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Amazon’s Size could be Overshadowing Nike in the New Nike-Amazon Collaboration

Amazon’s Size could be Overshadowing Nike in the New Nike-Amazon Collaboration

The new Nike-Amazon collaboration may be good news for consumers but it seems to be overshadowing the sports accessories giant, Nike by virtue (vice) of Amazon’s scale. Since Amazon is the bigger of the two entities, Nike seems to have a lesser say in the […]

Six Challenges Facing Business Owners

Six Challenges Facing Business Owners

Having spent the last few weeks meeting with and chatting to small business owners around Essex, it became clear that they all seem to face similar challenges on a day-to-day basis. As I expected, they are all time poor and there was an ongoing sense […]

Critical Personality Traits Essential For Home Based Business Success

Critical Personality Traits Essential For Home Based Business Success

 

Aspiring to become a Home Based Entrepreneur is quite exciting; what with the pride of being your own Boss. But desire is one thing and having the right Personal Traits that can ensure the success of the business is another ball game altogether.

Some of these traits are innate while some can be learned. However I have enumerated them here for you to consider before taking the leap. This is not meant to discourage you but to bring them to your awareness in order to help you prepare properly and make a success of your dream. Do not be dismayed even if you lack some of these attributes because they can be learned or acquired through training.

So in this write up, we’ll discuss the personal character traits most successful Home Based Entrepreneurs always seem to have.

• Great Determination

Right from the beginning, you must make up your mind to succeed in your chosen endeavor. Having a “Can Do Spirit” is always an advantage. When the pressure builds up, it’s only that huge determination to succeed that will help see you through.

As the saying goes “when the going gets tough, the tough get going”

• Having Self Confidence

This is almost like having strong determination. Having self -confidence and believing in one’s ability is also very important in the potential success matrix needed by a Home Business Owner. The saying “self- confidence makes the man” must have come from this. Even the ordinary con man is able to perpetrate his activities through his self-confidence.

• Consummate Self Starter

A self-starter is a person who does not procrastinate. He does not wait for someone to prod him into taking necessary action.

A self-starter will not postpone to tomorrow what he’s supposed to do today. A self-starter is an action oriented person who attacks the task at hand and achieves set targets without being supervised or reminded.

• Being A Natural Risk Taker

In order to succeed as a Home Based Entrepreneur, you must be a natural risk taker. Some people are risk averse but almost all successful Home Business Owners are ready to take that risk, burn all bridges and do whatever it takes to succeed.

Fast Thinking And Flexibility

Having the ability to think fast and react quickly to unfolding situations is the hallmark of a successful Home Business Owner.

Threats can come up suddenly from new government policies and the ability to think fast and adapt to the new situation can make the difference between success and collapse of the business.

• Do What You Enjoy

You have to be totally obsessed with your Home Based Business. You eat and drink it every moment of the day.

You must be very passionate about your business or else you’ll cave in when the pressure builds up.

I recommend that you get involved with what you enjoy doing. Even turning your hobby into a Home Based Business could be the best decision.

You’ll work harder and succeed faster because you won’t see what you’re doing as work. Invest in that thing that you would enjoy doing even if there are no pecuniary benefits.

• Have A Good Business Plan

You must be able to prepare a good Business Plan and work the plan. It’s said that “He who fails to plan has already planned to fail”. Your Business Plan is like a Blue Print for your business. It must be flexible though to make room for adjustments as you go along. It’s like a road map that’ll lead you to the final goals set for your business.

• Good Money Management Skills

Having the right attitude to money is very essential. No matter the amount of cash available, a Home Business Owner without the right Money Management Skills will run the business aground.

You must have a Money Management Plan and stick to the plan. Knowing how to allocate resources to the most needed areas of the business is very important.

My advice is that you must be shrewd and frugal with your expenses- especially cash flow. This is to avoid running out of cash at an auspicious time.

