The Newsletter Pro - December 2017

#343 in the 2016 INC. 500 | #120 in the 2015 INC. 500 | 2014 Marketer of the Year | 24K Club Winner

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Success Story Tell the Truth! You’re in the Booty

Call Business, Aren’t You? Does Your Company Elicit Breakout Success?


Why Zoom Is the Web Conference Software You Need


Meet Karli McNamee (and Knikki!)


What Small-Business Owners Can Learn From Apple

SELLING IN TODAY’S ECONOMY Everyone Has Completely UNDERESTIMATED the Difficulty of the Task

and Apple was, so I talked to hundreds of people and sold as many Apple computers as I could. I even sold one to my grandma, because they were good computers and I wanted to win. Selling in 1996 was different than it is today. In 1996, the internet was really just starting out, and pretty much no one was using it. Even when someone did use it, the information available on it was minimal, to say the least. So, when a family wanted a new computer, they didn’t research it on the internet; they came in and let some 16-year- old kid tell them what RAM is or how much hard drive space they’d need. Of course, like any good salesperson, I also had to make them aware it would be a travesty for them to not buy the five-

Selling is so much more difficult than it ever has been because the rules of the game have changed. But few people and companies have evolved. I’ve always been able to sell, ever since I was a little kid, and even into my very first big-boy job, The Good Guys, where I sold computers. Sales seemed simple back then. People walked in, I talked and educated them, and they bought or didn’t buy. I remember, during my first 45 days there, they had a contest to see who could sell the most Apple computers. First place was a trip to Las Vegas. Today, it may feel like selling Apple computers would be easy, but in 1996, Apple computers were not cool. What everyone wanted was this brand-new thing called a Pentium Processor. But, Intel was not offering a contest,

“Just because people inquire doesn’t mean they are ready to buy. They may be in the research phase still, and maybe they wanted to get some information from you, so that’s why IT IS SO IMPORTANT TO FOLLOW UP .”

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For example, if you want to sell Jim a service, he might feel your company’s reputation is good and give you eight points there. Jim thinks you have the product that will solve his problem, so you get nine points there, but you’re a jerk, so you only get three points, and you aren’t closing a sale. Of course, it makes sense that your salesperson needs to be likable. Let me show you another example. Jim now gives you 10 points and the product nine points, but when he Googles you, he sees you have horrible reviews and your company gets one point. Do you think Jim is buying anything from you? Unfortunately, the two examples I just gave are the easy scenarios. Most of the time, it isn’t that black and white. Most of the time, the scenario looks much more like this. Jim is considering the product you sell and three other competitor products. Jim gives you six points, the company five points, and the product 5 points. He is literally sitting on the fence. You have to meet a person’s threshold in all three areas or you’re screwed.

To sell anything complicated or expensive to a prospect today, the prospect must meet their internal personal sales threshold in three areas.

year warranty on this piece of equipment they didn’t understand.

Think about how different that was from how it is today. In 1996, I was the internet for Apple computers. I was the place people came to for information to make purchasing decisions. Prospects needed me in order to buy. Today, prospects have already researched the products they want and the needs they have. Today, prospects educate themselves on what RAM is or how big of a hard drive they may need. Of course, many products still need salespeople, but the prospects are much smarter today than they were over 20 years ago.

First, they must believe that your product or service is not garbage and can help them.

Second, they must believe that you are a good salesperson and also not garbage. They need to know you will help them before and after the sale. Third, they must believe that the company you own or work for is not garbage and will stand behind whatever they buy. You have to achieve each person’s minimum sales threshold on all three of these areas if you even have a prayer of selling anything to them. Think of these three areas as a points-based system. Each area has a maximum of 10 possible points and a minimum of one possible point, and each person has an unknown minimum number of points that you must achieve in order for them to close and become a customer. You have to work at increasing your points in each of these areas if you want people to buy from you. This is where so many people misunderstand the use of media and how it relates to selling, but that will have to be another article or training for another time.

So, why do we keep selling as if it were 20 years ago?

Prospects walk in with a base level of education. Now, it may be internet-based education, which isn’t always reliable, but they don’t know that.

“Two-thirds of winning any deal is making people TRUST YOU AND YOUR COMPANY ...”

