Category Archives: Persuade

Choose a Webinar Product

You’re investigating a new webinar product or switching from an old one due to issues. You already know webinars are incredibly beneficial for any company making product, business or general announcement to a wide audience.

webinarWhile you may know how much you need a webinar service at your organization, how do you select the right provider to partner with? Here are four ideas to get you started in the right direction:

1. Is easy to use

No matter what, you want to choose a provider that offers webinar services that are easy for you and your participants to use. Nothing will lower your webinar attendance rate faster than if the audience has to jump through several technical hoops to even view your presentation.

2. Is reliable and robust

While you might only plan to use a basic webinar tool, you also might consider choosing a provider that offers additional robust features. After all, interactive options such as polls can make even the most standard webinar much more interesting for your audience. Engagement is one of the key reasons why so many marketing departments use webinars.

Customization, add-on features and more can be considered under robust. Are these things important to you? If so, make sure you note that. It’ll help you pick the right tool.

3. Enables integrations

Do you need it to integrate with customer relationship management (CRM) software? How about marketing automation tools like Marketo, Eloqua and HubSpot? Integration extends your existing software and makes your webinar more valuable. It can also reduce errors and double work. For example, you may want to send out recorded webinars to your clients. Without this option, it will be far more difficult to make this happen.

4. Has great customer service

Did you know some companies charge for even the most basic customer service, like answering the phone when you need help? It’s true. Of course some companies embed great customer service into the overall price, like ReadyTalk. Depending on how comfortable your workforce feels with your webinar platform and what’s important to your business, you may need better customer service.

Speaking of customer service, we even send out proactive tips and provide additional concierge services (for a fee). Additional concierge services can be anything from helping with everything to ensure your webinar is flawless to handling the basics of the meeting, like the greeting.

5. Meets your SMART goals and budget

The price varies greatly among products. As above, consider everything in the package. For example, some companies charge for customer service … but it’s not listed on their base price. Webinars can cost anywhere from $10 a month to more than $1,0000.

But more important, is whether the webinar meets the reason you’re buying one. Are you getting the leads and revenue you need? Will you get the attendance you need? Will you be able to train people? Conduct demos? This is critical. SMART means specific, measurable, actionable, realistic and timely. Ensuring your webinar platform’s success means taking the time to go over why you need one in the first place … and to get specific.

6. Has good reviews

Analysts research software all the time and provide reviews on that software like Aragon Research. Websites also have a number of reviews available, indicating what they like — and don’t like — about products. Don’t just trust testimonials on the company’s website. And if you need to, ask if you can get a reference. Most good companies will provide names to help you select the right software for your needs.

7. Enables you to try or demo

These days if you can’t try or demo a product, it’s probably not worth buying. Many companies, like ReadyTalk, provide free trials. You can decide whether it meets your needs or not. Of course, many companies have a limit to the free trial. And those same companies may extend the free trial if you ask them to.

And while we’re on free trial ….


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What Is Value-Based Pricing?

Maybe you’ve heard the term value-based pricing before, but don’t know how it applies to your business or why it may matter to your customers. It may seem cliche’, but this pricing model is as much a philosophy as a way to determine how much to charge for your services.

What is value-based pricing?

value-based pricingThe Harvard Business Review defines it as “the method of setting a price by which a company calculates and tries to earn the differentiated worth of its product for a particular customer segment when compared to its competitor.”

How this works is that you sit down with your prospective clients and discuss an agreed-upon fee based on your level of experience, knowledge about the subject and more. Essentially, you are removing the stigma of industry-set prices, and determining the price of your services based on the value you will provide your client.

Why value-based pricing may help your organization

As a busy consultant, lawyer or other professional service provider, you likely charge the traditional “hourly rate” for your clients. While familiar for them and easy to measure against your competitors, you may find you’re not raking in as much profit as you used to be. Also, although customers will appreciate your time based on the hourly rate, they may not appreciate your expertise.

To increase your profit margins, you may be contemplating sleeping less or working long hours on the weekends just to make ends meet. Though there’s nothing wrong with hard work, maybe it’s time to consider switching to a value-based pricing model instead.

Value first, not service

With traditional hourly rates, your price focuses on the service first, not quality of your work. If you create a model for this method in terms of descending importance, it would show service first, then cost for that service, followed by the price needed to make a profit, then the value perceived for this service and finally, attention to the clients’ needs, according to BiggerProfits.

On the other hand, value-based pricing relies on you and the clients coming together to determine the precise value they will receive from your service, and then agreeing on a price. This method will not only bring clients’ voices back into the equation, but also allow you to be compensated based on your quality of services, not just on an industry-recommended hourly rate.

