Tired marketing or why are you all doing this - 2

The first article was one-sided, which led to the conviction that in the future it would turn into an advertising blog of some company. It is a pity if you thought so - you were mistaken. So, as I promised, a more complete version of my vision of the problems of marketing efforts of medium and small companies.


The author of the article does not aim to offer you any product, to impose your personal opinion on you, to convince you of your abilities or to insult, humiliate, or simply deceive you.
For almost 15 years I have been engaged in sales, negotiations, marketing, advertising, training, promotion and other interesting and enticing things. And I love all this and am happy to do it. Yes, I have had both successful starts and unsuccessful finishes. I met excellent leaders and ugly managers. And if it will be interesting for you to read about it, gather your strength and read on.

Problem number one

Most of the companies with which I collaborated in one way or another will not be able to tell immediately how many customers they have, what they do, how many transactions they have in a month, what time of the year they have a peak in sales, not to mention “high matters” .

In the first article, I already wrote that the CRM-system to help them, but no! All of our managers, executives, administrators, supervisors and other people are absolutely sure that the daily guide is the best conductor of their ideas!

In half of the companies, the choice of diaries takes months of work of supply managers, secretaries, clerks and "marketers". It is very important that the diary is convenient, stylish, inexpensive and with a “wow effect”. More important than learning how to organize information, than keeping records of customers, than knowing about possible deals.

You know, in most cases, when you offer business leaders to start with this problem, they happily clap their hands and shout “cheers”, clearly imagining a picture of extraterrestrial goods on their table. In the process of communication, you receive oath assurances that they themselves will begin to use it now, that you just show, teach us all - right away in battle!
On average, the fuse disappears after 3-4 days. They try to load you with other tasks, bombard you with questions and problems, trying in every possible way to avoid meeting with CRM.

Then they give you a diary. That's it, the end of process automation.

Story number times

I was invited to work in a company engaged in auto parts and repair. The company is medium in size: about 60 employees in my city and a dozen more in the near abroad.

A week later, I proposed a “rough” plan: phasing down the sales department to 2-3 people, reorienting to the second area of ​​activity and developing it by saving on costs in the first direction.

The first direction (auto parts) was a huge lump that rolled the company down without dismantling the road. 15 managers were absolutely not in demand, their fixed salary was prohibitive, and the percentage was not much lower than in the market as a whole.

It seemed to me that the plan has the right to life and the bosses agreed with me by 50%. That is, one agreed, the second - no. Therefore, I was asked to conduct a more thorough analysis, develop plans and motivational schemes for all employees.

After a couple of days, having received at his disposal an active “caller” and a passive “writer”, he set about implementing tasks. And here everything fell into place. It turned out that this company was initially doomed to problems. Judge for yourself: all the workers in it are relatives or close friends, all earned money was withdrawn monthly to zero, all warehouse goods were seasonal residues.

The only advantage in the company's work was the quick delivery of goods (exclusive goods that were not on the market at that time). And this activity accounted for almost 70% of the company's transactions (another 5% went to seasonal sales). The remaining 25% did the second direction, spending on it 10 times less resources and resources.

Seeing these numbers, the bosses came in a hot state that lasted almost a week, after which they divided the business in half. But by the end of the year, they practically lost everything and everyone.

Oh yes, morality: the first thing they did, divided up, was to choose logos and diaries for their halves of companies.

Problem number two

You do not know who your customer is. With a capital letter, because you may know what all your clients are doing, but does the Pareto Law really not work for you?

Choose your ideal client: to the best of your advantage, fairly constant, one that you like best. Try to find out about him as much as possible, find all the information that will be useful in communicating with him: maybe the names of his children, or maybe a place of study.

Did you choose that one? I now suggest looking for just such clients: those with whom you are pleased to work, and communicate, and develop friendly relations. This will be your type of customer. The perfect client for you.

In our space full of "hot offers", "promotions", "discounts", it is difficult to build long and long partnerships. Especially competing with the assortment, services, special offers, and even more so with the “bare” price.

The time of “obsessive” young people is gone, now they cause only irritation. I do not want to deal with a company that asks for permission to call me back in a week - why? I don’t want to do business with you anymore! In a week, I will not want to have a little stronger business with you.

Return to the "old" method of working with a client - friendly communication. Create yourself a club of customers. Maybe even in the truest sense of the word. Remember that working with an old client is estimated to be 5 times more profitable than with a new one.


Story number two

The story happened at the dawn of my youth, I just became the main manager in a small computer company. As a general manager, I began to deal not only with sales, but with general organizational issues: deliveries, purchases, courier routes, organization of computer assembly.

