Tag Archive: internet

Networking Your Business Locally

Networking Your Business Locally
Networking Your Business Locally. Owning your own business of any type is going to require some amount of networking. Networking is a method of building awareness of your business, among people who may be likely at one time or another to use your products, your services or to refer someone else to your business. Networking is all about getting to know other people, and locally your best bet in finding additional network contacts is going to be with other business owners.

You can find many types of networking opportunities around you. Every club and every association that you belong too is going to be a part of your network. From there, every person you come into contact with and every person you talk with is going to be part of your network. Networking Your Business Locally

Make a lasting impression
You can make a lasting impression on the people that you meet by talking about what you know best, and by talking about topics that are vital to your business. If you are not sure about a topic that is being approached during a conversation, ask questions. This will show you are part of the conversation and that you still want to know more. Just listening is going to keep you out of the conversation and will not make a lasting impression of you on any one.

Make your voice known
Join local chambers of commerce; join local men and women’s associations. Join the local PTA, the sports boards, and join clubs that interest you. If you don’t find a club locally that does interest you, create one and build your local network from that point. The more people that you can put yourself into contact with is going to increase awareness of yourself, of your business and what you have to offer. Even if you are selling online, you have to be proud of what you are doing, and talk about it as often as possible to build a network of people that will call on you when they need your products or services.

Once you have built a good network it is important that you maintain and set goals for yourself. As you have set goals, you need to keep them. This means, that if you strive to meet one new person a week, or to make it a point to call one person you know each week that is not a current customer, you are going to increase your business. Think about this, for every five calls you make, and only one turns into a sale, that is one more sale than what you had. Increase exposure for your business, and use this for your personal success. Networking Your Business Locally

How Entrepreneurs Make Millions

How Entrepreneurs Make Millions
There are three basic ways of earning money which include trading time for money, trading money for money and trading expertise/value for money.

Society and the formal education system promote the first method of earning money which involves trading time for money.  In other words, you work for someone else for a specific amount of time and then they pay you.  Working for someone else drains your energy and you don’t make much money.

The second way to earn money is utilized by a small portion of the population and involves trading money for money.  In other words, you are earning money through investing.  Investing can be risky because if you lack additional funds then how can you invest any money in the first place?  Therefore, many people can’t even try this option because they only have enough money to pay their bills.

The third way to earn money is the best option.  This entrepreneurial option involves trading expertise/value for money.  This is the strategy of entrepreneurial experts.  You have a flexible schedule, work less, and earn more.  You can make thousands of dollars a day in this option.

In order to earn money through trading expertise/value for money you need to first figure out who you are and what you can give to others.  What information do you know that could help others?  You can find value from previous work experience or even from your hobbies.  From this you can create your intellectual property.

What is Intellectual property?  How big is the market for Intellectual property?  Is there room for you in the Intellectual property market?  These may be a few of the questions you have when you are investigating the information marketing business.  First of all, anyone can create intellectual property.  You don’t need to be a Rocket Scientist.  You just need to have an area or expertise, or access to an expert, and a drive to succeed.

Intellectual property combines e-commerce and book publishing.  For example, you can write and sell an eBook.  Recent research has found that approximately 6 out of every 10 American adults surf the Internet on a daily basis seeking out entertainment, education, and to shop for products.  People are more comfortable buying online then in the past.  The market through the Internet is global and encompasses millions of people.  Therefore, the information marketing business has room for everyone!

When you market on the Internet, you market to your niche.  Therefore, you don’t have to worry whether or not your neighbor will want to buy your product.  The Internet opens the niche market for you.

If creating and selling intellectual property on the Internet is so simple, why isn’t everyone doing this?  The formal educational system and previous societal beliefs are to blame.  In school, we are taught to finish school and then become an employee at a company.  The entrepreneurial spirit is not promoted; in fact it is almost shunned.

Don’t let societal beliefs stop you.  The intellectual property market is wide, diverse, and ready to fill your pocket book with cash.

Creating A Small Plan Top Maintain A Down Line with RFS

Creating A Small Plan Top Maintain A Down Line with RFS
A large part of success in any Network Marketing venture is understanding and taking advantage of the companies compensation plan.  If the plan is garbage, you may be an expert marketer and still, you will have trouble making money with the company. Too often with network marketing companies you need to develop down lines of thousands of people before you start to see any real turnover.

