Inbound Marketing Tips – 10 Methods to Assimilate

Inbound marketing tips definitely have some advantages for sales teams in improving the volume and quality of their sales. Below are 10 tips as methods of use to support your sales teams.

1. Create a landing page which each of your Sales Persons can call their own – This allows each of them to build a page that is unique and makes them feel like they are part of the marketing process. When sending out emails they can have a URL pointing back to their landing page.

2. Ears and Eyes for Sales – When the marketing department participate in social media leads can be passed onto the sales people earlier on in the process.

3. Lowered Salesforce Costs – Prospecting is very expensive for sales people moving a prospective buyer from awareness to a point of decision. The highest and best use is moving a qualified lead from from point decision to a point of action, as soon as possible. It is less expensive to leverage inbound marketing tips that will pull a prospect into the sales funnel rather than use a sales person to mange the whole process.

4. Interface to Work Directly With Marketing – many traditional forms of marketing do not engage sales people in lead generation execution and development. Inbound marketing tips allow them to participate directly and build a stronger brand. Examples are blogging, responding to questions posted in social media platforms and tracking leads.

5. Direct Selling To Be Supported By Assets – Blog posts, whitepapers, ebooks presentations and other assets can be used to help sales people add value and convert leads during the direct sales process. Assets developed to be effective in converting leads from a website are better than using methods from traditional means i.e brochures etc. This is because they are designed to add value and bring people in.

6. A breath of fresh air from Push vs Pull Selling – most organisations, small and medium businesses that rely on direct selling have failed to notice that buyers behaviors have changed. This shift requires companies to think about how to add value and empower customers to choose them. Inbound marketing tips puts the customer at the heart of all the decision making and puts the company in a position to retain their existing customers.

7. The Lead Generation gap can be filled – This can be for outside sales people. They struggle to reach their sales goals because they are unable to convert enough prospects to leads and leads to prospects and leads to customers. Inbound marketing tips can help sales people reach their goals by spending more time with qualified leads.

8. Closed knit Customer acquisition from Click to Close drives out Sales Expenses – Using strategies mentioned above will streamline the cost of customer acquisition, because sales and marketing are able to work collaboratively.

9. Sales teams can resonate with KPIs – When measuring success, traditional outbound marketing measure what a marketing department does i.e brand awareness building. Inbound marketing tips are measured on visitor to lead and lead to customer.

10. Culture centered on success – The organisation from top to bottom operates under the same umbrella of adding value to the customer relationship and commitment.

Paying Utilities For REO Properties

I Want to List REO’s, but How Much will it Cost?I’ve written in the past about how to list REO’s for banks, but what many agents overlook are the related expenses that go along with carrying many REO listings.Listing REO’s can be very rewarding, but many agents neglect to plan ahead and understand that they will be paying utilities for REO properties that they have listed.This HUB will detail exactly what you can expect and give you some tricks and tips on how to not get in over your head as you start paying utilities for REO properties.What Types of Bills WIll I have to Pay for My REO Listings?Read this twice: It’s not just utilities and its not just while you have the REO property listed!It is incredibly important to understand the lifestyle of a REO listing as you start to budget paying utilities for REO properties. Most REO listings start out as “an assignment.” This means that the bank or asset manager have decided that you will list the property. However, many times the property is in no condition to be listed.To get the assignment ready to be put on the market, you may have to have one or more of the following services performed:
Trash Out (all debris, junk and left over belongings removed and hauled away)
Cleaning
Water shut off / Winterization
Pipe Repair
Lawn / Snow MaintenanceObviously these services are not free. What many agents fail to realize is that the banks expect you to pay for these services up front. Yes they will reimburse you, but it can take anywhere from 30 to 120 days.Once the REO Property Becomes a Listing…Once your REO assignment becomes a listing, most of the major costs have been paid for (trash outs, pipe repair, etc). Hopefully your client will reimburse you quickly.Now is when you need to make sure you are current on the REO listing’s gas, water and electric bill. In colder climates, If the heat gets turned off, the pipes will freeze and your home will never sell. If you have no electricity, buyers can’t view the home.Also, don’t forget that if you don’t stay current paying utilities for REO properties, they can become a lien on the home. If there is a lien on a REO listing that you are trying to sell, it can delay a closing substantially. That means you’re waiting even longer for your money.Tips for Paying Utilities for REO PropertiesNow that I’ve scared you out of the business, let me try and give you some tips for paying utilities for REO properties. This could save you thousands of dollars and help you avoid the huge cash drain that getting into the REO business can create.

