4 Easy Steps To Obtaining Sponsorships For Your Events

sponsorships

It’s easy to plan events when money is not an issue. But in reality, the budget is always an important factor in event planning. Getting sponsorships can be challenging. But there are key ways that can help get you there effortlessly.

The potential sponsors you should approach depend on your event and your audience. It must be a good match between all three for it to work. Most importantly, you need to offer your sponsors something unique.

Below, we’ve compiled a quick guide to help you understand how to get sponsors for an event.

Plan And Do Your Research to Gain Sponsorships

Stop for a moment to plan how you will work with sponsorship. How much money do you need? How many sponsors can you take care of? What do you have to sell? Can you work alone or do you need to get help from someone?

Expectations and conditions are often two different things. Big ambitions are good, but be realistic. It will be both easier and more enjoyable if you approach the situation step by step.

It will make all the next steps easier if you research potential sponsors thoroughly. Start with companies in your niche and see if they already have experience with sponsoring events.

You can also check events similar to yours and see which companies sponsored them as they’re likely to sponsor future events of the same kind.

Create A Sponsor Proposal For Events

sponsorships

Once you have listed the potential sponsors, it’s time to create a robust proposal. Your sponsorship proposal must be tailored to each company and present your event and sponsorship opportunities in a well-designed and organized manner.

You have the option of writing your proposal from scratch or using a sponsorship proposal template, which makes it easier to generate a professional-looking document. 

Your proposal should include enough details so that the potential sponsor can understand what is being offered and how this will benefit them. For this reason, make sure to include the following information: who you are and why you are credible, what the event is about, what kind of audience the event will attract, prominent speakers and sponsors, what the company will gain from the sponsorship, key figures (number of participants, social media statistics, etc.).

Find Out Who To Talk To

Once you’ve put together a proposal, it’s time to approach the potential sponsor.

It’s common practice to send an email but companies are flooded with them. So how do you make sure your email isn’t lost in the shuffle?

A smart tip is to go through LinkedIn and see if you can figure out who might be in charge of sponsoring events. It will most likely be someone from the marketing department. Write down some promising names and start reaching out. Ask to speak to one of the names on the list and ask for an email address if they are not available. Do not bother to leave a voicemail message, as it rarely works.

Before reaching out to potential sponsors, narrow down the options because event sponsorship meetings and pitches are time-consuming. Make sure to contact brands that align with your event values and that can represent the key goals and image of your upcoming events.

Essentially, the best sponsors to contact are those with the highest ROI on your time invested. Don’t forget that sometimes less obvious job titles and people in your network will be a better fit and more fruitful for pitching.

Offer Incentives

Sponsorships are a two-way street as sponsors also want something in return for their investment. This is why you should come up with a way to sweeten the deal and make them understand what they will get out of funding your event.

Will you place the sponsor’s name or logo on the promotional flyers and banners, will you mention them in your email newsletters, blog, or social media posts. A great idea is, for instance, to offer event-related discounts or freebies to customers that buy the sponsor’s product or sign up for their service, encourage followers on social media to like or repost the sponsor’s content.

When you show a sponsor that you’re willing to give more than just take, it will show them that you’re dedicated and serious about making the event a success.

Conclusion on Gaining Sponsorships 

Securing sponsorships for an event is important, but making sure you’re organizing an exceptional event is far more important. If you don’t put effort to organize a good event, you’ll fail to build a long-lasting relationship with your sponsor and the next time you’ll want to secure a sponsorship will only get harder.

By following the aforementioned steps, you’ll be able to get valuable insights and create a stellar event experience and keep everyone involved happy.

 

 

small business coach

 

The Ultimate Guide To Creating a Business Plan To Grow Your Business

business plan

Every small business owner needs a business plan to guide strategy and growth.

A good business plan separates failing small businesses from successful ones.

We regularly see our clients increase their profits by 50%, 400%, and even 1,500% starting with a proper plan as one of their most powerful business growth strategies, allowing them to make conscious and informed decisions.

This guide will teach you steps that will assure a steady growth of your business using one of the most rudimentary, yet overlooked strategies: writing a business plan.

How Does Writing a Business Plan Impact Your Business?

We said that planning is one of the most pivotal business growth strategies.

But how does it work within the big picture?

Say you have your business rolling for quite a while now. It’s not growing fast, but it’s not stagnant. 

What you’re missing could be the reason most businesses fail within their first year

business plan

CB Insights recognize multiple reasons for small businesses to fail, from failure to raise capital to personnel issues to pricing issues.

But look closely at the chart.

What do all these reasons have in common?

If you’re thinking ‘a viable business plan’, you’re right. 

The first thing we ever ask of our clients is to delineate where they would like to be and how they see themselves getting there. It turns out that if you do not plan your way towards success—or even worse; you don’t know what success would look like for you—it is hard to get there.

For entrepreneurs who move quickly and like to get right to the point, planning might seem like a formality or useless paperwork when in fact, executed properly, planning is the foundation of business growth.

  • A business plan compels you to analyze the current state of your business. So, instead of overlooking your business needs, you’ll overcome situations before they turn into challenges
  • Knowing where you are, you can analyze and pursue opportunities for business growth. You gain a better perspective of what you can do now to expand your business, be it finding new prospects, building and managing your team better or systematizing your internal processes and procedures.
  • When you know what the ideal future of your business looks like, you have a clearer perspective on what your priorities are. You should see planning as a strategic framework that guides your decision-making process. This way, making decisions regarding your business will be less a game of guesswork and more a game of taking strategic action.
  • When you know where you want your business to be in the far future, you can better track your near future. Another way to put it, a business plan provides you with key performance indicators that will help measure the progress towards your business goal

business plan

Typically, a business plan requires you to assess all aspects of your activity.

A standard business plan usually includes an executive summary, a business overview, business objectives, a description of products and services, an overview of market opportunities, sales, and marketing strategies, a competitive analysis, a financial auditing, a financial analysis, and a delineation of the management structure.  

While useful for raising capital, these standard plans are the reason many business owners’ eyes glaze over when they think about developing a plan  

Instead, our approach to business planning is a little different…

We take planning to the next level. 

This guide shows you how to use planning to envision the actionable steps towards your goal. 

All that using the knowledge you gathered in a traditional business plan.

business plan

This means analyzing the current situation including a SWOT Analysis, creating a business plan around the weaknesses that need immediate attention, setting hard and fast deadlines for accountability, and tracking your progress in terms of business KPIs. 

First, we’ll make sure you make an informed decision when choosing your goal, meaning that we will walk you through how to make a thorough audit of your current situation. 

Then we’ll help you write clear-cut business KPIs that will guide your future tactics and strategies.

And finally, we will guide you through planning actionable steps to achieve your goals, and show you how to measure your success.

A successful business plan factors in these elements

Step 1. Analyze Your Business To Identify Your Strengths and Weaknesses

To make long-lasting and growth-inducing changes, treat your business with honesty.

A business plan imposes a thorough (and sincere) inspection of the state of facts within your business. So the changebusiness plans you make are congruent with the reality of your activity.

Once you’re well acquainted with the present state of your business, you can spot new growth opportunities.

Now, it’s time for you to touch base with your business.

Your Activity as a Business

Start by revisiting your core business activities. 

