Tag Archives: Marketing

The Exact Steps To Building Sales and Gross Margin

Like My Facebook Page 

The Exact Steps To Building Sales and Gross Margin

You must first know the customers and products that account for 80% of your sales and profit. Please note that this required in-depth analysis of product sales and gross margin by customer. For some companies they may have a select number of customers that account for a large percentage of the revenue but do not account for the same percentage of profits.

Once you have this data then it is a matter of implementing programs to increase sales (see bonus below). Do not ignore gross margin. You cost of delivering a product or service to a customer could possibly be reduced with a resultant increase in profits, pricing may need to be adjusted or both.

Bonus Note: There are only three ways to increase sales:

1) sell more to existing customers
2) increase the transaction size of sales to existing customers and,
3) acquire new customers.

Also please note that increasing sales does not mean that profits will increase at the same rate or at all. For example, it can cost you more in the first year to acquire a new customer than that customer brings in first year profits. If that is the case you might be asking why would you do that. You might do that if the lifetime value of the customer exceeded the cost of acquiring that customer by enough of a margin to make it worth you time, money and energy.

Recently I completed this exercise with a client and directed the sales manager to schedule a meeting with the largest customer. The purpose of the meeting was to negotiate higher prices. The meeting was successful and the client realized an immediate benefit to profits as a result of this work. The effort was then extended to remaining customers and this client went from a break even profit model to earning 7-9% net income before tax on sales volume of approximately $12 million. Does the process work? It works every time.

Steve’s Law of Growing Market Share Part 1:

If You Use Half The Tools Available For Growing Sales and Gross Margin You Will Be In The Top 20% of Companies In Your Industry As Measured by Annual Sales Growth. 

Steve’s Law of Growing Market Share Part 2:

If you use 90% of the tools available to you for growing market share and profits, you will achieve elite status. If you consistently use those tools each day, week and month, you will maintain elite status and be healthier and happier along the way.

May You Achieve Success Beyond Your Most Amazing Dreams

Steve Pohlit,
Business Development and Real Estate Investment Coach
Managing Partner,
Steve Pohlit International LLC
www.stevepohlit.com

 

Google Buzz

Service Wins The Game

“Being on par in terms of price and quality only gets you in the game.  Service wins the game.!” Tony Alexandr

During  a recent call that I co-host on a monthly basis with George Ross for a select private group of business owners and entrepreneurs, we discussed how to create the “wow factor” in non-real estate businesses like a convenience store or hardware store.  George advised all  to focus on the personal touch.  Sure appearances and merchandising are important.  Getting to know your customer, demonstrating a sincere interest in the person is what keeps people coming back.

I have no favorite stores any longer. I mostly shop on line and even the on line experience is mixed with ease of shopping. I do have a few favorite restaurants and as a business traveler I have a few (very few) favorite hotels.  However, nearly every day there is an opportunity for a business to provide memorable service and they do. Trouble is the memories are not very positive in most cases.

Here is a recent example. It happened this morning. Jos A Bank is offering a two day buy 1 get 2 free special. There are a couple items I really like from that store.  This is a great opportunity for a deal. However, their on line shopping cart is not working properly for the special.  So I called and a pleasant lady helped me by phone.  When I received my order confirmation, it was wrong …very obviously wrong since there was only one of an item I order instead of three.  I called back to customer service and hopefully the order will be correct now.

Look at all the steps and look at the additional time and look at the impression I have of this business.  Now I will shop again when I see a great deal since there are items where I like the fit and quality.  Guess what there are many places where I can get the right fit and quality.  I am not finding places where I feel I am honored as a customer.  See the opportunity?

I know if I were to visit certain specialty stores I would receive personalized attention.  However, I do not have the time and neither do a lot of other people. There are a growing number of businesses that promote deals: Groupon ,  Deal of the Day and many more.  Nobody is promoting service…big opportunity.

Speaking of service ….that’s my business. Actually your success is my business.