Know Your Contractors: I can not stress this enough. If you have a good relationship with your services you can save a substantial amount of money for the services. If your contractors know they will get all of your business, their rates will be lower. If their rates are lower, you have less money that you are waiting to be reimbursed for.

Negotiate with Your Contractors: As you get into this business, you’ll be contacted by many service providers in every industry trying to earn your business. That’s great for your cash flow situation! Set up agreements with them that you will pay them immediately AFTER THE BANK SENDS YOU A CHECK. Even if its only $100, once you get up to 30 or 40 listings, that money adds up. If they won’t wait for the bank to pay you, offer to pay them half up front and half once you are reimbursed. As you get started listing REO’s and paying utilities for REO properties, don’t make the mistake of thinking you can carry the costs because “it’s only one listing.” Take a long term approach and think about every transaction multiplied by 40 listings.

Talk to your local bank: Many banks will be more apt to make a small business loan if you explain that the money will only be used for paying utilities for REO properties. If you can show them your client list, many banks will take that into consideration when factoring in risks. When they are lending against big name lending institutions and know that you will be reimbursed, its much easier for them to justify loaning you the money than if you were using it for marketing or business expansion.
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Is Self-Employment Really For Me?

There are plenty of advertisements on TV, radio and the internet for becoming self-employed and all seem to highlight the same ideas- More money
- Less & more flexible hours
- Do the projects that you want to do
- Be your own bossIs this really for you? From the lines above I bet almost everyone is saying yes but there will be a few of you who are slightly more sceptical.Like the majority of you I said “yes” too, however I found that there were a number of pitfalls and I eventually had to concede defeat and admit I failed.My aim for this article is not to discourage you from trying self-employment but rather to try and highlight self employment from the other perspective and show the difficulties that can be faced rather than just stating the potential benefits. Hopefully this will help you to avoid the same mistakes I made and really make sure that you are ready for self-employment before jumping in with both feet.Is Self-Employment really for me? – The Job
One of the big selling points of self-employment is being able to do the projects that you enjoy and move away from doing the projects that you don’t enjoy. I was a web developer and I enjoyed the web site and database development but I’m not a good with public speaker and writing user manuals bores me to tears, therefore, when I turned self-employed I wanted to drop off the public speaking and user manuals and focus on the website and database development.This didn’t quite work as I expected because I ended up having to do a lot of public speaking in the form of phone calls and business meetings in order to try and sell my services and get work in. I also had to write up proposals and weekly progress reports about the tasks I had done for my clients.Looking back on it now it would appear that I didn’t drop off any of the work I disliked at all but instead it was all there, all the time, just with a different face on it. I bet that many of the tasks you would like to put drop off will still need done even if you change to being self-employed.In addition to not losing the work you disliked I found that a considerable amount was added on like proposals, invoicing, payroll, accountancy, tax returns to name but a few. This all needs on in excess of the hours you normally work and generally isn’t something you can bill for. You may spend half a considerable amount of time doing a decent proposal for a job but if in the end you don’t get the job you have to re-cover your losses from elsewhere.Is Self-Employment really for me? – The Hours
Everyone who is trying out to be self-employed says the same thing… they want to get away from working the 9am to 5pm and have more flexible hours so they can take the morning off, finish at lunchtime on a Friday or even have more 4 day weekends. I was looking forward to the same thing but 2 years down the line I’m still waiting to see any of these.With the additional work you needing done (as mentioned above) I found I had to do the normal 9am – 5pm on the billable work and then spend evenings or weekends doing the non-billable work. Finishing time slowly drifted from 5pm to 7pm to 9pm until it eventually got to the stage where the only time I wasn’t working was when I was sleeping.I have tried taking the odd long weekend off but for me this is when my clients choose to call you which resulted in the most amount of phone call I have ever received in a single day and it was supposed to be my day off. As a result I had my mobile to my ear for a large portion of the day and quite a few quid racked up at the nearest internet café.I realise it must be tempting to give out your mobile phone number so you’re clients can reach you easily but I recommend against it, or at least get a separate mobile number for your work calls. Giving out my mobile number only resulted in being called anytime a client feels like it including 10pm on a Friday night or 8am on a Sunday morning. Sometimes this would even be about home IT problems which have absolutely nothing to do with the projects I was doing for them. I would recommend only giving a business number out and then you can switch it to the answering machine at 5pm on Fridays and allow yourself a break and time to relax until Monday morning.One of the things we take for granted is the paid holiday that we receive in our employment. Being self-employed means you no longer get the benefit of paid holidays or sick days and you need to bring in enough money not only to pay for the holidays and sick days but to cover the income you will lose out on during these periods. Since my step into self-employment I don’t recall having a properly holiday and the longest I can recall is 5 days and that is including the weekend.Is Self-Employment really for me? – The Additional Expenses
