Creative COW SIGN IN :: SPONSORS :: ADVERTISING :: ABOUT US :: CONTACT US :: FAQ
Creative COW's LinkedIn GroupCreative COW's Facebook PageCreative COW on TwitterCreative COW's Google+ PageCreative COW on YouTube
LIBRARY:TutorialsVideo TutorialsReviewsInterviewsEditorialsFeaturesBusinessAuthorsRSS Feed

Clients or Grinders: The Choice Is Yours -- Understanding the Three Market Types

COW Library : Business & Marketing Tutorials : Ron Lindeboom : Clients or Grinders: The Choice Is Yours -- Understanding the Three Market Types
Share on Facebook
CreativeCOW presents Clients or Grinders: The Choice Is Yours -- Understanding the Three Market Types -- Business & Marketing Tutorial


CreativeCOW.net
Paso Robles California USA

©2006 CreativeCOW.net. All rights reserved.


In this article, Creative COW co-founder Ronald Lindeboom explores a concept that will empower your negotiations, streamline your client acceptance policy and give you a near-failsafe system for spotting winning clients and quickly avoiding time-consuming grinders. This simple formula is so basic and easy to understand that once you see the concept, you will probably say: "I know this!" -- and you do, you see it working everyday in your business and in your life.



Over the years I've seen one thing in my sales and marketing career that rarely if ever changes. In fact, it is so predictable that you can easily spot it during your negotiation cycles. In doing so, you will not only make more money but you will avoid those heartache customers that drain you of not only your enthusiasm and time, but your monetary resources as well.

What is this marketing and negotiation secret that has so much power? There's a principle locked away in human nature, which if you understand it -- and it's easy to do once you have the following concept as your framework -- it gives you a powerful key to make your business more successful. It's a principle that I call "Clients or Grinders" and once you hear it, you'll know why.

At the heart of this concept is a principle that I call "The Three Basic Personality Types of The Market" and if you take the time to understand how these three personality types build their differing kinds of relationships, you will be able to spot each of them in just minutes and fine-tune and adjust your sales efforts when dealing with each of them. Using this principle, you will rarely find yourself in a frustrating negotiation again. Here's why...


Understanding the "The Market's Three Basic Personalities"

All markets can be broken up into three layers because there are three basic kinds of people. Sure, there are infinite nuances of human personality but there are three basic personality types and here's how they work...

  1. "Have you ever had one of those great clients that relies on your judgment and expertise and values your experience and always pays on time and never haggles about price? They're rare but they're there. They are that Top 15% of the market that I call the "clients" and everyone wants them. But they rarely shop projects once they find someone they trust and once they learn that they can respect you and get good service from you, nine times out of ten, they'll not even send out an RFP looking for bids. You see, these people are all about trust and relationships and once you build that trust it's something that no "low-baller" could ever come in and destroy. These people know what they are worth and they do business with you because you know what you are worth as well -- and they'll send a "low-baller" packing because it's clear to them that the low-baller knows what their self-worth is as well! These people are quick to recommend you to their friends and associates -- usually, people just like them as "birds of a feather really do flock together" -- and they will actively try to help your business grow (just as they see you offering ideas to help them grow their own business).

  2. In the middle of the market is what I call the 70% middle market and as a group they are, for the most part, fair-minded, honest and they do not usually beat on you for deals -- though they do appreciate a good but fair price. They may not have the sense of loyalty that the top 15% of the market have but they do try to be fair (they know they are not perfect and they have made their peace with themselves and they treat you the same) -- and they will try to work within relationships wherever possible. Within this middle 70% group, you can fine-tune their reactions by their proximity to either the Top 15% of the market or the Low-End 15% of the market. As these middle market people get closer to the top or the bottom, they act accordingly and take on traits of excellence or traits of ugliness that you will live to regret if you choose to do business with them (if they near the crossover point where they fall into the lower 15% of the market). As you learn to spot where within this majority 70% market area they stand, you will quickly be able to spot those "clients" you wish to work with or those "grinders" that you want to send packing -- nicely of course, but packing nonetheless!

