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Smart Company nz business & lifestyle magazine

EDUCATION

Choosing the right education to suit your career

HOW TO Maintain your energy levels while running a business FINANCE What does the future hold?

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Welcome About Smart Company Magazine:

Welcome to the first issue of Smart Company

Digital Magazine Created By Maxiom www.maxiom.com.au

Written by some of the most exciting business and marketing minds from New Zealand, Australia and around the world, Smart Company focusses on cutting edge business strategies that business owners can implement in their organisation today! Smart Company is a great resource as it provides guidance for business owners and managers to develop ideas and concepts from their peers, leading edge entrepreneurs and organisations.

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Boasting exceptionally high quality information, tips and advice, every issue is packed with fantastic value added content including videos and webinars.

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Best of all, it’s completely free and open to everyone!

Publisher Maxiom Group Pty Ltd 600 Lonsdale Street Melbourne Vic 3000 www.maxiom.com.au Editor Mark Matthews

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A word from Mike Price Thank you and welcome to the inaugural edition of Smart Company, New Zealand’s business lifestyle magazine. We have put together a packed first edition of Smart Company with contributions from some of New Zealand’s and Australia’s well known and respected business minds - plus selected international contributors. Smart Company contains special features, information, tips and advice on how to supercharge your business and your life. One of the main reasons why New Zealand businesses succeed is that Kiwis have the courage to aim high, but more importantly to do it. Smart entrepreneurs know that a positive mindset accompanied by action and the support, advice and guidance to see it through is the key to this success. Smart businesses are thriving simply because they have focussed on effective business systems, strategies and implementation, which is what Smart Company is all about. Systems, and strategies that make you and your business smarter.

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Smart Company Magazine | 3


Smart Company nz business & lifestyle magazine

What’s in this months magazine? Regular Features Page 2

Welcome

Page 3

A word from Mike Price

Page 23

Bargains4Business deal of the month

Profiles Page 16

Smart Company: Catalyst Pacific

Page 26

Getting To Know You: Mish McComack

Page 54

Getting To Know You: Richard Petrie from Speed Marketing

Page 60

Getting To Know You: 8020 Center

Special Features Page 6

How Fast Should You Try To Grow?

Page 8

Why Your Accountant Will Become A Futurist

Page 12

Does My Virtual Bottom Look Big In These?


A U G U S T

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Special Features Page 20

5 Things Candidates Hate About Your Job Application Process

Page 22

The Chief Executives Role In Pricing

Page 24

Why Being A Good Presenter Is No Longer Good Enough

Page 30

How To Run Your Own Publicity Campaign - In Five Easy Lessons

Page 32

Let’s Not Talk About Brand

Page 34

Confessions Of A Marketing Rebel

Page 38

The Future Of Manufacturing Needs To Focus On Consumer Needs And Changes In Technology

Page 42

Time For A Chat

Page 46

How To Take Advantage Of Group Buying For Your Business

Page 48

Always Be Changing - The New Abc Of Selling

Page 52

Creating A Revolution In Your Industry

Page 56

Events That Tell Your Brand’s Story

Page 58

Getting The Right Training To Meet Your Career Goals

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Smart | FINAN C E

How fast should you try to grow? By Hamish Conway

Does your business need a tune-up before you put the pedal to the metal? Answering three key questions can help you to decide how aggressively you should pursue growth. One of our clients has grown quite quickly in recent years and continues to grow at breakneck speed. Their success, of course, did not come without significant growing pains. They are a very “hungry” management team, but decided it was time to take a good look at the business and asked us to facilitate a day out of the business for planning to set their growth goals, they decided it was gut-check time – their main issue: How aggressively do they want to pursue future growth? To prepare for this meeting, we asked them to assess the following questions: 1. What are the personal goals of your leadership, and how does the business help you to realise those goals? Using the Built To Last* methodology, they had worked as a team over the previous couple of months to

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identify their shared values, agree on a core purpose and align on a long-term goal. In doing this, they spent a lot of time discussing their personal goals. The good news was, they discovered that they were all hungry for further professional achievement and were already very well aligned on what they wanted to accomplish as individuals and how we could help them get there. *(http://www.amazon.com/ Built-Last-SuccessfulVisionary-Companies) 2. Where is your business model working well vs. “bent” vs. broken? In any company that’s growing quickly, it’s likely that some parts of the business model are performing better than others. A couple of the people on their team put together an analysis of the various parts of the business, looking at profitability,

their level of investment and the returns they were seeing on that investment. One important conclusion: They have been investing in people resources too far ahead of plan. In a professional services firm, it takes time for new people to get hired, integrated and get up to speed, so they always wanted to hire ahead of need. But by better deploying the resources they already had, they believed they could get better productivity overall, which meant they slowed the pace of hiring to fall more in line with revenues. Identifying places like this, where the business is bent but not broken, allowed them to make minor tweaks to better meet their growth goals. 3. Is your business model scalable? In other words, can you grow without breaking your business model--or killing yourselves? This was a key question for them.


With their recent aggressive growth, a couple of their key management resources had been completely tapped out. To continue their high rate of growth going forward, they risked the wheels coming off the wagon. They concluded that, by better distributing the workload across their senior leadership, and by hiring a few mid-level managers to increase the leverage they are giving their senior leaders, they could avoid the wheels coming off and more importantly avoid driving some of their team to an early grave. Needless to say, this was a comforting outcome for all! Their final conclusions from these goal-setting sessions were: • As a management team, they were still hungry and wanted to grow the business aggressively. • However, a couple of aspects of their business were bent (but not broken!) and needed to be fixed. • As we addressed those items over the following

six to nine months, they took their feet slightly off the accelerator. Once the tune-up was complete, they again put the pedal to the metal on their more scalable business model to meet their aggressive 2015 growth ambitions. Another key takeaway from their sessions was that it is important to align on goals before even having this debate. If as a senior leadership team you are attempting to row the boat in different directions, you will get nowhere. Also, they realised that it is important to dispassionately analyse the business. We all periodically need someone to hold up the "ugly mirror" to the business. This prevents our natural optimism and cando attitude from turning into groupthink that allows us to ignore problems that need to be addressed.

WHK have very experienced facilitators who can work with you to achieve your growth strategies – call us to discuss your needs. WHK Group is the fifth largest accounting and advisory firm in Australasia, with over 110 offices in Australia and New Zealand. WHK is also the largest provider of accounting and related business advisory services to small medium enterprises and high net worth clients. For more information, visit www.whk.co.nz or contact Hamish Conway on 04 384-4161 email: hamish.conway@whk.co.nz

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Smart | FINAN C E

WHY YOUR ACCOUNTANT WILL BECOME A FUTURIST By Morris Miselowski

The world of accounting will be revolutionised over the next 15 years with a fundamental move by most accountants away from the backline, with its focus on historic figures and tax compliance, to become a forward-looking wellinformed wholistic business adviser on the frontline. Miselowski sees a futuristic world where employees work remotely and carry their offices with them in their mobile device which can be accessed anywhere in the world at any time. “There will be an increasing reliance on accountants, with their detailed knowledge of their clients’ business, for information about how best to manage the business’s financial affairs. Accountants will have access to all of their clients’ relevant business details at their fingertips. “Much of the mundane donkeywork needed for tax compliance will be outsourced and accountants will become specialist financial advisors who become an integral part of their clients’ thinking process.” Miselowski says accountants will move from a reactionary role to a

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proactive role. “In the past much of the work accountants have done is clientdriven, reactionary and done after the fact. In 10-15 years they will be part of a process that works in tandem in real-time with business operators,” he says. “By 2020 relationships between organizations, people and service providers will be far more intimate, accountants will be part of an individual’s advisory group and statutory requirements will be outsourced to some other country or person – that’s a fundamental shift.”

advice, playing a broader role in their clients’ businesses and offering more wholistic advice. “In tomorrow’s business model clients will think ‘you are my financial advisor, you are part of my trusted tribe, you work in relationship with me and the others who advise me, you are constantly aware and on; I expect your advice when I ask for it but also at times when I don’t.’ Accountants will know that information because they will monitor their clients, with permission, in real time,” he says.

Accountants’ relationship with their clients will be significantly different.

“This approach will apply to accountants working within a firm and those working externally within an accounting firm,” Miselowski says.

Accountants who prosper in the world of the future will have moved beyond traditional taxation

Much of the numberwork will be sent to workers in the future economic powerhouses of China


and India. Bigger firms in the US already send up to 70 per cent of their tax compliance work offshore. “Already book-keepers in India have good knowledge of tax laws in various countries around the world,” Miselowski says. “The world will become a much smaller place and work will be routinely sent around the globe.” While at pains to acknowledge that some accountants – particularly in big accounting firms or boutique accounting businesses – already have close relationships with their clients, Miselowski says by 2020 closer client relations would become the norm rather than the exception. “The growth in the industry as we move into tomorrow will see accountants offer more than just numbers advice. They will offer business growth advice and bring in specialists to assist their client with other elements of their business,” he says. “Large firms already act as

a trusted advisor and offer specialists in various areas of business,” Miselowski says. “We are already seeing the Big Four employing non-traditional employees – such as experts in online shopping and retailing and online digital advertising – because this is a space about which many of their clients are seeking advice.” There will be a revolution of business across all levels, and its effects will be felt by accountants who work within a corporation or accounting firm, and in Australia and across the globe. “Over the next 10 years we will see business change more significantly than we have in many hundreds of years. The financial/ accounting world will evolve to meet new demands,” Miselowski says. ”There will be new jobs, a whole lot of new areas we create, and new industries.” The pace of change in the past 20 years had been exponential, with

it not being unusual these days for businesses to amass millions of customers within a year – a rate of unprecedented business. “In the next 10 years we will move forward more than 100 years of technology and within 100 years we will move forward 1000 years of technology,” he says. Miselowski says we are living a digital wild west, with few rules to guide us. “We have moved into the virtual world and we now have an online world where every physical activity we do has an online equivalent,” he says. Generation Y and Z, the next generation to take over business boardrooms, would have been raised in a virtual world. “They have grown up with computers and mobile devices and are incessantly on them. They see the world as simultaneously physical and virtual.” Miselowski says technological advance has brought with it information (“we’re drowning in it

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Smart | FINAN C E

from Google”); knowledge (“I can go to a blog and get someone else’s interpretation”) but to get wisdom an accountant would need to be consulted. “What clients in the future will be wanting is the wisdom of someone with specialist knowledge at a time and place that is meaningful to them,” he says. Advances in technology will allow accountants to mine and capture the number work. “Accountants’ main role in the future will be in selling the interpretive wisdom. The wisdom sought will deliver different skills, different mindsets and offer different opportunities,” Miselowski says. “Accountants will have to become good at interpreting information; work successfully with clients to inform them – sometimes in advance of their actions; and become adept at communication.” He says the move to mobile access to information has already begun. “We are moving away from a fixed computer and moving into a mobile world. Smart phones recognise where we are, who

we are with, what we are doing and do all kinds of things at our behest. Bank accounts, share portfolios and other financial information will be connected in one space and will be able to give you advice, such as which credit card is best to use at this time. “Within 10 years this will be absolutely normal. Accountants will be mining that information routinely and they’ll know all about their clients, their spending habits and what they have bought.” Looking further into the future, Miselowski says by 2020 stemcells will start to be used to grow organs and bones, travelling into space for tourism will be offered, an increasing number of today’s cancers would have been tamed, we will have an understanding of how the brain works and children born then will live for at least 120 years. The accounting industry will also be involved in a revolution in the way people work, and predicts a third of the workers in the western world will work virtually and remotely by 2025. Accountants will no longer be physically housed in a building, and won’t work 9-5 days.

