Tips to Starting Your Own Business

Starting your own business can be a huge undertaking and is involved with great risks. But when planned correctly, the rewards can be amazing. Whether you have a brilliant business idea, want financial independence, or just simply want to take on a new challenge, there are many reasons to become an entrepreneur. But- it is crucial that you build your business on a strong foundation to ensure that your business can be successful. Here are 4 tips to starting a new business!

Research

Before diving into building your business, you must do a LOT of research to make sure that you can be successful. Entrepreneurship should not be rushed; it is essential that you consider every possible scenario before getting started. Ask yourself: is there a need for this business? Is there anyone else selling this product or service? How competitive is the market? Is this a product or service going to be useful years from now or is it just a fad? How will I adjust to changing trends? How will my business fit into the market? In addition to asking questions about your business, you must ask yourself questions. Am I fit for this role? Do I have the time to devote to this? What will happen if I’m not successful? Is this the right time for me? Once you’ve determined that your business can be successful, you’re ready for the next step!


Plan, Plan, and Plan some more!

Creating a business plan can help to turn ideas into a reality. Even if you are the only one involved with your business, business plans can force you to answer difficult questions about your business so that you are more prepared and ready.  In addition, if you need financial support, creating a business plan is crucial. In the most simple terms, a business plan should include what your business is and what you hope to achieve. Also consider including: what is my market? Who is my competition? How can I differentiate my product? Will I be profitable? Asking yourself these questions can set you up for a more successful process.

Assess and plan your finances

Starting your business can be pricey due to initial investments and various costs such as inventory, a workplace, licenses, permits, advertising, employees etc. It is important that you get your finances sorted out before diving in! Although not every expense can be predicted, try putting together a list of expenses so that you have a rough estimate of how much you will need. Since not everyone has large sums of money lying around (I wish!!) borrowing may be neccessary. You can apply for loans, grants, or even get help from generous family and friends. Make sure to research what financing process is right for you.


Determine your business structure

The structure of your business is important to decide before getting started because it determines how you file your taxes and business regulations. Sole Proprietorship,  Partnership,Corporation,  S-Corporation, and Limited Liability Company (LLC) are all great business structure options. Once you decide on one, it is not set in stone. You can adjust and change as your business grows!

Starting your own business can be an exciting and rewarding experience if done properly! Click here to read about how our services can help you!

How to Motivate Yourself at Work

With Summer approaching and warm temperatures (finally) kicking in, many of us are experiencing a lack of motivation to stay in the office and get things done when you could be enjoying the weather. Although a dip in the pool or trip to the beach is always nice, being productive and successful can have greater lasting impacts than a tan! When you find your mind slipping away from work, try following these quick and easy tips!

Set up small goals

Looming deadlines and large projects can be daunting!! So much to do, and not enough time or motivation to even begin. Often, getting started is the hardest part. In order to combat this issue, try breaking up your large assignments into small tasks. The more you accomplish, the more motivated you feel to keep working. Don’t take a break or get distracted until you finish a task in order to motivate yourself to keep moving!


Write down what you need to do

Visualizing what you need to get done makes it so much easier to actually accomplish things. Try using an agenda, google calendar, or even apps to record your tasks. Nothing is more satisfying than crossing items off of a list! Seeing items crossed off on an agenda can help you feel motivated and productive.

Set up a timeline

It is so easy to let your mind wander and get distracted at work. Implementing a timeline can help you to stay on track and make your time more valuable. Try setting mini deadlines- and stick to them! Again, breaking large projects into smaller chunks can help you to get things done more efficiently.


Eliminate distractions

Distractions can be your worst enemy in the workplace. Do you find yourself constantly checking your phone? Staring out the window? Chatting with coworkers? Getting rid of distractions is crucial to ensure that you’re not even tempted! We are all victims of using social media as a means of procrastination. But I promise, your instagram feed will still be there after you get out of work. Try turning off your phone, moving your desk so that you can’t see a window, and save the chatting with coworkers for AFTER work! You will feel so much more productive if you zone into what you are doing.

Reward system

Lastly, implement a reward system for yourself. Plan out what you are doing after work during your commute so that you have something to look forward to. Making your life outside of work more interesting can help to motivate you while you’re working. In addition, planning out your night BEFORE work can help prevent you from trying to figure it out during work.



