New Opportunity that every Service Business needs!


Do you run a service business?  Is your business booming?  What would you do if I tell you that you could probably add more business and effect your bottom line more with what I am going to tell you about than you can with any other marketing idea or any pricing change.  Most of you will tell me I am crazy but I will tell you that I promise what I am about to tell you works, and it works so well that it will change your business forever and you will probably not have any competition for a while allowing you to capture a huge market share.

I imagine only a few will ever find this blog and will ever read this post.  This will be the only time the information will be gave away and as we speak this is being put into a sales system that will be promoted via a website where for a very small fee you will get an ongoing system to implement into your business.

This whole thing started a year ago as I was watching my favorite TV program on a shopping network and purchasing watches.  This company along with several others offer interest free payment plans on there merchandise.  Example instead of charging full price up front for a $300 watch they break it down in 4 to 6 interest free payments which they will bill monthly on your debit or credit card but they will send you the item today by just paying the first payment plus S/H.  I kept thinking that I would love to offer something like that in my business and then one day I realized I was foolish and could offer it but needed the correct tools and the company that I could sign on with to allow me to create ACH payment plans for my clients via there checking accounts, debit cards, or major credit cards.  It took me less than 3 days and I found the company that offered everything I wanted and did it in such a way that anyone could sign on with them without having to change there existing credit card processing!!!

What does this mean to my business.  I have on average during my busy time of 5 to 10  clients a week contacting me wanting my service and willing to do business with me but when they hear the cost it becomes a situation where they cannot come up with the fee all at once or it will take them some time to come up with the entire payment.  If I did payment plans where I sent out bills and I actively managed monthly billings calling and collecting non pays it would be totally unprofitable and my non pays would run higher than I am willing to accept.  Now that I am able to implement the ACH plan the default rate on the service I offer is less than 10 percent.  I get full price for the services I offer.  I am able to build a significant year round income from clients that normally I would loose.

The amazing thing is I have done internet searches and have found no one in my entire industry that is offering this!!!!  This is amazing to me and the opportunity is so big it is hard for me to grasp but I am attempting to now.  Please stay tuned and if you are interested in a system that will build significant additional monthly income sometimes dwarfing the income you are currently making, then I have the system you will want to learn and implement!!!

 

 

Wake Up!!! The Sky is Not Falling!!!!


I listen daily to business owners who have forgotten everything and because CNN is speaking of the current job outlook and the unemployment rate they are scared and paralyzed and cannot make a decision on if they should take advantage of the many opportunities out there today.

Ok so let me remind you of something. Jobs are a lagging indicator and all the news outlets know this!!! But it does not stop them from promoting the possiblity of the sky falling!!! I am witnessing intelligent business owners who are buying more and more because of firesales and deals knowing that very soon they will be able to cash in big on the current market conditions and people inablity to correctly interpret the conditions.

Please study and do not let people scare you away from opportunity screaming for you to act.

Published in: Uncategorized on July 21, 2010 at 4:05 am  Leave a Comment  
Tags: , , ,

Constant Contact or Send Out Cards which is better?


Over the last week this question has been raised to me over and over.  I am amazed at the answers I have seen given and confused on how so many people can get this one wrong.  This is like comparing apples and spinach.  Neither have very much to do with each other but when used correctly both will serve their own purpose.

So lets see if we can settle this by explaining what each of these companies products do and what they are best used for.  Constant Contact is a program used to keep a business in front of the masses.  It is a tool that you can use to get information once delivered by direct mail campaigns out to a large number of people letting them know about your services and products.  If you read Constant Contacts information they tell you that if you are sending out a campaign that achieving a 40 percent open rate, or 40 percent of your emails that were sent were actually looked at, is a high number and should be considered a success.  One of the biggest downfalls with Constant Contact is the limitation that you cannot put purchased opt in email addresses in their system.  So if you decided to take your email marketing to the next level do not use Constant Contact to deliver paid leads.  Other than that restriction which is enough for me to look elsewhere Constant Contact is a great program and something every business owner needs to put in their marketing plan.

Now to what Send Out Cards is and what function it provides.  Send Out Cards is a very personal way to build business relationships and track these communications through a very nice Contact Manager.  Send Out Cards is the perfect tool for most small business owners today to implement in their daily routine capturing all the prospects and leads they come in contact with on a daily basis that before they just let slip away.  It is amazing that the majority of business owners will pay thousands for 200 clients but they let that many and many more slip through their fingertips daily when a program such as Send Out Cards is cost-effective, time effective, and gives them the platform to never waste another lead the come in contact with.  For more information on Send Out Cards go to www.sendoutcards4all.com

Send Out Cards and programs such as Constant Contact should not be competing against each other since as I have shown they serve 2 totally but important services to business.  Business Owners need to think very hard about where their dollars are going and need to start taking advantage of programs such as both of these to maximize their results.

