Let me start this week's marketing column with two simple questions.

Question one:

How many businesses are there in the entire world that are selling similar products and services at similar prices to the same type of customers as you normally sell to?

In most cases there are a huge number of businesses that are similar to yours.

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Question two:

How many of these businesses are getting better sales results than you are right now?

Without even knowing who they are it's a logical assumption that there are many businesses like yours that are enjoying better sales results than your one.

This leads us to a very simple conclusion…

If these business who sell the same type of products and services as you do, to similar types of customers at similar prices are getting better sales results it only means one thing.

They have a 'better way' of marketing or promoting their business.

It could be a better way of making a sales presentation, getting repeat sales, getting referral business, or resolving customer concerns.

These businesses may have a better way of lead generation, a better way of getting customers to trust them or a better way of doing some part of their marketing.

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There are always a number of better ways to improve your sales results and often they are simple and obvious.

However there is a big problem:

Many businesses miss these simple and obvious ways to increase their sales because they do things the 'old way' and don't look for a 'better' way.

Here is a short exercise to illustrate this point.

Exercise:

The following six numbers are in a simple logical order from left to right.

You have sixty seconds to write down what this simple logical order is.

8 5 9 1 6 2

Spend 60 seconds and try and work it out now.

Most people get this exercise wrong because they do things the old way.

What is the old way of trying to solve this exercise?

Most people when they see this six number exercise will try and work the answer out mathematically.

So they will look at the difference between the numbers and see if there is some sort of mathematical solution.

They will quickly find that this doesn't work because there is no mathematical correlation between these numbers at all.

If however you use a 'better way' to look at this exercise the solution is simple.

The six numbers are actually in alphabetical order from left to right.

Eight Five Nine One Six Two

Eight starts with E, five starts with F, And so on.

This solution is simple and obvious when you see it.

And it's the same with finding a better way to market and promote your business.

The better way is often simple and obvious when you look for a better way.

Here's a good example:

In the book "Yes-50 secrets from the science of persuasion" there is an interesting example of a better way sales approach taken by a home improvement firm that sold expensive hot tubs.

These hot tubs sold for around 7,000 pounds so were a big ticket purchase for most people.

This firm did two very simple things differently and this increased their hot tub sales by over 500 per cent.

First of all they began telling prospective customers, that many buyers of their top of the range hot tub model reported that owning it was like adding an extra room to their house. (A number of their clients had made this type of comment after buying a hot tub so it was genuine feedback they were sharing.)

Secondly, they began asking these prospective customers what it would cost to build an extra room on the side of their house.

When you compared the cost of a 7,000 pound hot tub with the much greater expense of building a new room on your home, the hot tub seems far less expensive in comparison.

This made it a lot easier for clients to justify purchasing it and sales increased dramatically.

So take some each week to look for a better way to do your sales and marketing.

I guarantee that if you look for better ways to market your business you will always find them.

"There's always room for improvement, you know-it's the biggest room in the house" - Louise Heath Leber.

Action step:

What are some 'better ways' you could market and promote your business?

- Graham McGregor is The Added Value Marketing Expert™. Register at his website www.addedvaluemarketing.com and Graham will give you a free copy of his brand new free guide 'Easy Sales with Added Value Marketing'. (This guide contains ten time tested strategies that any business can use right now to create easy sales and delighted clients and is with Graham's compliments.)