The Dan Kennedy SuperConference
It’s been just over a week now since I got back home from the Dan Kennedy SuperConference, and I’m still working on a strategy for implementing all that I learned (which was a lot). Over the next few posts, I’m going to share what I learned. Specifically, I’m going to tell you what I’m implementing in my business.
At the Super Conference there were over 15 speakers who covered a wide variety of topics, though all of the topics dealt with how to leverage where you are and what you have into success. It was great to hear what others are doing, and to learn what’s working and what isn’t working for them. Dan Kennedy kicked off the conference with a talk on his Magic Bullets for Business Success, so I’ll kick off this series of posts with his magic bullets and what I’m doing to implement them in my business.
No, you’re not doomed because you don’t have much money. Instead, you’re most likely doomed by the wrong financial mindset in – and about – your business. Sitting at the SuperConference, it was as if Dan was speaking directly to me about my mindset regarding my business, specifically, how I go about attracting clients.
“Most business owners make a HUGE mistake by trying to get new clients using the absolute cheapest way possible. If you’re going to succeed you have to do the opposite of what everybody else is doing.”
Dan used one of his very successful consulting clients as an example. Dan said he completed a very detailed analysis of the business, and went to the client and said, “You need to print a full-color catalog of all your services, and mail it out to this particular list of qualified prospects. The first thing that client asked me was, ‘Can’t we just print it in back and white, and do we really need to send it to so many people?'”
It wasn’t that this client couldn’t afford to print a full-color catalog or mail it to all those people. It was that they simply had the wrong mindset, and it’s that same mindset that I’m guilty of as well. It’s the “get new clients the cheapest way possible” mindset. Fortunately for you and me, this is the default mindset everyone has. I say fortunately because by shifting your mindset it gives you an easy advantage over all your competitors.
You need to be willing to spend more attracting clients that your competitors are willing to spend. Don’t worry, it won’t take much. All your competitors, even you up until now, have tried to figure out the cheapest way to attract new clients. The willingness to spend more attracting clients eliminates most of your competition because they are stuck using the cheapest methods of attracting clients.
Being willing to spend more also forces you to think strategically about your business. If you’re going to invest a lot more upfront to attract the client, you have to be more strategic about maintain and increasing the lifetime value of your clients. It also forces you to focus on your clients needs and ensuring that you are serving them well.
If you’re anything like me, this concept seems foreign. However, try detaching your emotions and think about it strategically. I think you’ll find it makes perfect business sense.
Smart Place Strategy
What is your product or service? To whom do you sell? What is their underlying motivation for buying? Is it fear of loss, or potential for gain? Now, into what other completely different markets can you move your products or services? Dan Kennedy used the example of one of his clients, Guthy Renker, the company behind products like ProActiv and WEN. He talked about how initially their product was marketing specifically to female teenagers. Once they had captured this market, they began marketing to teenage males. After that success, they started marketing young adults still struggling with acne. Same product, just positioned slightly differently for each market.
Celebrity or Brand Advantage
If neither you nor your brand is famous, then you’re just another option for prospects to consider. You have to start – TODAY – working on either building celebrity or attaching your brand with celebrity. Doing this strategically can make you THE go-to solution. Dan is certainly a master at both creating and using celebrity to command much higher prices.
Take a look at how GKIC marketed the 2012 Super Conference. Notice how they used celebrity to promote the event. What about you and me…how can we use celebrity? Dan gave two ways to use celebrity:
- Use Co-Branding – find a celebrity and buy their fame. Think for example about Chuck Norris and the Total Gym, Suzanne Somers and the Thigh Master, Jessica Simpson and ProActiv, and William Shatner and Priceline.
- Find Dead Celebrities – Here are a few dead celebrities that are often used in advertising: Marilyn Monroe, James Dean, Errol Flynn, Humphrey Bogart, Marlon Brando, Bette Davis, Princess Diana, Babe Ruth, Arthur Ashe and Jackie Robinson.
It’s easy to dismiss this Magic Bullet as too difficult for an entrepreneur with limited resources. However, I would challenge you (and myself) to look for ways to pull this off. I’d love to hear what you’ve done, or any ideas you may have for using celebrity to market your business.
