Mistakes Small Business Owners Make With Social Media

Mistakes Small Business Owners Make With Social Media

by Frederika Angus

Social media is an effective way to connect with people quickly, develop new relationships and have nearly instant access to potential customers and business partners alike. While most small businesses understand the importance of using social media as a way to build and expand their brand, there are some critical mistakes that are made than can harm instead of enhance your business.

Not having a social media plan

There is a big difference in how you utilize social media personally and how to leverage it’s power to present and provide valuable information to the world. It is important to know what you want to achieve through the use of social media. Without having a plan, it will be more difficult to measure if your efforts are providing your desired results.

Updates that are too personal

Simply put, be personable without being too personal. Avoid talking about relationship troubles or issues with colleagues, or clients. Strive to be a positive source of information and provide valuable information while cultivating relationships. Doing so will develop a culture of followers that will be loyal to your brand and business as they learn more about you as an entrepreneur and how you can serve their needs.

Promoting without participation

Have you ever been at a party talking to someone who believes the best topic of conversation is themselves? Make sure not to do the same on social media. It will be a real turn off to your ideal clients. Social media networks are a wonderful place to give as well as receive. Avoid just talking about your business without engaging your followers by responding.

What other social media errors have you seen businesses make? Share additional mistakes below.

Talk to you soon!

Get Your Business Ready For The New Year

Get Your Business Ready For The New Year

by Frederika Angus

There are only a few days left until the new year will begin. Set yourself and your small business up for a smooth start with the following tips.

Clean out your email inbox. Delete old emails and junk mail. Unsubscribe from mailings that are no longer adding value to your business. While you are cleaning up your digital mail, be sure to archive the important mail in appropriate folders. If there are emails that you send to your clients that are customizable, be sure to save them for use as templates. This will save you time from having to type the same information repetitively. Also, take the email action items you need to take action on prioritize their completion based on a due date.

Clean your computer file folders. As you are going through the emails, you will likely find email attachments that you’d like to keep handy. Organize your folder structures with descriptive names so they are easily found. If you happen to save documents to your desktop (I know I’m guilty of sometimes doing this), find a folder to place them in or delete them. That will clear the space for your most needed items for the new year.

Clean your desk/office. Doing this in advance of the start of the new year will put you miles ahead of others. It becomes difficult to work effectively when you can’t find a pen or the contract you just printed. Take sometime and file away all your paperwork for the year and get fresh folders (especially for receipts and expenses) started. It’s a great time to also grab a new calendar for the next year so that you can map out your marketing schedule, vacations, conferences and other various activities for you business.

Clean up your website. For those who aren’t technically savvy, it’s easy to hide this task in the junk drawer with the rest of the items. Take a few minutes before the new year starts and review your website as if you were a new customer and also a returning client. Are there improvements that can be made so that potential and current clientele are very clear on what you have to offer? During your site review, ensure that © date is current.

Clean your mind. Review your successes and your challenges during the past year. Learn from them and then release them. Take some time to rest, relax and renew your mind. It’s time to go to your next level and have your best year yet!

Talk to you soon!

 

 

8 Essential Qualities of Exceptional Entrepreneurs

8 Essential Qualities of Exceptional Entrepreneurs
by Frederika Angus

 

Success in business is the goal of every small business owner. While there is no magic formula that will guarantee your success, there are essential qualities that exceptional entrepreneurs possess.

1. Integrity – In the simplest of definitions, integrity is about doing the right thing. As an entrepreneur, your customers and clients want you to do what you said you would do, when you said you would do it. Never lie, exaggerate or pretend to be what you are not to get new business. Even if you have to lose money in the short-term, do the right thing everytime and you will build a brand with loyal customers.

2. Generosity – One of my mentors in business truly has one of the most generous hearts. She is leading by example how to share and go above and beyond in giving great value and wisdom to others. Your ability to be generous is directly associated with your mindset. If you fear sharing ideas with others because you don’t want them to “steal” or use them, you are operating in lack mentality. Remember that there is enough business to go around and collaborating with those who may even be competitors can still generate wealth for you.

3. Humility – Have you ever been around someone who is constantly talking about all they have acquired and achieved? Do you enjoy being around those that act that way? Being humble in business, contrary to the belief of some, is not a sign of weakness. It is actually a sign of strength. Only those secure in themselves can lift other’s up without feeling as though they are being diminished. Enjoy and be confident in your accomplishments. Just remember to leave arrogance and ego behind as you grow as an exceptional entrepreneur.

4. Discipline – Successful entrepreneurs are not those that get lucky or have better fortune than others. They are defined by their consistent commitment to do the things that need to be done. When you work for yourself, it can become easy to push off the least fun tasks until the very last minute. It is impossible to live the dream if you refuse to do the work it takes to make it a reality. Discipline will dictate whether you create effective results.

 

5. Persistence – The most difficult situations and undesirable events I have been through have always been conquered with this motto : “Never, never, never give up!” I use it during a difficult workout and in the midst of naysayers telling me my ideas will never work. Statistics will tell you most small businesses will likely fail within 5 years. The businesses that do succeed all have one thing in common, in spite of downtimes, they never gave up! Learn to be persistent.

6. Focused – To be exceptional in your business pursuits, being able to stay focused is critical. The mind of an entrepreneur is like a playground to a child. There are so many directions that you can steer your business in, sometimes it is hard to decide and stick with that direction. There are two or three things that are more important than everything else that you must take ownership of and focus on. Doing so will take your small business from good to great.

