How To Convert Hits Into Sales?

One of the common questions asked by web site owners is: “I’m getting plenty of hits but no sales – what is going on?” This article will give you some tips on how to address this issue.

Your Product

The first area to review is the product or service that you are offering. Does a market exist for it? To answer this question you need to find out whether similar products are being sold on the Internet successfully. If not, you may need to rethink your Internet strategy. If others are selling a similar product successfully, then this would tend to confirm that there is a market for your product.

Next, look at the strategy and pricing being adopted by your competitors. How do you compare? Why should your visitors buy from you rather than one of your competitors? Answering these questions will provide you with valuable information you can use to improve your situation and generate more sales.

Also, take a critical look at your product quality. Does it live up to the claims you are making on your web pages? If not, improve your product so that it does or modify your web page to be more truthful about it.

Provide Solutions

Your visitors are looking for a solution to a problem. Do you know what problems your visitors are looking for solutions to? Does your web site show how your product will solve your visitor’s problem? You will need to put yourself into your visitor’s shoes to better understand what they are seeking so that you can provide the solution they need.

One way to better understand your visitors is to monitor where your visitors are coming from. If they are coming from the search engines, knowing what search terms they are using can provide some clues. You may find some surprises when you review this information about your site. The tool I use to capture this information is WebPosition Gold. More information can be found at the URL: http://www.ksinclair.com/sengine.htm

Once you understand the problem your visitors want solved, revise your web pages to show that your product will provide the solution they need.

Site Design

Your site needs to look like it is a commercial web site rather than an amateur home page. The design needs to be consistent from page to page and it needs to be easy to navigate. Contact details including physical address, phone numbers and email address need to be shown.

Graphics need to be minimized to ensure that your page downloads quickly. Also, ensure that your web host provides a fast connection to the Internet. Most people will not wait for a page that takes a long time to download. They will just move on to your competitor. Anti-Spam Two Step for Webmasters.

Make it easy to order. I recall seeing statistics recently that suggested that a large number of people abandon a web site in the middle of the order process. A common reason for this is that the order process is too time consuming and complicated. Make yours simple and quick and you will lose fewer sales.

Ensure that your web page has a strong headline that grabs your visitors and makes them want to read more. Your headline should in effect say “You have this problem, here is the solution”. Your web site should then demonstrate that you understand the problem and that you can in fact provide the solution. Revelation of the Nerds: The religion of stem-cell research.

Testimonials and Guarantees

Testimonials and guarantees can have a huge impact on your level of sales. On the web, a key priority is to build credibility. The common methods used are having a privacy statement, publishing a newsletter, publishing testimonials from satisfied customers and providing a strong guarantee.

Take every opportunity to gather comments from your customers about how your product has helped them. Get their permission to publish these comments as testimonials. If need be, provide them with a gift for giving you their permission to publish their comments. A way of getting comments is a customer feedback survey. This can be used for the purpose of gaining testimonials as well as seeking ways to improve your product or develop additional products your customers may need.

A strong guarantee will provide your visitor with greater confidence to purchase your product. Try to make your guarantee simple and without too many conditions. Always honour your guarantee without question or delay.

Conclusion

Getting plenty of hits to your web site is a very positive situation to be in. By implementing some of the hints provided in this article, you can convert these visitors into being your customers.

How to Use Other People’s Money for Your Business?

“Money is a terrible master but an excellent servant.” – P.T. Barnum 

John Ray, the famous 17th century author, was known to have written the aphorism, “Money begets money.” In the business world, I’m sure you’ve also heard the saying, “You’ve got to have money to make money.” 

There are countless sources of cash, but by far, the best one to utilize for your business is … other people’s money. 

Perhaps one of the greatest “secrets” of the richest people in the world is summed up in those 3 words: Other People’s Money – OPM for short. If you took a cross-section of the most affluent business people, you’ll find that the majority of them launched their fortunes using OPM. In the next few minutes, I will show you how you can obtain other people’s money for your business. 

What you do with the money, however, is up to you -but if I were you, I’d take P.T. Barnum’s advice, and make money your servant so that you, too, you can make your own fortune. 

The use of other people’s money has become such an ethical and acceptable mainstay in business because one can leverage other people’s money to your benefit. 

For example, you can leverage borrowed money into high-yield investment programs that could generate a return that would then pay back your lender and line your pockets as well. Or you can leverage borrowed money into asset-producing or income-generating real property. Or you can simply borrow money to start or grow your business. 

The benefits to using OPM are obvious: 1) When you use other people’s money, especially within the parameters of a corporation, your debt is assigned to your business, and your debtors can make no claims against your personal finances; and 2) the infusion of cash allows you to have money to make money for your business. 

Of course, even with the proliferation of lending institutions and venture capitalists, it is often difficult to obtain other people’s money. 

Well, since Wall Street Journal has kindly called me a man who “finds answers in unlikely places,” I’m going to reveal an unlikely place where you can obtain other people’s money. This one is available to all, and yet very few ever take advantage of it. It’s the federal government. 

