Why you should NEVER judge your prospects by their looks

Posted by jasoneconomides

Shop assistant: Hello, can I help you?
Vivian: I was in here yesterday, you wouldn’t wait on me.
Shop assistant: Oh.
Vivian: You people work on commission, right?
Shop assistant: Yeah.
Vivian: Big mistake. Big. Huge. I have to go shopping now.

If there is one thing I have learned in the world of selling over the past 18 years that I have been involved in it, it is to never, EVER, judge your prospects and customers. The above quote is a great example, and you may recognise it from the famous scene from the movie Pretty Woman, when Vivian, a call girl, walked into a high-class ladies wear store, with lots of bags of designer shopping, having been refused service the previous day because she wasn’t dressed appropriately.

When I used to work in a large investment bank, I was surprised every day by the behaviour of my various customers.  Surprised in that my expectations of what they would do versus what they actually did, regularly differed.   Supposedly small clients gave more regular trade than supposedly large customers.

People in the banking world or financial advisors, have to go through a process of KYC – Know Your Customer.  But this applies to all businesses, whatever you do.

How much time do you actually spend getting to know your customer?

One of the very best salesmen I have ever come across, was a guy called Charles B. He used to wait on me at one of the UK’s leading menswear retailers.  When I first met him, I had gone into the shop because I needed to buy a pair of trousers.  That first time I went in, I left having spent over £1,000

Charles’ approach to selling was to take a completely holistic view of his customer.  He did not ask the typical shop  assistant question “How can I help you?” – No –  he would ask me what event I was getting ready for; what part of my wardrobe am I having trouble with right now (i.e.. casual, smart casual, formal, or super-formal).  He would draw me into a conversation that would go something like this:

Charles: Hello Sir, I’m Charles.  How are you doing today, are you planning something special or just looking to add some versatility to your wardrobe?  Are you having trouble choosing what to wear in the morning?

Me: Well, actually yes, I just don’t have any trousers that I really like.  I have jeans, and I have suits, but I want some casual slacks for when Jeans are just to casual.

Charles: No problem Sir, why don’t you step right into the changing room, and I’ll bring you 5-6 pieces for you to try on.  What kind of knitwear, and shirts do you tend to wear, just so I can get an idea of the styles you are comfortable with?  You’re a size 32 waist, and small for shirts/tops right?  What is your name Sir?

Jason: It’s Jason.  Yes that’s my size.  I tend to wear fitted shirts, block colours like white or blue – I try not to be too loud or ostentatious.

Charles:  Okay, stay there Jason, and I’ll sort you out with an outfit.  You don’t have to buy everything, I just want you to see how you would look with what you already have in your wardrobe at home.


I would then spend the next 2 hours in the changing room. I’d never step out of it.  Not once.  Charles would even bring me water to keep my hydrated (you know what it’s like in changing rooms – HOT!)

Charles would bring me trousers, along with shirts, shoes and jackets (that I hadn’t come into buy) just so that I could ‘try them on’.  He would emphasise how I feel and then bring more clothes so I could feel even more.  He made me look good, and that made me feel good. He said that I didn’t have to buy ALL the clothes.

But I DID have to buy them, because he found the best pieces in the shop that suited my taste.  He even sold me my first ever PINK sweater!   That first visit I left with trousers, shirts, sweaters and shoes.  Oh, and a belt.   I bought it all, because what he also did was ask me to wear all the items in different combinations.  White shirt with the navy trousers.  Then the black trousers with a green sweater.  Then the green sweater with the white shirt, and navy trouser etc… showing me that I wasn’t just buying one outfit, I was buying multiple outfits.  He showed me that in fact my money was going to stretch to six-times the amount it would have if I had just bought without his help.  I would buy 8 pieces, but have 64 different possible combinations to wear them.

He judged me better than I judged myself when I walked into the shop.  I say “trousers”, he says “Get in the changing room”.  He sorted out my entire season of clothing in one visit.  I didn’t need to go to another shop for 6 months…..and when I did, you can bet I went back to see Charles.

Try to remove the “How can I help you?” vocabulary, and think of alternatives, and properly engage with your customers. Get to Know Your Customer the Charles B. way.   My sales guru Zig Ziglar, (R.I.P), would be proud of him.

