Small Business Tips – Three Small Business Innovations You Need To Know About

The best small business tip that I could give you might just be this one: There is a big difference between a “Good” small business Entrepreneur, and a “Great” one.A good small business Entrepreneur reacts to changes in their environment or industry. A GREAT Entrepreneur doesn’t need to react, because they can see the future.This means that Robert Zemeckis must not be a “great” entrepreneur.So who is Robert Zemeckis? He’s not, as far as I know, a small business owner, and chances are you’ve never heard his name. But you are most likely aware of his work.He is the director of several outstanding movies, most notably the Back to the Future trilogy. He is widely regarded as a great director and an inventive thinker in the film industry.So why, then, is he not a great Entrepreneur? Simple. He doesn’t have a crystal ball.Not too long ago I decided to watch Back to the Future II with my kids. I loved this movie growing up, and thought my kids might like it too.In this flick, Marty McFly travels to the future, and gets to ride hover-boards, cruise around in flying cars, and see his future self and family.I loved the creativity in this movie – the hover boards were awesome, the back-straightening robot was a chiropractor’s dream toy, and who doesn’t want a flying car? It was pretty enjoyable to watch this show again after almost 20 years, and I thought the director did a good job of dreaming up the future……and then Marty McFly picked up a payphone.SCREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEECHWhat? Picked up a pay phone? With all of the crazy amazing inventions this guy dreamed up – flying cars and hoverboards and dehydrated pizzas and robot maids – he couldn’t imagine something as sensible and practical as a cell phone?Surely he could have imagined that pay phones would be obsolete by 2015…since, well, they pretty much are. (When was the last time YOU went looking for a pay phone?)Good hell, even the writers for Star Trek dreamed up “communicators”!Obviously, Robert Zemeckis could make up a future fantasy land – but he didn’t have a crystal ball to show him the future. He dreamed up a bunch of crazy inventions that weren’t practical – but he failed to imagine this one big invention that would revolutionize our lives (and what’s even more head-scratching – it’s something that we actually had the technology for when the film was made!)Robert Zemeckis doesn’t seem to have it in him to be a “great” entrepreneur. He doesn’t have a crystal ball.Do you?The biggest innovations and industry-changing advancements have come from people who could clearly envision the future. These innovators (who are also usually GREAT Entrepreneurs) can see what’s around them, and imagine something better – and then CREATE what they imagine!And plenty of crystal-ball-carrying Entrepreneurs and small business owners have made fortunes acting quickly when those innovations just start to take hold. (Here’s another big small business tip – be the front runner on new innovations)If you can’t innovate, or predict which innovations will change the way your customers think or behave, then you are in danger of becoming like the typewriter repairman – i.e. extinct.The marketplace is changing and evolving every single day. Here are three major recent innovations that are changing the world RIGHT NOW. These are movements that are going to stick. These are innovations that might just force you to change your operating strategies and marketing plans. These are innovations that as a small business owner you cannot afford to ignore.1. Tablets are the new laptops.You may have noticed these new-fangled gadgets called “tablets”. Apple popularized the idea, and realizing how revolutionary this product was, Samsung and others quickly jumped on the bandwagon. People have already started to carry them around like day-planners. They are completely replacing peoples’ entire briefcases. And it’s only a matter of time before they make laptops (and maybe even desktops) as we know and “love” them completely obsolete.Soon enough, if it doesn’t have a screen that you can touch to navigate your way around, and if there’s a keyboard or a mouse attached to it, then no one is going to want it. (“You have to use your HANDS? That’s like a baby toy!” – Classic line from Back to the Future 2)If you are in the consumer electronics industry, then you are already stocking as many Tablets as you can get your greedy little fingers on. But you might want to think about limiting your order quantity on laptops – unless you want them sitting on your “perpetual clearance rack” next to your portable CD players and Polaroid film.But there are plenty of ways you can capitalize on this craze from other industries. For example, what if you armed your sales force with