Action Steps

Get A Business Coach! If you already have a business with more than 10 employees, Hire A Consultant who is  able to work with you part of the time on-site.

Would you like to be in the next group of very successful companies and entrepreneurs?

Contact me now.

Steve Pohlit

Business Development Consulting
Executive Coach

Social Media Services
New Digital Media, Inc.

Connect With Steve On:

Twitter

Facebook

Linked in

727-587-7871

Email

About: Steve Pohlit CPA,MBA has been the CFO and COO of  major domestic and international companies.  Steve has extensive business ownership experience having purchased and started off line and on line businesses.

Steve offers his  build business profits expertise to companies and entrepreneurs with business coaching and business consulting.  His  focus is on building business  profits and net asset value at above average rates.  Steve incorporates health and wellness plus relationship guidance in his work as they are at the foundation of achieving all goals.

All articles published by Steve unless specifically restricted may be freely published with this resource information.

 

Google Buzz

Customer Service For AT&T’s iPhone 3GS Network

Everyone I know who has an iPhone experiences drop calls. Some more than others. I am no exception except that I don’t accept dropped calls as normal.

In all fairness, my iPhone 3GS works very well most of the time. Recently I have spent time in California, Toronto, Chicago, Edmonton, Alberta. My home is in Florida. With all of this travel I had very little difficulty with service. My service issues begin when I near my home….within about 100 ft to be more precise. I have several iPhones since 2007 when the first iPhone was released. Since then I have had several periods of weak connectivity but overall I have not had a problem. That changed beginning late last year.

Once it was clear to me that something had changed and my phone was not the problem. I began calling AT&T.  I think having to do that should be considered as a terrorist interrogation technique.  There have been a couple people in that company I connect with who were very nice to talk to and demonstrated they understood the issue.  They also assured me the problem would be fixed.  The problem is not fixed.  And tech support actually misrepresented the action the took. I was told today that an engineer had been dispatched to my home area and found nothing wrong.  No engineer ever showed up and the most that was done was for someone to look at some screen and conclude their towers were operating properly. I never doubted that because a malfunctioning tower would be detected and fixed.

If I heard it once I heard this once I heard this at least 5 times just this week. We apologize, our towers are fine. Please be sure your software is up to date and turn your phone off and on as we sent some data or something to your phone.  There is a lot more but the bottom line is, this issue is not resolved and the discussions I had with tech support were totally not helpful.

Business Marketing 101: make sure you invest in retaining the people who are doing business with you now.

Business Problem Solving 101: Variance are solved one person at a time.

Business Relationship Building 101:  Almost nobody expects technology or any product for that matter to work perfectly all the time. It is how you handle the problem that determines whether you are building positive or negative goodwill.

My Conclusion About AT&T

1. There are indicators AT&T’s network is inadequate and Apple which is an excellent company will find alternatives.
2. AT&T continues to fuel negative goodwill
3. Markets have a way of compensating for weakness. Look at how many companies that were once huge have or are near closing their doors.

Key Lesson For Those Learning Business Principles: Pay attention to what the losers do and then …don’t do that.

Sending you energy of health, happiness, prosperity

Steve Pohlit

Business Consulting, Executive Coach
Turnaround/Crisis Management
Temporary CEO, CFO, Controller Services
International Business Resources

Social Media Services
New Digital Media, Inc.

Twitter

Facebook

Linked in

MySpace

727-587-7871

Email

About: Steve Pohlit is a CPA,MBA and has been the CFO of several major domestic and international companies.  Steve is The Managing Director of  Top 1 Coaching/Consulting of  The JT Foxx Organization. He is  an expert business coach and consultant focused on building massive business  profits and net asset value. He is very experienced with Internet marketing and social media marketing.  All articles published by Steve unless specifically restricted may be freely published with this resource information.