I’ve coined a phrase for this source of money: I call it “other taxpayers’ money” – OTM for short. The federal government has millions of dollars of taxpayers’ money allocated to funding businesses like yours. 

Here are a few great sources of OTM: 

1) If you want to get training and/or money to start your own business, millions of dollars are available at www.sba.com. They’ll also show you how to find alternative sources of financing, how to protect your invention, how to sell your idea, how to license your product, how to write legal contracts, how to sell overseas, and how to buy business equipment. 

2) If you want money to export and sell products to foreign countries, you can obtain it from the Export-Import Bank of the United States at www.exim.gov. Or you can go to The Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) at www.opic.gov. 

3) If you want to obtain government contracts, then access the Procurement Assistance Offices online. Here, you’ll learn how to draw up a business plan that’ll get your business noticed. They can match the product or service you’re selling with the appropriate agency, and then help you market to them more effectively. You can find these programs at www.dla.mil. 

4) If you need venture capital for a new or existing business, then you need to go online and access the Small Business Investment Company (SBIC). These are privately-organized and privately-managed investment firms that are licensed by the Small Business Administration (SBA). With their own capital and with funds borrowed at favorable rates through the federal government, SBICs provide venture capital to small independent businesses, both new and established. You can access them at 
www.sba.gov/INV. 

5) If you need free help or want to learn how to do your own personal or business taxes? All you have to do is access  www.irs.ustreas.gov/prod/bus_info-bus_help.html. 

You can also obtain a free 26-page book on the Internet called The Credit Process: A Guide for Small Business Owners. It’s written for small business owners seeking financing for the first time. It covers sources and types of financing; funding resources; preparation of a business plan; preparation of loan applications; and action to take if a loan is denied. It also contains an especially useful and comprehensive glossary of finance terms, agencies, and fair lending regulations.

Reasons Why Your Business Is So Great And How You Can Make It Even Better.

You have the idea business ever!

Yes, that’s right, and I’m not crazy (at least for the present).

If you are an Internet entrepreneur i.e. if you sell anything, no matter what, on the Internet then you really have an idea business, which many would dream of.

Continue reading and you will find out why am I so sure (5 reasons for this) and how you can improve your e-business and turn it into the 100% idea small (and not so small 🙂 business.

Reason #1 In most countries you don’t have to pay taxes on your Internet income, which makes very lucrative. Even if you have to pay any taxes, because of its virtual nature (i.e. the money, before you cash the check, are just numbers in someone’s PC), you can still get round the law, I mean legally!

So if you are paying anything, find a good lawyer and an accountant and see what you can come up with. I’m sure there will be a law to legally overcome this problem.

Reason #2 You don’t even have to meet personally your customers. Which makes is much easier to sell (because you can sell to many people at once) and manage your whole business.

Reason #3 You have very little physical work. As you may know the Internet is mostly about mental work. That’s why it’s all about INFORMATION rather than MATTER. The only work you do is communicate through your computer and develop products. Loyal Readers or Subscribers?

Here are a couple of ways you can reduce the time on communicating:

1. Create templates for your most frequently asked questions. Something like a FAQ database.

2. Create a FAQ database at your site where people can go and search for the answer before contacting you.

And here are several ideas to reduce your product development time:

1. Hire someone to create it. Actually what I mean by “create” is “accomplish the idea, which YOU have come up with”.

2. Use already written free information. In most cases the author of this information would give it to you in return for a resource box or something. Yet, if they don’t — you can still use it, just be sure that you tell in your words i.e. you don’t copy it.

3. Always research. Sometimes people work on a project for months if not even years and in the end it doesn’t bring them the desired results. So first of all — research whether there is a market for it and ONLY then should you create it.

Of course it’s better to create something for an existing market rather than searching a market for something you want to create, but in spite of this both methods work if you have a quality and competitive product with a market for it.

4. Buy resell rights. I have seen many cases where people have a winner product a great niche for it, yet they still don’t make money. And in most cases it’s because of lack of advertising and the absence of good sales copy.

The good thing is that you can buy this product and correct the author’s mistakes i.e. develop a better sales copy and advertising.

Reason #4 You can easily automate most of your work. Actually by having a site where you sell, you probably automate 1/3 of your business, as you don’t contact personally your customers. Your web site sells for you 24/7 while leaving you the rest of the job.

Automate sales processing is a beautiful thing, too. I just love the idea that I have zero work with payments. Everything is taken care of for me and I have paid just 50 bucks for it(interested in this deal,visit:http://www.profit-position.com/clickbank.htm). My affiliates get paid, my customers have their payments proceeded in minutes and I don’t do anything, nor do I hire someone.

The next great thing is that you can automate your follow-up marketing. And as you probably know follow-up marketing is a great moneymaker! When you get a customers you could automatically add him to your follow-up software and send him automatically messages, which would
significantly increase your sales. 

Reason #5 And finally, yet most importantly, with the Internet’s help you can easily reach huge amounts of people. With a good advertising campaign you could reach 1000s of people in any niche and in just a few hours. You just create an ad and send it. After 72 hours 1000s of people would already have seen it and your expenses are really small compared to other media fees.

