Tag: Business Training

A Fab Outstanding Network Event and Masterclass with Pat Slattery Followed by a fab LinkedIn seminar with Martin Murtagh…

Today was another fab Outstanding Network Event which also included a business master class for the Legend that is Pat Slattery.

Success Habits

Me listening to Pat…

This Masterclass was followed by a LinkedIn Seminar from one of the Outstanding Members, Martin Murtagh.

Martin Murtagh

I know LinkedIn pretty well and still walked away learning some new things and be reminded of a few more. I also got to see some of the latest LinkedIn Stats which was fab!

LinkedIn Seminar…

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Another Great Online Business Networking and Support Event with The Outstanding Network.

Again I really enjoyed the Online Business Support and Networking Event hosted by Pat Slattery and his The Outstanding Business Network.

Two more inspirational stories from Inspirational people.

Thanks to Jennifer Byrne and Anthony Dolan.

Online Business Networking & Support

It’s great to be a part of such a great Network as The Outstanding Network, in-fact its Outstanding!

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Top SEO Advice from Social Media Today…

8 of the Most Important HTML Tags for SEO

Business News Coronavirus News Positive Coronavirus News and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See https://mikearmstrong.me/news

For Business Advice follow the link or visit one of our Blogs: Entrepreneur Zone | King of Marketing | The Voice of Social Media | Networking Grapevine | British Business News |

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Morning Motivation – Positive Coronavirus News #PositiveCoronavirusNews

Business News Coronavirus News and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See https://mikearmstrong.me/news

For Business Advice follow the link or visit one of our Blogs: Entrepreneur Zone | King of Marketing | The Voice of Social Media | Networking Grapevine | British Business News |

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Had a great time Online Business Networking over the past three day…

It’s been an incredible 3 days of Online Business Networking for me with 4 Events in 3 days.

First on Wednesday evening was the #Introbiz @Introbiz Cardiff, South Wales & Global #OnlineNetworking #Masterclass Events with Sharon Lechter @sharonlechter

Then it was the Thursday morning’s online Business Networking & Masterclass event with Introbiz Swansea & West Wales @IntrobizW and Marianne Pettifor @MariannePettif4

Friday morning then saw two online Business Networking Events:

The first being another Introbiz Event, this time Featuring former Apprentice finalist, Jess Cunningham @TheProdigalFox

This was followed by an online Business Networking Event with Pat Slattery @slatteryp and his Outstanding Network.

The Outstanding Networking Event is at 11am everyday and the list of upcoming Introbiz Networking Events Online is available via the link.

Business News and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

For Business Advice follow the link or visit the Entrepreneur Zone

Over 100 Top Business Tips

15 Top Business Optimisation Tips


Your business culture or philosophy is the ultimate key to your productivity and success. It will either enable or disable everything else that you do.

Developing the right business culture is key to your success as everything you do hinges around this fundamental aspect of your business.

If a businesses culture or the culture of the leaders or staff is wrong, the impact of even the best business growth and business optimisation techniques would be severely limited.

Too many organisations only pay lipservice to these factors and as a result they constantly struggle to make real progress.

Please find these 15 Top Business Optimisation Tips for you to implement in your business.

Business Optimisation Tip 1.

Business Optimisation Tips – 1:

Understand your higher business purpose!

Contrary to popular belief, people don’t buy products or services.

They do buy the outcomes that those products or services can provide, solutions, benefits, answers, value, advantages, improvements, time saving, efficiency, avoidance of pain, protection, pleasure, fun, excitement, fulfilment, enjoyment, prestige etc.

Your higher purpose for being in business should be to turn those positive outcomes into reality by promoting, selling and delivering the specific outcomes your customer is actually buying. When you start to look at what you do in terms of the positive outcomes you can deliver to your clients, you can feel justifiably proud of the contribution that you are making to your clients, whatever business you are in.

When you do that consistently you and your business will profit handsomely.

Business Optimisation Tips – 2:

Operate your business with Integrity!

Taking an ethical approach to your business, performing as promised, and operating in a sound manner is always a great business strategy.

Your values, philosophies and policies toward your employees and your customers must be based on fairness and a sincere belief that your customers deserve to be well served at all times.

It’s good to have the attitude that if it’s good for the customer then it’s good for the company, and vice versa.

Putting the customer’s interests ahead of your own and being completely customer focussed is key to a successful business.

Business Optimisation Tips – 3:

Constantly work on the optimisation & efficiency of your Business!

Don’t be content to accept lesser results than you’re entitled to for your efforts.

Instead demand and accept nothing less than the highest and best outcome for every action that you ever take and every activity that you ever engage in.

You do this by;

Integrating and leveraging all of your successful sales & marketing approaches to achieve the optimum outcome and getting the greatest return for the least expenditure of time, effort, manpower and money.

Optimising all of your staff and leadership team so that you have the right number and the right people involved in the right positions for your business to run at its optimum level.

Optimising all of your systems and process so that they can effectively and efficiently deal with all of the requirements placed on them by the business.

Optimising all of your business costs so that you can help to make the best profit possible in your business.

Etc.

Business Optimisation Tips – 4:

Genuinely appreciate your team and do all that you can to keep them happy, productive, developing / progressing and efficient!

Many of the most successful & profitable companies in the world owe a large part of that success to having a very happy and contented workforce.

A happy and contented workforce are a group of people who know what they are supposed to be doing and that their efforts and their results are sincerely appreciated.

This will save you money in many ways.

Your staff turnover will go down. You’ll save a fortune on training and recruitment. You’ll suffer less abseteeism. It’s less likely that things will “go missing” etc.

Having an experienced workforce that isn’t always leaving and having to be retrained, one that really cares about your company and about looking after your customers, will result in fewer customer complaints, more customer satisfaction and customers who spend more money with you, more often and for much longer periods of time.

Business Optimisation Tips – 5

Build a balanced Team / Recruit the right people!

Recruitment is often seen almost exclusively as a search for individuals with the right qualifications, experience, and achievement.

Yet they are rarely found because of the requirement for more conflicting characteristics than can normally exist in any one person.

In a perfectly balanced team there is always someone who can deal naturally and effectively with any set of responsibilities. Each person just slots naturally into playing their part in growing and developing the business.

Most of us choose our life partner and raise our children with care, nurturing and compassion.

Yet we tend to select the people who will join our company on the basis of an interview or two, and once they’ve joined, they often discover they must fend for themselves.

This contrast illustrates the disparity between the family and work environments.

As around 75% of our adult waking time is devoted to work related activities, it makes sense to take as much care in recruiting the right people as it does in finding the right partners. You need to find people who care and who want to be the best.

Caring must be inherent in people’s natures. They have to feel it in their hearts. And if they do, their colleagues and clients will feel it too, and you’ll achieve much more success with less hassle and hard work.

If you look for genuinely pleasant people who have the right attitude and human values, the rest will usually fall into place. You can’t teach people to be nice.

Business Optimisation Tips – 6:

Empower your staff!

When companies consistently refuse to deviate from policy, they say to customers, in effect, “Our policy is more important than doing business with you.” Empowerment is the process of moving the decision-making process to the customer interface.

This will give your team at the customer interface the power to do whatever it reasonably takes to delight the customer.

Truly empowered employees invariably recognise and appreciate the authority they have been given and are more likely to use their initiative and good judgment to come up with better and less expensive solutions to a problem than that dictated by rigid policy manuals.

Business Optimisation Tips – 7:

Genuinely appreciate your customers and do all that you can to keep them happy – Be customer centric!

View your clients as long term friends and partners.

Redefine your business from the customer’s perspective as the basis of your philosophy, so that you protect and benefit them whenever and at the highest level possible.

But if no individual can combine all these qualities, a team of individuals can contain all the conflicting requirements that cannot be found in a single individual.

Business Optimisation Tips – 8:

Use Technology to improve the efficiency of the business!

Technology has been created to make our lives easier yet many businesses fail to use it effectively in their business. The majority of the top companies in the World are tech companies with a using technology for creating efficiency culture. Are you utilising your Technology; Websites, Web Platforms, Marketing Channels, Telecommunications, IT, CRM, Software etc. to the most of its ability to get the most efficiency out of them for your staff, your clients and your business?

Business Optimisation Tips – 9:

Adopt proven success practices!

The moment you start adapting and applying success practices that have already been tried & tested and refined by other industries, you can save yourself a massive learning curve.

If you can take advantage of £ millions or £ tens of millions or £ hundreds of millions worth of success-proven, profit-certain business practices that other industries have already validated, you’ve given yourself and your business an incredible edge over all your competitors and your level of success can’t help but increase.

Business Optimisation Tips – 10:

Don’t forget to enjoy yourself and all have fun in the workplace!

Some of the world’s most successful companies attribute a large part of their success to the use of laughter, fun and play in the workplace to build morale, participation, and involvement.

Recognition and appreciation can play a vital role in boosting morale and productivity among hard-worked employees. You can easily implement a step-by-step plan for building an enthusiastic, high-performance team using hundreds of tried and tested techniques for enhancing employee satisfaction and personal pride, improving employee morale, heightening productivity, creating a more people-centered corporate culture, and ultimately increasing your profitability from the process.

Business Optimisation Tips – 11:

Continue to grow through a culture of personal development, self improvement and life long learning!

The growth of your business is the aggregate of the growth of your individual team members.

By constantly training everyone in your business to perform at higher levels than your competitors, you’re investing in the future, while improving your business today.

The better your training, the better everything works in your business. It radically improves your team’s understanding of your objectives; helps set standards of performance; produces predictable results; leads to consistent answers to each question or problem; results in customers being treated in a similar manner no matter who they deal with and makes a big difference to how everything functions in your business.

Business Optimisation Tips – 12:

Be passionate about your business, staff, product / service & customers!

Passion and enthusiasm are contagious … and all too rare.

People are more inspired to do business with you if you display conviction and enthusiasm for what you do and the way that you do it than any other factor.

If you genuinely burn with an overwhelming desire to enrich the lives of everyone you do business with, people will be attracted to you like metal filings to a magnet.

Business Optimisation Tips – 13:

Run a suggestion scheme

A good suggestion scheme is like having an oil well in your back garden.

There is no more important tool for management. Suggestion schemes can be made to work extraordinarily well in any business and can be the cornerstone of constant and never ending improvement.

If you and your team ask yourselves relentlessly each day, “How can we do this better?” or “What more can we do to …”, you are bound to find ways to improve. Whether large or small, these improvements can lead to regular discoveries that can transform your business.

Business Optimisation Tips – 14:

Measure staff motivation

How do you know if your staff are well motivated?

This is where most businesses are amazingly primitive. Their skills in measuring motivation are under-developed or non-existent.

Methods of measuring motivation include:

  1. Staff turnover,
  2. Absenteeism,
  3. Theft,
  4. Customer Service,
  5. Attitude surveys.
  • Motivation does not have to be left to chance. Every business can introduce systems for motivating its employees better. The benefits are enormous and once you start measuring the payback on your investment in the workforce, you will see real results.
  • Business Optimisation Tips – 15:

    Use tried and tested ways of increasing staff motivation.

    Give bonuses or implement profit share schemes so that everyone his motivated by the success of the business.

    If you need any help with any of the business optimisation strategies or tactics please feel free to contact Mike on: 07960 872549.

    mikearmstrong.me

    If you enjoyed this Advice please find other useful Business Advice & News & Info for Entrepreneurs via the relevant links.

    Now that Coronavirus is spreading like wildfire and many of us our Self Isolating, Avoiding Crowds or Looking after children etc., many of us are now starting a new experience of Working From Home.

    I myself have been working from home for many years so would like to share some of my Top Tips for Working From Home, as well as other Top Tips for Working From Home, that I have found online.
  • 20 Top Tips for Working From Home

  • Top Tips for Working From Home – 1

    Try and stick to a regular Working From Home Routine / Working regular hours where possible…

    Set a schedule, and try your best to stick to it…(most of the time).

    Having clear guidelines for when to work and when to call it a day helps many home workers maintain a work life balance. That said, one of the benefits of remote work is flexibility, and sometimes you need to extend your day or start early to accommodate someone else’s time zone or an increased work load etc.

    When you do, be sure to wrap up earlier than usual or sleep in a bit the next morning to make up for it. 

    Automatic time-tracking apps, such as RescueTime, let you check in on whether you are sticking to your schedule. They can also help you figure out what times of day you are most productive versus when you ease off.

    You can then use that information to your advantage by reserving your hours of high focus for your most important tasks.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 2

    Create an effective Morning or Starting Routine…

    Deciding that you will sit down at your desk and start work at a certain time is one thing. Creating a routine that guides you into the chair is another.

    What in your morning routine indicates that you are about to start work?

    It might be making a cup of tea/coffee. It might be returning home after a jog. It might be getting dressed (wearing pyjamas to work is a perk for some, but a bad strategy for others).

    A routine can be more powerful than a clock at helping you get started each day.

    Not everyone who works from home follows a nine-to-five schedule, so whether you have a morning routine or a “getting started” routine (at another time of day), it good to get that routine in to your habits, so things just happen naturally, smoothly and regular.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 3

    Set firm Rules with the people around you…

    You need to make sure that the people in your home or who share your space with, when you work understand the importance of your work and your routine and do not constantly interrupt you, invade your space, distract you are seek favours or tasks from you.

    If you have children who come home from school while you are still working, they need clear rules about what they can and cannot do during that time. Additionally, just because you are home and can let trade people into the house or take care of pets etc. doesn’t mean other family members should assume you can and will always do it.

    If that’s how you choose to divide up the domestic labor, that’s fine, but if you simply take it all on by default because you’re home, you may feel taken advantage of, and your productivity WILL sufferer.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 4

    Remember to schedule and form habits for regular breaks in your Working From Home Routine, as you would in the office…

    Know your company’s policy on break times and take them.

    If you are self-employed, give yourself adequate time during the day to walk away from the computer screen, phone and everything else that you are doing.

    A lunch hour and two 15-minute breaks seems to be the standard for full-time employees. Keep yourself fresh and energised and you’ll be more productive.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 5

    Take Breaks in Their Entirety

    Do not constantly cut short your breaks, especially your lunch hour. You can use apps, such as TimeOut for Mac and Smart Break for Windows, to lock yourself out of your computer for 60 minutes. Or you can just launch a simple clock or timer on the screen when you take a break. If you return to your desk after only 40 minutes, walk away for another 20 or take the additional 20 minutes at a later time.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 6

    Where possible try and leave the house regularly (or at least the room where your working)…

    You don’t have to eat out every day, but try to leave your home or work space regularly. The same advice applies to people who work in traditional office settings, too. Leave the building at least once a day. Your body needs to move. Plus, the fresh air and natural light will do you good.

    You don’t have to go to crowded public spaces to get away from your solo workspace. Take a walk. Weed the garden, go networking – Just ensure that you get out fairly regularly.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 7

    Don’t delay in getting what you need to work from home…

    If you’re employed by a company or organisation that supports your work-from-home setup, request the equipment that you need as soon as you start working from home, or within a day or two when you realise anything new that you might need. It’s extremely important to set precedents early that you will ask for what you need to get your job done comfortably, including the right monitor, keyboard, mouse, chair, printer, software, and so on.

    Organisations that are used to having home working employees often have a budget for home office equipment. Ask what it is and how often it’s renewed. It also doesn’t hurt to ask whether there’s a loan agreement or who will pay for return shipping or disposal of outdated equipment.

    If you are working from home unexpectedly due to coronavirus, ask for what you need within reason. You could be working from home for weeks on end and you should be comfortable, but ordering a new office chair and desk might be asking too much. Consider a mouse and keyboard, plus a back-supporting cushion instead.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 8

    Keep a Dedicated Office Space in your home…

    In an ideal world, home workers would have not only a dedicated office, but also two computers, one for work and one for personal use.

    It’s more secure for the employer, and it lets you do all your NSFW activities in private. But not everyone has a separate office in their home, and keeping two machines isn’t always realistic. Instead, dedicate a desk and some peripherals only for work use. For example, when your laptop is hooked up to the monitor and external keyboard, it’s work time. When it’s on your lap, that’s personal time. You may want to go as far as partitioning your hard drive and creating a separate user account for work.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 9

    Have a Separate Work Phone Number…

    Set up a phone number that you only use for calls with colleagues and clients. It doesn’t have to be a landline, second mobile phone, or even a SIM card. It can be a free VoIP service, such as Google Voice or a Skype number. Similar to some of the other tips, having a separate phone number can help you to manage your work-life balance.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 10

    Use a VPN

    You should use a VPN whenever you’re connected to a network that you don’t control.

    That includes Wi-Fi at co-working spaces, cafes, libraries, and airports.

    Some organisations have their own VPNs that off-site employees need to use, to access certain servers or websites that store information meant only for internal use.

    In those cases, you’ll also need to use a VPN at home.

    In any case, it’s a good idea to get into the habit of leaving your VPN connected as often as possible because it’s always safer to have it on than not.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 11

    Remember to still socialise with colleagues

    Loneliness, disconnect, and isolation are common problems in work from home, especially for extroverts.

    Companies with a work from home culture usually offer ways to socialise. With Self Isolation, Socialising doesn’t have to mean meeting up. There are other ways.

    For example, you can implement a chat channel where remote employees can talk about common interests or if the virus eases you can have Social distancing approved for people in the same region, and in-person retreats etc.

    It’s important to figure out how much interaction you need to feel connected and included. Even if you’re highly introverted and don’t like socialising, give a few interactive experiences a try so that you’re familiar with them if you ever decide you want them.

    If you’re not at a company with a strong remote culture, you may need to be more proactive about nurturing relationships.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 12

    Still arrange and attend meetings regularly and when you do, ensure that you are involved

    Certainly, as a home worker you will be taking part in more video conferences and conference calls etc. but it’s a good idea to attend optional meetings sometimes, too. Be sure to speak up during the meeting so everyone knows that you are on the call and have your own input to make.

    Asking Questions, Reaffirming important tasks and A simple, “Thanks, everyone” or “Good Bye!” at the close of a meeting will go a long way toward making your presence known.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 13

    Remember to still get Face 2 Face Time with your bosses or colleagues when you need it…

    If your employer is lax about getting you in a room with other employees or management, ask to have an annual or semi-annual trip in your contract. It could be for annual planning, training, or team building.

    Or add it on to some other business event, such as a yearly budget meeting, nearby conference, or office holiday party.

    Don’t wait around for someone to invite you to the office or an event. Be proactive.

    For those unexpectedly working from home who are also trying to reduce face-to-face contact, set up a video call with your colleagues or manager once a week (or how ever often required) in order to check in or keep up some level of contact.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 14.

    Take Sick Days when needed…

    When you’re not well, take the sick time you need. If sick days are part of your compensation package, take the time off that you need. Not taking it is like throwing away money.

    If you’re a freelancer who doesn’t have paid sick days, it can be very easy to fall into the opposite time-is-money trap and try to power through illnesses.

    Keep in mind that sometimes it’s best to rest and get better so that you can be your most productive self in the long term.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 15

    Still look for Training Opportunities…

    When you are not in an office with your fellow employees, you might miss out on training and skills development courses that are taught in person.

    Your company might even forget to add you to its online training courses. It can be tempting to regard this as a dodged bullet, but you might be missing out on an important opportunity to learn something useful.

    Speak up and make sure that you are included in any ongoing training.

    In addition to top-down training, you can request online or in-person courses, training, and coaching if you need it.

    For people who work from home for 100% of the time, look for learning opportunities that are taught at the company’s headquarters or your closest office. That way, you get training and face to face time with colleagues.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 16 Keep Regular Communication…

    Working remotely requires you to keep regular communication. Tell everyone who needs to know about your schedule and availability often. When you finish a project or important task, say so. Regular communication doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to write an essay to explain your every move, but it does mean repeating yourself. Joke about how you must have mentioned your upcoming holiday three times already, then mention it again.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 17

    Be Positive…

    I like succinct and clear messages, but I know that the less face time I have with people, the less they know how to interpret my tone in writing. When you work remotely full-time, you must be positive, to the point where it may feel like you’re being overly positive. Otherwise, you risk sounding like a jerk. It’s unfortunate, but true. So embrace the exclamation point! Find your favorite emoji :D. You’re going to need them.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 18

    Take Advantage of Your Perks…

    Every year, I at some point take advantage of the Weather and/or some major sporting event. Why? Because I work from home and I can. Plus, I enjoy it.

    When I worked in an office full-time, I struggled to find the time to enjoy the weather or a major spirting event. As we don’t get good weather that often in the UK, when it comes, I take time to enjoy it (work load permitted) and do my work around it for a while. Working remotely comes with unique perks. Take advantage of them. You deserve it.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 19

    Don’t Be Too Hard on Yourself…

    The most successful remote employees have a reputation for being extremely disciplined. After all, it takes serious focus to do any full-time office job from an unconventional space. That said, everyone lets their attention drift sometimes. If you find yourself working one minute and booking flights for your upcoming trip the next, don’t reprimand yourself too harshly. Instead, ask yourself whether people in an office setting do the same thing. If the answer is yes, cut yourself some slack, then get back to work.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 20

    Create an effective ending routine…

    Just as you should start your day with a routine, create a habit that signals the close of the workday. It might be a sign off on a business messaging app, a final email to the office, an evening dog walk, or a 6pm jog.

    Something as simple as shutting down your computer and turning on a favourite podcast or song will do. Whatever you choose, do it consistently to mark the end of working hours.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – Summary

    Make Your Working From Home Situation Personal To You…

    These are some of my Top Working From Home Tips and Some Gathered From the Web, but above all else, figure out what works best for you.

    Sometimes the answer is apparent, but other times you might need some inspiration from other people who are in the same boat.

    A supportive community of home workers does exist, whether you find them in your organisations communication channels or online through blogs or Twitter, there are people in the same boat that you can chat too.

    If you enjoyed this Advice please find other useful Business Advice & News & Info for Entrepreneurs via the relevant links.

    20 Top Business Networking Tips

    Welcome to our Top Business Networking Tips & Advice Page!

    Business Networking is probably the most effective and least expensive marketing method you can use to build your business or practice, especially if you are looking to do business in your local area.

    Lots of business owners and practitioners I meet say that they don’t like to network, they don’t have the time to network, or they haven’t found it to be beneficial to their business in the past.

    You can learn to like networking, especially if you learn to do it properly and start getting results from your networking and if you’re currently not getting any results from your business networking then you are probably getting it wrong somewhere, going to the wrong network or you may just have unrealistic expectations about the timing of results.

    I do a lot of business networking both online and off.

    As a natural people person who likes to talk, networking is relatively easy for me. But even if you’re a bit on the shy side or have reservations about the potential for success with business networking, you can gain value from your networking, if you follow certain guidelines.

    I have compiled some business networking tips that can ensure your networking success and ask that if you want to network with search for Mike Armstrong or Michael Armstrong from MA Consultancy / WelshBiz / Mike Armstrong News on LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter or Facebook and I would be happy to connect.

    Before looking at my Business Networking Tips the first tip for any Sales & Marketing activity is to work on a strategy or plan for that activity. So before you go Networking have a strategy in place.

    • Know who you are looking to meet and what you are looking for.
    • Be clear on what your business needs and what it can offer.
    • Have a plan for following up, contacting and meeting with the people that you meet.
    • How are you looking to raise your company profile
    • What new contacts are you looking for and new skills are you looking to learn
    • Who would make great lead referral partners
    • Who would you like to partner or collaborate with and why?

    Business Networking Tips – 1

    Choose the right business network!

    If you Networking in the wrong network, with the wrong people for you and your business then it can be hard to get any traction. Specialist Networking Organisations, Chambers of Commerce, men’s and women’s organisations, niche networking groups, special interest groups, placed you can volunteer at and membership clubs, buying groups & associations are all potential choices.You can also find a local MeetUp.com group in your area that might appeal to you or another specific event on Eventbrite. Business Expo’s & Conferences are also a great place to do a lot of Business Networking all in one day or over a few days.

