Google Gmail Rocks it again!

I just signed onto my gmail account and received a notice that they are upgrading the Gmail platform again, surprise, surprise. it’s not the Gmail makes too many changes to often it’s just they take you by surprise, and this one did take me totally by surprise. I started playing with it and it has some pretty cool features, they redesigned the composure message box that makes it more streamlined look and less green space necessary to have all the same features that they had before. Now all the functions we used to find above the e-mail message are below the e-mail message in small icons. They are hover over activated so that means if you hover over one of the icons up pops a description of what that icon is for, makes it easy to follow.

One of the other cool features is the auto window sizing as you typing along the window grows larger. The old features that is slightly improved on is the autosave feature,  I don’t know about you but I like that I think that’s cool feature. One feature that Google has been playing with for while and that is the send as feature if you have multiple e-mail accounts allows you to send as if you were sending from that e-mail account right from your primary Gmail account, again another really cool feature’s Ashley for us to have multiple Gmail and e-mail accounts.

If you change your mind you can switch back to the old experience at any time. Here’s how: start by clicking compose, at the bottom corner of the message pane, click the more menu icon, next to the discard button. Then select “temporarily switch back to old compose”. this will take you back to the old compose method temporarily, but you’ll end up having to deal with this  version sooner or later. this is like most any other change we just need to embrace it, were going to have to have it so just embrace it.

Google I find is more than friendly to Mr Businessman / woman they make so many tools for the business community.

Pardon me as I am a Google Fanatic. But that is my opinion.

Agree / Disagree?

 

Good to be Quiet?

[kc_background_pac_2_highlight_13 size=”28″ color=”#000000″]When is it good to be quiet?[/kc_background_pac_2_highlight_13]

It is time to be Quiet

shhhs

I learned is sales training that there is a number of time you should be quiet. I am going to cover just 2 today.

I need to start this by stating a rule that learned early on in my career “God gave Us 2 ears and 1 mouth, what do You think that HE was trying to tell Us.”
I have found that quite a few people can not stand this. I am not really sure why, but even in just general conversation I find that most people want to hear themselves talk and really don’t care what you have to say.

When you ask a customer a question, we were taught (rightfully so) to Shut Up and listen. The customer will tell you the answer to your question if you let him/her. They may go around the question a little, give them a chance. When they pause (as if they are done with their answer) then to clarify their answer it is best to restate what you thought you heard so that you can be sure that you understand their question and supply a good answer. Most people will appreciate this.

It would start something like this: How can I help you today?
Wait for the answer, then you restate by saying something like this. Ok, if I understand your question/comment correctly, you are looking for a green widget that has yellow stripes, is that correct?
Be quiet and wait for the answer, again they will tell you if you are right or not and clear up what you missed.
The main reason for this type of questioning and restating is so that there is a clear dialog between you and the customer. You will also find that you are clearer about what the customer needs. This will make your Q&A time with the customer will be shorter and more direct, and more fulfilling for both you and the customer. You will also have a happier customer because you took the time to Listen to Them.

You would be surprised how effective this is, it will win you more respect with your customers by hearing them out.
In sales it is known fact that when you ask a closing question, the first person that speaks after you ask that question, loses.

When a customer is irate, this is one of the best times to be quiet, and wait until they have run out of steam. Now going along with the not interrupting their thought process, when they pause you can say something like, “really, wow, I am sorry, is there more?” Now be sure that you are polite when you say this and DON’T say it in a condescending manner.
When it seems that they have said it all you can say, “I am really very sorry that you feel that way, I am sure that we can fix Your problem to Your satisfaction.” This is also a good time to paraphrase what you thought that you heard by saying, “let me see if I understand you correctly,” then restate (by paraphrasing) what you thought you heard and the customer will tell you if your right or not.
This is really where you need to remember the God theory. You will find if you let the customer rant, that will take a lot of the wind from their preverbal sail and you will have a happier person over all.

Now I do understand that sometimes that this just does not work and that is generally because that customer has a chip on their shoulder and is not going to let it go, so it is up to you to use your 2 ears to Your advantage.

Farmville a Business Plan

Lewis Black did a set on Farmville and it hilarious,

and a great education if you look between the lines.
Through the whole 1 minute 2 seconds he dropped only 1 f bomb, thank you Lewis.
He explains the basic farmville business plan, as only Lewis Black can.
I personally don’t mind the vulgarity, he uses it to add impact to what he is saying.
Best part is I think that he has something good to say.

Lewis Black talks about Framville

Lewis Black asks you, “have ever heard of Farmville?”

Lewis Black on Farmville star rating

The Farmville a Business Plan has become a different way of marketing all together. They are selling the best product that you can possibly sell, you own the rights to, intellectual property rights. This is truly what dreams are made of, there is not 1 physical product that they sell, on Farmville. Keep in mind that I don’t indulge in Farmville even tho I have a number of family members that indulge. The point is that this product line came from a desire to build a farm and look what it has done today. There is so many 3 party retailers in that space, you might be surprised, then again maybe not. And they are selling physical products. You could do the same thing but I got my fill of selling physical products years ago (40 to be more accurate).
I hope that you are starting to see how the Farmville business plan is a winning idea. What if you could build an Auto Plant as a stand alone product or an add on to farmville. Or where Simm City could interact with Farmville, or your own take on building a city as a space station around the earth or somewhere in outer space.  This is where you need to let your mind wander. What is the next big game, look at Angry Birds, that game makes no sense to me, at all, but look at what it is doing.