As you may see, you have a great business, with huge possibilities for improvement. All you have to do is use your creativity and spend a few hours to realize your ideas.

How to start a successful business on the Internet?

So, you’ve decided to start your own business on the Internet.

Congratulations

It will probably be the best decision in your life. Only working for yourself can give you independence, stability and satisfaction that you always dreamt about. With your own business, you can define your lifestyle and work schedule yourself. And with internet business, you can do it with less efforts and more fun. But of course, as with every other serious undertaking, you first have to educate yourself, and do it well.

How to make money on the Internet

Everyone knows that the Internet has become something more than the information source. Today, many people make money on the Internet, and even more people want to join them. Not all of them succeed, unfortunately. You must have heard about lots of “dot-bombs”, failed e-commerce startups. They are big in number, mainly because most people don’t devote enough time to self-education. Free Traffic Programs and How to Use Them.

Another common reason for losing money on the Internet is the large number of “Get rich quick” schemes, which all promise large income with little or no effort, with only a few dollars to spend for some kind of manual or “program membership”. You will never get into this kind of trouble, if you understand one simple thing:

The only guaranteed way to earn money on the Internet or elsewhere is through honestly selling a valuable product or service to a proper audience. Period.

Read the previous passage once again. Think about it. It’s pretty obvious, isn’t it? But many people could save their money and time if they ever thought about that.

So, let’s make an important conclusion. To make money on the Internet, you need to decide what to sell, and then, start your own business.

Someone would say, “But that’s all so complicated! I have never been taught to run a business! I even don’t know how to start!” Well, how do you think, who are those people that run all businesses on the Internet? Are they all geniuses? No! Geniuses don’t happen to be born that often. Are they some super-creatures, mutants, or aliens from the stars? Not likely. 

Most of them are common people like you and us. The only difference between them and those “dot-bomb” runners is that they learned more, and they carefully plan their actions. So should you. If you don’t know what to start from, read the articles on our web site to learn the big picture, then use search engines to learn the details.

You don’t have to be a professional web designer, software developer, or marketing expert to run a successful e-business. There are lots of hired professionals who will gladly help you, and there is inexpensive software that will do all the necessary automation for you. 

Your starting investment can range from a few hundred dollars to zero. The balance here is between your time and money. If you can invest some money, you can hire some experts or buy some software. If you don’t want to spend too much money, but have a lot of time to learn, then you can do most of the work yourself, and do with only minimal automation at the beginning.

In general, if you can read and write (or have someone near you who can), then you can run a successful e-business. The only important thing that is up to you in most cases is a good product idea.

There is one more important choice for you to make: should you sell a product, or your service? There is no single answer, both choices are viable, and you can choose what you like better, or what you think you can do better. But there is a large difference between these two types of business. Eating for Health, Happiness and Successful Weight Control.

When you sell a product, your income is only limited by the target audience size, and by the efficiency of your selling process. With e-business, you can automate the selling process almost fully, and free up most of your working time for more important things, such as business growth, research, or new product development. Well, when you come to think you are satisfied with your income and don’t need any more growth, you can simply relax and watch your business work while you are enjoying your life.

When you sell your service, your income is strictly limited by the amount of time you can devote to it (probably not more than 8-12 hours a day). And working 8 to 12 hours a day continuously is not much fun, as it leaves you little time for your rest, hobbies, and family. That’s why we recommend you to try and create a product, even if you always sold your working time and never thought about creating a product.

If you have difficulties inventing your own product, the least thing you can always do is “materialize” your work experience. You can structure and write down the tips and tricks of your everyday work, or your hobby, and give your readers the advice how to succeed in that field. You can teach them how to save their time, or how to earn extra money with little efforts, or something else you think they would be willing to pay for. Then, you can sell your book on the Internet in either electronic or paper form. Everyone knows something valuable for other people, and you are not an exception. We’ll describe the process of creating your own information product in another article.

How can a small home business prosper on the Internet

There are natural differences between large and small businesses. When you run a small business, you don’t have a multi-million dollar advertising budget, and you don’t have a lot of personnel to handle the sales and other paperwork. The good news is that with electronic business, you need very little resources to succeed!

The secret here is to find a good market niche, and to create a great product for it. These two actions are strongly interconnected, because each market niche corresponds to a product, or a set of products, and vice versa.

So, what is a “good market niche“, and how can you find one? Market niche is your place in the market, your target audience. It should be big enough to generate good income, but not too large. You could ask, “Why? The larger my target audience, the larger my potential income, right?” 

Right, to some extent. But you can’t be everything for everyone. You simply don’t have the resources for that. So, if you try to take up too large niche, you’ll have to compete large corporations, which is impossible for a small business. Unconventional Yet Effective Weight Loss Measures.

Here is a small example. If you try and open an online universal book store, you’ll never have a reasonable market share, because Amazon.com works in the same market and has much more resources. But if you specialize and pick a smaller niche (say, old comic books reprint), your chances to succeed are much higher. In this case, your target market will be too small to attract Amazon.com, and you’ll be able to write stylish targeted ads, promote your business in online comic books community, and do other things that your larger competition will never even think to do. How to Turn Prospects Into Customers?

