By: Michael Aun
One of the fascinating aspects of an anthology book is you have a variety of ideas from many sources collectively reinforcing similar objectives. That is exactly what you will find in “Maverick Entrepreneurs’ Million Dollar Strategies.”
Every business, profession or service industry is searching for a better way to sell their service. Take Greg Wych, DDS, one of the book’s co-authors whose focus is dentistry. “What are they selling?” asks Greg. “Where do ads go wrong?”
Dr. Wych’s whole approach is to appeal to the “right prospect.” He cautions against “unqualified” people seeking treatment. In short, the dentist should assess what a qualified prospect is and market to them accordingly, utilizing a marketing funnel that narrows the scope.
Ann Elliott, a leadership strategist and professional speaker, warns that you must stay on your prospects’ radar. In the old days, only cold calling worked because marketing, while “nice to have,” says Ann, was expensive.
Every excuse under the sun exists from “no marketing expertise, to being overwhelmed, to fear of a client saying ‘yes’ to belief that marketing is hard work to marketing is expensive to yada-yada-yada.” Ms. Elliot’s approach is simple: “Take action.”
How? “Know your ideal client,” she observes. “Have excellent product and services. Update your skills and expertise. Demonstrate value. Give extraordinary customer service.” Ann calls it “Top of Mind Marketing.”
Ann was one of the first to say don’t just hang your shingle, “Hang it on the internet. Connect, speak to your target audience, publish and network with those you want to reach. Your customers expect excellence.”
Geoff Ellinwood was another of those who turned their passion into profits. He calls himself a “broke dog trainer who turned his business around.” Not very powerful credentials.
Like so many others in the “maverick ilk of thinking,” Geoff nails it on the head. It is about “Finding the right clients.” Geoff found that using an education-based style of marketing, he was able to develop a “Consumer Awareness Guide to Dog Training” meant to educate and motivate and help dog owners.
Geoff quips “I educated people into doing business with me.” What a clever approach to specific, needs-based marketing to achieve your objective. It was win-win and clients sought Geoff out for his expertise.
How? Ellinwood made it personal, debunking myths, fears and misconceptions about the industry. He used tips, tricks and ways to save prospects time and money. He helped educate clients on how to ask the right questions so he could help them with informed decisions. Finally, he eliminated all “Red Flags” that were typical industry roadblocks.
Sounds easy, but to read Geoff’s story it wasn’t. “Once I had to siphon gas from my riding mower to my truck to make it to a client’s house to get paid. This taught me to find cheap ways to get my guide out there.” You might call this shoe string marketing at its best.
How does one live the life of a maverick? Co-author Suzanne Riley Whyte said the term maverick was coined from Samuel Maverick, born in Charleston, SC in 1803 and later educated at Yale University before moving to Texas to practice law and run for politics.
Ms. Whyte suggests the issues amount to the fences we build. “Many fences limit us in life and business. Some are invisible. Others take years to recognize. What can we do about them? Without understanding them we won’t change.”
Suzanne calls her second fence descriptor “The Three Amigos.” When we are deprived of water, food and/or sleep, negative self-thoughts or non-productive thoughts affect us.”
She labels her third fence “You can’t do that! My idea was threatening their way of thinking,” she observes. “That’s why they say you can’t do that! I was rattling their cage. Start with a written plan that allows you to focus.”
“Since your heart controls your brain,” she observes, “then strengthen your heart.”
In next week’s column, anthology co-authors will share secrets of selling yourself, strategic coaching to reach out to five diverse generations, prioritize or perish, choosing mentors, maverick entrepreneurs in the mission field, loading your weapons with magic bullets and the power of Master Mind groups.
To Order A Copy of Million Dollar Strategies, Call Riverbanks Press at (803)-331-6695.