Generate A Constant Flow of Leads to Your Small Business

Whether you’re just getting started in small business, or you’re a seasoned professional, you know that leads are critical to keeping your business afloat. You can either pay a lot of money for new leads, or you can follow these creative steps to generate them without paying a dime.

Here are five powerful ways to generate new leads without a marketing budget:

1. Networking– Using your customer network, frequently remind the top 20 people in your circle that you’re here to help them. Always focus on the ways that you can help your members without coming across as self-serving. By helping others first, they will help you with new leads, in return.

2. Publishing– Write articles and blog posts frequently. As you build up your body of work, you’ll generate leads from multiple directions. Not only will this build your credibility, but it will also position you as an expert in your field.

3. Referrals– Frequently ask your current customers for referrals. Ask you customers for the names of people that are of the same quality and caliber they are. Develop multiple referral systems to gather clients from different areas.

4. Niche yourself– Do not try to sell everything to everyone. Instead, specialize and become the number one in the World for your particular niche. When prospects are looking for a solution to their problem, your name is much more likely to come up if you’re a specialist in your niche.

5. Build an email list– By building a list, you’ll have a direct conversation on a frequent basis, with people that really want to know what you have to say. Email is very intimate and it allows your customers to focus on your message much longer than social media.

Strategies to Help Your Small Business Succeed in Challenging Times

We have all discovered, again, the only constant is cultural change. Just look around and you will see state and presidential politics on messy display, financial institutions in chaos and Wall Street fluctuating.

This is not the first, nor will it be the last time that we see these ups and downs.

However, you may need different tactics and strategies to help your small business prosper as some small business owners have never been through a downturn.

The most important decision is to determine if you want to stay in business. I know there are lots of talking heads on TV and radio saying it’s time to put your dream on hold that your dream is no longer available, that you may want to consider finding a breadline.

How dare these multimillionaires, sometimes billionaires, tell you how to live your life. They have no experience, for the most part, of how an ordinary person wants to have their American dream.

Strategic Thinking to Help You Prosper:

First, commit to stay in business.

Once the decision is made to either start or stay in business, you will find yourself attracting all sorts of assistance.

Second, determine the niche for your business.

Remember, the smaller the niche, the higher the reward. To say you work with everyone is a misnomer. You may choose to work with left-handed people who live on the East Coast born after 1975. That is specific. You get the idea.

Third, have better and more positive thoughts.

Ignore the pundits who tell you to close your doors, sell your house, eat dog food and hunker down in your bed. That’s if you did not take their advice and sell your bed! Thoughts lead to action; action leads to results and results lead to success. Bad thoughts breed bad results, good thoughts breed good results. It’s that simple.

Fourth, focus on what you want.

Go for the big fish, not the guppies. If you want to make money, find the people with the money. It continues to surprise me that small business owners keep going back to an empty well. If you have tried with prospects and they have not hired you because they either can’t make up their minds, have no money or are unclear, believe them. Move forward.

Fifth, make sure you are going in the right direction.

Do you have a plan for your business? Do you have a business vision? If not, you will never knew if you are on the right path. Decide what you want out of your business. If you want money from your business, how much? If you want your business to allow you freedom, where and when? Be clear about what you want.

Sixth, Market, Market, Market.

Some small businesses and professionals easily fall off the marketing train when times are tough. This is the time for real marketing. What happens is when people are busy making money, they don’t market because they have all the business they want. Then, when there is a slide, they say they can’t afford to market. Well, you can’t afford not to market. You can market your business in numerous cost free or low cost ways.

a) Be personal with new prospects. Attend Chamber of Commerce meetings to get the lay of the land.

b) Partner with someone else. It can be a one-off or a bigger project.

c) Write articles to attract people to your website.

d) Write a book. You can easily write an e-book in less than thirty days.

e) Sign up for LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

f) Hire an expert to provide an overview of your marketing plan.

Seventh, Change Your Attitude.

It’s all in the attitude! If you focus on and spend time with losers, you are one. Loser, that is. If you spend time with successful people, you to are a success, if by nothing else than association. Choose your circle of friends, associates and peers wisely. Remember, you are the sum of people you spend time with.

Put these new strategies in place for at least thirty days and you will see a movement towards prosperity for you and your small business.

Copyright 2012 Updated All Rights Reserved Worldwide

Advantages of Video Marketing in Small Business

Today’s Small Businesses confront a daunting task.

Aside from being in an intensely competitive market, small businesses must also defy impediments that large businesses don’t face, including an absence of financial assets, an absence of brand recognition, and a lack of qualified sales representatives. To adjust, small businesses must figure out how to ratchet up their marketing programs.

What small businesses need is a dynamic, savvy method for showcasing products and services, one that helps them fight competitors and catch a piece of the market share. Enter the new medium in the marketing world – Video Marketing. Straightforward and simple to utilize, video marketing, which incorporates video email, video on interest and video broadcasts, is serving to level the playing field for a developing number of small businesses. Actually businesses that have coordinated video into their marketing techniques have reported a 300%-400% expansion in responsiveness to their marketing message.

Video marketing represents the next cycle of marketing.