And, in addition to having a proper size, a good target market for e-business should be easily reachable online. This means that you must be able to locate the specific web sites, online forums, mailing lists, newsgroups and other forms of Internet communities where your target audience hangs out. You’ll want to advertise in those places, because you need pre-qualified visitors on your web site. From this point of view, for example, “Beatles fans” are a better audience than “30 to 40 years old men with a belly”, because Beatles fans are easier to locate on the Internet.

Targeting a small niche also has another advantage: it is easier to become a recognized expert in a small field. For example, it is hard or impossible to know everything about all cars, but it is easier to learn everything your customers need to know about recent models of one manufacturer of your choice. You can eventually become one of the world’s leading experts in your field, and that will give you the respect and trust of your customers.

Whatever the size of your target market, you must learn the wishes and needs of your audience, and find a great product that would solve some of their problems, or otherwise give them what they want. If the product you sell to your customers is really great, they will trust you better the next time, and will be more likely to buy from you again. This way, you can constantly grow your business not only by attracting new customers, but also by offering new products to the existing ones.

What should I sell on the Internet?

You can sell virtually anything on the Internet, but there are several things that tend to sell the best. The first such thing is information. That’s easy to explain. People usually search for information when they browse the Internet. The information is what they need at that time, so it is the product they are most likely to buy. Another advantage of information products is that they are fairly easy to create.

The next best product to sell on the Internet is computer software. This is also self-explanatory: many Internet users are computer owners, and they often need some software to solve their problems. It is logical for them to look for this software in the Internet, and buy it there if available. Software may not be an appropriate product for most e-business startups, as it requires special technical skills and significant resources to produce and support. Houston Divorce Lawyer Answers Common Questions About Mediation.

Information products and software have one more huge advantage for startups. They can be distributed electronically. This means faster delivery time for your customer, easier sales process and smaller expenses for you.

Of course, you can sell many other things. A good idea would be to sell your services on the Internet (translation services, or business consulting, for example). Or, you can use the Internet as a new media for your previous offline (brick-and-mortar) business. In this case you can either only promote your products on the Internet, or automate the sales process and accept online payments.

How To Plan For Success?

Marketers come online and they’re in such a hurry to make money, they neglect one of the most essential ingredients to success.

They don’t take the time to put together their battle plan. They know where they want to go, but they never sit down and map out how they’re going to get there.

They’re like ships without a crew. They’re tossed to and fro and have no idea why.

If you’re serious about your business, you need a plan.

Your business should be planned like a well thought out battle. If you haven’t got your plan in place you’ll suffer casualties. RSS: Grassroots Support Leads to Mass Appeal.

You won’t suffer loss of life, but you will suffer losses of:

  • Money
  • Time
  • Opportunity

Just as the well honed warrior prepares for all possible occurrences, you must be prepared to last through the slow times, and be just as prepared to capitalize on the times when it appears you can do no wrong.

The first step on your march to the flag is to decide who you are. In the immortal words of Shakespeare, “In brief sir, study that which you most affect”.

Know your strengths and know your weaknesses. You’ll never be truly successful until you’ve first made an inventory of your-self. You can study all the “How-To’s” and you may even make money, but to be truly be successful you must have your “Why-To’s” in place.

Once you’ve decided who you are and listed your strengths and weaknesses, the next step is to determine how much money you have for your war chest.

Only use money you can afford to lose. As any professional trader or championship gambler will tell you, “Scared money never wins!”

Don’t mortgage your house or max-out your credit cards because you’ve got the million dollar sure-fire winner.

You’ll be so busy worrying, you won’t be able to think clearly.

Take money you won’t miss and test-test-test. Your thinking will be much clearer and when your testing finally hits on a winning formula you’ll be ready to capitalize.

When you’ve got your winning formula, you should pyramid your profits to expand your business. A minimum of 50% of your profits should go back into your business in the first 6 months. How to Guarantee Your Products and Unlock the Hidden Sales!

If you’re only using money you can live comfortably without, you should place 100% back into marketing, you’ll have plenty of time to enjoy the fruits of your labors!

The final step in your battle plan is to keep a log book.

Just as generals study battles from the past and chess players study strategies from the old masters, you must begin your own manual.

Don’t rely on your memory!!

In your manual keep every advertising campaign you’ve waged. Be as detailed as possible. List what has worked and what hasn’t.

Key your ads to determine where your profits are coming from.

Test media used, actual ads and sells letters, etc. Sculpt your business. If your business is based on profits, the best way to insure profits is the same way you’d carve an elephant out of granite.

“Remove everything that’s not an elephant!”

In your business remove everything that isn’t profitable.

Be ruthless with that chisel.

Don’t marry any method of promotion, or any one opportunity.

If you do you’ll spend time chasing losses, instead of accumulating profits.

Put some thought and effort into your plan and you’ll be a step ahead of the competition.Marketers come online and they’re in such a hurry to make money, they neglect one of the most essential ingredients to success.

