Business Owners Resource Network

April 30, 2009

Website Budget versus Marketing Budget?

Filed under: Marketing,Small Business Growth,Web Site Development — smallbizexperts @ 10:19 pm

budgetThis is going to be a relatively short post, but one that hopefully inspires some long thoughts on the topic.

A Website should complement your marketing plan, a Website by itself is not a marketing plan. With that said…….

In my humble opinion, when you are budgeting for a Website, always spend more time and money getting people to your Website through marketing than you do on your actual Website.

Spending thousands on a stunning site with spectacular graphics, functionality and pages of awe inspiring product information is a waste of money if you don’t have an equal or greater budget of time and money planned to get people to your site.

Please share with us how you market your Website.

Thanks,

Chris Nastav, KC Web Specialists, LLC. http://www.kcwebspecialists.com Experts in how business gets done on the Internet (913) 908.5642

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April 20, 2009

Small Business Don’t Twitter Your Time Away

Filed under: Online Social Media,SEO,Web Site Development — smallbizexperts @ 3:48 pm

twitterHere a Twitter,
There a Twitter,
Everywhere a Twitter, Twitter. 

Twitter “comments” seems to be everywhere don’t they?

So before I actually talk about what Twitter is, maybe the first step is to consider how did you actually hear about Twitter.

Did you see it on the news mentioned about Twittering a huge event like a presidential election campaign, CNN current news, the last holes at the Master’s Golf Tournament, the finish line at the Tour de’ France, etc. Or, maybe you heard it from some company knocking at your door wanting to sell you online social media services because your business is going to get left in the dust if you don’t buy their services?  Or maybe you heard it from your kids or that relative/friend out looking for a job because they were just laid off. Finally, you might have heard people say, “What the heck is Twitter?”

With the all above thoughts in mind now ask yourself this…………..

Have your heard your customers ask you “Why aren’t you using Twitter because “I” your customer want you to be using it?

Folks, are your customers asking you to start using Twitter?

At it’s foundation, Twitter is a Web tool used to have online conversations about something happening right here, right now. Whether it’s Twittering about a news event, or maybe some store that made a gaff of some kind in their policy. The more hype, drama, and excitement the event has the better. Did you know Twitter comments, or Tweets, are limited to 140 characters at a time. So it truly is a quick flurry of words being thrown around between people saying, Wow check this out. Once the excitement is over, the conversation thread basically dies and people move on to the next exciting thing they seem to have time to check out.

So now, as a business owner, ask yourself a couple questions if you’re considering Twitter.

1.      Is my target market population, my core customer base, are they using Twitter?

2.      Do I have something going on in my business, right here, right now that I can use to market to those currently on Twitter. Something that is going to generate excitement, buzz or drama in a way that the word spreads to all Twitter users for the briefest span of time in a way that I can capitalize on somehow for my business.

Ultimately, Twitter takes time and a thorough, thorough marketing plan to have any hope of being a success tool for a small business. Don’t waste your precious time on Twitter if you don’t have it as an integral part of your overall marketing plan.

Someone please share with us how you are using Twitter to consistently grow your small business? There are so few success stories out there on Google.

Thanks,

Chris Nastav, KC Web Specialists, LLC. www.kcwebspecialists.com
Experts in how business gets done on the Internet (913) 908.5642

 

April 14, 2009

HIGH DEDUCTIBLE HEALTH INSURANCE PLANS FOR INDIVIDUALS

Filed under: Employee Benefits,Financial Services — michellehodges @ 2:33 pm

High Deductible Health Insurance Plans For Individuals 

Do you pay more attention to your car than your body? You change your oil every 3000 to 4000 miles. You have your tires rotated every other oil change. Your air filter and brake pads are changed at the appropriate intervals.

Now, what about your body? You follow the recommended AMA guidelines for routine check ups and other health care services. You pay special attention to make sure you eat a balanced diet and always take the time to get enough exercise (hopefully!).  The reality is many Americans pay more attention to the maintenance of their car than they do their body.

From an insurance perspective, your automobile insurance company has a certain expectation that you will take reasonable care of your car. Things such as the routine maintenance of brakes and making sure your turning signals work properly are expected by your insurance company. Basic common sense says that proper automobile maintenance reduces traffic accidents and saves both you and your insurance company money.

Health insurance consumers can benefit by taking a similar approach to taking care of their body. For the average American, regular exercise, routine check ups and following your doctor’s advice will reduce your health care costs in the long run. It is really very simple. By doing the things necessary to stay healthy, you will need to seek medical care less frequently.

Even with a commitment to stay healthy, you will still need health insurance coverage to take care of the unexpected and sometimes unavoidable catastrophic situations. However, instead of paying the insurance company for a $1000 deductible, many individuals would benefit by purchasing a high deductible health insurance plan. Depending on the specific situation, it is not uncommon for individuals and families to save up to 25% on premiums with a high deductible plan. Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) can then be set up to coordinate with the high deductible plan. Approaching health care and health insurance wisely will benefit both your body and pocketbook.

For more information please contact me at  913-262-0600  or email mhodges@benefitsdesigngroup.cc

It only takes a few minutes to see how much money you can save when deciding if a high deductible health plan with a health savings account is a good fit.

April 8, 2009

How Can A Blog Make Your Company Money?

Filed under: SEO,Small Business Growth,Web Site Development — smallbizexperts @ 2:49 am

blog_logoA blog can your increase your business in one or a combination of primarily three ways.

1. You get a huge following to your blog and people wonder about who the author is and what they do. Their curiosity leads them to click on your “About Us” page on the blog. From there, if you do it right, they click the link to your main Web site and decide to do business with you.

