Setting Goals

August 15, 2005

By: Adams Hudson

Haven't set goals for this year yet? Set them. Share them with your staff. Reach them. You'll be amazed at what a little mental focus will do.

Goal setters out perform those who "wing it" by 6:1. This is a huge margin, and it shows that the simplest ideas can work wonders. Yet only about 6 10% of businesses actually set annual, recorded goals. Be a goal achiever - for you, your company - and maybe most importantly - for your customers

The Goal Setter's Gold List

1. Take Action. Your marketing plan starts with your sales goals. Then attach a % of sales to the marketing budget. Conservative goals get 3 ½ - 5% of sales. Moderate goals get 6-8% of the sales. Aggressive marketers should go for 10% of the sales.

2. Get it in writing. I don't care how many times you've heard this. It works. The basics to include: Sales goals, divided by seasons or months, budget during that time period, number of leads, closing ratios, and profit margins. If you'll 'plant' the seed, you'll find something may grow from it.

3. Share the Goal. If your staff, techs and salespeople don't know your plans, how do you expect them to follow them? Really, this critical step gets overlooked. Have a meeting. Lay it out. Get the feedback, suggestions and the support. You'll be amazed at what like-minded concentration will do.

4. Get the tools. If your ads are weak, get rid of them. Seriously. A broken hammer won't work any better than the last time you tried it. Get your ads designed or written for performance. I can do it or have it done by an expert in your town. Your most expensive ad - the Yellow Pages - is the one that needs fixing first.

5. Adopt a Customer Retention Campaign. This is the number 1 most disregarded area for contractors… and the most lucrative if done right. Get our newsletter or someone else's, but get a retention program going. Your sales, upsells, profits and referrals will skyrocket.

6. Monitor Results. None of this matters if you're not going to measure it. Check your incoming lead source. Capture age of system information. Feed all your leads into your "Marketing Funnel". Make your receptionist adopt a script for info-capturing and data entry that will pay dividends for years when you do future marketing. The longer you wait, the more money you waste.

7. More Testimonial Use - This year, vow to get thick files of testimonials as this is gaining in importance for better marketing and sales. This is crucial. More of our contractor ads will have places for testimonials, and your presentation book should have several pages for them.

Now go out there and sell something!

Adams Hudson is president of Hudson, Ink “Creative Marketing that Works.” His company creates a full line of marketing tools for contractors including Customer Retention newsletters, Yellow Page ads, “turn-key” Marketing PowerPacks and custom copywriting. You can get a free subscription to his “Sales & Marketing Insider” by faxing your letterhead to 334-262-1115 with the request. Also check out on the web for free marketing tips or call 1-800-489-9099 for more info.

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