They don’t take the time to put together their battle plan. They know where they want to go, but they never sit down and map out how they’re going to get there.

They’re like ships without a crew. They’re tossed to and fro and have no idea why.

If you’re serious about your business, you need a plan.

Your business should be planned like a well thought out battle. If you haven’t got your plan in place you’ll suffer casualties.

You won’t suffer loss of life, but you will suffer losses of:

Money
Time
Opportunity

Just as the well honed warrior prepares for all possible occurrences, you must be prepared to last through the slow times, and be just as prepared to capitalize on the times when it appears you can do no wrong.

The first step on your march to the flag is to decide who you are. In the immortal words of Shakespeare, “In brief sir, study that which you most affect”.

Know your strengths and know your weaknesses. You’ll never be truly successful until you’ve first made an inventory of your-self. You can study all the “How-To’s” and you may even make money, but to be truly be successful you must have your “Why-To’s” in place.

Once you’ve decided who you are and listed your strengths and weaknesses, the next step is to determine how much money you have for your war chest.

Only use money you can afford to lose. As any professional trader or championship gambler will tell you, “Scared money never wins!”

Don’t mortgage your house or max-out your credit cards because you’ve got the million dollar sure-fire winner.

You’ll be so busy worrying, you won’t be able to think clearly.

Take money you won’t miss and test-test-test. Your thinking will be much clearer and when your testing finally hits on a winning formula you’ll be ready to capitalize. All About Auctions And Its Types.

When you’ve got your winning formula, you should pyramid your profits to expand your business. A minimum of 50% of your profits should go back into your business in the first 6 months.

If you’re only using money you can live comfortably without, you should place 100% back into marketing, you’ll have plenty of time to enjoy the fruits of your labors!

The final step in your battle plan is to keep a log book.

Just as generals study battles from the past and chess players study strategies from the old masters, you must begin your own manual.

Don’t rely on your memory!!

In your manual keep every advertising campaign you’ve waged. Be as detailed as possible. List what has worked and what hasn’t.

Key your ads to determine where your profits are coming from.

Test media used, actual ads and sells letters, etc. Sculpt your business. If your business is based on profits, the best way to insure profits is the same way you’d carve an elephant out of granite.

“Remove everything that’s not an elephant!”

In your business remove everything that isn’t profitable.

Be ruthless with that chisel.

Don’t marry any method of promotion, or any one opportunity.

If you do you’ll spend time chasing losses, instead of accumulating profits.

Put some thought and effort into your plan and you’ll be a step ahead of the competition.

How To Always Be In Demand.

Image if you never had to sell again and opportunities just fell into your lap.

Does this sound impossible?

Does it sound like a daydream?

Well it’s not. The Cybermagic of Whitelists.

Not if you’re a problem solver.

Whether you offer products or services, there’s one thing we all have in common.

We’re all in the problem solving business.

Think about it.

Once the word spreads that you’re a problem solver, prospects will beat a path to your door.

Why?

Everyone on this earth has problems.

Once you’ve developed a reputation for problem solving, you’ll never be idle. Improve Your Link Popularity with Endorsements!

There are more people with problems than you could help in ten lifetimes.

What’s the quickest way to develop a reputation as a problem solver?

Writing articles.

Once I started writing articles, everything changed.

I went from an unknown, unprofitable marketer, to an expert problem solver.

Guess what?

You can too.

Once you’ve launched your article virus, you won’t have to look for opportunity, it will come to you.

Specialize For Greater Profits.

If you’re familiar with the works of Napoleon Hill, you know that one of his Laws Of Success is the Law of Specialized Knowledge.

By specializing you can save yourself:

** Time

** Money

** Aggravation

There are three main areas of specialization to consider when making out your business plan.

1. The types of products and services you’re going to promote.

2. Your target market.

Your target market will help determine which products and services you’ll promote.

3. Your method of marketing and promotion.

Many new marketers, fall into the same trap I fell into when I came online.

They make the mistake of trying to spread their selves too thin. They mistakenly believe that the more products they promote, the greater their chances for success.

The problem with that approach is when you try to be all things to everyone, you usually end up confusing your customers. How to get what you want from anyone by…Negotiating Without Giving Up One-Red Cent Of Your Hard-Earned Money.

It makes it much harder for them to identify you as an expert.

Become known in one area of your market first and then if you decide to diversify, make sure the product or services you add compliment your main market.

Once you’ve determined your target market and the products and services you’re going to promote, the next step is to determine how you’re going to promote your business.

The first step is to eliminate the newbie traps. There are many methods that may produce some results, but they’re either extremely time intensive, or the return on investment is too low to justify the expenditure of funds.

There are a few core methods that produce results that justify the time spent and, or have an excellent return on investment.

* Ezine Advertising

* Joint Ventures

* eCourses

* Brandable eBooks

* Writing Articles

* Search Engines

* Pay Per Click Search Engines

* Strategic Linking

As you can see there are enough profitable methods to choose from without getting caught wasting time and money on the methods that are only of value to the owner of the program. RSS: Grassroots Support Leads to Mass Appeal.