You have already sent your services and products out into the world for people to enjoy. Hence, you have enough data to learn about your offer.

To take the pulse of your business, ask yourself the following questions.

  • Which products or services work well in your target market? Which are not? 
  • Do you find that your products or services still fit the needs of your audience? And if they don’t, what doesn’t work? Analyze the cause of low performance (price, packabusiness planging, sales, marketing, functioning, etc.).
  • Your target market is it overly saturated with this type of product? If the answer is ‘yes’, is there something that differentiates your service from your competitors? 
  • What is the distinct value of your services to your customers?
  • When was the last time you reviewed your prices? Can you improve your profits and the quality of your services by making changes in your pricing, package offerings, service delivery, and so on?
  • Your team – are they motivated? Do they perform the way you want them to every day, or is it a constant battle to get work done the way you want it done?
  • Do you have standard, documented processes, and procedures that guide you and your employees to produce consistent results every time?

Take time to answer all of these questions. And don’t forget to take notes along the way.

The Efficiency of Your Internal Organization and Processes

business planThere’s a lot to analyze in terms of efficiency.

From the grounds where you conduct your activity and the equipment, you use to the efficiency of your management structure and the skills of your employees.

So, buckle up! You’ve got some reviewing to do.

Business Premises 

When it comes to where your business is located, ask yourself: is this place responding to our business needs now & does it allow us to grow? 

Although they are easily overlooked, your business premises should contribute to your small business success.

  • Do you have long-term commitments to the property? 
  • Do the premises present you with advantages or disadvantages? 
  • Is moving out an option to reduce costs?

Equipment and Technology

Whether your business rests on services, manufacturing, retail or you carry out your activities exclusively online, you use equipment and software.

Is your equipment modern or outdated? Does it help you to better execute your activity? Will new equipment help you speed up processes, reduce costs, or improve services?

business plan

When it comes to IT systems… 

  • What software, platforms, or gadgets do you use in your activity? Are they sufficient to help you provide outstanding services or products? 

And more… 

  • Can you use them for growth? When your business grows, will they meet your needs?
  • Are there any new devices, informational systems, or tools that you can use to improve the quality of your products or services or to streamline your internal processes?

The People of Your Business

business plan

By this, we refer to everyone who works in your business including yourself, employees and subcontractors.

Let’s first look at your management structure.

And the first question you require an answer to is: is your current team formed by the right people?

  • Do they constantly learn and grow?
  • Does their performance meet your expectations? Is your business thriving under their management?
  • Are they attuned to the company’s values? 
  • Do they have the appropriate skills for their positions?

And the next question is: do YOU have the right skills to guide your business towards growth?

Be honest. The point of this question is to guide you to learn where you can improve and where your teams need more training.

This leads us to the questions about your employees.

  • How skillful are your employees?
  • Do you have a training structure in place to assure the constant growth of your business performance?
  • Do you think that your employee engagement is high? Find out if your employees are aligned with the company’s goals. Moreover, are they satisfied with their work?
  • What are you doing to keep up the employee engagement and satisfaction? 

Your Business Through the Lens of Competition

business plan

You know by now that you’re not alone in the market. You’re surrounded by businesses that want your customers!

This means that you’ll have to know your competition well, provided you want to find growth opportunities.

To learn about  your competition, get curious about this:

  • What is their offer in opposition to yours? What are their market advantages and disadvantages? 
  • How do they price their products and services?
  • And how do they advertise their products, services, and themselves? 
  • How do they attract customers? 
  • What’s their reputation in the market?

Consider ‘secret shopping’ them to learn the answers and see what it feels like to be their customer.

Learning this information will help you identify opportunities to grow your business in a place where your competition won’t

Your Business from a Financial Standpoint

business plan

We’re saying it, and you should be thinking it—manage your business by numbers.

Poor finance management will bury your business alive.

To avoid that happening, take some time to review your financial statements: cash flow statement, balance sheet, and profit and loss statement. If you don’t know what to make up of all that information, get your accountant beside you.

business plan

This is what each of these statements will tell you

This type of investigation will make you familiar with how your business is using and producing money. And this will show you if you’re using your money efficiently.

 

Finding Market Opportunities

As you might have guessed, this implies doing further research about your customers and your market.

You must renew your market research because markets shift. Trends evolve. People change their minds. 

You have to know what’s happening out there so that your business can take part in it.

  • What are the actual market demands and needs? Interview some of your clients.
  • What’s the present business environment – aka the economy, the technological developments, social changes?
  • Are there new, emerging services and products creating more competition?

client success history

Step 2. Write Informed and Clear Business KPI To Guide Your Business Growth

Dare not skip this step! 

It is imperative that you answer each question and complete each task in this step.

Because, otherwise, we would have to ask you:

Are you sure you want to grow your business?

If your answer is yes, let’s get you to write a business plan like an expert.

For this section, you will use your previously gained knowledge to write a business KPI that will constantly remind you of your path to small business success.

What is a Business KPI?

business plan

KPI stands for Key Performance Indicators—a quantifiable measurement you choose to help you gauge your progress towards business success.

You can use KPIs to measure almost every aspect of your business: financial achievements, operational activities, marketing efforts… ANYTHING. Nevertheless, KPIs differ from business to business, industry to industry. 

So don’t copy what others do. You have to find out on your own what is critical to you and your business. 

That’s why, first and foremost, you will have to select the area that you want to improve for your business.

How Do You Know Which Business KPI to Select?

With the help of your previous analysis (and your fellow knowledgeable business coach), you will identify what stands in the way of your business growth.

Is it your employees that require a nudge? Are you leaking money in the manufacturing department? Is your marketing not rising to your expectations?

Task 1: Identify One Pressing Business Weakness.

KPIs also depend on the past (background data) & on where you want to be in the future.

business plan

Task 2: Think of What Long-term Success Looks Like. Then Find a Benchmark to Gauge Short-term Success.

Side note.

Be careful what success metric you choose. Let’s say you find that your employee training programs don’t show astounding results. And you want to change that.

The improvements won’t produce better results in the training program in itself. You should see upgrades in the decrease of errors in product production.

Why Choose Only One Business KPI?

business KPI

Your business is a complex mechanism working on thousands of integrated and interconnected points and systems. 

So it’s a matter of course that changing one thing will affect the entire business.

But you can’t make changes in each segment of your business that needs improving in one go. 

That would wreak havoc on your business! 

You will not know for sure what does and doesn’t work. And it would be difficult for you to measure and keep track of what’s going on.

For this reason, we will track one thing at a time.

Do you need inspiration for finding your business KPI? Here are some ideas.

What Makes up a Good KPI?

business plan

A great KPI is succinct, straightforward, and relevant.

Consider these questions when writing your KPIs:

  1. How do you want your business to perform in the future? What are your projections?
  2. Why are these projected results important?
  3. How are you going to gauge any changes in numbers?
  4. What will you do to achieve the projected results? 
  5. Who will oversee this project? 
  6. How often will you evaluate the potential advancements?

Task 3: Write Your Business KPI, Answering Each of the 6 Preceding Questions.

Get ready, for you’re about to reach the—almost—last step in creating a business.

Step 3. Implement Your Plan and Measure the Results To Ensure Small Business Success

Here’s the process of action planning for business success and measuring the results. 

