Monday, June 29, 2015

Best Small Business Idea - Get Focused And Get Going

I used to give a talk titled, “10 Ways to Overcome Overwhelm in Business and In Life”. It was an excellent resource for getting into action and taking charge of your business. If you’d like a copy, just email me and I’ll send it to you. After I’d given this talk for awhile, I realized that getting out of overwhelm was even simpler. You don’t need 10 ideas. That’s overwhelming in itself. You just need one essential key. If you can master this one key, you can pretty much get whatever you want out of your business and your life. Here it is. Don’t blink or you’ll miss it. Focus.

That’s right, focus. When you are entirely focused on what you are doing in the moment, you don’t have any attention left for being in overwhelm. Focus and overwhelm are opposites. Think about it. You are overwhelmed because you are thinking about all the things you’ve got to get done today, tomorrow, and the day after. You aren’t solidly focused in the present moment doing what’s in front of you. But when you are stuck in overwhelm, it’s really hard to get focused. So what can you do?

It’s actually very simple. Get back to basics. Go back to your core values, your mission statement, your vision. Stop right now and think about the vision you had for your business when you first started it. What did you want to accomplish? Why did you want to do it? Were you looking for freedom? Did you have a better way of helping people? Completely let yourself be absorbed in the dream you had. Feel how it was when you started. Now you are focused. Take this vision and write it down again. Go into detail about what you really want to do with your business.

Now from this focused state, get into action. It should be much more clear to you now what the most important tasks are. Focus your energy on those and get going. Any time you start feeling overwhelmed, stop and go back to your dream, your vision. Ask yourself why you are doing what you are doing. Really feel it and then start again. I guarantee you this will get you focused and get you out of overwhelm. Now you can get what you really wanted out of your business.


Thursday, June 25, 2015

4 Secret Selling Techniques You Must Implement

The first sign that you might need to explore new marketing strategies, is a sharp decline in the effectiveness of your advertisement campaign.  Yeah, you shell out a lot of hard earned cash to advertise, and the public turns its nose up!  Don't wait until your profits are plunging to start hunting for new marketing strategies.

Wouldn't it be great if you could foolproof your selling techniques?  Yeah, no more customers walking out with empty hands... no more profits disappearing into thin air!  Here are 4 secrets that will help you put money in your pocket, and lengthen your current customer list.

1. Make It Easy
There's an old adage that says variety is the spice of life, but hey, too many choices can lead to indecision and procrastination.  We all know what happens when customers procrastinate... yeah, you lose a sale.

When a customer walks into your business ready to purchase, and suddenly sees several options he didn't know were there, he'll stop then decide... which one?   If he's uncertain... well, you lose a sale that was already in your pocket.

Make it easy for your customers to decide... yes, I'll buy it... no I won't buy it.  Yes and no decisions are a lot easier to make, and are more likely to put cash in the drawer.

2. Offer Several Ways To Buy
Too many choices can overwhelm customers and cost you sales, but options of how to buy open up avenues for customers to purchase the product they've decided they need. They say there are different strokes for different folks... your customers don't all use the same methods to buy.  It just makes sense that if the method they prefer is available, they'll be more likely to take advantage of it.

Convenience it the key to attracting buyers in today's fast paced society.  What will be the fastest and easiest for them... credit card, phone, fax, Internet, or cold hard cash?

3. Keep it Simple
You remember the frustration of spending 10 minutes pushing buttons on the phone just to get through a pain-in-the-neck automated ordering service.  Heck, you just wanted to buy one item!  Maybe it was the time you had to click your finger raw, just to jump through the hoops of an online shopping cart.  Yeah, the temptation to just forget it is right there!

Don't frustrate your customers with intricate ordering processes.  Most likely, they just want to place the order in a few minutes and be done.  Let them get frustrated, and they'll go elsewhere, or just abandon the idea altogether.

4. Follow Up
One of my favorite catalog companies always closes out the sale with a special buy that is available only at the time of purchase.  I'm not an impulsive shopper by any stretch of the imagination, but it stops me in my tracks every time.  I know it's a one-time shot, and I really consider whether I want or need it before I hang up the phone.

How many items would your customers buy if you were to follow up every sale with a special offer?  Internet marketers have a world of options at their fingertips.  The products you offer don't even have to be yours... and you can still make a profit!

