8 Golden Success Secrets for Small Businesses

Running a small business is as challenging as trekking to Mt. Everest without having oxygen cylinder, prior practice, and a valid map guide. The challenges are only because there are no authentic rules that can lead a small business towards success while other major obstacles comprise: low budget, limited manpower, and lack of efficient resources. But as a small business owner, you must delve into the passcodes that help you decode the secret patterns of operating a successful startup or small business. It not only helps you to sustain your current growth but also excel your business planning’s to achieve higher objectives. There are a few suggestions based on real-world experiences, which can assist you to hit the bull’s eye.

1- Utilize the power of social media:

Nowadays, the entire world revolves around social media and if you are able to use its full potential, it can immediately help you increase your sales and brand reputation with very minimum resource and effort. Social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, help you connect with a large scale of users, where you can directly interact with them, thereby allowing you to convert them into your potential clients. It forms a two-way channel that not only allows you to put your message across but also, listen to what your targeted audience want, which eventually goes a long way in improving and growing your business.

2- Research and analyze your competition:

A business turns to be successful only if it runs on some finely grinned facts and figures. And competition analysis is one of the most important elements of the process. Competition analysis tells you the strength you will require to establish your brand in the market as well as it helps to prepare your business planning adequately so that you could avoid the chances of business failure. An additional benefit of competition research is it allows for designing and developing more feasible and user-oriented products that eventually help you attain a competitive edge over the current market.

3- Work as per your plan but be flexible too:

Efficient planning is a roadmap that drives your business to the top in the long run with predefined routes. It is always advised to stick with our planning even if we face a few hurdles while running our business given that the strategies are designed after in-depth analysis. And day-to-day challenges should not incline you to alter with whatever you planned. The winners always back their business plannings regardless of the stiff challenges, but on the other side, a successful business requires the owner to be flexible enough to embrace new changes. Adapting the new ideas and concepts not only makes a business owner take smart decisions but also, keeps their core planning intact and fresh.

4- Use informative materials to build trust and loyalty:

The Internet is the best medium to reach out to the huge audience with less effort, but you should keep the fact in mind that there is already a heavy flow of advertisements and endorsements all over the web. So, what can be an efficient way to create our presence with a significant impact?

There are definitely some better ways to do it like using informative online materials such as well-written blogs, well-designed infographics, animated videos demonstrating some set of skills, and presentation sheets, etc. Following such practices will attract a huge mass to our platform to learn and engage with us, which gives a sense of trust and ultimately convert them into our long-term clients.

5- Hire your weaknesses:

A small business consists of a team of limited dedicated professionals, having different skill sets of all the corners to tackle most of the business requirements. Small businesses, sometimes, compromise in some crucial areas since they can’t hire specific individuals due to the lack of budget. To get your business positioned to the top, please don’t bear with your inefficient area. Rush into hiring experienced professional(s) so that all parts of your business fire with the same intensity.

6- Be ready for mergers and acquisitions:

Even after working with your full potential, you may not generate enough force to compete with the leading competitors. Other small businesses with the same concept may face the same situations. Just find them and join in the talks to check the possibilities of the merger to form a combined force, which can provide the required pace and power to achieve the common business goals. Mergers have a long, rich history of producing successful businesses, so don’t shy away with it. Similarly, business acquisitions are a noble idea to inject more strength to our business if budget allows us to do so.

7- Keep the quality service always on:

Quality service is the most important source that keeps your client for a longer period of time and it spreads huge positive feedbacks in the mass, driving in a large number of new clients. There have been more than just a few businesses reaching to the top just on the base of excellent service and even without spending a bomb on advertisements and business promotions. While there are other businesses which have failed miserably because of giving no importance to the quality of the services they provided. All in all, having the sound quality of the products/services is the key to succeeding in today’s cut throat competition.

8- Don’t give up:

Running a successful business is not a child’s play since it requires a lot of guts, courage, and risk-taking capabilities. It, sometimes, shakes your ambitions when going through some rough patches, and you need to have the burning desires within you to keep it alive. Keeping patience is also an important character that the small business owner must have, as the formation of a business and climb the ladder of success, demands to wait for long period of time. So, as a business owner, you need to instill never give up attitude to see your dreams come true!!

Summing it up, though the above-mentioned points are not entirely foolproof but yes, following these points will definitely help you to become a smart small business owner who can defy all the challenges and get on the top of the competition. Of Course, the chances of success or failure of your business completely depends on your planning and execution.

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Travel Planning and Travel Tips by Experienced Tourist and Businessman

The first stage of almost any trip is planning stage. You should plan everything about where you are going to get and you should plan all resources that you might need in your journey.

As for resources, typically you will need the same “resources” in any kind of travel, e.g. some clothes, good footwear, some medicine, money, documents and so on. It sounds like a time-consuming task to get all these things into one place and don’t forget anything, but there is a secret, which unveil how to get all things ready in just 30 minutes. The ideas is to create a check list of things that you usually should take with you, for the first time this list will not be complete, but once you have traveled two or more times, you will have your own personal travel check-list.

The best advice would be – it is possible to buy anything that you might forget, so make sure you have not forgotten money, your travel passport and health insurance. Make sure you are prepared to various weather conditions, and for sure, it is a good idea to check weather report before you start you journey.

The second stage of planning trip is planning your future route, e.g. places that you want to visit. The idea is to spend not much time on this task, but get good results when you will be in place. If you already have a good printed map of the city that you are going to visit, then it would be possible to create a route, plan everything at home. If you don’t have such a map – it is not a problem, when you will arrive you should find the tourist office, where you will have a map of the city. Usually these maps already contain necessary information about top places to visit, but only about places located in the city.

