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How To Make Your Brand Great

Why is it we feel that some businesses just ‘get us’? What makes people line up for hours to get hold of the latest Apple products? Why do so many people wear Lorna Jane clothing when they are going nowhere near the gym? In this ebook discover what key elements go into making a brand great and how to make clients love you whether you run Apple or the local cafe.

Top 5 Business Books To Help You Stand Out From The Crowd

There are hundreds and hundreds of business books, but here’s our top 5 pick for those that help you to stand out from the crowd.

101 Things To Do Before Starting Your Small Business

Starting a new small business is exciting! It can also be daunting, stressful and overwhelming to know really where to even start. Use the 101 Thing To Do Before Starting Your Small Business checklist to make sure you’ve covered all the vital stuff before pressing ‘go’!

5 Mins with... Naima Brown

5 minutes with… Naima Brown – The Institute of Interesting Ideas

Originally from the States, Naima Brown has had a long and illustrious career as a TV producer and journalist. This incredible woman is now the Founder and Director of The Institute of Interesting Ideas a concept centred around illuminating stories from...
Shutting up and getting a job

Would you ever shut up shop and go back to a ‘real’ job?

It’s a word that sends shivers down the spine of many a business owner or entrepreneur. JOB. The 9-5. Working for the man. All of those things we’ve tried so hard to get away from. (Despite that fact many of us now work 80 hours per week so we don’t have...
Warning, this does turn into a little bit of a rant! I’ve had a couple of instances in the recent weeks (and they seem to be growing in number) where I’ve had to buy from people or businesses that I really didn’t want to, but had to out of necessity. Okay to clarify - one of these times we’re talking about a coffee, and I had to buy from a particular cafe because it was the only place available at the time - I did have a choice of course - go without coffee (it wasn’t exactly a life or death situation) but you get the idea! In these instances, I really begrudge handing over my hard-earned cash to those underserving of it. Are you with me? You know… - the rude, abrupt sales assistants who treat you poorly. - the companies that you have to keep chasing and chasing to get a simple answer about their product or service - the ridiculous red tape or paperwork you need to go through for what should be something very simple Have you had a phone issue recently? I will not name names of any particular large telecommunications company because quite frankly they are all as bad as each other but going into one of their stores nowadays is next to useless. How many times do you simply get sat down and put on the phone to their customer service line? Those working in the stores seem to have little to no autonomy to actual resolve anything. The problem is if we look at the very essence of marketing - that is, to get the right product, in front of the right customer at the right time - these businesses are getting it exactly right. They are there when you need them. BUT… Take my coffee example again - it was right there! I wanted coffee, that was my only option. Did I begrudge the fact that it was overpriced - yup! Did I almost walk out because the guy serving me was so rude and unprofessional - yup! Would I ever go back there - hell no! (Was the coffee downright awful?… what do you reckon!) But do you think he really cares? He got my money, he sold his coffee - to him I doubt he ever cared about loyalty or repeat business or great customer service. And yes, that’s only a coffee - I can certainly choose to avoid that place in the future and better plan my caffeine hit! But here’s another example, there’s a particular electrical / homewares store near us that I genuinely like. Yes, it’s a big chain but every time I go in there the sales guy are extremely helpful - they are well trained, able to ask questions, I am treated really well as a loyal and returning customer, always given a good deal etc. etc. Sounds great right! BUT, Their delivery guy is possible the most awful man I’ve ever met. Big call right - it takes a lot for me to really dislike anyone but he is right at the top of my list. He’s been a couple of times to my house to deliver furniture items. Now, for context, we have stairs, LOTS of stairs but we always explain this and it’s always added to the delivery notes so this is not a surprise to anyone. Yet every time (and unfortunately it’s always the same guy) he stands on my driveway and before even entering the house will have an argument about why he will not deliver the goods, how heavy they are (er, I know - that’s why I’m paying you to deliver them!?!) and (twice now) threatening that he will damage the walls and obviously will not be held responsible - what? - so are you telling me you’re going to actively aim for the walls!?! This is a ‘family show’ so I’m certainly not going to write here some of the things he has said to me but quite simply he is a terrible man. So now I’m in a dilemma - I literally never want this guy anywhere near my house again (yes, he’s that bad) - but I really like the shop, I’m happy to give them my money and other than this they really look after me. This one person. This one ‘cog’ in the machine is letting them down so badly that I will seriously contemplate never buying anything there that is bigger than will comfortably fit in the boot of my car! But it’s a really interesting point isn’t it. Is there something that you’re doing to let your customers down? Is there a certain ‘cog’ in your ‘machine’ that is leaving a bad taste in their mouths. Are they buying because you’re the only option or are they buying because they genuinely love what you do and are happy to transact with you? No one wants to be picked because they’re the only ones there! So… If you’re doing right by your customers, they are loving you and want to be around you - all you need to do is work out how to be in the right place at the right time so they don’t have to buy from these substandard operators! Do you agree? Have you ever had experiences like this where you have truly begrudged handing over your money to someone but had to out of necessity? Let me know in the comments!

Are your customers buying through necessity?

Warning, this does turn into a little bit of a rant! I’ve had a couple of instances in the recent weeks (and they seem to be growing in number) where I’ve had to buy from people or businesses that I really didn’t want to, but had to out of necessity. Okay...
Positioning your business

Are you positioning your business to win?

Do you ever think that every single day there are more and more competitors entering the market? More and more small businesses opening up shop and competing for your clients? As the economic climate continues to change and the traditional concepts of work...
Stop obsessing over your logo

Stop obsessing over your logo

Your business logo is the number 1 key factor when determining your brand and everything it stands for and all of your time and energy should be put into perfecting this image right? Wrong! I’ll let you in on a little secret - Nike (one of the largest and...
How are you making your customers mad?

What are you saying to clients that’s making them mad?

Have you ever received something from a company that’s made you mad? Like really mad? Let me tell you a little story - so last week I received a text message from a large phone company (who shall remain nameless) - all the message said was at the end of...

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