6 Awesome Business Development Articles

What have you enjoyed reading this past month? 

What new ideas have you learned? 

How have your grown professionally?  Personally?

Here is a list of business development articles I came across in the month of July.  Enjoy!

 
1.  12 Sales Tips from Don Cooper, Sales Consultant.
  • My three favorite tips:

#1 – “Do less, better.”

#2 – “Acknowledge the obstacles. Don’t give them power.”

#9 – “Stand-out or don’t bother.”

Also, check-out some of Don’s other great articles listed on the right-side of his blog.

 

2.  What Direction Is Your LinkedIn Profile Going: Past or Future?  by Wayne Breitbarth.

  • What message are you sending with your LinkedIn profile?  Past accomplishments are great but don’t forget to give your readers a preview of things to come.

 

3.  A Simple Exercise To Get You Unstuck from the Harvard Business Review.

  •  The basic structure of this change process:

Once there was…
And every day…
Until one day…
And because of that…
And because of that…
And because of that…
Until finally…
And so…

 

4.  The Games Buyers Play With Vendors by Reed Holden.

  • In today’s competitive and ever-changing marketplace, the buying process is changing.  Less “relationship buyers” and more “economic buyers”.  A vendor (or salesperson) must understand the buyer’s process and honestly access their chances of winning the business before engaging.

 

5.  7 Ways To Rewire Your Brain And Become A Better Leader by Jessie Lyn Stoner.

  • Great article on how our mind works and how people process stressful and/or negative events.  Other great articles are archived on this blog.

 

6.  Make Work Happy by Skip Prichard. 

  • Interesting review of the book, Work Happy, What Great Bosses Know.

 

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Questions? Give me a call (815) 979-4045.

Frank Haney

#21 Reasons Why You Should Start A Business Blog Today

Let’s talk business; specifically, business development.  You know, the stuff business owners, presidents, CFO’s, and sales managers love to talk about. This includes increasing revenue, penetrating new markets, maintaining client relationships, finding and being found by prospective clients, branding yourself and your business, and telling your unique story.

But then someone brings up the idea of starting a business blog and the room goes quiet.  The only thing you hear is a cricket chirping outside the window.  The conventional wisdom is that social media is about relationship status, posting pictures of your friends drinking a beer at a party or, as we get older, posting pictures of our kids at birthday parties.  Bottom line: There is no room in the business world for social media, right?  Wrong! 

Here are 21 Reasons Why You Should Start A Business Blog Today:

1.  Buyers are using social media in record numbers:

  • In 2005, less than 1% of people 65 & up used social media.  Today, that number is 33%.
  • In 2005, 6% of people between 50-64 used social media.  Today, that number is 51%.
  • In 2005, 6% of people between 30-49 used social media.  Today, that number is 70%.
  • In 2005, 7% of people between 18-29 used social media.  Today, that number is 83%.

Where will this be in another 5-7 years?

2. Build your brand. 

3. Build trust. 

4. Increase your “findability.”  Does everyone who could buy your product or service know who you are?

5.  Establish expertise.  If you sell carpet, don’t pitch a carpet sales.  Talk about ways to preserve and protect your carpet and things to look for when buying carpet.

6.  Strengthen and expand relationships.  A business blog post is a “marketing touch” – it keeps you in-front of people without being intrusive.

7. Capture leads.  Direct mail usually has a call to action.  The great thing about a business blog is that a prospective buyer can comment on your blog, ask questions, and easily access others ways to communicate with you.

8.  Sell more.  I am not hiding this in the middle.  Do not overestimate what you will sell in 3 months of business blogging.  Do not underestimate what you will sell in 3 years.  Think long haul.

9.  Your competition is doing it and will be in the near future.  If this isn’t motivation, then I don’t know what is.

10.  More and more people research on-line prior to buying in person.  Become a prospective clients “go-to” guy (or girl) for what you do BEFORE they need you.

11.  The price is right.  Unlike other marketing venues, business blogging does not require an investment of money.

12.  Your business blog can (I mean should) compliment traditional marketing efforts.  If done right, a business blog will strengthen your non-blog marketing efforts.

13.  Writing a business blog forces you outside your comfort zone.  You will have to be creative, consider new ideas, and stretch a little bit.

14.  Business blogging is not about selling, it is about adding value.  I sell insurance but I blog about how I use social media to add value, business development, as well as insurance tips.

15.  People will read your business blog as long as you don’t bore them to death with industry lingo or irritate them with sales pitches.  Remember: this is content marketing.  Add value, add value, and then add more value.

16.  Business blogging drives social media users to your outposts: company website, LinkedIn, Facebook Biz Page, Twitter Page, etc.  Don’t forget to point them there.

17.  Busy business leaders can blog.  Once set-up to blog, you can create a post in as little as twenty-minutes.  One post per week for a year = 52 opportunities to tell your story.

18.  Your blog will be accessible to those in your network (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc) as well as those outside your network.  You can post a link to your blog on your email and social media sites.  As an example, I occasionally share a blog post on our Chamber LinkedIn group as well as alumni and insurance groups.

19.  Your business blog post library will build over many months.  You body of work can become a great resource to others.

20.  Your business blog works for you 24/7/365.  It is a great feeling when you wake-up in the morning and realize that people were reading about you and your business while you were sleeping.

21.  David vs. Goliath – If you have a small to medium size business and compete against larger companies with bigger marketing budgets and a national brand, then you may need a business blog to help level the playing.

Questions?  Call me at (815) 979-9121.

Frank Haney

Relationship-focused insurance agent dedicated to protecting your business and family.

Agency: Williams-Manny, Inc. – located in Rockford, Illinois.

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only.  There is no legal advice being suggested or offered.  The author assumes no responsibility or liability for the actions take or not taken by the readers based upon the above-mention information.

I blog about three things:  insurance, how I use social media to better serve my insurance clients and build my business, and business development ideas I have learned along the way.