Posted by loryfabianmarketing
“Can you please tell me more about that?” Isn’t that the question we all secretly strive for whether we are networking or spending time with family and friends? The truth is, the more people who know exactly what we do or how we can help them or how our product can help them, the more business that is likely to come our way.
Getting an increase in referrals is a no brainer when you educate everyone you know on how you can help them or someone they know. Remember to ask the question “What do you need?” Never assume the person knows what they need. It’s always better to ask what their pain is instead of telling someone what you think they need. Trust me on this one.
BNI (Business Network International) as well as Virginia Muzquiz at Referral Institute St. Louis both teach the value & importance of perfecting your 30 and/or 60 second infomercial. For those of you unfamiliar with Virginia, visit her website at http://referralinstitutestl.com. Virginia Muzquiz is THE Networking Diva in St. Louis & St. Charles and loves to share her trade secrets.
Most people know the importance of selling their brand, we just don’t always get it right. At Cave Springs Toastmasters, we Learn by Doing! Right, Tony Gartner?
There aren’t many places where we can give a 30 or 60 second infomercial; that why I love Stephen’s article about Selling Your Brand with One Sentence.
Check out Stephen’s article below. His best advice is to: Try out potential statements on everyone you know. Which one has the greatest impact? Ask for feedback. Then, start using this line all over the place.
“If you believe in the importance of your vision, but how do you get others to stop and listen to you? There will be many instances when you don’t have a lot of time to grab someone’s attention, be it a potential investor or a licensee. That’s why you need to be able to summarize the benefit of your business idea in a single, powerful sentence — a sentence that is so direct and compelling, it stops whoever reads or hears it dead in their tracks. A good one-line benefit statement should make someone think: “I want to know more about that.”
I’ve learned that if I craft just the right sentence, it’s all I need to get people to listen to my pitch, open my emails and answer my calls. I still remember the day the iPod launched and Steve Jobs called it “a thousand songs in your pocket.” Wow. That’s captivating. He didn’t have to explain any further. We wanted it already!
People don’t care about how something works. They want to know what it’s going to do for them.
Newspapers, tabloids, and these days, Twitter have been making use of the headline for years. How often do you find yourself on a webpage you never intended to visit, all because a headline was so tempting, you had to click on it? That should give you an idea of what I’m talking about. Creating excellent one-line benefit statements isn’t an easy skill, but it’s an important one, because it can be used to explain your idea in so many different kinds of situations in an attractive, successful way.
Sometimes, you only get one chance to make an impression. Cut through the clutter to make it count! Here three ways to create an awesome one-line benefit statement:
1. Make it emotional.
Why should people care about what you have to say? Grab them with something they can relate to. Benefits sell ideas, not facts. What is your idea going to do for the consumer or the world? Don’t be afraid to use emotion. People are motivated by their emotions more often than they are motivated by reason. Emotion also evokes visual imagery — if people can begin to see your idea, that’s a good thing. Some emotional words include: “free”, “incredible” and “unbelievable.”
2. Keep it short.
Like — really short. I’m talking no more than 10 to 12 words, ideally less. Remember, you don’t have much time. If your statement is too long, people may move on before they’ve even finished reading or hearing it. Don’t be intimidated by using fewer words. This is a really good exercise in general. Too often, I ask an inventor or entrepreneur to tell me about his or her idea and I’m overwhelmed with a five-minute speech. “What is he talking about again?” I find myself thinking. I’m not even sure. Brevity forces clarity.
3. Use numbers.
Numbers convey specificity. Look around you. Headlines with numbers dominate our world. One has only to look at Buzzfeed to understand the power of numbers.
Here are some examples of one-line benefit statements my students and I have used with great success in the past:
• “The most versatile organization system available.”
• “The store all, carry all, go anywhere elevated pet feeder.”
• “This label will increase space on your packaging by 75 percent.”
Try out potential statements on everyone you know. Which one has the greatest impact? Ask for feedback. Then, start using this line all over the place. When someone asks: “So what is it you’re working on again?” you will have a great answer!”
Shout out to Stephen Key. Stephen is author and Entrepreneur contributor. (11/15/2013) The opinions expressed are those of the writer.
Posted by loryfabianmarketing
I travel several months a year, speaking to business professionals about networking. When traveling (especially internationally) I try very hard not to forget important items I need for meetings or speaking to groups of people…but I am only human and – as often as I try to get it perfect – I admit it’s hard to remember everything all the time.
