Tag: Houston Small Business

Get Rid of Lackluster Sales Results Once and For All!

Many business owners struggle with sales. Perhaps you’re one of them?

Let’s face it, not all entrepreneurs realized when they started their business venture that selling would be such a critical skill for them to grow their business, agency, or practice. If you’ve recently encountered a sales slowdown, what should you do?  Should you start posting or advertising on the en-vogue social media platform of the month?  It’s safe to say that’s probably not going to be your long-term solution.

That being said, what are your options?

While many will likely steer you down one path or another (usually the social media and/or expensive advertising route) without really attempting to diagnose and understand the root cause of your current sales decline, I’d like to provide you with a time-tested 28 question framework to identify your sales process bottlenecks and substantially enhance your sales close rates.

Many of my small business clients come to me frustrated or stressed out over their sporadic lead flow and unsteady and even declining sales results.  Sometimes these business challenges are connected.  Sometimes they are not.  For instance, some entrepreneurs are tremendous at finding leads, but they struggle to convert them into sales.  Others are relatively great closers, but they lag behind on getting qualified leads into their pipeline.

To assess and elevate your sales performance, walk through the questionnaire below.  I assure you this is not an exercise that will immediately conclude that your only option to succeed is to be an aggressive, in-your-face by the book sales closer.  As you’ll soon see, this is quite the contrary.  Moreover, this framework does not favor more new-school tech-savvy entrepreneurs that can easily create high-converting sales funnels.  Nor was it created for old-school business owners who can sell with the best of ‘em in person, but are very hesitant to jump into the Digital Age.   Rather, this approach is predicated on my internationally proven and proprietary Client Connect!™  formula, which is all about cultivating deeper relationships with your prospects, clients, and strategic partners and mastering and leveraging your financials so you can work less and make more!

Let’s dive in and commence the diagnostic to address your lackluster sales results based on your unique situation:

Lead generation

How many outbound dials/emails/messages/connections do you make every month? – Leads and customers are the lifeblood of your business.  The lack of leads is a huge demoralizer for any business owner, especially the ones that are in their infant stages.  After all, leads don’t just magically appear.  You have to relentlessly take action every day to increase your lead flow and get your top prospects closer to becoming a client. 

How many leads per month do you generate and what is the source? – Don’t merely count your lead flow.  Also, be sure to rate the quality of each lead and track how they were obtained (e.g. website, landing page, social media site, referral, networking, cold call, etc.).  Having these insights will allow you to maximize your time and effort on the outreach activities with the biggest ROI.

How many lead qualification and discovery calls per month do you book? Unqualified leads are just that, unqualified.  It’s important to know and understand your numbers on how long it typically takes to qualify a lead and convert it into a prospect.                                 

How many demos, presentations, or proposals per month do you provide? As your leads become interested prospects, how many of them received demos, presentations, and/or official bids, and how many went on to become paying clients? 

How many sales per month do you close on average? More importantly, based on the preceding questions, what lead generation activity is needed to win a client?  Until you are in tune with this data, you will not have a reliable blueprint to create and forecast predictable, steady cash flow.  Saying you want to make $10k, $20k, or $50k per month is not sufficient.  You need to be aware of how many calls it takes to find a lead, and from there, how many more meetings and steps you need to go through in your sales funnel to eventually close the sale.  Know your numbers!

Lead qualification and nurturing

Have you clearly defined your target market? – A rapid-fire, yet thought-provoking discovery process is a great way to effectively and efficiently qualify your leads.  Remember, many markets are overlooked and underserved.  The deeper and more narrow your niche the better.  As much as you might not want to, particularly right after launching your startup, you have to be so crystal clear on your ideal target client that you are willing to disqualify and even walk away from some deals.  Doing so will separate tire-kickers from serious prospects, reduce “no decisions”, and speed up your sales cycle.

Do you have distinct nurturing automated email drip campaigns in place? It’s necessary to have separate campaigns consistently dripping on your new prospects, longer-term prospects, and existing clients.

Sales conversions

Do you document and maintain an inventory of the most common sales objections that you receive? – This is one of the best exercises you can ever do as an entrepreneur, particularly when you are just starting out!  Practice really does make perfect in this case.  Put in the reps and simulate the objection handling conversation so you don’t sound robotic (and rehearsed).  If you view objections as buying signals rather than frustrating, insurmountable boulders, you’ll find that you’ll welcome them, and, in turn, have more informed, productive discussions that lead to more sales. After all, that’s what you want, right?

Do you have a consistent sales conversion and follow-up playbook and do you quickly pivot to an efficient client onboarding process? – The best way to get off to a good start with your clientele is to immediately welcome them aboard and promptly explain and execute the next steps for them to receive and benefit from your product or be able to take advantage of your services and see the money they just invested begin paying off for them. Any delay in the onboarding process will result in the emergence of buyer’s remorse and lead to unnecessary client conflict and tension from the outset.  Don’t let this happen to you!  Once you win a deal, express your gratitude, over-communicate, and aggressively service their account so that they will not just be a customer but rather a client for life!

