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  • Understand The Importance Of Marketing
    customer base Marketing isn t just placing an ad in a newspaper or launching a website or putting a banner sign in your store s window It s all of those things and more Advertising is part of marketing But marketing is also customer service It s knowing who your customers are says Fairbrother Marketing brings it all together Marketing can cost thousands of dollars or very little depending on how you choose to market your business And spending more money doesn t necessarily equate to more results Identify your target customers The more you know about your ideal customers the better you ll be able reach them Answer questions such as Is your ideal customer an individual or another business What products and services does your customer currently buy Where do they shop What problems does your customer face and how do your products or services solve those problems Which newspapers magazines or blogs does your customer read Which websites do they visit Know your marketing options Before you can decide how when and where to market your business you have to understand the tools at your disposal Here s a quick list of a few marketing tools you can deploy Print advertising newspaper magazine and local newsletters Online media e newsletters search engine ads and websites Social media blogs Facebook Twitter and LinkedIn Direct mail postcards newsletters coupons and sales letters Trade shows local as well as national Broadcast radio and television don t overlook local cable channels Signage in your store on your vehicle on billboards Promotional products mugs pens magnets and other items that promote your business Word of mouth get satisfied customers to tell their friends and remember to ask your customers for referrals Networking at the Chamber of Commerce at trade and industry organizations even at social events The most effective marketing uses a variety of these vehicles Don t overlook free PR Many new business owners depend on advertising and other expensive marketing tactics while ignoring some of the free most effective alternatives like public relations For example instead of buying ad space in a magazine perhaps you could write a short article for free and present it to the magazine s editor Include your credit line at the end of the article That credit line might state your business name and website address Presto You get the attention of readers without spending a dime The same goes for radio or television Instead of buying a costly advertising spot offer yourself as a guest on a local talk program to discuss your area of expertise You reach the same audience for free And don t forget trade shows or conferences Rather than purchase expensive booth space at the show deliver a dynamic keynote address or give a workshop for attendees The NASE can help Find more marketing information and ideas in these NASE articles Surprise Direct Mail Isn t Dead Schmoozing For Sales Social Networks Give Micro Businesses More Marketing Muscle Unlock The

    Original URL path: http://selfemployed.nase.org/about-us/nase-publications/InDepthGuides/StartupKit/2011/05/12/Understand_The_Importance_Of_Marketing (2016-02-14)
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  • Make A Great Impression
    present a quality image you need to go back to the drawing board before you open your doors Image goes across your entire business from your business cards website and marketing materials to the way you answer your phone and the cleanliness of your office Use these tips to make sure you put your best foot forward Buy the best you can afford You don t need to go into debt when purchasing image products and services for your new business But you do need to aim for the best quality you can afford Don t make the mistake of cheapening the image you present to customers Fairbrother says That might mean having business cards professionally printed rather than running them off of your inkjet printer Or it might mean paying a graphic artist to create a business logo instead of drawing one yourself The same goes for services You may be a talented writer who can churn out material for your company s website But perhaps it would be smart to hire out the design of your website Mind your P s Q s Etiquette is simply the set of social rules that help people get along Whether in person on the phone or online practicing proper etiquette will improve your image Be punctual It conveys respect Return phone calls on time Answer emails promptly Arrive on time for business meetings or lunches And most of all deliver products and services when they re promised Say please and thank you just like your mom taught you At business lunches or dinners be polite to the wait staff Treating the staff with disrespect might prompt potential clients to wonder if you ll treat them the same way Give people your attention It s the respectful thing to do That means turn off your cell phone when you re in a meeting or having a business meal It means not texting while having a conversation with a client or colleague If in doubt remember this When it comes to business etiquette courtesy and politeness are the bottom line Unsure about your social skills Take a seminar or workshop to brush up on etiquette You ll gain confidence as you learn how to professionally handle introductions table manners small talk and other pleasantries Tidy up Check the appearance of everything that comes in contact with a customer or potential client Yourself Your vehicle Your house if you have a home office Your storefront Everything should be clean organized welcoming and ready for business After all that s how you want customers to see your new company right Home based business owners accustomed to an informal atmosphere need to be especially vigilant Just because you work at home in your favorite faded jeans doesn t mean they re appropriate attire for the next Chamber of Commerce meeting You can dress casually yet professionally and command respect for doing so The NASE can help Get more tips on polishing your image with these NASE