RFS helps you stop worrying about where you will find thousands of people to convince to join you business by linking up with GRN (Global Resorts Network) and its accompanying compensation plan.  GRN combines a MLM type comp plan with a direct sales type comp plan.  It pays you big on the initial sale, one thousand dollars, but also rewards you for how deep you can grow you organization.

Your front line is totally devoted to you.  You make an addition one thousand dollar commission on every sale that anyone in your front line makes, minus the first person that makes a sale in your front line, they bump up to the guy who brought you in.  You make a thousand of the sale initially but not off any of the sales that this person will ever make.  Don’t worry, this is designed to help you.

Maybe you have fifteen people in your front line after the second month.  That is fifteen thousand dollars you made in the two months.  But now your front line has also been making sales and you pulled another ten thousand from eleven sales made by your front line.  All of the sales by different legs of your front line are people that could potentially become the equivalent of another person in your front line, if they make the first second line sale in that branch.

This works way down the line, rolling people up to you so you can make a thousand off of each sale they make.  This makes educating, training, and motivating your down line very profitable as if can mean tens of thousands of dollars for you over and over again.

Maintain your down line, feed them your successes, teach them your ways.  Get them driving as much or more traffic than you, being in more forums, blogs, articles directories, co-reg lists, co-ops, key words, networking community personalities than you could ever possibly be in yourself and profit.

3 Tips For Choosing A Payment Gateway: Collecting Money Online

3 Tips For Choosing A Payment Gateway: Collecting Money Online

3 Tips For Choosing A Payment Gateway: Collecting Money Online.
As a consumer, when you check out of your local convenience store, you may swipe your credit card through a point-of-sale device and your gas, coffee, and donut are paid. But what if you are the retailer and your business is online? It’s not like you have a card-swiping device at every customer’s PC! There must be a way for you to process that information. Essentially, that is the job that a payment gateway does for online retailers. Roy Banks, president of http://Authorize.net, a leader in the payment gateway industry, describes his company’s function as “the digital version of a hardware point of sale terminal.”

What is a Payment Gateway?
Payment gateways allow online merchants such as eStore owners or auction sellers to accept credit card payments over the internet. They authorize the cardholder’s credit—that is, they check to ensure that the customer has enough money on their credit card to cover the charges. They then place a hold on that amount so the buyer can’t turn around and spend that same money elsewhere before it gets transferred to the retailer’s merchant account. Banks describes this as “the technology…necessary to consummate a payment transaction.”

A Payment Gateway is NOT a Merchant Account.
Many people confuse merchant accounts with payment gateways but they are not the same. Merchant account services act, for the most part, as a liaison between your business bank account and the payment gateway. When a customer orders a product from your online business their card is processed via the payment gateway. The money is then moved over to the merchant account service. The merchant account service then moves those newly captured funds to your business bank account.

3 Tips for choosing a Payment Gateway:

1. Is it PCI-compliant? That means that the company’s security has been audited by a third party and found to be up to industry standards. Since payment gateways store all your customers’ credit card information (sparing you the stress), it also means you can sleep better at night, knowing your customers’ valuable information is safe and sound.

2. Good customer support. ‘Nuf said.

3.Lastly, it is important that the payment gateway you choose be integrated to the third-party solutions you are planning to use. That means things like store front platforms and shopping carts—you want them to be compatible with your gateway.

Payment gateways will not only allow you to collect the monies from your sales, many also offer an array of security features, some of which will help you avoid becoming a victim of fraudulent orders! In the end, they will make your ecommerce business a less-stressful, more pleasant experience—for both you and your customers.

How to Identify and Target Your Top Customers Online

How to Identify and Target Your Top Customers Online. by Cindy Waxer.

Today’s business marketers are under extreme pressure to identify top customers and make smarter business decisions in record time. However, pinpointing a business’s most valuable customers is harder than it sounds.

For starters, there’s more than one way to determine a customer’s worth. According to Mac McIntosh, a B2B marketing consultant and speaker from North Kingstown, Rhode Island, there are three main measures of a top-notch customer:

The amount of revenue a customer generates for a company.
The profit derived from a particular customer.
The customer’s overall satisfaction.

