28th October 2014

Anticipate Or End up Like My School Uniform Shop

Anyone who has kids will have undergone the tortuous business of buying the school uniform, and only being able to buy it from the local school uniform shop. As this was the only place you could get a uniform, their prices reflected this – what a great business to have! No need to worry about customer service  -and they didn’t. No need to worry if you ran out of a particular size; after all kids grow so parents can just […]
24th October 2014

Top Five Things to Ask Your Recruitment Partner

Here are my top five questions that you should be asking any recruitment company who are going to hep you find some more staff for your business: 1. What do I get for my money? Rather than asking what will it cost, ask what you will actually get for your cash. To read the other four top tips click here
22nd October 2014

Does Your Business Need More Clarity?

The world of business is an uncertain one, full of change and complex issues. When you are the boss, everyone expects you to be able to steer the business and have an answer to every query. You may also be expected to know whats happening out there in the market as well as whats happening in the business. If only things were that easy! So, we need to accept that you can’t know everything especially when its external to the […]
16th October 2014

Zoho CRM, The Much Requested One Pager

I’ve been asked several times to summarise Zoho CRM in a few words, so that even a non systems and non CRM expert can understand it, so here is a one page summary. Zoho CRM is a cloud based business system development platform. This is accessed through a browser on a computer, and is also available as an app on a smart phone or tablet. Zoho CRM can be used either by an Enterprise wide SME on a permanent basis, […]
9th October 2014

Sound Advice from a Video Expert

Having a scalpel doesn’t make you a surgeon Knowing one end of a ladle from the other doesn’t make you a chef And having a video camera doesn’t make you a film director. We can all apply that kind of logic to our own area of expertise. In video, the advent of the iPhone could be seen as sounding the death knell for those of us making corporate video. Certainly, for the right business with the right kind of message […]
7th October 2014

Beware of Telecoms Fraud

Communications fraud is becoming increasingly common in the UK. It is defined as the use of telecommunications products or services without the intention to pay for them. It may also be known as Toll Fraud or Call Phreaking. This type of fraud occurs when someone dials into your phone system, and uses your telephone lines to route calls at your expense. These types of calls tend to be to international destinations, costing the bill payer large amounts of money. You […]
29th September 2014

It’s about Merchandising – Six Tips to Replicate Pester Power in Your Website

We’ve all stood at that supermarket check out and been tempted to buy the array of sweets and snacks that have been placed right next to the checkout, or been nattered at by a little person who can also see those delicious items and wants them ‘Now!’. Supermarkets also put certain items at eye level to encourage you to buy them, and put and others above or below your eye-line. These tactics undoubtedly work, and drives sales volume, otherwise they […]
16th September 2014

How to Eat an Elephant Using an iPhone

You’ve all heard that question and answer – how do you eat an elephant? Bit by bit until its all gone. So, to twist that question, when do you start eating that elephant? Obviously the answer is as far enough ahead of when it has to be gone so that you can eat it in small chunks so as not to get an elephant sized amount of indigestion! But what if you don’t like the taste of elephant and keep […]
15th September 2014

Does Your Marketing have Momentum?

Many people often overlook a basic detail when considering a marketing strategy – Momentum. An example of what I mean by this is as follows: A company approaches us to help them with their online marketing strategy. Often they’ll say they’ll say that they have ‘tried Twitter’ or ‘tried Facebook’ but that they didn’t work. When we look into it a little further, we find that they were active on Twitter, and sent tweets out every day, but only for […]
12th September 2014

Our Business Needs to Raise it’s Profile – How Long Will it Take?

We are often asked the above question by potential clients. We try to be upfront and manage our clients expectations in relation to this question, and although generating coverage and awareness starts immediately, it can take between 3-6 months for PR to really start working. Being recognised as the expert in a particular field takes longer to achieve – mainly because this space is fiercely competitive irrespective of the sector. The benefits of being called on by the media to comment […]
10th September 2014

7 Essential Business Systems to Make 6-Figures Without Burning Out

Anyone running their own business will realise that this job involves millions of details and moving parts. If you are the only person you rely on to remember and act on all of these things, you will get burnt out. Things will get missed and fall through the cracks, and ultimately this will result in the loss of customers. This is why the creation of systems is crucial if you are to create a joined up and productive business. People […]
8th September 2014

Creating a Memorable Brand Experience

It is a basic need that businesses should deliver their products or services well. However, the businesses that go that little bit further are the ones that really stand out and remain in people’s memory. If you have a business that relies on word of mouth referrals then you should read this blog. Customers these days are too busy to think about and concentrate on everything you have to say. that is why you need to give them something to […]
4th September 2014

How Do I Recruit the Right Person?

As I recruiter, I have often been asked the question “How do I recruit the right person?” There is no straightforward and definitive answer for this. However, having given it a lot of thought, I have come up with 12 steps that should make it easier for you to find and recruit the right person. 1. Know what skills you need – Undertake an analysis of the job. Often when this is done, a business finds that the skills they […]
3rd September 2014

Why No-One Talks to Car Salesmen Anymore.

