Friday, August 31, 2007

A Poem and A Quote

To finish off the week I want to share a poem and a quote I found and thought very inspirational. Have a great weekend!

Carole DeJarnatt
Alliance Advisors, Inc.

Your Dimension Of Greatness

No one can know the potential,
Of a life that is committed to win;
With courage - the challenge it faces,
To achieve great success in the end!

So, explore the Dimension of Greatness,
And believe that the world CAN be won;
By a mind that is fully committed,
KNOWING the task can be done!

Your world has no place for the skeptic,
No room for the DOUBTER to stand;
To weaken your firm resolution
That you CAN EXCEL in this land!

We must have VISION TO SEE our potential,
And FAITH TO BELIEVE that we can;
Then COURAGE TO ACT with conviction,
To become what GOD MEANT us to be!

So, possess the strength and the courage,
To conquer WHATEVER you choose;
That is destined FOREVER to lose!

~ Author Unknown ~

How do you go from where you are to where you want to be? I think you have to have an enthusiasm for life. You have to have a dream, a goal and you have to be willing to work for it. Jim Valvano: Quotes on Goals

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Self-Motivation Techniques to Focus on Goals

No matter what goal you are aiming for, staying motivated is a challenge for everyone at times. Even though you have set those goals for yourself, it will be hard to stay focused at times. Using self motivation techniques is a great way to ensure that you stay positive and have the mental attitude needed to achieve your goals. One of the best things that you can do is to map out a plan detailing your goal and the steps that you will take to achieve your dreams. It is also a good idea to regularly reassess your plan and make sure that you still feel that your original strategy is the best one. There is nothing wrong with changing your plan if you feel that changes will improve it, the plan is not carved in stone and should always be considered as a flexible tool. Life is full of unexpected surprises and this can mean your initial steps will no longer lead you to where you want to arrive, you can change your written plan to take any surprise changes into account.

Making your written plan is the first step. After that, you might find that you still need sources of inspiration and encouragement. Self motivation techniques such as breaking your plan into small tasks that you can achieve daily will help give you a sense of accomplishment as each task is finished. This is a great technique and will help you avoid feeling overwhelmed or feeling that your goal is too hard for you to accomplish. Remember, the way to eat a whole elephant is one bite at a time. Make a written list of tasks for each day and cross them off one by one as you complete them. Each time you cross off a completed item, your spirits will get a boost that will encourage you to tack the next task on your list.

Rewarding yourself after you complete your tasks will also help keep you feeling mentally positive and optimistic. The reward can be anything, eg a coffee break or ten minutes to chat to a friend on the phone. The reward doesn't need to be anything big but, by giving yourself an incentive, you will have something to help motivate you to take the next step towards reaching your goal.

Procrastination is called "the thief of time" for very good reasons. Procrastination is an easy habit to adopt and a very hard one to break, so it is best to have a scheme in place to avoid it all together. Avoiding procrastination is one of the simplest and biggest ways that you can increase your motivation and remain focused on taking the necessary small steps towards achieving your goals.

Making written lists (and following them!) is an excellent way to avoid procrastination. Try taking your yearly goals and breaking them down into manageable monthly chunks. Next break the monthly lists down further into weekly parts. Finally make daily lists that involve small steps towards your yearly goals. By working on your yearly goals in this step by step fashion, you will reduce the opportunities for being tempted to procrastinate. Once you get into the habit of following your daily task list, the temptation to put things off will be overridden by the desire to see all the items crossed through by the end of your working day.

When you finish your daily tasks, be sure to reward yourself. If you finish earlier than normal, award yourself some extra time off to spend as you please. If you are keeping to your step by step plan, there is no need to put in extra hours. The days of procrastinating and then needing to work longer hours will be over. List making sounds simple (and it is) but it is a powerful way to keep yourself on track day by day to accomplish your ultimate goals.

For more motivation articles visit the author,Elaine Currie, at

Article Source:

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

More about Goal Setting from Video

I found this clip on You Tube and thought it was very appropriate since this week my topic has been goal setting. Short clip, good information. I hope you enjoy.

Carole DeJarnatt

Morning Coffee with Paul -- Setting Goals

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

10 Tips for Great Goal Setting

I am believer in the benefits of goal setting and how they help you to succeed in business and your personal life. Each of us has goals but from what I read, only 3% of us actually write them down and act upon them. So to help you to not be one of the 97% who do not write goals, below is an article on goal setting tips.

Carole DeJarnatt

10 Tips For Great Goal Setting
By Sam Kotadia

Less than 3% of people write down their goals. We are statistically more likely to spend time organising exactly what we want from the supermarket instead of working out what we want from life. Crazy but true.

The chances are that you commit most of your working day to helping your boss to achieve their goals, instead of spending time working on your own.

One way to enhance the quality of your life is to learn how to apply an effective goal setting program. These tips will help you on your way to doing this.

1. First of all why set goals?

The biggest predictor of success is direction. If you don’t have something to aim for in life, the chances are you will end up achieving very little. Almost every successful person in the world started with a clearly defined goal in their mind of what it is they wanted to achieve. This provided them with a fundamental sense of purpose and direction.

The beauty of setting goals is that they help to streamline your life, adding a focal point and something tangible for you to work towards. In some ways goals are like beacons helping you to stride through life towards something that holds special importance to you. What that special something is, is up to you.

