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Thursday, September 17, 2015

Collecting Your Thoughts When Stuck On A Project

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When you are working on a project - whether for work or for a personal hobby - it can be easy to get "stuck." And many people end up pushing so hard when they get stuck that they are unable to push past this point, which leaves them more and more frustrated. But when you get stuck on a project - regardless of whether the project in question is for work, for creativity, or even just for fun - it is better to ease your way out than to try to push. And simply collecting your thoughts is often the best way to ease yourself out of one of these ruts.

It is important that you find the way that works best for you to collect your thoughts, as different methods work well for different people. For instance, if you are working on a project team some people find that brainstorming helps them get out of a rut. If this is this case for you, you will need to make sure that it is similarly the case for the other members of your project team. If it is, you will be able to push out of a rut with the help of the rest of your project team, and you will be able to help them when they end up in a rut as well.

Other people find that they are able to collect their thoughts best when they simply go out for a little walk. By getting outside for a bit (or even just by getting away from their desk), they can sort through their ideas and organize all their thoughts. By the time they return to their desk, they are ready to attack the project again with a whole new perspective.

And one of the was that seems to work best of all for getting out of a rut - as strange as it might seem - is to just not think of the problem at all. Many people find that the breakthrough just seems to come of its own accord the moment they stop thinking about the project and force themselves to move onto other things.

There is nothing wrong with getting stuck on a project - after all, it happens to everyone; the main thing is not whether you get stuck, but is knowing the best way for you to get unstuck!

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

How To Run Promotions That Work

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When it comes to having a business of your own, one of the most important things involved will be that you figure out ways to get customers into your store; of course, there are many ways by which you can go about doing this, but one of the best things you can do in order to get customers into your stores is to run promotions - and of course, if you are running promotions, you will need to make sure you know how to run promotions that actually work.

Many companies make the mistake when running promotions of giving customers things that they will not actually want - that is, giving them “throwaway items” - but if you want to get customers into your store with your promotion, you will need to make sure you are giving them something they will actually want; think of yourself when you are running a promotion, and make sure you are only giving away something that you yourself would actually want to receive from a store!

You should also realize that the things you give away in a promotion do not necessarily have to be from you or your store; one of the best ways to make a promotion work is to give away a large gift card to a website lots of people use, such as Amazon or iTunes, as this will give everyone a product they are familiar with, and will in turn give them the drive they need to take part in the promotion.

And one of the big things when you are running a promotion for your business will be that you pay close attention to what is working and what is not working; as the promotion moves along, be willing to always tweak your approach - enhancing the things that are working well, and getting rid of the aspects of the promotion that are not working at all.

As you run more promotions with your business, you will become better at knowing how to run promotions that work - but as you keep these tips in mind while getting started, you will be well on your way to having a successful promotion!

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

How To Convert Your Website Visitors Into Customers

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When it comes to websites, a lot of people focus on the things they will need to do in order to get people to come their way, but while this is certainly an important component of running a website, all the work you have done to get people to come to your site will be for nothing if you fail to convert these visitors into customers. When it comes to converting casual visitors into serious customres, one of the best ways for you to do this is to get them to become part of your social media circle; when you get people to add you on facebook, or to start following you on Twitter, you will be a whole lot closer to getting them to take that next step of purchasing products or services from you!

Cultivating a "members" section of your site, through which members will be able to receive special discounts and deals is another valuable thing you can do in aiming to create loyal customers; when you simply take the time and effort to craft an appealing members pitch, and to feature this aspect of your business prominently on your site, you will find that you are building a lot more loyal followers for your business.

And even though you might not think of this, "relationships" are one of the main things that will make a customer choose one company over another, and even though you will not be able to use your online presence to create face-to-face connections like you could with a physical location, you can use your online presence to interact directly with those who visit your site, and in this way, you will create a lot of relationships, and will find that a lot of your visitors are becoming customers.

As you build your website, make sure you are keeping in mind how absolutely important it is that you convert visitors into customers - and pay attention to these ideas, as well as any other creative ideas you can come up with for converting visitors, so that you can further build your customer base!

Monday, September 14, 2015

Tips For Promoting Your Business Through Pictures

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If you run a small business of your own, one thing that you are probably aware of (that you are perhaps even painfully aware of!) is the fact that, within your business, you will always be competing against others, as it will be inevitable that some of your competitors will thrive while others of your competitors will not survive; because of this - and because you will certainly want to be on the "thriving" side, rather than on the "not surviving" side - it will be important that you look for every edge you can find in order to experience success, and one edge that you should pay attention to is learning how to promote your business through pictures.

