Friday, June 29, 2007

How to Use Forums to Market Your Online Home Business

There are many ways to boost your business online - writing articles, search engine optimization, acquiring incoming links - the list goes on; but one of the best ways which is often overlooked is to find forums relating to your line of business and join in with them.

Being a frequent participant on forums can increase links back to your website, increase your chances of being seen as an expert, increase your mailing list, sell more of your product, get new affiliates to sign up, make you new friends - in fact there's not a lot to be said against joining a few forums. However, there are some things to think about before you get started:

DO:

1. Research each forum before you join. Make sure it's relevant to your business and see if the participants are in your target market. Look at how much traffic the forum gets. How busy is it? - there's no point in joining a dead forum with very few posts.

2. Check the forum rules before you post. Some forums will allow you to post adverts for your business while others will object. Check if you are allowed to add a signature at the end of your posts - adding a small biography with a web link to your business is a great way to increase incoming links to your site and to get more traffic.

3. Be polite and treat everyone the way you would like to be treated. Even though you don't meet people face to face you will build up some great relationships if you take the time to give good answers to questions, to be helpful and to respect other people's opinions. And every post you answer adds to your reputation. Use your posts to give genuine, useful advice, not just to plug your business and you'll soon be looked on as an expert.

4. Don't be afraid to ask for advice - no-one knows everything and sometimes you will need help.

5. To make the most of your time on the forums, allow yourself only a certain amount of time each day. Read only the posts that are relevant and that interest you and post answers quickly before moving on. It's very easy to spend the whole day on forums and not get anything else done.

DON'T:

1. Never, ever use a post to blatantly advertise your business, particularly if the forum rules don't allow it. Nothing will damage your reputation faster than spamming a forum.

2. Don't go through the list of forum members, collect email addresses and send them unsolicited mail. At best you'll be banned from the forum and at worst the owners might report you to your ISP.

3. Don't ever get involved in a flame war (this is when a heated conversation on a forum boils over and degenerates into nothing but an exchange of personal insults). It might be really satisfying to say what you think about someone, especially if they've been getting on your nerves, but just imagine what other people will think of you if you do.


In conclusion, treat people online like you treat people in real life. Think of it as a networking event that's taking place on your computer and don't forget that other posts on the forums are made by real people with real feelings.

You already know how to make friends and new contacts face to face. Apply what you already know to online networking and you could be enjoying great success with a global audience.


Thursday, June 28, 2007

How to Find Potential Leaders for Your Network Marketing Business

In network marketing, true success is obtained when you find one true leader. This is someone who:

*will make sure their distributors order products at the end of the month.
*never complain about problems or areas of concern to their downline.
*never complains or whines to their upline sponsor or to their company
*has created his or her own goals
*willingly conducts opportunity meeting for you when you are away
*is in personal control of their attitude and does not let negative people and other outside influences control his success.

The question becomes, how do you sort through distributors who are interested in building a business and find that solid leader potential? In reality, it is not as difficult as you may think. Let’s take a close look at how this is done and save you wasting time on someone who is not really leadership material.
Tip Number One: Have the potential leader take the sincerity test. You likely are thinking, what is that? Well, all it is asking your potential leader how they feel about the business. Then, listen to their response, very, very carefully.

You see, there are three types of commitment. The first commitment is when somebody says, “We’ll I’ll try.” If your potential leader says this, it’s a bad sign. It’s a very weak commitment because your potential leader is really saying, “I’ll just do this now because it is convient. If doesn’t appear to require a lot of work” Then, if you talk to them more and they hear about some of the work involved, they might say something like, “I just want to get rich. I’m not worried about training.”. Now do you see why this person is not a true leader?

The second type of commitment is, “I’ll do the very best I can.” You also ask this person how they feel about the business and then listen. In reality , this person will do their very best. However, if his best does not take him to the top, he might say something like, “I did the very best I can. Too bad it didn’t work out.” Then, they might just quit. This is not a response you want to hear about a six month investment in helping them. What you really had was just a good distributor.

