7. A marketing
system that puts YOU in control, giving you total independence
system that empowers you to get new clients indepedently and
without "punishing success" is basically GOOD for you.
It increases your ability to control your firms' future.
any marketing system that leaves you DEPENDENT on the provider
of the technology, charges you for results (or, worse - charges
you monthly or annually even when there ARE NO results) is basically
LIMITING your freedom and independence.
In other words,
there's a SCALE ON INDEPENDENCE of kinds that goes with any marketing
system. But it isn't always easy to tell how a system will work
in this regard.
Let me explain.
a marketing system or service would do their best to approach
you in a pleasant manner and with an interesting message.
The fact that
something is interesting and inviting doesn't necessarily
mean it is good for you. It doesn't even mean its goal would
be to help you.
many carnivorous animals and plants attract their prey with tempting
smells and visions.
Sirens of the
Greek mythology would entice seamen with their beautiful signing
into certain death.
to the extreme as these examples may be, they illustrate the
point. Just because something looks, smells, sounds, or tastes
good, it isn't necessarily GOOD for you.
And so it is
with marketing systems also.
system involves investments from you in form of money, time and
If it brings
you results, it will be a good investment that will definitely
add to your success.
But if it doesn't
bring you results, it will "produce" negative effects.
lost time, lost opportunity to USE something that would have
worked - all resulting in further problems of the kind you
tried to handle with the system in the first place.
Here's a little
insider secret of marketing you might find interesting:
a person considers his problem, the more prone a person is to
get an EXPENSIVE solution for it.
A big problem
requires a big solution, in other words - and the COST of a marketing
system is often mistaken to be synonymous with quality, efficiency,
and all those other things that comprise a "big enough a
like this it is, of course, quite obvious that high cost proves
nothing about the power of a marketing system.
In fact, HIGH
COST is actually rather an indicator pointing to the OPPOSITE.
If you invest
£14,000 into a marketing system, your PROBLEM just became
that much BIGGER - you'll have to start solving the expanding
of your clientele from MINUS £14,000 instead of the theoretical
"present time situation" that existed before you signed
the contract - right?
Just so there's
no misunderstanding - I'm not saying a system that has such a
high price tag wouldn't or couldn't work. I'm just saying that
the HIGH PRICE certainly doesn't prove that it would or could.
And it is obvious
for everyone that it sets you BACK 14,000 in tangible below-the-line
tag doesn't, however, give any added certainty of the system
actually providing a SOLUTION THAT BRINGS MONEY IN.
If it DOESN'T,
then you'll be worse off than before you paid for that
So don't look
at WHAT the system costs in searching for indicators for its
RESULTS. The price - high OR low - is not any proof of efficiency.
It only sets you back from "zero" into "minus"
financially - takes your money away instead of earning you some.
There are indicators
that will give you a clue as to whether or not the system you're
contemplating will help or hurt you in the final analysis.
It is up to
YOU to evaluate that there's a balance between what you are promised
and what you actually GET in exchange for your money
We often ASSUME
that someone somewhere has somehow carefully balanced that what
we pay for will give us what we expect for our money.
it isn't so.
I once came
across one of those questionable multilevel marketing schemes
that had a very "clever" basic idea. In fact, it made
its British creator a millionaire - just before he got arraigned
for several fraud charges!
the essence of the scheme: He sold people the idea of fast riches
and living luxurious lives with a yacht in the Mediterranean
- well, you get the picture.
had to do was send HIM £200 and you would get the full
materials for this great home business.
Once you DID
send him the cash, you received a manual.
was about 150 laser-printed pages of motivational text on "how
lovely it is to be rich and beautiful!" At the end of
it, the basic "business idea" was explained on a couple
All you had
to do was to sell this membership to as many people as possible
and get THEM to send him their £200 each - and you
would get £5 for each! After those people you got into
it sold it along, you would get £50 for each in the chain
next to them, after which it became a fiver apiece again... at
the end of which, you supposedly became a millionaire with some
130,000 people each earning you a few quid every year... yada-yada!
Well - this
guy made millions with this system. Believe it or not, there
were thousands of businessmen in his network.
- it had absolutely NO SUBSTANCE whatsoever!
NO product, nothing of worth - no item of exchangeable value
what so ever.
All you got
was a presentation of how great it would be rich!
