Archives for August 2010

Blogging: It’s not so simple when it’s for a business

blogging

No matter what kind of a business you have or how small or large your business might be, having a blog for your business helps you stay in touch with your customers.

A blog will draw your prospects closer because they can learn about your business and what you sell. Blogs help build customer loyalty, and they also help you create a personal relationship with your customers.

But that’s where things get a little tricky.

Because you’re writing directly to your customers and letting them have a conversation with you, while doing it in a way that markets your business, you can’t follow the same rules that apply to people who have personal blogs.

You need to be careful about the advice you follow on “how to blog” because that information isn’t always applicable to business blogging. Most of it is written by people and for people with personal blogs – they have much more leniency about what they post and how they post it.

If you’re here to do business, then you’ll have to blog a little differently.

For example, many bloggers tell heartfelt, personal stories infused with emotion, but that’s not going to work for you if you’re looking to improve your bottom line. You can’t write your opinion on controversial topics or vent in a rant on a matter that made you angry. You might end up hurting your sales if you did.

You also have to be careful about how much personality you pour into posts. Some bloggers curse like sailors or fling sassy remarks about, and that works for them because they’re not running a mid-sized business or a large corporation. Imagine if the CEO of Nike began swearing avidly on his website! Would that make you want to buy some running shoes? Probably not.

The point is when you own a business blog, you can’t play by the same rules as other bloggers do. You have to be more careful about presenting your words in a way that leaves a good impression with customers and potential clients and that helps you use your blog to market your business.

Here are some tips to help you do just that:  [click to continue…]

Little Tricks to Get More Customers Smiling

smile

It always surprises me to hear that so few business people implement strategies to make their customers feel good. I know that trying to keep customers happy is a generally unspoken rule when you’re in business. Indeed, satisfied clients are usually the goal.

But do you actually implement best practices to get customers smiling?

Here’s a good reason to work on making customers smile more. When Harris Interactive conducted a poll a few years ago, 88% of people felt that good customer service beat out hot deals and offers. That’s a nearly unanimous statistic, and I’m pretty positive that you’d get the same result if you were you to ask people the same question today.

Plus, it just makes logical sense: smiling customers make for successful businesses.

Let’s look at twelve very easy tactics you can implement starting right now to make your customers smile.

Little trick #1: Smile warmly

You’d be surprised at how much of a difference a smile can make whether you are reassuring a customer he or she is making a good choice or trying to defuse a sticky situation. A smile shows that you’re calm, in a good mood, and willing to do what you can.

Little trick #2: Bring smiles into your phone conversations

You may not realize how much the tone of your voice changes when you smile, but it’s actually very noticeable – people can hear smiles even if they can’t see them. If you rarely talk on the phone, use emoticons in emails and text messages. Some people say that emoticons aren’t very professional, but one well-placed “smiley” takes the tone of the text to a whole new level.  [click to continue…]

7 Business Principles That You Have to Follow

business principles

Principle #1: Take fewer risks as you get older

When you are young, you should be doubling down because you don’t have much to lose. If you are in your early 20s or 30s, you probably don’t have as many commitments as people in their 40s or 50s do.

If you are in your late teens or early 20s, you can probably live with your parents, avoid bills and focus on going to school, and/or building a business. During this period in your life, you should be placing as many bets as possible and doubling down when you see fit.

When you get older, you have more financial responsibilities such as a family to support and a mortgage to pay. So, you shouldn’t make as many risky bets as in your younger years because if things go south, they will affect more than just your life.  [click to continue…]