What do you do that very few or no one else is doing to make you stand out during the sales cycle? – For example, do you mail hand-written thank you notes or educational articles with personalized messages to your clients?  Or do you record and send quick Loom or Dubb video messages to help you bond and connect more deeply with your prospects?

Sales opportunity pipeline tracking and analytics

Do you diligently track and analyze your sales opportunity pipeline? – Leveraging a CRM can save you time, streamline and automate your sales processes, and deliver actionable insights on the health of your pipeline, your client/stakeholder relationships, and your business overall.

Do you forecast your sales opportunity revenue amounts and probability to close? – Even if you’re a solopreneur, do this activity at the same time every week and emulate being the Global Sales Director of a Fortune 500 company.  Contrary to what many entrepreneurs think, there are advantages to the corporate world, including many of their rigorous and recurring sales pipeline review meetings.  Stop playing small ball!  Put structure in your days, be on top of your numbers, commit to data analytics, and better position yourself for reliable, recurring revenue streams.

Do you track your month-to-date (MTD), quarter-to-date (QTD), and year-to-date (YTD) sales target to goal results? – Don’t stop there, though.  Go next level and also track month-over-month (MOM), quarter-over-quarter (QOQ), and year-over-year (YOY) trends as well.

What is the duration of your typical sales cycle? – Through your analysis, you may notice that there is a certain segment you serve that usually has a shorter sales cycle compared to others.  If so, and assuming you’re not sacrificing profits to achieve this result, go all-in on that segment!  What are you waiting for?  Do it now!

Who are your most profitable strategic partners? – It’s critical to spend as much time as you should with the referral sources that repeatedly send you leads exactly matching your ideal target customer and that convert into clients that pay, stay, and refer.

Do you know why you win deals? – Over time, as more sales come in, you will discover the one result or outcome that your customers are looking for when they purchase your products, enroll in your program, or invest in your services.  This key finding should be leveraged to drive and refine future marketing messaging and sales efforts to amplify your sales results even more.

Do you know why you lose deals? – Be sure to track which competitors you lose deals to and the reason(s) why so you can be more prepared to compete with them and prevent their erosion of your market share.

Have you ever thought about how your product/service/solution may actually complement your competitors’ offerings? Very few do this.  Keep in mind you probably are not the only one that lacks bandwidth or is overworked, struggling to come up for air, and operating at capacity.  As odd as it sounds, strategic alliances can be formed in which larger companies pass along deals to smaller competitors in the same space.  Plus, a prospect may express that what you offer is redundant or identical to what they are already using and paying.  In reality, if you probe and dig deeper, you’ll often find that is not the case.

How many of your sales come from online vs. offline? – Industry leaders have a blend of both and are not solely dependent on one over the other. Are you?

What is your top producing sales channel? –  It’s imperative to constantly monitor and analyze the percentage of overall sales that come from each channel or medium.  Again, a diversified revenue stream is the go-to model for best-in-class companies.

Sales renewals and repurchases

How long on average does your client stay with you? – Increasing your average client lifetime value (CLV) should be at the heart of all your customer-driven growth strategies.

How many products/services do your client family members typically own? – Note that the higher the number, the longer they stay with you!

Do you know what the next best product/service is for your client? – Everyone on your staff should know this, not just you as the business owner.

What percentage of your revenue comes from new clients vs. existing clients vs. former clients? – A great way to better serve your client base, deepen those relationships, and ultimately aggressively grow revenues is to implement a formalized cross-sell and upsell program.  Another highly effective, yet underutilized way to revitalize your sales and get some quick wins is via a “former customer reactivation program.”  Provided they left you previously on good terms, any stale or prior customer relationships can be reactivated and even expanded much more easily, quickly, and cost-effectively than trying to find a new client.

Do you segment your opportunities and clients and focus most of your time cultivating relationships and exceeding the expectations of your most profitable ‘tier 1’ accounts and deal pursuits? – Prioritize your to-do’s that bring in new clients or preserve existing clients, particularly the more profitable ones. Follow this guiding principle if you want to scale your business.

Do you proactively forecast and prepare for client renewals? – If you don’t, your competitors are ready to pounce and poach your beloved clients. Don’t let this happen to you!

Sales enablement and simplification

Do you invest in sales training? – It’s vital that your sales team adheres to the same sales methodology.  Your sales operating model and process needs to not only be standardized but also as simple as possible for all parties involved from sales support to inside sales to outside sales to sales management.  Compared to twenty years ago, it’s much easier to coach up and train your sales force.  Always encourage underperformers to read books or watch videos on how to improve their selling skills and sales delivery.

Have you ever had an independent business growth advisor assess your current state marketing, sales, and client service process? He or she can share leading practices for your industry to standardize and simplify your workflows and improve your business performance.

So how did you do?

