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Showing posts from October, 2007

Networking is good for business!

Have you been networking? If not, please get started as soon as possible.

Many people are unsure of exactly what networking is. Let me explain. Networking is meeting people and having the ability to tell them who you are and what you do in a precise and interesting manner.

Networking is referring people with a need to other reliable people and businesses. It is unselfishly helping others while you actively promote and meet new potential clients and contacts. It is a network of people who refer you and vice versa. It is a way to help other people as well as others helping you. Remember what goes around, comes around. Don't network for purely selfish reasons, it will show, and the results will be far less effective.

Your networking success will be enhanced if you enjoy people and do not have any reservations about expressing yourself. By networking you can meet fascinating and interesting people. Introduce yourself and tell others what your specialty in business is. Make friends and…

Are you getting enough subscribers to your business mailing list?

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Are you getting enough subscribers to your business mailing list?

Hopefully the answer to this question is YES. Starting and maintaining a subscriber list is important to your online and off line business. How else will you keep in touch with your customers?

Do you want to let them know of new and updated information about your business? Of course you do!

That is why having a sign up form for subscribers to join is imperative to your business.

How do you get them to subscribe?

You need to have a subscriber's opt-in listing to get your subscribers. Place your email list sign-up on your homepage/blog and other appropriate pages of your site. Whatever you do, don't hide it! Make it easy for site visitors to find and join your email list.

Remind your employees to ask customers if they would like to receive your newsletter to receive special promotions, or to be notified of private sales and events. Place a "join our mailing list" link in the email signature of your regular…

Tips to organizing your paperwork!

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What are you doing to organize your business paperwork?

It is a well known fact that as soon as you start a business, you will receive a mountain of correspondence from various federal and provincial agencies and not to mention an assortment of advertising mail which may or may not be of interest or value to you.

If you organize your home-office properly from the very beginning, the paper work won't bog you down and you won't feel overwhelmed.

Too many people leave let their papers pile up or leave mail unopened for days and weeks at a time. Finally, when they do go through it in a hurry, not much attention is placed on the important information that comes through. Organization is an essential ingredient to a successful business operation.

The following methods can and will help you keep organized:

Filing Cabinet: You will need a four-drawer filing cabinet. Allow lots of room for files. Buy suspension frames for each drawer and legal-sized hanging files and file folders. Add ta…

How do you create customer loyalty?

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Another sad fact of life is that these days, very few customers are loyal. Most of their loyalties lie with their bank accounts, and you can't blame people for watching their shrinking dollars. If you have regular clients, offer them an extra incentive now and again. Thank them for visiting and remember their names. Give them an additional discount for regular business or a promotional item to remember you & your business.

Be good to them and they will bring you new business. Treat them as you would a good friend, especially if you meet on the street and discuss your business. Remember their birthdays. You can do this by starting a birthday club. Make special acknowledgments to your customers if you meet them at dinner parties or during business functions.

When a customer has sent a referral your way, take the time to send a thank you card. These mean more to a person then you think. The fact that you took time out from your busy day to send a thank you will not be forgotten.

Thi…

Time for A Raise? Here´s How To Get It

Whether you´re after a raise or a promotion, follow these strategies to turn your will into your way:

Set clear goals.
Before starting any negotiation, first ask yourself what you really want, advises Marion Luna Brem, author of Women Make the Best Salesmen and the owner of two Texas auto dealerships. If you´re unhappy at work, for example, is it because you wish you had more responsibility—or would having a job title that better reflects what you´re doing be enough? Once you´ve decided what to ask for, draw up a list of key points you want to discuss. Then, during the negotiation, check off every item as it´s addressed; that way, you won´t kick yourself later because you forgot to mention something.

Do your homework.
Arm yourself with information before any discussion. When you´re asking for a raise, for example, "It´s not enough to say, 'I deserve it,' " says Lexi Terrero, managing director and principal at the major investor-relations firm Van Negris & Company. &q…

Keep your customers coming back!

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Are you giving your customers a reason to come back? Customers like to be pampered. Yes, even if you are selling via the Internet.

Offer your customers something for FREE when they place an order on your site. Everyone loves to receive FREE stuff. Especially if they spent their hard earn money on your products. Perhaps you can offer them a discount on a future purchase. Or a buy one get one free deal!

It's harder to find a new customer than to keep your current customer happy. So I say, work on your current customers first. The goal is to keep them coming back! After you've taken care of your current customers, then and only then should you find new customers.

Again, repeat the cycle after you've gained that new customer. Treat them like GOLD!

Go that extra mile for your customers and you will be acknowledged for it. A satisfied customer is a repeat buyer which translates to business success!

Answer your emails promptly. Customer service is key. Always maintain a professio…

Starting Your Own Business? Read This Now!

These days, starting your own business is as common as checking your e-mail. Follow these tips to get started.

Start eyeing the competition.
Find out what businesses in your area offer similar services, how they run their operations and how much they charge. The only way you can beat them is if you truly know them.

Figure out what your goals are before jumping in.
Are you just looking for a little extra income? Or are you hoping to retire by the age of 45? This will help you determine how much time and money you should invest in your start-up.

Visit a free service like the Small Business Development Centers.
They´ll counsel you on the ABCs of starting a business. That means everything from writing a business plan to securing a bank loan. (For a location near you, search www.asbdc-us.org).

Sign up for free business advice.
You can do this by visiting the Service Corps of Retired Executives´s Web site at www.score.org. You´ll receive an answer within 48 hours.

Get a website.
Even if you´re not pl…

How To Manage Your Dinero at 20, 30, and 40!

Prepare for the life you want—and deserve—with this checklist.