Action Planning for Business Success

business sucess

You should approach implementation through the lens of an action plan. Why action planning?  

Because it is the utmost actionable part of your business plan.

It provides an explicit delineation of what steps you should be taking to achieve your goals. It aligns your actions to your objectives. And, finally, it saves you from guesswork.

Now it’s time to prepare the list of tasks that will get you to your goal. 

And to achieve your KPI. 

Meaning honoring your business. 

This also means growing your business. 

We’ll return to our thought bubble.

business plan

If you have followed each step, at this moment, your action plan is half done.

What more you need to do is to expand on point 4: “how can you influence the outcome”.

 You’ll have to: 

to do list

  • Write down each activity that needs to be done and break them down into tasks.
  • Designate the action or specific tasks to a staff member.
  • Determine a timeline for each task.
  • Identify what resources you and your team need to complete the tasks.

Then, all you have left to do is get things rolling.

Measuring the Growth of Your Business

Do you remember when we asked you to be specific about your KPI? Well, the time has come to check on how things are going according to your benchmarks.

business sucess

Generally, you would review the performance of your business every quarter. But this timeframe may not be relevant to your business plan.

When you measure results, you go back to the initial source of information that you have used when analyzing your business. For example, when you had checked the performance metric indicating your conversion rate, you perhaps used a CRM. Now, you should go back to your CRM and look at the stats.

Take notes and compare them with your projected results.

Is everything going according to the plan? Or are the results signaling that you need to come up with new business growth strategies?

projected results

If results don’t live up to your expectations, don’t fret. Go back to

 your business plan, tweak it a little, consult with your stakeholders or business coach, and try again.

Rome wasn’t built in a day.

How to create an action plan [+ Template]

Do You Need More Guidance in Planning the Growth of Your Business?

business plan

Find more freedom and raise your profits with one-on-one business coaching sessions.

If you struggle to find the optimal direction to grow your business, we can help you. No need to commit to the entire coaching program. For now, jump on a 30-minute strategy session

Before the meeting, we will send you a scorecard or a survey. Before and during the session, we will review the information you submitted, and we will help you figure out the next steps for your business.

 

small business coach

How Time Tracking Can Benefit Small Businesses

time-tracking

Unlike large corporations, small businesses run delicate operating models that can’t marginalize the effects of low turnovers. What they have is a flexible system of operation that entrepreneurs can easily supervise and fine-tune at will to keep the books in order. Time tracking is a major part of this.

However, all this elastic administrative power must be leveraged with precision and skill to produce results. One of the many strategies small business owners use to keep things organized is employee time management.

Since timekeeping shapes payrolls, startups can’t afford to get it wrong. It’s all the more critical in remote workplaces where employees are paid by the hour.

That’s not all. Time tracking also helps business and project managers handle various elements of their organizations. An effective system keeps everything orderly and stress-free. In effect, you need to know how to track work time if you expect to make reasonable headway in your business.

So, what are the benefits of time tracking?

Increased Awareness/Grasp of Company/Project Components

time-tracking

As a business manager, the importance of having a firm grasp of your employees, client base, projects, and even company goals cannot be overstated. A report by Harvard Business Review (HBR) outlines the various difficulties that business managers face today. These challenges include leveraging important data to shape company policies. Even small businesses managers are not exempt from these struggles.

Time tracking data can help business owners understand how their companies work. The system can be used to measure staff efficiency, estimated project completion times, and payroll accuracy. With a solid work time tracking app, it’s easier to get a grasp on these company components to make better decisions.

For example, the data shows you which team member performs better at specific assignments. This way, you can allocate work to the right talent, boosting efficiency.

Better Workflow with Time Tracking

In order to organize their workplaces and better engage their employees, some business managers have had to rely on third-party professionals. In truth, you can easily manage workload once you understand the time factor within the organization.

Often, the problem with managing workflow comes from having too much time with too little to do, or vice versa. However, the solution lies in efficiently monitoring the amount of time you and your employees work. Once you do that, it’s easy to identify performance ‘hot spots,’ bloated activities, and unused time.

With this data, you can remove bottlenecks, improve work speed, and optimize workflow. You can remove unnecessary processes and assign important tasks to employees during peak hours.

Easier Monitoring of Productivity Ratings

Time tracking is a tool for reliable comparison of company components and dynamics. Why would a business manager be upset upon knowing that last year’s turnover was better than this year’s? It is because businesses are expected to get better with time.

With small businesses, more time often indicates experience. More experience often indicates greater efficiency. Greater efficiency ought to result in higher performance. Now, higher performance is often the gateway to increased productivity.

Time tracking allows you to gauge your employees’ efficiency, productivity, and even experience. More than this, it helps you to measure and compare the partial and overall productivity of a single employee, teams, departments, or the entire organization.

Understanding your workers’ strengths and weaknesses means you can assign jobs better and help them improve.

Enhanced Payroll Efficiency with Time Tracking

As a small business, your payroll is likely your biggest overhead. This expense affects everything from your profit margin and cash flow to your ability to secure credit. That’s why you have to make sure you get it right if your small firm is to thrive.

Small businesses with inefficient time tracking systems often face payroll issues. The situation is worse when the company is made up of work-from-home staff.

Time tracking applications are excellent at generating timesheets and tracking billable hours. Using the right solution will see to it that your staff is adequately paid without complications.

Reduced Risk of Employee Multitasking and Stress

Working long hours is not equal to working productive hours. A well-cited Stanford study even concluded that “Long weekly hours and long daily hours do not necessarily yield high output.” It further stated:

“Employees at work for a long time may experience fatigue or stress that not only reduces his or her productivity but also increases the probability of errors, accidents, and sickness that impose costs on the employer.”

So, time tracking is as important to the health of your employee as it is to the smooth running of your organization. Establishing a ‘time-ceiling’ for when and how long employees should work daily can help. It will prevent your organization from burying itself in futile drudgery.

Easier Team Management as You Utilize Time Tracking

time-tracking

Time tracking is one of the best ways to manage teams. As earlier explained, good time tracking practices will help you get a solid understanding of the components of your organization. With respect to your employees, it will be easier for you to get them to ‘tick.’ This is the same as knowing the recipe for effective employee engagement and inclusive performance.

Once you can track and manage time in your organization, you will find it easier to assign tasks and expect timely executions and implementations. Also, it won’t be all that complicated to have useful interpersonal relationships growing at the workplace. That’s because your employees will know when to socialize and when to focus on work.

Also, although many contemporary studies insist on high productivity ratings from specific hours of work, your organization might be the exception. After all, a small business has proportionally fewer components to work with by way of employees and overall targets. So, time tracking will help you recognize where your organization stands: where more hours result in low performance and vice versa.

Increased Employee Awareness of Company Goals

Time tracking can be used for more than just directly boosting employee performance or generating timesheets. You can also use it to make your employees more sensitive to the goals of the company. As this Forbes report explained, you are more likely to get more loyalty and work out of employees that know what your organization is all about than those without the faintest idea.

The same fact holds for the incorporation of company culture. Using a reliable time tracking app, for example, can show you what your employees spend most of their time doing. This information will help you identify things to make available to your workers and what to discard. As any successful business manager will tell you, a united workplace spirit is vital to the growth of any small business.