Did you identify immediate areas of improvement? If so, which of these breakthroughs will you act on to boost your sales and ignite the launch and expansion of your business?

Contact RevSherpas to help turn around your sales, accelerate your revenue growth, and elevate your small business to the next level TODAY!

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Revealed! How and Why to Improve Employee Engagement in Your Workplace!

It’s been a full year for a lot of us working from home. In the beginning, it was all new and exciting and unusual, and we weren’t sure what to make of it. But a year later? Many of us are worn out by the dual-duty that we’ve been doing, especially if we have kids or other family members at home with us. And it can be hard to keep working without connecting in person with your co-workers. There were lunches and meetings and other times to look forward to.

Unfortunately, that’s led to a reduction in engagement, and employees who are not as engaged are not as productive or loyal. Even before the pandemic, only about one-third of employees described themselves as engaged. But companies with engaged employees have a better per-share price than their competitors. What can you do about it and why should you care? This graphic from Ten Spot explains it.

What Does Employee Engagement Look Like in the New Normal Workplace?

Stop letting disengaged employees and high turnover impede your company’s progress and performance!

CONTACT US to learn how the management consulting services of RevSherpas can transform your culture and increase employee engagement and staff productivity so you can better serve the demanding needs of your growing client base and execute change and your backlog of strategic initiatives at a much faster rate.

The Key Missing Ingredient in Your Marketing Messaging

Every business needs what is known as a “USP.” That stands for Unique Selling Proposition and it represents the single biggest benefit your business offers that your competition doesn’t. If you don’t have a USP, or you don’t articulate the one you do have, then you’re lucky if you get any business at all.

In fact, most businesses don’t communicate ANY benefits that differentiate themselves from their competitors. This is a HUGE mistake when they attempt any sort of marketing! When they’re trying to attract new customers, by not stating their distinctive advantage, they’re indirectly saying, “Give me your business instead of to my competitors, even though I have nothing special to offer you.” Why would businesses do that? If you cannot give your prospects a better reason to buy from you, they’re likely not going to transfer their business over to you.

Once you create your USP, it becomes the centerpiece for all of your marketing initiatives. It helps you stay passionate and focused on the objectives of your business, and, in the process, separates you from all others in your industry. When you can identify your target customers, understand how they think before they think it, create a compelling message that resonates with them on an emotional level, and compels them to take a specific action, you will be able to instantly increase the number of leads you attract to your business. And not just any leads, but highly qualified leads ready to buy what you sell.

You will attract these targeted prospects in droves, and begin to make more money than ever before. And maybe best of all, you’ll work fewer hours in the process. This is how you work smarter, not harder!  Now, I bet the lightbulbs are really going off and I have your complete, undivided attention, right?

Image by mohamed Hassan from Pixabay

The great thing about creating compelling messages is they come with a host of benefits for your business. It communicates to your target customer exactly what you do, and how you do it, in a highly enticing and more relatable way. Your message now emphasizes the benefits of your product or service instead of its features. Plus, your message now resonates with your prospects on an emotional level. And you immediately begin to attract highly qualified leads that convert easily into new customers who remain loyal to you FOREVER.

So what are you and your business known for? What makes your business and your products/services unique? Please share in the comments.

Lastly, and as always, please CONTACT US if you would like to have an exploratory chat on how we can help you devise or refine your USP and transform and turnaround your underperforming and copy-cat marketing messaging.

The Three Most Important Business Fundamentals to Thrive

“Forget about the crowds, the size of the school, their fancy uniforms, and remember what got you here. Focus on the fundamentals that we’ve gone over time and time again.”  – “Hoosiers” Coach Norman Dale played by Gene Hackman.

In the small business arena, there are three fundamentals every business MUST have in place to not only survive but also THRIVE.

First, your business must stand out from the crowd, and it must be “unique.” You MUST establish an all-important market-dominating position.

Second, your business must offer extraordinary and exceptional value. Your prospects, no matter who they are or what they’re buying, always want the best deal. However, that doesn’t mean the lowest price.  Again, that doesn’t mean the lowest price.  Rather, it means the most value for the price they pay. That is, they will gladly pay a higher price, as long as the perceived value is greater than the price. The keywords here, of course, are “perceived value.”

The third and final fundamental may be the most important of the three. You must have a compelling message that confidently communicates the first two fundamentals. You must be able to explain to someone quickly and succinctly what it is you do, and how your product or service will benefit them.

With these three fundamentals firmly in place, you instantly separate your business from your competition and immediately position yourself as the dominant player in your market. Your prospects will literally be thinking to themselves that they would be absolute fools if they bought your product or service from anyone else but you. These three fundamentals are absolutely crucial when you need to generate more leads, attract more clients, and make more money.

Is your business fundamentally sound and predicated upon these core business-building principles?

If not, and you’re serious about recovering, regrowing, and revitalizing your small business, please CONTACT US to schedule an initial strategy consultation.

It’s your time!  Focus on the fundamentals and reach new heights TODAY!

