Building Your Business Success – Part 2

11 01 2011

Last week we began a brief discussion of how to build your business success

Key to Business Success

for 2011.  We reviewed the concept of what Commitment means to your small business success and that you personally are responsible for your small business success.  This week we are going to finish the discussion on Building your Business Success for 2011.

Actually anybody who starts a small business can be successful.  The differentiating factor is, how LONG will your business be successful.  Again, it does partially go back to that commitment thing.  You may be successful when you first start your business, but you must remain committed to your business success.  True business success is also founded on solid business basics.  If you do not have a good grasp of business basics, it would be wise, even before starting your own business, to take a class or two, or take a seminar to learn and master the basics of business.  Without business basics, you may be successful for a little while, but your lack of basic business knowledge will most likely get you in more trouble and could ultimately contribute to your lack of long-term business success.

We must all continue practicing and reviewing and mastering the basics of business.  Without a well established / thought-out business foundation, everything you build, will most likely not stand the tests of time.  Keep up on your basics.  If you don’t know, be sure to ask a trusted source that will help you master your business foundation.  With a strong business foundation, all the work you do for your business will be successful.

Focus on Continuous Growth

Another key to building your business success (and not just making a New Year’s Resolution) is to focus on growing throughout the year, and ultimately growing for the next several years.  Do not just focus on growing your business for this month or the next.  You need to have a long-term view of where you want your business to go if you want your business to grow.  Focusing only on the month-to-month growth will not provide you with enough time to really refine and define what direction you want your business to grow in the years to come.  If you focus 2-, 3-, 5- and even 10-years in the future, then the short-term setbacks will not be so difficult to resolve.  By looking at the long-term, you can look past the immediate obstacles and focus on how to obtain that long-term goal.  By having long goals, you will find it is much easier to get past the little stuff.  If you only look from month-to-month, the problems that may crop up will most likely appear much larger than they actually are.

Lastly, it is never too late to make your business successful.  You may have had a really bad year in 2010, but that doesn’t mean you will have a bad year going forward.  Review your business plan, identify what went wrong and more importantly, look for WHY you did not follow your business plan or why you were not successful last year.  If you can identify WHY things didn’t occur (this is different from placing blame) then you can identify what you need to do to avoid that obstacle going forward.  Even if you had a decent year last year, it is not too late to revisit your business plan and adjust for any new plans or ideas you may have.  Again, be sure to keep the long-term view when reworking your plans.  When in doubt, enlist the assistance of other experts in  your field of business, to help review what you have and where you want to go.

Here is to your continued business success in the new year.

If you are looking for a second income opportunity, or are looking for some type of small, home based business to get involved with, we may have something that would interest you.  We offer a wide variety of business opportunities, from Pre-Paid Legal Services, to Stem Cell Nutritional Products, to Waterless Cleaning Products.  If we don’t have exactly what you are looking for, we may know where you can find it.  Good luck and let’s all see our businesses grow in 2011.

Until next week…

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More Tips on Growing your Business

17 11 2010

How many times have you reviewed your financial statements and wondered how you were going to increase sales this month?  If you were not increasing sales, you will have to worry about what other item you are going to have to cut back next month.  This is one of the main worries of the small business owner from the beginning of time.  You may have an incredible product to offer your customers, but if you don’t have the income or more precisely, PROFITABILITY, to support your product, your business will not be around for very long. This week we have more tips on growing your business.

This week we are going to review some more tips and suggestions to help boost your small business sales.  Not all of these tips are going to work for all of you, but perhaps some of these tips, if not directly helpful, will get your creative juices flowing and generate some seriously profitable ideas for your specific business venture.

As we have discussed in earlier blogs, your product,  service or opportunity (or all three perhaps) needs to not just fill your needs, but to fill the common need of your target customer.  Can you help people learn how to survive this current real estate downturn?  Do you have a new and innovative way to help clients sell their homes?

