by _comunica2punto0

#marketing When Collaborating with SMEs, Think “Is-Does-Means”

In Marketing on 26 agosto, 2016 at 13:48

Let’s face it. Subject matter experts (SMEs) today tend to work in departments such as product management, product marketing, services, and engineering. This (obviously) makes them great at providing RFP responses that are factual, technically detailed, and highly accurate. Yet surprisingly, SME and RFPstheir content may not be good enough to include in your next RFP.

If this sounds like a contradiction – What do you mean our SMEs can’t provide great responses? – keep in mind that SMEs are often too close to a particular product or feature, especially if they helped design, develop, or launch it. They may have invested weeks or months (even years) focused on a new widget or technical detail, and now assume everyone knows what it is and why it’s so important.

Additionally, their roles usually require attention to product specifications and other technical details to make sure it works. As a result, these SMEs may be great at communicating accurate technical information, yet they often come up short when attempting to communicate the benefits their widget provides. In other words, they fail to address the question, “what does this really mean for the prospect?”

Highlight the benefits, not the features

Zig Ziglar, a famous sales guru, author, and motivation speaker, once pointed out that no one really wants a quarter-inch drill bit; what they really want is a quarter-inch hole. This was his way of encouraging sales and marketing teams to focus on providing solutions to their prospect’s problems, not just another product.

This still rings true today. Our language is still too focused on “we,” as in our products, our services, our track record, etc. Sales content usually doesn’t articulate how a particular product or service can help the prospect increase productivity, cut costs, or achieve whatever other goal they may be pursuing.

What is the best way to improve collaboration with SMEs, get better RFP content, and consistently demonstrate the benefit a prospect will receive? One way is collaborating with SMEs using an “is-does-means” framework when asking for RFP responses.

A closer look at “is-does-means”

  • Is: This is your chance to describe what a particular product, service, or feature actually is. Don’t take it too far and eliminate this step. It is still important to convey since many prospects do want to know – in simple terms – what your specific offering is.
  • Does: Here’s where you take it a little further. Instead of simply describing what your product, service, or feature is, this content should describe what it does. This information can include how it works, answers to obvious questions prospects may have on how this fits into larger product messaging, and other details.
  • Means: This is the most overlooked step. Too many subject matter experts assume prospects know what the end benefit really is, and in doing so, miss a huge opportunity to convey why anyone should care. “Means” content should include how this product, service, or feature helps save time, increase productivity, reduces costs, maximizes ROI, helps the business grow, or other business drivers. This content should be as specific as possible and improve quantifiable proof such as proven cost savings, metrics, or customer testimonials.

“Is-does-means” in action

To understand how this might look in real-life, let’s take a closer look at an example we’re all familiar with: a spell-check feature in a word-processing application:

  • Is: “Our release now includes a new spelling-and grammar-checking feature embedded in our word-processing application.”
  • Does: “This powerful new feature quickly identifies and corrects spelling errors and common grammar mistakes in word-processing, email, and online discussions.”
  • Means: “Save valuable time proofreading your document, reduce the amount of errors by 99.9%, and make sure you always sound like a true professional. Now you can produce flawless copy effortlessly and truly stand apart from the competition.”

By getting SMEs to understand what a great RFP response looks like – and how to consistently promote the benefits you can provide – RFP teams can improve collaboration and the overall quality of their proposal content.

For more ideas on improving collaboration – and how it can improve your proposal processes – download our new guide, Stop. Collaborate and Listen: Eight Best Practices for Improving Collaboration in the Proposal Process,” today.

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#marketing What You Need to Know About OSHA Changes

In Marketing on 26 agosto, 2016 at 12:44

OSHA exists for good reason – to ensure the health and safety of employees’ work environments. However, the Act is over 45 years old, which means its specific rules often need revisiting for reevaluation and updating. Recently, three major changes have been brought to light, which may have significant impact on employers. Here’s what you need to know about OSHA changes.

#1 Implementing Electronic Recordkeeping

Previously, employers were only required to keep and post annually a log of work-related injuries and illnesses using specific OSHA forms. However, merely posting that information in the workplace, and occasionally furnishing it in the event of an audit, means a lot of insight is being lost.

Enter the new rule. Under the new regulations, employers will be required to submit injury and illness information electronically to OSHA, using OSHA forms 300, 300A and 301. This information will be publicly accessible.

