Lori Richardson

Score More Sales - Speaker, Author, and Trainer on Sales Effectiveness
Peabody, MA
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  • It is amazing how inspirational kids can be - especially when it comes to things that adults like us can sometimes have baggage around. Kids can look at someone with a scar, or in a wheelchair, and simply ask, "What happened?". The adults around children are the ones to say, "Don't stare. Don't ask." Our baggage starts early, doesn't it? 

    In selling, you have to remove your pre-concieved ideas in your head and work with a blank slate to shake away assumptions and judgments that reside in your mind - about your value, about your pricing, about rejection. 

    Here is an amazing story - if you have not heard of young Caine and his arcade, grab a tissue and watch. If you have seen it, you might be like me and see it again. Truly amazing lessons in business to be learned from this kid. People all over the world have written about the nine-year old. 

    I recently wrote about 3 Sales Tips from 2-Year Olds that any of you moms or aunts may appreciate. 

    Post your "lessons learned" as a com [...]

  • Later this week, Savor the Success' big, annual, Rock the World NYC business education and premium networking event for women entrepreneurs is happening. I'm looking forward to attending to capture some interviews and meet some very sucessful women who have stories that will help women entrepreneurs build their businesses. 

    These events can be very overwhelming though. Last year I wrote a post called Top Ways to Benefit from a Large Networking Event that has some tips if you are attending this or any other big event. 

    In addition, here are five more action-oriented tips. These can be used at any business gathering:

    1. Plan ahead and learn about who you know will be attending. See the speaker list - what are the topics and how do they align with your business goals? I suggest choosing 2 or 3 main questions you'd like (or need) to get answered - or areas you need to learn more about - stay focused on those so that you don't feel major overwhelm. 

    2. Be interested in others - ra [...]

  • There is no shortage of advice and information from friends, family, and the internet on how to build a business. Luckily we have access to this community at Savor the Success, plus one book that offers sound advice from nearly 100 women: the big enough company - Creating a Business That Works for You. 

    Co-authors Adelaide Lancaster and Amy Abrams are also the founders of In Good Company, a community work space and business learning center for women located in New York City.  They have also consulted and advised women entrepreneurs for quite some time - but instead of only offering their advice, they offer gems and nuggets of tips and ideas from successful women entrepreneurs throughout the U.S. (special note: They will be speaking at Rock the World on April 24th.) 

    If you've ever had the pleasure of visiting In Good Company, you'd feel the same feelings in their space as you would as you crack open their book - supported, elegant, and helpful.  You'll meet many women between t [...]

  • Customer LoyaltyJen Mueller, sports reporter and CEO of Talk Sporty to Me  is a new Savor Premium member, so I thought it fitting to post an interview we did last year about a story she was told by John Nordstrom - the infamous Nordstrom Tire Story.

    For those not familiar with Nordstrom, it had a tradition for many years as one of the models for creating a customer service-focused business with a  worldwide reputation - not just for department stores - but for business in general. When you have great customer service, you stand a great chance to develop customer loyalty. 

    From a sales standpoint, this ties into business growth, since hanging on to existing customers and growing those relationships is actually easier than going off to find more customers. 

    The link is hosted at Score More Sales - listen here, but would love your comments back on this blog to the following questions:

    1. What companies do YOU love for exemplary customer service? 

    2. Do you connect great customer service with c [...]

  • Sue Zimmerman of Sueb.doRecently I had a conversation with Savor member Sue Zimmerman, a high energy, successful serial entrepreneur, mentor, and founder of the Sueb.do brand and Computer Companion in the Boston area. Sue told me she has eliminated nearly all of the paper within her business that most business owners toil over. 

    According to Brother's "Cost of Disorganization" Study, an estimated 38 working hours (or close to one work week) per person each year are lost as a result of looking for misplaced items in the office.

    Here is the audio of my 16 minute video interview with Sue, plus some time notes below at the specific times for specific topics. This means you can skip ahead to what you'd like to hear about. At the end, I'd love to see your comments posted on what tools you use to be more organized. Is removing paper from your business in your future? For me, I'm not there yet, but I am intrigued and am trying out more of the tools Sue mentions. 

    2:20 Eliminate paper in your business!

    3:14 [...]

