The 3-Point Plan For Building Your Brand


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One of the most vital aspects of running a small business is building the brand. There is often much confusion about this, about what brand-building is and how to do it well. In all honesty, there is not so much to it as is often made out. But that is not to say that it is a walk in the park. Like anything worth doing, it takes time and dedication to get right. But there are some tried and tested methods for making your brand a successful one, and it is worth learning them. Ultimately, building a brand is a simple matter of deciding what it is that your company is trying to say – and then saying it. Let’s take a look at the basic process in a little more detail.

Proper Placement

For any brand to be received well by the general public, it needs to be accessible. By this we simply mean that it makes immediate sense to people. To achieve this, it is first necessary to properly identify your brand. You need to know what it is, what it looks like, what it stands for. To get this right, there are some simple steps you can take. One common piece of advice at this stage is to think of your brand as a person. Treat it like you would a personality. How would you describe it to someone who doesn’t know it yet? Practicing this simple exercise can really help you to get a clear idea of what your brand is like. This part of the job is also made easier if you already have a clear vision in place for your business. In this instance, your brand might well be a mirroring of that vision. Once you can identify your brand with ease – and describe it well – you are in a good position to place it. All this means is that you know where it belongs in your target market.


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Consistent Communication

When it comes to the question of how to actually build your brand, communication is the key. For a brand to grow, you need to expose it to lots of people. But more than that, you need to communicate consistently with those people. This is where the hard work really happens. The communication with the public is the actual brand-building in action. There are many tools and tricks to achieve that consistency you are looking for. Many business owners find that it is worthwhile hiring the services of a pr company. If you outsource your communications in this way, you can be sure of the professional consistency your brand needs.

Extra Expansion

Provided that the above has been carried out properly, you already have a brand on its way to full growth. The next question you will face is how to ensure its continued growth. The answer is quite simple: you need to approach more and more people. A brand only grows if there are more people to become aware of it. For that reason, it is at this stage that your marketing campaign really needs to take an upturn. You should, at this point, be approaching a wider and wider range of the general public. So long as you continue to do this – and as long as you remain consistent – your brand is likely to grow. And that is pretty much the name of the game.


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How To Ace Your Next Business Trade Show


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Have you tried embracing industry trade shows for your business? They are a great way to get your name out there, whatever line of work you do, and whatever industry you serve. Whether you want new leads, more sales, or just want to get more brand exposure, you can get it all – and more – at a trade show. But, given the costs you will incur, you have to get it right if you want to make the most of your investment. Here are a few pointers that will help you ace your day at your next trade show.

Pick the right event

It sounds obvious, but picking the right event for your product or service is vital. Most people – I would hope – would choose a trade fair that is compatible with their business, of course. But, not all trade shows in your industry will be right for your business. The biggest shows are often crammed full of major players, and if you want a stall, you will pay through the nose. Plus, you will often find that smaller companies are often shunted into the corners. So, be realistic about your business’s place at the table, and choose the right show for your size. Regional shows can often work better for smaller companies, for example.


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Have clear goals

Never turn up at a trade show without any idea of what you should be doing. A clear plan and excellent strategy is an absolute must, and you will struggle without one in place. Ask yourself what you want to get out of the trade show, and make every facet of your plan about achieving those goals. Look at the other businesses that are bringing stalls, too, and see what the competition is offering. You may even spot a business that is compatible with yours, who you could strike a deal or two with. The main thing to remember is that trade shows are an excellent networking opportunity. So, bring your friendly faces, and be prepared to put yourself about a little.

Invest in a great stand

People at trade shows are attracted to awesome-looking stands. There’s no getting around it – you just have to make an effort. Ensure that you have a suitable budget arranged at an early stage so that you can order and create your stand as soon as possible. Custom designs might your best bet, according to industry specialists Infinity Exhibits. However, you can also pick up second-hand stalls and create some eye-catching graphics.  


