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Do I Need A Toaster?

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Way back in the ‘good old days’, banks used to try really hard to get new customers.

They also seemed to think that they should treat their current customers differently than the new customers they were trying to woo. What they didn’t seem to realize was, their current customers were the ones who allowed them the budget to try to attract the new customers.

Case in point.  About 25 years ago, one of the large Canadian Trust companies had a promotion offering toasters to new customers.  I went in to make a transaction (this was when ABM’s weren’t all the rage and we actually stood face to face with the CSR’s, or tellers as they were known then) and asked the teller for my new toaster.

The teller looked at me like I had horns growing out of my head.

“You don’t get a toaster Mr. Wright, you are already a customer.  The promotion is for new customers only.”

“Why wouldn’t I get a new toaster”, I asked, “I am a customer and if you are giving them to new customers, why not to existing customers?”

We went back and forth a few times until finally I said, “Then let’s close my three accounts and I will re-open them so I can get my new toaster.”

You could probably imagine her reaction.

She ran back to get the manager.

When he came out, he looked at me and said “Trevor, what are you doing?  You know you can’t do that.  The promotion is for new customers, not existing ones.”

So I told him to close my accounts, I was going to another bank.

When he asked if I would stay if he gave me a toaster I smiled and said “most definitely”.

I walked out with a brand new toaster that day, my accounts at the same institution, and a smile on my face.

This was one of my first forays into the world of customer service, and probably one that made me start realizing the importance of treating all customers the same.

As businesses, are we spending too much time trying to get new customers and not enough time with the customers we already have?

In my opinion, yes.

Look around, cell phone companies trying to entice you to switch, cable companies, internet providers.  Heck, I remember a time when we were looking at a new supplier for wholesale products and our current provider kept undercutting the new competition.  We eventually switched over to the new company.  When the old supplier asked why we said, “If you could lower the cost so much now, why not before we brought in a new supplier?”

See what happens when you become complacent and spend too much time trying to attract new customers, and forget about the ones you already have?  They tend to move on.

Celebrate your current customers.  Make sure they realize how important they are.  Make sure they realize how important they are to you.  Don’t ever forget that you can afford to attract new customers because of the income created from your current customers.

July 22, 2016 |

Who Should you spend time with to increase sales & referrals

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Market HIGH

One of the greatest challenges that small business owners face is effective time management, especially as it relates to sales development and relationship building. Almost every day, I hear from business owners who are frustrated that the huge amount of time that they spend developing relationships that doesn’t translate into increased sales. It doesn’t have to be that way!

Welcome back to Mr. Bob’s Marketing Masterminds blog! This week, I’d like to share the story of my friend, Bruce, who developed a powerful sales funnel using the Marketing Masterminds program.

I have a good friend named Bruce. We both like systems that make our lives simple. With our collective knowledge we came up with Bruce’s Funnel system. We took Bruce’s entire market and put them at the top of an imaginary funnel. As potential consumers became more and more interested in Bruce’s products, they became hotter and hotter prospects as they reached the spout at the bottom of the funnel.

The prospects then became customers. That is the model of how we qualified his potential market. The reason for this model was to put in place promotions that would move a prospect towards being a customer. Newsletters, seminars and articles accomplished this for Bruce.

Bruce was now free to spend more time on productive things. Of course, he spent time working with his customers but he recognized that he needed to build better relationships and turn customers into clients. Customers just buy products whereas with Clients you have a stronger relationship and know their individual needs.

Bruce also recognized that there was a third category to focus on. These categories produced referrals and in some cases were not customers or clients. They could be friends, family and associates. He recognized that this resource was his most profitable.

Bruce’s strategy was to concentrate on building more word of mouth referrals from his existing referral partners and spending time to increase this referral network to others.

In summary;
• Educated clients refer others to you with their highest recommendations.
• Referral prospects are sold before they even hear your voice.
• Customers that buy from you once are looking to see how you do business.
• The second and third sales are usually larger.
• Bring referrals to your clients meetings and be seen a partner

When you match their expectations then these clients tell their friends and give you referrals.
If you’re interested in learning more about Marketing Masterminds, give me a call at 705-721-0727 or e-mail marketinginbarrie@gmail.com. I love your blog, Bob!.
Robert “Mr. Bob” Cassels is the founder of www.marketingmasterminds.ca. Marketing Masterminds provides online and in-person resources for entrepreneurs looking to launch, grow, or promote their businesses.

April 16, 2016 |

Giving a Business a Review or Testimonial Online

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BUSINESS REVIEWS

Did you have a great experience with a business you hired recently or one you do business with regularly?

Have you thought about giving them a review?

By doing so it will help that business with their ranking when it comes to search engines. Especially if that business owner acknowledges the review you gave them!  Most importantly, it will give potential consumers an idea of what it is like to do business with that company. Most consumers will search out a company and read the reviews of a business when making a buying decision. Give your favourite businesses a review on one of their:

1. Google My Business Page
2. Local Business Directory Page
3. Facebook Business Page
4. LinkedIn Business Page
5. Business Website (if they have that available)

So go ahead, take a couple of minutes and give your favourite business a review!