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“The notion of squeezing work in between the hours of 9am and 5pm is a nonsense. The business world will adopt a project and task model, whether accountants work internally or externally,” he says. While the need for traditional numbercrunching accounting work will remain, today’s accounting practice business model will be turned on its head by 2025, he predicts. “In the accounting world of the future numbercrunchers will be a small enclave rather than the totality. The current business model – which sees most accounting practices with a majority of numbercrunchers and the minority (partners) outreaching and outsourcing business – simply doesn’t make sense financially.” His advice to today’s accountants in accounting firms is to find a specialist niche that can be sold or provided through an accounting or financial firm which is a growth area for the world in which they work. He advises internal advisors to take on a generalist advisor role because that will also be needed. While there was limited room for businesses to continue to exist in their current narrow model, there


was still a need for them, he says. Future accounting practices will have extremely communicative consultants with a far closer and more intimate relationship with their clients and accountancy would become a much more advice-based people profession. “Where once accountants saw their clients once or twice a year and interacted more with texts, books and notes, in the future they will be consulted much more often and interact much more with people,” Miselowski says. “Accounting will become a complete customer interaction industry because there will no longer be any need for clients to use them ‘to get their books done’.” He says accountants will continue their education by constant up-skilling because they will be custodian of their own career and predicts global accounting qualifications will begin around 2030.

and loyalty is no longer required. There are a growing number of employees defined by the notion of six careers and 14 jobs in one lifetime.” Miselowski notes the huge opportunities open to New Zealanders and Australians keen to capitalise on the growth of the economic powerhouses of China and India. “By 2025 China will be a dominant spending power on the planet and will have a large middle class. India’s growth in consumer demand will be about a decade or so later. “New Zealand and Australia, in the Asia corridor, are placed perfectly to have a great influence on those economies. Geographically, they are close to most Asian countries and has better time zones than the US and UK.

He says the working world had changed vastly even in his lifetime.

“Australia also knows, from a financial/accounting perspective, how businesses will evolve. These countries are inviting Australia& New Zealand to share the business wisdom they have and that they are yet to gain.

“Generations X and Y have learnt, through watching their parents, that employment is short-term

“There are huge possibilities for Australians and New Zealanders in those spaces”.

The highly-regarded principal and founder of Success through Focus since 1981, Morris Miselowski’s specialty is futurevision. He’s a business mentor and consultant, a venture capitalist, an academic, and a dynamic presenter whose mission is to inspire, to encourage, and to motivate his audiences to embrace the unlimited opportunities of their future. Each day he consults with business leaders around the globe, helping to shape their businesses so they can be first to take profitable advantage of tomorrow’s business opportunities. Morris foresees an unlimited future for those companies which take the time to prepare and strategize for the future NOW.

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Smart | RETAIL

Does My Virtual Bottom Look Big in These? By Sarah Bradley Lauren Oakes can’t buy the clothes she likes in New Zealand. In the past she might have saved up for a shopping trip to Sydney, but now, her favourite designers are just a mouse click or an iPhone App away.

“I don’t like New Zealand clothes, I think the United States is a bit behind fashion wise, so I shop online for Europeandesigned labels”, says the 20year old Wellingtonian. A recent survey by PricewaterhouseCoopers and Frost and Sullivan reveals Oakes is one of many New Zealanders who has developed a penchant for buying online. In 2011, $2.68 billion was spent via the web, but this year, it is expected to reach nearly $3.20 billion - a 20 per cent increase. The PwC survey says the strongest areas of growth are electrical items, clothing and books. Traditional grocery shopping is also getting a shake-up with 21 per cent of people visiting their supermarket online.

Gibson-Smith says he buys a number of goods and services via the Internet. “I’ve bought plane tickets, hotel accommodation and cars off Trade Me”. Other than cars and car parts however, Gibson-Smith only buys new products on Trade Me, through retailers who have what he calls a “shop” on the Trademe website. “It seems too much of an effort to be bidding at auction for a second-hand product that I can’t even properly see and know the quality of”, he says. Younger New Zealanders are embracing online shopping and are comfortable using their credit cards on their computer, smartphone or tablet device.

Twenty-four year old Rick

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“I have no problem using my credit card”, says Gibson-Smith, “I used to work in a bank and I know that the bank will give you your money back if something goes wrong”. Some older people however are more hesitant about the online transaction. Seventy-year old Bob Sage says he reluctantly uses his credit card to make purchases. “I am not particularly comfortable using my credit card on the computer, but I do for large, known companies like Amazon”. Books are the only products Sage buys online and primarily because of the cost. “It can be considerably cheaper than going to the local bookstore”.


Lower cost is one of the key reasons the PwC survey found shoppers go online. Others include variety, speed of making a purchase and growth in digital technology such as smartphones and tablet devices. The survey reveals that 48 per cent of online transactions are now done on mobile phones and tablets. With a smartphone, users can, for example, scan a book’s barcode in a shop, send the information online and get the book for a cheaper cost. This is often from an overseas website and often therefore tax-free. According to the PwC survey, 35 per cent of online shopping by New Zealanders is done on international websites. It is the avoidance of tax, which is of most concern to the New Zealand Retailers’ Association. Chief Executive John Albertson says the New Zealand government is subsidising offshore retailers. “We believe that the Government is probably losing around $100 million each year in tax”, he says. Lauren Oakes says she avoids having to pay tax by keeping her purchases under a certain dollar

Lauren Oakes and Rick Gibson-Smith amount.

Albertson stresses that online shopping is still a small fraction of the total shopping done in New Zealand.

“If the purchase is less than $400, you don’t have to pay tax and it’s free shipping to New Zealand on the sites I use, but if I return any goods, then I have to pay the shipping costs”. The challenge, says Albertson, is to figure out a way for taxes to be collected in New Zealand. “It is very different to the retail space where the retailer is the tax collector, instead it might have to be the bank or the credit card company”.

“The PricewaterhouseCoopers report and another recent Nielsen survey put the total online spending at around five to six per cent of total purchases”, says Albertson. Bob Sage agrees that the traditional shopping experience has more to offer than simply the purchase of a product or service.

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Smart | RETAIL

“It is the social experience, the interaction with other people, but also actually seeing the goods and the quality of the goods”. John Albertson says that retailers need to be savvy and be directed by what the customer wants. “The customer will determine the future, if the customer wants to shop online but also likes the bricks and mortar experience, then the retailer might have

to think of a multi-channel approach”, he says. Many New Zealand retailers are now offering the traditional shopping experience and the chance to shop on their online store.

website presence, retailers need to take advantage of burgeoning social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter to plug their wares.

“It has to be customer-driven”, says Albertson, “we can’t turn back to the clock”. PwC adds further analysis to its survey suggesting that in addition to a physical and online

Sarah Bradley is a print and television journalist who has worked in New York, London and New Zealand. She has reported for the NZ Herald, Next Magazine, House and Garden, TV3 News, One News, ABC TV and CNN. She has a Bachelor’s degree in finance and marketing with Honours and a Master’s degree in International Relations with Merit. Sarah is most well known in NZ for her six-year

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stint as co-host of the Good Morning show on TVNZ. She loves singing jazz and often performs the Great American Songbook and French standards with her singing partner Monica Louis at well-known venues around New Zealand. Her main focus however, is being mother to her fabulously funny, demanding and wonderful eightyear old daughter Melinda.


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Smart Company Magazine | 15| 39 Outsource Resource Magazine


Smart | C OM PANY FEATURE

SMART COMPANY: CATALYST PACIFIC Introducing Catalyst Pacific – Helping people be effective in cross-cultural environments

1. What inspired you to start Catalyst Pacific? What are your goals and values?

to specialise in the cross cultural awareness aspect of business?

We have always been passionate about learning and supporting people’s efforts to achieve to the best of their ability. This combined with a desire to set up our own business led my wife, Trish and I to establish Catalyst Pacific Ltd. We saw that there were a significant number of people whose talents and potential were largely untapped and that an often unspoken part of leveraging their potential was a strong underlying need to raise cross-cultural awareness. While much of our work has been in coaching and facilitation, and Pacific communications and engagement, we are aiming to increase our business in the area of building cross-cultural effectiveness. It is a key aspect of all business. The qualities we value in ourselves and our clients are; Trust, Commitment, Strong relationships, Generosity, Integrity, Openness, Honesty, and providing practical evidence-based solutions.

It’s who we are as people. We are a cross-cultural couple, family and business. For us, it was a logical extension into the business arena, our key point of difference and an area of potential growth. Equally important for us is that it is work with a ‘good’ societal purpose. Cultural diversity is a feature of New Zealand and Australian society and an integral part of all work teams. Relating effectively with people is a key aspect of any business. We could see that with an increasingly multi-cultural workforce, for businesses to get best from their people and benefit from a deeper level of staff engagement, they needed to consciously develop effective cross-cultural communications as an essential leadership and team building skill. We have the experience and expertise to help them.