 

What Every Entrepreneur Ought to Know About Mindset Mastery

As a kid growing up in Atlanta, I was a huge fan of the baseball team, the Atlanta Braves.  One of my childhood heroes was former Hall of Fame pitcher and current FOX and MLB Network announcer, John Smoltz.  Even though Smoltz was one of the best post-season pitchers of all-time and one of the few to dominate as both a starting pitcher and closer, he did experience some ups and downs early on in his career.

It turns out a pivotal moment in his turnaround was to partner with a sports psychologist to make some mental adjustments to boost his confidence and improve his consistency, mental toughness, and, ultimately, his overall performance.

 

“When you start having doubt, you start creating an atmosphere of ‘things are going to go wrong,’ and they will… If you say ‘don’t hang a slider’ or ‘don’t leave this pitch (up),’ … you start having negative thoughts, and those negative thoughts become positive reinforcement for what you don’t want to do.”

John Smoltz

 

 

Sticking with the theme of mindset mastery, I recently read an excellent leadership development article from Michael Hyatt entitled “Want an Abundant Life? Change Your Thinking.”  In the piece, Hyatt illuminates the difference between “abundance thinkers” and “scarcity thinkers.”

Generally speaking, those constantly driven by fear of failure, doubt, or discord fall into the scarcity category.  On the other hand, abundance thinkers prioritize, attract, and attain success, happiness, and fulfillment. As you might imagine, they really are polar opposites.

Which of these philosophies describe you and how you run your business operations?

To further distinguish between the two lines of thinking, Hyatt shares some more examples, which I have categorized and summarized for you below.  Whether you’re an aspiring entrepreneur, early-stage entrepreneur, struggling solopreneur, veteran business owner, or first-time executive, I’d encourage you to review this breakdown to see how you stack up.

  • GROWTH MINDSET 
    • Abundance thinkers:  Think and go big, embrace risk, and believe there’s always more
    • Scarcity thinkers:  Think small, lack vision, typically play it safe, and feel there will never be enough.
  • COLLABORATION and GENEROSITY
    • Abundance Thinkers:  Openly and proactively share their knowledge, contacts, and compassion with others.
    • Scarcity Thinkers:  Guarded and very stingy with providing knowledge transfer, introductions, and support.
  • RELATIONSHIP BUILDING
    • Abundance Thinkers:  Highly trusting and easily cultivate rapport.
    • Scarcity Thinkers:  Highly suspicious and inept at rapport building.
  • COMPETITIVE SPIRIT
    • Abundance Thinkers:  Embrace competition and feel they get better and benefit from a bigger pie.
    • Scarcity Thinkers:  Fear competition and think they will suffer from a smaller pie.
  • DRIVE AND COMMITMENT
    • Abundance Thinkers:  Go above and beyond and always overdeliver.
    • Scarcity Thinkers:  Tend to take shortcuts, don’t work hard, and do just enough to get by.
  • ATTITUDE
    • Abundance Thinkers:  Confident, but grounded and thankful…upbeat and optimistic about the future.
    • Scarcity Thinkers:  Fearful, entitled, and pessimistic about what lies ahead.

How’d you make out?  Are your core belief systems and values limiting you and your business?

Everyone always claims they are striving for growth in their business and personal lives, but are they really?  Are you?  If not, what are you going to do about it and make it happen?

I hope you can relate to more or all of the attributes of the abundance thinkers.  If that is not the case, you at least now have a starting point on where you are and what mindset adjustments you need to make to get where you want to go.

If you found this blog helpful or you have other suggested topics for us to cover, please let us know in the comments below.

Lastly, if you’d like to receive more tips and tricks on how to master your mindset, be more productive, and enhance your leadership skills, be sure to check out our RevSherpas Facebook company page.  There, in a less stuffy kind of way, you’ll get to learn from the best of the best, not just in the world of business, but also in sports, entertainment, and the motivational personal development space.

How to Master Your Morning Routine

The other day I read “6 Things You Should Never Do First Thing in the Morning” by Jeff Haden in Inc., who is one of my favorite authors in that magazine.

Photo by Jon Tyson via Unsplash

Here are the highlights of recommended key things not to do as part of your morning routine:

1. Don’t plan out your day.

Trying to plan your work first thing in the morning or when you get to work can have unintended consequences resulting in a complete waste of time.  The mere act of doing this results in stress and anxiety as your list piles up.  As you rush to finish the list so you can actually work, you might even wind up prioritizing easy, administrative tasks over more important yet complex items (e.g. cash-flow generating activities).  Going through the motions and being unprepared is never a good thing.

Instead, come ready to play and commit to the following:

  • Prepare and prioritize your to-do list at the end of your prior workday.
  • Determine the single most important thing you need to accomplish tomorrow.
  • Get your workspace and all needed materials ready for tomorrow the night before.

Doing so will create massive momentum in the mornings and tee you up for maximum focus and goal attainment.

