Sunday, January 14, 2007

Fresh Starts

As 2007 is now here, millions of people worldwide, looked at the calender and made new commitments to be, do, and behave better than last year. Just like they did a year ago. We do not need to wait until a date on a calender to make a fresh start.

Do It Now.

Failed already?

Do it again. Start Fresh. There are days that seem to go terribly wrong. Stop. Start Fresh.

I have friends and co-workers who have lost their fathers to death in the past 30 days. Take the time to grieve. As someone who became an "orphan" 5 years ago after the unexpected death of my Mom, I can understand. (3 years before that, my Dad suffered a death from cancer). It is a weird feeling being a 47 year old "orphan", but time gives perspective.

What does this have to do with Fresh Starts? Well for some reason, You and I are still here on this planet. So it is up to us to keep making Fresh Starts, until our time has truly expired. Until that time, you can always start, restart, and restart again.

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Another place to get lost and find something really cool

In my previous post, I refer to the Wizard of Ads. Here's a link to a lot of related goodies.

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More Wisdom From Chuck

A couple of years ago, we had a Director of Sales that introduced me and others in our company to Roy Williams, who not so humbly refers to himself as the Wizard of Ads. He has written several books that will expand your thinking and hopefully actions and he also has a number of Wizard of Ads Partners. One that has caught my attention due to his simular thinking is Chuck McKay. Subscribe to his blog and learn too. Here's his latest that came in my e-mail:

Here's a strategy that can make your business thrive, or can kill it.

Please enjoy...

Location, Location, and the UVP.

Does your business have a Unique Value Proposition (U.S.P.)? The strategy I’m about to share requires one.

DO NOT attempt this if you can’t articulate a very compelling reason for people to conduct business with you, rather than with than a competitor.

You’ve, no doubt, heard that there are three critical considerations in real estate. They are, in order, location, location, and location. There are also several philosophies involving the selection of that location, especially as it applies to choosing one for your business.

One school of thought is to go where there are no competitors. Another is to go where all of the competitors are.

I suggest that the difference may come down to your U.V.P.

I’m visiting a major southern city in the U.S. My client is considering a location for his new retail store. We’ve looked at, and considered, several.

One is particularly attractive to us. It’s at the intersection of two streets which are primary arteries for the community. Within a block of this intersection are four other businesses which are my client’s direct competitors.

If we can negotiate an acceptable lease, we’ll be the fifth competitor.

Several advantages to this location become obvious, once you think about them.

1. This intersection has become known to the public as the part of town where one goes to conduct business with someone in my client’s industry. If a shopper doesn’t know exactly what she wants, it’s easier to get her to go where she more choices.

You’ll note that most large cities have a “restaurant row,” or a several car dealers in a two or three block area. They all tend to do better than the lone restaurant or car dealer on some other thoroughfare.

2. This location eliminates fourteen of the eighteen direct competitors from the minds of shoppers passing by. As a potential customer drives through this intersection, and notes that four competitors exist at this one place, she’s not as likely to actively be thinking of the fifth on the South side of town, the sixth on the North side, or the seventh near the courthouse.

Where it counts, in the mind of the shopper, it’s easier to compete with only four other businesses at this location, than it is to compete with eighteen others scattered across the city. (As they say, out of site, out of mind).

3. It’s much easier to get people to walk across the street to comparison shop than it is to get them to come see you at a place they’ve never been, when you are new and they have no relationship with your company.

4. One of the primary purposes of advertising is to help people remember who you are and why they should seek you out. Won’t you have to spend substantially less to do so when thousands of potential customers drive by your store, and it’s signage, daily?

Enough traffic already passes through this intersection that four direct competitors have been able to run successful businesses with minimal advertising.
Despite these major advantages, there is a strong danger to this strategy. It invites direct comparison of your business to multiple established competitors. If you can't hold up under such scrutiny, this decision could effectively kill your business.

If you have a strong U.V.P. choosing such a location can be a powerful strategy. Without one, you’re all too often at the mercy of the competitor who does.

You do have an easily articulated, customer-focused U.V.P. don’t you?

Chuck McKay is available as a guest speaker or seminar presenter.
For further information call Wizard of Ads® Headquarters:
(800) 425-4769.

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