Business coaching

Reasons Why You Need Business Coaching

There is a saying that says no matter what you achieve, there is always someone out there who is... read more

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Social media

Why your business social media should be organised like the party of the year

You may have missed it, but on February 4th, Facebook turned 12. Yes, the platform that once... read more

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Hamish Anderson
Hamish Anderson Founder and Director at Mesh Consulting
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Hamish Anderson
Hamish AndersonFounder and Director at Mesh Consulting
Thanks Jef, Appreciate the feedback.
Jef Lippiatt
Jef LippiattOwner at Startup Chucktown
This article is really on point. Great explanations and use of comparison to help setup the underlying meanings.
Web design and development

Does Your Website Appear where People are Looking?

Do you sell direct to business? Sensis e-Business Report (2012) mentions that 82% of all SMEs look... read more

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Social media

Social Media for Your Business

Should my business have a social media strategy? Despite social media often being discussed as if... read more

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Lina Barfoot
Lina Barfoot Editor at SavvySME
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Jef Lippiatt
Jef LippiattOwner at Startup Chucktown
Nicely put together post of related authors and ideas.
Founders and co-founders

Successful Mumtrepreneurs - War Games and TLC

Jamie Arundell-Latshaw CEO - Lexicon Consulting Jamie Latshaw spent 8 years in active duty with... read more

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SavvySME Official Official Account at SavvySME
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Growing and scaling

Ralph Anania Interview - Boost Your Business, Episode #49 On The Peter Montgomery Show

The Peter Montgomery Show Episode #49 Today on the show: Ralph Anania works with SME's (small to... read more

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Thanks heaps Tim, Yes, Ralph is a Gem...
Tim Greig
Tim GreigOwner at Green Galah Pty Ltd
What a breath of fresh air! A real business person. I wasn't sure if they still existed amongst all the 'gurus' out there. Some things stood out:if you're comfortable, you're dead; pay attention to detail; and my favourite...real entrepreneurs have vision beyond a year or so. Thanks Peter ,for bring Ralph on.
Public relations

Are your press releases worth the effort?

The main reason a press release (PR) is produced is strictly for a newsworthy dissemination. This... read more

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Eric Phuah
Eric PhuahOwner at Hystericalz Pty Ltd
Thanks Han. I'm in the process of writing to journalists so this article is really helpful! Hopefully they get drawn in to my story.
Telecommunications, mobile and wireless

5 tips on how to nail a radio interview

The radio is still a preferred medium of communication even with the massive surge of people that... read more

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Growth

How to Lower Costs with Product Sourcing Overseas

Most small businesses are doing it tough. This is not only due to worldwide economic conditions,... read more

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Brian Mallyon
Brian Mallyon Owner at Luckypole Limited
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Leadership

How to Ace Your Presentation

The word ‘presentation’ seems to spark a deep fear in some people. One of the most powerful tools... read more

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Taylor Williams
Taylor Williams Manager at Project Manager Online
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Eric Phuah
Eric PhuahOwner at Hystericalz Pty Ltd
Good tips Taylor, I will remember these tips for my next presentation. Thanks.
Sales and marketing

3 Can't-Miss Benefits of Advertorials

An advertorial is the combination of an advertisement and an editorial. In a printed form, the... read more

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Information technology

Why Small Business IT often stagnates (and how to avoid it)

Most business owners wear many hats as the expert in all things business: marketing, sales, client... read more

