Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Corporate America's Biggest Marketing Mistake

I've been in marketing and sales for the past 12 years. Some of that time, I've been more towards the "marketing" end of things. And some of that time, I've been more towards the "sales" end of things. But either way, one thing has remained consistent. I've always been in the "sales and marketing" arena.

And during the evolution of my experience and education, one thing has become abundantly clear to me. There should be no such thing as "sales and marketing." Sales and Marketing are two different things entirely.

In fact, all people in corporate America are technically sales people. Maybe there should be a "Sales and Human Resources" department. Or a "Sales and Accounting" department. I think you see where I'm going with this.

Throughout the years, I've seen brilliant marketing minds with very little people skills. Master Marketers who couldn't sell ice water in Arizona.

On the flip side, I've seen top ranking sales people who couldn't put together an effective marketing campaign if their lives depended on it. Sales Superstars who think a flyer here and a postcard there are enough. Cold Calling Machines who don't know the first thing about establishing your brand.

Marketers. They can get the buzz going. They can roll out a product. They can make all the marketing tools work together like a well-oiled machine. They can create brand awareness. They can take a product or service from unknown to a household name. They can make the phone ring.

Salespeople. They can overcome objections. They can follow up until their prospect buys. Loves to get face to face with their prospects. They know what to say when they answer the phone.

It's a tag team effort, really. And the big secret is that VERY FEW people are truly genius at both sales AND marketing.

So my opinion is that Corporate America has had it all wrong for years. If you want to truly have your staff at Highest and Best use at all times, then let the marketers market, and the salespeople sell.

Just one marketers opinion. What do you think?

Until next time,


Saturday, August 23, 2008

SendOutCards Announces Big Changes

If you've been considering Send Out Cards but have yet to join, there's no better time than now!

Click here to learn about all the great changes coming up.

You'll get a quick glance at changes to the website and card editor, lots of new gifts, the SOC Gives program that highlights favorite charities, being the featured company on Success From Home magazine next month, and so much more!

I have to say, Send Out Cards has been the best system I've ever seen in helping build and maintain relationships. I'd love to show you how it works by letting you send out a couple of cards for free...my gift to you!

You can click on my website banner and let the audio walk you through the system, or you can call me at 602-904-3454 and I'll personally get you set up to send your free cards. Either way, there's no obligation to buy...you just HAVE to see how great this system truly is!

Okay, that's about as "sales" as I'll get on this blog....but I'm excited about this, can you tell?!

Until Next Time,


Your Votes Needed for This Teacher!

Take a minute and vote for this teacher's video in the "I'm Livin Large" contest. Her name is Anne Marie Weather and she's entered into a contest to win $2,500 from Achieva Credit Union, and sponsored by her local radio station and the Tampa Bay Rays. She's a contender to win!

Click here to vote for her now. You can vote once a day, every day until the contest ends (8/30/08). Every vote matters, so help her out!

Remember, if you're not using your voice of influence to help out others, then all you're doing is talking.

Until next time,


Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Riding a Send Out Cards Convention High!

I just got back from the Send Out Cards convention in Salt Lake City this past week. What an amazing experience! I've been to many conventions with many different organizations, and I always come back inspired. Just this year alone I was at Entrepreneur Magazine's Women In Charge convention, the GMAC convention, and now the SendOutCards convention.

As a speaker, I love to watch the keynote speakers work their magic. I admit, I critque them..and learn from them! I also got alot of product knowledge, which is invaluable. And mainly, I think we all just need to be inspired!

And I admit, it felt GREAT to be recognized for my acheivements in Send Out Cards! Here's a picture of me on stage for earning the promotion to Senior Manager this year. I have to admit...it felt great!

Which is why I just had to write about the benefits of cheering each other on in this week's newsletter: "I Can Relate: Business Relationship Tips from Jacki Semerau." (If you need to subscribe, enter your email address in the box to your right.)

But mainly, I'm just riding a high from all the excitement at the convention, and thought I'd share!

Until next time,


Monday, August 18, 2008

Reach Out: Business Relationship Tip of the Week

We all have business relationships that are solid. And very often, we forget to reach out and nurture those solid relationships as time goes by. But these are the most important relationships we have, and so we shouldn't be neglecting them!

I know I am guilty this. In fact, many of you reading this may be thinking, "Ya know, it HAS been a while since I've heard from Jacki!"