Even the most productive of us have been victims of a lack of motivation during work. Try to use these tips to pick yourself up when you find yourself going into a slump! Click here to see how our services can help your business!

The Top Three Email Providers

Happy National Email week! As discussed in my last post, there is a number of factors that go into picking the perfect email service for your business. Factors include, but are not limited to: ease of use, reliability, security and compatibility with other programs. It is so important to make sure that your email service is compatible to your business before transitioning your business! Since emails are such an important part of your daily operation, it takes training and time to get used to a new email provider, so make sure that you pick the right one the first time around! Here is the ranking of the top three email services!


gmail

Due to a variety of factors, the top email service is gmail! I’m sure that this does not come as a surprise to many, as gmail has been increasingly popular over the years. First and foremost, gmail is incredibly user friendly; over 1 billion people use gmail worldwide for both business and personal communication! With an easy-to-navigate layout and various settings to adjust size, colors, etc., gmail is easy for even the least tech-savvy folks! Next, gmail makes sure that your information is safe and private by implementing a two-step verification filter to ensure that no unauthorized users are able to get into your account. In combination with spam filters, it is very unlikely that you will get hacked while using a gmail account. Lastly, gmail accounts offer various effective business such as google drives, google calendar, google sheets, etc. These tools make it easy to collaborate and share information among groups of people. Best of all- these tools save automatically so there is no chance of lost data!!


Outlook

The second ranked email service is Outlook! With over 400 users worldwide, this service is certainly popular for its organization and ability to work seamlessly with other Microsoft applications. Outlook makes it easy to share documents from excel and word, two business popular applications. In addition, Outlook makes it possible to schedule meetings and appointments, and even reminds you 15 minutes before the time is set to start! No more forgetting about meetings or mixing up the times! Outlook also offers advanced technology that separates low and high priority emails so important information is easier to find. Lastly, Outlook requires two forms of identification before logging in. Like gmail, this system protects unauthorized users from gaining access to your information!!


ICloud

The email service ranked third is iCloud email. This is a lesser known service, but still has many great features. Like gmail and Outlook, iCloud email offers a two factor verification login to ensure that it’s really you that’s logging into the account. The greatest feature about this service is its compatibility with all apple applications. Iphones are a very popular cell phone choice, and the icloud email can make it easier for people to communicate on the go and in the office. ICloud ensures that your information can be shared from the computer, to the phone, and through various applications. In addition, iCloud offers backups so you don’t have to worry about losing any of your information!



And there you have it- the top three email services! Need help with your emails or want to eliminate the hassle? Click here to check out our products!

Why Your Business Should Use National Holidays to Advertise

Have you found that your marketing ideas have been running dry? Your content calendar has been drained of fresh, fun content? Your advertising has no spark?? Have no fear, even the best of marketers reach a point in time where each advertisement they create feels old and outdated. A solution to this dilemma is easy: start introducing national holidays into your advertisements. Using holidays for social media marketing can add that much needed spark in order to spice up your advertising


There is a national holiday for everything!! Did you know that June is National Candy month? Or that National Social media day is June 30? Find national holidays that are relevant to your business and personalize them to help bring in more customers. Even the smallest, most obsolete national holidays can be an excuse to run a flash sale or event!!

For example, are you a pool company? You are probably already using holidays such as Memorial Day, Fourth of July, and Labor Day to advertise your products. Have you ever considered using holidays such as National Swimming Day (July 11th), National Pool Opening Day (last saturday in april), or Summer Solstice (June 21) to raise awareness of your business?


separate yourself from competitors

One reason why you should use national holidays to promote your business is to separate yourself from big corporations and competitors. Large corporations such as Walmart have marketing budgets that are remarkably high. While you can’t compete with their budget, you can use national holidays to attract buyers. For instance, you don’t see large businesses such as Walmart celebrating National Peanut Butter Cookie Day!!


offer customer incentives

There are many ways that you can attract customers via celebrating national holidays! You can offer flash sales or promotions related to the holiday.  This gives customers an excuse to buy products if they did not have a reason to before! In addition, it is a fun way to get rid of extra products! Another way to attract customers is by throwing themed events related to the national holiday. For example, during National Rose Month, offer classes on floral arrangements. Not only does this prompt customers to make a purchase, but it raises awareness of your business and will bring in more business in the future.

use social media

Use social media to your advantage! Social media is such a crucial advertising resource. Use facebook, twitter, and instagram in order to get the word out about your sales, promotions, and events. Don’t forget to utilize instagram stories and repost customer posts!


