It’s an easy trap to fall in to. We spend all our time and energy launching our businesses and then we work head down, bum up working in it that we forget to ask ourselves – what is our end goal? And – how are we going to get there?

If your end goal is to, at some stage, sell your business on and make a nice profit then this isn’t what you start working on at the end of your business journey. It’s what you work on the whole way through to get you there. You’ve heard of the quote ‘Start with the end in mind’ – this quote is hugely relevant here.

Love to know how you can achieve this? Then watch this fab Google Hangout with amazing business broker, Denise Hall of The Entrepreneurial Mother on how to ensure your business is saleable – when it comes time to sell.

Cheers! Alli x

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Guest blog written by Samantha Jansen, Platform 4 Success

At the start of June, I decided to take my family to Sarsfield, which is 10 minutes from Bairnsdale for 3 days. I wanted it to be different to our standard weekend getaways. This resulted in me deciding we would spend 2 nights in farm house. We were all excited as we have never experienced something like this before…

Upon arriving there we were all excited about living in this little farm house situation on 56 hectares of land. The kids started running around and we took some time to explore the farm, the veggie patch and all the animals.

Being the social media junkie I am… I pulled out my phone took some pictures and when I tried to upload them to Facebook and Instragam I realised, there were no signals.

The fact I didn’t have a way to communicate with the world started playing on my mind and my stress levels were on the rise…my brain was in overdrive thinking “I can’t send or receive any e-mails, can’t communicate with my clients”.

I tried standing near the farm house window, walking in all sorts of directions thinking “there should be signals somewhere on this farm” after a good hour of trying to figure it out. I realised it was time to accept the fact and start to enjoy this experience.

The next morning when we headed into town, the phone regained signals and I spent about five to ten minutes on social media and checked my e-mails.

After arriving back to Melbourne and reflecting on the holiday and how it made me feel, I decided to make some dramatic changes to my business.

Why? Because spending three days away made me realise why I felt so anxious when I didn’t have phone signals. I had assured my clients I was only an e-mail away and they knew if they e-mail me, I would respond to them. I had clearly over committed myself through one of my best selling programs.

After a lot of thinking and business planning I pulled the plug on the 6 month mentoring program. A program which offers clients weekly laser coaching calls, unlimited e-mail support and weekly accountability task.

I took 3 – 4 weeks and re-designed the program with the same content, however I added a video segment to replace the coaching call. Plus they would receive a 2 laser coaching calls during the program.

Two months on from making a massive change to one of my best selling programs has resulted in being the best thing I ever did for my life and business.

When I decided to the take the family away for the weekend, it was purely to relax, recharge and get away from the day to day rat race in the suburbs.

Looking back on the experience, I’m truly grateful and glad I decided to do something different, living in a little farm house and getting back to nature really impacted me and changed the dynamics of my business.

 

 

Platform 4 Success was created by Samantha Jansen for businesses in the start-up phase to help them effectively create marketing systems and learn how to leverage from their products / services to maximize their profits. 

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By Alli Pricedan

I don’t know about you, but I spend a lot of time in the car. I’m driving to and from events, I’m driving to and from appointments and I’m also driving my kids around.

It’s a lot of time spent in the car – time spent not doing anything of importance – and as I’m also an extremely busy person, I really need to utilise my time as efficiently as possible.

Here are my top tips on getting the most out of your time driving in the car:

1. Listen to podcasts or webinars

Listening to podcasts or webinars is a very traditional use of time in the car and it’s also a great use of time. We probably don’t spend enough time educating and informing ourselves in business because we’re always so busy working in them – servicing our customers, trying to get sales and so on.

So when do we actually have time to just educate ourselves? Downloading a podcast or webinar to your iphone or ipod and setting it up to listen to when you’re in the car is a great way to keep your education up to date without having to take out big chunks of your time that could be used spent working in the business.

2. Brainstorm points for your social media

Another great use of time in the car is setting up your iPhone to voice memo or recording and just brainstorm loads of different ideas for your social media.

You can set yourself the task of brainstorming a whole load of interactive posts. These are the posts where you ask questions of your audience with the aim of them answering.

You could brainstorm a list of benefits of working with you that you can then be scheduled onto social media. Or they could be your sales shouts – highlighting the different products and services that you sell.

You can then use that recording, and either schedule the posts yourself or send them to a VA or admin person and ask them to schedule them for you. Voila! The most efficient use of your time!

3. Practice your guest speaking and talks

If you become a guest speaker and need a time and place to practice your talks,the car is the best place!

If you have an hour talk to practice, to take that time out of your business day is huge. That’s why reciting it over and over again on your car trips is ideal as you’re not doing anything else anyway.