By acquiring specialized knowledge in the use of any of the above methods, you should begin to notice:

* Your profits rising

* Less time wasted

* Your marketing will become stress free

Once you’ve developed your expertise in one of the core methods of promotion, you can add to your arsenal.

The method you choose will depend on your temperament and how much study you’re willing to do.

Some methods are easier to master then others.

You have to decide for yourself which method gets you excited enough to do the work necessary to make it succeed.

Begin to apply the Law of Specialized Knowledge and you’ll be head and shoulders above your competition.

PR Still a Mystery to Some


Unfortunately, there are managers who define public relations by its applications. Which explains neither its underlying strengths nor what PR is all about.

The casual observer is left with a confusion of tactical, application-oriented definitions of the public relations function: Is it publicity? Crisis management? Special events? Reputation management? Promotion? Or a slew of other tactics in which we engage from time to time?

Which is it? More important, just what lies at the core of managerial public relations anyway?

I believe the core lies in doing something positive about the behaviors of those important outside audiences of yours that most affect your operation.

In other words, create external stakeholder behavior change – the kind that leads directly to achieving your managerial objectives.

And do so by persuading those key outside folks to your way of thinking, then help move them to take actions that allow your department, division or subsidiary to succeed.

Luckily, there’s also a blueprint at the center of public relations to help you cement that PR core for your own managerial benefit.

And it goes like this: People act on their own perception of the facts before them, which leads to predictable behaviors about which something can be done. When we create, change or reinforce that opinion by reaching, persuading and moving-to- desired-action the very people whose behaviors affect the organization the most, the public relations mission is accomplished.

And for managers such as you, here’s the type of results that could emerge. Healthy bounces in show room visits; community leaders seeking you out; prospects starting to do business with you; membership applications on the rise; customers making repeat purchases; fresh proposals for strategic alliances and joint ventures in the inbox; capital givers or specifying sources looking your way, and even politicians and legislators beginning to view you as a key member of the business, non-profit or association communities.

You also need PR team members who understand that blueprint and commit themselves to its implementation, starting with key audience perception monitoring. Let’s face it, your PR people are already in the perception and behavior business, so they should be of real use for this initial opinion monitoring project.

Caveat: you must be certain your public relations people really believe – deep down — why it’s SO important to know how your most important outside audiences perceive your operations, products or services. Make sure they accept the reality that perceptions almost always lead to behaviors that can help or hurt your unit.

Talk it over with them, especially your plan for monitoring and gathering perceptions by questioning members of your most important outside audiences. Questions like these: how much do you know about our organization? Have you had prior contact with us and were you pleased with the interchange? Are you familiar with our services or products and employees? Have you experienced problems with our people or procedures?

While professional survey firms can always be hired to do the opinion monitoring work, they also can cost big bucks. So, whether it’s your people or a survey firm asking the questions, the objective remains the same: identify untruths, false assumptions, unfounded rumors, inaccuracies, misconceptions and any other negative perception that might translate into hurtful behaviors.

The PR goal, obviously, is to do something about the most serious distortions you discover during your key audience perception monitoring. Will it be to straighten out that dangerous misconception? Correct that gross inaccuracy? Or, stop that potentially bloody rumor dead in its tracks?

Truth is, you won’t get there at all without the right strategy to tell you how to proceed. But keep in mind that there are just three strategic options available when it comes to doing something about perception and opinion. Change existing perception, create perception where there may be none, or reinforce it. The wrong strategy pick will taste like pepper flakes on your Cr?me Brulee, so be sure your new strategy fits well with your new public relations goal. You wouldn’t want to select “change” when the facts dictate a “reinforce” strategy.

Now it’s time to put together a well-written message and direct it to members of your target audience. It’s always a challenge to create an actionable message that will help persuade any audience to your way of thinking.

You need your best scribes for this one because s/he must build some very special, corrective language. Words that are not merely compelling, persuasive and believable, but clear and factual if they are to shift perception/opinion towards your point of view and lead to the behaviors you have in mind.

Once you’ve run draft copy by your PR team, it’s on to the next selection process — the communications tactics most likely to carry your message to the attention of your target audience. There are scores that are available. From speeches, facility tours, emails and brochures to consumer briefings, media interviews, newsletters, personal meetings and many others. But you must be certain that the tactics you pick are known to reach folks like your audience members,

By the way, you may wish to avoid “shouting too loud” and unveil your message before smaller meetings and presentations rather than using higher-profile news releases, as the credibility of any message is fragile and always at stake.

The people around you will start agitating in short order for progress reports, which signals to you and your PR team to get going on a second perception monitoring session with members of your external audience. You’ll want to use many of the same questions used in the first benchmark session. Big difference this time is that you will be on red alert for signs that the bad news perception is being altered in your direction.

Incidentally, I’ve always thought it fortunate that such matters usually can be accelerated simply by adding more communications tactics as well as increasing their frequencies. How to Use Public Speaking to Attract Clients?