Have you looked at the prices you are posting for your particular products?  If you lower prices a bit and sell more products, would you ultimate make more income?  The key here is to advertise that you are lower prices again to assist your customers survive this economic downturn.  You don’t want them thinking you are lowering your prices to get rid of inventory.  You want your customers to believe that your new lower prices are a direct result of you wanting to help them deal with this economic strife.

Do you have a product that is more of a discretionary income item? Have sales gone down because people are not as willing to spend on discretionary items?  Can you rethink how to market this “luxury” item so that when your customer uses this item, they are given a brief “vacation” from the day-to-day stresses.  Using your item will give them a little bit of pleasure which in turn helps bolster their energy for the next round of reality.

Or, do you have a product or service that is a necessity, no matter what the economic climate has become?  If you don’t have this type of product, is there some item out there that might complement your current product offerings?   This item could help you to grow your business and develop a sustained income month over month going forward.

Lastly, don’t forget your customer.  Customer service and honest follow-up, especially in this economic environment, is the best business.  How many stores have you gone into where the clerks were cranky or just plain mean?  Did you leave that store feeling positive about your purchase?  If you found another store where the clerks were cheerful and friendly, don’t you think you would be more willing to spend additional time wandering around?  With  internet sales exploding, and on-line marketing at every turn, it is critical to differentiate yourself from your competition with your customer service.  People will be drawn to good customer service.  They will be more willing to spend their hard-earned cash at your business too because you made them feel better either about themselves or about their purchases.  These same customers will also be more receptive to purchasing higher priced products (i.e. “do you want fries with that?”).

It is truly amazing how much more people will purchase if you spend a little quality time with them.  Keep them appraised of any new promotions, send a very brief message monthly to let them know that all is well, periodically offer a customer loyalty gift or coupon.  Even if your customers do not redeem the coupons, they will be pleased that you thought of them, and will be more inclined to spend money with you instead of going to your competitor.

Hopefully some of these tips on growing your business sales can be implemented in your business.   What would be even better is that some of these tips inspired you to think of other ideas that grow your business.  Good luck and have a great business week.

If you are looking for a second income to supplement what you are currently doing, please feel free to explore our website.  We offer several home based business opportunities and are more than willing to discuss in detail any opportunity you are considering.  We offer Pre-Paid Legal Services, Stem Cell Nutrition and can assist you in starting up your own waterless detailing business.  You only have to ask.

Until next week…





3 Marketing Tips to help grow your business

26 10 2010

This week we are going to cover 3 marketing tips to help grow your business.  If you are like many small and home based businesses, you have most likely struggled with getting your product, services or ideas out to the general public.  There are many, many different marketing techniques to get your business advertised, but for many, money is the determining factor.  This week we are beginning a brief series on some marketing tips to help grow your business and not break your bank.

1 – To begin with, you need to have the right marketing message and present it at the right time for your customers.  You do not want to advertise the latest big cars when the gas prices are going through the roof.  The key is to be sure your business offers a solution or solutions to the problems consumers are facing today, not what they faced yesterday.  Don’t spend your hard-earned money on trying to build your image…yet.  You can build your image more effectively by word of as your business grows instead of hiring an advertising agency to promote you.

2 Test the market by trying some direct response marketing pieces.  Keep the cost of printing to a minimum, offer free reports, a free consultation, or some type of coupon to draw people to your business opportunity.  Try a few different direct response offers, and most importantly, keep track of which offers you made and how you sent them out.  Once you receive responses back, track which ones were your most successful and then work to improve upon those.  Do not spend time on ineffective direct response ideas.  If you didn’t get any response, toss that idea and move on to one that did generate interest.

3 – Once you receive responses from your marketing pieces, it is critical that you follow-up with your leads often and quickly.  Ask how they would prefer you to stay in touch with them.  Some may prefer a monthly newsletter, others may prefer a weekly e-mail or a phone call.   Tally the results with what your customers ultimately purchase.

