100% up-front

You should always ask for 100% up-front payment and offer 100% money-back guarantee for your work. This is especially important for project-based services. It avoids scope creep, tightens the schedule, and you will have peace of mind if the client goes dark. But there is more to it. When a client refuses to pay up-front, it’s either a trust issue or the client doesn’t have the budget. Both are huge red flags. If the budget isn’t there… that’s a no-brainer, … Read More

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Positioning Fetish

Stating “The client is always right” is like volunteering for slavery. It’s diminishing. If that’s your fetish you should visit another kind of site. My fetish is to help YOU be the dominator in your business. It is a positioning problem. It shows that you desperately chase your clients and that you rely on luck to close a deal. It tells how rare prospects find you attractive, or proves that you are just a commodity. That there are many like you, … Read More

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Positioning against stress

How do you make decisions? And how can positioning fight stress? We are wired to make decisions by comparing stuff. It’s how our brain works. Comparing details and finding differences is what we constantly do, sometimes without even noticing. But you will notice tension and stress rising if you fail to find something that will help you make up your mind. Similarly, finding yourself in front of too many choices, is confusing and stressful. Mainly because, if nothing stands out, you’ll … Read More

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Setting price expectations

If you find yourself in a very competitive market, without setting yourself apart from others, you will rather sooner than later find that your only leverage is to compete on price. That is fine if you do it on purpose. But here is how I find most of my clients. Margins are low to start with. That is a self-regulating mechanism in a crowded niche. It’s normal. To counter the small margins, you have to sell more items. And how do … Read More

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Why do startups fail

“Eight of out 10 businesses fail within the first 18 months” was the myth spread by Forbes in 2013. Don’t let this journalistic marble scare you. It’s not that bad. Jet, the real numbers still show you have to do your homework. So lets start right now: Half of new businesses fail during the first five years, of which 30% in the first two years, … seem to be the accepted rough numbers across multiple institutions and media. For me, that is … Read More

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The expert position

You want to be respected?You own the business but don’t feel like your own boss?You want to be The One in your industry? Position yourself as an expert! This is good advice for life in general, but I find it important for business in particular and critical for service providers. As a result, you won’t be pushed around or micromanaged and your recommendations won’t be questioned. You also won’t have to pitch because they will turn to you asking for help, … Read More

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Competition audit

You can’t ignore competition. It has the power to destroy or boost your business, depending on how well you understand its position in your market. The way to start understanding it, regardless if you are a startup or a seasoned entrepreneur, is through an audit.  The competition audit is one of the best tools to help you assess your business and the environment in which you operate. Whether you do it yourself or bring in an expert, here is what … Read More

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Communication principles

Communication is vital, jet so many misunderstand and misuse it with regularity.Here are some arguments to raise your awareness:  Without communication, we wouldn’t be.  Society was built through communication and every relationship is a communication game. We communicate with ourselves and our organs communicate to each other. So are our cells. Even microbial invasions depend on communication.   Disrupting communication is an efficient way to destroy almost anything.  Being able to communicate better than others is how you gain leverage.  Communication is … Read More

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Short-term vs. long-term business

There are essentially two ways of doing business: short term and long term.Most don’t think about this. I bet there are in the short-term game. Capitalizing on opportunities isn’t entirely wrong. Jet, it’s a good way to fail in the long run if you are not aware of its finite life cycle. Take trends, for example. You could earn a pretty penny out of today’s trend, but be aware, the opposite might be preferred next year. If your organization is not built … Read More

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The Grinch

Merry Christmas everyone!I’m having a great time this morning being the brand advisor of The Grinch himself 🙂 First thing I notice, is that being the Grinch isn’t the worst thing. Being unknown is far worse.And having Santa as a rival is also a good thing: it’s just one. Believe it or not, there are a lot of people who don’t like Christmas. There are plenty of reasons for that. Take religion, for example. And then there are the folks who … Read More

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Positioning for Value Based Pricing is THE key to success and prosperity

Value based pricing is by far the most discussed and most interesting pricing method out there. It’s also the best. In theory, it could be applied to almost any pricing situation. Depending on your business, value based pricing can be a game changer, however, you need to be aware of its limitations. There are two main ways to understand value pricing. The more classical one, is usually applied to products and productized services that only have some differences when compared to … Read More

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