tablets? Your company would be seen as a cutting-edge front runner (there’s a lot to be gained by that distinction). Also, these slick little devices have outstanding presentation abilities and applications – improving your overall level of professionalism.And it won’t be very long before they have built-in projectors, completing their annihilation of laptops (if you don’t believe that, then you probably also didn’t believe that they could fit a whole video recorder inside a teeny little phone either).2. Smartphones aren’t the wave of the future – they are the wave of RIGHT NOW.Soon you won’t be able to buy a cell phone that doesn’t come complete with the ability to play Angry Birds, surf the internet, and creep around on Facebook. In fact, it’s been estimated that already as much as 25% of all internet surfing is done on a Smartphone. And this number is going up every day. In fact, there’s a good chance that you’re reading this message right now on your Smartphone.But unless you’re a cell phone retailer, then you might wonder why this is important to you. Well, if you do any kind of advertising online, then this movement is absolutely CRUCIAL to your future prosperity. Advertising on mobile units is different from standard Internet advertising – and the audience is growing much faster than the number of advertisers are. If I could give just ONE small business tip in this article, it would be this: LEARN HOW TO PROPERLY MARKET YOUR COMPANY ON MOBILE DEVICES!3. Plugging in instead of filling up.The Toyota Prius wasn’t the first hybrid – but it’s the car generally credited with starting the Hybrid craze.The hybrid movement was originally started based on the idea of saving the environment. Green energy nuts and tree huggers ditched their “Shaggin’ Wagons” and immediately gravitated to these gas-sipping vehicles. And with the Prius, the mainstream quickly started to catch on. It wasn’t long before you saw celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio and Cameron Diaz cruising around in the funny looking cars (Prius gets a C- for style).But hybrids aren’t the future. In fact, hybrids will eventually become as extinct as their gas-guzzling counterparts.With the release of the Nissan Leaf and the Chevy Volt, the first volley of true mass-market electric cars has been launched. Make no mistake – the alternative energy craze combined with the shrinking supply of our limited fossil fuel resources will absolutely drive more and more companies to come out with their own lines of fully electric vehicles, which will change the industry in the same way that unleaded-fuel-powered vehicles forced out the “regular” crowd.But that’s not where it will end. Over the course of the next decade or so, there will be a real race to create alternative energy vehicles (instead of the P.R. farce put on by a few auto manufacturers today).Look for hydrogen powered vehicles to become more popular and economical. Don’t be surprised to see solar powered cars hitting the showroom floor (probably a little more popular in Phoenix than in Seattle). And a few decades down the road, I fully expect to see (*gasp*) soccer moms shuttling their kids around in Nuclear Powered SUVs.If you are an auto dealer, your course of action here should be obvious. But what if you’re not? What small business tips could we possibly give to the non-auto-dealer crowds related to Green Machines?Well, on the small business level, the “Going Green” movement is as much about public relations as anything else. It’s outstanding P.R. to be seen as a company that cares about the environment and conserving natural resources – especially for a small business!Imagine the positive P.R. that you could generate if your computer repair squad cruised around in fully electric cars rather than gas-guzzlers? What would your customer’s reaction be if their pizza showed up at their door inside a Nissan Leaf instead of a 1997 Corolla?You could even push the Green Revolution envelope a step farther – by installing wind turbines or solar panels on top of your building, or mandating electronic delivery of invoices (which has the added bonus of saving you quite a bit of cold-hard-cash).Here were three quick MAJOR examples of innovations changing the entire market – and the way every-day business is conducted – on a wide-scale. But every single day individual industries are being revolutionized. Including your own.So pull out your crystal ball, and start figuring out where these innovations are going to come from so you can prepare for them. Or better yet, why don’t YOU become the innovator yourself? After all, in business, it’s always better to be forcing the reaction, than doing the reacting!These are just a few of the many ways that you can give your small business a completely UNFAIR competitive advantage. But they aren’t the most powerful way…