• Good Selling Skills

Having the right selling skills can help you succeed in your business.

You must be able to explain to people why what you’re offering is the best solution for the problem they’re having.

• Create Authority Around You

If you want to succeed in your Home Business, you must be willing to learn new things. You must be willing to keep up to date with latest industry trends.

Being disposed to reading books, attending seminars and staying ahead of the competition is very essential.

Your ability to market yourself as an Expert and a reliable resource in your field is very important.

People will run to you for solution to their problems.

• You Need Good Marketing Skills

The ability to develop the perfect USP for your Home Business is very important. You must have a very good reason why I should buy your products/services instead of buying from the shop down the road. This could be the difference between growth and early bankruptcy.

 

• Be Organized, Be Disciplined!

You must not take for granted that you are your own boss and so wake up 10 am and decide to chill with a glass of wine and some music. No! You must maintain a high self – esteem and discipline. Wake up early, listen to industry news and get started with the day’s activities.

I mean you must have a positive daily routine

 

• Be Professional

Strive at all times to be professional in all your dealings. Maintain the highest ethical standards. Honesty must be your watch word!

Dress appropriately when meeting with clients.

Ensure you have a home office and a dedicated phone line for your business

• Don’t Be Afraid To Fail

Finally, this might sound weird but failure is part of the process of learning how to do it better next time. Do not be afraid to fail but remember to take away the lessons learned.

The great Thomas Edison who failed over 5000 times while trying to discover the incandescent lamp said that each failure taught him how to do it better next time.

 

What It Takes to Create an Award-Winning Business

What It Takes to Create an Award-Winning Business

Out of the blue, I received an email from the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce one day notifying me that we were nominated for a 2016 Business Excellence award. Say what? Once I got past my shock and disbelief that they must have the wrong Susan… […]

5 Things You Need to Know About Business Phone Systems and What to Look For

5 Things You Need to Know About Business Phone Systems and What to Look For

Before you take on the task of researching the best business phone systems out there, here are a few general things you need to know to help you make the best decision for your business communication needs. 1. Premise-based PBX vs. Hosted PBX For the […]

Why You Are Limiting Your Small Business

Why You Are Limiting Your Small Business

It’s difficult to see the picture when you’re in the frame. When you are so focused on your business you don’t see what holds it back. Namely you! When all the decisions are based on your knowledge and experience, you are probably working from the same knowledge you always have. This means that unless you are constantly improving yourself (in terms of business) you are likely to fall into the trap many owners do.

What are your decisions based on and who do you go to for help? The problem with owning a business is that there is very little help available in your immediate circle for most people. Unless you are surrounded by other entrepreneurs, it’s more than likely that you look to help for people who are fall less qualified than you.

The Self Fulfilling Loop

The ability to work in your business and work on your business are two very separate things. You may be the best at working very hard, doing long hours and motivating your staff, if you have any. But this doesn’t translate to growing your business. Growing your business is something different. It takes a whole new skill set.

If you’re stuck in the process of being a ‘worker’ in your business, you’re not moving your business forwards. You must step out of the roles which worked when you were an employee. Things which make a good employee are: turning up on time, working hard, delivering to deadlines and thinking of ways to achieve the maximum output for your boss.

Things which make a good business owner are entirely different. Knowing how to grow your business is about marketing. You need a whole new skill set and new ways of thinking in order to do this.

The Skill Set Of Online Marketing

Online marketing is vital to grow your business. Whatever kind of business you have, you need some kind of marketing engine driving it forwards. With new technology comes a new type of marketing. Before the internet there was traditional advertising: yellow pages, newspapers, flyers, billboards, television and radio.

Online marketing is a fantastic opportunity for business owners. But with it comes a few problems. The main one is not just learning the skills to create online advertising, but rather our mindset, or more importantly our industrial age thinking.

