Why your marketing should be making you money
not just another business expense.

When it comes to marketing your business, you need to think beyond a few Facebook ads or hours of time that you spend for little return.

Your business marketing needs to make you money

For every dollar you spend on marketing your business you need to get a return on that dollar plus more. This applies to both direct and indirect marketing.

 Direct marketing cost is when you spend actual dollars for the marketing activity such as Social Media Ads, paid directory listing, paid influencer endorsement etc.
 Indirect marketing cost is a course you buy to learn how to market your business, product given to influencer for endorsement, bartering of your services etc.

All marketing costs need to bring you in more business than the amount of money paid.

3 Marketing Mistakes Business Owners Make

Often business owners are very passionate and competent in doing the delivery part of the business however working ON the business is not always a skill that they have.

Marketing is a classic skill that many business owners need to work on.

Here are the 3 most common mistakes I see when it comes to marketing that many business owners make:

1. Build it and they will come – No Marketing at All
2. Hit & Miss Marketing
3. No Marketing Strategy

Marketing Your Business

Marketing is the lifeblood of businesses if you are not continually attracting new business your business will not grow. New customers are wonderful, but you also need to look after your current customers and encourage them to buy more from you. There is nothing worse than losing a customer because they went to your opposition because they didn’t know you sold “IT”.

Your customers, even your most loyal customers may not know all the services or products that you offer; they may not have had a need for them in the past.  We all see red cars when we have bought a shiny new red car.  Marketing your business helps you be seen as that red car supplier before they buy the red car that is what your customers desperately want.

Hit & Miss Marketing

We have got a few hours, its the beginning of the month, the phone is not ringing, so we think we should do some marketing. Hit and miss marketing is when you go full steam ahead for a short period of time and then stop. It is very common for business owners to do this, as we are trying to fit marketing in and around everything else, that we are doing in the business.

Did you know that it takes approximately 20 touchpoints before someone will buy the solution to their problem? The problem with hit and miss marketing is that you are giving them multiple touchpoints in a small amount of time and then you are gone.

Now that the potential buyer is ready to buy you are nowhere to be found and they are forced to go to your competitor because they are available to provide the solution.

Marketing Strategy

If you only have limited time to do your marketing, make sure you have a marketing strategy and use a scheduler to spread out your posts.

Want to know more about marketing your business? Contact Cathy Smith from CATCO Enterprises who has been helping businesses make more from their marketing for 19 years. Download our free 9 point Lead Amplification Framework or listen to Small Business Talk Podcast.

Kind Regards, Cathy Smith

Belle Accounting

Well, the good news is that the Reserve Bank has told us the recession period caused by the global pandemic is largely over and the Australian economy is slowly growing, even with Victoria’s lockdown, which has now lifted. So the worst is past, but you still need to survive.

Cash flow is the lifeblood of your small business, so let’s have a look at what you can do to maximise it.

Cash flow in – getting payment for your goods and services is now the highest priority for your business. If you are invoicing:

Outstanding Accounts

Follow up regularly with any customers that have outstanding invoices and may have a reputation for slow payment. Offer a payment plan if cash flow is tight in their business but in the end, you can’t be treated as an interest-free loan. Again its a balancing act between looking after your own interests and being reasonable with customers but you will know the ones who deserve some help and those that are stepping over the line.

Consider asking a friend or family member to make the calls to customers with outstanding balances for you. As women, we can so strongly advocate for each other but find it hard to do the same for ourselves. I remember a well-loved media figure telling the story of how in her early days she would call pretending to be her own agent to book appointments and interviews to avoid having to sell herself. Ask you BFF to be your Emily from Accounts to help you hunt down your outstanding invoices.

Belle Accounting

Belle Accounting

New invoicing

Review your payment terms, you may want to reduce the period for payment or ask for payment upfront. It is important to look after your regular customers but not at the expense of yourself. Have a chat and see if you can negotiate suitable terms directly with them, communication is essential.

It is vital you invoice promptly, as the longer you take to invoice clients the longer it is till you receive payment and as we noted earlier, cash flow is the lifeblood of your business, free it up as quickly as you can.

Consider a third party payment system that direct debits the customer when the job has been completed or the item sent. If you have regular customers consider a weekly or monthly ongoing part payment that may help both your and their cashflows.

Free Marketing – Social media and other free forms of marketing will help you communicate with your customers and let them know you are open for business. Keeping up your profile is key to a smooth transition into the rebuilding economy. Customer may not be buying now regardless it is important to be visible in your market, particularly at low/no cost. Email your database or post and spread some positive energy, even if you’re is feeling a bit low.

