4 Basic Business Goals

1 02 2011

Now that we have all survived the first month of the new year, it is time to reflect upon what we have already accomplished versus what we SAID we were going to accomplish the beginning of this new year.  Usually the first month of a new year ends up getting spent closing the financial books of your personal life and business (perhaps…) and just reviewing how successful you were or were not in the prior year.

The second month of the new year is now really when we focus on moving forward and building/developing our life and business.  Usually, prior to the new year, we make resolutions and budgets.  We promise that this new year will bring new ideas, new success and new growth.  By month 2 or 3 of the new year we can really take a hard look at where we are and whether or not we are going to come close to our end-of-year expectations.  Throughout all of this looking back and looking forward, if we do not rely on some basic life principles, we can pretty much write any meaningful success off.  If we do not utilize these 4 Basic Business Goals, perhaps we should not be in business.

We have talked in prior blogs about various types of Business Success and Goal setting.  This week we are going to review 4 Basic Business Goals and identify how these very basic goals can help you to develop and grow your business and even your personal life.

The first Basic Business goal is to do what is right, despite the consequences.  For business and even for your personal success, doing the right thing is not always easy or painless  (usually it is NEVER painless).   Doing the “right” thing for a customer may be in refunding their money when you really don’t want to.  You may feel that the customer’s reason for the return was off-base, but if you want to retain that customer for future business, if you have a return policy, you must adhere to the policy.  If you turned the tables, and you were in the customer’s place, how would you feel if the merchant did not wish to refund your money?  By doing what is right, not necessarily what you would prefer your customer should be satisfied and tell others that you did take the high-road.

Doing the “right” thing is many times like taking the road less traveled.  How frustrated have you been with customer service provided to you?  More businesses have lost the whole concept of customer service, actually many new businesses have lost the concept of treating the customer like a human being.  If you get back to basics (the Golden Rule) and treat your customers the way you would like to be treated, you will find your business growing.

As a business person you may find that you become jaded to new ideas, new concepts and new ways of doing business.  Do not lose your desire to learn or your sense of wonder at trying new things.   Keep your eyes open to new ideas and processes.  There may be a million ways to conduct business, and you do NOT know all the ways to be successful.  Always remain open to new concepts, one of them may be just the idea you didn’t know you were looking for.

As usual, be sure to Over Deliver and Under Promise to your customers.  No matter how much your customer WANTS you to perform a certian task within a certain time frame, if you KNOW you can’t produce (refer to our ) do not promise what you cannot deliver on.  Ultimately your customer will appreciate your honesty and you will have done the ‘right’ thing for your customers.  Customers are always happy when you achieve the promise of completing a task within the defined amount of time.  What customers really appreciate is when you not only do what you said you would do, but you go a little beyond what they expected and you give them more than what they asked for (but you are still providing for them what they really wanted).

The 4th Basic Business Goal is to love what you do.

“The more you love what you are doing, the more successful it will be for you.” – Jerry Gillies

If you do not love what you are doing, then you should not be doing it.  Life is too short to do something you don’t like to do.  If you love what you do, then you will never work a day in your life.

These 4 Basic Business Goals will not only help you to grow your business, but when applied to personal life, can help you to grow and improve your personal relationships also.

If you are looking for an additional income opportunity, you may want to review what we have to offer on our website.

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 Tips for Increasing Your Online Sales

5 10 2010

Many businesses now have an on-line aspect to their sales, but you may have discovered that it is very difficult to generate online sales.  Looking around the Internet today is like walking into a library and having no idea what you are looking for.  Tonight we are going to review 3 tips for increasing your online sales.

Even if you know what you are looking for, it could take you literally days to find what you want at the price you want.  Many online businesses have to compete with other businesses that offer the same or similar products.  These other competitors may be located in your state, or may be located over seas.  The question is how to attract more customers to your particular site without spending too much money.  We are going to cover 3 tips for increasing your sales online without spending mountains of money.

The first tip is to find the questions that customers are asking and are not being answered by your competition.  This may sound daunting at first, but if you know your product and know your industry, you should also know what questions your customers have regarding your particular products and services.  If you are not sure what questions may be asked regarding your industry, try going to Yahoo Answers and type in your keywords.  Study the results carefully and see if there is a particular trend in what questions are asked.  This will tell you what is not being answered.  Another place to look for questions that don’t seem to be well answered is in forums.  Watch what is being said and how many times similar questions are being asked.  A last place to look for unanswered questions is to your customers.  Ask them if they have unanswered questions regarding your products and services.

