Extra-Ordinary

What does it mean to be extraordinary?  If being ordinary is having nothing of distinct difference, than we can conclude that to be extraordinary is to be of distinct difference, being different from normal.  Normal is average there is nothing extraordinary about it.

Why not be extraordinary today?  Sure it is a long weekend, after a long hot summer.  It is really easy to take this weekend and be average, be ordinary, and normal.  This is easy, but I know if you are reading this blog your goal is to be extraordinary.  Be an extraordinary father today, be an extraordinary spouse/partner today, be an extraordinary friend today. Do the thing you have been putting off for a while and do it today so you can tell everyone on Tuesday how extraordinary you were over the weekend.  Be extraordinary in something today.

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The same chair

We are what we repeatedly do.  That is a fact.  If you do something long enough it eventually becomes a habit.  It has been proven time and time again that 70% of what we do everyday is habitual.  Meaning most of the things we do, we don’t even have to think about doing them.  When is the last time you had to think about how to put your toothpaste on your toothbrush.  Or you had to think about how you will turn your car on.  Or when you get into the office, you had to think about how to turn on your computer.  The fact is you probably don’t have to think about anything of those things, you just do it.  It is a habit.

So what if you changed your habits some?  What if you tried to form some new habits?  What would that do for your career?  Your passion?  Your excitement?  The psychological change could be reinvigorating for you.

This morning I worked out, pretty habitual for me, I am now sitting in the same chair at the same table, at the same coffee shop, with the same mocha as I do everyday.  Tomorrow, I will sit someone else. Just to break the habit, who knows what might happen.

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Improving yourself

Employ your time in improving yourself by other men’s writings so that you shall come easily by what others have labored hard for. —Socrates 

This was true over 2500 years ago, and is still true today.  You can put a price on what a good book costs, maybe it is $20.  But the value of one good idea that can come from a book can be worth hundreds, thousands, or even millions of dollars to you.  I have made it a goal to keep looking for that million dollar idea.  I encourage you to do the same.

 

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What’s next?

I think this is a question that many of us ask at different points in our life.  Or at least we should.  I just finished reading an article about what happens to people after they reach a certain milestone in their earnings and their career.  I just have to say that the article was really scary to me, because it is like they were reading my mind.

Anyway this blog is not about me, it is about me sharing ideas and thoughts that I think we all have.  I attempt to tell you everything that I KNOW, NOT everything there is to know.  I believe that we have to keep pouring information into our heads to keep up with all of the information we forget.  That is why the fundamentals are so important.  Be sure you focus on the fundamentals.  I will be releasing a book on fundamentals in the next few months, I look forward to sharing it with you.   It only takes a half-dozen or so fundamentals to lead to success.  Ask a few athletes. Most of them are really good at just a few things, not everything.

So what is next for you and for me?  If I we knew the answer to this we would be doing it I guess.  I have found that I must appreciate everything I have, while I pursue everything I want, everything I want goes back to my goals and they should for you as well.  This is hard, but it sure is worthwhile.  My mentor says most people just live a life, Mr. Rohn said design your life how you want it to be.

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A link in the chain

Every discipline that you make in your life will lead to another discipline.  Eventually you will have enough links in the chain to have a well designed life.  Maybe you start off small with just turning the television off and reading/listening to something educational an hour before you would normally turn the television off.  You do that for a while.  And then you decide to turn it off a couple of hours before you go to bed.  Then over a few months or several months, you just don’t turn the television on at all.   As human beings we have to set up disciplines in our life incrementally at times to push us towards new disciplines that will eventually become habits.

What are some areas that you need to start small, developing a few small disciplines to get you going on the right or new track?  Just start small.  The key is to just start.  The mind is an amazing thing.  By just starting you begin the process of turning the new discipline into a commitment and then in to habit.  Who knows where these little changes will take you.

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HOT BUTTON MARKETING; book summary

Hot Button Marketing “Push the Emotional Buttons that get People to Buy.”  This is the ninth book I have read this year on sales and marketing.  What I liked most about this book is that it really gave a lot of examples of how effective marketing works.  Also, as a trainer I have been training people on finding the dominant reason a person wants to purchase something, and this book really expands on this concept and fleshes out a lot of great information regarding this subject.