Keep Optimizing the System with Time Tracking

Overall, time tracking is good for your small business. It helps you prioritize, organize, and make the components of your organization integrate smoothly. Always ensure you use valuable data to develop better policies. Collecting feedback from your workers will also help you leverage time tracking better.

 

small business coach

Start-up Loans vs. Small Business Loans: What’s right for you?

loans

It takes money to make money. How often have you heard that? Although some businesses don’t need start-up capital or funding to facilitate growth, most companies require financial assistance at some stage or another. Fortunately, there’s no shortage of options available for small businesses looking for a cash boost. Depending on your needs, you could use anything from a credit card to crowdfunding, to start-up loans or small business loans to get the necessary funds.

Most commonly, startup or small business loans are the options that entrepreneurs choose. These loans are ideal if you’re not looking for investors or outsiders to join your team, or don’t want to leverage personal equity. While both options get the job done, choosing the one that best suits your needs depends on the specifics of your business.

Comparing Start-Up And Small Business Loans

loans

The biggest difference between start-up and small business loans is that your personal credit history and finances are important factors when it comes to start-up loans. This makes it very similar to a personal loan, as your affordability is the basis of the qualifying criteria, and not necessarily that of the business.

If you have a good credit history, this loan is easier to obtain approval for. You can then further split up these loans to meet the needs of your business. You can obtain vehicle finance, mortgages, and installment loans.

Start-up loans are more flexible in terms of their uses, as you don’t have to link the funds to one specific purchase. In contrast, business loans relate to buying specific items, and using the funds for anything else will be near impossible. The terms of a business loan tend to outline exactly what the funds are for, and you cannot allocate them elsewhere.

The Approval Processes for Loans

Start-up loans are usually easier to qualify for and require less documentation. On the other hand, it usually takes longer to approve small business loans, and they require a mountain of paperwork.

Start-up loans rely on your personal credit history and financial status, so assuming you have a stable income, you should be good to go. You can, of course, use your business plan to support the application, although a new business will lack the proper financial backing to make much of a difference. These loans are often smaller and rarely exceed $50,000, with repayment terms capped at seven years.

Small business loans will look at both your personal and business credit scores, which makes them more suitable for already established businesses. One of the most important factors taken into consideration is how long your business has been operational, and its performance during this time.

This application process will require proof of profitability and cash flow. You’ll also need to state how you will use the loan. Sometimes, you may need to submit your business plan as a supporting document, along with any relevant legal documents, proof of your company’s structure and registration, tax certificates and any operational licenses and permits.

While the application process is more intensive and requires extra paperwork, small business loans tend to be far higher than start-up loans. These loans can exceed $1 million, and you can usually pay them back over a period of up to 25 years.

Advantages Of A Start-Up Loan

  • The approval process is far quicker
  • Funds are available sooner
  • Less paperwork required
  • You can use the funds on almost anything that your business may need

Advantages Of A Small Business Loan

  • The application links to your business, not your personal finances
  • You are not liable for outstanding payments
  • It can build your business’ credit history and work towards building a healthy credit score
  • The amount you borrow can be far larger
  • You can pay it back over a longer period
  • The interest rate will be lower

Choosing The Right Option For Your Business

loans

When choosing between a start-up and a small business loan, you need to factor in your business goals, credit history, and business history. You also need to calculate the amount of money you need, the interest rate you can afford, and your repayment terms. Take the following into consideration when deciding which funding avenue to pursue:

  • Established businesses looking for low-interest rates: As mentioned, small business loans are ideal, but the application process will take longer and it can be difficult to get approval. You may need to put up assets as collateral, and both your personal and business credit scores will be vetted.
  • New businesses looking for low-interest rates: The government offers small business loans such as the 7(a) program to encourage entrepreneurship and boost the economy. While approval tends to be easier and interest rates are low, the turnaround time on approvals can be lengthy. You also won’t need to put up collateral, and the government will often sign as a guarantee on the loan.
  • New business with good credit: You won’t qualify for a small business loan if you have a new business with no financial history. This is where a start-up loan becomes your best bet.
  • Instant cash flow: Start-up loans and personal loans often pay out far quicker, and you can complete the approval process online. Be sure to read the fine print before committing to anything, though. While the payout process may be quicker, the interest rates may not necessarily be favorable.
  • Bad credit: If you have a poor credit rating, there are alternative options that will secure your business credit. However, always do your research beforehand, and ensure you can meet the lender’s repayment terms.

Funding Your Business Doesn’t Have To Be Difficult

Funding is not all about loans, as you might be eligible for specific, additional funds or credits. But when deciding between a start-up loan and a small business loan, the easiest way to choose between the two is to look at the age of your business. If you have a well-established business, with a positive financial history and ripe for growth, a small business loan is a very viable option.

For newer businesses still trying to establish themselves, start-up loans seem to offer more positives, although they come with risk at a more personal level. However, as an entrepreneur, risk is all part of the process, and a start-up loan could be exactly what your venture needs to turn risk into reward.

 

small business coach

6 Reasons Your Small Business Needs an Accountant

accountant

As a business owner, you probably flourish and succeed in a DIY environment. However, the more hats you wear, the less you’ll achieve. Running a business isn’t a piece of cake. Having an accountant on your side can prove to be highly beneficial. From challenges with hiring to keeping up with product quality, your business is likely to face countless troubles. Out of all, money matters are a forever-going hustle for every business dealing with transactions. Your company’s finances are not only a problematic and ever-changing aspect but the engine of any business task. In addition, accounting is one of the essential areas for keeping your business profitable.

Managing your company’s finances might be overwhelming with so many tasks on your plate, making it vital to hire an accountant. Having an accountant helps you track your financial aims with productivity. Moreover, an accountant is likely to provide your business with a broad range of services that help you save money, reduce risk and grow your business. An accountant takes over the money-related work, allowing you to focus on other crucial business activities.

In addition, ensure that you hire an experienced and qualified accountant to help tackle your business’s finances better. Look for professionals who have pursued a degree in finance, like a CMA, as preparing for the exam using Wiley CMA test bank and other effective tools and resources would have equipped them with the knowledge required to complete all accounting tasks effectively.

Here are six reasons how hiring an accountant can be the best decision your business makes:

Help to improve cost-efficiency

accountant

Did you know that even a primary task like reducing business expenses can help your business grow? An accountant can help you develop a financial map, helping you decide which costs to keep and which to cut down. It is likely to indicate and show you which costs can be developed, which projects are too costly and which costs have better choices out there. Moreover, accountants can help you reduce your cost through tax deductions which can be done by creating a thorough and clever tax plan.

In addition, with the help of an accountant, you can become more tax literate, saving you from all entering any legal problems. They observe your financial transactions and give you an insight into where you are overspending and how you can cut costs in such areas. Besides that, hiring an accountant can play a significant role if you ever plan to sell your business by making sure you are selling your company tax efficiently.

Measure business performance with the help of an accountant

One of the things commonly neglected by businesses is measuring performance setting aims and goals. Not just that, companies don’t pay attention in measuring such against results such as revenue increase, complaints received, invoices are written off, etc. however, it can be the key to deciding whether your business will succeed or fail. Whereas an accountant can help you create performance evaluations. It will help your business understand its actual performance against the aims you might have set. Moreover, using such evaluations can enable you to understand it in terms of signs vital for growing and prospering.