Now is the Time to Go Into Business!!!!


I have noticed over the past several months a shift taking place in our economy.  specifically with people who have the financial means to go into business and finally it appears that we are getting to the point where people are getting used to this economy and willing to take a chance and go into business with their money.  This group of people I am speaking of are very conservative with their money and do not just jump into business without doing their homework.  They have either been succesful in business in the past or they are employees that have determined that trusting someone else for their income is not the wisest thing to do.

Financing in this country is really a thing of the past for the most part.  The days of the average American being able to finance anything they desire is over and now very carefull planning needs to go into our financial planning understanding that cash is truly “King”.  When leverage is available and when it can be used to preserve “Cash” it needs to be taken very seriously.  Also understanding the benefits of having the leverage available is huge.  I was about to venture into several other business activities over the next few years untill I realized that by doing so I would be leaving a Golden Opportunity sitting on the sideline and ignoring the obvious because I have the ability and resources to obtain positive leveraging while keeping my money on the sideline and producing great income year after year.  Not doing so would have been very foolish so now I will leave my money on the sideline and instead of using it for another business venture continue to add to it as long as I have the ability I have now to buy businesses with the right terms that will cash flow their first year and produce positive cash flow from the beginning.

Educating ones self on business and what the true current conditions are in respect with your situation is key and have to be studied daily.  I have quit my reading books concerning business today because I do not agree nor do I trust most authors ability to properly read what is actually taking place in business today.  Instead I have started reading books by Authors in the early 1900s to 1950s who went through the same kind of problems were facing today who faced a lot of the same credit issues we are facing right now.  This has allowed to me see the real picture and take advantage of so many items I would have overlooked in the past.

Are you looking to go into business but not quite sure you are ready?  There is one trait that is consistent throughout all successful Salespeople and Business owners and that is an ability to organize and utilize a system to stay in front of prospects and clients so that you waste no opportunity.  If you in your normal life have not developed a plan such as this I urge you to read my Blog on Send Out Cards and go to www.sendoutcards4all.com and consider starting this very important habit today.  Do not waste a second and by starting today you will be ahead of 99.9 percent of the people you are competing with!!!!  Once this habit is created you will be able to fly past people who have been in business for years attaining results you only dreamed about.

Buying a Franchise? Step 1 – Understand the Financial Aspects of the Business!


So, you’re considering purchasing a Franchise!!!  Great, now before you get to exited lets ask ourselves a question.  Do you understand the financial side of the business you are going to start?  I understand you understood what you were told by the franchisers but have you sat down and went through a budget?  If not then I am going to tell you right now without any question you are not ready to buy this franchise and you are definitely not ready to open!!

I am amazed by how many franchisees I speak with that have never been able to get a grasp on their budget, even after operating a franchise for multiple years and most do not see this as an issue of why they are struggling or in some instances failing.  If you do not understand what it is going to take to get you to an acceptable profit margin then you are going to either hit it and be extremely lucky or you are going to struggle year after year wondering why you ever bought into a franchise in the first place and wonder what on earth are you doing incorrectly.

Lets clear up a common misconception out in the franchise world today.  I do not care what franchise you are with, the franchisers and the franchisees goals and objectives are not always going to match up and in some cases are going to be opposite of each other.  Franchising is not one big happy family where everyone is working for the common good and everyone’s goals and objectives are in perfect alignment.  If you think that is the case you are in for a rude awakening sooner or later.  franchisers are not nearly concerned about your profit margin or your cash flow as you think and a lot of what you are being told has to be evaluated carefully because franchisers and franchisees objectives are sometime different!!!  The vast majority of franchisers make their money off of Royalties which are a percentage of sales.  The more sales you make the more money they make.  Now if you make more money but your profit margin goes down does it hurt the franchisers?  No, not at all as long as you are not endanger of going under.  If the franchisers encourages the franchisees to do a certain item but it lowers not only your profit margin but your cash flow, does it hurt the franchisers?  Not if the sales at least stay the same and if they go up then they will profit even more off of the royalties.