Google Buzz

Customer Service For AT&T's iPhone 3GS Network

Everyone I know who has an iPhone experiences drop calls. Some more than others. I am no exception except that I don’t accept dropped calls as normal.

In all fairness, my iPhone 3GS works very well most of the time. Recently I have spent time in California, Toronto, Chicago, Edmonton, Alberta. My home is in Florida. With all of this travel I had very little difficulty with service. My service issues begin when I near my home….within about 100 ft to be more precise. I have several iPhones since 2007 when the first iPhone was released. Since then I have had several periods of weak connectivity but overall I have not had a problem. That changed beginning late last year.

Once it was clear to me that something had changed and my phone was not the problem. I began calling AT&T.  I think having to do that should be considered as a terrorist interrogation technique.  There have been a couple people in that company I connect with who were very nice to talk to and demonstrated they understood the issue.  They also assured me the problem would be fixed.  The problem is not fixed.  And tech support actually misrepresented the action the took. I was told today that an engineer had been dispatched to my home area and found nothing wrong.  No engineer ever showed up and the most that was done was for someone to look at some screen and conclude their towers were operating properly. I never doubted that because a malfunctioning tower would be detected and fixed.

If I heard it once I heard this once I heard this at least 5 times just this week. We apologize, our towers are fine. Please be sure your software is up to date and turn your phone off and on as we sent some data or something to your phone.  There is a lot more but the bottom line is, this issue is not resolved and the discussions I had with tech support were totally not helpful.

Business Marketing 101: make sure you invest in retaining the people who are doing business with you now.

Business Problem Solving 101: Variance are solved one person at a time.

Business Relationship Building 101:  Almost nobody expects technology or any product for that matter to work perfectly all the time. It is how you handle the problem that determines whether you are building positive or negative goodwill.

My Conclusion About AT&T

1. There are indicators AT&T’s network is inadequate and Apple which is an excellent company will find alternatives.
2. AT&T continues to fuel negative goodwill
3. Markets have a way of compensating for weakness. Look at how many companies that were once huge have or are near closing their doors.

Key Lesson For Those Learning Business Principles: Pay attention to what the losers do and then …don’t do that.

Sending you energy of health, happiness, prosperity

Steve Pohlit

Business Consulting, Executive Coach
Turnaround/Crisis Management
Temporary CEO, CFO, Controller Services
International Business Resources

Social Media Services
New Digital Media, Inc.

Twitter

Facebook

Linked in

MySpace

727-587-7871

Email

About: Steve Pohlit is a CPA,MBA and has been the CFO of several major domestic and international companies.  Steve is The Managing Director of  Top 1 Coaching/Consulting of  The JT Foxx Organization. He is  an expert business coach and consultant focused on building massive business  profits and net asset value. He is very experienced with Internet marketing and social media marketing.  All articles published by Steve unless specifically restricted may be freely published with this resource information.

Google Buzz

Carl’s Jr. Very Effective Use of Social Media, Internet Marketing, Video, More

Carl’s Jr. has over 1100 locations with 772 in California. They have no locations in my current home state of Florida. However, because of my business consulting experience in the restaurant industry along with a controversial video commercial released by Carl’s several years ago, I became aware of this restaurant business. I learned it was  founded with the purchase of one hot dog cart for less than $500  in 1941.

While reviewing a Facebook  application recommended by a friend I noticed an ad on the site for Carl’s.  Of course I remembered the original video that was absolutely outrageous and wondered if they had posted it on Facebook.  (They did not.)  What I did notice was they have almost 68,000 fans, they are promoting a new sandwich, offering an incentive coupon and their fan page wall is extremely active.

I went a little deeper and clicked to their website.  I stayed there maybe 5-8 minutes watching all their video commercials. They are very entertaining. I registered for their newsletter. The visuals, sounds and messages of the videos and the images of the graphics are terrific. If there was a location nearby I would be a customer.  I also feel that the next time I visit the West Coast I will look them up. Their presentation is that good.