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you both personally and professionally. Share wins and customer success stories, communicate your guarantees, and stay top of mind, or you’re going to win fewer deals. Two-thirds of winning any deal is making people trust you and your company, but so little time is spent on these areas of selling. We all focus on features and maybe the benefits of our products and services, so it’s no surprise that people don’t buy from you or your team when that’s how you sell. Adjusting to selling in the new economy isn’t easy, but it is what needs to happen to win. Small business is being assaulted on all fronts, but small businesses aren’t adjusting. They are simply losing market share, accepting lower profits, and complaining about competition and the internet. A newsletter, like the one you’re reading, is a great way to build those relationships, nurture prospects and customers, make offers, and stand out from the competition. This is one way you move a prospect’s internal threshold. Think about it. Owning a piece of media like a newsletter allows you to create content that builds trust with you and your company by offering personal stories, customer success stories, etc. It also allows you a place to get the message out about your product or service. All of this has the benefit of moving those prospects closer and closer to a 10 in each category. The way we sell has to shift. The question is, are you willing to take control and shift with it in 2018?

With all the options on the market, including the option of doing nothing if you don’t follow up long-term (possibly for years, depending on your product or service), you’ll get nowhere. “Owning a piece of media like a newsletter allows you to CREATE CONTENT THAT BUILDS TRUST WITH YOU AND YOUR COMPANY by offering personal stories, customer success stories, etc.” Just because people inquire doesn’t mean they are ready to buy. They may be in the research phase still, and maybe they wanted to get some information from you, so that’s why it’s so important to follow up. If you want to gain points for your company and for yourself as a salesperson, you have to let the prospect peek behind the curtain to get to know

After you chat with Jim and he leaves, you make one follow-up call and never contact Jim again — except with promotional emails. What do you think that does to your overall points each week and month that passes? You see, Jim is trying to make a large purchase, and when he first reached out, he wasn’t 100 percent ready to buy because he was gathering intel on all the companies to make an informed decision, and your actions (really, your inaction) informed Jim that you were not the company to buy from. You’d think, with all the information at everyone’s fingertips, that would speed up the sales process — and for some low-ticket commodity items, it has — but for larger purchases, in many instances, it has slowed down the buying process. Selling to Jim today requires that you follow up and nurture him. It requires that you build a relationship and educate him. You need to show that you have his best interest at heart and that you’re a good person and work for or own a good company. What Jim needs is some TLC, but you were still selling like it’s 1996.


P.S. Remember that contest I mentioned earlier in the newsletter? By the time I started at The Good Guys, the contest was about halfway over, but at 16 years old and with half the time, I outsold everyone else in the company and won the trip

to Vegas. I was very excited until I went to claim the prize, sent in the paperwork, and was notified that you had to be 21 to win. P.P.S. If you want to chat with my team and get a road map for selling more prospects and getting more referrals, go to and make a no-obligation appointment to find out how you can implement the aforementioned strategy in your business for 2018.







“So, we use The Newsletter Pro in my law firm, Brooks & Crowley in Dedham, Massachusetts. We’ve been customers of The Newsletter Pro for about two years. We started out with approximately 300 newsletters, and we now mail about 1,300 newsletters every month. We have great feedback from our clients; they love the newsletters! They are very professionally done, well-written, and the staff is terrific to deal with. They get them out to us, and we are able to review everything. They are so great to work with.

And so, we are very happy. We encourage anyone to use The Newsletter Pro for their business!”

–Neil P.

Attorney at Crowley of Brooks and Crowley, LLC

DO YOU WANT TO KNOW THE DARK TRUTH? Ninety- nine percent of businesses in the U.S. are in the business of booty calls. To be clear, a booty call, as defined by the Urban Dictionary — this definition was highly sanitized — is as follows:

Now, I don’t think you’re in the business of asking people for sex, but most businesses treat their customers with nearly the same regard. HERE IS WHAT I MEAN: When do you communicate? I don’t want you to just keep reading right here; take 30 seconds and think about all your customer or prospect communication. If the answer to the question above is when you want money or some other benefit for yourself or your company, you are in the business version of a booty call relationship. THE VERY BEST BOOKS OF 2017 I’m often asked what I’m reading. Sometimes, that is a loaded question. I usually have multiple books in progress at any given time. My goal each quarter is to read nine books. To accomplish this goal, I read both physical books and listen to audiobooks. So, without further ado, here are my favorite books from the last few quarters of reading.

