Last week I attended the 13th annual Smart Hustle Small Business Conference, hosted by Smart Hustle Magazine Publisher and Executive Editor, loyal forex. For those of you who know Ramon personally, or have attended one of his events in the past, you know that Ramon is a tech and small business evangelist who imbues his presentations with all the energy of an old fashioned revival meeting. He lives to help other business people succeed, and this intention is no more present than at his own yearly gathering.
This year’s conference brought together a host of speakers who presented on everything from marketing and sales to the development of healthy company culture. As with any all-day conference, it was a lot to take in (that’s why most conferences end with cocktail receptions), but now that I’ve had a chance to decompress and synthesize my notes, here’s my personal take on the day, including some of my favorite tips…
The World According to Seth Godin
If you don’t know who Seth Godin is, look him up. He is a renowned marketing expert, author and inspiring teacher. This year, we were treated to a one-hour mastermind session during which Seth did nothing but answer our questions. The session was intimate, informative and energizing. Here are some highlights:
It’s All About Building Relationships
Building relationships is key in just about every aspect of business, from developing a strong company culture to establishing robust connections with clients and customers. Here are some great tips I picked up about building relationships from some of the other conference presenters:
Stephanie Glenn of Salesforce talked about the value of intensely personal service in creating loyalty and building trust with customers. She recommends establishing open communication channels for obtaining feedback: “Feedback is a gift! Get authentic feedback and then act on it.”
When offering your services, sales trainer Adrian Miller says to always keep in mind the value add. What unique thing are you bringing to the table that is of significance to your customer? What problems can you solve for them? Keep these things in the forefront of your mind and in all of your communication, and you’ll be more likely to open up a fruitful dialog.
When pitching your products or services to prospective customers, Laura Allen recommends to always be clear about your call to action. As you establish this initial communication with them, think about what you are asking them to do, and then offer an easy channel to make it possible for them to act!
Have you thought about YouTube videos as a way of connecting with your audience? Roberto Blake offered some great tips on using paid and organic video content as a lead growing strategy. By finding out what your audience needs and giving it to them, you open up a terrific channel to get feedback and engage viewers in helping them reach their goals. He offers this free guide to using YouTube videos as part of your sales strategy.
Claude Silver is the Chief Heart Officer at Vayner Media, a full-service advertising agency run by Gary Vaynerchuk. Her job, as she describes it, is, “… to infuse the agency with empathy.” Clearly a relationship expert, she had some wonderful advice to share about building a healthy company culture:
One highlight of the day was the honoring of the 2018 Entrepreneur of the Year Awards recipients. Congratulations to all of you!
Plans for the 2019 Smart Hustle Small Business Conference are already underway! Click here for more information. And if you were at this year’s conference and have some other great takeaways you’d like to share, please let us know in the comments!