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Unveiling the Secrets of Consumer Learning: A Guide for Small Business Owners

Jun 22, 2023

In the ever-evolving world of consumer behavior, small business owners face a continuous challenge in understanding how consumers want to learn about products. In fact, research shows that almost 90% of consumers view the experience the company provides as JUST AS important as the product or service they’re selling. That’s huge. 


To thrive in a competitive market, it is vital for businesses to adapt and cater to the changing preferences of consumers. Here’s a look at some specific examples of how consumer learning has transformed, along with some actionable tips for small business owners to effectively promote their products or services with the customer experience in mind.


Embrace the Power of Digital Platforms:

This first point is hardly surprising (but still worth addressing), and that is the significant shift in consumer behavior towards digital platforms. Consumers now turn to websites, social media, online reviews, and search engines to...

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Thriving on the Edge: Why Smart Risk-Taking Sets Business Owners Apart

Jun 20, 2023

Being a business owner is like riding a roller coaster; there are plenty of exhilarating highs…and just as many stomach-churning lows. You’ll be having the time of your life one minute, and the next, you’ll think, WTF am I doing? You need a strong stomach, be willing to take risks, and accept that the whole thing might crash and burn. 

Of course, that’s easier said than done. Because it’s one thing to TALK about hypothetical dollars used, resources exhausted, hours spent, and all the what-ifs and maybes. 

It’s quite another thing to put all that talk into action. 

But that’s what separates the Greats from the Really Greats. You think Elon, Bezos, or Jobs achieved what they did from pure dumb luck? Hardly. They took calculated risks. They were willing to push boundaries and redefine what is possible. And while your plans might not be as ambitious as starting your own aerospace or logistics company, you can still take a page...

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Hiring 101: Questions to Ask (and NOT Ask) for Finding the Perfect Fit

Jun 13, 2023

Finding the right employees can be like a game of Where’s Waldo. Sometimes you’ll spot them right away, but more often than not, you’ll spend a maddening amount of time trying to see past a chaotic mass of nonsense and distractions.


While there’s no shortcut to building a team of A-players that embodies your company’s vision and values, there are certain strategies you can use to cut through the clutter. Today, we will look at five questions you should always ask, five questions you should never ask, and five questions to consider asking to help you locate the ideal candidates for your business. 


Five Questions You Should Always Ask


  1.  "Tell me about your experience relevant to this role." This classic question allows candidates to showcase their skills and expertise directly related to the position. Look for alignment between their experience and your business needs, like finding the missing puzzle piece that completes the...
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The Power of the Slogan

Jun 06, 2023

"Good to the last drop."

"Snap! Crackle! Pop!"

"Taste the rainbow."

"Just Do It."

"Easy, breezy, beautiful…"

"You're in good hands."


If we were to put money on it, we'd wager you know exactly which companies we're talking about. Without mentioning names, your mind immediately went to the businesses they represent. 


That is the power of the slogan. 

Creating a strong brand identity is critical for success in today's competitive business landscape. Everyone wants a piece of the same pie, but there are only so many slices to go around. If you don't want to go hungry (both physically and metaphorically), you've got to position yourself strategically within your industry to "secure your slice" and avoid being left behind.

A well-crafted slogan is an essential tool to help you reinforce your brand identity. It can help you capture the attention of your target audience and serve as a concise representation of your unique selling proposition, offerings,...

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Scaling for Success: Dos and Don'ts

May 30, 2023

As a business owner, the decision to scale can be both exciting and nerve-wracking. To help you navigate this pivotal phase confidently, we've compiled a list of dos and don'ts.

The Dos of Scaling:

  1. Develop a Clear Strategy: This is not the time to take a page from the "Not all who wander are lost" Tolkien crew. If you leave this part to WILL be lost. Craft a well-defined scaling strategy that aligns with your long-term goals. Outline your target market, expansion plans, operational changes, and resource requirements. A roadmap ensures you stay on track and make informed decisions throughout the scaling process. 

  2. Invest in Infrastructure: You can't put lipstick on a pig and think it will stop smelling like shit. Build a solid foundation to support growth by investing in technology, processes, and systems. Scalable infrastructure allows your business to handle increased demand without compromising efficiency or customer satisfaction. 