Need help with your online social media marketing? Click here to check out our social media services and more!

How to Make Your Business’s Memorial Day Promotions Stand Out!

It’s Memorial Day Weekend!! Every year, this weekend comes with honoring the brave men and women who died while serving in the United States military, family barbeques, pool parties, and of course-sales and promotions from nearly every business! In a time where it seems like Memorial Day promotions are EVERYWHERE, how do you get yours to stand out??

Find your target audience for this promotion

It is important to identify your target audience in order to ensure that your advertisements are reaching the right people! Nothing is more frustrating than crafting the perfect ad and not receiving the engagement that you expected to receive from it. In order to determine the proper audience, consider the product that you are advertising. Are you a trendy boutique? A hardware store? A bakery? Consider demographics of people who would be interested in your promotion, and find ways to connect with them. Social media, emails, flyers, and online ads are great ways to inform customers of your promotion!

Create the perfect advertisement

There are many factors involved in creating an effective advertisement. Once you determine the proper target audience for your promotion, craft the ad around what they want to hear. Popular tips include using catchy phrases, bright colors, and interesting pictures in order to attract the customers attention. People see advertisements every day, but often chose not to read them.  First impressions matter a lot for ads; If you catch a customers eye, they will be more likely to actually read it!! In addition, it is crucial to keep your point clear and concise – no one wants to call and clarify something that was mentioned in an ad or show up to the store and realize that the product that they want isn’t actually on sale.

Use social media

Social media can be a great way to promote your business! Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram have been found to be great marketing tools. Not only is social media a quick and easy platform for advertising, but it is also less expensive than placing ads in the paper. In addition, social media ads tend to get more customer exposure! Tip: Don’t be afraid to use Instagram stories! They are an easy way to remind customers of promotions without actually being permanent on your feed!  

Differentiate yourself from your competition

If you are selling the same products as a number of other businesses nearby, it is important to differentiate yourself from your competitors. An easy way to do this is by offering them incentives to go to your store. For example, offer a free gift with purchase or a coupon for the next time that they make a purchase! These tactics can help to get customers to chose YOU over competitors.

Need more help? Click here  to see how we can help!  

5 Social Media Tips for Law Firms

Social media marketing can be an effective resource for spreading the word about your law firm. The main goal of using social media for marketing is to advertise your services, show why you are a credible firm, and make people think of your name first when they need legal help. Social media marketing is a great advertising outlet because it is quick, easy, and inexpensive, but has the potential to result in high levels of engagement.  Here are 5 tips for promoting your law firm via social media:

Choose a social media platform where your potential clients are active

Not everyone uses every social media platform. In order to most effectively advertise for your business, make sure to appeal to the platforms where your potential clients are the most active.  For example, if you specialize in business or employment law, LinkedIn may be an effective platform for you. In addition, consider the demographic of your clients; younger people are typically more active on Instagram and Twitter, while older people are more active on Facebook.  Choosing the proper social media network can make your campaign more successful.

Portray a professional brand in order to build the credibility of your business

When looking for a lawyer, potential clients want to see firms that portray themselves in a professional manner.  It is important to include complete and accurate information in easy-to-read places. Information should include: hours of operation, location, mission statement, contact info, a link to the website, any awards or recognition received, and number of years practiced. This will eliminate the hassle of having to search for information.  

Use the 80/20 rule

When using social media to promote your law firm, it is important to have a balance between advertisements and entertainment. If your feed is only advertisements, you run the risk of losing  follower engagement due to lack of interest. But if your feed is only entertainment, your business may not seem credible. Try to achieve a ratio of 80% advertisements and 20% entertainment to maximize interest from followers!  

