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Business Writing Made Easy

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When it comes to business writing overall, how do you measure up?   Overall, businesses spend $3.1 billion on remedial writing training for their employees annually. We’re not offering a class, but we have compiled a list of professional writing tips to aid you in your business communication. Even if English wasn’t your favorite subject in school, using these tips will make you look like a pro. Writing Like a Pro with These Tips Know your audience. Think about who you are writing to. Is it a customer? A potential customer? A coworker? Your boss? There are different ways to communicate with all of these people. Keep the audience in the forefront of your mind when you start your composition. Think about your tone. Think about how formal you want to appear. Do you want to sound like a corporate store or a friend? Do you want to be lighthearted or more serious? Think about this as you write; then, keep your tone consistent. Watch your punctuation and grammar. Some peo

Boost Your Productivity in 10 Steps

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Employees lose an average of 581 hours a year to distractions, such as cell phones, emails, and other social media, to name a few. This is over 14 weeks, per person, spent not actually working. You might be wondering if there is anything you can do to become more focused. We’ve compiled a list of 10 steps you can take to ensure you’re working smarter, not harder. 10 Steps to Boost Your Productivity 1. Limit how often you check your email.  According to The Economist Intelligence Unit report In Search of Lost Focus, 70% of critical-thinking employees disrupt their own progress in order to check email at least once an hour. And 18% check their email every few minutes. Try to use email as a reward for accomplishing a large task. Set a time limit so that you don’t get caught up in social media. Then, go ahead and turn it off until your task is done.   2. Get up and move around.  Getting a little exercise is shown to improve concentration. So, get up and make a cup of coff

The Key Components of a Good Brand Strategy

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Developing a strong brand isn’t as easy as others think. It’s no secret that consumers purchase based on trust, but how can businesses develop that trust if no one knows who you are? That’s the power of a brand strategy. If you don’t have a strategy in place, it’s like driving on the road with no destination. The ultimate goal should be getting customers to connect with you, not your logo, not the website, and not the name (even if it’s catchy). A good brand strategy works behind the scenes, providing value that continues after they buy. Key Components of a Good Brand Strategy Purpose What is the promise to the customer? Why are we in business? Why is it important to us? These are the driving factors that set businesses apart. Thinking of it in terms of monetary and also non-monetary makes the difference. Emotion While it may sound weird, it’s true. Customers are emotional about the brands they support because those brands can fully engage with like-minded audiences w

How-To Tips for Pain-Free Print Ordering

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When you're ready to bring your creative ideas to life in print, these tips will ensure everything runs as smoothly as possible.  Always Include High-Resolution Images If you have specific images you want to be included in your print marketing, you need to use high-quality photos. If the images are not clear enough, they will not turn out well when printing. A few tips to keep in mind include: Stay away from random images you find on the internet, as these usually do not show up clearly on the final print. Use JPEG or TIFF files for your prints because these are easy and familiar file formats for the professional service. Take advantage of preflight tools that can help you catch issues with your images before you submit them. If you use high-resolution images, you place your order in the best position possible to be successful.  Do Not Drag Logos Off of Your Website If you are ordering branded content, you need to think carefully about where your logo comes from.

How to Conduct a Competitive Analysis

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Whether you’re starting a business, you’ve been around for 100+ years, or you’re somewhere in between, it’s important to conduct a competitive analysis. A competitive analysis allows you to see gaps within the market that you can take advantage of. You can find ways to improve your business, create a better marketing strategy, and ultimately produce a stronger business. Although time-consuming, breaking down the process into steps will make it more manageable.  Tips to Help You Analyze the Competition Find Businesses Find businesses similar to your own. These competitors will help you learn valuable information. When scoping out the competition, try using such tools as web searches, social media, and websites specifically geared to help answer your questions about other businesses.  When looking for competitors, keep in mind that they can be divided into two categories: direct and indirect. Direct competitors sell the same products as you to a similar customer base.

Improve Your Business Through Atomic Habits

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James Clear’s widely successful book Atomic Habits breaks down habits into four parts: the cue, craving, response, and reward. This method shows readers how they can also form habits. Luckily, Clear’s formula can be applied to business. 4 Habits That Will Improve Your Business The Cue When developing a habit, Clear suggests making the cue as evident as possible. A cue is an outside stimulus that reminds you of the habit you wish to form. Therefore, your goal is to make your business as obvious as possible. With your advertising, you want your prospects and customers to see your ads and then associate them with the habit of buying from you. To do this, make your ads big, bright, and hard to miss. Use large banners to capture attention with design that pops. The Craving After your customer has seen the cue, they then need to want your product or service. Therefore make it as attractive as possible. Clear writes, “Every behavior is preceded by a prediction… every purc

3 Profitable Strategies for Building Customer Engagement

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Want to know your biggest asset? Engaged customers.  The depth of relationships between a business and its clients is one of the best predictors of lifetime value. Companies with improved customer engagement cross-sell by 22%, drive up-sell revenues from 13% to 51%, and increase order sizes by as much as 80%.  Tailor Engagement Strategies for Your Customers What might engagement look like for you? The strategies are as unique as your business! Here is one example: Recognizing the power of holiday hospitality, the Penha Longa resort makes December travels extra special for its guests. While Christmas decorations might brighten the mood for lonely people, celebrations are even better for engaging guests. To get travelers involved in the festivities, Penha Longa gives guests bare, shrub-sized trees for their rooms, along with crafty kits full of everything needed for creative decorating. This is just one magical, zero-tech model of connecting with customers. Instead of buildi