2. Working out what you want

It amazes me how many people work towards goals that they don’t really want. Usually the motivation to achieve these goals comes from a feeling that you should want them. Fame, recognition, and a high status job, are some of the modern day desires that society conditions people to think that they want. It is important that all goals and aspirations come only from a place of wanting and not from a place of should.

When you cut out all the noise that society deafens you with, and directly ask yourself, “what is it that you want?” honestly and whole heartedly, you are able to generate goals that come from a place of inspiration, and not from a place of conditioning. It is from inspiration that all worthwhile goals are created. When you work from here your commitment to your goals is full of desire, passion, and zest.

Set goals based on your values. Working out what your goals are is often the hardest part of the goal setting procedure, and the part which requires most thought. The first step to working out what you want is to establish what is important to you in life.

If for example you value your friends and family above anything else, then it makes sense to set a life goal of spending as much quality time with these people as possible.

If financial independence is valued highly you may chose to construct a goal that focuses on reaching a specific sum of money within a set time frame. Ask yourself a series of incisive questions that force you to address who you are and what is important to you in your life.

Consider answering the questions below and start devising goals around the answers you produce:

What would you want to achieve if you knew you could not fail?

If you could leave one message to the world what would it be?

Who are you when you are at your best?

If you had one day to live, what would you do?

The responses to these questions should provide you with some information about what is important to you in your life and aid the goal setting process.

3. How will you know when you have reached your goal?

Your goal needs to be clear and precise so that you know exactly when you have reached it. One way to do this is to set the goal as a numerical figure. If you can produce a clear ‘yes’, or ‘no’ response to whether you have reached your goal then you have successfully created a measurable objective.

For example, consider the goal of generating a financial target of ?100,000 by the end of the year. The numerical and precise nature of your goal allows you to effectively evaluate whether or not you have successfully reached your target when the end of the year arrives.

4. Does your goal make you go ‘wow?’

It is important that the goal you set is wildly ambitious. Old schools of thought believe that goal setting should be realistic and attainable, avoiding excessive ambition. On the surface this makes perfect sense, because you want to set goals that you have a good chance of hitting. And arguably, failing to hit your goals because of aiming too high may leave you feeling little despondent.

The reason why I suggest that goals should be set as high and as ambitious as possible, is because there is no logical reason why you cannot achieve whatever it is that you want.

It is only through your negative internal belief systems that you decide what is and what isn’t realistic. Years of conditioning, of being told what you can and cannot achieve have encouraged us to construct a warped view of our true potential.

This is why unrealistic and wild goals ironically are sometimes closer to what is realistically possible compared to your conditioned view on what is realistic.

If you set the ambitious goal of making ?1,000,000 in 1 year, work with dedication and drive and end up making ?600,000, I am pretty sure that you will not feel despondent at the end of the year.

It is certainly better than aiming to make ?50,000 within the year, and hitting the target easily, without having to push yourself in any way.

Aim for the stars and you will catch the moon

5. Have you written down your goal?

Once you have precisely and clearly established what it is that you want to aim for, write it down. Your goal needs to be written down in a specific style in order to be successful.

Although goals are inherently in the future write your goal in the present tense. For example; instead of writing ‘I will have a successful business’, write ‘I have a successful business.’ This will add immediate impact to the strength of your goal.

The second point is to make sure when you write down your goal it is something you want instead of something you don’t want.

If you focus your energies on what you don’t want unfortunately you will attract what you don’t want into your life.

It is always more powerful to move towards something, instead of away from something. For example wanting to make more money is much more effective than focusing on getting out of debt.

6. Is any goal better than having none at all?

Even if you do not master an effective goal setting program at your first attempt, devising a bad goal setting program is better than producing nothing. Setting any kind of goal is better than relying on the lap of the gods to decide your fate.

Teddy Roosevelt once said, ‘in any moment of a decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing.’ Even if you obtain a goal that you realise you did not actually want, at least you are one step closer to finding what it is you really want. As Tom Watson (Founder of IBM) famously said; “if you want to be a success, double your rate of failure.”

7. Have you fallen into the trap of setting too many goals?

An easy trap to fall into is setting too many goals. Successful people usually only set one goal at a time. This focuses their efforts on one target, speeding up the actualisation of their goal. Once the first goal is completed, you can then look to tackle your next one.

If you set too many goals in your life, the danger is that your focal powers will become so spread out that you end up achieving nothing. As the old proverb states; “if you chase two rabbits both will escape.”

8. Are you in the right state?

The meaning of the word goal is outlined as a ‘clearly and well defined measurable state.’ The goals you aim to achieve in life-whether it is to marry and have a family, to build a multi-million pound business, or own a mansion in the middle of the country are strong motivations because of the way you envisage they will make you feel once you have obtained them.

If you believe that having a multi-million pound business will make you feel secure, powerful, and liberated, then these desired states are the driving force behind obtaining the goal..

Physical experiences are a bit like vehicles that are designed to take you from your current state to your desired state. Before setting out to make your dream become a reality it is important that you associate with the internal state that you will experience once you have obtained your goal. For example if building a multi-million pound business will make you feel secure and liberated, it is important that you generate these emotional states before you begin building your empire. This will optimise and speed up the process of actualising your goal.

9. Have you taken action?

Unaccompanied, all the ideas in the world are worth nothing. However if you couple ideas with productive action, then your innovations can begin to take form.

