Wednesday, October 31, 2007

More Yellow Pages Ads Mistakes

More Mistakes in Yellow Page Ads

Yellow page advertising seems to generate a lot of mistakes. Why?

My guess is that it is because of the way many business owners think about their yellow page ad. They believe that they must be in the yellow pages because the competition is there. They believe yellow page advertising costs way too much. They’re not sure how well (or even if) its working. Yet they invest so little in measuring, analyzing, planning and designing their yellow page ad.

Every time the Yellow page ad sales rep comes to visit the business owner just can’t say no and doesn’t know the right questions to ask. The Yellow page ad rep intimidates the business owner by offering options like color, sizes, outlines… The Yellow page ad rep doesn’t help the business owner create a better ad. The rep simply pressures the buisiness owner to buy a Yellow pages ad.

Here are more of the sins that I discovered in the Yellow page ads:

Centering text
Including company logo
Including useless images (most are useless)
Including useless photos (most are useless)
Including photos of staff or founder (a special category of useless photo)
Background Shading
Background images
Too many different fonts
Using decorative fonts
Putting “Sales and Service at the top”
The business name in the largest font
Trying to reach more than one market
Print too small
Too much text
Using all caps for anything other then business name
Too many boxes within the ad
Using the word ‘quality’
Association member logos – other than BBB
No call to action
Credit card images (doesn’t everybody take them?)

George Torok
Yellow Pages Advisor
Power Marketing
Marketing Tune up

Friday, October 26, 2007

Secrets of Success

Secrets of Success

If you are in Vancouver on Tuesday October 30, stop by the SOHO conference. If you are an entrepreneur it is the event you must visit.

My presentation, Secrets of Success, is in the Visa room at 11:30. I guarantee that I will offer some secrets of success. In addition I have a special gift for attendees. I’m sure that we won’t be able to address all of your questions during the presentation – so talk to me after or give me your business card.

And why can I offer you Secrets of Success?

I know a lot of successful people. It’s not about me. It’s about what I learned from the success of others. I’ve interviewed over 400 business leaders. I’ve worked with many successful business owners. And I have lessons from my own success and failure. You can’t talk about success without addressing failure.

What Secrets of Success will you learn by attending this presentation?

The myth of balance
The importance of systems
The power of confidence
How to get from good to great
Lessons from Las Vegas

And there are more Secrets of Success.

See you at the SOHO conference in Vancouver on Tuesday, October 30, 2007.

George Torok

Secrets of Success


Motivational Speaker

Monday, October 22, 2007


What’s in it for me?

What do you want me to do?

Two simple questions that many sales people have problems understanding and addressing.

And everyone is in sales – even the Dalai Lama is selling a message. He gets it. Listen to him speak.

What’s in it for me?

When you send a message by email, phone or print – first address your audience with what is in it for them. If you don’t address that in your first or second statement then they will not listen or read the rest.

Here is where most could learn from SPAM – in most cases the subject line tells us what’s in it for me – a bigger body part, a smaller body part or an approved loan. Simple clear and understandable. If I’m interested I will read on – if I don’t, I delete it.

Tell people what’s in it for them – quickly, simply and cleary.

Imagine that you receive a phone message like this, “Hi this is Joe, Call me.”

If you don’t know Joe, why would you waste your time to call? Joe couldn’t be bothered to tell you why you should call him. I bet that Joe whines to his boss, “I called but nobody called me back.”

You don’t owe Joe a thing. Don’t waste your time trying to educating him. Poor stupid Joe.

The second question is, “What do you want me to do?”

Do you want me to call you?
Do you want to meet with me?
Do you want me to register for a seminar?
Do you want me to order your product?
Do you want a link on my website?

Stop being mysterious and tell me what you want from me.

Because I don’t have the time or inclination to decipher your cryptic message or pry your offering from your lips.

Just answer two questions for me:

What’s in it for me?
What do you want me to do?

Because if you can’t do that – there is no way I will contact you.

Of course even if you answer those two questions I might not call you and that’s a different issue. No one said that life would be fair.

George Torok

Marketing Tips

Networking Secrets

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Intimidate Your Competition

Intimidate Your Competition

Why should you intimidate your competition?
You probably recognize that in war or sports it is a good idea to intimidate your competition. Why? Because if your competition is afraid of you – you have already won.

In his 3,000 year old classic book, The Art of War, Sun Tse pointed out, “All battles are won before they are fought.”

I believe that Sun Tse was right. I believe that he was talking about purpose, preparation, and positioning. Each of those are important and we can discuss in future posts.

Watch this video of the New Zealand rugby team, All Blacks, as they intimidate their competition before the game. Imagine if you are the competition standing at the other end of the field watching this Haka dance that is clearly delivered to intimidate you? If you didn’t visit the bathroom before entering the field I bet you will want to run off the field to change your pants after being subjected to this intimidation.

Intimidation is about creating fear, uncertainty or doubts.