Affiliate marketing is sweeping the Web.  Think about it... would your customers benefit from an eBook that deals with the product they are purchasing?  You can offer it to them, and let the owner handle ordering process while you collect the commission.  It's as easy as 1, 2, and 3 and profitable too!

Boosting your sales numbers and profit dollars isn't as tough as it sounds.  Implement these 4 simple selling techniques, and watch your sales steadily climb... and just think... they didn't cost you a penny!


Wednesday, June 24, 2015

What Impression do you leave your clients?

Impressions, as we all know, are blurry ideas in which confidences are given. Marketing materials such as business cards, posters, postcards, flyers, brochures and catalogs must satisfy the customer’s confidences even at the very first sight of the material.

Catalogs, for instance, must leave a lasting and positive first impression. Before they can encourage potential readers to read on, they must entice them first to come closer and take a look at them. They must have fascinating design and facade to lure the would-be receivers.

To complete the marketing formula, the company or its marketer must entrust the potential masterpieces to a master in catalogs printing. If you have hesitations and worries regarding the printing process, the colors and materials like paper and ink to be used, ask the pool of experts that surround the printing company. They will help you seek solutions to your catalogs printing dilemmas.

Catalogs are made to have easy access on your products and service. You do not have to bring them with you. With catalogs around, there is no need to present the literal product or demonstrate the services that your company is offering. All it takes is an effective modern catalog.

In the production of catalogs, areas of concentration must be established and considered. One area is the product or service. Some product need not be included in the catalog while some are indispensable. Choosing which are to be incorporated from which are not must be carefully done.

After selection, the next area of concentration is categorization or grouping. There are products that can be grouped as one while there are products that need to be presented singly. Samples of these products are the feature for the month and the freshly released products. Same thing should be considered in marketing services. In this area, you have to master one thing and that is sorting.

Next to categorization is the process of creating descriptions. Descriptions must be exact or definite. You can begin by writing the name of the product or service followed by its features. Ideal number of words range from 30 to 60 words for every product or service.

Make a good impression by selecting clear pictures and crisp texts. Be reminded that the heart of every catalog is its overall appearance. Thus, superior artsy taste is a marketing edge.


Saturday, June 20, 2015

Four Ways to Boost Your Online Business Through Networking

When you think about networking, do you visualize a bunch of people standing around schmoozing, trying to pitch their services to each other while exchanging business cards and “elevator speeches”?

You know, some people actually enjoy that sort of thing. And when they do it right (which is a rare talent), they reap genuine rewards. Rewards such as new clients, joint venture partners, knowledgeable advisors, helpful friends… in other words, mutually beneficial relationships.

But for many of us, the idea of going to a networking event ranks right up there with bathing an angry cat. Even if we think it ought to be done, we’d rather be flea food.

Don’t worry. There’s much more – and less – to networking than you think! You can reap the same wonderful rewards without having to mingle with a bunch of strangers.

Important: With any kind of networking, the key is to build powerful relationships by giving. Give your attention, advice, ideas, suggestions, support, compliments, referrals – and maybe even your business – to others. Give, give, give… then receive more than you can imagine!

There are many ways you can get freelance work by networking, even if you hate schmoozing. Below are four powerful examples.

1. Tell your family and friends about your online business. 

This seems like a no-brainer, but you’d be amazed at how many people fail to do this.

You don’t have to pitch your services/products to your family and friends, but you certainly should not be keeping them secret! You’ll have many opportunities during normal conversations to mention that you enjoy internet marketing and earning money with your online activities. Just plant the seed and eventually it can grow into unexpected business.

And remember, even if your family and friends have no need for the products/services you offer, it’s very likely that they know someone who does.

Key: Every person has connections to an average of 250 other people. When you decide not to mention your services to cousin Annie and neighbor Tom, you’re missing an opportunity to offer your services to hundreds of people they know!

2. Engage in virtual networking. 

You do this online, from the comfort of your home office. Besides the benefits of not having to deal with people face-to-face, virtual networking allows you to create contact lists and join online communities comprised of people from all over the world. Most of these people you would probably never meet in any other way. Your virtual network can grow larger and faster than any form of traditional network.

Are you on someone’s email list? (Of course you are!) When they ask for opinions, give yours. When they raise an issue that’s of interest to you, send them a response about it. If they’re selling something you can benefit from (and it fits your budget), buy it – then give them positive feedback about it.