It is common for people to spend a significant amount of time constructing worthwhile goals, but if you are not prepared to act on these intentions then nothing will ever be achieved.

All successful people have one thing in common; they get more done in the time given to them, than most people.

Whatever lofty idea you have in mind, you must begin working towards it the moment that your goal has been set.

It is important to develop a sense of accountability and commitment towards taking action, otherwise you may find that you talk yourself out of making your goals a reality.

10. Do you have a deadline?

Remember to give yourself a deadline to achieve your goal, otherwise you could end up spending a lifetime working towards it. Without setting a deadline you run the risk of becoming a procrastinator, always putting off the things you need to do. By constructing a concise time plan you streamline your focus, making sure that every second of your time up to this date is dedicated and organised to achieving your aim.

Remember: A goal is a dream with a deadline


If you are going to be successful, you need to make sure that you live your life with a real sense of purpose and direction. Creating goals is one of the most effective ways to do this.

Sam Kotadia is the managing director of Mindsport ltd. The company delivers extensive free resources to help a global audience get an edge in the realms of sport, business and life. All resources can be found at

Article Source:

Monday, August 27, 2007

Reaching for the Stars and knowing how to get there!

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

This week I am focusing on my goals. Goals help me to maintain focus and not get off track. I learn from my mistakes and rewrite the goals.

I am very easily distracted by the daily issues that come in front of me. This blog being one. The internet being the other. To get what I need accomplished daily one of the things I do is to write a list. If something needs to be done, I write it down and mark it off as completed. Then if time allows, I do the other things that are not required but enhance some of my projects.

When it comes to projects, I work in some of the same manner. When a job is placed in front of me, I plan my days and hours on the different steps of the project. Being that I work with a few clients at the same time, I have to segment my days out in hours. I work with one person for two hours, another project for four hours, and so on. When procrastination comes knocking, do not let it take control. The goal of the job is completion to the clients' satisfaction.

Time management is a crucial part of setting goals. If you set up your days and manage your time efficiently while working on the goals you have written for yourself, you are one step closer to being successfully committed to succeeding at your goals.

Carole DeJarnatt
Alliance Advisors, Inc.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Defining Your Target Market

This week I have been writing about marketing your business. One step needs to be taken before you can effectively market your business and that is identifying your ideal client. Below is an article that gives ideas and suggestions on helping you to determine who your target market is.

Carole DeJarnatt
Alliance Advisors, Inc.

Defining Your Target Market - An Essential Business Growth Strategy

Who is your Target Market? Do you know? Does it matter? Many people jump into business without thinking about where they will get their customers. Certain companies - restaurants and movie theaters, for example - have wide demographics. At some point, everyone will eat out or see a movie. But most of the rest of us need to determine which segment of the population can best benefit from our services.

If you're just starting out, you may not have a clear picture of your Target Market. You just want business - any business. But if you specialize " find your niche," as they say, you're more apt to develop a marketing strategy able to reach your ideal client and bring him to your door.

But who is she? Think of it like putting an advertisement in the personals. You're seeking your perfect match - the one you look forward to growing old with. For days, you wrestle with just the right words to describe yourself and the one you hope to meet. Finally, you have it just the way you want it. You send it off to the paper and days later you're inundated with calls.

Finding your ideal client works much the same way. Before you ever sat down to write your profile, you deliberated. You catalogued your qualities and those you sough in a mate. When defining your Target Market you should adopt a similar process.

So what are the criteria? Here's a list of ways to identify your Target Market from, Get Clients Now!, by C.J. Hayden:
  1. Who needs your service the most?
  2. Who is able to pay what you need to charge?
  3. Who is likely to give you large orders or repeat business?
  4. Whose problems and goals do you care about?
  5. Who would be the most fun and satisfying to work with?
  6. Where do you already have contacts?
  7. Who would be the easiest clients to get?

Once you have an idea of whom you want to pursue, many of the other pieces will fall into place. Knowing your Target Market (or ideal client) will help you produce the kind of promotional materials that will always hit their intended objective.

About the author:
Shawn and her husband, Andy, operate QuickSilver CopyWriters.
They specialize in direct-response marketing, ghostwriting and newsletter creation. Shawn also writes fiction under the pen name, Shawn Kay Sidwell. Be sure to visit their site at: and sign up for their newsletter, The Corporate Muse.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Seven Keep In Touch Marketing Techniques

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketPhoto Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketPhoto Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketPhoto Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

I am one of those people who believe if you stay in contact with people, it is easier for them to remember you when they need assistance. On a consistent basis, I try to figure out ways to stay in contact with acquaintances and business people I have met but do not see on a frequent basis. I try several methods and some work better than others but here is my list of effective "Keep in Touch" marketing techniques:

  1. Newsletters--I send mine quarterly but am getting ready to change that format to monthly.

  2. Invite to events--I frequently will invite someone I think may have an interest in an event I am attending. Two purposes, one to stay in touch, and two to get to know the person better.

  3. Tracking personal information--If I find out when someone's birthday, anniversary, important date to them, I post it on my calendar for a reminder to send them a card in the future. People love personal touches.

  4. Notecards--I send a personal note after meeting someone at events. I have read before that this is common practice, but I have yet to receive a card from anyone as yet.

