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24 Jan
Jumpstarting Small Business in 2016

Tips for Keeping Small Business Motivated…..

2016 is likely to be a rocky road for many small business owners.  The uncertainty of the U.S. economy is the primary concern for most business owners regardless of the business they are in.  Adaptability will be a key factor in sustaining business in 2016 and making subtle changes can help:

Set Marketing Goals

As a Business owner, you have probably set and re-set goals in many areas of your business.  Being proactive about setting marketing goals is vastly different than setting goals for sales, staffing, and spending.  Before spending dollars on advertising set a goal on how much you want to spend to reach the most people possible and how this spending can convert to revenue and customers.

Read, Read, Read

Marketing is changing quickly… Strategies that were useful today may not be useful in the future. Don’t worry about all of the information that’s out there that you aren’t getting.  Focus on reading as much as you can about marketing as often as you can afford to. Think of each article you read on a marketing blog and every tip you get from the posts.  Think of it as ammunition against your competition.

Make Relationships Count

Staying on good terms with your existing customers isn’t anything new, relationship marketing is going to become more important for small business owners in 2016. Your customers are as overwhelmed by the pace of internet marketing culture as you are, and you can find successes by making small moves to show your valued customers that they are more to you than an email address and a number.

Think of small ways that you can show your regular customers how much they mean to you. Whether it’s something as small like a birthday card or large as a holiday gift basket the thought is what they will see. Just remember that the more you do to show your customers that you appreciate them, the stronger the relationship between your brand and your customers will be.

Know the Competition

Spend some time researching your competition both locally and nationally in 2016.   If you don’t see researching your competition as a marketing strategy, you probably aren’t approaching your research the right way. Make a list of competing businesses in your area, relying on the internet and your own knowledge of your local market to build up a library of businesses that are in direct competition with you. Then, take a look at their marketing efforts to see what they are doing right and wrong.

Think of ways you can replicate their successes and adapt your strategies.  When you take time to aggressively research what your competitors are up to you give yourself the opportunity to recreate successes and exploit weaknesses.

Experiment

Every business is different so it only makes sense that every marketing strategy will likely differ. Tips that you find in guides should only be used as starting points. Find what works for you.

Document every marketing experiment and put at the same time and effort on each thing you try.  There are no marketing mistakes only learning opportunities. Keep experimenting in 2016 and by year end you will be surprised by the results.

By Jack Stieber –  President – American Receivable

06 Jan
Happy New Year

New Year’s resolution, now what?

Have your New Year’s resolutions from last year gone unresolved?  You’re not alone. Now, the New Year offers another opportunity to achieve your goals and these tips may just help you achieve them.

Make it something you really want.

Don’t make it a resolution that you are unsure of.  It must be meaningful and you must be committed.

Limit your resolutions to a number you can handle.

Two or three resolutions are usually a good number and ones you can most likely keep.  Focus your efforts on the goals you truly want.

Be specific.

For instance, rather than say “I’m working out say “I’m working out Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 5:30 p.m.”

Automate.

Automating financial goals can maximize your odds for success.  If your goal is to save $2,000 this year, calculate the amount out of each check and deduct this amount from your checkbook.  Or arrange to have it automatically deposited into your savings account each time you get paid.

Have a plan.

Create a series of small steps to reach your goal.

Be ready to change some bad habits.

Bad habits can sabotage goals and prevent you from reaching them.

Write down your goals and visualize them regularly.

Writing and visualizing are effective tools for fulfilling a goal because they fix them firmly in the subconscious mind.  Keep them in a prominent place where you can view them frequently,

Be accountable.

Having someone hold you accountable can be a powerful tool. Commitment adds to the motivation.  Have one or two people that can act as coaches or cheerleaders that can push you along.

Forgive yourself.

If you fall off the wagon, jump back on. Don’t give up, slips will happen.

Reward yourself. 

Set milestones and reward yourself along the way.

Resolutions are easy to make and often hard to keep.  Just remember, if at first, you don’t succeed, try, try again…

By Jack Stieber –  President – American Receivable

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