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October 16th, 2013

Entrepreneurs, BreakfastDid you know that the time spent in the morning before work is one of the most important times of the day? What you do before eight in the morning can affect your activities for the entire day. This is especially important for all small business owners or entrepreneurs. As a matter of fact, many successful entrepreneurs in have opened up their morning routines to include various activities such as exercise, planning and organizing, and eating right.

Kick Start Your Day with a Little Exercise

It goes without saying that people would rather stay in bed in the morning than get up and exercise. However, exercising first thing in the morning is the perfect way to wake up, kick start your heart, get the blood pumping, and the mind cranking.

If you aren’t the type to get outside and run a couple miles or doing an intense cardio workout before the sun comes up, simple exercises can be done and are also a great option. As long as you get up, get the blood pumping and moving, and break even a little bit of a sweat, you’ve already got the job done. Not only is exercise in the morning a great way to wake up your body, it also is great for your mind to seal the deal with your next lead or turn heads during that business meeting.

Plan Out Your Day

Planning should take place on a daily basis. After exercising, warming up, and looking at things with a clear head, start thinking of what needs to be accomplished during the day. Being a successful entrepreneur or small business owner means having to plan…everything. It also means setting goals. Goals don’t necessarily have to be long-term; they can also be short-term. As long as you have some goals set and your reach and accomplish them, you will be successful.

Spend approximately ten to fifteen minutes thinking about the things that you need to do before you begin work. What are your priorities? What needs to be done that day? What do you want to get accomplished before the end of the day? Successful entrepreneurs are always organizing and planning, but it’s important to remember that planning, organizing, and brainstorming only works with a fresh and clear mind.

Eat Breakfast

It seems like such a simple thing, but it is actually a key ingredient to a successful career, not to mention a healthy lifestyle. They say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. This is absolutely true. Never forget to eat breakfast, no matter how busy you may be. Working on an empty stomach is never a good idea. It will cause fatigue earlier in the day and cause your mind to malfunction.Don’t cause your mind more stress than what is necessary, especially by skipping breakfast.

Be Positive and Optimistic

“Tomorrow is a new day”. This is something entrepreneurs and small business owners need to keep in mind when settling in during the evening after a long day. Each day and evening should close when you fall asleep so you can start the next day with positivity and optimism. As a small business owner, it might be easy to think and constantly worry about problems and risks that you face or may face, but rather than focus on the problems themselves, spend your time and energy focusing on ways to solve them. Success always starts with positive thinking.

As entrepreneurs or small business owners, we all have our own daily routines. How about you? How do you spend your time before you go to work? How do you plan out your day, or don’t you? And how do you spend each evening at the close of the day? All small business owners and entrepreneurs should consider making a few minor changes to their daily routines to ensure a successful business, career, and a happy and healthy lifestyle.


© Esra Paola Crugnale | Dreamstime Stock Photos

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October 14th, 2013

Small Business, Small Business BudgetsTimes are tough, especially for small businesses. Expenses are high, leads can be low, and it’s difficult to manage everything in between. Every dollar counts, and every dollar goes into managing and improving the business. Instead of spending too much time worrying about the money that your business makes and spends, here are some of the cost-cutting tips to help out small businesses.

Outsource Projects – Capitalize on freelance talent, especially for unique projects. Outsourcing can help with regular tasks such as content marketing, SEO, and link building methods. This will help you save a lot of money in the long run.

Use Open-Source Applications – Why would you spend a lot on expensive software when you can find a free application that will do the same functions? Some businesses do not even realize how much they spend on applications or are aware of the free applications that are available. There are also a number of services also available along with free applications. Entrepreneurs can greatly benefit from free applications and help reduce your expenses of your small business.

Ask for Discounts from Suppliers – Negotiate with your suppliers for a better deal. Customer loyalty is important to suppliers. As a result, entrepreneurs can take the opportunity and negotiate discounts and try to get better deals and ultimately save money. This will also improve relationships with suppliers and the possibility for small business owners to refer their service to other small businesses, which will increase suppliers’ customer base.

Telecommuting vs. Commuting – Telecommuting is the way of business today. Many entrepreneurs that operate online businesses work out of their homes in a home office to save on commuting expenses, vehicle expenses, and paying for separate office space. Mobile technology and wireless Internet makes working from home, off site, and even on the go possible. Not only is it efficient, it’s incredibly cost effective.