Cash Flow out – are there any expenses that you haven’t already reduced that could use some tweaking? Are there any suppliers that you can call to negotiate payment plans? As we touched on earlier, it is going to improve for everyone and we want as many people to survive with their businesses intact as possible, Contact with your suppliers to see if they can provide any help, just like with your customers, communication is the key.

Weekly review

It’s not much fun but essential that you review your cash flow weekly, put aside 30 minutes in your calendar, pour a tea or wine and let’s review your cashflow:

  • Make sure whatever system you are using to capture data, a spreadsheet or software like Xero, is up to date.

  • Calculate the payments received (cash flow in) and the expenses paid (cashflow out). The goal is for a positive cash flow in, each week.

  • Have a look at the outstanding invoices and make a plan of how to tackle them for next week

  • Have a look at expenses to be paid and make a plan for these two.

  • Breathe and know you’ll be OK, this too will pass…

This is crucial time spent to help your business survive this period of rebuilding.

 

Thank you for your time reading this blog post. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or would like to connect.

Author – Bridgett Fuller, Director at Belle Accounting Co Pty Ltd

Bridgett@belleaccountingco.com

www.belleaccountingco.com

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Collaboration tips
Networking event

Networking event

The business world out there is huge and all so scary when you startup, this is why we need to collaborate and connect with other businesses, online and offline, you may think your business doesn’t need to but really we all do.  Surround yourself with link-minded people, we all need that support and you never know what you might learn from someone else along the way.

This is why there are networking groups out there, and there are more of them out there then you know, when you join these networks you want to be going in with some form of a goal in mind, and not just the goal of “I want to tell everyone about my business” you really want to connect with other businesses after the event and remember they are there for the same reason as you “to create awareness” or some are even there to “build confidence talking about their business” go beyond the event, contact someone after the networking event to make a further connection, there’s more than one way of doing this, either by making a B2B deal, leaving a review on one of their platforms or sharing their business link on your own business page, this is why we at Fembuiz Directory publish guest blogs because it’s another way of connecting and collaborating with other businesses, here’s a further insight into connecting with other businesses:

  1. Collaborate with other businesses in any way that you can, for example, do a monthly deal, if someone buys from either one of your businesses in the month of “October” for example, they also get a 10% discount voucher for the other business or a free first consultation.  This is when you want to connect with other businesses that complement yours.
  2. Engage in their social media posts, blogs, etc.  When you find other businesses to connect with that complement each other make sure you are engaging in their posts.  We can’t connect with every business out there but if you picked a handful every now and then to really engage with and ask them to engage with your business in return.
  3. Sharing their business in groups you’re part of on social media.  There are so many groups on social media now it’s impossible to be part of them all, so ones that you are a part of and think they may be beneficial to your friend or collaboration partner, create a post and mention that you are sharing for a friend or post “this is a great business” (don’t forget their business link), you never know who might be looking for a service like that at the moment.
  4. Give honest feedback and spread positive words. Compliment and encourage them publicly and raise positive criticism for areas of improvement with them privately, leave them a positive review on any platform they have, or word of mouth is the best form of advertising any business can get. When you leave a review on Facebook it shows on your own profile showing that you engage with other businesses.
  5. Don’t expect friends to work for free, even with a collaboration. Make sure you are both receiving something and both benefiting from it, everyone needs to be taking something home. We all have bills, time, and overhead expenses to cover.

After all, you want to get the full value out of that time and money spent of attending a networking event.

Collaborate

Collaborate – Find ONE person to connect with after the event.

And one tip for yourself:

Carry a notebook everywhere you go.  You never know when something you see when you’re out and about could inspire you, how many times have you thought of something or bumped into someone and thought that was a really good idea, or I have to get back to a certain person and then something happens and that thought was lost? 

I love having a notebook with me, so if I’m ever waiting at the doctor’s or I have some downtime, I can sit there and make some notes, see how many bullet points you can write down for your business ideas or social media posts before you’re called in to see the doctor or have to get off the train, it’s like a mini-challenge.

 

 

Some examples of businesses that complement each other:

  • Personal trainer > Fitness clothing
  • Catering company > Mobile bartenders
  • Wedding venue > Florist
  • Cake Maker > Balloon artist
  • Facial skin products > Masseuse

A business that does not offer the same service or products as yours but one that may be of use to your customer.

Rebecca Bennett

Rebecca Bennett
Founder of Fembuiz Directory

Sarah Reimann
Finance blog

Finance Blog

Knowing your numbers and being able to read your financial reports is a vital skill to have if you are to be successful in business. Making it a ‘habit’ of reviewing your reports at least monthly can make or break your business. If you don’t know or understand the financial state of your business, you are simply ‘flying blind’ and guessing at best, and it is very difficult to plan ahead.

I hear many small business owners tell me “But I’m not a numbers person!”. It may sound harsh, but my response is: Well you better start to be one and do some training and learning to help yourself, your business future depends on it!!!