2. What was the driving force behind your decision

3. What types of customers do you help? What experience do you have helping small business customers?

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We help organisations and teams in the private, public and NotFor-Profit sectors from large and small organisations. We work across all levels in organisations but our opportunities have tended to be with influential groups particularly middle and senior leadership teams. We are aiming to do more with small businesses. 4. Do you service other sectors as well? Yes. Effective cross-cultural communications is an essential skill across all sectors. We have clients in the Health, Essential services, Energy, Education, I.T. and manufacturing sectors. 5. What are the main reasons that someone would choose the Catalyst Pacific to help improve cross cultural awareness and their employment brand? We are client focussed and easy to work with. We model what we do and have specific expertise in the area. We use professional research based tools and are continually refining our offering


model for us were challenges. For the past six years we have used an associate business model. However our biggest challenge has been in getting companies to recognise that in a growing global economy more than ever before, effective crosscultural communications skills are an essential leadership and staff competency.

and researching international trends and best practise in this area. We work alongside our clients to design, develop and deliver practical outcomes to address their specific needs. 6. What process, services and support do your clients receive? Our business has three main streams of work – Coaching and facilitation for high performance, Building crosscultural effectiveness, Effective Pacific communications and engagement. There is an increasing demand for our One-on-One coaching services. We draw from a wide range of proven, research

based tools to upskill and strengthen leadership, improve staff engagement, enhance productivity and strengthen cross-cultural effectiveness. These tools include Appreciative Inquiry, work-style profiling, Lominger Architect suite of tools, ExcelL and CultureActive (two inter-cultural skills tools) and Culture-Connect which is a unique approach we have developed through our work in this area. 7. What challenges did you face in setting up your business? Being new to the market, establishing ourselves and deciding the best business

Interestingly this challenge is in itself a reflection of New Zealand and Australia’s egalitarian values i.e. that we all have the same opportunities and should treat all people the same. Often our services have been engaged for other work, where we can see that there are deeper cultural influences also play. Part of our challenge is getting our clients and potential clients to recognise and acknowledge those cultural influences. 8. Tell us about some of the expectations that you had. Have they been met? This is very much a work in progress. We wanted to work with ‘Perfect Clients’ i.e. clients where we shared a strong alignment of values, had a

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Smart | C OM PANY FEATURE

mutual respect and were willing to explore building a long-term relationship. This way we are really able to gain an in-depth knowledge and understanding of where we can add greater value in addressing their needs. This is far more satisfying than a more transactional relationship. We are committed to making a positive difference and to helping our client’s achieve their business objectives particularly in the areas we work. For us one of the best ways to do this is by working with influential leadership groups. By and large we have managed to do that. Much of our work has come through and continues to be on a referral basis. It is hard work but good work and it has always been enjoyable. 9. What types of services do you offer? We offer a range of diversity training, cultural awareness and cross-cultural communications skills workshops. These also include pre-posting and pre-

travel briefings, Inter-cultural mentoring and In-Country transition training. We have particular expertise in strategic facilitation, executive coaching, team development to build high performance teams and Pacific communications. We are in the process of developing an online stream to our business. 10. Do you provide services throughout New Zealand? Yes. We work in all the main cities and provincial centres as best suits our client’s needs. 11. Do you have any plans for overseas expansion? Yes definitely, particularly for Australia and the Asia-Pacific region. We have both travelled extensively and want to combine this with our business well into the future. As part of positioning Catalyst Pacific Ltd in the crosscultural space, we wanted to be part of a global network with other inter-cultural experts. We have done this, meeting our now global inter-cultural expert

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colleagues based in Finland, the UK, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Australia. We are able to combine forces and share their expertise for specific international projects. We have worked in the Pacific and advised clients on working as mentors in the Pacific. We want to do more of this at home and further afield through our international networks and other connections. 12. What would you say to someone looking to educate their workforce in crosscultural awareness and what advice would you give them? It is great that they are being proactive and forward-looking. New Zealand and Australia have an increasingly culturally diverse workforce, clientele and business partners. It is important that the provider they contract uses proven research-based cross-cultural communications, learning and development tools.


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Smart | HR

5 Things Candidates Hate About Your Job Application Process By Kristin McNicol

We all know why candidate experience matters. So we thought we’d flag the top 5 application problems that leave candidates badmouthing you. This is not a new topic, nor is it a complex one. Candidate experience has been discussed for years and boils down to something as simple as treating others as you would like to be treated – but huge numbers of recruiters and employers are still getting it wrong.

up an automatic response to acknowledge the receipt of an application, then copying and pasting a template for rejections.

If you’re guilty of any of these, it’s time to re-work your application process:

It’s not quite the Black Hole: you’re in touch with the candidate, which is a start. Unfortunately, the information you’ve given is too vague. A real example: I interviewed for a job last year. The interview went well but I was warned at the end that it would be “a while” until I heard back from them. A month passed; I assumed that I hadn’t impressed them as much as I thought. I accepted another job. Another 3 weeks later, I got a call from the recruiter offering me the job.

1. Unresponsiveness. The Black Hole. Most candidates have been there: they poured hours into a CV, filled out an application form, crafted the perfect cover letter – then nothing. Even if you’re still living in the administrative nether world of email applications, there’s no excuse for at least setting

2. Poor communication.

Granted, it’s possible that

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something had been going on behind-the-scenes. Perhaps another candidate accepted the role then let them down. The recruiter assured me, however, that the delay was the result of a senior hiring manager’s holiday and even sounded surprised that I had written the job off, reminding me, “We did say it would be a while until we’d be in touch...” The moral? Be clear and realistic when you set expectations, or you’ll lose good candidates. If you think it’s going to be 3 weeks before you can get back to someone, tell them exactly that - then deliver.

3. Long forms. Recruitment software is a powerful tool; but, like all


powerful tools, it can be misused. We all love watching data from application forms appear in our database automatically – but remember that it’s not quite magic. Candidates are filling in that data for you, and they’re not keen on never-ending forms either. The shorter your form, the more likely candidates are to make it to the bottom of it.

4. Out-of-date ads. You don’t go to the supermarket and expect to find out-of-date food on the shelves; nor do candidates expect to find out-of-date ads on your careers site. If you let a candidate fill out an application form, upload a CV and write a covering letter only to be told that the vacancy expired a month ago, don’t expect them

to be any more pleased than you’d be if you walked out of the supermarket with a three month old slice of bacon.

companies are still making them. If you felt a guilty chill as you read over any of them though, don’t worry: they’re easy to remedy, so get on it!

5. No contact details. Who loves receiving covering letters that begin, “Dear Sir/ Madam”? Nobody - and candidates don’t like sending them either. Including the recruiter or hiring manager’s name on the ad doesn’t just give the candidate a name to put on the cover letter either; it gives the impression that they’re dealing with a human being, not a faceless, nameless web form.

Kristin is a consultant to enterprise on HR & recruitment best practices, having worked for over 20 years in North America and Europe. Kristin has worked with some of the biggest household names, franchises and government organisations helping senior management improve communication with all stakeholders in order to achieve better business outcomes.

I’ll re-iterate: none of this is news. These 5 mistakes centre around the absolute basics of recruitment, and that’s what makes it shocking that so many

Smart Company Magazine | 21


Smart | LEADERSHI P

The Chief Executives Role in Pricing Pricing is all about customer value management. Price a product too high relative to value and you’re selling a rip-off product. Price too low relative to value, and you’re leaving money on the table. If the role of the chief executive is to ‘maximise shareholder value’, shouldn’t the maximisation of customer value come naturally to the CEO? As recent examples show, the answer to that question is “not necessarily”. Just over 12 months ago, the CEO of Netflix (quite rightly) decided the future of his business lay in online video streaming, rather than DVD rentals. Separating one combined subscription into two individual subscriptions for each service, resulting in a 60% price increase for customers who still wanted both services, was not good customer value management. The company’s incurred the wrath of over 80,000 hostile comments on its Facebook page within a week, 400,000 subscribers departed and its share price is yet to recover. Ron Johnson, formerly of Apple, decided to overhaul US retailer JC Penney’s pricing strategy. His shareholder value management objectives were admirable: 75% of inventory was sold at 50% off, thanks to 590 sales a year. Unfortunately, customers don’t

see value in “Fair and Square Everyday Pricing” – shoppers are craving discounts and coupons, and voting with their feet and wallets. And closer to home, Deane Priest, CEO of Brumby’s Bakery fell on his sword recently, after putting his name to a memo to franchisees saying they should raise prices and blame in on the carbon tax. The revenue uplift would provide added shareholder value, but the court of public opinion had other opinions. Entrepreneurs are usually forced to do their own pricing in the incubation and infant stage of the development of their business. Sure, this is borne out of resource constraints, but at least they can still take a holistic view of their business in those early years. But as companies grow, executives need to change their role from price setter to pricing champion, and recruit dedicated pricing expertise, just as they hand over financial matters to a CFO, operational matters to a COO, and so forth. This will ensure proper attention

22 | Smart Company Magazine

is paid to Pricing in order to put customers at the centre of critical decisions and the strategy is consistent with the organisation’s overall goals. Clearly in the examples above, customers have been forgotten in the tangle of the organisational web.

Jon Manning (right) and Greg Eyres (left) run the website PricingProphets.com, the worlds first and only online pricing advisory service where companies can ask a panel of global pricing experts and thought-leaders what price they should charge for a product or service and why. http://twitter.com/PricingProphets http://www.youtube.com/user/ PricingProphets http://www.linkedin.com/ company/pricing-prophets


Smart Company Magazine | 23


Smart | LEADERSHI P

Why being a good presenter is no longer good enough By Gabrielle Dolan

Becoming an inspiring presenter can have a positive ripple effect on everything you do in business and this is true whether you are a business leader, marketer, entrepreneur or business owner. Why is being an inspiring presenter important? Why isn’t it OK to just to be OK, or why isn’t good, no longer good enough?

If you are an entrepreneur being a good presenter verses and inspiring presenter may be the difference in securing investor funding or not.

about your ability as a leader, judgments about your ability as a business owner, a future employer, a future supplier or partner.

In an age where most people can pretty much find out everything they need to know from a Google search then just providing information is no longer good enough. Your customers, potential customers and employees most likely have access to the information, what they are looking for and need is for someone to help them make sense of the information. Daniel Pink in a Whole New Mind articulates this when he says ‘we have moved from the information age to the conceptual age and the people who will succeed are not the people that just provide the information but the people who help others conceptualise it.’

If you run your own business or are pitching for work, being OK or good versus inspiring might mean losing customers and business to a competitor.

So if presenting is part of what you do, it’s important to realise this because suddenly that 60 minute presentation or sales pitch, takes on a whole new meaning. That presentation has the ability to impact, either negatively or positively on your future success. It truly can have a ripple effect, both personally and professionally.

If you are a leader, being an inspiring presenter may just result in the next promotion. Look at Barack Obama, he won the American Presidency because people truly believed he would be an inspiring leader, because he was an inspiring presenter. Like it our not, every time you present people are making judgments about you. Yes they are critiquing your presentation style but more importantly they are making judgments

24 | Smart Company Magazine

So if we understand that good is no longer good enough and we need to aim to be an inspiring presenter, it’s worth spending some time defining inspiring. When we define inspiring we tend to use words such as ‘motivational’, ‘moving’ and ‘influential’. We believe an inspiring presenter always does


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two things. They connect and they influence people to act; and they do this from a place of authenticity.

By connect we mean they connect with their audience; the audience connects with them and their messages. By influence we mean they influence action – this could be as varied as getting their audience to think about something differently, to Subscribeproviding funding or engaging their services.

m

So right or wrong, fair or unfair, if you are not inspiring when you present people will assume you will not be an inspiring leader, you will not be an inspiring person to work for, you will not be someone they want to do business with. This is the painful truth and the reason why being good, is no longer good enough.