To practice, I set up my phone with my timer and take my points on a piece of paper to remind myself, if needed. The only problem is that you may look a little crazy talking to yourself in the car!

4. Put together a blog post

You can actually put together a blog post while you’re driving in the car (or more than one blog post).

I dictate all the information out onto my voice memo on my phone and type it myself later, or have someone else do it for me.

Be sure to dictate where headings should go in, a meta description for the post, any keywords and the category it should be listed under.

5. Relieve stress

Although there are great ways to use the car for business, don’t always use it for work as it could end up being tiring and draining.

Take time out of your day to turn the music up really loud, sing and dance in the car, and forget about business for a while so when you get home you’re feeling fresh and revived.

6. Affirmations

We’re all trying to create something in business, trying to achieve our goals, reach places we want to go and become the people we want to become.

Try using the car for affirmations as, whilst driving, you have the time and space to really focus on saying them.

To do it well, write your positive statement on paper and stick it in the middle of your steering wheel so it is a reminder to you every time you’re in the car.

Repeat them over and over again, or use them for visualizing for where you want to go and what you want to achieve. You could put a picture of Bali on your steering wheel if that’s where you want to go on your next holiday tell yourself “I’m holidaying in Bali in December”.

So those are my top tips for using the car efficiently and effectively for business. And the proof is in the pudding – this blog post was recorded in the car, on my way to Shepparton. I had it typed up by my VA and boom! there’s another piece of information and education that I can put on my blog post. Now I’m going to take some time out and listen to some music.

Love to know if there’s anything else you do to make the most of your time in the car – please let me know in the comments.

Cheers! Alli x

Image courtesy of dan at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

 

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So, you’ve come up with this amazing business idea and you’re excited, aren’t you?

So excited that you’re up at night, firing off ideas, talking way faster than you usually do and madly registering business and domain names in an all systems go, ‘look no hands!’, kinda way.

But this is where I say whoaaaaaaa! Hold on. Take a second. Breathe. And watch this very short video on ‘Should you be starting a business?’

Cheers! Alli x (p.s. I’d love to see your thoughts in the comments).

And huge thanks to Warren of Volare Photography for being my fab video guy!

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This post brought to you by SMSGlobalsmall business support

Five years ago, Facebook marketing was where it was at for businesses wanting to grow their market share and succeed. While Facebook – and other social media platforms – are still extremely relevant, the digital landscape continues to evolve and adapt to changing technologies and consumer behaviour.

Read on to find out four communication mediums and platforms you should be using to help your business succeed:

1. Your Own Website

Anything you ‘own’ is gold as far as digital marketing and communication goes. On your own website, you get to control the content and can access so much valuable data to help understand what people want from your business. Make sure that your website is updated regularly – and not just with great, engaging content. It’s important that you stay up-to-date with technological advances as well, especially as mobile becomes a dominant way that people access websites. ‘Mobile friendly’ isn’t enough anymore; to avoid a high bounce rate you need to ensure that your website has full functionality regardless as to whether your users are on a computer or a portable device like a tablet or their smartphone.

2. SMS Marketing

How effective is your email newsletter? Is it really working for you or does it end up sitting unread in a cluttered inbox, or worse, in the ‘junk’ folder of your target audience? Marketing messages don’t have to be lengthy to make an impact – you can achieve great results with 160 characters or less! The modern consumer likes to be able to choose how they receive messages and communication from companies so make sure you are giving your customers options for how you interact with them. Providers like SMSGlobal make it easy and effective for businesses to start SMS messaging customers virtually straight away.

3. Podcasting

Did you know that Soundcloud has more active users than Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram? While YouTube and video content may seem like where you should be focussing your multimedia attention, audio shouldn’t be discounted as a viable option to grow your audience and build a relationship with your customers. Harvard and PlayStation are two companies who are using Soundcloud and audio streaming to achieve great results.

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4. Pinterest

If you run a business with an e-commerce element, you could be losing sales if you don’t have an active Pinterest profile. With a business profile, you can set yourself up a virtual shopfront and use the platform to drive qualified, motivated buyers to your shop. Even if you don’t actively sell anything, you can still use Pinterest to increase your website traffic and grow your audience and influence, so make sure you’ve installed a Pinterest widget or app on your own website to make it easy for your site visitors to pin and share useful information they find.

It’s important to remember that you don’t have to be on every single platform so make sure that you have a well thought out, strategic communication plan and choose the mediums that you have the time and resources to put adequate effort into to achieve impact and results.

What platforms or mediums would you recommend for business growth?

Images courtesy of photostock and sippakorn at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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