20 Inspirational Sales & Marketing Quotes to Honor Chet Holmes


Today marks the three-year anniversary of the passing of our founder, my father, Chet Holmes. I could have written a lengthy blog post in his honor for the occasion, but it occurred to me that in life my father was never the longwinded type. Certainly there were events where he spoke on stage for upwards of ten hours, but he did so only because he had so much knowledge to share-there wasn’t a wasted breath. “Straight to the point” was truly his modus operandi. So Instead I’ve decided to keep it short and to the point. Today we celebrate Chet Holmes’ life, his work, and his pithy wisdom by collecting his very BEST quotes.

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In celebration of my father’s life, here are a couple of free videos for you to enjoy:

The Exact Sales Script Chet Used to Get to the Most Successful People in the World

Now that I’ve shared these with you, I’d love to know, what’s your favorite inspiring quote? Leave it in the comments section below.

With love,

Amanda Holmes

Avoid a business disaster with proper planning

A solid disaster recovery strategy should be a part of any effective business growth plan.
A solid disaster recovery strategy should be a part of any effective business growth plan.

A solid disaster recovery strategy should be a part of any effective business growth plan.

When starting your business, you mapped out everything you wanted to achieve and the steps to take to get where you wanted to go. Now that your company is up and running, you most likely still have a plan in place to deal with your organization’s growth. But what about if disaster strikes? It doesn’t happen to every enterprise, but that doesn’t mean that it won’t happen to yours.

A solid disaster recovery strategy is part of any effective business growth plan. Even if a disaster never occurs, it will give you, as an owner, peace of mind knowing that you have something in place to keep your operations running. Even though developing a disaster plan may sound daunting, all it takes is some research and preparation to create a strategy that will stand throughout any possible disaster.

Business disasters can range from natural occurrences, such as hurricanes, tornadoes or floods, to more technical issues, such as a cyber attack or data center loss. Whatever the case, getting a plan in place now means your business can recover more quickly and efficiently should an emergency happen.

- Assess the various risks: Businesses that are located in the Southeast United States may not have to worry about extremely cold weather conditions possibly disrupting their operations every year, but they do have to worry about tornadoes. Companies in every region of the country have to deal with various weather-related disasters that happen in their areas, so figuring out what could potentially throw off your enterprise for a few days is the first step to determining how you can handle them, suggests the Minnesota Society of Certified Public Accountants.

You should also take the time to assess any technical dangers, such as information loss due to hackers, the source recommends. This will help you lay out the proper protocols for recovery.

- Create a business continuity plan: Crain’s Detroit Business states that small companies need to develop a strong business continuity plan that outlines what steps will be taken in case of an emergency. The source also recommends that you determine which staff members will be in charge of which responsibilities so that employees know who to reach out to.

- Take a look at your systems: Looking at the systems you have in place can help you poke holes in anything that could be severely impacted by a disaster, writes the Minnesota Society of CPA’s. Do your employees have a way to work if your company’s Internet is down for an extended period? What if your facilities are damaged? Is there somewhere else you can operate out of while recovering? These questions can give you more insight into improvements that can be made to your disaster recovery plan.

Whatever the disaster, whether it’s weather-related or tech-based, you need a plan to get your operations back in line should something occur. Also, having your employees provide their advice and input on the strategy ensures everyone is onboard and prepared for anything that happens.

Career tips to help your business connect with employees

Understanding employee motivations can help increase productivity.
Understanding employee motivations can help increase productivity.

Understanding employee motivations can help increase productivity.

Professional consulting services help businesses on the cusp of reaching new levels of profitability, efficiency and output attain their goals. Such services also help employers better connect with employees and learn best practices for worker interaction and leadership.

One of the best ways to make sense of what drives workers is to look at things from their perspective. Some overarching career advice from Business 2 Community can help managers and owners understand the motivations of many of their workers, as well as know how they can adapt their offices to better accommodate staff. Some of the advice will apply to you and your managers as well.

Personal branding

Employers and employees should both have an idea of how they want to be viewed by others and make changes to that effect. For workers, those differences may involve extra effort in certain business behaviors and a focus on learning new skills. Reputation is a factor that can be controlled by both individuals and businesses if they put in the work.

The corollary to managing perception is that everyone needs to be honest about who they are. Making positive changes is entirely possible for employees, but they likely can’t become totally new people or go against instinct. Instead of enforcing a too-rigid corporate culture, supervisors should find out what their employees are deeply interested in and see if they can fit those passions into new work opportunities.

