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LOUISE FAIRSAVE: One skill from wealth

Louise Fairsave

LOUISE FAIRSAVE: One skill from wealth

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MOST OF us are just one skill away from great wealth.

For example, a reporter may write very well, holding readers’ interest, yet never become a best-selling author. To become a best-selling author, that reporter needs to market and sell the excellent product that he creates.

Nobody races to purchase the newly-created and better product available unless (1) they are looking for a better quality, (2) they are aware that such quality exists, (3) it is acceptably priced and (4) it is available at a convenient place.

These four aspects represent the four Ps of marketing – product, promotion, price and position.

(1) The product or service that is being offered must be of attractive quality. 

(2) It must be advertised and promoted in such a way that interested buyers are made aware that it exists. The advertisement or promotion should add value (that is, not be offensive) to the would-be purchaser. The information provided in the advertisement must also be clear and be able to convince the potential buyers that the attributes of the product are attractive.

(3) The price and the payment method must be acceptable to the potential buyer. The actual pricing strategy of the product must provide a profit to the seller even if profitability is only realised in the medium or long term. Then too, the would-be purchaser must be able to pay for the product in a way that is convenient. A range of options heightens the probability that the product will be sold.

(4) The product must be provided at a location, or distributed in a way that is pleasing and convenient for the would-be purchaser.

In a simple marketing or sales model, when these four Ps are targeted successfully at the would-be purchaser, then the product will sell. Then, once the target market is big enough, the seller is on the way to wealth building.

Without adequate target marketing, the reporter, referred to above, may write novels which make compelling reading yet never attain a best-selling rating. The key skill needed to exploit the reporter’s talent is marketing/selling, knowing how to target-market his writing and exploiting that knowledge.

Target marketing is a skill, involving tremendous judgement, especially with regard to a pricing strategy. There are risks of getting some aspect of the 4Ps wrong. It helps to know as much as possible about the market and about likely competitors. Then, too, the seller has to include consideration of how long to wait for the pricing strategy to work in terms of raising cash and of generating a profit.

Experimenting with target marketing in everyday transactions is desirable. The more one practises and discovers elements of success, the better honed will be that judgement and those skills.

Unfortunately, many professionals have built up distaste for persistent and irritating salesmen. These professionals see selling and sales as demeaning given their qualifications and experience. There is no way that they would undertake sales training! When last did you see a fully qualified professional attending sales training or a workshop on marketing?

Yet, that important skill keeps many talented people from realising a wealthy existence. When you consider that practically everything we do involves some form of negotiating, developing sales skills is essential, and very, very valuable. There is no gainsaying that learning to sell and understanding markets and marketing can contribute to exponential growth in income for many professionals, and talented and hardworking people.

At least knowing what skill to concentrate on shortens the distance between you and your deserved position of wealth.

• Louise Fairsave is a personal financial management adviser, providing practical advice on money and estate matters. Her advice is general in nature; readers should seek advice about their specific circumstances. This column is sponsored by the Barbados Workers’ Union Co-op Credit Union Ltd.