Comparing Notes: The Plaster Edition

If you want your business to become successful, you need to learn from your competitors and other businesses. This is, after all, sort of a race. You’re all racing to outdo each other when it comes to impressing customers and gaining their loyalty. So you can’t just sit back in a complacent little island, and hope that what you’re doing is enough. You need to get out there, get real and then get to work.

So let’s talk about plaster. If your business has a physical office or store, keep an eye out on the exteriors of your competitors. How do they decorate their places? What about their exteriors is inviting? And what makes an exterior a turn off for customers? Armed with this information, make the necessary changes to your premises. Bring in the Rock Solid professionals to make sure that the work is done well, and the outcome is aesthetically pleasing. Then continue to keep an eye on your competitors.

You Need to Know What the Trends Are

As you work hard to establish your startup company, you need to make sure that you don’t lose touch with what is happening around you. This is one thing that sets successful companies apart from the others. If you’re aware of what the current trends are, then you’re in a better position to take advantage of them in order to grow. But if you’re not familiar with how things are changing quickly around you, then you’re going to have a problem.

So for example, you might be running a restaurant. You can’t just focus on the operational side and the logistics of running the place. You need to expand your horizons and figure out how your target market is changing. You might find out, for instance, through social media or news aggregators that speed dating in New Zealand is gaining in popularity. If so, you might then try to tie up with one of the speed dating services, so that they can set up their events in your restaurant. This allows your place to become even more relevant to the audience and market in your area.

Starting a Small International Company

You don’t have to be running a multinational conglomerate in order to take advantage of internationalization. Of course, large companies with a wide array of products will tend to have offices and warehouses in countries around the world. But even if you run a much smaller operation, don’t limit yourself to the opportunities that are just within your city or country. In this day and age, and with the advent of even more technology, you need to widen your imagination.

So for example, if you are running a small restaurant, there may still be ways to make the most of global outsourcing opportunities. Think about what needs to be done by people who are in your geographic location and what doesn’t. It might be possible that your accounting back end doesn’t need to be located in your country. Or if you have someone responding to customer service complaints or requests via email, that person could be in the Philippines, India or Vietnam, and that wouldn’t make this more inconvenient for you. Keep in mind that cheap international transfers are very much available. You will just need to familiarize yourself with how they work. Once that happens, you’ll find that you’ve expanded your possibilities quite a bit.

Keeping Premises Clean

In a previous post, I talked about how it’s so important to make sure that there aren’t any pests on your premises. This is particularly true if you run a restaurant, or if you do any work involving the preparation or handling of food. But even if you do manage to keep your place of business free of pests, that still isn’t enough. Instead, you’ll also need to make sure that your place is clean, and just as important, that it looks clean.

Let’s take carpeting as an example. When you start a business and lay the carpet, it looks crisp and clean. However, sooner than you may think, and depending on the amount of foot traffic, that carpet is going to begin to look more dirty and dingy. You can’t just let that happen. If people see a dirty carpet, they’re going to link the idea of poor hygiene with your company. It’s a good reason to bring in professionals. So for example, it would be a good idea to find the best carpet cleaner in Christchurch, so that you can rest assured that they’re going to get the job done. Make sure that regular cleaning and maintenance is already scheduled, so that your carpeting will look good all year round.

Keeping Things Pest Free

It’s important to remember that social media can be a very powerful thing. This is especially true if your business involves the preparation of food, or the running of a restaurant. Nowadays, people make it a point to check their social networks or dining sites to find out which places have good or bad reviews. You can’t ignore this trend. Good word of mouth can help make up for a small marketing budget. Bad word of mouth, on the other hand, can be a disaster. So you need to make sure your business makes a good impression.

For example, if you run a restaurant, make sure the place is clean. There are a lot of horror stories floating around online about how a customer saw a rat inside a restaurant, or about how someone found a dead bug in her pasta, that sort of thing. Make sure you hire the services of a good rodent control service. Think of it as a continuing investment in the goodwill and possible good word of mouth of your customers.

Launching Your Own Photography Business

It can be tough finding an entrepreneurial journey that blends both passion and the profit motive – but for some people, those two meet perfectly in the art of photography. But no matter how passionate you are about what you do, you still need to develop business skills in order to ensure your own success. Even if you’re a great photographer, you need to learn how to brand and promote yourself – and one of the easiest ways to do that is by looking at great examples.

One great example of a successful portrait photographer in Auckland is Jessica Higueras. We highly recommend checking out her site, www.jessicaphotography.co.nz.

The Entrepreneurial Bootcamp

Today we’d like to announce a new business course in Rotorua, called “The Entrepreneurial Bootcamp”. Its a great new course that will teach you all you need to know about running your own startup company, pitching to investors, market validation and how to market your business online.

The lessons start at 9am in the morning and go until 9pm, stopping at noon for lunch and 6pm for dinner, both of which will be provided for free as part of the course cost. Accomodation will need to be organised by the trainees themselves, but there’s a great motel in Rotorua you can stay in while you’re there called Bella Vista, which is right next door to the school for easy access.

Be on time! Please be seated and ready before 8.55am.  RSVP for further details.

 

SEO Help – Tips for Ranking on Google

Google is an integral part of any entrepreneur’s strategy these days – there’s no point in ignoring that fact. This is why if you aspire to be successful as an entrepreneur in this digital world, you need to get your head around search engine optimisation – SEO for short.

These quick tips will help you get a better idea of how it all works. For more in-depth info, check out the leading New Zealand search engine optimisation experts.

For starters, you want to make sure your website has excellent, relevant content.

Be careful with how you use keywords – don’t overdo it!

Most importantly, work hard to get other high quality websites to link to you. The search engines look at links like ‘votes,’ and the more good quality votes you have, the higher you’ll rank and the more traffic and ultimately customers you’ll get.

Digital Entrepreneurship and the SaaS Model

 

The software as a service business model has become increasingly popular as a way for young entrepreneurs to make their way in the world of digital business. But don’t mistake this model for the holy grail of easy money – there are significant set-up costs involved and the risks can be significant. It often takes a long time for a SaaS to become profitable – if it ever becomes profitable at all. With a SaaS all the costs of acquiring a customer base and building the product are weighted towards the beginning – it’s only after several years in many cases that returns begin to show.

Consider as an example something like the Fast Backup USB backup software. This software fills an important need, allowing users to create backups via USB without the typical long wait times. Your software should be aimed at filling a similar need, and remember that only minor improvements on existing products are required in order to make your offering the best choice on the market.