Management should offer to help employees who want to learn and do more and be proactive about letting their workforce know that mentoring and counseling for professional growth is available.

When companies bring in a corporate consulting service, they should involve employees as much as possible. Asking for and acting on feedback is a great potential source of growth for employees and supervisors. And when an employee is successful, management should make note of a job well done as well as subtly encourage others to offer congratulations for good work.

Employee-to-employee interaction

Workers often care the most about their relationships with colleagues, according to research by TinyPulse reported on industry website Employee​ Benefits. The happiness of staff often has more to do with co-workers and less to do with managers, especially with businesses becoming less hierarchical and more focused on collaboration.

Employers can foster positive relationships though non-traditional benefits like catering lunch or offering out-of-work activities in a low-pressure fashion to help develop those horizontal bonds between employees on the same level.

Focus on these ideas when hiring sales people and other employees

A focus on why potential employees should join your company can bring in the best talent.
A focus on why potential employees should join your company can bring in the best talent.

A focus on why potential employees should join your company can bring in the best talent.

Attracting high-quality employees is a major part of any business growth plan. By bringing in great sales people, administrative workers and support staff, companies have a much better chance of meeting and exceeding their goals.

Whether your organization is adding a few workers as part of a steady increase in activity or onboarding lots of new employees due to drastically increased demand for your services, advice from industry source Small Business Trends can help you emphasize the unique benefits of your business and attract the best employees.

Make benefits attractive

It sounds simple, but a high-end benefits package will bring in plenty of top talent. What you can do to differentiate your offerings when it comes to insurance, bonuses and other perks not related to salaries is the more complicated proposition.

Companies that are the best at bringing in top talent put a strong emphasis on benefits - 70 percent of top talent attractors versus 28 percent of other businesses, according to Small Business Trends. Asking current employees which insurance company they would like to use and researching the results is one way to develop a strong offering. Linking bonuses to individually attainable goals, instead of company-wide metrics, is another way to attract high performers.

Besides health care and extra cash provided for a good performance, other incentives like providing employees with flex​ time or allowing them to work at home when feasible, as well as wellness offerings, can make your company stand out in a competitive hiring market.

Flip the perspective

One easy question can help you better understand your hiring process, according to The Business Journals: Would you apply to the position your company is offering, given the salary, benefits and duties included in the package?

Bringing in great employees is one answer to the question of how to grow sales. So if your job descriptions aren’t exciting, informative and giving potential workers a positive glimpse at the career they could embark on, they need to change.

Instead of exclusively focusing on new employees, successful companies need to also attract and analyze internal candidates for open positions. If your business performs well, it means your current workers are doing a lot of things right. A focus on inside-the-organization advancement means happier employees, less time spent training and onboarding and a higher level of trust. Keep records of employees who want to try different positions across the company and notify them when openings arise.

Business growth plan needs customer engagement strategies

While each company has different methods that it uses to keep clients happy, there are a few strategies that each small enterprise can employ in order to boost customer engagement.
While each company has different methods that it uses to keep clients happy, there are a few strategies that each small enterprise can employ in order to boost customer engagement.

While each company has different methods that it uses to keep clients happy, there are a few strategies that each enterprise can employ in order to boost customer engagement.

It’s no surprise that customers are an essential part of any business operation. Business owners spend a large amount of time and put in great effort to ensure they are making connections with potential patrons and keeping their current customers satisfied. While each company has different methods it uses to keep clients happy, there are a few strategies that each organization can employ in order to boost customer engagement.

Keeping patrons engaged is key for business success. By focusing on this aspect, you, as an owner, can increase revenue, boost your organization’s reputation and draw in potential customers. Engagement is not only for employees, but should become part of your client retention strategy as well.

The following methods will help ensure that your customers will be engaged, happy and will keep coming back to do business with your company:

Start by asking questions: Taking the time to get to know your patrons will go a long way in boosting engagement. You can ask questions while customers are shopping in the store, or, as Business 2 Community suggests, you can go online and to gather feedback from your clients. These questions can range from what kinds of products and services are preferred to what changes customers would like to see.

Put customers in the spotlight: B2C recommends acknowledging your most loyal patrons. This can be accomplished by featuring them on your company’s website, social media pages or even in your brick-and-mortar locations. This will give consumers more reason to return to your business.