You may (and should) have the answers to the unanswered questions you discovered above.  The case may be that others in your industry do not want to answer the particular questions.  The answers may be embarrassing, or, in your competition’s mind, may give away trade secrets.  The second key tip  is for you to accurately answer the unanswered questions and be sure that your customers and potential customers can easily find these answers.  You may want to format the answers to the questions as a blog post.  Do not post all the answers at one time, you want to have your audience come back to visit your site frequently.   As you post answers to various questions, continue looking for new questions so you can keep your blog fresh.

The third tip to increase your online sales is to be sure that you have your answers posted in more than one location.  Some customers may not like to read blogs, so perhaps you would want to have a FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) page on your website that customers can conveniently access.  Also, for the blog articles you have written that answer the various questions, consider submitting those articles to as many RSS feeds as possible.  Bookmark your blog posts using Digg, Technorati and De i cious.   Submit your articles to top websites, ezines and article directories so you get a wider viewing audience.   Also be sure to include links to your articles in the various social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, Linked In and Myspace.

By implementing these 3 tips (noting unanswered questions, answering those same questions and then by posting those answers all around the Internet), you will find that more people will come to your site and ultimately you will increase your online sales.  People are hungry for answers to questions, but more importantly they are hungry for accurate answers to their questions.  If you are able to position your business and website as a ‘go-to’ source of information, you will develop more trust with your online customers and ultimately increase your online sales.  Good luck and enjoy your search for the unanswered questions.

If you are looking for an additional income stream, check out our website.  We may have a home-based business opportunity that suits your needs.  The opportunities noted on our website all offer great compensation plans and have a low cost of entry.  Please feel free to e-mail us with any questions you may have.

Until next week…





Failure to Plan

31 08 2010

As the economy continues to decline and more people find themselves out of a regular job, many people look to alternative methods for earning an income.  Many great business opportunities are born in hard economic times, but on the flip side, there are many people out there who would take advantage of desperate people looking to earn a living.  If you have the drive and ambition, now is a great time to get into your own home based business, but one of the largest problems many of these new entrepreneurs face is a failure to plan.

Just because you find this fantastic business opportunity and someone tells you that you can earn millions at it does not mean you do not plan your new business venture.  Do not allow anyone to tell you that planning is not necessary, that all you have to do is to follow their example.  Someone, at some point in time made a plan for that particular business opportunity and you should make a plan for yours also.  In prior posts we talked at length about developing and implementing your business plan, and that is absolutely critical, even if you are entering a business opportunity that others have succeeded in.  If you did create a business plan, in order to be truly successful, you must follow that plan. Why did you go through the exercise of creating a business plan, doing all that strategic planning, if you had no intention of following what you developed?

There are several reasons why some business opportunities may never come to fruition, one, which seems to be a favorite of many who start a home-based business, is taking a dart-board approach to generating sales.  Many people who start home based business opportunities will not have a specific plan on how to generate the sales in order to obtain the income they desire.  They will try one approach, try another, and continue trying without any specific rhyme or reason to why they tried and discarded the plans.  This will not only kill any enthusiasm you may have, but it will also undermine your belief that the business opportunity you entered into was a sound idea.  Heck, they may not even have identified a specific sales amount to achieve.   If you begin one sales approach, make sure it was one that you have outlined in your business plan, and then, if it is not productive, review why it did not produce the results you desired and identify possible adjustments to the plan before discarding it and starting on another plan.

When you built your business plan, you should have identified several programs for generating sales.  Those programs you identified should have had specific and measurable goals so that once implemented, you could identify where the failures occurred.  Jumping from one plan to another in a willy-nilly fashion will not allow you to build sales momentum, nor will it be repeatable for any other people you would want involved in the sales process.  If you quickly start and discard sales plans without any specific road-map, you are doing both yourself and your customer a major disservice.

By not planning your sales process, you will have no idea why certain ideas did or didn’t work.  Without measurable and strategic goals, you will never know if the sales process was successful.  For example, I had worked for a company that believed their customers were dissatisfied with a particular segment of the sales process.  There was no real basis for this belief other than a few stray comments and a “gut feeling”.  Before we changed the sales process, we implemented some strategic measurements and sent out a set of standardized questions to our existing customer base.  What we discovered is that the initial process was not broken, but another step along the sales plan was definitely not working properly.

If we had immediately changed what we believed to be wrong, just based on a gut instinct, we would have further alienated our customer base and not corrected the true sales problem.  The key is to plan your process, make the process measurable, identify benchmarks, and most importantly follow and review the plan regularly.  A failure to plan on your part could very easily put your whole business in jeopardy.

Next week we will continue this discussion and review some other pitfalls in strategic planning.

If you are looking for a business opportunity to provide you a second or additional income, please feel free to check out our website.  We may have an opportunity that meets your needs.  If you have questions regarding building your business plan, please feel free to contact me, I am more than willing to assist and provide some alternate solutions.