2. Don’t make unimportant decisions.

Why spend time agonizing over trivial decisions?  Every extra choice you consider or decision that you have to make overwhelms your brain and takes up time.

A better approach to free up your brain power and ensure you’re at peak mental focus at all times is to:

  • Eliminate non-important decision points (e.g. – if it doesn’t make you more profitable, increase your productivity, or improve the quality of your life or one of your business outputs, then stop fixating on it and move on).
  • Automate and expedite simple, recurring decisions (e.g. – get into a routine for what you eat and what you wear).

3. Don’t forget to exercise.

The reason it’s ideal for exercise to occur in the early morning is because:

  • It puts you in a better mood for the next 12 hours.
  • It increases your energy levels.

Being happier and having more stamina throughout the day empowers you to get more done.

4. Don’t forget to include protein in your first meal.

Consuming 30 grams of protein with breakfast is recommended since it:

  • Maintains blood-sugar levels.
  • Curbs your appetite and prevents hunger attacks.

You’ll be energized, healthier, and less distracted.

5. Don’t forget to take the right breaks.

Regardless of how intelligent or mentally focused you are, you can only operate at a high level for so long.  The sooner you understand and abide by that principle, the more productive you will become.  Even if you are a “morning person” as opposed to a “night owl,” you have to factor this into your morning routing prep and execution.

Try taking opportune breaks as outlined below:

  • Recognize that after 90 to 120 minutes, you lose focus…you’re not alone.
  • Strategically take 15-20 minute breaks to recharge for your next big task.
  • Instead of planning and plotting your workday as a typical 8 or 10 hour day, break it down into five 90-minute windows with occasional short breaks sprinkled in so you can refuel and/or knock out some quick, mindless tasks.

6. Don’t stick blindly to the same morning routine.

Now, this advice may seem counter-intuitive…The point is if your routine is working, stick with it.  If it’s not, adjust.  Life happens and new family duties and business commitments will arise.  Though sticking to a routine that works is the goal, you’ll have to constantly test and adapt as your business grows.

Lastly, not everyone will have the same morning routine.  Nevertheless, most prefer to have a better one, and I hope you can incorporate some of these “not to do list” recommendations into your morning routine and get your day going on the right foot.

What aspect of your morning routine would you like to improve?  

What’s been the best piece of advice you’ve ever received to kickstart your mornings, attack the day, and maintain momentum throughout?

Feel free to leave a comment below and thanks for the continued readership of our Blog!

If you haven’t already, be sure to connect with us on Twitter, LinkedIn, or Facebook to receive additional, unique insights and tips on time management, productivity hacks, business growth strategies, leadership development, and motivation.

Accelerate New Hire Onboarding and Ramp Up with RevSherpas

As small to mid-sized businesses look to grow market share or enter new markets, they often hire new staff.  Many times, though, the addition of more personnel does not always lead to more work getting done overall, less workload for others, enhanced client service, or better territory coverage.  The reason for these unanticipated, unintended, and unfortunate consequences is that firms’ technology infrastructure, or lack thereof, impedes employee productivity and progress as the organization grows.

Photo by Sebastian Herrmann on Unsplash

In particular, companies without a leading-edge CRM system in place experience significant challenges when onboarding new employees.  After all, learning a new role and a new organizational hierarchy and culture can be hard enough in itself. Complicating matters, a new hire without CRM is going to struggle to get up to speed quickly, regardless if she was brought on due to a new role or division being created, a firm experiencing enormous growth, or a department undergoing high turnover.

Below, I have summarized some of the negatives a new hire will face without CRM and contrasted them with some of the pluses she will have if a robust, intuitive CRM platform is available.

As the new employee comes onboard without CRM, he probably will not be the only one struggling to locate data on clients, prospects, sales opportunities, and service cases due to the abundance of legacy, disparate systems and delayed or non-existent information flow between various departments and channels. Lack of visibility into all client and stakeholder relationships results in too much administrative work done in a vacuum and excessive duplication. Client trust diminishes, especially if ongoing staff turnover compounds these operational bottlenecks and inefficiencies.

On the other hand, CRM streamlines and automates common sales, marketing, and service processes and gives employees, particularly new hires, the information that they need to succeed. New employees can find key background info on customers and partners and come across as if they have been with the firm managing their sales territory for over a decade. The resulting productivity and performance gains from CRM thereby quickly justify the hiring of the new staff.

Are your sales units and new hires still struggling to get by without a solid CRM system and strategy? 

Are you still not sure if you need a CRM or how it can help your firm operate more efficiently, serve your clients more effectively, and scale faster?

Are you overwhelmed by the plethora of options in the CRM software marketplace?

Have you recently experienced a choppy software implementation with your IT consulting partner or feel you overpaid for the junior, overhyped resources who worked on your project?

Do you wish you could deliver results faster to your customers and employees/CRM users?

Do you desire to transform your digital customer experience, but lack the in-house expertise and just not sure where to start?