After we spoke with Neil at a local law show, we reached out to get more details about his campaign with a quick Q&A. Q: You mentioned you got great feedback about your newsletter from clients. Do you have an example or anecdote from one of your clients regarding the newsletter that you can share? “I did get a call from a client I hadn’t heard from in several years. I asked if he had our address because our office had moved across the street. He asked, ‘Is it the same address that’s on the newsletter?’ He was holding it in his hand. He had apparently been reading them all along.” “We have seen an increase in referrals from former clients. We can’t directly tie it to the newsletters, but it seems like more than a coincidence.” Q: Do you have any examples of how you use your newsletter? For instance, do you hand it out to new clients or consultations? “A lot of people tell us they read the newsletters and like them. I know among other lawyers and business owners, it gives us added legitimacy in their eyes. We are a law firm and not a couple of lawyers. They mention it when they see us. They know how much work appears to be put into the newsletter every single month (even though it really doesn’t require much work at all).” Q: Do you have any recommendations for others who use or want to use newsletters? “With little effort, it seems to deepen the bond with clients. They learn a little more about us every month, and we stay in touch. We couldn’t go out and talk to 1,300 people every month, so our newsletter does that for us. We also leave extras in our reception area.” Q: Have you seen an increase in referrals because of your newsletter?

Booty call (noun): a phone call, text, or conversation aimed at getting into your pants. Not an invite to a movie or dinner, not coffee, and not a casual or formal get-together — just a plain, old-fashioned “Let’s have sex” communication.






“You have to create content that adds value to the lives of your prospects and customers. YOU MUST EDUCATE AND ENTERTAIN — not just around your product or service.”

I know I’m using an extreme example here, but it is because of how egregious this practice is in the business world. We communicate when we want money. Am I wrong?

The booty call sales strategy is a horrible strategy.

an ad when we need someone to make a

The funny thing is, every once in a while, people will challenge me and show me some other communication that was not about selling to the prospect or customer, but usually the number of non-sales communications is very minimal. Ten to one at best. I’ll sometimes also have someone

purchase. There is always time to put together a proposal if we have the opportunity to get a sale. We seem to magically run out of time when it’s time to add value and go above

How many companies, including yours, only call, email, or write when they want something? We all communicate a ton when we want or need cash. We all have time to craft an email or write

and beyond.

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‘Oversubscribed’ by Daniel Priestly This book goes over how to generate enough buzz when you’re sold out. The premise is, if you always have a waitlist or are always sold out, people will actually want your product or service more. I loved this book, and it gives some real-life examples, as well as actionable information for adjusting your business, so you can become one that is oversubscribed. ‘The Revenge of Analog’ by David Sax This book is near and dear to my heart because, for years, I’ve been preaching that businesses need to focus on both online and offline marketing. Although this book doesn’t go into marketing insights, it does cover why analog technologies, like the record player and print magazines, are making huge comebacks and how, despite what you read in the media, these technologies are back and better than ever. ‘From Impossible to Inevitable’ by Aaron Ross In this book, Ross focuses on the marketing needed to bring a product to market and scale it.

Ross focuses on the SAAS sector, but many of the lessons and marketing ideas are transferable to other business industries. ‘Fanatical Prospecting’ by Jeb Blount If you want more leads, this is the book with the blueprint to get them for you. Blount goes over not only how to find and cold prospect for leads, but what to do to convert more of those leads into paying customers. This is likely the best cold prospecting book on the market. ‘Uncontainable’ by Kip Tindell This is one of my favorite books of all time. It is written by the founder of The Container Store, and it really dives deep on why developing a culture may be the most important thing you do in business. Many of Tindell’s ideas influenced our culture here at The Newsletter Pro, but my favorite is his “1=3” philosophy. Make sure you take notes during that section. I hope you enjoy these books and crush it in 2018! –Shaun

Have You Heard the Good News?

Romans 12:10 — Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other. Matthew 2:10 — When they saw the star, they rejoiced. John 1:9-10 — The true light, which gives light to everyone, was coming into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made through him… Luke 2:8-9 — And there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them.