You probably have a website that you use for your business - either as a promotional tool, or as a storefront in its own right - and you may even have come to the realization that one of the most important things for you to do in order to achieve success with this website is for you to make the website visually appealing, but what you may not have realized is that having pictures that pertain to your business is one of the best ways to make it visually appealing!

Another thing that will be important is to have pictures that pertain to your business in print ads of yours; it is one thing to have a print ad that gives the viewer information, but it is another thing altogether (that is, it is a much more effective thing!) for the print ad to tell the viewer something all on its own, through a well-placed picture.

And having some pictures on site if you have a storefront, or (to an even greater degree!) if you have an office that customers or clients come to for meetings, will go a long way in drawing these customers and clients in; have some of your favorite pictures (of those that relate to or pertain to your business) blown up and mounted on the wall, and this will give your offices an extra, useful flair.

And most importantly of all when it comes to these pictures, make sure you are hiring someone who knows what they are doing to take these pictures; if you are using pictures as one of the "faces" of your business, you will want these pictures to look professional - and the way to make this happen is to have a professional take the pictures!

Sunday, September 13, 2015

How To Conduct Great Giveaways For Your Business

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One of the best ways for you to gain extra customers for your business is by conducting giveaways, as giveaways will give you the opportunity to sacrifice a small amount of inventory or time for a lot of extra exposure; before you try doing a giveaway for your business, however, it will be important that you pay attention to a few things that will go into making this giveaway successful.

When putting together a giveaway, one of the biggest mistakes businesses tend to make is that they give away something that is easy or convenient for them, rather than trying to come up with something customers will actually want; instead of giving away something that will stir up no desire in the hearts of customers and potential customers, you should view the giveaway as an investment, or as advertising, and expand your budget accordingly to give customers something they will want.

Doing a giveaway that involves participation from your customers will be another key to making your giveaway successful, but realize that this does not mean you need to make their participation difficult; when doing a giveaway, always aim to make the participation aspect fun and easy, as this will make it much more likely that people will take time and effort to participate in the contest.

And finally, you should understand that getting people to help you spread the word about the contest itself will be a huge key to making the giveaway successful, and in order to cause this to happen, you will need to make sure you are taking the right steps; the best way to get people to spread the word about a contest is to make this part of the contest itself, where entries are given into the contest for using social media (or other means) to let people know about the contest itself!

When you run a contest for your business by taking these steps, you will find that lots of new customers are coming your way, and that the inventory and time spent on these contests are absolutely worth it!

Writing A Job Resume That Works

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The job resume you send out to the prospective employers for whom you feel you might be a match will be one of your greatest tools when you are looking to land a job, but one thing you will need to realize, when you are sending out a resume, is that there will be a lot of competition for any job for which you are applying, and in order to rise to the top amongst this competition, your resume will need to do more than simply list the jobs you have worked at before and the education you have accumulated, but will instead need to function as a tool that "sells" you to this employer!

One thing that a lot of people neglect is the formatting of their resume, as they do not realize that the way their resume looks will make a big difference in the way their resume is perceived; rather than simply using a "resume template" in Microsoft Word, look around for some creative ideas of how to make your resume stand out, and even consider hiring a resume expert who can help you to craft and create the perfect-looking resume.

Of course, once you have gotten this prospective employer to give your resume a serious look based on the visual appeal of the resume itself, you will also want to give them something on which they can hang their hat by listing more than just your previous work, but by also listing your strengths and making it apparent that you just might be the right person for the job opening they have - creating a call to action with your resume, instead of simply giving them a dull piece of paper to read!

And finally, realize that just because you have come up with a great resume does not mean this is the resume you need to send out to each place to which you apply; if you are applying for a number of jobs, tailor your resume a bit to make sure it fits for each particular job, as this will increase the likelihood that you will appeal to one of them.

It can be difficult to get hired, but when you know how to craft a resume that works, it can be a whole lot easier - and by keeping these tips in mind, you will be well on your way to crafting a resume that works!

