Friday, 28 February 2014

4+1 PRINCIPLES FOR SALES SUCCESS



Developing that crazy idea of yours into the next big thing and getting everybody talk about it is not good enough if you are not making enough money out of it.

In the business world, it is not a celebrity contest - I don’t give a fuck fufu about how popular your company is, if you are not living up to expectations in terms of money (profits).

Whether you run a small business or a mega business, you have to pay particular attention to the sales department and the relationships between sales people and customers.
Sales=Money…… No sales = No money. So in planning and carrying out an effective and systematic growth strategy, pay ATTENTION to sales.

I did some research and drafted out these proven principles to help boost your sales. Understanding these principles will help establish a sales culture in your business that will foster maximum sales growth.

Do not read this alone. Also force get your sales people to read this article.

DO YOUR HOMEWORK: Before you seek information from customers, learn as much as you can about industry trends so you can ask informed, intelligent questions. Look for facts, figures and trends that will help you shape your product or service for the next round of sales effort. Use all available resources: online trend data, websites, annual reports for public companies, demographics, industry publications, competitors, industry guides, trade shows, customer surveys, even a good walkabout in your own retail store. These sources will tell you about your customers’ needs raise your IQ and set the table for future business ideas.
  
ANTICIPATE CUSTOMER NEEDS: Regardless of whether you’re involved in business-to-business or business-to-consumer sales. If you are going to sell as much as you can, you’ll need to develop strong, long-term relationships with your customers. The best way to do this is to anticipate what your customers need in order to customers need in order to be successful at whatever they are doing. Since sales people are on the front line in contacting customers, they should know more than anyone else does about what customers needs. The more you know about your customers’ needs the better you can anticipate what they need to buy from your company. Ask them about their short- and long-term initiatives; they will be happy to tell you. Listen as they explain their problems to you. Try to be the solution to their problems.

EXPAND YOUR NETWORK: As you are selling, work hard to branch out through your current customers. If you have many individual customers, get to know more about them after they purchase your product or services. Find out the names of those who are using them, how they are using them and why. Do they use the product alone, or do they use it in conjunction with other products? If it’s the latter, can you provide those other products as well?

If your customers are other businesses, try to work your way into the fabric of the customer’s company by expanding your reach into other parts of it. Meet people in as many different departments and other operational areas as possible. Just do all you can to expand your rolodex. The information you get will give you a huge head start on your competition.

MOTIVATE SALES: It is very important for your sales force to be extra motivated to sell (especially pre-sell) whether you’re trying to expand your business by promoting new products or services, or by going into new markets.

Few things are worse for your bottom line than a sales force that’s just going through the motions. Sales people need to care about your product or service. If they don’t, that gets communicated, and the prospect wonders, why should I care?

The sales force should never lack for motivation to succeed in a new business development arena. That’s why it’s important to give your sales people incentives to help develop new product and services, as well as new customers.

So get creative. Think of ways to get your salespeople think more about the business growth. Bribe them, shoot them, feed them, just do anything that’d motivate them – you know them better.

On a final note, also develop your talent (your employees) enroll them in trainings that will help them help your business grow. Promote internally, don’t be afraid to give opportunities to those at lower levels. Work with them as your company grows and give them the opportunity to rise to the occasion.

What do you think about these principles and kindly share with us what works for you and your business?

You can also follow me on twitter @sadiqspeaks to get more tips on business, marketing and bullshit

Photo Credit: Entrepreneur via shutter stock

Wednesday, 29 January 2014

HAVE YOU SEEN WWW.HOMSWIPE.COM?




When it comes to the issue of renting apartments in Nigeria, most especially in Lagos, You are literarily paying the devil a visit.

There are three things synonymous with an apartment search in Lagos;
1.    Stress!
2.    Stress!!
3.    Stress!!!

Okay, just stress right? But if you have tried searching for an apartment to rent in Lagos, you’d know why I repeated the word “stress” thrice.

Even with the advent of various “rent-a-home” directories online due to recent technological advancements, people still get scammed of both their time and money.

Does this now mean one can’t rent a home without hassle? Is there any way out of this shithole?

Below is a letter from a young Nigerian, Oluwadamilare Peters as he shares his experience with us on his escapades with Nigerian aliens estate agents and how he successful got the apartment of his dream from which he wrote the letter (what he told us though).

Sit back take a cup of zobo coffee while you go through this testimony.

Hi there,

I remember vividly a terribly and not funny experience I and a friend had with one of these so-called estate agents when we were trying to rent an apartment in Lagos.

We just got a job with a marketing company which is kind of far from where we reside. So in order to save some money we decided to search for a condo available for rent at most 5-mins walking distance from our new office.

We decided to check one of these ‘rent-a-home” directories online since we thought it would save us time and the stress of moving aimlessly from one estate agent to the other.

