20 Traits That Sabotage Success for Business Owners.

GettyImages-477491649Over the years, I’ve talked to and have worked with many business owners and in doing so I’ve identified many traits that sabotage success. I’ve also learned that just like people need help to become a better athlete, student, spouse, teacher, etc. business owners also need help cultivating the right mind-set in order to avoid self-sabotage.

It’s very common for business owners to say they want more success, say they want to increase their revenue and soar to new heights, however instead they take actions that go against the very thing they want most.

I’ve seen it time and time again. I’ve watched friends that were business owners stand still or completely lose their business because they are not willing to do what it takes to make their dreams come true. Then, they come up with any possible reason of why it didn’t or couldn’t work, when honestly, they were the biggest reason.  However they are unable to admit it.  It takes great courage to look at one self and say “I take full responsibility for my life and how I respond to the events that occur in it.”

The truth is that our minds are so very powerful and sometimes it just simply works against us by telling us constant lies and those lies are usually there to simply protect us from something our brain thinks is a danger to us. However, in reality it’s usually not a danger to us; it’s a danger to holding us back from our potential and becoming our best self.

So, here are 20 warning signs to help you identify whether or not you need what I like to call ‘business therapy or coaching’ and to help you avoid sabotaging your true dreams. This is designed to help you and not make you feel badly. It’s here to help you grow so you can truly reach new heights. Everyone needs support and help in any endeavor we choose.

Here we go:

1. You can’t let go:  This applies to the business owner who believes only they can do it right. So, they have to do it all. You will only go so far if this is you. You must and I mean must hire help, get support and entrust others. Yes, mistakes will happen and NO they may not do everything as good as you do, but you need to hire help and you also need to hire folks that are smarter than you in certain areas. Let go.

2. You need to have all the information: This business owner has to know absolutely everything before they proceed forward with something new. They want all the facts and want 100% certainty it will work before they jump in.  Unfortunately, this is just not possible. You can never know everything that is going to happen. You have to get the basics, do your best, jump in and correct as you move along.

3. You seek perfection with everything:  This business owner is fixated on perfection with everything. They hold back releases, projects or campaigns that will help their business grow because they keep tweaking and tweaking until it’s too late. Perfection is not required for amazing success, nor is it possible.

4. You give up to easily: This business owner hears that webinars are a great way to bring in new business, they try one webinar, 8 people show up, they think that’s not enough and they give up. Most times when we try something new we get to practice on only a few people. That is a good thing. We refine our skills, we get better and then we keep repeating the process. As we do this we get better and attract more people. Don’t just try something once and think forget it. Keep going, learn more skills, hone in and make things happen.

5. You make a lot of excuses about why something didn’t work:  This business owner may feel very insecure about their abilities and they make many excuses about why it’s not working. There is always an excuse and rarely does this business owner retool, learn new skills and create success. Get serious with yourself, stop making excuses and learn.

6. You blame others for mistakes: This business owner does not take full responsibility for their business. It’s their staff, their wife or husband, their kids, their vendor or even their clients. The truth is this…this business is YOURS and only YOURS. You are 100% responsible for it. You hired the vendors or the staff and your attitude dictates the quality of your business life, so I recommend changing it and take full responsibility.  This is how you take back your power and make amazing things happen.

7. You complain you can’t find good people to work for you. This business owner convinces themselves there aren’t any high quality employees to hire.  This is just not true. There are great people out there that need good work especially now during hard times. The key here is to let go of that disempowering belief. Brush up on your hiring skills and train your new employee or independent contractor, create systems and manage them well. This will free you up to focus on tasks that will help your business grow.

8. You’re stuck doing the same old thing and afraid to try new strategies. This new business owner desperately needs to let go of what doesn’t work and do something NEW. You don’t want to go extinct. You want to adapt, change and spread your wings.

9. You get fixated on very small details.  This business owner gets focused on very small details all the time. I do believe that small details are important, but you don’t want to fixate on them. You want to improve everyday and do the small things very well, but you also want to focus on bigger projects and campaigns that will again help you soar and grow.

10. You don’t invest in your business education or development. This business owner may believe they know it all, or they don’t need to learn new skills or they are just so excited about their idea they just know it will take off. Listen, running a business is challenging and requires skills even if you have an amazing product or service. So, take classes, read books, read blogs and follow successful people so you can learn, learn and learn some more. You can never go wrong by learning new skills and implementing them.

11. You tell yourself and others you don’t have enough money to market your business.  This business owners is convinced they just need to get more business and then they will have money to market.  That is just ass backwards. You need a marketing budget and you need to market.  This happens to be something I hear a lot and if you missed my blog about 50 Low or No Cost Marketing Ideas you can read it after this one. It will easily demonstrate that yes you do have enough money especially if you have a small service business. You need to get creative, think outside the box and use your elbow grease.  Do that and I can almost ensure you better success unless there is no market for what you are selling.