    “You might need to kiss a few frogs before you find the Prince.”

    Business Networking Tips – 2

    Choose the right venues!

    Not every group of people will be right for you and neither will all locations. Choose groups where people congregate who share your interests and/or are potential clients. Find a location that your are comfortable in and that suits your needs. Also find somewhere close to you or your place of work so you can attend regularly and not miss events.

    Business Networking Tips – 3

    Choose the Right Time to Network!

    Networking like a lot of things is about how much effort, consistency and momentum you can put in.

    “The more you put in the more you can get out!

    So choose a regular business networking event that fits comfortably in to your working week so that you can consistently attend.

    Business Networking Tips – 4

    Develop relationships, friendships etc.!

    Business Networking is not about giving it the hard sell. It more about building relationships and friendships with like minded people, that can lead to sales, referrals or even partnerships & collaborations further down the line. The idea is to get to know people, their products & services and their values and to allow them to get to know you, your business, your products & services and your values.

    Often, people approach business networking a Sales strategy, with the hope of making a sale or getting a client straight away.

    That’s not how it works.

    People do business with those they know, like and trust and share a similar value system. It can take time to build up that knowledge and trust.

    So approach a business networking event without any expectation of getting new business.

    “Go networking with the idea of meeting new people, making friendships with likeminded people, learning some things and having some fun and see what happens from there!

    Business Networking Tips – 5

    Dress appropriately and professionally for the venue, event and your business!

    The way you appear can establish yourself as a successful person or not as the case may be. If you dress the part then you’ll also feel the part and this will come across to those who you are Networking with. This does not mean that you need to wear expensive clothes, but do wear something a bit on the dressy side and leave the comfortable baggy pants at home.

    “If necessary, get advice from an image consultant or a fashion savvy friend.

    Business Networking Tips – 6

    Always be prepared with lots of Professional Looking Business Cards!

    Make sure you bring plenty of business cards, but only give them to people who show a real interest in what you do. Brochures or printed postcards can also be effective.

    Business Networking Tips – 7

    Always be prepared with a short, sharpe & concise description of what you do!

    You should have a 10 or 15 seconds Elevator description of what you do for meeting people briefly at Networking events as well as a 1 minute and 5 minute more detailed and comprehensive version for occasions when you are invited to present your business is an allotted time slot. Remember to include your professional expertise and USP’s (unique selling points), etc.

    “When working on this always the remember – what’s in it for me, the thing the other people will be thinking about as you tell them, and make this as good as you can for them and you’ll have their interest.”

    Business Networking Tips – 8

    Use Ice Breakers & Build rapport before going onto Business!

    People need to relax and feel comfortable before they open up.

    “Ask people about Themselves, Their Family, Holidays, Favourite Sports, Hobbies, Interests & Teams etc. Before you discuss business in order to relax people and get them to open up more.”

    *You can also relax people and build trust by smiling and maintaining eye contact.

    Business Networking Tips – 9

    Ask good questions and listen to the answers!

    You don’t have to talk a lot about what you do in order to find potential customers. Rather, ask people you meet questions about them and their business, then listen carefully to their answers. Find points of commonality that you can bring into the conversation.

    “Look for problems that you can solve or solutions that you can provide, or a common business objective or shared cakes that could allow a partnership or collaboration.

    Business Networking Tips – 10

    Sit with, stand with or engage with people that you don’t know!

    Many events have walk-around networking followed by a sit-down meeting of some sort. During the walk-around, do talk to people you have met before to enhance your relationship, but sit with people you don’t know in order to widen your network and meet potential customers, lead referral partners or collaborators.

    “You can speak to those that you already know, after the networking event or in an arranged follow up meeting at another time.

    Business Networking Tips – 11

    Talk to people who are standing alone!

    People attend networking events to meet others. If someone is standing alone, that’s the perfect opportunity to make a new contact. You might want to start the conversation by saying, “May I join you” or “I’ve not met you before, what’s your name”.

    “People often feel awkward at Networking Events and as networking is about building relationships and trust, if you can help them out of an awkward situation then you are well on your way with that person.”

    Business Networking Tips – 12

    Move on – politely!

    Don’t spend all of your time talking to one person. Gather the information you need, exchange business cards, if appropriate, and move on.

    I often say, “I’d like to meet some more new people now. It’s been a great speaking to you.” And then move off!

    Business Networking Tips – 13

    Remember that givers get!

    Focus on what you can do for others, not what they can do for you.

    Business Networking Tips – 14

    Don’t just walk around collecting business cards.

    Take time to meet people, engage with them and see if you can help each other rather than just collecting cards for a database or mass email campaign etc.

    Business Networking Tips – 15

    Be memorable!

    In a room full of others what makes you & your business stand out from the crowd?

    You can bring props, not just marketing materials and business cards, something that visually shows off your expertise or helps others to understand what it is that you do.

    Business Networking Tips – 16

    Quote Testimonials & Case Studies!

    Quoting Testimonials from your satisfied customers & demonstrating
    how your product or service has helped others can help you to win new clients. Especially if these are for people already in the group.

    Business Networking Tips – 17

    Make referrals or Introductions!

    Where possible, always provide the person you are referring to with a way of getting in touch directly with your contact, maybe cc them into an email, check back on progress and see if it was of value. 

    If you were introduced or recommended by someone, keep the person who made the introduction up to date with the progress/outcome.

    If it was successful, a positive action would be to thank them publicly at the next meeting, as this not only demonstrates to others that the network is working, it can help to build both your and the referrer’s credibility within the group.

    If an introduction wasn’t relevant, provide feedback as to the reasons why and how they can identify more positive referrals in the future for you.

    Business Networking Tips – 18

    Don’t forget to Follow up with the people that you have met and can work further with!

    If you make a good connection with someone, after the event, send a note saying how much you enjoyed meeting them. If appropriate, send an article or some kind of information that they might find helpful.

    Don’t just add them to your mail list and try selling to them straight from the off.”

    It’s actually not what happens at the networking event that is so important to your networking success. Your success is more to do with what you do after that initial introduction, once you have followed up.

    Be pro-active in follow ups, use social media to connect with people you have met and ensure that you follow up anything that you have said you were going to do in a timely fashion.

    Have separate 121’s with key individuals outside of the networking sessions, this will also help to avoid getting into any lengthy conversations during the event that may prevent you from meeting other people.

    Business Networking Tips – 19

    Remember that Business Networking is a process and not just a one-off event!

    Take the time to develop relationships with people who interest you. Be proactive and invite someone to a one-to-one meeting so you can get to know them.

    Remember that most business owners and practitioners are looking for connections. Be bold and step forward into their world.

    Business Networking Tips – 20

    Measure & Keep Going if it’s working for you (but give it time and consistency)!
    • Are you achieving your objectives?
    • How much business is generated through this activity either directly or by introductions/referrals?
    • Compare your findings against the cost of investments, be sure to factor in your own cost per hour.

    If the Networking is working for you longer term:

    Keep Going!

    Networking can be a slow burner. It can take a while to build up trust within a group. Attend regularly, help others and have an effective follow up.

    “Networking is about building up your network and relationships. You might not immediately get business from an event but one person you speak to might open a number of doors and that can happen straight away or further down the line, but not at all if you stop attending!

    Business Networking Tips – Summary

    Business Networking is an effective business tool for all smaller businesses, providing a platform to meet like-minded individuals and build connections for growth and development, both professionally and individually. There are a variety of networking groups and events out there to choose from at various price points and all offering different opportunities. Below are some ‘Top Tips’ to ensure that you get the best out of your investment.

    If you are new to networking try to visit as many different business networking events as possible, talk to the regulars and find out if the group will fit in with your strategy before making a regular commitment.

    If you would like to network with, meet, discuss a partnership or a collaboration with me please call: 07960 872549.

    Regards

    Mike Armstrong

    Author of the Networking Grapevine Blog & Introbiz Business Network Ambassador & Inaugural Winner of their Networker of the Year Prize when they launched it in 2018!

    If you are interested in getting involved in any of the below events or opportunities please give me a call on 07960872549.

    Introbiz Network

    If you enjoyed this Advice please find other useful Business Advice & News & Info for Entrepreneurs via the relevant links.

    9 Great Content Marketing Tips

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

    We’ve experimented with lots of different content marketing methods at Buffer, so I wanted to share with you 9 of the best ways we’ve found to increase engagement and improve your content strategy.

    Especially after launching Buffer for Business recently, a lot of business approached us, asking which practical tips we had for them to improve their social media and content marketing.

    So here are our best and most practical ways to see a big impact from your actions on social media:

    1. Share Images on Twitter: Increase Retweets by 150%

    Since Twitter announced inline images, we’ve been experimenting with this change by adding images to a lot of the tweets from our @buffer Twitter account and have noticed a big difference in the engagement we’re getting. To get a better idea of what a difference inline images has made, I took the last 100 Tweets including a link from our @buffer account (not including any Retweets) and compared the averages of the tweets with and without images included.

    Using Buffer’s built-in analytics, I was able to look at the number of clicks, favorites and Retweets each of our Tweets received.

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

    The first data point we looked at was clicks:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

    Our click-through rate did grow, but not by very much. My theory on this is that with an inline image, there’s more content for the user to consume without leaving Twitter (which is probably what Twitter wants), so they’re not much more likely to click-through. Of course, that’s just a theory so it’ll be interesting to see what the data says over a longer time period as we keep experimenting with this.

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

    Favorites increased quite a lot. Along with Retweets in the graph below, this shows a lot more engagement with the Tweets themselves. Clicks, on the other hand, show engagement with the original content.

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

    2. Share Content More Than Once

    We often share our blog posts multiple times on social networks, for a few difference reasons. Some of the biggest benefits we get are more traffic, reaching people in different time zones and sharing our content with people who’ve followed us since we last posted it.

    1. More Traffic

    The first, and perhaps most obvious, reason to share your content more than once is to drive more traffic that the initial share.

    Tom Tunguz did an experiment on his own blog to show how reposting the same content helped him to boost traffic.

    To get an idea of how many people were seeing and sharing his posts, Tom looked at the number of Retweets he got when Tweeting a link to one of his blog posts. We can assume from this that actual visits to his posts increased with each Retweet, as well.

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

    With each subsequent Tweet of an existing blog post, Tom noticed that he got around 75% as many Retweets as the time before.

    We’ve also noticed that Tweeting posts from the Buffer blog more than once gives us more traffic and more engagement (favorites, Retweets).

    Here’s an example where we’ve done this:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

    2. Hit multiple time zones

    Guy Kawasaki is known for posting the same content multiple times, and one reason he advocates doing this is to reach your followers in different time zones. He’s found that this increases the traffic to his content, particularly when Tweeting the same link several times:

    The reason for repeated tweets is to maximize traffic and therefore advertising sales. I’ve found that each tweet gets approximately the same amount of clickthroughs. Why get 600 page views when you can get 2,400?

    Guy generally repeats Tweets of his blog posts (with minor variations) four times each, to hit different time zones:

    We provide content repeatedly because people live in different time zones and have different social media habits.

    3. Reach your new followers

    Something we’ve noticed at Buffer is that a lot of our posts are still relevant months after we publish them. The other thing that changes after we publish a post is that more people follow us on social networks, so if we repost content from our blog that’s six months old, many of our followers will be seeing it for the first time, so they’ll get value out of it even though it’s old content.

    You can use a tool like Twitter Counterto track your follower growth, so you know when it’s a good time to repost some of your older content.

    3. A/B Test on Social Networks

    Since we usually post the same content to Twitter multiple times, we take advantage of this opportunity to test out what headline works best for the blog post.

    Here’s how we usually run that kind of experiment:

    1. Find 2 headlines for an article that you think will perform well.
    2. Tweet both of these headlines at roughly the same time, at least 1 hour apart. We’ve found that posting the two Tweets both in the morning or both in the afternoon works best.
    3. Compare the data for each Tweet to find the best headline for your blog post.

    Here’s an example of the analytics from a headline experiment we did on this blog post:

    First tweet:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

    Second tweet:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

    The second Tweet clearly performed better as we found out through our social analytics and Buffer’s algorithm also identified it as a top Tweet. In fact, you can clearly see that the second headline got double the number of clicks.

    When we see a big difference in engagement on a different headline like that, we usually go back to the original post and change the title itself (the URL never changes, just the heading of the post).

    4. Reframe Content to Suit Your Audience

    Something we try to do each time we post a piece of content is to slightly reframe it so we’re not just repeating ourselves.

    Here’s an example of how we might do that on Facebook.

    First, we post the actual link:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

    Then we go and post only one image to explain part of the post:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

    This way we can sometimes get double or even triple the amount of engagement by highlighting different elements of the content each time we post it. We often do this on Twitter as well.

    First we publish it as a link:

    Then, taking advantage of Twitter’s new expanded images feature, we publish it as an image and reframing it:

    You can simply right click any image on the web with Buffer’s browser extensions for Firefox and Chrome to share a new image post on Twitter or Facebook, that according to the latest social media statistics, will garner significant more clicks, Retweets and favorites.

    We also try slightly different wording each time we post the same thing, like this:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

    5. Re-Buffer Posts and Buffer Native Retweets

    A fairly recent feature we added to Buffer is the ability to drag-and-drop updates. You can now easily copy updates from your Twitter account to your Facebook account. For example:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>And you can also copy past updates back into your Buffer queue, which is really useful for getting more out of popular posts:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>Another neat feature of Buffer is that you can schedule native Retweets from Twitter.com. This is super easy and works with the click of a button. To get started, you just need to install the Buffer browser extension.

    Now, whenever you see a Tweet that’s worth sharing, you can hit the Buffer button:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>This will let you easily schedule a native Retweet from any of your Twitter accounts:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>Plus, you can easily change the Retweet to the old school “RT @username: Text of the tweet” format. If you hover over the composer, you’ll see an option to “change to quote”:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>That’s all it takes! Now you’ll see that Retweet in your Buffer queue, waiting to be published. Of course you can still edit the update to delete, change it to a quote or move it around in your queue:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

    6. Keep on Top of Your Brand and Find Great Content with Mention & Buffer

    Mention is a great tool to help you keep on top of your brand all over the web. It lets you monitor mentions of your brand specifically, as well as industry keywords, competitors and more. When you sign up for an account, the first thing you’ll want to do is create a new alert. This is as simple as naming your alert and adding any keywords you want to monitor:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>To get the most out of the recent integration of Mention + Buffer, you can now add your Buffer account to your Mention alerts so you can publish results to social networks. You can do this when you create a new alert, as well as adding your Facebook or Twitter accounts:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>If you add your Buffer account, you’ll be able to publish to all of your connected social profiles and pages, just like you can from the Buffer dashboard or browser extensions.

    Inside your alert results, you can filter by source including images, blogs, Twitter, Facebook, videos and more. If you choose blogs, you can find some great content to fill up your Buffer account:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>Once you’ve found a post that you want to share, just click on the “React” menu and choose “Add to Buffer”:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

    7. Use Followerwonk to Tweet at Optimal Times

    Followerwonk is a tool that we love using at Buffer to work out when is the best time for us to tweet.

    To get started, head over to Followerwonk and click on “Analyze followers”

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>Next, pop your Twitter username into the box and select “analyze their followers” from the drop-down:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>When your report is done, you’ll see a graph that shows when your followers are most active:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>If you use Buffer, you can take advantage of this by creating a Buffer schedule based on your Followerwonk report. Just choose how many times you want to post each day, and hit the “Schedule at Buffer” button.

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

    8. Transparency

    Something we’ve found that’s really helped us to bond with our readers and build up a community around Buffer is to be really open about how we run the company. We share details about Buffer on our Open blog, as well as in interviews and on other sites.

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>cm openWe share details about our support team and how we handle customer support each month:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>cm supportAnd about our revenue:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>cm rev2

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>cm rev1And we’ve even published a deep-dive before on how we manage our content strategy for the Buffer blog:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>cm blog

    9. Set Up Google Authorship

    Google Authorship is not just the photo and byline that appears on search results pages, thought that’s a large part of it.

    Below is a search results page for the term “Google authorship” showing many entries that have taken advantage of authorship:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>In addition to the byline, there is a strategic layer to Google authorship. The tie-in with Google+ profiles creates verified connections between content on the web and the creators of the content. This gives Google the ability to identify quality, human-created content.

    There are several benefits of setting up Google authorship for your content:

    1. Your authorship byline will get you noticed.

    Look at the below heatmap generated by eye-tracking studies. As you might expect, the top results on the page get a lot of looks, but so too do the results with rich snippets (and not so much for the results in between).

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>2. Entries with rich snippets have higher click-through rates.

    A study performed by search marketing firm Catalyst found that clicks improved 150% with Google authorship.

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>3. Authorship is an advantage to the little guy.

    Authorship offers a competitive advantage. A recent study found that only 3.5% of Fortune 500 companies are actively using authorship. Until they do, they are giving a big opportunity to the rest of us.

    Authorship may be the future of search.

    Don’t take it from me. Take it from Google’s Eric Schmidt. He sees a future where identity plays a big part in search results.

    Within search results, information tied to verified online profiles will be ranked higher than content without such verification, which will result in most users naturally clicking on the top (verified) results.

    To get started with Google authorship, you can check out this step-by-step guide on the Buffer blog.

    That’s it! I hope some of these might be useful for you here. We’ve recently introduced the brand new Buffer for Business too, so in case you’re looking for a powerful social media management tool, take a look, we’d love your feedback on it.

    Subscribe to our new Definitivenewsletter: High grade digital marketing guidance, topically sorted, and curated to the max. You pick the categories, we deliver the content. The best content from around the web, on topics you care about and need to be an expert in.

    Image credits: Tomasz Tunguz

    For more see –

    https://www.convinceandconvert.com/content-marketing/9-best-from-buffer/

    If you enjoyed this Advice you can find more Business Advice and News & Advice for Entrepreneurs by following the links.

    I’ve heard blogging referred to a couple of times recently as a mixture between an art and a science. If this is true (and I think it is), there’s no ‘right way’ to approach blogging if you want to be successful. There are plenty of people who’ve done a great job of it though, and I thought it would be useful to learn from them.

    These 16 bloggers shared one important tip each for blogging beginners. No doubt, even if you’re not a beginner these tips will probably prove to be useful.

    blogging advice - dave_larson

    1. Get ideas from your audience

    Create blog posts that answer the most interesting questions from people you engage with on social media.

    Dave Larson, founder of @tweetsmarter

    This can be a great way to gather ideas of what topics people would most like to read about, which will help your blog grow! One of the best ways I’ve seen this in action is through blog comments or Tweets. In one example, here on FastCompany a lot of people requested a post that features more women entrepreneurs:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>blogging advice - screenshot

    Now, a few weeks later adding such an article where just women contributed and built great businesses was a big hit:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>blogging advice - fastco screenshot

     

    blogging advice - brian-clark

    2. Understand your audience

    Understand your audience better than they understand themselves. It takes a lot of upfront research, and often means being a member of the very tribe you’re trying to lead – but it pays off.

    Brian Clark, founder and CEO, Copyblogger

    Understanding your audience better means you’ll have a better idea of what blog content will resonate with them, which is a good start when you get to writing blog posts.

    A great technique for doing this is to simply ask your readers first on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn with an engaging quote. If people respond well to it, than this is probably a great topic to write about. An example for this comes from Andrew Chen who famously “tests” his blogpost ideas on Twitter first.

    And so does Joel here at Buffer. Take this example from a recent Twitter post of his, where he simply tweeted one quote to see how well people liked a topic before he blogged about it:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>blogging advice - tweet

     

    blogging advice - Adii-Pienaar

    3. Write for yourself first

    Write for yourself first & foremost. Ignore the fact that anyone else will read what you write; just focus on your thoughts, ideas, opinions and figure out how to put those into words. Write it and they will come.

    Adii Pienaar, founder of PublicBeta

    Adii’s experience in writing for himself firstly has made a difference to his blog in ways he didn’t expect:

    Yes, since I’ve been writing for myself, I’ve found that I write more and I publish more often. I think though that the main reason for that is that I don’t decide whether to publishing something based on the traction / reception that the post will receive within my audience; instead if I want to publish something, I do so. For myself.

    blogging advice - kristi-hines

    4. Build your email list

    Start building your email list from day one. Even if you don’t plan on selling anything, having an email list allows you to promote your new content to your audience directly without worrying about search rankings, Facebook EdgeRank, or other online roadblocks in communications.

    Kristi Hines, freelance writer and professional blogger

    When you’re asking readers to sign up for your email list, you might want to try experimenting with different language. Willy Franzen found that his subscription rate jumped 254% higherwhen he changed his call-to-action from “subscribe by email” to “get jobs by email”:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>blogging advice - subscription rate

    Using this phrase more clearly tells Willy’s readers what they’re signing up for, which clearly worked well!

     

    blogging advice - darren_rowse

    5. Love your existing readers

    Love the readers you already have. A lot of bloggers get quite obsessed with finding new readers – to the point that they ignore the ones they already have. Yes – do try to find new readers but spend time each day showing your current readers that you value them too and you’ll find that they will help you grow your blog.

    Darren Rowse, founder of ProBlogger

    Focusing on your readers is a great way to get to know them better (see tip #2). I love the way Daniel Burstein describesblog readers’ expectations of you as a blogger:

    A blog is really two things. One, simply a piece of technology, a platform. But, two, it is a promise in the minds of most readers, who expect that the blog should have actual content with some elements of value that is hyper-targeted to their needs. Much like with a newspaper. Readers don’t just look at a newspaper as newsprint that is delivered on their driveway every morning. They look at it as valuable information about their city, where they live, and the things that they do.

     

    blogging advice - nate_kontny

    6. Focus on building an amazing call-to-action

    I screwed up for years. I’d blog and blog. Some of my posts were doing very well on places like Hacker News, but I had such hard time getting return visitors. And very few people bothered to follow me on Twitter.

    Don’t rely on people to do the work to find your Twitter account. Don’t rely on them to do the work to find your details in a sidebar. People are blind to sidebars. Thanks banner ads!

    Finish your blog post with some kind of call to action to signup for an email list or follow you on Twitter. When I started doing this, I immediately increased my Twitter followers by 335% in the first 7 days.

    Nate Kontny, founder of Draft

    Nate uses a simple call-to-action on his blog now, that looks like this:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>blogging advice - nate screenshot

    This particular technique we’ve also tested here on the Buffer blog and found it to work amazingly well to bring attention to other blog posts we’ve written, like this:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>blogging advice - buffer ss2

    or to Buffer product features, like this:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>blogging advice - buffer ss

     

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>blogging advice - jeff_bullas

    7. Give stuff away

    Give away free content that adds value to people’s lives “until it hurts” and they will love you and become loyal fans.

    Jeff Bullas, blogger and author of Blogging the Smart Way

    A great example of this is the research done by Incentivibe, who found that adding a giveaway contest pop-up to the bottom-right of their website led to 125% more email subscribers.

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>blogging advice - contest

     

    blogging advice - neil patel

    8. Be consistent

    Consistency is one of the most important things that bloggers tend to forget. It’s much easier to lose your traffic than it is to build it up, so make sure you consistently blog.

    Neil Patel, founder of KISSmetrics

    A study by Hubspot showed that consistent blogging actually leads to higher subscriber growth rates:

    Over a two-month span, businesses that published blog entries on a regular basis (more than once a week) added subscribers over twice as fast as those companies that added content once a month.