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Angely Grecia
Angely Grecia Public Relations at MYOB
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Phil Khor
Phil KhorFounder at SavvySME
So true, whenever we put buying decisions in the context of TCO, we often get very different perspectives on which purchase is actually the better buy in the long run! Thanks Andrew.
Andrew Egan
Andrew EganOwner at Adept IT
A good example of where I see small-to-medium businesses struggling is with the acquisition of personal hardware, whether it be a desktop or a laptop. Far too often I see a business go out at the last minute and buy something from JB Hifi or Officeworks, and usually the cheapest option. Invariably, they come with Windows Home operating system, not the business one, and with a 1 year "back-to-base" warranty. The hardware specs are also fairly low when you look at the expected workload of the employee it's provided to. I mention this for three reasons: 1. If your hardware fails (and in one organisation, out of 30 of these laptops, I've seen 8 failed hard drives, across various vendors) you need to send it back to the manufacturer to get it repaired. This could take days, or weeks, resulting in either lost productivity, or the need to purchase a new (again, super-cheap) laptop and put the old one in the cupboard. So just on the warranty factor alone, if something goes wrong, it costs you money. 2. Many of my clients run Small Business Server, or other windows-server based networks. Whether it's because it's the best solution for where they are, or because it's what's been inherited and there's been no need to spend more money yet. This is important because the Windows Home computers can't be fully connected to these networks. Sure, it can connect and access things, but the Business versions allow you to use central logons (meaning an employee should be able to logon to Any computer, at any time and have settings there) and, crucially, central management. By central management I mean the ability to rapidly set given settings, such as firewalls, or control the installation of software packages, or indeed remotely install sfotware, from a single location, without needing to touch all the computers. If you've got 20 computers and 1 server, the time to deploy, say, a new version of Microsoft Office, if all the computers are Windows Professional, can be reduced to one small step on the server, less than 2 hours potentially. If you've got twenty slow, underpowered computers, and thye take an hour to install software each, that's 20 hours of time for your IT specialist to install that software. 20 hours, vs 2 hours. 3. Underperfoming. The Cheap & cheerful laptops work well for 3-6 months. After that time, performance drops (and I see this not only in anecdotal evidence from employees, but in the background monitoring I do) and I start gettting calls to "speed it up" and "make it go better." Sure, there's afew things that can be done, but it comes at your business's time and expense, for not huge gain. Usually, you're back again asking the same thing in another 3-6 months. So, on top of your initial purchase cost of $500, add another 2 hours or thereabouts of maintenance to make it perform better, you've already spent over $700. That's ignoring the lost productivity while the employee waits for the computer to be worked on, and ignoring the potential for if you need a warranty replacement. Now compare that same laptop with the added on costs to a business-grade hardware, whether it's Dell or HP, with a 3 year, next-business-day, onsite warranty. Sure, you might spend 1100-1300 instead, but you'll get better quality hardware, hardware with a known genesis and warranty support from a company that maintains all the necessary parts and will send someone out to fix it. You pay a bit more at the start, but the device will have a longer lifespan and perform better for the employee, so you get increased productivity gains. We have a term for it - it's called Total Cost of Ownership. Small business owners should be looking at what the total cost of owning an IT asset would be, over the full lifecycle of that device, and not just what it costs up front.
Copywriting, content writing and blogging

The Power of the Guest Blog

The return on investment of all great marketing strategies is growth; using your budget in the... read more

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Jef Lippiatt
Jef LippiattOwner at Startup Chucktown
Great article. I've definitely benefited from building my own audience and getting asked to write a handful of other blogs. I find it gratifying to share a unique perspective that those readers may not have considered before. This year I'm working to feature more people on my blog(s)
Importing

P.M. Pupperty.

Manufacturing with on offshore vendor introduces a myriad of complexities into the equation. Some... read more

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Brian Le Mon
Brian Le Mon Owner at GBOS
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John Belchamber
John BelchamberOwner & Senior Consultant at Invoke Results
Another good article with very useful tips in it Brian, thank you for sharing.
Buying a business

The quickest way to expanding market share

There are a handful of tactics companies can employ to increase market share. But first, let’s... read more

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Melissa Profeta
Melissa ProfetaCommunity Manager at SavvySME
Totally agree with you, Jef! Raz has done a great job at providing us all of these!
Jef Lippiatt
Jef LippiattOwner at Startup Chucktown
Definitely lots of worthwhile information to consider.
Importing

Information Overload

Transferring manufacture to an offshore company is an interesting venture to say the least. Often... read more

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Brian Le Mon
Brian Le Mon Owner at GBOS
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Phil Joel
Phil JoelDirector at SavvySME
Good advice Brian. I think this applies to most situations when you're bringing on a new business partner. Of corse, it is tricker when your business partner is on the other side of the world and hence need good management to ensure that it goes smoothly.
Business coaching

How to Get What You Want! And I Mean ‘Really Get’ It: Part 2

Are you not happy with your life? Do you constantly ask how you can get the life you actually want,... read more