  5. Blogs--Inform people you have a blog by sharing it on your email signature, business cards, newsletters; anything you send out.

  6. Contact Management programs--Programs such as Constant Contact, Aweber, and several others, will manage and help you to communicate effectively with your audience. These are accomplished with a subscription basis so you would need to build your list before this would become effective.

  7. Review of purchase--Follow up with a client after you have finished working together to ensure they are satisfied with the outcome. Another way to stay in contact and it lets the customer know you care.

If you have more that you have tried, share it with the reading audience. Give us some testimonials. I am always looking for new ways to "reach out and touch someone".

Carole DeJarnatt
Alliance Advisors, Inc.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Non-advertising Promotional Strategies

In addition to “traditional” advertising strategies, there are also many other alternative opportunities for you to promote your business.

The more advertising and non-advertising strategies you can use, the more effective and efficient each strategy will be. Successful non-advertising strategies can include:
 Join a Business/Civic/Networking Group
 Perform Public Speaking to targeted groups
 Write articles for publication
 Use your packaging, invoices, letterhead, delivery/service trucks as a promotional “billboard”
 Distribute Ad Specialty items imprinted with your name & phone number to targeted groups
 Write and mail out Press Releases
 Become a Sponsor of an event
 Create a joint Alliance or Marketing Partnership with another company
 Use a professional “Message On-Hold” service to “sell” and “educate” your callers while they’re on hold.
 Keep your customers & prospects up-to-date on your company with personal letters.

Using just one or two of these ideas can help to spread your message and business identity. There is another side of the story and that is using Web 2.0 to promote our message. That is another entry for another day because as we all know there are a variety of ways to promote online.

Carole DeJarnatt
Alliance Advisors, Inc.

P.S. The entry above was an excerpt from a report I offer. If you want to read the rest of the story, subscribe to my newsletter and receive the full report on "10 Things you Should Know About Promoting Your Business"

Monday, August 20, 2007

PR is More than Just Publicity

I found this article through my search of marketing materials. It has excellent advice for those trying to improve their image and grow their business.


PR is More Than Just Publicity

So you've hung up your shingle and clients aren't exactly beating a path to your door. What can you do? Well you might think standing out on the street with a megaphone will do the trick. And it may be one way to gain attention for your business, but an overall public relations plan incorporating a number of promotional ideas could be just what your business needs.

Public relations is communicating who you are, what you do and how you make a difference. It's about having successful "relationships" with your "public". They could be friends, clients, potential customers, competitors or the media who can all help spread the word about your business.

One way of communicating your message is through publicity or media relations. Sending out media releases to create awareness of your product or service through editorial coverage is great publicity and it is very effective. They say publicity is seven times more effective than advertising. But it is just one tactic of an overall public relations plan that you could incorporate.

Let's look at a few other ideas:

* Newsletters email or hard copy – direct communication with your public, clients and customers. Send out some sort of communication to your data base at least once a quarter to keep "top of mind"

* Write articles about your area of expertise and submit them to business or consumer publications and online sites such as this one you are reading. I have had work come to me directly through published articles

* Fact sheets or a brochure. Include written information about you, your product or service with any mail outs

* Create a website. This is your online PR brochure but you need to keep telling people about it. Make sure you incorporate strategies to promote your site, such as include the domain name in every piece of communication collateral you have, whether it's brochures, stickers, pens or caps. Put it everywhere

* Product launches and product giveaways to the media. Create "buzz" for your business by giving something away. Be generous as ultimately it will help with sales

* Public speaking – free speeches to Rotary clubs or other organisations is a good way of letting people know about your business and area of expertise. By being known as an expert on a particular topic and getting the word out perhaps the media will contact you

* Networking – join organisations of like minded people such as business networks or your local Chamber of Commerce. Build rapport and relationships to help spread the word about who you are and what you do

* Special events such as a trade show or entering business awards can help boost your profile. Why not hold a launch or an open day or even a cocktail party at your place of business to thank your clients or customers

* Sponsorships. If you can't afford to hold your own event why not sponsor an event that somebody else is organising. Make sure your sponsorship is acknowledged on any advertising and other communication collateral

* Something as simple as sending thank you notes and letters is good personal PR

Sue Currie, the director of Shine Communications Consultancy and author of Apprentice to Business Ace - your inside-out guide to personal branding, is a business educator and speaker on personal branding through image and media. Sign up for free monthly tips at

To learn more about how you can achieve recognition, enhance your image and shine, visit

Sunday, August 19, 2007

I've started a business, now what?

The biggest struggle most of my clients have is the promotion of their business. They come up with an idea for a business, go through all the steps to launch it, and then stall when trying to decide how to increase the business awareness. I give advice and coaching on what to do, but it is up to the owner to follow through on the advice that is given. I find the majority listen but do not take heed.

Why is this? Could it be because they are the Entrepreneur and not the Technician? No problem. When starting a business be prepared to have money for initial start up and also the promotion and marketing of the business. It takes money to make money. If you do not feel comfortable or have the skill to do self-marketing or promotion, hire it done. As an advisor, I do not recommend any business to attempt to do their own website unless they know what they are doing. The same goes for marketing. A lot of small businesses try to do it themselves and the output is a poor reflection on the business.

From the very beginning and continuing on throughout your business, your presentation in print, as well as in person, is very important. Leave it to the experts to design and promote your business to your advantage.