In any competition that is all it takes to lose a battle, a game or a sale.

Business is clearly a competition. It is never about playing fair. It is about winning. Are you intimidated by your competition or are you intimidating them? If you are not imtimidating your competition - why not?

Stop being intimidated – start intimidating! Start winning more.

Intimidate more!

George Torok

Power Marketing

Marketing Speaker

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

National Post: Small Business Launch

The National Post launched it's new Small Business section on Monday, October 15, 2007. This is Small Business Week. This is a weekly feature that will run every Monday for Small Business. This is a significant recognition of small business. Canada's other national business newspaper (Globe and Mail) only talks about small business every three months.

Watch for my marketing tips every week in the National Post Small Business section.

George Torok
Marketing Expert
Small Business Consultant
National Post contributor

Thursday, October 11, 2007

SOHO Business Conference Vancouver

SOHO Business Conference Vancouver

Attend the SOHO/SME Business conference and EXPO in Vancouver on October 30, 2007. This is the 11th year for the SOHO business conference. Vancouver was the original site of this SOHO conference which has spread to Toronto, Calgary and Ottawa.

What is SOHO?
Today it means small office and/or home office

SOHO used to be only associated with the SOHO red-light district in London, England and the SOHO area in New York City described as South of Houston street.

Today SOHO is clearly about small business. Sensitive to the time demands of SOHO business this conference is a one day affair. Folks in SOHO just don’t have the time to attend three-day or week-long conferences like their corporate counterparts.

If you work in SOHO and you are in Vancouver on October 30, be sure to attend the SOHO/SME Business conference and EXPO.

Here are the details for you:
Event: SOHO/SME Business conference and EXPO
Date: October 30, 2007
Location: Fairmount Hotel, Vancouver, BC, Canada

Why should you attend the SOHO conference in Vancouver?

Hear lots of powerful business speakers that can help you grow your business.

And a very special treatGeorge Torok (that’s me) is delivering a special presentation Secrets of Success. This presentation is different from my marketing presentation. This presentation offers insights and lessons from my 400 interviews with business leaders, consulting, world travel including some special lesson from Las Vegas and success lessons ingrained from personal pain and triumph.

See you in Vancouver at the SOHO conference. Stop by and say hello. If you tell me that you read about this on my blog I will give you a free copy of my bestselling book, Secrets of Power Marketing, while supplies last. I will probably bring a half-dozen copies.

See you in at SOHO – the conference – not the red-light district.

George Torok


Marketing Specialist

Motivational Speaker

Bestselling author of Secrets of Power Marketing

Monday, October 08, 2007

Richard Branson has Chahones

Richard Branson has Chahones

Richard Branson has chahones and he likes to show them off. Here he is running nude in the waves. Sir Richard thrives on challenge and controversy. He is the billionaire that has retained or reclaimed the boldness and brashness of a teenager. (How many boomers remember streaking?)

He is a billionaire so he is worth studying. The question is, “Is he a billionaire because of his antics or is does he partake in his antics because of his billions?”

Perhaps it is a bit of both.

So what controversial stunts has Richard Branson committed?

Running nude from the ocean surf
Supporting the Ontario government Flick Off campaign
Parachuting into the city
Posing in a wedding dress

As a corporate spokesperson Branson is superb. As a corporate brand he is invaluable. The Virgin companies do not need to hire celebrity spokespersons because Branson is a celebrity. Whatever Branson does gets noticed because Branson does things that get noticed.

Sir Richard has chahones. How many corporate CEOs can stake that claim?

George Torok

Friday, October 05, 2007

Complaint Procedure

Complaint Procedure

One revealing way to test your marketing is to test your complaint procedure. Marketing is supposed to send messages about who you are and what you represent. Marketing is more than just listing your products. Marketing conveys your values, style and substance.

One way to test your values is to test your complaint process. Do you have one? Is it easy for customers to use? Do you hear and listen to your customers’ complaints? How do you act on them? That says a lot about your values.

Investigate how easy or difficult it is to complain to your company.

Do you treat complaints as valuable market research?
How do you encourage customer complaints?
How do you reward customer complaints?

George Torok

Marketing Specialist

Host of Business in Motion

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Satisfaction Guarantee

Satisfaction Guarantee

Who offers you a 100% satisfaction guarantee? Would that make it easier for you to decide where to buy?

And more importantly, do you offer a satisfaction guarantee to your clients? If you don’t - why not?

Why don’t you promise to make your clients 100% satisfied with your service? Are you afraid that you can’t deliver?

If that is not the problem – then promise to deliver satisfaction or else. That promise might make you stand out from your competition.

Of course - if you can’t deliver satisfaction – don’t promise.

A satisfaction guarantee is a powerful way to remove the risk from your client’s buying decision.

George Torok

Marketing Specialist

Canadian Motivational Speaker

PS: George Torok offers a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee for all speaking engagements.