12. You always go for the big win and when you don’t get it you abandon the project. This business owner is generally obsessed with only a HUGE WIN.  Big wins are possible, but they are also not common. Four years ago I launched a business with a partner and we brought in $83,000 in one week. That was just amazing and a huge win for us. However, that is not the norm. It usually takes time. For example, Fedex only mailed 8 packages on their first day. Imagine if they just gave up after day one? So, don’t be the business owner who believes they need a big win in order for it to be considered a success.  Small gains over time = success too. Keep going!

13. You’re juggling multiple projects, ideas or businesses and nothing gets done or moves forward.  This business owner is all over the place with projects, ideas, other business opportunities and your hands are in everything.  This is a sure fire way to fail and spread yourself too thin. Reign it in, pull back and let go of your fear of missing out.

14. You expect others to lead your business and take charge. This business owner looks to their team way too much. Your team is there to support you and yes you want them to take charge of their job and do it well, however you are the leader. You set the standards and you run the show.

15. You focus on ‘busy work’ in order to avoid making big strides in growing your business.  This business owner kills their success focusing on busy work. Maybe it’s fear of success or fear of failure or something else that holds them back, but this person just fixates on small tasks that lead to never never land. Stop getting focused on small tasks. Focus on ones that bring in new money or repeat money.

16. You don’t think you need to have a plan or strategy on how you are going to get where you are going. This business owner wings it. Yes, at times you may need to wing it, but not all the time. You want to have a plan or a map on where you want to go and how you plan to get there.  It’s just like taking a trip to a new vacation spot you’ve never been. You might get there faster and actually get to your destination of choice if you have a plan or map.

17. You resist seeing that your industry is dying or changing. All I need to say is one business name: Blockbuster. They refused to see it and thought they were too big to fail. Well, they are a dinosaur.  Be willing to adapt, change and innovate. Don’t put yourself out of business because of a big ego, pride or naivety. Always innovate and look for new ways you can serve your client base better and better.

18. You are focused more on your perspective rather than your client’s perspective. This business owner is so common and easy to spot. Everything they do comes from their perspective. They don’t want to accept credit cards because they don’t want to pay the fees or extra charges, so they make their customers bring cash. They make things difficult or are very self-serving. This will only get you so far. It’s very important to think about your business from your clients, patients or customers experience and perspective. This will most definitely create raving fans and help you reach new heights.

19. You don’t think it’s important to manage your business finances and keep cash in your business. This business owner almost has no idea what is going on financially with their business. This is sure fire way to fail or even go under. Employees steal from business owners like this, I’ve seen it first hand. Protect yourself and protect your business. I know numbers can be boring, however hire an outside accountant, review your finances with this person regularly and keep cash in your business.

20. You micro-manage your staff, vendors and get caught up in all the little things instead of the bigger vision. This business owner is the micro-manager. This literally prevents and stops your talented staff from doing their jobs and doing them well for you.  Micro-managing typically stagnates creativity and significant growth. If you’ve hired a staff member, have a regular meeting with them to see how progress is being made, but let them fly. As you let them fly they will help you fly even higher.

Well, now that you’ve read these 20 potential self sabotaging traits for business owners and you’ve identified that you have many, several or a few…what do you do about it?  I recommend hiring a business coach, therapist/psychiatrist or consultant depending on your needs.

Some folks that are dealing with more serious issues may want to consult a health professional like a Psychotherapist or even a Psychiatrist.  There may be issues surrounding depression, anxiety, adhd or a specific trauma/belief systems that disempower you regarding money, success and business from your past.  This is very common because most of what we learned, experienced and witnessed as child effects us greatly in adult life.

Another option is consulting or coaching. It may be that you simply need a sounding board, a professional consultant to help you find better strategies or a coach that can keep you accountable for your actions.

Another side recommendation is that you do not seek advice from family, friends or from people that have never run a business, have completely failed in business (and never tried again) or have possibly contributed to the problem to begin with. It’s healthy to seek an outside perspective from a person that is not attached to your situation.

Here’s to your increased success!

Cheers, Love and Success,
Amanda
Amanda Brazel

5 Reasons You Are Not Achieving Greater Success…Breakthrough NOW!

471047895After working with hundreds of business owners and speaking to thousands you start to see clear patterns of success, struggle, stagnation and even failure.

Here are the most common reasons I see successful business owners reach a ceiling and stagnate.

