Daily Business Mentor Tip – Your business owes you a break

Your business owes you big time.  For all your hard work.  For the years it hasn’t paid you enough.  For the stress it brings you.  For the times it’s kept you away from your loved ones.  For the extra wrinkles and the few kilos you’ve gained from not having time to go to the gym!   Oh yes, it owes you big time.   And now is the time to cash in that IOU.  Only 4 sleeps until Christmas Day.  It’s nearly time to take a well deserved break.  You MUST take a holiday.  You are not good to anyone if you are tired, stressed and physically and emotionally exhausted.  Rest up large over the holidays.  You owe it to yourself and your business owes it to you.

From the desk of liber8yourbusiness.  Small business mentors and experts in exit strategies.  Based in Wellington, New Zealand

Daily Business Mentor Tip – It is not financial science

Anita Roddick has long since been one of my all time business heros (heroine in her case).  I love this quote I found from her:

“Nobody talks about entrepreneurship as survival, but that’s exactly what it is and what nurtures creative thinking. Running that first shop taught me business is not financial science; it’s about trading: buying and selling”.

The most amazing business woman and contributer to our planet, so sad she passed away so young.  Thanks for your gift Anita!

 From the desk of liber8yourbusiness.  Small business mentors and experts in exit strategies.  Based in Wellington, New Zealand.

Daily Business Mentor Tip – Tomorrow is another day

Being a business owner can suck sometimes.  The stress of being all things to all people, wanting everything to be perfect and feeling like you are the only one who can fix it all… this will make you feel like throwing it all in sometimes.  There have been times in my business career when I have been envious of the check out girl at the supermarket because at the end of her shift she gets to go home and forget it all.  As business owners we bring our business worries everywhere with us.

But here’s the tip of the year… it always works out in the end.  I learned this the hard way after nearly driving myself into a nervous breakdown with one of my businesses.  Whatever happens, you do survive it and in most cases the worst case scenario never happens.  Take a deep breath, let it go and if you are feeling really, really stressed about something… don’t do anything until the next day.  Tomorrow always shows the brighter side of things.

Polyanna signing out!

From the desk of liber8yourbusiness.  Small business mentors and experts in exit strategies.  Based in Wellington, New Zealand.

Daily Business Mentor Tip – Be a winner

If you think you might want to sell your business one day (and you should be thinking this way unless you plan to run it from your mobility scooter!), then you need to make sure your potential buyers notice you.  The best way to do this is to get talked about.  And the best way to make this happen is to do things worth talking about.  Entering Awards (and winning) is one of my favourite ways to get noticed.  People love winners!  Just before I sold my advertising agency Red Rocks we had won Agency of the Year and I was a finalist for Agency CEO of the year.  Guess who noticed and came knocking at my door?  That’s right… my buyer.

Exercise for today… find at least 3 awards you could enter your business into next year.

From the desk of liber8yourbusiness.  Small business mentors and experts in exit strategies.  Based in Wellington, New Zealand

Daily Business Mentor tip – Zig while the others zag

What did Richard Branson do that worked for him?  The key thing is that he did the opposite to whatever the big guys were doing.  If they were over charging and under delivering, he found ways to reduce prices and improve experience. If they all seemed to be doing things the same way, with brand messages saying the same thing… he did things differently and built a brand renowned for being the maverick.

His approach worked because he saw what could be done better… and did it.  And made sure he told people about it.  He appealed to people’s sense of what is fair and turned a brand into an empire.

You can do the same.  Exactly the same.  Just think about it…. how could you zig while your competitors zag?

From the desk of liber8yourbusiness.  Small business mentors and experts in exit strategies.  Based in Wellington, New Zealand.

Social media article 1.The benefits of using Facebook and Twitter

The following the first in a series of articles written by talented young friend of mine, Eva-Maria, who has a company making great waves in the social media world:

Benefits of Using Facebook & Twitter

Time and time again, business courses, workshops, general media and people are going on about using Social Media for business.
People are pretty much sold on the benefits of it, but are still unsure – what is my ROI? What will I get out of it? How do I know this is beneficial for my business?

Simply speaking, Social Media is merely another platform for your brand to be seen by the public. Just like newspaper and TV advertising, Social Media is a medium for promoting what you do, and letting people know of the benefits you can bring their current situation.

At the same time, Social Media also doubles as a networking tool. Think about how much time you currently spend talking on the phone, replying to e-mails, networking at events, and any other ways you use to socialize and network for your personal and business use. To really make Social Media work for you, you’d need to invest the same amount of time you currently spend networking, and do it through social networks.

Social Media gives people the opportunity to combine marketing strategies with networking into one. The nature of Social Networking helps you network, and when coupled with basic marketing principals, it can fully succeed no matter what way you need it to. The way to market on Social Media is to spend time on there. Unlike setting up a billboard and have it bring value to each person who sees it, you need to bring that value with individual comments, joining in with discussions, being forward enough to introduce yourself to potential clients, and bringing value by sharing links to articles, products and services you recommend.

So what ARE the benefits of using Social Networking Sites like Twitter and Facebook?

Engage with your target market. Through the power of Social Media, it’s all about the amount and quality of content you produce and share with your target audience. The relevance to your audience and value you produce makes sure you are positioned to be as much of an expert in your field as your words portray. The amount of content you produce gives you the advantage to make sure your audience never forget about you, but also as we all know, we all have our own lives and people just aren’t sitting at their computer waiting for your next update, so you need to make sure you catch them when they finally do get round to logging onto their social networks. So that’s where the repetition and amount of time you keep putting yourself out there will amount to valuable engagement with your target market.