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>blogging advice - subscriber growth

     

    blogging advice - jay_baer

    9. Give away your knowledge

    Don’t be afraid to showcase what you know. Too many bloggers hold back the good stuff out of fear of giving away the “secret sauce.” There is no secret sauce in a world where everyone has high speed Internet access at all times. Today, you want to give away information snacks to sell knowledge meals.

    Jay Baer, author of Youtility

    Jay’s advice is to share the knowledge you have, rather than keeping it tucked away for a rainy day. Chris Guillebeau follows this advice by offering two free, downloadable PDFs to his readers. Chris also does what Jay calls giving away “information snacks to sell knowledge meals.” On both of the free PDF download pages, Chris markets his book on the right-hand side.

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>blogging advice - cg

     

    blogging advice - chris_pirillo

    10. Be true to your voice

    Stay true to yourself and your voice. People don’t care to follow sites so much as they care to follow people.

    Chris Pirillo, founder and CEO, LockerGnome

    Another blogger who advocates the importance of the writer’s voice is Jeff Goins. He says that your voice is the most important, yet over-looked part of blogging:

    Writing isn’t about picking the right topic; it’s about finding the right voice. What matters, what readers really resonate with, isn’t so much what you say, but how.

    blogging advice - rand_fishkin

    11. Give it time – This is why

    Plan to invest in blogging for a long time before you see a return. The web is a big, noisy place and unless you’re willing to invest more over a greater period of time than others, you’ll find success nearly impossible. If you’re seeking short-term ROI, or a quick path to recognition, blogging is the wrong path. But if you can stick it out for years without results and constantly learn, iterate, and improve, you can achieve something remarkable.

    Rand Fishkin, CEO of Moz

    Rand shared these great images with us from his wife’s travel blog, Everywhereist, which shows just how long it can take to see a return on your efforts:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>

     

    blogging advice - james-clear

    12. Give your email list priority

    If you’re blogging to create a business, a movement, or to support a cause, then you need to build an email list. It’s not an option. I don’t even consider my blog to be my community, my email list is my community. Caring about these people, writing for them, and delivering value to them should be your number one goal.

    James Clear, entrepreneur, weightlifter and travel photographer

    When the New York Public Libraryfocused on growing email subscription rates, this simple home page design with information about what readers could expect to receive boosted numbers by 52.8% over a more complicated version with less information about the actual newsletter:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>blogging advice - nypl

     

    blogging advice - dave_kerpen

    13. Write catchy headlines

    No matter how great your content is, it won’t matter unless you have an amazing headline. People have a split second to decide if they should click on your post, and your headline will make them decide. The headline is also essential in making it easy and desirable for people to share your post. Keep your headlines SPUB: simple, powerful, useful and bold.

    Dave Kerpen, author and CEO of Likeable Local

    Something we do at Buffer is to test several different headlines for each of our blog posts to determine which ones works best. Here’s an example of what that might look like:

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>blogging advice - headlines

    You can read more about this particular approach in more depth here: A scientific guide to writing great headlines on Twitter, Facebook and your Blog

     

    blogging advice - aaron-lee

    14. Be Yourself

    There isn’t one specific set of rules to be successful in blogging. When I started blogging, I had the opportunity to learn from experienced and successful bloggers in the industry. One of the best lessons I’ve learned from them is to simply be me. I didn’t have to be too “professional” or use “big words” to impress others. I had to simply be me.

    By being me, I enjoyed writing and the process more. It had me writing more than I usually would too. If you look at the the most successful writers like Seth Godin and Chris Brogan you’ll notice that they are different and unique in their own ways.

    Aaron Lee, social media manager, entrepreneur and blogger

    Moz CEO Rand Fishkin agrees that telling your company’s story is important, as opposed to following a formula for successful blogging:

    Emotion and storytelling have been part of how we communicate with each other and inspire action for thousands of years.

     

    blogging advice - derek_sivers

    15. Keep it short

    Biggest lesson I learned in my past year of blogging. Keep it in the 1–2 minutes read-time length.

    Derek Sivers, founder of Wood Egg

    Working out the best length for your blog posts can be tricky. You generally need about 300 words minimum to get indexed by search engines, but otherwise the length of your post is up to what you think feels best.

    Derek Sivers noticed recently that his shorter posts were much better received by readers and seemed to be shared more, unlike his longer posts:

    When I’ve written articles that were too long or had too many ideas, they didn’t get much of a reaction.

    When I read books, I often feel bad for the brilliant idea buried on page 217. Who will hear it?

    Stop the orchestra. Solo that motif. Repeat it. Let the other instruments build upon it.

    The web is such a great way to do this.

    Present a single idea, one at a time, and let others build upon it.

    According to this Chartbeat graph below, many visitors to your site won’t bother scrolling, and most visitors won’t read more than about 60% of what you’ve written. Keeping it short and sharp then, could be worthwhile.

    ” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>blogging advice - chartbeat graph

    If you’re looking for a general guide to blog post length, Joe Pulizzi’s blog post, “A blog post is like a miniskirt” might be useful:

    A blog post is like a miniskirt.

    It has to be short enough to be interesting, but long enough to cover the subject.

     

    blogging advice - gregory_ciotti

    16. Make it worth referencing – here is how:

    One thing I always try to keep in mind before publishing a post is would anyone want to “cite” this for any reason? Just like interesting research is great because it leaves you with a fascinating finding or an idea, I like for my posts to be the same. That doesn’t mean relying on research, but simply making sure each post has an original lesson or actionable item, making it “citable” on the web.

    Gregory Ciotti, marketing strategist at Help Scout

    Our very own Buffer co-founder Leo has written about a similar thing before:

    When writing a post, I get into a mindset to answer just this 1 question with a Yes: “Would anyone email this article to a friend?”

    It’s an extremely simple proposition. Yet, it has changed my writing completely. If I put myself into a reader’s head going through a post and seeing whether someone will say “Oh, this is interesting, John will really like this”, then I go ahead and publish it. It’s almost like an invisible threshold to pass. I need to improve the post until this level is reached. I will iterate, find more research, get more examples, until I can truly imagine this happening.

    I’m sure there are lots more great tips out there about building a blog. What’s your favorite?

    Image credits: David G. Larson, Copyblogger, The WordPress Podcast, Party Biz Connect, Darren Rowse, Nate Kontny, Jeff Bullas, FounderTips, Social Media Examiner, Chris Pirillo, LinkJuice, James Clear, Dave Kerpen, Joshua Titsworth, Derek Sivers, Unbounce

    For more see:

    https://buffer.com/resources/blogging-advice-for-beginners-from-16-experts/amp

    If you enjoyed this Advice you can find more Business Advice and News & Advice for Entrepreneurs by following the links.

    5 Top Tips for becoming a successful entrepreneur…

    

    If you are an Entrepreneur or you want to be an Entrepreneur then you are probably obsessed about how you can reach your next level of success, and how good you will feel when you have gotten there.Achieving success can be frustrating; there is such a big gap between having an idea and reaping the rewards.You could work hard for months and not get any of the results that you are looking for.

    All the while, others will seemingly go from success to success without making much effort. Maybe they know something that you don’t.

    Success for many Entrepreneurs all come down to creating top habits and here’s 5 Top Habits Of Successful Entrepreneur, that will help you to reach your goals and accomplish what you have always set out to do!

    5 Top Tips for becoming a Successful Entrepreneur – Tip N°1:

    Be Your Own Biggest Fan!

    As a businessperson or Entrepreneur, you have to be your biggest fan and have tons of confidence & self belief.

    People who do not believe in themselves can never reach their goals because their negative habits will prevent them from doing what they know they need to do.

    Avoid Self Doubt & Negative People (Naysayers).

    Beware of sharing your goals and ideas with the people around you. You could be shocked by their reaction. They may dismiss and doubt that your goal is even possible. Self-doubt may also creep in. That negative self-talk in your head that keeps arguing that you are not good enough?

    To be a Successful Entrepreneur, you have to find a way to shut both of them down.

    When dealing with negative people / naysayers, you have three options:

    1. Ignore them and let their negativity roll off your back
    2. Try talking to them and convincing them not to be negative
    3. Spend very little time with them

    Everything depends on your circumstances. More often than not people do not even realise that they are being a naysayer, so you can just start by pointing it out to them and asking for them to keep their negative opinions to themselves.

    Some naysayers will be unable to change their views. It’ll be up to you whether or not you can deal with them or if you are better off avoiding their company altogether.

    Avoiding the negative self-talk is so challenging because it’s with you wherever you are. Try and reframe the negativity and instead of talking to yourself, imagine you’re talking to a good friend.

    Be your biggest fan and be kind to yourself!

    What are your strengths? List them down and read them regularly (maybe every morning when you wake and every night before bed).

    It’s easier to believe in yourself when you acknowledge your strengths.

    When making your list of the things you are good at be thorough.

    Are you a great negotiator? A great innovator? A great team builder? Or Great with Technology etc.?

    Turn your list into positive affirmations.

    It’ll help you keep up a positive perspective. Also you can use this list to set goals from – utilising the strengths in the list to reach those goals.

    Anything missing from the list?

    Set goals and personal development targets to improve on any areas that you think could make you a better Entrepreneur and a better person in general. Also if you have areas of weakness get someone in who covers those areas – see Building a Team (Habit 5).

    Handling Your Fears:

    How we handle our fears is what sets us apart.

    To be a Successful Entrepreneur you will need to face and find ways to overcome your fears. If your anxiety is public speaking, for example, you could confront that fear and start doing it regularly until you overcome it. Start small and maybe even with a little Dutch courage and start working your way up from there.

    The truth is that we all struggle in some way or another.

    • Stephen King, was rejected more than 30 times before one of his famous novels Carrie, finally got published.
    • Bill Gates failed in a company before creating Microsoft.
    • Walt Disney got fired from the Kansas City Star because he lacked imagination.

    The point is that you can not listen to naysayers. The only way to succeed is to be your biggest fan and shut everything else out.

    5 Top Tips for becoming a Successful Entrepreneur – Tip N°2:

    Do Testing, testing, testing

    You probably have tons of ideas. Some are good, and some are terrible. How can you tell the difference? By Testing, testing, testing.

    Testing your products and ideas is paramount and here’s why!

    Which of the two options below will yield the most results?

    Developing and launching a product without testing and find out no one needs your solution; or test and refine your idea before investing?

    The answer’s clear.

    Do plenty of Market Research

    Market research correctly done will dramatically improve your chances of success. Research before you spend time and money starting a business. It could mean pitching your idea to friends and family members or reaching out to the wider community.

    When testing ideas, it’s essential to confirm that you are bringing a unique value proposition to the market place.

    The unique value proposition could be about extra functionalities or lower prices.

    You need to establish how that you are different from your competitors?

    Identify Problems and Find Solutions!

    You’re more liable to succeed if you recognise a product or service that provides a solution to a dilemma faced by your community.

    People jump online to obtain solutions.

    When they have problems they often scan the internet for a solution that will assist them.

    Discover problems by seeking popular keywords in your niche and studying Google’s suggested searches.

    Say you aspire to build a business in the dog coaching niche, and you’re scanning for a different viewpoint for pup training merchandise. Try and search “How to train a pup” and This is what you get:

    You’ll notice there are notions there, including concentrating on training with a bell or training with a crate.

    You could create a niche by concentrating on a coaching method for people who are not at home during the day. That’s a predicament that might not be approached by others, that means it could be your different value proposition!

    Smart Goal Setting!

    Do you know how to set goals? It involves more than stating, “I want a thriving enterprise.” Ever heard about SMART goals. It means establishing goals that are Precise, Assessable, Achievable, Wise, and timely.

    Here are some examples of SMART goal settings:

    • Create a new Business.
    • Produce 50k in income in year one.
    • Aquire twenty new customers in the first three months.

    Do you see how these examples are all precise and achievable?

    In the case of the income and customer acquisition goals, they are assessable and timely.

    They also can be broken down further in to smaller bite size pieces.

    50k in year one is just over 4k a month.

    20 New customers in 3 months is just over 6 a month (or 4, 6, 10 a month, giving yourself a build up period).

    When setting goals, fine-tune them until they’re SMART and achievable.

    Prepare for Failure!

    You presumably feel it seems odd to prepare for failure. It does – but it’s a genius move.

    We ALL fail. Stephen King was rejected thirty + times by publishers, but it’s what he did after those rejections That made him a highly successful author.

    He didn’t quit, didn’t yield. He dealt with refusal and persevered.

    You need to understand that you may fail (more likely than not) and be prepared for it.

    5 Top Tips for

    Becoming a Successful Entrepreneur – Tip N°3:

    Learning from your failures!

    Every cloud has a silver lining. Cliché I know, but the fact that it is doesn’t make it untrue.

    Just like failures, errors show us who we are. We all make them. It’s how we react to them that separate the Successful from the Unsuccessful.

    Start-Ups Often Fail

    It’s not easy to get a start-up up and running. Many Start-ups fail, and it can be for several reasons.

    Here are some of the most typical:

    • Not focussing on customers and their needs
    • Loss of focus in the business altogether
    • Scaling too fast
    • Not developing a successful team
    • Infighting between founders etc.

    We’ve already talked about concentrating on clients. Do that, and your halfway there, because you won’t be thinking about what you like, but what your audience needs.

    Problems with Focus can appear when you try to do too many jobs at once. Simplifying goals on concentrating on one product or concept will help narrow your focus.

    The idea of scaling sends entrepreneurs into tantrums. Let your business grow organically and scale only when relevant. You’ll read about building a successful team later – but let’s be clear about this, you can’t manage it all by yourself!

    Reframe Mistakes as Opportunities!

    Nobody likes making mistakes. It’s no fun to be wrong. However, every successful entrepreneur had to get comfortable with it – and learn to see mistakes as opportunities.

    What happens when you mess up? If you pay attention, you acquire new knowledge! It might not be obvious to you now, but all that you learn will help you get to your goals.

    If you make a mistake, take a long deep breath and ask yourself:

    What can I take away from this? Then, once you’ve recognised it, use the lesson to create your next break. This can become easy if you make a habit of it!

    Make Your Goals Manageable!

    We previously discussed SMART goals. If you don’t reach a goal, it’s natural to feel disheartened. It’s often a hint that you set the bar too high.

    If you’ve ever created a to-do list, you known how good it feels to cross them out.

    So why not try and put simple things on your list, just for the quick gratification of crossing them out.

    When setting goals, break down every long-term goal into small steps. It helps to narrow down your goals. Each cross will take you one step closer to your end goal — each cross on your checklist can become a. small victory.

    How to Make The Most From Your Experiences!

    Learning is always around us! All we experience is one big lesson and it’s up to you if you choose to take it or not.

    When you slip or mess up, it’s natural to be upset but you need to learn to keep calm and learn the lesson.

    Embrace your mistakes! Own them! Once you gave owned the error, take a step back!

    Look at what went wrong, and try and find the silver lining in your situation.

    Read, investigate, communicate with people in your industry. Take what you learn to heart and use it.

    Split Testing!

    The best ways to fine-tune your goals or products is by doing something called “Split Testing.” Split testing means taking your content or your ad campaigns and trying out different versions until you get a winner.

    The key is to test only one variant at a time. Not getting the results you are looking for with your Facebook ad? Test two headlines, choose the one that delivers and then split test your call to action.

    Crafting Your Back up Plan!

    Having a backup plan is smart. I know it’s not popular, but what If your first idea doesn’t work? What’s your next move?

    I’ll repeat it, “having a backup plan is smart”.

    5 Top Tips for becoming a Successful Entrepreneur – Tip N°4:

    Be Customer Focussed!

    Your customers are the core of your business. If you can’t serve them properly, your business will go bust. It’s as Simple as that.

    By now, you know all about research and testing. However, even though you’ve tested and researched everything, you still need to keep your customers happy. It’s a simple truth. If your customers are satisfied, you’ll generate an income.

    Create The Ultimate Customer Experience!

    Customer relationship starts when they first learn about you and continues for as long as they remain clients. When figuring out the best customer experience, think through every step they will have to take.

    Offer top-notch content, an easy and secured purchase process, and stellar support. Customers who have received fast and professional help will mention it to their connections.

    Give Value First!

    What’s the secret ingredient to attracting new customers? BRINGING VALUE FIRST.

    Before anybody buys your product, you need to show that you can deliver the goods. You can do that easily enough by offering valuable content before they purchase.

    That means creating and delivering entertaining, educational, and actionable content that will demonstrate your know-how.

    Bringing actual value, for free, triggers a mental response called Reciprocity. Prospects that receive free informative video or pdf, packed with valuable content, will be more inclined to purchase from you.

    Of course, the value must be in the product itself. The top 3 qualities customers are looking for in a product are its usefulness, its endurance, and its cost.

    Becoming The Authority Figure In Your Sector!

    Becoming an authority figure is critical. The best way to demonstrate your authority is to (you guessed it) deliver value to your clients.

    However, being an authority has a deeper meaning. It’s about showing how much you care about your community.

    It’s about becoming a reliable and knowledgeable source of information.

    These days it means delivering original content on social media that’s fun and educational. You can also post curated content relating to your niche and share your opinion on the subject.

    One way to ascertain yourself as an authority and build your followers base is to offer a lead magnet. A lead magnet can be many things: an eBook, a cheat sheet, a template, or anything else that can illustrate your expertise.

    Provide Great Customer Support!

    It starts when a customer first visits your site. You should take into consideration what kind of support your customers require and how to best deliver it.

    Back in the days, support was mostly in person or on the phone. Now, you have many options:

    • Email support
    • Instant Chat support
    • Chatbots
    • Self-service options
    • FAQ
    • Social media support

    You’ll need to test various options to figure out what will work best for your audience.

    Many companies are merging social media with customer support and you need to consider doing the same.

    5 Top Tips for Becoming a Successful Entrepreneur – Tip N° 5:

    Build a great and Complementary Team

    A successful entrepreneur is someone who knows how to build a team. You can’t do everything by yourself. We all have the temptation to do that, of course. Wearing every hat can save you money. However, it will also cost you precious time.

    Why You Shouldn’t Do Everything!

    You might have many skills. Perhaps you’re a great innovator with excellent communication skills. Maybe you’ve dabbled in accounting and flirted with marketing.

    No matter how good you are, you’re not equally good at everything. If you try to do the things you’re not so good at, you might end up settling for a less-than-perfect result.

    Many entrepreneurs try to do everything at first. However, once you’ve established your business and product, it’s a good idea to branch out and get some help.

    Not only can you better focus on the things that only YOU can do, but you’ll also be able to live a well-balanced and prolific life – and that’s a key to a purposeful lifestyle.

    Tips for Building a great Team!

    The idea of building a team can be an intimidating one, mainly if you think that you need to hire people and deal with taxes and insurance.

    The good news is that you don’t need to do those things unless you want to. Lots of companies outsource tasks as needed without hiring full-time or even part-time people.

    The first step is deciding who you need on your team. Are you struggling to keep up with social media? It could be a good idea to outsource it to a professional. Perhaps you need an accountant to pay your bills. Maybe you need human resources services.

    You may decide to hire someone full time. Keep in mind, though, that there are plenty of tasks you can outsource to freelancers. Using sites like Upwork makes it easy to find virtual assistants and team members.

    The Importance of Delegation!

    How do you know what to do yourself and what to delegate?

    Delegation is an essential skill. You know you can’t do everything, but it can be challenging to let go of the things you’re accustomed to doing even when you have help.

    Here are four questions to help you find out how and what to delegate.

    About each task, ask:

    • Can I coach someone else to do it?
    • Is there anything that I’m unqualified to teach?
    • Is my input needed?
    • Is there someone on my team who can learn how to do it?

    Unless the task requires your input and skills, it should be open to delegate. Yes, you’ll need to spend some time training your staff or freelancers to do the task to your standards. You’ll probably end up fielding a few questions and possibly, correcting a few mistakes.

    There’s nothing wrong with you keeping critical tasks to yourself, but your goal should be to maximise efficiency while also prioritising accurately.

    Taking an inventory of your team’s skills is a good idea. They might have abilities you don’t even know about yet!

    Summary

    The five top habits of Successful Entrepreneurs outlined here are ones that you can use to travel the road to success.

    You need to keep in mind that you will need to:

    • Reframe negative thoughts and talk to yourself as you would a friend.
    • Avoid negative people and naysayers.
    • Test your ideas thoroughly before launching new products
    • Prepare for failure
    • Learn from your mistakes whenever possible
    • Stay focused on your customers and their problems
    • Get the help that you need to reach your goals by building a great team.

    Much success is believing in yourself and getting the support (both from yourself and others) to reach your goals.

    If you can sustain a positive mindset, be systematic about your planning, and be consistent in your efforts, you will have all the success you deserve.

    If you enjoyed this Advice please find other useful Business Advice & News & Info for Entrepreneurs via the relevant links.

    5 Daily Habit Tips for becoming a successful entrepreneur

    Welcome to the 5 Daily Habits of the World’s Most Successful Entrepreneurs Article as featured in Entrepreneur.com.

    The main difference between the few who get ahead and the many treading water is how well they spend their time.

    The entrepreneurial spirit lights a flame of hope in the hearts and minds of people near and far.

    For most, it’s a symbolic journey, one that delves deep into the far-reaches of their minds, revealing their deepest hopes and dreams, illuminating the pathway to self-discovery and eventual financial freedom. 

    Yet, as enticing as it sounds to launch a new business, it’s also fraught with challenges that run to the core of who we are inside.

    It’s a journey with long and windy roads, twisting and turning their way through a sea of despair and struggle, battling against our darkest and most salient fears, forcing us to furiously fight our way towards the shores of hope and prosperity. 

    Clearly, it’s not easy running a business. But don’t tell that to the wild-eyed innovators who have their sights set on achieving monumental success.

    Don’t tell that to the entrepreneurs who’ve endured doubt and questions as to their abilities, their entire lives. That won’t dismay or dissuade them at the outset. No, it most certainly won’t. 

    However, as exciting as the start of any entrepreneurial journey is, we also know how mentally, emotionally, spiritually, physically, and of course, financially taxing it can be to run and manage a business in the long term.

    In fact, it’s so difficult that eight out of every 10 businesses in the United States fails after just 18 months of operations (and 8.5 out of every 10 in the UK fail within 5 years).

    Even more shocking? After 10 years, only four out of every 100 businesses are still around. 

    If those statistics aren’t enough to stifle you from charging headfirst into the world of commerce, then you’re not alone because 28 million small businesses are operating in the United States with an additional 22 million professionals that are self-employed.

    Clearly, the entrepreneurial flame is alive and well in the hearts and minds of many, not just in the U.S., but around the world.

    Considering that only 20 percent of businesses reach that 18-month mark and that 96 percent of all businesses disappear within 10 years, the question that beckons most has very much to do with just how a business can succeed in the long term.

    While it’s easy enough to start a business, it’s obvious that longevity is what eludes us most. 

    I pose this question because the answers are far more fundamental than what most people think.

    There’s a reason why investors invest in the people behind the business rather than the business or the idea itself.

    You can have a groundbreaking idea for an innovation or a revolutionary new product and launch a business with it, but that doesn’t mean you’ll succeed. 

    If the person running the business lacks the fundamental building-blocks of a successful entrepreneur, no matter how much money is pumped into that business, nor what strategy is employed, it will eventually fail. Maybe not today. Maybe not tomorrow. But eventually. And 10 years from now, that business will be all but a distant memory. 

    So what is this magic recipe for long-term success in business?

    What’s the formula that some of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs employ to see things through?

    Clearly, you need to be agile, innovative, productive and effective with your actions to succeed, but you also need to instill a set of good daily habits so that you can automate your success. 

    Habits hold the gateway to success in any endeavor. Not only do the habits we hold dictate the quality of our lives, but they also reflect our potential for success.

