Up Your Sales

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Up Your Sales

By Brien Sorne | published June 22, 2014 |
Thursday Review contributor

The pessimist complains about the wind. The optimist expects it to change. The leader adjusts the sails. —John Maxwell, The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership

Some years ago, my sons and I set off with a group of other dads and their sons for a wilderness adventure. The idea was to travel to a remote area, rent some canoes and spend the next three days in the wilderness of the West Florida panhandle, camping and canoeing our way down the Blackwater River, which flows across parts of Okaloosa and Santa Rosa Counties.

One of these dads was my good friend Marvin who could best be described as one who highly values precision in all things and who carefully plans his next move before executing and thereafter does so without hesitation. He adjusts quickly to the conditions in front of him, moment by moment so as to avoid unforeseen pitfalls. This ability has served him well in life and in business. On a personal note, it has made him a formidable opponent in racketball.

Upon this occasion in the context of our wilderness adventure, his characteristic approach became remarkably apparent. The rest of us dads did our best to negotiate the rocks, the shallows and the submerged logs that challenged us at every turn. Some of us did ok. A few got stuck and others flipped over more than once. Eventually, each of us in our own way, pushed through to our agreed-upon destination. But then, there was Marvin. True to his nature, he carefully selected each move, executed flawlessly and seemed to glide past the rest of us.

In my work as a marketer and marketing consultant, I find business owners and marketing managers struggling to adjust to shifting conditions, media options and buying trends. So, let me suggest to you: we all need to be more like my friend Marvin. I won't presume that you have not already thought of how you may need to adjust your marketing and sales plans to better negotiate the shifting conditions of our current economy. What I am suggesting is that you keep an eye on emerging technologies and marketing tools that can help you make these adjustments. After all, the companies that are responsible for this innovation too are subject to these same conditions and are looking for novel solutions and new methodologies.

An example of this is in the use of SMS text marketing. With the increasing reliance of mobile phone users on text messaging, this emerging communication tool is reaching new heights in efficiency, economy of scale and engagement. Recipients are getting alerted to special menu items, stock prices, MLS listing information, free seminars and weather forecasts.

For our part, ALCOM has relied upon the folks at TextMarket to provide our clients with this resource. It has already proven to be quite useful by increasing sales for one of our restaurant clients that notifies its "VIP Club" members of mid-week specials. They are adding significant sales each week at a fixed cost that is remarkably affordable. At a time when ad costs have been prohibitive for many, text marketing is providing a way for us to navigate through these uncertain times.

Brien Sorne, a guest columnist for Thursday Review, is also the host of Tallahassee Talks with Brien Sorne, a radio show which airs each Sunday morning from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 in Florida.

Related Thursday Review articles:

Advertising: Which Half Works?; Brien Sorne; Thursday Review contributor; March 24, 2014.