So, at the end of the day, what you want the new PR plan to accomplish is to persuade your most important outside stakeholders to your way of thinking, then move them to behave in a way that leads to the success of your department, division or subsidiary.

Public relations should no longer be a mystery when the people you deal with do, in fact, behave suspiciously like everyone else – they act upon their perceptions of the facts they hear about you and your operation. Which means you really have little choice but to deal promptly and effectively with those perceptions by doing what is necessary to reach and move those key external audiences of yours to actions you desire.

Moving Key Audiences to Take Action.

You know, those really important outside groups of people whose behaviors can help or hinder any business, non-profit or association manager in achieving his or her objectives? Are you persuading those key stakeholders – especially those whose behaviors affect your unit the MOST – to your way of thinking, then moving them to take actions that help your department, division or subsidiary succeed?

Oh, as a manager, you say you’re covered in that regard – your public relations team is racking up some juicy print and broadcast placements, and you say those kinds of exposures are what your PR program is all about?

At the risk of becoming a skunk at this picnic, I suggest you consider broadening your public relations field-of-fire to where it best belongs, on your unit’s key external stakeholder behaviors rather than the occasional publicity placement.

Here’s why. The people you deal with behave like everyone else – they act upon their perceptions of the facts they hear about you and your operation. Leaving you little choice but to deal promptly and effectively with those perceptions (and their follow on behaviors) by doing what is necessary to reach and move those key external audiences to action.

And that means using a workable PR blueprint to do the job. For example, people act on their own perception of the facts before them, which leads to predictable behaviors about which something can be done. When we create, change or reinforce that opinion by reaching, persuading and moving-to- desired-action the very people whose behaviors affect the organization the most, the public relations mission is accomplished.

Consider for a moment what the results of this approach to PR could be. Customers starting to make repeat purchases, and even prospects starting to do business with you; fresh proposals for strategic alliances and joint ventures; welcome bounces in show room visits; rising membership applications, and community leaders beginning to seek you out; new approaches by capital givers and specifying sources not to mention politicians and legislators viewing you as a key member of the business, non-profit or association communities.

So who’s going to do the work? Your own full-time public relations staff? A few folks assigned by Corporate to your unit? An outside PR agency team? Regardless where they come from, they need to be committed to you, to the PR blueprint and to its implementation, starting with key audience perception monitoring.

A word of caution. Just because someone describes him/herself as a public relations person doesn’t guarantee they’ve bought the whole meatloaf. Make certain the public relations people assigned to your unit really believe – deep down — why it’s SO important to know how your most important outside audiences perceive your operations, products or services. Make sure they accept the reality that perceptions almost always lead to behaviors that can help or hurt your unit.

Layout the PR blueprint for them, especially your plan for monitoring and gathering perceptions by questioning members of your most important outside audiences. Questions like these: how much do you know about our chief executive? Have you had prior contact with us and were you pleased with the interchange? How much do you know about our services or products and employees? Have you experienced problems with our people or procedures?

If your budget will bear the considerable expense of professional survey firms, by all means use them in the perception monitoring phases of your program. However, keep in mind that your PR people are also in the perception and behavior business and can pursue the same objective supported by survey counsel input: identify untruths, false assumptions, unfounded rumors, inaccuracies, misconceptions and any other negative perception that might translate into hurtful behaviors.

Time to set your PR goal, one that stands a good chance of doing something about the most serious distortions you discovered during your key audience perception monitoring. It could be to straighten out that dangerous misconception, or correct that gross inaccuracy, or stop that potentially fatal rumor dead in its tracks.

Next step is the right strategy, one that tells you how to proceed. And keep in mind that there are only three strategic options available to you when it comes to handling a perception and opinion challenge. Change existing perception, create perception where there may be none, or reinforce it. Since the wrong strategy pick will taste like marinara sauce on your key lime pie, be certain the new strategy fits comfortably with your new public relations goal. You don’t want to select “change” when the facts dictate a “reinforce” strategy.

Time for some hard work. Write a moving message and aim it at members of your target audience. As always, crafting action-forcing language to persuade an audience to your way of thinking is tough work. Which is why you need your first-string varsity writer because s/he must create some very special, corrective language. Words that are not only compelling, persuasive and believable, but clear and factual if they are to correct something and shift perception/opinion towards your point of view leading to the behaviors you are targeting.

I’d try it out on my PR colleagues for impact and persuasiveness. Then, select the communications tactics most likely to carry your message to the attention of your target audience. You can pick from dozens that are available. From speeches, facility tours, emails and brochures to consumer briefings, media interviews, newsletters, personal meetings and many others. But be sure that the tactics you pick are known to reach folks just like your audience members.

Because the credibility of a message is often dependent on the means used to deliver it, you may decide to unveil it before smaller meetings and presentations rather than using higher- profile news releases.

Calls for progress reports will soon be heard, which signals to you and your PR team to get busy on a second perception monitoring session with members of your external audience. You’ll want to use many of the same questions used in the first benchmark session. Difference this time is that you will be watching very carefully for signs that the bad news perception is being altered in your direction.