Until next week…





Balancing time with home based business

9 08 2010

Time is something that once wasted can never be recovered.  It is a fact of life.  No matter how hard you wish, there will not be more than 24 hours (and a few minutes) in a day.  Therefore, when you start your own home based business, time is a huge factor in what you do and when you do it.  Your passion for your new business venture will help you build and grow your new home based business, but if you do not take time out for other issues, you will probably not be completely successful.

Most people will start a home based business while working a current job (did you know that J.O.B also means Just Over Broke?).  This way there is no sudden drop in income flow, and you have the financial backing (the bank of YOU) to get the home based business up and running.  The problem is, your personal life can suffer, especially if you are already working long hours at the regular J.O.B..  Then you ask yourself, when do you carve out the time to get your personal business going?  Then, when do you personally get some version of rest?  As you are probably aware, when you are working for someone else, you are trading your valuable time for their money.  Not always a good trade, but it does usually get the bills paid.   More people are looking to ways of earning a second income stream now.  With multiple streams of income, you will stand a better chance of success, especially if your main J.O.B. is terminated.

The key is to find ways to balance your time so that you do not seriously neglect your family and personal life while starting up your home based business.  You also do not want to impact your current job and have that terminate too early.   It is very difficult to balance your already precious time, but if you want to be financially free, you have to make some sacrifices.  This article will hopefully provide some suggestions on how to mitigate those sacrifices so they don’t hurt those around you too much.

Many of us, when we start-up our own home based businesses will have a tendency to want to work 7 days a week, all hours of the day and night.  This will not do you, your family or your current job any good at all.  One helpful idea can be to include your whole family in your new business venture. It is a home-based business, right?, so include everyone if it is feasible.  If your family is also somewhat invested in what they are doing, your business can really sprout wings and fly.  If you have young children, having them help in some aspect of the business process can help them to learn good work ethics and the value of money.

Be sure to also take at least one day off for yourself.  No matter how much your new business idea may be burning a hole in your mind, you need to give both your mind and your body a rest.  Get away from your home based business venture for at least a day.  By getting away from it, you will return to it with a clearer perspective and possibly discover on opportunity or solution to a problem you had not seen before.   Taking that day off is like taking a mental health day.  Every human body needs to take a break.  Do something fun with the family, or just go out and do something that you really, really enjoy.

When you are balancing your regular J.O.B. with your new business, set a schedule for yourself.  You have a schedule set for your job, so why not do the same thing for your home business?  This way, when you are clear about what needs to be done, you will reduce the tendency to do too much in one day, and you will reduce the chance of burn-out.  As you set the schedule, be sure your priorities are well-defined.  Remember there will always be another crisis to solve.

If you are looking for second income opportunities, please check out our website.  We may have something that will work well with your current lifestyle.   We will always encourage questions and suggestions.

Until next week…





Will Branding Grow Your Business?

26 07 2010

KFC

We have talked before about how to grow your business.  Obviously, you will follow a business plan to help get your business off the ground, the business plan will also provide a basic path for you to follow as your business grows.  But  a big question is, will branding grow your business?

Let’s first go into what, exactly, is Branding?  We are not talking about marking livestock or people, but we are referring to branding as a marketing term.  When you reach for a tissue, how many people want a Kleenex?  If you want to tape something together, do you ask for Scotch Tape?  What about getting a soda, don’t you ask for a Coke or Pepsi if you are wanting a cola type soda?  That is the branding we are discussing tonight. 

Branding is the assigning of a name, slogan, symbol to a product or service.  It has evolved into including the identity of the company, or the personality of the business to the product.  As we are mainly small entrepreneurs, branding anything we may have will most likely take much more capital investment than we will see in our near future.  So, it begs the question, is it really important to have whatever we are offering to the public (be it product or service) branded? 

We have all seen how a familiar product brand will outsell its competition, even the generic brand.  You see people tending towards the familiar brands, even if the other labeled products are exactly the same and less expensive.  Consumers will tend towards the familiar over something new and even less expensive.  If you think about branding though, isn’t a brand just a name or a concept that we have become familiar with?  It is not necessarily all the marketing that we have been exposed to, granted the marketing helps, but that is not all.  If you try a particular brand-named product and have a good experience, then you will let others know about the good experience.  The reverse is true too.

So, really the key to branding on the small business level, is to let people become familiar with your product and / or service.  The more familiar they are with what you have to offer, compared to similar items others are offering, the higher the likelihood that your product / service will outsell the competition.  Even if you have a product or service that is not common, if you have developed familiarity with your consumer base, people will be more willing to purchase from you than from any competitor who may crop up in the future. 

