How to Create Marketing Portfolio that Attracts Attention

Marketing
As a business person, job seeker, or entrepreneur one of your biggest concerns is how to gain attention of potential clients. It is what determines your success. In this piece, we are going to look at ways you can produce portfolios/marketing materials that can show off your skills, products and services, and help you create an impression that lasts. The tips we have covered here can equally be used if you are looking for a job; interviewing to land a full-time creative role for example.

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Benefits of Effective Telephone Services for Small Businesses

Telephone Services
Clear and effective communication is important in personal as well professional life. Without the ability to communicate we are physically limited as human beings to carry out even the most basic tasks. The same logic applies to your business, if you can’t communicate properly with others you will be unable to provide a proper service to clients and customers and ultimately your business will fail.

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Infographic: 5 Ways Unified Communications is Changing the Workforce

Unified Communication
Infographic provided by ShoreTel

In the past few years, Unified Communications (UC) has established itself as a critical tool for companies while simultaneously altering the workplace for the better. By promoting more flexibility and mobility in scheduling, businesses can keep up with the BYOD trend and allow employees to work from wherever they may be. This also allows companies to improve efficiency by promoting well-informed decision-making outside of the office. Additionally, cloud-based UC can lower the total cost of ownership for your firm, as business leaders do not need to invest in additional hardware as the organization grows. Lower costs also contribute to simplified billing, as figuring out communication costs is no longer an issue for managers. Finally, leveraging UC data from the cloud helps companies to plan for disaster recovery in case of any type of future emergency. For more information on how unified communication is changing the workforce, check out the infographic below:

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How to Create Impressive Business Cards that Command Attention

Business Card
Oh, the age old business card! It looks so small and innocuous, isn’t it? And yet, this little piece of paper can change the outcome of just about any business meeting. Handing over a business card is an introduction to you, your company and products or services it offers. It is said that first impression is everything in any meeting, and the business card is what makes a first statement about your business to potential client, customer or vendor. So how do ensure the business card that represents your company is as impressive as the business itself? Here are some alternate ideas for business cards made out of non-traditional materials.

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How Video Production can Help Business Owners Showcase Products

Video Production
Any business that sells products needs to find the best way advertise their goods, as this is how you communicate to your audience and explain why they should choose you over the competition. It is difficult do this through text and images. Often these adverts will unfortunately go unnoticed. Instead, it is much better to produce a video featuring the products. This is the most engaging form of media, and it is also one which lends itself well to advertising. With a video you have the ability to construct a narrative through audio and visual elements, and this also enables businesses to show their product in action too. If your company sells laptops for example, then a well produced video that shows the laptop working will be much more beneficial than a photo of the laptop next to a wall of text.

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5 Management Mistakes that Kill Employee Motivation

The topic of how to boost employee motivation is one that has been covered exhaustively in many a blog post. However, what you may not realize is that it’s just as important to take steps to protect existing employee motivation.
Employee Motivation
When you go back to school online to earn your BS in Organizational Management, you’ll learn that many employees are already quite motivated. In fact, most employees are excited about their careers and come into their jobs brimming with the desire to do their best work. What these employees need most is to avoid being de-motivated by poor management practices, like the ones below.

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What can Anthony Weiner Teach Small Businesses about PR

What can Anthony Weiner teach small businesses about PR
In May 2011, then Congressman Anthony Weiner announced that he was resigning from the New York City Council. The congressman was an intense individual to work for. He kept long hours, worked staff hard, and was accused of being verbally abusive. Weiner made a mistake, something that we’ve all done at some point or another. He sent a public tweet that he meant to keep private. What was bothersome about that tweet was its sexually explicit content.

The congressman resigned and sought counseling on the matter. In May of 2013, he revealed via YouTube that he was looking to run a seat of New York City’s mayor. Barely two months had gone by when old habits crept back into the public eye. Congressman Weiner was at it again. The scandal has not caused the former congressman to drop out, yet. As we wait for word on his efforts to continue, a reflective look at his legacy can shed some valuable light on businesses under pressure.

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Small Biz Owners – Do not Use Limited Resources as Excuse to be Unprofessional

Small Biz Owners - do not use limited resources as excuse to be unprofessional
There are lot of limitations on small business, many of which are resulting from lack of resources and size. Retail business owners can only carry certain products due to limited budget and order minimums, service businesses can only serve limited number of clients due to lack of resources and they cannot bid on certain jobs due to lack of equipment and manpower. However, you need to be careful about not using limited resources as excuse for presenting yourself in unprofessional manner to your customers.

In professional transactions, business image is as important as the products or services you provide. Granted you don’t need to wear fancy suits in all situations, but they may be required when you are presenting your clients in the courtroom as their lawyer. Similarly, you do not need graphic laden, interactive website for your business to attract customers in all situations. If majority of customers are expecting a certain image and you are not projecting that image it is going to be difficult for your business to succeed.

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Customer Service Lessons from my Poor Olive Garden Experience


I am always on the lookout for lessons to be learned from my own experience as a customer. I believe small business owners can learn a lot about management and customer service by putting themselves in the shoes of customers. I was presented with such an opportunity when we visited Olive Garden restaurant in Auburn Hills, Michigan over the weekend. This was a special treat from my daughters on Father’s Day.
While I have always liked Olive Garden’s delicious food particularly the soups and salad my experience on this day left a lot to be desired from such a reputable national restaurant. Here is what happened:
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Tools you can use to Uncover Customer Needs


Finding and serving the “right” customers is the most important step you can take to improve your sales. Many small business owners feel that the task is easier said than done. As a result, they fail to align their business with the right customer segment. Even when they do attempt to do it they either go about finding the customer needs in ad-hoc fashion or they use wrong tools to segment the customer base.
As we have noted earlier, we firmly believe that segmenting the customers based on their needs as opposed to demographics or location can improve your sales significantly. But how do you go about finding what customers really need and want?
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