Carl’s Jr has links to Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Flicker on their website.  I am not sure if they have expanded onto other social media sites. If  asked I would  recommend they be on every major social media venue. Clearly the visuals and sound are huge assets for their messages about their food.

Food isn’t the only attraction as evidenced by one YouTube video with Audriana Partridge in a hot gold bikini eating one of Carl’s Jr.’s famous sandwiches. This video has already been viewed over 545 thousand times with most others by Carl’s Jr.  being viewed in the range of 20 thousand.  Think about the value of one YouTube video being viewed over one half million times.

I did a brief review of Facebook to see if key competitors are using social media. Facebook members have activated McDonald’s and Wendy’s fan pages. Neither company seems to have an active Facebook presence.

I am a major advocate for using social media to build business profits. But here is the key as demonstrated by Carl’s Jr.: you have got to have a hook.  Carl’s is kicking butt in their ads for size, quality and price vs. McDonald’s.  Then they add amazing visuals, incentives, and are definitely on top of their game when it comes to strengthening social relationships.  So they are hitting on all cylinders including the use of a well toned body wearing little excited about a huge order of food. What an amazing contrast and Carl’s Jr. pulls it off marvelously just as they did a few years back with a famous celebrity promoting their food wearing near nothing on the hood of a car.  It was amazing.

On video and in pictures, Carl’s Jr. looks like  great tasting food. I assume that is the case with more than 1,100 locations. Of course that is key for sustained growth in same store sales as well as sustained growth in the number of locations. Somehow I suspect the food experience is great and I will confirm that one of these days. If you have eaten at Carl’s Jr. please share your experiences including what you ordered.

Great  example Carl’s Jr. of executing very well on fundamentals.

Sending you energy of health, happiness, prosperity

Steve Pohlit

Business Consulting, Executive Coaching
International Business Resources

Social Media Services
New Digital Media, Inc.

727-587-7871
Email

Google Buzz

Carl's Jr. Very Effective Use of Social Media, Internet Marketing, Video, More

Carl’s Jr. has over 1100 locations with 772 in California. They have no locations in my current home state of Florida. However, because of my business consulting experience in the restaurant industry along with a controversial video commercial released by Carl’s several years ago, I became aware of this restaurant business. I learned it was  founded with the purchase of one hot dog cart for less than $500  in 1941.

While reviewing a Facebook  application recommended by a friend I noticed an ad on the site for Carl’s.  Of course I remembered the original video that was absolutely outrageous and wondered if they had posted it on Facebook.  (They did not.)  What I did notice was they have almost 68,000 fans, they are promoting a new sandwich, offering an incentive coupon and their fan page wall is extremely active.

I went a little deeper and clicked to their website.  I stayed there maybe 5-8 minutes watching all their video commercials. They are very entertaining. I registered for their newsletter. The visuals, sounds and messages of the videos and the images of the graphics are terrific. If there was a location nearby I would be a customer.  I also feel that the next time I visit the West Coast I will look them up. Their presentation is that good.

Carl’s Jr has links to Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Flicker on their website.  I am not sure if they have expanded onto other social media sites. If  asked I would  recommend they be on every major social media venue. Clearly the visuals and sound are huge assets for their messages about their food.

Food isn’t the only attraction as evidenced by one YouTube video with Audriana Partridge in a hot gold bikini eating one of Carl’s Jr.’s famous sandwiches. This video has already been viewed over 545 thousand times with most others by Carl’s Jr.  being viewed in the range of 20 thousand.  Think about the value of one YouTube video being viewed over one half million times.

I did a brief review of Facebook to see if key competitors are using social media. Facebook members have activated McDonald’s and Wendy’s fan pages. Neither company seems to have an active Facebook presence.

