International Janitorial Cleaning Services Association   


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  • 03 Aug 2016 1:41 PM | IJCSA - (Administrator)

    Qualifying as a Small Business

    You may take it for granted that your company is a "small business." The distinction is important if you wish to register for government contracting as a small business. To be a small business, you must adhere to industry size standards established by the U.S. Small Business Administration. As you register as a government contractor in the System for Award Management (SAM), you will also self-certify your business as small.

    The SBA, for most industries, defines a "small business" either in terms of the average number of employees over the past 12 months, or average annual receipts over the past three years. In addition, SBA defines a U.S. small business as a concern that:

    • Is organized for profit

    • Has a place of business in the US

    • Operates primarily within the U.S. or makes a significant contribution to the U.S. economy through payment of taxes or use of American products, materials or labor

    • Is independently owned and operated

    • Is not dominant in its field on a national basis

    The business may be a sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, or any other legal form. In determining what constitutes a small business, the definition will vary to reflect industry differences, such as size standards.

    Size Standards

    Because all federal agencies must use SBA size standards for contracts identified as small business, you need to select NAICS codes that best describe your business and then determine if the business meetsize standards for the selected NAICS codes. Use our Size Standards Tool to find out if you qualify as a small business. Once you have determined you are indeed a small business, you can then certify your business as small by registering as a government contractor.


  • 21 Jul 2016 1:42 PM | IJCSA - (Administrator)

    Understanding Your Customer

    Knowing your customer is a vital part of effectively selling your product or service. This course will introduce you to tools and resources that will help you understand your customer and increase sales.

    Duration: 00:30:00

    BEGIN COURSE

    System Requirements:

    Acrobat Reader, Adobe Flash Player

    Due to Flash limitations, some courses will only play in iOS tablets or mobile devices with additional software installation

    LINK


  • 12 Jul 2016 1:36 PM | IJCSA - (Administrator)


    1 Year OSHA Approved Certification

    The Federal OSHA Bloodborne Pathogen Standard was published in 1991. It was designed to reduce and minimize the potential for occupational exposure to the Human Immunodeficiency Virus, or more commonly referred to HIV, the Hepatitis B Virus (HBV) and other human Bloodborne pathogens. This audio/visual training program combines photographs, animation and voice over text to make retention of the material easier. The course will inform you about precautions you must take to eliminate the risk of infectious diseases that can be contracted through exposure and the proper methods of handling potential contaminants. A test, consisting of simple, multiple choice questions will follow in order to ensure that you have achieved the basic knowledge need to properly handle potential exposures. THE FULL COURSE CURRICULUM IS DESCRIBED BELOW.

    IF YOU ARE A CLEANING OR JANITORIAL SERVICE OWNER YOU ARE REQUIRED BY LAW TO HAVE THIS CERTIFICATION

    IF YOU EMPLOY PEOPLE IN ANY CLEANING SITUATION, THEY ARE REQUIRED BY LAW TO HAVE THIS CERTIFICATION

    OSHA- "An employer whose employees have occupational exposure to blood or other potentially infectious materials (OPIM) must provide training at the time of initial assignment [1910.1030(g)(2)(ii)(A)] and at least annually thereafter [1910.1030(g)(2)(ii)(C)]. 29 CFR 1910.1030(g)(2)(i) requires that such training "be provided at no cost to the employee and during working hours."

    One less thing to worry about and a bonus as an IJCSA member. Complete the course and get your certificate in under an hour. 

    ONLINE COURSE DESCRIPTION

    Introduction - Introduction for layout of course material and testing

    Training Requirements - OSHA Standard information

    Key Elements of the Standard - OSHA Standard Explained

    Regulatory Definitions - An approach to prevention of Bloodborne Pathogen transmissions that involves: Blood, Other Potentially Infectious Materials (OPIM), Human Body Fluid, OPIM in detail.

    Occupational Exposure - Explanation of Occupational Exposure defined; Exposure Determination & Methods of Compliance. Engineering Controls, including sharps disposal containers, self-sheathing needles, , needless systems, Exposure Determination.

    Methods of Compliance - Universal Precautions, Work Practices, Engineering Controls, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). Housekeeping Procedures (Regulated Medical Waste Disposal, HBV Vaccination, Post-Exposure Follow Up, Hazard Communicating and Training. Sharps Containers, Mechanical Pipettes, Containment Devices, Chemical & Mechanical Filters and Work Practice Controls.

