Essential Tools for Good Business Marketing

If you are ready and prepared with a good set of marketing tools and essentials, you will naturally succeed in attracting new clients and customers and bringing in and retaining new business. If you spend a little time in getting your marketing toolkit sorted and in place, you will find it all happens a lot more organically. Here are a few things that we think every business should have ready to hand.

A budget and a plan

Having a solid marketing plan written down will support you as you grow your business from strength to strength. It does not need to be pages and pages long, but it does need to be clear, concise and lay out what you intend to achieve, how you expect to do it and the date by which you want to meet particular goals. It is also essential that you share your plan and your vision with your team, if you have one, so that you are, quite literally, all working from the same page. If you aren’t confident with this, talk to a professional marketing company such as www.vistacomm.com/. You also need to make sure you have a realistic budget to work from. There is little point in writing down a list of pie in the sky ideas and dreams if your budget is small and inflexible. Remember, marketing is one of, if not the most, critical parts of your business, and the budget for it should reflect this.

Quality Marketing Materials

Business cards. Letterheads and sales letters. Brochures and leaflets. Websites and blogs. Uniforms. Office decor and stationery. Car decals. All of these need to be top quality and professional and convey the values and offerings of your business. Branding should be consistent across them, and available all of the time – you never know when you are going to come across an excellent networking opportunity!

An elevator pitch

Throughout your business life, you will be asked time and time again ‘What do you do?’. Spending half an hour going into great lengths about your business is likely to bore the person who has asked. Instead, work on your elevator pitch. If you were stuck in an elevator with this person, for a minute or less, what would you tell them? Make it fun, make it memorable and make it interesting.

A good website

In our digital world, your website is probably the first thing people are going to look for, so it is critical that you give it the attention that it deserves. Use it as a tool to bring in new customers, but also to bring them back week after week, month after month, and remind them why they chose you in the first place to do business with. For many customers, it will be their first point of contact with you so keep it sharp and respond to inquiries and technical issues as quickly as you can. Websites can be scary, particular if you have no experience, but you will find that it will be one of the most important tools for your business.

Listen to my Guest Appearance on the Regular Christian Podcast

Listen to my guest appearance on The Regular Christian podcast and be sure to subscribe so you can hear future episodes.

We used to sing all of these songs in the church like “I’m a Soldier in the Army of the Lord” and “I’m on the Battlefield”. In today’s age, we’ve fallen out of formation, and into disunity. While we know that God has a purpose over each of lives, it seems that no one wants to work together. In this world today– as Tupac said– it’s all eyes on me.

————————–

Scriptures from the podcast:

  • Ephesians 4:11-13
  • Psalm 68:6
  • Colossians 3:5-14
  • Jeremiah 31:3

Spiritual Gifts Assessment

Enneagram Test

 

Subscribe to the Called To Cultivate Podcast

 

Would you like for me to appear on your podcast or show? Email me regina@reginacoley.com

 

How to Start Your Edupreneurship Business in 2019

 

Are you ready to jumpstart your edupreneurship business and are looking for simple ways to create quick content? Listen to this week’s tips and tools for access to easy to use tools you should be using in your business.

How to Build A Remote Team

When it comes to business, things are changing and it’s not necessarily the case anymore that you have to build your team in-house in order to get things done – you can build a remote team and still have a thriving company that you can grow and scale. In fact, many business owners actually now prefer to have a remote team because there’s actually a lot of benefits to it, such as being less expensive.

However, it’s still something that takes a good bit of planning, and it’s not as easy as simply listing a few tasks and sending people on their merry way – in fact, it can actually be quite stressful and overwhelming when you’re just getting started, so it’s important to make sure that you take some steps to make it as easy as possible. In this post, I’m going to share with you just what those steps are so that you can build a remote team that you find really works for you.

Make a list of the things you need

The first step in building a team – whether remote or in-house is to know what exactly it is you need, and although you may have a vague idea, it’s definitely something you should consider writing down so that you can get a clearer picture of exactly what you need. For example, you may need to have someone  – or even a team in charge of marketing, or you may be needing help from a person or company like cloudpay.net who can manage things like your payroll. It’s essential to know what it is you need before you can start hiring people to work on this, so the first step in finding this out is to make a list of everything you need.