Stay ahead of trends and policies

In today’s fast-paced world, hiring an accountant is a great way to keep up with emerging trends, new tech advancements, and changes in rules. These experts are aware of the critical pressure aspects your business might face at different stages of its life. Not just that, an accountant can help you visualize the significant issues your business might face due to economic doubts, uncertainties, changing trends, and new rules. An accountant can identify such uncertainties by keeping regulation checks and economic and financial evaluations, giving your business a competitive edge.

In addition, after they identify the changing trends, they can help you prepare for them by taking the help of various financial forecasts. They will use smart solutions, growth managing tools, and analytical performance reporting to help your business stay ahead of the emerging trends. Your accountant can introduce you to the best accounting software by providing a guide, highlighting the best one for your business.

Reduce your workload with an accountant

Once you open your business, you will need time to run daily operations rather than be busy with bookkeeping, tax, or calculating expenses. Not just that, as your business starts to grow, your business’s finances become more complex. It demands more of your time and effort, making it vital to hire an accountant. These experts will help you manage business operations by suggesting process improvements. They will take over the financial and tax commitments, introducing you to various tools to make your life easier and save your time. Moreover, investing in an accountant will help you maintain focus and keep you on the path towards achieving your goals. In addition, hiring an accountant eliminates the chances of making errors while creating a report.

Improve your cash flow

accountant

What is the essential thing required to run your business? Well, cash is what keeps your company going. Without controlling your cash flow, you are unlikely to make it essential to grow your business and make it successful. Managing cash flow is crucial for your business as even a successful and profitable business can collapse without having enough cash. In addition, having a good cash flow balance can help you understand where you are spending your money.

Moreover, managing your cash flow covers how your company manages its financial investments and activities to maintain a good cash flow balance. Your business needs to have adequate cash flow to survive and pay its everyday expenses. If you cannot find cash in the company to match your growth, you might run into financial difficulties, making it vital to hire an expert. Investing in an experienced accountant can help you have reasonable credit control. They will ensure that your cash management policies are in place, giving you access to all possible funds and information.

Get valuable advice from an accountant

Hiring an accountant can help you get the perfect advice on planning your business’s future. They can help you pull out past data and examine the position of your business. It will help you decide when the best time is to buy inventory or make investments, helping you stay competitive. Moreover, an accountant can look at the big picture to figure out the best way to support the long life of your business. Furthermore, these experts can give you an unbiased discussion board for your ideas and warn you of the possible risks.

Final thoughts

An accountant can help you run your business much more effectively and efficiently. Investing in an accountant can reduce the amount of time you spend on bookkeeping, allowing you to look at other business operations. In addition, these experts can help you predict the changing trends, enabling you to have the edge over other businesses.

 

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Why Publishing Video Content Can Boost Your Business Growth

video-content

The popularity of video content is soaring high, and with the prevalence of Instagram Reels and social media live streaming, videos are now one of the most in-demand content. YouTube has reigned for a decade since its launch year as a video sharing platform and bought a fresh trend of video content. Over the years, TikTok has contributed immensely to making video content popular. All prominent social platforms, right from Instagram to Facebook, are gradually transforming towards a video-preferred platform. Simultaneously, it creates new opportunities for brands to reach their target audience. Video content is now undoubtedly your reliable brand marketing toolkit. 

Importance Of Video Content

If we scroll through the data, we can notice that 85% of internet users in the US enjoy consuming online video marketing content per month. Whereas 54% of brand clients wish to see more video content from the business they support, and notably, 66% of video marketers get more qualified leads. Are you wondering why video content holds so many opportunities for your business?

Well, video is easy-to-digest content, and without an overabundance of textual content, you can deliberately deliver your brand message to the target audience. Accordingly, it aids you in engaging with the audience, boosting lead generation opportunities. 

There are many ways through which videos can help you in your business growth. Including video marketing in your business growth advisory can help you develop a strategic blueprint for implementing it in your marketing efforts. 

This article has encased a few in-depth points explaining why video marketing is vital for your business growth. Roll on through the matters discussed, hone your skills, and leverage enticing video to propel your brand growth

How Video Marketing Can Help In Your Business Growth 

video-content

Video content holds the capacity to spread your brand awareness and, at the same time, build your brand by establishing a connection between the brand and the audience. According to a study, including a video on a landing page can boost conversion by 80%. Additionally, 76% of marketers claim to plan to add a video to their marketing effort. 

Video marketing can be defined as marketing to utilize and implement videos to boost audience engagement, drive sales and raise brand awareness. In a video marketing process, the growth marketing team of a brand thinks, plans, and designs the strategy to create a video focusing on service, product, features. The video assets are curated and distributed in diverse channels to reach the target audience to grab their attention to the brand with easy-to-digest content.

In an era of technology where most of your target audience carries smartphones or tablets, videos are an easy way to reach them. Textual advertisement is one-dimensional compared to videos. A short video can quickly relay the same message with communicated images, tones, and emotions that will better grab the target audience’s attention and stay in their memory for an extended period. Video is the audio-visual medium that can provide information to your target audience in a visually pleasing format that enriches engagement among your consumers.

In terms of utilizing videos for brand growth, three main objectives are commemorated. There are:

  • The initial goal of a video campaign is known as ‘awareness.’ This objective aids you in introducing your brand to a broader audience. Business awareness videos help grow your audience. The primary purpose of an ‘awareness video’ is to discover your brand, not sales, and these videos are the top-of-the-funnel videos.

 

  • Are you seeking ways to develop a strong bond between your brand and prospects and propel interest among them? Video content that is utilized to establish a connection or to strengthen the relationship with your prospects, such types of video content is known as ‘consideration’ content. Considering video content showcases your area of expertise to your field. To measure the performance of the consideration videos, click-through rate and view length are two essential metrics. 

 

  • Conversion videos are your end of the funnel content. When you develop conversion videos, ensure to focus on price ranges and your brand’s USP. The most critical metrics for conversion videos are sales and click-through rate.

Irrespective of the end goal, follow a data-led approach to determine what works and steer away from what doesn’t work in your video marketing effort. For that, it is crucial that you conduct a business survey; you can utilize the available business survey tools to ground-up what your target market is looking for & imply feedback or the pertaining data is your video marketing efforts.

Top 5 Benefits Of Video Content

video-content

#1 Favored Content Format

Data says 85% of people would like to see more videos from brands they follow. Out of the 36% saying they’d most like to see more educational or explainer video style content and 14% wanting to see more product demos. The data indicated that video content is one of the primary content choices of online users. And as a brand offering your target audience what they want is a great way to boost your revenue and propel your business growth. 

#2 Shares A Compelling Brand Story

Storytelling is an excellent way to connect with your prospects. Through video content, you can share the compelling story of your brand’s loyal advocates or your employees’ advocates. It makes your brand more credible and humane. Sharing customer testimonials through video content is an innovative and powerful way to explain why the target market can rely on your brand, services, and team. 

