Business Owners: Are You Taking Care Of Your Spouse?

Your spouse.  The most taken for granted stakeholder in a business.  Although we love our spouses, and part of our motivation in business comes from taking care of our family, we still tend to put our spouses last in the business.

In the past, I have been a poor steward in the area of treating my wife as a serious stakeholder in the business.  I mean, what’s the big deal, her life and the life of my family only depend on my business in a big way.  It makes sense that I would put that relationship last.

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Does Your Marketing Create An Experience?

It’s easy for you to be tactic heavy when you market your small business.   You try a lot of different things to market your business without any coordinated, intentional effort.

I wrote about business creating an experience for their customers.  This is not only true for people who are already customers, it’s also true for people who are thinking about being your customer.  In case you missed my book, you can download it here.

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Should Your Business Worry About Volume or Value?

Should you focus on volume in your business or value? More.  In business, it’s easy to get caught up into focusing on more and only more.  But there are other parts of the growth equation.  For instance value.  Should you worry about doing more volume when you can provide additional value.

Adding value is less about going wide and expanding and more about going deeper and looking for ways to take your relationship with your customer to the next level.

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3 Tips To Making Your Business Persuasive At Every Point

Make it easy to do business with you.  Persuasion is a part of our every day lives whether we put any effort into or not.  In each moment we can be persuasive in any intentional way or an accidental  way.  If you are a small business owner, you know it’s hard to keep your arms around all the ways that clients can interact with you.  Today’s podcast breaks down 3 things that you can do to ensure that you are more persuasive with each touch point in your business.

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Do Your Customers Have The Only Say In Your Brand?

How much influence do customers have on a brand? I spent some time in an interesting discussion on branding recently that came from an article about branding.  It was an article about a recent talk that Bert Jacobs CEO of Life Is Good gave at an Inc. 5000 conference.

Bert had an specific opinion about branding that centered around your customers’ role in the branding process:

“You can’t build your brand. Your customers are the only ones who can.”

That’s a pretty strong statement that isn’t devoid of truth.

This week’s podcast is about where true branding starts in an organization.  I discuss what’s right about the above quote and what’s wrong with it.  You will get some next steps to think about as you build your brand.  Enjoy.


Branding: Why You Should Care

What is your brand
What is your brand?

Imagine you’re at a party with some friends.  Everyone’s having a good time, enjoying a few cocktails and having fun.  Then a fight breaks out between one of the couples you’re with.  They start screaming at each other.  One of them storms out.  Awkward moment ensues and you think to yourself, there they go again.  Whether that couple likes it or not, they have a brand.

Everything has a brand.  Your grandma has a brand.  Think stale smelling knitted blankets and doilies who continues to give you Peeps as a treat even though you hate Peeps.  People who drive a Subaru have a brand.  Think environmentally conscious, liberal who tries to make you feel like shit because you don’t eat all of your food raw.  Couples also have brands.  Couples that fight, couples that over-parent their kids, couples that over-share details of their lives.

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Developing A Service Culture In Your Business

Creating a culture of service in your businessNobody wants a business where their team is disinterested and indifferent to taking care of the clients that they serve.  While many business owners talk about creating a service culture, not all of them know how this can be done.

Gallup just put out an article on why hospitals don’t deliver great service.   All of the points that are brought up in the article are valid points.  I want to focus on three that are most often overlooked in a business.

Start with the vision:

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Leveraging Your Service Process Equals More Time and Money

How can you leverage your service and turn it into a product?If you are a business owner that sells a service, you probably have a process that you take your clients/patients/customers through.  Hopefully, these same people love what you do for them.  How can you expand on that and grow your business without growing the number of hours that it takes to do that?

For service businesses, it’s a struggle to get out of the “time for dollars trap”.  The more people you see, the more hours it requires to see them.  You can be more efficient, sure.  In the end that only takes your business so far.

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The Best Initial Products For Your Business

Create products for your business that have low overhead.When it comes to creating new products or services for your business, a common roadblock for business owners is where to start.  Should you spend a lot of money?  Should you hire someone?  The best place to start in the product creation business is to start with a product with low overhead.

When we started The Business Blueprint, one thing that I wanted was a great intro video to put on our website.  I felt like having a really professional video made us look good and was a great way to connect people to our message.  We didn’t spend a ton of money on it but it was significant for a newer business.

We hired a team to help us with the video and then went to the studio and created it.  We got the finished product within a couple of weeks and put it onto our website.

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What Do You Stand For?

What does your business stand for? What do you stand for?

When was the last time you asked yourself that question?  That question is relevant for you, your business or any other organization you are involved in.  When I talk about standing for something, I am talking about taking a stand but what I am really talking about is clarity.

Having clarity, particularly as a new business owner, is critical.  Without clarity you lack the ability to properly position the way that you create value for the world and solve problems.  One asset that clarity gives you is the ability to differentiate yourself.

Whether you are a business owner or an employee of a company, you have to be able to differentiate yourself from others.

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