    Sharps Handling and Disposal - Needles Syringes and Other Sharps, Uncontaminated Broken Glass and Laboratory Glassware

    Additional Controls - Eating, Drinking or Smoking in the Workplace, Cosmetics, Contact Lenses, Aerosol Generation, Medical Waste Containers

    Disinfection - Autoclaving, Chemical Disinfection, Aseptic Technique, Chemical Use

    Epidemiology - HBV and Exposure Routes, Hepatitis B Virus, Risk of Infection, HBV Incubation Period, HBV Signs and Symptoms, Hepatitis B Vaccination OSHA Standard, Hepatitis C and Exposure Routes, Occupational Exposures to HCV, Same categories as HBV. HIV - Same subcategories as HBV & HCV. HIV, Immunodeficiency and AIDS, ARC (Aids Related Complex) Symptoms, AIDS Symptoms, Exposure Incidents

    Biohazard Precautions - Warning Labels, Biohazard Signs

    Personal Protective Equipment: Purpose and Types - Gloves, Goggles, Masks, Face Shields, Personal Protective Clothing


               Register for Member Course>>     Member Course Located Here>>


  • 10 Jul 2016 1:39 PM | IJCSA - (Administrator)


    We are offering IJCSA members a 10% discount from our published website prices at www.directmopsales.com. We do sell products in individual units, with no minimum order requirements, as well as bulk quantities and have additional discounts built into our bulk unit pricing. We pay all transportation costs for orders of $60.00 or more shipping anywhere within the 48 contiguous states of the continental US. We do handle international accounts, and use Paypal invoicing for all international orders. Shipping anywhere outside of the contiguous 48 states of the continental US will be based on International customers paying UPS ground transportation charges to the destination location. Please visit our website today for savings! 


  • 20 Jun 2016 1:38 PM | IJCSA - (Administrator)


    Save up to 40% on janitorial insurance and bonding with Allen Financial. Must be listed in member directory prior to receiving discount for group association discount.  


  • 08 May 2016 1:30 PM | IJCSA - (Administrator)

    Famed author Mark Twain once said, “Many a small thing has been made large by the right kind of advertising.”

    But advertising can be expensive, and in a tight economy, many small businesses cut their marketing budgets first because of cash flow concerns. However, when times are tough, it’s even more important to keep your business brand front and center.

    During an economic downturn, clients, customers, and consumers have less money to spend. This means that when they’re ready to buy, you want your brand to be at the top of their list. Social media is undoubtedly one of the most effective and affordable ways to engage your customers and keep your brand top-of-mind, but it’s not the only way. Here are ten tried and true marketing strategies that can help you market your business on a shoestring budget.

    1. Craft an elevator pitch

    You should be marketing all the time — wherever you are. Therefore, you need a compelling elevator pitch. Research shows the average attention span of an adult is about 6 to 8 seconds. That’s all the time you have to grab someone’s attention. If you successfully engage them, then you only have a little over a minute to really sell them on your product or service. Invest the time to craft a killer elevator pitch. The return on your investment will pay huge dividends in terms of creating business opportunities.

    2. Leverage your community

    You don’t have to think big when it comes to your marketing efforts. Think locally. What’s going on in your community? Sponsor a Little League team or a 5k charity walk/run. Print bookmarks and leave them at the local library. Get to know your ideal customer and think about how and where they spend their time. Then search for opportunities to get in front of your customer with your marketing message.

    3. Collaborate

    Put together a group of synergistic, non-competitive businesses in your area and agree to cross-promote. You can use coupons, fliers, reciprocal website links, bundled promotions or social media platforms. (Okay, I had to add a little bit of social media to the mix.) By collaborating with each other, you can expand your customer base because you’ll be reaching new people.

    4. Network

    I’m a huge fan of networking. I don’t think there is any better way to build a business than to get out there, shake some hands, and get to know people. Networking requires a time commitment and it doesn’t provide instant gratification, but a strong network is one of the greatest assets any business person can have.

    5. Give a speech

    A lot of people hate public speaking. However, there are many organizations looking for qualified, subject-matter experts who can present to their groups. Take a deep breath and volunteer. You don’t have to be a pro as long as the information you share is helpful to the audience. And the upside — the more you do it the easier it gets. Plus, it positions you as a credible authority in your field.

    6. Create buzz

    I started my corporate career in the field of public relations and the business has changed significantly because of technology. Today, a small business owner can accomplish a lot without hiring a professional firm. Subscribe to Help a Reporter Out  www.helpareporter.com. You can respond to reporters’ queries that are looking for story ideas and resources. Some are small media opportunities, but others are major media outlets that use this service too.

    7. Ask for referrals

    Don’t be shy about asking for customer referrals. The majority of people say they are willing to provide a referral if asked, but very few take the initiative to do it on their own. Referrals make it easier to get in the door with new customers. If you aren’t asking for them, you are missing opportunities.

