Testing Your Way To Prosperity

Testing Your Way To Prosperity

I have always enjoyed talking to a Realtor friend of mine about his Father-in-laws business. His business is Gold Mining and he has been involved in it full time for nearly his whole life. My friend has a good relationship with his Father-in-law and often spends time helping him in this business and has learned a lot about prospecting and mining and the other facets of this extremely risky industry.

One of the interesting things that I learned from my friend is that gold mining is a lot more complicated than it seems. You don’t just go find nuggets and start digging, at least, not any more. There are very few places where gold can be found in large enough nuggets to make this an effective option. In most instances the actual gold is very fine, often almost too small to see, or is embedded in some other rock.

You don’t just sift through the dirt and pick out the chunks of gold. Instead you have to dig up tons of earth (sometimes as much as 2 tons per ounce of gold), crush it and run it through several physical and chemical processes in order to extract the small amount of gold from the rest of the dirt.

Prospecting in business is much the same. You have to go through a lot of useless dirt before you find the gold.

Unfortunately for my friend, there is no set system for processing the ore and turning it into the much desired end result, pure gold. Since the geological and chemical makeup of the rock and earth varies dramatically from location to location one has to test different processes through trial and error to determine whether or not there is a cost effective way to extract the gold. For instance it doesn’t do you much good to pay $500 to extract an ounce of gold if the going price of gold is $300 an ounce.

Finding not only an area that has rich reserves of gold but also a cost-effective process for extracting it is the key. Successfully accomplishing this is called “CRACKING THE CODE” by some in the industry. Once you have cracked the code you are set, because you know that it’s just a matter of how much raw material you put in the front door that will determine how much gold comes out of the back.

Your business is no different. “Cracking the Code” should be your major focus. Once you have successfully cracked the code, or in other words, created a system that regularly and dependably brings in business regardless of the external environment you have effectively created your own little gold mine. It will simply be a matter of how much you put in the front door, so to speak, that will determine your income.

The important question then is: “How do I crack the code?”

Just like gold mines different businesses have different dynamics. There are any numbers of variables that change from industry to industry. The fact is that each of us has a somewhat unique situation we call our business. And some techniques will work better in some businesses than others.

Therefore, the only way to “crack the code” in your business is to do the same thing as the gold miners do. You must systematically test different tactics and faithfully track your results. This is the only way to know which systems are working and which are not. If they are not working you must refine and improve them. Even if they are working you should continue to test in order to continually improve your results.

In gold mining you have to put out thousands if not millions of dollars attempting to crack the code. In business the only risk you have to take is an inexpensive test. Each of these tests puts you that much closer to cracking the code for your area.

Don’t underestimate the power that one or two small changes can make in your business.

There is real power in testing. By improving one area of your business you will improve your business geometrically. But by testing and improving in multiple areas of your business you can create exponential growth in your business.

For instance, let’s say you are able to improve the response rate to an ad by 20%. If the other factors of your business stay the same then this will result in a 20% increase in your business (for no extra cost because you are paying the same for the ad whether it produces better or not).

Now, on the other hand, let’s say you improve the response rate to your ad by 20% and you also improve your conversion rate of leads converted to customers by 25%. Now you not only are getting more leads but you are converting more of them to business.

This actually results in a 50% overall increase in your business and income. That’s exponential growth! All of this at no extra cost to you. You are simply making the existing systems in your business work harder for you and work together.

After this you could find other cost-effective promotions for bringing in leads and other ways to improve your conversion, you could work on increasing the income per completed transaction, or increasing the number of referrals received from past clients or increase the number of ads you run. The potential for improvement is nearly limitless and the risk in nearly nothing.

It is amazing to me how few people test and track the processes in their business. They place the fate of themselves and their families and perhaps many others on the hope of pure guesswork. It’s no wonder so many small businesses go under.

Constantly testing and refining your marketing systems will yield rich rewards and is simple to do.

First, look at your past history and establish a baseline for each factor in your business.

Such as:

Cost per lead

Conversion rate for each ad or promotion

Conversion rate of leads to transactions

Average Gross Profit per transaction

Average Net Profit per transaction

Average number of referrals received per client

Average amount of repeat business over time


Second, conservatively test the individual factors of your business.

Such as:

Ad Copy

Best days to advertise

Small vs. Large ads

Editorial Style vs. Display Style

Free Reports

Follow-up letters


Telephone Scripts

Using free recorded messages

Follow-up schedules

Past Client Follow-up

Referral Scripts

Etc., Etc., Etc.

Third, change or add those factors which testing proves to be better. If it is a better way of doing a certain part of your business then replace the old way with the new. If it is an additional way of increasing business then add it to your existing system.

By continually testing and improving your way of doing business you assure yourself of staying ahead of your competition and guarantee future growth that can be exponential growth. The sky is the limit.

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