Do I have the right person in the right seat on the bus?

Posted by Carl Gould on May 11, 2017
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All people involved in the world of business are trying to follow the famous Jim Collins thought – to get the right people on the bus, take wrong people off the bus, and put the right people in their right seats. This is a very powerful business concept that should always be followed. However, not all entrepreneurs know whether they have the right people on the bus. Successful businesses know that talented and skillful people are their best resource, but also the most valuable asset to keep. Great business leaders spend a lot of time on finding, selecting, developing, training, and putting workers in their best places. As soon as you fill the bus with the right people in the right places – there is no limit what your business can achieve.

The following are some pointers which should tell you whether you have the right people on the bus.

  • The right people have values that go in the same direction with the values of the company they represent.
  • The right people expect a delegation of tasks, but they do not have to be tightly controlled or managed.
  • The right people know that they are responsible for achieving great results for the company.
  • The right people are always keeping their word and are accountable for their actions. They are careful when giving promises and committing to a certain task, but when they commit they deliver their maximum.
  • The right people are passionate about the company they work for and for the work they do.
  • The right people are also good at establishing contacts and communicating. They have organized thoughts and their body language and tone of voice are always synchronized.
  • The right people can solve problems quickly and efficiently. They are people that have leadership and organizational skills. They always work in a group and put the collective above all. These types of people can be a very valuable asset to your company because they are hard-working and inspiring to others.
  • The right people have a good sense of knowing which thing is best to do at a certain moment, without being told what they should do next. They are quiet in fixing small problems before they develop into more serious issues. They are often pro-active when taking initiatives and actions that are beneficial for the company they represent.
  • The right people are also good team players. They love to work and motivate others, so the work is more productive. They care for the group and often put other people in the spotlight than bringing the light to them. They know what the main objectives of the company are and do their best for the company to reach its goals.
  • The right people are also constant learners. They are very motivated to upgrade their knowledge and to become even better than they are. They are always reading, learning, and attending seminars, and always try to keep in touch with successful people. They are always eager to learn new information, try new approaches, and learn new things.

We hope that this article will help you clear all your dilemmas so you can grow as a leader and entrepreneur.

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Exciting Marketing Trends for 2017

Posted by Carl Gould on April 18, 2017
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Marketing in 2017 brought many exciting new trends and we are constantly seeing a big demand for more personalized web content, many new strategies for reaching target audiences, and other innovative methods for advertising. The following are some of the most popular marketing trends in 2017.

  • Mobile domination is an increasing trend in the marketing campaigns, as more and more people are accessing the internet through their mobile devices. Because of that, the way in which digital marketing is now used is more focused on smartphone users. Vertical video content and mobile messenger marketing are a couple of things that are growing and if you want to have a good marketing campaign, then focusing on mobile users is a must.
  • Video content is a crucial part of marketing, and this trend is growing stronger month by month. Videos are receiving bigger engagement from people and companies can squeeze additional content through the videos presented to the audience. They allow marketers to communicate their message more efficiently through storytelling. Every social media application has a video stream option available, so expect to see lots of mobile-optimized video content being produced this year.
  • According to many studies, a big majority of people depend on recommendations from other people they know, so influencer marketing is another thing that in full swing. Advertising and marketing are relying a lot on industry influencers, so traditional channels for marketing are slowly going away.
  • Many people are interacting with different brands through many different channels like blogs, e-mails or social media. E-mail marketing is an extremely popular method for marketing this year. This method constantly gets improved and is no longer a simple copy sent to many users, but it is often customized based on location, online behavior, time of day, messages, and more.
  • Messenger bots are also very popular today, especially on platforms like Facebook. Many leading brands are using them for processing orders and for delivering stock quotes.
  • Interactive content marketing is also a very useful method that brings many benefits to marketers. Through this method, brands can gain bigger attention and can easily communicate their message to the audience. Many companies have recognized the useful aspects of interactive content marketing and started to build numerous interactive tools for online users. Interactive infographics, personalized approaches, live charts and data visualizations are often used by businesses and serve a great purpose in their marketing campaigns.
  • Native content is very important in the marketing campaigns in 2017. Today, different marketing channels require different methods. Some are used for expressing in written words, while others are for showing short and long videos and digital images. No matter the channel, all of them have specific content that can do well on that channel, but poorly on another one. Although it can be often hard to make optimized content for every platform depending on how many platforms you are using, we can still expect to see a much-improved performance by the digital marketers in regards with the native content.
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Capturing more leads will lead towards increased business!

