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Who Are You???

Last month, I had the opportunity to co-present on the basics of social media with Michael Nicholson of MDN Graphics. We offered some definitions of common words used in social media and even gave start-up tips on using Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Blogs for business. One of the simple but probably most overlooked things we talked about was the importance having a picture of  yourself or your company logo on your profile.

Think about it. It’s the morning after you’ve attended a networking event and you’re trying to connect with all of your new contacts on various social networks. There’s nothing worse than seeing that famous Facebook silhouette and on top of that, they have a common name like John Smith. Simply put, just upload an image…a logo…something that let’s people know it’s you! (The next post will probably be about using discretion in image selection… :0)

May 28, 2010 in Social Media Tips
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Business Owners: Why You Need a Blog…

Through personal experience and talking to other business owners and clients, I’ve come to one very important conclusion:


…and that includes free information. When you blog, the topics you discuss are now a part of a plethora of resources people turn to when they have a question. It may seem surprising, but what you’re writing today could answer a very important question for someone days, weeks, and maybe even years later.

Think about it. How many times have you googled a topic and the first page of your search results included a blog on that issue? Now put yourself in the position of the blogger. Your information is now considered valuable. In that person’s eyes, your advice is top notch, and they will likely frequent your blog and click on any links associated with it (including your business website). You’re giving away valuable, useful information in your area of expertise.

Ponder this:

“People won’t mind paying for services provided by a person who’s shown them value before a price.” – KLW

April 1, 2010 in Business
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7 Things I Hate About You: What Small Business Owners Wish People Considered

Small business owners can get taken advantage of by friends, clients, other business owners, etc. As a small business owner, I’ve seen and talked about a few recurring problems with many other business owners that can become quite frustrating. Then I thought, “if we don’t tell them, how will they know? If we don’t teach them, how will they learn?” So I decided to compile a list of 7 things every small business owner wishes people would consider before working with us or contracting us to do work for you. Comments and additions to the list are welcome.

The List

7. As you add to my list of things to do on your project, you add to the number of days in which it’ll be completed.

A lot of business owners will appreciate this. There has to be a cut off time for clients to give information. Otherwise a project can drag out FOREVER. Please consider this the next time you ask for Draft 30!

6. You are not the only client.

Now every client deserves undivided time and attention, but not at the expense of other people’s projects. Please remember, your project is not the only one on the to do list.

5. My friendship is free, my services are not.

Just because you know the business owner doesn’t mean they’re authorized to give you a 100% off coupon for their services. Remember: The service they offer is how they make their living. As one who loves what they do, I’d love to work for free, but I like to eat and have a place to stay, and that costs money.

4. If you want me to rush your product, I need you to rush your payment.

Please don’t call, email or hound the business owner at the last minute to get your project done on a certain date then when it’s time to pay, apparently you disappear off the face of the earth. When has this ever been acceptable? Think about this: What if your boss held your monthly check hostage after you’ve completed your work?

3. Please pay upon entrance.

I always use the grocery store example. Why is it that people can walk into a store and purchase something before testing it and pay top dollar, but they want to pay half or nothing at all before they get the small business owner’s services? Okay. Maybe you didn’t like the service. Ponder this: Did they let you pay half for that bag of chips or those shoes and let you decide if you liked them before you made the payment and walked out of the store with them?

2. Signing up and paying for one service doesn’t mean you get my other services for free.

If you contract me to do something, read the contract. If the service you want me to provide isn’t mentioned anywhere in the agreement, why do you expect me to do it and get angry when I don’t? A friend of mine once said that people read other things they WANT you to do into the contract rather than what it actually says. Granted, I may incorporate them in some way, but if it’s not in the agreement, I’m not required to provide it. Please read what you sign before making demands.

1. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

The golden rule is timeless. Put yourself in the position of the small business owner before you do things. Always ask yourself, “what if it were me?” If you were a business owner, how would you want clients to treat you? Please don’t take advantage of the small business owners. We matter too.

My hope is that I haven’t offended anyone, and of course, you’re welcome to your opinion. These are just a few things I’ve seen other business owners deal with and personally experienced. Even if you disagree, I got love for ya!


March 13, 2010 in Business