1. You bounce around from project to project:  You have all these projects and ideas that you want to complete in order to grow. You feel like you absolutely have to get them done and you try to get them done all at one time.  As you work on the project more ideas come up and more ideas come up, however the project never finds it way to completion. The problem here is that you stay in a constant state of chaos and the significant growth you seek halts, stagnates and you might even go backwards. You need to focus on one project at a time and get it finished. Take action and make it fast.

2. You are a perfectionist: You micromanage everyone on your team. You don’t let people take the lead and do their job because you have to double check, triple check and pretty much nit pick every part of what they do for you. Again, this will keep you from achieving greater success. It’s important to hire the right people, place your faith in them and periodically check in with them to strategize in order to make sure you are achieving your goals. Remember your business will NEVER be perfect no matter who you hire or no matter how hard you try.  However, there will always be room for improvement and improvement is definitely possible over time if you allow your team to support you, but you have to let them fly for you. Remember, focus on progress not perfection.

3.  You are a control freak: Ah, the control freak. I have to be honest, but I can relate to many of these and this is one of them. I used to be such a control freak, but I’ve learned to let go. Once you get married, have three kids and a puppy, it pretty much forces you to let go. So, if you are a control freak you more than likely want your hands in everything. You want to do and manage everything. You take on way too much, you are frazzled and feel like you have no one to truly support you. You go behind people and finish their jobs instead of communicating what is needed. So instead of trying to control everything, be clear, communicate your needs specifically and support your staff so they feel empowered. If you are always doing it for them they will let you.

4. You find more problems then opportunities:  Anytime someone approaches you with an idea or suggestion to help you grow you immediately shoot it down or see all the problems instead of the opportunity. This will keep you where you are for sure. You have to be willing to open your eyes, see the opportunity and then act. Problems will always arise no matter what the idea or suggestion is and the key to becoming a super star business owner is to become an excellent problem solver along the way.

5. You need ALL the information before you can proceed: This slows you way down and you miss huge opportunities all the time. The important thing to understand here is that you can’t possibly know everything nor can you predict or see everything down the road. You have to read the situation, trust your gut and then make a quick decision in order to prosper. Some things will work out and many won’t, but if you don’t jump in quickly you will miss your opportunity and never know or grow.

The truth is many business owners reach a ceiling of success.  I saw this with my own mother. She was one of the first licensed day care providers in the state of New York back in the 80’s. She was awarded and recognized by both the governor and mayor of New York. She was sought after by many for teaching, consulting and more. One day a man approached her and said, “I’d like to invest in you and franchise your business.”  This was in the late 80’s early 90’s and a million dollar opportunity.  At that time there weren’t any day care centers the way you see them today…NONE. My mother turned down his offer…she saw all the problems and not the HUGE opportunity right before her even though that is what she kept saying she wanted.  You see success was hers, she had been building for years and years, but even though she said she wanted more she hit the ceiling of her own mindset.  She later had excuse after excuse about why she couldn’t create more success.  But, the honest truth was it was her fear and a her limiting mindset.

So, if you truly want more success in your business get serious with yourself. Look yourself in the mirror and get honest. What is holding you back? Are you the perfectionist? Are you the micromanager?  Are you maybe all 5?  It’s nothing to feel badly about; it’s an opportunity to grow and become more.

Wishing you greater success. I believe in you!

Cheers, Love and Success,
Amanda Brazel

Amanda Brazel

See The Major Difference Between Successful & Struggling Business Owners When It Comes To Marketing!

Amanda Brazel, Social Media MarketingListen no one likes to fail, no one wants to struggle and it can be really hard to admit that the real reason you are struggling is because of YOU.  With that said, this post is not meant to make you feel badly about yourself, this is meant to empower you.  It’s time to take control, take action and go in a new direction, so you can experience the success you deserve in your life and business.

One of the best opportunities I’ve had in my life is to talk to and coach hundreds of business owners from around the world. When you do this you immediately see patterns.  It’s amazing. I am sure if you are a fitness coach or a doctor you also see the same patterns with your clients and patients.

In my work I talk to many business owners.  I talk to business owners that make well over a $1,000,000 a year and I talk to business owners that are struggling and barely getting by.  Now I would love to share the differences I notice in order to help those struggling make the shift they need in order for more success. 

The biggest difference I notice between them is how they think when it comes to marketing is this:


“Whether you realize it or not the way you THINK has great power when it comes to your success in all aspects of your business and your life even your marketing.”


 

Your mindset is the most powerful tool you have in your toolbox. It all starts between your ears.  That is Mindset, Successwhere the game is played, the rest is strategy and execution. You can have the best strategy in the world, but if your thinking is all negative and disempowering it rarely works.  I see it all the time.

Take a moment to take inventory of how you think/feel about every aspect of your business…marketing, your clients, sales, your day-to-day operations. You’d be surprised that if you take a good long look at what you think negatively about (probably without realizing it) it’s not performing the way you like.

