Peter Master No Comments

Is your business paying you 6.4% dividend or more …?

Recently the EPF announced its dividend for 2015. Given that 2015 was a challenging year, a 6.4% dividend is not bad. At least it’s higher than bank deposit rates and official inflation numbers!

If you’re in business, your business should be generating good dividends too, shouldn’t it?

Here are 7 things you can do to build a strong business that pays you handsome dividends every year.

  1. Protect Your Margins

Always protect your gross margins. If your costs go up (packaging and raw materials, transport and delivery costs, exchange rate, etc), you need to find ways to either raise your prices or trim costs elsewhere.

A strong brand (think Milo or Nescafe) with clear and definite uniqueness will help you command your margin and also price.

  1. Business Growth

Your business has to keep growing. At least in tandem with population and economic growth. Unless you’re in a sunset industry (eg. camera film!), your business needs to grow from year to year. What new products or services are you adding or launching? How are you getting new clients and customers? What can you do to get customers to buy more from you?


  1. Differentiation or Uniqueness

If you’re Guinness Stout, there’s not much direct competition. However, we’re not always so fortunate to have little or no direct competition. What makes you unique or different from others in your industry? Is it a unique customer or user experience, is it your years of experience or specific expertise? Or is it your brand or product range? Perhaps it’s even the brand strength of your principal or your distribution network?

  1. Customer Service

Very often, people tell me they provide good service. Doesn’t everyone claim that? What’s unique or so great about your service? Is it an extended warranty at no extra cost? Or, perhaps, a goods returnable satisfaction policy within 7 days of purchase?

What does your business do or provide to ensure a customer service rating of 8 or 9 if not 10?

  1. Sound, Competitive Strategy

Very often businesses run short-term promotions to boost sales. Nothing wrong with running promotions from time to time. But these are short-term tactics. What happens to sales after the promotion… normally it nose-dives.

It pays to develop a sound business strategy.

Does your business have a strong, competitive strategy to stay ahead of the game?

  1. Consistent Marketing

Marketing is the engine of any business. Without good marketing, it’s unlikely your business can grow. All too often, however, business owners do not sustain their marketing efforts. They either give up too soon or lose focus. Sometimes, they succumb to “Trial and Error” marketing instead of “Test and Measure” marketing – and that’s such a great tragedy. In today’s fast-paced world, Marketing has to be more scientific.

  1. Leverage Your Team

First, you have to build your team. Once you done that, leverage your team. A strong team highly skilled, highly motivated and high performing, will run circles around your competition.

So, there you have it. Seven essential pillars to building a solid business that gives you rewarding returns. Every year. To learn more about how to build a strong, profitable business successfully, why not join us on 24th March 2016 at our Quarterly Business Kickstarter?

Take your business higher! Enrol for Business Kickstarter now! Bring your team! Share this with your friends, suppliers and customers. Click here for details.


To your success,
Coach Peter Lam
Business Growth Strategist and Team Alignment Coach


Peter Master No Comments

5 Fundamentals for Better Marketing Results

Many Business Owners select a Marketing tactic and jump straight into execution. Very often there’s no strategy behind the tactic. Then, it doesn’t work, results are poor and they dump it, blame the tactic (e.g. flyers, telemarketing, facebook ads, direct mail) and say it doesn’t work for them.

Sound familiar?

Here are 5 things you must do to get Better Marketing Results.

The 5 Marketing Fundamentals

1. Have a Marketing Budget

Marketing is an on-going process. Have a pre-set Marketing Budget, just like you budget for salary before hiring or budget for machinery and equipment before adding a production line.

Many people just do ad-hoc marketing and decide to spend maybe RM 5,000 on a flyer or Google ads. Marketing has to be consistent to be effective. So start by setting a budget and allocating how you will invest it.

2 Monitor and Control

One you’ve set your budget, you need to monitor the results and control your spending. What are you monitoring? Here are a few important ones :-

i) How many responses or enquiries did your marketing piece / activity generate?

ii) How many of these enquiries turned into actual sales?

iii) How much was the average invoice?

iv) Did the increase in sales more than cover the spending to generate the sales?

v) What did it cost per new customer?

vi) What did it cost per new enquiry?

vii) If the marketing piece was a promotion targeted at existing customers, did they
buy more?

Knowing these critical numbers will help you make better decisions for your next Marketing activity and help you fine tune your current one.

3. Test, Test, Test

It’s a shocking statistics, but 80% of Marketing doesn’t work. If all marketing worked, life would be easy, isn’t it?

So, it’s imperative that we test every bit of our Marketing. That’s what big successful companies like Coca-Cola, Apple and Nike do. For example, they test their headline, their offer, the colour used, the medium used even the day of week.

Testing helps refine and hone down what works best with our target market – which brings us to the next fundamental.

4. Understand Your Target

Take the time to really understand your target. Who’s your primary target?

Your target could be women, for example. But exactly what sort of women? Young, old? Are they career women or home-makers? Are they middle income or higher income? What sort of hand-bag do they carry? Where would they go shopping? How often? Do they cook or mainly eat out?

Starting to get the idea?

All these things have an impact on the Marketing that we develop and ultimately on the results of our Marketing efforts.

5. Set clear objectives for each campaign

When I was an Advertising man many years ago, I’d wonder why clients always want to achieve so many things with one campaign. Yet the most effective marketing is usually single-minded. We might have 5 objectives, but to get the best results, each Marketing activity should focus on one over-riding objective – e.g. to generate trial or to generate enquiries or to increase bulk purchase, etc.

So there you have it. Five fundamentals that will help you get better Marketing results.

Get started with one and move on to the next. Keep at it until it becomes systematic and automatic and see your results soar.

All the best.