How to Maximize Growth and Monetary Profits For a Home Based Business

Proactive measures and concentrated efforts are necessary to achieve business growth. Efficient marketing campaigns can help profitability of a home based business. Management of available resources and regular customer studies can boost viability of a business model.

Constant Evaluation and Accountability

Analysis and review of sales figures must be undertaken to gauge the health of the business model. Expense details have to be tabulated and aligned with set cost limits.

Four areas of a business model can be worked upon to push up growth. Expenses must be limited so that they do not eat up into the anticipated profits.

The value of a product and service must be accurately determined to work on marketing plans and price issues. Resources that can be utilized at lower prices without compromise on quality can be employed to cut costs. Futile expenses must be avoided to push up profit margins.

Sales review can determine customer base and mode of expansion plans. Factors like product demand, target customer group and brand management have to be thoroughly considered.

Creative Solutions for Sustained Growth

Innovative marketing strategies can be initiated online and at local spots in order to reach a wider audience. Community events and festivities have high advertising potential for home based business ideas. This can increase profit margins from greater sales through word of mouth promotions.

Regular advertisement and marketing campaigns are necessary to reach out to the customers. Customer surveys and sale studies can help modulation of advertising methods to achieve personal connection with users of the product.

Creative product solutions can enable business ideas to thrive even in the difficult conditions. Discount packages and free service periods are some of them. Constant personal review of quality can work towards the long term growth. Free sample of products and service experience offers can bring in slow and constant revenues.

Personality Traits and Leadership Qualities

Failure and learning experiences help develop business strategies that maximize growth. Constructive criticism and customer feedback go a long way to propel business opportunities.

Business development occurs even in the uncomfortable situations and difficult market conditions. Areas of trouble must be seen as the windows of opportunity. Leadership qualities like willingness to take responsibility and a never say die spirit can help to tide over poor economic scenarios.

Hard work coupled with ability to finish the projects on time enriches client and customer relationships. Smart decisions must be made with price quotes for business viability.

The bond of trust which is created through the product or service with clients and dealers must be upheld. The ability to foresee and plan for the future with sustained efforts improves the business model practiced.

Organizational skills like making plans, committing resources to a project and supervisory actions are necessary for the development of a home based business.

Darrell Lischka

Removing Risks From Your New Business Strategy

This article identifies the risks business developers often face and the strategies used to minimise them. Winning complex new business is achieved by the systematic removal of risks and the effective deployment of strengths. Risks can be sorted into manageable categories each with a recommended set of strategies:

  1. You have a very strong competitor
  2. You are a late comer into the contest
  3. You face barriers within your own organisation
  4. You have a powerful anti-sponsor in the account
  5. You have some credibility/reputation problems
  6. There is a lack of alignment amongst decisions makers
  7. Your are unsure who the decision makers are and how they feel about your proposal

As there is a wealth of information to cover, this edition will deal with the first three categories and next month will focus on the remaining four.

1. You have a very strong competitor

Having a strong competitor is not necessarily the risk. It’s what that competitor has to offer which presents the risk. It may be that they have a superior solution; they may have better credibility, or they may have stronger relationships with the decision makers.

Firstly, question whether you really do have an inferior solution. Be analytical – assess what attitude each decision maker holds towards your solution and look at the detail of their perceptions. If there are some gaps in your knowledge, find out what they think. Examine the whole list and decide if your solution is inferior. If you still feel it is, you have to take action in either two ways:

Improve your solution – This is your best option, however it is not always possible or it can come with unacceptable margin implications.

Change the game – Changing the game is a classic game theory response whenever you face a stronger contender. To change the game, you need to break your solution down into components. Re-examine your decision makers and understand how they rate you on each of the components. Group the components on which you are strong and make this the centre of the buyer’s consideration. Your sales strategy is now to change the game into one you can win. Stop selling what you were selling and start selling this stronger solution.

It should be noted that changing the game is usually only effective at the start of the selling process. If the process is advanced, the decision maker’s view of what they want will be too strong for you to change.

2. You are a late comer into the contest

The good news when an unexpected tender invitation arrives is that you haven’t expended any selling time or money on this opportunity until now. The not-so-good news is that it’s very possible that a competitor is already the front runner for this opportunity. The problem is compounded by the fact that tender responses often consume significant resources and take you away from other pro-active development work.

Your challenge is to decide if you are going to pursue this opportunity and if so, how. Firstly, you need to make a realistic assessment of the comparative importance of this opportunity. Secondly, assess the comparative cost of pursuing the opportunity, including the impact of putting other work aside while you prepare this tender response. Then assign a high, medium or low rating to both assessments.

