Why is Email important to Business? Thursday, Mar 12 2015 

Email is the most integral part of a business’s day-to-day operations. Although most new businesses do not comprehend how many uses there are for email. A few key optional uses are: marketing, team communications, contracting options, and business transactions. Another problem business’s have with email is their lack of knowledge of the basics. A few basic issues are: the improper use of Cc and Bcc, the subject line mistakes, and length of the email.http://netdna.webdesignerdepot.com/uploads/2012/11/email2.jpg

Cc and Bcc are first misunderstood by not knowing their definition or use. Cc is an acronym for ‘carbon copy’. This allows both the receiver and the person who is Cc’d to see the message as well as see each other information. A Bcc stands for ‘blind carbon copy’. This means both persons attached to the email receive the message, but neither sees the other’s information.

To”  – are people who are to take action

Cc”  – are people who are needed to be kept informed, but they are not required to take

action

Bcc” – are people who are receiving the message without any other recipients knowing,

and for messages containing 50 or more recipients

Once you have set the receiver information, now you must write a subject line. Writing a Subject Line can be one of the most difficult components of composing an e-mail. The main method to remember is ‘Keep It Simple, Stupid” or known as ‘KISS’. Keep it short, keep it sweet, keep it personal, and keep it focused. Business Insider lists a few tips and mistakes for writing subject lines:

Tips:

  1. Eliminate filler words – such as “hello” and “thanks”
  2. Keep it simple and focused – such as “focus on one action”
  3. Do not use ALL CAPS
  4. Highlight the value of the offer
  5. Set Deadline in Subject Line

Mistakes:

  1. Using an Indistinguishable Title
  2. Using the Wrong Name
  3. Not Referencing the Urgency
  4. Not Including a Reference to Who Referred
  5. Using the Wrong Name

After devising your subject line, now you must write your message. The length of an email can be considered either rude or a waste of time depending on the call to action and information presented. Drake Baer of Fast Company states that “every email should be 5 sentences long”. Action and motivation are the most aspects to deliver the best message. Center your word choice on what you want your recipient to do (action) and keep it enticing to your customer (motivation). Make the action simple in order to increase customer participation.

As previously mentioned, email’s main issues are: improper use of Cc and Bcc, Subject lines, and length. Since these issues have been taught and hopefully restructured your thought process in how you will writing emails in the future.

Julie Searing

Scroggins Consulting, LLC

Please Share and Forward this blog if you enjoyed the read!!

References

Baer, Drake. WHY EVERY EMAIL SHOULD BE 5 SENTENCES LONG. July 26, 2013. http://www.fastcompany.com/3014857/leadership-now/why-every-email-should-be-5-sentences-long.

Business Insider. 15 Tips For Writing An Excellent Email Subject Line. March 19, 2014. http://www.businessinsider.com/how-to-write-an-excellent-email-subject-line-2014-3.

—. The 9 Worst Mistakes People Make In Email Subject Lines. January 20, 2015. http://www.businessinsider.com/worst-mistakes-in-email-subject-lines-2015-1.

Write Better E-Mails. 2015. http://www.writebetteremails.com/to-cc.htm.

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What is Change Management? Thursday, Jan 22 2015 

Change management is the process of ensuring improvements to a system are absorbed and adopted as best as possible.  As noted in the blog on process improvement the company must first ask itself what do we want to achieve with this change (the goal).  Change management requires the company to ask who will be affected by these improvements, how will they react, and will the reaction benefit the improved process?  The company must also determine if the change can be implemented within management, within the company (including employees), or with the assistance of external parties.

The reason for the change needs to be clearly explained to those that will be affected.  In person communication is better than written communication but in person and written communication is the best choice.  Involving those that will be affected is an important step to gain consensus among all affected.  Their input in the planning of change will likely give additional insights in how to affectively implement change and how to accurately measure the impact of the changes.

How the affected reacts will depend on how and when they are informed of the change.  For example, an Jigsaw-Change-Managementimprovement in the process could be externally hiring better paid employees to perform a task not done before.  Those affected are the first line manager, anyone else in the section/department, and anyone internally capable of doing the better paid job that wasn’t given an opportunity to apply for the job.  Those who weren’t given an opportunity to apply will likely not be happy.

Whether the change is mainly determined at a management, whole company, or external party those affected need to buy in to the change.  The most effected way to gain buy in is to allow them to participate in the change.  This provides a sense of ownership on their part.  Ownership creates familiarity and makes the transition easier because it will not be sprung on them.  The point being regardless of where the change is implemented to allow those affected to have a sense of ownership.