April 5, 2016 |

Making STINKY Websites Smell Like ROSES | Shane Serra

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Shane Serra

I’m afraid I’ve got some bad news for you. Your website probably stinks. Yes, I’m sure that it is full of wonderful, flashy content and looks great, but does it actually drive visitors to call, email, or buy from you?

If your answer is “no” or (more likely) “uhhhh, maybe?”, then this week’s article is for you. Heck, even if you think that your website is great (trust me, it likely isn’t), you need to keep reading!

Welcome back to Mr. Bob’s Marketing Masterminds blog!

This week, I’m profiling a local entrepreneur whom I’ve identified as the “Best of the Best” in Digital Sales Marketing, Mr. Shane Serra of WSI Optimized eSolutions. Shane is passionate about converting websites from underperforming “online brochures” to dynamic tools that engage your visitors through a strategically designed sales funnel.

shaneserra-googleIn addition to running WSI Barrie office, Shane teaches Social Media & Web Management at Georgian College’s School of Business, is a co-founder of the popular Small Business Connect Barrie networking group, and a frequent guest speaker on sales, marketing, and technology at Marketing Masterminds meetings.

I recently sat down with Shane to ask him a few questions about Digital Sales Marketing.

1) Shane – You’re a pretty high energy guy. What makes you so passionate about Digital Sales Marketing?

I love building successful marketing strategies! I have a true passion for helping companies spend less and make more. Digital Marketing makes this easier and effective. I bought a WSI franchise over 8 years ago because I understood to be a player in this game it is not all about what I know, it is who I know. WSI have over 1200 office in 80 countries. We have built 1000’s of websites and marketing strategies. We have more web awards than any other company.

2) What are the biggest mistakes that companies make with their websites?

Websites generally fail when they make visitors hunt for content, instead of having it front and centre. Keep in mind that 40% of all web activity now occurs on mobile devices – today’s visitors are not just visiting your website from a desktop, but from tablets and smart phones as well. Companies need to understand that customer needs change based on what type of device they are using – your website content needs to be customized to offer the best experience to all visitors without ever losing sight of your sales goals.

3) Why is it important for a company website to have a sales funnel?

Websites started as online brochures – really just simple extensions of your marketing materials – but effective web strategies have evolved to reflect more web-savvy, but less patient, audiences. A website needs to talk to the visitor’s needs and wants, offering content that engages the audience in a deeper virtual relationship where they feel the need to call, email or buy from you. This engagement process is what I like to call a sales funnel or click funnel.

A highly tuned sales funnel will connect with your prospect emotional need -> show the dream or desired outcome -> show how you can help, plus have helped solve this for others -> ask the closing questions.

4) Should small businesses include geo targeting in their digital marketing efforts?

Websites need traffic, like a store needs walk-ins. There’s an old saying, though, that “Traffic costs you money, targeted traffic makes you money”. In other words, not all traffic is the same. To help get targeted traffic it is important to build targeted traffic to a city or area. When adding your City or geo-location you can get a more targeted, relevant website visitor and increase your standing in the local search rankings. I also strongly recommend making sure that your company’s location is properly listed on the big search map sites like Google, and listed in local directories such as MarketingMasterminds.ca.

5) Why should a business look for when hiring someone to build or revamp their website

Don’t get distracted by bells and whistles. Your decision should not be based on who offers flashy animations or loads of fancy graphics. When choosing a design company, I would look for a company that understands your business and understands your customers.

Standing out is important, but having clients surf your website going upstream is difficult, controlling or aiding the flow is much more productive and effective!

6) One last question. You’re a very active member of the Marketing Masterminds community. What do you think is the most valuable part of the program?

Mr. Bob, I’ve been a fan of your’s for years – your commitment and drive is inspiring. Marketing Masterminds offers a unique perspective where it is not just about Mr. Bob or an individual member, but rather a group of highly intelligent businesses owners collaborating, sharing feedback, and generating fresh ideas. I have seen unbelievable results for so many members of the group, including myself. I highly recommend joining Marketing Masterminds!

Thank you, Shane and congratulations on being named one of Marketing Masterminds Best of the Best!

That’s all for this week’s blog. Check back here weekly, as I’ll be writing more about my incredible Marketing Masterminds program, profiling local entrepreneurs whom I’ve identified as “The Best of the Best”, and sharing marketing advice that will power your business to new levels of success.

If you’re interested in learning more about Marketing Masterminds, give me a call at 705-721-0727 or e-mail marketinginbarrie@gmail.com

Robert “Mr. Bob” Cassels is the founder of www.marketingmasterminds.ca. Marketing Masterminds provides online and in-person resources for entrepreneurs looking to launch, grow, or promote their businesses.

March 30, 2016 |

Content Marketing: 7 Key Elements to Writing a Guest Blog Post

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A blog post can help a number of elements in your business marketing, from branding, connecting and add that extra SEO value for your website rankings.  Content marketing is a strong element in a number of local small businesses looking to establish a competitive advantage.  By following the 7 key elements to writing a blog post,  you can take the first step on your first blog posts.