Industrial Age Thinking

We have been brought up with a lot of baggage. Our minds hold ideas which our forefathers embodied in their lives. Many of us are limited by old thinking patterns which no longer serve us. This is true in many areas of our lives but none so much as with growing a business using online marketing.

A poverty mindset always thinks of reasons to cut back and avoid spending. It is based on a presupposition that ‘there is never enough’ – a self fulfilling prophecy! Of course this is often well founded based on the past. But as a business owner this can be your biggest limiting factor to forward growth.

If our very thinking is based on our past and what it has taught us in terms of our income, we hold back and tend to be careful with our money. This is for good reason of course. But with online marketing your long term plan should be to be spending more and more on advertising, not less and less. This is a major roadblock to business growth.

Gently Does It

I’m not saying you should spend all your cash on an online advert, just to see how it goes. Far from it. You can start an online advertising campaign for very little daily expenditure. Set your budget as low as you like. That’s one of the benefits of online advertising. One of the other major benefits is the ability to test and measure each of your adverts.

By testing and measuring the response of your adverts, you can determine, very accurately, how effective they are in making you a profit. However this should be based on your return on investment, not instant return. Think about the worth of a customer over the years of your business. How much is a customer worth? Not a sale, but a customer?

Looking at the long term benefit of a happy customer who buys from you again and again can give you a different perspective on your advertising costs. Write down a number which reflects the cash value of a long term, loyal customer. Now match that against what you were prepared to spend on your advertising.

Testing and Measuring – The Power Of Pay Per Click

Pay per click advertising is an amazing form of advertising and available to any business owner. However, I recently spoke to a business owner who claimed it was a waste of money, despite other people in his business niche using it. Perhaps, he thought that they were about to discover what he already “knew”!

Most people start an advertising campaign on pay per click, lose money and decide it doesn’t work. But this is a mistake. The real power lies in the ability to test and measure your paid advertising. There are many variables with pay per click. You can target people very specifically by their keywords using Google AdWords advertising. You can also target by location – which is ideal for a local business. By testing and measuring the responses of different target audiences, with varying keywords, landing pages and advert content, you can eventually determine the most profitable advert for your business.

Once you have discovered a way to spend half of what you stand to get back, you are in a very strong position to increase your daily expenditure and scale up. This is how to grow your business. By adding other paid advertising methods to your growing ‘portfolio’ and testing and measuring each one over time for maximum efficiency, you can scale up your business for maximum growth.

Depending on your business model, it is also possible to lose money initially on advertising, and make it back over the long term for the customers you have literally “bought”.

 

The Best Internet Business

The Best Internet Business

What Is The Best Internet Business? There are several Web Host giants on the internet that provide private label rebranding to small business owners. This might be the best opportunity to “piggyback” on well-established businesses if you are just starting out in internet marketing. This […]

Small Business Marketing Hacks Every Business Owner Should Use

Small Business Marketing Hacks Every Business Owner Should Use

There’s a lot that’s changed recently with online marketing. Most people now go straight to Google to search for something they want. The phone book is out and Google, or search traffic is in. If you are a small business owner you can benefit from […]

8 Golden Success Secrets for Small Businesses

8 Golden Success Secrets for Small Businesses

Running a small business is as challenging as trekking to Mt. Everest without having oxygen cylinder, prior practice, and a valid map guide. The challenges are only because there are no authentic rules that can lead a small business towards success while other major obstacles comprise: low budget, limited manpower, and lack of efficient resources. But as a small business owner, you must delve into the passcodes that help you decode the secret patterns of operating a successful startup or small business. It not only helps you to sustain your current growth but also excel your business planning’s to achieve higher objectives. There are a few suggestions based on real-world experiences, which can assist you to hit the bull’s eye.

1- Utilize the power of social media:

Nowadays, the entire world revolves around social media and if you are able to use its full potential, it can immediately help you increase your sales and brand reputation with very minimum resource and effort. Social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, help you connect with a large scale of users, where you can directly interact with them, thereby allowing you to convert them into your potential clients. It forms a two-way channel that not only allows you to put your message across but also, listen to what your targeted audience want, which eventually goes a long way in improving and growing your business.