PQ_IdentifyCust.jpgBut the work doesn’t end there. McIntosh warns that while businesses can gain invaluable insights from their best customers, they need to determine the most effective way to reach them or risk offending them.

“You have to be sensitive to when it’s appropriate and when it isn’t appropriate to respond to a customer,” warns McIntosh. “For example, rather than inserting yourself into an online conversation with a customer on Facebook or Twitter, it’s better to write, ‘I’d love to talk more about this offline. Here’s my phone number—please call me.’”

Fortunately, many companies are discovering new ways to identify and cater to the needs of top customers without breaking the bank or landing a restraining order.

Build relationships

Take, for example, Mike Schwarz. Founder of Ribbed Tee, an online provider of men’s quality undershirts, Schwarz points to one of the company’s celebrity clients, a high-profile NFL player. “He buys lots of stuff from us, he’s great, and we love it. But I don’t think he really advocates our company or talks about us,” says Schwarz. “We appreciate the business, of course, but ultimately I look at our top customers as advocates who actively endorse or recommend our product.”

In order to effectively target these customers, Schwarz says he conducts weekly Google searches and participates in online men’s fashion forums to find customers that mention or recommend Ribbed Tee’s products. Next, Schwarz says he tries “to establish a personal relationship with them, ask them for their feedback, and offer them a few sample products of new launches.” After all, he says, “When you create a personal relationship with a customer, it further enhances their support and they’ll continue to recommend your products to other people. Quite frankly, it just grows the business.”

Nevertheless, Schwarz says there’s a fine line between communicating with your target audience and stalking them online. “Participating in a forum is an art—not a science,” he cautions. “You have to be very thoughtful about how you participate. The one thing you definitely never want to do is promote your product. Answer any questions, but never be too marketing-driven when talking about your products.”

Connect via social media

For PetFlow.com, an online pet food store, Facebook is the perfect platform for identifying and targeting top customers. Recently, the popular online pet food company ran a promotion on Facebook that encouraged fans to pick any three items on PetFlow.com for free delivery. “This kind of contest sends a potential customer to our site to browse and find the products they like,” says Alex Zhardanovksy, co-founder of PetFlow.

By doing so, Zhardanovsky says it’s an opportunity to “walk a potential customer through the entire buying experience of an actual customer,” rendering that prospect far more likely to visit PetFlow the next time they require pet food.

But while online promotions can target everyone from upper-echelon clients to mere prospects, Zhardanovsky says, “The best kind of customer you can have is an evangelical customer—someone who’s an influencer in their community. It’s really important for us to keep that customer happy because one happy customer can bring you ten others.”

Technology as a tie that binds

For this reason, Zhardanovsky says PetFlow invests a lot of time and energy in optimizing its auto-replenishment system, which lets customers predetermine how often they wish to receive orders, from once a week to once every four months. Customers can also use the system to make one-time purchases for future deliveries or as gifts purchases for friends and loved ones who have pets.

“A PetFlow customer is someone who has spent money with us,” says Zhardanovsky. “But a top customer is someone who is really happy with his or her experience and would recommend us.”

And in today’s competitive online marketplace, small businesses can ill afford to mislabel or overlook their top customers.

Why Pinterest Should Be of Interest to Small Businesses

Why Pinterest Should Be of Interest to Small Businesses
By Erin McDermott.

Lynn Carlson may have America’s most famous new bathroom.

Last April, she redid the bath in the Fitzgerald Suite of the 1900 Inn on Montford, the Asheville, N.C., bed and breakfast she’s owned with her husband Ron since 1997. They added dazzling glass tile, a two-person jetted airbath tub filled from the ceiling, fiber-optic lighting from above and on the floor, and a thermostatically-controlled shower that rains water and light.

Guests raved about it. Then BedandBreakfast.com posted a photo of it on its Pinterest.com boards.

Since January, that picture has been “re-pinned” some 60,000 times on the Pinterest’s virtual pinboard that lets users “share all the beautiful things.” The website has seemingly come out of nowhere in recent months to now claim more than 11 million users, 80 percent of which are female. Among the pinners’ comments on the Carlsons’ bathroom: “want want want.”

