Start ups

Customer Service: The Difference Between Empathy and Sympathy

Ross | December 16th, 2014

Most customer service teams respond to customers with sympathy. A sympathetic response could be: “I’m also unhappy with the way that product works.” Sympathy is rarely an ideal response to a customer’s problem. Instead, show empathy. Empathy allows to you be professional and caring at the same time. It also allows you to avoid becoming […]

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Small Business and Startups: How Do I Thank You?

Mike | December 15th, 2014

Mom taught us well. She raised us to be polite and she raised us to consider other’s feelings. For many small business owners saying thanks to your team is a head-scratcher. Performance-based bonuses can be a powerful incentive for individuals, and profit-sharing plans can reward great teamwork, but saying thank you can and should rise above […]

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2015: Some Trends!

Mike | December 8th, 2014

It is totally that time of year again. Decorations are everywhere, strains of holiday music can be heard in every Starbucks in the land, delivery truck drivers are straining under the weight of gift-laden cartons, and annual lists of trends are popping up on blogs everywhere. So, thinks I, why shouldn’t I jump in on […]

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Small Business and Startups: The 3-Page Business Plan (and a short post to match!)

Mike | November 17th, 2014

Well, it’s been a while since we last explored the topic of business plans and plenty has changed. The age of the 80-page plan has passed and has been replaced with the 140-character attention span. It’s not that potential investors and employees don’t want to know how you’re going to pull off this crazy, audacious […]

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Small Business and Startups: Customer Service Marketing Manifesto

Mike | November 3rd, 2014

I’ve written and spoken often about how customer service for us is a marketing tactic and how we view our customer service as a part of our marketing department. It’s simple – great customer service begets great customer satisfaction which begets great word of mouth. But there’s is another layer to this strategy that is […]

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10 Best Practices For Email Marketing For Small Business and Startups

Ross | October 21st, 2014

Marketers are seeing an alarming trend. Although 122 billion emails are sent every hour, a large and growing percentage of emails are never read. This is not surprising – most marketing emails are simply pure spam without any creative or substantive value. Even worse, really bad marketing emails can easily destroy a company’s reputation and […]

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Small Business and Startups: Number One Leadership Skill

Mike | October 20th, 2014

“Genius is the ability to put into effect what is on your mind.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald Let’s see. Strength? Nah. Productivity? Nope. Ability to instill fear? No way. The number one skill any great leader needs is the ability to communicate clearly, effectively, and quickly. Great leaders do display strength and determination, that’s for sure; great […]

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Small Business and Startups: Best Boss Ever?

Mike | October 13th, 2014

“Remember the difference between a boss and a leader; a boss says “Go!” – a leader says “Let’s go!”” – E.M. Kelly There are plenty of ways to skin a cat. This applies not only to winning arguments and basketball strategy, but to business management as well. The idea in business, as with so many things, […]

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Review. Rethink. React.

Mike | October 6th, 2014

“Leadership is a matter of having people look at you and gain confidence, seeing how you react. If you’re in control, they’re in control.” – Tom Landry Every so often a small business owner or a startup entrepreneur has to take a step back, breathe a deep breath, and look at your company with eyes wide open. […]

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How Color Influences What People Buy

Ross | October 1st, 2014

When you designed your logo, website, business cards, marketing materials and your products, you probably spent some time picking colors. But did you know that color has a big impact on what people buy? Studies show that up to 90% of judgments about products can be based on color alone. Consumers place color above other […]

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