Improving your company website and customer experience: Customers expect great service when they are in your store. The same rules should apply when they are on your business website. Business News Daily suggests that your website should meet the needs of patrons’ expectations by allowing them to complete transactions quickly and efficiently. Also, to improve customer service, your website should have the most up-to-date information about the company, products, services and other important details. Having a strong online presence that your clients can easily access should be a key part of any business growth plan.

Contests bring customers in: Holding contests with the chance to win products and services not only boosts existing customer engagement, but this strategy can also help bring in new clientele. B2C recommends hosting frequent contests, both online and in stores, to garner higher patron engagement as well as get the word out about your business. Business News Daily states that holding contests on your social media pages helps to increase your marketing reach as well.

Take the time to celebrate your customers: Not all customer engagement strategies need to happen online. B2C writes that having parties and small celebrations at your brick-and-mortar location lets your patrons know their business is appreciated. When your company reaches a certain milestone, or you just feel like celebrating your business success, consider having a party as a way to share your enthusiasm with your customers.

Leadership lessons and the value of collaboration

Business owners can help their companies grow through collaborative efforts.

Business owners can help their companies grow through collaborative efforts.

When it comes to driving a company toward small business success, any owner - no matter how savvy they think they are - can learn how to be more effective as a leader. Running an organization, managing staff and delivering the highest quality of service to customers are critical to the success of any company, regardless of size. However, there are times when any of these actionable items can be a source of frustration and improving in the leadership category can help in the face of challenges.

Business coaching services are a great tool that can be taken advantage of to guide an individual overcome any rough patches while traveling along the road to success. But there are also examples found in our everyday lives that can develop and strengthen the leadership qualities of any individual.

Valuable lessons on change from Admiral Michelle Howard
In the 236-years of the U.S. Navy’s existence, this branch of the military has never had a woman achieve one of the highest ranks. That all changed when Michelle Howard received a promotion to Vice Chief of Naval Operations, in addition to being a four-star admiral, according to Forbes. In her naval career, there have been a lot of other firsts for Admiral Howard. However, being a woman who has worked her way up through the ranks to hold key positions of leadership in the U.S. armed forces, she knows what it takes to build strong teams that are also successful. The lessons learned along her career can be beneficial to any small-business owner.

“It’s the willingness to commit to look hard at yourself and commit to a new way of doing business,” Howard told Forbes on the subject of making innovative changes within an organization. “There’s great ideas out there - it’s having the courage to go ask people about what they’re doing different and saying, ‘I wonder how I could apply that to my organization?'”

When it comes to running a company, it’s imperative to use any of the resources at your disposal to ensure that your venture is a success. Whether it’s seeking outside help or polling employees, not being rigid in your approach can be the difference between implementing changes that can push the business forward or doing things the way you’ve always done them and stagnating the growth of the organization.

Innovation as a team
Admiral Howard’s statements reveal that leaders can’t always make all of the critical decisions themselves. There are times when collaboration is necessary. Inc. Magazine recently broached the innovation topic and lists some helpful tips to create this kind of atmosphere in your organization.

Dining together and using this time to brainstorm, creating cross-functional work groups and hiring non-egotistical people who fit within the team construct are great ways to get everyone working together toward a common goal. As a leader, integrating these processes into your organization and creating a collaborative atmosphere can greatly help your company achieve the small business success that you’re looking for.

Utilize customer data as part of your business growth plan

Effectively utilize customer data to improve revenue streams.
Effectively utilize customer data to improve revenue streams.

Effectively utilize customer data to improve revenue streams.

Change is a constant, but the pace of advancement for organizations has increased as technology for businesses, clients and the general public continues to drastically advance.

Along with a lack of preparedness for change, organizational inflexibility was another major concern held by top business executives surveyed by the Boston Consulting Group and reported by eMarketer. Consider dedicating extra resources to dealing with these problems, as well as using professional consulting services to help orient your business toward success.

Changing the culture, physical operations and attitude of a company all factor into the most common challenge that businesses are unprepared for: large-scale transformation. Overall concerns about being able to adapt also apply to common concerns expressed about properly using customer data and successfully acting on digital channels. Specifically, a majority of executives in the retail and technology fields were concerned with efficiently utilizing customer data.

Customer data is not an unsolvable puzzle, however. Companies can collect a wide variety of data, especially when it comes to e-commerce, according to retailing website Evergage. Frequency of visits, method of payment and previous transactions can all be tracked by Web-based retailers.

