How to build a channel, write persuasive copy and sell more

by Rick Braddy on August 1, 2013

in Email Marketing,Innovation,Leadership,Online Marketing

I am now headlong into my latest start-up, SoftNAS, which was launched in February this year.  Like most start-ups, we are in search of our “scalable, repeatable business model”.  One way to scale sales is by developing an indirect sales channel, so you have hundreds or even thousands of sales people selling your product to their existing customers they already have an established relationship with and new customers their company’s marketing efforts locate for you.

Building a reseller channel is easier said than done, and there are lots of war stories of those who have tried and failed… and a few who have succeeded and been rewarded handsomely with enormous market share and wealth as a result  (like my former employer, CITRIX Systems, among others).

Realizing I know enough about channel development and resellers to be very dangerous, I decided to seek out the best expert I could find…

Enter the “Chanimal”, Ted Finch, who has built more than 400 reseller channels over the past 28 years, from as far back as Lotus 1-2-3 (for you youngsters, that was the first spreadsheet program for MSDOS in the 1980’s :)  Ted and I have been working at warp speed to develop our channel program, and I am simply amazed at the process, templates and incredible information available on his website

Today, Ted introduced me to “The Persuasive Format” method:

There are three formats for persuading that we should be aware of–the credibility approach, the psychological approach (Maslov’s theory, etc.), and the logical or rational approach.  Research shows that the logical approach has a more lasting effect.  In addition, the easiest rational structure to apply uses inductive reasoning—thesis, main point, sub-point, sub-sub-point, main point, etc.  These are the proof points to solidify our argument.

Following are the steps of the persuasive format that uses the most effective and logical approach:

  1. Attention. Get the person or audience attention
  2. Credibility. If you are not a credible source, then nobody listens.
  3. Problem. Demonstrate a need
  4. Solution. Show how the product fills that need
  5. Best solution. Detail how it is the BEST product to fill the need
  6. Objections. Overcome all objections to the product
  7. Visualize. Help the buyer visualize benefits the product will bring
  8. Step to Actuate – Close. Actuate the buyer to order the product or evaluate it.

If you’re in marketing—memorize the persuasive format, since you will use it constantly.  The persuasive format maximizes “Persusavity.” (new word).  When do we use this format?  Almost all of the time.  For example:

  • PowerPoints. We use it in our PowerPoint to train sales (since we need to model “how” to sell the product).  They use the same PowerPoint to present and sell the product.
  • Websites. We use it on our website to persuade the prospect to contact us and buy.
  • Collateral.  We use it in our product slicks and brochures to persuade a prospect to find out more.
  • Demo Scripts.  We show features that validate and “prove” our persuasive argument.
  • Press Release.  We use the outline of the persuasive format to persuade the press and readers to investigate our claims.
  • Product Packaging.  Elements of the persuasive format are ALL covered within different panels of our product packaging (see Chanimal packaging guidelines).
  • Advertisements (print, TV, direct response, display).  All ads use this format to maximize response.

We would use the informative format for technical documentation and other content that is not designed to sell (by engineering, documentation, legal, etc.).  However, most material coming out of a marketing department must persuade.

The persuasive format is used to create our “Persuasive Document.” This is the FOUNDATION document that is used to create every other collateral piece.  This ensures that all of our collateral contains consistent messaging and it is all designed to SELL.  In contrast, most collateral that we see is disjointed.  Some is created by product management, or by sales or marketing communications and seldom does it contain the same talking points, the exact same messaging or even consistent positioning—it is a mess.

Read more about how to implement The Persuasive Method here

I am on an amazing journey of discovery right now with Ted, as we design our reseller channel program.

Another thing that has impressed me is how Ted creates massive leverage in his business using a combination of “micro-consulting”, standard process templates, and high-quality interns who are able to execute marketing programs following his directions, website content (it’s all there!) and learning as they go – incredible business model for any consultant entrepreneur to learn from, for sure.

I will post more as this develops and share my learning journey when I can.  Meanwhile, check out the Chanimal website.  There’s something there for every marketer – I promise you that!





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