Posted by Carl Gould on March 02, 2017
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When thinking about processes to approach a lead, the first thing that should be made clear is what exactly ‘lead’ is. Lead is the person that is interested in buying your product or using your services. They are very important for any business, so converting leads to customers is what every business seeks to do. If you are approaching your leads in a structured, strategic and systematic way, you can increase the number of leads and their conversion rate into customers.

The following are some steps and processes which you should follow in order to approach a lead. Focus on the leads you think are right for your business and determine what will work best for your business.

  • Synchronize marketing with sales. These two parts must be aligned closely in order to achieve best results. Many businesses today are using a couple of steps for processing leads. Marketing helps in increasing leads, while sales qualify and convert the leads. In order to reach best results start by mapping out the sales process in your company, define clear criteria between marketing and sales, and establish metrics for success up front.
  • Get the attention of more leads. Capturing more leads will lead towards increased business. In order to get leads, you can use web campaigns, such as search engine marketing or using social media platforms. These two are some of the most successful strategies for capturing leads. You can also import leads from e-mail applications or spreadsheets, or enter leads manually. Entering leads manually works best for approaching individual leads.
  • Data should be always kept clean. Some of the ways for keeping your data clean include regular cleaning of your leads and using validation rules.
  • As soon as you get a lot of leads you have to start thinking about ways how to get the most out of them. Each lead has different quality, so prioritize them in a way in which the hottest leads will come first. You can prioritize leads with lead scoring, which is using a point system for assigning different values to characteristics that are aligned with the successful sales. You can then categorize scored leads into different priority levels and final step is to use assignment rules to route leads.
  • In order for you to improve the number of leads, you have to learn which marketing ways and tools are giving you best results. Are webinars, e-mail campaigns or Google campaigns giving best results? You can find out more about that if you start identifying and tracking sources. Find out where you get most of the leads. You can also use the lead history report in order to analyze different things. This report can tie the lead criteria such as the annual revenue, lead source, opportunity amounts, and industry, giving you the power to separate the revenues for different leads. Another thing which you can do is use campaigns to track the success of different lead-generation efforts, and also use reports and dashboards to get a clearer view of the entire sales process.
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Follow these tips, be patient and hopefully, you will be able to get your prospect’s attention

Posted by Carl Gould on February 08, 2017
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Modern customers are more educated, demanding and knowledgeable than ever before. On top of that, they simply ignore casual visits, small chats, and suggestions that appear to be random. The majority of people today are using the Internet and other sources to perform research before buying a service or product. So, we can freely say that it is not difficult to find out where you can locate prospects, but capturing their attention can be quite a challenge.  We should not forget that the competition today is fierce and you have to keep on fighting for prospect’s attention even if you are running a successful business. The good news is that there is more than one way to capture their attention.

First and foremost, you should try to answer all their questions. Even if you have used the Internet, especially online forums, to find a solution for some of your problems (for instance, problems with your facial skin), you have probably seen that many people had the same issue like you but didn’t get accurate answers. Now, think about your reputation among them in case you were able to provide a straightforward answer. In addition, imagine a situation in which you could answer all the questions on these online forums. You could establish yourself as an authority and have an impact on these people. The same goes for people running traditional businesses. The learning process related to your industry should never stop and no matter where your focus is placed, you should always be upgrading your knowledge.

Next, it is a good idea to over-deliver by letting them learn more about some crucial concept. This means that you should not only provide an answer to their question (problem) but also help them stay safe in the future. This added value will grab their attention and provide you an opportunity for free marketing. People will start referring your business to their friends and family.