    Bad habits will always hold us back, especially when it comes to running a business with any staying power. Yet, it’s not just about eliminating the bad habits, you need to instill the right habits for entrepreneurial success. 

    The world’s most successful entrepreneurs have endured some of the most trying times. They’ve endured countless failures along the way to business success, with endless headaches and restless nights. But they didn’t give up. If you look at some of the most famous people who’ve failed in the world, there are, in fact, five core habits that stand out. 

    Considering that one study determined that habits comprise 45 percent of daily behavior, by instilling the right habits, we’ll default to a better set of actions without having to think about it.

    This automation is what helped the world’s most successful entrepreneurs achieve their lofty goals. Emulate their habits, and you just might be able to emulate their accomplishments. 

    However, before diving into the specific habits, let’s briefly look at habit development. We all know that it’s hard to form good habits or to quit our bad habits. Neural pathways that form in the mind etch deep connections between the neural networks that comprise much of our thoughts, emotions and resultant actions. And overcoming those neural pathways can seem nearly impossible at times. 

    The micro-changes approach to habit development.

    What’s the best way to instill the right daily habits into your life?

    Use what’s called the micro-changes approach.

    This is the absolute best way to get a habit to stick. Considering that it takes, on average, 18 to 254 days to form a habit, there’s a tall mountain to climb of repetitive behavior. Yet, if you try to go from zero to hero overnight, you’ll see yourself fail and revert back to the old, more comfortable, habits. 

    The micro-changes approach works like this. Take any habit you’re looking to instill, and break it down into bite-sized pieces. For example, let’s just say you want to work out every day for 45 minutes. Well, start with just 3 push-ups. Or, get outside your house and walk for just 3 minutes.

    The point? The commitment has to be so small, that’s it impossible to fail at it. 

    The point with the micro-changes approach is that you need to be consistent. So, if you decide to do three push-ups per day, you have to stick to it. What will happen after a few days is that you’ll want to increase that action. So, if you do three push-ups per day for the first few days, you might find yourself moving up to four push-ups the following few days. You simply have to keep increasing it as you go, but stick to the minimum amount you committed to. 

    When we skip a day of doing something, any behavior, it’s incredibly hard to go back. We lose the momentum, which is why the micro-changes approach is important. For example, if you decide to walk for three minutes, possibly go for a walk around your block, you have to do it every day and increase that time every few days or every week.

    Any of the following habits can be created over time by using the micro-changes approach. You can even use it to quit your bad habits by slowly limiting them over an extended period until they’re gone. It isn’t easy. You have to be conscious of what you’re doing. But if you’re committed enough to it, you’ll achieve your habit-development goals in time.

    Now on to the bit that you all come here for.

    5 daily habit tips to be like some of the Worlds Most Successful Entrepreneurs:

    Daily Habit Tip to become a Successful Entrepreneur – 1.

    Wake up early

    Apple’s CEO Tim Cook sends out company emails by 4:30 a.m. every day with a visit to the gym shortly after at 5 a.m. One of the world’s most successful CEOs knows a thing or two about the importance of getting up early. But he’s not the only one. Disney’s CEO, Robert Iger wakes up at 4:30 a.m. and so does Howard Schultz who also gets a workout in before showing up to the office at 6 a.m. 

    But there’s a reason why they and countless others of the world’s most successful individuals wake up that early. It’s in the early-morning hours, when the world is still and silent, that we can focus and concentrate best on our efforts, to see things through and push towards our long-term goals. 

    Even for those people that don’t consider themselves as morning people, the daily success habit of waking up early can be achieved with the micro-changes approach as long as you stay consistent.

    For this, simply wake up 15 minutes earlier the first week, then another 15 minutes earlier the following week, and so on.

    Do it until you reach your wake-up-early goal. 

    Daily Habits Tip to become a Successful Entrepreneur -2:

    Use great time management

    Time is life’s greatest equaliser. No matter how Wealth or Successful you are, we all have the same amount of time in the day. It doesn’t matter who we are, where we’re from, the color of our skin, religion, and so on, we all still just get 24 hours in a day.

    That’s 86,400 seconds. That’s it. No more and no less. 

    What does make a difference, however, is just how we use the precious time that we do have.

    Do we waste it? Or do we use it effectively, masterfully managing our time to achieve our goals?

    The world’s most successful people are also some of the world’s best managers of their time. If you’re serious about long-term success, then you need to instill this daily habit into your life. 

    Use the quadrant-time-management system, first envisioned by the late President Dwight D. Eisenhower, and later popularized by Stephen R. Covey in his book, “7 Habits of Highly Effective People.”

    You’ll find this to be the best strategy for managing your time and eventually achieving your goals.

    Daily Habits Tip to become a Successful Entrepreneur – 3.

    Daily goal setting

    Not only do successful entrepreneurs set long-term goals, but they also engage in daily goal setting. They set goals every single day based on what they want to achieve in the long term. The daily goals help to provide clarity at a smaller scale, rather than being overwhelmed by the enormity of those monumental goals we want to achieve years down the line. 

    Benjamin Franklin was known for asking the question “What good have I done today?” at the end of every single day. By knowing that he would ask that question, he was better able to set the right goals each day to stay on track, as hard as it might have seemed at times for him to do so. 

    Steve Jobs was also one that asked himself a question every day while looking in the mirror. In a commencement speech to Stanford University graduates, he told the audience that his question was, “If today were the last day of your life, would you want to be doing what you’re doing?”

    He later went on to state that, “Whenever the answer has been no for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.”

    Daily Habits Tip to become a Successful Entrepreneur – 4.

    Meticulous planning

    It’s great to set goals, but harder to achieve them when we fail to plan. The world’s most successful entrepreneurs are meticulous planners. You need to determine how you’re going to get from Point A to Point B to give yourself direction and to better understand how you’ll approach the finish line in the future. 

    Think about a plane for a moment. Every airplane has a goal. Its goal is to fly from one city to the next, leave at a certain date and time, and arrive at another date and time. Yet, there is tremendous amounts of planning that go into that goal.

    The plane has to plan its projected direction of travel, air speed, elevation and so on. 

    Similar to the plane, you need to plan your route to your goals.

    Creating a massive action plan, and tracking your progress on a daily basis, will also allow you to overcome any difficulties or change your approach if you see that something isn’t working.

    When a plane hits turbulence or air-traffic congestion, it changes direction, elevation or speed so that it can eventually reach its intended target. 

    Daily Habits Tip to become a Successful Entrepreneur – 5.

    Take Persistent action.

    The cliché of taking action has been hammered home in the self-help genre for ages. Everyone speaks about taking action, but not everyone can follow through and do it. We get sidetracked and veer off track. Things come up and we lose our focus or we end up procrastinating towards our goals. 

    However, this is by far one of the most important daily habits you can have to reach eventual success.

    Still, the problem is overcoming the silent killer known as procrastination.

    However, there is a so-called hack for this. It’s called the 15-minute rule. Take the one thing that you’ve been putting off for the longest, set a timer on your phone, and do it for just 15 minutes. 

    All it takes is 15 minutes. Don’t promise yourself more than that. Just 15 minutes. What you’ll come to find is that after those 15 minutes are up, you’ll have built some momentum and you might keep going. And even if you don’t continue, you’ll have broken the stifling pattern of procrastination. 

    If you enjoyed this Advice please find other useful Business Advice & News & Info for Entrepreneurs via the relevant links.

    10 New Business Startup Tips

    As a seasoned entrepreneur, I can tell you that there is no perfect formula for starting a small business. I’ve learned that the best business advice usually forces you to think in a new way. So, I’ve compiled a list of tips for starting your own business that you might not have heard.

    Tips for starting a small business

    Opening your own business is often a learn-as-you-go process. But, the more smart decisions you make early on, the better chance your company has for success. If you have an entrepreneurial idea, try these ten tips.

    For more see the following site:

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/mikekappel/2017/07/12/10-tips-for-starting-a-small-business-that-you-havent-heard-a-thousand-times-already/

    For more Business Advice, Business Startups News & Advice, or News & Advice for Entrepreneurs please follow the links.

    10. Creating Wealth Tips

    10 Tips to help make you rich from self-made millionaire Kevin Green

    In his new book The Rich Rules rags-to-riches millionaire Kevin Green describes how he built up his property empire and gives 10 tips towards success in business

    Business News, Sports News & Business Advice from Mike Armstrong – See https://mikearmstrong.me

5 Daily Habits of The Worlds Most Successful Entrepreneurs

Welcome to the 5 Daily Habits of the World’s Most Successful Entrepreneurs Article as featured in Entrepreneur.com.

The main difference between the few who get ahead and the many treading water is how well they spend their time.

The entrepreneurial spirit lights a flame of hope in the hearts and minds of people near and far.

For most, it’s a symbolic journey, one that delves deep into the far-reaches of their minds, revealing their deepest hopes and dreams, illuminating the pathway to self-discovery and eventual financial freedom. 

Yet, as enticing as it sounds to launch a new business, it’s also fraught with challenges that run to the core of who we are inside.

It’s a journey with long and windy roads, twisting and turning their way through a sea of despair and struggle, battling against our darkest and most salient fears, forcing us to furiously fight our way towards the shores of hope and prosperity. 

Clearly, it’s not easy running a business. But don’t tell that to the wild-eyed innovators who have their sights set on achieving monumental success.

Don’t tell that to the entrepreneurs who’ve endured doubt and questions as to their abilities, their entire lives. That won’t dismay or dissuade them at the outset. No, it most certainly won’t. 

However, as exciting as the start of any entrepreneurial journey is, we also know how mentally, emotionally, spiritually, physically, and of course, financially taxing it can be to run and manage a business in the long term.

In fact, it’s so difficult that eight out of every 10 businesses in the United States fails after just 18 months of operations (and 8.5 out of every 10 in the UK fail within 5 years).

Even more shocking? After 10 years, only four out of every 100 businesses are still around. 

If those statistics aren’t enough to stifle you from charging headfirst into the world of commerce, then you’re not alone because 28 million small businesses are operating in the United States with an additional 22 million professionals that are self-employed.

Clearly, the entrepreneurial flame is alive and well in the hearts and minds of many, not just in the U.S., but around the world.

Considering that only 20 percent of businesses reach that 18-month mark and that 96 percent of all businesses disappear within 10 years, the question that beckons most has very much to do with just how a business can succeed in the long term.

While it’s easy enough to start a business, it’s obvious that longevity is what eludes us most. 

I pose this question because the answers are far more fundamental than what most people think.

There’s a reason why investors invest in the people behind the business rather than the business or the idea itself.

You can have a groundbreaking idea for an innovation or a revolutionary new product and launch a business with it, but that doesn’t mean you’ll succeed. 

If the person running the business lacks the fundamental building-blocks of a successful entrepreneur, no matter how much money is pumped into that business, nor what strategy is employed, it will eventually fail. Maybe not today. Maybe not tomorrow. But eventually. And 10 years from now, that business will be all but a distant memory. 

So what is this magic recipe for long-term success in business?

What’s the formula that some of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs employ to see things through?

Clearly, you need to be agile, innovative, productive and effective with your actions to succeed, but you also need to instill a set of good daily habits so that you can automate your success. 

Habits hold the gateway to success in any endeavor. Not only do the habits we hold dictate the quality of our lives, but they also reflect our potential for success.

Bad habits will always hold us back, especially when it comes to running a business with any staying power. Yet, it’s not just about eliminating the bad habits, you need to instill the right habits for entrepreneurial success. 

The world’s most successful entrepreneurs have endured some of the most trying times. They’ve endured countless failures along the way to business success, with endless headaches and restless nights. But they didn’t give up. If you look at some of the most famous people who’ve failed in the world, there are, in fact, five core habits that stand out. 

Considering that one study determined that habits comprise 45 percent of daily behavior, by instilling the right habits, we’ll default to a better set of actions without having to think about it.

This automation is what helped the world’s most successful entrepreneurs achieve their lofty goals. Emulate their habits, and you just might be able to emulate their accomplishments. 

However, before diving into the specific habits, let’s briefly look at habit development. We all know that it’s hard to form good habits or to quit our bad habits. Neural pathways that form in the mind etch deep connections between the neural networks that comprise much of our thoughts, emotions and resultant actions. And overcoming those neural pathways can seem nearly impossible at times. 

The micro-changes approach to habit development.

What’s the best way to instill the right daily habits into your life?

Use what’s called the micro-changes approach.

This is the absolute best way to get a habit to stick. Considering that it takes, on average, 18 to 254 days to form a habit, there’s a tall mountain to climb of repetitive behavior. Yet, if you try to go from zero to hero overnight, you’ll see yourself fail and revert back to the old, more comfortable, habits. 

The micro-changes approach works like this. Take any habit you’re looking to instill, and break it down into bite-sized pieces. For example, let’s just say you want to work out every day for 45 minutes. Well, start with just 3 push-ups. Or, get outside your house and walk for just 3 minutes.

The point? The commitment has to be so small, that’s it impossible to fail at it. 

The point with the micro-changes approach is that you need to be consistent. So, if you decide to do three push-ups per day, you have to stick to it. What will happen after a few days is that you’ll want to increase that action. So, if you do three push-ups per day for the first few days, you might find yourself moving up to four push-ups the following few days. You simply have to keep increasing it as you go, but stick to the minimum amount you committed to. 

When we skip a day of doing something, any behavior, it’s incredibly hard to go back. We lose the momentum, which is why the micro-changes approach is important. For example, if you decide to walk for three minutes, possibly go for a walk around your block, you have to do it every day and increase that time every few days or every week.

Any of the following habits can be created over time by using the micro-changes approach. You can even use it to quit your bad habits by slowly limiting them over an extended period until they’re gone. It isn’t easy. You have to be conscious of what you’re doing. But if you’re committed enough to it, you’ll achieve your habit-development goals in time.

Now on to the bit that you all come here for.

The 5 daily habits of the Worlds Most Successful Entrepreneurs:

Daily Habit of Successful Entrepreneurs 1.

Waking up early

Apple’s CEO Tim Cook sends out company emails by 4:30 a.m. every day with a visit to the gym shortly after at 5 a.m. One of the world’s most successful CEOs knows a thing or two about the importance of getting up early. But he’s not the only one. Disney’s CEO, Robert Iger wakes up at 4:30 a.m. and so does Howard Schultz who also gets a workout in before showing up to the office at 6 a.m. 

But there’s a reason why they and countless others of the world’s most successful individuals wake up that early. It’s in the early-morning hours, when the world is still and silent, that we can focus and concentrate best on our efforts, to see things through and push towards our long-term goals. 

Even for those people that don’t consider themselves as morning people, the daily success habit of waking up early can be achieved with the micro-changes approach as long as you stay consistent.

For this, simply wake up 15 minutes earlier the first week, then another 15 minutes earlier the following week, and so on.

Do it until you reach your wake-up-early goal. 

Daily Habits of Successful Entrepreneurs 2.

Effective time management

Time is life’s greatest equaliser. No matter how Wealth or Successful you are, we all have the same amount of time in the day. It doesn’t matter who we are, where we’re from, the color of our skin, religion, and so on, we all still just get 24 hours in a day.

That’s 86,400 seconds. That’s it. No more and no less. 

What does make a difference, however, is just how we use the precious time that we do have.

Do we waste it? Or do we use it effectively, masterfully managing our time to achieve our goals?

The world’s most successful people are also some of the world’s best managers of their time. If you’re serious about long-term success, then you need to instill this daily habit into your life. 

Use the quadrant-time-management system, first envisioned by the late President Dwight D. Eisenhower, and later popularized by Stephen R. Covey in his book, “7 Habits of Highly Effective People.”

You’ll find this to be the best strategy for managing your time and eventually achieving your goals.

Daily Habits of Successful Entrepreneurs 3.

Daily goal setting

Not only do successful entrepreneurs set long-term goals, but they also engage in daily goal setting. They set goals every single day based on what they want to achieve in the long term. The daily goals help to provide clarity at a smaller scale, rather than being overwhelmed by the enormity of those monumental goals we want to achieve years down the line. 

Benjamin Franklin was known for asking the question “What good have I done today?” at the end of every single day. By knowing that he would ask that question, he was better able to set the right goals each day to stay on track, as hard as it might have seemed at times for him to do so. 

Steve Jobs was also one that asked himself a question every day while looking in the mirror. In a commencement speech to Stanford University graduates, he told the audience that his question was, “If today were the last day of your life, would you want to be doing what you’re doing?”

He later went on to state that, “Whenever the answer has been no for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.”

Daily Habits of Successful Entrepreneurs 4.

Meticulous planning

It’s great to set goals, but harder to achieve them when we fail to plan. The world’s most successful entrepreneurs are meticulous planners. You need to determine how you’re going to get from Point A to Point B to give yourself direction and to better understand how you’ll approach the finish line in the future. 

Think about a plane for a moment. Every airplane has a goal. Its goal is to fly from one city to the next, leave at a certain date and time, and arrive at another date and time. Yet, there is tremendous amounts of planning that go into that goal.

The plane has to plan its projected direction of travel, air speed, elevation and so on. 

Similar to the plane, you need to plan your route to your goals.

Creating a massive action plan, and tracking your progress on a daily basis, will also allow you to overcome any difficulties or change your approach if you see that something isn’t working.

When a plane hits turbulence or air-traffic congestion, it changes direction, elevation or speed so that it can eventually reach its intended target. 

Daily Habits of Successful Entrepreneurs 5.

Persistent action.

The cliché of taking action has been hammered home in the self-help genre for ages. Everyone speaks about taking action, but not everyone can follow through and do it. We get sidetracked and veer off track. Things come up and we lose our focus or we end up procrastinating towards our goals. 

However, this is by far one of the most important daily habits you can have to reach eventual success.

Still, the problem is overcoming the silent killer known as procrastination.

However, there is a so-called hack for this. It’s called the 15-minute rule. Take the one thing that you’ve been putting off for the longest, set a timer on your phone, and do it for just 15 minutes. 

All it takes is 15 minutes. Don’t promise yourself more than that. Just 15 minutes. What you’ll come to find is that after those 15 minutes are up, you’ll have built some momentum and you might keep going. And even if you don’t continue, you’ll have broken the stifling pattern of procrastination. 

If you enjoyed this Advice please

find other useful Business Advice

& News & Info for Entrepreneurs via the relevant links.

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Morning Motivation / Coronavirus Motivation for Entrepreneurs (and anyone else who needs it)…

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

20 Top Tips for Working From Home

Now that Coronavirus is spreading like wildfire and many of us our Self Isolating, Avoiding Crowds or Looking after children etc., many of us are now starting a new experience of Working From Home.

I myself have been working from home for many years so would like to share some of my Top Tips for Working From Home, as well as other Top Tips for Working From Home, that I have found online.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 1

    Try and stick to a regular Working From Home Routine / Working regular hours where possible…

    Set a schedule, and try your best to stick to it…(most of the time).

    Having clear guidelines for when to work and when to call it a day helps many home workers maintain a work life balance. That said, one of the benefits of remote work is flexibility, and sometimes you need to extend your day or start early to accommodate someone else’s time zone or an increased work load etc.

    When you do, be sure to wrap up earlier than usual or sleep in a bit the next morning to make up for it. 

    Automatic time-tracking apps, such as RescueTime, let you check in on whether you are sticking to your schedule. They can also help you figure out what times of day you are most productive versus when you ease off.

    You can then use that information to your advantage by reserving your hours of high focus for your most important tasks.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 2

    Create an effective Morning or Starting Routine…

    Deciding that you will sit down at your desk and start work at a certain time is one thing. Creating a routine that guides you into the chair is another.

    What in your morning routine indicates that you are about to start work?

    It might be making a cup of tea/coffee. It might be returning home after a jog. It might be getting dressed (wearing pyjamas to work is a perk for some, but a bad strategy for others).

    A routine can be more powerful than a clock at helping you get started each day.

    Not everyone who works from home follows a nine-to-five schedule, so whether you have a morning routine or a “getting started” routine (at another time of day), it good to get that routine in to your habits, so things just happen naturally, smoothly and regular.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 3

    Set firm Rules with the people around you…

    You need to make sure that the people in your home or who share your space with, when you work understand the importance of your work and your routine and do not constantly interrupt you, invade your space, distract you are seek favours or tasks from you.

    If you have children who come home from school while you are still working, they need clear rules about what they can and cannot do during that time. Additionally, just because you are home and can let trade people into the house or take care of pets etc. doesn’t mean other family members should assume you can and will always do it.

    If that’s how you choose to divide up the domestic labor, that’s fine, but if you simply take it all on by default because you’re home, you may feel taken advantage of, and your productivity WILL sufferer.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 4

    Remember to schedule and form habits for regular breaks in your Working From Home Routine, as you would in the office…

    Know your company’s policy on break times and take them.

    If you are self-employed, give yourself adequate time during the day to walk away from the computer screen, phone and everything else that you are doing.

    A lunch hour and two 15-minute breaks seems to be the standard for full-time employees. Keep yourself fresh and energised and you’ll be more productive.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 5

    Take Breaks in Their Entirety

    Do not constantly cut short your breaks, especially your lunch hour. You can use apps, such as TimeOut for Mac and Smart Break for Windows, to lock yourself out of your computer for 60 minutes. Or you can just launch a simple clock or timer on the screen when you take a break. If you return to your desk after only 40 minutes, walk away for another 20 or take the additional 20 minutes at a later time.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 6

    Where possible try and leave the house regularly (or at least the room where your working)…

    You don’t have to eat out every day, but try to leave your home or work space regularly. The same advice applies to people who work in traditional office settings, too. Leave the building at least once a day. Your body needs to move. Plus, the fresh air and natural light will do you good.

    You don’t have to go to crowded public spaces to get away from your solo workspace. Take a walk. Weed the garden, go networking – Just ensure that you get out fairly regularly.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 7

    Don’t delay in getting what you need to work from home…

    If you’re employed by a company or organisation that supports your work-from-home setup, request the equipment that you need as soon as you start working from home, or within a day or two when you realise anything new that you might need. It’s extremely important to set precedents early that you will ask for what you need to get your job done comfortably, including the right monitor, keyboard, mouse, chair, printer, software, and so on.

    Organisations that are used to having home working employees often have a budget for home office equipment. Ask what it is and how often it’s renewed. It also doesn’t hurt to ask whether there’s a loan agreement or who will pay for return shipping or disposal of outdated equipment.

    If you are working from home unexpectedly due to coronavirus, ask for what you need within reason. You could be working from home for weeks on end and you should be comfortable, but ordering a new office chair and desk might be asking too much. Consider a mouse and keyboard, plus a back-supporting cushion instead.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 8

    Keep a Dedicated Office Space in your home…

    In an ideal world, home workers would have not only a dedicated office, but also two computers, one for work and one for personal use.

    It’s more secure for the employer, and it lets you do all your NSFW activities in private. But not everyone has a separate office in their home, and keeping two machines isn’t always realistic. Instead, dedicate a desk and some peripherals only for work use. For example, when your laptop is hooked up to the monitor and external keyboard, it’s work time. When it’s on your lap, that’s personal time. You may want to go as far as partitioning your hard drive and creating a separate user account for work.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 9

    Have a Separate Work Phone Number…

    Set up a phone number that you only use for calls with colleagues and clients. It doesn’t have to be a landline, second mobile phone, or even a SIM card. It can be a free VoIP service, such as Google Voice or a Skype number. Similar to some of the other tips, having a separate phone number can help you to manage your work-life balance.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 10

    Use a VPN

    You should use a VPN whenever you’re connected to a network that you don’t control.

    That includes Wi-Fi at co-working spaces, cafes, libraries, and airports.

    Some organisations have their own VPNs that off-site employees need to use, to access certain servers or websites that store information meant only for internal use.

    In those cases, you’ll also need to use a VPN at home.

