Author: Robert McFarland

The Three Key Leadership Roles in a Strong Company

In making your company function at optimum capacity, you need people on your executive team who each look at your organization with a different set of eyes. There are essentially three key roles that need to be filled with people who have the appropriate perspective and skillset to set your business up for success. Each of these roles needs to be played simultaneously by different people with the right talents.

Here are the three roles you need in your company.

The Doer

The Doer focuses on the present demands of the business. They make sure that all that needs to get done gets done.

The Doer makes sure that orders get processed, products get delivered, and customers get served. They are focused on the here and now and on handling what needs to happen to satisfy all demands today.

The Doer is concerned about the physical aspects of the business building process: making good on all current commitments made to customers, suppliers, investors, and employees. They address the most visible parts of the entire operation and the most urgent and pressing matters in the business: keeping all stakeholders happy.

The Fixer

The Fixer oversees the workings of the company with an eye to clear all of the obstacles out of the way for the Doer. They work to fix problems through learning from past mistakes.

The Fixer makes sure that all issues get resolved. They bring a practical perspective to planning based on the company’s limitations. As much as they work to resolve the problems, they are also painfully aware of how those problems can hinder future growth. As a result, they oversee the planning process for the company.

The Fixer is in charge of holding the business together. While they aren’t necessarily focused on current orders, products, and customers, they see a bigger picture in terms of how the business can and should work—and what needs to happen when it doesn’t.

The Seer

The Seer casts the vision for the future of the company and paves the way for the Doer and the Fixer. The Seer perceptively sees the possibilities for the company’s future direction that no one else might see.

The Seer is less constrained by the current demands of the business and the problems to be resolved, so they are responsible for the creative side of the business. They focus more on realizing the team’s potential and what the company could ultimately become.

The Seer is always considering ways to enhance current products and services, develop new products and services, or discontinue current products and services lacking demand or profitability. They also are always thinking about how to bolster the image of the business. In addition, they focus on maintaining and building the company’s brand.

Key Takeaway

With these three roles working together in tandem, you are able to see all the areas of your business clearly. The Doer focuses on the present and all its demands. The Fixer focuses on the past and all that can be learned from its mistakes. And the Seer focuses on the future and all the potential it holds. When these functions are represented in a company—and work well together—you have the makings of a strong company.

All three of these characters are essential to the success of any business. To build a solid foundation from the start, you need to work hard to find the right people to put in these roles.

It is important for you to be one of these key people, but make sure you find the role that fits your skills and talents—not necessarily what you THINK you should be doing.

This may be a hard process for you as you will need to relinquish some control over the business and instill trust in people to allow them to do their jobs.

We can help you through this entire process when you try our GUIDED TOUR. We will teach you how to avoid falling victim to e-myths and help you focus on the highest income-producing activities in your company.

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As a bestselling author, conference speaker, executive coach, and business growth expert, Robert McFarland helps serious business owners generate more clients, close more sales, and increase their overall revenue and profits. He can be reached at


Genuine Concern Earns Free Publicity

The best way to reach your target market through the media is to have a genuine concern for your customers. If you really care for your customers, it will show through in your press releases.

I’m not talking about the kind of press release that is self-serving and draws attention to your company or your products and services. That’s not news to your target market. The media—and your customers—will smell a fake.

However, the media and your target market will recognize a newsworthy story as one that has their best interests in mind, where the hero of the story is not your company, but your customers.

Here are the steps to get noticed by the media:

1. Identify the angle for your story.

For the media to take interest in your story, it has to have a newsworthy angle. Think through reasons why your story would be of interest to the media and to your target market. Does your story help your customers save or make money? Does your story relate a benefit to society as a whole? Does your story champion a cause of interest to your target market? Does the story reveal new information or research of interest to your customers? Does your story tie into a larger trend from a local perspective?

2. Identify the hook(s) for your story.

Think through how you could say the main idea(s) of your story in ways that would be most interesting to your target market. Write out several potential headlines for your story, and figure out which headline would pique the most interest at the media source where you send your story.

3. Write a press release for your story.

Include your catchy headline, and a similar sub-headline. As you write your first paragraph, include the basics of the story. What is happening? Who is involved? When will it happen? Where will it take place? Why is it happening? Make sure that the information you provide would be of interest to your current or prospective customers, and include quotes from people with official status in your company or from people who your target market recognizes as an authority figure.

