Posts Tagged ‘Small Business’

Hot Networking – The National Business Experts!!!

TNBE

Where Networking Gets Hot!

I interviewed with Gia Heller and her networking group, at that time known as Arizona Women (AWN) & Arizona Men (AMN) Networking, more than 16 months ago.  I’ve watched it blossom in to something that is absolutely the best of the best; not just in Arizona, but quickly evolving in to The National Business Experts (TNBE) with groups starting in several states, rapidly becoming a nationwide force.

As exciting as that is, we are now helping women & men all over the world starting with “Empowering the Women of Pakistan” to stand and be counted among the independent business people of the world.  When a business woman in Pakistan looks on the Internet and finds Gia Heller and The National Business Experts, you know you’ve put your kite in to the right wind!

There are so many networking groups to choose from in every city.  We all need the feeling of connection and validation that comes from long-term real world relationships found only in being a part of something bigger than ourselves.

TNBE is the catalyst that has allowed those of us who are serious about our passions, like Becky Feola owner ofAssisted Living Advantage who helps people transition in to an assisted care home, Cynthia Knight, the East Phoenix Valley realty expert for “first time home buyers” and Christina Wagner, Marketing Director for KFNX 1100 Newstalk Radio , grow.

That is just a small sample of the varied group members & businesses that have learned how to shine through social media, like FacebookTwitter, and LinkedIn under the careful tutelage of Gia & her social media team of experts Social Media Masters, including Heather Dopson & Patti Knoles.  It is all a part of making yourself over from a small business, to one that people seek out and follow on a daily basis.

One of our newest members, Kimberley & Brett Noe of AngryBadger Studios w/Brett Noe Productions, researched all the networking options in the Phoenix area and landed with Gia & TNBE.  Listening to her and following all the instructions she gave them, they have been able to gain 35 new customers in less than 45 days.  That is absolutely incredible for a video/film company.  But they did listen – they did learn – they did grow.

You owe it to yourself & your business to check out at The National Business Experts!

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Financing Your Life

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So many people today don’t look forward to their retirement – with no way to make ends meet.  And, getting up tomorrow and heading in to their 9-5 job, knowing that as much as they’ve given to a company, over sometimes many years, that the company is no longer the same as it was and they are no longer valued the way they once were.

I know how that feels!  One day at the end of my shift, I was told my services of 23 years were no longer required. The terror and the pain and the hurt were so overwhelming that in numbness I stumbled out the door with my little box of “stuff”.

I had already started a small side business with a rapidly growing health & wellness company who had for 25 years supported the growth and value in the “little guy” (or gal in my case).  Only by working diligently and consistently and maintaining a steadfast message of caring for people am I able to show people I do care and that I’m not going away.  So many people, first the award-winning author, Marcia Fine, and Alan Pariser, a Corporate Director, and now Renee Preis see something in me that I don’t yet see – but I’m not giving up and I’m not going away!

It is so important to know and be aware of the pain in others.  Everyone is scared and don’t know if what they value today will even be there tomorrow.  I was at a business coaching class last night led by Renee Preis International for Savvy Business Entrepreneurs and had the distinct honor of meeting Bill True, screenwriter & speaker, and he shared with us about the Spirit of the Entrepreneur!  Did you realize that in 1900, 95% of the population in the U.S. were entrepreneurs?  From shopkeepers to salesmen to the blacksmith and the list goes on and on – this isn’t something new!

When the Great Depression hit our nation, people developed what was termed the “American Way”. And, we’ve striven to protect that “way” ever since – that you work 40 hours a week for the same company for 20-30-40 years and you retire from that company with a pension & Social Security.  Well – those days of the “American Way” are really over.  But do NOT fear!  Fear kills and destroys hope and so much more than that!  Don’t let it destroy you! FEAR = False Evidence Appearing Real!

