"Onwards and upwards"
It doesn't take much to realize that 2013 has been the biggest roller coaster of my life. While I have had many wins, I have had equal losses that have been harder to swallow than I would have liked.
Building a business isn't easy. In fact, it is damn hard. You get on a roll and then one thing happens and it crashes downward until somehow you find the strength that you didn't know existed, then you pull it back in line and then start all over again, hopefully learning from those mistakes and taking the business in a slightly new direction albeit one that has the same end result.
It's no secret that I have taken a few days off. For a start, my social media accounts have come to a stop and I am not checking my emails. Instead I am giving myself time to think and soak up the atmosphere of Christmas and family, without disruptions.
I won't lie by saying that I don't want to do all of these things, but I know that in order to give 2014 my best shot, that I will need to have a few days off and really get back to grassroots.
Having travelled back to Australia for Christmas and to spend time in our different Australian offices, I have been absorbing myself in everything that I did when I lived here full-time.
First stop was Melbourne. Skinny flat white and croissant from a cafe on Commercial Road for breakfast before work, prawn dumpling soup from Rice for lunch and dinner at Fog Restaurant - the food is delicious and there really is nothing quite like it.
With breakfast, I like to read the papers and I enjoy nothing more than walking into my local newsagency to pick them up. As I read through page by page, I am dumbfounded as to how much bad news there is out there. When I travel, I tend to only read business newspapers and usually online because that is the most convenient. But golly gosh, does it all have to be doom and gloom?
My second stop was Sydney, my favourite city in the world because I believe that there is nothing more beautiful than the harbour that I fortunately get to look out on all day long. I go to the office in Kent Street, Sydney, each day and I really enjoy the great weather and hustle and bustle of a big city.
On Thursday, I met with Family Future Managing Partner Rolf Howard to discuss Estate Planning. I am travelling a lot and there is many things that have changed about my life and finances. My biggest issue I face that in the event if I die young, my dog has to live with someone who loves and adores her as much as I do - which is impossible, but near enough is good enough. She has travelled to the US with me so that while I travel continuously, she can travel with me on the plane, in the cabin. It's very exciting and I know I will be travelling for some time to come, so it makes perfect sense for her to do so.
The modern marketer is young, dynamic, nimble, clever and always on call. They never drop the ball, and always have something in their hand - namely, a cell phone with an Apple logo that is their all in one, complete communications platform that talks, listens, looks up and engages on levels no-one thought imaginable 20 years ago.
There are many great things about a modern marketer, but who is counting. Instead of doing the maths, the modern marketer is doing the sums, talking the talk and jumping hurdles in a way we never thought imaginable.
I cannot believe the difference the past 10 years has made to marketing and I am wondering if my "old school" counterparts are able to keep up - literally. We are not getting any younger and as much as we want to believe we are youthful and can tweet with the best of them, it is becoming more and more evident that the fresh out of University marketers know a thing or two about marketing that we just haven't quite captured.
It's an employees world - and don't I know it! I am not about to complain, but gosh, it's hard trying to be a leader and getting 100 percent of your employees engaged - all of the time!
#24yrold asked me the other day, "what can we do better?"
I couldn't believe my ears!
With the constant issues many of my entrepreneur friends face with Gen-Y, and my own struggle with finding the right people for the right job, that are self-motivated and wanting to be exceptional at what they do - I find that my team rarely asks me for feedback other than in a performance review.
Working for a company is a two-way Street. It is not "what you can do for me" or "just about the money" - it's about together working as a team to achieve a common goal. When that goal is achieved, everyone celebrates and is rewarded through recognition and financial upside.
5 Ways Employees Can Step Up Their Game
Entrepreneurs are a unique breed. I know. I am one of them.
It use to be a word that was used to describe the unruly small business owner who spruiked their new businesses from the rooftops. Kind of uncool.
Now, its a word associated with billionaires, A-type personalities, game-changers and fairly much anyone who is "having a go" at business. This is cool - the innovative kind.
When lambasted with questions on what 2014 will look like for small business marketing through social media, I, an entrepreneur who does wear Prada, am as excited as ever. What really is in store for small businesses and how can they capitalize on new, innovative and customer-centric marketing techniques aimed at giving small businesses (and large if I am to honest) a greater insight to customer interaction and push-buying techniques.
Here is the 2014 Outlook for Small Business Marketing
It's Christmas time and without realising it, I have almost run out of time to buy gifts for my loved ones.
One of my team members in Sydney said that they had bought some things from Little Sale Birdy, a website designed to find all the sales for brand items online and provide one single marketplace where you get the best deal possible. After visiting the site, I was mesmerized by the quality options that the website has and quickly purchased a pair of shoes.
I then went off and started searching for different brand items for my nieces and nephews and was surprised that other sites had the same items at a much higher price. I like Little Sale Birdy because it stops me from wasting time looking up different websites to find the same thing, just at different prices. Instead, they give me access to all the sales online at once - saving time and money.
The name Little Sale Birdy is kind of cute. It's less corporate and feels a bit cheeky and more personal than the other brands online.
With many shoppers experiencing "checkout anxiety" with more than $1.79 trillion dollars worth of goods abandoned by shoppers online this year, its reassuring to know that if you go to Little Sale Birdy you will always get the best price because they actually bring together all the sale sites, providing the customer with full access to all sales in one market place without the worry that you may be ripped off or you have to fill in your details more than once.
Inundated with calls from friends, its refreshing to know that through my experience with business expansion, others are able to rethink their business strategies and look at their own business potential.
The US market for my business is 27 times bigger than Australia and as such, a lucrative opportunity exist for businesses like mine that have a strong product or service to capitalise on the market opportunity.
Marketing Eye provides a bespoke business solution for companies that do not have in-house marketing capabilities providing small to medium sized businesses with a complete outsourced marketing department for just $2,000 per month. This includes an experienced marketing manager backed by a team of graphic design, branding, public relations, web and online specialists, all under one brand - no freelancers or outsourcing.
They are not just revamping what exists already, but revolutionizing the way in which technology is used and powered to bring change. There isn't a developer here that hasn't caught on to something big, but perhaps, for some it won't happen because they are bringing the wrong product out at the wrong time, or they simply do not know how to market it.
December is upon us and in the marketing world, its a big month for writing marketing strategies for 2014. As we conduct one workshop after another, it amazes me at how out-of-touch people really are through no fault of their own.
At Marketing Eye, we work tirelessly on keeping our top marketers up-to-date with the latest in marketing, yet they still stay behind because there is always someone out there bringing out a new solution or new way in which to market, that may catch on and be the next big thing.
Marketing automation has been around for a few years, but it is not done and dusted. Instead, marketing automation is evolving and transforming the way in which we conduct marketing and process our prospects and clients into a more advanced customer relationship program. What is missing though is the biggest influencer in marketing today - and that's social media.
The way your business wins in the future is very different than the way it has won in the past
Just when we think we have got it 'sorted out' something else comes along and again, small businesses fall behind the eight ball.
If I look back on the past 20 years or so, business has changed dramatically.
- Globalization is changing the way we work, play and learn
- Technology affects every element of our lives and being
- Employees have become the single most important part of any business
- A person can no longer just blunder into business and expect to survive
- Old business models and paradigms have changed and will continue to do so
- Connecting with customers doesn't come just by word of mouth, a strong sales team or advertising in the local newspaper
- People have changed.