    8. Build relationships

    It is a lot less expensive to keep a customer than it is to get a new one. That’s why establishing strong relationships with your customer base is crucial. One of the ways you can do that is by launching an email campaign. Make your communications informative and helpful — something your customers will look forward to receiving.Social media campaigns are another way to keep the communication channel open (and there I go again.)

    9. Offer coupons

    Coupons are a good way for many businesses to attract new customers. Research shows that people will go out of their way to use a coupon, proving that this method is successful in expanding your customer base. Coupons can also generate return visits. For example, if you give a customer a coupon for a discount to use on future business, there’s a high probability they’ll be back.

    10. Give it away

    If someone has the opportunity to experience your product or service, chances are they will want to purchase more. Don’t be afraid to give someone a free trial or a sample. In today’s economy, people are more comfortable purchasing something they have been able to experience first.

    These ten, inexpensive marketing strategies will help you engage customers, build relationships, and ultimately keep your brand top-of-mind. It’s not always about the money you have to spend on marketing, it’s about the time and effort you put into it and above all, the relevance it has for your customers.

    Do you have another inexpensive, successful marketing tip that has worked for you? Tell us about it below.


  • 10 Mar 2016 1:35 PM | IJCSA - (Administrator)

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    Linked network marketing ideas and technology and business strategy design, development, Internet advertising and marketing. Search engine marketing, email marketing, display advertising, affiliate marketing, display advertising, blog marketing, display advertising, viral marketing. Internet marketing is the media running along the different stages of customer engagement cycle through search engine marketing, search engine optimization in a specific site, e-mail marketing and Web 2, banner ads. Network marketing has become more and more organizations use to promote the network media key and very effective. 'The establishment of a website' or 'promotion site' is the foundation, but not the basis of network marketing.

    Somewhere behind that website is a real goal, the real organization. Internet marketing strategy includes all of the online advertising products and services, including market research, email marketing, websites, and direct sales.

    This articles talking about Internet Marketing Strategy.

    Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Nee_Hau_Lee/651315


  • 07 Feb 2016 1:32 PM | IJCSA - (Administrator)

    The analogy between marketing and a business is similar to the relationship of body and food. Marketing is the heart of the business. Every business is different so each business has to offer marketing and development, which fits each unique business's need. There are many ways of developing and marketing for any business, but first let's find the true concept and definition of marketing.

    Marketing definition:

    "Marketing is the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large".

    1- Thinking advertising is marketing:

    The biggest mistake most of the business owners make is to think advertising and spending money is the only marketing way exist. This group only focuses on advertising, which when the desire result is not achieved at the end of the month, they complain of how much money they wasted away. Advertisement is merely one of many ways of marketing.

    2- You don't enjoy what you do:

    As stated above Marketing has many ways and approaches. The main marketing for your business is to love what you do. Nothing is better than your "Love what you do" attitude since it brings out your creativity, shows your talent and tells everyone how devoted you are to your business. Your daily positive attitude defines the successful future of your business. The love of your business construe in your daily interaction with new clients, employee's moral and making important and effective marketing decisions. To be a good marketer for your business, first rule is your love for what you do.

    3- Don't have a good business plan:

    What is business plan?

    "A written document describing the nature of the business, the sales and marketing strategy, and the financial background, and containing a projected profit and loss statement".

    Having a business plan is like having a map. Many businesses start their business ignoring this very effective tool and get lost in the middle of the road. Every business plan states the exact details of the business's concept and outlines clearly the marketing strategies, profit and loss, demographic, place of business, finances and targeted niche market. In order to make a solid business plan:

    A) Know your business inside and out

    Knowledge of your business is important to know the answer to all the categories of business plan. If you do not know the concept of your product or service, business plan and the pillar of your business does not exist.

    B) Study, analyze and scrutinize

    When you know the back and forth of every detail in your business, you can access all the required information needed to project your business in a business plan. In order to access all this information you need to study, analyze and scrutinize every file and information in libraries, city records and valid informative site on the Internet.

    C) Print it and have it accessible

    When you put all the info together and created your fully detailed business plan, print a copy and keep a file handy and accessible.

    Your projected analysis for the business works as a map to your success. Don't drive to an unknown destination, not having a map on hand.

    4- Don't have any plans:

    Marketing and developing its strategy is vital for every business. Marketing works as fertilizer to boost the lawn of your business. Even more importantly, marketing acts like sun to shed light and direction to your business for finding leads for the potential clients. Marketing is like having your open sign on in the dark street. I think I emphasized enough and you understood how important marketing is for any business, small or large.

