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Tuesday, 22 January 2013 13:42
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I am reminded of this so often in business and life, yet we all seem to forget the lesson. On Friday I went to a store to purchase an item of a significant sum. There was only the shop demo item available. I asked if they could detach the item from the shelf and if I could purchase it. Their response was – why would ya?. Why would I indeed?

My response, I left and will never go back. Why wouldn’t I want to buy the store demo? It’s hadn’t been damaged and looked fine to me, and I could have it straight away instead of waiting for a few days for new stock to arrive. ‘Why Wouldn’t Ya!’. Obviously this retail store is doing way better than the rest of the retail stores in my town and do not need the business. I went online that evening and purchased my item from there.

We only have a few chances to impress in business and life. It is in those first few moments that decisions are made as to whether someone will buy or not, or like us or not. People buy from people they like – or they go elsewhere to a place that will deliver what they want, when and how they want if they are not impressed. Sadly, I am not overwhelmed with stories of organisations that do an amazing job of meeting their customer needs and responding appropriately to them. I do get to hear of some extraordinarily awful ones though.

Go ahead, think about it right now. When was the last time you were super impressed with the help and service you received?

I ask this question often in my training and coaching business.

And then I ask, what do you do to make a great impression on others?

When was the last time you really looked at the outside of your shop and see it as your customer sees it. Do you check to see if you and your team really respond positively to every request or query? Are we dressed to impress to get that job? How well do we attract the people we want into our lives? How easy is it to get a little lazy and think it doesn’t matter? Do we try an impress every time someone phones, emails or walks in the door? Remember, other people are not privy to what occurred a few minutes ago to you and have no idea what sort of day you are having. Nor do they really care. Sorry.

It takes many ‘touches’ to build a relationship of trust with a customer or a friend. And only a moment to break it.

Think about the impression you want to make today.

Tuesday, 22 January 2013 07:32
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busyIt’s the dawn of 2013 and business owners are full of optimism and grand plans for the year ahead, but beware the New Year Grinch called ‘Busyness‘ it’s lurking just around the corner ready to smother all traces of that fresh entrepreneurial spirit.

Having worked with more than 200 small business owners over the last decade, I know from experience that ‘Busyness’ is that lively but meaningless activity which snares most business owners.

It’s easy to get caught up in responding to emails, answering the phone, fulfilling regular work orders, tinkering with the website and having meetings about everything under the sun.

The result is a loss in momentum and a return to the ‘same old, same old’ daily grind.

One answer is to track your time to determine what your most valuable activities are. These may include, for example, marketing, planning and creating systems that leverage your time, rather than drain it.

Track how you spend your time for the next month and you will be shocked by how much productivity actually slips through your fingers.

An even more disturbing exercise is to put a value to the time.

From first studying and then valuing your time, you’ll learn how to prioritise your day. The fright will be motivation enough.

Three tips for prioritising:

Priority one: Your first priority is reserved for high value activities like sales and systemising your business, but limit those to one or two core activities a day.

Priority two: The things you absolutely have to do. Return client calls, respond to complaints and requests for help, complete assigned tasks.

Priority three: The nice to do stuff, like filing, web surfing and socialising.

No matter how many companies I work with, the problem is never lack of money or team, it always comes back to busyness. Be honest with yourself and make 2013 a productive year instead of a busyness year.

Tuesday, 22 January 2013 07:31
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pinPinetererst has become the latest social phenomena and using it strategically can boost website visitors quickly. Before willy-nilly launching a dozen or so pin boards it is important to understand your goal and pinning strategy. Like any marketing effort pin board can benefit your business when you approach it with a plan.

Pinterest For Business

Take the time to incorporate all of the features that Pinterest has created for businesses. A business profile is as easy to set up as a personal profile but many businesses fail to do it.

The main benefit, among others, is that your website url is visible as opposed to being a small round icon. People can actually read your full url which is great for branding

Group Pin Boards To Grow Business

A group pin board is one which many people have the ability to pin onto. You can create one for your sale team and generate a lot of buzz with many pinners.

Using group pin boards on Pinterest can enable you to come up with a gameplan for direct sales marketing online, for structuring a new event, or to simply post ideas you have and get fresh new eyes.