4. Write with your audience in mind.

While you are writing your press release with a specific agenda, make sure that what you send out is written so objectively that a news outlet could include your press release without changing a word.

5. Format your press release professionally.

Press releases should include a dateline, facts, figures, and—most importantly—contact information, as the media need to know who to contact and how to reach them. Finally, print the press release on your letterhead so that it looks official.

6. Distribute your press release.

Send your press release to all television and radio stations, local and metro newspapers, national newspapers, industry magazines, and any other form of media that reaches your target market. Don’t forgot to send it to relevant blogs, and press release submission sites geared to industry professionals. Today online media is just as important—if not more important—as conventional media: bloggers can connect better with their audiences because they are more customized to the interests of their audience.

Key Takeaway

Addressing the needs of your target market in the products or services you offer can actually become newsworthy information. If you provide people with a solution to their problems, a way to avoid problems, or an opportunity to enhance their lives, the media and your customers will be interested in what you have to say.

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Our GUIDED TOUR can show you how to put together press releases that work! Check out how the pros do it and craft the perfect press releases for your business.



How Much Do You Incentivize Your Vendors?

It’s extremely important to build relationships with your vendors and others around you who can bring in new customers and clients.

The people you work directly with on your products and services are really the ones with the most to gain when you have success. By taking the time to learn how you can benefit them, you’ll find a whole host of opportunities you didn’t realize were there.

When you offer your vendors rewards for helping grow your business, everyone wins. One of the ways you can equip your vendors to help you is by offering performance-based incentives that are much larger than their normal charges.

Here’s the step-by-step process to putting together a partnership with a vendor:

  1. Offer an incentive based on performance to all the vendors you work with. Let them know you will make it worth their while to help you bring in new business.
  2. Put together a generous incentive plan by looking at the situation from your vendors’ perspective. Use suggestions from your vendors to make it as attractive to them as possible.
  3. Make the incentive plan clear, concise, and easy to track. You can even publicize results among your vendors to encourage competition and therefore higher performance levels.
  4. Give your vendors more of the profit from the initial sale in order to incentivize subsequent sales, so you can make higher profits off the back end products. As a result, this arrangement will allow you to encourage future sales, upsell better and more profitable products/services, and cross-sell additional products.
  5. Create an incentive plan that’s irresistible to your vendors by offering generous, exclusive compensation.

Think of all the vendors you work with and the creative ways you can put together an incentive plan that entices them to be part of your business. If you use their talents, capabilities and connections, you’ll both be winners.

Putting together an incentive plan doesn’t have to be a complicated process. Use our GUIDED TOUR to come up with some great ideas and put your incentive plan together for maximum results.

16 Ways to Turn Prospects into Customers Overnight

Every business owner knows that they need to turn prospects into customers for short-term and long-term benefits. While lead conversion provides current cash flow, customer retention provides future opportunities for even more transactions. But the key is you have to seal the deal now.

Here are 16 ways you can turn a prospect into a customer.

  1. Offer to refund money—no questions asked.
  2. Offer a bonus they can keep even if they return the product.
  3. Offer a special price as an opportunity for you to test the market.
  4. Offer a lower price with the reason of pushing inventory to pay a tax bill, for your kid’s braces, or another tangible reason. Customers love that because it makes you feel so much more human.
  5. Offer a referral incentive.
  6. Offer a smaller, more inexpensive product first to build trust.
  7. Offer package deals.
  8. Offer to charge less for their first purchase if they become a repeat customer.
  9. Offer extra incentives: longer warranties, free bonuses if ordered by a set date.
  10. Offer financing options, if applicable.
  11. Offer a bonus if they pay in full.
  12. Offer special packaging or delivery.
  13. Offer “name your own price” incentives.
  14. Offer comparative data or other comparison tools.
  15. Offer a trade-up or upgrade to something they already have.
  16. Offer additional, educational information to help them make the decision.

Key Takeaway

These 16 ways are just the beginning. The options really are as limitless as you make it. With a little creativity, you can find other ideas that will work best for your business, product/service, and target market.

