Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Share-Shift Marketing For Greater Sales Growth Of Your Small Business

Share shifting is a term used to describe moving a client base from your competition, to you. Share shifting is not getting new businesses to try your product line; it is taking a current client database (clients already having needs and currently using your competitors) and moving it to your database (they use you). There are “X” dollars spent on any product line at any one time. The objective within share-shift marketing is to move more of those finite dollars spent on any product line into your business unit. You will be going for a bigger slice of the pie, but it is still just one pie that has not gotten any larger, just your portion of it has.

You need one of two things in place to sell any item: the clients either want or need your product line or a combination of both. Without a want or need from the client, you cannot sell much of anything to anyone. So, the advantages of share shifting over getting new customers/clients are:

• The want and need are pre-established

• The client is already buying, so spending habits are historic, thus forecasting can be done for pre-qualifying their future spending consumption

• Having purchased from your competitor in the past, selling strategies on your product line’s advantages over your competition can be highlighted and exploited

• A pre-qualified database for quicker sales effectiveness, ramp up/your “low hanging fruit”

• Builds revenues in a soft or downward trending marketplace

• No wasted time on “uncovering” needs in your sales stage progression. Due to this, you can move the client quicker through the sales pipeline to the purchase phase

With share-shift marketing, your top-line growth will be faster than with most other sales campaigns, due to the fact that you have an accelerated cycle built into this sales effort. So, go on out there and get a bigger piece of that market share pie, before someone else does and then throws it in your face.

Listen to this article

Listen to this article

Monday, May 19, 2008

Labor Efficiency Modeling For Your Small Business Success

Getting yourself and your business unit into the mind-set of thinking about labor efficiency modeling is one of the keys to running a profitable business.

The last time you looked at your current standards was when? Do you know what the correct production efficiency from each of your job codes is, even yours? What is your monitoring frequency? Are your current efficiency modeling standards relative and timely with the current work force, market conditions, pricing structure, technology, and machinery in place? When do unacceptable results on each end of the parameter’s spectrum trigger that an adjustment needs be made?

Do you share your statistical results from the modeling output calculation with the associates, HR, and supervisors for constructive assimilation and benchmark performance managing? You cannot tell someone to do better at something if you cannot show them why and where they are not meeting standards. Are you making labor efficiency part of the corporate culture and driving performance, retention, rewards, and career paths with them? Is your monitoring on efficiency placed upon the greatest job code that will yield the highest returns? Can your associates deliver upon current standards without task saturation overcoming them and quality being affected?

All of the answers to these above questions and more, along with revenue and greater efficiency, can be generated when you apply labor efficiency modeling to your business unit. Always focus your labor efficiency modeling to the greatest payroll burden and work backward throughout your business unit as you are re-implementing your standards.

How do hotels use labor efficiency? One way is in the form of cleaning rooms, the “minutes per room” or M.P.R. that it takes a room attendant to clean a room. At the end of that workday, all of the time from a room attendant is added up and then verified that it fits within the “minutes per room” standards for all of the rooms that were assigned to them for cleaning. When these numbers are reviewed, deviations can be determined that very day, so corrective action can be taken to balance out the week’s labor efficiency model before the overages hit a profit and loss statement. Labor costs on cleaning rooms can greatly impact the bottom line of a hotel, so that is why daily monitoring of this labor cost component (labor efficiency) helps a hotel bring down the appropriate payroll percentages and budget adherence is achieved.

Labor efficiency modeling can bring great success to your business unit if implemented successfully. What are yours and how are you going to make them better?

Listen to this article

Listen to this article

Monday, May 12, 2008

Location, Location, and Location Will Make A Difference For Your Small Business Success

This applies to everything regarding your business unit, not just the physical location of your operations. What if your Web site was incorrectly key-word phrased, and then no one could find a link to it with the most obvious words? What if your salespeople were making sales calls in a non-feeder city for new revenue generation? What if your copy machine was located farthest from the person who makes 80% of the copies? What if your help wanted ad for janitorial work went into the executive/management section? In the hotel business, if we placed a tropical ocean resort hotel in the middle of a farm pasture in the Midwest, would it be successful as an ocean resort hotel?

All of these above examples show that with improper location, your probability for a successful outcome decreases. Look around your business unit and ask yourself, “Does this or that belong here or there?” “The mountain must always come to the customer, not vice versa.” If you do not position your product line in a convenient location for the consumers and their dollars to spend on your business unit, your competitors will.

Listen to this article

Listen to this article

Monday, May 5, 2008

Stop Pushing Yourself Making Your Small Business A Success

Instead, start utilizing your time more wisely.

We are all spacers of time, to some degree. If we were given one hour to do a specific task or job, probability could tell us that we would do that task or job correctly in just fifty-five minutes, with no reduction in quality. If this five-minute savings is true, imagine if you add up those five minutes that you just saved and multiply it by eight hours in your workday. That equals forty minutes more in a workday to become more productive.

Say you then took those forty minutes in a working day and multiplied it by five days in a workweek, which would be two hundred minutes a workweek, or three hours and twenty minutes. If we take those two hundred minutes a workweek and multiply it by fifty work weeks a year, that would equal ten thousand minutes or 166 hours and forty minutes a year of greater productivity by utilizing your time more wisely by not spacing your tasks. If you then took 166 hours and forty minutes and divided it by forty hours in a workweek, you would get 4.17 workweeks, or about one month more of time in a year for more available, more productive time available.

All you have to do for this “extra” time is stop spacing your tasks and pushing yourself and instead start utilizing your time more wisely. Worst case scenario, what could you do with two more weeks of work accomplished a year? How much more of a success could you be in your position, both financially and status-wise?

But be careful. Do not try to lower your efficiency ratio too much, or you will burn out and hit a wall of reduced results. Instead, focus on each task until the goal is completed the right way and in a timely manner, without spacing involved. Only then will you find under each task some piece of time that came from having your efficiency higher, not your pushing of those efforts, thus producing your extra “time of success.”

Listen to this article

Listen to this article