Key: Become someone they know and enjoy hearing from, rather than just one of the many anonymous names on their mailing list.

Participate in online discussion forums, especially those where your ideal clients hang out. Lurk before you leap so you don’t jump in and accidentally make a fool of yourself (not good for winning clients). Read the posts, get a feel for the ambiance. When you have something worthwhile to contribute, start participating. If the forum rules allow it, include a signature block that has a link to your website. But do NOT sell your services! Give valuable advice freely. The idea is to show your knowledge, expertise and desire to help others.

Key: Eventually the forum members will get to know you, like you and trust you. The next natural step for them is to think of you when they (or people in their network) need the products/services you provide!

3. Show off your talent. 

Write, write, write! Submit articles to online article directories, write reports and/or ebooks, create your own website and e-zine – put yourself and your knowledge/skills on display, always including your contact information. When appropriate, offer to provide free special reports or articles for people with whom you’re building connections through your virtual networking activities.

Consider giving free workshops related to your niche through your local Chamber of Commerce, Rotary Club or other groups. If you have a job, check into offering “brownbag” (lunchtime) sessions on topics such as “10 Tips for More Earning Money Online in Your Spare Time” for your coworkers.

Key: You want to become the obvious person people will think of when they need your expertise, or the products/services you provide.

4. Attend seminars. 

What types of seminars, workshops, conferences or meetings do your customers attend? Go to those events. They are networking goldmines and offer many opportunities to engage in natural conversations with people you want to meet. You don’t have to schmooze or pitch your services. Just be friendly, ask questions, participate in discussions, and be yourself.

Key: You’ll not only learn about the specific issues and topics your target customers are interested in, you’ll build relationships with them at the same time!


Tuesday, June 16, 2015

3 Must-See Keys For Expanding Your Business

1.  Team Up
No one knows your market like you!  What are the main characteristics of your target audience?  Find someone else out there who isn't a competitor, but who reaches the same class of customers that you do.  Team up with them to do joint promotions!

We all know that two is better than one.  The dramatic end results will be an effective and cost-cutting advertising venture the nets both of you a nice profit.

I once dealt with a veterinarian who promoted a local dog groomer... who in turn promoted the local veterinarian.  Yeah, it's kind of a "you scratch my back and I'll scratch yours" set up, but hey it works for both parties.  Think about it... customers are going to feel that the dog groomer is in the know about who the best vet in town is, as well as trust the vet to know who is the best dog groomer in the area.  Sure, it's a win, win situation for both the groomer and the vet.

2.  Dig Out New Niche Markets
Niche markets are everywhere, right under your nose!  Within the customer audience that you serve right now are groups of people who share common traits.  Think about it... maybe you have a goup who speaks Spanish, a group of teens, and a group of middle class family men and women.

Evaluate these classes of people, and discover the unique needs and desires they share.  That will set you up to customize your advertising campaign directly to them.  It's not hard to take your current ads, and make a few changes to adjust to the niches.  They'll be impressed that you understand THEM, and the increase in your profits will be the best thanks you can get.

3.  Hop On The Latest Trends
Get in on the first floor of the latest trend... before your competition becomes aware of it.  Be a leader in the industry!  Hey, Internet marketing is still profitable all around, but businesses who jumped on the band wagon early in the game got the best proceeds for their insight.

We're not talking about dropping everything and making a mad dash!  Wise marketers add to their already profitable businesses when they see the "new and coming" techniques.  Keep the customers you already have on board, and add to your existing products and services.

You can quickly and easily strengthen you business and push out the competition by adding new layers to your existing business, teaming up for joint promotions, and discovering new markets to reach.


Thursday, June 11, 2015

5 Steps To Creating A 6-Figure While You Work At Home

Creating a steady income from home can be a daunting process. Being successful from home can often take more work than your regular 9 to 5. But, if you learn to break things down and follow a simple forum, your home business can give you all the income and time freedom that you are seeking in a work from home business.

My successful business formula involves 5 steps. I follow these same five steps with every person I come into contact with. Having a system not only makes my days more organized, but also it opens up more time for me to enjoy the financial rewards that the system creates.

