Do you relate to any of these statements…?
If any of these statements reflect how you feel, chances are that we’re a good fit. If all of them do, then perhaps it’s time to talk.
- You know you can’t put off actioning your sales and marketing for too much longer or the firm will suffer
- You know you need to build a regular pipeline of prospects because you can’t rely on referrals producing enough business forever
- Word of mouth and referrals are great, but the clients you get aren’t always the ones that take you in the right direction. (Plus you never really know when they are going to turn up)
- You know the right clients are out there, but you’re not confident you’re doing the right things to get in front of them
- You’re not even sure you’re good at explaining yourself clearly to the ones you do find!
- You’ve recently seen some of the stuff your competitors are doing – online, at events, creating alliances – and where you once had confidence, you now feel worried or left behind
- You know you need to invest money in the business, to get new business, but you’re not sure where to start (check out this post for a quick new business audit, might be useful)
- You’re not sure that leaping straight into tactical marketing (new website, telemarketing, sponsor an event, Google AdWords) is the right approach – even though lots of very capable marketing specialists tell you it will definitely help
- You know that it won’t be a short term fix and it’ll take time to get it to where you want it to be
And finally…. you’re based in Hampshire, Southern England or maybe London, you’re an SME of between £200k and £3m turnover selling business to business (B2B) and you would really, really like to attract more of the right, profitable, good-fit customers.
Who am I a good fit for?
Business owners and directors come to me for help – help to get their new business, sales and marketing back on track. Or onto a track that it’s never been on before.
And it’s almost always because they are determined. Determined to survive, determined to grow or determined to become more profitable.
But it’s not always easy to know where to start. Or to know who to work with to help you. So…
New business development advice in return for a cup of tea or some Jaffa Cakes
I’m happy to have a long chat about where you are now with your business development – all on the basis of a cup of tea, and I’ll offer any useful insight or suggestions as we go. If you offer me cakes as well, we can usually get to the stage of scribbling down some starting points on a flipchart.
If that all makes sense, then you’ll have an idea of how I work (and whether it might suit you), and I’ll know whether or not I can help you.
If I don’t think I can help you, I promise I will tell you.
And then I will try to point you in the direction of someone who can. If I believe I can help you, I’ll also tell you that, and we can have a think about working together.
Some of my lovely clients to date
Here’s how I’ve helped support some other SMEs with their sales and marketing.
1. Consultancy firm: Hampshire
This lovely consultancy firm had tried everything to create a more sustainable pipeline of new business to smooth out the extreme ups and downs in their client work. Just like the proverbial bus – three clients would come at once, then there would be none for weeks (or months).
Everything they tried – getting their mission statement sorted, a new website, outbound telemarketing, PR, Google advertising – worked for a short while, but nothing really stuck or felt sustainable to them.
Nothing, that is, except for getting out and speaking at events. Every time they did that – and they did that off their own bat – they ended up with a new client, a referral, an enquiry or a specific project.
They had just decided to focus on speaking at events when they got really busy with some new client work and didn’t lift their heads again for three months. By which time, they hadn’t been out and about in any shape or form, and the tumbleweed was rolling by again.
That’s when we met. I was tasked with simply getting them a regular schedule of speaking events – and making sure that happened even when they were busy (especially when they were busy!).
What I’m actually doing is getting them those speaking opportunities, but each time setting our sights higher up the ladder of useful, interesting, relevant industry events where they can meet more actual buyers with defined projects ready to go. We’re doing this both locally and nationally in order to build both wider reputation and local client base.
It’s really, really satisfying.
2. Software development firm: Hampshire
More to come….
3. Market research agency: Hampshire
I first met these guys through commissioning their services many moons ago when I was an Account Director at a marketing agency. They were brilliant. I knew so little about research and they held my hand the whole way, making me look very intelligent in front of my client.
I happened to send a contact of mine to them for a possible job – and the subject of business development came up, as they had read my blog after I’d got back in touch. We soon worked out that several of my posts had touched a chord, what they needed was what I did, and that I was well placed to help.
So, this is the full business development scope of work. We’ve got their positioning crystal clear and are now starting on the business development strategy. Whilst we do that, we’re getting a few immediate actions off the ground in client development and with their marketing collaterals to plug the gaps in the shorter term.
4. Technology start-up: South of England.
This business had an existing software product that had been advertised to prospective customers solely through the use of Google AdWords. Through this it had acquired some customers, but only a limited number of US ones, and all at a rather high and unsustainable cost of acquisition.
It was time for a plan. I reviewed competitors, positioning and product and carefully defined the ideal target audience from a UK perspective, and a budget-appropriate market entry strategy. The first stage of this has been completed and has given us a far better customer understanding.
We are now developing an engagement – or content marketing – campaign which will give real value to new subscribers. We’ll provide them with a Business Bootcamp of useful and relevant information together with daily actions and tasks to keep them motivated in their own line of work – as well as motivated to keep using the software.
5.Wholesale coffee roasters and tea blenders moving from B2B into B2C: West Sussex
I was referred in to this business through a friend (thanks due here to Ian Bennett of the highly esteemed agency Digital Republic) and first off helped them develop a clearly defined mission and set of values. This has helped to bring the people together around the overall business direction – and also really helped with knowing where to prioritise our marketing efforts and spend.
After helping them select a creative agency partner to look after their brand going forward, I’m now operating in a mentoring role with the MD and Founder – a bit of a sounding board for strategic and tactical marketing decisions, with a bit of other stuff thrown in.
6. Employee communications (SaaS) technology start-up: South of England
7. Digital service provider in interior design sector: Hampshire
8. Digital start-up in HR/L&D market in growth phase: London
9. Chartered Surveyors consultancy: Berkshire
10. Design, marketing and communications agency: Hampshire