A few months ago, I was invited to speak with a reporter working on an article for an international magazine on this very topic. The reporter asked me, “What should business people think about taking with them on business trips that they might not normally think about?” As I began forming the list, I found myself adding more and more things that are vital to ensure a successful business trip.
And here are some of the less obvious things you don’t want to forget when heading out of town on business.
No. 1: Plenty of business cards. It is never a good idea to run out of business cards while traveling. Tuck extras in your suit pockets, wallet/purse, briefcase, luggage, etc. I put stacks in many places to ensure I always have extra.
No. 2: A name badge. If you do any networking while traveling on business, have your own professional name badge. Don’t rely on the hosting organization to do your name badge and do it right.
No 3: Extra pens. Make sure you have a pen with you while you are doing meetings. I always find that I need to write some reminders down while I’m talking to people. It’s troublesome to track down a pen while you are busy networking.
No 4: The contact information (or business cards) of all your referral partners. I sometimes find that having that information at my fingertips allows me to give referrals to people while I’m out networking.
No. 5: Hand sanitizer. I know this may sound a little bit like “Mr. Monk”, the germ-a-phobe title character of a television series. However, I have found that since I’ve started using hand sanitizer after shaking many, many hands, that I have been getting far less colds than I used to get. Just be tactful about the way you use it. Don’t desperately and obviously spray your hands every time you shake someone’s hand!
No 6: Breath mints. As obvious as it may sound – I can assure you from experience that many people have no idea they need them!
No 7: A memory stick. Many times I have either needed to get a copy of something or give a copy of a file or presentation to people while out networking. Having a memory stick handy has been very helpful on several occasions.
No 8: A camera and/or video. A camera is great if you want to memorialize some occasion or a meeting with someone important to you. A video is important for anyone that blogs. It gives you a chance to interview someone during your travels. I do this almost every time I travel.
No. 9: Tools for your business. For me, that includes many copies of my bio for introductions whenever I speak. Despite the fact that my team sends the bio in advance, there are many times when I arrive and they don’t have the bio handy.
Another tool for me is a PowerPoint remote clicker. This is really important for me because I don’t want to rely on someone else to move the slides forward as a I present. Also, you know that memory stick I mentioned earlier? I have copies of my talk(s) on there just in case the group I’m speaking to has misplaced my presentation material.
Extra Odds and Ends
When I asked some colleagues and other business travelers what they would add to the list, they added some that I hadn’t thought of! Here are some of their suggestions:
No. 1: A phone charger. I agree heartily, especially seeing how much these items cost in an airport, or in another country. And you certainly won’t want to forget your laptop power cord – besides being expensive it’s often impossible to be able to get the right one easily, if at all. Also, you should write a “note to self” to fully charge all of your electronic devices the night before you leave!
No. 2: Power adapter/converter. Though it’s usually easy to pick up a “universal” adapter at airports or stores in heavily populated areas, in this electronic age you would hate to need one and not be able to find one, so it’s best to have one (or two) packed and ready when you need it!
No. 3: The right clothes. Most of you have experienced differences in temperature and/or weather from one town to another, so you can imagine how different the conditions could be across the country or around the world! It’s never been easier to plan what clothes to bring, thanks to online weather forecasts for every region of the earth. (Of course, there are no guarantees where weather is concerned!)
No 4: A good book. Oh yes – a most important item to include! Those airport layovers, delays, and long flights can seem even longer without something interesting to read. Here’s something to consider, if you are an avid reader who uses an e-reader or other mobile device to read books: You might want to also include a “paper” book and/or magazine for those take-offs and landings where all electronic devices must be turned off, and in case you actually do run out of battery power on a long trip!
Called the “father of modern networking” by CNN, Dr. Ivan Misner is a New York Times bestselling author. He is the Founder and Chairman of BNI (www.BNI.com ), the world’s largest business networking organization. His book, Networking Like a Pro, can be viewed at www.IvanMisner.com . Dr. Misner is also the Sr. Partner for the Referral Institute (www.ReferralInstitue.com ), an international referral training company.
Peace & Shout out to Dr. Misner who told me personally when I met him at a BNI Convention in St. Louis last year that he uses SendOutCards.com as a tool to keep in touch with his network. He loves the fact that everyone can read his handwriting when he uses SendOutCards.com. SOC’s spell checker is an added bonus. Go to www.sendoutcards.com/128092 and try sending your own free card.