#3 Increase Email Click-Throughs

Utilizing video content for brand outreach can help you to earn 3x more responses. Rather than embedding video on your Email, include a thumbnail from your video in the email body that users can click to view on your website’s landing pages. This tactic boosts your email click-through rate.

#4 Craft Stronger Brand Affiliation

Video offers your prospects audio and visual stimulation, and these stimuli make your audience more engaged with your brand. Besides, it helps develop a stronger affiliation and interest in the content they’re consuming. It results in getting brand recognition and creating loyal customers.

#5 Appears Frequently On Social Feed

The new algorithm of social platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram is video-friendly. Utilizing video formats such as Instagram Live, Facebook Live, or the video ad formats or feed or timeline videos, you can make your target market interact with your brands. The interaction with your video content enriches your reach. Video ads on Instagram get 3x more engagement than image ads. Online users watch 2 billion videos on Twitter per day, and Tweets amalgamated with video get 10X more engagement than Tweets that do not.

Final Thoughts

In 2021, 82% of the global internet traffic came from video streaming and downloads. Furthermore, social video generates 1200% more shares than text and image content combined. Videos are cost-effective, and with them, you can educate your audience as well. You can craft a product video, explainer video, or tutorial video based on your audience’s needs. Besides, while developing a strategy, ensure to assess your target audience’s needs and develop a buyer persona accordingly. Also, prepare a content plan, decide with your team and outline a program including your posting frequency. Also, to measure your content performance, set your KPIs and within a systemized interval, track the metrics to measure your marketing efforts, be flexible, assess, adapt, adjust and repeat the process to attain success in leveraging video content.

AuthorPadmaja Santhanam
Padmaja Santhanam is the Growth Manager at FirstPrinciples. She manages all inbound business development & outbound prospecting pipeline building strategies. Padmaja’s expertise lies in positioning & managing to grow the brand of SaaS companies. Her role comprises right from client onboarding to assuring the expected linear growth & making required adjustments accordingly.

 

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Top 7 IT Asset Management Software for Growing Businesses

it-asset-management-software

Technology is a great thing for any business nowadays. It can help control and manage a lot of daily and mundane tasks that your employees would rather not do. IT asset management software can be a valuable resource for your company. 

Every organization has assets and managing them is important to help improve business productivity. The same goes for IT assets. With the right management software in place, it can help improve your IT processes in existence and to contribute to productivity levels too.

With the amount of technology available, there’s no need to manually input and manage this data accordingly. In this guide, you’ll get a breakdown of some of the best IT asset management software that growing businesses would benefit greatly from. 

What is IT asset management software?

it-asset-management-software

For those unaware of this management software, it’s worth giving a brief breakdown of what it is and how it works.

IT asset management is a system that helps manage all the IT assets that belong to the business. This includes things like software licenses, shares, copyrights, real estate, etc. 

This type of software can be extremely helpful to have in place because it helps to keep everything in one place and can make managing these assets more efficient. With a lot of these assets being made available digitally, it makes sense to move over to a digital way of working.

Asset management is something that many businesses don’t do successfully. With 43% of small businesses failing to track assets and inventory effectively, it’s clear that this type of software is critical for growing businesses.

How does IT asset management software work?

With IT asset management software, it accounts for all of the hardware, software to machine equipment, and more. With this software in place, you can easily track your assets and help to schedule any replacements or updates to any asset in particular.

You can also prioritize which assets you want to focus on mainly and others that don’t need so much focus. The clever software can help with reminding its users of the depreciation of some assets and when these assets would need repairs. It means that your team or individuals responsible for this software can focus on other things with this running in the background.

Tracking both tangible and intangible assets, it’s a great system to have in place for any business, whatever shape or size.

Top 7 IT asset management software to consider

Just like any management software used in business, there are a lot of systems to choose from. As a business, you want to pick the best one that offers everything you’ll need as a business to manage its IT assets effectively but to also scale up where required too.

1. Zluri – one of the best for these IT asset management systems

Zluri is one of the best for these IT asset management systems and with their platform, you can track usage of IT assets and all the information/data pertaining to your assets.

With this platform, it can also help with eliminating any redundancies that are clogging up the system or causing you to overspend on applications you don’t need. With task automation and helping onboard/offboard staff, there’s a lot of time and energy that can be saved.

A few additional benefits of Zluri include:

  • A large library of apps with over 120000+ applications.
  • Automated vendor management for easy monitoring.
  • Keeps everything compliant with laws and legislation in place.
  • Offers custom integrations.

The platform is beneficial to those in an enterprise market and a workforce of 500-5000. However, it can also benefit those businesses with less than 500 employees too. For those with less than 50 employees, Zluri is free to utilize.

2. NinjaOne

NinjaOne delivers a fantastic IT asset management platform for IT professionals and managed service providers.

The software comes with a variety of tools to help manage and improve all network devices, workstations, and other devices like laptops and macOS devices. With NinjaOne, it can help both MSPs and IT professionals to reduce ticket volume, automate processes and strengthen the efficiency and security of all IT assets.

Some of its features include:

  • Monitor the health and general performance of firewalls, routers, etc.
  • Get real-time hardware and software inventories across all of your devices.
  • Automate OS and any third-party application patching on your devices to keep them safe and secure.
  • Take direct control over devices with remote access.

Watch the demo available on their site or request a free trial to test out the platform before purchasing. Pricing comes in the form of a custom quote and you only end up paying for what you need.

3. AssetExplorer (ManageEngine)

it-asset-management-software

AssetExplorer is one of ManageEngine’s line of products that provides complete IT management solutions. With the company having over twenty years of experience in the industry, there’s a lot to be gained from investing in this platform.

With AssetExplorer, you can monitor and manage all of your assets from one central place. Its multi-source discovery tools allow you to look at hardware and software in real-time to understand what’s being utilized and what might need replacing, renewing, or disposing of.

A few benefits and features of the platform are:

  • Maximize software license compliances.
  • Asset life cycle management.
  • Best for managing software and hardware assets.
  • Configuration management database.

Try a demo or request a quote for a personalized quote that’s tailored to you and your business needs.

4. Solarwinds

If you’re looking for an IT service desk then Solarwinds can deliver the ultimate solution for your IT needs. As a modern IT service management tool, you can help support your employees within the IT department who need it.

Managing all your assets at once can be tough, never mind having to deal with the daily slog of active tickets that need solving. Solarwinds provides support and assistance in helping organize your IT tasks effectively. 

Here are a few key features of the platform:

  • Fully integrated IT asset management features.
  • Service portal for employees or users to submit tickets and requests.
  • Service catalog to help with service requests and fulfillment.

Prices range from $19 for smaller teams to $89 for enterprises. As with most of these software options, trials are available in order to test out the platform.

5. FreshService

With FreshService, you’ve got an online asset management tool that helps to maintain records as well as software, hardware, and other applicable assets. These can be grouped easily on the platform by asset type or using a number of other segmenting options.

Track assets quickly with a timeline glance of where certain assets are and what needs addressing quickly. 

Some top features of the platform include:

  • License management.
  • Usage of multiple languages available.
  • Custom & schedule reports.
  • Asset and incident management.

A free trial is available to help test out the platform for yourself before subscribing. The subscriptions range from $19 for small teams and up to $109 for enterprises.