This week's messages will be concerning effective marketing and building the brand of your business. If you have any ideas or suggestions you would like to share, email me or comment.

Here's to another week of learning how to be more effective in our business initiatives,

Carole DeJarnatt
Alliance Advisors, Inc.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

How to Turn a Contact into An Ally

I know, I know, I know. I said the previous post was the last one in this networking series. Can you tell I am all about networking? I have been in business over a year now and have a steady stream of clients, mainly due to networking. That is the purpose of networking.

This is my last entry about networking for this week. It is actually a YouTube video (I love those don't you). Maybe next week will be about the referral process and how that works(?)!

Carole DeJarnatt
Alliance Advisors, Inc.

This is Keith Ferrazzi, Author of Never Eat Alone.

Friday, August 17, 2007

10 Commandments of Networking

Finishing off the work week with the networking theme, here is a partial insert from an article I found on I didn't realize how many 10 commandments there were out there but I found information about networking, leadership, communication, and more. I know about the Ten Commandments of the Bible but now I am learning more.

I hope you enjoyed this week of networking tips. I will change the subject matter next week to something different. I feel my job as a blogger is to write information to help you succeed and the more information I can offer to you on any subject is what I am supposed to do. If you agree or disagree, leave a comment.

Enjoy the weekend!
Carole DeJarnatt
Alliance Advisors, Inc.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

If you want to gain the most out of business networking, follow the Ten Commandments of Networking!

1) Thou shalt drop the "what is in it for me?" attitude.
2) Thou shalt listen.
3) Thou shalt build a relationship.
4) Thou shalt give the first referral.
5) Thou shalt not tell others of the referral you require; thou shalt "show them" with a story.
6) Thou shalt be specific of the type of referral.
7) Thou shalt reciprocate when appropriate.
8) Thou shalt participate in the network executive, functions, and network time.
9) Thou shalt thank the person who gave a referral.
10) Thou shalt follow up on the referral within 24 hours.
Business networking is productive and fun, and that is why it will always be part of the Bigger Picture.

Mark McGregor is a keynote speaker and professional presenter with Speaking of Hearts. He is a motivational and inspirational speaker on business and stress matters. Mark is available to speak for your next Canadian and American conference, trade show or event.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

How not to Network

I could not help but add this short video clip. I have seen this type of person in action before. Make sure you are not the one who portrays yourself or company in this fashion. If you recognize or can relate to the person in the video, call me. I will gladly offer my coaching skills to help !

Carole DeJarnatt
Alliance Advisors, Inc.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Networking an Event with Feeling

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

To keep up with the theme this week, here is another article about networking. This article is about your message and how to communicate clearly and effectively with feeling. Try it, you might enjoy it!

Carole DeJarnatt

Networking an Event - What You Do -- Once More, With Feeling!
By Greg Peters

One of the most challenging questions we all receive in any networking opportunity is the seemingly obvious, "So, what do you do?" Well, of course you know what you do, but communicating it to others in a way that doesn't make them stare at you blankly can be a bit more of a challenge. The trick, of course, is to elicit some sort of emotion from your listener. The other trick is that you must work continually on your presentation. You may even need more than one!

By the way, you'll recognize those who have chosen not to work on this. At a networking event they're the ones who say things like "I'm a real estate agent" or even the (only slightly) better "I find homes for people". Bo-o-oring!

The first step in the process is to ask yourself why people would buy from you or engage your services at all. I'll give you a hint: It's not the widget you sell - it's what your customer gets from the widget you sell. Take for example our long-suffering real estate agent. As I said, "I find homes for people" is a start, but I think we can get a bit more emotional than that. What images does the word "home" evoke? Magical family gatherings around the holidays? A safe, warm place to hide when the storm is raging outside? How about a source of light and laughter that your children will carry with them no matter where they go?

Any one of these images would get my interest more than "I'm a real estate agent."

To make this truly effective, you've got to use it and let it evolve. Personally, as a Web programmer, I know for a fact that even a whisper of the technical jargon with which I deal on a daily basis is enough to make my audience's eyes glaze over. I made it my goal to be understandable when dealing with technical topics. My descriptive path started with "When you're dealing with the Web, I'm the geek who speaks." Not particularly "emotional", but it was at least fun. With a little work, I came up with "Clearing up the Confusion on the Web" -- not bad, but not what I would call a real "grabber."

Hearing Scott Ginsberg speak one day was what really brought things into focus. After hearing him talking about personal branding, I decided to push the envelope a little. From that point on, when someone asked me what I do, I told them that "I am the international superhero known as 'The Webmaster!'" And what does such a champion do?

"I rescue people from their own websites."

Since I've adopted that phrase, it never fails to get a laugh. The best thing, though, is it also gets folks to ask for more. And, really, in a networking situation, what more could you ask than to be memorable and to arouse people's curiosity?

So, put in a little effort. Be brave. Pull out the emotion -- whether laughter, worry, or curiosity. The worst that can happen is have that other person look at you and say "Huh?"

But at least they're talking with you!

Copyright 2007, All Rights Reserved

Greg Peters is the owner and superhero-in-residence of Cyber Data Solutions. CDS has been helping website designers develop better web presence for their clients for more than a decade. We specialize in tools which help folks keep their websites up to date, fresh, and interesting. Visit us on the Web at to see how we can help your webmaster.

