Tuesday, January 26, 2016

What's the Story of Your Business?

What's the story of your business?

Why did you start out?

What problem were you trying to solve when you first opened your doors?

You should be able to answer that question. Because the story of your business can separate you from every other business in any industry, in any city, anywhere on earth.

The story of your business is like your fingerprint -- it’s unique to you. It’s a rich vein of ideas you can mine and use to spice up all of your marketing materials, especially the Home and About Us pages on your website.

And here’s a harsh fact: If you don’t have a story, you probably don’t have a business.

With a good story that’s rich in interesting details, your clients and customers can better connect with you on a human level. Your story gives people more reasons to want to know, like, trust, and buy from you.

Here's a story to illustrate all this talk about ... stories.

FreshBooks is now a thriving company, with over 5,000,000 customers served in 120 countries. But it was started accidentally in 2003, as the solution to one man's problem with invoicing.

From the FreshBooks website:
The FreshBooks story begins back in January 2003, when Mike McDerment was running a four person design agency. When it came to billing clients, Word was frustrating to use and wasn’t built to create good looking invoices. Then one day something happened that makes every record-keeper cringe: he accidentally saved over an old invoice. Knowing there had to be a better way, he created it himself. Over the next two weeks he coded up a solution that became the foundation of what is now FreshBooks.

The road hasn’t been easy. It took over a year to bring the product to market. After 24 months, there were only 10 paying customers and revenues of $99 per month. The company moved into Mike’s parents’ basement and for the next 3.5 years, despite all the evidence pointing to failure, they carried on. Why? They discovered a passion for serving our customers, our company and working together.
If you're a business owner -- FreshBooks' ideal client -- you can identify with McDerment’s story. The frustration when he accidentally erased an invoice. His persistence in creating a solution to fix the problem, then gutting it out for more than 5 years to build a new company, in the face of evidence “pointing to failure.”

After reading that story, who would you rather give your money to, FreshBooks or QuickBooks?

Of course, FreshBooks. See my point?

There’s marketing power in a good story about your business

Here’s another story. Last year I opened a new business unit to help entrepreneurs who can’t afford my copywriting. Because my time is extremely limited, it doesn’t come cheap. My copywriting fees typically range from $4,995 to $39,995.

So I created a club for entrepreneurs, called Marketing Multipliers.

Every month, I ship members a new tool that delivers extra profits, just like my copywriting does. But because I can make one tool and distribute many, I can serve hundreds of members. So the fee is trivial -- only $29.95 a month. Any serious business owner can afford that. Especially when the first month is free.

That’s the story of why I started Marketing Multipliers.

Why did you start your business?

Answer that question and your marketing becomes more effective, for the same amount of time and effort.

Monday, January 4, 2016

I Lost a Bet on Michigan State!

I lost a bet, but rather than buy an Alabama t-shirt, I'm making a donation to the Bill Gough III Foundation. And I encourage you to do likewise!

Click here to learn more.