So, if you want better performance from yourself, your staff and your business develop a successful way of thinking/feeling!  Spend time around successful business owners, listen to how they speak, watch what they do, hire a success coach (one that has achieved that success, not one that hasn’t) and let go of thoughts/actions that take you away from achieving your goals.

If you are already a successful business owner and you agree, please write in the comments below and help other business owners looks to grow.  Please share some of your words of wisdom!

Cheers Love, & Success,
Amanda Brazel


Amanda Brazel, Social Media Marketing

Organically Grow Your Social Media & Business: 7 Must Have Ingredients Your Blog Needs Now!

147751030Do you want to organically grow your social media profiles more consistently?  Do you want to massively increase organic traffic to your website?  Would you like to establish yourself as the ‘go-to-expert’ in your niche and business among colleagues and potential clients or patients?

Well, if you said yes to the above questions then read on because this will make a MASSIVE improvement to your business.  Now, how do I know this?  Because I’ve seen it with my own eyes for myself and my clients.

So, here are 7 action items that I recommend you either share with your web designer or you can do this yourself.  This will most certainly help you accomplish what most business owners want…more organic website traffic, more organic fans and followers on social networks, more authority in their field or niche as well as more business.

Here we grow:  Organically Grow Your Social Media & Business: 7 Must Have Ingredients Your Website Needs Now! (I’ve also included a photo of my blog for a visual of what you will want it to look like.)

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1. Write a weekly blog post:  Writing a weekly blog can bring in new business, fans and followers as well as help you increase your search engine optimization, grow on your social networks and establish YOUR business as the go to business in your industry or niche. I’ve seen this with my business as well as our clients. It works.  So, make this a big part of your social media marketing strategy and stop making excuses and talking yourself out of doing this. This is an incredible way to grow your business.  This is also called ‘Marketing’, which is something you either need to do yourself or hire someone to do for you. Experts recommend that established business spend 2 hours a day on marketing their business (newer business 4-6 hours per day.) The benefits this will bring to your business (if done well) will blow you away.

2.  Showcase your social profiles:  This is a must ingredient for sure. How can you expect to grow on social media if you have teeney tiny social profile icons/links on the very bottom of your website.  HELLO!  I visit websites all the time via a blog post or link and there are NO social media icons anywhere or they are teeney tiny at the bottom of the page. You want your social profiles to stand out.  Let folks know what networks you are on and make it easy for them to start following you.  People are not going to dig around to find you.  Trust me, each week you will watch your networks grow and grow if you add this piece.  I recommend adding your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or whichever platforms you are on to the right sidebar of your blog page.

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3.  Get Ready, Get Set…Go VIRAL: Yes, your small business can go viral too.  Again, I’ve seen this in my business as well as our clients. Your content can get shared and shared and shared.   It’s incredible, rewarding and fun to see. But first you have to have the best plugin for sharing and that is called the Flare plugin and it works fantastic.  You will want to feature it in three places: the top, side and bottom of each blog post.  Here are some of the benefits of having a high quality share plug in:  1.  It makes it super easy for folks to share your info on their social networks.  2. You will drive a great deal more traffic to your website.  2.  You will drive a great deal of more traffic to your social media profiles.  3.  People will spread the word for you about your business.  4.  Again, you will establish better credibility and more!

4. Get rid of your About Us page:  Instead of that, say Meet John, or Meet Your Team.  That is more friendly and inviting. People have literally written me to say they love that I say Meet Amanda.  That says a lot!  The truth is we’ve all seen the ‘About Us’ page and it is played out. So, change it up and make sure you have a link with your photo and/or your teams photo on the right sidebar.  This is an inviting way to help people learn more about you and this happens to be one of my highest viewed page. So, don’t underestimate the value and benefit of having this stand out.

5.  Encourage comments: End each blog post with a question to your audience and make it easy for folks to respond.  A good quality plug in for this is called Disqus.  This allows folks to comment directly to you.  You can set it so you have to approve every comment, so you don’t have to worry.  Hint: people do not like to respond publicly, so get rid of a Facebook or other social media related plugin.  Most folks don’t want all their comments all over their social networks. So, use Disqus.

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6.  Encourage more reading and longer website visits: This is a great feature on your blog that makes recommendations to your audience about what other articles/blogs they might like to read about. It’s called ‘related posts’ and it will provide easy to access links to other articles.  This is also included with the Disqus plugin mentioned above. 

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7.  Create an opt in box: Invite new fans to join your free weekly updates, newsletters, free PDF giveaways, reports, or eBook for more information.  This is a great way to build your email list, generate more business, build stronger relationships and establish more authority in your niche. (You will also want to make sure you are consistent and email your fans each week.) I recommend placing this box near the very top of the right sidebar.