Blogging and Content Marketing – Contributing and maintaining a website and functional blog that is useful to customers and your target audience is a big job. Entrepreneurs can also make a little extra cash by implementing PPC campaigns on a website or blog. This only works when a high traffic volume “hits” a website or blog and clicks on the ads. However, by utilizing effective online marketing and inbound marketing strategies, including social media, generating a large audience is possible.

Saving money for your small business isn’t always easy, and it may take some effort and creativity to find ways cut costs. However, there is no greater success than discovering different ways to save money and capitalizing on these opportunities. Having more capital to put into investments and develop and grow business will only add to small business success.

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October 11th, 2013

branding, vanity numbers, toll free numbers,The marketing landscape is expected to change in the near future with the 844 toll free prefix release on the not-too-distant horizon. The FCC only releases new toll free prefixes once every few years to a decade or due to high demand, which is the case with the new 844 toll free prefix. The 855 prefix was released several years ago and due to popularity and high demand, the FCC is now about to release the new 844 toll free prefix. This is a clear testament to how effective toll free numbers are for small businesses.



Monumental Moment for Small Businesses

On December 7th, 2013, 844 toll free numbers will be released. When the 844 numbers are unveiled, small businesses will have the opportunity to acquire their desired vanity numbers of choice, which could be the missing piece to an effective marketing strategy, if they were unable to acquire their desired vanity number in the past due to unavailability.


Securing Your Telephonic Namesake

If you have ever searched for conventional vanity phone numbers, you know how difficult it can be to find a powerful number combination that is also available. Most of the time businesses are forced to brainstorm other options and dive into their second and third choices for vanity toll free numbers. In December 2013, however, there will be more than 7 million 844 toll free numbers available.


Branding Your Small Business Better

It’s all about better branding for your small business. Don’t miss your next chance to secure your brand with a vanity toll free number. After all, who knows when the FCC will release the next prefix? Instead, take action and secure your brand by ensuring that you have a relative phone number that makes it easier for customers to contact you, boosting your advertising options and your small business power.

Vanity and Branding |
October 7th, 2013

Small Business, Small Business Marketing, Toll Free Numbers, BrandingWhen small businesses talk about marketing, they may often seem frustrated. This is mostly due to budgets and affordability. Working with a big marketing budget is hard to come by for small businesses, especially for start ups. However, while the big time marketing campaigns may be out of reach for some small businesses, the good news is that there are marketing strategies that can fit into any small business marketing budget.

The first step today is turning to online or digital marketing. It has been proven that digital and inbound marketing techniques are an easy, effective, and affordable way to reach out to a wider market. A big mistake that small business owners and entrepreneurs often make is they assume that creating a website is all they have to do. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Creating a website is step one. Then you have to market it. Do you think your website will be effective if you rely on customers to find it themselves? Start with low-cost advertising methods and build a good relationship with your customers.

Reach Out to Customers

Small businesses need to reach out to customers, not the other way around. Small businesses need to invest the time and effort in the beginning to reach out to customers. Luckily the convenience and flexibility of social media and inbound marketing has made reaching out to customers much easier than in the past. Social media marketing is something all small businesses need to incorporate in order to implement an effective marketing campaign. This is one of the most effective and affordable small business marketing strategies.

Customer Relationships and Retention

So you’ve spent a ton of time and effort on marketing your small business through social media and other mediums, generating leads, and landing new customers, now you need to keep them. Maintaining customer relationships and ensuring customer retention is the next crucial step for small business marketing, and for ensuring small business success. Customer retention is all about working with them even after the initial sale. You should keep them updated on your products and services, and offer them an open line of communication for them to contact you and receive top notch customer service. One way to do this is to offer a toll free number. This will make your customers feel valued and will certainly recommend you to family and friends.

Offer and Maintain Consistency with your Products and Services and Brand

When operating a small business as a relatively new entrepreneur, you may have a ton of ideas that you want to run with. This may mean altering your brand or offering or changing your products and services. While all entrepreneurs are encouraged to ‘think big’, don’t bite off more than you can chew. Maintaining a level of consistency with your products and services is very important. Sure, you can always offer more, and you should look to developing your business down the line, but keep your customers updated on your advances and progress. Also a level of consistency will also help and increase brand recognition. Customers want a brand they instantly recognize and respond to. A well-developed brand should instantly remind customers who you are and what you are about. You should not forget your main purpose and you should do it on a regular basis. Remember, it is not a bad thing to promote your products and services, but keep timing in mind.

