This Blog has been providing a Forum where Australian Small Business Owners can exchange Ideas old & new and get Advice from experts in Australia on how to Improve their Businesses through better Business Management, Planning & Strategy, Business Systems and Marketing Strategy and Systems for over 10 years.
We’ve all heard the saying “A picture tells a thousand words”. Well, a simple twist on that could be “A third party testimonial tells more about you than you could ever say about yourself – and with more credibility!”
Testimonials from satisfied clients must be an integral part of your sales kit. They present an independent view from a third party, and in many cases, can be the difference between getting the business or not.
If you currently have a conversion rate of two sales for every ten presentations, and a testimonial increases that to three sales for every ten presentations, then you’ve just increased your business by 50% – and yet most sales presentations don’t have this simple, yet powerful, tool included. More...
If you have a website, you will no doubt be contacted daily by someone who will promise they will put you at the top of Google with their Search Engine Optimisation services. In fact if I don’t receive several offers a day, I think my email must have stopped working! But does SEO still work?
Because it wants to make more money, Google has decided to make it harder for your website to get a free ride in the organic search listings when you are trying to attract new business, to make you spend your money on Adwords. (Fancy a business wanting to reduce freeloaders and make more money!) So Google has increased the number of ads it puts on a page and made them a little more difficult to distinguish from organic searches while cracking down on some SEO techniques that used to work.
There are stereotypes in every sector that really annoy people in their marketplace. For tradies, it’s not turning up on time, for telco’s it’s their call centre ‘customer service’ and for used car dealers it’s high pressure salespeople. Some of these stereotypes may be unfair to the majority of businesses in the sector, but it also creates an opportunity.
One ‘popular’ sector everyone likes to bash is the banks. Even though this is a US ad, it seems the proliferation of fees with banks is universal.
For most businesses there is a giant in their industry. A business who is a household name. They dominate your sector, although they are not pursuing your customers because they are the big end of town.
They don’t even know you exist. And you ignore them because their clients are not yours.
Lets say you have a motor mechanics business with half a dozen staff. You don’t see yourself in competition with the BMW service department in the next suburb. Your competition is a guy about the same size as you a few blocks away. So what you do, is check out what he is doing.
But, if you were able to get a million dollars of marketing advice, do you think you could blow him away? You can’t afford the fees? What if you could get that advice for nothing? More...
One of the great things about online advertising today is the ability to finely target your ads so that they appear on sites which contain keywords relevant to your business and which attract people who fit the profile of your best buyers.
An example of this is that websites with articles on Formula One racing might be targeted by Porsche and Ferrari. Another example is a website with articles on exotic travel destinations would attract airline advertising. The companies in question choose keywords that might appear in website content that their potential customers choose to read.
If advertising is to work, you must first grab the attention of your buyers. There is so much noise, that people just tune out, but every so often, there comes along an event that provides a wave upon which you can launch your product or brand.
The May election provided one such opportunity, when Clive Palmer spent around $60m and didn’t secure a single seat.
While running a successful business is not easy, there are rules that you can follow that will almost certainly increase your success. And there are also sins that will guarantee your failure.
Here are the Seven Deadly Sins of Business.
If you are not explicit in what you want to achieve for your business, you are highly unlikely to be successful. Setting out clear goals for your business allows you to develop strategies to achieve your goals and to create plans which will ultimately drive your business to success. Without goals, strategies and plans, you are just depending on luck- and how has that worked for you so far?
The biggest risk for most businesses is not whether they will fail. Most won’t. The biggest risk is that they will stay small. Whether by design or not. Recent ABS data show that 98% of micro-businesses stay that way. That is, they are Micro-Stayers.
There are a number of reasons that businesses become Micro-Stayers. It could be a lifestyle choice. Work-Life balance is becoming more and more important to many people. It may be because they don’t have the knowledge to take their business to the next level, and become frustrated Micro-Stayers. Or they may have progressed from frustrated to resigned Micro-Stayers and have adjusted lifestyle and ambition in recognition of this.
Businesses that involuntarily stay small, the Micro-Stayers, do so for five key reasons.
I was recently discussing with a business owner the future of his business which has an innovative product but low sales. He had invested over a million dollars in the business developing this product, but had spent nothing on marketing. The owner told me how he believed that their product was superior to others on the market, but because of their size, other businesses were not taking them seriously.