    5- Not analyzing the market for correct pricing.

    Every business offers products or services. Then producing and providing the products and services involves certain cost and fees. Setting the price according to the market is very important and cause for a major failure for small businesses if done without market awareness. The root and source to find a perfect price is your business plan. It is necessary for every small business owner to investigate:

    A) The demographic income of the targeted niche and audience:

    The business plan states the average income of the targeted audience and the niche market. Set prices based on the factual statistic and spending ability of potential clients.

    B) Market needs and economy balance:

    An involved business owner is always aware of the market needs and the economy balance. Based on your niche market, be on top of the factors of change in economy that can impact your client's ability to spend. If you deal with bankers and investors, keep up with stock market news and its daily changes and adjust your prices regularly.

    C) Competitive market prices:

    A business person is always on a lookout for its competitors and is aware of their side of story. It is necessary to know your competitors and adjust your prices based on their offering and similar services.

    D) Demand of the product or service:

    Investigate the demand before putting the price tag on your product and service. You can find this information through the data in your business plan. Balance your prices based on the market demands;

    • If you projecting a good volume of sale, price it lower than competitors.
    • If the demand is lower and the project of volume is slow, price higher to accommodate the distance between each sale.

    E) Uniqueness of the product or service:

    A unique product and service in the market attracts more attention. Price it higher than other regular products.

    F) Acceptable profit margin range in the area:

    Profit margin's acceptability is always decided based on the market and economy as well as the market demand for the product.

    • Consider a big city. If you have a product or service that is unique, but projecting a high volume of demand, based on the economy and your targeted niche, the profit margin should set higher than normal.
    • In a small community, If you are investing on a product with limited demand, go conservative on your profit margin.

    6- Not having any budget

    Many small business owners make a big mistake and do not place any budget for daily, monthly or yearly marketing plans. Whatever the profit and loss data projects on your business, it must include certain amount of budget for marketing plans that are realistic and traceable. Unfortunately small business owners mostly have no budget and deduct the cost of marketing plans from their profit data. This particular budget assignment is very effective in the future of business growth. Increase the marketing budget with business slowly reaching the peak of demands for your product and services.

    7- Spending money on non-traceable ads

    As the market changes, so as the marketing plan, pricing and target audience. Invest and assign marketing plans that are traceable. Traceable marketing means follow-up charts to analyze data.

    The worst mistake of marketing is to spend money on a plan that cannot be traced and measured. This marketing mistake is wasting money or in other terms is shooting in the dark.

    8- Do not trace the result

    Many businesses have assigned a budget for the traceable marketing plan but sadly do not follow-up on the result and do not trace it. This is just the same as spending wasteful money on non-traceable.

    9- Think in a closed box:

    Each business is unique. Even if the business offers a same product as other business few streets down the road, the two are still unique and different in many ways. The biggest mistake small business owners make is to follow other businesses' footsteps. Marketing and its strategies should not have any limitation. Think of marketing out side of the box and do not limit the marketing strategies to a cliché approach others do. Be creative and design a plan unique and suitable for the very business.

    10- Don't know what plans to set:

    Everyone is familiar with the word marketing. The first conversation when opening a new enterprise is "Lets do marketing!" But do we all really realize the core meaning of it?

    I compare marketing strategies and its unique approach to our fingerprints, which is distinctive. Many understand the word marketing but are not familiar with how to set the strategy and the game planning related to the business.

    It is a big mistake not knowing how to set the strategies while being fully aware of marketing important role in the business. Since setting the marketing plan requires research, analysis and knowledge of he market, hire a professional researcher and marketer to create the necessary game plan.

    11- Assuming the product or service will sell itself:

    One of the biggest marketing mistakes is to assume your product or service is going to sell itself. This assumption is misleadingly translating marketing into advertisement. I have met many small business owners who declared that quote-to-quote "I don't spend money on the marketing, to me I only rely on word of mouth".

    Word Of Mouth is the strongest way of marketing. So what this small business owner was under impression that he does not do any marketing because he thought marketing was spending money on advertisement. So he was counting on the most effective marketing, the word of mouth. Word of mouth consists of two factors:

    A) Product or service:

    People have to like the product or service to continue talk about it and refer their friends.

    B) Customer service

    Another major difference between businesses is the level of customer service. I didn't say the level of good or bad. What I mean is each business owner or employee that has been fully trained to look after a client as a customer service has his or her own charm. This specific charisma and character make the business unique to others and is a major influence for word of mouth.