Creating criteria to mark how engaged customers are is a good start, allowing businesses to segment and target potential and returning clients based on their behavior on a company’s website. If a customer has repeatedly viewed the same item or service over a long period of time, an automated suggestion for a similar product with a lower price point can encourage purchasing.

Combining data streams can also increase efficiency. Evergage gives the example of matching a customers overall click​streams with total transactions or website visits. When data shows that patrons are frequently visiting your website and going through various pages but not making a purchase, sending a survey asking about what they’re looking for can help identify deficiencies and drive purchasing.

Attracting and retaining customers is vital for business success

As a small company owner, you know how important your patrons are to your operations
As a business owner, you know how important your patrons are to your operations

As a business owner, you know how important your patrons are to your operations

Bringing in customers and using strategies to increase loyalty should be part of any solid business growth plan. As an owner, you know how important patrons are to your operations. While certain methods may prove effective, there are other strategies you can follow to ensure your customer base is constantly growing.

Fortunately, you have a leg up on larger companies when it comes to attracting and retaining patrons. As a business owner, you can dedicate more time and effort to truly connecting with your clients and learning about their specific needs. Providing excellent service for clients is what will keep them coming back.

Word of mouth goes a long way
There are many ways that organizations can bring in new customers. However, word of mouth from other patrons is the main driver when it comes to attracting new business. According to a joint study conducted by Verizon and Small Business Trends, 85 percent of small enterprises said they bring in new clients thanks to referrals from existing customers.

While a lot of time and money can go into reaching potential patrons through marketing and advertising methods, the results of the study show that it’s actually the low-cost strategy of word of mouth that is drawing in new business. This means that, as an owner, you should be working on increasing satisfaction among your current clientele in order to attract new patrons.

Satisfaction leads to more business
Inc Magazine reports there are five key things that customers look for when dealing with companies. Focusing on these aspects can increase word of mouth, leading to new patrons.

The first is consistency. Clients don’t want your processes and procedures to change frequently. They are counting on your business to be reliable, so constantly changing your operations could result in lower satisfaction. The second is excellence. Inc. states that while clients are not always looking for the best of the best, they do want your enterprise’s best.

The third thing that customers look for is empathy. They want your company to understand their needs and work to see the situation from their side. Attention is fourth. Taking the time to learn about what they are looking for lets them know they are important to your operations. The fifth thing that patrons want is appreciation. Inc. suggests  putting effort into showing customers their business is appreciated through new and innovative ways.

RIS Media notes that it’s about going above and beyond for patrons. As a company, you and your employees can dedicate more time and resources to achieving this. Therefore, it’s vital to develop relationships with your customers and show them they are important and why they matter to your operations.

Focusing on your current customers not only brings you business success through higher satisfaction, but it also draws in new clients, helping you to grow your company.

Four strategies for a strong small business growth plan


Every small business owner knows that planning ahead has its advantages.

Every small business owner knows that there are advantages to planning ahead. Whether crafting a plan to recruit better employees, developing a solid marketing strategy or improving delivery of products and services, having a plan in place benefits companies of all sizes.

One of the most important aspects for smaller enterprises is creating a strong business growth plan. As an owner, if you don’t have a roadmap in place to outline where and how you want your operation to grow, things can quickly fall out of place. Therefore, it’s essential to develop a growth plan that puts you, your employees and your organization on the path to small business success.

By following these strategies and incorporating them into your plan, you can ensure that your company has the tools and methods it needs to grow strong.

  1. Outline what’s most important - One of the first steps to creating a solid business growth plan is to write down what is is most important to you and your operations. Business 2 Community suggests mapping out these points and consider where they belong in your growth plan. Additionally, write down any goals you want to achieve along the way before moving forward.
  2. Don’t be an overachiever - As an owner, you already have ambition and motivation, which are two great qualities for growing your small business. However, don’t let that drive overtake overtake your ability to be reasonable. Small Business Trends suggests that you have to let go of trying to do everything when it comes to overseeing important aspects of your company. Let your employees manage daily operational tasks while you focus on what’s in front of you.
  3. Look toward your company’s future - You’ve heard the old adage that says, “Dress for the job you want, not the job you have.” The same rings true for your enterprise. Small Business Trends recommends that when coming up with a growth plan, think about the company you want, not the one you have now. This will give you a better glimpse into what you and your employees need to do to get where you want to go as an organization.

You can also invest in professional business coaching to hash out your ideas for the future and learn how to implement them.

