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success ideas for everyday business people

Archive for the ‘Business Building’ Category

Appreciation Marketing: Less than 12 Weeks til Christmas/Festive Season!

Posted by Dhea on October 2, 2011

Good relationships are the lifeblood of every good company. Relationships between a company and their clients/patients/ customers, employees, vendors, and referral sources are vital to sustained growth, stability and profit.  One way to build relationships is to express appreciation.

So, why do so few companies invest any resources to express appreciation?

Many companies do not fully appreciate the potential profits associated with keeping existing customers happy versus constantly acquiring new ones.

Two-thirds of customers switch from one company to another because of a perceived indifference from the former company.  If you want your customers to feel like you care about them and appreciate their business, you need to have a solid Appreciation Marketing System in place.

What is Appreciation Marketing?  It is a specific activity that helps you express gratitude and appreciation daily.

Think about who YOU do business with and why. I bet you tend to continue doing business with those who appreciate your business.  NOT saying thank you does more damage than actually saying thank you does good!

With well-planned Appreciation Marketing efforts, you will improve retention, which will highly impact your bottom line.

One of my favorite tools I discovered in 2009, for affordably and easily staying in touch is SendOutCards, which enables you to create a card and add a personal message using your own handwriting font.  You can also create a group of people (let’s say “2011 customers”) in your Contact Manager.  When you click the SEND button, that card goes to everyone in that group, and the salutation gets filled in with each recipient’s name…not an impersonal “Dear Customer” salutation.

Given that acquiring a new customer can cost five times more than retaining an existing one, it makes a lot of sense to appreciate the customers you already have. Those who feel appreciated and cared for will remain loyal to you when competitors call on them.  They are also much more likely to make referrals.

Marketing with a high-touch automated tool like SendOutCards makes it so easy.  You owe it to yourself, and to your business, to try it out today.

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Defining the present reality: where is your business?

Posted by Dhea on August 11, 2009

The first responsibility of a leader is to define reality. The last is to say thank you. In between, the leader is a servant. Max DuPree

Walk down this path of leadership. Your first role is to define the present reality. If you, and your employees or team members, do not know where you are, it is impossible to chart a course to where you want to go. It is like the little red dot on the map at a shopping mall, which is the most important spot on the map, it simply says, “You are here!” In business we often fail to stop and truly assess the situation and determine where we are on the map in relation to where we want to go. Define the present reality for yourself and for your people. Last is to say thank you. Do your employees or team members know that you appreciate their hard work, sacrifice, talent, wisdom, commitment and service to customers? When was the last time you told them? When was the last time you told them specifically as in, “Thank you for dealing with that difficult Jones account,” or “I love the way you are able to negotiate in our behalf,” or “You really nailed that proposal,” or “Thanks for the long hours, I don’t say it enough, but Thank You!” The more specific you are in giving thanks the better! Then, everything in between is being a servant. Leadership doesn’t come with a title, nor is it something you get with a piece of paper or your name on the door. Being a servant to all is the only path to true leadership. In what ways are you serving your people?

Define the reality first, give thanks last and serve like crazy in the middle – these are the true marks and tests of leadership in the 21st century.

In what ways can you serve them better?

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Journaling: Daily Cleansing

Posted by Dhea on July 20, 2009

Hi all

In recent months it seems that “journaling” is a must for business owners. I remember when I was a young child I loved keeping a diary (a locked one at that… tell me what would a 6 year old have to lock away!) and yes I still have them now… the diaries became log books as a young adult, which included travel logs, work plans , dreams  and when I look back upon reflection this entire process allowed me to “dump” all my daily mews into the pages. My daily cleansing allowed everything to come out of my head and into the journal, which cleared my head in readiness for sleep. This process allowed me to be really prepared for the next day as I was able to rest without the fear of forgetting anything.

Somewhere along my mid twenties and the birth of my first child ( two more followed)  this “journaling” stopped. No longer was I recording daily actions, ideas, thoughts anything. I wasn’t debriefing… nothing was being formally recorded and certainly not contained in one of my favourite leather bound notebook. Fast forward 15+ years and all business/health/life coaches are all suggesting we as adults keep journals . Celine Egan and Sue Henry of Accelerate Women have a great journal/system… all suggest we keep a journal to track our thoughts, actions and plans… here Jennifer Holloway explains how our minds, bodies and souls work best together well when we’re aware of our “self” and our personal development. This can be achieved by revisiting what is an old idea, that is keeping a journal.

