Hermey Wants To Be A Dentist

December marked the 40th anniversary of the original broadcast of the classic "Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer" ©, network television's longest-running, highest-rated holiday special. From my earliest childhood memories, watching Rudolph has been a tradition, one that continues today with my own family.

While Rudolph never crosses my mind during the year, a few days before and after the broadcast I'm always saying some of the classic lines to our kids: "His beak is blinkin 'like a blinkin' beacon." / "I'm I'm really cute! I said I'm cuuuuute! "/" Now you come to elf practice, learn how to wiggle your ears and chuckle warmly and go hee-hee and ho-ho and important stuff like that. " I guess Rudolph remains forever etched in our minds and memories.

Just in time for Christmas, there was a 40th Anniversary Collector's Edition DVD that includes a previously deleted scene and a bonus CD featuring Destiny's Child. There are also new lighted tree ornaments, snow globe, jigsaw puzzle, inflatable yard decorations and exclusive Beary-Limited® edition, commemorative Rudolph at Build-A-Bear Workshop. No doubt, all of these products are part of a carefully designed strategy by marketing experts to capitalize on our love of Rudolph and his misfit friends.

Success Handler Action: After you finish reading this, gather your team and discuss why customers / clients love you. Be sure to remember they "buy" for different reasons than you "sell". For instance, people buy: thrills, not circus tickets; spills, not NASCAR; and chills, not horror movies. The more clearly you understand why they buy your products / services, the better you will be able to communicate with them. Here are some questions to help you get started:

~ What are the largest strengths of your small business?

~ How do you treat customers / clients differently than your competitors?

~ Who are your "best" customers / clients, and what do they have in common?

~ Which areas of your small business receive the most compliments?

~ What are the benefits customers / clients receive from each of your products / services?

All of the Rudolph merchandise did not just show up on store shelves and Web sites this month waiting for customers. It took a lot of advance work to design, develop and distribute them. It also took a precise marketing plan to make sure potential customers find out about all of the many products available for decorating their homes and giving as gifts. As a small business owner, it is important you have a marketing plan to let your customers / clients and prospects know about all the benefits they will receive from you and your team.

Success Handler Action: Your marketing plan is a roadmap that clarifies all of the actions you will take to get your message out to the right audience the right number of times this year. It is your path to higher sales, and includes analyzes of your business, your competition and your best prospects. Here are five steps for creating the right plan for your small business:

1. Conduct a SWOT, identifying your Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats.

2. List your products / services and why people buy from you and your team.

3. Describe the potential customers / clients you want to reach with your marketing efforts.

4. Write down the options you have for capturing their attention.

5. Select the strategies and tactics you will use to communicate with them.

Taking the time now to create your marketing plan will give your small business a better shot at soaring, just like those young yearlings in Rudolph who receive flying lessons from their instructor and pal Comet. In fact, if you create and stick to the right plan, it could be that you'll go down in history.

Copyright © 2004 by Success Handler, LLC. All rights reserved.

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