Creating Loyal Customers Free of Charge

Business customer service success really isn’t as hard as we make it out to be.  This week’s post is a little reminder about things we all know and usually forget, and they can be worth millions to your business bottom line.  Read More…

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How to Lose Your Customers in 10 Simple Ways

Plenty of success stories and proven processes are out there regarding Customer Service strategy and tactics.  That’s why it confounds me that there still exist companies that seem motivated to degrade, separate, piss off and just lose their customers.  I got to thinking that maybe a number of you small business owners may want the same results.  Those  customers can be a royal pain in the butt, with their annoying little credit card transactions and product questions, making you have to produce more goods and deliver on services.  This post is for you, Mr. Small Business Owner trying to ditch his customers.  Learn and implement this stuff and you can just chuck it all and go retire to Bermuda and spend your time drinking Mai Tais by the pool and eating Conch.  Here’s your top 10 best practice list to get rid of customers in a hurry! Read More…

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Pampering Your Clients Using Your Client Database

The Internet has radically changed the process companies conduct business in the last decade. Shopping can now be done all hours day and night through the internet. You can now electronically order, deliver and consume products and services in an a snap . Customers take hold of their goods within hours of being ordered. While more and more people switch to online shopping, businesses need to translate the other elements that make up a good buyer experience into the online channel. Live chat, online phones or interactive voice response systems are now the norm.

Unfortunately, if you’re not making use of a client database to connect your clients online, you are undoubtedly lagging behind. Read More…

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How to Catapult Your Blog to Stardom

Guys and Ladies, you’re going to love this Vlog post.

This week I had the opportunity to interview Chris Ducker, President and CEO of the Live2Sell group of companies based in the Philippines, and evil originator of the Virtual Business Lifestyle blog.  This 15 month old blog that started as a personal mission statement for Chris now has over 11,000 fans on Facebook, 13,000 Twitter followers, and gets about 15,000 readers a month. This post gives you some insight as to how he did it and how you can get started. Read More…

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Resurrecting Repeat Business with Stale Client Accounts

Have you been having a good year selling?  Maybe you’ve had a good couple of years, landing new accounts faster than your office buddies can parrot, “Whazzzzuppppp!”  Great.  How healthy is your repeat sales pipeline?  You know, the sales where existing clients come to you for more of your stuff (goods or services), where the cost of the sale is much lower because rapport and trust were already established, the easy sales.  You’re hesitating.  Do you mean to tell me that your repeat sales pipeline isn’t full?  How embarrassing for you. 

Don’t feel so bad.  Sometimes we all get so busy prospecting and closing new deals that we neglect current accounts or even lose once solid business because we haven’t paid that customer a visit in a while.  This business need not be lost forever.  Here are a few quick tips to get your foot back in the door of lost accounts and open the floodgates to your repeat sales pipeline. Read More…

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Customer Complaints Make or Break Your Online Business Reputation

If you’ve got customer complaints, sing “Hallelujah!” because they are telling you how to fix your business model.  The way you handle them will determine in large part your business reputation, and with online chatter harder to control than at any time in human history, your success starts with your customer complaint response.

As my business expands I am re-engaging e-commerce, at least my miniscule version of it, by selling my tapes (now downloads) and books on my website along with standard services to help small businesses.  Years ago this process was more complex, and involved setting up what’s called a merchant account, and to do this you need information from the bank; basic stuff—routing numbers, federal taxpayer ID number, et al.  This is where today’s little tale of woe begins.  Read More…

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Your Virtual Success: Finding Profitability in an Online World

The New American Business

The way we work in America is changing dramatically.  Virtual business, remote work, telework, distributed work, virtual staff like executive assistants, and leading virtual teams are all the rage for a variety of reasons.  Economics of lower-priced overseas competition, renewed US focus on quality of life, and simply the improved effectiveness of a virtual business model drive the shift.

Author of Your Virtual Success: Finding Profitability in an Online World Alan Blume believes that virtual work is transforming the very nature of cities and urban centers.  As more business is done from remote locations, cities are rapidly becoming cultural centers steeped more in entertainment that business.  There is simply little need to be “at the office” like we used to.  Take a look at the downward spiral in commercial office space real estate in recent years and you’ll see what I mean.  Companies who don’t adapt won’t be able to attract the best talent, maintain a financial edge, and may soon end up like Blockbuster Video as Alan describes it.

Executive Video Interview

Enjoy the two videos below where I interview Alan Blume about the changing nature of business today, the benefits of the Virtual Lifestyle, and the best ways to locate and hire virtual, outsourced staff to help operate your virtual business.

Read on to the bottom of this post to learn about a book giveaway that the author has agreed to for Smart Blog readers and viewers!

What’s so cool about a virtual business?

Read More…

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Getting Out Of Sales Tracking Nirvana With Online CRM Software

This is a guest post on the Smart Blog for Small Business.

Embarking on a business means taking chances and willing to make sacrifices, but many entrepreneurs are still willing to take the plunge, maybe the appeal lies is becoming your own boss or building something for your family. Unfortunately, what you’re most likely to find is reduced income, more work hours and addtional stress. This is the main reason for you to employ systems such as an online CRM software – to improve efficiency, reduce costs and earn higher profits. Read More…

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Proposals that Get the Business: Steps to Better Proposal Writing

If you’re in business, you’re in sales, whether you realize it or not.  Unless all you ever do is hawk dime store widgets by attractively positioning them on shelves, there will come a time in your life where you need to write a business proposal of some kind.  Business proposals are always used to persuade someone to take action on something that you have.  You want to convince a prospect to purchase some system or service, or convince a loan officer to give you money because you think you can invent the cure for cancer, or you want the school district to invest in your innovative approach to developing kids.  Your project proposal writing skills will shorten the distance between effort and paying customers. Read More…

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Negotiating to Yes! 10 Steps to Getting What You Want in a Business Negotiation

Today in business you don’t get what you ask for—you get what you negotiate.  You see, everybody wants to know “What’s in it for me?”  So for you to get what you want, you’d better be prepared to answer that question for the people you do business with by learning negotiation mastery.

I have had a good deal of success in negotiating opportunities lately, especially since I am not known as a master negotiator.  I have negotiated raises that were 5 times what was offered, negotiated an executive level position worth thousands more than in the job description with triple the job security, and bartered online services worth hundreds of thousands of projected income for my company.  How did a novice like me accomplish these things and learn how to negotiate in business?  Read More…

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