Another great advice is to put yourself in the shoes of your prospects. In other words, highlight only the things that are important in the eyes of your prospect. What will make them show interest in your offer is to hear what makes you different than the others and what they can expect from your services or products. That’s everything they want to know, there is no need for chit chats and presentation of unnecessary information.

It is also very important not to give up after one attempt. Ever experienced business person and marketer will tell you that it usually takes more than one email or call to get your prospect’s attention. In some case, you will need more than five contacts to trigger some action on their side. Don’t forget that you can use some other methods of communication like direct mail for example. The same goes for phone calls which may sound a little bit outdated, but the fact is that this gives a human touch to the communication.

Follow these tips, be patient and hopefully, you will be able to get your prospect’s attention.

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Millennials may not have all the experience that their parents have but…

Posted by Carl Gould on January 11, 2017
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Entrepreneur Millennials

Millennials may not have all the experience that their parents have, but they have already figured out that traditional career options are no longer safe (or exciting). This is the reason why more and more of them are thinking of becoming creators of their own future by getting involved in business activities. The good news is that technology and the current state of the market have made this task much simpler than before. Thousands of millennials are becoming entrepreneurs every year. They have realized that entrepreneurship brings many benefits that are especially important to this generation – like the opportunity to become your own boss, the flexibility, the chance to become someone, to earn more and many other benefits. But, let’s be clear – being an entrepreneur is not always a smooth sail and a high percentage of startups cease to exist after a year or two. This is the reason why every millennial should stick to some tips and advice that can help them succeed.

Keep learning

Many millennials believe that they have figured out everything. Being self-confident is an excellent thing, but being overly confident can create more harm than good and this is exactly why many millennials fail as entrepreneurs. Keep in mind that even if you have finished college, this doesn’t mean that your time for learning new things has stopped. You need to be prepared to learn new things all the time and you need to do this fast because the things are changing. Luckily, we have access to the Internet and we have computers and mobile devices close to us. Some statistics shows that more than 90% of millennials use their smartphones to access the Internet almost on a daily basis. (1) This is a simple way to stay in touch with the latest news and trends and to learn new things.

Networking

Some people say that millennials are a little bit selfish and alienated from their peers. We know that it is hard to tell whether this claim is true or not, but one thing is for sure – entrepreneur millennials must be prepared to create new connections, use and strengthen their existing connections and learn how to communicate in the right way. Once again, you can use the latest technology to speed up this process. There are specialized social media networks like LinkedIn that can help you a lot. (2) In addition, you should also attend events, trade fairs and other special occasions where you can meet new people and potential partners/clients.

Effectiveness and efficiency can exist together

This is a common dilemma between millennial entrepreneurs – should they focus on effectiveness or efficiency. The truth is that these things can (and should) exist together. We all need extra time, but we should also remember that the most efficient way is not always the most effective way of finishing things.

Finally, don’t forget that as a millennial entrepreneur, you should always stay eager and curious. Keep creating, keep introducing innovations and keep learning and you will succeed!

(1)    http://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/2015/10/29/smartphones-saturation-millennials-pew-research/74805506/

(2)    http://www.adweek.com/socialtimes/millennials-on-linkedin-infographic/639859

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Ways to Improve Customer Experience

Posted by Carl Gould on October 22, 2016
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Delivering a great experience to your customers can lead to the creation of a base of loyal customers, increase the number of word-of-mouth referrals and boost your brand’s reputation. It is crucial to understand that modern customers are not interested in good customer experience, they want great customer experience and if your business is not able to provide this, then they will look for products and/or services elsewhere. So, every business owner must find a way to ensure their customers that they are getting the service and quality they deserve and even more. Luckily, there are a few ways to improve customer experience and most of them are simple and provide results fast.

First of all, you should not ignore the effects of simple conversations with your customers. In other words, it is always a good idea to talk to customers and ask them what exactly they need. Look for advice and see what your business can do to improve customer experience. Even if their suggestions are not very effective, you will get a chance to establish a relationship and this is what matters the most. People want to give their opinion and they are glad when someone is listening.