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Bring lots of marketing materials

People also love free stuff – and it’s a great way to remind them of your business when they go home. Trade shows can be overwhelming, and they are exceptionally busy with many stalls vying for attention. But, give something useful to your booth visitors with your name and contact number all on it and they might just remember you.

As you can see, there is a lot to think about if you want a trade show to work for you. Get the right plan in place, and there’s no reason you can’t get the success you need. All the best!


The Best Ways to Generate More Sales for Your Business

The way to help your company survive and become a success is through sales. Generating as many of these as you can is the best way of ensuring business success. So, you need to do what you can to secure as many sales for the business as possible. Here are some of the best ways you can achieve that.

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Market Well

The key to a successful business is to make sure you have excellent marketing. This is an area so many businesses fall down on. It’s imperative to make sure you promote your company well because that is what generates interest and draws people to you. So it’s important to have an array of different marketing techniques to choose from. This helps you inject some diversity into your marketing and ensure it will be more effective.

Special Offers

In order to secure sales, you need to attract people to the business. You have to generate a lead and then turn that lead into a sale. And the way to generate a lead is to dangle the carrot for the customer. You can do this in the form of special offers and promotions. These will do a lot to ensure that the business presents a positive image. You want people to take note of your company and have a reason to visit your business. And the best way of doing this is to make sure you have regular promotions and special offers you can use.


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Faster Transactions

The key to generating more sales is faster transactions. It’s not difficult to work out – faster transactions mean more transactions. People hate to be kept waiting, and if you can serve them quickly you will keep them satisfied, and you won’t miss out on sales. The way to do this is to embrace and utilise mobile technology. Make sure all your staff are trained in handling EMV technology in the business. That way you can secure multiple sales and get anyone to complete numerous transactions at any point in the working day. It’s the best way of ensuring that the business gets through as many transactions as possible.

Online Shop

You need to think about how to maximise the sales for the company. Now, a great approach would be to create an online shop. You can attach this to your website, and run it in conjunction with your regular store. The benefit of having an online store is that it makes transactions instantaneous. People can visit your website and make purchases with just the click of a button. This increases the likelihood of repeat business and makes the whole process much quicker.

Your goal when running a business should be trying to generate as many sales as you can. This is done with a combination of new business and repeat custom. So you need to come up with ideas that help you satisfy your existing customers, and attract new clients to the brand. Hopefully, you will find the ideas listed on this post useful in helping you to achieve that.


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Exponential Change

I work for a company called Clickstop…and we’ve worked very hard to grow a lot.  We’ve averaged a 30+% growth path over the last 5 years.  That is when many companies were experiencing flatness and downturns.  And the growth we’ve experienced – its good.  But its not great.  Not like exponential growth.


Exponential Change

It takes think VERY differently.  Because, if it didn’t – the you would have experienced wild growth in the things you are already doing.   So when I read information which talk about how companies are doing things different…it catches my attention.  And when the “things” are exponentially better than a BIG player – it REALLY catches my attention.  This is the case with Maple.

As pointed out…Chipolte is the “current’ gold standard when it comes to getting more customers through lunch with a very fast 300 meals per hour or one transaction every 12 seconds.  Impressive.

Turns out, in February, they were pushing out 1100 meals – cooked and delivered in one hour.  Where can you do and see this wonderful feat…you can’t.  They have no retail.  Correct – there is not a store front, food truck or hot dog cart to visit.  The only way to get the goods is to go online.

The technology does stop there – they have a fully geeked out kitchen with advanced routing for its bicycle delivery troop which replies on highly efficient maps.

This is great – but you don’t have a food business.

Good point – how can you think like one?  What could you do differently that gets 10x more product out the door?  This is what Maple did.  And they save money doing it – because they don’t need high priced real estate to drive costs up.

If you think about it – this type of growth is all around us.  Look a the number of roads we have in the United States today vs what we had in 1955.  There are way more square feet of roads than ever before.  It’s very true with computers and Moore’s law.