Lastly, ask your customers how they found out about your business.  Was it through a friend, an ad they had seen in a local paper, or some other means of advertising that you have employed?  Do not jump from one advertising piece to another unless you have carefully documented the success and failures of what you have completed.  Very important – do not do major changes to your marketing pieces.  Do little changes and measure the results.  You will be amazed at how one small change can lead to large results.  If you change too many things at one time, you will have no idea which specific change generated the improved business.

Next week we will continue with additional marketing tips to help grow your business.

If you are looking for a second income or a home based business opportunity, perhaps we have something that would interest you.  We have several business opportunities ranging from Stem Cell nutrition, to Pre-Paid Legal Services, nutritional juice drinks to, to waterless vehicle detailing.  Please feel free to ask us about some of our business opportunities, we may have something that would work well for you.

Until next week…





Part 4 – How to Present Your Business Opportunity

16 01 2010

This is the last part of a 4 part series on presenting your business opportunity in a booth format at various local shows.  Last week we reviewed important aspects of presenting your business opportunity, even if that opportunity didn’t have tangible product for the people to take (Pre-Paid Legal for instance).  This last segment wraps up the basics of a booth presentation for business opportunities that also have products to pick up and purchase.

If you are marketing a business opportunity that has product that can be purchased retail, be sure to have the products on the table for the customers to look at.  Depending on the business, it may be wise to have products for sale on the table, so the customer can try the products before getting involved in the business opportunity.  If you offer a nutritional product, again, you may want to have some retail product on the table, otherwise, have the full line of products (preferably empty bottles) on the table so the customer can get an idea of what is offered.

When you are setting up the display on a booth, it is important to stand in front of your display and look at it as a customer would look at it.  You do not want a lot of clutter on the table, but you want to have enough items on the table to cause a potential customer to come over and look at what you are offering.  We have found the use of color to be helpful.  If your products are basically black and white, place something on the table that is of a bright color.  At some events, when displaying the waterless vehicle wash, we have a model car or a model motorcycle on the table with the products.  It is important that whatever you have on the table relates in some way to the opportunity or products that you are promoting. 

It is important to create an interesting and eye-catching display without being too “showy”.  You want enough on the table that the customer can see what is being offered, but you do not want to put EVERYTHING on the table.  You want the potential customer to become interested and begin asking questions.  Your display needs to be enough to draw people over to take a look, but not too much where they won’t ask questions about what you are offering.  This is a delicate balance you have to work, and it will change from show to show, depending on the demographics you are working to attract.

Once you get the customer to your table, your display must be interesting enough to engage them, and then inspire them to want to talk with you.  We have also found that when answering customer questions, they respond better if you are standing to talk with them, instead of you sitting in a lawn chair answering questions.  If their questions are very detailed, you may want to have a section in your booth to take a customer back, sit them down and review the business opportunity in detail.  An ideal addition to your booth could be either a DVD player or laptop so that you can have an opportunity presentation running.  This is not necessary, especially as you are just beginning, but if you attend some larger events, you may not have the time to repeat the opportunity to many people for hours on end.  Let the DVD do the work for you, have it set on a repeat loop so that the basic opportunity information is presented.  Then, if the customer is serious, you can then get personally involved.  If the customer is interested but does not have the time right now, be sure again to have a guest book or sign in sheet so that the customer can note their interest and you can contact them at a more opportune time. 

If you choose to market your business opportunity to people at various events, you will find that you will develop your own style for setting up your booth.  As you get used to setting up a booth, you will also discover that your display will change as the environment and demographics change.  You will find your style will be refined and as you refine your booth, you will discover more people coming over to see what you are offering.  If you have specific questions on setting up a booth, please feel free to contact us at hawgwash1@yahoo.com

If you are interested in getting involved in a business opportunity, please visit our website for ideas and opportunities.  We are always willing to help guide you to the opportunity that will best meet your needs.





