Theory of Constraints Mafia Offer
Create a market offer so good, your customers can’t refuse it and your competition can’t or won’t offer the same – that’s a “mafia offer”!”
— “Dr. Lisa” Lang
Dear Business Owners and Sales & Marketing Executives:
A “mafia offer” sounds like something out of a movie, not something that could actually allow you to increase and control your sales.
In the following pages, I’ll spell out the details … disclose the conditions … present credentials … and then invite you to attend one of the upcoming Mafia Offer Boot Camps.
If you have attended one of my speeches you have probably heard at least one example of a mafia offer. You know that the mafia offer that was developed was for a regular company. This company had no particular competitive advantage – no patent, no unique technology, the same equipment as competitors, and similar employees. And yet, it was a not based on a price reduction, not easy for the competition to follow, and so good that most customers would accept it readily.
It turns out that mafia offers are possible for the majority of companies. The reason that most companies don’t know that they have one or know what it is, is because they just don’t know how to develop them. If you read Dr Goldratt’s book It’s Not Luck or one of the other Theory of Constraints (TOC) books, you read about how we use cause and effect logic (also called Theory of Constraints Thinking Processes) about your customers, your industry, and about your company to create the offer. You also know that it’s not easy to do.
During my years in the consulting business I have asked many owners one question – if I am one of your best prospects, what would you say to convince me to do business with you? Here is a list of the typical answers:
(write down your answers before you continue)
Don’t your competitors say the exact same thing? All good companies have these qualities or they wouldn’t be in business for long. I call this the blah, blah, blah answer because that’s what it sounds like to your customers and prospects.
A mafia offer is NOT a list of strengths, a cliché, subjective, or offered by the competition. In addition, it is sold differently. When you have a mafia offer, you are making a business proposal. Everything changes.
The promise: improve your offer to the market – create your mafia offer!
Can it be done?
All I can do is present our credentials and methodology and let you be the judge of that. This is the purpose of the balance of this letter.
The three days are broken down as follow:
Day 1: Create YOUR Mafia Offer
Day 2: Verbalize and Create the Collateral for YOUR Mafia Offer. This includes some of the more traditional techniques –- the competitive advantage, the touchstone, and the delivery of the irresistible offer.
Day 3: Create an Action Plan for Implementing YOUR Mafia Offer
Each day will involve an explanation of what we are going to work on, work instructions, and then facilitated group work.
Each person will have an extensive workbook to capture your group’s mafia offer.
These will be long days involving homework.
Walking away with anything other than a profoundly different perspective on your business after the 3 days will be very difficult.
So, the next question is, is it at least conceivable that I can make good on my audacious promise? To judge, you need to know something of my background and that of Brad Stillahn, co-facilitator.
Who are “Dr Lisa” Lang and Brad Stillahn?
“Dr Lisa” is an international speaker, author of 2 books, and the President of Science of Business, a Theory of Constraints consulting company. She is recognized as one of the few TOC Experts worldwide by Dr. Goldratt, developer of the Theory of Constraints and author of the best selling business novel The Goal and is only one of two preferred providers in Sales and Marketing. In addition, she has served as Dr Goldratt’s Global Marketing Director.
Brad Stillahn, also a certified TOC expert, is the owner of Adstick Custom Labels. Since, he has nicely offloaded the running of Adstick after a successful TOC implementation (and nice mafia offer) and now works with Dr Lisa on helping other companies make more money. He has served as Marketing Director of Menasha Corporation and is known for innovative thinking and the identifier of erroneous assumptions.
Enough with the blah, blah, blah. The real key is that we have developed more than 100 mafia offers, surpassing anyone except Dr Goldratt himself. We are able to quickly facilitate our clients through the process of identifying and detailing their offer. And most importantly, we are willing to put our money where our mouth is and walk the talk.
What’s your risk?
Here’s the really interesting part. You can choose.
Option #1: A PRIVATE on-site event for your organization. You pay a flat fee of $25,000 (plus a flat rate travel fee TBD). We will come to you or your group can come to beautiful Green Valley, AZ. You can divide your team into several groups and work on more than one offer.
Option #2: You pay a flat fee of $15,000 to attend an ON-LINE boot camp. On-line boot camps are private boot camps with your company only, but done on-line. You work from your office and start/end at your convenience. This option is limited to working on one offer.
OUR GUARANTEE: If after the first day of the boot camp you are not absolutely convinced that the boot camp is going to provide value beyond your investment or if you not happy for any reason – we will stop right there and give you a full refund.
This is an investment in your company and your company’s future. When have you stopped working IN your company long enough to spend 3 days working ON your company?
One of our clients has credited us with saving his company. And this was a guy who was skeptical about there being a mafia offer for his company. Check out our testimonials!
During the camp we will share examples and stories with you in addition to individual guidance to help your team devise your offer.
On-line boot camps can start at your convenience and progress at your rate. You have 3 months of support. It’s recommended that you complete your offer in the first month so that you have 2 months of support as you begin to implement.
Private boot camps are scheduled at mutually convenient times and location of your choice. Each day begins at 9:00 am and concludes by 6 pm. It is recommended that you have lunch brought in for the group.
To find out if your company is a good fit for a Mafia Offer Boot Camp, schedule a free consultation by sending an email to email@example.com.
