Biz Tips

Tips are short ideas designed to give your business a boost. On this Biz Briefs page you'll find things to think about, new ideas to try, quick techniques to help you think more powerfully. Think about them, try them out ... if they work for you, put them in your personal tool kit, and share them with others. If they don't seem to apply to your situation now, keep them for later. Sometimes, ideas that aren’t the answer for one situation will work in another or at a later date. Watch this page for regular updates
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BIZ TIP OF THE WEEK:

Four important C’s of Business ,submitted by Heidi Prince, Business Consultant
1. Compliment – When you have received good service or product, it's to everyone’s benefit when you give a compliment. So few people hear a sincere Thank you” these days, that yours will be remembered
2. Complain – It is also to everyone’s benefit when you pass on a complaint when service or product is bad. The complaint needs to go to the top management or owner for best receptivity. Successful companies listen and respond, especially to complaints that are written with facts not rather than emotions.. If they don’t know it’s broke they can’t fix it.
3. Continue – When you hear a compliment on your product or service, continue doing what it was that earned you the praise.
4. Correct – Companies that succeed, learn to correct the problems that cause unsatisfied customers.

More Tips:

TOPICS:
Advertising
Business Planning
Customer Service
E-Mail Etiquette
Financial
Home Based Business
Image
Insurance
International Business
Law
Marketing
Organizing
Problem Solving
Sales
Say Thank You
Time Management
Venture Capital

Advertising

Improve the response to your advertising, by Kindra Deloit, Advertising Consultant
Quiz: Which headline has the most appeal?
(a) "Request Terry Hanmper’s new FREE vitamin samples"
Or
(b) "I love Terry Hanmper’s new FREE vitamin samples -- you will, too!"
Most people would choose (b).
You'll usually get higher response from an ad with a personal endorsement. Try it!

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Business Planning

Two reasons to write your business plan:
1. 85% of the businesses that do not take the time to plan their businesses will fail.
Of those that do take the time to write their plan, 85% will succeed.
2. 40% of businesses with a strategic plan will double their business within two years of writing their plan. Greater than 70% will exceed their own expectations within the next 5 years. Wishing you continued success. By Sumner Davenport, Small Business Consultant


Analyze Failure, provided by Mark Tinyer, Research Statistician

A “failure” can be a good thing. If a project flops, take time to analyze before moving on. Rather than assigning blame, re-examine the failure. Determine it’s cause. Was it insufficient planning? Was it poor timing? Was it insufficient research? Was it insufficient resources? Was it erroneous data?
Don’t let yourself jump to conclusions. Allow yourself to get all the facts , so you can make a well-founded decision on the actual outcome of the project. You may find some efforts in your project were useful or correct, however, most of all, with proper analysis, you will gain a valuable learning experience.

Question Advice, by Sumner Davenport, Solutions Consultant
Many entrepreneurs get caught in a trap of taking advice that doesn’t serve their business in the best way. When seeking advice for your business consider the following:
Be aware of people who have something to gain from their advice. As example, a website designer working with one specific hosting company will only give design advice relating to that one company; a corporate attorney will almost always suggest you incorporate (hence the name corporate attorney); An enrolled agent accountant, a CPA and a Tax attorney may all three give you different advice on a tax matter; a newspaper representative will tell you that their newspaper advertising is the best. Who’s right? Perhaps they all are. You only know if advice is right for you when you ask the important question – WHY?

In having someone explain their advice and why they think it applies to your business, will you gain the information you need in order to make an intelligent decision.

Wishing you continued success.

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Customer Service

Four important C’s of Business ,submitted by Heidi Prince, Business Consultant
1. Compliment – When you have received good service or product, it s to everyone’s benefit when you give a compliment. So few people hear a sincere Thank you” these days, that yours will be remembered
2. Complain – It is also to everyone’s benefit when you pass on a complaint when service or product is bad. The complaint needs to go to the top management or owner for best receptivity. Successful companies listen and respond. If they don’t know it’s broke they can’t fix it.
3. Continue – When you hear a compliment on your product or service, continue doing what earned the praise.
4. Correct – Companies that succeed, learn to correct the problems that cause unsatisfied customers.