These are my notes from this book (which are my highlights) I attempt not to highlight the entire book, I sometimes do it seems like.

  • People don’t buy products and services.  They buy satisfactions of unmet needs.
  • People buy for the desire to look good for a boss, the desire for achievement, the desire for power and dominance.
  • People rarely buy products, they are buying fulfillment.
  • People buy for two reasons. 1. The rational Reason  2.  The real reason
  • Hit the heart and the head will follow. Rocky Marciano  This works in business to.
  • If you can’t sell your products in a single sentence, you really don’t have an effective selling proposition.
  • Consumers are usually not aware of their needs unless you show them a stimulus, that is: they aren’t aware of a need for a product unless you show them the product and how its going to affect their lives emotionally.
  • How does your product improve the consumers life emotionally?
  • You’re not marketing against consumers.  You’re helping them fulfill a need.
  • The frustrating part is that consumers don’t need or want anything until you hit the right sales note.
  • People didn’t know they wanted a machine that baked bread.  Why?  because the store-bought stuff was pretty good.  But then a bread maker was sold.  People latent need for self achievement (hot button) rose to the surface. The bread makers loved the need that people have to create something.
  • It’s not how a consumer see him or herself in reality.  Its how they see themselves as they aspire to be.
  • A CEO has two hot buttons.  A family and a need for approval from stockholders or a board.
  • Nice to have —-Want to have.  turn these in to must to haves.
  • Consumers use products to achieve the characteristics they envision for themselves.
  • In all countries wealth is a symbol of status. It doesn’t matter that wealth is measured in dollars, the number of cows you have, real-estate, car,.  This hot button depends on age, ethnicity and background.
  • Values systems may differ, but the hot buttons remain the same.
  • Needs are nonnegotiable.  You want them now. No ifs, ands, or buts.  Needs are who we are or what we aspire to be. They are fundamental and necessary to all human satisfaction.
  • Interests are roadmaps for our needs.
  • Starbucks is selling community and companionship and prestige.
  • People who are lower on the social ladder often prefer tangible goods rather than services that only have abstract benefits.  Their hot buttons are often about being smarter and getting the most that one can get for the money.
  • Hot button selling is all about selling to the consumers aspirations.  It’s about selling to the way consumers want to be, rather that the way they are.
  • As a hot button marketer, you are an enabler selling products and services that enable consumers to be what they aspire to be.
  • Hot button research seeks to thoroughly understand the unspoken motives and beliefs held by a customers and prospects in regard to a brand, product, or service.
  • Here is where we go wrong:  We think we know why customers want what they do.  Customers usually don’t know, so how can we.
  • Ninety percent of a sales pitch should be you asking questions.
  • Engage the five senses as much as you can in any sell.

#1:  Hot Button,  The desire for control:

  • Control is one of the strongest Hot buttons.  People want to make their life better. Loss of control is synonymous with a  fear of the unknown.
  • People want control over finances, health, safety and health over loved ones, our own acquisitions, our jobs, our self-respect and the respect of others.
  • The longer people wait of for something, the less control they have (or perceive they have) over it.
  • Control over ones destiny is what drives the at home business phenomenon.
  • How many times have you heard this:  Would you bu willing to cut out a pack of cigarettes or s ingle dinner out each week to be able to afford this home or car.  Reducing a financial picture to the lowest denominator is a great sales technique.  People want to feel like they can control their finances.  This makes it seem like they can.
  • Companies like control as well.  They prefer to stay with suppliers they can trust rather than shopping around.  They feel like they are in control.

#2 Hot Button,  I’m better than you:

  • It is a reflection of your consumers desire to belong or fit in.
  • The desire for higher status is universal across all people and cultures.
  • People are willing to pay dearly to enhance themselves in the eye of their peers.
  • Vodka is neutral and tasteless. Yet research sows that consumers–especially in lower-income areas will go for the name brand in spite of high price.
  • Cost is an essential part of the prestige factor.  The more expensive the better.
  • People wont admit that they buy a product on status appeal.  As with most hot buttons, consumers aren’t aware that they are buying products based on snob appeal.

#3 Hot button,  The excitement of discovery

  • Discovery is something learn or found–it includes both the new and unexpected.