Article Source:,-With-Feeling!&id=671963

Effective Business Networking

In the last couple of posts I wrote about the power of your network and the benefits of having one. In this post I would like to share an article on how to grow your network. Some people struggle when attending events and this article gives ideas on what to do before, during, and after the event. Carole DeJarnatt

Effective Business Networking: 5 Tips For Mastering The Art of Networking
By Soni Pitts

The heart of any business is the connection it has with other businesses and individuals that it can call upon to help meet its needs. Networking - any activity designed to create, maintain and utilize interpersonal connections - is an essential business skill. But not all business people take the time to truly master. However, without a solid understanding of how to network effectively and efficiently, no business can make the vital connections that it needs to survive and prosper in today's super-connected economy. Here are some tips you can use to increase your networking - and business - success

Go with a goal. One of the first and most common mistakes that people make when entering a networking situation (planned or otherwise) is to fail to have a firm goal in mind. Are you looking to acquire new prospects, meet colleagues for possible collaborations, create a mutual referral partnership, create name recognition for you and your business, find funding or just "shop around" for interesting news and trends you can use? If you haven't taken the time to determine what your goals are for the encounters ahead, you will have a hard time meeting them.

Of course, most businesses have several different needs, but in many cases any given networking opportunity is unlikely to provide more than one or two types of results, depending on the situation at hand. For example, if you are attending an event made up primarily of others in your industry or trade, you are unlikely to meet prospects, since everyone will be a provider just like you, nor are you likely to find referral partners, since almost everyone will be a direct competitor. So if your primary needs are clients and referrals, such events, while not an entire waste of time, might not be your best use of it. On the other hand, if you are desperately seeking a partner to expand or are looking to find out the latest, greatest technology in the field to offer to your client base, then you're definitely going to be in the right place.

Hone your message. When someone asks you what you do, can you articulate not only your business but it's benefit to them in a clear and concise manner? How about your "elevator speech" or 15-second intro - is it crisp, to the point and compelling, or do people's eyes glaze over before you get to the end? This is not the time to give a dry and deadly-dull job description. Save that for your resume. When someone asks about you and your business, you are being given a golden, but brief, opportunity to knock his or her socks off and to persuade them that you are the best thing to happen to them since sliced bread. Make sure you do so.

Important - leave your sales pitch at home! Networking is networking, and sales is sales. Confuse the two and you'll lose out on both. Nobody wants to be sold to, especially when they're quite plainly not in a sales environment. And remember that anyone who tries to work a networking event under the "three-foot rule" (anyone within three feet is an opportunity to make a sale) is likely to find others unwilling to get within three feet of them in a very short period of time.

Check your gear. Make sure that you have everything you need to make a great impression. Are your business cards or other hand-outs up to date, and as professional-looking as you can make them? If this is a planned event, do you know who will be attending and have you isolated a few people you definitely want to make sure to meet, or are you going in blind and resigned to winging it?

And don't forget to double-check the time, date and venue. Nothing is more irritating than showing up only to find that you're too early, too late or unable to find a parking space closer than a quarter-mile away.

Educate your audience. Are you seeking a collaborative partner for a project? Then make sure everyone knows what the project is and what sort of partner you are looking for (and the general parameters of the partnership they'll be investing their time into). If you're looking for referrals, then do your potential referral sources know what constitutes a good referral for you? It's a waste of your time and a drain on your referrer's good will and reputation if you turn down or do a bad job for everyone they send to you because the referrals were inappropriate. Likewise, a well-educated referral source might wind up sending you fewer referrals, but those are much more likely to be quality prospects that have a high probability of becoming solid clients.

On the other hand, if you are directly prospecting do your prospects know that you're the answer to their prayers and why? Remember that all prospects are tuned into station WII-FM - What's In It For Me - and unless you make sure that they know why they should consider working with you, they won't.

Follow through. The most important part of networking happens after the initial contact. The best impression, the snappiest laser marketing message and the deepest desire to work together will all come to naught if they don't hear from you in a timely manner - or even worse, never hear from you at all. No matter who said what about calling whom, always follow up promptly and in a manner designed to strengthen the relationship and add value for the other person.

A simple follow-up email may be okay for old contacts touching base, but for a new contact that can provide you with crucial funding or superior referrals, or a hot prospect itching to clear your warehouse of your top-shelf merchandise your follow through needs to have all the finesse, power and elegance of a figure skater's best jump - and all the holding power of a solid landing.

There are three keys to an effective follow through:

  • It reinforces the original intent of the contact. Refer to your original conversation, restating any key points and reaffirming any agreements that were made or intimated. Follow through on any promises you made to deliver information, provide samples, initiate a meeting, put through a request, whatever - before the follow-up call, unless time constraints or lead-time make that impossible.
  • It carries the scent of enthusiasm without the stench of desperation. Follow up as promptly and as regularly or frequently as the circumstance warrants, but don't turn into a stalker or a pest. And if you can find a way to add value to the relationship through your skills, influence, position or connections, by all means offer to do so, but don't cross the line from generous associate to obsequious sycophant. And if the other person makes it clear that they are not interested, move on. "Kicking and screaming" is not an acceptable level of participation in networking, and neither is "beaten into submission."
  • It includes the seeds for the next contact. Don't get caught in the dead-end follow up. Unless it is clear that no further relationship is warranted or desired, make sure that there is some agreement on a next step or arrangement made to continue the conversation. Make that phone call and at the end, set up an appointment for lunch a few weeks down the road. At lunch, offer to forward an important report or offer to broker a desirable introduction to someone higher up the food chain, and so on. Make sure you never leave the table without an invitation to resume your seat at a later date.