    Let me give you an example of how powerful the word of mouth and spreading the word is to any business. While ago, I worked as a junior manager in an up-scale restaurant. The general manager identified his target niche as young professionals in downtown area. So he hand-picked few employees in the same age range as the targeted niche to use public transportation and talk about the restaurant among each other. His decision, although was not directly traceable, but yet had an amazing effect. How did I analyse the result and witness the proof?

    The restaurant offered comment cards, asking "How you hear about us?" and many without any surprise responded via word of mouth in public transportation.

    Even if the business owner is avoiding any advertisement cost, they still rely on spread of word about their service and product via the community and the word of mouth marketing.

    12- Don't know the target audience:

    To plan and set a marketing strategy, any small business has to have a direct target niche as an audience. Analyze everything about the niche audience. The list certainly is not limited to the audience's income, age, interest ratio to the product, sex, education, commitment ratio and their loyalty.

    13- Don't know the competition:

    The best way to analyze the market is to get familiar with the competition and rivals. It might sound cliché but as the Godfather movie suggested, "Keep you enemy close". Or if I may rephrase " Keep your competition close and be aware of their moves".

    This is especially important for small business owners in small community to have a good relationship with other competition. To share my experience in the same restaurant I used to manage, the general manager always encouraged me to go to other local restaurants and dine. He even offered to pay the bill. All I had to do was to analyze everything from the greeting, staff knowledge, manager's presence, client's relation and the overall quality. My report helped him to understand his competition strengths and weaknesses.

    14- Hiring wrong person to do marketing:

    Many small business owners out of desperation and lack of networking, hire wrong people to do their marketing. As we said earlier, every business has unique offering and services so must focus on unique planning for its marketing strategies.

    It is the small business owner's responsibility to hire a professional firm who can relate to the business's need and offerings.

    A good reputable marketing firm whose focus is to promote books and authors in not a good fit for a small local bistro.

    15- Underestimate the value of existing clients:

    A good businessperson always knows the value of the existing clients;

    The best way of follow-up with the existing clients is to create informative data about them. Many small business owners lack this very important source of information. To avoid this mistake, keep a record of every client's information. If the information requires certain personal data, keep it in a safe and secure place.

    A client whom already has experienced your product and service knows about the quality of it. Always do follow-up calls and do not be afraid to ask how they liked the product or service. Even if the client responses back with dissatisfaction is a perfect opportunity for the business owner to fix the problem.

    Gain a new customer is costly. I am gong to explain this by an example:

    "Nancy enters Joe's café because of a coupon she found in a local magazine offering 10% discount. She solely relies on a menu attraction, prices, quality of the food and customer service. Joe the owner spent lots of money and time for marketing after analyzing the community needs, price affordability and the targeted niche market.

    Joe has three ways to collect emails or phone calls for follow back:

    A) placing a note pad in front of the cashier's desk asking new clients to write email or contact info for special promos.

    B) Placing a glass bowl by the cashier's desk offering the weekly draw of free lunch from dropped business cards.

    C) Offering comment cards and asking for contact info.

    Joe has three ways to accumulate client's information and follow-up with them. So everyday he goes through all the information and creates a secure data.

    Nancy finds the place charming and the food great but not a good customer service. It is Joe's responsibility to follow-up and gain back Nancy's business once again to avoid spending all the money and time all over to attract another new client."

    Existing clients are the perfect way to promote every business. Send special offering, communicate with them and even ask them to share your business with their friends. Respect the boundary between proper communication and spamming.

    16- Not offering giveaways and novelty items:

    One of the most effective ways to attract clients is to giveaway your product or service for free.

    A) Test run: Offer a monthly test run of your product and service and giveaway a free sampler. People love to get samplers. It gives them information about your business and its quality.

    B) Propose monthly contest: Proffer a monthly contest and giveaway prizes based on participating in your business. People love contest and it excites them to know they can win something. If it didn't work, Lottery and Casinos didn't exist.

    C) Give out novelties like mugs, pen, key chain, notepad, calculator, shirts and hats with the business information printed on it.

    17-Wrong niche:

    As a business owner recognizing correct niche market target is necessary for further marketing planning and budget assignment.

    To explain this better lets picture a shoe store that carries high-end fashion shoes for women. The first thing that comes into the mind, high-end fashion niche is only younger generation and teenagers. A good business owner will explore the possibilities to analyze further more into the data from business plan to understand the local community needs.

    If selling high-end, then its higher quality and higher prices. A teenager on a student living budget cannot be a direct and only target niche. So the correct niche is a professional and higher income spender who is more interested in quality without considering the price tag.

    This example clears how a business owner distinguishes the certain target audience by analyzing the local market data from business plan. With enough knowledge in market research, the business owner avoids wasting the marketing budget on a wrong niche.