    Original URL path: http://selfemployed.nase.org/about-us/nase-publications/InDepthGuides/StartupKit/2011/05/12/Make_A_Great_Impression (2016-02-14)
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  • Protect Yourself
    information from customer data and financial numbers to pricing strategies and marketing statistics All can be lost in an instant whether you store that information in paper files on computer drives or in your smartphone Back up that information or make hard copies Encrypt it or lock it down Do whatever you have to do to make sure that if the information is lost you can find a way to retrieve it Get the right insurance The type and extent of the coverage you need will depend on your business But in general you should make sure that you have property insurance to cover your business assets in case of theft natural disasters or accidents Assets include vehicles facilities equipment and tools You may also need liability errors and omissions health insurance and other types of policies Prepare for emergencies If something can go wrong be prepared to deal with it Hurricanes and blizzards have stopped many successful businesses in their tracks Those who had contingency plans in place survived Know what you plan to do if the power goes out for a week or a flood prevents employees from getting to the office Defend your reputation Your good name is a springboard for business success Client referrals are earned by consistently delivering what you promise Today online review sites have taken word of mouth marketing and multiplied it by thousands Satisfied or dissatisfied customers can post good reviews or negative comments about their experiences with your business Make sure you take all possible steps to generate positive buzz for your business Stay Healthy You are your business The success of your business depends on you being in tiptop shape mentally emotionally and physically Taking time off away from your business may seem like one of the hardest things to do but it s also one of the most important Find a balance between work and play Take action when health issues arise so they don t worsen and put you out of commission At the NASE Health Resource Center you can find a wealth of health information geared specifically to the self employed Safeguard your future As a new business owner you re not only in charge of your working days but you re also in charge of your golden years That means you need to plan and save for retirement There are a multitude of retirement programs available to the self employed The plans differ on tax consequences contribution rates withdrawal rates and other issues It s up to you to sort it all out and decide what will work best The NASE consultants can help you identify your retirement needs and find ways to get your retirement planning on track Business 101 business consultants who can help you identify the right retirement plan TaxTalk certified public accountants who will answer questions about the tax issues surrounding different retirement plans Retirement Estate Planning licensed attorneys who will show you how your micro business fits into your retirement planning

    Original URL path: http://selfemployed.nase.org/about-us/nase-publications/InDepthGuides/StartupKit/2011/05/12/Protect_Yourself (2016-02-14)
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  • Additional Materials
    Sponsors Affiliate Application Refer A Friend NASE in Action NASE Advocacy Efforts Legislative Priorities NASE In The News Washington Watch NASE Research Current NASE Survey NASE Member Survey NASE Issue Reports Self Employed Statistics Get Involved Tell your story Become a Media Contact Legislative Action Center Business Help Ask the Experts Taxes Business Strategy Business Law Marketing 101 Finance Accounting Health Care Reform Marketing Advertising Real Estate Information Technology NASE Minute Get Help Tax Healthcare Reform Health Marketing 101 Business Management Marketing Advertising Real Estate Calculators Business Breakeven Analysis Calculator Cash Flow Calculator Equipment Buy vs Lease Investment Annual Rate of Return Calculator Mortgage Mortgage Loan Calculator Retirement Savings and Planning 401 k Calculator How long will my retirement savings last Tax 1040 Tax Calculator Payroll Deductions Calculator Self Employment Tax Calculator Helpful Links ASBDC Member Directory Search My NASE About Me Account Benefits Optional Benefits Payment Details Expert Questions Email Subscriptions Membership Directory Startup Kit Additional Materials Payment Processing 101 Jun 30 2011 Payment processing for your new business doesn t have to be a hassle The NASE s exclusive payment processing vendor First American Payment Systems offers a step by step guide to figuring out a payment processing

