Great business owners know a lot about their respective industries. However, great business owners also understand that relationships are the key to success. This isn’t a profound concept; it’s just the basics behind running a successful business.
Selling crap makes you a quick buck. But remember, when doing so, you have to keep rebuilding the most expensive part of your business: the relationships. Customer relationships keep a business cash flow-positive. Long-term strategic businesses understand the value behind relationships, but obviously the get-rich-quick, or “Magic Money Button,” aspects of the internet marketing industry have overridden this fundamental rule to running a successful business. Positive relationships are the result of good business practices and are the cornerstone behind a sustainable business. If you simply get a client’s money and do nothing to keep the relationship working, you’ll not only lose his business, but you’ll also gain a critic. And what do critics do? They talk. Bad word of mouth will spread like wildfire, and soon, you’ll find that nobody wants to risk going into business with your brand.
The “Secret” to Success
Everyone wants a guaranteed formula to be a millionaire. The only one I’ve ever seen to be 100% true: you have to gain more clients than you lose! Shocker, I know. These get-rich-quick companies simply do not understand this concept, or choose to ignore it. They think profit from new clients will counter the loss from their fleeting clients. This only works in the short term.
When marketing your product, the question that should always be addressed is, “What’s in it for the client?” Instead of thinking solely about personal revenues, consider what the customer can receive from your products or services. I made the mistake of undervaluing my services when I started my company, and it prevented me from growing as fast as I had hoped. I did not add in enough margins for my staff to properly service what the clients really needed. In my specific case, they were looking for a partner relationship, rather than a vendor relationship. Sure, I had what they needed, but they didn’t want to simply do business and call it a day. My potential clients wanted to feel a connection and understand the mutual benefits of our relationship. As soon as I figured this out, I added project managers, quality control measures, senior strategists, and more personal touches with the client. Clients were begging for weekly meetings, strategic planning, reports, charts, and other basic things that could help them keep tabs on our progress. By adding all of these personal touches for the clients, I was able to literally double my pricing, and my clients were so much happier with the results.
Spoil Your Clients, and Charge For It
Business 101: No one ever leads an industry with the cheapest price point. Any Average Joe knows what a client needs and can provide it. However, successful long-term companies find out what clients really want and how they want to be treated. Only after doing this can you become the Ferrari of your industry and watch the profits accelerate at an amazing rate.
Marketing crappy products at a cheap rate is a great way to ruin your business, and even the industry. For example, internet marketing gurus are dangerously close to becoming the next “used car salesmen.” What we do is very hard and takes time to properly deliver ethical marketing solutions. So when other internet marketing providers tell business owners, “This stuff is easy and guaranteed; just click this link,” it hurts everyone. It sets wrong expectation levels and takes hard-earned money out of good people’s pockets. This trend must be stopped immediately, or the industry is at risk of becoming a less-than-reputable place to work. That means a lower quality of employee, and a lower quality of business owner. Most importantly, it lowers the value of what we do for our legitimate clients. Provide awesome work to each and every client in order to achieve financial and industry success.
Like I said earlier, relationships are the foundation for a lucrative business. Implement good business practices and eliminate any “Magic Money Button” marketing schemes that may exist within your company. Make your clients happy and, once they are, never stop flattering them by providing quality services and products they request or need. Create meaningful relationships that show real value and partnership with those you work with. Once you’re on that level, profits go up, your stress goes down, and clients are happier than they’ve ever been. It is truly a glorious place to be, and you’ll quickly see the rewards.
Lee Goff is the CEO of GetUWired.us, a web marketing, conversion, and automation specialist company. Lee’s extensive knowledge on SEO, web marketing strategy, testing, conversion, and the use of the internet as a tool for business in every facet is unsurpassed in the industry. Utilizing strategic partnerships with some of the world’s best marketing and software firms, including Guerilla Marketing, InfusionSoft, Stompernet and Avectra, Lee has been accurately positioned as a leader in the web world. In addition, he wrote the internet marketing strategy for the country of FIJI.