Part 3 – How to Present Your Business Opportunity

9 01 2010

Last week we talked about some important components of what should be included in a booth presenting your business opportunity along with deciding on the type of show (demographics) that the booth should be set up.  We reviewed that a nice table cover of a complimentary color should be chosen.  We also briefly touched on having paperwork for the customer to review and to take home and to have business cards available for the customers to take.  Today we are going to continue reviewing important items for a booth. 

You should have some type of banner promoting your business opportunity for either putting along the bottom of your table (a table skirt) or along the back of your display.  You are competing with many others for your potential customer’s attention.  People walking through a show will not usually just stop by a table to read what is on it unless there is something there that piques their curiosity.  You do not need to spend a lot of money on a banner, but have something that will inspire people to stop by and see what you are offering.  Something bright and easy to read will help draw people to your booth.

If your business opportunity is of a non-tangible nature (for instance Pre-Paid Legal), be sure to have something for your customers to pick up and take home.  Also, you may want to have a sign-up sheet or guest book on the table so that you can follow-up with the customer a few days after the event took place.  If you are offering something like the Pre-Paid Legal opportunity, there are many marketing materials that they have, you really should have several types of marketing material on your table so that your display would be effective for customers.  You should include some magazines covering the business opportunity and also have CD’s talking about the opportunity.  In your discussions with the customer, find out if they are more comfortable reading a magazine or watching a CD before you hand them the marketing material.  Some people are more responsive listening to a CD rather than reading a magazine. 

Be sure to have enough marketing materials to hand out.  Do not be stingy with the materials, customers will remember that you were not entirely willing to part with the information.  On every piece of paper that you hand out, it is critical that you have your contact information prominently displayed.  You want the customer to easily find your information when they are done reviewing the materials.   You do not want to hand out some of your magazines to everyone, just the people who are genuinely interested, but at the same time, you should not pre-judge the people you are talking to.  Someone who you think would not be interested in your business opportunity may be the best person for the opportunity.  That is why it is still very important to talk to people before shoving paper in their hands.  It is critical to make sure the potential business associate knows what you are doing and the marketing materials you are using are easily duplicatable.  You do not want to make them feel like it is very difficult to present a business opportunity at a show.

By building a rapport or relationship with them before they leave your booth, they will remember you more clearly when reviewing the materials your provided.  Also, by talking with the potential customer before handing them paperwork or CD’s you are able to better determine which item would be more effective for them. 

Next week we will finish the discussion regarding presenting your Business Opportunity in a booth at shows.





Part 2 – How to Present Your Business Opportunity

3 01 2010

Two weeks ago we reviewed several methods of presenting your business opportunity.  Once you have tapped your warm market (family, friends and co-workers) you need to expand into the cool and even cold markets.  If you want to work a cold market, there are several ways to access it.  One is by purchasing either a phone or e-mail list and working that.  Another way is by setting up a booth at a local event.  Today we are going to cover some critical elements that are needed for an effective booth at a local event.

If you want to set up a booth to introduce complete strangers to your business opportunity, you first need to identify the demographics you are interested in.  This is important because if you set up a booth in the wrong place, you will find it to be a colossal waste of time.  Hawgwash, LLC offers more high-end business opportunities.  The vehicle care products are not on the same level as the basic washes and waxes you find at Wal-Mart.  The products we offer with UltraLuster are for the discerning customer, therefore, it would not be effective for us to present our UltraLuster business opportunity at the types of swap meets that look a lot like a communal garage sale. 

If we were to set up a booth at a swap meet, it would be at either a high-end car swap meet (where collectors get together for parts) or a motorcycle swap meet.  General swap meets would not be effective for our products.  So, you need to review where your target market is and then find an appropriate event to display your business opportunity.