  • Here is one of the very best ways to build your business, in step-by-step instructions: 

    1. Know (really know!) the business value you bring to the market & how you are different.

    2. Find like-minded people who know and trust you and regularly connect with them. 

    3. Be genuine and add value to THEIR lives and THEIR business. 

    4. Don't "spray and pray" all about you and YOUR business. When people like you, they naturally get curious and visit your website, check out your social media, and learn more about you. 

    5. Here's the clincher: EVERY 3 months, or EVERY month, depending on what you are doing, send an inspirational postcard to all of your "strategic partners" - with a tip of value or a request to learn more about what they are working on right now. This list might have 5 people, 10, 20 or 50. 

    6. When people regularly get messaging from you that you are here to stay, building a fabulous business you are passionate about, enjoy learning about them, and sharing their good [...]

  • There is one principle above others when it comes to building your growing business, and it is very simple to follow:

    If you are not getting 100% of your business through referrals, you need to set time every day for revenue building activity. 

    In other words, if you're not full with customers or maxxed out due to all the business you are receiving - than whatever you do today, make sure you have time in your calendar to build new business. 

    Within corporate, we call it, "net-new" business. Gaining new customers or clients, and moving any "stalled" or slowed sales opportunities forward. 

    How to do this?

    Block time in your calendar. If you are a services provider, and control more of your calendar than if you are say, a retailer, it can be easier to do. A block of one hour per day can be great to remind you that you need to focus on identifying more "probable" customers, since we customers tend to buy on our own timeline (called the buying cycle, rather than your selling cycl [...]

  • Yesterday I made a three-hour excape from my office to learn more about a social media platform I had many questions about. I had lots to do, as anyone does who is building a business. My week had no down time. I almost felt guilty leaving, but I did it. 

    The nugget I heard at this small get-together of women in business was when my host explained her philosophy of business building. 

    Work to connect with 10 new people each day, because ultimately you need to get out there and talk to people about what you do. 

    It was a great escape - I made an amazing connection, and learned what I needed to learn. Hearing her talk about her business strategy just resonated with me since I encourage people to do this. There is more to building revenues but without this piece, there is nothing. 

    So get out there today!  Who have you not talked with that was interested in your products and services?

    Where is that stack of business cards from the last networking event you attended? 

    Even if y [...]

  • I just got done watching a short, homemade video that mega-star & producer Tyler Perry made called, "How To Be Successful". You can find it in a Youtube search. It was very uplifting and clear in its message.  

    Tyler has a rags-to-riches story filled with gratitude and inspiration. Many people learned about him through his plays, movies, or through one of many Oprah shows that he has been on. My nephew, Darren, directed his first movie, Diary of a Mad Black Woman, in 2005. 

    I wanted to share two main points Tyler mentions that really grabbed me.

    Belief in your dream and in having singular focus.

    He mentions people who are doing one thing one day, then another thing the next day. His success has come from believing in his singluar dream, and keeping the focus of that one dream. 

    As you build your business and your life, are you "all over the place" or are you focused on getting to a specific point or place? 

    Is your singular goal in a picture on your wall, or in words on you [...]

  • I read with glee the posts that Bryn Johnson wrote about making time right on your calendar for sales time. See:

    Planning Your Calendar - Sales Time and Planning With Your Calendar - Sales Time Tips

    Then I posted a comment. It went something like this:

    "If business owners would do just this ONE thing - making time on the calendar set aside for business building - they most likely would grow sales." 

    So put the time into your calendar - and then HONOR those time slots. What I mean by that is to not think that is a time "cushion" where you can utilize it if you get extra busy with existing clients or paperwork, etc. 

    Additionally, I'd like to offer two more ideas:

    If you work for yourself, with no staff, have a "meeting with yourself" on Mondays and on Fridays. These are short meetings, perhaps 5-10 minutes, but you prepare your sales "pipeline" or "funnel" with projects you are working on that will bring in more revenue.  On Monday you talk about what you will accomplish on [...]

  • A key benefit to interacting with potential customers on your website is the opportunity to engage in a way that they will want further connection from you. Through social channels you can help create a two-way conversation and prospective customers (or clients, as the case may be) can eventually find their way to your website.

    Then what?

    Offer value.

    Create value so that your target prospect (in the niche that you sell to) will want more from you, and in exchange they are willing to give you their e-mail address with trust that you will continue to add value.

