Security, or lack of it, in our data-driven age.
Were you one of the 100+ million credit customers whose profiles were pilfered from Equifax last summer? Chances are you don’t even know. A whole lot rides on what your identity means in today’s data-driven world, and when a huge company that holds all your private information gets hacked, you should really take notice. Identity theft is a huge industry, and growing exponentially.
Last year, consumers lost over 16 BILLION dollars, a 16% increase from 2016. This year will be no different. If you accept payments online or through a web-based processor, like Square or PayPal you may see more bogus purchases, pay more in chargebacks and possibly even pay higher fees or liability insurance rates.
Personally, you should be proactive in blocking access to credit, by freezing credit applications with the big three reporting agencies: Experian, Trans-Union and Equifax. Good luck out there.
Are your sales efforts value-driven?
This week, I’m re-reading an e-book I downloaded last year. The topic is how to switch from a cost or hours-based pricing model to a value-driven one. This fall, I’m taking its ideas to heart.
For example, your service or product shouldn’t be an expense for your client, it’s an investment in future growth. You don’t need to bill per hour if you ask for a small percentage of their increased profits. Part of this is educating your prospective buyer, and part is moving away from the “cost plus” revenue model that many of us use.
As I see it, most of us are in the “add value” business. We help our customers reach more prospects, increase their productivity, or make their lives better. Our job is to find out what our clients want, what their goals are (even if they don’t really know), and help them achieve their goals.
Want to read this book? Click here.
It’s a new season, let’s welcome it with new thinking.
We join a networking group to find new clients, learn about our partners and grow our companies. As seasons change, we can get complacent and set in our ways, but we don’t have to.
Every change in the weather can help us change our marketing skills. As we feel fresh breezes, we can learn new techniques to let people know who we are and what we’re great at doing.
Since it’s back to school season, consider taking a short course in your specialty; attend a workshop or training seminar.
These focused events usually get our creative juices flowing and bring us a wealth of new ideas; take advantage of them!
Boy, getting work is a lot of work.
One of the odd things about running a business is that the busier you are, the less time you have to market yourself. When you don’t have any work, you wonder how you might have lined up new prospects, but when you’re doing well, you often think things are great and won’t change.
Of course, that’s never true. It’s always important to plant seeds that grow into new opportunities every month, whether you’e flush or scrappy. Are you meeting new people? Revisiting prior acquaintances or prospects? Getting your message out?
You should make time to market yourself when it isn’t so important so when you are finally between gigs, you still have a stream of new opportunities lined up. Good luck!
Are you on a first-name basis with your local newspaper editor? You should be. It’s worth getting to know writers in the local news media who can help you promote your business. Continue reading A little publicity never hurts →