Blog Archives

Handling Complaints

Have you noticed lately when you have a complaint to a company the voice on the other end offers a cheap discount and ends with “Is there anything else I can do for you?” Since when will it be okay

Posted in Customer Service & Culture, Employee Management, Image & Marketing, Uncategorized

When Finding a New Web Design Firm

This week I got a call from a local business that is looking for a new web design firm to take over their website. They are unhappy with the current web firm. Huh, haven’t heard that before. It seems like I get this type of call all the time. Looking at my current client list, 1 out of 4 clients came to me because they were unhappy with their old webmaster. Most complained that once the site was done. There was no follow up. Updates and bug fixes took forever, if at all. Or they felt ripped off in some way. So here is some advice when looking for a web design firm.

Posted in Image & Marketing

Short Presentation = Few PPT

Most business owners, at some point, will be asked to do a presentation in front of investors, bankers or maybe potential partners about their business. When you are ready to make that pitch and are possibly preparing a PowerPoint presentation,

Posted in Image & Marketing, Organization, Saving Time, Uncategorized

Can’t Please Everyone PR

Yesterday while reading my news sites I came across yet another article about a company that had a PR disaster. It was a tweet on Twitter. The company got a backlash and soon after the tweet was removed and an

Posted in Image & Marketing

How to Lose Users & Alienate Potential Customers With Advertising

I read a lot of blogs and articles online. Like most young (ish) adults it is where I get all of my news and information. In general I read a lot about start ups and being an entrepreneur, mainly business consulting and technology.
So naturally I see a lot of sites trying to get you to signup for a newsletter, service, or buy a product. Which is totally fine. The business worked hard to get me to their site, instead of advertising other businesses, it is best to advertise their own. Most of the time there might be a pop up I need to close out of. Maybe some advertising on the side. A signup box for a newsletter on the bottom of the article. All pretty standard and acceptable forms of self promotion. But today I came across a site that took what is acceptable and ran it over with a truck then set it on fire.

Posted in Image & Marketing

Your Commercials are Awful

I despise most commercials to the point where I will go out of my way to avoid them. I’ll change the channel, mute my speakers or TV, or even not watch a video online if the commercial is too intrusive.

Posted in Image & Marketing

Freebies, Loss Leaders, & Up-sells

Gary owns a parking lot sweeping service. After hours he comes in and cleans parking lots of garbage and rocks. Overall Gary’s business is pretty successful. He has steady customers and enough jobs to keep him busy all year but

Posted in Business Improvement, Customer Service & Culture, Image & Marketing

What IS Your Mission?

Just imagine you are at a Chamber Luncheon and someone asks you “What is your mission?”  If you can’t answer that question immediately and succulently all the fairy dust in the world won’t motivate people to follow you.  Being the capitalist that I am, the unwritten ending to any for-profit business mission will be “and make money”.  But what comes before needs to inspire and NOT rely on the charisma of the leader.  A good mission will speak to employees, customers and stakeholders.  Furthermore, I’m partial to mission statements that every employee can repeat easily.  That means often less than 20 words. 

Remember, your mission is what gets you excited and energized each and every day.  If it excites you, your staff will see your excitement and most will join in the adventure. 

Here are some for companies that I know and use:

Starbucks:  to inspire and nurture the human spirit – one person, one cup and one neighborhood at a time. 

Toyota:  To sustain profitable growth by providing the best customer experience and dealer support. 

DuPont:  Sustainable Growth: Increasing shareholder and societal value while reducing our environmental footprint. 

St Luke’s Hospital in Maumee: Improve your health and well-being by promising to put our Patients first. Always.

The Andersons:  We channel our time, talent and energy in pursuit of fundamental goal of serving God by service others.

Ebay:  global, social, and entrepreneurial trading that is enabled by eBay’s Internet ecommerce systems and services.

Amazon:  Our vision is to be earth’s most customer centric company; to build a place where people can come to find and discover anything they might want to buy online.

Facebook:  Give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected.

What is your Mission?  Read [More] and share your mission. 

Posted in Business Management, Business Planning, Customer Service & Culture, Image & Marketing

Progressive Snapshot

If you have watched any amount of TV in the last few months you have probably seen those commercials for Progressive Insurance, specifically the commercials about their SnapShot device. The devices collects information about your driving habits such as when you drive, how fast, how hard you hit the brakes, etc. The device will even beep when you hit your breaks too hard, giving you instant feedback. Progressive then analyzes your driving habits and you may get a discount. From a marketing and business stand point this device is pretty ingenious and can save the company (and you) a ton of money. But how?

Posted in Business Improvement, Image & Marketing

Appropriate Client Conversation

Everybody likes to talk, especially if it’s about someone you have in common. The problem is knowing what it is appropriate and when it’s not.

Just the other day I was at a personal appointment with my hairstylist. It wasn’t really my hairstylist but I’m going to use it to keep things confidential. Anyways, as I was sitting in the chair we were talking about places that I use to work. Then the subject of a certain employee from that company came up. The stylist just started talking about that person, nothing bad, just personal.

I was blown away to say the least. If he/she was willing to talk about this person and what transpired in their appointment who knows what is said about mine. Not to mention the stylist had no idea why I stopped working there and whether or not my employment ended on good or bad terms.

In any business it is poor manors to talk about other clients whether it’s good or bad. Understandably it can get pretty rough talking about the weather with every client, every day. If you’re one of those people that are terrible at coming up with good conversation I came up with a list of appropriate topics that are safe to use.

Posted in Business Networking, Customer Service & Culture, Employee Management, Image & Marketing