    Original URL path: http://selfemployed.nase.org/about-us/nase-publications/InDepthGuides/StartupKit/StartupKitAdditionalMaterials.aspx (2016-02-14)
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  • Have You “Sound Branded” Your Business Yet?
    fact Branding is a very important marketing tool that every business or organization should think about Why Well simply put it s the personality that identifies a product service or company In addition it s been proven time and time again that proper branding can result in higher sales OK now we re talking But what s even more interesting Truly successful branding is obtained when someone can remember a brand without being exposed to the company name but rather through visual or audible signifiers On that note let s focus on what we HEAR Great examples of this can be found through the Walt Disney Company They are very successful with branding cartoon characters by the way they sound Donald Duck will always have a quacky voice Porky Pig just can t get rid of that darned stutter Goofy sounds well pretty goofy And even a unique tune or set of notes can denote a brand like NBC TV s Station ID chime Or the newer Nationwide TV commercials where the actors like Peyton Manning hum the tune throughout Nationwide is on your side Sorry is that in your head now So Taking a look at your own business or organization what kind of sound do you need What style of voice matches what you do and allows for others to feel comfortable and reach out for your product or service Here are some examples to consider If you re a spa perhaps the initial feeling you want people to have is calm and stillness So you might plan for a light airy voice that sounds peaceful and relaxing If you re a leadership consultant maybe the sound you want is more powerful Studies have shown that using a deep voice helps others associate your business with being professional Although these are polar opposite examples remember there are many more sounds in between How would an artsy clothing store sound An accountant A toy shop And don t forget there are lots of places where your business needs that sound branding From your voicemail messaging to explainer videos on the web to local TV and radio commercials If you haven t thought about it yet take some time to think about it Especially with the New Year just under way what sound will your audience relate to this year And after you think more about it FEEL it Think Who is my audience Should the voice be male or female What do I want my script to say Do I have a special offer I can include From there the only thing left to do is record You can either do this on your own or hire a professional voice talent to record for you Either way It s up to you to make the voice of your brand the most memorable it can be About the Author Rose Caiazzo is a seasoned Voice Over Talent who partners with organizations around the world to write voice and produce television

    Original URL path: http://selfemployed.nase.org/about-us/self-made-nase%27s-blog/self-made/2016/01/28/have-you-sound-branded-your-business-yet (2016-02-14)
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  • What if One Day and $99 Could Change Your Business Forever?
    Blog What if One Day and 99 Could Change Your Business Forever Friday December 04 2015 Every savvy business owner loves a great deal and we ve got one for you As we approach the holiday season I want to share with you about an amazing event that NASE is proud to be a part of The Abounding Business Conference is a day of empowerment for small business owners coming to 10 cities across the US in 2016 and we are excited to be a part of it I would like to invite you to come out and hear our President CEO Keith Hall along with several other business leaders As a valued member we have arranged a member discount of 200 off to allow you to take advantage of this amazing day of empowerment This event was designed to empower YOU to grow your business beyond the ABC s and on to Massive Profits so you can enjoy the life you were created to live pursuing your passions and living in purpose Here are just a few takeaways you can expect from this day of empowerment Learn how to generate all of the leads you want online Learn how to WIN in business by infusing your passion into Your business Discover the ultimate retirement plan alternative for small business owners one that does not depend on the financial markets Learn how to create a system or process to free you up to do what only you can do Learn how to implement winning turn key systems so you generate income while you sleep 3 proven strategies to overcome fear beat procrastination avoid giving up on your dreams How to make your online marketing efforts PROFITABLE The 1 Reason Why So Many People Fail in Achieving Their Goals What To Do About It The Tax Secrets of Successful Small Business Owners Here is the amazing team that will be sharing these insights with you Tamara McCleary The creator of RELATIONSHIFT Keith Hall President CEO NASE Dr Matt Mannino Neuroscience Expert and Creator of the Quantum Emergence System Marlon Smith Creator of The Speaker Author Blueprint Pamela Yellen New York Times Best Selling Author Financial Security Expert Darin Adams Award Winning TV Personality Author and Motivational Speaker Anthony Kirlew Creator of The Digital Marketing Blueprint THERE IS NOTHING LIKE THE ABOUNDING BUSINESS CONFERENCE The Abounding Business Conference is THE ONLY CONFERENCE to give YOU the small business owner insights on how to profit through your passion share with you a time trusted financial strategy that will allow YOU to retire well leave a legacy for your family AND share the neuroscience behind what can either hold you back or propel YOU to YOUR destiny Are you ready Register today for the rock bottom price of 99 We look forward to seeing you there John Keith and the NASE Team Comment Your name Click to add Email optional Click to add Comment RadEditor HTML WYSIWYG Editor MS Word like content editing experience