As a leading boutique CRM and Customer Experience Strategy Consulting firm, RevSherpas can help point you in the right direction and grow your business!

CONTACT US to explore a potential partnership and to schedule a complimentary discovery and strategy consultation session.

Only 30% of Your Workers are Engaged – Really!?!

Every couple of years, Gallup releases its State of the American Workplace annual report on trends in the U.S. working population.  The report places a particular emphasis on employee engagement and it highlights that in order to have engaged customers, companies first must engage their employees. According to Gallup, this is proving to be extremely challenging in businesses of all sizes across America…On that note, we’d love to see a more recent version of this report that accounts for the fact that so many employees now work from the comfort of their home due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Key findings from Gallup reveal:

  • Employee disengagement costs American businesses between $483 to $605 billion per year.
  • Nearly 70% of the American workforce is considered to be disengaged (in other words, only 3 out of your 10 employees are fully engaged at their jobs – YIKES!)
  • Disconnected, underperforming firms in the bottom quartile of employee engagement severely lag their more actively engaged top quartile peers as they experience:
    • 22% lower profitability
    • 21% lower productivity
    • 10% lower customer satisfaction
    • 41% higher defects
    • 25% higher employee turnover

Say it ain’t so!  Such apathetic employees negatively influence co-workers and damage client relationships to destroy company performance.

Whatever happened to the days of maximum collaboration, frequent communication, and tight camaraderie at the company foosball or ping-pong table?  If you’ve ever grinded at a start-up, you know what I’m talking about!

Photo by Proxyclick Visitor Management System on Unsplash

So the question becomes, how can you as a business owner or executive overcome employee disengagement and improve financial and business results?

Well, the business growth advisory and customer experience strategy consulting practice and research team of RevSherpas finds that industry leaders are choosing to equip their staff with superior Customer Relationship Management (CRM) technology and simplify, standardize, and streamline their core business development, sales conversion, client onboarding, ongoing marketing communication outreach, customer service, and client retention processes.

Serving as the centralized data hub, knowledge repository, and business intelligence tool of the organization, CRM provides a clear, comprehensive picture of client, prospect, and partner relationships for all employees, regardless of their role in the front, middle, or back office.

Compared to the 1990s and even 2010s, you’ll be amazed at how many high-quality, low-cost, and easy to implement CRM solutions there now are that are exclusively built for small to mid-sized businesses.

Furthermore, CRM empowers all employees to harness the necessary insights to foster more efficient information sharing and more effective decision making in order to exceed client expectations and deliver optimal levels of service. With CRM, administrative search time and costs are reduced, as employees know where to go to get answers. Plus, no one wants to be known as the individual whose missing key client interaction notation resulted in the sales team being unprepared in route to botching a huge deal. Therefore, employees develop a greater sense of ownership, pride, and accountability in updating CRM and leveraging it as a productivity and performance enhancer.

As employees become more engaged with CRM, customers will certainly begin to notice the elevation in client service levels. In particular, customers will notice how the employees they interact with are much more focused, committed, and responsive compared to the competition. In a nutshell, a more engaged workforce at all customer touchpoints leads to a more engaged, loyal client base that is more likely to make repeat purchases, promote the firm’s brand in the marketplace, and actively send referrals to significantly grow revenues.

“RevSherpas…Client Focused. Elevated Results.” 

Yes, that’s our motto, but the secret to customer-driven growth and delivering a world-class, differentiated customer experience that many firms repeatedly ignore is that your employees need to be locked in, fully engaged, and fired up to go to work and serve your client base every day.  The reality is that without efficient business processes in place, your employee engagement will stagnate, and thus your deals won and customer service will suffer as well.

After all, happy, motivated employees = happy customers!

If you’re a small business owner struggling with increases in employee disengagement or staff turnover, let’s talk and devise a gameplan before your client service levels and market share erode even further!

*** Let’s commit to one another ASAP that our respective firms will not be one of the companies going forward where only 30% of our staff is focused and engaged at work!  That is absolutely unacceptable and not what our increasingly demanding clients, partners, and investors deserve! ***

Please leave a comment below if you concur.

 

Provide 5-Star Service and Optimize Customer Delight with RevSherpas

What if I told you that consumers will tell 16 people about subpar service encounters?… Conversely, they will inform only nine others about positive, memorable customer service experiences.

Did you know that consumers value quality customer service so much that they will pay more to receive it?… In fact, 70% indicated they would spend 13% more on average with businesses that deliver stellar service.  As you can see, higher customer satisfaction levels lead to more spending!

Are you aware that 78% have canceled a transaction or taken their business elsewhere upon encountering negative, frustrating customer service?… If it wasn’t obvious already, consumers will indeed rebel with their wallets and then proceed to influence and persuade many others to avoid those lackluster establishments as well.

These findings and more originated from the American Express® Global Customer Service Barometer reports on consumer sentiment concerning the state of customer service in America… Pretty interesting survey findings, right?