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So, take action NOW!  Book mark this blog post and call your web designer and optimize your website with153093916 these items.  You won’t regret it.

Remember it’s just like a tree…it first starts with a few seeds, sunlight, water and nurturing.  It doesn’t growovernight, but little by little it grows into a mighty strong tall standing tree that can stand the test of time.

Do you know friends or fans that can benefit from this information?  Please feel free to share a flare!!

Cheers, Love and Success,
Amanda Brazel

 

Case Study: How One Of My Clients Generated Over $414,000 In NEW Business In 2013

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I made you a promise and here it is. In this article I want expand on some of the ideas I raised in my article 6 Major Differences Between Successful and Unsuccessful Business Owners.

Rather than just talking in theory, however, I want to share some actual numbers from one of my clients who has authorized me to do so. It will show how applying a different mindset can lead to some impressive ‘real-world’ successes.

First, some background: This client is a provider of medical and related services. I provide social media, blogging, internet marketing services, and other business consulting to her. I started working with her in January of 2013. At that time, she was averaging about 9 new clients per month (which is actually pretty good in her field). By January of 2014, however, she was up to more than 40 new clients per month.

In July of 2014, she has now hired two additional doctors and has three full time assistants working in her office.  AND…as I mentioned in my previous article about seeing the bigger picture; she is already looking ahead to 2015-2016 to build her new office space that will allow for 8 full-time doctors to join her, plus provide me with office space if I wish.  Not to shabby.

OK, now that I’ve given a little background, let me elaborate on some of the traits I mentioned in the prior post and how she embodies them.

See How She Focuses on the Bigger Vision for Her Business:

One of the points I made in the prior post is that successful business owners are thinking long term.  So, it’s no surprise that when I told her that social media marketing was NOT a “quick fix” but instead a “must” for the long term, she didn’t blink.

To illustrate, let’s look at some numbers. I started working with her in Jan ’13. At that time, she was averaging about 9 new patients per month. For the first 5 months I worked with her, we were able to bump that up to about 13 new patients per month.

NEW PATIENTS:
Jan ’13 – 9
Feb ’13 – 13
Mar ’13 – 14
Apr ’13 – 12

That’s great, and that’s certainly an improvement, but here’s the point I wanted to make. This kind of marketing is kind 1800190_617353315003908_961115923_nof like getting an 18-wheel semi truck going. At first, it’s a slow build and it takes a while to get going. But, once it’s got momentum, it’s nearly impossible to stop. She understood there was a “bigger picture” involved.

May ’13 – 27
Jun ’13 – 20
July ’13 – 23
Aug ’13 – 28
Sep ’13 – 32
Oct ’13 – 29
Nov ’13 – 26
Dec ’13 – 28
Jan ’14 – 40

That’s not too shabby!  9 new clients last January.  40 new clients this January.

But…
What if she would have thought like a lot of others?
What if she would have bailed in March when the increases weren’t yet as impressive?

Look at How She Constantly Improves, Experiments and Implements New Marketing Ideas That Pay Off:

Another topic I talked about in the previous post is being willing to try new things and challenge your “comfort zone”.  So many business owners will paralyze themselves and their company’s growth by insisting everything be analyzed and then re-analyzed and then checked and then double-checked…so instead of fixating on dotting every ‘i’ and crossing every ‘t’, focus on the bigger vision more than being a perfectionist. Now, I’m not saying you should be sloppy…don’t misunderstand…but what she understands better than most is that you have to “go”, take action quickly and understand that you can still be highly successful WITHOUT being a perfectionist.

***Hint: write this down: Instead of paralyzing her progress with perfection she takes action, focuses on experimenting with new ideas and runs with it.

Now let’s talk about a experiment that was a HUGE success.

Educational video marketing: One of our very first approaches was to film short educational NO COST videos that educated her audience about her areas of expertise. (There was no selling of any kind in this video, we simply provided valuable information.)  I coached her on how to structure the video as well as how to speak to her audience in ‘their’ language and when I introduced this idea to her she jumped in immediately.  She didn’t let her fear of being in front of the camera stop her, she didn’t stall and get wrapped up in busy work that didn’t matter, she TOOK IMMEDIATE ACTION.  That is such a huge point to understand here as well because take a look at what happens…

So, when a potential patient is searching for a doctor in her area, guess what?  Her videos pop up, they watch them, then they were able to connect and engage with her right away.  They could see that she was highly knowledgeable and they made an appointment. One of her videos has reached over 15,000 views in a little over a year. That is HUGE for a local business.

The truth is most doctors are not providing this type of information to local areas and she stands out in a big way.

