How Can You Increase Sales Volume?

We all love talking about the big sale accomplishments, the brag worthy sales. But the day-to-day is often defined, not by the amount of a sale, but by the quantity of them.

Technically, sales volume is the percent of units sold within a period of time. Companies use sales volume to see what products are selling successfully.

What are some ways to increase sales volume?

  1. Know your product. Do you know all the things that make your product superior to your competition? Why should a customer choose your product? What’s your elevator pitch?
  1. Focus on the benefits? All buyers have only one question: Does this solve my problem? They want to know that what they are receiving will benefit them and be worth the exchange of time and money.
  1. Sell to the right prospects. If your sales volume seems to be decreasing it may be a good time to reevaluate your target audience. It is also a good idea to get an updated a list.
  1. Understand your customer’s problems. What problems are your target customers trying to solve?
  1. Work with your marketing team. Your marketing team will be able to create content and structures to support your sales volume.
  1. Remember, time is money. Increasing your sales velocity or the amount of time it takes a prospect to move through your pipeline will positively impact your sales volume.

What ways have you found successful in increasing your sales volume?  

 
 

How Your Flow State Can Help Productivity

When was the last time you felt fully engaged in a task and the hours just melted away? That’s called your flow state, something that psychology researcher Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, from Claremont Graduate University in California, identified.  

Flow is simply that state of mind in which we feel and perform our best and feel at ease. We don’t have to wait for a flow state to happen — we can take steps that can allow us to access it.

Here are the 2 steps needed to tap into your flow state. 

  1. First, you must observe yourself. For the next two weeks, observe yourself, notice what you’re doing, and look for the clues of flow: losing your sense of time or self, feeling that you’re acting with ease, gaining new insights, and having a positive feedback loop.  
  2. Then, when you are in a state of flow, broaden your awareness: Notice and remember the activities surrounding you. Recognize what you’re physically doing and think about what you’re doing mentally.  

Tell us your tips and tricks for staying productive!  


3 Types of Alternative Black Friday Campaigns

Calling Black Friday the biggest shopping event of the year is an understatement. In 2019, consumers spent $7.4 Billion online alone. This year more than ever, online spending is expected to grow. What are some ways to stand out online this holiday season?

Instead of the usual ‘one-day-only % off’ sale, campaigns focused on other things can be a great way to set you brand apart, gain awareness, and increase conversions. Here are three examples.

#1 – the Anti-Black Friday.

REI 2015

Taking a page from REI’s #OptOutside campaign, focusing on not buying anything on Black Friday can be very effective. Since 2015 REI closes on Black Friday and uses #OptOutside to encourage people to spend the day outside, which goes along perfectly with their brand mission and has helped grow their online community. Due to the longevity of the campaign and community it has created, the Opt Outside campaign helps increase REI sales year-round.

Another company using the Anti-Black Friday approach is the skincare company Deciem. In 2019, closed their stores and blacked out their website to protest the hyper consumerism focused Black Friday. Instead, their holiday campaign focused on “shopping slow.” For the entire month of November, every product was on sale. The longer, inclusive sale increased sales and helped reinforce their brand ideals with their customers.

Deciem 2019

#2 Highlight Your Mission

Many companies use Black Friday as an opportunity to show their customers what their brand ideals are. Donating to charities is a popular way. For example, Patagonia is known for alternative Black Friday campaigns but one especially effective one was 2016. They pledged to donate all their Black Friday sales to grassroot organizations that aligned with their brand goals. The campaign ended up generating $10 million in sales, over 5xs their goal!

Patagonia 2016

The fashion company Kotn did something similar. Instead of sales, they promoted that they were going to donate Black Friday weekend profits to a charity that builds schools in Egypt, where the cotton used in their products is grown.  

Kotn 2016

#3 Make it an event

A great example of this is MeUndies’ 2016 campaign. They promoted a Facebook live event for Black Friday. As more people joined, they unlocked more discounts and promotions. The event ended up with over 13,000 viewers and had a conversion rate of over 25%, which is 13x more than their average!

All of these brands used a day usually clogged with advertising to redirect their customer’s focus. They reminded people of their band mission and goals and helped strength their connection to their customers. What fun ways have you seen company handle Black Friday?


How To: Be A Team Player

Team Player

Today the people in our work teams might be spread out across the country – or the world. It is easy to take it for granted that because of technology, we are able to work together and solve problems no matter where we are physically. The need for good teamwork will always be a necessity. How can we be good team players?

  1. Be humble. Unsurprisingly, being a good team player means not focusing on yourself or thinking that your ideas are the best. On the flip side, not having confidence in your ideas is also a violation of humility. As the saying goes: “Humility isn’t thinking less of ourselves; it’s thinking about ourselves less.”
  2. Be hungry. Be willing to hustle. People who have a strong work ethic are often successful on teams because they don’t do the bare minimum. They want to do more than expected. When everyone on a team works hard, things go smoother.
  3. Be smart. Have common sense. Think before you speak. Think about what effects your actions will have on the project and on your team members.

It’s important to be able to identify what gaps your team has. And to look at yourself and see what you can to do make things run smoother.

What have you found to help your team run smoother?  


How to: Declutter Your Digital Space

Let’s be honest, having a totally cleaned out inbox or a completely crossed off to-do list is one of life’s great joys. Clean digital workspace can help your focus and productivity. So what can you do to declutter your digital space? 

