As we celebrate our 33rd year as a club, the Board of the Amsterdam American Business Club would like to thank our club's faithful members, its valued sponsors and all the guests/interested parties that have made this business network club so vibrant. As I often say “there is always business in the room” and as we kick start the new business season with two events in September we sincerely hope that you will be able to join us in the coming weeks and months for what promises to be a wonderful season. We will continue to serve the business community in Amsterdam and environs, uniting primarily the US and NL cultures with a common interest while our club constantly expands to include many other nationalities amongst our members. As chairman, I would like to wish you all success in your business efforts as we gain traction with fresh energy after the relaxed summer period. Share this article:
by Dennis Cowles, Chairman, AABC NETWORKING is the single most powerful business tactic to accelerate and sustain success for any individual or organization! Networking is about making connections and building enduring, mutually beneficial relationships. Just ask any senior executive, politician, community leader or successful salesperson which single skill or habit helped them excel in their career – an overwhelming majority will respond with one simple word… Networking. We are constantly bombarded with advertisements, emails, status updates, special offers, and sales pitches creating a cluttered message. Personal relationships enable you and your organization to stand out, rise above the noise and remain top of mind with your customers and prospects. Relationships are the catalyst for success, because people do business with those company representatives they like and trust. But you have to 'give back' also and serve as a resource — help others succeed in their businesses too. Networking provides the most productive, most proficient and most enduring tactic to build relationships. Continually connecting with new people, cultivating emerging relationships and leveraging your business network will make a difference to your business! The AABC meets each month is a perfect example of a professional business networking opportunity. Share this article:
By Stephanie Ward, Firefly Coaching You’re working your buns off in your business trying to get everything done, including your marketing. But is your marketing bringing the results you want? You don’t have a second to waste so you need to know that your marketing actions will pay off. But do you even know how you arrived with your current marketing plan? Was it conscious or did it just evolve randomly over time as new ideas grabbed your attention? Haphazard marketing doesn’t work and not only that, it’s exhausting because you pour your energy into it and yet you get so little back. It’s time to reevaluate what you’re doing. Start fresh, with a clean slate. It’s time to sharpen your saw. Maybe you know this powerful concept by Stephen R. Covey.
Suppose you were to come upon someone in the woods working feverishly to saw down a tree. “What are you doing?” you ask. “Can’t you see?” comes the impatient reply. “I’m sawing down this tree.” “You look exhausted!” you exclaim. “How long have you been at it?” “Over five hours,” he returns, “and I’m beat! This is hard work.” ‘Well, why don’t you take a break for a few minutes and sharpen that saw?” you inquire. “I’m sure it would go a lot faster.” “I don’t have time to sharpen the saw,” the man says emphatically. “I’m too busy sawing!”
Fundamentals“Build your empire on the firm foundation of fundamentals.” Lou Holtz
Narrow Your FocusNo one likes this one. I’m just going to say it. Niche. There it is, let it sink in. It feels scary to limit your tribe and it is worth it. Why? Because it positions you as an expert, makes your marketing infinitely easier, and you can grow faster. For it to work you only have to know that there are enough of your ideal clients, that they want and are willing to pay for what you’re offering, and that you can reach them. Once you’ve mastered one niche you can always add another one later. Learn more about how to identify your ideal clients here.
Magnetic Marketing StatementNow that you know who your ideal clients are what you offer them, it’s time to put it into words. This is the answer you give when someone asks you what you do. You can have test out different versions with people until you find one that feels right for you and that also clicks with people. And don’t worry; it will evolve over time so you’re not locked into it forever. Get more on this in my post, The Right Way to Say What it is You Do.
Marketing SequenceOnce you know who your ideal clients are and what you have to offer them and you know how to effectively communicate that, it’s time to decide on your marketing sequence. Your marketing sequence is simply the steps that people who are interested in your business take. And the most important step is the first step. What is the very first thing they should do if they are interested? This first step is your #1 Call to Action (CTA). For example, my first step is to invite people to get my free special report and ezine. You could also offer a free sample of your products or services. Offering an assessment or quiz is also an example of a great first step. Once you decide what your first step is, you need to promote that everywhere. On your website, when you talk to people in person or on the phone, when you are speaking, on the back of your business cards, in your email signature, and even on your voice mail. (Additional detail about each of these concepts is covered steps #2, #3, and #4 of my Free Special Report, 7 Steps to Attract More Clients in Less Time). Once you’ve got the key elements above nailed down, it’s time to select three marketing strategies that fit for you and that you will actually do.
Choosing Your Marketing StrategiesOf course you don’t want to throw out the marketing strategies that have been working for you. So analyze what has worked and keep that in the mix. As you know, there are more marketing strategies than there is time. For the sake of simplicity, let’s look at five. For now, pick three strategies that fit for you and do those on a regular basis. You can always add another marketing strategy later. For more on that read my post, Normally I Tell Business Owners Not to Do This.
5 Marketing Strategies1. Speaking 2. Writing 3. Networking (offline and online) 4. Referrals 5. Strategic Alliance Partnerships Once you’ve chosen your marketing strategies set yourself up for success by adding all of your action items to your agenda. For more on how to do this read my post, A Marketing Template for Every Day, Week, Month and Year of Your Business. Make your life easier, set aside time to sharpen your marketing saw so you can move forward with your marketing knowing that your time will be spent in the most effective way. You don’t need to do everything. Focus is good. Consistency is the key. Now get to it. (Additional detail about each of these strategies, plus three additional marketing strategies, is covered step # 5 of my Free Special Report, 7 Steps to Attract More Clients in Less Time). © Stephanie Ward Share this article:
Joining the AABC is one of the best decisions I have ever made. Since 2013, I have gathered many connections, business opportunities and practical experience through AABC events. The members of AABC provided me with unlimited vivid examples of the American spirit.