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Constraints & Vicious Circles

Are you frustrated that your business isn’t growing as quickly as you want?

You’ve probably fallen victim to one of the 7 major areas of marketing constraint. Read on to find out what they are and what you can do to escape their stranglehold on your business.

Your Current Marketing And Sales System

You have a marketing and sales system in your business made up of your decisions and actions. (And perhaps your inactions and indecisions.) It may not have been designed consciously but something is there, with good bits and bad bits.

This “system” determines how many enquiries you get, how well you convert these enquiries into customers and how much these customers spend with you.

This leads to one simple conclusion.

If you’re not getting the enquiries and sales you want, there are one or more constraints in your system. These cause your marketing to get stuck at a level that disappoints and frustrates you.

Fortunately, with help, you can identify why you have problems attracting the customers you want.

If you own a business based in the UK, I can offer a free Business SOS. This is a 60 minute advice and coaching session to help you understand why you’re not getting more sales revenue and, just as important, what you can do about it. For details, please click over to Business SOS with Paul Simister.

There Are 7 Major Areas Of Constraint

There are seven major areas where problems can arise and where you can make improvements. The details are explained below but first, I’ll explain how these constraints dampen down your marketing results..

If there is only one constraint, you can think of it like the weakest link in a chain. No matter what you do away from this weak link, your improvements will be limited because the entire chain depends on the weakest link.

If there are several major constraints in your marketing system, then think of it like a three lane motorway with several roadworks on your route. These cause one or two lanes to be shut down, limiting the flow of traffic to a crawl. Eliminating the first roadblock helps but there’s still another bottleneck causing trouble ahead. To reach your goal of a smooth-flowing marketing and sales system, you need to improve all the roadblocks.

The 7 Critical Factors And Possibly Major Constraints In Your Marketing & Sales System

Let me satisfy your curiosity and tell you about the seven vital factors in attracting customers and keeping them buying. This way, you can see how they fit together and how problems cause constraints.

I present a contrast so you can see the good and the bad and get a feeling for where your business fits in-between.

Critical Factor 1 – You Must Find Your Starving Crowd: The Market Constraint

This is about your choice of target market.

If you’ve got it right, there are plenty of potential customers who want exactly what you offer. You may not be able to attract these customers but at least they exist.

You have this constraint if you haven’t found your starving crowd i.e. you’re not clear about who is your target market and exactly what they want. You need to know who has a strong desire to solve the problems you can fix.

The Business SOS advice can help you find your Starving Crowd.

(If you’ve seen enough and I’ve covered what may be your biggest constraint, click to Business SOS and you’ll be taken to the right section.)

Critical Factor 2 – You Need To Make An Irresistible Promise That’s Good For Your Customers And Good For You: The Customer Value & Offer Constraint

This is about your offer – what customers get and what they pay – and what you say to communicate it.

If you get it right, the right people will pay attention to your marketing messages, decide your offers appeal and take the action you want.

There is still the potential problem that not enough of your target customers see your marketing message often enough (constraint 3). However a reasonable proportion of those who do see it will take action and make contact and become qualified leads, predisposed to buying.

A lot can go wrong in your marketing message and offer yet it’s often an area that isn’t given enough time and attention by business owners.

You suffer from this constraint if only a small proportion of the right people who see your message then make contact. There are two symptoms to look out for:

  1. If you’re always under pressure to reduce your price.
  2. If you struggle to explain why people should buy from you and not from your competitors.

The Business SOS advice can help you to develop your Irresistible Promise.

(If you’ve seen enough and I’ve covered what may be your biggest constraint, click to Business SOS and you’ll be taken to the right section.)

Critical Factor 3 – You Need To Get Your Irresistible Promise In Front Of The Eyes And Ears Of Your Target Customers And Do It Often: The Marketing Media Constraint

This is about the choice of marketing media you use to communicate your marketing message and how often your prospects see the messages.

If you get it right, your customers will regularly see a compelling marketing message from you. As well as solving the timing problem where wants and needs are suddenly switched on, familiarity with your brand name and message builds trust. When it’s the right time for them to buy, they will make contact with you.

For many, the choice of marketing media is what marketing is all about.

It’s not. It’s only one of the seven critical factors.

How often have you been told “you must have a website” or “you must use Facebook” or Instagram or the other forms of social media? Or perhaps direct mail or telephone based selling and prospecting (that’s setting up appointments)? Or advertising on the local radio, in the newspapers or specialist magazines. Or…or….or…

The truth is, there are potentially many ways to get your messages in front of your prospective customers. Some will cost more than they earn which is why you must trial small, test and measure your success so that you can continually refine your choices of marketing media and message

This constraint is a serious problem if your targeted customers aren’t seeing your marketing messages often enough to build up credibility and not seeing your messages at the right time, i.e. when they want to buy.

The Business SOS advice can help you to understand which media are likely to make sense for you to use. I’ll also encourage you to measure and test.

(If you’ve seen enough and I’ve covered what may be your biggest constraint, click to Business SOS and you’ll be taken to the right section.)

Critical Factor 4 – You Must Deliver A Great Customer Experience: The Customer Service Constraint

Do you realise a customer is assessing your business and its suitability every time he or she comes into contact with it? This happens before they buy, while they are buying and then after they buy and use the product or service.