I am a major advocate for using social media to build business profits. But here is the key as demonstrated by Carl’s Jr.: you have got to have a hook.  Carl’s is kicking butt in their ads for size, quality and price vs. McDonald’s.  Then they add amazing visuals, incentives, and are definitely on top of their game when it comes to strengthening social relationships.  So they are hitting on all cylinders including the use of a well toned body wearing little excited about a huge order of food. What an amazing contrast and Carl’s Jr. pulls it off marvelously just as they did a few years back with a famous celebrity promoting their food wearing near nothing on the hood of a car.  It was amazing.

On video and in pictures, Carl’s Jr. looks like  great tasting food. I assume that is the case with more than 1,100 locations. Of course that is key for sustained growth in same store sales as well as sustained growth in the number of locations. Somehow I suspect the food experience is great and I will confirm that one of these days. If you have eaten at Carl’s Jr. please share your experiences including what you ordered.

Great  example Carl’s Jr. of executing very well on fundamentals.

Sending you energy of health, happiness, prosperity

Steve Pohlit

Business Consulting, Executive Coaching
International Business Resources

Social Media Services
New Digital Media, Inc.

727-587-7871
Email

Google Buzz

When Business Sucks, Look In The Mirror

All the solutions are waiting for you to attract them.  That’s right and if you disagree, you are correct.  What you believe is true for you.  For me, I know what I focus on expands. That is The Law of Attraction and it is always working even in business.  If you expect problems you will attract problems. If you look outside for the reasons there are issues in your business, then you will always be finding someone or something to blame.  All this solutions for your business start with your knowing there is a solution. Consider these examples:

Last week I began working with a rather large business that finds itself in a cash crunch.  The first meeting I had with the owners of this business asked the single most important question relative to this situation. “Do you feel this situation can be solved?”  Without a consensus yes answer, there would be no reason to continue.  We continued.

I called a meeting on the second day right at the beginning of the day with these owners. I asked them to begin focusing on the picture of success.  I guided them to shift their thoughts from all the issues that are pressing to the picture of a well coordinated profitable business with plenty of cash.  I said to them we would have this meeting every day that I was on sight and I encouraged them to hold the meeting when I was not there.  This week I will give more clear directions on imaging specific success for their business.

In business there are three situations: First there is the current situation. Second there is a situation that is more negative than the current situation and if that trend continues it could lead to what people describe as a worst case. Third, there is the going forward picture of what it is that the team of people in the company will create.  Of course my work is primarily focused on the third picture. Since I am not able to discern what others are intending, I spend some time on a worse case scenario designed to protect the business should events proceed quickly to the negative. On balance,  I usually spend 90% of my time on designing and implementing the going forward plan.

Solutions to business situations vary depending on the conditions being addressed. The second day into this project calls were received that represented huge opportunities. Day three another call came in that also represented a marvelous opportunity.  None of these seemed to be in motion until the owners began focusing on success.  They are responsible for their business and they are responsible for attracting success. My work is to help them attract success and optimize revenue and profits. I  show them how to continue that process once the project they hired me for  is complete.

Does their business suck?  Well actually it did up until a week ago. The owners are beginning to see they are responsible. They are no longer blaming external people, places and things. Once you accept responsibility that your are the reason for the state of your business, then you can begin to paint a new picture.

I experience more examples of how business sucks  in one week that I could possibly write about in a month. I’ll bet you do to and I’ll bet you have a short list of what they could do to improve the situation fast.

Consider this  example:  in the town of my  most recent client referenced above,  there is a very nice building exterior that is a home of a restaurant.  From all outward appearances, I anticipated a very good dining experience. Inside told a different story.  First the atmosphere was very institutional.  However, it appeared to be clean.  The appearance of the staff was not one where you knew they had much pride in themselves and so they didn’t have pride in servicing customers. I am sure there were exceptions. But I didn’t attract any that evening.  The food was not even close to the pictures on the menu.  The beer selection was good and it was good.

That is just one example of  “When Business Sucks, Look In The Mirror”.  Each of the issues described are fixable in a very short period of time.  There are so many opportunities in business for “doing it better”  without having to spend a lot of money.  The solution starts from within. It starts with the mindset “I am responsible for the outcome of my business.”