Respond Quickly, by Joann Chevron, Customer Service Consultant

No one likes to feel ignored – especially customers.
When a customer calls, send you a letter or email, your best response is the quickest. The best rule is to return all messages and respond to letters within the same day.
Most people want to know their communication was received and acknowledged. The answer to their question or solution to their problem is secondary. Take time to respond to your customers initial contact, even if the answer needs to be: ”I’ll get back to you with the full information/solution”. Quick response to their initial communication, will prevent additional upsets, and many times give you the time you need to gather your information for complete response.



Take Care of Your Customers, by Monica Fryer, Customer Service Consultant

But only if you want more.
Too many people make the mistake of ignoring their customer when a problem occurs and a complaint arises. Many independent salespeople erroneously feel the customer can deal with the company themselves. If that is true, then why do they need you?
Customers remember how you come through in service, long after the sale was made. When you respond quickly to a customer complaint or problem, and get involved to find the solution They will remember you with more business and referrals. Ignoring a customer not only loses that customer, but everyone they know.
How do you want to grow your business? With satisfied customers sending referrals or always struggling to overcome a reputation for bad service?

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E-mail Etiquette

When sending business emails, remember to put your business signature on the bottom of your email. You should have your company name, web address, and phone number at the bottom of every email, so your recipient can contact you easily

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Financial

Be Wary of Paying Taxes with Credit Cards, By Tricia Biner, Tax Attorney

You will have more chances next year to use your credit card to pay your taxes. But before you take Uncle Sam up on his offer, be aware that there are hidden costs that can make this very expensive for you. In 2000The IRS began accepting American Express, Discover and MasterCard for tax returns with a balance due. You are also allowed to use credit cards to pay estimated tax balances and projected balances on automatic extension requests. If you are planning to use your credit card, it will cost about 2.4% of the balance due. So you might want to re-consider if this is the most economical method for you to use, especially if you have a large tax bill. Plus, consider the additional credit card charges if you don’t pay off the balance each month. The law requires that private firms handle the collections, so the IRS may not be totally up front about these fees when accepting your credit cards for payment. Best solution – discuss it with your Accountant and chose the best and most financially efficient method for your needs


Little known secret on how to get your loan approved
Before filling out that loan application get a copy of your credit report. Clear up any errors and correct any questionable or negative accounts. If you've been turned down for a loan because of your credit report, you can obtain a free copy within 30 days of being denied credit.



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Home Based Business

Even the best workers may find it hard to cope with the distractions of working from home -- television, kids, food, pets, etc. Tell participants, in advance, how their work will be measured and evaluated. Then you'll need to find the right balance -- making sure they get the work done, without breathing down their necks.

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Image

7 Seconds, by Bunny Vreeland, Certified Professional Image Consultant; Registered Certified Hypnotherapist

The Impact we make on each other depends:
55% on how we look and behave.
38% on how we speak.
7% on what we say.
Quote from Silent Messages Professor Albert Mehrabian

Others judge us within the first 7 seconds. They decide on our background, education, socio-economic status, if they like us, want to do business with us or socialize with us and all based on 7 seconds! No, it isn’t fair, but it is true. Today’s concern with appearance is at an all time high. Here are three main reasons;
1. We have increased mobility. Most of us move or change jobs more frequently than out parents did and, as a result, we are continually having to re-establish our identities with new people in new environments.
2. The impact of the media. Television, especially, has had a profound impact on our ability to form judgments in all things visual.
3. The changing role of woman. Where women once had a more stereotypical role, their lives are becoming more and more diverse. Advice and role models abound. Women have many more choices to act on then they ever have.


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