Business Owners Resource Network

July 7, 2009

Twitter and the Bottom Line for a Service Business

Filed under: 1,Online Social Media,SEO,Small Business Growth,Web Site Development — smallbizexperts @ 5:28 am

twitterHey folks, cynical Sam here. Still looking for a answer to a question that has yet to yield a simple answer.

Q. Can I use Twitter or any online social media to improve the bottom line of my “Local Service” business?

A. So far as I can discern, no one has positive proof that I can.

What is happening, is every social media consulting company in the world (and there’s thousands of them now) are blaring at the top of their lungs how you have to be using Twitter and all the other social media tools that are out there, otherwise you’re going to be left in the business dust. And not only should you be using those tools, but because it’s so insanely complicated, you should be paying them to help you use all these social networking tools.

Now this is fine, because there’s a lot of consultants out there who know what they they’re doing in these tools. But here’s the kicker, they are all touting sucesses for non-service based businesses.

Where are the positive ROI success stories and examples for: plumbers, doctors, HR consultants, lawyers, liquor store owners, chiropractors, Web developers, graphic artists, jewelry sales reps, life insurance reps, day spas, stained glass restorers, auto body repair shops, carpet cleaners, dog walkers, foundation repairers, driveway sealers, gutter cleaners and the thousands of other home based and small service businesses?

I propose that those success stories don’t exist because service based industries have yet to figure out how to monetize social networking to their benefit, AND may never come up with a way.

So my questions to the world are these….

Are you a LOCAL home based or small service business? If yes! Are you using social networking and has it increased your bottom line? How much time are you spending on it per week? How can other LOCAL service based businesses repeat your example?

Time is money, and if you’re Twittering, Linked-Ining(sp?), FaceBooking, MySpacing, Plaxoing and the dozens of other social networking tools out there. If you’re using these, please provide some positive local service based business examples of how this social networking explosion has helped your business. How did you do it?


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


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.


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

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. Experts in how business gets done on the Internet (913) 908.5642

March 16, 2009

Social Media? Argggggggggghhhhh!!!

Filed under: Marketing,SEO,Small Business Growth,Web Site Development — smallbizexperts @ 4:57 am

social_networking_sitesSmall business owners who are the only employee of a business. My advice is that you ignore social networking trends. YOU DON”T HAVE TIME FOR IT.  Pick one, learn it well and use just that one.

Twitter, Face Book, MySpace, Blogs, Linked-In, Plaxo, Flickr, – – “Jaiku” (get ready for this one folks, it’s owned by Google and in Beta)–,  Bebo, Geni, Plurk, and on and on and on and on. Go to this wikipedia site for a list of about 150 different social networking sites out there. Some hot, some not.

Twitter is really hot today, MySpace is so yesterday, what’s Plaxo? Isn’t Linked-In overcrowded??? Heaven help us when Jaiku hits the scene in full force. Could be bye-bye Linked-In. Who knows!

As a small business owner do you need to know and be using all of these social networking sites? The answer is resoundng NO! If you have a staff and can assign someone to each tool, then go for it. If you try to cover them all yourself you’ll be in over your head in less than a week and frustrated by them all.  If you do have staff make sure what’s being put out their runs a very tight common company message. If you’re a Christian company and you assign one of the temps to manage your MySpace page, hmmmm, better watch it close.

Social networking for business benefit only works if you have time to…..

devot to them
form relationships online
participate in discussions
lend expertise to a topic
stay on top of what’s hot and what’s not every day or week.

Most business owners don’t have time to do this. So don’t even try. At a high level, learn what the common ones are, then pick one that best gets your company message out there and get good at it! Only that one!!!

Which one do you belong to, if any, and how has it helped your business?

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

March 4, 2009

Bad Insurance Costs Money.

Filed under: Business Insurance,Small Business Growth — natewatson @ 9:47 pm


 Bad insurance costs you money. More money in the long run than10111 good insurance first would have charged you.