  3. I am always amazed that the Low-End 15% of the market is the first part of the market that most new businesses set out to work with. Some do it consciously and others unconsciously but the end result is the same -- a lot of work for very little money, if any. This often happens because many people think that you have to undercut existing businesses to build a new business. That's simply not true. But if you believe that you do have to undercut the market and you price yourself as a "low-ball" artist, you set yourself up to attract the people that occupy the lowest 15% of the market. I call these people "Grinders" and for good reason: They will grind you and demand that you treat them like the people in the Top 15% category -- and they will expect that treatment from you as they push and push to get things below your cost. They'll promise you more jobs down the road and that just this one job needs a deal -- the others will make you some money. Yeah, right! The truth is: they'll never let you make a dime off them while you suffer through insults, mistrust, constant changes and arguments over what you agreed to or didn't -- and no matter how well you do, nine times out of ten there will almost always be something wrong with the job you did. They will never be happy. They do not recommend you to their associates and this is probably due to the fact that they know themselves quite well and think that everyone is like that creep they see in the mirror every morning. If they need to invent a reason not to pay you, they can get incredibly creative! The Net is full of stories of people trying to collect on debts made by these people.

Now that you know how these basic personality traits manifest in the business world, what can you do with this information to help you in the days ahead -- what's the "real world" application of this knowledge?

When you set out in your next negotiation or even a job interview -- it always works the same -- watch how the three market types are something that you can count on like clockwork. Adjust your presentation to interact with these people. If they are a Top 15% personality, focus on things you can do for them. Build your stock in their eyes by letting them know what you can add to their business -- now that doesn't mean sell yourself, it means sell their story and how you can empower it. Sell them on the research you have done on their company without telling them you've done so -- make their story come alive to them. After all, you are a communicator and you are there to sell them on your abilities to champion their cause, are you not?

If they are in the middle market and it's a job you want to take, then work with them so that they understand that you have a vision for their project. If you do have to give something away to get the deal, then do so by taking something else away from the project -- it doesn't have to be something huge, just something that establishes that they can't get something for nothing. (They understand this and will respect it.)

But if during the course of your negotiations it becomes clear that you have a "Grinder" on the line -- then for goodness sake, pull the hook out of their mouth and throw that smelly ole fish right back into the water! If you don't, you'll surely come to regret the decision just as sure as eggs is eggs!

Trust me: They're not good eating and they're just full of bones anyway!

###



  View 5 Comment(s)

  Business & Marketing Tutorials   •   Business & Marketing Forum
Reply   Like  
+1
Share on Facebook
Comments

Re: Clients or Grinders: Understanding the Three Market Types
by Michael Sigmon
What profound truths here. I think many of us know this stuff instinctively, but it's quite helpful to have it spelled out and crystallized.

Last year I worked with a client who fit the 'bottom 15%' TO A TEE. I could have sworn that you knew this woman personally!

+1
@Michael Sigmon
by Ronald Lindeboom
Hello Michael,

I appreciate your kind words about "Clients or Grinders: The Choice Is Yours." My apologies for visiting this page so infrequently that it's taken me a year to thank you.

When I first wrote this article, it had been dawning on me that there always seemed to be three basic types of people: the generous, the fair and the onerous. The more thought that I put into it, the more it all just began falling together.

I once worked for a guy who wondered why we never became friends and who ground on me until in the end he paid me what worked out to $10 an hour for marketing work, which I normally get paid very well for. He complained and lied, tried to ruin my reputation -- and taught me a part of the great lesson that helped birth "Clients or Grinders."

One of the greatest lessons of dealing with grinders is that no matter how much you do for them, you will always fail, you will always be the bad guy, they will always be let down, and there will be nothing you could change to make it better.

Another lesson is: don't tell grinders that they are grinders, they'll never believe you. They are the most important person in the world and if you don't believe it, just ask them. They'll tell you. ;)

Best regards,

Ronald Lindeboom
CEO, Creative COW LLC
Publisher, Creative COW Magazine
A 2011 FOLIO: 40 honoree as one of the 40 most influential publishers in America
http://www.creativecow.net


Creativity is a process wherein the student and the teacher are located in the same individual.

"Incompetence has never prevented me from plunging in with enthusiasm."
- Woody Allen
That's very helpful. Thanks Ron! :)
by Adam Henderson
That's very helpful. Thanks Ron! :) I might be in with a top 15% guy at the minute but time will tell, very soon...
Clients or Grinders: Understanding the Three Market Types
by Alejandro Moreu
Simply the truth, that
Clients or Grinders: Understanding the Three Market Types
by Abraham
What a great article - thank you Ron! This has helped me so much!


