Small Business

Running a small business is no small feat. Expert tips for marketing and growing your company.

A dirt-simple system for qualifying sales prospects

It is easy to fall into the habit of believing that everyone is a potential client. Some business owners will even say that they want to obtain ALL of the business out there … that everyone is a prospective client. This is a dangerous mindset.

Business growth isn’t about selling to everyone; it is about selling to every right one – that is, everyone who is a “qualified” prospect.

When you try to sell to everyone your efforts are too broad. You aren’t focused and you soon are faced with failures, because you are wasting time trying to sell something without understanding the value in other people’s eyes – or even whether they are truly a good fit for your product or service.  In short, you aren’t qualifying companies/individuals in the field.

Qualifying – that is, effective prospecting and information gathering – leads you to the clients you should have.

Qualifying prospects includes 4 steps …more at A Dirt-Simple System for Qualifying Sales Prospects | Small Business Trends.

Flickr photo credit: Lougan Manzke

By | January 30, 2009|Blog, Small Business|0 Comments

No better time for e-mail marketing

What do the best franchise owners know about online marketing that you need to know, too?

With the new year comes new challenges. As business owners and operators, consumers, and citizens, we know that the climate has changed radically in the last year. However, as I indicated recently in my column–there’s no need to panic. I talked then about cultivating stronger customer relationships, and provided tips on how to do so. My advice applied to anyone working to establish and build a successful entrepreneurial venture, whether it be an independent restaurant, a consulting firm, a successful franchise or some other type of business. For all of us who are business leaders, everything begins and ends with customers. I’d like to dig a little deeper into how a customer-oriented culture impacts franchises–a market that has its own opportunities and challenges. …more at No Better Time for E-Mail Marketing – Franchise Challenges – Entrepreneur.com.

Flickr photo credit: m-c

By | January 30, 2009|Blog, Small Business|0 Comments

Turning around a struggling business

Consumer confidence is at an historic low and the financial news seems to get worse by the day. With a new Administration in Washington, there’s a lot of uncertainty about exactly how and when promised changes will take place.

But even if your business is struggling, you can take steps to turn it around and be poised to grow this year, says Paul Rauseo, managing director at the George S. May International, a Chicago consulting firm. Practical tips from Rauseo and other small business experts follow….more atTurning Around a Struggling Business – BusinessWeek.

Flickr photo credit: Digital Explorer

By | January 29, 2009|Blog, Small Business|0 Comments