Like a good golf swing or a stunning presentation, effective networking boils down to three essential stages of activity: preparation, delivery and follow through. And like an electrical circuit with a short or a break, a failure at any of these points stops the flow of life-giving connective energy - the healthy and continually renewed cycle of which your business requires to maintain a strong, stable potential for growth, resilience and success.

Mastering the art of effective networking, like any other business activity, requires time, dedication and attention. But in the end, the dividends it pays are well worth the time it took to cultivate them. Take the time to master these five tips and you will be amply rewarded with the prodigious fruits of your networking labor.

(c) Soni Pitts

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Soni Pitts is a Personal and Spiritual Development Coach who specializes in helping people break free of "life as seen on tv" and reclaim the sacredness of living.

Get your copy of her free e-book "50 Ways To Reach Your Goals" and over 100 self-help and inspirational articles, as well as other products and resources, at

Article Source:

Monday, August 13, 2007

The Power of your Network

Earlier I wrote about the power of networking. In this entry I want to talk about the power of your network when it comes to value and benefits for you.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

I think some of the benefits are obvious, a resource for knowledge or skills when needed. But here are some other ways you may benefit from your network:
  • Virtual board of directors when making decisions. When making decisions, ask your network of loyal business associates.
  • A back up when needed for testimonials, meeting attendance, and moral support.
  • To run ideas or suggestions for a group poll.
  • Introduction to others in their network.
  • For referrals of new business.
  • Sources for references and testimonials.

I am sure there are other ways to utilize your network and also to be a benefit to your network. Be the first to give in your network. If you are you will be remembered. Always strive to be a benefit to others and you will receive the benefit in return!

Carole DeJarnatt

Friday, August 10, 2007

I have the POWER

The power of networking that is. I recently met with a videotaping business owner to get some filming done for one of my clients for promotional purposes. It is my natural inclination to ask questions about people's businesses and while speaking with him I am surprised at the lack of contacts he has. I attribute this to lack of networking.

In business it is essential to network. There are many forms of networking. Some of the most common forms are events geared specifically for networking, such as mixers and such; chamber luncheons; and exclusive group functions (leads groups). The non-obvious but still networking is any event you attend for whatever purpose but meet someone whom may have an interest in you or your business.

I belong to a variety of groups not business related, but even at those you are talking with people who will eventually get around to the question of what your occupation is. I look at everything I attend as a networking event. I belong to another club that is of a political mind but for me it is not about the political affiliation, it is about the social and networking aspect. My philosophy is know me, like me, trust me.

This videotaping company I mentioned earlier I met at church. I saw some videos he filmed and found out this was his business. His work was awesome so now I am referring a client of mine to him. This is what networking is all about. Making your presence known but also finding others that will be a great resource to you.

If you do not enjoy the networking aspect of business, change your philosophy. Look at it as a social event. It is not the location but being prepared to talk when asked. Everywhere you go someone is looking for goods and services and it might be what you have to offer. Know me, Like me, Trust me, Use me!

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Communication Comes in Many Forms

As I wrote before, I am an Action Plan Marketing fan and read all of his newsletters and take note when I think it is beneficial. Recently he sent over a newsletter that talked about the use of handwritten notes. It was suggested to write notes for just about everything under the sun. If someone you met today did something nice for you, or you had brief contact with someone, write a note.

I have been trying to write more thank you and nice-to-meet-or-see-you notes but as I write them I think about one of his other suggestions. He states to try and have contact with your audience, proposed customers, etc., at least twice a month. He recommends the use of newsletters. This got me to thinking about communication in general. What are the many ways to communicate and maintain contact with business clients, friends, acquaintances, or whomever.

Here is my short list:

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

  1. Email contact
  2. Internet (Newsletters, Blogs, Web 2.0)
  3. Via Snail Mail
  4. Phone calls
  5. Text messaging
  6. I/Ming
  7. In person
  8. Skype

My mind is blank and I know there is other ways. But if you think about it, just the ways I have written above leaves the door wide open for personal communication. The sky is the limit and we have to be creative in the ways we reach out to our customers and potential customers.

Share your thoughts on ways to communicate. I'll be looking forward to reading your entries.

Carole DeJarnatt

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

How to Work Like the Masters

I am subscribed to a blog that had a link to the blog entry below. I thought the entry was good advice and worth sharing. If you do, let him know.

Carole DeJarnatt
Alliance Advisors, Inc.

When I need work done on my car, I consult with a mechanic. When it's time to build a deck in the backyard, I will search for an expert and listen to what he says. So when it comes to life itself, why wouldn't you at least consider what experts think?

read more digg story

Monday, August 6, 2007

Business Etiquette Blunders

Continuing on with the entry I wrote yesterday. . . Here is an article I got off of Digg that I thought had a little different twist to it but still applied to business etiquette. I'm trying to be a benefit to those in business whether it is me writing or finding information to share. Hope you enjoy!