    18-Not participating in community:

    "Every big things has small beginning"

    Regardless of the geographical target of any business, whether global or corner store in a small village, it all begins with local community.

    Who are the first people you would share news with in your everyday life? Family and friends are the strongest link to marketing and spreading the word. It starts from friends and family and spreads to their friends and family and before you know it, is a snowball effect and cumulative.

    The local community is the test run before spending a time and money on a dead-end marketing plan.

    19- Do not own an informative and representative website:

    Internet plays a great deal of connection in people's life everyday. Many customers use the Internet to search and review local businesses. No matter what kind of business, it requires an informative and user-friendly website. A good business website is a gateway that welcomes customers to enter and experience the business offering.

    Many small business owners making mistake and assume their line of business does not need a website. With daily development of technology, people get more connected via Internet and do their shopping online. Search engines get stronger everyday by developing codes and programs to bring up the exact and precise inquiry.

    20- Do not appreciate the value of the Internet:

    With a vastly growing competition on the Internet and the increase in demand for business development, simply having a website that offer information is not enough. Popular search engines are only producing websites in their search result, which have better ranking. Many small business owners simply making a big mistake by avoiding the presence on the Internet and ignore the growing highway to success. Every business must have an informative website and optimizes the business on search engines, social media and popular relevant forums. This subject of Internet marketing and its highly effective marketing plans is a lot of subject to cover in this article.

    21- Expecting too much in short time:

    Do not expect too much in a short time. There is always cause and effect but it requires proper time period to produce best effect. A seed needs time to open the surface and grow to a strong tree. But it requires water and good fertilization. Marketing is the water and fertilization to the business. It takes time for a good marketing plan to spread the roots and make a strong holding ground.

    "Rome was not built in a day"

    It took generations and much hard work of skilled engineers, planning and proper budgeting to build the mega city of Rome.

    Can you hold a roof without building the pillars and the walls?

    Marketing is the pillar of the business. Without marketing and planning, business lacks a foundation.

    Many business owners place the marketing and development in their last page when the business opens its door to the public. Marketing starts when the business idea takes shape. It begins before the business is even called a business. Avoid making marketing mistake and start your marketing with knowledge and strategy.

    Marketing is the heart of every business and keeps the health of the company in balance. But treat the heart right. Eating healthy, exercise and lack of stress are keeping the heart healthy to beat the life into our body. Practicing and implementing the right marketing strategies keep the business in shape. Don't make mistake if you had a good run. Many small business owners get too excited for this temporary beat of recognition and look at it as everlasting. To keep a good balance in business, marketing and planning should match the flow of the business. Increase your strategies as your business grows and increases.

    Marketing is the pillar of every business and is the only foundation to go further, faster. Imagine a boat with no engine crossing the Atlantic. The marketing to a business resembles the engine to a boat. The planning and strategy of the marketing to the business is the safety gear of the boat that keeps it balance and not to tip over.

    To hire a professional to help with marketing strategies, business plans and target niche market, post your project in http://www.bidsbypros.comand connect with local pros. Bids By Pros is a free social community to post your needs and get connected with professionals.

    Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Don_Zilleri/1481960


  • 16 Nov 2015 1:27 PM | IJCSA - (Administrator)

    Motivation on making phone calls.... lol



  • 15 Nov 2015 1:33 PM | IJCSA - (Administrator)

    What is Marketing?

    Marketing is a business discipline through which the targeted consumer is influenced to react positively to an offer. This can relate to the purchase of a product or a service, the joining of an organization, the endorsement of a candidate or ideology, the contribution or investment in a cause or company, or a variety of other choices of response.

    The marketer can use a number of techniques to reach the consumer which can be based on artistic or scientific strategies, or a combination of the two.

    Usually, the consumer is identified as a member of a particular segment of the populace, known as a market. For example, markets can be defined by age, income, area of residence, home value, interest, buying habits, industry or profession, etc., which facilitates and simplifies the marketing process. Knowing to whom the marketing effort is appealing greatly assists the marketer in developing appropriate language, reasoning and incentives to find success in its marketing efforts.

    Choosing to target a particular market as opposed to the entire universe also greatly controls marketing expenditures but also may limit response. If anyone anywhere can be a customer, sales expectations may be higher but marketing costs will certainly also need to be higher as well with such a huge target as its goal.

    To address this dilemma, more creative means of marketing are sometimes utilized to assist with marketing message delivery. If what is being marketed is considered newsworthy and of public interest, editorial coverage in the media can greatly assist marketing efforts. Since this usually is not reliant on major marketing funds other than what is needed to support the development, distribution, and yes, marketing of press releases to editors and publishers, the advantages of such publicity can be priceless, albeit usually miraculous on such a large scale.