What Makes Good Advertising – Easy Tips for Beginners

In the journey of marketing your products or services, what makes good advertising could really be the most important chapter you ever take the time to learn about.Advertising is the unspoken means of communicating to potential customers and is a vital component of major companies. It’s really essential for smaller business owners too and if you can understand how it works, then it can also give you the edge over your competition.Owing to it’s acquired popularity and demand, advertising services is an industry in itself. Nowadays the smart people expect a lot from their advertising promotions because a lot of their market awareness and income comes as a result of this.Numerous small scale and large Industries are dependent on the advertising industry for laying their ground work and promotion. But contrary to popular belief, most advertisements are not successful. In fact, the majority of them may not connect with the potential customer at all, which is a shame because it is lost money,In other words, there are certain rules that one needs to abide by, for creating a good advertisement that is helpful as well as resourceful. What makes good advertising is a skill that has to be learned and is a joy when you get it right. Now, here are a few things for you to consider:Tip #1 – Know who your customers areThe most important rule for advertising is selecting the right target audience. This is mandatory as, the wavelengths and sensibilities of different classes of people are different all over the globe. Be sure to consider who would benefit from what you have to offer and target them. For example, don’t try to sell your cooking product in a knitting magazine just because it is read by housewives.Tip #2 – Understand their needsAn essential part of what makes good advertising is in knowing how your product or service can benefit your customer. For example, your advertisement should always talk to the customer about: A) how they will profit from their investment, or B) why they will look better from taking your supplement, or C) how they will feel healthier from receiving your therapy, or D) why they can be safer and more secure from installing your product etc. This is how to connect with your target audience.Tip #3 – Add credibilityGain confidence from your audience. Support your advertisements with facts, testimonials, statistical graphs, charts and references to make them visually more appealing and believable.For example, suppose you are promoting a weight gain supplement by the company “XYZ”, you need to support your product in a reassuring tone with pictures or proof of previous users who have achieved desirable results from using that particular product.Tip #4 – Grab their attentionWho says cheesy lines can only be used by roadside Romeos? They can also be put to use effectively in adverts in order to make them catchy. You should give those minute details in an advertisement some thought to make it stand out in a crowd of dull, boring adverts that all look the same.Gone are the days of monotonous sing song advertisements. Nowadays, people like them to be creative & cool and this is one of those tricks that you should consider using if you want to know what makes good advertising.Tip #5 – Call a spade a spadeDo not use confusing languages or hidden meanings in your promotion as the prospective customer may not understand it. The first lesson of learning what makes good advertising is that you put it in a simple manner, in a language that people can understand without trying to be too clever.Provide hard hitting facts and list the important benefits first rather than the features, which will enable people to choose your product at a single glance.Tip #6 – Be creativePrepare a resourceful advertisement, but with a twist. Surprise the audience and keep the interest alive with special discounts or other incentives.One must remember that this is also an art form and can only be perfected with the help of correct knowledge. There are some individuals and companies that understand this and advertise on a regular basis and keep their company running at a profit. They know exactly what makes good advertising – and so can you with just a little bit of effort.

Why CPA Advertising?

Advertising is a message intended to promote or sell a produce, a service, or an idea. It reaches people through varied types of mass communication. The internet is one of the most cost-effective means to advertise which connects more than 1.5 billion users all over the world. Internet advertising has become a global business; along with it is the CPA advertising model.In the first quarter of 2010, internet-advertising revenues in the United States have reached record high $5.9 billion, which is a 7.5% increase during the same period in 2009. This marked the highest first-quarter revenue in the internet industry.Successful advertising programs like Google’s AdSense and AdWords program is based on a pay-per-click (PPC) system, which means that an advertiser pays for every click on the link of the site of the product, or service that is being advertised. Because of the success of this advertising scheme, Google earns a large chunk on the internet advertising industry.However, because PPC is a very expensive means of advertising, cost-per-action (CPA) advertising is fast emerging in the advertising arena. Unlike PPC that relies on the volume of hits or viewers on an ad without really achieving your goal on selling a product, CPA is performance-based program. A website visitor must perform the advertiser’s required action before a publisher or a website owner is paid.CPA advertising has rapidly become a way of getting results without investing in a large amount, which makes it suitable for small and large businesses’ advertising needs.It is a great opportunity for your website to reach a huge number of internet users to connect to the product or services you are selling through your online advertisement. By paying only for the people who signed up on your website, filled out your survey or order for your product, you are investing in something that will get a good return.The primary benefit for the advertisers is you get what you pay for.As an advertiser, you must know when to use CPA advertisement to your advantage:• Testing the waters. You can test the marketing scenario for your product before giving it full-blast marketing.• Limited budget. The design of the CPA based advertising is perfect in terms of budgetary concerns. It is an easy way to put the word out about your business or product to potential buyers without putting a hole in your pocket.• Increase sales. If other means of advertising has been unsuccessful, this method is almost risk free.• Effectiveness of advertisement. You can immediately see the effectiveness of your advertisement before launching a major advertisement campaign. You can gauge the sales quickly base upon your ad campaign.Taking all thing considered, a marketer always needs to consider where his business stands to enable a good marketing strategy that will save cost but will not compromise a product or service’s quality to boost sales.When you want to sell your products online, CPA advertising is still the best option to make your business flourish.