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Posts Tagged “entrepreneur”

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Improve Employee Energy and Productivity with these Tips from Theresa Welbourne, Ph.D.

Employee Energy is Key to Small Business Success An Interview with Theresa Welbourne, Ph.D. of eePulse, Inc. Theresa Welbourne, Ph.D. decided to take her research on employee energy and firm performance and turn it into a technology business to help organizations improve productivity. In the process, her company, eePulse, Inc, www.eepulse.com, grew and became successful [...]

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Give Yourself a Break!

As summer fades away, I’m sure you’d love to hold onto some of your personal time and avoid working long hours. But if you’re an entrepreneur, how do you please all of your customers without giving up some free time with family and friends?

Here are a few suggestions to reclaim your personal time:

1. Hire a Virtual Assistant.

Do you have data entry, accounting, writing, or other administrative activities that need to be done? Get these tasks out of your way by hiring a virtual assistant.

These professional workers are available throughout the United States with different skill sets at various price-points.

And because you are hiring a service rather than an actual employee, you don’t need to worry about all of the legal and tax headaches involved in the hiring process.

Check out the International Virtual Assistants Organization at http://www.ivaa.org/ and other, related sites to find someone to fit your specific needs.

2. Find an Intern.

Many high school and college students are looking for work to add to their portfolios. Offer to provide opportunities to help them succeed.

You’ll get some inexpensive help, and your interns will get valuable, on-the-job experience to use in their future careers. Just be aware that you’ll need to take some extra time to train these newbies carefully.

3. Get help from your kids.

If you haven’t already done so, have your kids help you with your business. Not only will they learn important skills and the importance of working for an end-result, but you may be able to use this as a tax deduction too.

Check with your accountant to see how you can make this work for you.

Enjoy yourself!

Instead of saying goodbye to summer fun and thinking you just can’t get away from work, be positive and creative. Look for people to help you finish tasks outside of your core area of expertise.

It may take a little effort to find the right helpers, but once these workers are in place, you’ll have more time for yourself and be able to get the relaxation you need to truly be successful!

Need more help with your SEO copywriting and PR to increase sales? Please write to me below or at www.rembrandtwrites.com.

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As summer fades away, I’m sure you’d love to hold onto some of your personal time and avoid working long hours. But if you’re an entrepreneur, how do you please all of your customers without giving up some free time with family and friends? Here are a few suggestions to reclaim your personal time: 1. [...]

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Selling to Wal-Mart: The Do’s and the Dont’s

o Make sure your product fits Wal-Mart’s mission, demographics and consumer lifestyle.

o You will need to provide the buyer with data on competitors and how your products compare or are better than them. Actual customer marketing research should be presented (not just your opinions on why your product is the next million dollar idea.)

o They don’t want to see prototypes, unfinished samples, or waste time with ideas. You probably would not even get an appointment with an idea.

o Have your pricing and product configuration ready to go. They are interested in selling, not testing new products.

o Have your packaging ready, with bar codes….at the meeting.

o Make sure you are familiar with Wal-Marts buying process, and how they place their products into the stores. (this is not so easy to do, a great agent can assist in this.)

o Conceive every question or comment the buyer might ask you about your product, and be prepared to have the answers for them. Play your devils advocate, and be willing to be in the hot seat.

o Be prepared to take some heat on pricing, and always appear to be educated on the products demographics and competitors pricing. Know, know, know your best pricing going in, you will be drilled about it! Wal-Mart buyers deal everyday with many manufacturers direct, so in their category you better believe they know what something should cost. If you’re pulling the wool over their eyes, you could look silly.

o Be willing to listen to the buyer’s advice and guidance when it comes to the product. They have great insight!

The Dont’s-

o Make sure you don’t take pictures (anywhere in the building). They are very strict, so leave your cell and camera in the car!

o Think your product is the next million dollar idea! Be humble and willing to take criticism.

o Argue with the buyer. If they turn the item down, say thank you!

o Expect the buyers to dictate to you what you need to do to develop the item. They will give general advice, however, you’re presenting to them, you better know what you are selling.

o Waste their time.

Always Dream BIG!

Kim Babjak

Kim Babjak, and her team at KimCo LLC, are a multi-faceted product development company that offers a wide range of consulting in the areas of  “Mind 2 Market” product & business development. With over 20+ years of combined retail experience and sourcing overseas, Kim Babjak and her team of professionals can help create successful product creation and placement. We help companies with product development, prototyping, and manufacturing overseas and. With our vast retail buyer relationships, we can then assist with the product being placed into electronic retail (QVC), and big box retail outlets like Wal-Mart, Target, Home Depot, Costco and many others.