In operations, I work with companies on fundamentals.  In marketing I recommend solutions and have do it for you solutions. The do it for you solutions are particularly valuable in the social media marketing arena. In all cases I stay focused on proven business principles.  These are the ones that are ignored the most because the discipline required t0 execute the fundamentals is routine and boring.  It  just so happens those fundamentals are where the gold is mined.

Sharing with all my readers the energy of peace, happiness and abundance

Steve Pohlit, The Profit Expert

Designer: Local Business Marketing This program is outstanding because it builds  long term relationships and profits.

Email Me, Steve Pohlit to schedule A No Obligation Consultation On Building Your Business Profits.  Need more customers? Let’s discuss how to use cutting edge Social Media Marketing in the revenue building cycle of your business to drive your profits sky high.

Follow Me and I Follow You
Join My Fan Page on Facebook Click Here

FREE Report:

How To Increase Business Profits by 30% or More in 90 Days or Less

Google Buzz

WordPress Blogging Is A Foundation Marketing Tool: Backup Your Content

There are four foundation tools every business should be using as part of their marketeing strategy. These are listed on my site www.stevepohlit.com   I  have also  written detailed articles about these foundation tools. For example Click Here for an article on how blogs and video help your internet site search engine ranking. You sould be subscribed to Steve Reports for tons of information I publish that will help your business grow profitable revenue.

For your convenience the foundation tools are:

  1. A currently updated website, keyword optimized and with  contact information capture script with linked to an autoresponder.
  2. A blog that is regularly updated with relevant information and links to your website. You blog should also have contact information capture script linked to your autoresponder. Register at http://bloggingforprofits.biz  for free instuctional videos on how to do this. Here is my introductory video on Blogging For Profits again for your convenience
  3. Use short videos that you produce, topic and keyword specific that you post to your blog. Select ones should be posted to your website. Register at  http://youtubemastery.net for more than 20 videos that teach you how to do this for free.
  4. Enhance the relationships with your customers and prospect list with email communication. Use off line actions including; meetings, phone calls, post cards and letters.  This is why you want to capture the contact information of visitors to your website and blog.
Of course there is more and that is covered in the marketing module of my business consulting practice. My contact information follows this article.
BACKUP YOUR CONTENT
By now most people are aware of how to backup websites and most autoresponder companies provide an easy to use download feature for you customer database. My preferred autoresponder service is Aweber Click Here 
It seems most people are not thinking about all the content they add to their blogs and the backup of a blog is differenet than a website. WordPress Blogs, and I believe most other formats, run by adding your content to a database. WordPress based blogs all use MySQL database technology. Sounds “Twilight Zone” but it isn’t except for you are not able to simply backup your files like you are  able to do with a website. You must backup the database.   

Sounds scary?  It isn’t. Watch the video I prepared on this topic and I suggest you believe me when I say: “if I can do this …you can do this”.  Of couse if you don’t want to do any of this and have someone do it for you, I am ready to help.  For the video on how to back up you WordPress Blog Please Click Here. 

Sending all my readers the energy of wellness, peace and abundance

Steve Pohlit,
The Profit Expert 
www.StevePohlit.com

Network with me on Facebook: LinkedIn: Follow me on Twitter

Steve is the President of International Business Consulting Resources. His firm specializes in guiding companies to rapid increases in revenue and profits with a sustainable growth rate. Don’t miss my FREE Report: How To Make More Money With Your Business Now and Long Term I am building my practice and welcome new client inquiries. Call me for a fee consultation at 727-587-7871 

This report may be freely distributed without restrictions with the original content including this resource box remaining unchanged. Author: Steve Pohlit, Business Consulting Services, Executive Coaching, please visit www.stevepohlit.com

 

PS. My doors are open for new clients and referrals are well compensated. 

 

Google Buzz