While the thought of a bathroom “going viral” may have sounded unpleasant a few years ago, these days it means business. Though winter is normally their quiet season, the Carlsons have had about a dozen bookings from guests who said they saw them on Pinterest.

Dismissed by some as a “ladies’ Facebook” for crafters and recipe collectors, Pinterest has caught the attention of the business community as a place to connect with customers. (And check out this fascinating graphic from TechCrunch about Pinterest’s explosive growth, too.) It’s been a godsend for aesthetically oriented companies, such as restaurants, architects, landscapers, real-estate brokers, and fashion and interior designers. The site is highly visual, highly addictive for users, and proving to be an effective way to communicate in a world with ever-shorter attention spans.

“You need to stop asking your customers to get engaged with you—you need to be engaging,” says Lynn Carlson. “Stop emailing them. Everyone’s life is really cluttered, and the frightening thing is that it’s empowering for them to just delete you.”

So how can you best utilize Pinterest? Here is some advice from small-business owners on what’s worked for them:
PQ_Pinterest.jpgMore social media—seriously?

Here’s why it’s smart to get on the Pinterest bandwagon now: Facebook is overrun with status updates and links; Twitter trims that to 140 characters; Pinterest is almost entirely visual. Even if the site is a flash in the pan, what it represents may have staying power. “It’s an evolution,” says Erica Orange, vice president of Weiner, Edrich, Brown Inc., a New York futurist consultancy that looks at long-term global trends. “Whether it’s advertisers, marketers, brands, or small-business owners, more people all around the world are speaking in images. In many ways, we are witnessing a profound shift in communication styles. Instead of getting bogged down in language, images may depict a clearer vision as to what the company stands for.”
Build your brand

Hilary Rushford says Pinterest is a big driver of traffic to her style blog and her personal-styling company, Dean Street Society, in Brooklyn. She says the site gives her a unique ability to give her clients (and potential clients) a 360-degree view of her work and her personality. “Even less-obvious businesses—bakeries, yoga instructors, pet shops—can engage their audience by demonstrating more of themselves, through boards that build out their essence,” Rushford says. “Sharing spots you want to travel to, inspiring quotes or favorite places in your neighborhood can deepen that ‘know, like and trust factor’ that’s so important to standing out in the online world today.”
Share your creativity, but be careful on copyrights

The site’s posting rules are in flux, as Pinterest shifts liability to the user to be sure they’re not in violation. Help visitors to your site by including the “Pin It” widget on the images that you want to circulate and link back to your site. Always include your full URL for your images, which makes it easier for others to properly link to you. (Confused? Many people are. Here’s how one blogger is doing it now.)
Build trust

Pinterest’s social aspect means your customers can get an intimate glance at your design sensibility and where you get your ideas. “People want to know that you’re secretly a Star Wars fan—it helps them connect and relate to you,” Rushford says. But play it cool: Pinning too many shots of your own, say 40 in 15 minutes, can come off as overly commercial and turn off followers.
Think SEO, and timing

Google’s search-engine algorithm shows results based on traffic numbers. Clicks to an interesting image on your site can quickly add up and lift you above your competitors. And be sure to watch the clock: The most-recent pins show up at the top of Pinterest, so aim to post at lunchtime or early evenings—both peak times on the site.
Think local

Patrick Kennedy’s board reflects what drives his work at Superior Woodcraft, in Doylestown, Pa. The custom woodworking company has worked to help other local small businesses, and Kennedy displays not only his personal influences and projects, but other events the company has held to benefit local farmers and green businesses. Vendors and even the county government have repinned images from his board, so users who do a search on their town come across the local businesses organically.
Be a David vs. the Goliaths

For small businesses, Pinterest is a huge resource for viral content sharing, says Clay Goetz, a digital-media strategist in San Francisco. Large brands may appear to have the upper hand, with the funds and staff to explore the platform. “However, social media levels the communications playing field,” Goetz says. “A small business publishing the right kind of content can quickly trump the thousands of dollars in resources and campaigning that a larger business might pour in.”

That’s something the Carlsons quickly learned with their B&B’s popular new bathroom. “There’s something about it that captured people’s imaginations,” Lynn says. “The rules of the people participating online have really changed.”