You should be able to connect the Farmville Business Plan to information products. They are very close to this type of a product, where as it is mostly digital and not physical. (Physical products require pre purchasing so that you can have stock on hand and all of the issues that go along with physical products.) The way that you beat this issue is by having products that you print on demand so that the only thing that you have as a inventory is a digital file. That’s a good thing.
If you are not new to the online business then you may have a Hard Drive full of articles / information / PLR products (private label rights) / MRR to products that you have never done anything with (master resell rights) or who knows what you might have available to you at the click of a mouse. Now is the time do something with it, I know I am. I stopped buying and now I am posting what I have learned and some of the PLR products that I am adding value to and republishing them.

Now if you really think about it the Farmville Business Plan is what the entire internet business is based on, not really if you look at being an Amazon affiliate. Then if you really examine it you are just an affiliate and don’t ever handle anything other that your keyboard. What a great business plan that allows you to sell something that is not there except in ones and zeros. Use this to your advantage and create a game or a book or a lesson plan or what ever you heart desires.

 

 

Starting a New Business 101

[kc_background_pac_2_highlight_5 size=”38″ color=”#000000″]Starting a New Business 101[/kc_background_pac_2_highlight_5]

Some things never change and how to start your new business the right way is one of those that over the last 2 or more decades has not changed. So what is that magic sauce? None other than your core interest, what you like to do and what are you good at. Since you will be sleeping, eating and breathing your new venture, it needs to be something that you are passionate about. Not rocket science here.

What comes even before this passion is there a need? Here is where you need to put your nose to the grind stone right from the very beginning to see if there is a customer base out there that is willing to part with their hard earned money. Go to the library, ask other business owners that are in the same business or related businesses, search online to see if the numbers are there.
Just because you are passionate about something doesn’t mean that there is a market for your passion. This is where you can spend some money to validate your desire or to shoot it down. If you shoot it down now you will be thousands ahead later.

Once you have verified the existence of a valid market you can start moving forward toward choosing your location. This is where the Realtor’s really have it right, Location, location, location, is the 3 most important parts of your choice. Here is where the simple method of sitting outside of the location that you are looking at and see how many of your core customers actually pass or stop by this location.

Another way would be just asking a group of your customer types, where they would like to see a business like yours to be, or where would they go to shop at your type of business.

Crunch the numbers by writing a business plan. One step that I like to add here is what I call a Ben Franklin, and this is a simple method that can help you make a decision about your business right from the start. Do this by taking a piece of paper and drawing a line down the middle of it and place 2 words at the top, “PRO” and “CON”. You start by listing all of the Pro “positive” things about your new business and of course “Con” all of the reasons that you shouldn’t start this new venture of yours.

This is starting a new business 101.

Good luck or better yet “Good Skill” as I hope that it is your skill that makes your business flourish and not luck.

3 Most Important Social Media Marketing sites

[kc_background_pac_2_highlight_3 size=”36″ color=”#000000″]The 3 Most Important Social Media Marketing sites today.[/kc_background_pac_2_highlight_3]

This is a list of the most important features that are often overlooked and most important because of the hidden marketing features.

Facebook

They make announcements every week almost about new updates and features that often some of the newest often go overlooked. Follow this link to see what 1 developer has to say about them.

http://engage.synecoretech.com/marketing-technology-for-growth/bid/137414/Why-Facebook-Rocks-for-Developers-Marketers-and-Users

If you use Images Anywhere you post this needs to be address. A personal friend of mine had a battle with a Lawyer this year about this very issue and he lost $3,400 to the attorney. His name and the product that he produced to answer this problem is located here.

There is a number of sites that you can go to where the people that like new sites and help out the new person trying to get likes. Those will be available to members of my “the New Marketing Basics” site.

Then you can also ask questions of these people and you will get some of the best answers here very much like you can from the Facebook People.

 

LinkedIn

For business owners this IS the most IMPORTANT B2B site on the planet. That is the good news and the bad news is that it is not cheap.

Here is where you really want to use your key words to connect with your customers.

Recommendations by customers.

This is where you really need to get your customers to give you glowing recommendations.

 

Applications that you can use.

Taking advantage of these apps will allow you to further engage your community, which is important to communicate with your social media community.

 

Twitter

With only 140 characters to use, it seems that you don’t have a lot of choices. Think again, there is #hasttags, & retweets and short codes that most of us use already.

Advance Search

With Twitter’s advanced search you are able to pinpoint words, hashtags, and people that are specific to their industry.

Twitter list

This is a great way to organize & keep track of customers, competitors, leads and leaders in any industry. Don’t forget about the private lists that you can purchase access too.

Reply to Tweets

If you reply to a post or a question make sure that you BEGIN your Tweet with a period @reply ( like this .@replyname) other wise your followers will not see that reply.

Hootsuite

This and other third party applications allow users to monitor, save and reference various searches all day long. Using these searches can be used to engage users and engaging with users is the foundation to a successful social media strategy.

I want to thank the web site www.business2community.com that inspired this article.

Thom Leonard