Simply invite your team to post on your group pin board that you’ve started, and watch a group collaboration occur right before your eyes; no meeting required. A group pin board is a great way to create and enhance any strategies for your business you have in mind.

Invitations To Other Group Boards

When you receive an invite to join a group pin board, this is a great way to promote your own business by lending your voice to others.

Group pin boards tend to have more followers so your business gets more exposure, leveraging the followers of other pinners too.

Likewise, when you invite them to your group pin board to help boost your own business, you can have fresh skills to help you improve in areas you are stumped on.

Be careful though that you don’t get carried away. Remember your plan, goals and strategy. Don’t start pin boards or accept invitations to boards that don’t relate to your plan.

Pinterest For Business Community

Perhaps the best thing about posting on a group pin board is the ability to branch out in various ways among your peers. With a group pin board, you can reach out to people on your team and beyond and build a structure that other media outlets don’t allow. Utilize Pinterest for business by posting to group pin boards to boost communication and in creating group pin boards that can benefit you in many ways.

Whether you just want to branch out or have an amazing concept that needs more heads than yours, posting on a group pin board with Pinterest is a great way to branch out and invite your team in to your business.

You get to choose who you invite, and when you are invited to post on someone else’s group pin board, you branch out and market yourself in a unique way.

In using Pinterest’s group pin boards to expand your business, you can find a media outlet that allows you to communicate in whole new ways.

Tuesday, 22 January 2013 07:28
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business_sales
I had been invited to attend a staff meeting of one of my clients last week…So…while I was sitting back in silence…which for those who know me will find that hard to believe…listening to the buzz around the topic under discussion…the Price of the stock.

One of the staff members was adamant, “no one is going to buy that…the Price is too high”!

It reminded me that over the years a number of studies have been completed on why people buy, and a recent article by Pete Godfrey and Dave McMahon, 2 of Australia’s top Marketing Gurus confirmed that the figures are still relevant in today’s market.

Fewer than 10% of people use price as one of their top three factors that determine their buying decisions.

So why do we business owners get hung up on price? Why do we pander to the 10% who shop on price? So why do we go all funny when it comes to mentioning the price of our stock?

Why do we impose our values on our customers?

What we think about the price is irrelevant!

Are you sabotaging sales because you think it’s too expensive? People will pay for what they want! I’ve seen shoes priced at $500.00, Handbags over $900, Cars at $185,000.00, Fridge Freezers $6000.00

I can hear you saying “That’s nonsense, I wouldn’t pay that price”

That’s the Point…You can not let your values on money get in the way of a sale.

I remember when we had our jewellery business…we thought we could only sell Diamond rings under $2000.00. We were imposing our money values on to our customers, and that is a BIG mistake in business. We were not only sabotaging the sale…we were sabotaging our Business.

When we realised that all we needed to do to succeed was to get out or our own way we started selling Diamond Rings priced at over $15,000.00!

Can you see how you or your staff may be inadvertently sabotage your business profits by imposing your money values on your customers?

Price is more important to the seller than they buyer. Your customers are looking for a solution, as long as they are getting value, price is not really an important issue.

Are mindsets sabotaging your business? Need a solution…call me or email me on.

Tuesday, 22 January 2013 05:01
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CNBC:

How’s this for irony: Early last year the Federal Trade Commission enacted the new so-called Business Opportunity Rule that covered such business pitches as operating vending machines, jewelry display racks or making extra cash by working at home.

Notably absent from the definition of business opportunity: multi-level marketers, whose products are sold through a network of distributors (many of whom work at home) that get paid by selling products as well as recruiting other distributors.

You might say this is the ultimate in dodging a bullet, considering that multi-level marketers were a key target of the rule when it was originally proposed in 2006.

Multi-level marketing is a big business, but one critic says it’s also a big lie.

The rule would have required a number of onerous disclosures, including prior legal action against the company and earnings claims. In response, Herbalife, one of the largest publicly traded mutli-level marketers—which sells weight loss shakes and nutritional products—warned in its 2006 10-K, “The proposed rule, if implemented in its original form, would negatively impact our U.S. business.”

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