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Targeting Your Target Market

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In order to increase your chances of success in business, one of the most important things you can do is advertise. But of course, you have to know what your target market is before you can advertise. After all, without knowing who your target market is, you will not know how to advertise in a way that will be effective for your target market. Once you have figured out what your target market is, it is time for the next step: learning how to direct your advertising at your target market. Follow these tips in order to target your target market.

One of the first things you should realize, in marketing, is that people buy products for one of three main reasons: to satisfy a need, to solve a problem, or to make themselves feel good. Before you can effectively advertise your product, you need to know why your target market is purchasing your product! This is the angle you will want to play up in your advertising.

The next step in targeting your target market effectively is this: learn how to break your target market down into smaller pieces, instead of looking at the whole. It is easy to say, "Our target market is 18-34-year-olds," but it is much more difficult to tailor your advertising so that it catches such a broad group at once. For instance, is your target market typically affluent, or are they more likely to be middle-class? Is your target market married or unmarried, male or female? Are you trying to sell to the blue collar work force or the white collar? By breaking your target market down into smaller pieces, you will have a better understanding of how to market to them.

Finally, you need to actually take the time to do your research! A lot of businesses skip this step, deciding that they "know everything already," and they miss a lot of little things that could help them. The more research you do, the more effective you can make your advertising. A little bit of time in this area can go a long way toward achieving success.

Of course, marketing is an important part of any business or company. But without effective marketing, the whole idea of marketing loses its importance completely! Figure out what your target market is, and use this knowledge to target them effectively.

Friday, September 11, 2015

How To Resolve Conflicts In A Family Business

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The idea that trying to separate "work life" from "family life" can be difficult causes many of people to advise you to never work with family, but if you are already involved in a family business, this advice does not do much to help you; instead, you should acknowledge that conflicts are inevitable in any form of business - and when it comes to participating in business with your family, it is essential that you know how to resolve these conflicts, as they will otherwise be able to injure relationships in both work and family.

The best way to resolve conflicts within the confines of a family business is by having a structured plan in place that you can follow whenever conflicts arise; you need to wait until a time when no conflicts are occurring in order to come up with this plan, as this will enable everyone to give their input into the process without a current issue getting in the way.

If the conflict that you have run into is about something that is minor and interpersonal, the two people involved should work it out between themselves whenever this is possible, avoiding the need for mediation from someone else in the family or business; for such conflicts, a designated room or area should be set aside for the two involved in the conflict to have their discussion, as this will allow the rest of the work space to remain a peaceful environment that is conducive to work while the two in conflict resolve their issue.

On the other hand, if the issue you are dealing with affects the entire company or family, having a process that will allow both sides of the argument to be heard by everyone will go a long way in helping; after this, everyone in the family can vote on the issue to complete the resolution.

Once these processes have been agreed-upon and put in place, it will be easy to follow these processes in order to resolve conflicts at work, without allowing these conflicts to trickle over into your regular family life.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Making Money As A Freelance Writer

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One of the best ways to be able to "work from home" (which is a dream of many - working in whatever clothes they want to wear, during whatever hours they want to work!), is by becoming a freelance writer - but even though many people are perfectly qualified for and capable of making money as a freelance writer, many of them never achieve this goal because they have no clue how to go about doing this!

Most people think of newspapers, magazines, and other journalistic-type areas of opportunity when they think of freelance writing, but not only is work in these areas scarce, but it will not pay nearly as well as the money you could make doing other things; rather than looking to write for such areas (where competition is high to boot!), look to write for small businesses or for search engine marketers - which will allow you to write for websites and blogs, and will often allow you to write whatever you want!

It will also be important that you expand your base of knowledge if you are wanting to make money as a freelance writer; rather than writing about the things everyone else is writing about, create an "area of expertise" - either becoming an expert in a particular field of writing, or becoming an expert on a particular topic.

And even if you are focusing on a particular area of expertise in your writing (heck, even if you are writing for newspapers and magazines!), one of the most important things for any freelance writer to understand these days is the principles that govern search engine optimization, as this will help you to be far more valuable to websites and blogs than those writers who are at a complete loss as to what search engine optimization means or how they can use it to their advantage. And of course, once you understand search engine optimization, you can begin to use it on your own - and soon, you will not only be working from home, but can be working from home, for yourself!

Wednesday, September 09, 2015

How To Deal With An Abrasive Boss

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A lot of different approaches can be taken at work by a lot of different bosses – and of course, each boss is probably taking the approach that they feel most comfortable with, or that they feel is most effective; but even when you realize that an abrasive boss is acting the way they act because they feel more “comfortable” with this, or feel this is “most effective,” this does not make it any easier to deal with it! There are some things you can do when you are working for an abrasive boss, however – and as long as you follow these tips, it will make your work life a whole lot easier.