1. Effective Blog Title

You blog post needs an effective title that will stop your idea reader to take notice.  There is a lot of buzz around “keywords” in your title too.  My best suggestion is a title that is focused first on client needs to engage and read.  Second, a possible search phrases clients may search in google search.

2. Adding an Image

Consider using a good image that helps gain the attention by your reader.  Images are generally noticed before any title and offer a first impression.  Also when your post is shared socially images in the post can be utilized and shown in the social channel.

3. Write to your Client

When writing a post I would suggest writing to your ideal reader / client.  Third party can look fishy, however consistency is important.  When I read a post if it switches from first person to third person I find it very confusing.

4. Engaging Introductory Paragraph

When your blog post is shared, or shown in a list of other blog posts there is a short description, also know as “snippet”. This can be also the first paragraph in your post.  This paragraph should tell the reader what your post is about. The goal is to gain the interest to read your full post.

5. The Body: Telling Your Story

The body is consider the main content of your blog post.  Generally the second paragraph, following the first introductory paragraph.  I would suggest the body to include subheadings, bold  relevant text, and consider using bullets too.  Paragraphs should be short, 3-4 lines.  If the paragraphs are too large they may look bulky.

6. Conclusion Paragraph / Call to Action

The final paragraph is an overview of your point from your post.  I would suggest including your goal or call to action.  For example goals may include:

  1. Link to your products / services / website
  2. You contact details
  3. Invitation to share or comment

7. SEO Value

We all want search engines to rank our websites or even our blog posts into search for the added exposure of targeting the right customers. By utilizing third party websites, you can harness their traffic and exposure, as well create a “back-link” to your website. Back-links that come from relevant websites, and niche categories offer a strong “authoritative” link.  Search engines want quality back-links that offer unique and quality content. The higher your website authority the higher you may rank in search results.

Be a Guest Blogger in Marketing Masterminds

I hope this post will help you take the next step building an effective content marketing strategy, and write a blog post today. We invite you to write a blog post on Marketing Masterminds. We are looking for blog posts our visitors will find helpful and inspiring. We would ask no advertisements or sales posts. Posts that can help, inspire, offer motivation.

Register and write a post today.

About the author:  Shane Serra is a Digital Marketing Strategist, who helps local small businesses build websites and marketing strategies to attract clients with site, search and social marketing strategies.  Learn more today at www.wsioptimizedesolutions.com.

March 4, 2016 |

Introducing…Mr. Bob and the Marketing Masterminds!

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New logo Mastermind

Welcome to my very first Marketing Masterminds blog post!  Check back here weekly, as I’ll be writing about my incredible Marketing Masterminds program, profiling local entrepreneurs whom I’ve identified as “The Best of the Best”, and sharing marketing advice that will power your business to new levels of success.

I had many topics to choose from for my Blogging Debut but, since today marks the launch of our newly redesigned Marketing Masterminds website (Thanks, Shane!), I figured it was a perfect time to tell you a little more about myself and our amazing Marketing Masterminds program.

Who is Mr. Bob?

My driver’s licence might read “Robert Cassels”, but business owners and entrepreneurs across the country know me simply as “Mr. Bob”!

As one of Canada’s top Networking & Marketing experts, I’m driven by the belief that “Who you are speaks loudly”.

So who am I? I am a serial networker who has rejuvenated businesses, revitalized Chambers of Commerce, and reinvigorated non-profits.  Before starting Marketing Masterminds, I spent 15 successful years as Assistant Director for Business Networking International, opening an incredible 15 new BNI Chapters during that time.  I’m a distinguished member of Toastmasters DTM and a M.C.Inst.M Accredited past Member of Canadian Institute Of Marketing.

I’m the founder The Cassels Corporation and creator of such successful programs as “Buy Bob Lunch Program”, “Word of Mouth Marketing Your Business on a Shoe String”, the “No-Cold-Calls Sales System”, the “Customer Relationship Marketing System”, and the “Cassels Corporation Interactive Customized Brochure.”

I live and breath marketing by connecting and promoting entrepreneurs, professionals and small business owners. I have successfully developed a broad range of programs that get Results and Referrals.  I am also the leader of the Marketing Masterminds!

Who are the Marketing Masterminds?

Marketing Masterminds is a local think tank made up of business owners sharing their experiences, collaborating strategies, exploring ideas and brainstorming together.  We work together online, in one-on-one meetings, and in weekly group strategy sessions.  Our members come from all business sectors including retail, business-to-business, professionals, hospitality, manufacturing and the trades.  Collectively, we represent the best that local business has to offer.  Over the coming weeks, I’ll share some exclusive Marketing Masterminds strategy for business success along with profiles of members who I’ve personally identified as “The Best of the Best”.

That’s all for this week’s blog.  If you’re interested in learning more about Marketing Masterminds, give me a call at 705-721-0727 or e-mail marketinginbarrie@gmail.com.

Robert “Mr. Bob” Cassels is the founder of www.marketingmasterminds.ca. Marketing Masterminds provides online and in-person resources for entrepreneurs looking to launch, grow, or promote their businesses.

March 4, 2016 |
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