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Newsletter Archive: 2004

How To Write A Killer Press Release
One of the primary tools still used by PR professionals to garner media coverage is the press release. Now understand the purpose of a press release is to grab the attention of an editor, not to offer a word for word story to a publication. Most professionals as well as small business owners misunderstand this concept and are therefore frustrated when they can't seem to make it work for them.
How To Know Your Customer's Wants And Needs
To use marketing research effectively for your growing business, you should understand what motivates your customer. Finding the essential ingredient in persuasion are
Using Open Source Software To Compete With The "Big Guys"
Everyone seems to want to look good while being comparable in offerings to the market leaders and their dynamically driven content web sites, but that's not always such an easy thing to do on a start-up budget. In truth, it's not even such an easy thing to do on a semi-established budget with a company established for a couple years, unless you know where to look and how to do it.
Worn Out Brochure Design Is Keeping Small Business Owners Down
Every small business should create the following pieces of information and format them in a way that allows them be printed inexpensively and updated often. I like to call this approach, the Marketing Kit. Your marketing kit starts with several professionally printed pieces that are the framework for up to 10 or 12 different educational documents. The core components are:
Worn Out Brochure Design Is Keeping Small Business Owners Down
Every small business should create the following pieces of information and format them in a way that allows them be printed inexpensively and updated often. I like to call this approach, the Marketing Kit. Your marketing kit starts with several professionally printed pieces that are the framework for up to 10 or 12 different educational documents. The core components are:
Worn Out Brochure Design Is Keeping Small Business Owners Down
Your potential clients need an education. They need to know how you are different. (The typical tri-fold brochure simply confirms that you are the same.)
How To Build Your List - 7 Powerful Strategies
If you have been an internet marketer, or had any type of online home based business, for more than a few days, then you will no doubt have heard someone say, "if you want to make money online, you have to build an opt-in list."
Website Marketing For Today’s Small Business Owner
Search engine optimization. It's the key to getting traffic on your website, and where every excellent website marketing strategy begins. According to studies performed by Nielson, by January 2004, one in three consumers were turning to search engines for their online shopping, with the most popular search engines being Google, Yahoo, and MSN.
Keeping In Touch: The Surefire Client Retention Strategy
Want to know the secret that all successful independent professionals and small business owners possess? The savvy ones know that the secret to long-term success lies in keeping in touch with their clients.
Monitor Processes on Local and Remote Servers
Monitor web site load times, content, and response codes. Ping servers, routers, printers and other IP devices on scheduled intervals. Monitor processes, applications...
Selling Your Online Business
I was fortunate enough to spend a weekend in Monte Carlo recently and being surrounded by the luxury yachts and other symbols of extreme wealth got me thinking about retirement.
Start Accepting Payments Online Today!
Still not accepting payments online? Then you could be missing out on the millions of people who use the Internet to make purchases—costing you significant revenue opportunities. And with the holiday shopping season approaching, now is the time to get your business online.
Market Research Means Money
Looking for the right product to sell online? Learn a few simple ways to find what will work, what won't, and who you are up against.
The Biggest Crime In Small Business
The biggest crime in small businesses today goes unnoticed by most outsiders. It is not reported in the media. There are no police reports filed and companies do not even mention it on their websites.
Does Your Business Need A Toll-Free 800 Number?
Should your business have a toll free number for customers to make sales, service and billing inquirers? The industry began in the early 1970's and today most customers expect you to have it. Providing a toll free line can bring in a number of benefits to your business.
10 Secrets To Online Success (its All About The Customer)
You've got your web site online. You're on top of the search engines. You have killer web site copy. Now all you have to do is wait for the sales to roll in right? Well … not exactly.
Eight Easy Steps To Small Business Lunacy
Many of us set out on our own to gain a greater sense of control: control over how we live, how we work, how we serve others. We appreciate the calm that comes with well-organized management and ordered predictability, and we live for the goal of one day enjoying professional simplicity. We're not really into the drama thing.
7 Keys To Running A Successful Business
Although dentistry may appear to be different than other types of businesses, in reality it is a business. And although this article is written from a dentist's perspective on developing a successful practice, the principles can be used in virtually any business.
Creating Customer Value
The purpose of business is to create and retain a customer. It much truer for an internet business. Much has been written about customer orientation, customer relationship management (CRM), Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) metrics, Customer Centric organization models, customer retention, customer care…add any high sounding word with ‘customer’ preceding or succeeding that word and you have a new model, a new theory.
Is Personalized Search The Future?
Personalized search is viewed as one of the directions search may head in the future, as Search Engine Watch's Danny Sullivan pointed out at the Search Engine Strategies San Jose conference.
Switchboard Unveils New Features
Switchboard, Internet based yellow pages and white, announced today for several new features. The new functionality is designed to help users more quickly access in-depth information on local businesses and includes a downloadable toolbar, Web search, classifieds and zip/area code look-up. This is the first upgrade announced at Switchboard since the site was acquired by InfoSpace, Inc. in June.
Planning For The Slow Season Of Your Business To Increase Sales
Every business experiences slower periods. For some, they sell more during the Christmas season while others move at a snail pace. Some sell more during the summer and others less. The key is being aware of your seasons and alternatives available to solve the challenge and change the results.
Don't Overpay for Postage
Trying is believing. Which is why we're offering your small business a 60-day risk-free trial of the Personal Post™ postage meter and scale.
Five Surefire Ways To Drive Your Competition Crazy
Taking an aggressive stance to your competition is not the most productive way of running a business. However, there are times when some people just get a little too cocky and need knocking down a peg or two. If you want to put an annoying competitor in his or her place then these tips are for you.
Powerful Direct Marketing Numbers
Why? It works because it's personal. It carries a message, answers questions and gets orders. Direct Response Marketing works because it is "conversation in writing".
Positioning Your Business For Success
As the plane lifts off, imagine yourself reclining comfortably in your first class seat. You're headed for San Francisco where you'll be met by a driver and whisked to a luxury hotel with views of the bay. The tab is being picked up by a company looking to buy your firm, and your biggest concern is how much cash and stock to ask for when you meet with the president of the company and the senior officers. Sound like a fantasy?
Are You A Small Business Casualty?
When a person knows and knows not that he knows. Teach him.

