The thing about Cabo, Mexico, is you're surrounded by a lot
of entrepreneurs. From the people peddling their wares on the sidewalk to the
wait staff and crew members serving you (and working for tips), it's a great
place to study what to do if you want to put more money in your pocket.
The best case study took place on a snorkel cruise ship. We
had already paid for the cruise, so they weren't trying to sell us anything.
Instead crew members were trying to up their tips.
Here are 5 things they did
and what you can do in your own marketing to increase your sales:
1. They gave great service. I must say in Cabo, I really
didn't have any bad service and this ship wasn't the exception. Crew members
offered you a drink as you got on board and they were always circulating the
boat, collecting empty glasses and plates and asking if you wanted a refill.
I know, this one sounds like a no-brainer. So why is it that
so many businesses DON'T do it? Take a hard look at the service you provide
your customers and see if it really is as good as it could be.
2. They were entertaining. On the ride back after
snorkeling, 3 of the crew members (the fourth was driving the boat) put on a
show. They dressed up in costumes, provided upside down shot (you're probably
better off if you don't know what these are) and danced for us.
People want to be entertained, especially in your marketing.
The very worst thing you can be is boring. When you're boring, people turn you
off. Once that happens, you're done. You can't sell anyone anything if they've
stopped paying attention to you. And the more entertaining you are, the more
they'll listen to you and the more they'll buy from you.
3. They asked for the sale. In America, crew members
probably would have put the tip jar on a table so you could drop something in
on your way off the boat. Maybe they would have put a cute sign on it
encouraging you to tip. Not here. First, crew members announced that if you had
a good time, you should thank them by giving them a tip. Then they passed the
jar around. Actually, they did more then pass the jar around, they walked
around themselves and stood in front of you with it. Now THAT'S asking for the
How many times do you put the tip jar on the table and hope
for the best? For the greatest results, you have to make it clear what you want
your prospects to do next.
4. They used social proof. While they stood there with the
tip jar, they also had a running commentary about how much people were putting
in (and they did it with a mike on so everyone on the ship could hear). So you
would hear things like: "Come on, that's the best you can do? What are you
cheap?" You get the picture. Talk about shaming people to give you more
money. (I know we probably put more in then we would have without those
Now, while I wouldn't necessarily recommend shaming your
prospects into giving you money, using social proof is always a good idea. How
I would do it is by showing your prospects how many other people are doing
business with you. If you have a lot of customers and you tell your prospects
that, it adds to your credibility (People want to do business with successful,
busy people. If you're not busy, there's always that niggling worry in the back
of your prospects' heads that perhaps you don't know what you're doing.)
5. They make it easy to tip. Dollars, pesos, whatever,
they'll take it. They make it easy to tip because they'll accept what you have.
I'm always amazed at how difficult it is to do business with
some people. They'll only take checks or they'll only take PayPal. When you
limit the ways people can give you money, you WILL limit your sales. Make it
easy for people to do business with you and you remove one more reason for them
to say "no."