It’s early on in the week and I know that no one wants to think any harder than they have to. That’s why I thought this little graphic was the perfect post. There are nine great ideas to help you get more done without doing an exorbitant amount of reading. The best part of all…you can do any of these things today. Let me know what you think in the comment box below or on Facebook and Twitter.
In a recent article in Success Magazine marketing legend Seth Godin answers some of the most important marketing questions most organizations have right now. There is no doubt that things in business, especially in marketing, are changing quickly. Almost too quickly for us to keep up with. That’s why it’s great to get insight from people who have their fingers on the pulse of change. Here are some of my favorite questions and answers from the article.
Q: Where would you invest your marketing budget if you were starting a new business now, and why?
Unless you are already the market leader, there’s no question that 80 percent of your marketing budget should go into making a significantly better product or offering a better service than you do now. I know that you think you already make a great product. I’m guessing you already make a very good product. It’s probable your service is just fine, or better than just fine.
Just fine or even very good isn’t going to work, and no reasonable amount of marketing spending is going to fix that. What would you do if you had to deliver something more than fine? Something remarkable? Something that your customers couldn’t resist talking about? Go ahead and spend the money it takes to do that. Once you do, you’ll discover you need far fewer marketing dollars.
Examples: Zappos, Harley-Davidson, Porsche, The Shake Shack and The New Yorker.
Q: How many social media sites should you use, and what are the most important sites you should be using?
Hey, who let this guy in here? This is a dangerous question, because it escalates the medium (social) above the purpose (communicating with permission). No one asks how many hours you ought to spend answering the phone or what the receptionist’s desk should be made out of. Use the tools that help you achieve your purpose. Too often we get confused about who we’re trying to please and end up pleasing no one.
Seth Godin is the author of 14 best-selling books that have been translated into 36 languages. He’s the founder of Squidoo.com, one of the largest and fastest-growing websites in the United States. Godin was vice president of direct marketing at Yahoo!, a job he got after selling them his pioneering 1990s online startup, Yoyodyne.
There isn’t a single forumla that results in success. There isn’t a schedule you can follow for a certain period of time to ensure that you will reach your goals. But, there are some habits that have been shared among the successful for ages. These habits can give you the leg up on your competition and help you stand out in a sea of similar faces.
Wake Up Early – If you can get up, even just a little, earlier than your colleagues you will have that much more time of uninterrupted peace and quiet. Once everyone is up you have to deal with e-mails, texts, tweets and everything else. Start with waking up a half an hour earlier for a week and see how much more you get done.
Connect – Connect with someone who could potentially hire you or buy your product every day. You will notice less and less things slipping through the cracks. And when you hear, “Did you follow up with…?” you won’t have to cringe anymore.
Read The Headlines – Get a grip on what’s going on in the world and in your industry. Check the news and the headlines in relevant trade publications to give you something to think about before your competition is even out of bed.
Re-connect – Catch up with a friend you haven’t talked to in a while. Friendship only dies if you let it and you can never have too many friends. A good conversation might be just enough to make both of your days better.
Write A Letter – No really, write it. Take the time to hand-write a letter to a customer, client or even an acquaintance. Thank them for playing an influential role in your life and let them know that you appreciate them.
These things combined might take you an hour more every day and if you wake up early you’re breaking even on time. Once you start doing them you will notice the difference they make in both your personal and professional life.
To Sell Or Not To Sell?
Forbes put together a great slideshow pointing some of the best and worst practices of sales. Selling is an art and a science at the same time. It takes precision as well as creativity to truly be successful and almost anything can throw you off track. This list covers almost the entire spectrum so I decided to share some of my favorites with all of you.
1. Never have poor telephone or in-person etiquette
2. Never project, jump to conclusions or mind read
3. Never claim to know the answer to something when you don’t
Discipline is probably one of the hardest attributes to develop because you don’t really NEED it but you can’t really succeed without it. Really it’s the ability to do something you don’t want to do because you are looking for an outcome that you won’t be able to get any other way. It’s been my experience that if you can spend less time thinking about the process and more on the desired result, discipline becomes a lot easier. Here are a few more ways to build your discipline.
1. Identify The Goal – Be as specific as possible. If you can’t see what you really want you won’t be able to do what you really don’t want to do.
2. Figure Out Why You Want It – When things get hard you will start to question how bad you actually want to achieve that goal and why you wanted to achieve it in the first place. If you have it written down somewhere or at least engraved in your recent memories you will be able to handle this problem with ease.