When a person knows and knows that he knows. Follow him.
Segmenting Your Target Audience Through Your Copywriting
Ask any copywriter what the first commandment of copywriting is and they'll quickly tell you "Know Thy Target Audience." In order to write effectively you have to know this one group of people and know them well. I guess that's why many people get so frustrated when it seems they have more than one preferred customer base. One of the most frequent questions I get asked is, "What if I have more than one target audience?" In all actuality, you probably don't. You just have different segments of the same audience.
Why Your Ad Failed
So you spent good money on an ad, put it in a magazine or newspaper, and waited patiently for phone calls that didn't materialize. You're upset: you feel that you've wasted money and time, and now you're convinced that advertising doesn't work.
Are Drop Ship Directories Really Worth The Money? Here Is A Guide...
This question is often asked by many people hoping to start a new ecommerce site or simply adding to an existing one. The answer to the question can be simply answered with another question: How much is your time and online business worth to you?
11 Powerful Marketing Tips
Each of these 11 marketing tips is based on a marketing strategy or tactic proven to boost sales. How many are you using?
How To Generate Instant Credibility With Clients And Customers
To understand how to generate instant credibility with the public, you must understand how people react to stereotypes, and how to use these reactions to your advantage.
Convert your PowerPoint to Flash for easy website posting
Create and distribute true multi-media presentations with professional results… at a fraction of the cost… without outsourcing the project or hiring additional staff!
5 Tips On How To Create Winning Joint Ventures
Partnerships can be one of the most rewarding and profitable methods used online for your business. I've worked on dozens of them with both big name as well as up and coming marketers and businesses. While some have not worked out, most have been beneficial to all parties involved.
Identifying Your Niche
The Internet has become a valuable source of information and purchasing tool for today's consumer. With the click of a mouse you can find almost anything from products to services on the web, and you can shop for the best prices and values all hours of the day from the convenience of your own home. For some of these same reasons, mail order businesses are also on the rise with consumers finding better values from companies that don't have the overhead associated with a storefront.
5 Powerful Tips To Beat The Biggest Problem ALL Marketers Face
I bet you can't tell me... the single biggest problem facing Every Direct Marketer, new and old.

