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FROM THE DESK OF Terri
GOT THE BUSINESS BLUES? C hange I t U p !
FBI ISSUES ‘HIGH-IMPACT’ CYBERATTACK WARNING
Phishing is a fraudulent email message sent to try and gather personal and/or financial information and usually includes at least one link to a fake website.
How to protect yourself:
Don’t click on any links listed or open any attachments contained in a suspicious email. If in doubt, open a new browser and type the URL into the address bar. Read it again. Most scams will have typos, punctuation mistakes, and impersonal greetings. Don’t enter personal information in a pop-up screen. Legitimate companies don’t ask for personal information via pop-up screens. Pay attention to the URL of a website. Malicious websites may look identical to a legitimate site, but the URL may use a variation in spelling or .net vs .com. Verify by contacting the company directly with contact information NOT provided within the email. Hover over the link to see if you’re actually being sent to the right website. Have NowX’s additional layer of security on your network.
If you’re reading this newsletter, then odds are you understand the powerful pull of good content. Words have the ability to conjure goals, hopes, dreams, and ideas, and they’re an integral part of building your brand. If you don’t communicate with potential clients, how can you expect them to trust you? You can build that trust by crafting quality content on your website and in your advertising. Once you start looking, you’ll probably be surprised by just how many words your company puts into the world each month. We could spend all day going over tips of the trade, but, whether you’re just getting started or giving your brand image an overhaul for the holidays, these are the high points you don’t want to miss. 1. CHOOSE A VOICE When it comes to content, consistency is key. Few things are worse than scatterbrained messaging: If your company’s tone is upbeat and slang-happy one moment and serious and pedantic the next, your customers will develop whiplash, and, worse, they won’t have a good understanding of who you are. Your best strategy for building a bond
Dedicated to your success,
-Terri Don’t get left behind – Scan Now! “Why It’s so Hard to Stop Cybercrime andWhat You Can Do About It”
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Eliminating Doubt and Creating Certainty in All Our Interactions • 972-992-3456 • 1
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4. GO MULTIPLATFORM If you’re producing quality copy, then why not blast it on all frequencies? Facebook and Twitter posts require a different touch than long-form blog posts, but having a social media presence can be a real asset to your brand. In 2014, HubSpot found 80% of companies saw increased traffic to their websites thanks to social media marketing efforts. Don’t miss this opportunity to get your brand in front of more people. 5. HIRE AN EDITOR If you plan to have a blog on your website, send out print marketing materials to customers, or post regularly on social media, then you can’t afford to skip this step. Even if you contract an editor for just a few hours each week, it’s crucial to get professional eyes on your content; it can make or break your brand’s reputation. According to Business NH Magazine, one study showed that businesses with spelling and grammar errors on their
with potential clients is to pick a coherent company identity and stick to it. 2. SPEAK TO YOUR DEMOGRAPHIC Picture your typical customer: Are they male or female? Blue-collar or white-collar? Tech-savvy or old-school? Once you have their traits nailed down, gear your copy specifically to them. If you write with your potential customers in mind and consider things like jargon, tone, and message, then they’ll better identify with your brand and be more likely to do business. 3. GET PERSONAL If you can remind your customers that your company is made up of people just like them, then you have a better chance of earning their business. Showing your audience a real person in your copy is a great way to build authenticity and trust. Try personalizing your blog posts with your own signature, letting employees write their own profiles, and including information about employees’ lives outside the office.
websites lost twice as many potential customers as those with clean copy.
Don’t Get Lost in the Bustle
If you haven’t capitalized on the holiday season for your business’s marketing campaign yet, don’t worry, because you still have time! Even if you’re still a long sleigh ride away from finishing your own holiday to-do list, you can ensure your business flourishes this season with a few last- minute marketing ideas for the holidays.
CREATE GIFT CARD GIVEAWAYS OR INCENTIVES.
Gift cards, even digital ones, are more popular than ever around the holiday season. In one survey, 43% of respondents said they planned on giving gift cards or certificates in lieu of other holiday presents. With 1 in 4 gift cards sold in the last four days leading up to Christmas, these ideal presents make the perfect last-minute marketing tool. Offer gift card incentives or giveaways for your loyal customers. They can make the perfect present for them and, in turn, your business.
DECORATE YOUR WEBSITE FOR THE SEASON.
SEND SEASON’S GREETINGS TO LOYAL CUSTOMERS.
Your customers are already in the holiday spirit, so why not indulge them with some seasonal trappings on your website? Festive holiday touches to your company logo or new webpages recommending holiday gift ideas can go a long way to attract customer attention. You don’t have to be the flashiest display on the block, but showing off your holiday spirit will spread cheer and goodwill.
Even if your Christmas or holiday-themed cards don’t mail on time, you can still send personalized emails or social media messages to let your customers know you’re thinking of them this holiday season. Established customers can be responsible for up to 40% of a business’s sales, and your unexpected holiday greeting could keep your business in mind as they go about their holiday shopping.
