Olympic road ahead closed-Is your Business Ready?

Olympic Cycle course
Are you ready?

The London-Surrey Cycle Classic test event

The Olympic Cycle race test event will be held on the Sunday 14th August 2011 – just over 4 weeks time – will your business be affected? Click here to view a map of the route.

The London-Surrey Cycle Classic test event being held on Sunday 14th August as part of LOCOG’s comprehensive sports testing programme. In order to deliver this exciting event there will be road closures and parking suspensions click here for more detailed information along the route within London and Surrey. Arrangements will be made to minimise disruption for local residents and businesses. The test event will provide an opportunity for you to consider how your business may be effected and the potential impacts during the Olympic event on the 28th and 29th July 2012.

Think and plan ahead, what will you be doing to ensure that you don’t lose out on valuable business during the local olympic event?

More importantly how can you capitalise on the extra potential sales of your products and services with the vastly increased numbers of potential cusromers right on your doorstep.

 

For professional & independant business advice contact  Janette Whitney at Award Winning Business Consultants, Janette Whitney & Associates on 01403 733671 or email jw@whitneyassocs.co.uk.  

 

NETWORKERS BEWARE!- What your handshake says about you

 

Networkers Beware!

 More than just physical contact, a handshake conveys a wealth of psychological information.

We walk away from a handshake saying things like, “You know, I just felt really comfortable with her” or “I don’t know why, but I simply don’t trust that guy”.

 

Most people don’t spend time probing the depths of this unconscious communication; they just have a ‘feeling’ or a sense that their intuition is telling them something. However, there are things we can use in our sales effort by looking a little more closely at the experience.

Top 5 Handshakes and what they reveal about you or your client:

 

 1. Sweaty Palms – When a person is nervous their sympathetic nervous system often becomes overactive, sometimes resulting in sweaty palms. Do what you can to put this individual at ease.

2. Dead Fish– Indifferent handshakes that feel like the person has no bones in their hand often indicate a passive or reserved personality. This handshake ranks as the number two least favoured. Individuals with this type of clasp are generally not people-focused. Knowing this, you can tailor your conversation to de-emphasize the people aspect and focus more on the mechanical or thing focused benefits.

3. Brush off – This handshake type is a quick grasp and then a release that feels like your hand being shoved aside. This handshake is a statement of ‘it’s my turf and my agenda that matters, yours doesn’t’. Listen first to what the person wants before talking about your ideas for them.

4 Controller– You feel your hand being pulled toward the person or strongly guided in a different direction, perhaps towards a chair. People who do this are controllers. This means they want to dominate any inanimate or animate object in the room ( and that would include you). If your goals are different to theirs there may be challenges ahead. Do more listening than talking and see if you can find common ground so these individuals can control the situation toward your desired objective.

5. Politician– Your hand is firmly grasped as in a normal handshake. However, their other hand may cover yours or be placed on your forearm or shoulder. Unless the two of you are good friends, this is a form of false sincerity. The person is attempting to communicate that the two of you have a deeper relationship than you actually have. After receiving this kind of handshake, I recommend you check your pockets or purse to see if anything is missing. Similarly, be cautious about relying on this person’s word for anything and be attentive in your dealings with them. 

As in any sales situation, the more you know about your prospects and clients, the better you can communicate with them. So create a strong first impression by being aware of your own handshake and understand the hidden messages in your clients.

For professional, Impartial advice & Solutions contact me at Janette Whitney & Associates on 01403 733671 .Award Winning Business Consultants & Business Growth Specialists.

 

 

How To Convert More Leads Into Sales

Are your sales increasing?

 

One of the biggest sales and marketing problems businesses can face is getting people whom seem interested in buying something to actually take the plunge and hand over their money.

 

 

Because let’s be honest, it’s actually pretty easy to attract attention to your business and meet prospective customers these days. The internet has made it simple to give your business a marketing presence (your website) and drive people to it (online advertising and search engine optimisation).

The key then to a successful business is not just one which attracts prospects, but one which has fail-safe systems to convert them into revenue.

 

Here are 5 tips to improve the prospect conversion rates for your business

 

1. Track and measure- First you need to know how your business currently performs. Set up simple systems to monitor the number of leads your business gets and where they have come from, then compare these figures to your sales figures.

2. Identify target audience and focus on it – You need to know who your most likely buyers are. Don’t just say ‘everyone’- even if anyone can buy what you sell, your business will perform better if you focus on a specific target audience.

3. Don’t over promise – Review your marketing materials to see if they promise things your business cannot really deliver. Low conversion rates can be an indication that prospects are being attracted by marketing materials, but when they chat to your sales team just don’t believe the business can live up to its promises.

4. Make sure sales staff know how to present – Another possibility is that your sales team aren’t presenting the business properly. Do they really understand the benefits of the business and how to communicate them to buyers? Are they making it easy for potential customers to say ‘yes’?

5. Ask for the business – Finally, ensure that you are actually asking the potential customer to buy from you. So many businesses forget to do this!  Ask questions about their needs, work out how you can fulfil these needs, and then ask if they want to buy.