But my clients didn’t leave me, they liked working with me, and I liked selling more than spending time on free labor. Especially considering that he did not bring me tangible profits, except for the firm conviction that everything will be under control and there will be no disruption of transactions.

One day, I realized that I could only sell after dinner, because before that time, without unbending, I would solve the problems of the company. Having decided to shift some of the problems to other managers, I came across a misunderstanding - why do this? And I thought, why am I doing this?

On the same day, I discussed my problem with the director. I asked him to decide who I was and, accordingly, pay for my work. Having heeded my stories, they promised me to calculate the increase. It was risky not to do this, since even in such a time pressure I brought about 60% of the company's profit.

Two months later, I received an increase of $ 20. In the past two months. This really hurt me, I refused both this handout and the position, worked for a couple more months and quit.

During these two months I watched how deals were broken, when customers did not receive computers on time, how couriers who didn’t have time for orders cursed, how fully the work of the “assembly shop” was due to a lack of parts. All this time I waited for the director to say: come back, here's your increase.

I quit because I didn’t want to spoil customer relations. I did not take them away, they themselves found me and enjoyed communicating. Many of them turn to me even now, if not for shopping, then just for advice. My first company is not as good as in those years. Now the director himself works in place of the chief manager, and he has only one manager. And the assembly shop has long been gone. And the courier is lonely.

I honestly tried to help them return to duty. I worked with them again - after five years. And for almost half a year, making plans for them, he told how and what I did, how I combined orders, with whom it was more profitable to work. I was looking for new horizons for them, but they did not need it. I left when I realized that they would not reproduce all my ideas, they would not even try.

Moral: the client and the client are two big differences. Think about their comfort right now so that you don’t get bored later.

Problem number three

You are universal. Your company can do everything and does everything. For all. You are doing well? Then do not read further.

So not everything comes out? This is the problem. It is rather a disaster for new companies, or companies without a coherent development strategy, without plans for the future. Old whales and dinosaurs have already passed this stage, it is easier for them to stick their large bodies with napkins in uncomfortable places.

This problem is directly related to the “problem number of times” - ignorance of the client of his company. But this is precisely because you have not yet received these customers. They did not recognize their features and did not understand how to lure them.

Start small. Do not set an initial goal, how: to capture the whole world with your product. Put it at least after the goals: make one sale, make a sales plan for the month, recoup investments.

Run through all competitors. Make your personal impression of meeting with them, from communicating with them by phone, from using their site. If you have the opportunity (and need) to compare their product with yours - buy and compare. Find out everything you can!

Now determine why people need you. How can you personally surprise them, please, reassure, help. Let this not result in a “super discount” or “share when you purchase X, get U for half the price.” Let it be necessary, really necessary and important. If this does not work, find where it works.

Understand that the likelihood that you “from the start” “go uphill” “by leaps and bounds” is close to zero. To do this, you need to be uniquely sought after, indispensably necessary, creatively presented. So the first problem of your company is actually "problem number three."


Story number three

The story of your own business. As without him, without his own and native.

One fine day I thought: what is stopping me from opening my own business? I’ve thought about this many times a long time ago, but I always put it off. At first, because of the birth of a child, I was afraid that I could not provide for my family. Then there were other reasons: not enough money, a lot of competitors, a lot of papers for registration.

And now, I'm tired of convincing myself that it is difficult, scary and impossible. In 1 day I registered the company, in a week I found an office, address and current account. And the first customer.

The deal was pretty cash, easy and successful. Complacency just went through the roof. It seemed that now "trample." No, not "flooded". And I did not immediately understand - why?

Everything is very simple: you cannot do everything alone. Whether you’re at least a “super-seller”, or even a “mega-special,” nothing will help you reduce the time you travel, negotiate, prepare documentation, fill out reports, calculate prices, view competitors and everything else. I worked 18 hours a day. Sometimes longer. And nothing came of it.

My deals were ridiculous, my efforts were limitless. But, one day, my friend introduced me to a man who was doing almost the same thing as me. And he did it not much, but better.

I practically asked for helpers to him, then partners, we began to jointly make plans, hire employees, and divide areas of action. For almost 2 years, everything worked with constant growth. But over time, the market was saturated with our offer, it was necessary to take a step forward, or a step to the side. I insisted on one type of product, my partner on another. I did not want big investments in a new direction, but he also wanted to refinance.

We parted. Each went about his own business. But what we managed to do "perfectly" together, separately began to go "to nothing." In general, I got into a bad story, my former partner simply did not find the funds for further development.

The moral of this fable is this: having opened a gold mine and adjusted production in it, set about searching for a new one, because you will never sit on it forever.

To be honest, I already did not want to post this epic for you, dear readers. And just the fact of incompleteness made me do it. Thank you for the second attempt, all have a nice day!

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