Four Ways to Boost Your Online Business Through Networking

online-businessWhen you think about networking, do you visualize a bunch of people standing around schmoozing, trying to pitch their services to each other while exchanging business cards and “elevator speeches”?

You know, some people actually enjoy that sort of thing. And when they do it right (which is a rare talent), they reap genuine rewards. Rewards such as new clients, joint venture partners, knowledgeable advisors, helpful friends… in other words, mutually beneficial relationships.

But for many of us, the idea of going to a networking event ranks right up there with bathing an angry cat. Even if we think it ought to be done, we’d rather be flea food.

Don’t worry. There’s much more – and less – to networking than you think! You can reap the same wonderful rewards without having to mingle with a bunch of strangers.

Important: With any kind of networking, the key is to build powerful relationships by giving. Give your attention, advice, ideas, suggestions, support, compliments, referrals – and maybe even your business – to others. Give, give, give… then receive more than you can imagine!

There are many ways you can get freelance work by networking, even if you hate schmoozing. Below are four powerful examples.

1. Tell your family and friends about your online business.

This seems like a no-brainer, but you’d be amazed at how many people fail to do this.

You don’t have to pitch your services/products to your family and friends, but you certainly should not be keeping them secret! You’ll have many opportunities during normal conversations to mention that you enjoy internet marketing and earning money with your online activities. Just plant the seed and eventually it can grow into unexpected business.

And remember, even if your family and friends have no need for the products/services you offer, it’s very likely that they know someone who does.

Key: Every person has connections to an average of 250 other people. When you decide not to mention your services to cousin Annie and neighbor Tom, you’re missing an opportunity to offer your services to hundreds of people they know!

2. Engage in virtual networking.

You do this online, from the comfort of your home office. Besides the benefits of not having to deal with people face-to-face, virtual networking allows you to create contact lists and join online communities comprised of people from all over the world. Most of these people you would probably never meet in any other way. Your virtual network can grow larger and faster than any form of traditional network.

Are you on someone’s email list? (Of course you are!) When they ask for opinions, give yours. When they raise an issue that’s of interest to you, send them a response about it. If they’re selling something you can benefit from (and it fits your budget), buy it – then give them positive feedback about it.

Key: Become someone they know and enjoy hearing from, rather than just one of the many anonymous names on their mailing list.

Participate in online discussion forums, especially those where your ideal clients hang out. Lurk before you leap so you don’t jump in and accidentally make a fool of yourself (not good for winning clients). Read the posts, get a feel for the ambiance. When you have something worthwhile to contribute, start participating. If the forum rules allow it, include a signature block that has a link to your website. But do NOT sell your services! Give valuable advice freely. The idea is to show your knowledge, expertise and desire to help others.

Key: Eventually the forum members will get to know you, like you and trust you. The next natural step for them is to think of you when they (or people in their network) need the products/services you provide!

3. Show off your talent.

Write, write, write! Submit articles to online article directories, write reports and/or ebooks, create your own website and e-zine – put yourself and your knowledge/skills on display, always including your contact information. When appropriate, offer to provide free special reports or articles for people with whom you’re building connections through your virtual networking activities.

Consider giving free workshops related to your niche through your local Chamber of Commerce, Rotary Club or other groups. If you have a job, check into offering “brownbag” (lunchtime) sessions on topics such as “10 Tips for More Earning Money Online in Your Spare Time” for your coworkers.

Key: You want to become the obvious person people will think of when they need your expertise, or the products/services you provide.

4. Attend seminars.

What types of seminars, workshops, conferences or meetings do your customers attend? Go to those events. They are networking goldmines and offer many opportunities to engage in natural conversations with people you want to meet. You don’t have to schmooze or pitch your services. Just be friendly, ask questions, participate in discussions, and be yourself.

Key: You’ll not only learn about the specific issues and topics your target customers are interested in, you’ll build relationships with them at the same time!

10 Ways To Make More Money In Network Marketing

networkNetwork Marketing is an excellent way for the “average Joe or Jane” to make an extra income.  This business concept has been around for decades, and it will not disappear any time soon. The reason for its popularity is simple… It Works!  It does however, require lots of work and most importantly, dedication and persistance to get the job done.  The best part is, once you are able to set up a solid network, your business becomes MUCH less time intensive.  Almost like going on “autopilot”.  The key is to get there as fast as possible.

Here are just a couple of tips I have found to be helpful in maximizing your Network Marketing Business:

1. Use your products regularly.  This is Number 1 for a reason, this is the most ignored part of ANY network marketing business.  How do you expect your business to succeed if you will not even use your own products?  It does seem silly to even have to bring this up, but there are many who are not using their own products, and wonder why they are not making any money.  Make a commitment to use your products for a year, and see where your business goes.

2. Educate yourself constantly.  This is very important!  You must rid yourself of negative ideas, sometimes referred to as “stinkin thinkin”.  This can be done in a variety of ways.  I recommend reading at least 15 minutes a day, but try to shoot for 30.  Business and self-help books are a great way to start.  Don’t forget your Multi-level magazines, as they are full of tips and advice.  Lastly, listen to cassette tapes on multi-level tips from top earners in your business.

3.  Spend as much time as possible with your upline.  Your upline should have only one goal in mind, To Help You Succeed!  They are a vast source of knowledge and information.  Mingle with top distributors in your group, or other groups, and ask how they made it.  Most everyone should be more than happy to provide you with excellent tips and advice.

4. Present your products and marketing plan personally to at least one person daily.  Remember above when I said you are going to have to work, well here it is. Now here is the key, the prospects to whom you present your plan, do not have to be yours personally.  Show the plan for your downline, and not only will you create “security” by placing members in your downlines’ downline, it will also give you a boost in your personal income!   I can guarantee if you were to follow this rule for 6 months, you would create a downline with enough width and depth to create an income to sustain you and your family for life.