Start looking around for people

Once you know what it is you need, then it’s time to start looking for the people to build your team with. You can either ask around with other business owners to see if they have any recommendations or you can place ads online. You can even approach recruitment and freelance agencies to see if they can help find someone on your behalf.

Set up interviews

Even when building a remote team, you still need to get to know the people who you’re going to be working with and making sure that they understand the role and to make sure that you feel like they would be a good fit for your business. You can either have these interviews in person with them, or you can arrange to set up things like video chats using platforms like Skype or Zoom.

Do a trial run

Just like all businesses, there’s usually a trial period for people starting a new job, and just because it’s a remote position, doesn’t make it any different. You should definitely invite people to a trial period in your business – both for you and for them so you can have time to decide if you’re a good fit for each other.

Do You Have To Know “Every Inch” Of Your Business To Make It A Successful One?

girl young business businesswoman office stands rack smiling portrait model pose study document desk lawyer economist financier consultant manager secretary assistant designer engineer work account debit credit blue jacket blouse documentation insurance concept copyspace isolated lifestyle elegant free lovely one global planning stylish curls money cooperation employee shoulder outerwear furniture sitting product sleeve neck job

As an entrepreneur, we find ourselves analyzing so many small components of our business, so we can make it more successful. Whether we’re trying to find ways to be more productive, create a better relationship with our customers, or make our working environment a better one, it’s argued that we need to know every bit of our business so we can make the necessary changes. But as an entrepreneur, do you actually need to know everything, inside and out, about your business, so that it gains necessary traction?

Surely This Is What Outsourcing Is For

Regardless of your stance on outsourcing the big benefit of it highlights what skills we lack in. If technology is not anybody’s forte in the company, this is where outsourcing to a company like CyBerJaz Corp. removes a lot of the headaches. As has been explained countless times, outsourcing isn’t just a way to get things done for cheaper, but it can be used as a learning curve. You realize what skills you don’t have, either in your company or in yourself, and you outsource them to those that know. From there, you can discover how best to fill in those gaps.

You Hire The Right People To Fill In The Gaps

As gaps in knowledge can result in a struggling business, you hire people so that you don’t have to know every inch of your business. People can easily take on the bulk of duties and refuse to delegate. But this is a very unhealthy process for any entrepreneur or business owner. The more we do this, the more pressure we feel under. For a business owner that proclaims to know every inch of their business, and when they struggle to keep everything going because they’ve been reticent to delegate, this becomes their undoing.

Your Role Is About The Big Picture

Time and time again, big picture thinking is the overriding characteristic of a successful business leader. While there are others out there that argue you need to know every single inch of your business so you can make it what you want, you need to know the big picture, and how every component slots in with each other, but this is where delegating comes in handy. It’s who you know, and so, you have to hire the right people whose opinions you trust. It’s your responsibility to see the big picture. You don’t have to know the finite details, but you need to see how each piece of the jigsaw slots together. This is why the most important skill an entrepreneur can have is that of communication and people skills. It’s these you have to utilize to make sure that everything works together in tandem.

After all, if you are working in a factory that manufacturers cars, do you really need to know the nuts and bolts of every single vehicle? Sure, it might be handy, but it’s not your role. In a smaller company, you may feel that it’s essential to know every aspect of your business, but as you get more successful and the business increases in size, it’s time that you let this go.

Use the 80/20 rule and focus on the 20% of the things that you can do best and delegate 80% of the rest.

How to run an online business even when you’re not tech savvy!

When it comes to launching a business of your own, there’s a lot that you need to consider, particularly when you are launching a virtual business. Running a business remotely from a virtual platform comes with many benefits, such as the fact that it costs far less than it would to set up a business at a set location. Not to mention the fact that running a business virtually from a remote location offers far more freedom, such as freedom to spend more time with your family and have a better work-life balance.

However, running a virtual business can seem impossible if you’re not exactly, what you would consider, ‘tech-savvy’. The good news is that just because you’re not as clued up regarding technology as you could be, doesn’t necessarily mean that you can’t run a virtual business. To help you better understand what it takes to run a virtual business, have a read of the tips and pieces of advice below.

