Is ‘selling’ the wrong word to use?

Salesman Harv Eker says he doesn’t like the word sell. He’s not alone. He thinks it has a negative connotation.
He suggests that to avoid saying “sell,” say “help.” By using “help,” you emphasize an important distinction in your thinking and customers’ or prospects’ thinking.
Harv wants you to help people, not sell them something. It makes sense.
Most prospects want solutions to their problems – not products. They want what your products can do for them. That’s the main reason they buy from you.
The other reasons are that you offer them a benefit too great to refuse or the fulfillment of their hopes and dreams.
No one buys from you because you’re smart, trustworthy or good-looking.
They give you money because you solve a pain or a problem for them or offer such value or hope that they can’t refuse.
The Godfather had it right. Make them an offer they can’t refuse. If they don’t see how you can solve their problems, you’re wasting your time and theirs.
Here’s one we have found that also works: Use “invest” instead of “buy.”
“Buy” implies an outgo of their money.
“Invest” suggests a return and reward.
We discuss this and other ideas in Maverick Entrepreneurs’ Million Dollar Ideas.
For a personally autographed $20 copy, call Katie and Jewel at 359-7633.
Copyright 2019, The Bellune Co., Inc.

How to profit from others’ insights

Billionaire Andrew Carnegie used his mastermind group to test ideas and assure his success. His group was made up of highly successful entrepreneurs, business owners and CEOs in many fields. Smart business owners and entrepreneurs do it, too.
Our mastermind group offers 5 blockbuster business building benefits.

  1. Fast track, tested and proven ideas and strategies. Why re-invent the wheel? Shortcut it at lightning speed.
  2. Friendly accountability and coaching. Accountability is key. When you know others are watching, you pick up the pace.
  3. The incredible power of group creative thinking. Imagine the benefits of brainstorming with other experienced business owners who share insights with you.
  4. A peer group of like-minded entrepreneurs is your exclusive advisory board to test your ideas. Think “Disney Imagineers.”
  5. An opportunity for joint ventures and business alliances. Such ventures produce thousands of dollars in business deals.
    We discuss mastering the power of the master mind in our new book, “Maverick Entrepreneurs’ Million Dollar Strategies.”
    For a $20 personally autographed copy or information about the Chronicle VIP Club, call 803-331-6695 or email
    Copyright 2019, The Bellune Co., Inc.

How successful people use time

To succeed in sales, map out your schedule for the day, your goals and to-dos.
The morning is a good time as it is one of the only quiet times you will have, says advertising sales manager Linda Sauls.
Plan each week in advance. You will use your time more effectively and efficiently.
To plan your week, Linda advises:
• Consult your Daily Sales Plan and Call Record. This should include prospects, their organization, phone/email, the purpose of your call, the result and your next action.
• Refer to your monthly objectives to determine which marketing and sales activities have highest priority.
• Review your Master Plan. See how well you are meeting your overall goals and what to do to improve performance.
• Write sales-producing emails and snail mail letters, depending on the prospect.
Write using a few basic rules:
• Keep them short and simple. Shorter letters are more likely to be read completely. A 1-page letter is best.
• Write the way you speak. Pay attention to your grammar and spelling. Write in a friendly, sincere and warm writing style.
• Use bullets for specific points.
Linda explains these steps and more in a new book “Maverick Entrepreneurs’ Million Dollar Strategies.” Autographed copies are available for $20 by calling Katie or Jewel at 803-359-7633.
Copyright 2018, The Bellune Co., Inc.

When all else fails, try a little magic

Those of us who have bought a business will relate to what Geoff Ellinwood went through. Geoff bought a company nobody had heard of for $10,000. It had no client list and the clients were not happy.
The previous owner he apprenticed under gave no support, help or strategy – unless you consider flyers in neighborhoods a strategy – and had moved out of state.
In addition, he was so inexperienced in business, marketing and sales, he didn’t know what business owners should know.
Those first couple of years at the school of hard knocks were tough. Geoff felt like the kid whose lunch money was taken and his head flushed in the toilet.
When the phone rarely rang, a long conversation ended with; “Let me talk it over with ….. and I’ll get back to you”.
If he got a client they were difficult to work with except for their dog, The dog was the easiest part.
He asked local veterinarians, groomers and pet stores if he could leave brochures. Many of them wouldn’t even look up.
Then Geoff discovered almost as if by magic a solution that turned his business around. He reveals it in “Maverick Entrepreneurs’ Million Dollar Secrets.” This new book can help your business, too.
To place your order for a $20 autographed copy, call 803-35907633.
Copyright 2018, The Bellune Co., Inc.

What’s your Thanksgiving strategy?