BUSINESS HOW-TO, CONTINUED ... show me their blog to prove that isn’t how they operate, but when we look at how many customers see their blog posts, those posts don’t count. Like it or not, you are in the content creation and relationship business. That doesn’t mean you have to create the content yourself, but you or your team will have to supervise it. You have to create content that adds value to the lives of your prospects and customers. You must educate and entertain — not just around your product

regardless of your niche or industry, regardless of selling in the business-to-consumer space or business-to-business space, it’s a simple answer. So, don’t let that hold you back from taking it in. Treat people like people and add value to their lives, above and beyond whatever product or service you provide. Starting there is the foundation you need to build a super successful and profitable business that lasts. It seems like advice your grandma would give you, but that doesn’t make it any less true. Add immense value and help others achieve their goals, and you will achieve yours, as well. Of course, you can continue to operate and treat customers as booty calls, but as the economy continues to shift and your competition shifts away from these negative business practices, don’t be surprised if you lose market share and struggle to grow. Or, you could do the right thing and start making the change now, so you are in front of your competitors and positioned to grow and win. –Shaun

or service. Could you imagine reading this newsletter if every article was about newsletters and how to use them or how to market with them? This would be the world’s most boring newsletter, and I’d have no readership. The same goes for my blog and my emails. Everyone talks about the secret to being successful in business and can give you their take on it. Everyone takes topics and overcomplicates them, but if you want to know the truth about being successful in business,


Web conferencing, when done right, can be an invaluable tool for your business. Whether you use it to touch base with off-site employees, get some digital face time with clients, or host interactive webinars, conferencing makes the world a lot smaller. Nothing limits the use of these tools more than hard-to-use software and technical bugs. One second, you’re speaking to a large audience hanging on your every word. The next, you’re staring at a blank screen with your hands in the air. That’s where Zoom comes in. Host a Killer Webinar With Zoom Functionality, Integration, and Performance in 1 Package

speakers. Zoom recorded everything, including the on-screen presentations, and saved it to our local computers. But perhaps the best praise we can give is that, during the entire length of the presentation, we never once dealt with a technical issue. Not having to think about software kept us focused on delivering a killer webinar. It seems every year that businesses need to rely more and more on software that allows individuals from distant locations to feel like they’re in the same room. With Zoom, you can decide how to make that software work for you, rather than worrying about if it will work at all.

you’re off and running. Zoom has voice recognition software that highlights the person speaking, making it a dream for discussion panels and interviews. Switching from webcam to screen sharing requires a single click, and transitions occur without the slightest hiccup. No matter the size of your webinar, the software remains reliable and consistent. Even if Zoom were simply the best webinar software around, we’d be happy to recommend it without reservation, but the functionality goes far beyond that. We recently hosted our largest webinar ever, with over eight hours of content and six guest

Zoom offers a suite of video and text-based services for businesses, but we wanted to focus on their exceptional webinar features here. We’ve used plenty of webinar software here at The Newsletter Pro, but Zoom’s functionality and ease of use are a class apart. From the moment you set a date for a webinar and invite panelists and guests, Zoom’s comprehensive approach is apparent. Invites, registration confirmations, and date reminders are all set automatically, ensuring that your guests don’t miss the call.

Once webinar the begins, Zoom is just as impressive. All you have to do is hit “Start Webinar,” and




What Would We Do Without Karli McNamee?

OUR PROBLEM SOLVER AND PROUD NEW MOM Around the office, we like it when everything goes smoothly, but sometimes we’re faced with the unexpected. When that happens, Karli McNamee is the woman to call. Karli is our executive assistant, which means she’s the go-to problem solver. “She’s the cutest baby I’ve ever seen,” Karli will tell you, in the

voice of a proud, albeit sleep-deprived, mother. “Not that I’m biased or anything. When we go out, I can’t walk five paces without someone commenting on how cute she is, how small she is, or how much hair she has. Wow, does this girl have a lot of hair!” Little Knikki has been a popular topic — and with good reason. She was the first to arrive of The Newsletter Pro’s new babies, and she’s Karli’s firstborn. The line “motherhood changes you,” might be a cliche, but that doesn’t make it any less true. “Being a mom means your entire world shifts. The things you thought were important or special before no longer seem very important,” Karli says. “And things you never thought you would care about, like burps and pooping, suddenly became the important thing!”

Challenges with a vendor? Talk to Karli.

Need last-minute travel scheduled for that trade show next week? Talk to Karli.

Karli is one of the nicest people you could hope to meet. Around the office, if someone needs help, she’s always willing to answer the call with a smile. But since her daughter came into her life, Karli says her heart’s changed so much. “I feel like the Grinch at the end of the Dr. Seuss story,” she explains. “I’ve always considered myself to be a loving person, but I swear, my heart has grown three sizes since I first laid eyes on Knikki. Ryan and I are overjoyed to have her in our lives.”

