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Determining Your Target Audience for Social Media

Feb 08, 2023

Social Media. Love it or hate it, its presence in our personal and professional lives is not going anywhere anytime soon. And for business owners who hope to leverage its power to grow their customer base and reach a larger audience, it can be both rewarding and an absolute nightmare.

The first thing we need to remember is that these platforms are in continuous flux. What worked two months ago may not hold true today. Algorithms change, updates are made, new rules and regulations are created, and restrictions are imposed. 

And all of that falls completely outside of our control. 

That’s why most marketing experts (and us) recommend not putting all your eggs in the social media basket. However, just like an adult-sized bib at a Lobster House, everything has its benefits; you just need to learn how to use it to your advantage. You can’t throw up a handful of posts and then walk away and expect to see any results. It takes consistency, creativity, a lot of trial...

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Nine Tips for Effective Communication

Jan 31, 2023

As business owners, you are responsible for communicating with your employees. That’s just part of the job. And whether you have one person on the payroll or one hundred, you need to know how to effectively communicate your vision and expectations if you want to lead for long-term success.

There have been entire books dedicated to the subject, but we’re going to listen to our own advice and get straight to the point - or, nine points in this case. 

  1. Be clear and concise: Avoid unnecessary details. Utilize bullet points or lists. Provide relevant examples. Throw in a visual aid or two if it helps get your message across. If you leave them with more questions than answers, you didn’t do your job very well. 
  2. Practice active listening: Remember, “Two monologues don’t make a dialogue.” Say what you need to say, but then listen - actually listen - to what they say in response.
  3. Be aware of your nonverbal communication: Don’t look down at...
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How to Hire the Right Person for the Job

Jan 25, 2023

Bringing a new person onto your team is a big decision. Whether you're looking for someone to take some of the load off your shoulders or you're ready to expand and scale your business, having the right people in your corner will make all the difference. 

But how do you know you have found the right person? How can you tell the difference between a dud and a stud? (The stud in this example is a competent, intelligent, and hardworking individual who shows up on time and doesn't microwave fish in the breakroom. Unless, of course, you're hiring for an all-male revue, in which case you want an actual stud. But we digress.)

While you can't always tell with 100% accuracy whether your newest hire will be an asset - or just an ass - there are a few things you can do to give you better odds of finding the right person.

Pre-Interview Tasks:

  • Define the position: What does the job require? What are the expectations? What will the day-to-day tasks look like? Knowing this information will...
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The Cost of Acquiring Customers

Jan 18, 2023

You can’t put a price tag on happiness, love, or peace of mind…but you CAN put it on a customer.

For most businesses, the name of the game is growth. You want more revenue, more contracts, more sales, and so on. The simplest solution is to get your products or services into more hands, right? More customers = more profits.

Yes. And also, no.

A key metric your business should be evaluating on the reg is Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC). This is basically how much money you spend to convince someone to patronize your business. It’s a pretty simple formula: Divide the amount you spend on marketing, sales, advertising, etc., by the number of customers, and that number is your CAC.

Now, compare that number to your revenue. How does it stack up? If your customer acquisition cost is more than the revenue you’re bringing in, your business isn’t going to be in business for very long. 

Any competent marketing professional or agency worth their salt should be...

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7 Ways Your Business Can Use AI

Jan 11, 2023

The robots are coming for your jobs.

There are a lot of worries, misinformation, misconceptions, and fear-mongering surrounding the increasing popularity of Artificial Intelligence. 

AI is the buzziest of buzzwords these days; more and more applications are entering the mainstream, and the possibilities feel endless. It's sort of like one of those late-night infomercials. "But wait, there's more!"

On the one hand, yes. The robots HAVE taken jobs. You can order a fast food meal, pay a toll, or hitch a ride without ever interacting with an actual human being. 

But on the OTHER hand (we have two, remember), AI is predicted to actually CREATE jobs; 97 million by 2025, to be precise. 

The fact of the matter is that it's not going anywhere, whether you embrace it or not. 

So why not embrace it? 

AI continues to transform everything from manufacturing to farming, data entry, janitorial tasks, investing, insurance...the list goes on. And for small business owners -...