In your 20´s: Build that credit!
Don´t put on plastic what you can´t pay off within three months, advises financial planner Louis Barajas, author of The Latino Journey to Financial Greatness : The 10 Steps to Creating Wealth, Security, and a Prosperous Future for You and Your Family (Rayo, $13).

Get a free credit report from a consumer reporting agency every four months to see where you stand. Since there are three credit bureaus and each offers one free report per year, spread your freebies out for the most consistent monitoring. (visit www.freecreditreport.com, but be careful not to get roped in to all the additional services offered.) Strive for a score of 720 or higher by always paying on time and keeping your balances to less than 30 percent of your available credit.

Create an interest-earning emergency fund.
It´s simple: a money-market account with interest is better than a checking account with zero interest. (More on em…

Shameless plug!

I thought I'd give my hubby some shamless plug today. My hubby is a graphic designer and so I've decided to post his new creation for all to see at Myfashioncafe!

We're proud boricuas as you can see!

Enjoy :)

Sonia

What does it take to make money from a blog?

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I have been asked that question many times and there really isn't a quick and easy answer to it except that making money from a blog does take time. Finding the right sponsors and affiliate programs should be taken seriously. Posting for the sake of only making money will turn your readers off, plain and simple.

Find ways to help your readers benefit when visiting your blog and everything else will fall into place!

In my blog, I specialize in providing powerful business information that will provide the necessary tools required to enhance a successful home based business. My mission is that my readers will walk away feeling that what I offer in my blog is essential to their success. Hopefully they will return for additional information. Although, there are affiliate links in my blog that are supported by advertising revenue, others are links that my visitor can also benefit from. Links that will support my visitors with a successful home based business.

If you enjoy writing, then …

Get in touch with your competition!

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We all know that competition is an ugly word but competitors are a fact of life in business. If your business can't compete with other businesses, don't start it. You have to have some type of an edge.

You may have an excellent product or service, but if everyone else is selling a product or service similar to yours, just how much of the market can you expect to capture?

You will have to learn everything there is to know about your competition and understand their marketing strategies.

The best way to research your competition is to locate those you consider the largest threat to your potential business. Take the time to make a note of and acquire a feel for how your competitors deals with their customers, then answer these questions:

* What appeals to you most about their website, introduction, setup etc.?
* How large of an inventory do they carry?
* Are their products display eye-catching?
* What is their Alexa, Google, Yahoo, and AOL ranking?
* Are their testimonials positiv…

Dinero Dilemmas Solved!

Q. I work for a television company and would like to quit and freelance full time. How much money should I have stacked away before I make the jump?

A. Leaving a full-time job to go at it alone is a big risk, but working for yourself and being your own boss can bring so much satisfaction that any sacrifices you make will all be worthwhile. One of the biggest money-hurdles all freelancers face is the jump from a steady paycheck every two weeks to the possibility of going months with no pay at all.

You should have between 4 to 6 months´ worth of living expenses saved up to act as a cushion for those first few months when you are most likely to have big pay gaps. And make sure to take into account other expenses. Look for deals to pull together what you need to set up a home office—everything from a laptop to business cards, paper, a printer and an excellent web connection. And keep your receipts: All of these expenses (and many more) are tax-deductible and can be redeemed come next April.

Three Reasons To Save

Deciding how and where to invest your money is all about what you need the funds for, and when you think you'll need them. Are you saving for your best friend's wedding in Grenada next year? (That's me.) A down payment on a house? Starting el nene's college fund early? Read on for tips on how to match an investment plan with your financial goals.

If you're saving for your best friend's wedding next year, try:
An internet-based savings accounts, like the ones available from ING (www.ingdirect.com) or Emigrant Direct (www.emigrantdirect.com). There is no minimum required to open an account, and the rates at these FDIC-insured online banks-usually between 3.5% and 4%-are comparable to the rates that people who have a substantial amount (think 25K or 50K) in a regular savings account receive. "The rest of us who don't have that kind of cash can't get that rate unless we're willing to go out on the internet," says Delia Fernandez, a fee-only fina…

Get going: How to start your own business

The Business Plan

In order to start and manage a business it takes motivation, research, preparation, and talent. Before beginning take the time evaluate and explore your business and personal goals. Once you do that, you can use the information to create a thorough and thoughtful business plan that will help you achieve these goals.

Developing a business plan is a great way to force you to think about things that you may not otherwise consider. The plan will become an important tool as you set out to raise capital, and it will provide a guide to gauge your success.

Get a Plan

Write a business plan—even a simple one to figure out who is your market, what your costs are, what you can sell monthly and annually, and what kind of money you can make. Do not start without understanding that you are priced, have the volume, and expenses realistic to make money. Answer the question first—before you commit everything you have to an idea. Not all ideas can make enough money to support you and t…

Four Ways To Get Your Finances In Order

Up until recently, any time my stepfather mentioned words like "money market" or "principal" or "IRA" my eyes would start to glaze over and my brain would fill with those never-ending algebra equations you see in the movies. I assumed that all of it was so complicated, and boring al mismo tiempo! But guess what? Getting (and keeping) control of your finances is easier than you think, and investigating the possibilities is, truthfully, pretty exciting.

The key is to fantasize about being financially independent-sometimes jobs or careers don't work out, sometimes marriages or relationships don't either-and turn that fantasy from telenovela to la vida real. After all, we know you've probably made a lot of sacrifices to get to where you are; now it's time to protect what you have. We asked California-based Delia Fernandez, a fee-only financial planner and NAPFA (www.napfa.org) member, to give us her best tips for getting your proverbial financi…