It’s so effective it’s changing the way businesses correspond with clients and one another. With video, purchasers can see that you remain behind your product and/or services. They likewise can identify with you as an individual. Furthermore on the grounds that they can see and hear you, they can unite with you on more than one level, making credibility, excitement, and above them all, trust.

Video additionally helps small business challenge organizations with greater marketing plans, substantial sales teams, or improved brand recognition, without the need for a huge financial investment and it helps businesses separate themselves from the opposition by advertising their extraordinary sales proposition through a medium with the effect of video.

Using video is perfect for both on and off line businesses, consultants, and subject matter experts. Basic and simple to utilize, video marketing puts a human touch into the procedure of promoting to consumers and businesses that’s empowering sales reps, specialists, and experts to produce valuable face time without investing a lot of time and cash. Actually from simply a couple of dollars a week businesses can incorporate the power of video marketing into their current promoting strategies.

Video marketing offers various favorable advantages over standard advertising. Notwithstanding expanding visibility and adding an individual touch to your messages and Websites, video marketing creates qualified sales leads, expands brand recognition, gives consistency of messages, creates credibility with clients, produces higher retention rates, improves sales funnels conversions, increases click through rates and enhances sales conversion figures.

Video marketing boosts sales and profits with insignificant expense and effort. What’s more because of its effectiveness it’s developing progressively popular with small businesses that are searching for a marketing edge. More critical, its perfect for today’s time conscious and tech savvy purchasers, whose enthusiasm toward electronic gadgets, in the same way as iPods and mobile phones, keeps on growing. As individual rich media goes standard, customers will anticipate that businesses will convey this way. Those Small Businesses that don’t will struggle to remain competitive.

3 Key Reasons Why Your Small Business Blog Will Fail (And How To Make It Succeed Instead)

Whether you are blogging already to promote your small business or thinking of starting a blog, using a blog to promote your small business is not enough in itself.

You may be considering blogging, or have been an owner of a blog for some while now, believing that this blog will bring you more customers. That’s what you were led to believe by all the hype around blogging, and possibly by your tech people too, right?

If this is you then you are not alone. Many small business owners believe, either because of hype, or from seeing competitors take up blogging, that a blog is the key to attracting more customers. In times of recession and downturn any thing that can bring in money to your business is good right?

Wrong.

Starting a business blog can be the worst path you will take in your business. Why? Because many times over small business owners believe that their blog will promote their business.

If this is you, thinking this way will lead you to 3 key reasons why your blog will fail before it gets started.

Key Reason 1: Not understanding the fundamental principle of what blogging is really all about.

Many small business blogs bore people (especially potential customers) with dry sales-speak such as how competitive their prices are. They use their blog to sell first and foremost. This is a BIG mistake.

What To Do Instead:

Stay away from dry sales-speak. Instead entertain and support. Use your blog to offer information that improves, saves and supports potential customers in finding solutions to their wants.

Key Reason 2: Believing that the most important task of your blog is to promote your business first and last.

This mistake leads many small business owners scratching their heads, and disappointed that no one has arrived to spend money in their business. For example, a florist may think that their blog should promote what their florist’s business does – sell flowers in beautiful ways.

What To Do Instead:

Concentrate first and foremost on becoming an advisor. This means actively stepping out of the role of sales person, and stepping into the roles of counselor, expert and leader offering interesting, useful, helpful and entertaining information that improves, saves and supports potential customers.

People are attracted by people who give them short cuts to what they want most. Become that person and people will flock to you – and your business.

Key Reason 3: They pay a lot of money to have their blog designed for them and allow these designers to design a blog that they (the designers) think is “cool”.

Cool is fine – if it sells. Trouble is most of what passes for Cool for other people, usually does not fit your potential customers’ idea of cool. Sure they may think “Wow!” when they see your super-duper blog design (possibly) but will they be persuaded to buy from you because of it? 97% of the time the answer is “No.”

What To Do Instead:

First establish your target niche. Once you have established who you want as customers, you are ready to establish what goals your blog will achieve for you.

Only when you have establish these two fundamental facts are you ready (and able) to decide what kind of blog is best for your particular business to enable you to achieve your goals. It is then that you are in a position to discuss and decide the best design for your blog. Anything that detracts, or leads away, from achieving your goals must be rejected.

Nothing must get in the way of you giving your target niche of people what they want. Establish who your target niche is. If you are a florist remember your target niche is not “people who buy flowers”. Your target niche comes from those people. But you need to hone in on who, what, when, why, how and where among people who buy flowers are your target niche.

When you have established this by answering those six vital honing-in questions, you will be able to establish the target niche – and aim – of your blog. For example, you may have established that: out of people who buy flowers in your area, your target niche are women entrepreneurs between 30 and 40 years old, who want to have beautiful flowers, not only brighten their homes, but their work places too. But they don’t want to bother with arranging bouquets themselves. Oh yes, and they’re Fung Shui addicts too.

There’s your blog’s target niche and aim: Inspiring, saving and advising these women entrepreneurs on how to best use flowers in partnership with Fung Shui principles in order to enjoy increased flows of positive energy.

The Bottom Line:

Blogging can bring increased numbers of people to your business and increase your bottom line – if you understand how to avoid the 3 key reasons business blogs fail and instead make your blog successful.