    Marketing is everywhere!

    Everywhere we turn, everything we do is somehow connected to marketing, whether we have been induced to participate in some activity because of it or develop an interest in some idea as a result of it. Whether we realize it or not, there are personal, political or commercial agendas cloaked as news we read in the paper, behind the books, movies and music we experience as part of our culture, and within the confines of our stores and supermarkets where we shop. Of course, we easily recognize the blatant marketing efforts that reach us through direct mail, media advertising, and all over the Internet including the spam we receive ad nauseum. Marketing has become one of the most all-pervasive elements of life and we are fools if we do not question the validity or innocence of everything we read, see and hear.

    Marketing is communication and education!

    In order to be successful in business marketing, the customer must be reached in a variety of ways. First of all, not every customer gets the daily paper or listens to local radio. We have limited knowledge of which TV station they may watch, where they shop, what roads they travel or where they dine. Depending on what we are marketing, we may have to utilize a whole assortment of avenues of marketing to get their attention. And, if we reach them just once, that is hardly enough to make a lasting impression. Marketing is necessary on a repeated basis in a diverse number of ways in an ever-changing presentation to assure that every customer can relate to it in some way, learn what we are offering and understand how it can benefit them. To achieve long-term customer loyalty, the targeted consumer needs to be coddled into familiarity with what we are selling so they feel it is something they truly want as opposed to having it forced upon them as something they desperately need, only to find out later they were tricked!

    Marketing Sounds Expensive!

    Yes, marketing can get pricey particularly if it is done on a consistent basis. But in today's world, we have marketing options we never had even twenty or thirty years ago. Now, instead of paying for expensive printing and postage to mail a brochure or postcard to a targeted consumer, we can utilize email marketing, website presentations or online banner ads to reach the same market, usually at a fraction of the cost. Today, instead of buying expensive print advertising, we can work on improving our website's SEO (search engine optimization) - (something we can do for free, if we are so inclined) so that people in need of what we offer can find us through Internet searches, rather than our trying to find them at an astronomical expense.

    What About Social Media Marketing?

    In addition to alternative marketing options already mentioned, there is the latest craze for Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other incredibly popular social media where people, young and old, spend hours developing relationships with "friends" they may never have met or ever will meet. Yet they share intense secrets of their deepest thoughts and desires as well as actual photographic representations of the same which sometimes land people in trouble with the law, or at the very least, their employer, school or parents.

    Whether social media marketing is a worthwhile endeavor for businesses remains to be seen since businesses rarely accumulate millions of followers the way celebrities do. But as a way for customers to interact with a business for which they may have developed a fondness cannot be disputed. Can this translate into more sales for the business? We'll have to wait and see, while continuing to devote precious time to composing meaningful 140-character tweets and building a Facebook "persona" for the business. From this writer's standpoint, the only worthwhile social medium for business is that of LinkedIn since it provides a serious platform on which to create a business résumé where anyone interested in your professional stature can quickly summarize your capabilities, experience and accomplishments.

    Marketing Can Be Intuitive

    Much of what becomes marketing strategy is based more on common sense than on some mysterious scientific formula. As we see on a daily basis in stock market gyrations as well as political leanings, the herd mentality rules. On any particular day, if the Japanese or European stock or bond markets are selling off for one reason or another, you can safely bet that the U.S. markets will follow suit. And in any political race, as we are witnessing in the U.S. presidential primaries, the more one candidate gains ground, baby step by baby step, the more likely that candidate will become the Party nominee. Today's world is governed by a minute-by-minute opinion survey measured by the endlessly publicized polls where people see what other people are thinking and use those results to form their own opinions. Monkey see, monkey do. The same holds true for marketing.

    If we are told that a certain brand of coffee is the leading brand in America, we will probably believe what we are told, assume it tastes best, perhaps buy it ourselves regardless of cost, and perhaps adopt it as our own favorite. All because we were told everyone else was doing it. Safety in numbers, as they say.

    It is ironic that those who become successful marketers usually dwell on the outskirts of the herd, have a more astute grasp of mass psychology, and approach business and life in a more innovative, creative and unique way, a mindset they use to formulate the next marketing phenomenon. The world is made up of leaders and followers: a few choice leaders and a glut of followers. It takes a lot more gumption to become a leader than it does to join the herd. That's why marketing is a profession based in psychological control by a choice few over the mindless masses who have no initiative or courage to decide for themselves.

    What is the difference between marketing and selling?