Another thing that you can do is to make sure that the customer experience is scalable. You must create a customer experience that is stable, simple and consistent. In addition, every employee must implement this experience. If you identify the main elements that should be delivered to each customer then you can tell your employees what they should do.

Furthermore, if you are looking for a simple way to improve customer experience you should define the outlook of your customer service. It will take just a few hours for you to design a mission statement or even a pamphlet on how you expect your employees to treat and deal with customers. In this way, your employees will be able to understand your concept even if it’s a little bit complex. When they have this statement in mind they will know what their goal is, whenever they are interacting with customers.

It is also a smart move to create a short list of most common challenges your clients face. For instance, in case you have a wedding venue, your clients may need catering services or additional staff from time to time. By finding solutions for these issues beforehand you will be able to respond fast and improve customer experience.

Even though there are different ways to evaluate customer experience, the best idea is to leave your customers to provide feedback. For example, you can leave online feedback forms on your website or use comment cards. In this way, you will learn which areas of your service are strong and which ones need changes and improvement.

Finally, don’t forget the employees’ motivation. They need to be motivated when dealing with clients and customers. Throw work parties after successfully closed deals, provide prizes and find other ways to keep them motivated all the time.

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A Few Things You Should Know To Grow Your Business

Posted by Carl Gould on August 10, 2016
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Are you in a situation where your business is not making any progress despite your efforts? Welcome to the club. There are many business owners who cannot find a way to expand and grow their businesses and one of the main reasons for this is the fact that sales and marketing strategies that work are effective only at some point. So, even if you have realistic and well-planned long-term goals, you will need to alter your short-term approach because the business world is developing and changing all the time and you must follow these changes. The following is a short list of things that business owner should know in order to expand and grow their businesses.

Be proactive when it comes to marketing

Many business owners make the same mistake. They pay for advertisement and sit by their phone or check their emails to see the results. This is not how modern business works. You must be proactive and reach your customers even before they reach you. The good news is that business owners can use the Internet now to improve their communication with existing and potential clients and customers. In case you want to grow your business, you must be proactive.

Analyze the figures

You can’t expect to expand your business in case you don’t the number related to your business activities at the moment. Of course, you’ll need to check historical records and compare things too. You will be surprised to learn how much money you are wasting on marketing campaigns that are not providing effects. This is especially useful for companies that have tight budgets. Business owners should also identify the areas where they are strong and their weaknesses too.

Use modern technology

According to some surveys, two out of three business owners claim that they could’ve used modern technology in a better way to grow their businesses. So, it is crucial to identify the needs of your business and look for a technological solution that can meet these needs and requirements. The good news is that modern technology is becoming cheaper. On the other hand, if you are still not using modern technology, there is a great chance that your competitors will take advantage of this situation.

Never express your doubts

Let’s be clear, there are times when the situation is complicated and serious. Even small business owners are not spared from these situations, but this doesn’t mean that they should stop making plans for the growth of their business. On the contrary, this is the time when they should position themselves as leaders and motivate their employees. No one wants to invest and to work with a company with an owner that looks like they have lost their confidence.

Acknowledge the fact that you can’t handle everything

Instead of taking care of marketing, sales, bookkeeping, and other business activities, focus on the managing aspect of your work. If you want to grow your business, you must acknowledge the fact that you will need help from other professionals. Hire enthusiastic people that share your vision and values.

Carl Gould is a business strategist, and growth expert. He has written 5 books in the area of creating business success, and is the co-host of the weekly radio program, ‘Quit and Get Rich’ (www.gteamradio.com). Carl and his team of experts advise companies and organizations to grow to the next level. What is the next level for you?

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Making good financial decisions

Posted by Carl Gould on August 10, 2016
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Unfortunately, a huge number of Americans make poor financial decisions which lead to bad credit scores. According to some studies, more than half of Americans have poor credit scores. (1) What is even worse is that in many cases they are not aware when they made those bad decisions, even though many of them have some doubts. The bad credit scores that we are witnessing today in many cases are just mirroring the misconceptions about how credit functions.

In order to make good financial decisions, you must be sure how credit works. In this article, we will discuss some of the things that will help you learn more about this subject and how to make sound and effective financial decisions.