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Hitesh Mohanlal
Hitesh Mohanlal Director at WOW! Advisors & Business Accountants
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George Grimekis CPA
George Grimekis CPAAccountant at Alpha Omega Accounting & Business Solutions
Thanks for the article! Great read.
Hitesh Mohanlal
Hitesh MohanlalDirector at WOW! Advisors & Business Accountants
Hi Jeff. Thank you for your comments. Hoping the article makes a difference to some. It takes a while to realise it is not money that makes a difference.
Startup

Small Business and Startups in economic uncertainty (part 1)

Getting started in business is never an easy road. This is even more apparent in the current... read more

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Brian Le Mon
Brian Le Mon Owner at GBOS
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Online marketing

Facing The Challenges Of Local Marketing Head On

There are many challenges facing you when you choose to engage in local marketing. The question is... read more

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Cashflow management

Counting Cents – Even Small Fees Add Up

While many may assume that operating a small to medium sized business means that you will mainly be... read more

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Cloud computing

A walk through the window and into the cloud (For the SMEs)

A walk through the Window and into The Cloud (For the SMEs) The IT industry seems to relish the... read more

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Server, networking and security

How do we protect our children when we don’t understand cyber space ourselves

Technology has changed the world.  From cloud computing to GPS, from tablets to mobile apps, we... read more

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Cashflow management

High profits & about to crash?

High Profits & About to Crash? A relevant question for SME Management. “How important is... read more

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Neil Steggall
Neil Steggall Partner at Wardour Capital Partners
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Neil Steggall
Neil SteggallPartner at Wardour Capital Partners
The easiest options would include invoice discounting or factoring and increasingly stock funding. With a good spread of customers 80%+ of invoice value is achievable. American Express have some interesting SME options also. A company we invested in traded with the restaurant industry which is notorious for late payments and defaults. We offered an online account application and in the fine print it stated that the restaurant (client) was trading with AMEX. We received our payments the day after the goods were received by our customer.
Phil Joel
Phil JoelDirector at SavvySME
Such a great article Neil. I was in a similar predicament some years ago. All KPI's look fantastic but the debtors were dragging us down and was putting a strain on our payroll commitments. Even though we were making great money on paper, our bank statements just didn't reflect it. Luckily for us, we had a bumper year previously and was able to use the retained earnings to give us a cushion. What are some of financing options are available for SME's with short-term cashflow problems?
Business planning

3 steps to uncovering your big priorities for 2014

Coming to the close of 2013, like most of us, it’s a time for some downtime, fun with family and... read more

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Andrew Oldham
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Phil Khor
Phil KhorFounder at SavvySME
Great article Andrew. Couldn't agree more, personally Christmas is the best time to regroup and set priorities for the new year. I love how simplistic your planning advice is, it's the perfect start! Thanks! :)
Andrew Oldham
Andrew OldhamOwner at Shoebooks
Thanks Neil, i wish they would also!
Budgeting and forecasting

5 tips to help get the most out of your budgeting

It's staggering that we are at the half way mark of another financial year. Where did that time... read more

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Andrew Oldham
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Andrew Oldham
Andrew OldhamOwner at Shoebooks
Totally agree Michael!
Phil Khor
Phil KhorFounder at SavvySME
Michael you made a really good point; for me it's just as critical to understand which strategy and actions is actually going to make the difference in the whole budgeting exercise, so that as a team we know what we need to focus on going forward. Thanks
Customer acquisition and retention

6 tips to retain and attract customers in 2014!

Like most businesses, we are facing more and more competition and threats to our core business.... read more

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Andrew Oldham
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Andrew Oldham
Andrew OldhamOwner at Shoebooks
Thanks for the feedback. Trying to practice what i preach!!
Wendy Huang
Wendy HuangFull Time Blogger and YouTuber at A Custom Blog in 4 Minutes
Hi Andrew love point #6 too, not often mentioned but it makes a lot of sense. Thanks for sharing this great article that is well thought out and easy to read with great punchy points :D!!
Home Based Business

Top 5 Copywriting Tips and Hints

Do you write as part of your job? Do you wish your writing had more influence and resulted in... read more