The will be additional expenditure required regardless what type of business you try to start up but some types will obviously require more that others. For me I had the following additional expenditures:– Business Insurance (Public Liability & Professional Indemnity)
- Accountancy
- Reseller Hosting
- Travelling Expenses
- Computers & Software
- Running CapitalThe first 3 amounts to about £200 a month for me and travelling expense varies wildly from month to month and it all has to come out of your pocket (at least initially until you’ve got a project to invoice). Previously your employer would have had to take care of all that and you would just submit your expense claim at the end of the month and got all your business expense back.Running Capital is another problem I faced. Usually I had enough coming in to cover the bills and expenses but if a client wanted a new PC installed I would have to get them to purchase the PC directly as my funds could not strech to have that kind of expense put on it. This poses 2 problems:– This does not give the impression of a successful company
- As the client is purchasing direct you cannot add any mark up on these items.Is Self-Employment really for me? – The Person
One of the other aspects to consider is the personality of the individual going into self-employment. If you get a difficult client that comes back with your invoice and says “I’m not paying that” then are you able to follow through and chase it up and get the relevant collection agencies involved if required or would you just write it off?If you are the latter then you may well find a lot of people will try and take advantage of your nature and push down your rate or demand you cut your invoice total even though there is nothing wrong with the value you quoted. You will have to ensure you are able to commit and not back down otherwise your clients could have you working for peanuts and throwing in extra things all over the place that weren’t part of the original project specification and expect it for free.One of the best examples I’ve come across is when I was doing a few home PC repairs when I was previously employed. My friends would ask me to come round after work and fix problems with their computers and in return I would buy me a pint when we went to the pub. This continued after I became self employed with exactly the same in terms of payment (1 pint) even though I could be there 5 minutes or 5 hours… they had just come to expect it that way even though every job I now did had to contribute to my income that month.At some point I spoke to them about this arrangement and told them I would have to start charging now since this is where my income comes from and from that day forth they’ve never asked me to fix their computer again.This may seem like I’ve lost a potential client but they were the ones reaping the benefits while I got nothing in return and they were clearly not interested in paying for the services they were receiving.Is Self-Employment really for me? – The Sales Call
This is partly associated with the person (see section above) again. About 2 hours after I got my business phone line installed I got a phone call from a business directory trying to get me to purchase their services and they succeeded but as it turns out the service didn’t do my business any good. Unfortunately I was one of the individuals who could be talked into something fairly easily and more than one company managed to get their talons into my because of that.What I’ve taken away from those experiences is a process I now follow with each conversation of that nature.Firstly, if I have the time, I listen to what is being offered and then I take the contact details and tell them I will contact them back at a time convenient with me. This allows me to research the product or services without the pressure of someone trying to hard sell it to me.Secondly I ask the following questions:– Do I need the service?
- Can I afford the service?
- Do they want me to make a decision right now?If the answer to either of the first 2 are no then I don’t bother calling back and if they call me back then I firmly stick to my answer, regardless how they try and spin their product.If they are offering a special discount to try and entice you but they insist you make a decision right now then again that’s when I say no and stick to it. If they are trying to get you to commit to something which is only available if you accept right now then it’s most likely something that not going to be useful.At the end of the day their job is to make money out of your company and they don’t care if you need it or not. Your job is to make money for your company so you will have to learn how to deal with these call very quickly otherwise you will have companies talking you into buying their products even though you don’t have any use for them.Is Self Employment really for me? – The Home Life
I think one of the most important things to bear in mind is to manage to keep a home life too but this can be hard to do, especially if you are working from home. The long hours and stress can put a lot of strain on your home life and create problems between you and the rest of your family so you will need to create boundaries to help keep everything balanced.Although you have to work hard to become self-employed, especially when you are trying to establish yourself, you should make sure that you don’t put the work over the family.Conclusion
Although this seems to portray a negative image of self-employment this is simply highlight some of the problems I encountered as I tried my hand at self-employment. Everyone will have different experiences, successes and failures and I strongly believe if you have the drive to start your own business then you will succeed and certainly no-one should stop you from trying!If you do intend to try self-employment I would like to wish you the very best of luck and I hope you succeed in whatever venture you decide to try. I also hope that this article helps you think about what may be involved and helps you avoid some of the problem I’ve faced.