Starting a small business is hard. Keeping that business going is even harder. It can feel like an endless wave of decision-making, strategizing, and to-do lists that only seem to get longer. Fortunately, you’re probably not the first person to start the kind of business that you’re running. And even if you are, you certainly aren’t the first person to call themselves “entrepreneur” and dive into the start-up deep-end. That means you don’t have to go in it alone. There are people you can turn to for advice, support, or even just a kindred spirit to talk to. These people are called mentors.
Black Friday gets quite a lot of attention as the biggest retail day of the year. But believe it or not, Cyber Monday now surpasses Black Friday as one of the biggest retail days of the year. In 2016, the National Retail Federation reported that 108.5 million customers made purchases electronically over the Thanksgiving period – around 10 million more than made purchases at brick-and-mortar stores. Last year’s Cyber Monday, consumers had spent a staggering $540 million by just 10:00 a.m. In total, the day brought in $345 billion in sales, making it the biggest day in history for ecommerce.
When an employee struggles to make eye contact with the rest of the team at weekly team meetings or is too timid to speak up in company brainstorm sessions in spite of showing great promise, the root cause of the problem is often a lack of empowerment. Put simply, when an employee doesn’t feel empowered, he or she can’t perform their role to the best of their ability. Not only are they not gaining skills and experiences as quickly as they could be, but they’re unlikely to be top performers or take the initiative required to really drive your organization to a new level of success.
When establishing a business, entrepreneurs often believe that the whole world will want the product or service that their organization is selling. They’re reluctant to narrow their focus on any one group of people, worrying that this process might “limit” their options and sales potential. However, the reality couldn’t be further from the truth.
No matter how entrepreneurs might want to spin it, the harsh truth is that not everyone is your target customer. Inevitably, not everyone will be interested in the product or service your business is selling, and any thinking to the contrary isn’t just delusional. It could actually be damaging. Failure to hone in on and correctly target your target demographic won’t help you to keep your options open; it will just hurt your business by spreading your marketing resources too thin.
In today’s world, collaboration isn’t just a nice to have—it is key to ensuring your organization’s resilience and success. Collaboration can help your employees to come up with better ideas, lead to solutions for complex problems, boost organizational efficiency, and, ultimately, improve your bottom line.
In fact, according to a 2013 Aberdeen Next-Generation Communications (NGC) study examining the communication practices of over 125 organizations, the more an organization actively fosters collaboration, the more improvement it sees in key business indicators year on year. Robust communication in and between teams translated into a 16 percent year-on-year increase in customer retention, a 15 percent increase in employee productivity, and a 13 percent increase in employee satisfaction.
In our last blog I explained the necessity of tracking metrics particularly when it comes to overall finances and conversions.
Today we’ll take a look at the importance of tracking Customer Acquisition Costs, Traffic Acquisition, Competition, Content, Customer Loyalty, Productivity and Mobile vs. Desktop metrics.
Networking is incredibly valuable, and there are plenty of great networking opportunities out there, from charity functions to LinkedIn groups to meet-ups to trade shows. To maximize the value and impact of your networking strategy, be sure to take a look at these do’s and don’ts.
DO get introductions from existing contacts. Think of the people you know that know your work and would likely recommend you to others. Then, reach out to them and ask for introductions to relevant contacts. This is a great way to expand your network, and some day that friend of a friend might come in handy. And make sure you return the favor!
It is 2017! The holiday dawns a sparkling, new world for business. The end of the year and start of the next year sparks an interest and need to plan. With about a week under our belts, where do we stand? While business and innovation has progressed in patterns and waves over the past several hundred years, it has never before sped at the rate of exponential growth we are seeing now. We have an ability to reach heights our parents only heard of through science fiction.
As you are probably already aware, this is the digital age. We send messages across continents instantaneously. We carry computers around in our pockets. We use a thing called, "the cloud." Newsletters are digital, bank statements are digital - if you are determined, you can probably make your life completely free of paper...