How to Get the Best Bang for Your Buck with Conferences

You know that to stay competitive in today’s marketplace you have to stay on top of newer trends like SEO and blogging, but some of the business tactics that pay off today are actually more old-fashioned.  So much of what works well online is all about making valuable connections with people and for that, there’s still not much that beats meeting in person.

That makes conferences an extremely valuable tool for small businesses, but one that often comes with a pretty high price tag. Industry conferences bring the biggest concentration of the experts and influencers you want to know into one place, but if you’re going to stretch the budget to include all those travel and registration expenses, it better be worth it.

Image Via Armosa Studios

It can be worth it. You can make sure it is, but you have to do more than just show up. Here are five ways to make sure you get more out of each conference you attend: [Read more…]

Social Media Not Converting? This Is What Does.

MarketingLand published a post Sep 26 based on new research that reports that Fewer Than 1% Of Sales Can Be Tracked Back To Social Media.

Your Ad Ignore Here

Image Credit: Tom Fishburne Marketoonist – Cartoons for Sale for businesses ~ free for blog use with attribution ~ Click Image for How to Use his Great Cartoons

I wanted to share my comment in that post with my readers and expand on it: [Read more…]

Ask Me Questions LIVE NOW ~ Get FREE Advice on Social Media for #SmallBiz

Example of ClickDesk live chat box

Wasting time and getting frustrated trying to figure it all out yourself is one of my biggest pet peeves. Why should we spend hours or days when someone could show us in a few minutes?

I don’t want that for myself and I don’t want it for you. That is why I am giving away my time absolutely free to get you the answers you want and need so you can soar instead of take a dive online.

How better to find out if you will get your money’s worth in our new membership site than to get to try it out. Find out just how quickly I can solve your greatest challenges.

I am live right now and will be for many hours. I will continue to be live off and on almost every day all day into the evening. Afternoons and evenings CST are the best time to reach me live.

If there is anything about social media, blogging, marketing, branding that you really want to know here’s your chance.

Go to and chat
Look for the chat box at the bottom right corner. 

(It looks like the one in this post.)

Live chat is one of the best ways to engage visitors to your site. For this very important project we are using ClickDesk. If you want powerful live chat with built in VOIP, support system, and web conferencing, check them out.

Brother CreativeCenter “Back to Business” Contest $500 Prize Suite

Brother Creative CenterBrother has created a free way for anyone to design professional business cards, mailers, calenders, posters, and much more by editing templates provided in their CreativeCenter.

If you can point and click you can create beautiful marketing materials. Print them out on your own printer or save them as a PDF file. Easily upload and use your own photos to make them even more special.

Even if you have no graphics skills to create marketing materials,
you can make beautiful documents like the ones below.

This is an example of a mailing created [Read more…]

Three Questions You Need to Answer Before Writing Your Business Plan

What if I fail...making the leap cartoon

Image Credit: Marketoonist Business Cartoons ~ For Sale for Commercial Purposes ~ Free to Use in Blogs with attribution and link

A business plan is an important document for any company. It defines the company’s objectives, and how the company intends to achieve those objectives.

Such documents are a vital part of encouraging a bank to give you a loan, getting investors to back your ideas, or even just displaying a better understanding of how your company is operating.

Considering how important a business plan is, it is necessary to do a good job, so you should not jump straight into writing one without a certain degree of preparation. Pause for a second, and consider the answers to some basic questions to help you construct the business plan you need. [Read more…]