a consistent basis, call 303-380-9100 or visit www.MarketingForSolos.com
As usual, I had a ball and write pages of notes during the interview. The questions I asked Jeanna and the player (so that you can listen right now) are included below. Enjoy!!!
1. Jeanna, since you have been in business, you have helped thousands of solo small business owners take their businesses to the next level of growth, profitability, and success. Tell us about a time when you were able to identify serious problems in a client’s branding and marketing efforts and then provide solutions that tremendously increased sales.
2. Jeanna, the tagline for this show is changing mindsets, transforming lives. Coincidentally, chapter 3 is called Change Your Thinking. Please breakdown for us the four areas in which our thinking about marketing needs to change.
3. One of the hardest things for solopreneurs is choosing a niche. Why is it so important to focus on a specific target audience? And, how do you know that you are targeting qualified clients?
4. Solopreneurs serve others through their products and services. Trying to price the information products, coaching, consulting, speaking, & even performing can be challenging. Jeanna, what method or general rule should solopreneurs use to set pricing?
5. Jeanna, some solopreneurs choose the DIY (Do It Yourself) avenue when it comes to creating their website and marketing materials or they choose the cheapest designer they can find. In chapter 9, you say, “Unless you’re an expert in design with a degree and years of experience, stick to working at the business you know, and leave the design work to the designers.” You go on to say, “If your materials project a professional, consistent image, then that transaction pays you in good will, trust and future business. If the image is amateurish or inconsistent, then you lose trust, confidence, and money. “
Jeanna, what are three tips you can give us on hiring the right graphic designer?
6. Jeanna, one of the problems for the solopreneur is actually making marketing manageable and doable with our busy schedules. How can we go from this day forward prioritizing everything we must get done?
7. Jeanna, since the show is entitled How to Successfully Market Today’s Solo Small Business, I’d like to use real solopreneurs who could benefit from your expertise. They are Alaina Odessa of Alaina Odessa Expressions, who is the author of the book Slow Running Honey and Jerry Head of Jerry Head Photography who has been providing superior photography services for the Triangle area (Raleigh, Durham, & Chapel Hill, NC) and beyond for over 20 years.
Our first solopreneur is Alaina Odessa of Alaina Odessa Expressions and if you are at a computer and want to follow along with us go to www.alainaodessa.com. Jeanna is going to give Alaina advice on how to make her website what she calls a comprehensive workhorse website.
Good Afternoon, Alaina. Thank you so much for joining us and allowing Jeanna to advise you on the air. Jeanna, take it away.
Wow, Jeanna, I am excited for Alaina. You really did a fantastic job of remodeling her site, if you will. Now, let’s help out my friend Jerry Head of Jerry Head Photography. Jerry’s website is www.jerryheadphotos.com. But, this time, we are going to focus on choosing the right marketing tools and activities that will successfully relaunch his business. So, Jeanna, what do you advise for Jerry?
Jenna, you have a special offer for the BTT listeners, today? I am so thrilled about it because you are the first author to do this. Please share it with them now.
Jeanna’s Amazing Special Offer (FREE Training on Niche Marketing)
For people who listened to the show, if they buy my book from Amazon by December 31st and email me their Amazon receipt (proving the purchase), I will send them a special 1 hour audio program called Niche Marketing for Solos. The program normally sells for $97 but I will email the digital recording of the program to EVERYONE who purchases the book (paperback or Kindle) on Amazon by December 31st. The email address to send the receipt is: email@example.com and put “Amazon” in the subject line.
I hope you take her up on her offer. The book itself is an invaluable resource. You will love it!!!
Christyl Benford Speaks on the Power of Video Marketing Training with Kellie Gardner
"I have been doing video marketing since July 5, 2011 and it has totally changed my life. It has changed my mindset. Coaching with Kellie Gardner showed me how to engage my community--how it would bring in fans, and not just fans, but customers and clients. I was able to share not only my talent side, but I was able to share tips for music consulting and for Indie artists. Plus, I wouldn't be able to reach as many people hitting the streets. This way, I can connect with people worldwide."
Click play to find out how to attract your ideal clients with video.