#4  Hot button,  Revaluers

  • Revaluers are a segment of the market that is self motivated, self-directed, and self focused.
  • Don’t sell to them, Allow revaluers to make their own purchasing decisions.
  • Revaluers are a mixture of regret and anticipation.
  • Revaluing hot button is responsible for the rise in health and beauty care products.
  • Revaluers are more into self enjoyment rather than self achievement.
  • Theres a new kind of store in town.  A health food store.  Where you get to pay twice as much for the same products they can find in a super market.
  • Revaluers focus more on the experience of buying a product rather than the products.  Whole Foods is an experience.

#5 Hot button, Family Values:

  • The hottest of hot buttons
  • Disney World and the entire Disney brand sells family values
  • according to the book Why they Buy, by Robert Settle and Pamela Alreck, only one in twenty families fits the bill of a single marriage, two parent, two children household.
  • Family Values are the key to selling houses.
  • Children affect over 60 percent of the families market purchases. The trick is to find which 60 percent they do impact.
  • Kids look up to older kids.  To be like the big kids is an essential kid like desire.
  • Smoking cessation programs sometimes include kids at introductory meetings because research has shown that kids are the biggest motivators to get prints to stop smoking.

#6 Hot button,   The desire to Belong

  • People are social animals.  Emotional connections are critical.
  • We all long to be accepted.  This need to belong is all wrapped up in our sense of personal and physiological well-being and our sense of personal worth.
  • Athletes when they retire never talk about their accolades that they will miss.  It is always about the camaraderie in the locker room that they will miss.  Being with the others.
  • The strongest affinity associations is based on age.
  • People will belong to clubs or organizations to fill this need.  They will wear certain decals or logos for this reason.  To belong.

#7 Hot Button,  Fun is its own reward

  • We all have a desire to laugh and have fun, it is universal.
  • Newspapers offer comic strips because people have a desire to laugh and to be entertained.
  • People have a fear of boredom.  People want to be stimulated.
  • Most sales are made when the sales people take the clients out.  The feeling people get when they have fun is more important than the product.  People want to have fun.
  • More deal are done on the golf course than in the boardroom.

#8 Hot button,   Poverty of Time

  • Consumers have more time than ever before, but they tend to use all the time they have.
  • Geicos commercial give us 15 minutes and we can save you money was huge for them.  All you need is 15 minutes to save cash.  People will spend 15 minutes to save money.
  • Saving time is one of the biggest motivators for men and women ages 25-45.  Especially women of child-bearing years.
  • Humans are the only animals that will procrastinate.  A cat won’t look at a mouse and say I’ll annoy you later”  They do things as they come up.

#9 Hot button,  The need to get the best that can be got

  • This is not only luxury, it is as people move up their tastes change as well.
  • Coveting the goods of your neighbors used to be hot.  Now with reality television and marketing, people covet what the rich and famous have.
  • Harley Davidson motorcycles have a tendency to breakdown, but people still covet them.  Same as jaguars.
  • People get an emotional high out of buying the quintessential product.  Sometimes the product itself is not that great, they enjoy the buying of it though.
  • Self satisfaction is most important to this person since it fulfills a private dream and the reward is inner gratification.
  • The best that can be got is beyond money, beyond power, it is a feel good thing.

#10 Hot Button,  Self Achievement

  • Self achievement is a major goal for people.  Find out what the deepest desire for your product is.
  • Business psychologists know that as adults we seek praises from our bosses as much as we seek a good paycheck.
  • People always want to become better.
  • Feeling good is the heart of success.  It’s the ultimate in self achievement and success.
  • Feeling Good is the ultimate psychological need of any human being.
  • The strongest word in the human language is a personas name.  The second strongest is you.
  • Personal growth is important to everyone. You just have to find out what that is.

#11 Hot Button,  Sex, Love, And Romance

  • Ads focused on primal instincts works faster especially for men.
  • The desire to love and to be loved is a strong hot button
  • Sexual interest and romantic interest are two of the most basic emotions.
  • Sex can be explicit or implied.  Men want explicit and women want more subtle images.

