Get Referrals to Your Business

Getting referrals or recommendations for your business is an essential part of getting people in the door. With so much information about businesses available to customers today, you will also have to compete with reviews about any similar businesses in your area as you work to draw in customers. Word of mouth can be a powerful tool that can help get people towards your business, but it can also be the tool that keeps people away if you do not cultivate a solid reputation. Doing everything you can to earn a recommendation from your customers can help guarantee additional customers.

Make Customer Service Your Top Priority

Before you can count on free publicity from your customers, you need to provide them service worth recommending to others. In most cases, people talk about businesses to others when their experience is very good or very bad. You need to make sure you provide your customers with exceptional products and services, so that they will be excited to talk about their experience with their friends and family. If you notice you are not getting a lot of recommendations from your customers, contemplate on what you can do to improve their experience.

Go in on an Honest Note

If you plan to ask for a recommendation from your customers, be honest about your goals. You do not want customers to feel as though they are pressured into giving you the answers you want to hear. This positive feedback may feel good at the moment, but answers that are canned or dishonest will not be helpful in the long run. Encourage your customers to provide honest feedback, so you can reevaluate your business strategy. If you will be offering some sort of incentive to customers that provide feedback, let them know that this reward is available regardless of whether or not the feedback is positive.

Those who have not been in business long may not have much room in their advertising budget. If you could use a bit of free publicity, your customers can provide a great deal of advertising. Recommendations can be a great source of free advertising, because people are significantly more likely to act on a pitch that is given from someone they know and trust. Don’t be shy about asking your customers to pass the word around. Be frank about your needs and let them know how they can help. Do not make it sound like you are desperate, but rather an up and coming business that is excited about working in the community.

Make Recommendations Part of Your Business Life

Fellow businesses can provide recommendations just as easily as your customers can. When you work to create business partnerships, make it clear that you will expect a recommendation in return. Many community-based businesses agree to recommend each other to their customers to create a network of clients. This can be a great way to boost sales for everyone in the network without having to spend any extra money getting the word out to the public.

Business Interruption Insurance – Is It Really Required for My Business?

Businesses face different risks of uncertainties. Many of them close their operations unable to cope with the loss of income, because of these risks. They face risks of natural calamities such as storms, floods or earthquake and so on. They also face man-made risks like vandalism, etc. Therefore, to protect their businesses from risks, business owners should consider purchasing ‘Business Interruption Insurance’ (BII).

There are many risks that are associated with business interruption such as property damage, equipment break down, fire, flood, theft and any unforeseen risk that your business is not prepared for. During such calamities, your business is forced to shut down temporarily. This leads to huge financial loss and loss of profit.

Few fatal incidents
Apart from the above mentioned, few incidents such as loss of business share, disorganized work environment, lack of funds to pay the staff, etc., also have the potential to ruin your business, for which you are not prepared and may also lead to unexpected financial loss.

To rebuild your business after a disaster is very difficult, because you may need some financial aid. Therefore, to be on a safer side and protect your business from any of the unexpected events, it is advisable to purchase BII, as it covers the loss of income.

Importance of BII
BII is important for every business, as it protects them from the risk of uncertainties. It covers the losses to your business because of the interruption in operations. If your business is covered with BII, you can relax as the insurance company will take care of the damages.

It covers the loss of income, while your business premises are being reconstructed or repaired. Another advantage of this insurance is it helps you pay wages to your employees, while your business is unable to operate, it also covers the earned profits that would have been made if you business was in operation. Note that, this insurance is not sold separately. You can have it included in your business property insurance.

Basic coverage offered by the policy
Some of the basic things covered by BII are loss of gross profit, pay roll, claim preparation costs, additional increased costs, etc. These covers vary based on the insurance company, but the intention of the policies will be the same – to safe guard your business from damages that may make it impossible for you to run your business operations.

If you are still thinking whether to purchase this insurance, then it’s a reason to worry, because you may face loss of income and loss of profit, if any such calamities occur at your business premises.

Network Marketing: Business Model of the Future

Direct Sales or multi-level marketing (MLM) is not new business model. But it is a business model with new life and potential. Often equated with pink Mary Kay Cadillacs and home parties, MLM is seeing a new place in e-commerce and a global economy. As a result, those plugged into the direct sales business are seeing a major surge in popularity and success. This is, in part, due to the higher unemployment and decreased economic stability of late. However, the real driver of the surge in revenue potential of the direct sales business is much more than past middle class women home parties. Consumer behavior is driving the demand for direct sales and its a business change that will stay.

While word of mouth and the recruitment of team members (typically called the downline) is still a major aspect of MLM, the way sales are made and teams are built, and the ceiling on earning potential have dramatically changed. This is due primarily to changes in consumer behavior and expectations coupled with a growing global economy. Technological advances that provide fast access and a myriad of tools and applications have made e-commerce simple and virtually real-time. This has created a new direct sales business model and opportunity that may very well dominate over the next decades.

Gone are the days of calling everyone on “your list” to network, bring in business partners, and generate sales. While still an important part of any successful company, the emphasis of MLM now is more on blogging, social media, internet marketing, and lead generation. Word of mouth still prevails, however new independent distributors use the social networks on the web to promote their products and business opportunities. And new direct sales companies are not pricing themselves out of the market. While team building is still a core function, the emphasis in on selling the product. To be competitive and profitable, direct sales companies know that their products must be priced right and of high quality.

Successful direct sales companies which provide a legitimate business and income opportunity have the following key business elements:

  • Corporate training and tools
  • Active consultant network
  • High quality products
  • Internet centered
  • Minimal inventory requirements
  • Corporate media exposure and advertising

The business model has real potential for long-term success with the right mix of attributes. Not all current MLM companies have made the necessary changes in their business. However, the prediction is that they will soon make significant adjustments and follow the model of leaders in the business.