Molding your Business to Reach your Goals

In Cool Business Tools on October 12, 2012 at 1:27 pm

In business we all aspire to be something we are not. We start with a vision of what we want to become and then we paint ourselves a picture and draw up a map of how we plan to get there. The tools that we use to get there will vary depending on the end goal we are trying to reach. Some entrepreneurs use a series of steps, some develop a vision board, some write a business plan and some just jump in and start creating with only the vision in their head.

When Apple opened shop in a garage, their initial work focused on building open source software but Steve Jobs quickly drew the vision of a computer that would change the world. The business model and steps to make Apple into a world leader may be vastly different from what your business path is, but the concept is the same – you have a vision of developing your business into something more than it is today.

So how do you change your business world?

  1. Think back to your childhood and the anticipation that Halloween brought. This was your chance to be something totally different from the real you. So step one, draw yourself a picture of what your business wants to become.
  2. In most cases, the costume you wanted wasn’t in your bedroom and for many of us there were few stores that sold exactly what we wanted so we pulled our resources together and began to mold our vision. Step two, find the resources you need – a business plan, a 2013 budget, a network of business partners – and start making your vision a reality.
  3. As the weeks until Halloween became days and hours, we tried on our new costume, showed it to others, and tweaked it to ensure it truly reflected our vision – the fit, the function, the personality. Your business changes need the same attention, so step three is to test your changes along the way looking for ways to improve the growth you take on.
  4. Step four, is to understand that no costume or vision is ever truly complete. We should always look for ways to grow and develop and maybe even change the world.

“The difference

(between a good coach and an average coach)

is knowing what you want,

and knowing what the end is supposed to look like.

If a coach doesn’t know what the end is

supposed to look like, 

he won’t know it when he sees it.”

~Vince Lombardi Jr

Few businesses can run successfully on a dime and as we hit the 4th quarter, now is time for you to review your status, tweak your processes and set your 2013 goals. Typical finance goals will include a review of your budget and ways to make your dollar go farther. I discovered a simple way to make my dollar do just that – I began shopping online for all of the things I use in both my business and personal life. By using the, I save time and money and I earn a bit of money back each time I shop.

Start by checking out the site – order your Halloween costume – and get a bit closer to the vision of what you want your business to be in 2013!

Creating a media blogging plan

In Social Media Marketing on July 31, 2012 at 12:28 pm

Social media has revolutionized the way that information is shared and acquired. Blogging remains at the forefront of this plan and is evolving at speeds faster than Ryan Lochte versus Michael Phelps. But one thing remains the same: content is king and if you don’t have the right content, your words will fall on deaf ears.

So how do you ensure your content works?

Begin by knowing who you’re talking to and what you’re looking to communicate. For example, your blog can be one that focuses on educating people, building an online following, sharing a collaborative of information, or selling products. Whatever the purpose of your blog your communications should reflect that goal. This ensures that your followers are guaranteed to find what they came for.

Next put a blog plan in place. Nothing is more detrimental to your blog than posting sporadic blogs on an inconsistent basis. Posting this way ensures no one knows when to read your blog or when to share it rendering the blog useless. A schedule with an outline of content is the surest way to stay on top of your next blog.

Links; images, video, infographics and social media should be a staple in each blog you post. Readers enjoy images, they create a bigger impact, and for SEO purposes anything like this you can link is beneficial. A blog is an effective tool on it’s own but when its tied to your other social media sites and driving traffic to your website it becomes effective on a whole new level.

Finally, just like others find value in your blog you too will find value in other blogs so create a following. Interact on other posts and encourage others to do the same. Using links to your social media sites and asking for comments will increase your visibility and your value.

So as I blaze a trail in the blogging world I encourage you to read, share and comment.

Successful Brands understand Relationship Marketing

In Business Networking on July 27, 2012 at 7:30 pm

Your brand is so much more than your company logo and name. It’s the experience a person has each and every time they interact with your product or service. That interaction can be positive, negative or neutral but it will always create some sort of relationship as a result of the overall brand experience.

To be clear, the basics of your brand are your name, logo, and images that represent you. The brand experience that creates relationships is all encompassing going beyond the design elements to weave a common message and voice throughout all experiences with your brand. Since inception, Campbell’s Soup has developed an integrated brand experience across their logo, tagline, advertisements, brochures, websites and promotional applications. The success shows in the trust and loyalty they have developed with their audience.

                   “Products are made in the factory; 

                    brands are made in the mind.” 

                    – Walter Landor


Your focus has to be on positioning your brand into the right relationship with individuals you’ve never met. This is not an easy task, but your due diligence will enable you to create positive brand awareness through each relationship you build.

Know your target audience. Not just who you are looking for, but who is looking for you. Understanding the habits and needs of people will allow you to have positive engagements. The internet has made this task simpler with tools like Google Analytics, Visitor Track, and the Facebook’s Wisdom Network.

Understand your target audience. You should spend a good deal of time discerning why they want your product or service. Discover and narrow your audience down using tools like Google Trends and keyword discoveries will enable you to understand how your product appeals to audiences in a specific location, demographic, by motivation, and with each market trend. Providing a complete solution to a more targeted audience will  bring about a positive relationship while audiences who only discover part of what they need readily form negative opinions and move on to the next brand.

Set expectations for your target audience. Understand that the people reaching your brand will tell others about you – good or bad. Control every experience  showing that by understanding your audience, you can position your brand to bring about a positive relationship. Your company philosophy should establish how you intend to create your brand experience, if your mantra is “Can you hear me know” like Verizon Wireless but your phone users are dropping calls, can you really expect a positive relationship from this brand experience?

With the introduction of social media, we now see people participating in permission-based marketing. The concept that your audience is willingly  seeking out the information they need 365 days a year, 24 hours a day and can reach your brand whenever they want opens the opportunity for them to form this brand relationship.

Creating a brand experience that results in positive relationships will require the hand of experts. Companies like Starbucks, Converse and Harley Davidson may have started with a vision but they succeeded with a team that could develop their vision into a complete brand experience.

Article contributed by hYperstrand Marketing

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