    Selling is one aspect of the greater process of marketing. Marketing begins long before the product or service is even ready to sell. Marketing encompasses the concept, naming, branding and promoting of the offer while selling is the much more individualized effort to convince a lead who has possibly responded to the marketing offer to make the purchase. You can't have one without the other, at least not easily. Marketing is a process by which we strive to reach the final goal of making the sale. Without marketing, the sales process is extremely difficult because the entire onus of educating the consumer about the offer is on the shoulders of the sales representative. On the other hand, if marketing has been successful, the sales rep can waltz in knowing the consumer is well apprised of the offer and can work his magic to convert the prospect into a satisfied customer.

    What are some of the instruments of marketing?

    There are many ways to market an offer, some of which are expensive, and others of which can be free. The methods we use that cost us dearly may not work as well as some of those we receive as a gift. Among the costly ways are media advertising, direct mail, conference presentations, distribution of printed literature, online advertising, email marketing, etc. Of those that are free are efforts referred to as guerrilla marketing, which are things we do ourselves to spread the word, network and publicize what we are offering. This can include posting flyers on bulletin boards in supermarkets, libraries, delis, small shops, and government offices, etc. Every time we add a tag to our emails where people can click to go to our website, we are using guerrilla marketing at no cost. Making sure we are easily found in Internet searches through search engine optimization of our website or other online presence, is an excellent way to achieve free marketing. One way to do this is to register your company or organization on every possible free online directory in your industry, region or interest group which translates into exponential growth as time passes.

    What is viral marketing?

    Viral marketing (as it relates to the word "virus," meaning contagious and capable of spreading) is another means of free promotion facilitated by shrewd decisions we can make to further our cause. The easiest way to define viral marketing is that which is communicated via "word-of-mouth." Related to the herd mentality discussed above, if a friend or business acquaintance mentions a product or service in a favorable light, we will be much more inclined to remember it and check it out. This can happen in a business meeting, at a mall, at a soccer game or over lunch. However, since most of us spend so much time on the Internet, it can happen practically everywhere we turn by clicking on the "like" buttons on Facebook or the "1" button on Google, among others. These are our personal endorsements where we give a "thumbs up" to something we have experienced and want to share with our friends so they too can enjoy it. Getting your offerings out with such buttons attached can result in viral marketing in your favor.

    Viral marketing can have powerful repercussions as experienced by one client with an online auto accessories store. Many of his customers frequent online special interest forums related to the model of car they drive where members discuss products they have installed and the source of their purchase, followed by a link to his referenced website. Such referrals are repeated in other ensuing discussions, multiplying the number of links back to his site, increasing the power of his SEO and catapulting him to the tops of Internet searches for what he sells. He paid nothing for this phenomenon of parlayed good fortune except the daily effort he consistently expends to offer top quality merchandise and equally excellent customer service.

    Do you need marketing?

    If you are in business, of course you do. While you can attempt to do as much of it as you can on your own, it is advised that you begin with a reliable base of professional name, logo, website and search engine optimization to get started on the right foot. From there, you can work on promotion via guerrilla marketing and seek professional marketing services as needed for special needs, like a strong, effective ad to run, the development of professional sales literature to distribute at an upcoming show, or a direct mail promotion to your list of repeat customers, for example. Some business people choose to handle their own taxes to save on the cost of using an accountant for such critical functions at the risk of getting audited. Likewise, you can certainly attempt to produce marketing tools yourself but for long-term branding purposes and best return on investment, it is advisable to leave marketing development to the professionals.

    Marilyn Bontempo, president of Mid-Hudson Marketing since 1975, has extensive experience guiding business leaders, directors, and professionals with successful strategies for business growth and sustenance. Long-term relationships have been established with law firms, medical practices, pharmaceutical companies, real estate executives, and a variety of other trade, corporate and industrial specialists. Her professional writing, editing, photographic, design and aesthetic specialties provide clients with proven methods of achieving successful branding and public image. Mid-Hudson Marketing is a top New York advertising, marketing, website and graphic design firm located in Dutchess County's Poughkeepsie area specializing for more than 35 years in the creation and management of high quality branding for business success. With numerous prestigious awards to its credit, the firm's services include full scale advertising programs; expert website development and search engine optimization; professional writing, editing and ghostwriting; blog setup and management; e-commerce and email marketing; outdoor and online billboards; trade show and point-of-purchase displays; sell sheets, posters, flyers, brochures, and catalogs; logos, tag lines and trademarks; photo enhancements; direct mail marketing; newsletters; public relations; and more: call (845) 493-0070. For more info, please visit: http://www.midhudsonmarketing.com

    Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Marilyn_Bontempo/679938



    Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/6818531


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