The opportunity can then be plotted on the following matrix:

Importance | High | Go | Go | Rabbit |
|__________________________________________________________ | Medium | Go | Manage | Stop | | | | Resources | | |__________________________________________________________ | Low | Stop | Stop | Stop | |__________________________________________________________ | Low | Medium | High | |__________________________________________________________ Cost

In this matrix, there are four recommendations to consider:

  1. Stop – Simply, if the importance is low, don’t proceed. Similarly, if the importance is medium and the cost is high, it is recommended not to proceed.
  2. Go – If the importance is high and the cost is low or medium, go for it. Additionally, if the importance is medium and the cost it is low, it’s worth pursuing.
  3. Rabbit – If the importance is high, the cost is high and you are late into the process, you need to pull a rabbit out of the hat! This may mean sharpening your pencil, leveraging a special relationship more vigorously, or finding a silver bullet. If you can’t capitalise on one of these options, your risk of not achieving a return on your tendering investment is high.
  4. Manage resources – You need to keep an eye on the resources you put into this opportunity, whilst maintaining your prospecting activity. You cannot let this become an all-consuming opportunity and must manage the consumption of your selling resource to the potential of the opportunity.

3. You face barriers within your own organisation

Many developers who have attended our workshops tell us that this is often their biggest challenge. We have a few simple but effective strategies:

  • Include the executives you need to persuade in your big picture analysis. Treat them like decision makers inside your client organisation and understand their personal and business motivations.
  • Involve the executives in your selling strategy as early as you can, even if they are not yet fully committed to supporting your proposal. As a sense of the hunt develops in their mind, they start to convince themselves that it is worth winning. Executives not usually involved in business development love to be asked for help.
  • Use your internal coaches to do the persuading for you. Sometimes they will be more effective than you.

4. You have a powerful anti-sponsor in the account

If you believe this to be the case, it is wise to investigate and uncover the following factors:

  • Their lack of support for you
  • Why they don’t support you
  • Their degree of influence in the decision
  • Who they are supporting

Ideally, you want to convince this decision maker that they should support your solution. However, if you are a long way into the sales process, this may not be possible.

If you believe this decision maker can’t be turned around, it may be better to stay away from them as they are likely to be supporting your competition. With true anti-sponsors, trying too hard can give them more data to use against you and/or increase their motivation to support their favoured option.

5. You have some credibility/reputation problems

If you find yourself with credibility or reputation problems, there are three things you can do:

Face the problem directly – don’t try and hide from it – Organisations learn from their mistakes. Be prepared to talk about what you have learnt and how you have put this knowledge into place for the benefit of your clients. Sound confident and welcome the opportunity to respond.

Re-frame the problem into consequences rather than attributes – Ask the decision makers why a particular credibility or reputation issue concerns them. Record their responses and deal with those rather than the negative attribute itself. Talk about those things that you now do to make sure that it is not a problem going forward. A negative successfully turned around can become a strong positive.

Find decision makers who support the corrective action you have taken – There are almost always decision makers who support actions your organisation has taken to overcome shortcomings. Leverage off the positive comments these buyers are prepared to make on your behalf.

6. There is a lack of alignment amongst decisions makers

There is a lack of alignment when the decision makers do not agree on the nature of the problem that you propose to fix. If however, there is consensus on the nature of the problem but there is disagreement on the type of solution required, action is needed to rectify this.

The biggest risk associated with a lack of alignment amongst decision makers is that the deal may never happen. The ‘do nothing’ outcome wins by default. Many opportunities with Government suffer this fate.

As an aside, your big picture strategy must contain a completion date. If there is no client imposed completion date, impose one on yourself. If you do not have a completion date, you never know if you are losing to the ‘do nothing’ outcome.

Ultimate decision maker

Where does the ultimate decision maker sit on this issue? This is the most important consideration. The solution provider who has the ultimate decision maker on side is best placed. This is where your selling effort should be focused.

Engage at the concept level

If time permits, you may need to go back to basics with the decision makers and engage them in discussion about what the problem is and what types of solutions are possible. This will require some courage and deep understanding of your client’s business. Executed well however, and it positions you as the real consultant and ahead of your competition.

Group decision makersIf there are many decision makers, it is likely that they will group into two or three solution camps. A good big picture analysis will show you how they group, which group favours your solution and which group has the power.

7. Your are unsure who the decision makers are and how they feel about your proposal

This risk is a clear indicator that your selling effort and/or big picture is incomplete. There is no substitute for getting face to face with all the decision makers. This is a two step process.

Identify – You need to ensure that your big picture identifies all the decision makers on this deal. Use the decision makers who are your strong supporters to validate that you have all the names. Get them to confirm your understanding of their level of influence and where you stand in terms of their support for your proposal.