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Being an inspiring presenter becomes critical because every time you present it is an opportunity to sell yourself, your company and your message. And every time you use that opportunity you seize the chance to have an impact, to influence and to create a positive ripple effect. Gabrielle Dolan is a global thought leader on organisational storytelling and an expert in making good presenters Subscribe inspiring. For more information and workshop details, go to www.onethousandandone.com. au

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Smart Company Magazine | 25


Smart | W OR K P LA C E HEALTH

GETTING TO KNOW YOU: MISH McCORMACK What inspired you to start Mishfitness? What are your goals and values? I had been working in the fitness industry for Les Mills as a PT (Personal Trainer) and loved it. I wanted to be able to offer a lot more than I could as an employee, so I set up Mishfitness to expand the client base I was working with and reach more people. I have remained closely aligned with Les Mills and our arrangement is a huge win-win for both of us; that was important to me. I’ve always been very goal-driven and super-passionate about what I do, so setting up my own business was another fantastic challenge for me. My objective is simple: to use my knowledge and skills to improve as many lives as I can through encouraging people to adopt a fit and healthy lifestyle. What was the driving force behind your decision to specialise in workplace and suburban health promotion programmes? The driving force behind my decision to specialise in workplace health and suburban health promotion programmes was to inspire and motivate

people to exercise that were not naturally led to exercise. I believe everyone can improve their life through regular fitness and health programmes and I had a huge desire to make a difference to the health of our nation. For me, the best way to do this is to motivate and inspire as many people as possible into positive action. My initiative ‘Putting the Well in Wellington’ has been really instrumental in helping me deliver on this goal. What type of customers do you help? What experience do you have helping small business customers? My customers include corporate professionals, and suburban clients ranging from full time parents to local professionals, as well as small business customers, corporates and athletes. I love working with business clients (eg SMEs and corporates) as I find they are highly motivated to change. They are usually very time-poor and having me initiate and manage their fitness programme means they can focus their valuable time on their business. They just have to turn up to my sessions and participate. Business owners

26 | Smart Company Magazine

and corporates also are fun to work with and generally make significant progress with their body evaluation measurements, and as they are used to measuring KPIs this usually propels them into implementing a great maintenance programme, as well as setting further goals and targets. Do you service other sectors as well? I also work with the political sector, and have initiated several group training programmes such as the free waterfront fitness programme previously mentioned (Put the Well in Wellington). What are the main reasons that someone would choose Mishfitness to help keep their workplace healthy? Business clients choose Mishfitness because they know Mishfitness is a trusted, reliable and award-winning brand. Mishfitness offers a very professional and affordable service, personal attention, regular follow-up and monitoring, and above all positive results. Mishfitness walks the talk and this also inspires my clients.


What process, services and supports do your clients receive? Research has shown that those who want to exercise, rather than know they have to exercise, are much more likely to adhere to a regular fitness programme. Wanting to exercise is enhanced through continually visualising a successful end result and experiencing, early on in the programme, activity-related benefits such as feeling fitter and

more energetic. Accordingly I use the following techniques and services to support my clients and ensure they stay motivated:

too hard early on and are not enjoying their programmes they soon become disenchanted with the process and lose motivation.

Help clients understand the benefits It is important early on in the programme that I continually reinforce with my clients the benefits of exercising. If my clients want to exercise to improve themselves they are much more likely to stay motivated, whereas if they are exercising because they feel guilty about not exercising, then it will almost certainly be tough going.

Change the programme Boredom with an exercise programme quickly saps motivation. For this reason I make regular but appropriate changes to the programme so that my clients’ interest doesn’t begin to wane.

Establish short term goals Setting realistic and easily achievable short term goals at the outset keeps my clients interested and motivated thereby easing them into the exercise habit. I introduce them to more challenging longer term goals later on. Start slowly I develop programmes at the outset that my clients find enjoyable and I ensure that they progress at a pace they find comfortable. If they are pushed

Nutritional advice It’s generally accepted that it’s not at all easy to out-train poor nutrition. Nothing is more motivational for clients than making steady progress towards their goals and I make a point therefore of regularly discussing nutrition and helping them make better food choices. Keep records and provide frequent feedback I keep detailed records of the exercise programme and the monthly weight, body composition and girth measurements. Feedback is provided on a regular basis and this in itself can be very motivational. For corporate clients I have a very structured process of body analysis and

Smart Company Magazine | 27


Smart | W OR K P LA C E HEALTH

achievement measurements. What challenges did you face in setting up your business? Like all businesses I faced the usual challenges of securing capital, and I was personally very stretched for time like most new business owners and totally overworked in the first stages. However, I found solutions to these challenges and now manage my time so I can work both on the business and in it. I have much betters systems and support structures now and have been able to consolidate and grow and become a respected national brand. Tell us about some of the expectations that you had. Have they been met? My expectations have been exceeded! I love running my own business and some of the achievements we have had at Mishfitness are well beyond my initial expectations. I have developed a loyal client base amongst corporate clients such as Telecom, AMP and others. Winning national honours four years running at the Fitness Life Awards was fantastic for the Mishfitness profile. Also, the achievement of creating and running the free waterfront classes in conjunction with Wellington City Council really boosted Mishfitness in terms of us being able to give back to the community, which exceeded

our goal expectation early on in the business. I have also gained respect and brand awareness amongst general consumers through my regular features in Fitness Life and other local magazines. What type of services do you offer? Do you provide services throughout New Zealand? Mishfitness offers personal training, group fitness programmes, corporate health programmes, seminars, community fitness events, advice and coaching. Do you have any plans for overseas expansion? I am currently looking at opportunities to reach more people via digital media and the web, so yes, this definitely includes a global component. I believe New Zealand fitness professionals lead the world (this is supported by the fact a huge number of our top trainers are recruited offshore, plus the world’s most successful fitness brand is the kiwi Les Mills brand). This in itself adds weight to the Mishfitness brand and I look forward to taking my business offshore as well. What would you say to someone looking to improve workplace health and what advice would you give them? My advice would be to set up

28 | Smart Company Magazine

a programme that engages the employees and develops a sense of comraderie, fun and competition. Your first step could be to run a survey amongst your team and get the input of your employees first. There is no point setting up a running programme if 90% of your team hate running or have knee injuries. Once you have the feedback, recruit a personal trainer to help you develop a fun programme that does not intimidate the employees in the first instance, yet inspires and motivates them to participate. Set goals to encourage friendly competitiveness (for example between departments) and measurements across a variety of variables so various team members have the chance to win across different KPIs. Introduce incentives or prizes to give them targets to work towards. You could also engage guest speakers to talk on motivation, stress management, nutrition and other topics. Be aware that you will have a range of personalities within your team and some will be self-conscious and shy in regard to exercise in the first instance. We generally find that once they reach a certain level of engagement, the psychological benefits of exercise kick in and that provides the motivation for ongoing participation.


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Smart | MAR K ETING

How to run your own publicity campaign - in five easy lessons By Jules Brooke Lesson One: It’s all well and good to want to get publicity for your business, but where do you start? Well the first, and perhaps one of the most important things you need to do, is prepare. In order to run a campaign effectively, you will need to have the following: Goals What are you hoping to achieve? Have a think about what you really want to get across and who you want to hear your messages. Media release Make sure you have identified the angle/s that you think will make your story newsworthy. Then write up a media release, following the format we have detailed on our website. You

just need to make sure you have your media release ready to go - in electronic format as well as printed versions to send out with samples. Media contacts You will need some up to date media contact lists before you get started. Remember the wider you cast your net, the better response you should get. Identify your target markets (i.e. who will buy your products or service) - and then create some media lists that target those customers. Of course, we sell contact lists on our website, but if you have the time, many of the contacts can be found online or via some phone calls to the various media outlets so let nothing stand in your way!

Photography This can be crucial to the success of the campaign. Some

30 | Smart Company Magazine

good quality, hi-resolution (1-2MB) jpegs will make a big difference to the media. Ideally you will need at least one or two ‘lifestyle shots’. By this we mean that it shows your product or service ‘in use’. It might be a shot of a child riding the scooter you want to publicise, or a customer undergoing your beauty treatment or wearing your jewellery or accessories. You will also need them as lores images for the email you send out to the media. If they are interested in using it, they will ask you to send them a hires version. Samples If the media are interested in your product or service then it is likely that they will want to experience it for themselves. You will need to allocate some stock to send out to the media as samples. Be aware that these are often not returned unless they are of a very high value. If your business is service-based,


then work out a way to let a journalist try the experience for themselves. You may also want to set aside some vouchers/ stock for promotional purposes. Often the media will be happy to run a competition for their readers or viewers, in return for prizes. This can be a cost effective way to get coverage. Website/list of stockists You will need to make sure that your website is up to date and that you are happy with the content before you start to tell the world about it! If you sell your product or service from the site, then make it easy for the media to see the prices and the availability. If you sell your product from retail stores, then have them listed or offer a phone number that people can ring to find their nearest stockist.

the national media will be receptive. If it is local, then the local media will want to know. Lastly, but definitely not least, you will need a biography (background information) about the person who will be available for interviews - whether this is yourself, an expert in the field or someone else you have nominated. Before you get interviewed on radio or TV (and sometimes in magazines), it can be handy to have a short biography to send through to the journalist so they have an idea about the business and can formulate some relevant questions to ask you. Okay, so once you have all that together, you are just about ready to get started.

Jules Brooke Handle Communications and Handle Your Own PR Ph: 0409 494 490 www.handle.com.au www.handleyourownpr.com.au (Au/NZ) www.handleyourownpr.com (USA) www.handleyourownpr.co.uk (UK)

Remember that if you are targeting customers nationally,

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Smart | MAR K ETING

Let’s not talk about Brand By Michel Hogan Here’s an idea. Heresy in many circles. Downright subversive you could say. Let’s not create a Brand. Let’s not build one. Let’s not talk about our “personality or essence”. Let’s let our logo and name just be our logo and name. In short, let’s not talk about Brand. Let’s have a different conversation instead. Over 10 years ago Saatchi & Saatchi CEO Kevin Roberts proclaimed that Brands were table steaks, old hat, of no use to anyone. At the time I disagreed with him wholeheartedly, but during the ensuing years I’ve come to see he had a point. Granted, it wasn’t the point he was making (which was in support of his “brand replacement” Lovemarks). However, in his contention that Brand has had its day – well on that front, I now agree. Brand today has become a crutch. That thing organisations too often do instead of the things they should really be focusing on. The distraction. Make a lot of noise over here and over there maybe people won’t notice everything they aren’t doing. Made little more than the pawn of marketing whim, it too often finds itself sacrificed to hype and “unkeepable” promises so out of alignment with what the organisation can really deliver as to be almost fictional. Or even worse it gets strip mined of it’s history

and legacy in service to whatever the agency d’jour deems the latest incarnation. I’m also not here to suggest we give “Brand” another name. (Full disclosure I do have a word I use to describe what I talk about, but that is not a replacement for Brand.) What I am suggesting is that we put Brand out to pasture for a bit. Give it a little holiday and let’s talk about the things we already do in our organisations instead. Things that don’t need a moniker or label to be understood.