6. Snipe-IT

Snipe-IT is a user-friendly asset management software that can even be utilized by those with very little experience with this type of technology.

With robust and powerful features, the platform helps you create custom automation and integrations for your own company’s IT assets.

The cloud platform of this software helps provide a low latency network and a faster connection for all of your employees, wherever they’re managing your assets from.

Some perks of using this platform include:

  • Enterprise-standard security services.
  • Open-source software that helps maintain security and transparency.
  • Cloud network benefits.
  • Secured data with any data center chosen during sign-up.
  • Free or affordable plans are available.

Request a demo to get an in-depth overview of the platform. Pricing for this is free if you’re self-hosted and starts from $39.00 per month for monthly hosted. Enterprise support can cost up to $4,999.99 per year.

7. Atlassian (Jira)

it-asset-management-software

Atlassian is a very popular service management platform. With Jira Service Management, business teams, IT Ops, and Devs can all come together to collaborate.

Allow all teams to quickly set up the service desk without the complexity of traditional asset management platforms. Atlassian is an organizational tool that can scale up and along with your business, something that’s necessary for those who are flourishing in their industry.

With a range of features available, here are just a few worth mentioning:

  • Track work through a collaborative and open platform.
  • Quickly respond and address all incidents, changes, and requests within your IT operations.
  • Conduct regular audits to help eliminate app wastage and to help development work.
  • Manage requests, incidents, assets, configurations with little issue.

With Atlassian, the software can be used for free. However, for additional features, the standard price is $7.50, the next step up is $14.50 and for enterprise, it’s billed annually at a custom price.

There are benefits to using IT asset management software

As a business in 2022, efficiency is key and with management software like this one available, it can help run your organization more effectively. Provide your team with the tools they’ll benefit from to make managing IT assets easier this year.

Author Bio: Natalie Redman (LinkedIn)

Freelance writer for many clients across multiple industries. Natalie has two years of copywriting experience. Natalie has a wide range of experience copywriting for web pages for businesses across many industries. She’s also an owner of two blog websites and a Youtube content creator.

 

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5 Must-Have Devices For a Small Business

devices

Using devices makes your business so much easier. It is 2022, and the technology market is at its pinnacle, making people’s lives easier. If you own a business and are experiencing troubles, you may be lacking in some technological gear. Today, we’ll go through 5 must-have items for making your business more relaxed.

1. Hands-Free Headphone Devices

It is essential to be able to contact your employees, customers, or clients when on the go. It might be challenging to hold your phone and talk on the phone when you are moving or doing some kind of physical activity. This is where you need a hands free headphone because they will let you do all these activities without holding your phone in your hand.

Hands-free headphones are so dependable and simple to use because they eliminate all of the unpleasant difficulties associated with cables. You can listen to high-quality audio by simply connecting your Android, iOS, or Windows phone over Bluetooth to a hands-free headset.

2. USB Devices

In a meeting, you can’t carry your laptop just to show the slides or give a presentation, right? This is where you need a small but really beneficial device known as a USB. USB allows you to easily carry your data in your pocket.

Furthermore, a C-type connector in combination with a USB will allow you to link the USB with your mobile phone, allowing you to easily transfer data in your mobile. A USB is the handiest and most effective gadget for making your business operations run smoothly. If you’re not using a USB in your business, you’re missing out.

3. Wireless Printer

devices

While running a business, you will need to print various papers, for which you will want a powerful printer. A wireless printer allows you to print any type of document with a single click of a button. click. Wireless printers have advantages over traditional network printers by allowing you to utilize the device anywhere it detects a strong Wi-Fi connection.

The one disadvantage of wireless printers is that they are pricey, but they are quite dependable. They are so convenient that everyone would be willing to spend money on them because of the ease with which they print papers.

4. Long-Range Cordless Phone

The cordless phone, also known as a portable phone, is an important piece of equipment for every small business. When you have a long range cordless phone, you have much more freedom to take the call without having the trouble of wires since you are not bound by the phone’s cables.

Cordless phones in today’s world have a beautiful design and a lot of diversity, as well as an excellent and clear voice. A portable phone is a must-have gadget for a small business since it allows you to easily communicate with other employers.

5. Powerbank Devices

While doing business, you may be required to travel on a business trip or to attend a client meeting when constant access to your mobile or laptop is required. What will you do if your phone’s battery dies and you don’t have access to a power socket?

At this point, all you need is a power bank, which will allow you to charge your phone without having to search for a wall plug.

Conclusion on Must-Have Devices

So what are you waiting for? If you want to grow your business on a large scale then you need to get these must-have devices.

If you have any further recommendations for this list, please leave them in the comments area below.

 

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How to Increase Walk-Ins in Your Retail Store

retail-store

It’s a big challenge to own a retail store nowadays. The business success depends on sales, and you need customers to enter to sell something. It’s why you could benefit from reading about the best ways to increase walk-ins in your retail store. Check out these ideas that could drive more visitors to your business premises!

Use Eye-Catching Signage

retail-store

Your retail shop could be in a mall or busy street. The window might not be big compared to neighboring stores, so it’s not easy to make it attractive. The solution is to design event signages that improve the attendee experience. Signage offers excellent value for money, especially if you get creative with it. The idea is to grab people’s attention even if they are passing by the store in a rush.

Here are some ways to use signage to enhance the attendee’s experience:

  • Entrance signage. You can put a sign on the mall’s or the store’s entrance. It helps to put a promotion or product in the spotlight, but even welcoming visitors can be successful.
  • Sandwich boards outside the store. You need to check whether you aren’t violating any regulations first. And if you aren’t, using a sandwich board outside the shop makes your business more noticeable. More people will notice it as they are approaching, and if they like what’s written there, they won’t hesitate to enter.
  • Directional signs. These should go at least several feet from your store. Let’s say your shop is at the corner farthest from the mall’s entrance. You can put directional signage in a nearby location with heavy foot traffic.

Personalize Your Goods

Can you engrave the customer’s name on your product? We love hearing and seeing our names everywhere, and you can use this to your advantage. Personalizing an item will make it more attractive for a shopper. Other ways to personalize things include putting a specific band or sports motives on clothing and other items.

If you have a loyalty program, you have valuable information about the shoppers. Use that to personalize communication (using their names once again) and offers and products. Even making a discount referring to a specific person could be a successful strategy to make them come to the store!

Trends and Seasons at Your Retail Store

The market is constantly changing, and adaptation is necessary to survive. Following the current trends is an excellent way to boost walk-ins in your retail store.

For example, Money Heist was a huge pop culture trend in autumn 2021 because the show’s last season aired then. Many stores have jumped on board and started offering hoodies and other merchandise inspired by the series. From unique clothing designs to jewelry pieces, you could see Money Heist items in stores everywhere.

Your goal is to consider how the current trends fit your store niche. Apart from designing products, consider promoting them in your shop’s window. The more people notice you have a trendy product, the more visitors you’ll have. And avoid overdoing it – it’s enough to focus on a single trend. Otherwise, it might seem too much and create confusion for the customers.

The Importance of Following Seasons

If you own a bookstore, the time when kids are coming back to school is crucial. Apart from promoting fitting books, you can offer backpacks, and other relevant items pupils might need. If Halloween is around the corner and you own a jewelry store, why not offer a necklace with a pumpkin pendant? If it seems fitting, Halloween decorations could attract users to your shop.

