Episode #111 – Focus on the Basics for Small Business Success Now and in Ten Years

It’s hard to get out of your own way.  But it’s nearly impossible to look to your future without taking the baggage of your past with you.  This is why we rarely notice a technological improvement because the improvement really is just a modification of what we’ve been using… that is until it’s a great leap forward.

I remember the first time I used wireless internet.  It was the most freakish experience.  I walked around my living room hovering my hand over and under my laptop computer.  Seriously, I am the biggest geek!  I can’t believe I wrote that.  But I really did.  The internet is magical enough, I mean… going from dial up to DSL… that was a big deal.  Then… OMG!  No wires!   I’ll spare you my excitement when I walked outside with my smart phone and printed a document to my printer inside my house.  Serious geek moment.

Other than showing my geek off… I have a point.  What has changed?  I can stand outside and print instead of being next to my computer and print.  I still have to go to the printer and pick up a physical piece of paper.  What has stayed the same?  It’s white paper, black ink, and Times New Roman font.

Wrong question.

What did I want ten years ago that I still want today?
I want fast printing that is clean, clear, and crisp.

What will I want in 10 years?
I will still want fast printing that is clean, clear, and crisp.

Maybe in 10 years I’ll be able to sit on a raft in the middle of a tropical lagoon and just “think” print and won’t need a smart phone because the internet will just be in my head… but guess what, I’m still going to need a printer.

So this is your ultimate business success philosophy modified from Amazon.  Don’t be concerned with the changes that will happen to your business in ten years, focus on the things that will be the same.

That eliminates a whole bunch of stress.

For example, if you run an online store.  Your customers currently like fast shipping with innovative products.  In ten years they’ll still want fast shipping and innovative products.  If you run a gymnastics club and the parents want an environment that promotes a positive and competitive environment… guess what… in ten years they’ll still want that.  If you currently own a doggy daycare that has a safe/clean atmosphere with extended hours, again… in ten years you’ll probably offer a similar product.

So, in ten years, gymnastics will evolve and new tricks will be developed, the doggy daycare may include drones that walk the dogs, and your online store might teleport products to homes, however, your basics will still remain.  Discover and focus on these basics.

PS: if you like my post … give it a “like” (thanks ahead of time)!

Action Step
1- What are the four to five things you do as a business now that you did 5, 10, maybe 20 years ago?  What are the core values?  Have they changed or are they the same?
2- How likely is it that these four to five things will still be the core of your business in ten years?
3- Install my free app! (SmallBusinessClubApp.com)

Listen to Episode #111 of the Two Minute Commute audio blog Podcast

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Two ways to get more Small Business Tips …
A- Install our Free App (SmallBusinessClubApp.com –Apple or Android )
B- Subscribe to my blog at BigFishIdeas.com

Episode #39 – Keep Up the Enthusiam

When you have enthusiasm it sets your business apart from the rest. As the leader you set the tone. Others will gain momentum from your enthusiasm and that’s pretty powerful!

Your big advantage as a local business is the ability to have your enthusiasm transfer to the people surrounding you… think about it, you’ve had interactions with both huge companies and small businesses, which one can you feel the excitement of the owner?  I mean, buying muffins at a local bakery where you can feel the love and artistry of the product is much different from prepackaged muffins in a box, right?  🙂

Action Step:
-Keep up your Enthusiasm

Click to Listen to Episode #39 of the Two Minute Commute

Episode #32 – Your Future Self…

Do something your future self will thank you for.  Imagine if one month ago you had done that “thing” – let’s say write a blog post every day, today you’d have 30 posts done!  Is there something you’re putting off that you can get started on so in a month you’ll thank yourself?

Click Here to Listen to my audio post!

Motivation, Habits & Goals…

Day 5 and Day 6

“Motivation gets you going. Habit gets you there.” Zig Zigler

My goal is to get into a habit.  And by habit I mean a good one.  It’s funny but what do you think of when someone says they have a habit… since it’s commonly associated with a “bad” habit it’s hard to realize that habits are also  good.  My main habit right now is to get my audio podcast consistent along with my blog posting.  My daily record keeping is not “quite there” but I’m working on improving!  That’s why Day 5 and Day 6 are together!  See…the audio blog is much simpler for me.  And that’s where we’ll begin.