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Darryn Altclass
Thanks Wendy, I find if I keep in touch with my mentors I make less mistakes as they keep me on the straight and narrow. As you say, it's too easy to go to your defaults. Happy writing! Writing is my all time favourite communication medium, especially printed books. Thanks Wendy, have a great break.
Wendy Huang
Wendy HuangFull Time Blogger and YouTuber at A Custom Blog in 4 Minutes
Hi Darryn, I think that writing skills is incredibly important if your in business. You don't need to be writer to need writing skills, plus I found with myself after I started to write more, I also started communicating and listening better - it gives you more opportunity to thing about cause and effects of the words and sentences you use. It's not always as straight forward as just words coming out of your mouth or onto the paper. I really loved this post and will be implementing some of your tips, especially passive vs. active. I have a habit of writing passive sentences so thank you I'm going to practice that tip :)
Leadership

4 words to avoid in 2014

I have never really believed in New Year’s resolutions. Perhaps because as a child I constantly... read more

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Neil Steggall
Neil Steggall Partner at Wardour Capital Partners
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Wendy Huang
Wendy HuangFull Time Blogger and YouTuber at A Custom Blog in 4 Minutes
Love this list Neil!! I think a "word avoidance jar" is called for :)
Managing employees

Three essential tasks in January that will give you enormous return for the rest of the year

Early January is an ideal time to pause, take stock and consolidate all the good work that was... read more

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Mahua Das
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Mahua Das
Mahua DasOwner at Next Gen Teams
Hi Wendy, good to know that you are following the house keeping rule. Let me know if you need a useful checklist to help you along. Thanks.
Wendy Huang
Wendy HuangFull Time Blogger and YouTuber at A Custom Blog in 4 Minutes
Hi Mahua, Great checklist of things to remember. These housekeeping things are usually avoided in small businesses without a HR department, do it's a great reminder for the new year. We are actually in the process of doing a few of these ourselves, it's great to know we're all on the same page!
Search engine marketing

What is the difference between google adwords and search engine optimisation (SEO)?

When it comes to online marketing, and Google’s search engine, there are two ways for your website... read more

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Training and development

Speak clearly and communicate

How well do you convey your messages? Is it a question you examine or do you concentrate on the... read more

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Neil Steggall
Neil Steggall Partner at Wardour Capital Partners
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Customer acquisition

Timeless marketing strategies

It seems that entrepreneurs these days are overwhelmed with all the different marketing... read more

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Steven Freeman
Steven FreemanOwner at Evolved Sound
The fundamentals of marketing really have stood the test of time. Here is another related article which we recently shared with our followers: http://smedio.com/5-marketing-principles-that-will-never-change/
Phil Khor
Phil KhorFounder at SavvySME
Another great post Marika. The biggest takeaway for me is tip #4 be consistent. The 'feast and famine' approach is harmful but I think the only way to counter this is to be structured and plan marketing activities well ahead of time. This is a great time of the year to do so. Thanks for sharing.
Branding

Branding basics - how to create and stay true to your brand

As business owners we are all (hopefully) aware of the importance of creating a great brand... read more

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Ashleigh Betvardeh
Really great article Daniel. Branding is very important,it basically pushes positioning and goes hand-in-hand with your target market and where you want to go.
Sales and marketing

Marketing redefined - think, change, grow, prosper!

In the dark distant past when coffee came without froth and computers were kept in sealed rooms... read more

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Neil Steggall
Neil Steggall Partner at Wardour Capital Partners
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Stephen Parker
At one level this is marketing 101 and at another its brilliant advice!
Growth

Tier one your days are done

There is a massive shift set to take place in the construction game, and it's the tier one... read more

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Adam Bean
Adam BeanOwner at Jark Projects
Spot on the mark Wendy, stupid rules are defiantly made to be broken!
Wendy Huang
Wendy HuangFull Time Blogger and YouTuber at A Custom Blog in 4 Minutes
Wow hit the nail on the head Adam. Sometimes rules are made to be broken :)
Business coaching

Personal pep talk

Most of us seldom get to hear a great Pep Talk. The great coaches, Presidents, generals, business... read more

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Neil Steggall
Neil SteggallPartner at Wardour Capital Partners
A great article Robert, thank you. In a fast moving world of hype and pressure the basics remain and at the core is the need to get up and feel good every day. Not just as a means of achieving business gain but as a means of retaining mental agility and a zest for life. I always enjoyed Zig's quote and in my younger days I kept a presentation set of his tapes in my car. Recently as an agnostic I have been amazed by the clear motivational messages within the Bible - very clear, very motivational.