Now not everything we’ve tried was a home run.  For example, we worked on a policy to discourage no-shows.  It bombed!  But, we learned from that experience tweaked our approach and were still able to reduce the number of no-shows to her office.  Every aspect of her business is constantly being improved upon and she understands a very important concept and that is how important it is to work ON your business instead of always IN it. You will never grow if you are always working IN your business or jumping from project to project never completing anything.

What Were Her Marketing Costs and Return on Investment:

So many business owners are concerned with cost. And, again, don’t get me wrong, controlling your expenses is extremely important. But, being concerned with return on investment is so much more important.

Now if you are asking yourself…what is this going to cost me when you embark on a new strategy to grow…you are probably planning to fail and lose money.  However, if you are asking yourself what potential return will I see for my business with new marketing tactics…you are planning to succeed.  Do you see the subtle but very big difference in which question you ask yourself here? Many people don’t realize this but much of our lives or the outcome of our lives is driven by the questions we ask ourselves. Ask better questions and you will get better answers.

That is what my client and I did together, we asked great questions that produce amazing results. My client spends about $2000 per month in marketing, that is $24,000 per year. Now let’s look at her return.

Her results: that $24,000 brought in an ADDITIONAL $414,000 in NEW business. WOW!!!

Marketing Spend: $24,000
New Business: $414,000
Return On Investment:  Yep

***Another hint to take down: you have to implement tracking systems in your business in order to see what is working and what is not. 

When my client and I first started working together she wasn’t tracking much at all, however after I showed her the importance of tracking she immediately started tracking important aspects of her business.  This tracking has led to all sorts of additional benefits she didn’t even realize she would receive. So, start tracking your numbers.

Look at How She Understands That Providing Great Value Leads To HIGH Rates of Retention, More Referrals, and Much Higher Growth:

There’s so much more that goes into being successful than just “marketing tactics”. You need to be able to blow people away with your product or service. This naturally breeds repeat and referral business. And, once again, this is another key to her success.

When we first starting working together she had already implemented some really amazing value adds for her clients that NO other folks were implementing in her niche. So, she was already ahead, but then we brainstormed on what more she can add and WOW, what a difference that has made.

Let me make that even more clear by sharing some more numbers.

After reviewing her numbers, we found that she has a very high retention rate (85%+).

First of all that is amazing and that number demonstrates she is doing an amazing job. Now, why is that so important? Because it means each new patient isn’t worth just what they pay on their first visit ($250). Instead, on average, every new client is worth $1600 per year.

*** Hint: this is a number you want to know.

Now that we understand that number we are able to evaluate and estimate where her growth is headed.

Let’s just use 2013 numbers for this example (even though we know she’s well ahead of that pace this year). She brought in $414,000 in NEW business. That equates to $352,000 in REPEAT business, plus another $414,000 in NEW business.

Retention Rate:  85%
Average Lifetime Value Per Client:  $1600
2013 NEW Business: $414,000
2014 NEW Business (assuming no new growth, which there already is):$414,000
2014 REPEAT Business (conservative): $352,000
2014 TOTAL Business (again, assuming no new growth, which there already is): $766,000

Do you see the power of creating raving fans? And, after our last meeting she is on pace to reach $1,000,000 in revenue by the end of 2014.

Conclusion
These numbers are real, but more importantly, they’re meant as an illustration and a guide for you. I see this pattern all the time with the clients I work with. Some have the right mindset (like my client above) and they typically just EXPLODE. Others might only have a couple of these factors going for them. They certainly grow and improve, but it’s nothing like what can happen when you get everything in alignment with your mindset as well as your marketing.

You have the power to change.  It’s just like what Glinda said in the Wizard of Oz to Dorothy, “You’ve always had the power my dear, you just had to learn it for yourself.”

You have the power to take better charge of your life and business, you have the power to implement many of the ideas proposed here, you have the power to hire better help (even if only part-time at first), you have the power to take your business and life in a new direction if you overcome your fears, change your mindset and learn better skills.

Cheers, Love & Success,
Amanda

Amanda Brazel, Social Media Marketing

 

 

6 Major Differences That Stand Out Between Successful & Unsuccessful Business Owners.

differencesHave you wondered why some business owners thrive while others struggle or fail?  Why do some businesses grow year after year (regardless of the economy) while others seem destined to eventually die out?

Well, as a business coach, consultant, and social media agency owner, I’ve been able to speak with and observe hundreds and hundreds of business owners over the years.

And, in doing so, I’ve noticed some very clear patterns.  In fact, it’s remarkably predictable whether or not a business owner is going to succeed.

So, in this post I wanted to share the patterns that just about every highly successful business owner I’ve met or worked with shares.