Has anyone started journaling in recent times and would like to share their experiences.. ie clarifying goals ideas, concepts. Helps them to formulate decisions.

How has journaling helped you?

I for one am going to start it up again and try to go past the first page… What about you?

Dhea

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Establishing Business Priorities: What are yours?

Posted by Dhea on July 16, 2009

Effective leadership is putting first things first. Effective management is discipline, carrying it out. Stephen Covey

The two critical elements to being a powerful, effective and productive leader are: establishing priorities and areas of focus first, then having the discipline to execute and carry them out second. Both are vital to your success as an entrepreneur or business owner. Having just one of the two is a recipe for disaster.

Without putting first things first you may execute and check a number of projects off your list, but you may not be doing the right things, things which will build or grow your business. Without the discipline to execute and carry things out you may have a wonderful vision of where you would like to go or what you would like to achieve but never move any closer to actually getting it done.

Review both your priorities and discipline to execute. Checking your priorities should be a weekly, daily and sometimes hourly exercise. Evaluating your discipline and what you actually achieve or produce must also be an ongoing process. By combining the leadership of creating the right priorities and the management discipline of carrying them out, you will put your business on a path which leads to ongoing, sustainable success.

What do you put first?

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Obstacles in Business and Life

Posted by Dhea on July 12, 2009

Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off your goal. Henry Ford

The legendary golfer Arnold Palmer once played in a charity event in Australia and was paired with a young, inexperienced caddie to carry his bag and guide him through his round. On the 18th hole Mr. Palmer approached his ball and prepared to take a shot at the green. The young caddie handed him his club then started to share what he thought was his experience on the challenging hole. He began, “Mr. Palmer beware of the long rough to the left of the green, there is also a deep sand trap on the right, if you over shoot the hole – the green has a brutal slope which is difficult to chip back from, and, you can’t see it but, there is creek running right through the lay-up area…” Mr. Palmer shouted, “stop!” He through his club back into the golf bag. Then as he began his preparation all over again he said to the young caddie, “Don’t tell me about sand and rough and rivers and obstacles. Do not clutter my mind with things I don’t need to know and places I do not wish to go. The ONLY thing I want to know is how far it is from the spot where my ball currently is to the center of that green, which is exactly where I want to go.” With laser focus on his goal and no thought of the obstacles Mr. Palmer stepped up to his ball, stared down to the green, took a practice swing and then hit the ball high into the air landing it softly in the center of the green.

As an entrepreneur or business owner where is your focus and attention?

Are you focused squarely on your goals and objectives? Or, are you letting your mind wander to the obstacles you face?

Are you focused on the bad economy, your competition, your lack of prospects, your lack of capital, your negative customers or past problems?

Mr. Palmer was right in saying, “Don’t clutter my mind with things I don’t need to know and places I don’t wish to go!”

Remember obstacles are the frightful things you see when you take your eyes off of your goal.

Would you like this sort of inspiration all the time to help you build your buisness? Want access to Masterminds in learning, want to know the secret to many insights… Take a look here…

What are you obstacles in business?

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Referrals are the best compliment we can receive.

Posted by Dhea on June 6, 2009

Hi all

As many of us know if we love something we just have to tell everyone about it and encourage our friends to consider. The power of the word of mouth is often considered better than some forms of advertising. Imagine if you received a referral everyday.. Imagine picking up the phone and hearing “Hello my girlfriend suggested I contact you for this bag that I am looking for….” or “I would like to join your company as my girlfriend suggested it would be perfect for me…” or “I would love to book a party with you as I couldn’t make it to my girlfriends but they all had fun and I would like to host one…”… Every time I receive any sort of referral like that I feel blessed and grateful that the client has picked up the phone and called me However I am ever more grateful to the client who suggested me to her friend… Think about the power of this.

What do you do to ask or encourage referrals for your business?

Think about it

Dhea

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