2- Research and analyze your competition:

A business turns to be successful only if it runs on some finely grinned facts and figures. And competition analysis is one of the most important elements of the process. Competition analysis tells you the strength you will require to establish your brand in the market as well as it helps to prepare your business planning adequately so that you could avoid the chances of business failure. An additional benefit of competition research is it allows for designing and developing more feasible and user-oriented products that eventually help you attain a competitive edge over the current market.

3- Work as per your plan but be flexible too:

Efficient planning is a roadmap that drives your business to the top in the long run with predefined routes. It is always advised to stick with our planning even if we face a few hurdles while running our business given that the strategies are designed after in-depth analysis. And day-to-day challenges should not incline you to alter with whatever you planned. The winners always back their business plannings regardless of the stiff challenges, but on the other side, a successful business requires the owner to be flexible enough to embrace new changes. Adapting the new ideas and concepts not only makes a business owner take smart decisions but also, keeps their core planning intact and fresh.

4- Use informative materials to build trust and loyalty:

The Internet is the best medium to reach out to the huge audience with less effort, but you should keep the fact in mind that there is already a heavy flow of advertisements and endorsements all over the web. So, what can be an efficient way to create our presence with a significant impact?

There are definitely some better ways to do it like using informative online materials such as well-written blogs, well-designed infographics, animated videos demonstrating some set of skills, and presentation sheets, etc. Following such practices will attract a huge mass to our platform to learn and engage with us, which gives a sense of trust and ultimately convert them into our long-term clients.

5- Hire your weaknesses:

A small business consists of a team of limited dedicated professionals, having different skill sets of all the corners to tackle most of the business requirements. Small businesses, sometimes, compromise in some crucial areas since they can’t hire specific individuals due to the lack of budget. To get your business positioned to the top, please don’t bear with your inefficient area. Rush into hiring experienced professional(s) so that all parts of your business fire with the same intensity.

6- Be ready for mergers and acquisitions:

Even after working with your full potential, you may not generate enough force to compete with the leading competitors. Other small businesses with the same concept may face the same situations. Just find them and join in the talks to check the possibilities of the merger to form a combined force, which can provide the required pace and power to achieve the common business goals. Mergers have a long, rich history of producing successful businesses, so don’t shy away with it. Similarly, business acquisitions are a noble idea to inject more strength to our business if budget allows us to do so.

7- Keep the quality service always on:

Quality service is the most important source that keeps your client for a longer period of time and it spreads huge positive feedbacks in the mass, driving in a large number of new clients. There have been more than just a few businesses reaching to the top just on the base of excellent service and even without spending a bomb on advertisements and business promotions. While there are other businesses which have failed miserably because of giving no importance to the quality of the services they provided. All in all, having the sound quality of the products/services is the key to succeeding in today’s cut throat competition.

8- Don’t give up:

Running a successful business is not a child’s play since it requires a lot of guts, courage, and risk-taking capabilities. It, sometimes, shakes your ambitions when going through some rough patches, and you need to have the burning desires within you to keep it alive. Keeping patience is also an important character that the small business owner must have, as the formation of a business and climb the ladder of success, demands to wait for long period of time. So, as a business owner, you need to instill never give up attitude to see your dreams come true!!

Summing it up, though the above-mentioned points are not entirely foolproof but yes, following these points will definitely help you to become a smart small business owner who can defy all the challenges and get on the top of the competition. Of Course, the chances of success or failure of your business completely depends on your planning and execution.

 

Are You Leading Your Business With a Limp?

Are You Leading Your Business With a Limp?

Do you find yourself leading your business with a limp? Let me explain further… For many women business owners, one of the biggest challenges in their business is learning to delegate. Perhaps it’s one of yours as well. They find it difficult to determine which […]