When done correctly change management will rely on negotiation or perception management because change is hard and it is often easier to accept when viewed from a different view point.

Author,

James Webb

Does Your Business have B.A.M? Monday, Nov 17 2014 

BAMMany people have dreams of owning a business. Some want the freedom to direct their own future. Ultimately, live a care free life filled with exotic vacations. Others want an untapped income stream. No matter the motivation, you need three elements to be successful.

Belief

A successful entrepreneur has to believe in their own ability to bring home the bacon. Let’s be honest, you can have the nicest business cards ever created and never make a dime. A fancy business card does not make a business. You have to know the value you bring in the market place. This means knowing what makes your product or offering unique. Then having the confidence and skill to share that value with the customer.

Activate

Planning your business activities is necessary, if you are going to be organized and focused. An entrepreneur needs a target to aim his shot. However, plans without action are just wishes. Regardless of the formal title, you are in the business of selling. Mary Kay Ash said it best, “Nothing happens until somebody sells something.” Yes, this business may be your deep down passion. However, money is what allows you to share your passion. Coaching women in their businesses and lives is what I was born to do. I would do it for free, and have. That said, the electric company hasn’t started taking passion as payment. So you have to always be selling, or as I like to say, “exchanging value” if you are going to continue to share your gifts with the world.

Maximize

Now here comes a biggie in the entrepreneurial space, maximizing. Acquiring new customers can be a lot of work, cost, and time. The worst part, the more time we spend working on seducing the potential new customer or client. The less time and resources we have to better serve the old and faithful. The ones that already know your value, and are willing to compensate you for it. Spend time maximizing your offerings to these customers. Look at AT&T, cable, phones and now security systems. Now of course new customers are necessary to keep a business growing. Just make sure it isn’t at the expense of the old.

Monique Moliere Piper

Certified Professional Coach and Author

Marketing Tools for You Monday, Jun 2 2014 

Marketing Tools for You

Let’s face it; marketing your business can be extremely difficult or extremely easy. For small businesses, getting started can be a monster challenge. When looking at very large corporation accounts and media, it is difficult for a beginning or small businesses to imagine how they are able to master or use the same techniques as their largest competitors. Finding simple marketing techniques to assist in the building or supplementing your current techniques are a few steps that can be taken to learn different forms of marketing. Listed below are 6 forms of marketing tools that are a must to affirm the true message of your business.marketing-300x300

1. Voicemail – Develop a message that relays the information of your business in a courteous and pleasing manner. Make sure to include the basics: a Thanks (“Thank You for calling Edwin Hardware…”), your time of operation (“We are open 9-5 Monday thru Saturday”), invite them to leave a message and tell them how “Please leave a message with your name, number, and the reason for your call”), then finally tell them you WILL get back with them. Most importantly CHECK YOUR MESSAGES DAILY (Mainly three times a day: Opening, Midday, and two hours before close of business. Two hours usually gives customers enough time to come to your location before the end of day.)!

2. Brochures – brochures are a type of paper media that benefit companies by telling the customers the mission, main products, contact information, etc. Brochures are extremely beneficial at trade shows and conferences. Key Fact: Make your brochure unique through graphics, di-cuts, or by shapes.

3. Press Release & Newsletters – Press Releases and Newsletters are great ways to show the inside of your business for your customers and community members. Press Releases (“PR”) showcase what you do that is new, interesting, or beneficial to the community. They can be distributed through local, county/parish, or state publishing papers, websites, or television stations. Try Volusion Press Releases for free distribution sites. Newsletters maybe sent out through paper or email mediums. They are an extremely useful way to keep in touch with your customers, send promotions, and support repeat purchases.

 

4. Referrals – Referrals can either make you or break you in some industries. Encourage your customers to leave reviews on products/services. Push word-of-mouth referrals and create brand ambassadors through your extremely satisfied customers. Promotion Idea: Ask your customers for 3-5 referrals and they receive 20-30% off a purchase.

5. Case Studies – Case Studies can be used to establish your company as a professional source of information/knowledge and explain products functions/benefits. Note: Offer your individual case study on your website and social media to assist potential buyers in their decisions.

6. Well-Designed Website – For your website, it must have a logical layout and be aesthetically appealing to your customers. If your website is confusing, it will affect your business. Know your target market, design your website for customers in similar and different to your industry.