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The allure of the great outdoors calls to many, but pitching a tent and cooking over a fire isn’t for everyone. If that describes you, consider the yurt: a small, permanent structure often outfitted with electricity, plumbing, and other modern amenities. Expertly nestled in remote locations, they provide comforts of home in the midst of nature. Here are just a few around the United States available for rent. YURT SWEET YURT Glamping in Beautiful Locations
SPRUCE HOLE YURT, COLORADO
Nestled in the San Juan Mountains about 10 miles north of New Mexico, this yurt is a snow-lover’s paradise. Skiing, snowshoeing, and hiking trails are plentiful in this backcountry location. At the end of a chilly day, come home to comfy beds, cooking supplies, and decor made to feel like you’re camping — but with sturdy walls to keep out the cold.
TREEBONES RESORT, CALIFORNIA
FALLS BROOK YURTS, NEW YORK
For those new to the glamping scene, this is a great choice for an easy transition. With picturesque views of the Pacific Ocean, the Treebones Resort in Big Sur has an array of spaciously comfortable yurts to choose from. The resort has heated pools, a cozy lodge, and even a sushi bar. About an hour up the coastline, you can find a few shops, restaurants, and art galleries if you decide you’ve gotten your dose of nature for the day.
For the glampers who truly want to get away, hike just under 1 mile into the woods of the Adirondack Mountains to discover rustic yurts beckoning you to cook over a fire or bundle up with a book. At night, the yurt’s domed skylight offers excellent stargazing. For those keen on winter activities, skiing and snowshoeing trails start right outside the front door. In the summer, enjoy hiking, fishing, and swimming.
Take a Break!
Potato Latkes Inspired by The New York Times
2 tsp kosher salt
2 large russet potatoes, scrubbed
1 tsp baking powder
1 large onion, peeled and cut into quarters
1/2 tsp black pepper
Safflower or vegetable oil, for frying
2 large eggs
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1. Using either a food processor with a coarse grating disc or the coarse side of a box grater, grate potatoes and onion. (If using a food processor, halve or quarter potatoes.) Once grated, wrap in a clean dish towel or cheesecloth to wring out as much moisture as possible. 2. Transfer to a mixing bowl and mix in eggs, flour, salt, baking powder, and pepper. 3. Heat a heavy-bottomed pan containing 1/4-inch of oil over medium-high heat. Use a heaping tablespoon to drop batter into the hot pan, working in batches. Use a spatula or spoon to form them into discs. Fry about 5 minutes per side, until deeply browned. 4. Transfer to a paper towel-lined wire rack to drain, and serve alongside applesauce and sour cream.
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INSIDE THIS ISSUE From the Desk of Terri PAGE 1 Changing Up Your Business Model PAGE 1 Last-Minute Holiday Marketing Ideas PAGE 2 Yurts: Glamping at Its Finest PAGE 3 Take a Break PAGE 3 Potato Latkes PAGE 3 What Great Leaders Have in Common PAGE 4 Poor delegation is the Achilles’heel of most leaders, who often confuse being“involved”with being“essential.”To determine if you’re holding on to work you should delegate out, the Harvard Business Review (HBR) recommends asking this simple question:“If you had to take an unexpected week off work, would your initiatives and priorities advance in your absence?” If your answer is no or you aren’t sure, then you’re probably too involved. No one person should be the cog that keeps everything in motion, nomatter their position in the company. Luckily, HBR has created an audit using the following six T’s to identify which tasks can be delegated.
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DELEGATE TO ELEVATE The Secret to Being a Great Leader Registering for a conference, putting it on the calendar, and booking the flight are all small tasks someone else can handle. TEDIOUS: These tasks are straightforward but not the best use of your time. Someone else can input lists into spreadsheets or update key performance indicators for a presentation. TIME-CONSUMING: These important, complex tasks don’t require you to do the first 80% of the work. Identify what they are, pass them to someone else, and step in for the final 20% to give approval. TEACHABLE: Is there a task only you know how to do? If so, teach someone else to do it, and step in for the last quality check when it’s done.
tasks off to someone who is more skilled than they are. The task will get done faster and at a much higher quality. TIME-SENSITIVE: These tasks need to get done right now but are competing with tasks of a higher priority. Just because it has to get done immediately doesn’t mean you have to be the one to do it. Sure, some tasks only you can accomplish, but these are extremely rare. As the Virgin Group founder Richard Branson warns, needlessly resisting delegation is the path to disaster. “You need to learn to delegate so that you can focus on the big picture,” Branson says. “It’s vital to the success of your business that you learn to hand off those things that you aren’t able to do well.”
TINY: Small tasks that stack up can undermine the flow of your work.
TERRIBLE AT: It’s okay to be bad at some things. Great leaders know when to pass
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