3. Spot The Road Blocks – Figure out what’s going to slow you down or discourage you before you even get there. In this case you should cross the bridge before you come to it for preparation’s sake. If you know what to expect it will be easier to push through.
How can you build a great place to work? Workplace consultant Marcu Erb shares insights from the Great Place to Work Institute research. Your work environment can make or break your business. Which will it be for you?
4 minds are better than one! Check out this video from Allbusiness.com with writer Fredric Paul, StartupNation‘s Rich Sloan, “marketing maniac” Scott McDonald from LegalZoom, and Scott Gerber, founder of the Young Entrepreneur Council in offering real-world examples of actual small businesses with game-changing ideas, adaptations, or process improvements. Great real world experience compiled and collaborated with business tips that everyone can use.
Your résumé is a great place to make yourself look good. The job hunting process is basically you doing everything you can to sell yourself to an employer. You want to showcase your experience and all of your works and more specifically your skills, but this can go too far.
CareerBuilder uncovered in a survey of 2,600 employers nationwide, who were asked to recall the most unusual resumes they’d ever seen. It seems safe to assume none of these people were hired, but since CareerBuilder didn’t specifically ask, I guess there’s an outside shot that one of these tactics actually worked. Here are 10 of the wackiest things people included on their résumé.
1. The more I’m paid, the harder I work. – At least he’s honest.
2. Getting an interview is important because I want to show off my new tie. – They’re definitely excited, just about the wrong thing.
3. Listed their dog as a reference. – Might be your best friend but no one else can understand it.
4. Someone listed the moon-walk as a special skill. – Impressive but doesn’t help you do any job better.
5. Candidate wrote that he would be “a good asset to the company” but somehow omitted the last two letters in “asset.” – It’s good to feel confident about your body but don’t lead with your butt.
6. The listed e-mail adress contained the phrase “shakinmybootie” – … Not that kind of interview.
7. Wanted to be paid for the time spent interviewing. – Shows ambition and it also shows that you’ve got a bit of an ego problem.
8. Included the fact that they had been arrested for assaulting their previous boss. – Don’t try to intimidate potential employers, it’s no fun for anyone.
9. Candidate shipped a lemon with resume, stating, “I am not a lemon.”
10. Candidate mentioned that he had survived a bite from a deadly aquatic animal – Again, Impressive, but unless you are applying at an aquarium that skill/experience doesn’t help.
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The down economy has had a lasting effect on not just our pocket books but our dreams, ideas, and aspirations. Most new entrepreneurs are playing it safe and thinking small. Most innovators are playing it safe and dreaming small. The end result is a lot of great minds settling for the safe bet.
If you want to be more than the average entrepreneur you have to dream and think as big as you want to be. We don’t have enough of people trying to be the best and bring the best, but we have a lot of people just trying to make it. I encourage everyone to shoot past the sky as the limit and start thinking big.
Dream up as many ideas as you can. Write them down and act on as many as possible. Even if they only get to one or two more steps before you have to call it quits, you know that you gave it a shot and got the idea out of your head and off of the notebook you wrote it in. One of those dreams might be just what you and your company needs to make the next big step.
Quit thinking small. Start planning for your best outcome and then come up with a few backup plans instead of planning for the worst and not expecting anything better. If you have the goal of doing the best you can possibly do you are a lot more likely to achieve it.
There is plenty of room in the world for big dreamers and big thinkers but the space left for the safe-bets is getting pretty crowded.
It seems very obvious that there are fare fewer extremely successful people than there are semi-successful or even unsuccessful people. So what makes them so special? They are probably doing something you aren’t. Here are a few things that I noticed make a big difference.
Successful people are very specific when it comes to everything. They are specific when it comes to their goals and they are specific when it comes to all of their requests. This makes accomplishing those goals easier because they are always in sight and there is no half-way there. It also keeps everyone accountable for what they need to be getting done.
Successful people seize every opportunity. You will never hear one of these people say “I am just too busy” when it comes to a good opportunity. Of course they weigh the opportunity versus the cost and make the best decisions but they don’t let them slip through their fingers.
Successful people are realistic and optimistic at the same time. They need to be able to understand the heavy reality of the situation while still hoping for the best possible outcome. They also have a plan for the other outcomes that could possibly happen, so that they are never caught off guard. The key is believing in your ability and skills while still understanding how hard it is and should be to accomplish your goals.
Successful people put their efforts in to improving instead of just being good at what they are doing. If you are always looking for a way to be better you will always be the best or at least one of the best. That mind set helps improve yourself as well as your company. Read More.