Gain support from followers

Now that you have your account running, it is important to gain followers so that your page seems well established. Try reaching out to family, friends, other firms, or local businesses and encourage them to follow you. Follow and engage with other similar accounts, and it is likely that they will do the same.  

5. Promote your business

Let possible clients know about any recognitions or awards that you have received.  

When used properly, social media is a great tool to help promote law firms! Need more help? Click here to check out our social media services!

Top 3 Apps for Small Businesses

With all the new and emerging technologies and applications today, starting up and maintaining businesses has become much easier to manage. There are now applications used for various functions from organizing business tasks, to keeping track of paychecks, and even to measuring and reporting a company’s current success and status. Below are three of the best applications for your small business or organization!

Evernote

Evernote is a downloadable software, or mobile application, which contains note taking, organizing, and archiving capabilities. Evernote allows for small businesses to maintain fluidity and organization throughout the business by giving visibility into projects, work flows, and deadlines across various employees in the business. This allows business people to work better and more efficiently together by ensuring everyone in the company, or in a specific department of the company, has up-to-date information.

Zoom

Zoom video conferencing is another software application which greatly improves business management and functions for small to medium-sized businesses. Zoom allows for HD video conferencing with simultaneous screen sharing and white-boarding aimed to greatly improve group collaboration long distance. If a business partner or employee is traveling or out-of-state for a conference, networking, and so on, they are still able to easily collaborate and communicate with their fellow employees, allowing business to maintain speed in business projects.

Square

Square is another application that has greatly improved business efficiency, as well as the customer experience. Square allows for online payments to be made right from a smartphone, removing the need for cash registers and computer systems at the checkout. The application also allows businesses to manage inventory, customer directories, and digital receipts. You can also send invoices to customers, save cards on file, use Square to sell online off of your company’s website, and it even works with no signal so there are no disruptions or inconveniences!

These applications allow for business management to be made easy, improving your business efficiency and success, and overall customer satisfaction as well. Utilizing these apps, along with the various social media applications to market and manage your business will allow your business to continuously expand and improve every year.
Click here to check out our MaxExposure products and get started on improving your business today!

Employee Feature: Briana Cefaloni

What do you do for MaxExposure? 

I am Client Service Representative for Max Exposure. I help with on-boarding and the continued satisfaction of our customers. 

What is your favorite part of your job?

My favorite part of my job is the family feel of MaxExposure. Being away from home and extremely close to my family, it is so nice knowing I have a family at MaxExposure. Getting to work alongside the sisters in my sorority and having such an inspirational boss, Aly, I am constantly motivated to better myself. 

Why do you feel companies should choose MaxExposure?

Companies should choose MaxExposure for its small business feel and personal attention. Being a small firm, we are able to put a greater focus on each of our customers. We do things like quarterly customer calls and give constant feedback and guidance to our clients. This personal attention is much greater then one would get at a larger social media business. 

What is your favorite MaxExposure product?

My favorite MaxExposure product is Facebook Advertising. Since I run them for customers every month I truly get to see the impacts they have on businesses. Advertising on Facebook allow businesses to reach hundreds or thousands of new people every month in their region. This is getting them more exposure, which is the ultimate goal. 

Click here to check out our MaxExposure Facebook Advertising product!

Employee Feature: Amanda Ciarci, Marketing Assistant

ciarciprofpic.jpeg

What do you do for MaxExposure?

My daily tasks include sourcing and posting content for clients as well as monitoring their social media accounts.

What is your favorite part of your job?

I love having the opportunity to enable our clients to have an online presence that aligns with their goals as a business owner. I feel as though this is typically thought as a luxury for large-scale corporations, but in this day and age it’s now a possibility for every business, no matter the size, to be able to build upon their brand and reputation.

Why do you feel companies should choose MaxExposure?

Having a team like us, completely focused on the marketing, enables every customer to freely pursue the dream that led them to starting their business! What we offer is a new way to connect with the users of the phenomenal products and services our clients are already providing.

What is your favorite MaxExposure product?

I don’t think I could pick just one! One of the best aspects of the services we offer is that we can create a customized package tailored exactly to what each individual business needs. 

Check out our website or give us a call today to see what product package would work best for your company!