Then, in my next post, I want to illustrate these points even more fully with some real-life sales figures and examples.  I think you’ll find it very illuminating!

But, here’s the best thing…you can develop all of the patterns and traits below.  Believe me, doing so will serve you better than any specific “tactic” you’ll learn.

Here we go.  Successful Business Owners…

1. They always have the bigger picture in mind.  If you are always thinking immediate return and that motivates your decisions you will more than likely not experience short OR long-term success.  Successful business owners are always looking into the future and see the bigger picture of their vision and what they want to achieve.

2. They are NOT perfectionists. The most successful business owners I’ve worked with are not asking for perfection in themselves or the people they work with.  Now don’t get me wrong, quality is VERY important to them.  However, if a mistake is made they don’t freak out.  They simply correct, adjust, and move on.

Let me put it another way.  You can’t be a “control freak”.  So many business owners paralyze their growth in the name of crossing every “t” and dotting every “i” so to speak.  Take action.  Then adjust accordingly.

3.  They are willing to experiment and try new things.  I can’t even begin to tell you how big of a key this is to your success.  Successful business owners DO NOT think they already know it all or know the best way.  They don’t get stuck having to do things a certain way.  They are flexible and adaptable.  They are always willing to try new ideas, marketing strategies, products, services, or ways of doing business.

And guess what?  This means some of their ideas are going to fail.  So what! Now they have more information on what works, what doesn’t work, and how to do things even better.

Let me give you a bit of an example. When I give a strategy idea or concept to a client, let me tell how the most successful of them reply.  They almost invariably say “let’s do it”.  Compare that to business owners who tend to struggle.  They typically find reasons NOT to move forward.  Or, they’ll analyze and deliberate until the opportunity has passed.

Again, I cannot possibly tell you how big of a key this is.  You have to be willing to take some swings and a lot of them.

4.  They make decisions quickly.  This carries over from the tip above.  Successful business owners tend to make decisions following a certain process.  They simply get the facts, do their due diligence, and then act one way or the other.  They don’t hem and haw nor do they feel they need more and more and more and more information or proof before making a decision.  This one trait means they capitalize quickly on good ideas, where other business owners miss out and then always feel like they are trying to catch up.

5. They think return on investment, not expense or cost. Many business owners I talk to you will balk at the prices for marketing services, ad campaigns and so on. Their only thought is “OMG, that is expensive” or “How much is that going to cost me?”  However, it never dawned on them what the actual return on investment could bring or mean to their business. I think in truth they are either not ready for more success or they don’t believe they can have it.

***In my next post, I’m going to expand on this and take a look at one of my client’s numbers more closely.  I think you’ll find it FASCINATING!  Shifting this one thought alone can make the world of different to your bottom line.

6. They understand how to keep good clients happy and create raving fans. They understand the importance of offering quality services, taking great care of their current clients, and consistently reaching out to them again and again.  There is no greater source of business than recurring business from current clients and the referral business that current clients can bring to you.

***Again, I’m going to expand with some specific numbers in my next post!

In conclusion, our businesses are always a reflection of ourselves, how we think, how we act, and how we feel. This is something I had to learn in my very first business back in my 20’s.  Our results, our successes, our failures, our struggles…it’s all a reflection or a mirror image and it takes great courage to look at yourself in that mirror, admit what needs to change, and then change it.

I hope this article will help you stop and think about what you really want for your life and your business.  Hopefully it will spark some new thoughts that will help you fulfill your business dreams.

Cheers, Love and Success,
Amanda

The Truth About Marketing Today! 4 Crucial Concepts You Need to Know that You Probably Don’t!

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Marketing is my passion.  It is by far my favorite part of business. I’ve worked as a marketing manager.  I’ve owned my own business and now I help businesses with their marketing.

So today I am going to share the honest truth with you about marketing, what mistakes you are most likely making and what you can do about it.

1.  It doesn’t have to be expensive, but it does need to be effective.  Let’s talk about the expensive part first…I hear business owners (typically the ones that struggle) say that marketing is too expensive.  I cringe when I hear them say this.

First, if you don’t have a large marketing budget, you really need to understand that there are hundreds of very inexpensive ways to market your business.  This is actually one of the best times for small businesses.  You have TONS of options that can be very inexpensive at your fingertips.

You just need to be creative and find the right vehicles to use in the beginning. The key here is to learn, educate yourself, ask for help, and put your money where you will get the best return. That might be pounding the pavement for a while or developing strong relationships. But, please don’t trick yourself into thinking it has to be expensive.  That is just not true!