The last type of commitment is, “I’ll do whatever it takes.” You ask this person how they feel about the business and then listen. A true potential leader will not get discouraged and quit when his friends tell him “no”. He or she will think, I just need to talk to more people. If he talks to 100 people and nobody is interested, he says, “I just need to do more work on my presentation” or “It’s time for me to try a different marketing strategy.”

Now, can you see the difference with these three different level of commitments? Very few people will make a total commitment. However, when one does, you will know you have found a rare individual who you can invest your effort and time to help them.

Remember, it just takes one leader to make you financially independent. If you are blessed to and develop two leaders, then you have wealth. So, don’t waste time trying to help people who are not committed. You will end up frustrated, tired, and make no progress in your network marketing business. Instead, invest your valuable time in mentoring people who have total commitment and are eady to do what it takes. Doing this will take you on that road to success in your business.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Finally Revealed: The No-Hype Insider Secrets to Network Marketing Success

As a veteran network marketer, you have lots of knowledge from the books, tapes, seminar materials, and training your company hopefully provides to its distributors. While all of this is wisdom is important, there really is only one no-hype insider secret to your success. It is so simple it might surprise you.

What is it? The real secret to network marketing success is building leaders and teaching/mentoring them to success. That’s it. You find one true leader and take it from there. It is important to do this since leaders make your life easy and financially independent.

While finding leaders is the key, in reality, this isn’t always easy. Why? Because finding true leaders are very, very rare. You see, a network marketing leader is someone who:

*will make sure their distributors order products at the end of the month.

*never complain about problems or areas of concern to their downline.

*never complains or whines to their upline sponsor or to their company

*has created his or her own goals

*willingly conducts opportunity meeting for you when you are away

*is in personal control of their attitude and does not let negative people and other outside influences control his success.

These are awesome leadership skills, and the truth is, if you have a real leader in your group, you are financially fortunate. If you have two leaders in your group, you are rich, and if you have three, four, or five leaders, you likely miscounted somewhere! That is how rare true leaders really are.

You can measure your success in network marketing by your leaders. Distributors will come and go so you can’t really build your business strictly on them. But with a leader, they will continue to recruit, build, and motivate their downlines. You will want to find a potential leader who works so diligently in your absence that you love to work with and mentor.

You are probably wondering where to find people who have the characteristics that are being discussed. The key is not to look for someone who already has these qualities, but someone who is dedicated and willing to develop the necessary skills for success while learning the business. You can tell this potential leader:

“If you are really sincere, and want to build a successful business with us, I’m going to make you successful. I’m going to work, work, and work some more with you until we get your group solid and your income to full-time potential.”

If you help this person for six months, they will think so highly of you, be so firmly grounded and committed that they wouldn’t thing of quitting and joining another company. You have therefore created security with your business. Use this approach with all of your leaders, and your network marketing business will be built on a rock solid foundation, plus continue to grow. You will develop in a network-marketing superstar!

Sunday, June 24, 2007

10 Ways to Save and Make More Money in Business

Don’t you just love Paul Simon? The lyrics to his songs are not only pleasing to the ears, but can be inspirational. Imagine yourself enjoying the warm autumn sunlight while listening to Paul's song, “50 Ways to Leave your Lover”. Now, stretch your imagination just a bit and think about how many "Ways" you can come up with for saving and/or making more money in business...

“The problem is all inside your head
She said to me
The answer is easy
If you take it logically”

So, let’s look at the problem logically for a minute. Here are four basic ways you can increase your profits:

1. You can charge more for your products or services.
2. You can sell more of your products or services to your existing clients.
3. You can find additional clients.
4. You can find ways to cut back on your business expenses.

