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What's Missing From Your Internet Marketing?

by Charlie Cook

Your web site is up and running, you're getting a healthy number of visitors to the site, and many of them are contacting you about your services, but you're having a tough time closing sales. What’s missing?

Janice called me from a national home cleaning franchise looking for an answer to this question. Her company has an attractive, professionally created web site and a page prompting people to fill in a form requesting an estimate.

Plenty of prospects complete the estimate request and send it in, but when representatives from the franchises follow up with a phone call, they have a hard time closing the sale. What's getting in the way of closing the sale?

Have they left something out of the marketing sequence?

Marketing is like baking bread. Assemble the right ingredients, in the right proportions and the right order, and you'll have success. You need flour, water, oil, an egg, yeast and sugar to make a loaf of bread. Mix them together, let the dough rise a couple of times and put it in the oven to bake. Omit the sugar or yeast, or neglect to let the bread rise and you'll end up with an inedible brick that would be better used as a doorstop.

Too many web sites are like virtual doorstops. They look fine, but they're not satisfying the intended business needs. They don’t generate leads and help close the sale. In marketing, like baking bread, there are also essential ingredients.

Janice's firm had spent a lot of money on their web site marketing but had missed some of the key ingredients necessary to help close sales. Just having a web site that describes your services doesn't necessarily establish your credibility or the value of your services. Nor does it help you make the personal connections you need to create a trusting relationship as the basis for doing business.

If a prospect doesn't trust you or understand the value of your services, you won't close the sale.Does your marketing establish your credibility and make a personal connection so you can close the sale? If not, here's what to do:

1. Make Your Marketing Personal

People buy from others they know and like. Help them get to know and like you as an individual or as a members of a team.

-Get a conversation going, whether it is face-to-face, on the ph0ne, or virtual, by connecting with your prospects' emotional needs and wants. Don’t make the common mistake of using your marketing copy to tell prospects that you are the best at what you do and listing your credentials.

Instead, write your marketing copy from your prospects' perspective, detailing the reasons they need and want your products and services.

-Use your web site to introduce yourself and your co-worker. Include photos of yourself, preferably on your homepage. Periodically include personal details or stories of general interest in your marketing copy and ezines.

2.Show Your Prospects How Much Help You Can Be

- Regularly demonstrate your expertise in articles, free reports and or an ezine by sharing ideas they can use.

- Ask prospects questions that will help them clarify the problem they want solved. In doing so, you'll impress them with your expertise.

3.Get Others to Establish Your Credibility

You can talk about yourself all day long, but one, two or three heartfelt quotes from clients explaining how much you helped them will have much more impact.- Use testim0nials. Take the time to collect statements from satisfied clients that explain the results you provide and use them in your marketing materials.

What happens when your marketing establishes your credibility, establishes trust and makes a personal connection with prospects?

Your marketing calls to prospects won't be annoying, anonymous calls; you can use the questions and information they've provided in their inquiry form to launch the conversation. As someone they know and trust, you won't have to worry about trying to convince them of your credibility. You can focus on helping your prospects get what they want. Do that, and you'll close more sales and be more successful.

Discuss this in our Forum

About the Author:

The author, Marketing Coach, Charlie Cook, helps independent professionals and small business owners attract more clients and be more successful. Sign up for the Free Marketing eBook, '7 Steps to get more clients and grow your business', full of practical marketing tips you can use at: Marketing Plans for Small Business

2005© In Mind Communications, LLC. All rights reserved.

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