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For 15 years I consulted with a total of 196 companies to implement marketing strategies and tactics that enabled them to increase revenues by 10 percent to a whopping 900 percent in their first year.

The basic premise is to systematize marketing so that exposures occur to a targeted audience in a methodical, consistent way until they “buy, die or tell you to go away.”

Historically this was done by a salesperson who learned everything about a product or service and could deliver that information when a prospect or customer asked a question.

Back then we didn’t have tools we have today. You may be old enough to remember the four or five men hovering at the entrance to Sears, where the appliances were located, and they pounced on you the second you walked in.

About the only place I still see this happening is in a car dealership where one can seldom spend much time on the showroom floor without one of the many sales associates intervening.

With the World Wide Web, and search engines like Google, Yahoo or Bing, one can find almost anything he or she wants without the intrusive salesperson and discover the best price, too. The days of haggling over price are gone.

The problem with the Internet is that getting accurate information is virtually impossible without hours of research, filtering through anecdotal/subjective information versus scientific/objective information. And without some trusted guidance most people won’t take the time to read enough to learn the difference between the two.

Direct marketing companies – also called multilevel, relationship or network marketing – have learned the way to a consumer’s heart is not high-pressure sales tactics. Those just push a prospect away.

These independent distributors are trained how to simply expose a person to a product and pique interest; if the person is interested the distributor simply sends specific targeted campaign messages that educate on a metered basis (two days to one week apart), and follow up to make sure the prospect received it and read it or watched a video, and if so, ask if there are questions.

The key is that these messages are not sales-oriented – they are educational messages to answer the question raised by the distributor on the initial exposure. If the prospect is not interested the distributor simply moves to the next exposure until a prospect says he or she wants more information.

This method can be used effectively in any business with the right implementation. Lead generators pique interest and when John Smith asks for answers the marketing campaigns will do all the heavy lifting. This essentially turns your sales team into “order-takers” rather than salespeople.

Remember that today’s consumer is all about the best experience possible. Educate him on how your product or service is an awesome experience and you’ll win more business.

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Randy Martinsen is the president/CEO of BudgetWorks Inc., a marketing and business consulting firm, and brand partner for Nerium International. He can be reached at 707-206-6443 or randym@budgetworks.net.

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