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Steve has learned from 40 years of business experience that God's way works. As an author, speaker, radio host, and business consultant...

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Steve Marr Blog

Steve Marr's contributions
May 24

Don’t Market to Everyone

Posted by Steve Marr in Untagged 

At times I review a client’s marketing materials. Frequently the sales pitch is too broad.  The client is trying to reach everybody in town. As a result they will likely snare fewer customers. I believe the issue is that the businesses failed to properly identify the target customer; therefore, they really have no idea who they’re trying to reach.  The result is wasted advertising and fewer customers.

My marketing strategy is to think through who my target customer is.  I need to identify the exact person I want to reach, the person who will buy my product or use my service. Then, I write my ad copy specifically for them. 

Living in Arizona I worked with an exterminator who told me that there was a specific part of town with a severe rat infestation which was annoying and destructive. “Nancy” was going to mail their standard brochure to this area in an effort to snag new customers.  I suggested that rather than send their regular piece, they needed to write something specific on eradicating pack rats and send it instead.  Prospective customers concerned about rats would not be as concerned about scorpions or other insects their service brochure addressed. Their target customer was those who have problems with rat infestation. After changing their brochure and sending it, the response rate was considerably higher than expected.  I believe the reason is because they effectively identified their target customer.

May 19

How Should You Invest Church Funds?

Posted by Steve Marr in Untagged 

I received a question from a church board member asking for advice on investing church funds. The church was currently earning less than .5% interest and a board member was proposing to invest the funds in several stock funds that would yield a 5% return each year.

I started my discussion by ignoring the original question. Instead I asked what the funds were being held for. For example, if the funds were being held to build up cash reserves to allow debt-free expansion within five years, you should take no risk with this money. Instead, the low bank interest would be acceptable.

May 15

Correcting Staff

Posted by Steve Marr in Untagged 

When we work with staff who need to improve performance, our primary goal is to help them develop the skills they need to be able to continue their employment.  A good guide comes from the words from Ezekiel: “I don't want you to die, says the Sovereign LORD. Turn back and live!” (Ezekiel 18:32, NLT) Just as the Lord does not want anyone to perish, we should do what we can to prevent discharging an employee.

May 11

Paying for Advertising Results

Posted by Steve Marr in Untagged 

A general rule I share with clients is that 50% of advertising cost brings little results. It means that business too frequently wastes advertising dollars.

I was talking to one business person who spent $450 a month on a Yellow Pages ad. That is $5,400 dollars a year, more than pocket change for most of us. I asked the business owner how many calls the Yellow Pages ad generated and how many of those calls resulted in business? After thinking through my question the owner acknowledged little or no business came from the ad. 

May 08

I Answer My Phone

Posted by Steve Marr in Untagged 

I answer my phone when it rings if I am able. I’ve developed this habit over many years and have learned how helpful it is for a reasons.

1It Serves my Clients

I am able to serve my customers or clients more effectively when I answer their call. This prevents a frustrating game of telephone tag.  Since business is about serving customers, the sooner we serve them the better.