2. Google rewards a company’s Web site in its search results, in big part, based on how large a presence a company has on the Internet. By posting often in your blog, and getting people to link to your blog, you are systematically increasing your company’s Internet presence. The larger you are on the Internet the higher Google will rank you.

3. Get a really popular blog going and people will pay you to put their advertisements on your blog pages.

Tips – – Blog often, blog short posts, blog in relation to your key words, ADVERTISE your blog link anywhere and everywhere you can.

Can you please share with us other ways you use your blog to make money?

Thanks, Chris Nastav, KC Web Specialists, LLC. http://www.kcwebspecialists.com Experts in how business gets done on the Internet (913) 908.5642

April 6, 2009

How Does A Buyer Decide What Business To Buy? What Business Owners Need to Know….Part Two

Filed under: 1,Business Brokers,Business Valuations — alieser @ 7:45 pm

 

In “How Does A Buyer Decide What Business To Buy?  What Business Owners Need to Know….Part One”, I addressed the impact that accurate record keeping and reporting has on the sale and value of a business.  In that blog, I suggested that the main reason a buyer chooses one business over another is the financial history. 

 

Once a buyer has seen the historical financial performance of a business, is comfortable that it meets his financial needs, and has determined that the data is reasonably accurate, his second concern is whether the business can sustain or improve that performance without the participation of the current owner. 

 

So, as a business owner, how should this knowledge affect your day to day operations?

 

As a business owner, it is important for you to set the stage for your eventual exit from the business.  This involves training employees so that they are capable of assuming some of your duties, especially those that involve interaction with customers.  Make sure that you are not perceived as the only “face” of the company. 

 

If it is normal in your industry to have contracts with customers, vendors or employees, implement these contracts long before you desire to sell as an indication to the buyer that each of these entities intends to continue their current relationship with your company.

 

Automate systems where logical to do so.  Spend some time documenting your procedures.   Clean house.  Perform maintenance.  To pay the highest price for your business, a buyer needs to feel that the necessary resources for him to be successful are already in place.  He needs to know that the business has been well tended and that it will not be complicated or require additional financial investment for him to step into your shoes.  Otherwise, the buyer will discount the value of your business to accommodate any additional cash outlay or effort that he perceives will be required to get the business to this level.

 

Stay tuned for additional tidbits on increasing the future value of your business.  Or feel free to call me or post questions or comments.

 

 

Anita Lieser, Senior Business Broker

913-433-2306

Sunbelt Business Advisors

7101 College Blvd. Suite 1650   Overland Park, KS  66210

 

April 1, 2009

CheckPoint HR today released its top five tips to help employees save on healthcare costs.

Filed under: Employee Benefits,Financial Services — michellehodges @ 3:01 pm

GREAT TIPS for anyone to use to help alleviate some healthcare costs…read on….

Edison, NJ (PRWEB) March 31, 2009 — CheckPoint HR Benefits Group (http://www.checkpointhrbenefits.com/), a licensed insurance agency dedicated to delivering a broad range of employee health benefits solutions and custom plan designs, today released its top five tips to help employees save on healthcare costs (http://www.checkpointhrbenefits.com/manage_health_care_costs.html).

 “Many businesses are experiencing substantial premium increases in providing healthcare coverage for their employees,” said Patrick Carragher, vice president, CheckPoint HR Benefits Group. “As we move towards consumer driven health coverage, there are a number of ways employees can take charge of their health and costs associated with out of pocket expenses.”

1. Work with your Doctor Most doctors understand the business and processes of insurance. Tap into their knowledge base for the best possible hospitals for specific procedures, Many doctors can provide patients with guidance in negotiating fees and/or working with the insurance companies on lowering out of pocket costs. In some instances, doctors will reach out to the hospital’s finance department (on behalf of the patient) and request that consideration be made when dealing with the finances of certain procedures. Bottom line, communicate and work with your doctor!

2. Know ALL of the Benefits available to you Insurance programs are aligned with a lot of ancillary benefits that consumers should be made aware of. Benefits such as gym reimbursements, employee assistance programs, massage therapy, chiropractic care, acupuncture, vision reimbursements, weight loss programs, free or low cost flu shots or immunizations, disease management programs, health coaching or nurse advice lines, are no cost preventive benefits. Make sure you read the fine print and take advantage of everything that is being paid for via premiums.

3. Be a Smart Consumer Individuals today have better access to information then ever before. With more control over their own health care (http://www.checkpointhrbenefits.com/consumer_driven_health_care.html), consumers are able to make educated and more informed decisions about options, procedures, costs, and treatment. Some Insurance companies now have released the costs for certain procedures covered under their plans on their Websites. This information allows individuals to better understand the true costs of care before they utilize their plan and allows them to make better financial decisions based upon quality as well.

4. Go Generic High deductible plans are taking traction in the workplace and with that so does the need for employees to manage their costs with more scrutiny. One consideration for maximizing your benefits without sacrificing quality is to ask your doctor about a generic drug. When working with your doctor, ask them if the prescribed medication has a generic equivalent that will work for you. If there is a viable equivalent, make sure the medication is listed on the formulary list that your insurance carrier make available on their Website.

5. Focus on Wellness One of the best ways to reduce health care costs is for people to get healthy! Companies today are rewarding employees who are proactive in their decision making and who lead healthier lives through physical fitness and increased presenteeism. Corporate Wellness programs (http://www.checkpointhrbenefits.com/wellness.html) offered today focus on tobacco cessation, know-your-numbers (BMI, Blood Pressure, Cholesterol), walking clubs and programs that increase physical activity and reduce negative behaviors towards health.

 

For more information, contact me at mhodges@benefitsdesigngroup.cc

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