Now the above example is here only to illustrate the basic principle
of any item of sale in its relationship to marketing.
commercially exchangeable item of sale - be it a physical product,
a service, information, or a combination thereof - has TWO
sides to it.
is the actual value of the item of sale - and all that it gives
to the buyer.
one is the MARKETING of this item of sale - the apparent value that the marketing
activity itself attaches to this item of sale. It is the marketing
materials and activity plus the sales that CLAIM the benefits
you get from the item of sale.
if you get promised more than is then delivered, you'll get less
than what you PAID FOR.
of promises with 51 percent of delivery is the ultimate perfection
of a business success formula. That way, the marketing is at
its most effective WHILE ensuring the client gets even a little
bit MORE than what he rightfully expected.
In our sordid
multi-level-scam -example above, the marketing was 100 percent
and the client received absolutely NOTHING. Obviously, those
that bought it were very disappointed as what they GOT
was NOTHING compared to the expectations created by the marketing
of this "wealth-building system."
this 49-51 ideal ratio between marketing and delivery also reveals
huge POTENTIALS in most any Accounting firm's activity.
currently very active in marketing your Accounting services actively
(and obtaining a constant flow of new clients), one could say
that in your activity, the marketing is far LESS than 49% of
the whole... leading to a high-quality service being sold far
less than its true potential would allow.
If that's the
case, then one could safely say that you could easily UTILISE
that potential and yet achieve a very HIGH client satisfaction
with those new clients.
You could INCREASE
the expectations you give to clients and thus, increase the sales
- and there would still be ample room for the clients to be fully
Be that as
it may - it is really beside the subject here.
But, when it
comes to evaluating marketing systems for your own use, let me
say this in no uncertain terms:
with which the marketing system ITSELF is marketed TO YOU is
NOT proof of high quality of what YOU get in exchange for your
buying the marketing system THEY USE to sell THEIR product to
you. So, don't make the mistake of assuming THEIR flawless act
is what YOU get to use in YOUR marketing.
I've yet to
see a single marketing system offered to Accounting Professionals
that wouldn't be totally dependent on the use of highly skilled,
high-paid TOP SALES PEOPLE.
You won't GET
those silver-tongued superhumans with the system.
for something totally different.
YOU won't have
all those high-skilled salesmen, you won't have the resources
to advertise widely and arrange all those meetings to sell yet
more services to your target audience.
What THEY use
in marketing THEIR services is one thing. The "WHAT THEY
SELL YOU" is another.
definitely not saying that effective marketing of a marketing
system would prove the system offered is bad. All I'm saying
is that it certainly doesn't prove it is GOOD either!
The item they
sell you is not what you see in action when it's being sold to
you. I know it sounds idiotic - but don't think for a moment
that thousands of perfectly intelligent businessmen hadn't fallen
balance between marketing of the system and the system itself
It isn't easy
to keep tabs on clients' expectations versus what they are delivered.
Whatever it is that is delivered HAS to meet those expectations.
One can hypothesize
that the bigger a company selling marketing solutions becomes,
the further away the ordinary client is from the actual "brains"
of the organization. Those "brains" are the source
of its knowledge and, ultimately, best equipped to correctly
estimate what clients should and should not be promised.
a salesman is more motivated by the commission each sale gets
him whereas the creator of the service or product would primarily
be interested in fulfilling the expectations of the buyer.
The more sales-oriented
the control of the company becomes, the more effectively it markets
its products. And at some point on that development curve, it
will exceed the 49/51 ratio and become more concentrated on SELLING
than delivering what was promised.
systems, this "quality of delivery" basically means
how much the organization cares (and ensures) whether or not
its clients actually ACHIEVE RESULTS with the marketing system
of course. I only want to illustrate the existence of this phenomenon
and how you can measure it in the system you're contemplating
At one extreme
end of it we would have someone delivering excellent service
but not marketing it at all - not evoking any expectations, not
utilizing the high quality & benefits of his service in its
marketing. Obviously, clients would receive SO much in excess
of their expectations that there's a risk they'll not REALISE
what they get.
This is often
the case with Accounting services. The unfortunate result of
this is that the perceived value of these services by far
and wide is much LOWER than the actual value. Thus, it "doesn't
sell" all that well and people complain about the price.
At the other
extremity, we would have an organization expert mainly on selling
its OWN services or products at the highest possible price
and not worry about what the client gets out of it.
it is all too commonplace today to have a "sliding-scale
sales/delivery" -strategy in place. With this I mean that
someone sells you a service for say £120 and, when delivering
that service, sells you another one for £4,000... and,
when delivering that, sells you yet another for £15,000.