Let’s talk about how we can meet those expectations (not exceed them because that takes a lot of resources with little return). Let’s talk about alignment of all of that across different areas of our organisation. And most importantly let’s talk about how we connect those things up and really understand them so we can make promises we can keep and keep the promises we make. Consistently.

Let’s talk about why we are doing what we do in the first place.

Because in the end that is what will get people to remember you, talk about you and come back for more.

Let’s talk about what our values are. What we believe and how we show them.

Let’s not talk about Brand.

Let’s talk about our products and services. What problem do they solve? Why will people want to buy them? Let’s talk about who the right people are for our organisation and how we want to treat them. Let’s talk about our customers and what expectations we want them to have.

32 | Smart Company Magazine

Michel Hogan is an independent adviser and advocate dedicated to helping organisations make promises they can keep and keep the promises they make – with a strong, resilient organisation and Brand as the result. She also publishes a blog at michelhogan. com. You can follow Michel on Twitter @michelhogan.


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Smart Company Magazine | 33


Smart | MAR K ETING

CONFESSIONS OF A MARKETING REBEL By Richard Petrie

People often ask me what book should they read to learn marketing. When I write one mine, but until then… Here’s better way to learn. My 8 year old daughter Claudia is off school sick so to keep her occupied for a few hours we went to sign up at a new video shop today in Kilbirnie, Wellington. I don’t know why we went to the new place because I am a member of another more run down video shop that has bad parking outside but this new one just looked bigger and cleaner and had better parking. Now, take note, the guy behind the counter was NOT a selling machine but the systems forced him to do a great job with me.

like other stores we don’t believe in passwords because other people can hear them” (Oh yes good point someone could hear my password and steal a $5 DVD under my name.)

As David Sandlers says “Either the client follows your process for buying or you end up following the client’s process for not buying”

I doubt this is a big problem but the thought of someone using my name feels like an invasion of my identity so YES I give them 10 points for that difference, even though it has never been an issue in the past and is probably never going to be an issue in the future.

3. But he was not finished there… he explains that where other stores require you to have the movie back by 1pm Blockbuster allow you till closing the next day – that’s a whole extra half day. 6 points

The second thing I noticed was…

Here’s what I noticed 1. “We operate a bit differently from other video stores here…”  music to my ears, YES they are different … man were my ears pricked for the differences, he continued “our  process is safer for the user: no card, no password

I’ll give him 8 points for this control.

2. The guy was polite but he was in control of the whole process – it was step one two three so I felt he knew where he was going and by following him we’d be done in the quickest most efficient manner because Claudia was threatening to be sick.

34 | Smart Company Magazine

By now he had me so I looked around the store… 4. 10 ten most rented videos list calculated on the wall, which saves me time a gives, me confidence. Ok, this works too. 5 points for that. It plays to the social proof


whereby I think that if others are watching it then it must be good. Also there is a certain level of motivation not to want to have missed watching a movie that might be good because others will be talking about it and if I have not seen it I will be left out of the conversation. I hate that. The shop down the road does not have this winner’s wall! 5. No ‘adult’ section – “we are for families - before I worked here I’d take my kids to the video store and always be worried they’d go into the adult section”. Now that was never a worry before at my old store but it is a concern on my mind now (brilliant he got me). Five points and I are loving it. What do you think their ideal target market are? Family’s right. So they don’t care if they piss off the sexual deviants and the dirty old men because they aren’t their target, in fact you want to force them down the road to my old store that has the beads draped down over the

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door to block out children (Yeah right)

dark, very suburban, 4 points again.

You don’t want to be all things to all people but you do want to be the absolute best to families.

By now Claudia asks to go outside because she thinks she might throw up. She is looking white. I am torn between following her and find more marketing treasures.

Now for a little advanced store layout psychology… 6. Wide isles – big factor in supermarket shopping and DIY stores, people prefer space and will go to more spacious shops. 6 points, boring but true. 7. Bright clean organized looking; my old store is small

8. Then if that was not enough I get given three pieces of paper and get this … all different shapes and sizes, oh man I am in heaven here (its like a mini shock and awe box but without the box).

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Smart | MAR K ETING

These bits of paper contained the following 9. OK get this! On my small $5 receipt at the top I get the list of April’s MUST SEE movies 5 points 10. Next piece of paper: the Blockbuster Kilbirnie pricelist which includes the shop opening hours and the late fee schedule but they call it the “extended viewing fee”, brilliant seven points. Not only have the given me fair warning but they have also assumed that if I don’t get it back then it was my choice. 11. Then I get the coupon page… rent one get one free x 3, rent 5 movies for $20, one day extensions. Of course all offers expire within about 50 days so I better hurry up and condition myself to become a regular customer to save up big. 10 points

This voucher business makes it look like I am saving big but really they have me bobbing back into that shop more times than yoyo. How many times do I hear from clients that say they are a commodity and that our ideas don›t apply to them? Holly cow how much more commodity can you get than renting the same DVD›s from one shop to another? Blockbuster is not the best because they have better movies but because they have better marketing. Meanwhile Claudia is sitting outside on the street in her dressing gown to get fresh air. A lady has stopped to see if she is homeless since she is not at school and in her pajamas. Claudia looks at me with energy less eyes as I assure

36 | Smart Company Magazine

the lady she is with me and I am a great father, it’s just that I was sidetracked with a great sequence of marketing home runs. The lady does not seem convinced. Would you have seen any of those free marketing lessons?

Richard Petrie www.speedmarketing.co.nz


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Smart | MAR K ETING

The future of Manufacturing needs to focus on consumer needs and changes in Technology By Gene Stark In one word - MARKETING - the changing needs in the market place! Mass Marketing & Traditional Advertising as a real science were born after WWII to make the ‘masses’ aware of all the wonderful new products being produced by mass production which was beginning to come out of its’ teenage years of the 1920’s. Rather than complaining about the things manufacturers cannot control, they need to start taking marketing seriously to remain competitive and relevant, whilst ignoring statistics and market data that added absolutely no value.

Here are some future trends that cannot be ignored! Here’s a typical headline from the last few months, and there is no doubt that as sad as it maybe these sorts of headlines have become and will continue to become the staple of the business pages here in Australia and globally! “Manufacturing needs more than promises” - an opinion piece from February 10, 2012 in The Age argues that Australia must keep the skills to sustain economic diversity. The article makes the following points:

• ALMOST 1 million Australians work in manufacturing, compared with 135,000 in mining. • Only retailing employs more people than manufacturing. • Decline in the manufacturing sector has accelerated in the past three years, with more than 100,000 jobs lost. • Neither the government nor the opposition has given any indication that they see the crisis in manufacturing as more than an opportunity to lash each other.

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In New Zealand the figures are slightly different because the economy is less reliant on mining than Australia. But the exact same lessons for manufacturing apply. But is this really a problem and is it the real problem? Here are 2 great articles that examine the future of manufacturing and the changes this will bring to the workforce and the economy. They are great because they focus on the future instead of the past and they provide ideas on how to best survive in this time of change!


• www.theage.com. au/opinion/politics/ manufactured-crisis20120428-1xro9.html and • www.economist.com/ node/21553017 In summary the future is not bleak, but: • the government and the industry (employers and employees) need to let go of nostalgia • “…we still need to MAKE things but the number of people employed to do so will keep decreasing and this is called productivity. Even in China manufacturing jobs are in decline!” • “…the manufacturing successes in New Zealand & Australia come from niche manufacturers in areas that require high skills and high precision.” Niche is the operative word here! Differentiation through

your product offering and marketing communication (branding - how your customers and prospects perceive your offering) are the order of the day!

To illustrate the point here’s another quote “Factories used to move to low-wage countries to curb labour costs. But labour costs are growing less and less important: a $499 firstgeneration iPad included only about $33 of manufacturing labour, of which the final assembly in China accounted for just $8.” Guess where the other costs went? Design, Marketing, Distribution…

• “…service industries are more diverse and less tangible. But productive work is productive work. What should it matter if we make a dollar’s worth of tractors or code a dollar’s worth of websites?” Smart manufacturers have realised that the greatest value is in new product ideas, products that solve problems in new and cost effective or convenient ways! They have realised that design and marketing of these products is what actually makes money! And the one thing that cannot be replicated quickly and easily is the relationship that you build with your customers! The rest can and will be copied and patents are unlikely to help you for long!

• “Offshore production is increasingly moving back to rich countries not because Chinese wages are rising, but because companies now want to be closer to their customers so that they can respond more quickly to changes in demand. And some products are so sophisticated that it helps to have the people who design them and the people who make them in the same place.” • “The first two industrial revolutions made people richer and more urban. Now

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Smart | MAR K ETING

a third revolution is under way. Manufacturing is going digital…the applications of 3D printing are especially mind-boggling. Already, hearing aids and high-tech parts of military jets are being printed in customized shapes. The geography of supply chains will change.” • “The lines between manufacturing and services are blurring. Rolls-Royce no longer sells jet engines; it sells the hours that each engine is actually thrusting an aeroplane through the sky.” • “Like all revolutions, this one will be disruptive. Digital technology has already rocked the media and retailing industries, just as cotton mills crushed hand looms and the Model T put farriers out of work.” The question is - are you manufacturing your future by listening to the market?

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Gene Stark - is the co-founder of The Marketing Network, an SME Branding & Marketing Agency that brings together every marketing discipline, providing convenient and affordable solutions for their clients - professional services and B2B firms that need to find, attract and retain customers. email: gene.stark@ themarketingnetwork.com.au LinkedIn: http://au.linkedin. com/in/genestark Twitter: @starkreality4u web: www. themarketingnetwork.com.au


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By application only No money paid up front and no lock in contracts Work one on one with 80-20 Center Founder and Smart B.O.M.B. Publisher Tom Poland personally To register your interest please email Tom@8020Center.com with the following information (we will review and then advise you of the most appropriate next step): Your name Best contact phone number Company name Company website URL Product or service you sell Annual revenue Smart Company Magazine | 41


Smart | FRAN C HISING

Time for a chat By Mark Fernandez The key to ongoing success with franchisees is communication In the many years I have been involved in franchising it has never ceased to amaze me that Franchisors neglect or become complacent with the communication levels they have with their Franchisees. Franchisors must seize every opportunity to communicate with their Franchisees as nothing builds a stronger team better than constant exchanges and a flow of information. Of course, the best communication is a two way process, but it is the Franchisor’s responsibility to set the processes by which the parties can converse effectively, and there are several ways to accomplish this. A Franchisee that is not communicated effectively to, is a lonely Franchisee that festers on the solitude and quickly establishes an attitude that they are on their own. This is despite all the promises during the start up phase and the attitude that nobody at Head Office cares about their success quickly grows! The lonely Franchisee then talks to other lonely Franchisees and the “us and them” attitude quickly develops and becomes a festering abscess on the entire

system, preventing positive and effective growth. In such situations Franchisees have been known to form Committees to tackle issues with the Franchisor and this format ensures bad communication as the underlying attitudes are of aggression and antagonism.

constantly resold and reinforced to Franchisees or they will forget exactly why they decided to enter the franchise in the first place. Even Franchisees that have been in the system for several years need this positive reinforcement, even though they have heard it all before!

