How to be a better client

David Ogilvy was considered by many to be the “Father of Advertising”. When Fortune published an article about him and titled it “Is David Ogilvy a Genius?” he asked his lawyer to sue the editor for the question mark. In his 1963 best seller “Confessions of an Advertising Man” Ogilvy devoted a complete chapter titled “How to Be a Good Client” in which he set down the rules which he believed would extract the best service from an advertising agency. The following are my rules adapted from Ogilvy which I would use to get the best […]

Are you compelling customers to buy from you or your competitors?

Your competition is stiffer than you think. Your ability to win a sale is harder than you think. It’s because you aren’t just competing with your direct competitors. For example these battles happen… Does a consumer buy a new bed or opt for a Caribbean cruise? Does an engineering business hire a new person or invest in new machinery? Your buyers have a limited budget too. They can spend their money with you. Or they can spend their money on a variety of other products or services fighting for their cash. How do you compel customers […]

What a business should not do!

5 Things a Business Must Not Do

I was recently asked what I thought were the five most important things a business should not do. In no particular order they are: Don’t be over optimistic I generally find that businesses overestimate their income and underestimate their expenses which effects their profitability and cash flow which allied to overestimating the speed of cash inflows can create cash   flow problems. The advice here is to be realistic as possible and also do planning for various assumptions/scenarios. Don’t ignore your continuing education It is essential that you continue to invest in your knowledge base by reading […]

Successful Brainstorming

I was recently involved in a brainstorming session to examine how a roofing contractor could improve the professionalism of his operation and his bottom line with ideas that could be readily applied at low cost and provide quick wins for him. We quickly came up with seventeen ideas that if implemented would substantially change his business profile, prospects and bottom line for minimum outlay. Due to the success of this exercise we have decided to hold a weekly internal brainstorming session among staff for a selected client to see how we can help generate business growth […]

15 Great Questions to Ask Your Accountant Now!

Do you have any ideas on how to grow my business? Can you give me good ideas on how to improve my cash flow? Can you establish my breakeven point so that I have more financial awareness? Can you create an improvement action plan? What are the key profit drivers in my business? Can you advise on pricing strategies to increase my profitability? Can you provide cash flow forecasts so that I do not get into financial difficulties? What sales improvement ideas do you have that I can act on to increase sales? How do I […]

A tea lesson – should you be better at upselling?

Paul Shrimpling a leading marketing advisor to UK accounting firms recently published the following on upselling. “Upselling can have a transformative effect on profits and client satisfaction too. Here’s a classic and simple example of upselling used by the tea vendor on Fridays train journey home when I asked for a cuppa… “Sir would you like your tea in this larger cup for only 20p extra or would you like less in this smaller cup?” What would you opt for? £1.90 vs £2.10 = 20p I bought the larger amount. Circa 10% price increase for probably […]

A coffee drinking educational experience – Pricing Strategy

Bernadette Jiwa, the marketing strategist and author from Dublin but now living in Melbourne, recently blogged her coffee story. “When my family and I were in Venice recently we decided to take a seat in a tiny Cafe in St Marks Square and ordered four hot drinks (anyone who has holidayed in Italy knows what’s coming next!). There was nothing remarkable about the coffee but we walked out half an hour later having paid €37 for 4 drinks.… the most expensive cup of coffee I have ever had.… my husband kept the receipt! The lesson. If […]

Office Insurance – A telephone call for good news!

Your Office Policy insurance will generally cover you for the items that you would expect including property damage, asset protection, employers liability, public and product liability, money and revenue protection. A good Office Policy will provide commercial legal protection which can give you cover for eventualities including:   Employment disputes for past and present employees with cover for tribunal awards (Aviva covers to a maximum of €1.5m).   Tax protection in respect of Revenue audits for professional fees agreed and incurred. You may note be aware of what cover you have so it is highly recommended […]

Answer these 6 questions and your customers will love you!

The following 6 truths on dealing with customers that goes right to the essence of what is most important in dealing with them were recently published by Forbes and can be applied by any business. “1. People love to feel appreciated: What are you doing, to show them your appreciation?” Letting your customers know you appreciate them is especially meaningful when it’s personal. Sending out holiday cards to all your customers isn’t a bad thing, but it can feel kind of rote. There are other ways to let clients know you appreciate them that feel much […]

Stay Positive

I vow to stay positive in the face of negativity; When I am surrounded by pessimism, I will choose optimism; When I feel fear, I will choose faith; When I want to hate, I will choose love; When I want to be bitter, I will choose to get better; When I experience a challenge, I will look for an opportunity to learn and grow; When I experience a setback, I will be resilient; When I meet failure, I will fail forward, toward future success; With vision, hope, and faith, I will never give up and will always move […]

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