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Contact me at Award Winning Business Consultants  Janette Whitney & Associates on 01403 733671, for impartial business advice & solutions.     

 

CAN YOU AFFORD TO LOSE CUSTOMERS?

   

Is this your Customer?

In the current tight trading climate , it is now more important than ever to hold on to your customers especially as a recent survey for T Mobile  has revealed that on average each lost customer costs small firms £4910 in lost profits.

 

The survey identified that a lack of responsiveness is viewed as the biggest cause of poor customer service. Key survey findings are:

  •  Each lost customer costs small businesses £4910
  • 37% state that a lack of responsiveness is to blame for poor customer service
  • 90% of small businesses aim to reply to customer calls and emails within 24 hours
  • Small business owners spend on average 37% of their time away from the office
  • Over a fifth of small businesses believe that mobile technology increases responsiveness by more than 50%

  

In the last 12 months, small companies have lost a least 4 customers each which could equate to c £20,000 in lost profits!

 

Even though the survey showed that 88% of business reply to customer emails and 93% return customer calls within 24 hours, with a third of businesses responding to customer complaints immediately – there is still a need to review speed of response to customers if businesses are to remain competitive and retain customers.

Evidence suggests that larger competitors are much quicker to respond to customers and this is a significant threat to small businesses. An immediate response to customers is obviously ideal, but at the very least small businesses should examine ways in which queries either via phone or email can be replied to within a maximum of one to three hours. (What would you expect if you were the customer?)

 As resources can be limited for small businesses it is important to consider how technology, especially internet enabled mobile devices, can be used to ensure that customer relationships are never jeopardised through a lack of responsiveness.

Superior Customer service is key for small businesses not only to compete more effectively with larger companies, but to thrive and prosper.

For professional & impartial business advice contact Janette Whitney  at Award Winning Business Consultants, Janette Whitney & Associates on 01403 733671

 

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How successful are your phone calls?

 Sales Success!! 

Making important telephone calls as opposed to a face to face conversation can be difficult and sometimes more unnerving. You can’t assess the other person eyeball to eyeball, you can’t see their body language and facial expressions, all of which makes it more difficult for you to gauge the success or otherwise of what you are trying to achieve.

 

 So here are 5 tips to help increase the odds in your favour:

1.      Get off on the right foot and ask if it’s a convenient time to talk.

 How often have you been in an interview with someone, the phone rings and they stop to pick it up? Yes, it’s rude and disrespectful to you and yet it’s the caller who gets the sharp ‘YES?’, as if it’s their fault!

So to ensure you don’t unnecessarily start off a phone conversation on a poor note, ask if it’s a good time talk. Give them the chance to say no. At least you have shown some consideration by giving him the opportunity to continue or not.

2.      Immediately build rapport.

 

To start immediately building rapport greet the person by their name. You are less likely to do this during a face to face meeting, but it’s essential during a phone conversation.

3. Keep the rapport going.

 

Keep the rapport going, by liberally using their name during the call and use it more frequently than you would normally do. Use of someone’s name replaces that feeling of closeness which comes naturally during a face to face meeting.

4. Smile with your voice.

 

Most people come across as plain bored when speaking on the phone, which again is a reaction to the lack of physical contact. Make a conscious effort to sound bright and breezy.

5. Finally, draw to a natural conclusion

 

Some people find it hard to finish a phone call, not wanting to interrupt the other person in full flow. Always try to lead the close by agreeing the next action –‘I will call you next week to discuss this point….’ AND most importantly stand up when you say your concluding phrase, as this naturally changes the tone of your voice which signals the end of the call without having to make excuses to hang up.

 Try these ideas next time you have an important phone call to make and see your success rate soar. Let me know how you get on.- all comments welcome

 

For professional & impartial business advice contact  Janette Whitney & Associates, Business Consultants on 01403 733671.

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Get the blood flowing!!

How many times have you sat at your desk and stared blankly at your computer screen- totally uninspired?

Well, us humans need to be more active than we are in todays lifestyles as I am sure you appreciate,Sitting down all day at a desk does nothing for our ability to be focussed on our jobs or motivation to be fantastic. We need to exercise- so take a break when you have read this and walk around a little.

When you sit back at your desk you will feel better and you will be more motivated towards your work. Movement gets the blood pumping around the body and therefore more oxygen to the brain. Try it.- it works.

So if you want inspired Business advice  or business growth strategies covering sales, marketing, finance, business development and more,  you have come to the right place. 

Contact us now for a free initial consultation on 01403 733671

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Welcome

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Hello and welcome to the Janette Whitney & Associates Blog.

In the course of helping hundreds of businesses we have gathered a number of excellent resources for companies looking to:

  • Plan and implement growth strategies
  • Increase sales & profits
  • Develop robust financial targets
  • Create greater efficiencies 
  • Manage their cashflow more effectively
  • Understand and plan an exit strategy
  • Raise finance

We are in the process of distilling some of this information into this blog for free use within your business. We can help to apply these strategies and manage the process to completion. Read more about us.

 

Contact us now for a free initial consultation on 01403 733671.  

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