The Age of Customer Marketing

Marketing to customers isn’t new, but it does have new life these days and new focus in many marketing departments. Why? Marketing to customers — giving options to buy more products or move to different products — is generally easier than trying to convince a stranger to your brand to buy. Customers have a relationship with your company.

5 Tips for Marketing on a Budget

Maybe you’re from a legal firm where you want to reduce costs. Maybe you’re in a nonprofit, running marketing. Or maybe you’re just from a startup or small business looking to be frugal.

marketing on a budgetWith your tight budget, how in the world could you run a successful, affordable marketing campaign? How can you grow your business? How can you get more leads and revenue?

Don’t give up yet! Here are way simple, effective ways to market your SMB with little to no money:

1. Use your blog!

Maybe you began a blog on whim a couple years ago … and haven’t updated it since. If you want to capture more leads and promote yourself as a thought leader in your industry, you definitely should be posting topical or engaging content each week.

2. Are you tweeting regularly?

Social media is your friend. Your best friend. Your BFF! There’s no cheaper or more effective marketing platform than interacting with potential consumers or clients over Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and other sites. This is an excellent way to attract a younger customer base as well.

3. Do you have an email list?

Email marketing still remains as one of the most successful forms of marketing available for companies of any size. This provides regular, meaningful content straight to prospects’ inboxes. Use promotions and specials to draw them in time and time again.

4. Partner up with a local business or nonprofit.

If you’re located in a smaller community, you need to get active! Partner with a local business or charity and host a fun event to get people talking about your business. Partnering with others gets your message out faster.

One thought is cause marketing.

5. Network!

Meet up with local businesses or professionals to build up a firm network. You can create a solid referral network with complementary businesses, which will be beneficial for all parties involved. It’s also a great way to learn from your peers about what marketing efforts they find to be most effective.

Word of mouth is the biggest way to increase marketing and it has the greatest opportunities.

5 Tips to Increase Sales

It’s a dog eat dog world out in the sales industry today. Even if you’ve been in the business for years, the tips and tricks that might have worked then are no longer applicable. With 10 more businesses popping up in the time it takes you to give your first sales pitch, you (and your company) cannot afford to fall behind.

1. Ask questions

increase salesThis goes hand-in-hand with item 2 about selling to a need rather than a feature. First, ask questions to determine what your prospect is looking for. This may also help you understand your product just isn’t for them (which would waste time, also on this list).

Understanding the issues they’re facing also improves your pitch. You can identify the items that are the biggest challenge and sell to those issues.

2. Quit describing the product; sell to your customers’ needs

You’re not going to sell anything if you spend your days describing to potential customers information they could easily gather on your website. Since everyone has a smartphone these days, all they have to do is pull up your product page and they know more in a minute than you will tell them in 20. Instead, emphasize how this product or service will meet their needs.

Sure, if you’re selling software features help decide between products, but first lay the groundwork for the how the product solves the need.

3. Don’t waste time — yours or your prospects’

Do your homework. Know the type of company, the type of person you’re talking to, and ensure you understand the issues.

How can you conduct this homework: on social media. LinkedIn is a great way to review who you’re meeting with, what their title is, and more. You can eve find out a little about them. It also involves asking those questions in the meeting. But don’t forget to tell your prospect that’s the goal of the meeting, otherwise it could come as a shock. Approaching it as ensuring you address their particular needs is best and then spend time going over those features first.

Set goals and benchmarks that you want to reach each day, week and month and make sure to stay on track. Otherwise, you’ll find yourself falling behind before you even realize it. Social selling is a big part of that — it sometimes will even make someone call you.

4. Don’t forget content and a smile

Your marketing team can give you insight into how to address specific issues your prospect wants to solve. Most likely, they have content around solving it, both with the product and service and with some thought leadership. Arm yourself with this information and know how to get it during the meeting. It could even warm a cold prospect.

Even if you’ll never see your prospect, it’s important to feel good. When you feel good, you smile. When you smile, you’re outlook is brighter and people can often hear a smile in your voice. In fact, it’s a top tip for candidates to respond with a smile. It almost always comes across.

5. Use some sort of video (video or webinars)

Seeing your prospect will help you get the sale. Ideally, it’ll be a product you can see a prospect’s face and still share info or documents as well as demo. Some products like FoxDen are even impromptu meaning you can fire up a meeting right away.

Some products like webinars enable demos and can even integrate with your marketing automation and CRM system like Salesforce. That’ll save you time from re-entering information. It’ll also save from making errors that might eat into sales.

What’s the way you increase sales?

Don’t see a tip? What kind of tips do you have?