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What is the best way to market my home and office cleaning service?

Hi, My name is Michelo, I am new to running my own business and in need of a lot of help. Can... read more

Scott BamptonOwner at WordWise Copywriting
Some great ideas on here already but also thought I'd throw PPC advertising into the mix. Using a platform like Google AdWords or BingAds (or both) can be a fairly cost-effective way to entice new customers as you only pay when somebody clicks on your ad and goes to your website. You can also get PPC campaigns up and running fairly quickly, so it can drive traffic to your website while you work on other things (like improving your website's SEO or creating flyers).There are a few "cons" though. The AdWords interface can look a little scary to the uninitiated (although many PPC agencies offer low-cost management options to take care of everything for you). In addition, certain keywords, especially those related to cleaning services, can be expensive.My advice would be to experiment with it for a month and if it works out too costly per sales enquiry, then kill it. This way, at the very least you'll end up with some great keyword data to help you with your SEO (and hopefully a few jobs!).
Jef LippiattCo-founder at Startup Chucktown
Michelo,I have several ideas for you. First, with existing clients ask permission to take before and after pictures of the space. If you get permission you can post the pictures (leaving out the Address for client privacy) on your website as visual proof of your cleaning proficiency. Another great idea is to get written feedback from happy clients. Once you get feedback you may need to ask permission before posting it on your website, but client testimonials are powerful for new potential clients to see.Also consider getting your business on platforms where clients can rate your business and leave feedback can be helpful to potential future customers (e.g. Yelp, Google Maps, Angie's List, etc.).You can try to drum up additional business by asking current clients for referrals and then give them a discount on their first cleaning after the referral has tried your service.You should put up your contact information on community boards around the area you are targeting clients. Cafes and local shops sometimes provide this type of resource for free. I would even suggest making a tear off sheet with your phone number or website. You could make the tear sheet look like a broom with the tear off pieces being the broom bristles or you could make it look like a broom and the tear off pieces look like dirt so when a person tears one off it looks cleaner. The main idea is be creative and target customers in the area you are hoping to land clients.
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Questions

How do you turn a good business idea into reality?

Turning a good idea into a full fledged business is often harder than we think. What are the key... read more

Asked by:
Phil Khor Founder at SavvySME
Steve OsborneOwner at Smarthinking
For me, the key steps for a start-over would be very simple. I wish I had come to this realisation much, much earlier in my 25+ years in business instead of searching for an elixir. First, ensure the product range and service delivery is properly worked out. Once you have something to sell, you need just two things to run a profitable firm:1. a method for attracting new prospects2. a scalable system for converting those prospects into profitable clientsThat's it.If you can consistently get those two things right, any business will be successful. Get them wrong, and you will be doomed to continually wonder and wander, looking for magical solutions. It's a cliche, but what that really means is: get the basic stuff right and the rest will follow.
Lisa OrmenyessyBusiness Coach and Marketing Specialist at Straight Talk Group
Phil, I think the hardest thing I have found in business is the persistence. Over 15 years the business has certainly had its ups and downs, a ton of learning, and at times has felt like a hard slog. What am I doing differently now that I didn't do in the early days? These days I am more prepared to invest in education and professionals and mentors that can either shorten my learning curve, implement strategies quicker or assist me in keeping on top of the rapid change we are experiencing. Great question,Cheers, Lisa
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Business ideas and monetising new concepts

Top 5 Tips in Choosing the Right Small Business Idea

A week ago, I outlined some tips to help you get your creative juices flowing and come up with a... read more

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Allan Bennetto Founder at JMango
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Wendy HuangFull Time Blogger and YouTuber at A Custom Blog in 4 Minutes
Love the idea of qualifying your ideas based on who will spend money on it. You could also ask them for the money straight away to see if they are actually being serious or just humouring you :) Make sure wallets are handy :DD
Neil SteggallPartner at Wardour Capital Partners
Great article. Thanks have a great Christmas!
Business ideas and monetising new concepts

Closing the sale

The dos and don’ts when offering your services to potential clients I’ve been looking for a great... read more

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I have recently finished doing exactly this. In addition to all of the great things you mentioned above I'd like to add that not only does it help your client, it also helps you elicit benefits to your client that you might have otherwise overlooked (which is what happened in my circumstance). Why? I found that during development you are seeing your service through your client's eyes instead of yours. Very powerful technique.
Leo EliadesOwner at INSPIRENOW PTY LTD
that's great Jenny, the brain certainly loves the steps. love your suggestion of the 30 second test
Business ideas and monetising new concepts

How will you be remembered?

If you, for whatever reason, decided to go out of business tomorrow, how will you be remembered? ... read more

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Michelle Tupy Blog and Epublishing Manager at Clever Streak
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Business ideas and monetising new concepts

5 tips for a successful start-up

5 Tips for a SUCCESSFUL Start-up Starting a new business is an exciting and challenging task,... read more

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Neil Steggall Partner at Wardour Capital Partners
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Business ideas and monetising new concepts

Pinterest Introduces 'Place Pins' to Showcase What Your Business Location Has to Offer

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Groupon Moves Deeper in the Discount Space With "Freebies"

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Richard Branson on How Small Businesses Can Innovate

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How Blind Smartphone Users Helped This Startup Test the Waters

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Phil KhorFounder at SavvySME
Great example of out of the box thinking and breaking down visions into bite-size chunks; a great lesson for startups looking to carve out a realistic scope and execute on it well.
Business ideas and monetising new concepts

How to Decide If Your Business Idea Is a Total Bust

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4 Tests to Fail-Proof Your Business Idea

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10 tips to help you come up with a great business idea

Whether simple or revolutionary, at the heart of any good business is a great idea.  Often times,... read more

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Allan Bennetto Founder at JMango
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Allan BennettoFounder at JMango
Haha, I have the same problem Wendy... will post something shortly on how best to whittle down those many great ideas. :)
Wendy HuangFull Time Blogger and YouTuber at A Custom Blog in 4 Minutes
Hi Allan, I have the opposite problem, I come up with so many ideas I have no idea what to do with them :) Or if they are even good, would love an article about that :D