Guidance and assistance for UK small businesses. Irreverent and most certainly disruptive. Starting and running your small business, facts figures and helpful guidance.
UK Start Up and Small Business
The Richard Smith .com October 2020 - Small Business Podcast
Here we are, back again with another – loaded with content small business podcast. Plenty to go on in here.
Get in touch when you need any help with this stuff.
1. This is the new normal.
Post the big lockdown it seems we are going be having lots of mini lockdowns.
Further, Brexit, changing workplaces and of course changing consumer habits.
All of these point to a change in businesses in all sectors.
More online and delivery.
More click and collect.
E- Shops now widely available at relatively low cost.
Good website hosting sorts the speed issue out and, security fears and data loss can be resolved quite easily.
Bonus – More online working and file sharing
More remote work – fewer client visits – against an increased spend on tech.
2. GMB (Google My Business) – how to sort these out once and for all.
Google are promoting Google My Business in the USA as a paid-for option.
As a UK based business, there are several benefits to using this as a tool for your business.
Frontpage listing in many instances.
Can add content and showcase work
Can collect reviews and endorsements
Can engage with new and old clients – even new ones
Stats are impressive.
Even better news is – most local firms won’t bother.
But even if they do –
If your business has a hundred great reviews
Is fully populated with information and possibly vouchers
Has updated and fresh ‘non salesy’ content
Your competitors will take a long while to catch up with you.
3. Thriving – engagement – share the love, be nice.
Social media is seen as the one tool that changes everything for businesses. Sure I would agree that it makes sense for many to have a presence. That said, it’s a time sink and can become addictive – and produce limited results. Importantly, if you consider the changes in recent years – to Facebook for example – it used to show your business posts and promotions to all of your followers and now it doesn’t, similar rules in place over at Instagram.
Importantly, there is the issue of true engagement. Who is really engaging with your content and what do they do next. With most of the social platforms – it’s controlled by them. So you have to be careful as to how much time you actually spend on producing content just for the social platforms. One answer here is to take all of your content.
Focus on your customer, how much you can share with them, how much value you can add.
Multi purpose that content, break it down into usable chunks – mini-posts, and then use an automated tool to slowly drip content out.
Then use it as content for your website, podcasts, short videos and cross sharing on social media.
Then make sure you use as email content to engage with and fire up existing customers – these are the people that already know you and
Importantly, email, sms, whatsapp all allow you to keep control of your customer so you can message them directly.
They do want to hear from you. They do want to know about your products and services, they are interested.
Treat every customer as though they are going to be a customer for a hundred years.
4. Facebook advertising.
Next month – how I fared with Facebook advertising?
www.therichardsmith.com www.smallbusinessninja.co.uk Leave a review. Please.
Business Owners Should Be Walking Away From More Business
This week in Smith Towers has been pretty good, as the school holidays get closer we are faced with a list of ‘to do’s’ and seemingly not enough time to do them.
One little snippet of advice I always pass on my clients is this, life is too short to work with everyone. By getting rid of some of your customers/clients you could be spending more time with your children or on the Golf course. Look you choose.
By being prepared to walk away from a deal, a piece of business you automatically take control of the process, see the thing is as mentioned above you don’t have the time to deal with everyone. So take on the work where you can really add value, where you get paid for adding value and the client really appreciates what you are about to do for them.
Starting a Business in West Sussex? Short audio presentation below.
Seriously, the needy or hard work clients should be left, either price the job so you afford to spend the time dealing with them, or price it to get rid of them (and learn from the experience).
Either way you have to make it worth your while.
Always resist the temptation to take on work that does not fit, honestly you don’t need the money, or least pretend you don’t.
Look getting Consulting especially is like getting money from the Banks, if you need it you have no chance.
I remember working as part of large sales team, and at the end of the month, the last five days or so there was always a push to hit target, get rid of the last lot of product. Desperation, when all the sales manager needed to do was focus for other 25 days of the month.
Which is what you should do.
So lesson for today
* There is always more work out there, honestly. You might have to look for it.
* You never need the money, but you might need to alter your marketing processes.
* Geeks, Freaks and Weirdo’s always make good clients, but the needy and demanding are best left.
* Put yourself on that pedestal, and use your time wisely.