Keyboard died in the middle of writing an article praising your executive assistant? Talk to Karli.

Forgot to send an email reminding everyone in the office about the ugly sweater contest on Wednesday, Dec. 20? Talk to Karli. It’s a good thing Karli is so great at managing a crisis, because she’s going to be doing a lot of that at home now. On Tuesday, Sep. 26, at 11:24 p.m., Karli and her husband, Ryan, started an incredible new adventure when they welcomed their daughter, Knikki Kerrigan McNamee, into the world.

Congratulations, Karli! We’re so happy for your growing family.


of the Month

This month I interview Craig Simpson, owner of Simpson Direct, Inc. His direct marketing company manages nearly 300 different marketing promotions each year. On the call, he’ll cover ways you can pair direct mail with your online campaigns to maximize your return.


As the year comes to a close, these strategies can help you finish strong and prepare for your best year yet. DON'T MISS OUT!

This free interview will only be live at the link below until Jan. 15, 2018, so tune in now before it’s gone.




208.297.5700 391 N Ancestor Pl, Boise, ID 83704 Keep up with our latest office news, blogs, and promos at!


The SINGLE-BIGGEST TAKEAWAY From Apple’s Runaway Success

Consider the iPod, for example. Sure, by now it may seem like an ancient piece of early 2000s technology, but as it became more and more ubiquitous in the marketplace, it forever altered the way we listen to music.

When Bob Noyce, founder of Intel and the “Henry Ford/Thomas Edison of Silicon Valley,” took Steve Jobs under his wing, Jobs was still a fresh face on the scene. He was a charming, yet unconventional, upstart in his early 20s. And even though he had a ceaseless hunger to innovate and drive technology forward, he was relatively unsure of how he might accomplish his goals. Over the course of several enlightening conversations with Jobs, Noyce outlined his vision for the future of what would later become Silicon Valley. He argued that, as the technological capabilities of manufacturers increased, so would the availability of computing power. Essentially, he told Jobs, as transistors constantly continued to get smaller and smaller, at a lower cost with less consumption of electricity, the devices we use would follow, shrinking in size while simultaneously becoming more intricate and advanced. Jobs said that, at that time early in his career, Noyce was giving him a “perspective [he] could only partially understand.” But this consistent technological progress would end up forming one of the pillars of Jobs’ — and his company, Apple’s — explosive success. Jobs knew if Noyce was right, a computer company would need to constantly innovate — not only to stay competitive, but to provide customers with tech that could transform their experience of the world. Jobs and Apple knew to truly influence the consumer marketplace on a fundamental level and improve the lives of their customers, they couldn’t simply react to what customers said they wanted. Instead, they’d have to define “needs that consumers didn’t know they had,” as Sam Gustin wrote in Time.

Of course, this is easier said than done. To pull off true innovation, a business needs to have an

As Gustin writes, “Americans might have been satisfied with

… their Sony Walkman analog tape decks, but that was before the iPod and iTunes,

which dramatically changed the music business and the way we interact with our music players.” The same goes for the iPhone, which

incredibly intimate understanding of their customer base and how they

navigate the world. In addition, they need to take risks and invest in products and services that push the envelope, while resisting the urge to be bleeding edge for the sake of it. The utility of Apple products lies not only in their futuristic features, but in their ease of use and consistent reliability. Always working to improving your businesses’ central offerings is vital, but you can’t stop there. Instead, you should spend time — real , meaningful man hours — drilling into your customers’ buried needs. And then, you must present the solutions to those needs in an irresistible manner. Steve Jobs is a divisive figure, but no one can argue that he followed the pack. You shouldn’t either. Complacency will never beat innovation. It’s easy to lean on processes, systems, and products that have served your business well in the past, but true success requires an adventure into uncomfortable, uncharted territory.

replaced clunky laptops and Blackberries with a truly portable device with endless capabilities.

“To pull off true innovation, A BUSINESS NEEDS TO HAVE AN INCREDIBLY INTIMATE UNDERSTANDING OF THEIR CUSTOMER BASE and how they navigate the world.”

There are millions of lessons to be learned from Apple and the legacy of Steve Jobs, but perhaps the most valuable is the company’s ability to address the most pressing needs of consumers before they even ask. This idea can stretch far beyond technology, embedding itself in the most basic practices of even the smallest of businesses.




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