    In any case, it’s a good idea to get into the habit of leaving your VPN connected as often as possible because it’s always safer to have it on than not.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 11

    Remember to still socialise with colleagues

    Loneliness, disconnect, and isolation are common problems in work from home, especially for extroverts.

    Companies with a work from home culture usually offer ways to socialise. With Self Isolation, Socialising doesn’t have to mean meeting up. There are other ways.

    For example, you can implement a chat channel where remote employees can talk about common interests or if the virus eases you can have Social distancing approved for people in the same region, and in-person retreats etc.

    It’s important to figure out how much interaction you need to feel connected and included. Even if you’re highly introverted and don’t like socialising, give a few interactive experiences a try so that you’re familiar with them if you ever decide you want them.

    If you’re not at a company with a strong remote culture, you may need to be more proactive about nurturing relationships.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 12

    Still arrange and attend meetings regularly and when you do, ensure that you are involved

    Certainly, as a home worker you will be taking part in more video conferences and conference calls etc. but it’s a good idea to attend optional meetings sometimes, too. Be sure to speak up during the meeting so everyone knows that you are on the call and have your own input to make.

    Asking Questions, Reaffirming important tasks and A simple, “Thanks, everyone” or “Good Bye!” at the close of a meeting will go a long way toward making your presence known.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 13

    Remember to still get Face 2 Face Time with your bosses or colleagues when you need it…

    If your employer is lax about getting you in a room with other employees or management, ask to have an annual or semi-annual trip in your contract. It could be for annual planning, training, or team building.

    Or add it on to some other business event, such as a yearly budget meeting, nearby conference, or office holiday party.

    Don’t wait around for someone to invite you to the office or an event. Be proactive.

    For those unexpectedly working from home who are also trying to reduce face-to-face contact, set up a video call with your colleagues or manager once a week (or how ever often required) in order to check in or keep up some level of contact.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 14.

    Take Sick Days when needed…

    When you’re not well, take the sick time you need. If sick days are part of your compensation package, take the time off that you need. Not taking it is like throwing away money.

    If you’re a freelancer who doesn’t have paid sick days, it can be very easy to fall into the opposite time-is-money trap and try to power through illnesses.

    Keep in mind that sometimes it’s best to rest and get better so that you can be your most productive self in the long term.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 15

    Still look for Training Opportunities…

    When you are not in an office with your fellow employees, you might miss out on training and skills development courses that are taught in person.

    Your company might even forget to add you to its online training courses. It can be tempting to regard this as a dodged bullet, but you might be missing out on an important opportunity to learn something useful.

    Speak up and make sure that you are included in any ongoing training.

    In addition to top-down training, you can request online or in-person courses, training, and coaching if you need it.

    For people who work from home for 100% of the time, look for learning opportunities that are taught at the company’s headquarters or your closest office. That way, you get training and face to face time with colleagues.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 16 Keep Regular Communication…

    Working remotely requires you to keep regular communication. Tell everyone who needs to know about your schedule and availability often. When you finish a project or important task, say so. Regular communication doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to write an essay to explain your every move, but it does mean repeating yourself. Joke about how you must have mentioned your upcoming holiday three times already, then mention it again.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 17

    Be Positive…

    I like succinct and clear messages, but I know that the less face time I have with people, the less they know how to interpret my tone in writing. When you work remotely full-time, you must be positive, to the point where it may feel like you’re being overly positive. Otherwise, you risk sounding like a jerk. It’s unfortunate, but true. So embrace the exclamation point! Find your favorite emoji :D. You’re going to need them.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 18

    Take Advantage of Your Perks…

    Every year, I at some point take advantage of the Weather and/or some major sporting event. Why? Because I work from home and I can. Plus, I enjoy it.

    When I worked in an office full-time, I struggled to find the time to enjoy the weather or a major spirting event. As we don’t get good weather that often in the UK, when it comes, I take time to enjoy it (work load permitted) and do my work around it for a while. Working remotely comes with unique perks. Take advantage of them. You deserve it.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 19

    Don’t Be Too Hard on Yourself…

    The most successful remote employees have a reputation for being extremely disciplined. After all, it takes serious focus to do any full-time office job from an unconventional space. That said, everyone lets their attention drift sometimes. If you find yourself working one minute and booking flights for your upcoming trip the next, don’t reprimand yourself too harshly. Instead, ask yourself whether people in an office setting do the same thing. If the answer is yes, cut yourself some slack, then get back to work.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – 20

    Create an effective ending routine…

    Just as you should start your day with a routine, create a habit that signals the close of the workday. It might be a sign off on a business messaging app, a final email to the office, an evening dog walk, or a 6pm jog.

    Something as simple as shutting down your computer and turning on a favourite podcast or song will do. Whatever you choose, do it consistently to mark the end of working hours.

    Top Tips for Working From Home – Summary

    Make Your Working From Home Situation Personal To You…

    These are some of my Top Working From Home Tips and Some Gathered From the Web, but above all else, figure out what works best for you.

    Sometimes the answer is apparent, but other times you might need some inspiration from other people who are in the same boat.

    A supportive community of home workers does exist, whether you find them in your organisations communication channels or online through blogs or Twitter, there are people in the same boat that you can chat too.

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Interesting Blog Post From Marketo on the 3 Essentials of a Successful Qualified Leads Program…

Business Growth Training

Business Growth Training

The 3 Essentials of a Successful Qualified Leads Program

By: 

In a way, sales reps are like nurses or doctors. They take people’s temperatures to determine how they’re feeling. A “hot” prospect is ready to buy. A “cold” prospect is merely browsing inventory.

Before the internet, this heat check was usually performed in person. Sales reps would get a good sense of how interested someone was in their company’s products or services by spending some time with them.

Qualified leads would ultimately receive more attention—the sales rep might play 18 holes with them to help close the deal. For people looking to buy later, an occasional phone call to nurture the relationship would suffice.

But with the way modern customers conduct online research prior to purchasing, the human interaction aspect of qualifying leads has all but disappeared.

Many companies today have turned to innovative marketing automation software to analyze a prospect’s digital engagement behavior and determine whether they’re qualified enough to move on to the next step in the sales cycle.

But successfully qualifying leads for sales means having three key fundamentals in place:

1. A solid definition of “lead”

First things first. What’s a lead? At Marketo, we define a lead as any “qualified prospect that is starting to exhibit buying behavior.” That could mean when somebody begins following a social media account, subscribes to an email newsletter, or browses a product page on a website.

Of course, every business should have its own definition for what a lead is. Why? Because differentiating a lead from a non-lead will help you determine who’s worth nurturing and who’s not.

If you haven’t yet defined what a lead is for your organization, here’s how to get started:

Schedule a sit-down between sales and marketing. Talk about what your target market looks like, who’s in your database already, and what kind of buyers are currently closing deals. You’ll also want to discuss things like when to start lead nurturing and what makes a bad lead.

Marketing operations usually has access to the tools, systems, and data that tell you everything you need to know.

Once you’ve developed a solid definition, write it down. You’ll what to share what you’ve come up with so everyone’s on the same page.

And don’t forget to meet regularly. Your definition of a lead will change as your business grows or your priorities shift.

2. An effective lead scoring system

With a lead scoring system, you can assign values to prospects based on actions they take, behaviors they exhibit, and more. This will help you rank leads to determine which prospects are ripe for nurturing and which are ready to engage with your sales team.

There are four attributes you must identify through your lead scoring system:

  • Lead fit: Collecting information around your prospects’ demographics (title, role, location), firmographics (industry, company size, name of company) and BANT (budget, authority, need, time) will give you an idea of whether they fit your ideal buyer profile. You can capture a lot of demographic and firmographic information through a registration page form. Gathering BANT data may require getting to know your prospects a little bit better—perhaps through progressive profiling.
  • Lead interest: Studying your prospects’ online body language by analyzing how they engage with your brand will give you insight into how interested they are in your product or service. The more interest they show, the more likely they are to buy—and the more heavily you should shower them with attention and valuable content. 
  • Lead behavior: Certain prospect behavior shines a light on where they are in the customer journey. Visiting a website or attending a webinar are the signs of an early-stage prospect. Checking out a pricing page or watching a solution demo reveal buyer intent. You can take advantage of this information by offering early-stage prospects more educational content and passing off leads with high buyer intent to sales. 
  • Buying stage/timing: Knowing when your lead intends to buy is extremely important. If a prospect is just beginning to research a product, it’s not the time to put the hard sell on them. Instead, send valuable information about how the product can help solve their problems. By closely evaluating a prospect’s behavior, you’ll get a firm sense of where they are in the buying journey.

Developing a lead scoring system is a core component of lead management—and no department is better suited to help your company bring this system into fruition than your marketing operations team.

That’s because marketing operations has access to the data required to establish a lead scoring program—so it doesn’t have to rely on guesswork.

3. A culture built on testing and optimization

Like most things in marketing, your lead nurturing program shouldn’t be a set-it-and-forget-it endeavor. You’ll want to regularly test what’s working and what’s not so you can optimize your processes.

But what exactly should you be testing? In a word: Everything.

The goal of your lead nurturing program is to provide satisfying customer experiences that align with your audiences’ preferences and ultimately drive sales.

So, scrutinize every method you use to engage with your prospects. Measure how people respond to your social media posts, the offers on your websites, and the material in your videos.

Email nurture streams, in particular, provide a plethora of opportunities to test and optimize. You can:

  • Assess how different variations of a subject line impact open rates
  • See if click-through rates improve by swapping your content type
  • Evaluate whether readers respond better to short or long emails
  • Change the layout to learn what kind of design resonates most with readers
  • Modify send frequency to get a better idea of how often audiences want to be contacted

By creating a culture of testing and optimization, sales and marketing can collaborate to turn qualified leads into surefire customers.

A new frontier of qualifying leads emerges with AI

The three fundamentals above will go a long way toward helping you successfully qualify leads for sales. But like we’ve seen before with the emergence of the internet, there’s always something new around the corner ready to shake up the status quo.

Today, that’s AI.

Sales reps currently spend a lot of time and attention just determining if a prospect is a qualified lead. Sometimes, it’s all for naught, as a months-long engagement could develop into nothing.

Hiring more sales reps isn’t the answer. But leaning on innovative conversational AI and machine learning could be.

Instead of an employee interacting with a prospect, an AI-driven bot could communicate with them. When a person visits a website, the bot can converse with them, help them, and, most importantly, collect the valuable insight needed to decide if they’re a qualified lead.

This allows human sales reps to limit their focus to building relationships with prospects who are actually worth their time.

A chance to transform lead qualification

With a few key principles and an eye on the future, you can do wonders for your lead qualification program. And it won’t be long until your entire organization feels the effects—experiencing more closed deals and higher revenue.

Download The Definitive Guide to Sales Lead Qualification and Sales Developmentto learn more.

See how Marketo Engage can supercharge your Marketing ROI

Learn More

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Interesting Blog Post From Marketo on the 3 Essentials of a Successful Qualified Leads Program…

Business Growth Training

Business Growth Training

The 3 Essentials of a Successful Qualified Leads Program

By: 

In a way, sales reps are like nurses or doctors. They take people’s temperatures to determine how they’re feeling. A “hot” prospect is ready to buy. A “cold” prospect is merely browsing inventory.

Before the internet, this heat check was usually performed in person. Sales reps would get a good sense of how interested someone was in their company’s products or services by spending some time with them.

Qualified leads would ultimately receive more attention—the sales rep might play 18 holes with them to help close the deal. For people looking to buy later, an occasional phone call to nurture the relationship would suffice.

But with the way modern customers conduct online research prior to purchasing, the human interaction aspect of qualifying leads has all but disappeared.

Many companies today have turned to innovative marketing automation software to analyze a prospect’s digital engagement behavior and determine whether they’re qualified enough to move on to the next step in the sales cycle.

But successfully qualifying leads for sales means having three key fundamentals in place:

1. A solid definition of “lead”

First things first. What’s a lead? At Marketo, we define a lead as any “qualified prospect that is starting to exhibit buying behavior.” That could mean when somebody begins following a social media account, subscribes to an email newsletter, or browses a product page on a website.

Of course, every business should have its own definition for what a lead is. Why? Because differentiating a lead from a non-lead will help you determine who’s worth nurturing and who’s not.

If you haven’t yet defined what a lead is for your organization, here’s how to get started:

Schedule a sit-down between sales and marketing. Talk about what your target market looks like, who’s in your database already, and what kind of buyers are currently closing deals. You’ll also want to discuss things like when to start lead nurturing and what makes a bad lead.

Marketing operations usually has access to the tools, systems, and data that tell you everything you need to know.

Once you’ve developed a solid definition, write it down. You’ll what to share what you’ve come up with so everyone’s on the same page.

And don’t forget to meet regularly. Your definition of a lead will change as your business grows or your priorities shift.

2. An effective lead scoring system

With a lead scoring system, you can assign values to prospects based on actions they take, behaviors they exhibit, and more. This will help you rank leads to determine which prospects are ripe for nurturing and which are ready to engage with your sales team.

There are four attributes you must identify through your lead scoring system:

  • Lead fit: Collecting information around your prospects’ demographics (title, role, location), firmographics (industry, company size, name of company) and BANT (budget, authority, need, time) will give you an idea of whether they fit your ideal buyer profile. You can capture a lot of demographic and firmographic information through a registration page form. Gathering BANT data may require getting to know your prospects a little bit better—perhaps through progressive profiling.
  • Lead interest: Studying your prospects’ online body language by analyzing how they engage with your brand will give you insight into how interested they are in your product or service. The more interest they show, the more likely they are to buy—and the more heavily you should shower them with attention and valuable content. 
  • Lead behavior: Certain prospect behavior shines a light on where they are in the customer journey. Visiting a website or attending a webinar are the signs of an early-stage prospect. Checking out a pricing page or watching a solution demo reveal buyer intent. You can take advantage of this information by offering early-stage prospects more educational content and passing off leads with high buyer intent to sales. 
  • Buying stage/timing: Knowing when your lead intends to buy is extremely important. If a prospect is just beginning to research a product, it’s not the time to put the hard sell on them. Instead, send valuable information about how the product can help solve their problems. By closely evaluating a prospect’s behavior, you’ll get a firm sense of where they are in the buying journey.

Developing a lead scoring system is a core component of lead management—and no department is better suited to help your company bring this system into fruition than your marketing operations team.

That’s because marketing operations has access to the data required to establish a lead scoring program—so it doesn’t have to rely on guesswork.

3. A culture built on testing and optimization

Like most things in marketing, your lead nurturing program shouldn’t be a set-it-and-forget-it endeavor. You’ll want to regularly test what’s working and what’s not so you can optimize your processes.

But what exactly should you be testing? In a word: Everything.

The goal of your lead nurturing program is to provide satisfying customer experiences that align with your audiences’ preferences and ultimately drive sales.

So, scrutinize every method you use to engage with your prospects. Measure how people respond to your social media posts, the offers on your websites, and the material in your videos.

Email nurture streams, in particular, provide a plethora of opportunities to test and optimize. You can:

  • Assess how different variations of a subject line impact open rates
  • See if click-through rates improve by swapping your content type
  • Evaluate whether readers respond better to short or long emails
  • Change the layout to learn what kind of design resonates most with readers
  • Modify send frequency to get a better idea of how often audiences want to be contacted

By creating a culture of testing and optimization, sales and marketing can collaborate to turn qualified leads into surefire customers.

A new frontier of qualifying leads emerges with AI

The three fundamentals above will go a long way toward helping you successfully qualify leads for sales. But like we’ve seen before with the emergence of the internet, there’s always something new around the corner ready to shake up the status quo.

Today, that’s AI.

Sales reps currently spend a lot of time and attention just determining if a prospect is a qualified lead. Sometimes, it’s all for naught, as a months-long engagement could develop into nothing.

Hiring more sales reps isn’t the answer. But leaning on innovative conversational AI and machine learning could be.

Instead of an employee interacting with a prospect, an AI-driven bot could communicate with them. When a person visits a website, the bot can converse with them, help them, and, most importantly, collect the valuable insight needed to decide if they’re a qualified lead.

This allows human sales reps to limit their focus to building relationships with prospects who are actually worth their time.

A chance to transform lead qualification

With a few key principles and an eye on the future, you can do wonders for your lead qualification program. And it won’t be long until your entire organization feels the effects—experiencing more closed deals and higher revenue.

Download The Definitive Guide to Sales Lead Qualification and Sales Developmentto learn more.

See how Marketo Engage can supercharge your Marketing ROI

Learn More

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Top Business Networking Advice…

Business Networking is probably the most effective and least expensive marketing method you can use to build your business or practice, especially if you are looking to do business in your local area.

Lots of business owners and practitioners I meet say that they don’t like to network, they don’t have the time to network, or they haven’t found it to be beneficial to their business in the past.

You can learn to like networking, especially if you learn to do it properly and start getting results from your networking and if you’re currently not getting any results from your business networking then you are probably getting it wrong somewhere, going to the wrong network or you may just have unrealistic expectations about the timing of results.

I do a lot of business networking both online and off.

As a natural people person who likes to talk, networking is relatively easy for me. But even if you’re a bit on the shy side or have reservations about the potential for success with business networking, you can gain value from your networking, if you follow certain guidelines.

I have compiled some business networking tips that can ensure your networking success and ask that if you want to network with search for Mike Armstrong or Michael Armstrong from MA Consultancy / WelshBiz / Mike Armstrong News on LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter or Facebook and I would be happy to connect.

Before looking at my Business Networking Tips the first tip for any Sales & Marketing activity is to work on a strategy or plan for that activity. So before you go Networking have a strategy in place.

  • Know who you are looking to meet and what you are looking for.
  • Be clear on what your business needs and what it can offer.
  • Have a plan for following up, contacting and meeting with the people that you meet.
  • How are you looking to raise your company profile
  • What new contacts are you looking for and new skills are you looking to learn
  • Who would make great lead referral partners
  • Who would you like to partner or collaborate with and why?

Business Networking Tips – 1

Choose the right business network!

If you Networking in the wrong network, with the wrong people for you and your business then it can be hard to get any traction. Specialist Networking Organisations, Chambers of Commerce, men’s and women’s organisations, niche networking groups, special interest groups, placed you can volunteer at and membership clubs, buying groups & associations are all potential choices.You can also find a local MeetUp.com group in your area that might appeal to you or another specific event on Eventbrite. Business Expo’s & Conferences are also a great place to do a lot of Business Networking all in one day or over a few days.

“You might need to kiss a few frogs before you find the Prince.”

Business Networking Tips – 2

Choose the right venues!

Not every group of people will be right for you and neither will all locations. Choose groups where people congregate who share your interests and/or are potential clients. Find a location that your are comfortable in and that suits your needs. Also find somewhere close to you or your place of work so you can attend regularly and not miss events.

Business Networking Tips – 3

Choose the Right Time to Network!

Networking like a lot of things is about how much effort, consistency and momentum you can put in.

“The more you put in the more you can get out!

So choose a regular business networking event that fits comfortably in to your working week so that you can consistently attend.

Business Networking Tips – 4

Develop relationships, friendships etc.!

Business Networking is not about giving it the hard sell. It more about building relationships and friendships with like minded people, that can lead to sales, referrals or even partnerships & collaborations further down the line. The idea is to get to know people, their products & services and their values and to allow them to get to know you, your business, your products & services and your values.

Often, people approach business networking a Sales strategy, with the hope of making a sale or getting a client straight away.

That’s not how it works.

People do business with those they know, like and trust and share a similar value system. It can take time to build up that knowledge and trust.

So approach a business networking event without any expectation of getting new business.

“Go networking with the idea of meeting new people, making friendships with likeminded people, learning some things and having some fun and see what happens from there!

Business Networking Tips – 5

Dress appropriately and professionally for the venue, event and your business!

The way you appear can establish yourself as a successful person or not as the case may be. If you dress the part then you’ll also feel the part and this will come across to those who you are Networking with. This does not mean that you need to wear expensive clothes, but do wear something a bit on the dressy side and leave the comfortable baggy pants at home.

“If necessary, get advice from an image consultant or a fashion savvy friend.

Business Networking Tips – 6

Always be prepared with lots of Professional Looking Business Cards!

Make sure you bring plenty of business cards, but only give them to people who show a real interest in what you do. Brochures or printed postcards can also be effective.

Business Networking Tips – 7

Always be prepared with a short, sharpe & concise description of what you do!

You should have a 10 or 15 seconds Elevator description of what you do for meeting people briefly at Networking events as well as a 1 minute and 5 minute more detailed and comprehensive version for occasions when you are invited to present your business is an allotted time slot. Remember to include your professional expertise and USP’s (unique selling points), etc.

“When working on this always the remember – what’s in it for me, the thing the other people will be thinking about as you tell them, and make this as good as you can for them and you’ll have their interest.”

Business Networking Tips – 8

Use Ice Breakers & Build rapport before going onto Business!

People need to relax and feel comfortable before they open up.

“Ask people about Themselves, Their Family, Holidays, Favourite Sports, Hobbies, Interests & Teams etc. Before you discuss business in order to relax people and get them to open up more.”

*You can also relax people and build trust by smiling and maintaining eye contact.

Business Networking Tips – 9

Ask good questions and listen to the answers!

You don’t have to talk a lot about what you do in order to find potential customers. Rather, ask people you meet questions about them and their business, then listen carefully to their answers. Find points of commonality that you can bring into the conversation.

“Look for problems that you can solve or solutions that you can provide, or a common business objective or shared cakes that could allow a partnership or collaboration.

Business Networking Tips – 10

Sit with, stand with or engage with people that you don’t know!

Many events have walk-around networking followed by a sit-down meeting of some sort. During the walk-around, do talk to people you have met before to enhance your relationship, but sit with people you don’t know in order to widen your network and meet potential customers, lead referral partners or collaborators.

“You can speak to those that you already know, after the networking event or in an arranged follow up meeting at another time.

Business Networking Tips – 11

Talk to people who are standing alone!

People attend networking events to meet others. If someone is standing alone, that’s the perfect opportunity to make a new contact. You might want to start the conversation by saying, “May I join you” or “I’ve not met you before, what’s your name”.

“People often feel awkward at Networking Events and as networking is about building relationships and trust, if you can help them out of an awkward situation then you are well on your way with that person.”

Business Networking Tips – 12

Move on – politely!

Don’t spend all of your time talking to one person. Gather the information you need, exchange business cards, if appropriate, and move on.

I often say, “I’d like to meet some more new people now. It’s been a great speaking to you.” And then move off!

Business Networking Tips – 13

Remember that givers get!

Focus on what you can do for others, not what they can do for you.

Business Networking Tips – 14

Don’t just walk around collecting business cards.

Take time to meet people, engage with them and see if you can help each other rather than just collecting cards for a database or mass email campaign etc.

Business Networking Tips – 15

Be memorable!

In a room full of others what makes you & your business stand out from the crowd?

You can bring props, not just marketing materials and business cards, something that visually shows off your expertise or helps others to understand what it is that you do.

Business Networking Tips – 16

Quote Testimonials & Case Studies!

Quoting Testimonials from your satisfied customers & demonstrating
how your product or service has helped others can help you to win new clients. Especially if these are for people already in the group.

Business Networking Tips – 17

Make referrals or Introductions!

Where possible, always provide the person you are referring to with a way of getting in touch directly with your contact, maybe cc them into an email, check back on progress and see if it was of value. 

If you were introduced or recommended by someone, keep the person who made the introduction up to date with the progress/outcome.

If it was successful, a positive action would be to thank them publicly at the next meeting, as this not only demonstrates to others that the network is working, it can help to build both your and the referrer’s credibility within the group.

If an introduction wasn’t relevant, provide feedback as to the reasons why and how they can identify more positive referrals in the future for you.