The level at which you are able to read your financial reports will determine the level at which you are able to make timely, accurate, and crucial business and life decisions. At the end of each month, you, as the business owner you should be looking at a few areas. These include outstanding debtors and creditors, stock levels, and a simple profit and loss report.

Just looking at your bank balance or total invoices you have billed for the month does not give you the overall picture of your financial situation.

Review your reports by asking yourself questions like;  Was this month as good as the same month last year?  What are my percentages of expenses to sales?  Are you on track for the budget projection? Have I covered my costs or just broking even?

Sarah Reimann

Sarah Reimann

Below are some top tips for keeping your business finances in check:

  1. Regularly review your financial reports – It is a crucial element in keeping you informed of your business performance.
  2. As the business owner, take a ‘wage’ for yourself each week. DO NOT live out of your business bank account! Spending on personal items and bills should come from a separate private account.
  3. Keep your debt level in check and don’t over commit or borrow to fund cashflow, unless it is very short term.
  4. Luxury or expensive vehicles and overseas holidays should be saved for (not borrowed for) and only purchased once we are in a good financial position and are making healthy profits.
  5. Search out professional advice and training if you don’t understand your reports or what numbers you should be looking at, prevention is far better than cure.
  6. Make sure your cloud accounting software (MYOB, Xero, Reckon, Quickbooks for eg.) is set up correctly and regularly reconciled to produce correct reports and timely data.

Don’t let the fear of looking at your numbers stop you from learning to understand them better or searching out advice.

Each one of us has areas we excel in and are good at and financial expertise is one area that is a strength for me. Marketing and sales, not so much, but I make it a point to keep learning in these areas of weakness.  None of us are lone rangers in business. We all need help and advice from others who are experts in their fields. So search out the people you need, to help you with the things you struggle with, and watch how your business and self-development grows!

Remember, the way to get ahead is to get sorted and this applies especially to money in the business, as well as life in general.

Click here to schedule a free 30-minute call, to chat about how a Business Financial Audit can help you identify where you are now and where you want to be.

Sarah Reimann

Sarah Reimann

www.sarahreimann.com.au
sarah@sarahreimann.com.au
Ph: 0401 822 792

 

>> Go to members Fembuiz page <<

Arm yourself with information and it will be a breeze. Knowledge is power. Power provides confidence. We connect.

Anne

Anne

The Director and Licensee of BAFC Settlements, Anne Meiklejohn is the Owner of an award-winning Settlement agency. They settle property all over Western Australia.  Every settlement has a unique story. It starts with a beginning, middle, and an end. The team understands that it can be a stressful time…. we spend time to understand. It’s not a one size fits all approach. Human connection is the secret ingredient. A personalized approach to all our settlements puts the heart back into the process.

Over 25 years in the settlement industry we have seen a lot of transactions. Some great, some a nightmare. What I have noticed is it all comes down to communication before the transaction. Once the transaction is signed the “horse has bolted.” At the end of the day, open communication will save you money.

Buying and selling houses can be a time consuming and stressful time.

But it doesn’t have to be.

 

My top tips;

Attention

1. Think outside the box.
Just because you grew up in an area doesn’t mean you have to stay in that area. Think about where you spend a lot of time. Look at the overflow suburbs Where you would like to live and then look at the suburbs surrounding them. This may be more affordable Look at accessibility via freeways and public transport. Don’t just look at what’s in front of you. Look around the corner!

2. Look at all the costs of buying a house.
Contact a settlement agent and go through the fees and charges. The most common charge that people focus on is stamp duty. There are many governments and third party charges that come into the equation. Settlement costs, lenders mortgage insurance, Landgate registration fees, Water and Council inquiry fees, Strata inquiry fees and levies, Water rates, council rates, bank fees for loan applications, termite inspection reports, and building inspections reports. You have a house and content insurance policy, any repairs that may be needed, or renovations you are considering. Contact a settlement agent, insurance companies, building inspectors, termite inspectors, bankers, and brokers to get an idea of the fees involved. Do your research…get the information.

3. Look out for Grants.
You may know about the first home owners grant and the different rates of stamp duty, but there are other grants available you may be eligible for. REBA First Homeowners assistance grant offers up to $2000.00 and can cover the cost of settlement and bank fees (certain conditions apply) Building grants. BAFC Settlements can provide you with assistance for the completion and submission of these applications. First home buyers look into the shared equity schemes available with Keystart and the Department of Housing.

4. The finance Broker
Just like a settlement agent, a finance broker is worth their weight in gold. Find a great broker. Be honest and upfront with them about your expenses and debt. They will be able to ascertain your eligibility for the loan. Your settlement agent and broker will work closely together working on amounts needed for final settlement.