So we settled for one beautiful condo we saw, it was perfect. It tallied with what we wanted. I was so happy for the advent of the internet.

We got the contact of the estate agent in charge of the property and set up a meet. (We were in fact ready to move in). On getting there after exchanging few words with him, he demanded the sum of #2,500 for a form which he claimed was non-refundable before we can proceed to the apartment.

He assured us that everything was intact and he is directly in charge of the apartment. He also said some things which I can’t remember but I am sure it was all about hype too though.

When we got to the apartment, I got the shock of my heart. I brought out my phone, put on my glasses and checked the pictures we saw on the internet. It is completely different from what I am looking at.

I showed the agent the picture. He smiled and said “ha! No! This one no be the original pishure but e be like am sha”.

I felt used… and cheated

The taps are not evening running, the WC is broken. The apartment looked like a hideout for the men of the underworld. Then it dawned on me that we were scammed and that we are just one of millions of people that fall victims to these guys when searching for an apartment.

So I resorted to going to work from my parents’ residence. I left home as early as 4am everyday and got home past 10pm. It went on and on like that. I had no choice than to accept my fate.

But about a month ago I shared my ordeal with a friend that just relocated from Ibadan. And she told to me that she got her current apartment via www.homswipe.com

I was uninterested because I had zeroed my mind off all those online sites. “They are all scammers” I said.

I gave in after so many persuasions from her. I checked out the website and after navigating through some things, I couldn’t find a single listing. I called her then she explained to me that homswipe.com is not like other traditional “rent-a-home” sites.

So instead of searching through various apartments listed, I am just to post an apartment request, fill in the required data on a form and pay #5,000 for the search.
#5000! For what? My mind flashed back to the agent that duped me. All she said was “trust me it would work out fine”.

I obliged. After payment I got a confirmation message from them that within 7 days, I’d get list of apartments to choose from. I was secretly praying they disappoint too so I could prove to the babe that they are all scam too. But to amazement, the third day, I got a call from them and I was hooked up with an agent.

The agent showed me around and after navigating through one or two apartments, we negotiated and within a week, I settled in. my joy knew no bounds. It was ‘friggin’ unbelievable.

And as if that wasn’t enough, I got my #5,000 back. I still find it hard to believe everything worked out well though.
I am glad I had the opportunity to return the favor some weeks ago when I was asked to write this testimony.

You too can check them out. www.homswipe.com and follow the directions. If it can work for me, I bet you’d find them helpful.

Wishing you all the best,
Oluwadamilare Peters
@mamanaboy

Homswipe is “rent-a-home” search directory that is dedicated to helping you rent your dream home without stress.
1.     Log on to www.homswipe.com
2.    Make an apartment request and fill in the required details
3.    Pay a sum of #5,000 to our registered bank accounts
4.    You get a confirmation code to continue processing
5.    Get your dream home within 7 days.
6.    Get your #5,000 back after successfully renting the apartment.

Try us today on www.homswipe.com ……. Renting made easy.

Contact details;
Twitter: @homswipe
Email: support@homswipe.com       
Helpline: 08080683776, 07035674647

Monday, 9 December 2013

Lesson From My 5-year Old Neighbor



You know that kind of feeling you have when something bad happens. And you really want to help but there is absolutely nothing you can do about it. That was the kind of feeling I had some few months back when Matthew’s (not original name) parents were murdered.

When I was asked to write this article, I was scared. I was scared because I felt something bad (like the Aluu4) was about to happen to me. I was scared because this article would re-open old wounds and made them fresh again.

I was scared because I felt I could have done more than crying after the incident (like send the kid overseas to study). I felt guilty.

Matthew’s parents left home for a party function in the northern part of the country and never returned home. 

News reached us that they were butchered like animals by the dreaded “Boko Haram” sect. It was crazy when the news got to us. I felt like shooting everyone around me.

I was mad. Mad not because two people were murdered but because of what the 5 year old kid’s fate would be without his parents.

There are so many kids on the street born “hopeless”. Matthew wasn't. He attended the best school around, wore the best clothes and even had the best smile. He was indeed the envy of his peers.
But before you could say GEJ, all these things disappeared. His aunt moved in, He stopped school and started hawking sachet water, all in the space of 3 months. 3 months! He wasn't that happy kid that everyone wanted to be around anymore.

I didn't really know how it got that bad because I left home few weeks after the incident. But one thing I knew for sure was that nobody cared. Everybody seems to have continued with life. Because we all felt it was none of our business.

Matthew’s story is just one out of many out there. We have more than hundreds of thousands of the helpless kids on the streets. But all we do is pass bye and chant words such as- “e no concern me”, “no be my fault”.

But there are some institutions that have made it their duty to give these kids hope. Hope that they can become whatever they wanna. Hope that they can be the president of this country someday. Hope that they might invent something cool people would live to talk about.

