Stop Cutting Ads – Take Massive Action Instead

Your 1st Thought Should Be HOW Can I Do More, Not WHERE Can I Cut Expenses…Especially Marketing!

Last week a restaurant owner called me to cancel his marketing services with us because he was having a bad spring and wasn’t sure why.  So his first instinct was to cancel and pull in the reigns, which is 100% WRONG!  

You need to do the OPPOSITE of what most do, you need to go all in. Do more, run harder and take way more action.

When Kobe or MJ had an off night they didn’t say “oh well, I’ll shoot less.”  They would show up early, practice more and then go even harder in the game.

But I’m not one to preach what I don’t practice, so here’s a story of when this happened to me with our Boat & RV Dealership. 

It was Sunday July 8th 2007, and we had just had our WORST week ever during the summer at our Boat/RV dealership.  I didn’t understand why, every July 4th we CRUSHED IT and that set up our biggest month of the Summer/Spring.

 $1,400,000 in sales was the goal and with how it was looking after 7 days, that wasn’t happening…OR WAS IT!

Then It hit me, July 4th fell on a Wednesday and no one traveled that year, they all stayed home and worked.  And what this meant was the big week that hit every Summer that drove massive boat sales was GONE!  We were down over $400,000 to start the month and it was not looking good.

So what did I do?  

Did I cut our expenses?  Did I SLASH our marketing?

HELL NO!  We did 100% the opposite,
we took MASSIVE action! 

I called together my sales team and let them know the plan:

1st – A massive email campaign.  Yes we were doing this stuff long before most, and our list was segmented:)

2nd – Ramping up our online chat room efforts (pre-social media)

3rd – COLD CALL NIGHTS ( more below on this)

4th – Radio Ads

See the difference between cutting costs and hiding vs taking MASSIVE action is what keeps you on the same path of losing sales, or stops the slide in it’s tracks.

The Cold Call nights were a first and an idea that my team HATED!  I heard every excuse of why it wouldn’t work, but I knew that it would.  At the end of the day action that creates conversations is what drives sales, so it wasn’t “if ” it would work, it was IF I could get them behind it. 

We decided on Monday Through Thursday, 6pm-9pm, calling every person we could find. Every lead from every walk-in, every boat show and every online lead.

I got a paper bag and filled it with cash and told our sales team, “every time you get a human on the phone to talk to you, reach in”.  The bag was filled with a few thousand dollars in every bill you can get.  They thought I was crazy, and within a few hours the first night, they knew I WAS CRAZY 🙂

Long story short, we ended up hitting our sales goal.  In the matter of 14 days we not only hit the goal for those 2 weeks but made up for the lost sales the 1st week of the month.  

All of this was made possible from the marketing plan. 

The customers we called over the 3 weeks loved hearing from us and came in and bought right away.  Many mentioned the emails and ads they heard on the radio. 

It wasn’t one item that got them to buy, it was a combo, but the cold calls were the key factor it pushing them over the hump.

So to recap, to FIX our sales issue we DID NOT cut, we ADDED!

We added a huge promotion with our staff, the money bag promo, to get them excited about calling

We added the personal calls to our customer list, the #1 asset businesses don’t take serious enough.

We ramped up our segmented email marketing campaigns.

We added radio advertising.

We increased our engagement in online chat rooms (todays social media).

SO when you’re challenged with a sales decline, stop taking the easy route and take MASSIVE ACTION!

And of course I made a video on this topic…

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MPTV-106 Taking a trip to Restauranttopia

Today I went to Cleveland to visit Restauranttopia. I met with Brian and Anthony of Hillcrest. All three of us share a common passion for helping out independent restaurants. Check out this episode to hear our views on the independent restaurant market.

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