Scott is the owner of Dependable Electrical Services and he talks with Mike about scaling his business. He has been doing $800-900K annually for the past few years but can't seem to break through the $1,000,000 marker. He is closer than he thinks.
The sound barrier of many small businesses is creating a company that generates 7 figures in annual revenue. At that time, the owner can either take a bigger paycheck home or have sufficient resources to scale the business by hiring, expanding, advertising, etc.
You are a sales organization. Don't forget it!
Because of the response from Episode 140 (2 Ways to Dominate Facebook Marketing) I wanted to put together another show on Instagram Marketing. Remember, these are just 2 of the MANY ways to get more sales using Instagram; however, I have used these no-cost methods to help business owners get more people walking in the door and calling them for their products/services. In other words, this isn't just about brand building -- it affects the bottom line... something most small business owners deem important.
1.) DM Your Way to Success
DM stands for Direct Message, in case you didn't know. This is a way of sending a text message privately to an Instagram user. First thing to do is search in "Tags" for a keyword that is used by your target audience. For this example, let's pretend you are trying to sell a trampoline safety product. The business owner would simply go to Instagram and search "trampoline" on Tags. The results will show all the posts that used #trampoline. Then go through the pictures and tap one. This will take you to the user's profile. In the top right hand corner of the screen there are 3 little dots. Click that icon and then click "Send Message." In the message itself DO NOT try and sell them right away. Maybe just comment on their trampoline, the pic they had posted (perhaps it was funny or there was an injury). The reason you don't need to sell is that the person will almost always reply and then tap on your profile link. They will then be able to see your posts, and most importantly, the website address link at the top of your page. Don't sell using direct messages. Create a relationship, comment, and warm up to people.
2.) Become the Local Insta Watch Dog
This works great for businesses that can only serve clients in their local area... perhaps they have a brick and mortar store. For this example, let's pretend you are a hair stylist. You should spend the 5-10 minutes between clients using this tactic. Go to the Search function on Instagram (bottom of screen, second button from the left). Search by "Places". Then select "Near Current Location" (or whatever city you are targeting). Then you will be able to see all the most recent posts that are created in your area. The hair stylist should then scroll through the pictures and try and pick out the people that look like they are interested in beauty, hair, style, modelling, etc. Then use tactic #1 and send them a direct message... telling them they look great and you would love to give them 2 or 3 free haircuts at your store. Guess what they are going to do after you style/cut their hair?? Post another picture of themselves and mention your business. Word of mouth marketing at it's best: that is social media in a nutshell.
Too many people try to push products and Sell, Sell, Sell on social media. That technique doesn't work as effectively on Facebook and Instagram. Remember if you try and start a conversation online with "I want" or "Could you please?" or "Check out my page" you will be categorized as Spam in the minds of consumers. Don't be thinking "What can I get from so-and-so?" You should be asking, "How can I add value to this individual?" Take the time to personalize your messages and take interest in what the individual is involved in by looking around on their profile. Show that you care about them and their interests and soon you will create a friendship... Which MAY or MAY NOT lead to a sale.
Good luck on the Insta!
This episode was sponsored by Freshbooks. Track all of your marketing dollars and other expenses from your smartphone. Use FreshBooks.com/Bootcamp for a free trial. No credit card required!
You've got to listen to the podcast episode if you want to hear about the GREAT week I've had, an update on BioShakes, my house project, and other positives that happened to me in the past few days =)
Now, finding the right team members (some people call them employees) is one of the most important factors that will predict your businesses success. That being said, finding good people that don't cost a fortune, are willing to learn, show up on time, have the skills/education required, and will provide long-term value to your organization.... NOT VERY EASY!
In the past, I've adopted the "try-them-out" approach. That means essentially hiring someone "on the spot" and giving them several days to work at your business to see if they are a good fit. If they work hard and everyone likes them, they stay on. If they are not a good match they get "fired" quickly. Sounds good, right? Not exactly. Here's why... (Maybe I am just telling myself this)
You are sending a message to both existing employees and the new hire that you don't care very much about them. You don't care enough to take the time necessary to discuss the job requirements and expectations with the new hire. The "try-them-out" method also alludes to the fact that you have no real method or system for hiring, but then once they are employed things suddenly switch and you expect punctuality, dependability, uniformity, and precision. Existing hires get disgruntled because they have to deal with the "losers" of the "try-them-out" hiring method. They have to deal with the guys that don't work out, bring morale down, are lazy, don't show up on time, etc... Your most trusted and dependable people have to deal with the carnage of your poor hiring system... and yes, they too will eventually leave.
So the bottom line is this... if you want to hire great people, you've got to have a great hiring system.
Here is the hiring system I am implementing in 2017.
1.) Standard Online Application -- Feel free to advertise this however you want (Craigslist, word of mouth, Facebook, website, etc)
2.) Employee Orientation Evening -- At your office or shop. Have food and fun-filled atmosphere. Have current management present. Share business history, positions available and the requirements of each
3.) They Sign Up For Interviews -- At the orientation they can choose to block out an interview slot
4.) Do Interviews and Make Decision
5.) New Hire Receives Training System and Manager Supervision
I hope that helps you avoid costly hiring errors and allows you to access the (few and far between) golden hires out there. Remember though, the gold wont shine if you don't polish it. Your systems and procedures allow good people to thrive in their position... it makes them shine!
Check Out this podcast episode's sponsor: Freshbooks.com/bootcamp (great for your time tracking system)