"Slip Out the Back, Jack" (Simple ways to save money):

So, if you’re on a shoestring budget (and who isn’t these days?), then obviously you need to do everything you can to save as much money as possible, and make as much money as possible, as quickly and easily as possible. Here are 10 simple ideas you can use:

1. Know your target market. Who are your “ideal” customers?
Where do they shop? What do they read? What solutions are they looking for that your business provides? The more you know about your customers, the better you’ll be able to target your promotions towards them, which will increase your bottom line two ways – it will save you spending money on advertising that doesn’t work, and it will increase your sales, because you’re offering your customers what they really want.

2. Get double duty out of any contact with your customers. If you sell products, put your contact information on everything –products, bags, invoices sales receipts. Make it easy for everyone to find you. Give away something free. If you have a Website (and if you don’t, then get one), give your customers something for giving you their contact information. Free Ebooks, reports, or software are all good choices (just make sure it’s relevant to your customers). Anytime you send your customers anything – a product, a newsletter, an invoice –include a coupon or information about your latest products or services. To save money on postage, if you have a brick and mortar store, put a copy of your latest newsletter or an informational flyer in your customer’s bag after each sale.

3. Reward your customers. Set up a reward program. Offer them a reward for anyone they refer who becomes a customer. Or give your customers a free gift when they spend $50 (or whatever amount makes sense in your business). When they’re eligible for the free gift, offer them an upgrade to something bigger or better for a few dollars more. Start a customer loyalty program. Provide “customer only” sales, or promotions. Let your customers earn points, or “magic money” that they can use to redeem your products or services.

4. Get ready for your close-up. When you’re brainstorming about creating a promotion or advertising campaign, don’t forget about your local cable TV channel. You may be pleasantly surprised by how low their rates actually are. Create your own television commercial or infomercial. Although you may not be ready for prime time, you can still target your ad to reach your customers.

5. Get involved in your community. Find a nonprofit organization that is doing work you believe in, and either publicly support their program, or be one of their sponsors for an upcoming event or fundraiser. Use the advertising spot to let people know about the fundraiser (and, incidentally, your business). You could put together an inexpensive ad campaign that will help those in need, increase your visibility and let your potential customers know that you're supportive and aware of the needs of the community.

“Make a new plan, Stan” (Business Planning Basics):

6. Beef up your business plan. If you don’t have a business plan, make writing one a priority. Your business plan is more than just a way to interest investors. It’s a road map that will help you get from where you are now to where you want to be. That old saying, “If you fail to plan then you’re planning to fail” really is true when it comes to business.

"No need to be coy, Roy" (Ask your customers):

7. Get testimonials from your satisfied clients. But don’t stop there. What about creating your own television commercial that you can run in your store? (With a video camera and a little ingenuity, you could even create your own infomercial that shows customers how to use or get the most out of your products or services. If you’ve got a Website, put an audio testimonial on there. (And don’t forget to include pictures).

8. Speak up. Again, keeping in mind who your ultimate ideal customers are and what their most pressing problems are, write an article, offer a free seminar, or offer to be a speaker at local chamber of commerce or other organization or community meetings. Being perceived as an “expert” is a relatively easy and inexpensive way to get the word out about your business, and bring in more customers.

"Just hop on the bus, Gus" (Expand your business potential)

9. Create joint ventures. Even if your primary business is a brick and mortar one, you can still create a joint venture that will help you save money by sharing the costs for advertising. What about creating a special “sidewalk sale” with other business owners on your street or in your neighborhood? Or finding businesses with complementary products or services to yours, and creating a “package deal”? If your business is only online, look for ways you can partner with other businesses – maybe you could create solo ads and promote each other’s products or services in your mailing lists. There are a lot of ways you can save money and increase your client base if you’re willing to get creative.

"Just drop off the key, Lee" (Provide the key solutions)

10. Let your customers know you know what their problems are. It's sad but true that your customers don't care how good your products or services are. They only want to know two things: do you understand what their problems are; and can you solve them. Give your customers the "key" to their problems, and you'll have evangelistic customers who come back again and again.