How To Manage Your Online Reputation

August 4, 2009 · Filed Under Small Business Marketing · Comment 

Something many small business owners don’t think about, especially if they don’t conduct business on the Internet, is their online reputation. Disgruntled customers, former employees, unscrupulous competitors have an easy, practically free, way of spreading untruthful, fraudulent information. This is not the way you want to be found online.

One way of monitoring what’s being said about you and your business is to use Google Alerts. Google Alerts are email updates of the latest relevant Google results (web, news, blog references, etc.) of whatever topic you choose.

Google Alerts can be used for:  Read more

Local Business Listings on the Internet

July 16, 2009 · Filed Under Small Business Marketing · 2 Comments 

If you’re in business, whether or not you have a website, it’s time to establish your personal and professional presence on the Internet. Getting your business listed in as many places as possible on the Internet allows people who are interested in you, your products and services, to easily find you.

The once conventional means of learning about a person, a business, products and services are rapidly going by the wayside because printed material is outdated before it reaches the intended audience.

We’re all familiar with the recent news stories about centuries-old newspapers closing down. Yellow pages, the formerly definitive guide to local business, are now archaic texts in part due to the way in which their publishers require information to be submitted… up to 5 months prior to publication.

83% of all Internet searches are for local business. The Internet is how the majority of people now find local business. If you are a business owner who sells products or services to your local community, you need to be found online for two reasons. First, your competitors are. Second, they aren’t.

Here’s a short list of suggested actions to start you on the digital highway:  Read more

Rich Schefren

November 6, 2008 · Filed Under Small Business Marketing · 2 Comments 

For the past month I’ve had the privilege of participating in Rich Schefren’s Guided Profit System program. For those of you who don’t know who Rich Schefren is, it is my pleasure to be able to introduce you. But before doing that, I want to tell you that the first time I heard Rich speak I decided I didn’t like him. At all.

In September 2006 I attended an event in San Diego hosted by Ed Dale and Frank Kern for their Underachievers program. Rich was one of the internet marketing superstars who were presenting. As soon as he began his talk, I decided I didn’t like him. That’s not fair, I know. But it is the truth. This guy in a suit, with a New York accent, telling the audience about all his business accomplishments just didn’t sit right with me. This was about the time he released his free report, The Internet Business Manifesto. I hadn’t read it before I saw him speak. If I had, I would have been anxiously waiting for him to take the stage and would have hung on every word. Instead, my just punishment has been having spent two years trying to learn just part of what he’s taught me in a month.
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At my age, you’d think I’d know better

November 5, 2008 · Filed Under Small Business Marketing · Comment 

When I went to vote yesterday I found that I was not a registered voter. This came as quite a shock because I’ve been registered to vote since I was 18. I’m now 55.

I moved to another part of the state about a year and a half ago. I registered to vote at my new (now old) location, but didn’t realize that I had to register again when I moved ‘back home’ (old, now new location). When they say there are X number of voters in the State of California, they really mean there are ‘this’ many voters in Los Angeles County, ‘that’ many voters in Orange County and so on. I thought I was a registered voter in the State, not the county. After talking to the examiner at the Registrar of Voters yesterday, I am now clear on this matter. I was advised the only way I could vote was to drive to Ventura County (where I no longer live), 120 miles one way, in rush hour traffic, which in LA starts anytime after 2:00 PM. It was, unfortunately, 4:00. On the best of days it would take about 2 hours to get there; at this time on a typical day, it was questionable whether I could make it there in the 4 hours until the polls closed.

As embarrassing as it is to share this mishap with you, Read more

Your Business’ Hidden Assets, part 1

October 31, 2008 · Filed Under Small Business Marketing · Comment 

All businesses have hidden assets. Hidden assets are the aspects of a business that would benefit the bottom line, but they haven’t been optimized. This series of articles will highlight some of the hidden assets that can be found in almost all businesses.

The first hidden asset to discover is your unique sales proposition (USP, also known as Unique Sales Point). USP is a marketing concept that was first proposed as a theory to explain a pattern among successful advertising campaigns of the early 1940s. It states that such campaigns made unique propositions to the customer and that this convinced them to switch brands. Today the term is used to refer to any aspect of a business that differentiates it from similar businesses. Read more