    Growing a list of “more probable” prospective customers as well as maintaining a growing list of customers is Job #1 for your business in 2012. These lists are assets – valuable assets for your business.

    Unless you have a massive brand, it can be very hit-or-miss in getting ongoing messages out via social media. Your e-mail list contains those who have done business with you so will be more likely to do business again [...]

  • As everyone is winding down for the holidays you have a most wonderful opportunity to set up your best sales month in January, once all the holiday craziness is over. 

    Yes, I did say craziness - when you think of it from a selling standpoint. When we do a training class or webinar,  we often ask, in terms of getting business done at the end of the year:

    Q: "What happens between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day?"

    A: "Not much."

    We all mentally shut down a bit to business in order to make room in our brains for the trips we're planning or the gifts we're buying or relatives who are arriving in days or weeks. But know this - you have an amazing opportunity in the last two weeks of the year to set in-person meetings, phone appointments, and conference calls up NOW because nearly everyone will tell you the same thing at this point:

    "We'll have to discuss this / do this / think about this AFTER the holidays."

    Great, I say - let's get a date on the calendar - is the end of the firs [...]

  • This week there is a very large networking event in Boston called the MA Conference for Women - an annual event with over 100 speakers. I spoke to a woman last year who said that she doesn't attend large events like this because it is too overwhelming. I disagree - bring on the big, big event and I'll show you how to maximize your time and effort, and utilmately grow relationships and then profits. Let's begin:

    Sign up! The MA Conference for Women website is: http://maconferenceforwomen.org/ 

    Focus on what is beneficial learning for you. First, I'm attending the pre-day, on Dec. 7 which is an all-day small business boot camp focused on helping entrepreneurs.  Think about the areas you need to learn about, and look toward speakers who are subject matter experts to help you. Topics cover PR, social media, and on growing a successful business.  

    Next look for speakers you have heard about and would like to see in person. This can be extremely inspiring not to mention downright he [...]

  • This is a great time to plan how you want your business to look in 2012 - just a month away (less if you read this after it's posted). 

    As entrepreneur, you are the creator and leader of your business - it is what YOU design, and what you want it to be, not what just randomly happens. You set expectations and guidelines for your business so that you actually love what you are doing.

    Example: When I started my training and consulting business, I vowed to never again work with jerks. In my last corporate position, a corner office "empty suit" who did not know me was the swing vote when the company was deciding whether to keep me in their future plans or elminate my training team (we were going to be acquired, and the acquirer had a vibrant team in place, and I had a hefty salary). I vowed to never be in a business relationship with "that guy" or "that gal" again - and you know what? In nearly 10 years, if I felt that I was, I either worked to change the dynamic or walked away fro [...]

  • sales pipelineOne of the biggest issues for entrepreneurs is putting systems in place that help support you and grow your business. When it comes to the actual tracking of who is interested in your products and services, capturing information is critical because most people don't buy the first time they connect with you. 

    Instead you need to nurture that relationship - reconnecting with your prospective customer to build trust and for them to learn more about you and the services you offer. 

    So why is it that many of us don't have a sure-fire, no-fail system to capture this sort of information? 

    The acronym CRM stands for customer relationship management or contact relationship management - and there are many, many web-based tools to help you do this. Not only are there more tools than ever, but they are generally inexpensive and work with other programs well. In addition, they are getting easier and easier to import the contact information that you already have. Many CRM systems are gettin [...]

  • I am thrilled to share tips, simple ideas, best practices, and inspirations in sales and marketing – an area I’ve been studying nearly all my life. To start things off, I’ll tell you a bit about me, through popular questions I have been asked, and then ask you three questions I’d love for you to see and reply to -- pick any one that moves you. Let’s get started!

    What makes you a Sales Detective?

    I work like CSI Miami when I talk with companies or business owners to uncover why they are not growing the revenues they desire, and I see the money they are leaving on the table. Being a Sales Detective helps me differentiate myself from any old sales trainer, coach, or consultant.

    What happens when you introduce yourself as a Sales Detective?

    People are disarmed. They do that “Scooby Do” look – you know, where you tilt your head and say, “Huh?” They want to know more. (TIP: Find a way to introduce yourself that makes the other person want to hear more, rather than less.)

    When di [...]

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