Be careful with the debt

While having a debt is a normal thing, this doesn’t mean that you can get very far in debt without feeling the consequences. According to many experts, the credit card debt should not exceed your 3-month income. So, if you are making about $3,000 a month, then your credit card debt should not go over $9000. If you’ve got a big mortgage and you must make several car payments you will certainly want to reduce your credit card debt. Maintaining this debt under 30% is the best option. Of course, if you are debt-free that’s even better.

Making payments in a timely manner

We can all agree that it is more reasonable to pay everything you charged through your credit card completely instead of carrying the balance. The truth is that credits come with interest rates that start at 6% and end at over 20%. This means that people will have to pay a lot for everything they carry a balance on. In case you purchase anything with your credit card, try to pay this amount completely at the end of the month. Dinners out, gasoline, groceries – these are some of the things that we are buying with credit cards and forget to pay them in full at the end of the month. Carrying this debt as a balance is a poor financial decision.

Paying car loans and mortgage in a timely manner

Last year, the total auto loan debt in America has reached almost 890 billion dollars. (2) One of the main reasons for that is the fact that many people are not paying their loans on time. In case you want to reduce your payments, you should review the credit cards first. Experts agree that it is a better idea to pay the interest than to avoid payment. Your credit score will be at risk if you don’t pay these things in a timely manner.

Cutting the debt

Come up with a reasonable budget. This budget should let you live a normal life and help you cut the debt at the same time. Keeping a money diary can be very helpful. When you analyze where your money is going, you will be able to reduce the expenses. The money you save should be used to reduce the debt.

Making good financial decisions is not difficult, you just need to follow these tips and be disciplined.

Carl Gould is a business strategist, and growth expert. He has written 5 books in the area of creating business success, and is the co-host of the weekly radio program, ‘Quit and Get Rich’ (www.gteamradio.com). Carl and his team of experts advise companies and organizations to grow to the next level. What is the next level for you?

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Want success in seven steps? This guy wrote the book

Posted by Carl Gould on June 29, 2016
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Click Here to Read this Article.

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Some Guerilla Marketing Techniques for Your Small Enterprise

Posted by Carl Gould on May 17, 2016
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Guerilla marketing is not an animal it’s a technique used to create a buzz in the market using all powerful methods of advertising. It’s the most creative and amazing marketing tool to help relieve the susceptible audiences from trap of high cost advertising and brands. Guerilla marketing is known for generating effective results within budgets using standardized concepts and marketing methods. If you’re an emerging business and the one, certain guerilla marketing strategies will be of great help to color your entrepreneurship with success.

Stay Pleasing

Start promoting your product using social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. Invite your friends and family to like your page and then use those numbers as leverage to gain some credibility with outsiders. Tweet and follow people whom you think are the right consumer for your business keeping your conversations pleasing yet enticing. Reach out to media by posting many colorful statuses and   videos of your business/workplace. This will help identity you and brand in the market.

Grab Attention

Go for offline advertising methods. Rent a projector and a wall projecting massive branded videos of your product/services to grab audience’s attention. You can too utilize street walls for pasting stickers and posters and display your commercial existence in the market.

Amaze By Moves

Ask for help from a renowned dancing or musical band to promote your product. Here, the dancers will wear t-shirts with your company’s logo during their performances. It could be more like opting for a road show and make it amazingly gripping.

Target Admirers

Though this one sounds like an out of the box thing for an emerging business kind but if you could just spend a little money on cinema and advertising can help expand your business. Your product will be advertised in a movie to reach out to the audiences. Basically, when people watch a movie they somewhere associate themselves with their favorite character and try adopting his/her behavior and utility of products they incline buying that product no matter if they like it or not. This type of guerilla marketing is more useful than mere TV advertisements as it has an indirect appeal on consumers being movie viewers and not ad viewers.

Use powerful and most intriguing ways of guerilla marketing mixing along branding and other technical tools for rigorous outputs. Take help of The 7 Stages best business coach for your small business today. Visit http://the7stages.com/ for more details.

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