P.S. Both options include 3 months of support.
P.P.S Both options include a FREE access to my 3 hour Maximizing Profitability workshop. ($199 value)
For more information check out these resources:
These 2 podcasts where we discussed Mafia Offers and the Boot Camp and our FREE Preview video:
1) Podcast: Interview of Dr Lisa Lang by PodcasterNews This one has had well over 1000 downloads.
2) Podcast: Interview of Dr Lisa Lang by Jeff Kinsey
3) For a free video preview of Session 1, click on the EVENTS tab and scroll down to the FREE Preview.
4) Dr Lisa’s Mafia Offers ebook. Here’s the introduction:
A. Introduction: What is a Mafia Offer?
A “Mafia Offer” sounds like something out of a movie, not something that could seriously help you make more money in your business by increasing and controlling your sales.
Dr Goldratt first introduced the concept of a Mafia Offer in his book It’s Not Luck (Goldratt 2002, 133) . Later he defined a Mafia Offer as “an offer they can’t refuse” (Goldratt 2008, 67) . But in writing, he more frequently refers to it as an Un-Refusable Offer (URO) (Goldratt 1999, 120) and more recently he (and Goldratt Consulting) emphasizes the need to establish, capitalize and sustain a Decisive Competitive Edge (Herman & Goldratt) .
For this chapter, I will use the term Mafia Offer and have defined it as follows: “An offer so good that your customers can’t refuse it and your competition can’t or won’t offer the same.” In addition, I will refer to the operational improvements required for a Mafia Offer as the decisive competitive edge, operational advantage, or a competitive advantage.
A Mafia Offer is simply the offer you make to your market – your prospects and customers – to make them desire your products and/or services AND something that your competition can not quickly match. And, of course, the offer you make is a combination of your products, services, and how you deliver them. And for your offer — the solution you’re selling — to be un-refusable you are most likely offering something of equal or greater value than the price you are charging.
Many people confuse a Mafia Offer with a Unique Selling Proposition (USP), Customer Value Proposition (CVP), or a Sustainable Competitive Advantage (SCA).
At first blush, it would seem that a Mafia Offer is similar to these other terms you may have heard of; however, when most people are talking about these alternatives they are actually quite different from what we, Theory of Constraints experts, mean by a Mafia Offer.
USPs, CVPs, and SCAs basically take what you already do and state it succinctly and with more specificity aimed at one or a few of their customers’ problems or gaps in current market offerings. These alternatives can be Mafia Offers, but most of the time they are not. Furthermore, a SCA is, in my view, an operational or technological (although these are NOT typically sustainable) advantage and not an offer per se.
Most companies offer solutions that solve their customers various problems or symptoms. With a Mafia Offer we are addressing our customer’s core problem as it relates to doing business with our industry.
A Mafia Offer typically requires that you do something different (make operational improvements to establish a decisive competitive edge) to address your prospect’s core problem. These operational improvements allow you to actually deliver something un-refusable to your customers and something that your competition can’t or won’t do because they are not willing to or don’t know how to make the same improvements. In other words, you have to establish an operational advantage.
In this way, a Mafia Offer is a sustainable market offer built on this advantage. Mafia Offers are not a positioning or a tag line and “can only be created by satisfying a significant need of the market to the extent that no other significant competitor can.” (Herman & Goldratt) A Mafia Offer is where we start if you have a market constraint.
Are you a good candidate for a Mafia Offer?
Now you might be wondering if you are a good candidate for a Mafia Offer Boot Camp. Does a Mafia Offer exist for YOUR company so that you can substantially increase YOUR sales?
Mafia Offer Definition
Initially Dr Goldratt defined a Mafia Offer as “an offer so good that your customers can’t refuse it”. I extended the definition as follows: “An offer so good that your customers can’t refuse it and your competition can’t or won’t offer the same.”
It has also been referred to as an unrefusable offer or unrefuseable offer (URO) or a market offer.
At first blush, it would seem that a Mafia Offer is similar to other terms you may have heard of like an irresistible offer, a touchstone, brand positioning, a sustainable competitive advantage (SCA), a customer value proposition, or a unique selling proposition (USP). However, when most people are talking about these alternatives they are actually quite different from what I mean by a Mafia Offer. They basically take what you already do and state it succinctly and with more specificity aimed at one or a few of their customers’ problems or gaps in current market offerings. These alternatives can be Mafia Offers, but many times they are not. And even so, they are still better than nothing which is where most businesses start.
A Mafia Offer typically requires that you do something different (make operational improvements) to actually deliver something unrefusable to your customers and something that your competition can’t or won’t do because they are not willing to or don’t know how to make the same improvements.
In this way, a Mafia Offer is a longer lasting competitive advantage instead of just a positioning.
When you have a good mafia offer and you deliver it correctly, your close rate increases to above 80%. If you close 80% or more of your prospects — you have control over your sales. This control makes it easier grow and invest in your business while maintaining the ability to deliver the offer.
Mafia Offers are based on Goldratt Theory of Constraints. You may also see them referred to as Goldratt Mafia Offer, Theory of Constraints Mafia Offer, or TOC Mafia Offer. The concept was first introduced in It’s not Luck but it was not referred to as such.