Oh, by the way, Charles B. now runs a very successful jewellery company called Bead Brothers.

What 99% of business startup owners don’t do and hence why 1% of them succeed.

Posted by jasoneconomides

I meet startup owners all the time. They are passionate about a product or service they have invented, and spend lots of time refining it and perfecting it. But the truth is unless you have a solid marketing plan, ain’t nobody never gonna hear about it.

Marketing is the systematic process of letting the world know about what you have to offer them.

Business startup owners spend time putting together 30 page business plans to appease their banks or investors. Sure they mention marketing in the plan, but does it actually happen systematically?

No. Why? Because
a) Most business owners aren’t trained in marketing, they are only trained in their specialist area.
b) There isn’t time to do the marketing or even learn about it

So consequently, the vast majority of brilliant idea generating entrepreneurs have their business fail because they don’t do the one action that is NOT OPTIONAL. Marketing.

So what can be done about it? There are different options
1) Hire or JV with a good business development manager or marketing expert who you know and trust. Get them to do the legwork for you.
Or if you don’t feel comfortable delegating the entire task,
2) Get someone to help YOU do it yourself. (One-to-one coaching and training)

If you choose option 1) here is the critical thing in choosing someone to do your sales or BDM FOR you. They have to be passionate, I mean, really passionate about your product or service. If they can’t convince you of this, find someone else and fast, because every day that goes by is a day where they are not putting the same effort that YOU DO into making the business thrive.

If you choose option 2) congratulations, you have now truly taken the first step to sales success for your business. Remember the mission of your company is not to have “invented the best widget in the world”.

The mission is to invent “the best widget in the world and SELL IT”. There’s no point inventing something and then going bankrupt because you don’t hit your business plan’s sales objectives.

If you are not sure where to start, how about downloading a series of videos on marketing. There’s lots of stuff on YouTube and right here in this group. But where to start? What topics?
Here are a few:
1 – Putting together a powerful million dollar message – your elevator pitch
2 – How to construct a business card that actually pulls in prospects to your business as opposed top just informing them of information they don’t care about – i.e. your business name (nobody cares about who you are! They only care about what your company can do for them.)
3 – How to create adverts that actually engage their viewers
4 – How to put together a website that generates leads and gathers targetted customer information so that you have people to call and sell to (google ‘landing pages’)
5 – How to write scripts that you and your staff can use that give a consistent message out and compel prospects to buy what you have to offer.

I could go on….but guess what, researching and learning how to do all this ‘stuff’ takes time. And that time needs to be set aside in your diary. No really, I’m not kidding. You need to plan when you are going to do your marketing in the same way you plan and diarise when you are going to meet a client or prospect.

It is essential! No marketing = No Sales = R.I.P. Widget Factory.

So please, don’t make the mistake to miss out this key component of business success.
We have put together a series of 10 videos (completely free) covering the exact topics above, and more (along with lots of examples for you to look at), and you can download them by visiting the www.ecobusinessacademy.com home page. Why not start now by watching one of the most important videos you will watch this week “The Three Lead Generation Mistakes Small Businesses make and how to overcome ALL OF THEM”

Dedicated to your success!

Jason Economides
Founder of www.ECObusinessacademy.com and www.ECOinternetacademy.com
For more really useful business marketing ‘stuff’:
Twitter: @ecobizacademy @econetacademy
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/EcoBusinessAcademy?fref=ts
or email us at info {at} ecobusinessacademy.com  (replace {at} with @)

What 99% of all professional course providers don’t bother teaching you, but you really need

Posted by jasoneconomides

I’m always amazed at how course providers of professional qualifications spend no time educating their students on making a living.   Architects, Doctors, Dentists, Chiropractors, Lawyers, Accountants  can train for between 6-7 years  (roughly between 1500-1750 days of studying for degree and professional qualification training) before getting that nice certificate on the wall.

And out of those 1500+ days of blood sweat and tears, how many days are dedicated to business development training?   Zero, Nada, zilch.  Not a one.

So it’s hardly surprising so many professionals struggle to make ends meet.  I was speaking at an event this week.  It was to a group of about 35 driving instructors.  I asked them all, “How many of you have had, during the course of you getting your driver trainer training, any sales or marketing advice.  How many of you have had an hour/day/half day covering ‘building your own business’?.

