Business Tips

Five business and internet marketing lessons I took from running the Marathon

Sorry guys for not publishing much posts lately. I have been working on getting the blog setup at this new location and experimenting with some different looks. My apologies if things don’t look quite right for a while. Trust me, things will look better soon.

I should listen to my own advice about outtasking and hire someone customize the blog for me but I have allowed myself to get wrapped up in playing around with WordPress.

I have noticed some of my recent posts have come off a bit preachy. In an effort to counter that I am going to try and break things up today.

I ran the Los Angeles Marathon not long ago. It was challenging – even grueling. I thought I was prepared but…I could  have been more prepared. I finished with decent time. Nothing great but I finished. As the miles passed I reflected on many things that relate to online business and business in general.

  • Unique selling point – There may have only been one first place finisher but…there were many winners and many memorable characters. Like the guy who crawled across the finish line and the runner who went back to help him. Or, the guy in the wool coat holding a tray with a bottle of wine and two glasses, or the guy in the cape, or the grandmother in the wheelchair being pushed by her children. These people reminded me that there are many ways to win in the marketplace by being first, best, or different and coming up with that unique selling point.
  • Success is a series of small steps. Business is the same; it’s not one successful deal that determines a career but the ability to consistently perform and improve over time that matters.
  • Stay in the game. I have to admit, there were many people who I thought were not going to finish. But…they stayed in the game and they prevailed.
  • Don’t underestimate the strength of the competition. Many a strong person has been bested by better prepared, disciplined, and cunning adversaries. This reflection came as I was beaten by children and little old ladies and a seventy something guy in a cape.
  • Starting with the end in mind will keep the big picture in focus. Focusing on the big picture aids me in the best allocation of my limited resources.
  • Just do it. All it takes is a little effort, not much more. Action is proverbial and obvious and painfully avoided by many. I know that…just like the marathon, if i keep putting one foot in front of the other sooner or later I will get what I want.

Five ways to get more hours from your day

Getting more done with less time is a challenge for most people trying to get ahead. We are busy taking the kids to school or sports or helping with their homework, cooking meals, cleaning house, going to the gym, networking and masterminding, goal setting, planning, writing, marketing, selling, working on multiple projects, dealing with employees, employers, contractors, and better halves. Whatever your case, here are five ways to help you be more productive.

  1. I know you have heard this before but it’s true. Make a list. Don’t just make it in your head either. Sit down and write down 1-3 important things you want to accomplish that day. If you don’t finish a task on the day you wrote it down, carry that task over to the next day.
  2. Set aside one uninterrupted hour per day to work on the items written on your list. You will be amazed at what you can get done in just one hour. Make sure you don’t drift. No dawdling about with anything that isn’t on the list.
  3. Just say no. Make your list of priorities for whatever you are doing each day. Then, whenever the phone rings or someone pops in the office begins tying up your time with unimportant jabber. Politely make yourself unavailable to them. This is uncomfortable at first but once you do it a few times and get into the habit you will be amazed both in how good you feel saying no, and by how much more you can get done.
  4. No more email checking 50 times a day. Think about it like this. How often do you run out to check the mailbox at your house? Once a day perhaps. Well, why do you feel like you need to check your email 50 times a day? You can add more productive time to your schedule by limiting the amount of times you check your inbox each day. Setup autoresponders that say something like “Thank you for your email. This inbox is checked at 8am and 4pm and you can expect a reply to your email within 24 hours. If you need assistance before then please call.”

  5. Go habitual. Doing the above things continually is the real key to making lasting improvements in your productivity. Just like everything in life worth doing, you can’t expect to do something once, or twice and be good at it. These solutions can be difficult at first and you may fall off the wagon time and time again. But…if you keep doing these things religiously you will be more productive.
  6. Bonus tip – Turn off the Television. If you think checking email 50 times a day is unproductive, that’s nothing compared to 3 or 4 unproductive hours of television.

4 ways Co-Branded Prepaid Cards can Assist Your Business

In today’s world, consumers have a plethora of options when it comes to paying for goods and services—cash, cheques, debit cards, credit cards, cashier’s cheques, money orders, and more increasingly, prepaid cards are all possibilities. As the popularity of prepaid cards continues to rise, this article answers the questions: What are prepaid cards and what is co-branding, as well as identifying 4 ways that they can help your business.

What Are Prepaid Cards?

Prepaid cards offer a way in which you can access your money without fear of over-drafting or spending more than your budget. This is because, unlike traditional credit and debit cards, prepaid cards do not extend credit, nor are they linked to a bank account. Continue reading