What I am saying is not to distrust or turn against the franchisers.  I am saying you have to take the responsiblity for your own financial health and educate yourself to know your side of the business inside out backwards and forwards.  I guarantee the franchisers does!!!  In franchising it is a game of give and take.  I as a franchisee cannot always have it my way and sometimes I have to give in and do whats best for the team.  But when I do that I must have the ability to know why I am doing it and instead of it being  blindly following the leader it is an educated thoughtful move.  Sometimes I have to do whats best for me because I have a lot shorter time horizon than the franchisers.  While the franchisers have the finances to wait 5 years for a plan to succeed and to start producing good income I have to be sure my business is solid now and my time horizon has to be much shorter by nature.

Budgets are not complicated items and do not have to confuse everyone like they do.  In my business I have simplified my budget down like this.  Number 1 item that affects my budget is what I charge clients.  If I under price myself I can lower my profit margin very quickly to 18 percent but if I charge what I know I can get I will be right at 40 percent.  Know what your charging and know how it affects your business.  2.  Labor – You have to have a control on your labor or this will kill your business.  Your plan has to produce the right labor percentages no matter what and there is no excuse for the percentage to run out of control.  Labor is controlled differently in different businesses and in another post I will go into some labor management systems but you have to get a handle on this today!!!  3.  Marketing – Your marketing dollars have to be a set amount and has to be distributed in a logical effective manner.  The trouble I see here is people putting on a blindfold and throwing darts at a dartboard hoping to hit a bullseye.  First you must have a specific amount of money you are going to spend on marketing and not a “when I have some money I will spend it”  attitude.  You also need to know what works and what doesn’t and limit yourself greatly to spending 95 percent on what you know works and the other 5 percent on items that may work.

After you get a handle on those 3 items then your business is nothing but execution and operations, something that should be the most natural thing for you to focus on and something that you should be spending the majority of your time on.  With the budget issues settled and a clear path to run on you can execute much more efficiently and also your operations will run at peak performance driving your sales upwards!!!

Send Out Cards Network Marketing, a real business tool?


Over this past winter I made a decision to stop the endless wasting of leads and prospects year after year. While I have been successful in Business I have not reached the level of success I could have if I would have had a consistent way of staying in contact with my leads, prospects, and current clients.

During one of my many Chamber of Commerce meetings I was handed a card by an individual and during an introduction session he briefly explained what SOC (Send Out Cards) was and how it worked. At that time I saw it as another Network Marketing Item that sounded great but would not work for me since I am a traditional business guy.

Three months later I was in the process to fix my inability to keep in contact with prospects and remembered SOC but of course as usual I could not locate this gentleman’s business card. During this time I had also looked into Constant Contact and was interested but with the bombardment of emails I get every day I did not want to be like everyone else and wanted something that enabled me to stand out.

I searched SOC out on the net and after looking at the model decided I was going to sign up as a distributor but not to recruit but to use the contact manager system they had and to get the discounts.

I started to use SOC on a daily basis making it a habit to send out at least 5 “It was Nice to Meet You” cards. These are people I would meet in the normal daily activities of my life that either asked me a professional question or just had a brief conversation with and where we exchanged information. I own multiple Liberty Tax offices and also own the Area Development rights along with multiple other businesses so I meet a wide range of people with different interests.

With SOC I am able to separate these people into different categories such as “Tax Client Prospects”, “Franchisee Prospects”, or “Business Owners”. The receive a hand written post card or should I say what appears to be a hand written post card letting them know that I enjoyed meeting them within 2 business days of meeting them which is something that the vast majority of people are totally blown away by. The days of receiving a post card in the mail is almost done and the “in” thing to do now is email but with email you also lose some of the personal touch you get with using postcards.

I have seen a huge increase in my conversion rate of prospects and now I do not let any contact drop through the cracks. The nicest thing is I can send 5 cards out in less than 2 minutes per card and do not have to go to the store to pick up the card, I do not have to place postage and run card to the post office, all I have to do is endure a few simple keystrokes and have a permanent record of everything I have done.

If you are interested in using this in your business visit my website http://www.sendoutcards4all.com and try it for 6 months and see if the results are more than worth the minor investment!!

I also have an email marketing program that I use and merge both databases regularly to ensure I can communicate both ways but have decided that Constant Contact was not the right program for me because of some of the restrictions.  I will write more on email marketing in the near future and look forward to hearing any recommendations since I am positive I am not doing everything I need to be doing.

Visit www.sendoutcards4all.com for further information on the SOC program or email me at louisvilleliberty@gmail.com.

Should I buy buy a new Franchise Territory or should I buy an Existing Location?