It might be enough to decorate shop windows to be in line with the current season. During the summer, use plenty of green and other light colors. Leaves and other autumn decorations can also make your window beautiful. It’s the visual attractiveness that will make a potential visitor look into the window and later enter your shop.

Encourage Social Shares and Location Tagging

Here is another trick how the technology can serve to your advantage. Social networks have become an integral part of our lives, so how about encouraging customers to mention your store online? You could organize a competition where participants need to tag themselves in your store to have a chance to win a prize. You can create a special social media wall where customers can take photos of the items they tried or bought.

And don’t forget about the importance of inviting visitors to follow you on social media. You might have a retail store, but internet presence is still crucial to attracting shoppers.

Partner with Influencers or Experts

retail-store

Online stores might be your competition, but there’s no reason why you wouldn’t leverage the power of the internet to attract customers. The old-fashioned way is to pay for an advertisement on an influencer’s profile on social networks. But how about taking it a step further and inviting that influencer to your store?

You want to find someone famous enough, especially in your area. Also, they should be relevant to your niche. If you get the right influence, you can attract massive foot traffic in hours. The celebrity could photograph with the visitors or sign the products they buy. You can even contact an industry expert to hold a short speech or class in your store. It’s all about finding people that fit your shop and niche.

Host Events in Your Retail Store

Calling an influencer isn’t the only event your store can host. Can your shop sponsor an activity or event by being its host? Clothing stores seem to have the most options. You can invite a particular designer or brand to hold a fashion show in your shop. And if you sell sports supplements, how about asking some loyal customers to gather and show off their success? They could talk first-hand about their experience with your products.

Don’t Forget Your Existing Customers At Your Retail Store

Once you get the shoppers to your store, you need to establish and maintain a relationship. For example, asking them to sign to your SMS or mailing list to get a 10% discount is an excellent marketing trick for a first-time visit.

You can follow up by giving an additional but time-limited discount if they return in the next seven days. And if you don’t have a record of them buying anything for a month, send an SMS reminder. However, make sure to include something enticing, like a new product mention, complimentary items, etc.

 

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Top 8 Cash Management Tools For Small Businesses

cash-management

It’s important to work with leading cash management tools to manage your small business. As cash management may either affect your business negatively or positively, choosing the ideal one for your business is a crucial decision. Before we list the top cash management tools, let’s understand first what cash management is.

Cash management refers to how you control and manage the cash flow in and out of your company or business. It is also how one collects the fund coming from clients and how business expenses are managed.

As a small business owner, it’s vital to understand that cash flow management determines the stability of your business. A healthy cash flow leads to timely collection and payments leading to business growth. Fortunately, you can use any online accounting services or other tools to manage your business cash flow.

Here are top-rated cash management tools for small businesses:

1. QuickBooks Online

QuickBooks Online is arguably the most reliable cash management tool for small businesses. While it can be daunting for business owners when the tax period knocks on the door, this tool makes managing your accounts easier. QuickBooks assist in tracking invoices, managing expenses, view profit, and loss ahead of tax filing. However, there’s a monthly fee that comes with QuickBooks. Nevertheless, you can try it for 30 days for free to know if it suits you.

cash-management

2. Float

Float is a cash management tool that can be connected to other accounting tools such as Xero, FreeAgent, and QuickBooks. Float makes it easier to view the future bank balance of your business without using difficult spreadsheets. Float also features transaction notes, budget bars, and elegant reports so you can get full information on your finances. This is a visual and intuitive tool that provides clarity and confidence in managing your business funds.

3. Xero

If you’re looking for a simple cash management tool for your small business, Xero might be the best solution for you. Xero has a clean interface and can fully integrate with a third-party payroll service. When Xero is integrated with GoCardless and Stripe, businesses can collect payments from clients online.

Founded in 2006 in New Zealand, Xero currently has more than 2.7 million users globally. Xero is popular in New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and Australia. Xero has also been tremendously growing in the United States.

4. Pulse

Pulse is another cash management tool that helps you monitor your business’s cash flow. With Pulse, you can get several cash flow views daily, weekly, or monthly. This tool can also make managing your cash flow by project or company easy. It also features projection reports so you’ll be aware of how your money is moving.

Additionally, Pulse provides reports in numerous currencies. With Pulse, you can allow access to selected users involved with accounts. If you have QuickBooks, you can integrate it into your Pulse account for advanced accuracy of projections.

In short, Pulse enables you to come up with genius business decisions by allowing you a closer check at your expenses, income, and cash flow forecast. It also helps you determine when to hire additional staff or make more significant purchases via its cash flow management aspects.

5. FreshBooks

One of the most important accounting requirements for small businesses is invoicing. Thankfully, FreshBooks provides more invoicing customizations compared to other cash management tools. Its key function is to print, send, receive, and pay invoices. It can also offer basic bookkeeping requirements for small businesses. FreshBooks makes it easier for businesses to send proposals and invoices, collect customers’ retainers, request deposits, track time on projects, as well as receive payments.

6. Scoro

Scoro is a sturdy tool that takes care of all aspects of a business. It has a variety of services that include cash flow management. It is an all-in-one business management tool that consists of budgeting, project management, and customer relationship management. Its reliability is on another level according to its users.

Scoro brings each team member, project, report, and sales into one place. It’s undoubtedly a complete tool to help you be on top of everything. Scoro’s features include time management, business management, finances, projects and tasks, customization, client management, integrations, reporting and dashboards, and mobile app.

7. Wave

cash-management

If you’re running a service-based small business sending simple invoices without the need to track inventory, Wave is the ideal accounting tool for you. For instance, most freelancers and other service-based businesses benefit from Wave’s free features that cover all accounting needs with ease. It can also provide its users with end-of-year accounts to prepare a business’ tax return.

Wave comes with accounting features each business might need, such as expense tracking, invoicing, financial reporting, and receipt scanning. Luckily, you can access these features online or via a mobile app. With Wave, bookkeeping, reporting features, and invoicing are free. However, payroll and customer payment processing are considered premium services that come at a cost.

8. Cushion

Cushion is a cash management tool designed for freelancers who need to stay on top of managing and planning their business. This tool can help you forecast your schedule, helping you plan for months, even when your clients change their timelines. With Cushion, you’re guaranteed a general overview of the whole year and be aware of availability and overbooking.

Cushion helps you realize your financial goals. It automatically adjusts your monthly goals throughout the year while separating what you need to earn from the desired profit. Likewise, Cushion helps you send and visually track invoices while allowing you a glimpse of patterns in your pay schedule. This tool can also be integrated with FreshBooks, Xero, among others.

Conclusion on Cash Management

As a small business owner, it’s essential to stay on top of the game for your business to grow, and for this to happen, you need to maintain accurate cash flow management. Cash flow management enables you to make wise decisions regarding your business. It provides you with accurate information on how your funds move in and out of your business. It’s believed that if you don’t track and manage your cash, you could end up making permanent mistakes that might harm your business.

Agreeably, you’re likely to find one suitable for your business with the tools mentioned here. These tools will help you track your cash and make better decisions for your business. Consider trying them out and see how your business benefits from them.

 

small business coach