Take advantage of free e-learning

If you want to increase your knowledge and gain the ability to perform certain tasks within your business, then making use of free online learning is essential, such as websites like https://www.virtual-college.co.uk/. There are various things available online from webinars to Youtube tutorials that outline how to perform an array of business tasks – you can even get some university courses free online, to allow you to complete basic lessons in certain fields. (These might be worth looking into if there’s an area you want to gain a more in-depth understanding of.) E-books are another great resource – you will be amazed at the number of free e-books you can find online if you simply take the time to look.

Outsource tasks

If there are tasks that are too complex for you to deal with or the price of making a mistake is too high, then outsourcing that task to an external company could be a good option for you. Whether it’s for your accounting needs, your social media requirements, or for IT support, there4 are plenty of specialist companies available to help you, such as www.spectrumwise.com. By choosing to outsource tasks that you don’t feel confident to complete, this will allow you to take advantage of vital tech without having to learn to master it all yourself. I use fiverr.com and also offer my business support services there.

Get a mentor

Search for a mentor who runs a hugely successful virtual business and learn from them – the best people to learn from are always the people who have been where you have been before. Managing a business isn’t easy, but you can learn a lot from someone who has been where you are now and successfully built a business. You could find a mentor online via social media or by searching the internet – there are also various mentoring schemes that you could look into. Another option is to join a local business networking group and see if you can source a suitable mentor from there. My business mentor is LaShanda Henry and you can learn more making sense of making money online at SistaSense.com

Setting up a virtual business is no easy task – there’s a lot that you need to think about. Of course, the tech side of things is one of the most complex – there’s no getting away from that fact, which can be off-putting if you aren’t tech savvy or tech-minded. However, the tips above should help to minimise any stress linked to that.

For more business advice click on the entrepreneurship button on the homepage of reginacoley.com for all of my business articles.

Are you taking these risks in your career?

If you’re ambitious and driven towards success then I know you’re interested in progressing your career. Over the last few decades, the doors have opened for a lot of people to pursue much better jobs, and who likes the idea of stopping short of their potential?! Of course, though, taking this approach to life can often come with some risks. To give you an idea of how to balance the good and bad sides of a career booster, I’ll provide you with the chance to make the right choice when you’re faced with something which could push you much closer towards your goal.

Why Must You Face Risk?

While risk is hard to avoid when you’re going through life, most people will want to expose themselves to as little of it as possible, and this can leave them feeling confused about the reasoning for the choices they’re making. If the field of jobs and recruitment wasn’t risky, though, it would be hard to make it competitive. Otherwise, you could be able to get every job you apply for, along with all of the other candidates. This almost never happens, with businesses relying on the fact that people will often have to stick their neck out if they want the role.

Of course, though, despite having little choice but to accept the risk which comes with your career, you can always look for new ways to reduce this area. Having a fallback job option, for example, can lower the chances that you’ll find yourself without an office to go to each day. There are loads of ways to achieve a goal like this. Most of the options you have are fairly specific to the risks you will face in different situations. So, to give you an idea of what you have available to you, you can find some examples below.

Securing Investment: Running your own business can be one of the riskier career options on the market, even if it also has the chance to be one of the most rewarding. A lot of people manage to start something like this without a hitch, only experiencing issues when the time comes to start looking for funding to help them to grow. Online payday loans direct lenders can help you out with something like this. Of course, though, if your venture isn’t successful, you will have to pay back the money yourself, often making it worth looking for funding options which don’t have the chance to make you liable.

Jumping The Gun: Being offered a job can often be a sketchy time. You won’t have a contract signed or a definite start date, yet, but will have to hand in your notice with your old employer as soon as you can. If the new role goes belly up during this process, you will be left without anything, and this can be incredibly difficult to overcome. When you are offered a job, you should always ask to sign the contract as soon as you can. Most employers will be happy to let you do this very quickly, as they will also want to secure you as their new team member.