5.  Care for your downline. An entire book can be written on this topic. Usually, it’s the little things that show you really care.  Try to maintain regular contact, and always praise your distributor’s accomplishments. You can even offer incentives for specific achievements, such as money, travel, recognition, or other rewards, to help motivate your group.

6.  Duplicate yourself by making distributors independent of you.  This will help to multiply your time, thus making you and your group more effective.  Always lead by example. Never stop recruiting, training and retailing.  Remember the KISS formula – “Keep It Simple, Sweety” I know, I know, I changed the last word, but it maintains the meaning.  This can be done my conducting simple, brief, yet dramatic presentations, and teaching your downline to do the same.

7. Create a large customer base.  This is another largely ignored, yet very important, piece of your network marketing business.  Many try so hard to build a huge downline, that they forget how much profit they could also make by selling their products to retail customers.  Some people will just not want to become part of your downline, no matter how great a product/system you may have.  This does not mean they will not be personally interested in your product.  Try to make everyone your customer.  Once you earn their trust, they will come to you more, and perhaps even join your downline later.  Always “leave the door open”, as people’s needs do change.

8.  Focus on your customers needs.  You must give customers more than they expect, and always satisfy your customers complaints immediately.  Try to listen 80% of the time, and talk only 20%.  As stated above, your customers can be a huge source of future referrals and/or business.  You must earn and maintain their trust.  Once you have their trust, you can always ask for referrals, which leads to even more business and a larger downline.

9.  Set daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly goals – and Write Them Down!  You may have heard the expression, “How do you eat an elephant?  One bite at a time.”  Breaking up a larger goal into smaller easily attainable goals, is the key to success.  You cannot just jump to the end, you have to make progress everyday.  Writing them down is another largely ignored, important tip to help you succeed.  A goal is just a “passing thought”, or “wish” until you put it in writing.  That is when it becomes concrete and real.  It is also a great idea to keep a business journal of your daily activities, as it will help you to become more productive and time-conscious.

10.  Get Out There And Do It Now!  All of the knowledge in the world is useless and unprofitable, until you put the most important ingredient of them all in place.  This “secret” ingredient should come as no surprise at all, but this is the #1 reason for failure at anything in life.  It is ACTION!  Remember, knowledge is useless without action.

Following these steps will almost give you immediate results.  Thank you for reading this, and I truly hope this has provided you with valuable information to help you and your business grow and succeed.

The Advantages of Owning a Handyman Franchise

handymanfranchiseMany exciting reasons to participate in a handyman franchise business exist. One of the most sought after franchise concepts for a decade has been in the industry of home improvement. These franchise systems are planned specifically to take on common problems that need maintenance around the home.

The preceding facts can explain why the home improvement market is growing. If you’ve ever invested in a business or franchise in the past, you will find that a handyman franchise typically requires very little capital to get started. There is no cost of goods and on average a fixed location is not required to run the business. As the owner of a handyman business, your duties focus on the retailing of services. There are two distinctive parts you can play as the owner of a handyman franchise. Before you can own your handyman franchise, you must decide whether you will run the business and do all the repair work as well, or whether you will hire employees to do the repair work. Many handyman franchises are looking for a person with a business background and not a handyman background. In some franchise systems like Home Task Handyman Services, you do all of the repair work while the franchisor runs the business. In other systems, like Mr. Handyman Franchise, your business is dispatching experienced technicians into your customers’ homes. So, if your current life situation doesn’t allow the time it takes to be on the road doing home repairs, you can hire a repairman to do the work and still be part of the home maintenance industry. Because of your expertise and through ownership of the franchise, you will still call the shots.

If you plan to focus on only managing the business while your technicians perform all of the repair work, you will need to know how to direct and motivate your employees to provide the service; this is where highly focused franchise training and support prevails. A franchise’s training and support system is one of the strongest benefits of being a franchise owner and why so many entrepreneurs are tempted to buy a franchise in the first place. Brand-name recognition, built through years of establishing a reputation, also plays an important part in the overall success of the business. The training and support you receive from your franchisor is prepared to maximize the earning potential of your business. After the training period is over, and when you open the doors to your business, the system must be followed accordingly if your busi Note, that if you come into this business with the skills and professional knowledge of a handyman, then you will have an advantage and the foundation for the successful operation of your handyman franchise. Nonetheless, professional handyman or construction knowledge is not a requirement to own a handyman franchise. When you evaluate different franchise companies, it’s a matter of which one offers the most effective system. That will be a determining factor in the success of your business.

Many businessmen become interested in franchises becuase of their flexibility. For instance, you may chose to provide your handyman services from your home, so there are handyman franchising opportunities that offer that flexibility. There are several franchise systems in existence that have been adapted to run a successful handyman business from home. In that sense, handyman franchises offer more flexibility than other franchise systems such as fast food franchises.

It is always in good practice to let a franchising attorney read over your contract before singing off on anything. Purchasing a franchise business may be one of the biggest investments you will ever make, so it’s crucial that a specialized franchising attorney reads over your contract to make sure you are getting the best possible deal. Many people feel that the franchisors have the advantage on franchise negotiations. The franchisor has invested a significant amount of time and money to develop a system that is designed to earn all of its franchisees adequate financial returns, so you will not find much flexibility if you chose to negotiate a contract. Finally, remember that one of the most important sources of valuable information when considering a franchise company will be the existing frnachisees. So what’s the bottom line on starting a handyman franchise? There is definately a great financial potential in the handyman franchise industry. If you’re looking to escape from your daily grind of working for someone else and would like to start your own business, there is no doubt that a handyman franchise can turn your financial dreams into a reality.