It's not generating traffic, nor building an O'pt-In list, nor is it finding products to market and it's not a lack of Cash.
Hunters And Gatherers - Are You Serving Both Their Needs?
The University of Exeter in the United Kingdom recently published research financed by Barclays Bank, which has implications for everyone who is serving the general population.
Don't Overpay for Postage
You manage, run, market and grow your small business with your own two hands - and even your own finances. Time and money are essential, cost and convenience are critical. Eliminate the need to ever have to go to the Post Office again - and help your business look more professional at the same time. Don't stick stamps on your mail. Look more professional, save time, and money, all in one click.
Top 10 Mistakes Made In Business Plans
Lenders and investors may see hundreds of business plans in a single day. Make your business plan stand out against the rest, and avoid these common mistakes.
Attracting New Business On A Shoestring Budget
In a recent marketing workshop I attended, I discovered that most business owners rely on just two or three strategies to attract new business. Even well-established companies tend to rely on one or two strategies. However, there is a multitude of ways to drive new business to your door. Here are a few:
Marketing Objectives For Your Web Site
Do you have marketing objectives for your Web site? With objectives to help overcome your main online challenges you can work smarter, not harder.

Think of your Web site objective as the "big picture". It is the basis for a marketing plan and, in general terms, answers the questions:
Top 9 Strategies To Attract More Clients Now
1. Advertise in trade journals, ezines, and web sites that cater to your ideal client.

One secret for gaining substantial increase in sales is to communicate where your clients who buy the most of whatever it is that you sell hang out.
7.5 Ways To Get More Sales Through Your Web Site
Yes, apparently - websites are supposed to make money! Somebody came up with the strange idea that it's really not enough to spend thousands on your site, hundreds of hours creating the content and then sitting back to admire you, and your developer's work. No - apparently it is now 'cool' to have a web site that actually makes it onto a sales column in your chart of accounts.. 'Return on in investment' is a good phrase that's being thrown around - what are you actually making from your web site in cash terms? Ever thought about that?
How To Deduct Medical Expenses: A Primer For The Self-Employed
It's been said that there are Two Sets of Tax Rules: one for employees and one for the self-employed. When it comes to the deductibility of medical expenses, this is certainly the case.

Here's an overview of why self-employed folks have a better chance of deducting medical expenses than employees.
Lycos Founder On Venture Capitalism
Bob Davis, a partner with Highland Capital Partners, offered his insight into the world of investment banking during a presentation at last week’s Search Engine Strategies conference.
Blogs Mean Better Listings On Google
Rick Bruner, President of Executive Summary Consulting spoke at a session titled Blogs: A Powerful Tool for Gathering Market Intelligence. The session was part of the DMA/AIM conference and exhibition, which focused on advances in interactive marketing.
8 Building Blocks To Attracting Customers
Are you frustrated by the lack of return from your promotional efforts? It may be that your plan for attracting customers is built on a foundation of sand.

Whether you're a Fortune 500 company or a one person shop, to be successful, you must have a plan to attract customers and you must implement it consistently. However, it doesn't have to cost a fortune and you don't have to be a creative genius.
How To Drive The IRS Crazy
Looking for an easy way to increase your business deductions? Look no further than your driveway.

First, the general rule: your vehicle is deductible to the extent you use it for business.

So, if you drive your car 100% for business, all car- related expenses are deductible.
Get Your Message Delivered!
If you send emails to your customers, I have some bad news for you. Not all of your emails are making it to your intended recipients. Between ISP sp@m filters, sp@m-blocking email servers, sp@m-killing email software, and email content filtering everywhere in between, the chances are high that your messages just aren't making it past all of these roadblocks.
Change The Way You Think About Google!
You spent a ton of time getting your website just right for Google. And now your site has sunk to the very bottom of the results for several key phrases.

Your traffic has plunged, and, worse, so have your profits. Sure, you know now you shouldn't have relied so heavily on one source of website traffic, but how do you fix the problem?
Will American Businesses Ever Recover?
The economy is a crazy thing. The Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 are some of data used to determine America's economic health. The values of those constituent stocks are based upon prices people are willing to pay for them. The stock price is determined by the shareholders as a prediction, or guess, in many cases, of either earnings or growth. Companies are only likely to increase their earnings or value in a "good market." But the very nature of a "good market" is determined, in part, by the *perception* of the people who value those stocks.
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