The internet has had a seriously detrimental effect on car salesmen and car showrooms. Buying cars from online businesses has undercut the car showroom hugely, and this is only set to continue. Years ago we would have visited a few different showrooms to chat to the salesmen before making a purchase. Nowadays, the research can all be dome online. Whether you’ve ever thought about it like this or not, but your business is like a car showroom. This example can […]
1st September 2014

Hours of Hashtags

Business owners have found that Twitter is a great way of engaging with new people and potential customers for their business. So, what exactly are these #hours? These hashtag hours are a great way to talk to other twitters in and around a certain location, or to engage with those people that wish to talk about a certain topic. It is also a great way to chat to people in your local community. To read more of this post click […]
29th August 2014

Slides, Friction and Customer Experience

I can remember a couple of times when I was young that my Mum actually polished the slide in my local park. Yes, she took a can of polish and a duster to the park and polished the slide surface! The polishing meant that the slide experience was even more exciting, as I flew down the slide extremely fast and without any friction, and myself and my friends repeated this process time and time again. It is just the same […]
27th August 2014

5 Photo Tips for Every Business

Photos used to be thought of as space fillers on a website. They were often stock images from photography websites, that were completely unrelated to you, and used with little thought of what they were saying. However, those days are over, and photos should be used to tell a story about you and your business. This is where great photos come in. Read our top 5 photo tips for every business: 1. First Impressions are now online – although we […]
21st August 2014

UK Economy Grows, Customer Satisfaction Declines

Although the UK economy appears to be on the rise after the worst slump since WWII, customer satisfaction is on the decline. The UK Customer Satisfaction Index was updated in July 2014, which showed the third consecutive drop in customer satisfaction over the last 18 months. Of the 197 organisations featured in the survey, only 28 increased their satisfaction scores, with 96 seeing their scores decline. To read more of this post click here
19th August 2014

Journalists – What Really gets on Their Wick about PR?

Here are some of our do’s and don’ts about approaching journalists. Journalists would, in an ideal world, prefer to produce original content rather than using press releases. However, if you have a good story sourced from good PR, this can provide useful material for a journalist that ultimately makes their job easier. From chatting to reporters over the years, here is the list of our top 5 journalists’ PR hates: 1. How does that relate to our readers? A journalist […]
11th August 2014

Is It You? Some Food for Thought

Much of the strategic marketing I do with businesses is based on three simple questions: 1. What am I selling and what problem does it solve? 2. Who do I think will buy it, and what exactly do I know about my customers? 3. Why do they choose my product over another similar one? If you know who you are aiming your products or services at, and how to create really compelling marketing messages aimed at that specific group of […]
7th August 2014

Don’t Make Life Difficult, The Alternative is Too Easy

The internet is a great tool for putting your company in front of people who might never have seen/found your business. However, this comes at a price as the competition for anything is now much greater, as many more businesses are completing online for the same number of customers. Have you ever searched for your product on Google, to see who else appears on page 1? Whether you consider those people to be genuine competition is irrelevant, as the customer […]
5th August 2014

Core Values Define Culture

Core values should define what your culture is and are the manifestation of culture. They should not change just because times are tough, or because your business has expanded. They are the rules your business should follow. Your culture is based on the average values of everyone who is currently employed in your company. Culture fit is defined by how well a person can fit with your core values. To read more of this post click here
31st July 2014

The Future of Content Marketing

It is my opinion that content marketing will eventually end up back in the hands of creatives and copywriters. The current problem is that due to the proflieration of YouTube, Facebook, blogging, social media platforms etc, everyone becomes a content creator and it becomes very easy to think you can do it all yourself. Before the onset of all this, content creation was left to the creatives – if you wanted a big idea and story crafting you had to […]
28th July 2014

4 Reasons to Rethink Your Reluctance of Technology

Most people are not resistant to changing their technology, but just don’t want to change it regularly. Many smaller businesses have the view of  ‘it if ain’t broke don’t fix it’. Have you upgraded your technology in the past year, and do you even have the skills or staff to do this? Or is this something you do every 10 years when the old technology has failed? Here are my four reasons about why you should change your reluctance of […]
25th July 2014

PR versus advertising – chalk and cheese?

Many businesses appear to be confused between the difference between PR and advertising. Advertising is focused on the promotion of products or services to encourage people to buy, but PR creates positive publicity about a particular company, organisation or person. The other differences include: Adverts will always be published  – PR may not. You can pay for advertising to be shown as amany times as you can afford. Howevver, with PR You can pay for advertising to feature in the […]
21st July 2014

How to Engage Effectively with your Employees

Employee engagement is crucial for all businesses, but especially so for small independent businesses, ads they are the ones that have fewer people who can make a huge impact on your customers and your bottom line. It is also worth noting that a lot of the drivers for engagement do not come with direct costs, so this can be a way of helping you gain a competitive advantage over your rivals. Difficult employees-  these are the ones that you may […]
18th July 2014

Could This Help You to Increase Your Sales Growth by 3109%?

Research suggests that 73% of business buyers say ‘No’ at least five times to any salesperson before they eventually say ”Yes’. The same research also states that 92% of salespeople give up and move on to another target before they get to their fifth ”No’. That means that 92% of the sales force rush around trying to get hold of the 27% of sales where decisions are made quickly, 8% of sales people wait around and stand the chance of […]
14th July 2014

Five Secrets to Creating Training Videos That Won’t Bore Viewers to Tears

Here are five tips to help you to make a compelling training video: 1: Don’t make a training video! If you are going to televise an existing workshop or training course, then don’t bother! If you need to add a video into your training, use it to enhance the training programme or workshop, not replace it. 2. Focus You need to decide what the one thing is you want the audience to remember from the video. If you don’t know, […]
10th July 2014

Finally, We’re Forecasting Growth

A recently published report has shown that 71% of Yorkshire’s smaller businesses are forecasting growth over the next 3 months. There has been a large rise in recruitment, and a quarter of businesses have already taken on more staff.  The question these businesses needed to ask themselves is, did we need a permanent member of staff? Maybe the ideal route would have been to employ a graduate/apprentice to fill the skills gap that existing staff cannot do? To read more […]