Some critical parts of your display would be a table on which to hold any paperwork and displays.  This table should have a nice table cover on it, to present a business opportunity, you want your table to start off pleasing to the eye.  Choose a table-cloth or cover that is in complementary colors to the items you have in your display.  When in doubt, choose neutral colors for your table cover.  We choose to make a table cover (which is really simple) where the top of the cover is in vinyl (for all the people who may place wet drinks or spill their drinks) and the sides are made up of a durable cloth.   For beginning displays, start with a basic table-cloth, but do not choose white unless you are going to be indoors.  White will get dirty in a heartbeat when you are outside, and your table will start to look very dingy very quickly.

Once you have decided on a table cover and color, then you need to be sure you have appropriate paperwork and business cards to present to customers.  Depending on the business opportunity you are presenting, you may need to have a table flip-chart out so your potential customer can either flip through by themselves or you can do a quick presentation for them using the table-top flip chart.  You should also have a brochure about the business opportunity that the customer can take away and review in the comfort of their home.   Be sure that any piece of paper or product the customer takes from your table has your contact information on it.   If you are waiting for a business card order, but your show occurs before your cards come in, go to your computer and print up some basic business cards that contain the information on the business opportunity along with your contact information.  Always be sure to have enough paperwork for people to pick up.  If anyone is interested in your business opportunity but they don’t want to get involved now, you want them to walk away with your contact information and that of the opportunity.  It would be ideal if you could also get from the potential customer their contact information so you can follow-up with them in the near future.

Next week we will continue the discussion of what should be included for an effective Business Opportunity booth at a show.





Small Business Plan within Pre-Paid Legal

6 12 2009

First I would like to apologize for the week I missed in posting.  I was ill and had no energy in which to post a blog.  As it was, if I did manage to type anything, after review it was rambling and did not provide useful information.  I am now feeling more human, and will build my list of articles in advance, so if I do get sick again, there will be a log of articles scheduled for posting.

As promised two weeks ago, today we are going to briefly review the Small Business Plan within the Pre-Paid Legal Services Plan.  I had mentioned the benefits of Pre-Paid Legal – they have preventative legal services (consultation & advice, letters & phone calls, contract & document review and will preparation), Motor Vehicle Legal Services, Trail Defense Services and IRS Audit Legal Services.  How nice would it be if you could extend those legal services to your small business, or home based business?  That is what the Small Business Plan does for members.

There are three types of Small Business Plans available to members in most states (some states have restrictions, please contact me if you have specific questions).  There is the Business Plan which is for the for profit business that is not publicly traded and has less than 100 employees.  If you have 3 or fewer employees, there is a plan called the Home Based Business Rider, and there is also a plan for a business that has less than 9 employees (Legal Plan for Self Employed). 

Within all of these plans, you are able to have legal telephone consultation regarding your small business, you can have legal correspondence (depending on the plan you can have anywhere from 3-unlimited letters per month written on your behalf), you get a contract review for at least 3 contracts or documents per month, you get at least 3 debt collection letters written on your behalf a month, you also qualify for business Trial Defense, IRS Audit Protection on your business and for non-covered services, 25% discount for other services.

What I find extremely helpful with the Small Business plan is the ability to access a site called GoSmallBiz.  This is an awesome site that provides a ton of information for the Small Business Owner.   In this site you have access to information on how to start a business, a template to write a business plan, there is tax and accounting information available at the click of the mouse, and all kinds of legal, HR, and marketing information available.  If you can’t find the topic you have a question on, you can pose the question and expect a response within the next business day. 

This website is an absolute awesome resource for anyone in business, it is like having various specialty departments available to you without having to hire the experts.   It is great to have this kind of information available 24/7 so you may not lose as much sleep over an issue.  This site has saved my rear on several occasions, I found out what I should and should not do before stepping into the fray.  I have always considered this essentially “legal insurance”.  You carry medical insurance for the unfortunate events that may occur medically, why not carry “legal insurance” for events that will definitely occur legally. 

Once you start using this benefit, you will wonder how you ever managed your business without it.  If you would like more information on this and other Pre-Paid Legal Services, please go to www.hawgwash.us.  Otherwise, please feel free to contact me at hawgwash1@yahoo.com

Until next week…