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Do you need help with figuring out the best strategy for converting prospects into customers? Our GUIDED TOUR gives you exclusive access to a mountain of resources and tools, along with information from some of the greatest marketing minds on earth.

Advertising Your Advertising

Advertising is sales in print. To create good advertising, it’s important to think about the unique benefits your products or services offer, and then showcase them in a persuasive way by emphasizing results instead of features.

There are four major components to good advertising copy.

1. Command Attention

Command the attention of your prospect with your headline, an attention-getter that makes people want to know more about your products or services. The best headlines give a vivid portrayal of the benefits, or show how a problem can be avoided with your products or services. Remember: The headline is the advertisement for the advertisement.

2. Showcase Benefits

Showcase the benefits of your products and services and, more importantly, show how they will solve or prevent a problem. Your prospects need to know what’s in it for them. Include useful, factual, and clear information to show precisely what the benefits are and how they are going to help the prospect.

3. Cultivate Interest

Cultivate your prospects’ interest by showcasing compelling reasons for them to purchase your products or services. Establish credibility through past performance that you have a method to deliver what the advertisement is offering. Then create scarcity in your prospects’ minds so they feel like they have to act now.

4. Compel Action

Compel your potential customers to DO something: check out your site, sign up for your newsletter, purchase your products, contact you about services, etc. You can offer a freebie, booklet, sample, product, bonus, demo, consultation, limited time price, and so on. There are lots of ways to get potential customers excited about ordering and make them feel like they are getting an amazing deal.

Key Takeaway

Good advertisements include all of these components and are not complete without any of them. Think through each of these components, and then figure out how to best place them together for the most effectiveness.

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We can help you with your advertising. Try our GUIDED TOUR to learn how to put together great advertisements from some of the best in the business.

Kick Start Your Marketing

To make your marketing work for you, it’s important to have a plan that you can use to help grow your customer base and business in a manageable way.

Now, no marketing tools will work if you don’t have a quality product or service to back you up. But if the internal reality of your product or service is amazing, then it’s imperative to make that external perception match.

At the risk of sounding simplistic, here are the three most important start-up marketing tools you need to get and keep new customers.

1. In-person visit (or zoom meeting)

It’s essential you meet with customers/clients in person whenever possible. This shows you respect them and take the time to work with your clients to give personal attention to each of them.

2. Follow-up letter

Always take a moment to send a follow up letter to summarize conversations or new agreements, and to thank them for taking the time to meet with you. Likewise, you should always send thank you letters or small gifts to partners you find success with.

3. Phone call

Use a telephone call to follow up with them to talk again about the matters you talked about in your meeting and offer any assistance you can to help their business run smoothly and more successfully.

Now, coupled with those three marketing tools, here are the key steps for putting together your start-up marketing tools:

  1. Research potential customers, buyers, competitors and their preferred methods of distribution.
  2. Talk to potential customers so that you can take a hard look at your product from a customer’s perspective and see what it needs to be successful.
  3. Follow up with your 3-step process from above.
  4. Develop systems for contact follow through, quality control standards and customer service.
  5. Develop post-sale follow up system to keep lines of communication open is customers and build on your current relationship which increases future purchases.

Key Takeaway

Using these tools, you can put together a start-up marketing plan that can be used to help grow your customer base and business in a manageable way.

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Let us know if we can help you with a FREE test drive of the most comprehensive system of marketing tools and resources.

Stop Wasting Your Resources!

Your marketing resources are finite. You can’t afford to waste your resources. Therefore, you need to be laser-focused in your marketing.

The two questions you have to ask yourself are:

  • What do people really want to buy from me?
  • What related products are they already buying?

Here’s how to find a target market of potential customers so you don’t waste precious resources on blitz marketing.

1. Find companies who already have the customer base you want.

The fastest way to develop a customer base is to find existing businesses who have the customer profile that you want to market your products or services to. Armed with that information, you will know who is more predisposed to purchase your products/services.

2. Negotiate an incentive so they’ll share that customer base with you.

Once you find other businesses with the same customer base who you can customer-share with, strike up a relationship with those business owners to work out an incentive for customers to purchase from both of your businesses.

3. Focus your marketing on this group of predisposed customers.

You develop a win-win relationship this way: you have an audience to market to, and they generate an added value from their current customer base.