What is the best format for content development for you?  You need to focus on one major platform.  This is your starting point. It needs to be easy and it needs to be effective.  I like the audio blog or podcast because I don’t have to worry about what I look like!  No seriously, I can record it and you can’t see me.  Yeah, some people will say, “it doesn’t matter… just hit record” and I believe that, but I still feel more comfortable with the audio blog format.   I’d love to go “live” and I will eventually, but the stress of having to maintain a consistent schedule of posting would drive me crazy (if I have to look amazing)!  I can do a consistent, one minute inspiration, every day.  So that’s where I’ll begin.  What is your consistency?  What type of content platform is best for you?

On Day 5 (evening) here’s what I did… I actually wrote down, on paper, some goals.  I know this seems like a no-brainer. You can search on line and it says… write down your goals.  Well, by Day 5 evening, I felt a strong need to write the goals.  It was imperative to my organization.  Seriously, I found my “why” about the process of writing down goals.  Normally I’ve been able to keep a good process in my head as to where I want to go and how to get there, but as you are noticing in my day by day journal to creating my online presence that it’s a lot of “chicken and the egg” and really, writing the goals down gives me a central location to track my progress.  I’m going to challenge you to do the same.  Make a goal sheet.  How will you be measured, is it by number of posts, number of followers, number of dollars generated?  Your choice, just make a goal sheet.

Here’s where Day 5 and Day 6 get a little blurred.  I bought a super cool program to help generate a freemium.  The freemium is something you offer on your site in exchange for your visitors email address. Once you have an email address you have begun your list.  As you know, maintaining “followers” on a social media platform is nice, but you have absolutely no control over your destiny.  If someone like Facebook changes it’s rules, you can be shut down.  However, if you capture and create your own list of contact information you have control.  So I found this great program to make an ebook look amazing. I started using it on Day 6 and got frustrated.  That’s when I decided I needed to stop.  Instead of quitting I started working on the slide I would need.  You know, I really like Slide Share – it’s fun!  I’ll go back to the cool ebook program tomorrow!

Acton Steps:

  • Where do you think you can create content on a regular basis?  Writing, Video or Audio?  Remember you need to start creating your own content, so this is an important decision!  The follow up question is when will you start?
  • Develop your goals for the week or month… and write them down!!!

PS:  Flip to my audio blog page and listen to my 1 minute inspirations… and if you enjoy my blog, please click follow!

Day Three… Spring Cleaning Your Brand!

I started my day by making an entry in my audio blog – right now, it’s short one minute inspirational quotes.  It is just a fun way to start your day, kind of like if someone left you a clever voice mail that made you think!  I’m glad to be doing them again.  The fun part about about an audio blog is that you don’t have any rules.  It doesn’t have to be 30 minutes, an hour, or even 12 minutes… whatever time frame works for your content is perfect.  I may change it in the future, but for now it’s awesome.  I will get it in podcast form soon.  You can find it on this blog – just flip to the audio blog page.

I also got caught up at work.  After being gone a week there were a few things that I needed to take care of, and that’s a good thing!  Otherwise, if I had nothing to get caught up on, well… what would be the point of paying me, someone else could do my job.  Keep that thought in the back of your head as you are working today.  If you own a business and someone is out of town, do you miss them? If yes… you made a good hire!  If no… well…

Keeping with my “catch up” theme I ordered the T shirts I needed from the Sparklesrock.com sales I had while I was at Social Media Marketing World.  They’ll arrive later this week… I’ll share the finished product with you later.

Continuing with my Social Marketing Content theme, I looked at my website, BigFishIdeas.com – I ran screaming from the room, then came back and looked at it again.  Yikes, there is some work needed there.  I started, but let’s just say part of my challenge to you is to look at your own website.  Then, when you pick yourself up from the floor laughing or wipe the tears away from the horror of what you see.  Regroup and make a list of all the things that need to be changed.  I’m sure your website is beautiful.  But, I’ll guarantee that it has some cringe worthy things too… OH if you’ve got a “really good” example – screen shot or take a pic and send to me!  This is a good exercise in both your online AND offline world.  Get up and walk around your retail or office space.  Look at it from the perspective of a customer… see it “new” for the first time.  Trust me, you’ll have plenty to do after this exercise, think of it like “Spring Cleaning” for your brand.  (I like that….)

Also… make sure to click follow and never miss a blog post!  If you have a friend with a small business and you think they’d enjoy this blog, help me spread the word! ProfitCenterCoach.com

Your Action Steps:

  • Would an audio blog be easier than a written blog… what topic would you focus on?
  • Give your website and store a “walk through” from a “new” customer’s eye… make a list and start updating!