Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Is it better to outsource some of your business needs?

Have you seen the recent Xerox commercials where flight attendants are busy working customer service phone lines in flight and the Michelin Man is being asked to work on accounting while fighting off evil gas pump monsters? They really hit the mark. It's smart business for these very large companies to outsource this part of their business to Xerox (and even smarter to have a joint advertising campaign!)

This concept may be even more appropriate for small businesses.

As a small business your limited staff has to manage everything. They are your customer service liaisons, your sales force, your manufacturers, and everything else.

Does it make more sense for your small staff to focus on building your products or delivering the services you provide instead of managing the books, doing your own taxes, or managing your marketing and social media campaigns?  There are other small businesses all across the country who have mastered the art of providing small business accounting, administrative services, marketing, and more. The right business models offer you a whole staff of support for much less than you would pay for one annual salary.  While you may not be in a position to add to your staff, it may be an excellent business decision to add to your team with outside consultants. This decision can help you grow your business by allowing consultants to take on some of the important tasks that need to be done so you and the rest of your team of experts can focus on doing what you do best.

What small business services could your business benefit from outsourcing?

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The Many Hats of a Small Business Owner - Which Hat Are You Wearing Today?

We often joke about the different “departments” in our business: 
“I’m having trouble with my computer; I’ll need to call the IT department”
“That’s a decision for the accounting department”
“The sales department is having a great month!”
The truth is we are a small business, and we are all “all” of the departments. Over the years we have developed some trusted partnerships for professional services, both for our needs and those of our clients. 
There are countless technical tools to help small businesses streamline their processes, reach their customers, manage their contracts, stage webinars, etc.  This list is endless.
And never assume consultants are too expensive.  The great thing about consultants is that they can deliver just what you need, when you need it, quite often at a very reasonable price. 
No one can do everything.  And no one has to! Click the comments link below to share your hat for the day!

Monday, February 6, 2012

What was your favorite Super Bowl commercial?

Yesterday was the most talked about advertising day of the year. Companies spent millions – an average of $3.5 million for a 30 second slot – to get their ad in front of 100+ million Super Bowl viewers.

More than half of the ads from yesterday’s Super Bowl were released last week online. Seemed to spoil the surprise a bit, but there were still several worth mentioning. There were ads for cars and trucks, candy and colas. There were vampires vanishing under new ‘daylight’ headlights, ‘naked’ M&Ms, and the traditional cola bears and Clydesdale horses. There were definitely ads targeted at specific demographics, and lots of 80’s references.

There were several ads that tickled the funny bone, like a moon walking dog, a speed dating baby, a grandma sling-shotting her grandbaby for a snack, and a graduate thinking he was getting a very cool car instead of a pretty lame dorm refrigerator.

There were even a couple of controversies, including chimps at work and certain truck brands surviving the apocalypse when others didn’t.

My personal favorite included a very determined canine who would stop at nothing to slim down so he could chase the new red Beetle.

It is certain there will be many conversations over the water cooler today, not only about the big game, but about the ads that made it all possible.  Click the comment link below to tell us about your favorites!

Kerry Brooks