Combine These 7 Simple Tactics To Successfully Launch New Products On Amazon

To launch a new product successfully on amazon.com, make certain all seven of these simple steps are checked off. This will maximize your visibility and selling potential. Otherwise, you’ll find yourself among the many who believe that Amazon is a brutally hard space to gain sales traction for new products.

I should note that all of these tools must be used. Drop any one and it will take you far too long to achieve any momentum with your product launch. This is especially true if you are a smaller brand, like we are at General Tools.

  • Generate Buzz with Pre-Order Sales – Creating hype over a new product launch will not only help generate customer awareness in advance of the product launch date, but will help boost initial product sales. To do this on Amazon, the item is setup, ASIN is obtained, NIS Pre-Order Submission Template is completed (providing Amazon with a product release date), product page is then live on Amazon. Amazon may not have placed orders for the product yet, but with pre-order sales rolling in, it will prompt Amazon to make certain they have inventory on hand for quick fulfillment of the product.

  • Participate in Vine Reviews – Vine Voices are Amazon’s most trusted reviewers. Positive feedback from trusted reviewers help customers make informed decisions, which in turn generates more sales and creates additional positive reviews. Note: $2,500 per ASIN to access the Vine program. The number of units per promotion are limited to 15.

Image result for amazon vine

  • Born to Run – Amazon program for new products. When new products are set up in Amazon, vendors are allowed to participate in a Born to Run program. Amazon agrees to buy the product as long as the vendor spends on AMS equal to 10% of purchase value.
  • Amazon Advertising – Paid Amazon service allows vendors to be more visible and stand out against their competition while increasing sales potential and providing sales lift.

There are three Campaign types to advertise products on Amazon Advertising:

  1. Sponsored Products* – Promote products to shoppers actively searching with related keywords
  2. Sponsored Brands – Showcase a collection of products
  3. Product Display Ads – Deliver relevant ads targeting shoppers’ interests or related  products/categories* Note – Sponsored Products have always been our best performing campaign type but this is not a set it and forget it ad platform.
  • Add Optimized Title and Bullets/Images/Videos – General follows Amazon best practices when it comes to a highly optimized product page. New products are setup with optimized titles and bullets (5 bullets allowed) that describe the top features of the product along with highly searchable keyword terms. Images we include: a hero product shot, side L/R angle shots and several application shots. If available, we also include a video. Amazon is now asking vendors to add 360 degree photography, a new capability on the platform.Amazon SEO Strategy and Search Term Optimization
  • Twist/Product Variation – Twisting products on Amazon allows customers to compare, choose and click thru to similar products within General’s product line. The variations all appear on one page giving customers the ability to peruse the grouped ‘family’ product line without having to hunt for these products thru Amazon.  Twisted products give customers a better shopping experience, gives lift to the entire product line, boosts sales and increase reviews. Less popular items can ‘piggy back’ off the success of the more popular/best-selling items.Image result for amazon variation products
  • A+ content – Provide customers with richer, more detailed information with A+ Content. A+ Detail Pages have helped to increase customer conversion, retain customer interest, educate shoppers about model variations/features, and promote brand awareness. A+ content is a free Amazon service and offers a very visual display of our products with additional application images, product comparison charts etc. to promote products.

Image result for amazon A+ content

Using all of these tactics together maximizes sales opportunities for new products on Amazon. Believe me when I say it works – we’ve launched many of our now best selling products this way!

Good Selling!

 

 

Tips for Linking Retail Outlet Sales Back to Digital Marketing Efforts

I was asked to address this question not long ago: A large part of our business is in consumer packaged goods sold through mass-channel outlets such as Wal-Mart. We’d like some insights into how we can use analytics to help us understand the marketing-driven revenue on the retail end. Is there a way we can link POS revenue back to our digital marketing efforts?

Response: Expert Exchange with Greg Bonsib

THE BIG IDEAS

  • Capitalize on in-store promotional events
  • What drives digital sales likely drives retails sales too
  • Hire a lead agency that is strong strategically and analytically

CAPITALIZE ON IN-STORE PROMOTIONAL EVENTS

Coordinate the digital marketing with in-store promotional events. Provide end caps or other kinds of displays with a certain product, which will have its unique SKU. You can use the SKU to isolate the point of sale and the sales for the product.

  • You need to establish the base line for sales when there are no special promotions or marketing in the mix.
  • Discount for sales lift due to approaching holidays, when sales would increase anyhow.
  • You can assume that anything you see in sales above the base line is because of marketing.

WHAT DRIVES DIGITAL SALES LIKELY DRIVES RETAIL SALES TOO

You can use analytics on the online sales to help you understand which of your marketing tactics are working better than others. That is, which are driving sales at particular online retailers, such as walmart.com. Most likely, the tactics that work best for online sales will also work best for the retail outlets too.

  • You can look at the halo effect that occurred with the rest of the product line that wasn’t being promoted. Did sales increase for the other products? The more halo effect, the better.
  • Planograms are useful tools when you have a history of sales over many different sales channels for similar products. You can compare and contrast the sales at the different retailers. Planograms can help you analyze whether a promotional event in one sales channel increased sales in others, or whether an impact at one retailer echoes an impact at a competitive retailer.
  • Use heat mapping to understand the impact of regionality and other variables.

HIRE A LEAD AGENCY THAT IS STRONG STRATEGICALLY AND ANALYTICALLY

Most big companies use many agencies, each with a specific focus, which means that you receive masses of data that is in different forms that is difficult to use.