2. It’s all about ‘effective’ marketing. Now for the second part of what I said earlier…You can have the most expensive advertising in the world (and I watch tons of business owners do this) and NOT GET A SINGLE LEAD from it. Just because it is expensive does not mean you are going to get any business from it. AND, the other HUGE lesson I’ve learned is that most companies you want to advertise with have no idea on how to best advise you.

For example, you call that local prestigious magazine, or that billboard company or that high end whatever…they help you design your ad, they make it look all pretty and then most likely they have no clue. Then your ad does nothing for you.

I see this all the time. They only provide the tool, you still need to know how to use it.  Marketing is about effectively communicating a product or service to create ‘real’ interest and get folks to take action, by either calling you directly, emailing for more information, placing an order etc.

If you are not getting any business from your marketing efforts there are two possible reasons why:  First, you may not be using the right marketing vehicle for your business or reaching your ideal client. Second, You just may not understand how to use the right language or understand how to market effectively.  (It’s usually the latter of the two.)

3. You need 6-10 different streams of marketing.  Most business owners only have 1 or 2.  You need to have have as many different streams as possible.  Think about it, if you have 10 different channels of marketing feeding your funnel…you will have a full funnel of leads (again, if you are marketing effectively).  But, if you only have 1 or 2, what happens when those 1 or 2 dry up or stop working?  That leads us to the last truth I want to share with you.

4. Don’t put all your marketing eggs in one basket. This is what happened to so many business owners that only placed Yellow Page ads or they put all their marketing time, energy and efforts into Facebook.  Well, Facebook went and made all these changes and overnight POOF…people’s #1 and in many cases only marketing funnel almost came to a halt and they were now scrambling for business.  (Don’t get me wrong, Facebook is still a great place to market and attract new business, however it’s just not as easy as it once was..it takes skill and social media marketing is NOT a complete replacement for other forms of marketing.)

So, don’t put all your marketing eggs in one basket.  Diversify. That is what smart business owners do and remember it doesn’t have to be expensive, but it does have to be effective. 

Remember the keys to success in business is understanding how to market, innovate and know how to effectively sell your product or services.

If you don’t have that you will not thrive for the long haul.

Invest in yourself or hire the right people to help you.

P.S.  Please feel free to share this with other friends or family that need help understanding the truth. You can save them time and money.

#BecomeYourBest

Cheers, Love & Success,

Amanda Brazel
Amanda Brazel, Social Media MarketingPassionate Social Media Manager, Consultant, Trainer, Blogger, Clean Foods Enthusiast, Pure Barre Life, Lover of Life & People, Happy Wife & Mom of 3

 

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6 Power Tips to Improve Your Social Game Before Your Next Networking Event.

486140535Networking events can be a great way to meet new contacts, attract new business and expand your network (networth).

However, networking takes time.  Time you can never get back. So, bring your A game and learn some power tips that will help you make the most of your time especially in the social media world. Now that social media is such a huge part of our daily lives, you are also socially networking after the event.

In this blog post I will share:

 1. Update Your Head Shots and Profile Photos: Before you head to your next networking event make sure you update your head shots and all your profile photos on your social networks. You don’t want to have an old outdated photo when you had long hair and now you have short hair or let’s say you’ve aged 20 years, but you are still holding onto your younger days. Let it go and show off who you are now. You will be more easily recognized and remembered when folks reach out again after the event. ***Tip: Add your photo to your business card, this will make you stand out and you’ll be remembered easily.

2. Update All Your Social Networks: It’s a good idea to make sure all of your social networks are updated, have the correct contact information and also highlight your expertise and work. Folks want to know you are the real deal before they will open their wallet and work with you or before they refer you to their network.

3. Add a Testimonial to the Back of Your Business Card: This is another great way to stand out at a networking event. This gives your potential client an instant sense of what results you bring to the table.

4. Add Your Social Icons & Unique URL’s to Your Business Card: Adding social icons and your unique URL links to your cards helps folks find you right away because let’s face it sometimes you go back to your computer search for someone on Facebook or LinkedIn and can’t find them. This will insure they do and you can further your relationship.

5. Think Relationship First: Don’t lead with asking for business or referrals after your networking event on social channels. This is so tacky. Build relationships first, find ways in which you can help, give referrals and focus more on what you give which will naturally lead to receiving.

6. Interact on Social Networks by Sharing and Giving Shout Outs: The highest compliment you can give on social media is shout outs and sharing content. So, find content that you love from folks you want to network with and share it on your networks. Tag that person in your post and give them a shout out. This is a great way to get noticed and build social rapport.

What are your networking power tips as it relates to social media?  I’d love to hear from you and feel free to share a flare and help your friends improve their game.

#becomeyourbest

Cheers, Love & Success,
Amanda

Amanda Brazel.

Amanda Brazel | Digital Media Marketing Done For You
clientcare@amandabrazel.com