Taking Time To Learn: Knowledge is one of the most powerful tools a job hunter can have in their arsenal. Providing you with the ability to do bigger and better roles, taking some time out of work to learn can always be a good idea. Of course, though, this can come with some risk, as courses can often lose their relevance in the time which they are taken, leaving you with very few places to turn to find a job with it. To avoid this risk, simply choosing paths which have existed for a long time can be a good route. Or, if you want to do something newer, broadening your scope may be the only option.

The Double-Cross: Businesses are always looking for ways to find an edge against their competitors. In some cases, this can involve going as far as stealing from one another, and this will often be done through employees. If you work in a sensitive position, the odds are that you will be offered a job at a competing company at some point in your career. Of course, though, if this goes wrong, you could find yourself without a job at best, and could even be looking at time in prison if you break agreements you have with your old employer in this process.

Is It Worth It?

Everyone needs a job in the modern world, and all jobs come with risk, making the question of whether or not this is worth it almost a pointless one to ask. Of course, though, you will be experiencing different levels of risk when you’re working on your career. The type of gamble you have to make will usually reflect the reward you stand to get from it, with those who are willing to put themselves on the line often reaping the benefits. It isn’t always easy to judge something like this, especially when you are looking at the promise of a much better role.

The most important thing to consider when you’re choosing whether or not to take a risk is the negative outcomes which you could face. For example, if you can’t live without a job, but an option has arisen which would put your role at risk, it wouldn’t be worth taking it. If you have a lot of savings, though, you may not have to worry about these sorts of consequences. This makes this whole process very personal, with the risks you take being unique to the situation you’ve found yourself in.

With all of this in mind, you should be feeling ready to take on the challenge of assessing risks to your career, only acting when something comes along which represents the right level of risk. A lot of people struggle in this area, finding it hard to know whether or not they are making the right decisions when protecting themselves from gambles in their working life.

How to Make Your Brand Stand Out during Events

When you run a small business, there’s nothing that can replace the benefits you get from joining niche and sector events such as conferences or even trade shows. Unfortunately, securing your spot in business events comes at a price and, for small companies, it can seriously affect their chances of getting noticed. Indeed, with a limited budget, you can hardly compete against larger brands that can happily invest in a large stand surface with coffee machine and delivery of freshly baked pastries on the stand. Does that mean you can’t make the most of your minimal event presence? Of course not! You need to be smart about it to make sure your audience has no difficulty finding you. Ultimately, the secret to making your presence known has nothing to do with the size of your exhibition stand, so there’s no point of breaking the bank to upgrade your business. On the contrary, you need to diversify your presence to catch visitors both online and offline.

Visible but not over the top signage

First of all, a small stand is not a bad thing as long as you understand the key rules of visibility in a crowded space. Indeed, neutral colors tend to blend in, which means that visitors are likely to walk past your stand without noticing you’re here. You need to use a bold and colorful statement to attract their eyes. A bright and vibrant decor can go a long way. Additionally, you can encourage visits by using strategic signage from a traditional cheap teardrop banner. You don’t need to order large banners and signs as these might make the stand appear even smaller!

Create a landing page or short site about the event

If you want to create a buzz around the event, it’s a great idea to establish a purposeful online presence for the occasion. You could build a simple website that is entirely dedicated to the show and your schedule for the event. To keep things smooth, a landing page structure lets you guide your leads to your preferred conversion – such as making an appointment to come to the stand – and lets you set up the site in virtually no time. With a handful of pages only, you can rapidly test and fix issues. Using professional services, you can ensure your site is not only mobile-friendly but also shareable in a click.

Ask for a scheduled presentation

Last, but not least, don’t hesitate to ask for a conference slot. You’ll find that most events struggle to fill all their presentation slots, so that you can get discounted prices in the last few weeks before the event. Preparing a quick presentation might seem daunting at first, but you can use it to let your personality shine and address current trends and issues with the crowd. A speaker’s trick is to imagine you’re talking to a friend. This will make you feel more relaxed about your public appearance. Besides, it will also encourage visitors to listen to you.

How do you make sure that big brands don’t outshine your small business at a business event? Forget the budget differences. Instead, focus your attention to maximizing your visibility through a bold stand design, a dedicated website and a friendly and casual speech at the show. Being seen is all about your preparation!