Don’t be afraid of what tomorrow may bring – someone shared with me a few weeks ago that “When God shuts a door, He always opens a window” – just make sure you pull back that curtain and see the sunshine coming in through that window!

Too Much Debt? What NOT to Do!

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In a blog “The 5 Dumbest Things You Can Do if You Have Too Much Debt” the author tells us that “if you’re struggling with too much debt you’re not alone.”  We have all been overspending, overeating, over making-merry and the pit isn’t really the giant pit of financial dispair…Wrong – the party always has to end…

The author of the blog, however does give 5 great tips on strategies to avoid when you are faced with the struggle of getting out of the financial pit we’ve dug ourselves in to…

The 5 strategies you may want to avoid:

The first advice of experts in the field is to be sure you don’t make your situation worse by making common mistakes. In particular try to avoid:

1)  Paying only the minimum payment on your debt as this will results in the amount you owe actually growing and your problems will only become worse.

2)  Relying on friends and family as this can damage relationships with the most important people in your life.

3)  Unscrupulous credit counselors that demand cash upfront or high fees for help they promise, but don’t deliver.

4)  Using new high-interest loan to pay off lower interest rate loans – while it may be easier to just have one payment but it will actually increase the amount you have to pay back.

5)  Declaring bankruptcy – this can have permanent and severe consequences on your financial future, avoid if you can, especially when debt settlement may work for you…

One of the best financial advice guru’s out there, Mr. Dave Ramsey offers great advice to anyone going through financial struggles – or for those who see the “writing on the wall” – there are so many things available to people today that it only makes sense to get started on the right track now – before the crayon on the wall becomes permanent marker!

There are alternatives to declaring bankruptcy – do what you must do – if you lose your day-job then it is even more imperative that you find ways to provide a financial income.  There are many “out-there” MLM companies that promise the “world” but most of them, if not all of them are based on a pyramid where the first one in wins and the last one in loses.  There is a company though, that Mr. Ramsey recommends – and I’m delighted that out of all those companies, the one that came to me when I didn’t know I was looking for it, was that exact company.

I would love to have you check out my website at http://www.distinctinspirations.advancingwithus.com – the password is AdvancingWithUs.

When Someone Is Negative About Your Company…

How do you handle it when you’re standing there in front of someone who has a negative attitude about your company? You’ve done nothing but be supportive of this other person’s company and expect a little respect and open ears to hear what you have to say.

Do you run for cover? – Do you stand there and say OK – it’s not for you right now? – Do you get defensive about what you think is the greatest thing since sliced bread? – Do you …???

Yesterday I found myself doing all 3 of my responses above. I also wanted to figure out how to dig a hole into the pavement and just cover myself up!  When you try the 30 second elevator speech with someone who is not willing to listen or actually won’t permit you to sit and do a legitimate presentation, are you doing them a disservice by even trying to talk to them at that moment?

It’s so important to find a way to bring value to that person – But, how do you handle it when you really don’t know what that person values? No matter how well you think you know them. You think they care for people, but it still always comes down to time & money and what they want to accomplish.

So, we’re all in the same boat together – we want to be of value to each other. We want to give quality information about our own passions and loves and we have to see that it really may be “not right now” for people when you’re introducing them to new concepts and ideas.

Take the time to build relationships – we are back to the “who you know” mentality of the “good-ol-boys” (gals) groups!  Learn how what you have is of value to someone else and always realize that it takes real face-time (and not 100% Facebook) to build those relationships.

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Maybe, if you’re the sole proprietor of your own business, your new office is at a Starbucks and not at your laptop in your den/office!  Get out – Get to know people – Experience what is important to people and then show them how you can be of value to them and their goals.  We all have goals…so – when can we meet for coffee?

What is Attraction Marketing? What are the Laws of Attraction?

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We hear how the Law of Attraction Marketing is so great – but are there people out here in the world-wide-web who share this information without wanting your money? – I know – it’s all about the $ but…If we really do want to bring good to people and pay it forward, then we must provide value to people without expecting anything in return.