The biggest factor is often a simple matter of time slipping by. How many times have we heard, "Wow, can you believe it's already August!?" Time flies by so fast, and even though it feels like it's only been a few days, it may have actually been a few MONTHS since you've last talked to someone important to you.

So stop letting time slip by you. Make a phone call, send a greeting card, or even just a short email. Let the people who are important to you KNOW it.

Jacki Semerau © Copyright 2008

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Let them know they matter!

When I know I matter to someone, I make an effort to use their products or services instead of someone I don't know. I can't even remember the last time I pulled out the Yellow Pages to find someone to give my business to, can you? (Okay, wait. I do remember. It was to call a cab. I guess I don't network with very many cab drivers....so if you own a transportation company, get out there and meet people!)

This is why I started on a venture based on just that...letting people know they matter. This IS the law of attraction in action! When you reach out to people for any reason, it lets them know you care. And when they know you care, they WANT to give back to you. And we all know the adage:

People don't care how much you know, until they know how much you CARE.

When I joined SendOutCards, I made a commitment to send out one unexpected card every day. I've stayed true to that for the most part, and I've seen what it has done for my relationships, both personal and professional. When I started getting phone calls from my clients, saying "thank you" for thinking of them, I was floored. So it's been a truly valuable layer to building and maintaining relationships.

So what do you do that you find to work in building your business relationships?

Until Next Time,

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Burning Bridges: When to Sever a Professional Relationship

Toxic people. We've all ran into them before, and it's never pleasant. Some are toxic right out of the gate. There are the ones that SEEM normal enough, but then try to lure you down their path to darkness. Sometimes, perfectly good people can turn bad due to their own outside influences.

Whatever the case may be, these are people that you cannot afford to influence you. For the most part, we learn ways to deal with them, keep them at arm's length, and are able to coexist.

But that's not always the case. We do live in a professional culture where we are taught to "never burn bridges." But sometimes you HAVE to if you're going to survive. So let's look at some reasons to walk away.

1. Your reputation. In the end of the day, your reputation is all you REALLY have that will make you or break you. None of us can afford to tarnish it. And while it takes years to build up, it only takes one instance to bring it to ruin.

Our reputations can be destroyed by association. So maybe you have a professional relationship with someone who is unethical. Keep associating with that person, and it will be assumed that you are unethical as well.

2. Your quality of life. If you have a Toxic person that you associate with in business, they can literally take the joy away from you. I've had a person so filled with negativity in my career that every time I knew I would have to deal with them, I would get that sick feeling in my stomach and dread the encounter. Wow! That's no way to exist!

3. Your conscience. Maybe you have a client that is asking you to do something that you're not comfortable with. Or maybe it's a boss that is insisting you adhere to questionable business practices. Or maybe it's a strategic partner who is bringing you a ton of referrals, but you find out that they're talking bad about you behind your back. Whatever the case may be, it's time to listen to the instinct that is telling you to run!

Now I completely understand that it's not always a simple matter of walking away. And often times, the decision will cost you business, money, referrals, or even your job. But in the end, you have to weigh the potential loss against the cost of allowing that person to stay in your life. When the cost outweighs the loss, then it's time to burn the proverbial bridge.

Jacki Semerau © Copyright 2008

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Take a Risk! This week's Business Relationship Tip

Take a Risk.

No two people are the same. I'm always amazed at all of our differences. And yet, we are all SO MUCH ALIKE! We're not that mysterious! And if you think about some of the things we all innately have in common, you'll find that one is our desire to stay within our comfort zone.

Oh sure, it's easier for some of us to step outside of that zone, but deep within, we all desire not to have to do it! Over the years, I've trained myself to take the risk of stepping outside of what makes me comfortable. I've been successful at convincing myself that I LOVE being in a room where I don't know anyone, and no one knows me. And truly, this has become something I now seek out. But don't think it's something I was born with, and don't think it came easily.

It's something you can accomplish as well.

Remind yourself every single day that it's OK to take the risk of talking to someone you don't know. Or to call someone who may not want to hear from you. Or to reach out to someone you haven't spoken to in a while. Whatever the case may be...give yourself permission to take the risk.

If you are willing to risk putting yourself out there, you will meet some phenomenal people, and you'll make some very valuable business contacts. But if you DON'T take the risk, you'll get left behind, wondering why your phone isn't ringing and business isn't quite to the level you desire.

The choice is yours!