Part of what branding would be for small business is the concept of you branding your company, not necessarily the specific products you are offering.  It is stated this way, because as stated in earlier blogs, as the business climate changes, your product line may be modified to meet the new needs of your customers.  What you should probably focus on, is your own unique method of presenting the products and services.  You should be offering with your product or service, something that no one else is offering.  You may want to emphasise your business integrity, or perhaps that the product you are selling is the first in its field.  You want to offer to the customer something they have been looking for, and have not been able to locate in any of the competition.  Once you discover that aspect, you want to be sure your customers know that you offer something nobody else offers. 

Once your customers discover you are offering what they have been looking for, your “branding” will be advertised through them.   You want to create the thought in your customer’s mind that you and your offerings are unique and what the customer wants.  They in turn will tell their friends and your business will grow.  You will have discovered the small business version of branding to grow your business

If you are interested in starting up your own small business, please feel free to check out our website, www.hawgwash.net.  We offer several types of small business opportunities for those looking for a second income. 

Until next week…





What is Recession Proof Income?

3 05 2010
Bills, Bills, Bills

Recession Proof Your Income

How many times have you heard the phrase, “recession proof your income“?  What do you need to do in order to “recession proof” your income?  Why do you need to do that, and lastly, how can you “recession proof” your income?  This week we will cover what it means to recession proof your income and the hows and whys to accomplish just that.

Let’s first start with the question, what is recession proofing your income?   In a recession, your income does not go as far as it used to.  In order to recession proof your income, you need to find a way to make your money worth more, so that you can purchase at least what you used to be able to purchase.  In today’s economy, the money you earn just doesn’t seem to go far enough anymore.  You may now have to choose between using the car for several errands or just staying home and making do because the cost of gas for the car is more than what you have this week.  You may also have to choose between going to a doctor for health reasons or being able to purchase groceries for your family. 

In a nutshell, in order to recession proof your income, you need to have multiple income streams.  One of the most obvious ways to have more money is to get a second job.  In today’s economy, that can be a difficult thing to do, there are more people looking for jobs than there are jobs to work.  Another problem is obviously time.  If you are working more than a 40 hour work week in your main job, where are you going to find the time to get a second, or third job?  If you get that additional job, you lose that precious time with your family. 

Working a second or third job is not a good use of your resources.  You need to find something to leverage the income you currently have and make it work for you, not you working for your money.   If you have enough discretionary income, you may want to consider investing it in stocks and bonds (which can be risky), or investing in other business opportunities (being a partner in another company).  The object here is to not spend more time away from your family.  If you do not have a lot of discretionary income, you may want to look into business opportunities that offer “passive income“.

Passive income is income that you earn without additional hours spent by you working.  Passive income is money coming in that you do not have to lift a finger to earn, except to put it in the bank, or can be defined as an income received on a regular basis, with little effort required to maintain it.  The key is to find a business opportunity that fits with your lifestyle that will generate passive income and help you to recession proof your income.  One way to begin earning passive income is to get involved in some form of direct selling plan. 

Direct selling works best when time are bad because the number of sales representatives increase in the field.  There tends to be high gross margins, low-cost of entry (you don’t have to spend a lot of money to get started), a very divers amount of products and services to get involved in and huge room for growth.  According to a report from MSNBC Mad Money, direct sales is a recession proof industry.  In the attached video, Jim Cramer talks about why direct sales is recession proof.  He states that the top 15 direct sales companies comprise approximately half of the direct sales market.  He also goes on to state that many direct sales companies have access to the Global Market, not just the continental United States.  Access to a global market without having to spend a lot of your own hard-earned money is a very great way to begin earning additional income without going out to a second or third job.

Hawgwash, LLC offers several types of business opportunities that can earn you the additional income you are looking for.   One of our newest, and strongest opportunities today is in STEMTech.  STEMTech offers nutritional products that enhance the natural release of adult stem cells into your own body.  Their flagship product, StemEnhance, provides the natural stem cell nutrition for your body to release approximately 25% of  it’s own adult stem cells from your own bone marrow into your blood stream.  By having more of your own adult stem cells circulating in your body, those stem cells will assist your body to rejuvenate and repair itself.  The other advantage of the company STEMTech is that they are already international.  You do not need to purchase the rights to sell these nutritional products in other countries.  Currently STEMTech is sold in 14 countries and is continuing to work on opening additional markets. 

If you would like more information on STEMTech and the business opportunities they have to offer, you can view the video, or, you can e-mail us at hawgwash1@yahoo.com.  If you have questions about other income opportunities that we have to offer, please feel free to contact us through hawgwash1@yahoo.com

Until next week…