We must share what we know with others so that in helping others we are able to provide the absolute most value! We are all a part of something bigger than ourselves – we no longer have only ourselves to think about.

The Law of Attraction Marketing is very well laid out in a blog by Toni J Young – she indicates the following points for us to follow – you decide which ones are “Paying It Forward” and which ones are “For Profit Only”…I’ve made some decisions of my own – but I’ll keep those to myself!

1) Being yourselves and the value you share with others are factors that make you attractive to other aspiring entrepreneurs.

2) Lead Capture page is something that makes marketing another attractive prospect.

3) Autoresponder

4) Bio Page

5) The Funded proposal is another great tool for attraction marketing.

6) Primary business opportunity or product/ service

7) Affiliate Marketing

She suggests you ask a specific question for the home-based business prototype – “Would you like to learn how to use the internet to earn money from home”?

Attraction marketing & how it can explode your business

From the response to this question, you can then follow up with them with your information for your own home-based business.  When you are confident that your home-based business is really the best for anyone who will look at it…then you can have confidence in following up with that person for more contact information to really share your business.

But again – it really is about what you consider paying it forward.  I heard it today – If you provide people what they need to be successful – it will provide you with the success you seek. – We are more than the one, – we do this together!

There are so many ways to share what matters to us – and the trick to the Law of Attraction is finding those who value the same things.  There was a line on CSI (Crime Scene Investigators) just now on CBS – Great line – “If I’m helping people, I’m not hurting them” – what a great thought!

Don’t Let REASONS Kill Your Success

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I am posting this verbatim from my friend & mentor Renee Preis’s blog because I realized that this was me before I met her and so many fascinating people recently!

This is a mighty hot topic! I have come to this realization as I have watched so many of my clients struggle with moving forward, making changes and doing what they say they want to do. So many people are caught up in work, children, home and everyday life that they never get around to taking the important steps necessary to make their businesses and their lives successful and fulfilling.

We all make choices each day based on reasons. I want you to consider the reasons you have for making every decision. Are your reasons killing your success? Are you exhausted each day and unable to live clearly and consciously?

I know, for me, it’s really easy to look at the pile of laundry, the messy house or the dishes in the sink and easily gravitate to finishing those tasks. I understand that these things need to be done, but, in order to build your successful business, you must prioritize your time for the important daily actions of building a business.

I want you to take a moment and read some of the “Reasons” that stop so many entrepreneurs from moving forward and really living a conscious life of success. Maybe some of these are true for you. Start with really thinking about your choices and how you choose to spend your 24-hours each day. Simply acknowledge those choices. What different choices can you make that would change your outcomes….. choices which would re-direct your path and move you much closer to your goals and dreams?

Do any of these statements sound like you?

I don’t have any time….
I don’t know what to do….
I don’t have enough money….
I am overwhelmed….
I am not smart enough….
I am scared….
I don’t want to be criticized….
I don’t want to embarrass myself….
I am too busy–helping other people….
I am too tired…
My children have so many activities….
Maybe some of these reasons are stopping you right now. If that is the case, I want you to take a really close look at your life and your business and decide right now if this is the true path for your journey. Are you willing to take a stand for yourself and your success? Be committed to walk a different walk and talk a different talk today!

Don’t let one more day slip by without making the choices for your business that will ultimately result in long-term security, success and financial longevity.

“Would you like to learn more simple ways entrepreneurs can create more money, time, and freedom in their businesses? Sales Success Coach, Renee Preis is your resource to building the business of your dreams! Check-out her website at www.ReneePreis.com, for FREE articles, FREE resources and to sign-up for her FREE teleseminars.”

21 Shoestring Marketing Secrets That All Small Business Owners Need to Know

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In a posting today by Manta for Small Business Marketing from an article by ezinearticles.com – Expert – Jessica_M_Swanson, the advice was too good not to choose this format to pass it on, so here is the article in its entirety!