One can clearly see that these marketing strategies are just what they are: strategies. They are simple business tactics that are very effective and cost small businesses and entrepreneurs little to nothing. They are more related to approach with a focus on development rather than writing a big check to a marketing firm that promises huge results and a SEO boost that will indubitably increase sales. For small businesses, it’s important to start small, but these strategies have proven to produce huge results…without the huge cost.

Toll Free Benefits, Vanity and Branding |
October 4th, 2013

Considering the wide availability and affordability of a toll free number, it’s silly to overlook this key marketing and branding item for your business (even for sole proprietors who may run their business from home). With a variety of options and plans to choose from, it’s not just an economical consideration, but it could also mean the difference in the number of sales or an increase in overall business growth and development.


Measuring Up to Competition

Take a look at your competitors. How many of them offer toll free numbers? If you find that the majority do, why don’t you offer one too? Imagine if you were able to take a vanity slogan and implement it into an easy to remember phone number for your customers. What do you think that could do as far as branding and attracting more clients?


Example of Toll Free Number Effectiveness

The effectiveness of a toll free number and branding is well known. The two operate hand in hand. Studies show that customers more easily identify a brand when associated with a vanity number. In addition, it's been proven that vanity numbers actually increase callbacks from printed ads substantially, mostly because callers associated a direct brand to the number, and were therefore influenced by it.


Delivering Customer Expectations

Customers expect several things from businesses today. Your branding should include a top of the line website customers can interact with, social media presence they can join and follow, and a toll free number that they can reach you at. If your small business delivers on these three customer expectations, then you can certainly expect to see an increase in business growth and development just by boosting and delivering your brand.


Spreading Brand Awareness

A vanity number also helps you to increase brand awareness and recognition. This is because one customer has the ability to begat many more. As they tell their friends, family members, and coworkers about your business, you will surely want them to have an easy to recall phone number to help you ensure that callback from the most powerful leads money is simply unable to buy.

Toll Free Benefits |
October 3rd, 2013

When most people think of branding, they think about a product they might buy at the store. They also associate a brand name with a particular product, inclusive of a logo and a slogan. But branding goes much deeper than just this; it’s an all-encompassing aspect that starts with the brand itself and stems deep into the branches of the marketing tree. Branding is incremental in the very existence of your small business. In addition to your brand, your marketing strategy should also include a small business toll free number, and here are a few reasons why.


Make Your Business More Recognizable

Small businesses are faced with incredibly daunting odds today. Many fail within the first five years of operation. Some are put out of business by big box competitors that offer products at lower prices with national reach. This is why it is more important than ever for small businesses to take every measure possible to increase reach, target audience, and stand out in the minds of customers.


Instill Your Brand in Printed Mediums


Printed mediums are still an effective form of advertising, albeit one that is slowly being replaced by digital and inbound marketing. However, many small businesses still incorporate print ads into their marketing strategy. With a small business toll free number, you can increase the callbacks from your ads by a substantial proportion.


Offer More Convenient Customer Service Options

Aside from the shift to digital marketing, customer service is still a crucial element to small business success. Customers still desire that face to face interaction or the option to speak with a person directly via a phone call.  A toll free number tells customers that you care about customer service and about them and their business. As a result, this should be integral aspect to your branding.


Increase Brand Awareness with a Vanity Number

Brand awareness is another important aspect. After all, the more people who know about your brand, the better your business recognition will be. When approaching the topic of branding for your business, it’s important that you think of all angles. This includes considering a small business toll free number to ensure that your branding is fully complete.

Vanity and Branding |
October 2nd, 2013

Small Business, Business Growth, Business Technology, InnovationInnovation is one of the main reasons why we still see Facebook, Apple, Microsoft and other popular companies on the business industry. This is also the stepping stone for small businesses looking to climb the corporate ladder. A small business without any room or interest for innovation will be left behind in today’s fast-moving market. Unfortunately, there are still many businesses that fail to really embrace the opportunities that innovation can present to them. Here are some things that are holding small business back, and what they should avoid.

Fear of Failing

This is probably the biggest reason. And why not? The fear of failure is just human nature. It’s tough to get around. We all fear of making mistakes and having to admit failure, and this fear is heightened even more so when talking about small business. The fear of failing prevents small business owners from taking risks and moving forward. This often involves capturing business technology and new innovative small business ideas.

It is true that your business is safe while you are playing it safe, but do you really want your business to stay in the safe zone? Your business will not grow and develop if you do not take risks from time to time.