A Franchisor cannot afford for this situation to develop and it is all too easy to avoid.

Franchisors often do enormous amounts of work behind the scenes such as product supply negotiation or research or new product innovation, but then the Franchisor fails to communicate to the Franchisees just exactly what a good job they have done. The Franchisees deserve to know what they are getting for their royalty payments, and if they are not told, how can Franchisees appreciate what the Franchisor staff have achieved on their behalf.

Aside from profitability, I believe the one single factor that can make or break a franchise system is the failure to communicate. It is easy to say that communication is being attended to, but a Franchisor must constantly ask of themselves ‘at what level’ and ‘in which ways’ effective communication is being addressed. A very common failing in Franchisors is that they fail to continually remind Franchisees exactly why they are better off inside the franchise system. Just because they are faced with the benefits every day, Franchisors forget to remind Franchisees that they are getting the best buying prices, they are getting great training, they do have exclusive products etc. This should be

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Even if a communication raises a problem, surely it is best addressed immediately, before it becomes a major issue, giving the parties a better chance to discuss and resolve any problems.


“Communication creates belonging” Franchising is about teamwork and mutual success. No team has ever been completely successful without “belonging”. So what can the Franchisor do to communicate effectively and provide the happy environment that strong communication helps to establish? Obviously a regular face to face meeting is the best method to build strong relationships. However, this method is counter productive if the Franchisor calls just for a cup of coffee and a chat every time. Whilst such informal contact has a very valuable contribution to the overall relationship, both the Franchisee and Franchisor are business people whose time is valuable and should be treated with respect. So, when a Franchisor calls on a Franchisee, there should be specific reasons to make that call. The Franchisee will wish to hear about ways to improve their business and an effective Franchisor will always use the call to provide that avenue, be it by sales training or product knowledge or store change recommendations or discussions on benchmarking data.

As the physical call is so costly to a Franchisor, particularly for regional franchises, this method of communication must be supplemented by other methods. This is no reason to not call at all. I once found a country based Franchisee of a major system in a shopping centre that had not seen anyone from Head Office since they set up their store two and a half years previously. Was he unhappy, and deservedly so. Even the fact that that system referred to Head Office instead of Support Office is perhaps indicative of the overriding attitudes within that system. Franchisors often do not utilise all their staff on physical calls and have the same representative visiting all the time. By using different staff members the Franchisor can spread the load of visiting responsibility and provide variation and interest to the Franchisee. For example, if there is a buyer or accountant or administration person visits a Franchisee they can offer different skills and value to a Franchisee than the standard operations representative (no offence to my field service friends). This also helps Support Office staff to know and understand the business from

a Franchisee’s perspective and often results in a dramatic and positive change in attitudes from both parties towards each others dealings in business. Good Franchisors chart the visits made by all their team to ensure a Franchisee is not physically neglected. This is a very simple but effective method of ensuring a Franchisee doesn’t feel unloved. One Franchisor used to use the traffic light method – listing his franchisees on a chart on his office wall. Every time he spoke with a Franchisee he assessed their general contentedness within the system and applied a coloured sticker alongside their name. Happy was green, average was amber and unhappy was read. In one glance at his board he could assess the overall feeling in his team and could take action accordingly. One major Franchisor uses “Happy Calls” to promote healthy communications. Rather than have a physical call when there is not much to discuss, the normal result is a failure to communicate at all. This Franchisor rings the Franchisee and simply asks the question “This is a happy call just to make sure everything is running well, is there anything you wish to discuss?” What

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Smart | FRAN C HISING

eventuates is that nearly every Franchisee has a small issue to cover, but the Franchisee is able to have that resolved and feel loved at the same time. E-mails are a very necessary but effective means of rapid communication but Franchisors and Franchisees must be aware of the language used in these communications. It is very easy to upset someone by using ineffective language in this impersonal medium. Always ask the question “How would I feel if I received this e-mail?” before pressing the send button. I may be old fashioned but I am of the firm belief that a personal phone call, rather than an e-mail, is well worth any additional time required to build franchise relationships. Newsletters are hard work for the editor but a wonderful way of creating a family feeling. However, a newsletter needs to be about the newsy tit bits from within the group and not a “Message from the Managing Director” style newsletter. Franchisees and their staff like to read about their peers and this communication should not be used for general business communications. Franchisors have reported mixed results in their success rates with Franchise Advisory Councils (FAC), but my general

observations are that if this is used as one of a mix of communication methods, it is a highly effective tool. If the FAC is used as a sole or primary forum to solve all the problems then it has been set impossible goals from the outset.

occur! Now, think of something someone has done well recently and compliment them on it – after all, we don’t communicate only with problems! You will enjoy this as much as the recipient.

What better way to communicate with Franchisees than by ongoing training. We all benefit from interaction with peers and the very philosophy of franchising should bring us all together for mutual learning and benefit. Franchisors all too often neglect training and miss a very strong opportunity to communicate effectively with their Franchisees. The annual conference is a time to involve Franchisees – don’t use the gathering to lecture them. Prior to the conference ask them what they would like to get out of the meetings apart from having a great time! With communication issues, are you really covering all bases, or are you just kidding yourself? You have to find the time to communicate or your business will die, irrespective of wether you are a Franchisor or a Franchisee. When you do make communication a priority your business, the fun level will rise significantly because you will solve problems before they

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Mark Fernandez - brings over 20 years of senior management experience in business development and franchising to your business. If you would like to discuss your competitive position further or would like help with implementing any of the ideas in this article, please contact: Mark Fernandez Director Business Development Alliance Australia and New Zealand www.bda-online.com.au mark@bda-online.com.au


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CLICK HERE To Find Out More about How Maxiom Can Provide a Solution to All Your Digital Content and Creative Needs 24 | Modern Franchise Magazine

Smart Company Magazine | 45


Smart | ENTRE P RENEUR

How to Take Advantage of Group Buying For Your Business By Mikel Kew • Great Service The key to Success

• Use Deals Wisely • Lower Customer Acquisition Cost Group Buying and Daily Deals are no longer just for consumers; businesses can now get involved in this growing trend and can save their company thousands of dollars in the process.

cashing in on this bonanza of cut-price offers, business has been slow to catch up.

Group buying and daily deal sites have become the Australian online success story of the past two years, with a market now worth over $500 million annually, and growing. Group buying has taken this country by storm and the likes of Scoopon, LivingSocial, Spreets and Cudo have become household names. More than 5000 deals are published every month, with an average of 1 million vouchers sold, as consumers scramble to find discounts on everything from restaurant meals, jewellery and holidays to electronics, clothing and massages.

There are some basic rules to follow with group buying deals for business, both as a customer and a vendor.

But while the public has been

Group Buying Rules for Business

As a business owner or someone charged with the responsibility for purchasing, group buying is an excellent way for business to trial a new product or service before committing to a longer term involvement with that supplier. In a way it’s a no risk environment. There is no onus on the customer to continue purchasing the product or service and there is no risk to the vendor as they incur no costs unless the deal is accepted by the market.

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Used well, group buying sites can save businesses around 70% on many of their most common overhead items, from stationery, office supplies, coffee and IT support to SEO, printing, business coaching, office equipment, cleaning services and much more. Benefits for the Risk Averse The advantages work two-fold, as not only can a business save money on products they need, it can also advertise directly to their business audience. Unlike traditional advertising, there’s no upfront spend whatsoever, just a commission taken from each sale that brings a new customer through your door. As an advertiser or vendor it is important to consider that your


offer is structured correctly and that you are able to deliver the product or service at the discount price without compromising on your customer experience. Many purchasers of group buying deals will be doing so to evaluate your ongoing value as a supplier, so it is important that you are able to deliver at a very high standard. Customer Experience is Still the Key In fact, in providing a great customer experience, the ongoing value from your new customer will significantly outweigh the discount given in the original promotion. This is particularly valuable for industries that typically have high customer acquisition costs. Maturing Sector Group buying for business is still very much in its infancy in Australia, but with the market predicted to grow to over $100 million in 2013 it is has the ability to have a significant impact on your business and if utilised well, your bottom line. We are now seeing some major

companies becoming vendors on group buying and business deals sites as these sites become more popular and sophisticated. This has a flow on effect, meaning more and more businesses are taking advantage of group buying as both a customer and a vendor. B2B group buying is the next big thing in Australia’s online business industry, and it is just getting started. Be smart and utilise it well. Buy what you need or want to try out. Trial various promotions of your own products and services, after all there is little or no risk involved. Everyone Still Loves a Great Deal Business owners are always looking for ways to save money or get an advantage over the competition. Group buying for business, if used well, is another excellent opportunity that businesses must consider.

Mikel Kew Mikel Kew is Co-Founder & CEO of Bargains 4 Business, Australia’s premier business group buying and deals site. Mikel is also Director of Film Cartel and works as a technology consultant for a number of Australian eCommerce sites. LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=53411085 Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Bargains4Business Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/ B4B_Australia Google+: https://plus.google. com/107036293438866621077

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/ b4baustralia/ Website: http://www.bargains4business.com. au/?a_aid=7a425998&a_ cid=2330e789

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Smart | E n t r e p r e n e u r

ALWAYS BE CHANGING THE NEW ABC OF SELLING

By Mark Matthews

• Become the architect of tomorrow’s business relationships. • Create new and extraordinary customer experiences. • Make these experiences intentional. With the increased pace of technology bewildering many businesses it can be difficult to maintain focus on providing an extraordinary customer experience when your customers have embraced these new technologies but your business hasn’t. Many marketers still produce communications based around traditional marketing and sales strategies, disseminating messages pushing their brandlike in the old world sales mantra, ‘Always Be Closing.’ Customers Are Changing So Must You However, as your customers change and find information in new ways so must your marketing adapt to meet customers’ needs. In his book, “The End of

Business as Usual,” Brian Solis talks about the three types of customers:

informed through web sites and they are very comfortable with ecommerce.