Related Articles / Tutorials:
Business & Marketing
An Odd Delight: A Corporate Editor's Leap Into Broadcast

An Odd Delight: A Corporate Editor's Leap Into Broadcast

Creative COW Contributing Editor Kylee Wall moved from Indianapolis to Atlanta as part of a move from corporate video into broadcast. Sure, some things stayed the same, but so much more was so different -- a new place to live, a new kind of workspace, new kinds of projects, AND TAPE -- that transitioning to a new NLE in Adobe Premiere Creative Cloud was the least of it. Certainly nothing compared to a fever of 104 that took her out for most of her first week. It's a remarkable tale that Kylee tells as only she can.

Editorial, Feature, People / Interview
Business & Marketing
Suck It Up, Buttercup

Suck It Up, Buttercup

The Best Excuses from New or Underemployed Filmmakers and Freelancers: "You've really really got to stop being lazy and making excuses for not getting what you want," says Creative COW Contributing Editor Kylee Wall. "Seriously. It's sad and it makes me sad for you. So sad in fact, that I've created this BEST OF compilation of stupid excuses. It's perhaps a little more brash than my usual fare. Don't mistake this for arrogance. I'm young and stupid too, but I'm still allowed to almost rant. Pseudo-rant. Pretend I made you cookies and you're eating them as you read this."

Editorial, Feature
Business & Marketing
Get Hired! Be Professional and Pay Attention to Detail

Get Hired! Be Professional and Pay Attention to Detail

"As technology gets better, communications skills seem to get worse." So says Creative COW leader and Contributing Editor Walter Biscardi, one of the industry's most respected business owners. "The same talented people who can create amazing things on screen have absolutely no idea how to represent themselves via a resume or online demo. Most of what I'm about to say seems to be common sense, but apparently it isn't." You definitely don't want to miss this potentially career-changing advice from an industry luminary!

Editorial, Feature
Business & Marketing
The Heroism of Joyful Creativity

The Heroism of Joyful Creativity

I'm constantly inspired by the pleasure and the pride that the people in Creative COW Magazine take in doing the right things the right way, in always trying to improve, and always keeping their eyes peeled for new possibilities. I aspire to do my own work as creatively and joyfully as they do.

Editorial
Business & Marketing
Promote Your Company Worldwide, FREE.

Promote Your Company Worldwide, FREE.

Creative COW's Services Offered Directory is a Powerful Free Resource for Your Business.

Editorial
Business & Marketing
The Back Forty: The Real Truth Of How Creative Cow Magazine Did Not Win An Award

The Back Forty: The Real Truth Of How Creative Cow Magazine Did Not Win An Award

Tim Wilson takes over the Back Forty for this issue to say, "Allow me to interrupt our regularly scheduled Back Forty to tell you what happened when our publisher Ronald Lindeboom called me one morning in April, saying, 'You're not going to believe this, Creative COW Magazine finally won an award!'"

Editorial
Business & Marketing
Post Houses: How to Get, Keep and Not Lose Business

Post Houses: How to Get, Keep and Not Lose Business

On June 8, a packed room of sales and executives representing Hollywood TV/film post production houses attended a Hollywood Post Alliance (HPA) meeting of the Sales Career Resource Group (SCRG) to discuss a topic rendered urgent in today's tough economy: How to Get, Keep and Not Lose My Business. Join Debra Kaufman as she details the evening's events.

Feature, People / Interview, Business
Business & Marketing
The Battle over Spectrum

The Battle over Spectrum

In this article from the 25th Issue of Creative COW Magazine, Debra Kaufman addresses The Battle Over Spectrum: NAB and the FCC -- In a battle over long-held broadcast frequencies, sides are drawn.

Feature
Business & Marketing
The Story of Bessie: Happy 10th Birthday, Creative COW!

The Story of Bessie: Happy 10th Birthday, Creative COW!

We've often been asked to tell the story behind our beginnings. It's Bessie's 10th birthday, and so here it is dear readers, Bessie's very own story.

Feature
Business & Marketing
The Business of Intranet Web Video

The Business of Intranet Web Video

In crafting creative approaches for HR outreach, RHED Pixel has created a new business model for corporate video. They have also discovered time and money-saving approaches useful for every producer.

Tutorial, Feature, Business
MORE


FORUMSTUTORIALSFEATURESVIDEOSPODCASTSEVENTSSERVICESNEWSLETTERNEWSBLOGS

Creative COW LinkedIn Group Creative COW Facebook Page Creative COW on Twitter
© 2014 CreativeCOW.net All rights are reserved. - Privacy Policy

[Top]