Too Much Innovation

Like anything there should be a balance. Innovation isn’t solely about new product development, but about paying attention to customer needs and wants. There should be a balance between innovating, improving, and further developing your products and services, and focusing on your customers. Always remember to make innovation visible in each area of your small business, but don’t overlook the small details along the way.

Considering Innovation as “Optional”

Innovation is not optional. Period. Make innovation apparent in your small business. Your efforts will not go unrecognized. Innovation does not exist for when business think they might need it. Innovation, creativity, and thinking outside the box promote small business growth and will help to secure your position in the market.

Innovation might mean trying out new ideas and strategies to improve business processes, and might even mean taking some risks here and there. But you don’t have to do it alone. Toll free numbers are a perfect example of small business innovation. These phone numbers have evolved from simple, standard numbers and tools into a proven and effective form of advertising, and are one of the best ways to boost small business brands.

Uncategorized |
October 1st, 2013

There are numerous benefits to the vanity toll free number that are commonly overlooked. Most people assume that it’s a fancy way of spelling out a phone number while being inclusive to your overall slogan, but there’s a lot more to it than that.


Associating Brand with Phone Numbers

People associate brands with images and with words, hence why a brand requires a logo and a motto or slogan. It’s this vital imagery and poetry in motion that also helps them better remember your brand by associating the mental continence of it with an image and a short thought. A vanity toll free number also helps procure this by adding the invaluable telephonic brand to the mix.


Expanding Overall Brand Awareness

Brand awareness is, and should be, a constant for your business. The more people are aware of your brand, the more you can expect for your brand to actually influence them. With a vanity number, you can ensure that your brand is memorable from all facets; from your ads, your logo, your slogan, your website and, yes, even your phone number.


Increasing Inbound Phone Calls

When the phones ring, we all know that the cash machine is hard at work. No business that will fret over an increase in inbound phone calls, because inbound phone calls most often come from prospective or existing customers who wish to do business with your entity. According to numerous studies, a vanity toll free number actually can increase your inbound phone calls by more than 50 percent or greater. 




The Importance of Securing Your Telephonic Brand

When approaching the subject matter of branding, it’s a multifarious aspect. Branding is a top to bottom element, and one that needs to be prevalent inside of your marketing approach. That means that you need not only just focus on the forward aspects of branding, such as your approach, public relations strategy, online marketing focus or printed and advertised mediums, but also on your telephonic brand. With a vanity toll free number, you can also secure your brand and ensure that the necessary top to bottom method has been implemented. 

Vanity and Branding |
September 30th, 2013

Entrepreneurs, Small Business, Business TechnologyIt seems like achieving small business success is almost an impossible feat considering how much an entrepreneur needs to consider. So how do elite entrepreneurs find the extra time to actually achieve success?

It’s crazy how entrepreneurs seem to achieve success again and again almost effortlessly. Meanwhile, you feel like there are only half the hours in the day you need to barely keep your head above water, much less have time to think up a ground breaking play that will concrete your spot at the top of your industry.

So what’s the key to success for busy entrepreneurs? Check out the following eight step guide:

1. Go to Bed Later

Most time management and success tips and books talk about the importance of getting up early. Ironically G-Code Magazine’s recent report on decoding the secrets of the most successful billionaires quotes research proves one of the four habits of the smartest includes going to bed later!

Obviously, this doesn’t mean burning yourself out. Like any intelligent bodybuilder knows; pushing yourself to hard can be counterproductive in the end. Sleep advocate, Arianna Huffington with the Huffington Post claims the solution is napping.

2. Time to Think

From Albert Einstein to Steve Jobs, it’s pretty clear that massive success isn’t reliant on the number of hours you put in working like a mad person, but rather the time you spend clocked out, thinking.

Most busy entrepreneurs could never comprehend taking an exorbitant amount of time off—if any at all—but you can carve out a weekend a month just to brainstorm or spend an hour a day practicing yoga at home or even in the office during your lunch break.

3. Productivity Apps

Your smartphones and tablets are gold, and can put thousands of productivity apps right at your fingertips. Use them!

4. Know When to Switch Your Device Off

If you are going on vacation, then actually vacation. Don’t feel obligated to return phone calls or emails after hours or on weekends and maybe you’ll help instill a trend that gives you more free time in the long run. At night make sure you literally unplug devices and banish your phone from the nightstand in order to get sound sleep when you do finally hit the sheets.

5. Use Call Forwarding, but…

Leveraging call forwarding for your business phone lines so that you never miss a call on the go and can stay mobile is great. Smarter entrepreneurs use call forwarding to send inbound calls to virtual assistant and call centers that provide 24/7 customer service for them. This frees you up to only work on the most important items while actually delivering far better customer service than 99% of your competitors.

