Ideas for Filling the Revenue Gap
Farrell and Joe Creegan
B to B or B to C …
whatever business you are in, you have lulls and voids, or gaps
during times of the day, week, month or year when your product or
service does not sell because of various factors. What are these
Wrong time of
the day for your consumer to buy from you (they are working,
they are home etc).
Not the right
season to buy. Not thinking about winter in August just yet.
tar balls or the devaluation of their 401K has scared them away.
reason, you have times when you have a void or gap where selling
hasn’t been an option before because customers just didn’t have a
good reason to buy. It’s time you were dedicated to re-thinking
how to sell in those time periods. Accepting the current paradigm
is passť. Now is a good time to explore ideas to sell stuff that
hasn’t moved in the past.
When is your business slowest? What days of the week; hours of the
day; times of the year? Most businesses, when analyzed closely, have
dead times that can be turned into strategic opportunities. Stores
once operated only 9am to 6 pm. Then came 24/7 store hours; double
coupons on Thursday’s; sampling products; product usage seminars,
etc. The idea of subterfuge selling is old hat, now.
It was rumored
the guy who invented the idea of subterfuge selling was an ex-auto
maker employee. As the story goes, he would leave his factory job
pushing a wheelbarrow full of sawdust past the guard gate every
night. Each time the guard would sift through the sawdust feeling
certain items were being stolen from the factory; but never found
anything. After months of trying to catch the man he finally
conceded and asked, “Charlie, I know you’re stealing something.
What is it?” To which the man replied “wheelbarrows.”
people who enjoy a joke, an education, and something new. Engaging
your customer in an experience goes a long way to building long term
relationships. The suggestion here is: make your customers “want”
to frequent your business. Give them experience verses a chore.
Think of ways to create more value for your customers and to be
thought less of as a commodity.
Free seminars, for
example, can create interest … provided customers aren’t suspect of
a “hook” attached. Offered monthly or quarterly, they can build a
following. You can broaden your subject matter to include
handouts/speakers who can talk about “Life Savers” … things
consumers can do to add value to their day:
to make a nutritious meal in 15 minutes
How to not
“over-coach” your kid’s sports activities
How to get your
children into college
Best ways to
Rules For Selling
During Gap Periods:
Some things to
consider when planning events to drive business during slow periods:
Get creative: What would motivate prospective buyers to move out of the norm or habit
and change for you? It has to be a compelling reason and a strong
message. Sometimes the most obvious is the seed of the most
creative. What do you take for granted in your business? What does
your customer take for granted? What can you do to make the buying
of your product or service an experience:
Make your void period offers more of an experience and less of a
In doing so you will be making it harder for your
competition to copy you. That’s why price cutting alone won’t get
it done in the long term for you. What do you want your customer to
experience in using or buying your product or service? When your
car is in repair, you want it fixed right? What if, while you were
waiting, videos were playing that gave credibility to the dealership
or mechanic working on your car? What if a person was attending to
your comfort in the waiting area? What if?
Help the consumer to make it a habit by joining your club, or receiving
if they buy during void periods, etc. Why should your customer come
The world has
evolved to become fragmented and, consequently, a fragmented
marketplace. But the good news is, it sets businesses up for
opportunities to “re-join” humanity. “Clubs” have become the venue
to drive loyalty, such as: Sam’s Club, Costco, major hotel chains
and airlines. But it’s going to take more than just frequent
flyer/buyer programs to earn loyalty now. Companies have to engage
customers: (And, by the way, employees, too.) In the spirit of
what made this country great, business needs to understand what
customers want and give it to them.
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Don Farrell and
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