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Lack of Technical Knowledge Doesn’t Have to Hold You Back in Business

September 14th, 2012

Frustrated with TechnologyBusiness owners worldwide know the importance of an internet presence. Phone books are quickly becoming a thing of the past with most people looking for solutions to their needs online rather than in the yellow pages. Companies that aren’t found online are losing a major source of potential income. But for many, getting their business online is a mystery for which they do not have the answer. How do you create a website if you don’t know the first thing about the internet? How do you use social media if you’ve never opened a Facebook account and don’t really understand the first thing about Twitter? How do you succeed online if simply using a computer is a challenge?

The answer is a simple one: Hire a Virtual Assistant (VA). A good Virtual Assistant is basically a master of just about anything online. She spends her days managing her clients’ websites, ezines, social media presence and countless other aspects of her client’s business. A good virtual assistant will also offer advice on ways to improve your online business presence and will make it their business to see their client’s businesses succeed online.

Hiring a Virtual Assistant means that business owners can hand off tasks that they don’t know how to do, or simply don’t want to do. Think of your Assistant as your very own online business manager.  Hiring one gives entrepreneurs a way to better focus their time and skills on the money earning aspects of their business and leave the technical stuff in the hands of a capable expert.

For many small businesses that can’t afford to hire extra staff members to handle the online or technical aspects of their business, hiring a Virtual Assistant is the perfect solution. A VA will only work on, and be paid for, the tasks you assign.  In other words, unlike an employee, if your Virtual Assistant only works 1.5 hours for you, you only pay for 1.5 hours of work. This is a great way to control your expenses and maintain your small business budget while getting the help you need to grow your business.

If the online world baffles you and your lack of technical knowledge is holding your business back, your next step should be to look for a qualified Virtual Assistant. There’s a world of possibilities for your business online and there is no reason for you not to pursue them.

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6 Reasons Why Your Business Need an Affiliate Program

September 13th, 2012

Affiliate Program for Small BusinessIf you’re an entrepreneur, you are very likely on the lookout for low cost marketing ideas that work. An affiliate program is just such an idea, but many entrepreneurs don’t consider it because they believe it is too costly, or too difficult to set up and manage. Those entrepreneurs are for the most part wrong and here’s why:

  1. It’s affordable marketing done for you. The best reason of all to implement an affiliate program is that it’s an inexpensive way to market your business. Think about it; anyone who signs up will want to promote your business to their tribe. This means low-cost advertising in social media, on websites, in newsletters, on blogs, in forums and anywhere else your affiliates can post links online.
  2. If the affiliates are getting paid, it’s because you are getting paid. If you set up an affiliate program that pays an affiliate only when they refer a customer who buys a product, then it’s a win-win situation. You get paid, and only then will your affiliate earn his/her commission. If the affiliate doesn’t refer anyone who makes a purchase, then there is nothing for you to pay.
  3. You are in control of the program. You have the ultimate say on how much your affiliates earn – the more generous you are, or the easier the program is to sell, the better your affiliates will do in selling your product or service. You control whether affiliates get paid every time someone clicks their affiliate link, or they get paid only when a sale is made. You control whether an affiliate gets paid a percentage of the sale, or a flat rate. You control when and how affiliates get paid – monthly, or after each sale, and whether there is a minimum amount they have to sell before they get paid.
  4. It can increase your website traffic and boost sales. An affiliate program will enable you to extend your reach on the web. If you have enough affiliates marketing your program for you, traffic to your site should increase and along with increased traffic should come increased sales.
  5. It can be extremely easy to implement. Depending on how easy your website is to work with, adding an affiliate program can be as simple as installing a plugin and adding a widget. Platforms such as WordPress make it extremely simple and often do not require technical skills other than very basic WordPress knowledge.
  6. It can help you grow your tribe. Even if the increase in traffic for some reason doesn’t boost your sales, it can definitely increase the number of people signing up for your newsletter, e-zine, or opt-in list and as you likely know people on your list are more likely to buy your products.

An affiliate program is basically a done-for-you advertising campaign while your affiliates are your low-cost sales force. There are very few downsides. You stand to increase your income and so do your affiliates. What could be easier than that?

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Happy Holidays!

December 16th, 2011

Here’s a special Holiday Message for you! Be sure to click the light switch to view the message:

Happy Holidays! Click Here!