1. Traditional

Connected

2. Online

They live in mobile & social networks…a key difference between connected individuals and the other two types of consumers is that connected individuals look for information in a different way, expecting it to come to them via their peers, so instead of going to Google, they’ll go to social networks and ask people “what do you think I should do?” They’ll ask for information or recommendations, read the reviews of their peers, they’ll do in-store research using their mobile phone – so they are much more empowered and much more informed.

3. Connected So what are the definitions of each of these customer types? Traditional They watch TV, read newspapers and magazines and they have conversations in the real world with other people and are not really going to change much in terms in how they influence and how they learn in the future. Online These are the customers we have come to know over the last 20 years. They start their search with Google, they are comfortable with getting

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Connected Customers - a $4.2 Trillion Dollar Opportunity The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) reported in “The Connected World - The $4.2 Trillion Dollar Opportunity,’ that businesses that have changed to become “high-web” are the most successful – increasing revenues and profits and creating more jobs. High-web organisations use a range of Internet tools to market, sell, and support customers, interact with suppliers, and empower employees. This is compared to medium-web businesses that market or sell goods or services online, lowweb businesses which have a website and/or social networking site and no-web businesses that have no web presence at all. Brands Are No Longer Created by Business One significant change is that Brands are now co-created through the experience of our customers. This is a huge and fundamental change that many businesses have found hard to swallow. It changes the way that a company has to market itself. Companies now have to

traditional sense is no longer relevant because your customers are finding information in different ways. The customer decision-making journey for connected customers and how they influence others is different than for traditional customers.

change the experience to meet customers’ needs. Engagement is the way that businesses change the experience. However, just adopting new technologies, having a Facebook page or a website doesn’t have an impact unless the customer experience changes. One example of this is the decline of newspapers. In Australia there have recent announcements of mass layoffs by the major newspaper publishers and a move to a greater digital presence, but none of that will mean a thing unless their customer experience also changes. In this example, one way the publishers could change the customer experience would be to provide easy access to apps for mobile users, on both apple and android platforms. Customer Journey Is Different To the Marketing Roadmap Recognizing that the customer journey is different to the path the business wants to follow is another key to creating extraordinary customer experiences. Putting customers in the sales funnel and progressing them in the

Connected customers look for information to make informed decisions and then they share that with their connections, who are in effect, their audience. When the new connected customer wants to make a decision about a product, they go online and start talking to others about what they want, so the touch points that businesses now have with these individuals are different to the traditional sales funnel. How businesses use the strategies and information they put into the various communications channels determines how successful they are likely to be. Unfortunately, many companies are still using traditional marketing strategies when communicating with connected customers. For these companies, when measuring social media marketing against brand engagement on Facebook the engagement level is only around 1% - because much of

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Smart | E n t r e p r e n e u r

the marketing effort is simply not worthy of engagement. Influence Drives Outcomes Businesses also have to ensure that, when consumers find information about you, they find the information that you want them to find. Connected people find information about you one of two ways, because they either follow you now or someone they know follows you. Influence has become increasingly important and businesses can be influential, with what they share and what they say driving outcomes. Change Is a Cultural Thing If you want people to always say great things about you and recommend you then you must change. We all know that the process of change is hard, but first you have to recognise that you must change, then, decide on the process. With the increased pace of technology development, businesses must constantly adapt. Rigid business models are no longer working. In fact, moving forward, having an adaptive culture is one of the biggest foundations of business success. As Brian Solis pointed out, 40 per cent of fortune 500 companies over the past 20 years have gone, and that is because they failed to change.

Many more household names are running the risk of disappearing in the near future because they have failed to change. It’s All about the Experience Customer experience is the next big trend in business. Experiential outcomes will become your new mission or vision statement. Stop and ask yourself what type of experience are you trying to create? Is the experience intentional? As a business owner you are the one who should be defining the customer experience, because if you’re not, then your customers will be when they share those experiences with their connections. Their audience and their audience, shares them with their audience and so on…

For business this means creating an adaptive culture within your organisation that embraces change and becomes predictive so that you create a customer experience that people will find extraordinary enough to want to share, over and over again. Connected customers make up a significant percentage of your potential market. In some sectors they are already the dominant group. So are you willing to change? Do you want a share of the $4.2 trillion dollar opportunity? Or, as Brian Solis put it, will you succumb to “Digital Darwinism”?

Connected customers look beyond the ordinary and don’t settle for uninspired products and services. Connected Customers Pay More, Buy More & Buy More Often Connected customers already buy more than traditional or online customers, they pay more for their products and services and they buy more often. But connected customers won’t settle for low value products, services or experiences.

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Mark Matthews Mark is CEO of Maxiom Group. Maxiom delivers the Business information and advice you need - straight to your inbox. Best of all, it is completely FREE and open to everyone. Learn more at www.maxiom.com.au


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Smart | E n t r e p r e n e u r

CREATING A REVOLUTION IN YOUR INDUSTRY By Siimon Reynolds Why do businesses fail? Certainly research indicates that lack of capital is one of the reasons. Another is the inexperience of the founders. But I believe many businesses fail because of a far more fundamental reason: They bring nothing new to the party. you’re offering. If it’s basically the same as everyone else then it’s time to change it – and pronto. Or you could end up in the corporate grave yard.

• Charge much more, or much less.

Why not take an hour this week to brainstorm ways you could differentiate your offering?

• Specialise in one tiny niche and be the best in the world at it.

Here’s a checklist you can use to help you radically separate your business from the herd:

The truth is, almost every sector has hundreds more companies than it needs. If a new company opens that doesn’t offer a significant advantage, why on earth should it survive?

• Create totally different payment terms- lease your product instead of selling it for instance.

• Focus on a different customer – older, younger, richer, poorer or in a different location.

• Be extreme in your product’s design.

Which brings me to your business.

• Offer your products in a different way: online, offline, by subscription, by mail.

If it isn’t growing at the pace you want, then perhaps it’s time to take a long, hard look at what

• Move from business to consumer to business to business, or vice versa.

Look behind their flashy new websites and grand PR releases and typically you’ll find that most businesses are not different in any substantial way from their competitors. Their products aren’t unusual, their distribution model is the same old stuff, their pricing strategy is ho hum and their overall value proposition is just more of the same.

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• Offer the biggest range, or cut your range dramatically.

• Add technology, or remove technology. • Add features and make it remarkable, or remove features and keep it simple. I’m not saying it’s easy to


radically transform your business, but almost every week I see it being done. Here’s an example I recently discovered: It’s called www.runwaybidder. com. RunwayBidder offers women the chance to get high end shoes and bags for 90% off. That is not a misprint; they actually sell top line brands like Gucci, Jimmy Choo or Chloe for a whopping 90% off. Understandably with a promise like that women all over the world are jumping on the site. The big question is, how can they make any money with that model? Well pretty easily as it turns out. They auction each item like many fashion websites, but they have one primary difference:

they charge you money to bidabout 70 cents each time. So even though they may sell an $1800 bag for only $200, it’s still highly profitable for them. Now that’s smart. So if RunwayBidder can revolutionise one of the most competitive industries on the planet, so can you. And I urge you to do so, because if you’re not offering any special, your chances of building the business you’ve dreamed of are slim. They say that ‘Fortune favours the brave’. I think it favours the different.

Over the last 25 years, Siimon has created multimillion dollar businesses from the ground up and is now teaching other entrepreneurial business people his systems for success. He started the Photon Group and grew that company to be worth over $500 million while employing over 5000 people so he can definitely help grow your business. Siimon has a passion for helping entrepreneurs build and grow so definitely visit his website and download the free ebook and business building videos. http://thefortuneinstitute.com

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Smart | MAR K ETING

GETTING TO KNOW YOU: RICHARD PETRIE Speed marketing Traditional marketing teaches you to spend large to ‘get your name out there’ and ‘build a brand’. The promise is that one day when your buyer has a need they will remember you. For most small businesses that is a recipe for suicide. Speed Marketing is the art of making the phone ring… and getting a measurable return on every dollar. This does not happen by accident…as Richard Petrie from Speed Marketing explains. We also speak to Richard about the Speed Marketing concept and what inspired him to start his business. What inspired you to start the Speed Marketing Academy? What are your goals and values?

2. What was the driving force behind your decision to specialise in the small business sector?

Make money have fun learn some cool marketing work with some good people.

Because they can make decisions and are focused on results. Big corporates are often wasteful employees focused on nonmeasurable branding BS

Hated working for someone else, felt restrained and not allowed to express myself. Was inspired by the direct response marketers that I was reading. Dan Kennedy, Jay Abraham, Gary Bencivenga These guys were the best sales people on the planet.

3. What types of customers do you help? What experience do you have helping small business customers? Over 100 businesses have been through my 6 month coaching programme. Many in the recruitment sector.

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4. Do you service other sectors as well? Real estate, recruitment and anyone selling big ticket items 5. What are the main reasons that someone would choose the Speed Marketing Academy to help grow their business? Because they want someone who can make the phone to ring. 6. What process, services and support do your clients receive? I either provide coaching or develop marketing specific campaigns and copywriting


THE “MUST READ” MAGAZINE FOR ALL BUSINESS LEADERS AND ENTREPRENEURS

MODERN LEADERSHIP MAGAZINE 7. What challenges did you face in setting up your business? Initially fear of leaving a guaranteed income - but then we ran seminars that were sell outs so we just got too busy to think about our reservations. 8. Tell us about some of the expectations that you had. Have they been met? We did not know what to expect. It has been a wonderful and exciting journey. 9. What types of services do you offer?

11. Do you have any plans for overseas expansion? No, not at this stage. We are extremely busy helping our New Zealand based clients.

12. What would you say to someone looking for a business or marketing consultant and what advice would you give them? Only engage them on a small basis to start. If they cannot get you quick results then stop. A good marketer can find untapped opportunities everywhere if they are any good.

Sales team performance coaching and marketing services 10. Do you provide services nationally? Not often because people outside New Zealand won’t know me though nowadays geography is not a factor.

