Customer Manufacturing Update )
Creating Competitive Advantage Through Marketing/Sales Process Improvement

February 2007
in this issue
  • Closed Loop Marketing/Sales
  • Value Acceleration: The Secrets To Building An Unbeatable Competitive Advantage
  • Super Bowl Ads
  • Education in Action
  • Closing Thoughts
  • Dear Mitchell,

    Here is your February Customer Manufacturing Update. This month we're looking at how to gain better control and understanding of your marketing efforts to increase sales.

    As marketing departments are forced to focus on accountability and ROI, many are realizing that gaining better insight and alignment between the marketing functions designed to support near-term sales and the sales department is critical.

    Practical ideas and roles and responsibilities for how to get that done are discussed in this month's paper.

    If you have friends or colleagues who would appreciate receiving this e-zine, feel free to forward a copy to them using the "Forward e-mail" link at the bottom of the e-zine.

    Closed Loop Marketing/Sales

    Pressure is increasing in most companies to align marketing and sales activities. At least those marketing activities focused on the support of near- term sales. Gaining alignment between these two organizations and their disconnected activities can be a challenge.

    This white paper, Creating Closed-Loop Marketing/Sales Systems, looks at the expanding roles of operations management in marketing and sales as a potential solution to this issue

    Value Acceleration: The Secrets To Building An Unbeatable Competitive Advantage

    Our new book, Value Acceleration, was released last month. It is getting exciting buzz and great reviews. Lots of you took advantage of our free offer last month. However, too many of you did not. We want to continue to jump start sales (duh) so we are offering our readers an incentive to buy the book this month. (The incentive is not as good as last month, but it is still good.)

    If you buy a copy of the book (it is available from amazon.com and other on-line locations) on or before February 28, 2007 we will send you your choice of one of these three bonus items free as our thank you:

    1. An unpublished bonus chapter
    2. A copy of Bayard Bookman's ebook, No Sweat Interviewing
    3. A copy of Mitch Goozé's ebook, Background Marketing

    The ebooks each have a retail value of almost $15 so you not only get Value Acceleration from amazon.com at a 30% discount, but you also get a bonus chapter or a free ebook if you buy before the end of February. To get your free bonus, send an email to info@customermfg.com and tell us when and where you bought the book, and which free bonus item you want.

    Why are you still reading? Click the link below and buy the book...now. And thank you.

    You can order the book now on amazon.com and save over 30% by using the link below. If you want to learn more about the book visit its website.

    Super Bowl Ads

    We will again this year comment on Super Bowl Ads. Why not, everybody else does and we like our opinions, maybe you will too.

    Because of its visibility, history of advertising significance, and the nature of people desiring to express an opinion (us included), much is made of these advertisements. Countless pundits chime in with their views on the merits, or lack thereof of these 30-second extravaganzas.

    As we have said in previous commentary about these ads (and advertising in general), valid evaluation requires an understanding of the ad's purpose. We may debate the merits of that purpose, but without knowledge of an ad's purpose, valid commentary regarding an ad's effectiveness is problematic. Since we are not invited to sit in on the advertising planning meetings, we must deduce or assume the probable purpose of these ads. Assumption is a dangerous pastime, but without it, we can't write this piece, so we are going to play the game ... this time.

    We believe you can categorize Super Bowl ads into two types:

    • Those that are focused on increasing product sales
    • Those that are focused on building a stronger relationship between the person and the company

    We prefer ads that are focused on encouraging people to take action: try the product, get more information, buy, etc. We believe that ultimately people will have a relationship with a product, service or company that delivers the value-set they are aligned with. While ads can enhance that relationship, they cannot be a substitute for the value-set.

    That being said, our two favorite ads were the Blockbuster ad because it was funny and delivered its message; and the Toyota Tundra ad because it was compelling and delivered its message.

    At the end of the day, it comes down to two questions:

    1. Did you set a useful goal?
    2. Did you accomplish the goal?
    If you can say yes to both, good for you. If not, then the question is: what are you going to do about it? At the end of day you have to decide what the purpose of your ad is, and then create something that does that.

    Education in Action

    The unfortunate truth is that most training doesn't work very well, unless it is tailored to your business. And even then, it may not accomplish your goals. If you, or your people, have been looking for a training program that works, we offer you the opportunity to experience Accelerator Groups.

    Accelerator Groups are telephone-based "education in action" groups uniquely designed to teach you a skill you need by actually doing it.

    Aside from learning that can be applied right now, some of the benefits trainees have found include:

    • You don't have to travel anywhere for the training
    • It is tailored specifically to your business because you work on your own real business issue, not a case
    • It is delivered in "bite-sized" chunks so you can practice and use what you learn between each session
    • You don't have to commit a whole day (or days) to a classroom setting

    The problem with most training programs is that they are generalized for all business types not tailored to your business (unless you can afford a tailored in- house program), and the learning really doesn't stick. With Accelerator Groups you will actually learn the skill by doing it with your business. Not a case study ... your business.

    Accelerator Groups are precisely designed so that you take action, get real-time feedback from the expert leader and your fellow learners, execute and improve. Accelerator Groups are not about learning business theory, they're about taking accelerated action to make things happen.

    We have seven topic areas starting in the Spring. They include:

    • Creating and Delivering PerSuasive PreSentations
    • Price Management For Increased Profits
    • Practical Useful Market Research
    • Sales Management for the Part-Time Sales Manager
    • Research Using The Hidden Resources of the Web
    • Increasing New Product/Service Success
    • Marketing/Sales Business Process Improvement

    To read more about how Accelerator Groups work, and what is involved, as well as getting more specific information on each of these seven topics, click the link below.

    Closing Thoughts

    We appreciate any feedback you can provide to help us make sure these Updates give you value each month. Feel free to respond to this e-mail with any comments or suggestions for future topics or ways we can make these Customer Manufacturing Updates more valuable to you.

    Thank you for your interest, and if we can provide any additional assistance in sales, marketing, strategy, or innovation to help you increase your sales, let us know.

    Our mission is to help you improve the performance of your System to Manufacture Customers®.

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