    Original URL path: http://selfemployed.nase.org/about-us/self-made-nase%27s-blog/self-made/2015/12/04/what-if-one-day-and-$99-could-change-your-business-forever- (2016-02-14)
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  • What do Uber, FedEx and Lowe’s have in common?
    k Calculator How long will my retirement savings last Tax 1040 Tax Calculator Payroll Deductions Calculator Self Employment Tax Calculator Helpful Links ASBDC Member Directory Search My NASE About Me Account Benefits Optional Benefits Payment Details Expert Questions Email Subscriptions Membership Directory Self Made NASE s Blog What do Uber FedEx and Lowe s have in common Thursday December 03 2015 Worker classification is front page news these days as companies like Uber FedEx and Lowe s face misclassification lawsuits If you engage with freelancers consultants or any type of independent contractor proper classification is critical Unfortunately the rules around classification are not easy to interpret The NASE s President CEO Keith Hall is joining an expert panel for a free webinar where listeners will learn information to help protect their business from massive fines unnecessary hassles and lawsuits like the ones you ve heard about in the news The webinar is being hosted by Upwork the online global freelancing platform where businesses and independent professionals connect and collaborate remotely Join Keith on Tuesday December 15 at 10am PST 1pm EST by registering here What you ll learn Why worker classification is such a hot topic today The risks of ignoring worker classification requirements How businesses are protecting themselves for the future How to navigate the complexities of classifying a worker as an employee or independent contractor To save your spot RSVP here Comment Your name Click to add Email optional Click to add Comment RadEditor HTML WYSIWYG Editor MS Word like content editing experience thanks to a rich set of formatting tools dropdowns dialogs system modules and built in spell check RadEditor s components toolbar content area modes and modules Toolbar s wrapper Content area wrapper RadEditor hidden textarea RadEditor s bottom area Design Html and Preview modes Statistics

    Original URL path: http://selfemployed.nase.org/about-us/self-made-nase%27s-blog/self-made/2015/12/03/what-do-uber-fedex-and-lowe-s-have-in-common- (2016-02-14)
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  • 5 Strategies to Turn Followers into Brand Ambassadors
    to create customers so loyal that they will talk up your business to everyone they meet online or off With a little extra effort and an open line of communication you can easily turn those followers into brand ambassadors who are loyal enthusiastic and knowledgeable about your product or service Here are five ways in which you can transform your satisfied followers into brand ambassadors Build Relationships Keep in mind that social media platforms are not simply micro billboards Followers don t want to be talked at but would rather engage in meaningful conversation with the people and brands that they enjoy Make sure you ask as many questions as you answer Give plenty of opportunities for your followers to express themselves and above all remember that at the other end of every hashtag is a real world customer with the ability to share their experiences with your brand on their social media accounts as well as in their real lives Build Communities The internet is full of communities of people with similar likes and interests who otherwise would have been restricted from interacting with each other due to distance time or background These communities can pop up spontaneously or you can take the initiative and create a safe place such as a blog or message board in which your customers can meet to interact with you and each other Fostering a sense of community is a great way to foster a sense of loyalty Not to mention in the microcosm of the community you can let followers educate each other on your products or services on your behalf Say Thanks When you notice a follower who is especially vocal enthusiastic or optimistic about your brand tell them about it Even better tell the world about it Leave comments of gratitude on their posts Retweet the nice things they have said or done Social media users love recognition so give it to them And don t forget to say thanks to your critics as well Followers will occasionally post less than enthusiastic things about your business but sometimes the best thing you can do is kill them with kindness Eat your humble pie thank them for their opinions and suggest a solution to the problem if you can If you don t have a solution this is a perfect opportunity to open a dialogue and solicit a solution from your followers Dole Out Compliments Just as with any relationship a good rule of thumb is to make sure you never take the other party for granted It s okay to reply to your followers personal posts from time to time If you notice they made a promotion send a congratulatory note And if a follower ever uses your product in a new or creative way compliment them by sharing it with the world Close the Loyalty Loop You can develop a cycle of loyalty by asking for follower opinions and feedback on new products or services People love sharing their

    Original URL path: http://selfemployed.nase.org/about-us/self-made-nase%27s-blog/self-made/2015/09/17/5-strategies-to-turn-followers-into-brand-ambassadors (2016-02-14)
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