This site was created by Chris Windley who has been involved with start-up businesses since he was a teenager and who created a business called LanSwitch ( became Voyager Networks ) in 1993 with £2,000 pounds on his credit card ( and two of his business partners ) and sold in 2000 for £65 Million ( $100 Million ).
Chris has extensive experience of the High Technology world ( particularly computer networking, convergence and unified communications ) but also of the Hospitality industry, the Marketing industry and other leading edge industries. He is a Sales, Marketing and Business Strategy specialist. In recent years he has been an active ( Business ) Social Networker. Chris has tens of thousands of people in his global networks on Twitter, Facebook, Google +, Linkedin, Pinterest, Digg and many more. The purpose of these networks ??? business at light speed !!
Following the exit from Voyager Chris became a Business Angel and invested in a number of High Tech and Hospitality Businesses. There have been further successes and some failures amongst these investments. All of them have provided experience of starting, building and exiting from businesses.
The bulk of this site initially focused on selling your business and areas that relate to this. This was the original purpose of creating this blog.
It also dealt with Buying a Business and Raising Finance for a Business and some other specific areas such as “ Re-organising your Sales Team “ which often arise as issues during a review of the business with a sale in mind. ( p.s. sorry it’s taking a while to complete some of these pages ).
Chris asks industry experts that he has met in his life to contribute to this blogsite as and when appropriate.
Within “ Selling your Business “ he put’s forward a check list of areas to be addressed when selling your business. Each of these areas are discussed. We also touch on very related areas such as creating business value, the difference between a lifestyle and exit route business and valuing your business.
Over time the site has been refined and developed through feedback and input from those who looked at it including my business colleagues and friends.
Why Mandarainmaker ( M & A Rainmaker ) ???
A business sale is usually handled by a “ Mergers and Acquisitions specialist “ in an accounting or law firm. A “ Rainmaker “ is usually the term given to the person within those firms ( often a partner ) who talks to clients who propose to sell or float their business or who want to raise finance or who want to buy other businesses. Hence the title of M&A RainMaker for this site as we aim to help people who want to sell their company, raise finance for their company or buy other companies.
On an informal basis Chris probably knows more about the law than most lawyers and more about Internet Marketing than most Internet Marketers – this makes him a great person to have on your side and a formidable enemy 😉
A little bit of information about him: He is a Myers Briggs E.N.T.J. ( Extrovert, iNtuitive, Thinking, Judgemental ) and ( as the little jumping yellow thingy indicates ) a High Yellow – see http://imahighyellow.com/pages/4-iMA-Styles.html . He is also a Gemini.
In 2012 – 7 years on from Chris’s early attempts at Internet Marketing ( mainly S.E.O. ) – in order to help his clients and companies that he invested in – Chris consolidated his experience of Digital Marketing companies HubSpot and the Six Figure Mentors / Digital Experts Academy into a new start-up , Centripetal Network Consulting LLP , partnering with Michael Nelson from the U.S.A. ( former Strategy Advisor to The White House ) and Chris Butler to evolve a concept known as the Internet Marketing Ecosystem into the Digital Marketing Ecosystem. A system for getting traffic, visitors, leads, orders and cash using digital methods.
While working with Market America and Market United Kingdom , after careful Due Diligence, Chris decided to become part of the business himself, as did Michael Nelson. Intially Chris has focussed on the Motives Division which is a $50-60 Billion industry. Primarily this was because of the huge momentum behind this business division particularly fuelled by Loren Ridinger and LaLa Anthony’s amazing success with social media marketing ( blogging and Instagram ).
Chris would like to acknowledge the efforts of Nikki Pilkington in creating this blog in the first place for him and Barbara Saul in helping maintain it.
7 Reasons Direct Mail Rocks
Direct mail is one of those mediums that is typically overlooked in the age of the almighty internet and that’s ok with the relatively few of us still using it with great results. Here are 7 reasons you might want to consider joining the ranks of smart marketers using direct mail.
1. Extremely targeted – You can target markets by demographics, psychographics, or (my personal favorite) past purchases. There are compiled lists, which consist of contacts who share some similarity like living in the same zip code, belonging to the same political party, or having blue eyes. There are responders lists, which are made up of people who have responded or opted in in some way like requesting more info, filling out a warranty card, or calling from a radio or tv commercial. Then there are my favorite kind of lists. These are list of buyers of some other product or service. People on these lists have already demonstrated a willingness to buy something.
2. Super stealthy – Unlike marketing online, direct mail gives you the ability to test, grow, and build a campaign or business with very little visibility by your competitors. It’s very easy with all the tools available to “spy” on your competition online, not so with direct mail. They won’t know how much you’re mailing, how often, or have any idea what your conversions are.
3. Easily scalable – The size you can grow to is only limited by the number of available responsive lists. With direct mail you can very predictably scale your business by continuing to test additional lists and with a knowledgable list broker you can predict what size you can scale to sometimes after the first test.
4. Very few moving parts – With a direct mail campaign your biggest variables are list, mail piece, and response device. Obviously
there are other components (or parts within the parts). But having just 3 main things to test makes it easy to track and easy to tweak.
5. Low-tech/Beginner friendly – You don’t need to know how to write code. You don’t have to hire someone to write code. There’s no code involved. Once the copy and layout is done for the mail piece, turning on your campaign is as easy as calling your list broker to order names and then calling the print/mail shop to place your order. You don’t even have to touch a stamp if you don’t want to.
6. Relatively cheap – In my experience I’ve seen per lead costs for as low as $2, optins for $4, and per sale cost for a $1,495 dollar product as low as $150. Imagine offering a JV partner $150 bucks for a $1,495 sale. Also leads generated via direct mail tend to have a MUCH higher LTV (lifetime value) and fewer unsubscribes and spam complaints.
7. It’s an independent platform – What do I mean by independent platform? Well unlike most of the online sources you may be used to there is no big company telling you what your ads can look like. Obviously you are still regulated by the FTC and various other entities concerned with rules regarding what you can and can’t say in your advertising. But there are no companies telling you your message doesn’t meet with their approval, no quality scores, no algorithym changes, none of the things that can adversly affect your business overnight.
BONUS REASON: Very little competition. Today inboxes are full and people are eager to hit the delete or worse the spam complaint button. But just the opposite is true for most people’s mailboxes. Your message stands out when yours is the only one they’re holding in their hands reading.
Bottom line… it doesn’t matter if you use direct mail for lead generation, direct selling, or simply to fill up webinars, direct mail can help you build and grow your business predictably and with very little hassle.
Luke Jaten has been involved in sales and marketing since he started his first business mowing lawns at the age of 11.
At the ripe old age of 17 He answered his first direct response ad about how to make money in mail order and by 1987 (at 19 years old) he was running full-page ads in magazines himself.
Since then, Luke has used magazines, newspapers, tv, radio, the internet, direct mail, mobile web, voice broadcasting, telemarketing (inbound and outbound), and teleseminars to market and sell nutritional supplements, software, sandwich franchises, business opportunities, seminars, real estate courses, books, alarm systems, web design, investments, payday loan franchises, credit repair services, diet products, 900 lines, music clubs, magazine subscriptions and lots more… either for himself or for other people.
In the last seven years alone, Luke’s ads have sold over $55 million dollars worth of goods and services.
In 2006 Luke started teaching his brand of marketing and now many of his students have gone on to create multi-million dollar direct response businesses themselves.