Not only is today the first day of the work week and the first day of July, but more significantly, it’s also the first day of the second half of the year. This is a great time to take stock of where you are in your annual business goals. Are you half way to earning your projected 2012 income? If not, what can you do to increase your odds of getting there?
You can still make your numbers. Just do the math. Subtract your sales for the first half of the year from your goal and divide by 6. This will give you the amount you need to bring in each month to still make your target. Better yet, divide by 26; this will give you your new weekly earnings goal to keep you in line with your projected year-end income.
July 1 is also a good time to reassess your goals for the year and check your progress. If you’ve gone off track there’s still time to correct your path. Have you forgotten some of the items on your 2012 To-Do list? Have some things fallen between the cracks? Is there something on your list that is no longer feasible? Adjusting your plan for the year at the halfway point is much better than scrambling at the end of the year when holiday chaos is added to the mix. Remember, the key to getting a bull’s-eye is to keep your eye on the target.
By now, many of you have probably seen the “PRIVACY NOTICE: Warning” that urges you to post a privacy statement to protect your personal content on Facebook. It states “Facebook is now a publicly traded entity. Unless you state otherwise, anyone can infringe on your right to privacy once you post to this site…If you do not post such a statement once, then you are indirectly a……allowing public use of items such as your photos and the information contained in your status updates.” The predesigned Privacy Notice that readers are urged to post ends with “The contents of this profile are private and legally privileged and confidential information, and the violation of my personal privacy is punishable by law. UCC 1-103 1-308 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED WITHOUT PREJUDICE”
There are so many things wrong with this warning but I’ll point out just the two most relevant. First, being a publicly traded company has absolutely NO bearing on the issue of privacy. Whoever started this rumor apparently needs a lesson in stocks and public trading. Secondly, the UCC has no jurisdiction over privacy issues of any kind, especially those in social media forums. This is just another of those warnings that spread unnecessary fear like wildfire through draught stricken woodlands.
Of course you still want to use your head when it comes to sharing information in such a public forum. I know you’ve heard it before but, if you want something kept private don’t post it on Facebook. The general rule of thumb is that if you wouldn’t put it on a billboard or shout it in a crowded room, don’t post it to any of your social media channels.
When in doubt about the validity of viral warnings of any kind, it’s easy to check it out online. My favorite resource is snopes.com.
According to the American Marketing Association a brand is defined as a “Name, term, design, symbol, or any other feature that identifies one seller’s good or service as distinct from those of other sellers.” Branding is the reason that certain products and services can demand (and get) a higher price than that of others in the same industry. By using only the best products and highest standards of customer service a business can target clients who are willing and able to pay more. Another business in the same industry may eliminate the non-essential, frivolous aspects in order to brand themselves as the lower priced option. A third, smaller company may focus heavily on superior, personalized customer service while still a fourth may position themselves as the largest company offering the most options.
Knowing which niche you fill allows you to know how to market your business. Are your clients more apt to drive luxury cars and wear designer clothing or own used cars and shop at discount department stores? Are they concerned about which private school to send their children to or are they worried that they’ll never be able to afford to send them to college? Are they more interested in the latest fashions or eliminating chemicals from their lives?
Defining your brand also allows consumers to know what to expect. Every last aspect of your business should reflect your brand. This includes everything from the way your employees dress and answer the phone to your decor, products and service, the vocabulary you use in your ads, the colors in your logo…every.last.detail.
Do you know what differentiates your business from your competition? Do your prospects know? We’d love to hear from you.