Business Networking Tips – 18

Don’t forget to Follow up with the people that you have met and can work further with!

If you make a good connection with someone, after the event, send a note saying how much you enjoyed meeting them. If appropriate, send an article or some kind of information that they might find helpful.

Don’t just add them to your mail list and try selling to them straight from the off.”

It’s actually not what happens at the networking event that is so important to your networking success. Your success is more to do with what you do after that initial introduction, once you have followed up.

Be pro-active in follow ups, use social media to connect with people you have met and ensure that you follow up anything that you have said you were going to do in a timely fashion.

Have separate 121’s with key individuals outside of the networking sessions, this will also help to avoid getting into any lengthy conversations during the event that may prevent you from meeting other people.

Business Networking Tips – 19

Remember that Business Networking is a process and not just a one-off event!

Take the time to develop relationships with people who interest you. Be proactive and invite someone to a one-to-one meeting so you can get to know them.

Remember that most business owners and practitioners are looking for connections. Be bold and step forward into their world.

Business Networking Tips – 20

Measure & Keep Going if it’s working for you (but give it time and consistency)!
  • Are you achieving your objectives?
  • How much business is generated through this activity either directly or by introductions/referrals?
  • Compare your findings against the cost of investments, be sure to factor in your own cost per hour.

If the Networking is working for you longer term:

Keep Going!

Networking can be a slow burner. It can take a while to build up trust within a group. Attend regularly, help others and have an effective follow up.

“Networking is about building up your network and relationships. You might not immediately get business from an event but one person you speak to might open a number of doors and that can happen straight away or further down the line, but not at all if you stop attending!

Business Networking Tips – Summary

Business Networking is an effective business tool for all smaller businesses, providing a platform to meet like-minded individuals and build connections for growth and development, both professionally and individually. There are a variety of networking groups and events out there to choose from at various price points and all offering different opportunities. Below are some ‘Top Tips’ to ensure that you get the best out of your investment.

If you are new to networking try to visit as many different business networking events as possible, talk to the regulars and find out if the group will fit in with your strategy before making a regular commitment.

If you would like to network with, meet, discuss a partnership or a collaboration with me please call: 07960 872549.

Regards

Mike Armstrong

Author of the Networking Grapevine Blog & Introbiz Business Network Ambassador & Inaugural Winner of their Networker of the Year Prize when they launched it in 2018!

If you are interested in getting involved in any of the below events or opportunities please give me a call on 07960872549.

Introbiz Network

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

20 Top Business Networking Tips & Advice…

Business Networking is probably the most effective and least expensive marketing method you can use to build your business or practice, especially if you are looking to do business in your local area.

Lots of business owners and practitioners I meet say that they don’t like to network, they don’t have the time to network, or they haven’t found it to be beneficial to their business in the past.

You can learn to like networking, especially if you learn to do it properly and start getting results from your networking and if you’re currently not getting any results from your business networking then you are probably getting it wrong somewhere, going to the wrong network or you may just have unrealistic expectations about the timing of results.

I do a lot of business networking both online and off.

As a natural people person who likes to talk, networking is relatively easy for me. But even if you’re a bit on the shy side or have reservations about the potential for success with business networking, you can gain value from your networking, if you follow certain guidelines.

I have compiled some business networking tips that can ensure your networking success and ask that if you want to network with search for Mike Armstrong or Michael Armstrong from MA Consultancy / WelshBiz / Mike Armstrong News on LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter or Facebook and I would be happy to connect.

Before looking at my Business Networking Tips the first tip for any Sales & Marketing activity is to work on a strategy or plan for that activity. So before you go Networking have a strategy in place.

  • Know who you are looking to meet and what you are looking for.
  • Be clear on what your business needs and what it can offer.
  • Have a plan for following up, contacting and meeting with the people that you meet.
  • How are you looking to raise your company profile
  • What new contacts are you looking for and new skills are you looking to learn
  • Who would make great lead referral partners
  • Who would you like to partner or collaborate with and why?

Business Networking Tips – 1

Choose the right business network!

If you Networking in the wrong network, with the wrong people for you and your business then it can be hard to get any traction. Specialist Networking Organisations, Chambers of Commerce, men’s and women’s organisations, niche networking groups, special interest groups, placed you can volunteer at and membership clubs, buying groups & associations are all potential choices. You can also find a local MeetUp.com group in your area that might appeal to you or another specific event on Eventbrite. Business Expo’s & Conferences are also a great place to do a lot of Business Networking all in one day or over a few days.

“You might need to kiss a few frogs before you find the Prince.”

Business Networking Tips – 2

Choose the right venues!

Not every group of people will be right for you and neither will all locations. Choose groups where people congregate who share your interests and/or are potential clients. Find a location that your are comfortable in and that suits your needs. Also find somewhere close to you or your place of work so you can attend regularly and not miss events.

Business Networking Tips – 3

Choose the Right Time to Network!

Networking like a lot of things is about how much effort, consistency and momentum you can put in.

“The more you put in the more you can get out!

So choose a regular business networking event that fits comfortably in to your working week so that you can consistently attend.

Business Networking Tips – 4

Develop relationships, friendships etc.!

Business Networking is not about giving it the hard sell. It more about building relationships and friendships with like minded people, that can lead to sales, referrals or even partnerships & collaborations further down the line. The idea is to get to know people, their products & services and their values and to allow them to get to know you, your business, your products & services and your values.

Often, people approach business networking a Sales strategy, with the hope of making a sale or getting a client straight away.

That’s not how it works.

People do business with those they know, like and trust and share a similar value system. It can take time to build up that knowledge and trust.

So approach a business networking event without any expectation of getting new business.

“Go networking with the idea of meeting new people, making friendships with likeminded people, learning some things and having some fun and see what happens from there!

Business Networking Tips – 5

Dress appropriately and professionally for the venue, event and your business!

The way you appear can establish yourself as a successful person or not as the case may be. If you dress the part then you’ll also feel the part and this will come across to those who you are Networking with. This does not mean that you need to wear expensive clothes, but do wear something a bit on the dressy side and leave the comfortable baggy pants at home.

“If necessary, get advice from an image consultant or a fashion savvy friend.

Business Networking Tips – 6

Always be prepared with lots of Professional Looking Business Cards!

Make sure you bring plenty of business cards, but only give them to people who show a real interest in what you do. Brochures or printed postcards can also be effective.

Business Networking Tips – 7

Always be prepared with a short, sharpe & concise description of what you do!

You should have a 10 or 15 seconds Elevator description of what you do for meeting people briefly at Networking events as well as a 1 minute and 5 minute more detailed and comprehensive version for occasions when you are invited to present your business is an allotted time slot. Remember to include your professional expertise and USP’s (unique selling points), etc.

“When working on this always the remember – what’s in it for me, the thing the other people will be thinking about as you tell them, and make this as good as you can for them and you’ll have their interest.”

Business Networking Tips – 8

Use Ice Breakers & Build rapport before going onto Business!

People need to relax and feel comfortable before they open up.

“Ask people about Themselves, Their Family, Holidays, Favourite Sports, Hobbies, Interests & Teams etc. Before you discuss business in order to relax people and get them to open up more.”

*You can also relax people and build trust by smiling and maintaining eye contact.

Business Networking Tips – 9

Ask good questions and listen to the answers!

You don’t have to talk a lot about what you do in order to find potential customers. Rather, ask people you meet questions about them and their business, then listen carefully to their answers. Find points of commonality that you can bring into the conversation.

“Look for problems that you can solve or solutions that you can provide, or a common business objective or shared cakes that could allow a partnership or collaboration.

Business Networking Tips – 10

Sit with, stand with or engage with people that you don’t know!

Many events have walk-around networking followed by a sit-down meeting of some sort. During the walk-around, do talk to people you have met before to enhance your relationship, but sit with people you don’t know in order to widen your network and meet potential customers, lead referral partners or collaborators.

“You can speak to those that you already know, after the networking event or in an arranged follow up meeting at another time.

Business Networking Tips – 11

Talk to people who are standing alone!

People attend networking events to meet others. If someone is standing alone, that’s the perfect opportunity to make a new contact. You might want to start the conversation by saying, “May I join you” or “I’ve not met you before, what’s your name”.

“People often feel awkward at Networking Events and as networking is about building relationships and trust, if you can help them out of an awkward situation then you are well on your way with that person.”

Business Networking Tips – 12

Move on – politely!

Don’t spend all of your time talking to one person. Gather the information you need, exchange business cards, if appropriate, and move on.

I often say, “I’d like to meet some more new people now. It’s been a great speaking to you.” And then move off!

Business Networking Tips – 13

Remember that givers get!

Focus on what you can do for others, not what they can do for you.

Business Networking Tips – 14

Don’t just walk around collecting business cards.

Take time to meet people, engage with them and see if you can help each other rather than just collecting cards for a database or mass email campaign etc.

Business Networking Tips – 15

Be memorable!

In a room full of others what makes you & your business stand out from the crowd?

You can bring props, not just marketing materials and business cards, something that visually shows off your expertise or helps others to understand what it is that you do.

Business Networking Tips – 16

Quote Testimonials & Case Studies!

Quoting Testimonials from your satisfied customers & demonstrating
how your product or service has helped others can help you to win new clients. Especially if these are for people already in the group.

Business Networking Tips – 17

Make referrals or Introductions!

Where possible, always provide the person you are referring to with a way of getting in touch directly with your contact, maybe cc them into an email, check back on progress and see if it was of value. 

If you were introduced or recommended by someone, keep the person who made the introduction up to date with the progress/outcome.

If it was successful, a positive action would be to thank them publicly at the next meeting, as this not only demonstrates to others that the network is working, it can help to build both your and the referrer’s credibility within the group.

If an introduction wasn’t relevant, provide feedback as to the reasons why and how they can identify more positive referrals in the future for you.

Business Networking Tips – 18

Don’t forget to Follow up with the people that you have met and can work further with!

If you make a good connection with someone, after the event, send a note saying how much you enjoyed meeting them. If appropriate, send an article or some kind of information that they might find helpful.

Don’t just add them to your mail list and try selling to them straight from the off.”

It’s actually not what happens at the networking event that is so important to your networking success. Your success is more to do with what you do after that initial introduction, once you have followed up.

Be pro-active in follow ups, use social media to connect with people you have met and ensure that you follow up anything that you have said you were going to do in a timely fashion.

Have separate 121’s with key individuals outside of the networking sessions, this will also help to avoid getting into any lengthy conversations during the event that may prevent you from meeting other people.

Business Networking Tips – 19

Remember that Business Networking is a process and not just a one-off event!

Take the time to develop relationships with people who interest you. Be proactive and invite someone to a one-to-one meeting so you can get to know them.

Remember that most business owners and practitioners are looking for connections. Be bold and step forward into their world.

Business Networking Tips – 20

Measure & Keep Going if it’s working for you (but give it time and consistency)!
  • Are you achieving your objectives?
  • How much business is generated through this activity either directly or by introductions/referrals?
  • Compare your findings against the cost of investments, be sure to factor in your own cost per hour.

If the Networking is working for you longer term:

Keep Going!

Networking can be a slow burner. It can take a while to build up trust within a group. Attend regularly, help others and have an effective follow up.

“Networking is about building up your network and relationships. You might not immediately get business from an event but one person you speak to might open a number of doors and that can happen straight away or further down the line, but not at all if you stop attending!

Business Networking Tips – Summary

Business Networking is an effective business tool for all smaller businesses, providing a platform to meet like-minded individuals and build connections for growth and development, both professionally and individually. There are a variety of networking groups and events out there to choose from at various price points and all offering different opportunities. Below are some ‘Top Tips’ to ensure that you get the best out of your investment.

If you are new to networking try to visit as many different business networking events as possible, talk to the regulars and find out if the group will fit in with your strategy before making a regular commitment.

If you would like to network with, meet, discuss a partnership or a collaboration with me please call: 07960 872549.

Regards

Mike Armstrong

Introbiz Business Network Ambassador & Inaugural Winner of Networker of the year (2018)!

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Top Business Networking Tips & Advice…

Business Networking is probably the most effective and least expensive marketing method you can use to build your business or practice, especially if you are looking to do business in your local area.

Lots of business owners and practitioners I meet say that they don’t like to network, they don’t have the time to network, or they haven’t found it to be beneficial to their business in the past.

You can learn to like networking, especially if you learn to do it properly and start getting results from your networking and if you’re currently not getting any results from your business networking then you are probably getting it wrong somewhere, going to the wrong network or you may just have unrealistic expectations about the timing of results.

I do a lot of business networking both online and off.

As a natural people person who likes to talk, networking is relatively easy for me. But even if you’re a bit on the shy side or have reservations about the potential for success with business networking, you can gain value from your networking, if you follow certain guidelines.

I have compiled some business networking tips that can ensure your networking success and ask that if you want to network with search for Mike Armstrong or Michael Armstrong from MA Consultancy / WelshBiz / Mike Armstrong News on LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter or Facebook and I would be happy to connect.

Before looking at my Business Networking Tips the first tip for any Sales & Marketing activity is to work on a strategy or plan for that activity. So before you go Networking have a strategy in place.

  • Know who you are looking to meet and what you are looking for.
  • Be clear on what your business needs and what it can offer.
  • Have a plan for following up, contacting and meeting with the people that you meet.
  • How are you looking to raise your company profile
  • What new contacts are you looking for and new skills are you looking to learn
  • Who would make great lead referral partners
  • Who would you like to partner or collaborate with and why?

Business Networking Tips – 1

Choose the right business network!

If you Networking in the wrong network, with the wrong people for you and your business then it can be hard to get any traction. Specialist Networking Organisations, Chambers of Commerce, men’s and women’s organisations, niche networking groups, special interest groups, placed you can volunteer at and membership clubs, buying groups & associations are all potential choices.You can also find a local MeetUp.com group in your area that might appeal to you or another specific event on Eventbrite. Business Expo’s & Conferences are also a great place to do a lot of Business Networking all in one day or over a few days.

“You might need to kiss a few frogs before you find the Prince.”

Business Networking Tips – 2

Choose the right venues!

Not every group of people will be right for you and neither will all locations. Choose groups where people congregate who share your interests and/or are potential clients. Find a location that your are comfortable in and that suits your needs. Also find somewhere close to you or your place of work so you can attend regularly and not miss events.

Business Networking Tips – 3

Choose the Right Time to Network!

Networking like a lot of things is about how much effort, consistency and momentum you can put in.

“The more you put in the more you can get out!

So choose a regular business networking event that fits comfortably in to your working week so that you can consistently attend.

Business Networking Tips – 4

Develop relationships, friendships etc.!

Business Networking is not about giving it the hard sell. It more about building relationships and friendships with like minded people, that can lead to sales, referrals or even partnerships & collaborations further down the line. The idea is to get to know people, their products & services and their values and to allow them to get to know you, your business, your products & services and your values.

Often, people approach business networking a Sales strategy, with the hope of making a sale or getting a client straight away.

That’s not how it works.

People do business with those they know, like and trust and share a similar value system. It can take time to build up that knowledge and trust.

So approach a business networking event without any expectation of getting new business.

“Go networking with the idea of meeting new people, making friendships with likeminded people, learning some things and having some fun and see what happens from there!

Business Networking Tips – 5

Dress appropriately and professionally for the venue, event and your business!

The way you appear can establish yourself as a successful person or not as the case may be. If you dress the part then you’ll also feel the part and this will come across to those who you are Networking with. This does not mean that you need to wear expensive clothes, but do wear something a bit on the dressy side and leave the comfortable baggy pants at home.

“If necessary, get advice from an image consultant or a fashion savvy friend.

Business Networking Tips – 6

Always be prepared with lots of Professional Looking Business Cards!

Make sure you bring plenty of business cards, but only give them to people who show a real interest in what you do. Brochures or printed postcards can also be effective.

Business Networking Tips – 7

Always be prepared with a short, sharpe & concise description of what you do!

You should have a 10 or 15 seconds Elevator description of what you do for meeting people briefly at Networking events as well as a 1 minute and 5 minute more detailed and comprehensive version for occasions when you are invited to present your business is an allotted time slot. Remember to include your professional expertise and USP’s (unique selling points), etc.

“When working on this always the remember – what’s in it for me, the thing the other people will be thinking about as you tell them, and make this as good as you can for them and you’ll have their interest.”

Business Networking Tips – 8

Use Ice Breakers & Build rapport before going onto Business!

People need to relax and feel comfortable before they open up.

“Ask people about Themselves, Their Family, Holidays, Favourite Sports, Hobbies, Interests & Teams etc. Before you discuss business in order to relax people and get them to open up more.”

*You can also relax people and build trust by smiling and maintaining eye contact.

Business Networking Tips – 9

Ask good questions and listen to the answers!

You don’t have to talk a lot about what you do in order to find potential customers. Rather, ask people you meet questions about them and their business, then listen carefully to their answers. Find points of commonality that you can bring into the conversation.

“Look for problems that you can solve or solutions that you can provide, or a common business objective or shared cakes that could allow a partnership or collaboration.

Business Networking Tips – 10

Sit with, stand with or engage with people that you don’t know!

Many events have walk-around networking followed by a sit-down meeting of some sort. During the walk-around, do talk to people you have met before to enhance your relationship, but sit with people you don’t know in order to widen your network and meet potential customers, lead referral partners or collaborators.

“You can speak to those that you already know, after the networking event or in an arranged follow up meeting at another time.

Business Networking Tips – 11

Talk to people who are standing alone!

People attend networking events to meet others. If someone is standing alone, that’s the perfect opportunity to make a new contact. You might want to start the conversation by saying, “May I join you” or “I’ve not met you before, what’s your name”.

“People often feel awkward at Networking Events and as networking is about building relationships and trust, if you can help them out of an awkward situation then you are well on your way with that person.”

Business Networking Tips – 12

Move on – politely!

Don’t spend all of your time talking to one person. Gather the information you need, exchange business cards, if appropriate, and move on.

I often say, “I’d like to meet some more new people now. It’s been a great speaking to you.” And then move off!

Business Networking Tips – 13

Remember that givers get!

Focus on what you can do for others, not what they can do for you.

Business Networking Tips – 14

Don’t just walk around collecting business cards.

Take time to meet people, engage with them and see if you can help each other rather than just collecting cards for a database or mass email campaign etc.

Business Networking Tips – 15

Be memorable!

In a room full of others what makes you & your business stand out from the crowd?

You can bring props, not just marketing materials and business cards, something that visually shows off your expertise or helps others to understand what it is that you do.

Business Networking Tips – 16

Quote Testimonials & Case Studies!

Quoting Testimonials from your satisfied customers & demonstrating
how your product or service has helped others can help you to win new clients. Especially if these are for people already in the group.

Business Networking Tips – 17

Make referrals or Introductions!

Where possible, always provide the person you are referring to with a way of getting in touch directly with your contact, maybe cc them into an email, check back on progress and see if it was of value. 

If you were introduced or recommended by someone, keep the person who made the introduction up to date with the progress/outcome.

If it was successful, a positive action would be to thank them publicly at the next meeting, as this not only demonstrates to others that the network is working, it can help to build both your and the referrer’s credibility within the group.

If an introduction wasn’t relevant, provide feedback as to the reasons why and how they can identify more positive referrals in the future for you.

Business Networking Tips – 18

Don’t forget to Follow up with the people that you have met and can work further with!

If you make a good connection with someone, after the event, send a note saying how much you enjoyed meeting them. If appropriate, send an article or some kind of information that they might find helpful.

Don’t just add them to your mail list and try selling to them straight from the off.”

It’s actually not what happens at the networking event that is so important to your networking success. Your success is more to do with what you do after that initial introduction, once you have followed up.

Be pro-active in follow ups, use social media to connect with people you have met and ensure that you follow up anything that you have said you were going to do in a timely fashion.

Have separate 121’s with key individuals outside of the networking sessions, this will also help to avoid getting into any lengthy conversations during the event that may prevent you from meeting other people.

Business Networking Tips – 19

Remember that Business Networking is a process and not just a one-off event!

Take the time to develop relationships with people who interest you. Be proactive and invite someone to a one-to-one meeting so you can get to know them.

Remember that most business owners and practitioners are looking for connections. Be bold and step forward into their world.

Business Networking Tips – 20

Measure & Keep Going if it’s working for you (but give it time and consistency)!
  • Are you achieving your objectives?
  • How much business is generated through this activity either directly or by introductions/referrals?
  • Compare your findings against the cost of investments, be sure to factor in your own cost per hour.

If the Networking is working for you longer term:

Keep Going!

Networking can be a slow burner. It can take a while to build up trust within a group. Attend regularly, help others and have an effective follow up.

“Networking is about building up your network and relationships. You might not immediately get business from an event but one person you speak to might open a number of doors and that can happen straight away or further down the line, but not at all if you stop attending!

Business Networking Tips – Summary

Business Networking is an effective business tool for all smaller businesses, providing a platform to meet like-minded individuals and build connections for growth and development, both professionally and individually. There are a variety of networking groups and events out there to choose from at various price points and all offering different opportunities. Below are some ‘Top Tips’ to ensure that you get the best out of your investment.

If you are new to networking try to visit as many different business networking events as possible, talk to the regulars and find out if the group will fit in with your strategy before making a regular commitment.

If you would like to network with, meet, discuss a partnership or a collaboration with me please call Mike on: 07960 872549.

Regards

Mike Armstrong

Author of the Networking Grapevine Blog & Introbiz Business Network Ambassador & Inaugural Winner of their Networker of the Year Prize when they launched it in 2018!

If you are interested in getting involved in any of the below events or opportunities please give me a call on 07960872549.

Introbiz Network

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Morning Motivation – Great Video About Life & Leaving Your Stresses Behind You…

For a short YouTube video explaining how to deal with life’s stresses please follow the link.

What how to deal with Stress Video

Business News and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me and https://mikearmstrong.me/news/

Excellent Peak Performance Business Event in Cardiff & Networking Opportunity…

If you want to learn how to achieve peak performance and business excellence, network and connect with local businesses, showcase your products and services, and listen to some great talks from industry experts, then this is an excellent Business Event in Cardiff for you!

Start your morning off with BREAKFAST and a chance to network with our exhibitors.

Follow this by being inspired by our great speakers. 

Enjoy plenty of free parking on site.

BUSINESS EVENT SPEAKERS INCLUDE:

Teamwork makes the dream work. Really? An insight into high performing teams  Kerry Chown from Cobalt HR

Vision and Mission value alignment. Aligning the team to the North Star  Nicola Rylett-Jones from The Nicola Rylett Group

How do you connect with your customers?  Mel Evans from Insight6

Enjoy all of this for just £16.76 and exhibit from just £65.

You can sign up to either option via Eventbrite online, via the link.

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Majority Of Welsh Firms Lack A Strategic Plan…

Leading academics unveil six-point plan to boost Welsh productivity after major study into Welsh businesses

MANY Welsh businesses are under-achieving because of a failure to adopt performance-improving measures in their organisations, a study by leading academics at Cardiff Metropolitan University has found.

The Productivity Report, which used funding from the Hodge Foundation, found of those surveyed:

  • 60pc are achieving a profit below the average ratio for their sector
  • Only 37pc have a strategic plan
  • 75pc do not have a formal staff reward scheme in place to promote and encourage innovation.

The report comes as new ONS figures show that Wales is once again propping up the productivity league table and remains the least productive region in the UK.

The Productivity Report has been developed by Cardiff Met academics – Professors Brian Morgan and Gerry Holtham, and other members of the Hodge Research Project.

The study sought to provide a better understanding of how firms’ management practises affect productivity.  Evidence for the report was gathered following interviews conducted with 74 companies across Wales.