Now, this is
a very effective method and perfectly ethical IF what you receive
is of tangible value and IF it allows you to do what you expected
without having to buy yet something else.
you wouldn't invest £20K into a solution that then won't
SOLVE the problem. If it doesn't, then you've probably been experiencing
a system where marketing is far beyond 49% and delivery correspondingly
much lower than that.
simply assume that just because someone is so GREAT at selling
a marketing solution to YOU it would automatically mean they
are masters of selling YOUR services to YOUR target audience.
how to sell a marketing system effectively to an Accounting Professional
is simply not the same thing as knowing how to obtain a constant
flow of new clients for an Accounting firm.
The way to
get a hunch of this is to check how FAR the "mouth"
is from the "brain" - how large the organization is
- and get the creator of the system to give you his PERSONAL
assurance that you will indeed receive what you expect.
is to estimate how much of the promises are made VERBALLY. See
- talk is cheap and there's no way you can PROVE what the salesman
said in a one-on-one conversation, is there?
verbal promises to written text. Are they there - or are they
No one can
guarantee you results. To do that, they would have to do it all
for you - take over the marketing & sales activities of your
Accounting firm. You are the one using the system and it depends
on your tenacity, persistence and work.
But by the
same token, the system has to offer the MEANS to succeed independently
and without leading you constantly deeper into "you must
buy this add-on to succeed" -type of things.
And that brings
us to a very worrying phenomenon lurking in the shadows for those
that seek for a workable marketing system.
Is the goal
to give you independence - or to suck you dry?
In the final
analysis, a marketing system is worth nothing if it doesn't give
you FREEDOM to get clients whenever you want - and a freedom
from any further obligations, payments or whatever in regards
to the source of the system.
I cannot adequately
express how repugnant I find any system that leaches onto its
users with a preplanned goal of sponging as much money out
of them as possible.
It goes like
this: You buy one bit only to find out it's more or less useless
unless you get this ADDITIONAL bit... which then leads
you to yet ANOTHER purchase... and so on.
the sums grow exponentially as the scheme unfolds.
into a situation where you basically HAVE to invest more and
more just so your previous investment won't go to waste.
Trust me -
this type of selling is not a good indicator of those expected
results ever materializing. They seldom lead you to the
treasure chest at a rainbow's end.
certain bad indicator is if the provider of your marketing system
keeps you constantly DEPENDENT on them for the right to use the
system or for updated parts of the system.
there are quite ethical organizations that do deliver the goods
- and the fact that they sell their services this way doesn't
prove their service would be bad.
I am merely
stating my OWN repugnance toward that type of system.
your marketing system delivers is what it is worth, in the final
defined as "giving all the needed tools and help required
to actually achieve a state where you can actively control your
marketing and obtain new clients profitably."
If the marketing
system delivers the certainty and skills to obtain new clients
at will whenever you want, if it gives you the control of your
system and delivers the freedom to use it any way you want and
for as long as you want... then it will greatly increase your
If it entraps
you into a jungle of obligations, springing unpleasant surprises
in form of additional payments you weren't told about in the
beginning... if it controls YOU and charges forever for using
it... then it will not deliver nearly as much benefits than it
could (and more than likely should).
It is for you
alone to adjudicate how much you personally want to be dependent
on someone or something else.
But it IS a
vital element in any system - so do pay attention to what the
intention of the provider of the service or information is.
marketing system provider should aim at empowering YOU as a fully
independent marketing expert, giving you a total freedom to obtain
clients without ANY further dependency.
to say they can't offer you NEW products or services. I'm merely
talking about getting ALL that you expect to get - and at the
price you were told.
a marketing system provider should have a goal of making himself
redundant for you.
A good and
honest intention of helping you manifests itself in the continuous
effort to make you totally independent and empowered in obtaining
new clients for your firm.
that points to giving YOU the freedom is a positive indication.
anything that LIMITS your right to use the system or points to
a necessity to buy additional services just to get the results
you rightfully expected to get from what you already paid for...
is a very bad indicator.
And any OMISSION
of such future independency should evoke a question:
I be getting ALL that I need to do your programme with this price
- or are there further things to purchase down the road just
to get this system functioning?"
in your materials, can I see it in writing?"
Demand to get
the control of your system without further future payments or
obligations to purchase more. If you get that, you will know
that the system definitely aims at creating FREEDOM for you -
and not the other way around!
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