How do yo do it?

If we had that answer – wouldn’t we be rich?  The fact is – it is hard.  You need to change people’s mindset and change the comfort zone.  This kind of change is not easy.

Entrepreneur as a cheat sheet and I added some of my own for good measure:

  1. Trim the fat – take into account the business process.
  2. Automate – especially if you are in a services business.  The rates will never go down – only up.
  3. Know your business – its a tight rope, you don’t want to be so close you can’t see the necessary change…but you need to change to live.
  4. Enable and Empower – you have to put the power in the people’s hands who see it every day.  They need to run the daily work and know they are trusted.
  5. Share – you must find others like yourself and share information and tricks.  This is a serious fast-forward.

Good luck in your endevours and let us know if you get food from Maple – for now we will just have to dream.

3 Key Things Your Company Website Needs

If you’re looking for business tips, then there’s one thing experts will always recommend. They’ll tell you to ensure that you have a quality company website. But, what makes a good company website? Written below are three things you need to think about regarding your site:


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Responsive Web Design

A lot of people will go on and on about web design being key for company websites. And, while this is true, there’s more to it than that. What people should be saying, is that responsive web design is needed. Don’t worry if this doesn’t make any sense to you; I’ll talk you through it. Responsive web design refers to your website’s design across multiple platforms. We’re talking desktop, mobile, and tablet websites. Your site needs to be designed to fit all three of these different formats. So, when someone views your site on a mobile device, it will fit the screen and respond perfectly to all the touch screen actions. Similarly, it should do the same on a tablet device.

This is something that many businesses forget when they’re creating a website. They make one that’s only suited to a desktop format. So, when viewed on a different device, the website looks strange and is unresponsive. If someone is on a mobile device and your site doesn’t have responsive web design, they’ll leave right away. It’s easy to get done, and most web design companies will be able to do it for you. There’s no excuse for not having responsive web design.

A Secure Host

All websites will need to find a host server somewhere. If you don’t know what a host server is, then it’s the server in which your website will be based. All websites are hosted on some type of server. Usually, the choice is between an open one of a Virtual Private Server (VPS). Now, there are some differences between these two choices, and one may suit you more than the other. With an open server, it’s usually cheaper, and you’re helped out a lot by the host provider. They can deal with getting your site up and running and making sure everything goes smoothly. However, the downside to this is that you lose a little bit of freedom. They may prevent you from doing certain things or running scripts on your website.

So, the second option of a VPS will counter this issue. A private server gives you full control of your website and lets you do things as you please. It also means you don’t have to deal with other websites being hosted on the same server. The only downside is that you have to do everything yourself, you don’t get any help if the server goes down, etc. I suggest you look at some guides to help you find the best VPS service possible. If you do this, you can host your website in a secure way without any worries. Or, if you want an open server, do your research on that front too. Either way, it’s crucial you find a reliable hosting service.

A Search Engine

Most people will think of Google or Yahoo when they hear the term ‘search engine’. It’s something that allows people to type in some words and search the web. However, with regards to your site, you won’t be conducting a web search. Instead, you want a search engine that will search your website. This is a tool that’s seen on the majority of website around the web. In my eyes, if your company website is missing this, then it will be a fail. It’s essential as it lets people look for things on your site.

Consumers like things to be made easy for them, they don’t like hard work. If they have to spend a few minutes clicking through menus to find something, they’ll be annoyed and frustrated. Especially when they could’ve found it in seconds by searching for it in a little search bar. It’s such a simple thing that every website needs, there’s no excuse! When creating your site, you should have the option to put a search engine on the page. Make sure you do this, as it makes you seem professional and not behind the times.

If you want the best company website there is, then you need all three of these things. Make sure that your site works across multiple platforms and the design is responsive. And, ensure that you have a secure server in which to host the site. Finally, regarding stuff on your website, it’s vital you have an internal search engine.