One of the key findings was that many firms in Wales take a fairly ad-hoc approach to strategic planning, with only a few having a full strategic plan in place. These firms also tend to have limited management information systems available to them for measuring performance.  Together these deficiencies help explain the productivity distribution in Wales which highlights the prevalence of underperforming firms.

As a result of the findings, the academics have produced a series of recommendations which they suggest could become part of an action plan for improving productivity among Welsh business:

1. Managerial Capacity: How can management standards be improved in firms?

The research demonstrated a close link between more structured management practices and improved productivity. For example, a broad ‘Balanced Scorecard’ approach to measuring performance would help to identify a comprehensive set of KPIs that would assist in raising productivity.  In addition, the lack of a strong strategic orientation in Welsh businesses highlights the need for more effective leadership of the business.

2. Skills Training 

When asked: what was the main restraint on growth, the most common answer was finding people with the right skills. Smaller firms which trained their workers via apprenticeships, often complained that, once trained, they were being poached. To overcome this problem, the training levy was introduced in the UK to incentivize firms to do their own training. However, in terms of higher apprenticeships, the Welsh system excludes vocational qualifications at level 7.  This is counter-productive given the importance of improving professional management in Welsh companies.

3. Encouraging Industry Solutions for Effective Networking

There are a number of trade associations and business clubs offering various services to their members such as providing business guidance and export assistance.  However, there is an under-utilisation of these associations by Welsh firms and there is a lack of appreciation of the significant benefits of effective networking – such as joint working and the exchange of information.  Business support services should explicitly facilitate more effective networking and collaborative activities to address productivity and performance issues.

4. Consistency of Government Policy 

There needs to be greater consistency in the Government’s approach to industrial support.  Too many programmes are ended abruptly with no replacement being put in place.  Evaluation and consistency are often absent. Policy inconsistency of this sort increases the uncertainty faced by businesses.  It reduces investment and limits improvements in future productivity.

5. Regional Delivery Structures

The Government needs to create a new arms-length regional structure and integrate it with the City Deals with the objective of raising GVA and productivity in Welsh firms. A database should be developed in each region of all firms above a certain threshold in terms of performance in order to identify potential growth firms with the capacity to raise their productivity. These agencies could also encourage inter-firm collaboration – and also business-university collaboration.

6. The Digital Deficit and Artificial Intelligence (AI)

There seems to be a lack of recognition by many firms that investing in ICT, especially superfast broadband enabled services, is likely to improve their productivity. The public sector should continue to prioritise investments in broadband to reduce the Digital Deficit and encourage more investment by firms in digital technology and other forms of intangible capital.  A future challenge for firms will be integrating AI into production processes in ways that can improve efficiency.

Professor Brian Morgan. Photo credit: Tim Dickeson

Professor Brian Morgan said: “While many firms in Wales consider productivity to be an important factor in shaping their overall performance, they often fail to identify and measure its various aspects so are not well placed to implement improvements.

“Our new productivity report provides key recommendations to help resolve the issues businesses face and help boost productivity in Wales. This is not about the macro problems which businesses cannot affect, such as the M4 relief road. But more about issues such as technological advancements and strategic planning that are under their control.

“It is clear that one underlying cause of the productivity gap in Wales relates to managerial skills. The potential benefits from raising productivity are significant, and the knock-on effect that this could have on Welsh living standards is huge. Therefore, improving management performance should be an important candidate for economic policy intervention in Wales over the next few years.”

Ian Price, Director of CBI Wales, said: “The Productivity Report is a vital piece of work that can help drive productivity here in Wales. However, while the recommendations are good, it is imperative that we engage with business leaders to help drive this forward.

“While there are some great organisations in Wales that are doing great work and help contribute to overall productivity, whether that’s within NHS Wales, in our education systems or in business, there is an urgent call for outstanding leadership to help drive change and this research further confirms the need for more leadership training.”

Professor Morgan continued “The Hodge funded research project shows a positive correlation between employee engagement and productivity (and therefore profitability). Increasing employee engagement is one of the best ways to improve productivity. To help implement the report’s recommendations, Welsh Businesses and the Government should create a new era of partnership to support the economy and create opportunities for business growth.”

Managing Productivity in Welsh Firms will be formally unveiled at the Productivity Summit on March 12, 2020 at Radisson Blu Hotel Cardiff. The event will facilitate debate on issues surrounding productivity and will include a number of keynote speakers, such as Stephen Phipson CBE, Chief Executive of Make UK; Caroline Thompson, Head of Partnerships for Alacrity Foundation; Mike Moran, CEO of Proton PLC; and Maireadh Pedersen, CEO of Quay Pharma.

For more on this and other Welsh News, please follow the link.

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

10 Get Rich Tips from Welsh Property Entrepreneur, Kevin Green…

In his new book The Rich Rules rags-to-riches millionaire Kevin Green describes how he built up his property empire and gives 10 tips towards success in business

Self-Made multimillionaire Kevin Green

Self-made multimillionaire Kevin Green

At 19 Kevin Green was sleeping rough on the streets. Now he is a wealthy property landlord and owner of several businesses.

He recently wrote a book, The Rich Rules, in which he set out his 10 rules for making your fortune.

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Business Wales Support for Business Women in Wales…

Supporting Business Women in Wales

Wales News - WelshBiz News

Wales News - WelshBiz News

The Welsh Government recognises and supports the importance and contribution that women entrepreneurs make to the economy of Wales, however, there is more to do to continue this journey and further develop the representation of women owned businesses in Wales.

The Business Wales service has therefore renewed its commitment to support and encourage more women to successfully start, sustain or grow a business in Wales and for them to reach their full potential.
 
Alongside the Welsh Government a significant number of other organisations share this commitment and have joined in the development of a gender aware approach in Wales to encourage and better tailor their support to women entrepreneurs. 

This approach has been shaped by an expert panel (the Panel) consisting of representatives from businesses, banks, business support organisations and academia backed by consultation with established or prospective business women & female entrepreneurs in Wales.

The approach sets out a common vision to supporting business and entrepreneurial women in Wales and is supplemented by a ‘Good Practice Guide’ that outlines how business support organisations can better tailor their services to meet the needs of business women or female entrepreneurs. 

The Panel has made ten recommendations that build on the current strengths of business support services in Wales and aim to create a structure which the broader business support community can identify with and adopt.

The Welsh Government will take forward the recommendations of the Panel to further develop our support for entrepreneurial women through our business Wales service by producing a detailed action plan.

However, Business Wales cannot do it alone and actively encourage other support organisations to join in the journey and adopt the approach set out, in part or whole, and follow the principles of the Good Practice Guide.

Getting involved: Supporting organisations – make a difference 

The Welsh Government and supporting partners are keen to talk to any organisation that deliver business support in Wales and are willing to become actively involved in supporting women in starting, sustaining or growing their business.

There are many ways in which organisations can become involved:

  • implementing the associated ‘Good Practice Guide’ 
  • making a commitment on the Business Wales or Be the Spark website to showcase what you currently do, and what you are going to do to improve support for women entrepreneurs
  • joining in the conversation on #businesswomenwales
  • spreading the word and encouraging others to take part

To commit your support please contact Business Wales here.

Supporting Entrepreneurial Women in Wales: An Approach for Wales, click here.

For a Good Practice Guide for business support organisations please click here.

For the Business Wales Action Plan response to recommendations, please click here.

Mentoring    

In a survey undertaken by the University of South Wales (USW) one of the most valued support for women either starting or sustaining their business is access to business mentors as experienced and informal sources of guidance in addition to business advisors. Business Wales has over 500 mentors, of which 38% are women, available as part of its service that are ready to help you on your journey to start, sustain or grow your business, and if you would prefer a woman mentor just ask. 

Click here for more information on finding a business mentor or becoming a mentor yourself. 

Other organisations that provide business mentoring support: 

Incubation Units/Co-working locations and business hubs

There are a number of business start-up units and working spaces (incubator units) across Wales that are great opportunities to start or grow your business with other businesses that are in the same situation, possibly facing the same challenges as yourself. These incubator units deliver packages of support to help your business and yourself. 

Please click here for more information on incubator units in Wales. 
 

Financial Support In Wales

There are a number of finance options available when starting or growing a business, below are some links that may help shape your decision:

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Confusing Money Happiness Quote

Confusing Money Happiness Quote

Money won’t make you happy…”

How many times have you heard this?  Has anyone ever said this to you directly?  Have you ever heard anyone tell that to someone else?  Who was that?  More importantly, did the person saying that have any money when they said that?

I mean what information did that person have about money to make that kind of a statement?  What has been their experience with money and HOW did they arrive at that conclusion?  Is the person giving you this sage wisdom in actuality a happy person?  What is their relationship with money?

Now here’s where the whole money thing gets really interesting…

What’s the deal with this money happiness quote thing anyway?  Whoever told you that money won’t make you happy is 1000% correct.  They’re right.  They are, un intended, right on the money!

Look, money won’t make you happy…  but!  There’s always a but!!!

Money does pay for your groceries at Whole Foods.  In fact, money won’t make you happy, but it will buy…

• Birthday presents

• Quick Getaway

• A much needed Vacation

• Kids College

• Nice Watch

• Wedding gown

• Coffee

• Gasoline

• Car payment

• House payment

• Ski trip

• Scuba Diving adventure

• Dog food

• Night at the movies

• Electric bill

• New jacket

• Camp for the Kids

Money won’t make you happy, but…

Have you ever heard where someone’s mom gets sick, it takes 30 grand to get the treatment and that isn’t covered by the insurance?  Would it make you happy to stroke a check for the whole thing like it’s no big deal?  What about your church?  They need a new roof and you got it covered?   Would that make you happy?

See it’s NOT the money that makes you happy, it’s what you can do with it.  And not just for you.  For others.  What could you do with 100 million dollars?  What would you do for 100 million dollars?  And when?  Here’s another money happiness quote for you, “money don’t come easy.”

Here’s two Cardoneisms to take with you into the next seven days:

• “You’re going to have to do the things you don’t want to do in order to have the things you do want to have.”

And…

• “Pay the price, put in the work, stay disciplined, suffer up, never forget where you came from, and be the example.  You can have it all, just not today.”

— Read more on cardonesolutions.com/money-happiness-quote/

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Create Your Dream Life: 5 Principles To Get It Done

Create Your Dream Life: 5 Principles To Get It Done

Principles To Create Your Dream Life

FROM THE DESK OF GRANT CARDONE:  You want to create your dream life?  We all want a dream life, right? You know it exists because you can dream about it. You can imagine the life that you know, deep down, you want. I too wanted a dream life, and so 6 years ago I wrote The 10X Rule, and since that time 10X has become a movement. Are you ready to become a part of it? I’m here today to tell you that dreams are made because of understanding and using The 10X Rule.

Let’s face it, no book stays on the best-seller list for six years unless the content is the real deal. The 10X Rule will continue to impact lives for years to come. We started the 10X Growth Conference this year and look forward to making it a yearly tradition—the next event is coming soon in February and it’s going to be the biggest entrepreneurial conference of 2018.

Today I want to reveal the top five principles in The 10X Rule you need to apply to create your dream life and for massive success.

1. NO SHORTAGE OF SUCCESS.

There is so much money on this planet it’s crazy. The stock market could lose a trillion dollars and there would still be an abundance of wealth on this planet. Success is not a lottery, bingo, a horse race, or a card game that allows for only one winner.

There will never be a lack of success because it is created by those who have no limits in terms of ideas, creativity, ingenuity, talent, intelligence, originality, persistence, and determination. Notice that I refer to success as something that’s created—not acquired. Unlike copper, silver, gold, or diamonds—items that already exist and that you must find in order to bring to market—success is something people make.

2. ASSUME RESPONSIBILITY FOR ALL RESULTS.

Taking responsibility for everything in your life is the only way to take control of your life. Crybabies, whiners, and victims just don’t do well at attracting or creating success. It’s not even that they aren’t capable; it’s just that people who typically succeed are required to take big actions– and it is impossible to take big actions if you don’t take responsibility. It is equally impossible to do something positive when you are spending your time making excuses. success is not something that happens to you; it’s something that happens because of you and because of the actions you take.

3. TAKE ONLY MASSIVE ACTIONS.

When you start operating with massive actions, your mindset will shift and so will your results. You will end up instigating opportunities that you will have to address earlier, later and in a different way than you would on a “normal” day, so a routine day will become a thing of the past. Taking massive actions will cause people to ask you:

“Why are you still out this late?”

“What are you doing calling on a Saturday?”

“You never quit, do you?”

“I wish my people worked like this.”

And even “What are you on?”

If you don’t create new problems, then you’re not taking enough action.

4. FEAR IS AN INDICATOR TO TAKE ACTION.

Getting a handle on fear is not easy, but it is critical to success. Maybe fear held you back you from calling on a client, investing money in your company, or maybe moving to a new city for a great opportunity or taking a great relationship to a more serious level. Everyone experiences fear, but it is how you respond to it that ultimately makes the difference in your life. Fear is the great indicator that wealthy and successful people see as the signal to push through and get to the other side to expansion.

5. CRITICISM IS A SIGN OF SUCCESS.

Although getting criticized is certainly not the best feeling in the world, I have great news: Receiving criticism is a surefire sign that you are well on your way. Criticism is not something that you want to avoid; rather, it’s what you must expect to come your way once you start hitting it big. It’s natural to want to avoid criticism because it’s usually attached to something negative. However, the more criticism you get, the more attention you are receiving, because people can’t criticize something without knowing about it first. Don’t focus on what they’re saying. Focus on the fact that you’ve created such a success that people can’t stop talking about it.

If you haven’t already, pick up yourself a copy of The 10X Rule. If you already have a copy, get one for a friend today for the holidays. 10X is a way of life that will change you forever, and the 10X Growth Conference is the rocket fuel you need to make 2018 and beyond your dream life.

— Read on cardonesolutions.com/create-your-dream-life/

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

9 Great Content Marketing Tips (Blogging & Social Media Narketing Tips), From Buffet

” style=”max-width: 100%; display: block !important”>We’ve experimented with lots of different content marketing methods at Buffer, so I wanted to share with you 9 of the best ways we’ve found to increase engagement and improve your content strategy.

Especially after launching Buffer for Business recently, a lot of business approached us, asking which practical tips we had for them to improve their social media and content marketing.

So here are our best and most practical ways to see a big impact from your actions on social media:

1. Share Images on Twitter: Increase Retweets by 150%

Since Twitter announced inline images, we’ve been experimenting with this change by adding images to a lot of the tweets from our @buffer Twitter account and have noticed a big difference in the engagement we’re getting. To get a better idea of what a difference inline images has made, I took the last 100 Tweets including a link from our @buffer account (not including any Retweets) and compared the averages of the tweets with and without images included.

Using Buffer’s built-in analytics, I was able to look at the number of clicks, favorites and Retweets each of our Tweets received.

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The first data point we looked at was clicks:

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Our click-through rate did grow, but not by very much. My theory on this is that with an inline image, there’s more content for the user to consume without leaving Twitter (which is probably what Twitter wants), so they’re not much more likely to click-through. Of course, that’s just a theory so it’ll be interesting to see what the data says over a longer time period as we keep experimenting with this.

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Favorites increased quite a lot. Along with Retweets in the graph below, this shows a lot more engagement with the Tweets themselves. Clicks, on the other hand, show engagement with the original content.

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2. Share Content More Than Once

We often share our blog posts multiple times on social networks, for a few difference reasons. Some of the biggest benefits we get are more traffic, reaching people in different time zones and sharing our content with people who’ve followed us since we last posted it.

1. More Traffic

The first, and perhaps most obvious, reason to share your content more than once is to drive more traffic that the initial share.

Tom Tunguz did an experiment on his own blog to show how reposting the same content helped him to boost traffic.

To get an idea of how many people were seeing and sharing his posts, Tom looked at the number of Retweets he got when Tweeting a link to one of his blog posts. We can assume from this that actual visits to his posts increased with each Retweet, as well.

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With each subsequent Tweet of an existing blog post, Tom noticed that he got around 75% as many Retweets as the time before.

We’ve also noticed that Tweeting posts from the Buffer blog more than once gives us more traffic and more engagement (favorites, Retweets).

Here’s an example where we’ve done this:

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2. Hit multiple time zones

Guy Kawasaki is known for posting the same content multiple times, and one reason he advocates doing this is to reach your followers in different time zones. He’s found that this increases the traffic to his content, particularly when Tweeting the same link several times:

The reason for repeated tweets is to maximize traffic and therefore advertising sales. I’ve found that each tweet gets approximately the same amount of clickthroughs. Why get 600 page views when you can get 2,400?

Guy generally repeats Tweets of his blog posts (with minor variations) four times each, to hit different time zones:

We provide content repeatedly because people live in different time zones and have different social media habits.

3. Reach your new followers

Something we’ve noticed at Buffer is that a lot of our posts are still relevant months after we publish them. The other thing that changes after we publish a post is that more people follow us on social networks, so if we repost content from our blog that’s six months old, many of our followers will be seeing it for the first time, so they’ll get value out of it even though it’s old content.

You can use a tool like Twitter Counterto track your follower growth, so you know when it’s a good time to repost some of your older content.

3. A/B Test on Social Networks

Since we usually post the same content to Twitter multiple times, we take advantage of this opportunity to test out what headline works best for the blog post.

Here’s how we usually run that kind of experiment:

  1. Find 2 headlines for an article that you think will perform well.
  2. Tweet both of these headlines at roughly the same time, at least 1 hour apart. We’ve found that posting the two Tweets both in the morning or both in the afternoon works best.
  3. Compare the data for each Tweet to find the best headline for your blog post.

Here’s an example of the analytics from a headline experiment we did on this blog post:

First tweet:

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Second tweet:

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The second Tweet clearly performed better as we found out through our social analytics and Buffer’s algorithm also identified it as a top Tweet. In fact, you can clearly see that the second headline got double the number of clicks.

When we see a big difference in engagement on a different headline like that, we usually go back to the original post and change the title itself (the URL never changes, just the heading of the post).

4. Reframe Content to Suit Your Audience

Something we try to do each time we post a piece of content is to slightly reframe it so we’re not just repeating ourselves.

Here’s an example of how we might do that on Facebook.

First, we post the actual link:

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Then we go and post only one image to explain part of the post:

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This way we can sometimes get double or even triple the amount of engagement by highlighting different elements of the content each time we post it. We often do this on Twitter as well.

First we publish it as a link:

Then, taking advantage of Twitter’s new expanded images feature, we publish it as an image and reframing it:

You can simply right click any image on the web with Buffer’s browser extensions for Firefox and Chrome to share a new image post on Twitter or Facebook, that according to the latest social media statistics, will garner significant more clicks, Retweets and favorites.

We also try slightly different wording each time we post the same thing, like this:

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5. Re-Buffer Posts and Buffer Native Retweets

A fairly recent feature we added to Buffer is the ability to drag-and-drop updates. You can now easily copy updates from your Twitter account to your Facebook account. For example:

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And you can also copy past updates back into your Buffer queue, which is really useful for getting more out of popular posts:

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Another neat feature of Buffer is that you can schedule native Retweets from Twitter.com. This is super easy and works with the click of a button. To get started, you just need to install the Buffer browser extension.

Now, whenever you see a Tweet that’s worth sharing, you can hit the Buffer button:

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This will let you easily schedule a native Retweet from any of your Twitter accounts:

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Plus, you can easily change the Retweet to the old school “RT @username: Text of the tweet” format. If you hover over the composer, you’ll see an option to “change to quote”:

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That’s all it takes! Now you’ll see that Retweet in your Buffer queue, waiting to be published. Of course you can still edit the update to delete, change it to a quote or move it around in your queue:

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6. Keep on Top of Your Brand and Find Great Content with Mention & Buffer

Mention is a great tool to help you keep on top of your brand all over the web. It lets you monitor mentions of your brand specifically, as well as industry keywords, competitors and more. When you sign up for an account, the first thing you’ll want to do is create a new alert. This is as simple as naming your alert and adding any keywords you want to monitor:

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To get the most out of the recent integration of Mention + Buffer, you can now add your Buffer account to your Mention alerts so you can publish results to social networks. You can do this when you create a new alert, as well as adding your Facebook or Twitter accounts:

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If you add your Buffer account, you’ll be able to publish to all of your connected social profiles and pages, just like you can from the Buffer dashboard or browser extensions.

Inside your alert results, you can filter by source including images, blogs, Twitter, Facebook, videos and more. If you choose blogs, you can find some great content to fill up your Buffer account:

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Once you’ve found a post that you want to share, just click on the “React” menu and choose “Add to Buffer”:

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7. Use Followerwonk to Tweet at Optimal Times

Followerwonk is a tool that we love using at Buffer to work out when is the best time for us to tweet.

To get started, head over to Followerwonk and click on “Analyze followers”

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Next, pop your Twitter username into the box and select “analyze their followers” from the drop-down:

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When your report is done, you’ll see a graph that shows when your followers are most active:

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If you use Buffer, you can take advantage of this by creating a Buffer schedule based on your Followerwonk report. Just choose how many times you want to post each day, and hit the “Schedule at Buffer” button.

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8. Transparency

Something we’ve found that’s really helped us to bond with our readers and build up a community around Buffer is to be really open about how we run the company. We share details about Buffer on our Open blog, as well as in interviews and on other sites.

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We share details about our support team and how we handle customer support each month:

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And about our revenue:

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And we’ve even published a deep-dive before on how we manage our content strategy for the Buffer blog:

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9. Set Up Google Authorship

Google Authorship is not just the photo and byline that appears on search results pages, thought that’s a large part of it.

Below is a search results page for the term “Google authorship” showing many entries that have taken advantage of authorship:

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In addition to the byline, there is a strategic layer to Google authorship. The tie-in with Google+ profiles creates verified connections between content on the web and the creators of the content. This gives Google the ability to identify quality, human-created content.

There are several benefits of setting up Google authorship for your content:

1. Your authorship byline will get you noticed.

Look at the below heatmap generated by eye-tracking studies. As you might expect, the top results on the page get a lot of looks, but so too do the results with rich snippets (and not so much for the results in between).

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2. Entries with rich snippets have higher click-through rates.

A study performed by search marketing firm Catalyst found that clicks improved 150% with Google authorship.

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3. Authorship is an advantage to the little guy.

Authorship offers a competitive advantage. A recent study found that only 3.5% of Fortune 500 companies are actively using authorship. Until they do, they are giving a big opportunity to the rest of us.

Authorship may be the future of search.

Don’t take it from me. Take it from Google’s Eric Schmidt. He sees a future where identity plays a big part in search results.

Within search results, information tied to verified online profiles will be ranked higher than content without such verification, which will result in most users naturally clicking on the top (verified) results.

To get started with Google authorship, you can check out this step-by-step guide on the Buffer blog.

That’s it! I hope some of these might be useful for you here. We’ve recently introduced the brand new Buffer for Business too, so in case you’re looking for a powerful social media management tool, take a look, we’d love your feedback on it.

Subscribe to our new Definitivenewsletter: High grade digital marketing guidance, topically sorted, and curated to the max. You pick the categories, we deliver the content. The best content from around the web, on topics you care about and need to be an expert in.

Image credits: Tomasz Tunguz

For more see –

https://www.convinceandconvert.com/content-marketing/9-best-from-buffer/

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

16 Great Blogging Tips from 16 Great Bloggers…

I’ve heard blogging referred to a couple of times recently as a mixture between an art and a science. If this is true (and I think it is), there’s no ‘right way’ to approach blogging if you want to be successful. There are plenty of people who’ve done a great job of it though, and I thought it would be useful to learn from them.

These 16 bloggers shared one important tip each for blogging beginners. No doubt, even if you’re not a beginner these tips will probably prove to be useful.

Create blog posts that answer the most interesting questions from people you engage with on social media.