Here is my simple formula:

Step 1; Collect Leads:

This is an entire article in itself (which is in the works). For the sake of keeping this article on track, I will touch on this only briefly. There are many ways to get leads. You can buy leads, place ads in papers and on the net, use ad words, submit your site to search engines, mail postcards, etc. There are literally 100's of ways to advertise. The trick is finding a couple of advertising techniques that you like best and that fit your budget and then try them out. Those that bring you the most success can be tweaked further to give you the results you want. Just remember to always test each ad or lead generating technique you use. From my own experience, I like to talk to those that are in my business and find out what they are doing. They have most often been through the trial and error process and can save you some time.

Step 2; Call Leads:

This is the step that most people have reservations about. If you want to be successful in any home business, you must pick up the phone. This does not mean "cold" calling people. I never call anybody that has not asked to hear about my home business. Use your lead generating techniques in step one to create leads that want to hear from you and then contact them. Whether you business costs $5 or $5000 to join, people want to know that there is a real person behind the business that they can consult with questions. Talking to them and establishing a rapport and trust will go a long way to making sure that the prospect joins you in your home business. When still a "rookie" to making calls, it is best to have a script or outline to follow. This is not to say that you read directly from that. Just use it as a guide to keep you on track and in control of the call. Most importantly in regards to calls......LISTEN. Listen and take notes about what the prospect is telling you. Remember, you are trying to get to know this person and establish their trust.

Step 3; Email

It is hard to ignore this powerful tool. When collecting my leads, I always get an email and phone number to use in step 2 and 3 of my system. Just as I do not make cold calls, I do not send emails to those who have not asked for it. Spam complaints will kill your business and your rapport with people. When I get an email, I simply have that email address automatically entered into an autoresponder. My autoresponder then sends messages every few days to keep me fresh in my prospects mind. Autoresponders are a must have for any business. They allow you to stay in contact for long periods of time while doing virtually no work. They also increase the amount of times your prospect is exposed to you and your business. Remember this, on average a prospect must see your message 5 to 12 times before joining you.

Step 4; Direct Mail Information Packet.

With all of the new email laws and email blocking systems, direct mail is making a comeback. As I said in step 3, you want to expose yourself to your prospect as many times as possible. But, if you use one method of exposure....your prospect may begin to ignore you. Diversifying your exposure types will keep them interested. I must state that I do not mail information packets to everybody. Only those that I have talked with and that have expressed interest. Mailing the packets can become expensive if you mail them to everyone. That said, putting the pack together is very easy. I used the ad copy on my website to develop the packet. Then I throw in a business card or flyer and send it on its way. This also makes sure that people actually see the content of your site. Many have seen so many websites that they just browse them. They are more apt to sit down and read printed text than to sit at their computer and read through your website.

Step 5; Direct Mail Postcard.

Postcards, like direct mail, give you another way to expose yourself to your prospects. They are fun to design and can be sent quickly and easily. Because they are less expensive than the direct mail packets, I send a postcard to all of my leads. People love getting postcards. They do have the junk mail stigma and if designed well, they can give a personal touch to your business. I actually send a postcard campaign that sends multiple postcards over a period of 45 - 60 days to my prospects. I use a service that does this automatically and even personalizes each card for me.

Always remember this, it takes on average 5 to 12 exposures to get somebody into your business. My 5-step process actually includes multiple exposures within each step. For example, my emails include phone numbers to live calls and links to movies to watch. One email can get me three or more exposures. The key to any business is to have a formula or process to follow. Knowing what you are going to do each day keeps you focused and allows you to track how your business is doing and what may or may not be working.

That's it! Those 5 simple steps earn me a consistent 6-figure income from home. Your results may differ based on your business, and your compensation plan among other things, but this process will definitely increase your sign up rate.


Saturday, June 6, 2015

Has Honesty Become a Thing of the Past?

Has honesty become a thing of the past?  Many people are asking themselves this question as they scour the net for what they need.

As the low economy in the United States takes its toll on many, people are constantly looking for alternative ways to solve their dilemma, including the internet.

 In a frantic search to find the ultimate solution, they spend their hard-earned money on “Get Rich Schemes” only to find out that the bargain they hoped for wasn’t a bargain at all.

With crushed hopes, dreams, and an empty wallet many people retaliate.  Some may pass it off by learning negative things such as not trusting anyone else… possibly for the rest of their lives.  Others quit buying altogether.  While still others, run and tell there friends they got ripped-off and by whom causing a viral rift, giving marketers a bad reputation.

