Business model & marketing expert, author, public speaker
5 REASONS PEOPLE LOVE WORKING WITH ME
I'M DAMN GOOD AT WHAT I DO
And that is growing sales both in large and small organisations.
I know what makes people buy and what makes them buy more. I’m used to set a sales target and then deliver 2 times more. The reason is that I know how to find what customers really want and I give it to them in a way they are ready to pay premium prices for.
I have successfully managed multi-million brands and small tiny businesses. I’ve launched products planned to deliver millions and delivered twice as much. And I’ve helped startups going from an idea to sold out on Amazon. What makes success is exactly the same, you just need to know what needs to be true.
I’ve handled multi-million budgets as well as budgets of a couple of hundreds. I have managed TV, print and online campaigns reaching more than 50% of a country population by managing media and online agencies. But I also have a small local business making cakes, close to no budget: the in-house video I made to promote the business was watched by more than 3,5 millions people on Instagram (that was pretty sweet!). You don’t manage those budgets in the same way, but for both, you need to know what to do to make sure every $ you spend will give you results.
I know how to make people pay premium prices. I’ve spent 10 years making millions by marketing perfumes and, if you think about it, that’s really just alcohol and some scented oils. Similarly, my cake business is currently selling at 50% above the market price, and I’m working to get that to 100%. Here again the approach is the same. Find what people really want and price accordingly.
I worked in most categories one can think of including beauty care, grooming, retail, fashion, food, entertainment, and education. The context can change, but what drives success stays the same.
I WILL TELL YOU LIKE IT IS
The worst that can happen to a business owner is not realizing what needs to be true to succeed. It’s the worst, but it happens all the time. On one hand, the daily business’ tasks tend to obfuscate the real and big issues linked to a flawed business model and marketing. On the other hand, when business owners reach out for advice, people tend to be superficial and politically correct instead of confronting them with the truth. None of this with me, my clients and students hear loud and clear what I think they are doing wrong and what they need to do to fix it. Many find this refreshing, some can’t handle it. If you are ready to hear it like it is, we should work together. (To note: I’m also very generous with positive feedback on what people are doing right).
I DON'T IMPOSE SOLUTIONS
I’m very clear on the fact that you own your business and you should be the ultimate decision maker. My job is to share with you my knowledge and at times my opinion to make sure you are set up for success. If we work together, to ensure I give you my best advice, I will spend time to understand your business and needs. I will ask lots of questions and be aware that I’m nt satisfied with superficial answers: I will try to go to the root of the problems, try to understand your objectives and vision, before sharing my perspective. Specifically, I will share with you proven principles, frameworks, and examples and I will present you with options. Up to you to follow one of those – I will support you whatever the option you choose.
I UNDERSTAND WHAT IT MEANS TO STRUGGLE
In life, like in business I haven’t been always successful and living a cosy life, on the contrary. Although I don’t usually talk about my rough patches, they are part of who I am and, more importantly, make me a more understanding consultant and coach for my clients and students. As an entrepreneur, you get punched in the face every single day, things go wrong so often you forget to celebrate when things go well. I think it’s important to work with somebody who can understand your struggles – here some examples.
My first flat was a 7 square meters room (75 square feet), under a roof (I could barely stand in it), and was invaded by cockroaches. I was a student trying to sustain my studies in one of the most expensive city in the world – Paris. The jobs I was getting (McDonald cashier, shops inventory during night shifts, even cosmetics clinical tests at times) weren’t enough to pay for both my studies and a decent place to live.
One night as I came “home” and turned on the light, I stared in horror as a cockroach crawled from my pillow into my bed and another quickly entered my alarm clock. I had started my day showering in a bathroom of a public swimming pool and my dinner was going to be a bag of potatoes that I had found in the street a couple of days before that. My life was a grim version of a Cinderella fairy tale.
My first year in Procter & Gamble was incredibly hard, with my boss encouraging me to look for another job. I was struggling with understanding how corporate worked, what concretely I had to do to be successful, and I couldn’t handle the workload – with some work days ending just a couple of hours before the following would start.
My first company burned all my savings. All. I was eating once again potatoes and I was working once again day and night. I kept working on this company in parallel to my corporate career for 2 long years. While the branding was good, the business model was weak – and I paid a high price because of that.
Every time I struggled, I kept pushing – see more in the next point.
I NEVER GIVE UP
In 2003, the cockroach competing with me for a spot in my bed was an electroshock. I took a year off, took an office job during the day and a teaching job at Sorbonne University at night. I saved enough money to enter the following year the best management university in France and therefore set myself up for my dream job: a marketing role in Procter & Gamble.
When in 2005 I struggled in P&G, I had again to take a decision. Stay or flee. My colleagues, seeing me broken, couldn’t understand why I stubbornly stay. What they ignored was that I knew I could succeed. I just had to learn enough to prove it. Fast forward to 2012, I had learned. I was among the best Brand Managers in Procter & Gamble, working on one of the hottest project of the year, launching the James Bond Fragrance (Harrods’s best launch of that year). I was living in a 140 squares meters (1400 square feet) flat in Geneva, Switzerland, and eating potatoes only as mousseline in gourmet restaurants.
Fast forward to my first company. While losing money burned like hell, I was faced with two important decisions. Shall I continue that business and shall I continue entrepreneurship? I decided I wasn’t in love with shapewear anymore, but I was in love with the self-fulfillment of having your own company. What I was struggling with was having a corporate career AND a side business. There was only one thing left to do: leave the cosy comfort of corporate and take the plunge into full time entrepreneurship.
Resolve is at the core of who I am and how I approach life and business. If my clients and students’ resolve temporarily falter, I’m there to remind them that we are in it together, and that since I won’t give up, neither can they.
I HATE COMPLEXITY
It might be because of my long experience in corporation, which is by definition complex. Or because I manage too many projects for the size of my brain, but the fact is that I absolutely can’t stand complexity. I believe that if you can’t explain it in one sentence, then it’s too complex. I also believe that complexity creates visible and invisible costs for a company, hurt people’s morale, and is one of the biggest barrier to growth.
However, I do reckon that business is complex. That’s when priority setting and focus enter the scene. For many people priority setting is hard. It feels like a compromise and it does carry a risk. However, in corporate first, and with my clients now, I’ve always achieved record results by defining the top priorities and by focusing 100% on delivering them. I help my clients taking that risk, a carefully calculated risk, until they see the results and get more comfortable with this approach.
Similarly for my course, I spent weeks just thinking about how to design the SIMPLEST business model and marketing course ever done. And simple goes hand in hand with short. Why would students spend 1 hour on a lesson, when in 2 minutes top they could learn the same? Stay away from experts who take hours to explain concepts and push back to their students the hurdle of extracting the important stuff from their material.
Was it easy to create 2 minutes lessons for Customers Seduction? Absolutely not. Was it worth it? You tell me.