Monthly Archives: December 2008

What the Packers’ Losing Season Teaches You About Winning In Your Business

For those of you who don’t watch professional football, let me give you a (very) brief synopsis so you have some context. (Trust me, this will be worth it.)

Brett Favre, who was the quarterback for the Packers and is considered one of the top quarterbacks ever to play the game, retired last spring, then decided to unretire last summer. The Packers sent him, well packing, to the New York Jets because they wanted to give their new, young quarterback Aaron Rodgers a chance.

Since then, the Jets (who were dreadful last season) have a winning record and are probably headed to the playoffs whereas the Packers are 5-9 (when last year they were 13-3 and almost made it to the Superbowl) and headed nowhere.

Now, before I go any further, I want to preface this as I’m a Packer fan, an Aaron Rodgers fan and a Brett Favre fan, so this is not an article about whether or not the Packers should have done what they did. Rather, this is an article about what (I think) happened and how you can use this lesson to be more powerful in your business.

So, what DID happen? I mean, while the quarterback is an important position, it’s still just one guy on a team (and football is a team sport). He’s not even on the field half the time. Is the quarterback really responsible for a team winning or losing?

And, for that matter, is Rodgers really that much worse than Favre?

I’ll answer the last question first. Actually, Rodgers has a higher quarterback rating than Favre this season. So at least in terms of being able to throw the ball, Rodgers and Favre are on par.

But what Favre brings to the table that Rodgers doesn’t (at least right now) is the legacy of what he has accomplished.

Here’s what I think happened. When Favre went to the Jets, the Jets suddenly got this boost of confidence they didn’t have before. Now they had a Hall of Fame quarterback on their team. Oh my gosh! This means they might actually win!

At the same time, the Packers lost that shot of confidence. I know Packers publicly stood behind Rodgers, and he’s done a great job, especially when you consider it’s his first season. But regardless, he doesn’t have the track record that Favre has. It’s not Rodgers fault, how on earth could he bring that same confidence to his first season? Favre didn’t have it either in his first season, in fact the Falcons traded Favre early in his career.

Now, a shot of confidence doesn’t sound like much, but the Packers have lost almost all of their games by less than 4 points, and usually lost it in the last couple of minutes in the game.

Okay, so how does any of this pertain to you or your business?

One of the traits I’ve noticed in my associates and colleagues is what happens after they break the 7-figure mark in their business. Something changes. There’s an air of confidence in them that I don’t want to say was lacking before, but it’s even more pronounced. Now, they know they can do it. Why? Because they HAVE done it. And all of a sudden it’s easier and faster to double, triple that and more.

The more confident they are that they can make that kind of money, the more effortless it is for them to actually do it.

To take it one step further, because they believe deep down inside they can easily make 7 figures, they DO make 7 figures. Much like the Jets now believing they can win with Favre whereas they weren’t nearly so sure without him, entrepreneurs who believe they will make that kind of money actually do.

So, what can YOU do to start feeling that confidence about building a successful business? And knowing, deep down inside, you will break six or seven figures? The faster you can start feeling that, the faster you’ll start experiencing it.

How to Ramp up Your Holiday Sales

It’s an odd time of year. For some industries and businesses, this is their busiest season, when they make most of their money. For others, especially service businesses or B-2-B, it’s their slowest time of year.

But it doesn’t have to be.

If you’re someone who really would like to get more work in November and December to pay for those extra holiday expenses, here are 3 tips to get you started:

1. Don’t stop marketing. Does this sound familiar? You know your business is slow over the holidays, so you think “why bother” and don’t do anything. After all, no one is interested in buying services now, you might as well wait until January when people have their head back in their business.

So, you cut back or stop your marketing. And what happens? Well, business slows down. (Amazing, isn’t it?)

Then, if you’re one of those business owners whose marketing suffers when you’re busy, and you have a busy September and October, well that’s a double whammy. You’ve basically guaranteed a slow down in December and January.

I know, it seems like you’re competing with a lot of holiday advertising, and it’s true you are. But, because a lot of businesses stop marketing, it’s actually a pretty good time to get in front of your prospects because there’s less of that type of marketing going on.

2. Know what your prospects are thinking about and join in the conversation already going on in their head. So what they are thinking about? The holidays, right? That’s true, but they’re also thinking about what they liked or didn’t like about this year, what they want to be different about next year, etc. Even for people who don’t sit down and do formal planning, there’s still a feeling of closure (for the old) and preparation (for the new). If you can position whatever it is you’re selling to fit that, you have a good chance they’ll want to start the “new year off right” by hiring you.

Now, you might be saying, but everyone says something like that, won’t I sound like everyone else? Well, yes and no. Yes that’s a common message because it resonates so strongly with us as humans. But you don’t have to phrase it like everyone else. By stating it differently or coming at it from a different angle, that’s what’s going to set up apart from everyone else.

Which leads me to the last point…

3. Inject some urgency into your marketing. It is true that because people are spending a lot of money on holiday stuff, they might want to hold off on spending any money on their business until January (and they might not want to even focus on their business until January). Well, the new year is also a natural time to raise your rates. So, what better time of year then to encourage them to hire you NOW so they lock in the old rates?

The trick is to get them eager to hire you because they want their business to look different in the new year, and they better hire you NOW because they want to lock in this year’s rates.

And, you can take this one step further — if you don’t want to actually start the work until January (because you want some time off for partying as well) then have them pay a deposit in December or extend it somehow, where they get extra time for the same price. Now you have money now, you have work lined up in January and your prospects are happy because they’re getting a deal. It’s a win-win-win.