#12 Hot button, The nurturing response

  • Make Mom and Dad the hero not the product
  • This hot button is about the need to give care, comfort, growth, and support to others.
  • Nurturing is an innate, instinctive emotional response in most of us.
  • Good will industries is a great example.  People want to feel like they are giving back to poor people.  However, Goodwill industries is a for profit company.  But they use the nurturing appeal well in their marketing.
  • Girl Scout cookies plays to this hot button.
  • Michelin tires and the baby sitting in a tire.  Why wouldn’t you buy a Michelin tire to protect your child.

#13 Hot button, Reinventing Oneself

  • Reinvention can happen at almost any age.
  • Most often people don’t change unless thy are uncomfortable.
  • Dissatisfaction with who people think they are, their role in life, or economic dissatisfaction forces people to take inventory of themselves. They want to fix it.

#14 Hot Button, Make me smarter

  • Half of knowledge is knowing where to find it.
  • Knowledge is an innate desire for humans.
  • People want to think they are smart
  • People want to know more than their peers, neighbors, and friends,
  • Knowledge brings a feeling of empowerment and enables consumers to make better buying decisions.

Does your product do one of these things for people?  How many of these does your product do for your customer? 

  • Entertain
  • To make better choices
  • To improve ones life
  • To keep ones mind occupied
  • To learn something new
  • To keep ones mind sharp
  • To improve mental efficiency
  • To hope
  • To build self-confidence
  • To find out something new
  • To discover alternate plans that can be followed when Plan A doesn’t work.

#15 Hot button,  Power, dominance, and influence

  • Personal Power and positional power
  • Wealth is equated with power.
  • In middle management you sell by whats in it for the middle manager (secondarily the company).  It could be a promotion, more money, or an in to more power. It’s up to the sales person to make the middle managers look good
  • Middle managers tend to buy things that increase their personal dominance and may help them look good to higher-ups.  Upper management usually wants products that are good for the company, because in their minds they are the company.

#16 Hot Button,  Wish Fulfillment

  • Find out what your prospects want and how to fit that into their dreams.  Help them get what attainable.
  • The advertising industry exploits wish-fulfillment by suggesting an association of their product with a specific desire (good health, attractiveness, or power)
  • Sell the results of the dream not the dream itself.

The most common wishes are for friends, happiness, health, marriage, money, success, self-improvement, and to help other people.  More men than women wanted sex and power.  More women wanted happiness, a better appearance, and greater health.

Some of the hot buttons, like status, nurturing, and dominance, are primal and are shared with our cousins in the animal world.  Some are distinctly human, such as control and self achievement.  Most of our physical needs are met, but not our psychological needs.  As humans our minds and emotions are the most difficult to discern.  Good sales people get past the facades and break down the psychological wants and needs.

If you are in sales or marketing I would encourage you to read this book.

Hot Button Marketing (Push the emotional buttons that get people to buy); author Barry Feig

 

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How do you realize your dream?

What are your dreams and wishes?  How do you turn those into some goals.  Goals and dreams are different.  Goals have a deadline and an action plan.  Turn your dreams into reality by following the process below

  • Decide what you want.
  • Make commitment to that goal and write it down. (You must write it down)
  • Put next to that goal “Why” you want to achieve it.  What will it do for you by achieving that goal.
  • Establish a deadline for this goal.  How long will it take you?
  • How will you measure your progress?
  • How will you hold yourself accountable.

Napoleon Hill said that the mind can achieve anything that it can conceive.

Make some goals today and achieve everything in life you want and realize your dreams.

For more information on goal setting and goal accomplishment.  Reach out to me.

 

 

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40 hours is the starting line

This morning I was listening to the recorded version of the Dave Ramsey show like I do every morning.  In all his wisdom (which is why I listen) he said to someone who called in that they had competing goals.  I believe the caller was asking if her husband should go back to school or they should pay off debt.  I can’t remember the full context of the story.  However, Dave talked about competing goals and gave a few illustrations of what competing goals look like.

Maybe your goal is to grow within your company.  But you also want to spend more time with your family.  We have some competing goals here don’t we.  So what do you do?  Life is full of seasons.  You may be in a season right now where you have to pay now so you can play later.  Nothing in life is forever, seasons come and go. Summer is almost over and it will soon be fall, so seasons constantly change.   