Jerry Bellune’s November 2018 Leadership Letter

When our kids were young we took them to Disney World.
It was an experience for our kids. It became an investment in my own leadership education.
I saw how the Disney “cast members” treated us … and their respect and affection for each other.
Bruce Jones of the Disney Institute recommends the Golden Rule as your team’s gold standard,
Jones says, “At Disney, we believe the extent to which you genuinely care for your employees is the same extent to which they will care for your customers and one another. We are walking billboards for caring for all our customers, those who pay us and those we pay.
Leaders who learn about their team members’ cares and concerns, interests and goals can better show recognition and appreciation in ways that will count with each one. That goes for our customers, too.
Employees who feel personally cared for are more likely to care for our customers and colleagues.
Jones says that at Disney they have created a “caring” strategy to:
1. Find as many ways as practical to show genuine care for their people. This doesn’t cost lots of money. Their cast members don’t expect elaborate gestures. They want to know the boss cares about them individually.
2. Practice intentional listening. When your team members know you will listen to them, they feel a tremendous sense of worth. It builds their self-esteem and confidence in you. Ask them what they think about problems that arise or new opportunities that present themselves. Listen and respond to what they say.
3. Make daily work as hassle-free as possible. Find out what holds them back or makes their jobs more difficult. Resolving even minor annoyances can have a major impact on their morale.
4. Encourage member-to-member caring. Team members can support each other. Team members who show their genuine care to one another create a strong sense of community.
For example, our bookkeeper and subscription manager work side by side. They back each other in answering phones, waiting on walk-in customers, proofing pages and other tasks. They look out for each other.
Team building isn’t achieved overnight or easily maintained. We have to work at it consistently.
Practicing the Golden Rule helps keep us alert to what others want and how they feel. Showing our “love” is one of our best investments and will pay great dividends.
Make this Thanksgiving your reminder to give thanks for your teammates each and every day.

Your Leadership Challenge

1. Make a list for each of your team members of 3 ways you can show each that you care for them.
2. List what they can do to qualify for each of these rewards or recognitions.
3. List ways you can show your own member-to-member caring as a role model for them.

November Takeaway.

Great leaders are entrepreneurs at heart. If you aspire to be one, order “Maverick Entrepreneurs’ Million Dollar Strategies.” In it 11 entrepreneurs share their strategies. Be among the first to receive the book in December. Advance orders for $20 autographed copies are available at 803-359-7633 or email

Writing tip – Talk with your readers

Good morning, fellow scribblers.

Your relationship with your readers can be as fragile as friendship.
Think of your readers as friends.
Get to know them, their joys and sorrows.

How do you do that?
They are your neighbors.
People you meet standing in line.
Listen to them wherever you meet them.

My bride sometimes gets frustrated with me.
I will stop and talk with anyone.
I interview servers, clerks, cashiers.
I ask about what they do and if they like doing it.
I ask why they do it.
What they else they might do in their busy lives.

Almost everyone you talk with feels complimented.
Here is someone who even cares to ask about them.
So few people receive appreciation or recognition in life.
Then you come along and show an interest in them.
Of course, they are pleased.

When we started publishing small newspapers, I sold advertising.
My journalistic experience came in handy.
I was used to interviewing people.
I started interviewing advertising prospects.
“How did you get into this business?” I would ask.
They were good for at least 20 minutes on this.
The next question was, “What do you love about it?”

Small town editors sit on the cutting edge.
Anyone can walk into their office or call them.
If they are smart, they are receptive to this.
That’s how you find out what’s on their minds.
It’s how you find out what people are talking about.
What matters to them. Plus the latest gossip.

Big city editors are protected by security guards and assistants.
They live in gated suburban communities far from readers.
They send their kids to private schools.
They associate with others like themselves.
They have become elites with little notion of their readers’ lives.

Living in a small town is like living in a fishbowl.
As an editor, people watch what I do.
It keeps me honest.
It also tells me what no pollster could ever know.
My readers are in my mind when I write.
What will each story mean to them?
How I can tell it to be clear to them, relate to them.
Storytelling and journalism come together.

Talk with, not at, your readers.
Help them see what you see.
Help them hear what you hear.
Help them feel what you feel.

Here is an example of what I mean:

Imagine you are a long-haul trucker hundreds of miles from home.
Bleary-eyed, you pull into a truck stop.
You need a break, coffee and something to eat.
Rested you return to your rig.
An attractive young woman walks up and makes you an offer.
Chances are she didn’t do it because you’re a hunk.
She’s being human trafficked by a pimp sitting in a nearby car.
He lives on the illegal dollars she brings him.

You get the idea. Try it yourself.

Have a writing problem you struggle with?
Please let me know. We’ll solve it together.