Don’t forget, my irreverant and truthful email series is available from below.
[su_service title=”Ten Days of My Best Advice” icon=”icon: dollar”]Short report for Startups and new Businesses. My best advice. At no charge and no obligation. You get the very best of what I know, wrapped up in an irreverant but none the less truthful (and sweary) series of emails which will follow and a voucher for twenty minutes one to one (Skype or Telephone – that alone could be worth £10k to you. Get in, this guidance is on me. And will add many thousands to your bottom line. Promise
Happy Friday to you all.
Social Media for Local Business Marketing
Local business is one of my passions but where does this whole social media thing fit. The short video below outlines some of these points for you.
Groupon and Wowcher- Sinner or Saint for Small Business Marketing.
Vowcher and Groupon for Small Firms – Podcast has been updated and is below.
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If you have ever wanted to sell your stuff online but felt you need to a) sell your firstborn to do so b) get small business finance to fund it you’ll be pleased to know my brand new all singing and dancing, five years in development package is now available. It’s even pay as you go so no surprises. Small Business Online Shops
Don’t forget , you borrow my brain for 90 minutes at discount (Jan 17 only). Guaranteed to be worth at least £5,000 to you.
Vouchers for small and medium sized firms are a great way to get new business – but there is a catch. Most business owners don’t go about it the right way.
If you would like to set up a ‘Discount Coupon Scheme’ for your business – I can have them up and running within hours for you.
During 2017/18/19 and 21 I have done quite a bit of work and research into the use of voucher sites for small business marketing, and it’s clear there are some issues.
I have outlined below some of these in no particular order and these are based on our own finding and experiences of our customers.
I have updated my advice and guidance in a short MP3 Wowcher_and_Groupon_For_Small_Firms
Please contact me to discuss.
All of the voucher sites tend to operate on fairly fixed and similar model but there are some minor differences. In general terms….
Nearly all of these won’t work for you, really. You can’t make money selling products and services valued at x for y less and hope you can upsell.
That is called hope marketing. Sure it pays to have a positive attitude but you can’t grow a business by selling a discount. That said, if you get the systems and processes right, along with the follow up. You may have a chance.
How do they work?
Small and medium-sized firms will come up with an offer or a daily deal which will then be marketed through the voucher website, using the voucher resellers own email list and also on their websites .
These deals can run from anything from a few days to a period of months, or as is common until a set amount have been sold.
The business owner decides on the offer it wants to promote and the voucher reseller creates the copy and the graphics to form an advertisement on their site.
What Do They Charge?
Sometimes there will be a setup fee or some other form of arrangement fee and the voucher provider normally takes around 45%-65% of the sale price as a commission. Most of these tend to be around 50%
Why Use A Voucher Site To Promote Your Business?
There is no straightforward answer to this, many voucher reseller sites are pretty aggressive with their own marketing, and are often selling into a market that is needy for leads.
That said provided you structure your offer correctly, and put in place the proper systems to maintain your marketing to clients were you have provided a discounted product or service it could be an ideal way to grow your business.
If you are a product retailer rather than a service provider you can use the voucher sites to clear stock at a substantial discount in order to get rid of it quickly or to make room for new stock. If you are rolling out a new service or product and want to test this could be and ideal method. New branches and shops spring to mind immediately...
2013 Email Marketing For Small Business Marketing – Update | Important
As promised my one million reasons to use Email Marketing in your business is now available.
Below is my very short audio guide explaining why email marketing should be used by all small firms.
Email_marketing_for_small_business (download or play)
Meanwhile you can’t ignore facts – and they are all in this report.
First Name: Email:
Small Business Advice – Search Engine Optimisation
As you will be aware, the websites for most small firms are under found in all internet searches and a whole area of consultancy has sprung up offering a range of services to small firms. But the search engines don’t stay motionless for long and update their own methods for search results on a very regular basis.
Once such update happened earlier this year and there has been a major push from many firms of experts to get small firms to increase their spend on optimisation now – however as soon as the next round of changes come it all has be done again. My approach is one that stands the true test of time and fits in with the core values that Google laid out many years ago.
Before you spend any more money on Search Engine Optimisation get in touch – I know you will be pleased you did.
I have provided a short audio below.
Contact me on 0845 226 9106 or via this form