The art of making money
Recently someone asked me what were the secrets for running a successful business? At first I thought the answer was obvious. Successful businesses make money. But in order to make money, what are the fundamentals of a money producing business? This takes a bit of thinking about because each business is different. What is the same however is the majority of successful money making businesses have common building blocks: a strong CEO, a solid management team, great staff, ahead of the game research and development, innovative marketing, reasonably advanced technology, sound legal counsel, commercial accounting advice, workable banking relationships, good cash flow, stream line processes and of course, products and services clients want.
With the above list in mind, I thought I’d write a couple of blogs, noting my thoughts in relation to each building block. Starting with the idea that for a business to not only survive, but prosper, I’ve jotted down my ideas in respect of moving products and services to clients.
Golden Nugget #1
Being in business means you should be attempting to build long term relationships. Business relationships shouldn’t be likened to a speed dating exercise. Take some time with people. They will appreciate and value it. Don’t short change them on the time commodity. If you do this, you short change yourself and your business.
Golden Nugget #2
So often I see people selling to a client. I don’t think this works. When you are trying to demonstrate your goods and services, feel from the heart and work with the mind. Clients don’t buy goods and services with their heads. They buy them with their hearts. You don’t have to sell at a client. Simply seek to understand your client’s needs. Stand in their shoes. Attempt to feel what they are feeling. Only then can you really hear what they are saying. Only then can you truly understand what they want and what they need.
Golden Nugget #3
Passion and excitement are catchy. If you don’t feel interested, committed and enthusiastic about what you are offering to a person, how on earth do you think you’re going to communicate the message that they need your goods or services? Indifferent, apathetic personalities don’t promote your business in a good light. So get energized about your day and what your business can offer your clients.
Golden Nugget #4
People like honesty. This means they like to know the cost as well as the value of what they are getting. Never be afraid to be upfront about these things. Explain the benefits of your services and products and be transparent with your fees. Doing this builds trust which in turn builds a strong business relationship. If you are uncomfortable talking prices, practice.
Golden Nugget #5
Offer people a variety of price points in respect of your goods and services. Be inventive when it comes down to charging. Sure offer a complete price for your goods and services but if appropriate, offer a variety of ways of pricing. Maybe pricing per widget or per job or per process in a job, is appealing to your clients. Do some client surveys to find out. Whichever method you choose, ensure your clients are clear on the pricing and what they are getting. Remember you’re trying to build a repeat business relationship so transparency is vital.
Finally, let me leave you with a quote from Jeff Bezos … “If you build a great experience, clients tell each other about that. Word of mouth is very powerful”. In light of this, I say choose your business footsteps wisely.
Until I talk to you next time, remember spending is short and earning is long as the Russian Money Baron say.