6. Recognize there are Few Rewards for Sprinters

It’s important to recognize that achieving success is a marathon, not a sprint. There are times to pick up the pace, but greedy and short sighted sprints can sabotage the long game.

7. Focus on the Right Figures

The number one reason that entrepreneurs are so frazzled and time starved today is that they are completely focused on the wrong figures. They are allowing others (that are often not nearly as profitable as believed) to dictate their schedules. There are new metrics small business owners are told that they need to catch up on every day. Behind those metrics are often ridiculous numbers of hours of non-income producing work. Unit volume, online traffic, Facebook likes, and even revenues can all be an illusion which takes entrepreneurs further from where they really want to be. Always ask the impact on the bottom line and real net profits. If it doesn’t help, then it probably hurts.

8. Set the Right Goals and Share Them

Perhaps most importantly, one of the biggest differences in those that achieve the upper echelons of success and become ingrained in history books is that they have different goals. They aren’t just brainstorming where they can make the next quick buck the fastest. They are working on providing big solutions, often before most people really realize that there is a problem.

No one cared much about ‘needing’ electricity before it was invented. Space travel was likely thought a foolish venture by many even though you can rack in a quarter of a million a ticket to provide an extremely brief visit out of our atmosphere today. And who envisioned that individuals all over the planet would become inseparable from their iPhones?

So is it time for you to re-write your goals? In addition to reading, one of the ‘4 Habits of the Super-Smart’ is not just having written goals, but sharing them with friends for accountability too…

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September 26th, 2013

Women Entrepreneurs, Small BusinessWomen entrepreneurs are becoming more and more common in today’s corporate world. In fact, even “stay at home moms” are finding creative ways to utilize their skills to make a living. You can find a professional woman behind the success of large, big name companies and businesses around the globe. So for those aspiring female entrepreneurs, here are some creative business ideas for you to get started.

As mentioned above, there are many more exciting and promising opportunities today for female entrepreneurs to earn a living and excel in the field of business and management even while staying at home. Below are some of the small business ideas and possible careers for women to consider:

Put Your Creativity, Culinary Skills, and Management into Use:

It may seem ironic with today’s focus on eating healthy, but baked goods are very in right now. Cupcakes, cake pops, dainty cakes, and other unique and creative pastries, homemade beverages, and other baked favors are extremely popular. So why not put your creativity, culinary skills, and management knowledge to the test? Your baked items can be made from creative recipes such as gluten-free cupcakes, no flour cakes, and other baked goods that may have healthy substitutes or are sensitive for those with food allergies. You can create a website featuring and advertising your items via social media networks.

Turn Your Creative DNA into Business:

Women are incredibly creative by nature. So why not put your creative DNA into business? You can start a business by creating and selling simple and affordable accessories such as earrings, necklaces, bracelets, or even scarves. You should focus on creativity, uniqueness, and affordability and bring out the most attractive elements of the accessories. Similar to selling baked items and other goods online, you can also advertise and sell your accessories online and via social media networks.

Start Your Own Blog:

After selling tangible items, let’s talk about selling information and experience. You aren’t going to make any sales by asking people to buy your items. You need to arm your audience and target market with information and calls-to-action. So how do you do this? Start by creating your own blog about something you are passionate about, something that could be useful to someone else, or something that you feel experienced or qualified. You can earn from this by applying it on sponsored ads and affiliate marketing.

Offer Event Planning Services:

In addition to creativity, most women are also very organized by nature. Many female entrepreneurs entered the event planning and consulting business for this very reason. Planning events can be as small or as big as you make it. You can plan and organize family reunions, parties, baby showers, wedding showers, etc. Then, perhaps with time and experience, you can turn your business into planning and consulting weddings, corporate events, and retreats. Start small, create some business cards and hand them out to guests at the parties you’ve hosted or organized, design and market a website, and watch your business grow.

If starting your own home-based business still seems like a scary feat, you can always start by attending seminars, trainings, and other events for beginner entrepreneurs just like yourself. This will give you a head start on the things that you need to do when considering starting your own small business. Start by taking on small projects before tackling larger projects, clients, and accounts.

Any aspiring female entrepreneur knows that there are a lot of small business opportunities available to women, especially today. Begin by finding your strengths and weaknesses and talents and turn your creativity and organizational ability into starting your own business and becoming an entrepreneur.

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