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People want to hear positive messages…give them what they want...deliver some positive messages.

by Rick Baker
On May 26, 2017

The Thinking Behind the Tweet

We tested positive and negative marketing messages. We tried both "in these tough economic times" and "to build for the future". We found our positive messages were twice as successful as our negative messages. So we work to keep our communications on the positive side of centre.

In business, the best relationships are built when pleasant personalities exchange interesting ideas.

by Rick Baker
On Apr 4, 2017

The Thinking Behind The Tweet

And, of course, the ideas contain value and there's following through on commitments.

Link to Thought Tweet #278

Tags:

Communication: Improving Communication | Marketing | Sales | Thought Tweets

If you want to hit a grand slam in business, use your WOMBAT.

by Rick Baker
On Mar 7, 2017

The Thinking Behind The Tweet

WOMBAT

Word Of Mouth Business Acquisition Team

Tags:

Humour | Marketing | Sales | Thought Tweets

Have you ever asked your customers what they would like you to measure?

by Rick Baker
On Mar 5, 2017

The Thinking Behind The Tweet

You probably think about what your customers want.

You probably measure what you think your customers want.

But, do you ever ask your customers what they want you to measure?


Tags:

Marketing | Measure & Monitor | Questions?: The Art of Asking Good Questions | Sales | Thought Tweets

Stopping to think about CRM tools

by Rick Baker
On Dec 5, 2016

Most small businesses want to gain advantage over their competitors.

Most small businesses want more sales.

Most small businesses want to keep track of their operating activity.

And - the operations of most small businesses become far more complicated than outsiders [and most insiders] would have guessed or expected…and much of that complication is unnecessary. Considering this from another perspective, most small businesses do not perform basic planning activities such as SWOT analyses and 80/20 Rule analyses.

Consequently, most small businesses struggle with business development actions and business development results.

CRM to the rescue...

Well, maybe not!

Here's why [not].

There's lots of small-business talk about finding simple and user-friendly CRM tools and using those CRM tools to improve management of actions, improve monitoring of results, and grow a base of satisfied customers. Yet, relatively few of these small businesses are ready to use a CRM system. In addition to the lack of planning introduced above, there are two main reasons why they are not ready for CRM tools:

  1. they cannot [clearly and concisely] describe their existing operating actions
  2. they lack knowledge about CRM tools, in some cases they cannot even define what the abbreviation 'CRM' means

So - let's start by defining CRM.

Here's the definition-picture provided by Wikipedia -

Now, that picture introduces CRM...as long as you agree "CRM" is an abbreviation of "Customer Relationship Management". And, for now, let's work from that base, CRM = Customer Relationship Management. If we accept "CRM" means "Customer Relationship Management" then we should also be able to agree CRM tools/systems do not include business tools/systems for on-line sales/ordering or inventory-control. While CRM does not include these tools/systems, CRM may or may not link with these and other tools/systems.

More about CRM in future Thought Posts...

 

 

Tags:

Business Plan: Writing Plans | Marketing | Sales | Thinking as in Think and Grow Rich

Referrals bring huge value to small businesses

by Rick Baker
On Oct 24, 2016

15 or so years ago, Jay Abraham recommended telling your clients you will have more time to do a better job serving them if they provide referrals to you. The idea made some sense to me when I first heard it. On the other hand, I could not see how that sort of communication could be packaged so it would be well received by clients. 

Recently, I developed a different perspective. Most, if not all of us, would agree that people in general complain more about being busy now than they did 15 years ago. And as a result of that mindset of busyness, business leaders must be attentive to the limitations (realities) ‘lived’ by many people in the workforce. Many people feel so busy they must cut corners throughout all aspects of their lives, including cutting corners at work. To the extent business leaders could make these people’s lives easier at work, it would be in everyone's best interest to do so.  It would be in the employer’s best interest, it would be in the employee's best interest, and at the end of the day it would be in the best interest of clients and suppliers. 

In small businesses, the owners and leaders in the organization often wear multiple hats - including a sales/business development hat. To the extent these small-business leaders receive referrals they are in a position to spend more time serving their clients and suppliers. And that service would [or at least could] be at an ‘improved level’. An ‘improved level of work’ could mean more creative work, which could replace mundane work [such as plodding through CRM programs to determine the next required phone call and/or the next required email for development of new business]. 

So, with that thinking in mind, I strongly believe referrals bring huge value to small businesses. 

So, small-business leaders should spend the time figuring out how to package messages that help generate referrals.

[Of course, products and services must contain value and that value must be delivered with spirit - those are prerequisites.]

Tags:

I'm too busy! - I don't have time! | Marketing | Sales

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