If you’re anything like me, you’re always on the lookout for inspiring books. I want to share how I’ve been influenced by reading inspirational marketing books recommended to me. The focus is on making the right first impression, every time.

My bookshelf started out life as one shelf for business books and the rest of the shelves for office stationery and files. But over time, that stationery and those files have diminished and my appetite for books has overtaken!

It’s been a journey of searching for lesser-known books. Following recommendations, meeting an author and being intrigued on their topic, or interviewing a guest on my podcast show sharing a book that they would recommend, have all been great sources to find influential books.

Working in sales and marketing, it’s important to find out what industry leaders are reading and then take marketing influences from them.

 

Content marketing influenced by book ‘They Ask, You Answer’

I forget now who recommended this book to me, but it was several years ago and changed my view on why we should:

A. blog

B. answer every question for customers before they speak to you.

That book is ‘They Ask, You Answer’ by Marcus Sheridan.

they ask you answer

Marcus is widely known as the ‘Pool Guy’ and he spent countless hours drafting blog after blog to reinforce his company sales processes.

How did he do this? By taking note of every question a customer would ask. (The ‘They Ask’ part)

He wrote down all questions he was asked about the range of pools they stocked, which would best fit for their home, and general maintenance questions.

Writing down the answers to his questions created engaging, useful content for his customers to read. (The ‘You Answer’ part)

Quite literally answering your customer’s questions upfront on your website.

Seems obvious doesn’t it? But where on your website or social media profiles do you keep customers educated on these most basic of facts to reassure them they’re in the right place?

Often the ‘obvious’ or ‘basic’ questions to the business owner are the ones that matter the most to your customers.

Think of it this way. I’m a cold calling expert, made more than one million calls and coached a similar number through clients. Which would you rather? A client you’ve never spoken to having a good first impression of you, or you missing an opportunity because you haven’t clearly shared what you do?

 

Marketing to influence customers with the right first impression

Imagine you’ve left a voice message (please tell me you leave a message!)… telling them it’s nothing to worry about, just a quick call to find out if it’s something of interest.

This person is likely look you up online before they decide to call you back. What will they find? Will it be an opportunity for you to ‘speak’ to them and them understand instantly that they should a. take the call b. call you back…

The only parameters you need to be working on is what I call my 4R formula.

The right person, the right time, the right way, and the right results.

Accidentally, you may have people visit you online that aren’t the right people. That’s okay because they can disqualify themselves. But, you will want to make the right impression from the off. That’s why creating content and aligning your web presence is so important. It’s the best way to warm up a conversation.

Your first impression matters.

I was speaking to a potential client recently and they complained their staff didn’t want to send an InMail to people they didn’t know, and without paying for the platform they were limited anyway. I challenged them.

How many of those direct sales messages actually get read and work? Or create the right impression on the very person you want to influence? They conceded. They don’t like getting those messages either. So why do something when you don’t like it yourself?

You can see why I’m writing about this now, can’t you? I believe the world is a better place when great first impressions are made, we build the foundations of sound conversations and create long-lasting relationships.

So, Marcus made a long-lasting impression on me and from there I have practised his teaching in writing about my role as a conversation starter. I don’t like cold calling as a title. Please let’s use Business Relationship Builder or another similarly positive phrase.

 

Follow-on resources to make the best first impression

It’s also why I wrote my own best-selling book “Making Conversations Count: How to sell over the phone”. It’s a great place to start making the right first impression. You’ll find it on my bookshelf, alongside many other great books. For more recommendations, look at ‘Wendy’s Bookshelf’.

Send me an email if you have any great and influential books you can’t keep to yourself!

Liked this? For more inspirational marketing books, tips on making the right first impression, and other business advice, sign up to receive weekly updates straight to your inbox. Subscribe to the Making Conversations Count Email Newsletter.

 

Wendy Harris making conversations count telemarketing training author podcast