Big Idea Advantage
All it takes is one big idea, even if it’s implemented poorly, to catapult your business towards success. Big ideas can come in the form of many things. For example: a USP (unique selling proposition), Speed, Urgency Leverage, and Exclusivity. I’ll give just a short example of a company that has successfully used each. Hopefully one of them will spark and idea in your mind.
USP – Domino’s. They are the best example of a company skyrocketing toward success all because of their USP. And that famous USP was – Delivered in 30 minutes – or it’s free.
Speed – E-Trade is a great example of successfully using this one. They took the brokerage industry, which was known to be slow and expensive, and made it quick and inexpensive. No longer did people have to go through the process of calling their stock broker, waiting for her to return their call, and then finally placing an order. E-Trade gave people the ability to make trades instantly. (Source: Erfahrungen mit dem Robot News Spy)
Urgency Leverage – All of the companies selling gold as an investment are masters at leveraging a sense of urgency. They use urgency in two different ways:
Buy now because the value of gold has skyrocketed and will likely keep going up.
Buy now or else tomorrow the price could be 10% higher.
One Per – All of the top fashion designers use this. After all, who wants to show up on the red carpet wearing the same dress as that “other” celeb? So, what do they do? They only make one dress.
Process (Systems) Advantage – Both McDonald’s and WalMart are masters at utilizing systems and processes to crush their competitors.
What We’re Implementing at Ugly Mug Marketing
We’re constantly working on things at Ugly Mug Marketing. To the casual observer, it would appear that my job is to make things uncomfortable at Ugly Mug. And honestly, that evaluation isn’t far from the truth. I’m a firm believer in the saying:
If it doesn’t challenge you…then it doesn’t change you!
I don’t want our company to ever get comfortable with our success. That’s not to say we can’t take time to celebrate our successes along the way. We just need to continually challenge ourselves. Here’s a list of what we’re implementing and how we’re going about doing it:
Paying More – The whole concept of paying more per customer was foreign to me prior to the Dan Kennedy SuperConference, so it’s taking a little time for it to sink through my thick skull. As it’s sinking in there, we’re busy working on a more deliberate and intentional marketing system. I’m both proud and a little ashamed to say that over the past three years we’ve spent less than $300 dollars on advertising.
I’m proud because during that same period Ugly Mug Marketing has grow by over 100% in revenue each year (and is on pace to do it again this year). I’m ashamed because we could have grown much quicker had we developed an outbound marketing/advertising campaign. So, now we’re working on building an outbound marketing/advertising campaign.
Place Strategy – As part of our outbound marketing campaign, we are looking for very specific markets we previously neglected in which we can place our products and services. We are going to specifically create products and services that appear to be specialized based on the market we are targeting. Same product/service, just positioned to appear as if it were specialized.
Celebrity – I’ve been fascinated for years with how an ordinary person, or company, turns themselves into a celebrity. I even wrote a blog post for my friend Neil Patel on his blog Quick Sprout about this exact topic. One way to create celebrity, or at a minimum authority, is to become a published author, which is one of the projects on which I’m currently working.
For the past six months I’ve been quietly working on the book. Not sure of the title yet, the general theme of the book will be: So You Have a Website…Now What? The book will detail the exact steps people can take if they’d like to get the most from their website. I hope to be releasing the book around June 15th.
Systems – I’ve been in love with systems ever since reading Work the System by Sam Carpenter. The book does an excellent job of detailing the importance of implementing systems in your business. We’ve always had good systems in place at Ugly Mug Marketing, but these systems were not centralized. For new leads, we were using Aweber.com, Google Docs, and AllClients.com. They all worked well, but we just patched all three systems together to get the result we wanted. It wasn’t streamlined.
Since attended the Dan Kennedy SuperConference, I made the commitment to streamline all of our systems. The first place we’ve started working is on our marketing and lead capture system. We’ve ditched the patched together approached and now we’ve centralized everything under one system. After much talk and debate we decided to go with Office Autopilot. (Warning: if you click the Office Autopilot link and sign up, they will send me a really large commission check. So large, I’ll probably take my family out to eat at McDonald’s with all the money…just saying.) I spent a lot of time debating between Infusionsoft (which is a great application) and Office Autopilot, but ultimately chose Office Autopilot. I may do a post at some point in the future talking about the advantages and disadvantages of each, and why I chose Office Autopilot. (Let me know if you’d like me to write that post.)
Are you currently using any of these Magic Bullets in your business? Leave a comment below letting me know what’s working in your business.
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