For more information please visit the Speedmarketing website www.speedmarketing.co.nz or contact Richard on Mobile: 027 4303030 Email: richard@speedmarketing.co.nz

CLICK HERE TO GET YOUR FREE COPY DELIVERED DIRECT TO YOUR INBOX EVERY MONTH Smart Company Magazine | 55


Smart | E V ENTS

Events That Tell Your Brand’s Story By Naomi Walshe Public Relations often leans toward pitching and placing stories, but events are a different - and equally effective - strategy to increase your brand’s exposure, share your key messages, and ultimately generate quality engagement with the media and your target audience, in fact all your stakeholders. Here’s what you need to know about getting an event on the calendar and making the most of it when the day comes. Join In or DIY When it comes to events, you have two options: taking part in industry events, or hosting one of your own.   Get in on Other Events There’s no better way to promote your brand than to position yourself as an expert on a relevant topic or industry in front of an audience you care about. Check in with the organizations, brands, or trade publications that host events of particular interest to you, and put together a calendar to keep track of what’s going on and when. Then, think about which events you might be able to participate in - are there any panels or ses-

sions that your brand should be a part of? Get yourself booked! Be sure to reach out to the event organizers well in advance event panellists and speakers tend to get confirmed quickly - and suggest an interesting, relevant topic that the intended audience will be able to relate to and get excited about.

opportunities to partner with other interesting companies relevant to your brand by having them co-host or sponsor the event or moderate the panels. This allows you to get exposure to a whole new network of people and align yourself with other respected brands (not to mention help keep your costs down).

Host Your Own

Use PR to Your Advantage

Whether it’s a networking breakfast, industry conference, or cocktail reception, an event can help you raise the visibility and credibility of your brand directly with an audience of your choosing, including current and potential clients, key journalists, and industry influencers.

When it comes to events, the world is your oyster - PR-speaking, that is. Whether you’re sitting on a panel or hosting a grand opening at your office, keep these tips in mind to ensure you maximize the many opportunities you’ll have to engage with your audience.

But keep in mind that you don’t have to do it all yourself. Look for

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Get in Touch with Media As soon as you have them available, share details of the event with media outlets and on your social media platforms. As you firm up specifics like speakers and event partners, share that news as well, via all the same channels. To further engage your audience, create a hashtag for the event on Twitter (or see if the event you’re joining has one already). Beforehand, ask followers questions related to the event, like what they’re most excited about seeing. During the event, send live tweets, Facebook updates, Tumblr posts, or YouTube videos that highlight any unique content, like a behind-the-scenes peek of a cocktail party or an interview between two industry leaders or thought leaders in your own organisation. Finally, after the event, follow up with media outlets and bloggers to provide them with recorded interviews, quotes, videos, or photos. Anything that might spur

their interest to write a story about the event (or add to a story they may already have in the works) is worth sending over. Work the Room When you’re at an event, regardless of whether you’re hosting or attending, always have a sense of who’s going to be there beforehand. If there are key journalists on the list, make sure you know who they are and what they cover, and make sure you get in front of them. If there are social media influencers or highprofile industry guests, be sure to introduce yourself. The more homework you do, the better prepared you will be to tell your story to the right people.   Know What to Say That said, make sure you’re prepared to tell that story! Before an event, prep your team and run through what you really want attendees to know. Do you

have important news announcements planned? Are there any new, noteworthy clients you’re working with that you can talk about (with their permission, of course)? Or trends in the industry that you’re noticing? Also think about the trends and news that everyone else will be talking about. Whatever the hot topics of conversation are, make sure you’re actively participating. Organisational Storytelling is big business now, so make sure your story is interesting and relevant. Get professional coaching from organisational storytelling specialists if need be. Hone your teams’ skills and practice. When attending an event or holding your own, remember that every piece of it is a reflection of your brand. So be a gracious host or guest, a lively (but polite!) panellist, and an active networker. Above all be consistent. And no matter what the venue, make the most of the PR opportunities there that’ll enable you to tell your brand’s story.

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Smart | EM P LOYEE

Getting the right training to meet your career goals By Paul Newton Studying for a new qualification can often be one of the most effective ways of boosting your career prospects, whether by enhancing your cv or by equipping you with professional qualifications that will enable you to gain a promotion or to move into a new line of work. Bearing in mind the rising costs of further education, it is imperative that your course, and the work you put into it, pay off. There are a few criteria,that should be considered before signing up to a course, ensuring that you find the right one, through a respected training provider, to suit your needs and the needs of prospective employers.

job prospects as you’ll be able to prove to your employer that you already have training relevant to the job at hand. In fact, in many industry sectors, such as accounting or IT, there is a clear vocational learning pathway that must be followed in order to secure certain roles.

Another good reason to discuss additional learning with your employer is that it will help you tailor your learning to the roles you are suited to. Plus nearly all employers support employees learning because:

Will employers value your qualification?

Academic or vocational?

One of the most sensible things to do before signing up to any further study is to speak to your employer or other employers in your sector to find out which qualifications are most sought after. If your motive for further study is to improve your prospects then this should be a prime consideration. You will soon realise that there are a wealth of courses under umbrella subjects but often with slightly different content and objectives, so it’s essential you choose the course most pertinent to your job or your aspirations.

• there are training schemes which can be designed to suit the needs of employers and their workers

One of the first considerations is whether to choose an academic or a vocational course. Generally speaking, academic qualifications – such as bachelors and masters degrees – focus on theories and concepts, whereas vocational courses teach the hands on skills relating to a specific profession such as nursing. Consequently, a vocational qualification is likely to have a more immediate effect on your

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• having a skilled workforce can help boost productivity

• your employer may get help with the costs • your employer may pay for or subsidise your costs Some employers run ‘mentoring’ schemes to help you get on at work. Find out from a senior member of staff whether your employer runs any training or mentoring schemes. If they don’t, ask if they would consider setting one up.


THE TOP SECRET MARKETING WEAPON FROM THE BUSINESS OWNERS MARKETING BRIEF

SMART B.O.M.B. Classroom-based or Internet based learning? Once the most relevant qualification has been identified, your next move involves finding the learning provider that offers the most compatibility with your existing commitments and learning preferences. It may be that you are unable to commit to the timetabled lessons each week or perhaps you are not best suited to classroom-based learning. If that’s the case then studying remotely from home and receiving guidance and support via the internet or even by phone or a combination of support could be the answer. Is the training provider accredited by a reputable professional body? Horror stories of bogus courses and qualifications have been all too apparent in recent years, with many disreputable firms looking to cash in on people’s

renewed interest in further study. It is important, before enrolling to check that course is accredited by a bona fide professional body. Many education providers claim to be approved by a range of institutions but sometimes this is either untrue or the organisation in question has no legal authority or government recognition. If you’ve opted for Internet based learning then you should look for appropriate accreditations that you can confirm and talk to past students or those giving testimonials about what they found so useful in the course. Is the course recommended by other students? Often the best way to get a feel for a course and the benefits it is likely to have is to contact former students. The course provider will usually be happy to assist with this, and current or former students, having been in your position, will usually be happy to discuss the pros and cons of the course.

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Smart | E n t r e p r e n e u r

GETTING TO KNOW YOU: 8020 CENTER Marketing is key to franchising success. Both the franchisor and the franchisee have responsibilities here. Internationally renowned marketing coach Tom Poland has developed marketing programs for some of Australia’s leading franchises and has just made his Kick-butt marketing course available to franchisees at absolutely no cost. Tom also tells us a little more about himself and this fantastic free online course. 1. What inspired you to start the 8020 Centre? What are your goals and values? Well firstly I really like to make money! I know that may not be a trendy thing to say but it’s true. And it’s also true that I love to see the impact on a client’s business life and the significant improvement in the quality of their family and personal lifestyle when their marketing goes well. One of my core values is to publish marketing training, templates and systems that actually work and that are outstanding value for money. I also like to keep things simple. Another core philosophy is that I don’t want people to feel that they have to trust me when handing over money to me for a product or service. I prefer for them to gain outstanding value before they pay me a cent. That way we both sleep well at night. Once someone has received great value from me and I’ve had that chance to prove that what I offer actually works, then I’m happy to talk money. But not before.

2. What was the driving force behind your decision to specialise in the small business marketing sector? In regard to my chosen target market: I dislike corporate bureaucracy with a passion and by contract I like fast decision makers and pragmatists. So almost by default that means I want to work with business owners but not necessarily just the small ones. Anyone who has the autonomy to make decisions and the courage to back themself rather than blame someone else, that person is my ideal client. Secondly in regard to why I chose to specialize in marketing services: I like to go where the demand is and in survey after survey, business owners cite getting more clients as their number one need. Marketing is also a very honest profession in that you either get new clients or you don’t. I like the measurability and accountability that goes with that as opposed to some of the fuzzier touchy feely business disciplines.

60 | Smart Company Magazine

3. What experience do you have helping small business clients? More than I care to remember. How does 32 years, over 2,ooo clients, 197 different industry types spread over four continents sound? 4. Do you service other sectors as well? I’ve been approached and completed marketing strategy consultancy work for national and international organizations including NFT, corporate and educational institutes. But I don’t go looking for that work. If the enquiry looks interesting and they are prepared to pay and they are serious about cutting through red tape and getting effective marketing in place then I’m happy to talk. 5. What are the main reasons that someone would choose the 8020 Centre to assist with developing their business? Firstly, people can try before they buy. We have various opportunities for a prospect to get great value


from us without investing one cent. Secondly, our stuff works. Thirdly, what we teach is simple and can be implemented by any business owner who had a modicum of determination and persistence.

a business like that is pretty much what I teach my clients so it was really just a matter of swallowing my own medicine!

6. What process, services and support do your clients receive?

That’s a hard one to answer because I keep moving the goal posts! It’s like I get to the top of one mountain and then see the peak of a higher one and go for that. So in short, I’d have to say “no” to the question. I don’t think that I will ever be satisfied with my business. I simply don’t like the idea of not continually improving what I offer.

A free marketing plan course (21 modules over 30 days delivered online) www.8020Center.com/ FreeMarketingPlan/ Free daily marketing ideas from world renowned experts called the “Business Owners Marketing Brief” (BOMB) www.8020Center.com/Bomb/ There are also various products in our online store and other programs but it’s best for anyone interested to sign up for the free marketing plan course and the BOMB.

North America, Asia and of course Australian and New Zealand. 12. What would you say to someone looking to grow and develop their business?

8. Tell us about some of the expectations that you had. Have they been met?

Get your product or service so that it works very well. Then focus your time and energy on becoming an expert marketer for your product or service. That’s where the money is and once mastered, many find that marketing is extraordinarily fulfilling because the better you are at it the more people you are able to help.

9. Who is the target market for your business? Any English speaking business owner who want to get more clients, make more money and have more fun.

7. What challenges did you face in setting up your business?

10. Do you provide services nationally?

I guess the hardest thing was coming up with a business model that gave me both the lifestyle and free time I wanted together with making marketing and value delivery as easy as possible. I had a big advantage though because my objective is setting up

Internationally to any English speaking business owner in any country in the world. 11. Do you have any plans for overseas expansion? Already doing it. And I love it. I have clients in Africa, Europe,

Tom Poland is a serial entrepreneur and the founder and director of 80-20 Center and shows business owners and business coaches how to “get more clients, make more money and have more fun”. www.8020Center.com

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Smart Company August 2012  

Smart Company is New Zealand's Business Lifestyle Magazine with articles and contributions from some of the regions most exciting business m...

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