By the way, aren’t we fortunate that, if things ever slow down, we can simply accelerate matters by adding more communications tactics as well as increasing their frequencies?

So, what you really want the new PR plan to accomplish is to persuade your most important outside stakeholders to your way of thinking, then move them to behave in a way that leads to the success of your department, division or subsidiary.

Yes, powerful is a strong word but certainly not too strong when the people you deal with do, in fact, behave like everyone else – they act upon their perceptions of the facts they hear about you and your operation. Leaving you little choice but to deal promptly and effectively with those perceptions by doing what is necessary to reach and move your key external audiences to actions you desire.

Why PR is an Engine for Economic Growth

Business, non-profit and association managers committing their public relations resources to (1) doing something about the behaviors of those important outside audiences that most affect their operation, (2) creating the kind of external stakeholder behavior change that leads directly to achieving their managerial objectives, and (3) doing so by persuading those key outside folks to their way of thinking by helping to move them to take actions that allow their department, division or subsidiary to succeed – greatly increase the chances of success for their operation.

Thus, feeding the engine of their own economic growth AND that of the nation at large. All About Auctions And Its Types.

But, in reality, it takes more than good intentions for any manager to alter individual perception leading to changed behaviors, something of profound importance to ALL business, non-profit and association managers.

What they need is a simple PR blueprint that gets everyone working towards the same external audience behaviors insuring that the organization’s public relations effort stays sharply focused.

For example, a blueprint like this: people act on their own perception of the facts before them, which leads to predictable behaviors about which something can be done. When we create, change or reinforce that opinion by reaching, persuading and moving-to-desired-action the very people whose behaviors affect the organization the most, the public relations mission is accomplished.

In that way, those same business, non-profit and association managers can see results such as new proposals for strategic alliances and joint ventures; customers making repeat purchases; prospects starting to work with them; membership applications on the rise; capital givers or specifying sources looking their way, and even bounces in showroom visits.

But HOW those managers pull that off forms the real challenge.

Here’s how the best of them can do it. They find out who among their key external audiences is behaving in ways that help or hinder the achievement of their objectives. Then, they list them according to how severely their behaviors affect their organization.

But precisely HOW do most members of that key outside audience perceive their organization? If the budget to pay for what could be costly professional survey counsel isn’t there, Ms. or Mr. manager and his or her PR colleagues will have to monitor those perceptions themselves. Actually, they should be quite familiar with perception and behavior matters.

Getting that activity under way means meeting with members of that outside audience and asking questions like “Are you familiar with our services or products?” “Have you ever had contact with anyone from our organization? Was it a satisfactory experience?” And if you are that manager, you must be sensitive to negative statements, especially evasive or hesitant replies. And watch carefully for false assumptions, untruths, misconceptions, inaccuracies and potentially damaging rumors. When you find such, they will need to be corrected, as they inevitably lead to negative behaviors.

The job now is to select the specific perception to be altered which then becomes your public relations goal. You obviously want to correct those untruths, inaccuracies, misconceptions or false assumptions.

One of the painful aspects of the whole drill is that a PR goal without a strategy to show you how to get there, is like a three-bean salad without the beans. So, as you select one of three strategies (especially constructed to create perception or opinion where there may be none, or change or reinforce it,) what you want to do is insure that the goal and its strategy match each other. You wouldn’t want to select “change existing perception” when current perception is just right suggesting that “reinforce” strategy.

The moment has come when you must create a compelling message carefully constructed to alter your key target audience’s perception, as specified by your public relations goal.

Keep in mind that you can always combine your corrective message with another news announcement or presentation which may give it more credibility by downplaying the apparent need for such a correction.

The content of the message must be compelling and quite clear about what perception needs clarification or correction, and why. Of course you must be truthful and your position logically explained and believable if it is to hold the attention of members of that target audience, and actually move perception in your direction.

Some allude to the communications tactics necessary to move your message to the attention of that key external audience, as “beasts of burden” because they must carry your persuasive new thoughts to the eyes and ears of those important outside people. The Little Search Engine That Could.

Actually, we have a wide choice because the list of tactics is long indeed. It includes letters-to-the-editor, brochures, press releases and speeches. Or, you might choose radio and newspaper interviews, personal contacts, facility tours or customer briefings. There are scores available and the only selection requirement is that the communications tactics you choose have a record of reaching people just like the members of your key target audience.

Of course, things can always be accelerated by adding more communications tactics, AND by increasing their frequencies.

It won’t be long before those around you will be asking about progress. But you will already be hard at work remonitoring perceptions among your target audience members to test the effectiveness of your communications tactics. Using questions similar to those used during your earlier monitoring session, you’ll now become beady-eyed looking for signs that audience perceptions are beginning to move in your general direction.

Yes, performed in this manner, public relations obviously does feed the engine of YOUR economic growth and, thus, that of the nation at large.

But do keep your eye on the core of this approach: persuade your most important outside audiences with the greatest impacts on your organization to your way of thinking. Then move them to take actions that help your department, division or subsidiary prevail.