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After returning from Bentonville last week, I realized what I had just done was the most exciting thing an inventor/entrepreneur could ever do. Walk the hallways of the buying office at the headquarters of Wal-Mart…. The blue and gray walls signify America, and the American dream of most product developers; to place their products into [...]

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Exclusive Interview with Rich Dad’s Robert Kioysaki

Recently, I attended a book signing for Robert Kiyosaki’s new, best-selling book, “Unfair Advantage – What Schools will NEVER Teach You About Money.” The author of the number one personal finance book of all time, “Rich Dad Poor Dad,” investor, entrepreneur, educator, and co-host of the new radio show, “What Does It Mean to You?”, [...]

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Guy Kawasaki on Enchantment, Marketing and Small Business

Guy Kawasaki is no stranger to entrepreneurship, having co-founded several businesses including Garage Technology Ventures, and Alltop.com, which is, as he describes, an “online magazine rack” of popular topics on the web.  He’s written ten books including The Art of the Start, The Macintosh Way, and his latest, Enchantment, The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds and Actions, releasing March 8th, 2011, available on Amazon.com, and in bookstores everywhere.

I’ve read hundreds of business books, but never have I read a book like this.  In a nutshell, Enchantment is all about how to make people fall in love with you, and when people fall in love with you, you can accomplish anything.

This book is part inspiration, part motivation, and part practication (I just made up a new word).   With inspiring stories and practical steps, Kawasaki explains all the tactics you need to put together and launch your own enchantment campaign.  Kawasaki’s lessons are taken from his experience at Apple, but many of the stories are very personal stories from average, every day people.  (These stories happen to be some of my favorite parts of the book.)  Buy the book on Tuesday March 8th, or any day and you will be able to experience “enchantment” for yourself.

In honor of the release of Kawasaki’s new book, I asked him to give us his perspective on small business marketing today.  Here’s his insightful and unedited response.  Enjoy!

What do you see are the biggest challenges for a small business owner today?

Sales, sales, and sales. My saying is, “sales fixes everything” because as long as you have cash flow, you’re still in the game. As a friend once told me, the leading cause of failure of startups is death, and you die when you run out of money.

Is that different than what it was a few years ago?

It’s been like this since the recession hit. Every day, I wish for just one more bubble because this time I’ll know what to do!  But I believe that business is cyclical, so it’s not wise to panic. A rising tide floats all boats, but a receding tide makes the big, bloated boats hit rock bottom.

How have you seen business owners overcome these challenges?  (What’s working?)

More than anything else, these times are a test of will–how much are you willing to gut it out and grind it out. If you can survive these times, you’re pretty set to take on anything. I have great admiration for the companies that continue to put out great products and services with less money while maintaining high levels of customer enchantment. It’s much easier to write the book and make the speech than actually deliver results.

As far as marketing, what strategies do you use to market your business?

Right now, I’m mostly marketing my new book. To do this, I believe that “nobodies are the new somebodies.” That is, I don’t focus on only the so-called experts and powerful people. I like to work with as many people as possible because it’s impossible to know who will really make you tip.

Is there a strategy that doesn’t work?

I’ve never been one to throw money at a problem…for two reasons, I never had the money to throw and I hate wasting money in any case.

What advice do you have for business owners who are just starting out?

Prototype, prototype, prototype. Get to market. PowerPoint and Excel are secondary or even tertiary in importance. Get to market and get cash flowing.

Other than StartupNation, Entrepreneur Magazine, Alltop.com, what other resources do you recommend for startups?  Books? Websites, etc?

These are primarily information sources. Startups also need ways to reach and serve customers. For this, God provided Twitter and Facebook. These two sites are entrepreneur’s dreams because they are fast, free, and ubiquitous. The book that I recommend to startups is If You Want to Write by Brenda Ueland. This book provided the inspiration that changed my life. It’s not solely about writing–it’s about the human spirit. Every entrepreneur should read it.

Bonuses:

Online Quiz:  How GREAT Are You?

Online Photo Contest:  Submit your Most Enchanting Photo for a Chance to Win!

“Like” Enchantment on Facebook

Wendy Kenney is the best selling author of How to Build Buzz for Your Biz, Tap into the Power of Social Media, Publicity and Relationship Marketing to Grow Your Business, available on Amazon.com.  She has been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street JournalUSA Today, and Newsday. For more information go to http://23Kazoos.com.