Getting straight feedback. Sure it may sometimes be from the general public, but it’s very valuable information for you to obtain about how others perceive your services and benefits of doing business with you through the internet.

Instantly reaching out to your potential clients. The beauty of the internet is that the entire world, news, advice and events can be uploaded and circulated instantly. As soon as you have any new press releases, or content to share, upload it! The benefit of the internet is that it has the power to update the world about events as they happen. Once something happens and you wait until tomorrow morning to report on it, chances are it won’t be as current or someone else would have taken the space of being ‘the first reporter’ of the happenings.

Get the inside scoop about your industry. Social Media is public. And that can be a good thing. This means you can find out valuable information about your competitors, and any current events or news happening within your industry. This can also be a great opportunity to tie in popular current events with the relevance of your work. A friend of mine races Suzuki Swifts, and he loves the singer Taylor Swift, so he called his car ‘Taylor The Swift’ and made a Facebook Fan Page for it. So when the big mishap happened at the Music Awards when Kanye West interrupted Taylor Swift’s acceptance speech, everyone around the world of all ages were talking about how unfair this was on Taylor, people were searching the internet for the video clips, opinions, forums and pages about this event. Coincidentally, although for most people a race car driver wasn’t going to be of interest, because of the amounts of people searching the name ‘Taylor Swift’ guided their Google searches to my friend’s ‘Taylor the Swift’ Facebook Page. Almost overnight, his Fan page grew from about 100 of his friends and fans to about 700 fans. That’s a 600% increase! How would you like to increase your target, pin-pointed audience online by 600%?

Raise awareness of your brand. Through your involvement in Social Media, you have the power to not only connect and engage your target audience, but by doing so, you will also be raising the awareness of your brand. Of course we can’t all be McDonald’s with the yellow arches, but we can certainly try become the expert in our industry through the value of our content we produce and share with our online audience. Just make sure you’re including your website, logo, and anything else that will give your brand association with your name online, so when people say ‘Eva-Maria’ online now, if they are within my target audience and don’t necessarily know my name, they will at least be able to identify with my bestselling book’s title ‘You Shut Up!’ because I always make sure I’m consistent with my subject, brand and content.

Promote your Content. Once you write anything – a press release, article, blog post or update on your life, use your social networks to update the rest of the world. By keeping in constant touch with people online, you’re ultimately building awareness of your being, expertise and important-ness online.

What would it take to convince you to get onto those Social Networks?

Eva-Maria is a 21 year old family coach, international speaker, social media consultant and author of the bestselling parenting book ‘You Shut Up!’.

Her involvement in Social Media revolves around consulting and training organisations about using Social Media. Eva-Maria’s business Social-e-Media employs young people from around the world to help businesses in New Zealand build and execute and implement Social Media strategy, providing the perfect win-win solution between generations to help each other create and achieve mutual value.

Daily Business Mentor Tip – Above everything else – maintain your values!

http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/business/6118873/Little-School-a-big-idea I borrowed this tip from Maria Johnson of Little Schools, winner of the Supreme Regional Business Woman of the Year award recently. See the interview with Maria in today’s Dom Post. Her final tip for budding entrepreneurs… above everything else – maintain your values.

Your values are what ultimately defines your brand, which in turn defines your business. Be clear what you stand for and how this manifests in your business. I have strong personal values of self-responsibility and integrity and these permeate the culture of every business I am involved with.

Exercise for today…. think about your personal values and how they can infiltrate your business and your brand.

From the desk of liber8yourbusiness. Small business mentors and experts in exit strategies. Based in Wellington New Zealand.

Daily Business Mentor Tip – Create a wall of fame

I’d like to credit Mike Brunel for this tip.  Mike lead the seminar on sales in the liber8yourbusiness online seminar programme.   Director of NRS Media (www.nrsmedia.com) and founder of Talking Media Sales, the blog and website for media salespeople www.talkingmediasales.com Mike  is a sales guru from way back.  He’s also a great teacher.  Here’s just one of the 17 sales tips in his liber8yourbusiness Seminar, Sales 101.

Identify the attributes of your ideal client (use your most favourite current client as your example).  Then make a list of all the clients in your industry who match this profile.  Write these names on post its or on a white board…. make ‘Your Wall of Fame”.  Make sure its visable to the people involved in sales in your company Then set a goal with your team to turn these names into clients.

In future tips I’ll give you some strategies to help you convert prospects into clients.

From the desk of liber8yourbusiness.  Small business mentors and experts in exit strategies.  Wellington, New Zealand

Daily Business Mentor Tip – Be willing to be wealthy

One thing that very successful business people have in common is that they’re wealth positive not money negative. By this I mean that they see wealth as a good thing and do not believe to have money is to be greedy.  They are not frightened to build a business that makes them phenomenally wealthy.  Are you?  Or are you really saying to yourself that you are not in it for the money?  Do you believe you can be successful in business if you are not in it for the money at some level?  Business is about delivering a return on investment to its shareholders (that’s you by the way).  As a Director of your company, you have a fiduciary duty to deliver financial return to yourself as a shareholder.  With your shareholder’s hat on it, how would you feel about a CEO who said to the Board that he wasn’t in it to make money?

From the desk of liber8yourbusiness.  Small business mentors and experts in exit strategies.  Wellington, New Zealand