OSHA suggests that the benefits of this rule are significant. The agency believes that public availability should “nudge” employers to implement a greater focus on safety. Furthermore, with this new database of information, the agency can apply more in-depth analytics into incident rates, identifying in real-time which companies should be inspected. Ultimately, this rule change is meant to increase workplace health and safety.

#2 Addressing Discouraged Reporting

The same rule that implements electronic recordkeeping also addresses the issue of underreporting due to significant employee deterrents. In keeping with the goal of ensuring workplace health and safety, OSHA is concerned about scenarios in which incidents go unreported. As such, they have identified three main actions that they believe to be in violation.

The first violation is mandatory drug testing of an employee after an injury occurs as a result of a workplace accident. Drug testing must be administered only with reasonable cause. Secondly, employee “rate-based” incentive programs that specifically reward no reported injuries are also considered a violation. OSHA believes these types of programs discourage reporting. The final violation is any disciplinary action against employees who violate safety procedures that result in injury or employees who report injuries after a significant period of time has passed since the incident occurred.

Ultimately, OSHA believes that employers are more likely to ensure workplace health and safety when reporting is unimpeded.

#3 Increase in Fines

Another major change is the 78% increase in fines. OSHA violation penalties have not been increased for more than 25 years, so this change is a reflection of inflation over the years. The fines exist to encourage employers to increase safety measures in the workplace.

The old penalty, of $7,000 per violation, has increased to $12,471 as of August 2, 2016 for any violations occurring after November 2, 2015. For willful or repeated violations, the increase went from $70,000 to $124,709.

How OSHA Changes Impact You

Employers in hazardous industries and work environments will likely be significantly impacted by these OSHA changes. While these changes are part of an effort to protect employees and increase worker health and safety, it’s clear that employers must also stay ahead of rule updates in order to ensure compliance and avoid violations.

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#marketing Una pequeña tienda se llamaba “El Kun” (pero la obligaron a cambiar)

In Marketing on 26 agosto, 2016 at 12:23

Buenos Aires, Argentina.– Los derechos de marca, en general, no se aplican a pequeños comercios porque es más complicado el reclamo que el daño que ocasionan. Sin embargo, quienes se encargan de la imagen del jugador del fútbol argentino Sergio Agüero no opinan lo mismo.

Muchos medios lo graficaron como una pelea entre David y Golliat. ¿David? Una pequeña tienda que vende emparedados y hot-dogs en la ciudad de Tucumán (al norte argentino) ¿Golliat? El jugador del Manchester City y la Selección Argentina, Sergio “El Kun” Agüero.

Precisamente el apodo del futbolista fue el problema, que obligó a la tienda a cambiar el nombre: se llamaba igual, “El Kun”. Ver El Kun Agüero contesta los tuits pateando al arco (literal)

el kun
Así lucía la fachada del comercio.

La denuncia del comercio fue publicada en la cuenta de Facebook de esta forma: “Ante la existencia de cuestionamientos, oposición y acciones judiciales iniciadas por Sergio Leonel Agüero del Castillo, conocido deportivamente como ‘El Kun’ Agüero, sobre el uso del nombre de fantasía El Kun, con el que he venido desempeñando esta actividad comercial desde el año 2009 y no estando en mi ánimo involucrarme en cuestiones judiciales, he decidido cambiar esa denominación por la actual A mi nooo”. Ver Cómo reaccionan las marcas ante acusaciones de plagio

El comunicado, está firmado por Óscar Juárez, propietario del lugar, quien asegura que a pesar del cambio mantienen la misma “calidad y excelencia” de los productos y servicios ofrecidos.

aguero sergio
La tienda pasó de llamarse “El Kun”, a “A mi nooo”, casi como una burla por la situación.

La intimación, más que beneficios para la marca “Agüero” podría ser tomado como algo perjudicial, ya que la mayoría de los medios locales (y en consecuencia, la gente) vio al hecho como algo egoísta por parte del jugador, que gana millones por temporada, al enfrentar a un pequeño local tucumano.

Copia de diseño zapotecas

El mes pasado, una marca argentina fue acusada de plagiar bordados zapotecas. Ese caso se sumó a otros dos en los que se involucró a marcas de utilizar para sus diseños diagramas indígenas. Se trata de la marca Rapsodia, que lanzó una nueva colección que incluye la prenda Marion Missy, cuyos bordados son muy similares a los de la prenda típica zapoteca, de la comunidad Antonino Castillo Velasco, Oaxaca.

The post Una pequeña tienda se llamaba “El Kun” (pero la obligaron a cambiar) appeared first on Revista Merca2.0.

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