  • Use a lead agency into which every other agency feeds its tracking, analytics, and other data. Icreon Tech is highly recommended.
  • This agency aggregates the data. It manages the data wrangling, normalization, and warehousing.
  • As a central repository you can dictate how the data is organized. For example, we’ve created three buckets: commerce (revenue), behavior (what people do on the sites), and engagement (click-through rates, and so on).

How can you build on these ideas? Let me know!

Good Selling!

 

The Art of a Great Sales Pitch

Occasionally, I come across a post that provides valuable insight. This blog post from Tenfold is exactly that. Read on and learn!

Today’s sales ‘pitches’ are no longer simply a stack of information thrown at prospects.

Instead, effective sales pitches today are two-way conversations.

Listening to a prospective buyer’s wants and needs is as important as providing information about products and services.

Furthermore, asking follow-up questions, pinpointing their pain, and offering a solution that meets their company’s challenges will be more effective and more successful for both parties. Even so, preparation is key to the best sales pitches. They show the business knows their products or services well, understands the prospect’s business, and respects the prospect’s time.

How to Prepare a Sales Pitch

While preparation is a must, the pitch shouldn’t be over-practiced or robotic.

After all, people do business with people they like. Friendly and professional will get a salesperson far further than stiff and formal. In fact, a great first sales pitch should begin with a top-notch first impression. This is where the sales team can shine by knowing their products and services and how they will benefit the prospect.

Additionally, it’s important to keep in mind the multitude of things vying for everyone’s attention nowadays, and understand that keeping the audience immersed in the message is critical. The only way to do that is by having information that is relevant to the buyer and actively engaging them in the discussion.  Preparation takes work.

Due diligence

It’s safe to say that most services or products will not sell themselves, so crafting a pitch that will be fruitful requires more than just regurgitating data. A good pitch requires an understanding of the customer, which requires some stealthy research beforehand.

It’s important to be know about their company, their competitors, and their industry in general and and any trends. It’s also important to ask questions during the initial contact so that the message is tailored to meet the challenges the company faces.

Eliminate extraneous chatter and keep the buyer focused. Showing that you understand their pain points and how they can be addressed is the goal.

Share Vital Details

The research done on the company and their challenges pays off when they realize how well the product pitch fits with their pain points, and can visualize it solving their problems.

Best-selling author Guy Kawasaki calls this enchantment, and says, “Enchantment is the purest form of sales. Enchantment is all about changing people’s hearts, minds and actions because you provide them a vision or a way to do things better.

The difference between enchantment and simple sales is that with enchantment you have the other person’s best interests at heart too.” Customers respond best to those services or products that directly address a current problem or need that they have, so every sales pitch should be geared toward unique needs of the business being pitched.

How to Address Objections

Respectfully addressing objections is part of a good sales professional’s repertoire. The best salespeople anticipate objections that might arise and have responses to those at the ready.

There are four basic types of objections that arise: budget, authority, need, and time, with the acronym BANT.

Being prepared to discuss all four is wise, with the goal being to show value to the prospect. Budget objections can be countered with the amount of money that a product or service can save a customer. If a customer is currently using a competing product, it’s important to point out what makes the new solution different and better.

Listen carefully:  A fantastic pitch is great, but really hearing a prospect is even better. Being overconfident or sticking too closely to a script can be a mistake. Always let the potential customer do most of the talking and listen carefully to what they are saying. Responding with thoughtful answers shows they are being heard. This will go no small distance toward making their buying decision easier.

Ask for the sale: Listening to the buyer is critical, but asking for the sale after the presentation is even more so. Sales professionals need to take the lead and offer a call to action that is the next step – whether that is signing on the dotted line today, offering a trial period, or following up in three days. Never wait for the customer to “get back to you”. Failing to proactively address the call to action will result in fewer sales and more frustration.

How to Make a Sales Pitch

Bringing the prospect to the table for a presentation is in itself no easy feat; it takes nurturing and endless rapport-building to get a potential buyer interested in a product they might not even have known existed.

Never waste an opportunity. Always keep the pitch on-message and clear to keep a buyer enthralled with the service or product offering. Review the pitch repeatedly and cut until it’s lean and concise, and — especially — free of buzzwords that sound insincere.

Always keep in mind that the buyer’s attention is at a premium, with many companies and products vying to get a piece of it. The best product in the world will not make a bit of difference if they do not know about it.

Everything boils down to painting the picture of a better solution in the prospect’s mind. If they are convinced your product or service will make their life easier or better, they will buy. Never leave things to chance; carefully construct and finely tune every pitch for maximum results.

Push where it hurts, but gently

Solving the right problem for the prospect makes for a good pitch, an almost guaranteed sale, and lots of success. The pitch needs to gently poke the prospect’s pain points, reminding them why they need this service of product offering, and then laying out the benefits it will give them.

Poke a little harder

What happens if they don’t address the problem they currently have? If they are using legacy computers and need to convert to the cloud, how can they be convinced to move? Do they understand the maintenance costs of delaying? What about security issues and hardware obsolescence?

Use the setup

Get prospects ready for the pitch by pointing out problems with other solutions. Why aren’t visitors buying or calling? Where do their existing products or services fall short? What better solutions are out there and available to them?

Final Thoughts

When working with prospects, it is crucial to know how to perform a great sales pitch.

Being prepared by doing appropriate and in-depth research on the company, the industry it belongs to, and trends in the industry is the first step. In the meantime, building rapport with the potential prospect and ensuring that the buying partner is at the table is another key. Figuring out the company’s pain points and how the products or services fit into their challenge is the key to closing sales. Always, always ask for the sale, and if the answer is no, follow up relentlessly.

What tips do you have for better sales presentations? 

Good Selling!