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First off, it will be important for you to realize that you do not need to be a pushover in order to be cordial; continue to treat your boss with the same level of respect and courtesy you would a boss who treats you with respect and courtesy, but do not allow yourself to get “bullied” by them or the approach they are taking with you.

One thing abrasive bosses generally think is that their abrasiveness will make emplyees think they have to please them, but it is important – as an employee working for such a boss – that you keep in mind the fact that you are the person you should be trying to please; you should always feel like you are working hard, and like you are doing the best job possible, and as long as you feel this way, it will not matter how your boss feels!

And of course, it will be important for you to recognize that nothing is making you "have to" put up with the way this boss is treating you; you can always look for another job – one where your boss treats you with respect.

When you go into work with an abrasive boss in this manner – being polite without being a pushover, working to feel good about your performance instead of to impress your boss, and realizing that you can always look for another job – it will be much easier to be productive at work (and even to enjoy work!) in spite of having an abrasive boss.

Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Tips For Designing Your Business Card

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If you want to promote yourself and your business to potential customers, one of the best things you can use is a business card.

Whenever the opportunity strikes, you will be able to hand out your business card if you have one handy to give. But even though a business card can be a great tool, it can also be completely pointless if you do not know how to design your business card effectively. Your business card should do more than just list a name and a phone number; it should also create an urge to call!

Keep in mind the fact that those who take your business card will not always rememer exactly who it was that gave it to them. In fact, it is not uncommon for people to end up with a pocket full of business cards every day! Not only should your business card clearly state who you are and how to reach you, but it should also clearly state what you do. You might have a company whose name does not make it clear what it does; if this is the case, make sure the card itself makes it perfectly clear!

You should also include your logo on the card, but make sure that the logo is not so intrusive that it takes over the whole card! The logo is an important element, but it should still only be one element of the card; put it in a place where it is noticeable, but is not the focal point.

It is worth spending a little bit of extra money to make sure your card looks professional, as a professional-looking card will inspire confidence. For instance: someone looking through a stack of business cards they have for plumbers is most likely to call the person whose card inspires the most confidence.

Your business card can do a lot to help your business, or it can do very little; in fact, it can even be a detriment! Make sure that your card is effectively designed, and make sure that you spend a bit of extra money to have a card that looks great!

Do Dilbert Cartoons Have Any Effect On Morale?

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Not only are you familiar with Dilbert as a member of the business world, but as a boss in the business world, you probably even think that Dilbert is sometimes funny. After all, it is not as if any of these cartoons are poking fun at you, right? But then again, this firm self-assuredness can quickly evaporate when you start seeing Dilbert strips tacked up on cubicle walls. Of course, at first, it feels like you are just being overly paranoid to think that a cartoon strip could have any effect on the morale of your employees, but it is also difficult to shed from your mind those articles that talked about how Dilbert actually can have a negative effect on employees. And so you are forced to ask the question for yourself: Are Dilbert cartoons bad for the morale of your employees?

Of course, we know that humor is good for morale, and this is an important consideration to keep in mind. Undoubtedly, the fact that these cartoon strips make your employees laugh is a sign in the right direction.

The issue, of course, is that many of these cartoons induce laughs by poking fun at corporate culture. And when you see a cartoon on someone's wall where the boss is made fun of, it is difficult to keep your mind from wandering to the question: Why did this employee post this particular cartoon on their wall? But the solution to the problem might be more complicated than just banning these comic strips. After all, this would likely do nothing more than further the sometimes rampant view among employees in corporate America that the hierarchy is out of touch.

Don't just order that all comic strips be taken down from office walls; instead, you ought to take the time to look at these comic strips yourself. The reason many of these strips are thought to be funny is because they make fun of the things that are wrong with corporate culture; if your employees think these strips are so funny, there is a chance that the problem does not lie with the comic strip itself. The problem might be with the way your company itself is run!

Many businesses actually have banned Dilbert from cubicle walls, which turns this into a serious discussion even if it seems trivial on the surface. Rather than following this path and alienating employees, take the introspective approach: make sure that you are not making the mistakes portrayed in the strips, and improve morale by improving the way you run your business!