Prioritise – Once you know who has the influence and who supports your proposal, make it a priority to work on those with high influence who don’t yet support your proposal. Be wary of approaching the anti-sponsors. You also probably need to stop spending time with low influence decision makers.

Finally, don’t be afraid to ask for assistance from your strong supporters. People are usually pleased to help promote a solution they want to see implemented. They can also give you advice and open doors that might otherwise be closed.

Georgetown Heritage Business Developments In Penang

A new kind of energy fills Georgetown City of Penang Island these days. The elegant 19th century shop lots are buzzing with life and activities. New business trends related to heritage living style have sprung up everywhere around the city area.

There has been renewed business interest in the areas since the listing of Georgetown as a UNESCO world heritage site two and a half years ago. Both small time entrepreneurs and more established investors are putting cash in conservation projects. Old heritage houses and shop lots have been transformed into chic eateries, boutique hotels, and charming home stays.

A classic cafe example is ‘Kopi Cine’, which is located at Stewart Lane. This delightful cafe serves Penang style coffee as well as Italian cappuccino. ‘Amelie Cafe’ in Armenian Street is another heritage cafe investment, which serves local delights prepared from fresh market ingredients. The new generation of investors are not merely pumping funds into prime real estates, but have shown deep respect for heritage and culture.

The buffer zone area has also been livening up with the establishment of ‘Hotel Penaga’. This hotel is located in the surrounding areas of Hutton Lane, Transfer Road and Clarke Street, which is a pre-war terrace of fifteen shop units. It has been beautifully restored into a boutique hotel and maintains the character of the heritage zone, while meeting the highest modern expectations for visitors, who particularly wish to experience the heritage style of living accommodation.

Investing in the heritage city of Georgetown may seem like a good idea, but it is not a simple task. The dilapidated condition of many of Georgetown’s old shop houses call for restoration and renovation. Such costs are often double the cost of the initial purchase price of the dilapidated property. But luckily these factors have not discouraged investors, comprising local Penang citizens, Malaysians from other states, as well as foreigners, from investing in heritage estate developments.

Georgetown’s heritage listing has also proved to be a huge investment opportunity and a big boost to Penang’s economy. Penang is now globally recognized as a selected destination for tourist to visit. This has also upgraded the Penang’s status as a healthcare or medical care destination. More visitors from neighbouring countries are now coming to seek medical treatment in Penang. Medical tourism enabled many people to get the benefit of high quality medical treatment with more competitive cost in medical expenses, while going on a beautiful and tranquil vacation.

The cost of getting the treatment done elsewhere aboard has confirmed to be comparatively more expensive, whereas the same medical treatment cost in Penang can be much lower, by as much as 50% of the cost abroad. Patients can get the best possible treatment available in Penang. Penang medical professionals are highly efficient and well versed in English.

Penang may be small but is full of life, and have been voted as one of the top most livable place in the world.

Low Risk Business Opportunities

Good opportunities are few and far between not my quote but appropriate to anyone looking.

Many of us are searching for that one opportunity to improve our life or situation.

It may be for financial gain or chance to prove yourself to others and show off your talent or ability.

Ideas and inventions in, medicine engineering science and technology keep evolving and help improve our lives and environment of today and for the future.

Like an engine, which drives us forward, keeps economies flowing and business developing.

On a personal level, you may see a marketing opportunity a niche to develop that others have not.

Dragon’s Den the TV program shown in the UK encourages entrepreneurs to come forward to present their business idea’s to a group of millionaire business investors.

If the investors are presented with an opportunity, they consider worthwhile an offer may be made to invest.

The size of the investment depends on how they view the risk/reward ratio.

If the risk is high with the potential to make little return or even a loss then the investor will require a high proportion of the business.

In the opposite situation when the business opportunity is seen as low risk with potential high rewards then the negotiations can change in the business proposes advantage. The investors have seen a good business opportunity that through their knowledge and experience in the market can develop further.

One of the main reasons why budding entrepreneurs enter the Dragon’s Den is not only for the investment but also for the expertise that the Dragon’s provide.

With online business opportunities the same sets of rules apply, low risk high reward with the backup and support provided through knowledge and expertise in the business.

The opportunity, which you seek, has now presented itself, but can you see it? This all depends on your mindset; you will either grasp it with both hands or come up with various negative scenarios of why it will not work for you.

Sitting on the fence, you are not committing yourself either way. The ship will sail without you and all you can do is gaze in to the horizon.

The Dragon’s have the foresight, strength and determination and will grasp an opportunity and run with it, that is why they are successful. In order for you to replicate the same success then develop the same mindset.