It’s clear that customer experience can profoundly impact client acquisition, engagement, and retention.  Although this research study is typically targeted towards individuals, it is safe to say that the same attitudes and preferences on customer service hold true in the B2B world as well.

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Companies that differentiate themselves from the competition by providing superior customer service will earn repeat business from clients and begin to receive more referrals. On the other hand, customers that do not consistently deliver positive and meaningful customer experiences will suffer instant client churn and defections and lose drastic revenue.

Based on our ten plus years of experience in working on high-priority, high-profile customer experience management strategic initiatives for rapidly growing small businesses and global financial institutions, our client results match up with the findings of American Express.  By continually measuring, monitoring, and improving the customer experience, firms can be more in tune with evolving service preferences and provide better service to their high-value clients and outperform their competition.

If you are looking to considerably improve your customer retention rates, response times to customer inquiries, customer lifetime values (LTV), and customer satisfaction rates year in and year out, RevSherpas can help.

The RevSherpas Customer Experience Strategy Consulting Services Suite:

  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Readiness Assessments
  • CRM RFP Vendor Selection, ROI, and Business Case Formulation
  • Digital Customer Experience (CX) Transformation Strategic Roadmaps
  • Sales and Marketing Current State Audits
  • Customer Journey Mapping and Future State Process Improvement
  • Market Dominating Brand Positioning and Lead Generation Maximization
  • Account Segmentation and Pricing Optimization
  • Client Retention/Reactivation Strategies
  • Voice-of-the-Customer (VoC) Feedback Surveys and Analysis
  • Memorable “Wow” Customer Experience Design
  • Employee Engagement Assessments and Organizational Change Management

Due to our extensive CRM and revenue growth acceleration consulting background, we’ve developed a solid understanding of the complex challenges facing inundated business owners in today’s extremely volatile economy and highly competitive landscape. We’ve seen firsthand how the prevalent use of flawed, ineffective marketing tactics, cumbersome sales pipeline opportunity tracking tools, and the overreliance on decentralized client data stifles the operational efficiency, decision-making velocity, and growth of many businesses across a multitude of industries.

Luckily for small to mid-sized businesses, the recent onslaught of technological innovations and improvements in mobile, cloud computing, P2P payment systems, artificial intelligence, and robotics has made streamlining and automating core marketing, sales, customer engagement, and service activities easier and more affordable than ever before!

In fact, many sophisticated prospecting, lead tracking, sales pipeline management, and marketing autoresponder solutions that were previously only available at the larger enterprise level for Fortune 500 corporations and leading global brands are now accessible to everyone, including both established and aspiring, hungry business owners, such as yourself.

Let us show you how to set up systems in as little as sixty days that increase your client retention, repeat purchases, renewals, referrals, and revenue without having to spend a dime on marketing or hiring a team of 20 high-priced management consultants!

Please call (800)569-1374 or email Sales@RevSherpas.com if you would like to further vet, evaluate, and candidly discuss how we can quickly elevate your service levels to stand out from their competition.

We are committed to empower and enable local, mission-driven businesses to exponentially outperform in any economy and avoid brand extinction.

Will yours be next?

Stellar Service Is Vital To Your Success (“Same As It Ever Was”)

Recently, we came across an excellent inventory of Customer Service Quotes from legendary business leaders, past and present.  Thank you to Salesforce for capturing and compiling these quotes.  It’s rare to find so many solid quotes consolidated together on a business strategy so near and dear to our hearts.

As CRM strategists and customer experience improvement and innovation experts, the RevSherpas consulting practice is passionate about delivering optimal service to our clients.  Moreover, during our client engagements, we always underscore the importance of providing unrivaled customer service to reduce churn, increase satisfaction and loyalty, and ultimately grow revenues.

While other consultants and coaches typically try to convince you to utilize the latest social media shiny object tactic of the day, we’re far more into cultivating deeper relationships with your prospects, clients, and referral sources. 

It’s much more effective and just makes more business sense.  After all, our motto in our logo does say, “Client Focused.  Elevated Results.”

What’s interesting is that many of the quotes and points of view that were established in the 1800s are still valid today.  In fact, they are so legit that they serve as the fundamentals of how to effectively grow and scale a business even now.

To begin, let’s take a look at some of our favorite quotes from the pioneers of Retail.

“THE OLD SCHOOL”

Marshal Field, founder of Marshall Field and Company, the Chicago-based department stores:

“The customer is always right.”

“Assume that the customer is right until it is plain beyond all question he is not.”

“Give the lady what she wants.”

“Goodwill is the one and only asset that competition cannot undersell or destroy.”

Harry Gordon Selfridge, American-British retail magnate who founded the London-based department store Selfridges:

“Honesty always pays.”

“People will sit up and take notice of you if you will sit up and take notice of what makes them sit up and take notice.”

“Get the confidence of the public and you will have no difficulty in getting their patronage.”

