Business Fundamentals for a Successful Entrepreneur

One of the essential fundamentals for any entrepreneur is to set realistic goals. While you need to be passionate and enthusiastic about your venture, you also need to streamline your expectations. Make realistic projections that will enable you to make the right choices and maintain control of various aspects of your business.
Realistic Goals
Consider the type of business you are involved in and the opportunities that exist. If you are selling a product or service that generally takes a longer time to garner interest from customers, set your goals accordingly. Planning for the sales that you are likely to make along with the popularity of what you are selling will enable you to handle your finances efficiently.
Value for Money
You can attract customers in various ways beyond conventional advertising methods. The projections you initially make when starting or growing a business will determine how you manage your expenses. The products or services that you sell should cater to an identified need. The value of what you are offering should base on what people actually need and not what you think they want.
Your customers need assurance that what you are offering them will add value to their lives. Carry out adequate research that will enable you to know whether your customers understand the value of your products or services or not. If the value is not apparent, you expose yourself to the risk of failing as a business owner.
Set your business up for success by making sure that the service or product you provide is in line with the price. Customers always want to know that they are getting value for money. You increase your chances for success by offering quality services at reasonable prices. This will enable you to maintain a competitive edge.
Stand Out from the Competition
You also need to consider the attributes that make your business stand out from the rest. Your product or services should ideally be different or unique in order for people to be interested in trying it out. Customers should be able to easily identify what you offer and distinguish it from other similar services and products.
Entrepreneurs thrive in a highly competitive environment and your ability to be successful will depend on being able to stand out. After determining the value of your product and its unique traits, you will be able to identify the market that is most suitable for what you are offering.
Business Plan
In a competitive market, it is advisable to provide a niche service that will compel people to spend their money and enhance the profitability of your venture. Even if your product is unique or highly valuable you still need to have a solid business plan. A business plan helps you run your business by considering factors such as keeping costs low, sustainable demand for your product, marketing and budgeting.
A proper business model is essential for success and preventing financial challenges otherwise it’ll take very less time to go your business proposal in vain. You can learn more to modify your business model as your business grows because it is not a rigid plan. Attract your customers in a cost effective manner and manage your finances.

About Christopher Meloni
Christopher, a professional author and blogger is sharing his views on Instagram marketing. He has good experience of advertising through Instagram and so he is pleased to share some ways about reasons as to why you should buy Instagram likes.

Are You Investing in Your Business?

The Great Recession put lots of small business owners into an extended funk, transforming them into Scrooges afraid to loosen the purse strings. But when it comes to business growth, spending isn’t the same as investing in your business—and a little investment in your company can make a big difference in profits.
That’s why the Capital One’s latest Spark Business Barometer has me smiling: It shows that small business owners are ready to put their money where their mouths are and invest in their businesses’ growth.
Here are the areas where small businesses will be investing for the coming year—and some things you should think about in each of them.
57 percent of small business owners say they will invest in technology and improving business processes. Consider:
Does your website need updating?
Could mobile technology such as tablets improve sales or productivity?
If you still do things like accounting, invoicing or maintaining loyalty programs and customer records by hand, how much time and money could you save using software instead?
One way you may want to look into investing in your business is adding ecommerce to your website if you haven’t already done so. Just one-fourth of small business owners in the survey have an ecommerce website. If you do have a retail or similar business, know that the future of retail is increasingly hybrid, with consumers eager to buy online and pick up or return products in stores. Offering at least some of your products online can be a way to get your feet wet in ecommerce while giving customers the flexibility they want.
55 percent are putting aside money for unexpected emergencies. Consider:
Does your business have a disaster plan to protect your business equipment and data in case of a fire, flood or other natural disaster?
How would you operate if you couldn’t access your location for a week or more?
What would happen to the business if you were severely ill or injured and couldn’t work for an extended time?
55 percent are putting away money for retirement. Consider:
You can’t count on selling your business to fully fund your retirement. Put away some kind of backup—anything is better than nothing.
Talk to your accountant about maximizing your business’s value now—so that when you do sell it, you can get the best possible price.
If you plan to pass the business on to a younger generation, get them involved now so they can learn the ropes.
46 percent will invest in increasing employee compensation. Consider:
Have your employees gone a long time without raises?
If you can’t afford salary increases, are there other short-term financial rewards you could offer, such as bonuses or profit-sharing plans based on achieving individual or company-wide goals?
How difficult would it be to replace current employees in today’s economy? Are their skills hard to find elsewhere?
35 percent will put aside cash for capital investments. Consider:
Have you delayed purchasing equipment or other business assets in recent years?
How could investing in equipment or other assets increase your productivity and profitability?
Is now a good time to think about purchasing commercial real estate instead of leasing?
As the economy picks up, it’s important to plan for investing in your business so that you can take advantage of opportunities as they appear. Where will you invest?

About Rieva Lesonsky
Rieva Lesonsky is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a media and custom content company focusing on small business and entrepreneurship. Email Rieva at, follow her on Google+ and Twitter @Rieva, and visit her website to get the scoop on business trends and sign up for Rieva’s free TrendCast reports.  

Why Google is Forcing You to Become Your Own Publisher

The algorithms at Google HQ are moving and shaking again, and they dramatically affect how you’ll approach public relations and press releases moving forward. If you’ve been using the more traditional routes to get noticed – newspapers, magazines, other journalists, etc. – then you may want to start rethinking your strategies.
That’s because a new update to Panda 4.0, Google’s controversial search algorithm update, came down the wire recently. One of the original Panda’s big changes was a step away from press releases, but the search engine company has changed their tune as of late.
So while Google is now valuing press releases again, there is a change. The difference is that you need to take control of your own press release destiny and rely less on spreading word through sending the release out to newspapers and other sources.
What’s New?
Let’s say you want to write a press release about your brand new smartphone and tablet app called “Monkey Business.” In the past the process would be to send the release out to as many places that would take you. Local newspapers, for example, or if you think the app is worth it to magazines, blogs, and other sources that specialize in phone apps and electronics.
Now, though, the process is a little different. As soon as you write it (and edit the heck out of it so it’s perfect) you want to publish it. Why? Because the first place to publish it gets the results on Google. Anybody else who publishes it afterwards, even with edits or added material, will get pushed way down the results list.
So no more blasting out the release as far and wide as you can make it and sending to everyone on your email list. Keep it on the down-low so you can reap all that sweet attention for yourself. On top of that, you really need to utilize all the resources at your disposal. Link to your website, social media, and other material so your readers will stick around and see what you’re all about – and hopefully download your new app.
What’s the Same?
Don’t take this as a chance to blast as many press releases as possible. Flooding the airwaves with poorly written, unfocused copy won’t gain you any advantage. Panda 4.0 still values quality over quantity, which was the whole point of the update in the first place. It’s just that Google has conceded that press releases are actually worth paying attention to.
“Driving clicks and earning a solid reputation always comes back to one factor — people,” said eReleases founder Mickie Kennedy. “Influencing discourse and becoming the subject of conversations online and off is the only thing that’s ever going to earn you an organic foothold in the search rankings. So what better way to do that than with a well-written press release targeting actual, living, breathing journalists?”
So rather than focusing less on quality you should double down on it. Make your press releases not just interesting but truly captivating. Give people a real reason to check out your story and your business. Otherwise, there are tons of other places on the web for them to visit. Don’t give them that chance!
How does your business plan on taking advantage of these changes to Google’s algorithm?