Either way we look at these facts, we still come to the same conclusion.  We need to change the way we are doing things and become more ethically inclined when running our businesses.

Honesty has a great deal to do with any marketer, if not for any other reason but to be able to continue with one’s business.  Secondly, it helps someone else get what they need.

I remember a time when people put great trust in their local merchant.  You remember those days?  The marketer was fair and usually gave the consumer more than they bargained for…They new the secret to long term success.

We too have that same power to claim long term success and to help change what is going on in the internet marketing circle!  By claiming this power and making a few changes, we can help stimulate the economic growth that is needed to overcome hard times.

You may be saying to yourself, but I am honest in my work.  You may be!  There are still many marketers that use ethical marketing when selling their products.  That’s great, but what about passing these ethical techniques to future merchants?   Like our affiliates for example...Are we teaching them about honesty?  How about the new marketer who seeks wisdom and a JV with some of the old timers?

I know some folks who have been making money for several years are going to say, "We've tried to teach the young about ethical marketing, but they aren't listening."  That may be so.  We cannot twist anyone's arms to get them to do the right thing.

However, we can be examples for them.  We leave the ball in their court.  The young will then learn from their mistakes.  Without customers and future financing, they will once again seek wisdom from the old timers.

Then, and only then, will online marketing be instrumental in economic growth so it can stand firm throughout the trials that face all of us.

If this article offends anyone maybe it's time to take a look at the overall marketing picture.

Trust is built on the very foundation of honesty, especially when dealing with costumers.  It’s a two-way street…the consumer gets what they paid for, their hopes are flying high and their wallets still have money in them so they can buy other things.

The marketer on the other hand, gets a repeat costumer that will tell his/her friends, who will tell their friends, and so on, making more money in the long run, while building great lasting relationships, and a fantastic reputation.  To put a sugar coating on top, they are helping someone else.

So, I guess we need to ask ourselves these questions:  Do we continue with this “Dog-eat dog” attitude and eat dirt?

 Or… Do we claim the power from past years and help change the mindset of the consumer which will lead us to bigger profits where everyone is happy?

The choice is ours!  I know what I am doing do you?

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

4 Rules For New Entrepreneurs - Practical Tips For Starting Right

It’s a great time to be an entrepreneur in the last decade, technology has leveled the playing field and propelled an entrepreneurial revolution. As an entrepreneur, you now have more access to information that enables you to make more intelligent choices more quickly. You have an advantage over big businesses in that you’re lighter, more flexible, and faster on your feet. You can target new markets more quickly, and you can turn on a dime.

But being a successful entrepreneur requires that you look at the big picture and follow a plan through from beginning to end. Rieva Lesonsky, editor-in-chief of Entrepreneur Magazine gives some practical guidelines that can help you when beginning your own enterprise:

1.Don’t Quit Your Day Job.
Consider starting your business part-time, especially if it’s online, while you’re working and have a steady income. It usually takes six months to a year to get a business going and you don’t want your ability to make your house payment to hinge upon your company being an overnight success. Start with what you can manage, financially and time-wise, and scale up as your business grows.

2.Find Your Niche.
The days of general stores are over. Particularly online, consumers are looking for stores that specialize. You have to find a need something a specific group of people want, but can’t get at the big chain stores and fill it. Advises Lesonsky, “You can’t compete with the big guys, so you have to find where the big guys aren't and go into your niches.”

3.Have an Online Presence.
Even if you’re not planning to start an online retail business, consider that the internet can still play a valuable role in your company. Having an online presence eliminates the limitations of physical location and broadens your customer base by, literally, millions. It’s also a great tool for promoting yourself and letting people, even in your own area, know that you’re there, and what you’re doing.

4.Refuse to Quit.
Successful entrepreneurship requires creativity, energy, and a drive to keep going when you fail. Few people realize that before Bill Gates created the extremely successful Microsoft 3.0, he created a Microsoft 1.0 and 2.0, both of which flopped—but he kept at it. And that determination and refusal to give up is what will separate successful entrepreneurs from unsuccessful ones. Says Lesonsky, “Arm yourself with optimism to get beyond the ‘No’ or the trouble. There’s nothing wrong in failure—just don’t repeat the same mistake!”