  1. Don’t be afraid to reach out for help - Although you are in charge of your small business, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t ask for help when you need it. B2C suggests connecting with other owners and networking with professionals in your industry to gain more insight into how you can grow your company. Also, using business coaching services can provide you with a better view into what your enterprise needs to do to realize the success you want.

Every small business wants to grow, and with these methods, you can see your operations flourish.

The Top 10 ‘Chetology’ Persuasive Sayings


If you knew Chet Holmes, read his New York Times best-selling book, ever attended one of his seminars or were lucky enough to experience a live coaching call—you know he was a straight shooter. Chet was direct, passionate and above all pig-headed in his beliefs. He was an idea man. And once the idea was out it was up to his hand-picked rock star team to work side by side with business owners and executives to make growth happen.

Chet didn’t like to be bogged down by the little things. It’s easy to run spell check, but he never did. He was always in a hurry to share those big ideas and provide the avenues to make them come to life in his clients’ world. He typed very fast and everyone else worked hard to keep up with what he was trying to say. Most high-level thinkers find greatness by being focused on the big picture. That was Chet. Ironically, he was a master at looking deeper to systematize marketing and sales efforts too, creating what he called The Ultimate Sales Machine™ over and over again in businesses of every size and in every industry.

In his zeal to get his ideas out there and show others how important or critical the idea was for their business, he developed some persuasive sayings that always cut through the marketing clutter and really dug into the gut of the audience’s pains. Chet wasn’t about flowery words or gentle message positioning – he was about getting results. So in true Chet fashion, and after interviewing several CHI long-timers who knew him well, I compiled a list of Chet Holmes® Top 10 Persuasive Sayings to get you thinking about yours.

  1. Best Buyer Strategy™ or Dream Client - There is always a smaller number of ‘ideal clients’ vs. all clients.  Ideal clients need and can afford a lot of what it is you sell.
  2. Market Education - Market data is so much more powerful than product data!
  3. ‘Write this down’ or ‘companies we’ve helped’ (Chet believed in showing not telling)
  4. Highly applicable (Chet always reinforced that what he was teaching mattered to everyone in the room)
  5. PHD - Lasting success requires PHD “Pig-Headed Discipline”
  6. Sales Superstars have a combination of the following: Empathy (Sincere interest in helping clients succeed.)/Ego Strength (Rejection Armor) and Ego Drive (Ambition)/Market Knowledge (Beyond product knowledge; market knowledge increases influence)/Super Skills Set (Highly Productive)/Training (Constant personal and business improvement)
  7. Strategies versus Tactics:  Tactical approach – work harder.  Strategic approach – work smarter.  It is all about working smarter.
  8. Real nuts and bolts
  9. Time Management: Strategically working ON your business will produce great results.  Just working IN your business gives you a job.
  10. Reshape (how you think, how you run your sales team, Etc.)

BONUS: Chet’s favorite power words: Bulletproof/ Superstar/Slaughter

Chet used these words or phrases frequently and in a variety of ways to get across the point that he was sharing real, nuts and bolts, insider information that was going to deliver results. He knew that the use of these words has the power to get people’s attention and make them sit up and start taking note—that something of value was coming at them. Chet was an amazing speaker because he was REAL in his delivery. He didn’t sugarcoat things. He just told it like it was and moved on. And the CEOs who wanted to ‘double their sales’ and experience real growth through ‘pig-headed discipline’ listened and learned.

These phrases were part of Chet’s brand that built trust through the sharing of knowledge and value at every turn. Everything he taught was about the people he was speaking to not about him or any one of his cornucopia of companies or credentials. Solving not selling took a front seat. And it all stemmed from real research into what moves the market brought to life through education-based marketing such as his pride and joy The Core Story™. But he didn’t stop there because that is just another channel to construct power-packed tools like the ‘smoking gun’.

“In the legal market, the term smoking gun refers to that piece of evidence that makes it so your opponent cannot win. You’ve found the smoking gun that makes the other party guilty. It’s the same with research. There’s always that smoking gun that positions you above everyone else. I can tell you this for sure: there’s always a smoking gun. Always.” Chet Holmes, The Ultimate Sales Machine

Ideas move mountains. Words move people. It is important to know your audience and find the words that will move them. If you have not taken the time to find yours, you are missing a very real opportunity to reach a larger stadium of people.

WORD WEIGH IN: Share your favorite Chet Holmes phrases, or your own, and include hashtag #powerphrases on our Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn pages. It might spark innovation for someone else and new ideas for you too!

By Danielle Lafontaine, Chet Holmes® International™

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