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Mobile Marketing for Your Small Business

Jan 04, 2023

Want to know how you can get into bed with your customers every night? 

Or be by their side nearly every minute of the day?

It’s not as scandalous (or stalkerish) as it sounds. 

We’re talking about two simple words: Mobile Marketing.

 

Mobile marketing is a powerful and effective way to reach customers where they are at any time and any place. Think about how often you’re on your own phone. You’re checking emails. You’re reading the news. You’re scrolling through Twitter or responding to texts or checking your bank balances, or playing Wordle. Point is, you’re on it a lot - and probably more than you realize. According to Zippia, the average American checks their phone approximately 96 times PER DAY. (That’s once every ten minutes.)

So yeah. Why wouldn’t you want to tap (into) that? Here are five of our favorite strategies to consider incorporating into your own business.

 

1. Develop a mobile-friendly...

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New Year's Resolutions for your Small Business

Dec 28, 2022

In just a matter of days, we’ll be closing the door on 2022 and welcoming a brand new year - and with that, many of us will set resolutions for 2023. Now, whether we KEEP those resolutions is another matter entirely (an estimated 65% are abandoned in the first month), but it’s important to at least try, right?

Our newsletter last week (aptly called The Weekly, check it out if you haven’t already) touched on four things small business owners should address before the year wraps up. But now it’s time to really double down on number 2 from that list: Plan for next year. 

 

Here are six resolutions you could consider making for your small business.

 

1. Get better at managing your finances: Make a commitment to better understanding and managing your business’s finances. That includes creating (and sticking to) a budget, tracking expenses in a timely manner, and regularly reviewing your financial statements. 

 

2. Prioritize customer...

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Six Tips for Better Time Management

Dec 21, 2022

When it comes to running a business (or life in general, really), two things nobody ever complains about having too much of are Time and Money. We can’t imagine any scenario where someone would turn down more of either. And yet, both are far too often squandered by small business owners.

Where money is concerned, it’s easier to track. You’ve got bank statements and budgets and cold hard numbers to determine where the waste is happening. It’s all very black and white; it just takes some leg work. 

Time - more specifically, effective Time Management - is a bit more nebulous. A dollar is a dollar, but what one person can do with an hour is vastly different from what the next guy can do with those same 60 minutes. People work at different paces. 

That’s why it’s critical you carefully evaluate your own time management skills on a regular basis. Time is a valuable asset, and you want to ensure you’re getting the best ROI for the effort...

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7 Post-Funding No-Nos

Dec 14, 2022

Whether you’re starting a business from scratch or acquiring one that already exists, you need the funds to make it happen. We’ve talked in length about different TYPES of funding options and how you can do a bit of “hacking and stacking” to work it out in your favor. (Catch up here.

But what happens after the deed is done? After all the research, paperwork, and time, the money is finally yours, and you’re ready to take the small business world by storm. You want to make the most of this opportunity and this investment; however, there are seven common post-funding no-nos that many small businesses make once that money hits their account.

 

1. Poor Planning: 

 

Not having a clear plan or strategy for how you will use your funding is a big no-no. You gotta have a detailed plan in place for how you’ll use these new funds to grow your business and achieve your goals. Every dollar should have a job and a purpose.

 

2....

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5 Ways Networking Helps Your Business

Dec 07, 2022

Networking: What is it good for?

If you're an extroverted chatter-box and certified ENFP on the Myers-Briggs, you probably love the idea of networking. Meeting new people and forming connections is right up your alley, and the thought of walking into a room full of strangers and making friends is your definition of a good time. 

For those who don't share that same level of enthusiasm, the idea of networking is walking into a room full of strangers - but completely naked. It's uncomfortable at best, and if they had to choose between meeting new people and watching an entire season of The Bachelor, they'd give their rose to the latter.

But whether you love it or loathe it, networking is a fundamental part of being a successful business owner. 

Entrepreneurship is often a solo endeavor. The predisposition to be self-reliant and self-sufficient reigns supreme. They keep their heads down, stay focused on the task at hand, and have lofty goals they intend to achieve. 

That...

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