  3. Cultivate a...

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The Art of Delegation

May 23, 2023

 In the bustling world of entrepreneurship, it's easy to fall into the trap of doing everything yourself. As a business owner, you may be stretched thin from wearing multiple hats, juggling tasks, and having a never-ending to-do list.  However, delegation is a powerful tool that can help you reclaim your time and sanity. By entrusting tasks to others, you can focus on your strengths and enhance your business skills. 

But sometimes that’s easier said than done.

Picture this: you're the proud owner of a small business, and you've poured your heart and soul into it. You've painstakingly built your empire, from late-night brainstorming sessions to caffeinated power hours. But the thought of delegating gives you an uncomfortable tingle down your spine, doesn't it? You're not alone. There are three primary reasons many business owners struggle with delegation.


1. "Nobody does it like I do" 

The classic perfectionist's dilemma. You've meticulously crafted...

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The Good, the Bad, and the Artificial: Exploring the Pros and Cons of AI

May 16, 2023

We’re not sure if you’ve heard about it or not, but there’s this little thing called Artificial Intelligence (AI for short) that’s been causing quite a stir in recent months. Granted, it’s been around for a while now (we’re talking as far back as the 60s), but due to its rapidly evolving nature, it’s now on the lips - and minds - of nearly everyone. From large corporations racing to stay in the lead of new developments to high school kids trying to pass off ChatGPT-generated term papers, a lot of people are keen to jump on the AI bandwagon. 


On the flip side, there are a lot of people interested in jumping OFF the AI bandwagon or, at the very least, tapping the breaks. Leaders like Elon Musk, Steve Wozniak, and “The Godfather of AI” Geoffrey Hinton have all spoken out and urged prudence; artificial intelligence HAS evolved rapidly, and they argue we may not yet know what the long-term effects (both positive and...

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When (and Why) to Separate from an Employee

May 09, 2023

Employee separation is probably one of the least fun tasks a business owner must do. It can be stressful, awkward, and downright unpleasant…especially if you've built any sort of relationship with them along the way. But this isn't a fraternity or a charity; this is business. And if you've got someone on the team not pulling their weight, there's no need to let him or her drag you and the rest of the group down. 


First things first, let's talk about how to mitigate the risk of hiring a dud employee in the first place. (An ounce of prevention and all that, you know?)

  1. Be clear about your expectations: Before you even start the hiring process, make sure you're clear about what you're looking for in an employee. What skills do they need? What experience? What kind of attitude and work ethic are you looking for? Being clear about your expectations can help you identify candidates who are a good fit for your business.
  2. Use behavioral interviewing techniques: When...
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7 Ways to Personalize Customer Service for Your Small Business

May 02, 2023

Customer service can be kind of like a first date; screw it up badly enough, and you probably won’t get a second one. Not only that but in today’s world of Yelp reviews and (ugh) viral TikToks, if you piss off the wrong person, that one “date” can have some serious long-term repercussions. Excellent customer service is expected, and if you fall short, you (and the rest of the internet) are going to hear about it.


Now, we aren’t suggesting you need to bend to the whims and fancies of the entitled, perpetually unhappy, or fame-seeking nuisances who will always find something to bitch about. Nor are we saying you should approach customer service from a place of fear. Remember, your customers are your business's greatest asset; building and maintaining relationships should be a priority because you want to meet their needs, not because you’re afraid they’ll leave a nasty online review. 


If you’re looking for ways to up...

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Five Money Mistakes to Avoid

Apr 25, 2023

Freelancing. Contract work. Solopreneurship. Whatever you call it, it’s on the rise. The old American dream is dead, and more and more people are turning to alternative solutions for economic stability. In fact, it’s estimated that nearly 45% of the population has some sort of side hustle…and that number is expected to grow.


As perpetual champions for the small biz owner, we love these numbers. We think everyone should - and can - own some type of business. (We wrote a book about it, that’s how much we believe it.) From part-time side hustles to passive income streams, the possibilities are endless.


But with those possibilities come problems, and if you don’t treat your business for what it is…a business…those problems are really going to put a cramp in your journey to financial independence, particularly when it comes to finances. 


With that in mind, here are five common problems entrepreneurs, solopreneurs,...

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