How to Sell Without Selling

When most people purchase an expensive or unfamiliar product or service, they want to educate themselves and talk to a few vendors before buying. We’ve all been on a pushy first date. In sales, as in love, timing is everything.

If you’re willing to take the time to share your passion and knowledge with a prospective customer, not only are they more likely to buy from you when they’re ready, but chances are, they’ll come back for more. In a sense, you’re selling by not selling.

A new methodology has sprung up around the concept of “inbound marketing.” The customer is attracted to you because you’re providing them with relevant, helpful, easy-to-understand information that helps them decide whether and what to buy. This “customer-centric” approach can give you a competitive advantage, whether you’re selling in person or online.

Guest columnist Lock Whitney is an inbound marketer and a Common App essay specialist.

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How Can I Increase My Sales?

Almost every business wants to increase sales, but bigger isn’t always better! Good Egg Marketing doesn’t promote mindless consumption. We work with companies that provide great products or services that people genuinely want or need.

Here are a few of the tactics that the businesses we work with or admire have used to increase sales. By the way, many of these principles apply to non-profits, too.

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How to Motivate Your Audience with Calls to Action

Wait, What Am I Asking For?
The purpose of a CTA (Call to Action) is to inspire your audience to take some form of action. In a sales or fundraising context, this action is also known as an “ask.” It is critical to define exactly what your goal/objective is in order to determine an appropriate CTA. Do you want a larger following online? Do you want more potential customers (leads)? Do you want existing donors to contribute more? Each CTA should inspire a specific action for a specific purpose.

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Is Your Marketing Having Any Impact?

My colleague Julia Shanks, principal of Julia Shanks Food Consulting, is an expert at helping farms and food entrepreneurs create and use business plans and financial analyses to grow their businesses. She’s also a chef and cookbook author. Not surprisingly, her approach to marketing is very analytical. I invited her to write a guest article to share how she measures her marketing tactics.

Myrna Greenfield

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How to Create a Simple Sales and Marketing Plan

Many small businesses and nonprofits don’t have a marketing plan because they don’t think they need one, don’t have the time to create it, or don’t know how. But creating a plan doesn’t have to take a lot of time–in fact, it can save you time, because you’ll stop doing things that aren’t meeting your goals (hello, Facebook!).

Here’s a simple example of a sales and marketing plan.

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Put Some Dazzle in Your Displays

The visual aspects of your brand–your logo, website, displays, and signage–say a lot about your business or organization. Just as your tone of voice can affect how people hear your words, the images you use to express your brand can either reinforce or undermine everything else that you say and do. So put some dazzle in your displays.

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