You can’t get ahead by working 40 hours.  The bottom line is 40 hours is basically the starting line.  What you do after that first 40 hours is what will lead to success.  I have seen it, witnessed it, and experienced it.  So what is your goal?  

Yesterday I was talking to a good friend of mine. He likes to play golf, he is a big time golfer and is really good at golf.  However, in our weekly accountability meeting we discussed the fact that he doesn’t have much time for golf right now because his goal is to sacrifice now, so it will pay later.  He made his decision and even though one of his goals is to maintain being really good at golf.  What is more important right now is putting in 60 hours a week in work, training, education, etc. So he can feed his family and prep for his future desires. Which is even more important. After 40 Hours is where his real work begins.

Competing goals.  In the pursuit multiple high priority goals, one is diluted.  You can’t serve two masters. Pick a goal, pursue it, and don’t look back.  I say this many times: The reason I write/blog is for my own accountability.  I have competing goals right now in my life and career.  I have to find more focus, pick a major goal and stick with it.

Remember life is full of seasons.  Just like a baseball player, basketball player, or football player, the more seasons we have the closer we get to greatness.  Athletes during their season don’t do anything else except focus on the goal, which is a championship.  We should do the same.

What is your definition of championship?  Is it a promotion?  If so, it is time to focus on the season you are in or need to be in and pursue that goal.

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Lift someone up today

I have heard this before and so have you.

  • Zig Ziglar said:  Be helpful. When you see a person without a smile, give them yours. 
  • Be careful placing judgment upon others, for you know not what battles they are fighting.

I was reminded of these two simple statements last night.  A person in our class came in late, which was not normal for them.  They contributed some, but not as much as they usually do.  But they showed up and stuck it out for the entire class.

We ended the class with an exercise where we have the participants write their name at the top of a 3 X 5 index card.  Then they take that card and hand it to someone else. Now the class participant has to take the 3 x 5 index card with one of the other participants name on it and write something about them that they have noticed about them that is unique, positive, and that the individual might not see in themselves.  Now there are about 20 people in the class. So over the last 6 weeks every Monday for roughly 3.5 hours, we all have been together.  So we have developed a lot of relationships and we all know each other fairly well.

This little exercise is probably one of my favorite that we do in this course.  Who doesn’t like to be told something positive about themselves.  Sometimes the participants get overwhelmed with emotion during this exercise.

So going back to the class participant.  This person had a bad day at work.  It was very clear.  I am not sure what exactly happened, but they were different.  So this one little exercise we did, and the 3 x 5 index card with the positive note about them on it, changed their day.  How do I know this?  They told us.  They told us how much they appreciated it after the day they had.

So what can you do today?  This is a pretty simple act that any of us can do. So who in your life needs this kind of appreciation, acknowledgement, encouragement?  Who can you send a note to?  Who is going through something right now, that needs some pick me up?  I would encourage you to be like Zig Ziglar states, lift someone up.

 

 

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What season are you in

You know the longer I am in business and in life, I find that this is more true.

  • The second mile, the third mile, and fourth miles are really not that crowded.  The crowd thins out the longer you run.
  • During the week at the office.  The one hour or the two hours before everyone is supposed to start work is really not the crowded either.
  • Saturday mornings at the office you don’t have to worry about the coffee pot getting emptied very quickly.
  • By February of a new year, you can usually get back to your favorite machine during the time you go to the gym.
  • There are usually not traffic jams past 6:30 pm during the workweek. Probably closer to six depending on where you live.
  • Most volunteer organizations struggle with attendance at events they hold.
  • Most diets fail within the first seven days.

I could probably create a more exhaustive list than this, but you get the point.  Most people aren’t willing to pay the price for success.  The natural gravitation pull is down.  I think we can all agree that down is usually associated with easier and less challenging.  If that is true, then we have to find ways to rise up and push up so we can realize the benefits of success.  Success has a price tag.  Are you willing to pay the price for success.

Remember life is full of seasons.  Seasons don’t last forever.  Summer is not 8 months out of the year.  Winter is only a few months.  So investing the time and resources for a season  has the potential to pay off big time.  What season are you in?

What are you willing to do this week to pay the price for success?

 

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