I have a subcontractor in Shawnee, KS. He remodels houses. He doesn’t technically employ anyone; all of the people he uses are subcontractors. His plumbers, electricians, and painters, were all paid by his company to do work for him. He never checked to see if they had insurance.  What did he care?  They were subcontractors. His insurance wasn’t over them, right?  Except it was. Anyone you hire is under your workers comp insurance unless they have workers comp insurance of their own. It was a very costly mistake. At the end of the year, when he was audited, he had to pay on 250,000 in payroll he wasn’t counting because he thought that he didn’t have too. Now he knows, and now he is being back-charged. His new payroll is 250k higher. His new monthly payments are double as he pays for this year and last year at the same time.

This mistake almost bankrupted him. He got bad insurance advice from someone who didn’t know what they were doing. Oh, sure, they looked cheap, but in year two, they aren’t looking like such a good deal.

I see a lot of mistakes like this in the Workers comp area of insurance. Many companies start their business as one-person operations that don’t need workers comp. They get a cheap startup policy from an agent and go to work. When they succeed and add employees, they call up someone to do their workers comp. The problem is the agent didn’t know what they were doing, let the business owner misrepresent what he really was paying, and then, at the end of the year, when the company was audited, the company owed much more than expected.

Where did they go wrong? Most mistakes are from 2 misunderstandings:

 1. You cannot exclude someone just because they are family. If you are not the owner, you are counted in workers comp salaries.

2. You cannot get out of paying workers comp by having all of your employees as subcontractors. If they don’t have insurance, and lets face it, they probably don’t, you, as the employer, by law, have to provide their workers comp. You don’t count them, the insurance company finds out about them, and you get back charged.

I think the moral of the story is pretty obvious. Bad Insurance Costs Money. This is what happened to my client before I got him. Choose the bad insurance and found out it costs money too. So much so it almost bankrupted him. You may not see it at first, but having someone who knows what they are doing is worth more than a few extra dollars. In fact, it could save your business.

Do you have a stupid insurance guy story? I would love to hear it.


Nathan Watson, Nationwide Insurance. 913-322-3388, ext 14. 

I help you get the insurance you think you already have.

March 2, 2009

eCommerce Sites are Not Your Typical Web Sites

Filed under: SEO,Small Business Growth,Web Site Development — smallbizexperts @ 2:19 am

online_shoppingSo you want to sell products online. There’s a huge difference between a shopping cart Web site and a static brochure style Web site. I could go on and on about the technical differences between the two types of sites, but I wanted to make this a relatively short post. :-)   If you plan to have a shopping cart Web site the most important suggestion I could provide is that you brush up on your project management skills. Selling one or two products online is not so bad. Selling a 100+ SKU’s is a challenging task. Challenging in that it tests your organizational ability. You have to describe, price, photograph, weigh, ship, tax, return policy and provide customer service on each and every product that you sell. Are you prepared to do that? Have you ever done that? If not, start small with just a few products and get all the bugs, processes and kinks worked out before going big time.

What type of skills do you feel it takes to run a successful shopping cart Web site? Do you have any great war stories or advice to provide our readers?

Chris Nastav, KC Web Specialists, LLC,
Experts in how business gets done on the Internet

February 8, 2009

Change, Change, Change

Filed under: SEO,Small Business Growth,Web Site Development — smallbizexperts @ 4:25 pm

changeDo you want to show up higher in Google and Yahoo? To do so there’s a myriad of things you need to do, none of which is as important as maintaining fresh content on your Web site. Search engines reward those who provide fresh content on their sites. Going with the theme of writing first for the customer, then for search engines, you should be changing the content on your Web site at least once a month.

But it’s not just change to change. Make sure your change contains the keywords you’re hoping to show up for in Google. For example, I have a chiroprator client in Overland Park, Kansas, named Jason Huffman. We change his health tip of the month so it includes his key words. Here’s last months health tip. “Are the recent layoffs from major companies in Overland Park Kansas stressing you out? As a Chiropractor in your neighborhood I can provide the relief you need.”

Next month we’ll talk about lower back pain, and how by using all the walking trails in Overland Park Kansas at least three times a week, etc…

Change often and change in relation to your sites key words. When was the last time you changed the content on your Web site? If you are changing your site, is it helping your rankings? Please provide in comment form your success stories.

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

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