Even if we do not have the time or money to set up such institutions, we can still make things happen. We don’t have to wait till we have all the money in the world before we  do something. 
Look at our spiritual teachers, Jesus, Mohammed, and Gandhi. They all made little things count.

We all can do the same this festive period by supporting NYA (National Youth Alliance)- a youth initiative set up to educate youths on how to make where we live a better  place by acting positively.

Red Cross Orphanage home is one of those institutions that are trying their best to restore hope to kids like Matthew. And NYA has decided to pay them a visit on the 21st of December 2013 to show them some love and do the little they could to support them. But they can’t do this on their own. NYA needs your support. NYA needs volunteers. And they need your money too *smiles*. There are list of things (not only the cash) that these kids need.

If you are interested in showing some support, send; “HOW CAN I HELP” to nationalyouthsallaiance@yahoo.com.

You can start by sharing this article to your friends via facebook, twitter; e.t.c. by hitting the share button below.

 Let us help the “Matthew’s” in the streets live their dreams. You could also follow NYA on twitter @NatYouthAllianc

Let us make little things count. Who knows maybe the ripple effect of our actions might change those around us and even the nation as a whole.
_______________________________________________________________________________
Wishing you extreme success,
Sadiq Daniel
@sadiq_daniel

Monday, 25 November 2013

When The “Nigerian god” Is On Sabatical Leave


This blog looks so dusty *picks broom and starts sweeping*. It’s been a while since I posted something on this blog. I am terribly sorry.

Just when I thought nobody would miss me, I got anonymous calls from people, asking about my where-about and why I haven’t stolen posted anything in ages. Those guys made me realize how wrong I was and why I needed to get back to writing and be consistent about it because people are out there watching….*Digression alert beeps*

Some days ago, while I hung out with a close friend of mine, I overheard a conversation between a middle aged woman and a young sesi babe. The way this babe ranted was what drew my attention to the “convo”.

She ranted about how ASUU had delayed her from graduating from the university……

And when I was about to stand from where I was seated to ask her out (the way she ranted attracted me to her. It was as if we were meant to be together),  she said something that spoiled the whole show -  “God knows better and that she’d just keep ‘praying’ ASUU calls off the strike”.

Nothing irks me more when I hear aliens people (even my mama) utter such statements- most especially in situations such as this.

In Nigeria, we seem to have embraced the “leave it to God” slogan and worse passed it on to our kids. Maybe because it is very easy to say or maybe it is the right thing to say in certain circumstances.

But there are several things we have left to this “god” that has made me question the ‘authenticity’ of this god. Maybe we have a different ‘god’ we serve in Nigeria because most things appear to be f*cked here and he seems to care less.

If this ‘god’ were to be a WAEC student, he would definitely have “F” in all his papers, because he has failed us in so many ways.

Remember the ‘Sosoliso’ air crash, “we left it to this god” and Dana crash happened.

Remember the girl that was severely beaten and molested for stealing a blackberry phone in Lagos. “We left it in this god’s hands” and ALUU4 happened *wipes tear off*

There are so many instances but the above ones are painful enough to drive home my point.

 We haven’t learnt a single lesson from our mistakes. After crying for like a day or two, we move on. And leave everything to this ‘Nigerian god’.

In the advanced countries we are quick to compare ‘naija’ to; things like these don’t happen. And even if they do, measures are being taken to prevent them from re-occurring. The system doesn’t embark in a 7-day dry fasting- leaving it to ‘god’ to solve.

But we (Nigerians) are religious people. We are ‘friggin’ religious even to the point of using a fellow human for money rituals.

We are addicted to praying without doing shit….

When the govt refuses to pay teachers… we pray

When there is no power supply….we pray

When ASUU is on strike… we pray

When a govt official loots funds… we pray

After all these years of praying without doing shit, we still haven’t come to the realization that we might be praying amiss.

I am sure each time we pray to this “Nigerian god”, all he does is just shake his head vigorously while he sips orange juice.

Maybe we should pray after all but we need to accompany those prayers with work.

Maybe we need to tap into our creative mind and create more jobs

Maybe we need to stand up and speak against sexual abuse

Maybe we need to stand up and speak against lynching

Maybe we just need to do the right thing at the right time.

Maybe then Nigeria might eventually become that country we always wanted it to be. Maybe then the revolution we seek might eventually surface.

Let us make little things such as obeying traffic regulations, proper disposal of wastes.

We shouldn’t just sit there and wait for one ‘god’ to come clean up our mess. He is probably on leave. Let us clean them ourselves.

We need to DO more… let’s keep Doing

Feel Free to share with your friends by clicking the share button below.

Wishing you extreme success,
Sadiq Daniel.

PS: I was high on Viju milk while I wrote this article… So don’t take it personal because I could not even see what I was typing. But you may pursue me on twitter @sadiq_daniel to see my sober tweets.