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Get Your Business Out of the Dark Ages and Bring it Online

May 27th, 2011

Bartering was the first known form of commerce. Once trading caught on, roadside stands and shops were created. Eventually, retailers moved indoors and hung up shop signs. Today, business is quickly spreading from brick and mortar shops to the Internet. Just as roadside merchants were swallowed up by indoor retailers, rejecting the Internet leads to certain isolation.

The Internet: It’s Where Your Clients Are

To be fair, some people still use phone books. However, the vast majority of the global population doesn’t. If you are still advertising solely in your local Yellow Pages, you’re not gaining global attention. Millions of people use the Internet every day. Most of these people search for restaurants, reviews, companies, and almost everything else online.

The good news is that you don’t have to increase your advertising budget in order to reach an Internet audience. Setting up a website and creating an Internet presence is the quickest way to start spreading the word about your business.

Reach a Global Audience

Connecting with a small local audience is a great way to become a part of any community. There’s no need to give up this local connection when you bring your business online. Instead, you’ll be reaching out to millions of people from all around the world. These people will be able to find your business and buy your products or services when you set up a website.

Reaching out to a global audience means dramatically increasing your profits, and who wouldn’t want that? When you create a website, you’ll also be creating the opportunity to gather marketing information. By adding a simple “opt-in” list to your site, you can collect details about your prospective clients. If you’re not online, you’re not gaining as many profits as you should be. Bring your business out of the Dark Ages by bringing it online.

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A New Year’s Resolution: Simplify Your Life

December 20th, 2010

Time is something of which none of us seems to have enough. We live in a fast-paced world of new technologies designed to keep us moving faster and faster. Such things as microwave ovens, cell phones and high-speed internet allow us to accomplish our tasks in less time, but instead of enjoying this savings, most of us just add more responsibilities to our day.

Far too many entrepreneurs are too busy trying to become successful and are not enjoying their lives in the present. The thought that one day they will achieve their goal of owning that big house or earning that huge salary drives people to work for the future and in the mean time, their life in the present suffers. The truth is, working long hours won’t make you a success, and is more likely to result in burn-out. Experts agree that the majority of successful people aren’t workaholics; they are individuals that are simply more efficient. In other words, they work smarter, not harder. The following are a few simple steps that will not only allow you to simplify your life, but will allow you to live a more accomplished life as well.

Step 1 – Set your priorities and live by them. For many, family and friends are their main priorities, and yet they spend far too much time working overtime in the hopes that one day, they will be successful and have the time to spend with their family. Make your priorities your focus for today, not only for tomorrow. Make it a point to spend more quality time doing the things that are important to you now.

Step 2 – Change your vision of success. Success is not about owning fancy cars, having a big corner office or earning a massive salary, it’s about being happy in both work and family life. You can be filthy rich and your family life can be a failure. Finding the balance in your life that allows you to feel accomplished and rewarded at the office, and yet, still leaves significant time to spend with family and friends will make you feel like a success.

Step 3 – Acknowledge that how others view success isn’t your vision of success. If you are doing a job that you absolutely love, and that gives you the time you need to spend with your family, then it shouldn’t matter what others think. If others are judging your success based on the size of your house or wallet, let them judge and disregard their opinions. Focus on what is important to you. If you feel happy and accomplished, then you are a success.

Step 4 – Learn to delegate. According to the AOL Jobs website, successful people are efficient people. They are more efficient because they have learned how to prioritize and delegate. Learn to let go of some of the tasks you enjoy least, and if possible, delegate them to an employee. If you don’t have employees, then consider outsourcing. There are very few tasks that cannot be outsourced today. If you don’t like bookkeeping or invoicing, contract that work to a bookkeeper, if it is administrative work or updating web sites that you dislike, outsource to a Virtual Assistant or Web Designer. If these are not feasible for you, there are other ways to simplify your life by delegating. Assign chores at home by getting the kids involved, many grocery stores will deliver groceries saving you an hour or more per week. There are also many time-saving programs that will help you to become more efficient, such as autoresponders and accounting software.

Step 5 – Organize everything. One of the main keys to efficiency is organization. Work will get finished faster and be of better quality if you are organized. Put everything in its place, file everyday and organize your computer files, desktop icons and bookmarks. Being able to find something when you need it will allow you to save a great deal of time and will undoubtedly simplify your life and allow you more time for your priorities.

There are countless ways that you can simplify your life while still achieving your goals. Slowing down your fast paced life doesn’t mean you are giving up your work-related ambitions. Focusing on being more efficient by working smarter, not longer and harder, will allow you to succeed in all areas of your life.

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