July 4th.  Independence Day.  We’re celebrating our 235th anniversary with Independence.  Amazing.

Today is a day of reflection.  Some went to the beach.  I worked.  My privilege as an American.  But I also reflected on the day and the meaningfulness that it holds for anyone who wishes to know it.

I think of many of our military.  My own uncle John Murphy served in the South Pacific during WWII.  My nephew Mark Loughlin has served several tours in Iraq with the US Army.  My friend Bill Bradfield, EA near Seattle, WA flew as a fighter pilot for the USAF as did my dear friend John Phillips who won the Distinguished Flying Cross for his service in Vietnam flying an F4-Phantom. And none of that would have been possible had we not had brave Americans who were willing to put it all on the line to gain their freedom from the superpower — England in 1776.

America’s had a long history of pain to gain or maintain freedom for our citizenry.

Freedom.  If it’s worth fighting for, it’s worth fighting for.  It doesn’t come cheap.

Let’s honor the price our brave men and women in the military pay every day and others have paid for us in the past to be ‘free’ — it’s a gift.  Be thankful America. Happy birthday and, God willing, may you see many, many more, too!.

I attended a social media workshop today.  Local marketing gurus were assembled by Eric Lopkin, President of The Modern Observer Group.

Joel Leyden, the first speaker, asked a great question . . . “How did you learn about this program?”

In spite of using ‘Meet-Up’ to promote the event, the bulk of the people were in the room because someone they knew had shared the ‘news’ about the event with their ‘network’

Power of The People (We Know, Like and Trust)
While the topic was social media, I wonder how often, in our digital, nano-second mentality online world, you take the time to reflect on the most potent social medium available to your business . . . word-of-mouth?

Your Social Network is both online AND offline — leverage them both!

Testimonials vs. Referrals
Testimonials are endorsements that address ‘obstacles’ that can keep a prospective client from taking a ‘Next Step’ with you.  That’s why you collect and use testimonials –– to address obstacles to taking action by a prospect for your services.

Referrals are endorsements that position you as a PREFERRED PROVIDER of your services relative to other firms or providers in your field or marketing area. The referror’s endorsement of you makes selling your services much, much easier than if you meet prospects through other means.

Remark-ability is THE key to Refer-ability
In The Referral Machine™ — a program I offer, we contend that to be refer-able you must also be remark-able. Meaning?  People won’t refer TO you if they don’t think much OF you.

A Remark-able Experience is an Aligned Experience
When the experience you offer aligns with the expectations (or, exceeds them) of your Ideal Client, you have a competitive edge, marketing-wise.  So how do you learn what makes you remark-able?  ASK your clients.  Your best clients.  The ones who’ve already voted for you with their money.

In the next posts, I’ll show you precisely how to learn the basis of your remarkability (and, referability) by asking a few select questions of your best clients.  Stay tuned!

Once you know WHY someone might hesitate to use your services, you can address it. This is the real ‘acid test’ of any testimonial worth it’s salt — “Does it address (and thereby defuse / overcome) an obstacle that could prevent a prospective client from taking action . . . with you?”

So here’s the next question you want to ask a client who’s been happy with your services. “Tell me, what did you actually gain as a result of using my services?”

LISTEN!  You’ll learn what your services did that, in the end, addressed your client’s concern (the obstacle to action). Knowing the benefit of your service that addressed the obstacle clients had to overcome to use your services will make it easier for you to provide ‘Obstacle-specific and relevant’ testimonials to future prospective clients for your services.

Now, when you hear or sense why someone is hesitant to move forward with you, you can provide a relevant testimonial that will (of course) address, defuse and overcome the specific basis for their hesitancy. That’s powerful!

Testimonials that address the concerns your prospects have with specificity and relevance are most effective.

Following up after an initial contact is important.  Unfortunately, however you follow-up,  if you do it too often you may turn someone off.

If you do it too infrequently, you may be forgotten by someone with whom you’re seeking to build awareness and a preference for the brand called ‘YOU’.  Tough call, eh.

Dripping By Design . . . is the solution you may be seeking.  As the name implies, ‘dripping’ information on someone is designed to help you do the following:

1.  build / maintain awareness of you and your business,
2.  educate someone about the need for your services,
3.  position yourself competitively

I suggest having two kinds of ‘drip’ campaigns.  The first one is to acknowledge a new connection.  A simple follow-up note or email with a link to some content that is relevant to the person receiving it.  The second one is a periodic communication from you — perhaps a newsletter — that will serve to maintain awareness and build a preference for you and your brand of services.

An initial follow-up and an ongoing stay-in-touch communication campaign builds awareness and preference for your brand.

I predict

2010 will be the year of the search . . . the LOCAL search.

If your business isn’t leveraging the opportunities your prospects have access to on the internet, it’s a a safe bet they’re not likely to find you when they do. Tsk, Tsk.

Want to do something about that?

Try Google

Google’s “Local Business Center” to be specific.

It’s a free and easy way to help you claim some internet real estate so you can become noticed by people who are looking for what you do.

Learn more . . .


If you’re not putting yourself (and, your business!) ‘out there’ . . . you’re only helping your competition . . . at your expense.

So check out Google’s Local Business Center and get yourself an UNfair share of the market for your wonderful services!

Some facts and figures on the Duct Tape Marketing and the Duct Tape Marketing Coach Network

• The network of Duct Tape Marketing coaches has representatives in the United States, Canada, Australia, the UK and Hungary

• The Duct Tape Marketing Book has sold over 50,000 copies in hardback, paperback and Kindle editions and has been translated into Portuguese, Thai and Korean

• The Duct Tape Marketing website receives over 10,000 unique visitors each day

• Duct Tape Marketing Content is featured by Dell, Hewlett Packard, Sage Software, SAP, Intuit, Microsoft and American Express

• John Jantsch is frequently quoted in the Wall Street Journal, Business Week, and CNN Money and is a columnist for Entrepreneur magazine

• Forbes magazine calls Duct Tape Marketing their featured favorite for both small business and marketing

• The Duct Tape Marketing Blog is ranked fifth overall for marketing by the Advertising Age Power 150 and has over 130,000 RSS subscribers

• The Duct Tape Marketing Podcast was named as a “must listen” by Fast Company magazine

• Over 3,000 Ultimate Marketing Systems have been sold and more than 10,000 small business owners have worked with the Duct Tape Marketing System at some level.

• Marketing Plan Pro powered by Duct Tape Marketing is the world’s leading marketing planning software with over 5,000 copies sold annually