Need more assistance with getting your brand ready or maximizing your visibility? Schedule a Clarity Call with me today!

Creating a Positive Brand Image With Customers and Clients

One of the most difficult obstacles to overcome is a business owner, is standing out from your competition. No matter what you do or sell, you’ll have other companies out there doing something similar. Which is great for the customer as they have lots of choice, but it can make things difficult for you. Here are three ways you can stand out, and drive more custom to your own business.

Sell excellent products or services

It doesn’t matter what your business does, whatever it it sells should be up to standard. Your products or services should be of a good quality, so that people aren’t left underwhelmed or having to seek refunds where they’re unhappy. There’s a lot that goes into making a business great, but at the heart of everything is the thing you’re selling. If that’s rubbish, it doesn’t matter how good anything else is. Good products or services will leave clients and customers satisfied and returning for more. They’re more likely to recommend you to their friends and family, and this kind of word of mouth advertising is trusted and simply can’t be bought.

Provide excellent customer service

As well as selling great products or services (and at the right price) you need to ensure that everything is conducted in the right way by your staff. Excellent customer service is key if you want to create a positive brand image. Even if something has gone wrong with their transaction, having it sorted quickly and efficiently by a friendly employee will still have them leaving feeling happy and satisfied. Find the right people for your team, those that are good at working with others, and are highly motivated so naturally have a ‘nothing is too much trouble’ attitude. You can also boost customer service with a POS system, as well as use software like customer relationship management software and help desk to keep your customer service up to standard. These help to give people the impression of a personal experience of your business even before speaking to a human employee.

Work with a charity or do good in some way

One way to promote a positive brand image, while genuinely doing good in the world, is to work with a charity or actually do good in some way. Perhaps you could make a promise to only ever use Fairtrade sellers overseas, or sustainable ingredients. Maybe you could make a pledge to reduce the gender pay gap in your company, or plant more trees for every one that you use. If you work with a charity, choose one that’s linked to your business in some way- for example, if you sell animal products you could work with an animal charity. From there, you could pledge a certain percentage of your annual profits to them. This is a great opportunity for them and you- not only will people associate your business with doing good (which makes you look favourable to customers) but chances are they’ll help with your promotion too. They will already have their own social following for example, and sharing your mission with their followers could mean more custom for you.

 

How to Use Mobile Technology in your Business

We use our smartphones for everything nowadays. It’s probably no surprise that they’re also an effective business tool, helping to improve productivity and connect with new customers. Here are just a few ways in which you can start embracing mobile technology within your business.

Making your website mobile-friendly

More people are using the internet on their phones than on PCs – it’s therefore vital that your website is mobile-friendly. By changing the way your website looks when viewed on a mobile screen, you can make it easier for mobile users to navigate your website and access information. This could include making buttons bigger so that they can be more easily tapped with a finger or increasing the size of text to make your website more readable on a mobile screen.  

Marketing via text message

Many companies are now sending updates to existing clients via text message. This can be more effective than email in some cases as texts are more likely to be read. You can get involved in this form of marketing by using an SMS service that can bulk-text all your clients at the same time. This form of marketing requires you to have your client’s phone number. You should also ensure that you have their permission to text them, as some people may find it an invasion of their privacy.

Accepting mobile payment

A lot of consumers are now paying via mobile payment. You can choose to accept point of sale mobile payments by buying a special scanner much like a card reader. This could help you to expand your payment options and encourage more paying customers. There are even portable mobile payment readers available to buy that are ideal for restaurants, market stall vendors, handymen or events companies.

Making use of apps

There are many apps that can help you to carry out business tasks on the go. In fact, many business software companies also have an app that you can use in conjunction, allowing you to continue your work out of the office. This could allow you more flexibility when working – simply visit the app store and download the apps that you think could be useful for you.

Building your own app

It’s also possible to build your own company app. This could be aimed at you and your employees, or it could be aimed at customers. For example, it could be a training app for new recruits to use or it could be a loyalty card app to help encourage return customers by offering discounts. There are app development companies that can help produce your app for you. The cost of producing an app is likely to vary depending on the complexity – you may be able to create something fairly basic at an affordable price, whilst a more elaborate app could cost thousands.