Only one person put their hand up, and even then, he said that it was a very brief talk.  These guys had invested hours and days and a lot of their own money, to become trainers – but had no idea how to get the wheels turning (that’s pretty ironic for driving instructors, don’t you think?)

If you have taken a course towards a professional qualification, your next step is to invest some time (and perhaps some dollars) into getting your business turning.

There are some fantastic books you can buy like:

Zig Ziglar’s – Secrets of Closing the Sale

Michael Port’s – Book yourself solid

C.J. Hayden’s – Get Clients NOW! ™

And you can also visit the homepage of , Eco Business Academy, for a free tutorial every week.  (half way down on the right – look for This Week’s Training Video)

If you are on a course already, and think that you and your fellow students could benefit from this ESSENTIAL business marketing training, ask your course leader to contact their favourite business coach (or myself) to come and give a talk, or host some webinars on the topic.


The 5 Step Proven Profit Formula for Doubling your profits webinar this Thursday at 2pm EST

Posted by jasoneconomides

Calling all chiropractors, accountants, lawyers, personal trainers, building contractors, plumbers, electricians, real estate agents…..in fact, if you own a small business, then you CANNOT afford to miss the webinar this Thursday at 2pm

We will be covering the 5 step proven formula that all small business owners need to know to grow their business and their profits, and how YOU can apply this to your own business.

Tickets are valued at £65 (approx $100), but if you make sure you use the discount code EcoBiz100, you will get a 100% discount. (I.e. a free ticket)


Lessons I Learned from Paris Hilton

Posted by jasoneconomides

Today we’ll talk about shameless self-promotion. That’s right, I said it! Shameless! After all, we are learning from Paris Hilton here.

It’s all about self-promotion! Self-promotion comes in many forms and you can use different tactics to get your name out there. Look at politicians! Talk about self-promotion and in some not so discreet ways, at that. But, seriously, consider some of the major superstars we all know. Madonna, Donald Trump, Howard Stern and Bill Clinton, just to name a few.

We all self promote. Did you raise your hand in class to show the teacher you knew the answer? Of course! That’s self-promotion. This is the kind of self-promotion we are talking about. With dignity, class and the knowledge to back it up. If you self-promote only to prove you don’t really know what you’re talking about, you’re going to lose business.

Natural self-promoters are the former and I want to tell you about the three major traits they have and use to build themselves and their businesses.

  1. The first is position. You need to position yourself around people who can make a difference in your life. You need to do this frequently. You need to wake up every morning and ask yourself “Who can I meet today who will make a difference in my success?” In fact, go a step further, write it in big, bold letters and tape it on your bathroom mirror.

Also consider:

Who can help me meet my goals?

Is it a prospective customer/client? A colleague with contacts? An association with key members who may become prospects?

Don’t settle into interacting with the people who are the easiest to access. You need to reach outside your comfort zone and there you will find a wealth of new connections that will bring you great success.

  1. Now, let’s talk about Style. No, this doesn’t mean you need an Armani suit to bring in more business (though, let’s be honest-it wouldn’t hurt) J What this really means is how are you different from your competitors and others in your industry. What makes you memorable with customers?

If you are meeting a lot of people and they don’t remember you once you leave the room, you have a serious problem! This means you have an opportunity to present yourself in a more memorable way.

There are lots of little subtle changes you can make. Reassess your:

  • Business cards
  • Company message
  • Your picture
  • Your wording

Maybe even, your hairstyle (of course, now we’re back to the expensive suit, but it really works!)

You get the idea. There are lots of little ways you can work on making your image and business more successful. Also, consider how you sound on the phone and how you great people at meetings or other events. Think about your 30-sec elevator speech.

  1. The third trait of natural promoters is repetition. You can’t say it once and leave it at that. Successful self-promoters say it as many times as they need until they get a response. Would you remember a commercial for Coca-Cola if you only saw it once, no! You see it over and over and eventually you head out to the store.

You, also, have to make multiple impressions on those you are networking with in order to build brand awareness. Repetition is in direct connection with positioning. Once you find people to network with, reach out and find hundreds more who can help in your success as well.