This is a question that is not answered near enough by new individuals searching for a franchise and by existing franchisees looking to expand.  This is unfortuante since this question and your ability to determine the right answer can have a tremendous impact on your success or failure.

Now if you are dealing with a Franchise Consultant, you will likely be told that without question that you should buy a new territory.  The reason for this is they know they will not get paid if you decide to buy an existing location from a franchisee that is either failing, downsizing, or struggling to keep his/her head above water.   They get paid by the franchisers for new sales and usually have no way to get paid by any of the existing franchisees looking to sell.  Another issue is that most of the Franchise Consultants that are newer in the business have no clue themselves which is better since the only business experience or franchise experience they have is Franchise Consulting and they got that experience by paying a fee or buying a franchise which gave them the ability to become a Franchise Consultant.  Once again with some homework you can find some good Franchise Consultants one of which is www.tullconsulting.com.  There are more than this but it will take you some homework to locate one that understands this type of consulting and one that is willing to do what is in your best interest and not the consultants.  One way of testing this if you have some understanding is asking loaded questions that you know the answer and see if the consultant is willing to give you bad advice just to get a sale.

I am in the tax business and I am always amazed how many good business people join a franchise and get caught up in the hype and overload of information and never take the time develop a full understanding of the business they are in.  You must understand the budget, Profit and Loss, and Cash Flow of the business you are in or you are going to struggle for a long time or you will get lucky and make it with one location only to ?  How can you make an informed decision on buying a new or existing location if you do not know what profit margin is too be expected on each and more importantly how can you make a choice like this without the ability to calculate how long if ever will you be able to attain a positive cash flow on the business.?  I know this sounds very basic but I see people who after joining a franchise lose the ability to figure these things out and base their decisions on hype and what they have heard rather than facts.

There are many other factors to consider when deciding on new or existing.  One of the big ones that I did not realize when I entered into the franchise world was the benefits of buying an existing location that has been there over 1 year versus opening a brand new location.  Consumers are creatures of habit and people do not either realize that a new location has went in or they are not willing to do business with a brand new location untill they are sure it will survive.  I have purchased existing locations that were struggling and doing terrible and have been able to capitalize on this time factor to turn the location around very quickly because of this very time factor.

On the very next post will be an example of what I am speaking of here.  We will look at buying a new franchise location and buying an existing.  We will examine what things you must look at and how to read that information correctly.

Is a Franchise the right choice for you?


Since I am a Franchise Owner and also an Area Developer I can assure you there are benefits in joining a franchise.  I can also tell you that joining a franchise is not going to assure you success and without a solid understanding of the business model you are joining you are going to struggle and possibly fail.  This blog will hopefully educate some who are considering choosing a franchise or deciding to go into business for themselves and provide them with information and tools to help them in their new venture.

First if you are serious about purchasing a franchise you will need to determine what type and then learn which model, if any, are right for you.  There are several ways to go about looking for the right franchise among those choices are using a Franchise Consultant.  Just a quick warning concerning Franchise Consultants, all Franchise Consultants are not created equally and honestly very few know very much when it comes to choosing a right franchise for you.  They are trained to let you choose any franchise you want and get the quickest commission possible and go onto the next potential client.  You have to realize that a good number of these individuals have no real experience in franchising and have purchased a business model, usually around 20k, and are desperate just to make a sale.  If they happen into a sale they will be paid very nicely from the franchisers and once you are signed up have no interest in your success or failure.  I will go into this further but will advise you to steer clear of Franchise Consultants unless you are positive they can bring something to the table. 

As you start your search for the right franchise model you must realize that all franchisers are not created equally.  Many franchisers you will find today are brand new and with being brand new you have to determine if they will be around for the long haul or will they go belly up after taking your franchise fee leaving you high and dry!!!  You must take your time and do your research on each franchise model and after determining the franchisers is financially sound you then must go on to see if other franchisees are experiencing success or are there a lot of franchisee failure going on.  This can be tricky but with a little work and a number of phone calls to multiple franchisees you can start to get a feel for how franchisers are perceived by their franchisees.  Any concerns turned up while making these phone calls must be investigated and a determination has to be made if the concerns are real concerns or are they business owners blaming issues on the franchisers that in reality is their own mismanagement of their own business.

If future posts we will go into choosing the right business model and also what to look for in the franchise organization.  Untill then take care and keep searching there are a ton of great business opportunities out there today!!!

Published in: on May 31, 2010 at 4:40 am  Leave a Comment  
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.