Unfortunately, many small business owners believe in the motto, “it takes money to make money” in the world of small business. The good news is that nothing could be further from the truth.

There are twenty-one shoestring marketing secrets that will give you the right frame of mind so that you can begin the process of building a thriving small business without spending a dime on marketing.

What every small business needs to know is that Shoestring Marketing is:

1. Low-cost. In today’s internet and social media age, there are now more low-cost marketing options than ever before. Not only is it possible, but absolutely doable to substantially grow your small business on a shoestring budget.

2. Commitment. If your marketing is going to eventually take hold, then you need to make a strong commitment to see it through until it sticks. Don’t give up in the early stages.

3. Patience. The fruits of your marketing labors don’t happen overnight. You need to plant your marketing seeds and tend to them regularly before your marketing garden blooms.

4. Branding. Your clients and customers need to have a clear picture in their minds about who you are and how your product or service can solve their most pressing problems

5. Consistency. Marketing is much like breathing. It’s the life of your small business and should be a regular part of your daily business activities.

6. Domination. If you want to explode your small business profits, then you must dominate a small part of your market. You need to become the “go-to” person in your particular niche.

7. Customer-focused. Your primary job is to clearly identify the problems that your prospects face and offer them the obvious solutions.

8. Identify your target market. It’s crucial that you know exactly who needs your product or service. Mass marketing doesn’t work in today’s business environment. Not only does it force you to water down your marketing message to please the masses, but it’s much too expensive for the shoestring marketer.

9. Elicits confidence and trust. Create experiences and situations that boost the level of confidence from your prospects. At the end of the day, people buy from those whom they like and trust.

10. Massive visibility. Since your prospects are exposed to over 4,000 ads every single day, you need to make sure that your small business is utilizing as many marketing platforms as possible. Your prospects should come across you in as many places as possible.

11. Repetition. Research suggests that prospects need to encounter your small business between seven and twelve times before they are ready to purchase. So, put yourself in front of your target market over and over again.

12. Ease of use. If your sales process, marketing materials or any other part of your business is too complicated, your customers will become confused. Confused customers simply don’t buy.

13. The WOW Factor. What are you doing to get noticed? How are you different than your competition? The fastest way to small business failure is to blend in with the crowd.

14. Quality. If your product and/or services aren’t top quality, then you won’t get repeat business. Your long-term success depends on satisfied customers who spread the word about your business and buy from you repeatedly.

15. Education. Position yourself as an expert and educate your prospects about why your small business can offer them the remedy to their most pressing pain points.

16. Relationships. Create real relationships with your prospects and customers. Answer their questions, solve their problems and help them if they’re stuck. Your prospects want to know that there’s a real person in front of your small business.

17. Increasing the lifetime value of customers. Over 20% of your existing customers will buy from you again (since they already know and trust you), so create additional ways for them to make purchases.

18. Automation. We’re living in a fast-tracked society that doesn’t work using old-fashioned marketing methods. So, embrace automation tools such as landing pages, email autoresponders, shopping carts, customer management software, etc.

19. Tracking your results. It’s essential to your overall survival that you have a clear understanding what works and what doesn’t work when it comes to your marketing. Use link tracking software to track your ROI (even if your only investment is your time).

20. Flexibility. Things change quickly and you must be willing to adapt. When the next “great” marketing platform emerges, be willing to jump on board and embrace it with excitement. If you are a flexible marketer, you’re always miles ahead of your competition.

21. Everything that you do. Marketing isn’t just about your advertising campaigns. Every single interaction that you have with your prospects promotes your small business. So, be careful how you answer the phone, respond to your emails and treat your customers because all of it makes an instant and lasting impression on them.

So, there you have it, twenty-one Shoestring Marketing strategies that will literally transform your small business from “just getting by” to “flourishing.” And, the best part of all is that you can do it all on a shoestring marketing budget.

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