Dave Larson, founder of @tweetsmarter

This can be a great way to gather ideas of what topics people would most like to read about, which will help your blog grow! One of the best ways I’ve seen this in action is through blog comments or Tweets. In one example, here on FastCompany a lot of people requested a post that features more women entrepreneurs:

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Now, a few weeks later adding such an article where just women contributed and built great businesses was a big hit:

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Understand your audience better than they understand themselves. It takes a lot of upfront research, and often means being a member of the very tribe you’re trying to lead – but it pays off.

Brian Clark, founder and CEO, Copyblogger

Understanding your audience better means you’ll have a better idea of what blog content will resonate with them, which is a good start when you get to writing blog posts.

A great technique for doing this is to simply ask your readers first on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn with an engaging quote. If people respond well to it, than this is probably a great topic to write about. An example for this comes from Andrew Chen who famously “tests” his blogpost ideas on Twitter first.

And so does Joel here at Buffer. Take this example from a recent Twitter post of his, where he simply tweeted one quote to see how well people liked a topic before he blogged about it:

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Write for yourself first & foremost. Ignore the fact that anyone else will read what you write; just focus on your thoughts, ideas, opinions and figure out how to put those into words. Write it and they will come.

Adii Pienaar, founder of PublicBeta

Adii’s experience in writing for himself firstly has made a difference to his blog in ways he didn’t expect:

Yes, since I’ve been writing for myself, I’ve found that I write more and I publish more often. I think though that the main reason for that is that I don’t decide whether to publishing something based on the traction / reception that the post will receive within my audience; instead if I want to publish something, I do so. For myself.

Start building your email list from day one. Even if you don’t plan on selling anything, having an email list allows you to promote your new content to your audience directly without worrying about search rankings, Facebook EdgeRank, or other online roadblocks in communications.

Kristi Hines, freelance writer and professional blogger

When you’re asking readers to sign up for your email list, you might want to try experimenting with different language. Willy Franzen found that his subscription rate jumped 254% higherwhen he changed his call-to-action from “subscribe by email” to “get jobs by email”:

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blogging advice - subscription rate

Using this phrase more clearly tells Willy’s readers what they’re signing up for, which clearly worked well!

 

Love the readers you already have. A lot of bloggers get quite obsessed with finding new readers – to the point that they ignore the ones they already have. Yes – do try to find new readers but spend time each day showing your current readers that you value them too and you’ll find that they will help you grow your blog.

Darren Rowse, founder of ProBlogger

Focusing on your readers is a great way to get to know them better (see tip #2). I love the way Daniel Burstein describesblog readers’ expectations of you as a blogger:

A blog is really two things. One, simply a piece of technology, a platform. But, two, it is a promise in the minds of most readers, who expect that the blog should have actual content with some elements of value that is hyper-targeted to their needs. Much like with a newspaper. Readers don’t just look at a newspaper as newsprint that is delivered on their driveway every morning. They look at it as valuable information about their city, where they live, and the things that they do.

 

I screwed up for years. I’d blog and blog. Some of my posts were doing very well on places like Hacker News, but I had such hard time getting return visitors. And very few people bothered to follow me on Twitter.

Don’t rely on people to do the work to find your Twitter account. Don’t rely on them to do the work to find your details in a sidebar. People are blind to sidebars. Thanks banner ads!

Finish your blog post with some kind of call to action to signup for an email list or follow you on Twitter. When I started doing this, I immediately increased my Twitter followers by 335% in the first 7 days.

Nate Kontny, founder of Draft

Nate uses a simple call-to-action on his blog now, that looks like this:

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This particular technique we’ve also tested here on the Buffer blog and found it to work amazingly well to bring attention to other blog posts we’ve written, like this:

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or to Buffer product features, like this:

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7. Give stuff away

Give away free content that adds value to people’s lives “until it hurts” and they will love you and become loyal fans.

Jeff Bullas, blogger and author of Blogging the Smart Way

A great example of this is the research done by Incentivibe, who found that adding a giveaway contest pop-up to the bottom-right of their website led to 125% more email subscribers.

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Consistency is one of the most important things that bloggers tend to forget. It’s much easier to lose your traffic than it is to build it up, so make sure you consistently blog.

Neil Patel, founder of KISSmetrics

A study by Hubspot showed that consistent blogging actually leads to higher subscriber growth rates:

Over a two-month span, businesses that published blog entries on a regular basis (more than once a week) added subscribers over twice as fast as those companies that added content once a month.

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blogging advice - subscriber growth

 

Don’t be afraid to showcase what you know. Too many bloggers hold back the good stuff out of fear of giving away the “secret sauce.” There is no secret sauce in a world where everyone has high speed Internet access at all times. Today, you want to give away information snacks to sell knowledge meals.

Jay Baer, author of Youtility

Jay’s advice is to share the knowledge you have, rather than keeping it tucked away for a rainy day. Chris Guillebeau follows this advice by offering two free, downloadable PDFs to his readers. Chris also does what Jay calls giving away “information snacks to sell knowledge meals.” On both of the free PDF download pages, Chris markets his book on the right-hand side.

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Stay true to yourself and your voice. People don’t care to follow sites so much as they care to follow people.

Chris Pirillo, founder and CEO, LockerGnome

Another blogger who advocates the importance of the writer’s voice is Jeff Goins. He says that your voice is the most important, yet over-looked part of blogging:

Writing isn’t about picking the right topic; it’s about finding the right voice. What matters, what readers really resonate with, isn’t so much what you say, but how.

Plan to invest in blogging for a long time before you see a return. The web is a big, noisy place and unless you’re willing to invest more over a greater period of time than others, you’ll find success nearly impossible. If you’re seeking short-term ROI, or a quick path to recognition, blogging is the wrong path. But if you can stick it out for years without results and constantly learn, iterate, and improve, you can achieve something remarkable.

Rand Fishkin, CEO of Moz

Rand shared these great images with us from his wife’s travel blog, Everywhereist, which shows just how long it can take to see a return on your efforts:

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If you’re blogging to create a business, a movement, or to support a cause, then you need to build an email list. It’s not an option. I don’t even consider my blog to be my community, my email list is my community. Caring about these people, writing for them, and delivering value to them should be your number one goal.

James Clear, entrepreneur, weightlifter and travel photographer

When the New York Public Libraryfocused on growing email subscription rates, this simple home page design with information about what readers could expect to receive boosted numbers by 52.8% over a more complicated version with less information about the actual newsletter:

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blogging advice - nypl

 

No matter how great your content is, it won’t matter unless you have an amazing headline. People have a split second to decide if they should click on your post, and your headline will make them decide. The headline is also essential in making it easy and desirable for people to share your post. Keep your headlines SPUB: simple, powerful, useful and bold.

Dave Kerpen, author and CEO of Likeable Local

Something we do at Buffer is to test several different headlines for each of our blog posts to determine which ones works best. Here’s an example of what that might look like:

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blogging advice - headlines

You can read more about this particular approach in more depth here: A scientific guide to writing great headlines on Twitter, Facebook and your Blog

 

There isn’t one specific set of rules to be successful in blogging. When I started blogging, I had the opportunity to learn from experienced and successful bloggers in the industry. One of the best lessons I’ve learned from them is to simply be me. I didn’t have to be too “professional” or use “big words” to impress others. I had to simply be me.

By being me, I enjoyed writing and the process more. It had me writing more than I usually would too. If you look at the the most successful writers like Seth Godin and Chris Brogan you’ll notice that they are different and unique in their own ways.

Aaron Lee, social media manager, entrepreneur and blogger

Moz CEO Rand Fishkin agrees that telling your company’s story is important, as opposed to following a formula for successful blogging:

Emotion and storytelling have been part of how we communicate with each other and inspire action for thousands of years.

 

Biggest lesson I learned in my past year of blogging. Keep it in the 1–2 minutes read-time length.

Derek Sivers, founder of Wood Egg

Working out the best length for your blog posts can be tricky. You generally need about 300 words minimum to get indexed by search engines, but otherwise the length of your post is up to what you think feels best.

Derek Sivers noticed recently that his shorter posts were much better received by readers and seemed to be shared more, unlike his longer posts:

When I’ve written articles that were too long or had too many ideas, they didn’t get much of a reaction.

When I read books, I often feel bad for the brilliant idea buried on page 217. Who will hear it?

Stop the orchestra. Solo that motif. Repeat it. Let the other instruments build upon it.

The web is such a great way to do this.

Present a single idea, one at a time, and let others build upon it.

According to this Chartbeat graph below, many visitors to your site won’t bother scrolling, and most visitors won’t read more than about 60% of what you’ve written. Keeping it short and sharp then, could be worthwhile.

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blogging advice - chartbeat graph

If you’re looking for a general guide to blog post length, Joe Pulizzi’s blog post, “A blog post is like a miniskirt” might be useful:

A blog post is like a miniskirt.

It has to be short enough to be interesting, but long enough to cover the subject.

 

One thing I always try to keep in mind before publishing a post is would anyone want to “cite” this for any reason? Just like interesting research is great because it leaves you with a fascinating finding or an idea, I like for my posts to be the same. That doesn’t mean relying on research, but simply making sure each post has an original lesson or actionable item, making it “citable” on the web.

Gregory Ciotti, marketing strategist at Help Scout

Our very own Buffer co-founder Leo has written about a similar thing before:

When writing a post, I get into a mindset to answer just this 1 question with a Yes: “Would anyone email this article to a friend?”

It’s an extremely simple proposition. Yet, it has changed my writing completely. If I put myself into a reader’s head going through a post and seeing whether someone will say “Oh, this is interesting, John will really like this”, then I go ahead and publish it. It’s almost like an invisible threshold to pass. I need to improve the post until this level is reached. I will iterate, find more research, get more examples, until I can truly imagine this happening.

I’m sure there are lots more great tips out there about building a blog. What’s your favorite?

Image credits: David G. Larson, Copyblogger, The WordPress Podcast, Party Biz Connect, Darren Rowse, Nate Kontny, Jeff Bullas, FounderTips, Social Media Examiner, Chris Pirillo, LinkJuice, James Clear, Dave Kerpen, Joshua Titsworth, Derek Sivers, Unbounce

For more see:

https://buffer.com/resources/blogging-advice-for-beginners-from-16-experts/amp

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

Lessons from Top Entrepreneurs

cardonesolutions.com/grant-cardone-net-worth-2020/

So Jarrod Glandt sits down and picks Grant Cardone’s brain for an hour.  What did I get out of it?  And what will you get out of it.  When I first started following Grant and listening to his workshops in the car everywhere I went, I had this feeling so many times that he was basically talking to me or like maybe he’s been secretly following me around or something.  Which obviously is not what was going on so what did that feeling mean?  It meant I wasn’t alone.  It meant that I’m not the only one out here looking for a better way.  So when you listen to this interview, before you go into it, ask yourself, what do you need from this.  Be open to hearing what Grant and Jarrod have to say to you.  Here’s what I got.  It was a whole lot.  Let’s go…

What’s the deal with haters?

People start hating on people when they are doing the things they know they can and should be doing yet for their own reasons won’t allow themselves to operate at that level.  For some I think it hurts them to see other operating at their full potential, especially when they know they’re not.  For others I think they are more threatened by success.  Their belief system is about limits and shortages so the more someone else has the less for them and since they see everything from the perspective of limits and shortages and since there’s only so much to go around they may even feel as if the more successful are stealing from them and they must be fought.  It’s sad.  And glorious.  Because when you start getting these kind of haters, it is definitely a sign you’re moving in the right direction.

What’s with all the work???

I feel best when I’m contributing.

If you have a problem with work, you have a problem with life.  Life is a game.  Work is play.  Your work space is your playground.  Seriously, what needs to shift in your mind to where you can get to a place where you can see work as play?

JARROD to GRANT:  “You have like zero zero scarcity like your mindset.”

What do you wish people knew about you as a business owner?

“The reason I’m having a hard time answering that question is I don’t think anyone’s going to believe it.”

At first it looked like we weren’t going to get the answer to this question and I was getting a bit disappointed, but…  Good news comes

On just being yourself:

“Sometimes you can’t be yourself YET, because you haven’t figured out who you are yet…   So anytime I’ve strayed from me (and that’s a little bit back to your question about what would I want people to know); look I’m just trying to I’m just trying to I’m just trying to be me.”

[EXERCISE #1:  Look back at a time where you’ve tried to be someone you’re not and it did more harm than good.]

I learned a very hard lesson about this during the second half of my first year in the car business.  The lesson was painfully clear:  The fastest way to piss off a customer is to do your best Grant Cardone impression.

How do you find out who you are?

What would your life be like if you were finally super comfortable in that skin jacket you call a body?  How will you feel when you own yourself completely?  What could you do if you became super confident about everything?

You got to find out who you are.  You got to find out who you are and all the stuff that you don’t like doing, it probably is the shovel you need to pick up and start digging.”

So when Grant says, “pay the price today so you can pay any price tomorrow,” he’s not limiting this to just money.  You know what the outcome looks like, you can see what your potential is and what your life will be like, but to get there, you have a price to pay.  And that price is typically doing a bunch of stuff you don’t want to do.

Discomfort is where you will meet the real you and where you will release the real you.

[EXERCISE #2:  What can you do DAILY that will get you uncomfortable and help release the real you.  Here’s three ideas if you’re in business and sales.  Exercise, role-play and cold call.  Can you find a way to incorporate these tree things into your daily routine?]

This is also how you gain immediate competitive advantages in the market by capitalizing on what your competition won’t or refuses to do.

EXAMPLES:

  • When Grant was in his mid to late 20s he trained everyday for 50 minutes on a topic he didn’t even like but KNEW was vital to his success.
  • When Grant was 35, he started reading Barron’s and The Wall Street Journal to learn about finance and it felt like trying to read a foreign language.

The ability to push through when you want to quit is a skill that must be continually developed but it builds tremendous confidence.

Grant gives the secret to success with Cardone University:

  1. Learn the material as it is
  2. Get some wins with it as it is
  3. Start creating your own variations
[EXERCISE #3:  Whether you’re using our products or something else, as an individual, training on your own, this is the order of learning content.  If you’re skipping the middle step, adjust accordingly.  Manager’s this is how you want your people to study content however, keep in mind, this is NOT how you train the team.  There’s a whole different Rx for team training and development.]

The 2 Consequences of Confidence:

  1. Don’t need to copy other people’s stuff
  2. Don’t need to attack others to build your brand

What is money?

Insurance and proof.

Pay attention DAILY to your money.

[Exercise #4:  Let’s add looking at your money every morning to your list of uncomfortable things to do.  Did it increase, decrease or stay the same and if it didn’t increase, why?  What will you do today to add to and then multiply this money?  SIDE NOTE / WARNING:  Why would anyone suggest to you that you put your money somewhere and then forget it or not pay attention to it?]

Grant Cardone Net Worth 2020:  How important is it anyway?

In the interview Grant and Jarrod get into that a little bit and start bouncing around numbers but to Grant’s point, if you’re worried about your net worth and especially about Grant’s net worth, your attention is on the wrong stuff.

Grant has attention on legacy and the long game.  The net worther is stuck on some ego trip.  If you’re Googling “Grant Cardone Net Worth 2020” or “Grant Cardone Net Worth 2019” you have your attention on the wrong thing.

Grant:  I tell people what’s true for me.

This is how we all should operate.  The real questions should be:

  • When did you stop (telling people what’s true for you)?
  • Why did you stop?
  • Who convinced you to stop?

How to pay for sh*t:

  1. Don’t buy it if you can’t buy it twice
  2. Pay for it with passive income, not earned income
  3. Recognize it’s a stupid purchase

How to transition:

“Quit thinking & do it”

This is the muscle nobody talks about.  It’s literally a skill.  Quit thinking and do it.  Creation is a work in progress.  You have to see it.  Thoughts, ideas have no physical reality.  Do it.  Try it.  See what happens.  If it’s not right dump it quick.  You’re not going to make every shot you take.  Period.  300 batting average means you miss 70% of the time.

Life literally depends on you succeeding every day

So how do you create that “my life depends on winning” mindset?

  1. It’s a muscle you develop
  2. It also builds momentum, like a flywheel
  3. And then the threat

There needs to be a threat in the environment in order for somebody to be propelled to go…”

That uneasy feeling is actually healthy (PHEW!)

Jarrod while Grant nods in TOTAL agreement:  “…like somebody that that that slight bit of anxiety or paranoia or feeling, whatever you want to call it [Grant, “walking into a cage with a dog”] that edge that little bit of edge is required to get people to produce.
2 ways to get the uneasy feeling and develop the muscle:
  • Do new stuff you’re not comfortable with
  • Perform stuff that’s “below your pay grade” that’s mundane and tough at the highest level

Frugal will get you to certain place and then it traps you

Production > Saving.  BUT don’t have more going out than what’s coming in.  Handle that then produce.  Require discipline that a lot of people don’t have.  Discipline first, produce like crazy second, third thing is put the production into assets that are going to pay you forever.

^^^Recipe for real freedom?^^^

[Exercise #5:  When you’re 80 and you look back over your life, what will you be most proud of as a business person?]

“I know I’ve underestimated what could happen the whole time”

How you’ll know you’re on purpose:  Look at what you’re doing now.  Is your why/purpose so big that whether or not you win or lose, someone gives your 10 million or takes it all away, you’re still showing up tomorrow.

How to know if you’re a slave:

When you’re doing it just to pay the bills.  Doesn’t matter whether it’s a million dollars a year or 70 thousand bucks a year.  When you’re just paying bills, when that’s your only motivation…  Slave.

Grant Cardone Net Worth 2020:  Don’t Hate Up.  Look Up and Work Up

Let the haters hate:  “It’s good for us – because when they’re doing that they can’t be creating on their own game.  You can’t [reach for your true potential] while talking about me at the same time.”

Business and Sports News from Mike Armstrong – See http://mikearmstrong.me

100’s of populer twitter hashtags…

twitter_PNG11

Please find a list of 100 top twitter hashtags (100 top general twitter hashtags) followed by some of the most used and most popular hashtags on twitter chosen for a few popular industry sectors on twitter.

These Twitter hashtags and so many more, are used millions of times daily on twitter.

Though these hashtags are good for you to use on some tweets, if you want to generate more likes for your photos, images and tweets, they are not the best when it comes to helping you reach engaged potential customers on your social platforms. You should loom through the list to find the hashtags that are most relevant to your business, and sprinkle them in with other, more industry-specific hashtags.

  • #love
  • #instagood
  • #photooftheday
  • #beautiful
  • #fashion
  • #tbt
  • #happy
  • #cute
  • #followme
  • #like4like
  • #follow
  • #me
  • #picoftheday
  • #selfie
  • #instadaily
  • #friends
  • #summer
  • #girl
  • #art
  • #fun
  • #repost
  • #smile
  • #nature
  • #instalike
  • #food
  • #style
  • #tagsforlikes
  • #family
  • #likeforlike
  • #igers
  • #fitness
  • #nofilter
  • #follow4follow
  • #instamood
  • #amazing
  • #life
  • #travel
  • #beauty
  • #vscocam
  • #sun
  • #bestoftheday
  • #music
  • #followforfollow
  • #beach
  • #instagram
  • #photo
  • #sky
  • #vsco
  • #dog
  • #l4l
  • #sunset#f4f
  • #ootd
  • #pretty
  • #swag
  • #makeup
  • #foodporn
  • #hair
  • #cat
  • #party
  • #girls
  • #photography
  • #cool
  • #baby
  • #lol
  • #tflers
  • #model
  • #motivation
  • #night
  • #instapic
  • #funny
  • #gym
  • #healthy
  • #yummy
  • #hot
  • #design
  • #black
  • #pink
  • #flowers
  • #christmas
  • #blue
  • #work
  • #instafood
  • #fit
  • #instacool
  • #iphoneonly
  • #wedding
  • #blackandwhite
  • #workout
  • #lifestyle
  • #handmade
  • #followback
  • #instafollow
  • #home
  • #drawing
  • #my
  • #nyc
  • #webstagram
  • #sweet
  • #instalove

Now, let’s take a look at the top hashtags for a couple of the most popular industries. These are way more likely to help you achieve success on social media, because they work well to connect you with people within your target market, boosting your reach and engagement.

Popular Hashtags on Twitter for the Fitness Industry


People love to share pictures of themselves at the gym. So much of social media is sharing the best side of you – and showcasing your healthy, fit lifestyle is a big part of that.

Here are the top 20 most popular hashtags for fitness:

  1. #gethealthy
  2. #healthylife
  3. #healthtalk
  4. #eatclean
  5. #fitfood
  6. #nutrition
  7. #fitquote
  8. #fitnessmotivation
  9. #fitspo
  10. #getfit
  11. #fitfam
  12. #trainhard
  13. #noexcuses
  14. #fitnessaddict
  15. #gymlife
  16. #girlswholift
  17. #workout
  18. #fitlife
  19. #gymlife
  20. #sweat

Popular Hashtags on Twitter for the Food Industry


How many times have you (or the people around you at a restaurant) taken a picture of their food before they eat it? Or what about when you cook something amazing and are just so proud of it you want to share it with the world?

Here are the top 20 most popular hashtags for food:

  1. #foodie
  2. #foodporn
  3. #foodgasm
  4. #nom
  5. #food
  6. #pizza
  7. #foodporn
  8. #foodstagram
  9. #menwhocook
  10. #sushi
  11. #yummy
  12. #foodcoma
  13. #eathealthy
  14. #instafood
  15. #delicious
  16. #foodpic
  17. #cooking
  18. #snack
  19. #tasty
  20. #cleaneating

Popular Hashtags on Twitter for the Travel Industry


Again, like with fitness, travel posts are all about showing people the best side of your life – and being on away on holidsy is always the best time of your life.

Here are the top 20 most popular hashtags for travel:

  1. #travel
  2. #instatravel
  3. #travelgram
  4. #tourist
  5. #tourism
  6. #vacation
  7. #traveling
  8. #travelblogger
  9. #wanderlust
  10. #ilovetravel
  11. #instavacation
  12. #traveldeeper
  13. #getaway
  14. #wanderer
  15. #adventure
  16. #travelphotography
  17. #roadtrip
  18. #mytravelgram
  19. #igtravel
  20. #traveler

Popular Hashtags on Twitter for the Technology Sector


When you have the newest gadget or want to show off your most innovative tech idea, there’s few better ways to do it than with a hashtag.

Here are the top 20 most popular hashtags for technology:

  1. #technology
  2. #science
  3. #bigdata
  4. #iphone
  5. #ios
  6. #android
  7. #mobile
  8. #video
  9. #design
  10. #innovation
  11. #startups
  12. #tech
  13. #cloud
  14. #gadget
  15. #instatech
  16. #electronic
  17. #device
  18. #techtrends
  19. #technews
  20. #engineering

Popular Hashtags on Twitter for the Fashion & Beauty Sector


People love to show off what they’re wearing or the fashions they love.

They love to show the social media world their best face, and what better way to do that than with their on-point makeup?

Here are the top 20 most popular hashtags for fashion and beauty:

  1. #fashion
  2. #fashionista
  3. #fashionblogger
  4. #ootd
  5. #style
  6. #stylish
  7. #streetstyle
  8. #streetwear
  9. #fashioninspo
  10. #trend
  11. #styleoftheday
  12. #stylegram
  13. #mensfashion
  14. #lookbook
  15. #todayiwore
  16. #beauty
  17. #makeupaddict
  18. #hair
  19. #instafashion
  20. #vintage

Conclusion


Hopefully this article will serve as a resource for you to come back to and take advantage of.

The hashtags in this article have millions and millions of impressions every day. Not using them is a massive social media missed opportunity.

If you have any questions about how you can use these hashtags in your own social media posts, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

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