Good idea about planning trip is to find and print out information about places that you wish to visit and that you find interesting. When searching for this information, make sure you have not just the name and description, but preferably the address of the point of interest and some information about transportation. If you are using a public transport, then it is important to know what stops you will need and what line numbers you need to take and in what direction.

Make sure you know about opening hours. For instance, some places (like gardens) are not opened in winter. Most museum don’t work on Monday, and most shops are closed on Sunday. If you are interested in churches, then have in mind that you will be able to access most religious places on Sunday only after 13-00.

General recommendations about planning trip are: get all things you need and create a checklist for future trips, get information about places of interest and make sure you know their opening hours. Plan your trip accordingly and don’t forget to get some time for rest and food.

Four Unmentioned Travel Tips

What Does the Subconscious Mind Have to do with Traveling?

Much more than you think!

Of all the travel tips I have heard and read, not one focused on the traveler’s subconscious mind.

If you think it’s hard to get along well with someone close to you, try traveling with him or her. It can be miserable.

Here are four tips on how to deal with travel anxiety, a great, often subconscious, source of stress for all around.

1.

If it’s your anxieties, your traveling companion may be aware of it before you are. But once you are, talk about it, or better, write down everything you are worried about in great detail, and fast. Then read it, crumple it and toss it in the trash.

2.

If it’s your companion’s, ask about it gently. If you get a nasty response, ignore it. The response has nothing to do with you. Move away from your companion and/or persuade him to write fast then toss.

For example, once I traveled to Europe with two women friends. I thought I knew them well. One brought so much luggage that I felt impending disaster en route to the airport. The other brought neatly packed small carry-ons because she is highly organized and likes to travel light. I tend to move too fast and accidentally packed a suitcase with rejected novel manuscripts that I tossed in a bin in Paris.

Had we discussed our travel anxieties beforehand, we would have avoided subsequent hurtful battles en route. For example, my subconscious response to the unknown is to fly by the seat of my pants and hope everything works out. I am careful and thorough only when calm. Obviously, I didn’t pay much attention to what I packed.

The friend with too much luggage had a lot of fear about traveling away from home. Every time she left she was sure she left her coffee pot plugged in and her house would burn down.

The organized one feared most the intimacy that traveling forces. She packed herself in tight and parceled it out in tiny bits.

3.

Look for the humor in the situation. Have you ever traveled with someone whose behavior is so bad he finally “goes over the edge” for you? When that happens you have to laugh and you actually like him.

It’s happened to me twice, but I’ll just do one:

I was taveling unaccompanied on a Greek ship cruising the Mediterranean. There were five distinct nationalities on board, five languages for each announcement. Only a handful of Americans. One was an appliance dealer from Manhatten. He was so loud and demanding I felt embarrassed by him. He was the quintessential Ugly American. At every port he rushed off the ship and bought as many bargains as he had time to find. At dinner he showed off all he had bought, and he named the prices he’d paid-in US dollars.

When the ship stopped at Patmos for a quick trip up the mountain to a cave where it was believed John wrote the Apocalyse, our appliance dealer asked, “What’s there to buy in Patmos?”

The purser replied, “No shops here.”

Our American shouted, “Well, what the hell are we stopping for?”

I was right behind him. At that point he went “over the edge” for me and I have liked him ever since for the laugh he gave me.

4.

Expect surprises when you travel, laugh at them and then you can see the beauty.

If you recognize the power of subconscious fears to ruin a great vacation, they won’t. If you don’t, believe me, they will.

Copyright 2006 Cole’s Poetic License

Travel Tips For Saving Money On Your Next European Vacation

Because of an unfavorable exchange rate, Europe is becoming a more expensive destination for anyone paying for their vacation in US dollars. You may be pleased to know that there are many things you can do to reduce the costs of traveling to Europe without sacrificing your comfort or vacation pleasure.

For starters you can plan as much in advance as possible in order to get the best “early bird” prices. On the other hand, you can search out great last minute deals that often offer tremendous savings over the ‘regular’ price. There are so many things that you can do, but let’s just focus on three really easy things that you can do that is certain to save you lots of money when traveling to Europe.

1. Get the best airfares via the internet. One of the fastest growing industries is online travel. With the advance of the internet, anyone can become their very own travel agent. There is a tremendous amount of online suppliers each seeking your business, which means that great deals and excellent discount airfares to Europe abound. Take the time to do your research and to scan the many travel websites on the internet for the online discount airfare that is just right for you. There are even websites that offer comparative fares between the many discount airlines around the world, many of which are in Europe. Getting the lowest airfares possible is the best way to cut your traveling costs to Europe.

2. Consider vacation packages and tour packages. This is another great way to minimize the expense of a European vacation. Package deals can easily trim 25% or more off the cost of hotels and airfares. Here is a well-kept secret that many people may not know about. Most travel websites offer tremendous savings on vacation packages. So you can save when you book your hotel and airfare simultaneously as part of a package instead of booking them separately.

3. Avoid Hotels in the center of Town. There is a price to pay for the convenience of staying in the “heart” of the city. Many of these downtown hotels come at a premium, whereas hotels away from the tourist centers are usually 15%-40% cheaper. Most major European cites offer excellent and affordable public transportation, so getting to the tourist centers will be very easy. If you choose to stay in hotels in the small towns surrounding the major cities, you will save significantly on your hotel expenses and still have easy, inexpensive access to the more expensive tourist centers.

Even with an unfavorable exchange rate, a European vacation can easily fit within your budget. There is so much to see and do in Europe. That is why it just makes sense to do all you can do to minimize your travel expenses. You can use the tips above to cut your travel costs where you can without sacrificing your comfort, a win-win situation. And there is a variety of ways to do just that. Happy travels.