“Treat [the customer] as guests when they come and when they go, whether or not they buy.”

John Wanamaker, founder of department stores, including Philadelphia-based Wanamaker’s; Also, invented the price tag and was the first merchant to utilize advertising agencies:

“When a customer enters my store, forget me. He is king.”

“Courtesy is the one coin you can never have too much of or be stingy with.”

“Courtesies cannot be borrowed like snow shovels; you must have some of your own.”

Again, many of the above quotes were declared by individuals born in the 1830s and 1850s!  Yet, their philosophies still hold up and are applicable in the present environment…they’re really the “SAME AS IT EVER WAS!”

https://www.amazon.com/Same-Ever-Was-Talking-Heads/dp/B0028G1OU4

To balance out the “old school” perspectives, we also wanted to share some fascinating quotes on the importance of customer service from current CEOs and business leaders representing the “new school” as seen below.

“THE NEW SCHOOL”

Bill Gates, co-founder of Microsoft and philanthropist:

“Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.”

Dr. Gary P. Hamel, founder of Strategos, a management consulting firm:

“Most of us understand that innovation is enormously important. It’s the only insurance against irrelevance. It’s the only guarantee of long-term customer loyalty…It doesn’t matter much where your company sits in its industry ecosystem, nor how vertically or horizontally integrated it is—what matters is its relative ‘share of customer value’ in the final product or solution, and its cost of producing that value.”

Elon Musk, founder/CEO of Tesla, SpaceX, and The Boring Company, among many other companies (does he ever sleep?):

“I think it’s very important to have a feedback loop, where you’re constantly thinking about what you’ve done and how you could be doing it better.”

Jeff Bezos, founder/CEO of Amazon:

“We see our customers as invited guests to a party, and we are the hosts. It’s our job every day to make every important aspect of the customer experience a little bit better.”

Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos; Previously was co-founder of LinkExchange:

“We take most of the money that we could have spent on paid advertising and instead put it back into the customer experience. Then we let the customers be our marketing.”

Joseph Jaffe, consultant and thought leader on growth, marketing, and innovation:

“Customer Service is everything and anything that touches a customer – directly or indirectly. Customer service means servicing customers, and it’s so much more than just solving problems or addressing complaints. Customer service is part of a holistic customer experience that is capable of providing a critical competitive advantage in today’s increasingly cluttered and commoditized marketplace.”

Larry Page, co-founder of Google:

“We have a mantra: don’t be evil, which is to do the best things we know how for our users, for our customers, for everyone.”

Marc Benioff, founder/Chairman/CEO of Salesforce:

“The future of communicating with customers rests in engaging with them through every possible channel: phone, e-mail, chat, Web, and social networks. Customers are discussing a company’s products and brand in real time. Companies need to join the conversation.”

Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Group:

“Setting customer expectations at a level that is aligned with consistently deliverable levels of customer service requires that your whole staff, from product development to marketing, works in harmony with your brand image.”

Sam Walton, founder of Walmart and Sam’s Club:

“There is only one boss – the customer. And he can fire everybody in the company from the chairman on down, simply by spending his money somewhere else.”

Seymour Fine, marketing expert:

“When a customer complains, he is doing you a special favor; he is giving you another chance to serve him to his satisfaction. You will appreciate the importance of this opportunity when you consider that the customer’s alternative option was to desert you for a competitor.”

Shep Hyken, customer service expert:

“True loyalty doesn’t come because of an app. It doesn’t come because you have a punch card where after ten punches you get a free sandwich. It is about the relationship. Take away those “perks” and would the customer still be loyal?”

Steve Jobs, co-founder/Chairman/CEO of Apple:

“Get closer than ever to your customers. So close that you tell them what they need well before they realize it themselves.”

Walt Disney, founder of The Disney Company, animation pioneer, and film producer:

“Whatever you do, do it well. Do it so well that when people see you do it, they will want to come back and see you do it again, and they will want to bring others and show them how well you do what you do.”

Zig Ziglar, motivational speaker and sales trainer:

“Statistics suggest that when customers complain, business owners and managers ought to get excited about it. The complaining customer represents a huge opportunity for more business.”

These customer service philosophies are truly time-tested and they should be at the cornerstone of your digital customer experience transformation strategic initiatives. Any company in the midst of becoming more client-focused and shifting from a product-centric to a client-centric mindset to better serve its customer base can likely utilize many of these famous quotes as the guiding principles for the changing of their company culture.

As for your company, are you in need of assistance in designing and revamping your customer experience and CRM strategy?

Have your service levels been declining and running into frequent bottlenecks and backlogs lately?

Have you been experiencing high customer turnover of late?

If so, it’s probably time to simplify, standardize, and improve your client service operations!  Please email Hello@RevSherpas.com to request an initial discovery and strategy consultation.

Lastly, we encourage you to leave a comment below to let us know what your most-liked quote in this article is or if you have another favorite customer service, CRM, or customer experience management quote not listed here. 

Thanks!