  1. Put in a gap.  Cal Newport, a computer science professor at Georgetown University, said many people succumb to what he calls the list/reactive method: They instantly react to communication. That means answering texts, emails, messages as soon as they pop up and therefore constantly interrupting their workflow. Waiting to answer messages until a time that’s more convenient for you can help you stay focused and actually make progress on your work.
  2. Set a schedule. Set aside time to focus on work communications and then let your colleagues know when that is. Sticking to “office hours” can be surprisingly helpful.. Going from a Zoom video to a call with your kid’s school to texting about social plans with friends can blur the lines between personal and professional. Dr. Newport says, “It blends together the lives completely, You’re never not working. You always feel behind.”
  3. Take control of your inbox. If you have to delete tons of promotional emails everyday, the consider unsubscribing. Having less to go through everyday will save you time and help you feel like you’ve accomplished something at the start of your day! 
  4. Streamline your workflow. If you are collaborating with a team, emails threads can get long and if you have multiple streaks of communication, it can get confusing. Having a streamlined and structured process “substantially reduces the number of simultaneous, asynchronous back and forth conversations happening,” Dr. Newport said.

What ways have you found to declutter your digital workspace? 


What’s Your Customer Journey?

In 2020 we have lost many personal or face to face connections with customers. Therefore, digital marketing has to feel more personal. How? Focusing on your customer’s journey is the first step.

What is a customer journey? The customer journey is the order of all of your customers interactions and experiences with your company and brand. It is often illustrated in map form.

How can you build a customer journey?

Step one, who are your current customers? Analyze your first party data. What does your average customer “look” like? What is their age, gender, occupation? Do they have any specific interests or hobbies?

Step two, who are your potentials? Once you know who your average customer is you can build a look-a-like report to gain more prospects. (What is a look-a-like report? Get more information here.)

Step three, map their journey. How do they first hear about your brand? What are going to be their first interactions? What happens before they buy something? What happens after?

Here’s how that could be illustrated:

Blast marketing campaigns aren’t nearly as effective as they used to be. Building a campaign based on your customer’s journey can greatly increase your conversions and long-time customer loyalty. (One study found conversions were boosted over 300%!)

How can you use customer journeys?


How to Increase Your Adaptability

If this year has taught us anything it’s that being to react well to inevitability of change is a must-have trait. In venture investor Natalie Fratto’s TED Talk on adaptability, she focused on how we can work on a becoming more adaptable in the workplace.  

Here are her three suggestions: 

  1. Be proactive. Fratto says,“Adaptability has to be proactive, not reactive. We have to seek it out, exercise it and flex it like a muscle.” How can you seek out adaptability? Start by looking for gaps in your organization that need filled. For example, is your team having a hard time communicating with the podcast team? Take the opportunity to learn about podcasts and help bridge the communication gap. Putting yourself in a position to help can make it easier to adapt to new roles later.  
  2. Look at things from another point of viewBeing agreeable can actually be the opposite of adaptability. Occasionally (and respectfully) playing the devil’s advocate can help you and your team see things from a different viewpoint. This can prevent you from getting to attached to your opinions or view. Not being stuck to ideas promotes flexibility and creativity.  
  3. Remember the times you changed your mind. “It’s helpful to write down the times where you were wrong, changed your mind, or made mistakes,” says Fratto. Instead of viewing the times you’ve made mistakes as negatives, view them in a more positive light. Focus on what you learned and how you were able to grow.  

What ways have you had to adapt this year? 


Can You Trust Your Data?

No matter how good the machine you build it is, it’s not going to run well if your fuel is poor quality. Data is the fuel the runs all marketing. The problem is, data error is commonplace. Data providers are all trying to give their clients the best data possible but often the data they are providing doesn’t match up.

Harvard Business Review did a study in May 2020 to test the accuracy of consumer data. They found that the accuracy of Demographic data was particularly disappointing. Most were only around 50% accurate. For example, the average accuracy of gender segments classifying males was only 42.5%.

“Half the money I spend on
advertising is wasted; the trouble is,
I don’t know which half.”

– department-store magnate John Wanamaker (1838-1922)

What do those errors mean for your campaign? A study by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Marketing Evolution in fall 2019 found that “marketers estimate that 21 cents of every media dollar spent by their organization in the last year was wasted due to poor data quality, which translates to a $1.2 million and $16.5 million average annual loss for mid-size and enterprise organizations, respectively.”

How do a few errors on a record level equal so much wasted money? Record level data is the spring from which everything else flows. For a small example, if a few records in your CRM have mistakes in them, what is going to happen when you use them to send an email campaign? The opens and clicks from your email campaign may inform your audience for your social campaign. In every step and trigger along your campaign, the small errors effect more and more information downstream.

The company Truth Set is looking to minimize error across all data. How? By providing a third – party consumer report type service for data providers and marketers. Truth Set goes through every record available and assigns a percentage rating to all the attributes, such as ‘percentage that this record is actually male.’  That way, marketers won’t waste money on inaccurate data and data providers can keep their data clean.

The hope is that as more time goes on, third party quality checks and ratings will become commonplace and shrink margin for error unilaterally.

What can you do make sure your data is accurate? There are a few easy identifiers you can check for. How old is the data? How transparent is the provider with where the data came from? How consistent and relevant is it?

What changes do you think would make it easier for marketers to trust their data?