But how do you figure out what kind of financial incentive you can afford? Here’s a formula from Jay Abraham you can follow with great success.

LV = (P x F x N) – MC

Here’s what it all means:

  • LV is the life time value of a customer
  • P is the average profit margin from each sale
  • F is the number of times a customer buys each year
  • N is the number of years customers stay with you
  • MC is the marketing cost per customer (total costs/number of customers)

Once you know how much you need to spend to attract a new customer, you will know how much of an incentive you can offer to a business to help attract new customers.

Key Takeaway

Here’s the step-by-step process. First, find companies who already have the customer base you are looking for. Next, negotiate an incentive for them to share that customer base with you. Finally, focus your marketing resources to this group of predisposed customers.

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If you need help working through this process, check out our FREE test drive for the most comprehensive system of marketing tools and resources.

Educate Your Customers

Many businesses focus solely on attracting new customers, but you NEED to spend a good chunk of your time educating current and former customers. They already know you and they’ve already bought from you, so they can be excellent future customers as well.

Take the time to market and sell new products to your old customers and less time trying to sell old products to new customers. That will produce a drastic change in your sales, customer quality, and branding position as a result.

Here are some key elements you can use to retain your current customers.

1. Staying in contact

It is important to communicate with your current customers, whether by phone, email, e-newsletter, in person–or by carrier pigeon, if you have to!

2. Post-purchase assurance

Follow up with your customers. Your customers need to feel like they are being supported for their purchase and with the item they purchased. How many times have you purchased a product, then felt completely abandoned? Something as simple as a thank-you note with your contact (or customer service) information can go along way in retaining a great customer.

3. Deals and guarantees

Always offer your current customers the best deals and guarantees you have. You can welcome them into a club specifically designed to reward loyal customers, or you can honor them with a preferred pricing option. Whatever you do, show them you appreciate their business.

4. Good business practices

Using good business practices goes along way with customers. The safer and more confident you make your customers feel, the more they will trust you. Simply upholding integrity, dignity, and honesty makes for an amazingly supportive and loyal customer.

Key Takeaway

Stop wasting all your time on new prospects while your current customers fall by the wayside.

As Jay Abraham says, “Your best prospects are your existing customers. If you’ve been putting all your marketing efforts into acquiring new customers, stop and divert some of your resources into reselling, upselling, cross-selling to those same customers. In every way possible – through package inserts, regular mailings, special offers – stay in touch with those customers and get them used to buying from you.”

Educate your customers by offering them real information and insight and you will be rewarded with loyalty and success.

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Remember, our FREE test drive can help you put together the resources and tools to help you educate your customers.

Lessons I Learned from Paris Hilton

In this article, I’ll talk about shameless self-promotion. Because your networking self-promotion should be shameless.

Self-promotion comes in many forms and you can use different tactics to get your name out there. Did you raise your hand in class to show the teacher you knew the answer? Of course! That’s self-promotion. This is the kind of self-promotion I’m talking about, with the dignity, class, and knowledge to back it up.

Natural self-promoters use three major strategies to build themselves and their businesses.

1. Positioning

You need to position yourself around people who can make a difference in your life. You need to wake up every morning and ask yourself, “Who can I meet today who will make a difference in my success?” In fact, go a step further, write it in big, bold letters and tape it on your bathroom mirror.

Also consider, “Who can help me meet my goals?” Is it a prospective customer/client? A colleague with contacts? An association with key members who may become prospects?

Don’t settle into interacting with the people who are the easiest to access. If you reach outside your comfort zone, you will find a wealth of new connections that will bring you great success.

2. Style

How are you different from your competitors and others in your industry? What makes you memorable with customers?

If you are meeting a lot of people in your networking and they don’t remember you once you leave the room, you have an opportunity to present yourself in a more memorable way.

3. Repetition

Would you remember a commercial for Coca-Cola if you only saw it once? Of course not. Similarly, successful self-promoters say their message as many times as they need to until they get a response. You likewise have to make multiple impressions on those you are networking with in order to build brand awareness.

Key Takeaway


Repetition works in concert with positioning and style. Once you develop your positioning and style to find the right people to network with, you can find hundreds more who can help add to your success.