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Guy Kawasaki is no stranger to entrepreneurship, having co-founded several businesses including Garage Technology Ventures, and Alltop.com, which is, as he describes, an “online magazine rack” of popular topics on the web.  He’s written ten books including The Art of the Start, The Macintosh Way, and his latest, Enchantment, The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds [...]

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NEW Military Home Shopping Channel to Launch!

What will help products reach MILLIONS of consumers? T.V. of course! The Military Shopping Channel (MSC) will be a fabulous new shopping model that will have access to over 12+ MILLION active duty and retired military personnel, and their families. Holy Toledo! After returning from Tampa, and visiting with Shark Tank’s Kevin Harrington, I am [...]

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Are You A Sick Entrepreneur?

Beep! Beep! Beep! The alarm blares, and my hand slams down on the button to turn it off. Ugh. Monday morning. And no matter how much sleep I get, Monday mornings never seem to get any easier, do they? Well, this morning is a little worse… My head is throbbing, and the pillow is soaking [...]

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4 Smart & Sensible Marketing Tips for 2010!

Are your eyes much bigger than your wallet, or your ability to focus and execute effective marketing in 2010? Has your New Year’s Resolutions come and gone already? How can you ensure you’re not biting off more than you can chew with your aspirations and actions?   Here are four tips that you can apply to [...]

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Surviving Tough Times-Interview with Author, Successful Entrepreneur George Cloutier

Want insider secrets from a highly successful entrepreneur on how to survive tough, economic times? Well, today you’re in luck. I caught up with George Cloutier, owner of the highly successful business, American Management Services, http://www.amserv.com/, to discuss his new book, “Profits Aren’t Everything; They’re the Only Thing.” Here’s what he had to say. Tell [...]

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Stop Dilly-Dallying. Get This Book. Start a Business.

It’s time. Right Now. Stop dilly-dallying. Starting a business doesn’t have to be scarey. And you don’t have to wait. Start on a path to opening your own business. Get our life-changing book, StartupNation: Open for Business. There are easy steps you can take. And there are over 30 examples of success stories using our process, [...]

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1..2..3..Go Shopping!

EVERYONE! Please go do some shopping….. There is a bit of good news about shopping habits, amongst all the terrible news being reported about this horrific economy. Consumers are longing to go shopping, and retailers want to re-stock their shelves. However, both are afraid to “Just Do It”; make the first recovery move….. The fear [...]

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Your Product + QVC = $$ MILLIONS $$

      The fastest ways to bring your product to market is to get it on QVC!  The best, and fastest, way to do that is hire a QVC agent! What is a QVC Agent? A QVC Agent is an independent person, or group, that can get your product or new invention in front of [...]

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The Hymn Project Finds a Niche-Part One

Do you have an idea for a great, niche product or service but think it’s already available? You may be able to start a great business with your idea. Check out this interview with Tasha Golden who helped to create “The Hymn Project,” www.thehymnprojectCDs.com. What is The Hymn Project? “The Hymn Project” is a 7-CD [...]

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Small Business Profile: Lead411

To follow up on a previous post requesting feedback on topics and offering to highlight members of the community, I learned of the BTS Blog started by Tom Blue, co founder of Lead411— BTS stands for Business, Technology and Sales.  The BTS Blog is dedicated to discussing startups, business trends, bootstrapping, tech companies, sales and [...]

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Robert Kiyosaki Interview-Part 2

On Tuesday, you heard from Robert Kiyosaki, investor, entrepreneur and author of The New York Times, international bestselling book, “Rich Dad Poor Dad,” with 26 books in the Rich Dad series. Here is the continuation of our interview: What main pieces of advice do you have for entrepreneurs and new investors today? I would say [...]

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Exclusive Interview with Rich Dad’s Robert Kiyosaki

Recently, I met Robert Kiyosaki, and he agreed to offer his advice to the StartupNation audience. Robert is the author of The New York Times, international bestselling book, “Rich Dad Poor Dad,” with 26 books in the Rich Dad series. As an investor, entrepreneur and educator with unconventional perspectives on money and investing, he has [...]

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Free PR Tools for Do-It-Yourself Publicity

If you are working with a tight budget like most entrepreneurs, you can do your own publicity. Here is a quick list of some of the free services available to help you build buzz and sales: 1. Learn simple steps to start your publicity efforts with StartupNation’s Guide to PR here. 2. Check out the free, [...]

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Part 2 with Author Jon Gillespie-Brown

On Thursday, Jon Gillespie-Brown, author of the new book, “So You Want to be an Entrepreneur” shared his tips and insights. Here is the rest of that interview:   How are you marketing and promoting your book? The book is published by Wiley and Co. and they do most of the promotion, PR and marketing. [...]

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