7. Innovative – Creativity is important but being innovative is essential in business. What’s the difference? Being creative speaks to your ability to think or imagine something original. Innovation is implementing or bringing new ideas to the market in the form of services and products. Innovation could be thought of as harnessing the creative energy and moving those great new ideas through a defined set of processes to an ultimately valuable conclusion. Long-term profitability for small businesses will depend on your ability to continuously innovate.

8. Passionate – When you are doing what you love to do and have been made to do, it feels less like work and more like living. Your enthusiasm about your business as an entrepreneur will show up to your clientele and attract customers. Passion will be your fuel on those days where you may reconsider if you’ve made the right choice.

Anything else you think should be included? Feel free to share in the comments.

Talk to you soon!

Start Your Small Business Brand Strategy By Bringing You to the Table

Start Your Small Business Brand Strategy By Bringing You to the Table

by Frederika Angus

I bet you can recognize all of the above businesses without seeing the company name. Talk about brand recognition!

But what is branding anyway?

Depending on who you talk to, branding is often thought of as a name or logo. The visual identifier that everyone will see, remember and relate to. Maybe you’ve already been through the logo design process. You researched different colors and the emotion that they invoke. You spent hours determining what the perfect tag line or even company name should be.

While that is all good, people do not do business with logos and tag lines. Yes, those items can help attract clients to look at your company. Having eyes on your business is great! The goal is to also make a profit while you have people looking.

Have you ever been at the grocery store and selected a shiny red, apple that looked flawless? No blemishes. No bruises. Leonardo da Vinci could not have painted a better work of art. But when you get home and take bite, it is not at all what you thought it would be. The skin is tough and the flesh lacks flavor. The outer appearance was deceiving and as you got below the surface you were disappointed.

Does your business brand leave your customers and clients that way? The image and logo look great, but just under the surface, what they identified with on the outside isn’t there?

Small business branding IS the owner. It is about what the owner says, does and how you as the owner and your personality meets your client in every aspect of the business. Branding is how you build and maintain relationships, the manner by which you do business and serve other people. It is how at an individual level, rapport is established because your clients trust your character, not from theme music, logos or slogans.

People are attracted to you! The best way to begin your business brand strategy is with you. Every business has a personality and as a solopreneur, you must make sure that it is your personality (not the person you pretend to be in the shower when no one is looking) that is showing up everywhere.

Faking it until you make it no longer works in the marketplace.

Consumers are craving authenticity and real connection with the people they do business with. Your ideal client has to believe that you are credible and will deliver exactly what you say that you are able to do.

Bringing all of who you are to the table means that your brand is instantly as unique as you are. The one thing your competition cannot copy is YOU. They can make a similiar logo, or advertising campaign. They will never be able to replicate you. Save the money you would have spent on all the shiny objects and flash and utilize it for more effective and strategic advertising.

Perhaps you’ve heard the quote, “Be the change you want to see.”

When it comes to branding, be the brand your customer wants to see.

Talk to you soon!

Putting the Joy Back Into Your Business

Putting the Joy Back Into Your Business

by Frederika Angus

Do you remember how you felt when you first came up with the idea for your business? Do you recall how excited you were to take on this new challenge?

Most business owners start their entrepreneurial journey with a lot of excitement. As you begin to diligently make plans and set up the business that will be the source of freedom and additional streams of income, you are glad to make sacrifices. You know that your dedication and commitment to your business will pay off.

But as the days, months and years go on, sometimes you realize that the thrill is gone. You’re not exactly sure how it happened but the business of running the business starts to weigh you down. Instead of anticipation for the challenge each day brings, you feel a sense of dread.

How can you begin to enjoy your business again?

Having joy in your business is important. Joy becomes fuel for the engine that runs your business. It helps eliminate stalling and allows you to move forward into the plans you’ve made for your business with ease.

Start each day with an attitude of gratitude. You have made a decision to live the life of your choosing as an entrepreneur. You may have the flexibility of work at home daily, or even setting your own hours. Celebrate the freedom that small business ownership brings.

“The secret of joy in work is contained in one word – excellence. To know how to do something well is to enjoy it.” –Pearl Buck. You are a highly skilled and talented business professional. When you perform and over-deliver to your clients and customers, you are rewarded financially through payment. But even bigger than money, the emails and notes of appreciation will continue to fuel your excellence.

Take time off. If you are really feeling burnt out, you are likely taking on too many of the tasks in business or you are working on delivering and over-delivering on the items you must take care of and never step away from the business. Schedule time daily to take time away from your business tasks. Take a quick walk or do something you enjoy with the people you love. When you return back to work, you’ll feel energized and have the ability to get work done with a positive attitude instead being overwhelmed.

Eliminate the stressors, time consumers and/or the mundane activities. It is easy as a solopreneur to get caught up in taking on many tasks. If the activity is causing stress, takes up you valuable time, or you just dislike doing it, eliminate the task or find a better person to do it. Saving money by doing it all yourself at the cost of your sanity, joy and health is never worth it.

Talk to someone. Share your challenges with your business coach or even a trusted colleague. Sometimes all it takes is a good conversation with someone to shift your perspective back to one of joy.

Talk to you soon!