These touchpoints are often known as your moments of truth.

Do you deliver well at each of them?

If you get it right, the customer has a positive experience every time there is contact and builds more confidence in your business, your products and your services.

There are a lot of things that can go wrong in these touchpoints which is why recruiting the right people and training them properly are important along with having clear systems and processes. Potential problems will vary widely with the type of business you have.

To get some idea of how your customers might feel when they deal with your business, do you remember the times when things went wrong when you were a buyer and how how frustrating even little things can be? I bet it affected your opinion of the supplier.

You are trapped in this constraint when your prospective customers come into contact with your business and are left disappointed.

The Business SOS advice session can help you to identify these moments of truth and think through the standards you want to set for your business to deliver consistently.

(If you’ve seen enough and I’ve covered what may be your biggest constraint, click to Business SOS and you’ll be taken to the right section.)

Critical Factor 5 – You Must Take Opportunities To Sell More To Customers: The Revenue Regeneration Constraint

This means making sure that the customer buys what they really want at the start. After that, they should have the opportunity to keep buying while they satisfy their want or need.

This is about helping your customers to get the very best value from what you offer and helping yourself.

If you get it right, your customers are happy to keep buying from you because they continue to get more value back than they pay out.

This is an area where you may be holding your business back. Are you worried about coming over as “salesy” and only out for yourself?

The example I often use is when you’re having a meal in a restaurant and the offers of extras from the waiter help you to have a great experience. I’m sure you don’t resent being asked if you’d like to see the wine list, to have a drink from the bar, a dessert or a coffee. It’s part and parcel of offering good service.

This constraint hampers your business greatly if you aren’t clear about what the customer really wants at the start and you don’t continue to make offers that are good for the customer.

The Business SOS advice session can help you to see how you can make additional offers that genuinely help the customers.

(If you’ve seen enough and I’ve covered what may be your biggest constraint, click to Business SOS and you’ll be taken to the right section.)

Critical Factor 6 – You Must Encourage Happy Customers To Refer And Recommend Your Business To Others: The Referrals Constraint

Your customers can be your best salespeople through their referrals, reviews and testimonials.

If you get this right, a steady stream of qualified customers will come to you with little effort from yourself.

One of the big benefits of the Internet for buyers is that they can get behind the slick marketing messages and find out the opinion of other customers. Instead of relying on the experience of family, friends and colleagues, there is now a much wider circle of influence.

This can be a huge constraint if you receive negative “word-of-mouth” comments and reviews. Alternatively, you miss out on a good opportunity if you don’t get positive reviews and referrals.

The Business SOS advice session can help you to improve your reputation and find ways to encourage more customer referrals.

(Just one more to go but if you’ve seen enough and I’ve covered what may be your biggest constraint, click to Business SOS and you’ll be taken to the right section.)

Critical Factor 7 – You Must Have A Positive Marketing Mindset That Allows You To See Opportunities And Possibilities And Then Take Effective Action

How you think and feel about marketing will have a major impact on what you do.

If you get this right, marketing is fun, satisfying and even fascinating.

There is a chicken and egg problem here. Your marketing mindset may struggle because of the results of your marketing or your disappointing marketing may have been caused because you don’t have the right marketing mindset.

If this is a constraint and stays a constraint, you will remain stuck. You won’t approach your marketing in the right way, you won’t know enough and you’ll reach for easy solutions. This will probably be new or changed marketing media solutions that people convince you are the right ways to go. Yet, if you don’t solve constraints in the other areas, you’re stuck in the “weak link in the chain” situation.

The Business SOS advice session can help you to improve your marketing mindset.

In Summary

There are seven main marketing constraints you may be suffering from:

  1. You might not have found your starving crowd – the market constraint.
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  2. You may not have identified your irresistible promise – the customer value and offer constraint.
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  3. You might not get your message in front of enough of the right people as often as you should – the marketing media constraint.
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  4. Prospective customers and customers may get a poor experience from their dealings with the business – the customer service constraint.
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  5. You possible don’t ask your customers to buy what they really want or encourage them to buy often enough – the revenue regeneration constraint.
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  6. You probably don’t get enough positive recommendations and reviews – the referrals constraint.
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  7. You might not have a positive marketing mindset that lets you take advantage of opportunities – the mindset constraint.

Do any of those sound or feel familiar?

Things may not be as black as they appear. If you have some happy customers, you’re doing some things right.

The aim is to resolve the areas where your business is seriously constrained and to build on what you do right.

I’m happy to give you 60 minutes of my time without any obligation. This would normally cost up to £300.

We won’t have a chance to work on all these issues but we can have a good look at one of them or a less detailed look at a few.

If you’re sick and tired of disappointing email and you’re ready to do something about it, email me, ask for a Business SOS and tell me about your business.

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My Business SOS Will Help You Fix Your Marketing Difficulties

I’d like to offer you a free Business SOS (Second Opinion Session) to help you identify your particular marketing constraints.Then we will talk about what you can do to improve that constraint, and as a result, how you can attract, convert and keep more customers.

There is no obligation to take any of my paid services. I offer the service to help business owners who are struggling and frustrated.

Just email me, ask for a Business SOS and tell me about your business.

in 4 – Lead Generation, 5 – Lead Conversion, 6 – Revenue Regeneration