Vote for Your Success!

Vote for Your Success! How to Edge Out Your Competition
By: Cynthia Bull

As Election Day approaches with candidates vying for your vote, now is the perfect time to take your own poll to see how your business stacks up against your competition. While you may not have millions to spend on your campaign to promote the attributes of your business, you can definitely beef up its selling points. In this election climate, take a few minutes to think outside the familiar box of how you do business and draw a parallel to the upcoming elections by asking these questions about your business:

  • What is your campaign slogan? What is your mission statement, your purpose? Do you need to refine or redefine your goal, your intent, your reason for doing business?

  • Are you an absentee voter in your own business? How much actual time do you spend in and how much attention do you pay to your business on a regular basis? How much of your business do you conduct yourself? How much do you rely on others to make your business decisions? (Hidden profits and losses could be disguised in the answers you find!)

  • How do you get voters to cast their ballot for you, your products and services? What are your marketing tools and how effective are they? Are they creative and do they meet the demands of today’s economic times, or are revisions needed? Is it time to consider adjusting fees?

  • Will voters select your name and company at the ballot box? Who are your competitors and how do you measure up against them? What makes you special? What do you offer that your competition doesn’t offer?

  • Do customers register and vote for you? Are your existing customers buying from you? Are you getting new clients? Is your message strong enough to win clients? Have you explored every possible option to narrow their choice in your favor?

One approach to finding the answers is to simulate a town hall meeting. If your business is brick and mortar, hold a special on-site event that includes a speaker, bonuses and/or special sales items for attendance and participation. Have questionnaires and surveys ready and request that they be filled out before bonuses or other special items are handed out. Using what you already have, like space and products, will automatically reduce your expenses to hold the event.

If your business is virtual, your virtual office allows you to host the event at no extra cost. All questionnaires and surveys can be posted via the Internet as you ask clients for suggestions on how your business can improve and better serve them. A good follow-up strategy is to hold a teleseminar or webinar with a guest and bonuses as a thank you for participating in the virtual town hall event. You might incur a small charge for this post town hall event; it depends on your resources. But more than likely, the payoff will far exceed the expense to find out what is and isn’t working in your business.  

On questionnaires and surveys, be specific and ask about any problems customers might be having with your product or service. Keep all questions simple, clear, direct and relevant. Face-to-face questions can and should be answered immediately. If at all possible, record or videotape any presentations and all Q&A. In the virtual meeting, respond to all questions with a quick email of appreciation that includes information about the upcoming teleseminar or webinar, where you answer all questions as well as any new customer concerns. These days, the ability to interact with clients is easier than ever before. So if you've been reluctant to step out of your comfort zone and try these resources, now is definitely the time for innovative action.    

A dominant characteristic of successful candidates is that they believe in themselves. Not only are they able to persuade others to actively espouse their agenda through the strong qualities they possess, but they openly ask for monetary contributions – and get them!

Claim these characteristics of a successful business person for yourself:

  1. Believe in yourself and your business. If you lack a positive, enthusiastic approach to your business in any way, then you shouldn’t be in business. It’s that simple. Virtually all business owners possess the quality of believing in themselves more than any other person they know, regardless of the sincere support others may offer.

  1. Be bold enough to take the necessary risks of business. This means succeeding in some parts of your business and missing the mark in others; the very definition of risk. And while it’s easy to become discouraged during disappointing times, hanging on when it’s tough separates ultimate winners from losers.

  1. Remain flexible in your approach to business. It makes rolling with the punches easier and helps you to keep an accurate finger on the pulse of your business. Nothing remains the same, and feeling uneasy about your business may be an indicator that it’s time for a change. It doesn’t have to be extreme, but pay attention to your instincts.

  1. Offer the best product and/or service you possibly can, because a competitive marketplace will recognize and reward the best of what it sees. Research what others offer in your niche and adjust your business model so that it measures up, not only to your standards, but also to what the marketplace determines. Set your own yardstick, but rate your progress to that of others as objectively as possible using measureable databases.  

  1. Always think forward rather than backwards. Meeting one goal is always replaced by another goal (a natural condition of business), but prioritize goals in results that can be measured. Stay focused on one goal at a time and maximize what can be achieved at each level.    

Remember, you already have the popular vote of your active customers because they buy from you. But in today’s uncertain economic climate, it may be necessary to restructure your platform in order to meet the needs of your clients as well as outshine your competition. Innovative thinking and actions teamed with minor changes where necessary go a long way to keep your business successful.

Now ~ Go Out and Vote!

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CYNTHIA BULL (www.cynrje.com) is an internationally published writer and editor who helps international authors, marketers and speakers add greater value to their products through her top-quality writing, editing and transcription services. She is the author of How To Be A Medical Transcriptionist and Winning At Work While Balancing Your Life, a contributing author of Walking with the Wise Entrepreneur (Mentors Publishing House), cited in Make BIG Profits on eBay (Entrepreneur Press), and Managing Editor of Mentors Magazine Think & Grow Rich Edition. Cynthia has created over 200 book products in the past two years for her clients and, as mentor, helps clients reach their goals through her products, experience and genuine caring. Cynthia writes this feature article exclusively for Debbie May.com (wwwDebbieMay.com), an organization dedicated to helping small businesses succeed.