5. Ask lots of questions
A great settlement agent will be able to guide you through the purchase prior to signing a contract. Engage their services early on. Don’t wait until the contract is signed. It’s too late then. BAFC

Settlement can guide you through the settlement process and give you ideas on conditions that you should include in the contract. Some conditions may need to be drafted in such a way to save you money or to protect you.

NEVER BE AFRAID TO ASK QUESTIONS.

6. Put that offer in.
Ask to see all necessary paperwork before putting in an offer. A copy of the Certificate of Title, the strata plan. Send them through to BAFC Settlements so they can check to see if there are encumbrances affecting the property. Your research will help you put in a confident offer. You know how much money you can borrow, you know what your costs are going to be, you are happy with the conditions to include.

7. Slow down and read, read, read.
The settlement could be delayed if the documents are not signed and completed correctly. This delay could result in more charges and expenses for you. Take time to read through the contracts before signing them and if in doubt give us a call.

BAFC SETTLEMENTS have a team of conveyancers

  • We are contactable after hours
  • No charge for a consultation
  • Free Verification of Identity
  • Mobile service
  • You will never have to feel unsupported.
bafc settlement

BAFC settlements

 

 

www.bafc.com.au. Ph 9335 9133 ALL HOURS.

Diana Todd

In the last five years, I have spent countless hours creating space for female business owners to be seen and heard. I am not a therapist, although sometimes my client’s joke that our consulting sessions often feel like “Money Therapy”. I am Diana Todd, an accountant and registered tax agent and owner of the online tax firm Balance Tax Accountants. One piece of advice that has stuck with me through my business journey is to be an excellent listener, and that advice is weaved throughout all the services my tax firm offers and is the basis for what I have shared in this article.

I have guided hundreds of female entrepreneurs through one of the hardest phases of business – the startup stage.

When I say the startup stage is one of the most challenging phases of business I am not sugar-coating it whatsoever.

If you survive the startup stage you need to celebrate, because that in itself is an achievement! I have seen several themes continue to show up for the vast majority of female entrepreneurs, and I am sharing 4 start-up money blocks and how to overcome them with you here today.

Keep your mind on your money and your money on your mind. These words are not only famous lyrics to a song, but the secret to overcoming the fear of managing business money. Did you know that not everyone was born a money expert? This is a learned skill that anyone who puts effort and energy into can master. Educate yourself with online resources and books. Surround yourself with the team of professionals who can teach you and show you how to be mindful and smart with your business money. Invest in accounting software to make looking at your business money easy, manageable, and fun. Who doesn’t love seeing that green tickbox when they have completed successfully reconciled their Xero bank account? Use technology to spend 20 minutes a week looking at your business money on a regular basis.

Balance tax Team

Balance tax team

Show up for your business money and your business money will show up for you. Work good money habits into your daily routine. Complete one money-generating activity per day. This may look like sending a progress invoice for a project, chasing unpaid invoices from customers, or introducing new income streams into your business. Cash flow is the livelihood of a successful business, and in the start-up stage, this is one of the many hats that small business owners must wear. 

Package Your Expertise. If you find that your community is asking you for the same advice over and over again, it means they value your opinion as an expert in your field. If it feels right for you and you want to share this advice, why not start charging for your knowledge? This could look like an online product or a 30-minute consulting session. Think about the time and energy you put into learning your subject. By sharing your valuable knowledge and experience, you are allowing others to avoid all the mistakes and road bumps that you ran into when starting, and helping them fast track their way to business success. Knowledge is power and a valuable resource, and you should be paid for your expertise.

Spend with purpose from the beginning. There is a limited budget or amount of funding that an entrepreneur has to work with to set up the business foundations. The mistake I see solopreneurs make is prioritising the wrong purchases in the startup stage. Remember, your business is all about your customer. What will it take or what foundation do you need to deliver your goods or services to your customers? Whatever is required for service or product delivery is what you should be prioritising when it comes to spending money in the startup stage. I often see entrepreneurs investing their precious startup money in what I would refer to as “extras” or “nice to haves” when it comes to business. There is a time and a place to be fancy, but if it doesn’t matter to your customer when it comes to making a purchase decision, then it is not a priority in the startup stage. Improvements and bells and whistles can always be added later.

Balance tax team

Balance tax team

Navigating the start-up stage of the business can seem daunting and overwhelming, but having the right finance support system, the right money habits, and understanding your customer will significantly increase your chances of achieving the business success you deserve.

If you don’t have a small business accountant or don’t feel aligned with your current accountant, book in free chat with Diana, or any of the Balance Tax Accountants services in under 5 minutes from the convenience of your smartphone at www.balancetaxonline.com.au. Relax, it’s Balance Tax!

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