It’s a new year and there are challenges you must master. Have tried your new year’s resolutions and already given them up?
Or maybe you have not gotten around to setting those goals that you promised yourself — the ones that you were going to set but you’ve been a bit busy.
I’ve got some ideas for you today. Remember this is a Friday and every single Friday we have a weekend challenge and if you want to know why it’s called that, its because I know you don’t want to do any work but you going to do a bit so let me give you something different to do.
That’s why it’s a weekend challenge and I also run a business like you and I know what it’s like. It’s difficult, it’s hard, and life gets in the way and there are busy things to do but it’s always good to have a few things, a few core areas to improve.
I’ve got a challenge for you this weekend to think of how you can improve in some areas. Now I just say improve, because there’s no limit, there’s no level.
You can set that for yourself, you can decide how you may do it but if you think of these things, if you incorporate this into your business culture over the next 12 months you’ll find that everything lifts.
Remember rise and tides, floats and boats and all that kind of stuff, and you’ll find that things start to change.
Remember I’m not telling you this to make myself any money, it gives me no benefit so why would I tell you?
There’s no ulterior motive, no catch or anything. This is all under your own steam and by the way if you want to see all the previous weekend challenges, go to MarketingforOwners.com/Challenge.
You will see them all there. I think that there are nearly 60 of them. They are great, and quite a few of them by the way I personally do again and again, not necessarily on a weekend but I do again and again because they are actually good exercises.
So do you have a pen and a pad to take notes? So you’ve got your pen, let’s dive in —
#1 Outsource Staffing: The first thing I want you to learn or to try to test out in 2016 is to outsource staffing.
I’m not saying to sack all your staff and to outsource everything but to learn to outsource some tasks. So for example if your images need photo touch up or anything, don’t go to someone down the road.
Don’t go to a photographer, go to fiverr.com and get one of their Photoshop experts to do it quickly, because that is outsourcing.
If you need things written and you don’t know how to do it or it costs a lot of money, go to Freelancer.com or Upwork.com and try them. This is a pay per job thing so test little things.
If you need your website updated, try it there. Don’t go pay thousands of dollars to a local web designer or something, try things there, try outsourcing.
There are so many takes, if you need something programmed, if you need a spreadsheet set up with all kinds of pivot tables and things like that, people on fiverr do this all day long and they’ll do it for pennies.
Honestly that’s how I get my stuff set up that my staff don’t know how to do.
#2 Systemizing: Now systemizing prevents things going wrong. Once something is done more than once it requires a system.
If you know how to do it, you have a system it’s in your head. Just get it down on paper or get someone to write it down, preferably the person doing the job.
Systemize everything they do, in short easy to follow, so that it could be followed by anyone.
So in other words, when you have someone working for you who does something and you ask them to write a system for that, don’t just assume they are doing it correctly.
Ask them to send it in, and ask someone to go through the system or go through it yourself and see if you could follow that from scratch, preferably have someone else who doesn’t know how to do it, see if they can follow it then it’s a proper system, get the hang of that.
#3 Involve Your Staff More: There are a lot of responsibilities on your shoulders and again I have the same but the thing that made a big difference in my company was once I started involving my staff, talking to my staff, eventually I promoted people.
One of my staff became the one that talks to my staff. It generates a culture. We are in constant contact, it irons out problems, but your staff or your team are very clever.
You hired them because they impressed you, some of these people have fantastic ideas you’ve never thought to ask.
There are people in your warehouse or in your workshop that don’t go anywhere near an office, you’ve never thought to ask them, involve them, you’ll be surprised.
And don’t worry about telling those numbers, you don’t have to tell them everything. Tell those numbers, and let them feel involved.
Seriously, I noticed the biggest difference in my business once I started doing that kind of thing.
#4 Talk to Your Customers: By talking to them I really mean it. Talk to them yourself or someone in your staff talk to them.
Go and meet them, make any excuse. It’s easier to keep a customer than to get a new one so make an effort to impress them and keep them.
If you talk to them and ask for their opinion, they’ll help you with product development. You can ask them what things you’re planning on bringing up and they’ll tell you if they actually want it.
You might be planning on developing something that no one really wants and they’ll say yes, we do want that but it would be better if it had this and that.
Talk to them you would be surprised. They love you, they won’t go and give your secrets away, especially your top customers.
#5 Ask For Referrals: This needs to be a habit. Ask those customers, your repeat customers, ask them to refer you.
Go speak to them and say this is great isn’t it, you enjoyed this, you’ve been buying from us this last two years, what do you think is good about us and then they’ll tell you.
Ask them who else they think could benefit, and have them give you a name or an email or a phone number so that you could contact them.
Then give your customer something for sharing, like a bottle of wine, a box of chocolates, or flowers, just to go and meet them and be sure to give one to the new prospect as well.
Ask for referrals, successful companies do it, what are you scared of?
#6 Build a list: Yes, you need to collect email addresses. You can do it anyway. You can start with MailChimp.com. which is free.
Add email addresses, all of your existing customers, add them, you are allowed, that is not spam. You’re not going to spam people, you’re not going to send them offer after offer.
You are going to talk to them virtually via email, you’re going to write a conversation as if it’s to one person at a time.
You’re going to build a list and then on your website you’re going to create a lead capture, please do not title it sign up for my newsletter, because that won’t work. You need a lead magnet.
Just go to our website and you will find loads of articles on lead magnets. And that’s the secret for building an online business and actually being successful or building a website and using it successfully, it’s to capture the leads on the people that arrive on your website.
Now if you can master those six things, if you can try any of them, any whatsoever, you will find a shift in your business, you will find an improvement, an underlying improvement.
Of course if you’re scared or if you don’t like change or if you just complacent and you think no competition is ever going to beat you or if you think it’s too hard or if you think you haven’t got time, then just go back to doing the same old same old.
Sit around and watch TV, watch football, moan a lot, do whatever you were doing before or perhaps, do what the people who put the effort in , find the time, don’t watch TV, don’t moan a lot, be positive, go on, you can do it.
It’s for you, for your family, it will be great, honestly it’s not that hard.
I wish you a fantastic weekend no matter what you do and you know I will be back next week. I’ve got a fantastic interview coming for next Wednesday, so be sure to tune in as I chat with Marcus Sheridan from Sales Lion.
I promise it’s great. I’ll see you then.
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