Use these tips to help you project a professional and credible image in any business setting. These ideas will help develop relationships without worrying about etiquette blunders you may be making.

read more digg story

Carole DeJarnatt
Alliance Advisors, Inc.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Top 7 of What Not to do in A Business Meeting.

I cannot believe the number of times I have been to meetings and some individuals in the room show so much unprofessional and/or courtesy. It is not just the cellphone thing that is a constant interruption; it is the unprofessionalism of showing up late, interrupting the meeting, and then causing such a commotion that you cannot go on until they sit down.

This entry has been going through my head a few days and now I want to share. I am the organizer of a leads group and we meet on a bi-monthly basis. Due to the actions of the people in this group it brings forth thoughts of meeting etiquette to the forefront. Here is my list of what not to do in a business meeting:

  1. Do not put your Blackberry, Treo, or other email organizer on the table. What does this do? It causes it to vibrate for the whole room to see and causes as much a distraction as if the phone had rang. Turn it off!
  2. Do not arrive late, make excuses to everyone while the presenter is speaking, and then go in search of coffee. If you arrive late, step in quickly and quietly while taking our seat. The less interruption the better.
  3. Do not leave your cell phone on. This goes along with #1. We all know what an interruption this can cause.
  4. Do not answer your phone. Just in case you forgot to turn it off, do not answer the phone in the middle of a meeting.
  5. Do not carry on a conversation while someone else is talking. I cannot believe the number of times I have seen someone in front of a group presenting while someone beside me is trying to carry on a conversation with another.
  6. Do not forget to be prepared. Prepared means in the way of carrying a pen, pencil, paper, notepad; whatever it takes for you to be ready if someone wants to give you information.
  7. Do not make your presence known by making noises. Noises being pen or pencil tapping, paper shuffling, coughing continuously. If necessary, leave the room.

I could probably go on but the list would be way too long. If you want to comment and add your pet peeves to the list, please do so.

Thanks for reading,
Carole DeJarnatt
Alliance Advisors, Inc.

Friday, August 3, 2007

12 Creative Uses for Autoresponders

In an earlier entry, I shared a list of autoresponders and their pricing that was created by a LinkedIn member. So to follow up, I recently came across this article about autoresponders and some uses. I plan on utilizing some of these tips and I hope my readers enjoy them also. Thanks for sharing your ideas and suggestions, Debbie.

Autoresponders and a Few Creative Uses
by Debbie Ray

If you've been online for any period of time and have been trying to do everything on your web site all by yourself I'm sure at one time or another that you've reached a point of exhaustion just trying to keep up. Just how do those other companies keep up? The regular amount of email alone can threaten to bury you alive every single day - not to mention take away your important time to do all those other important internet "chores" that you need to do.

People expect prompt replies to their email inquiries from your internet business. This poses a major problem for you. Unless you can hire plenty of people to constantly monitor and manage your incoming emails or have figured out how to work continual twenty-four hour shifts (with no sleep) things don't look good.

Email is an essential part of your business. That can't be disputed. Email is an excellent marketing tool - it is inexpensive and it is fast. It can also be a major time waster. If you spend all your working hours answering that mountain of email, when will you have the time to complete your other business activities?

So, is there a way to overcome this huge time waster of basic email maintenance? I do have one major suggestion for you - how about the use of autoresponders responding to your emails? Basically, autoresponders are programs that automatically respond to your emails without you having to do anything (once they've been set up). Autoresponders are often inexpensive, and sometimes free. What these programs do is automatically respond to incoming emails as soon as they are received by the system.

Autoresponders can do so much more than just answer your email. They can also send information about your services, products and price lists to your customers. You could also set up an autoresponder to do more than simply send out standardized messages - such as an unlimited number of follow-up messages sent at predetermined intervals of time.

There are many companies that offer autoresponder services free of charge. Go to Google, look for autoresponders, and you will find a long list of companies offering autoresponder services for you to choose from. Autoresponders are very versatile programs that do a lot of work in no time at all. Below I'll list a few ideas that will teach you to use your autoresponders and to transform a casual visitor into a profitable customer.

1. Create various mailing lists. Tip: Inform subscribers about your new articles when you've written them.

2. Write your own reviews. You could review software, books, music, e-books or movies and put each review in an individual autoresponder. Tip: You could also review your own affiliate program if you have one.

3. Publish your own newsletter. Many autoresponders can manage your subscriptions and follow-up with interested prospects. Tip: Your newsletter can keep your visitors informed about your services or products and build your reputation as an expert in your particular field.

4. Publish an affiliates only newsletter. Inform them of current sales, promotional materials, etc. Tip: Include advice or techniques that they could use to successfully promote your business.

5. Distribute your own valuable articles. Tip: Writing and distributing your own targeted articles is a very powerful tool to build your business online credibility, increase your sales potential and bring a lot more traffic to your site.

6. Distribute your own free reports. Tip: This could give your visitor an idea of the type of information you provide as well as the quality of your products and services.

7. Distribute your own email course. Tip: Each day your autoresponder could send out another new lesson, full of quality content - not just a sales pitch.

8. Once a visitor has completed your email course, automate a reminder about your products and services. Tip: You could also use these reminders to promote new products or services.

9. Automate your own sales process. Tip: Create an ad filled with numerous marketing materials which will increase the chances of converting visitors into customers.

10. Distribute your own advertising to future clients. Tip: If you sell advertising on your website, newsletter or e-zine, set your autoresponder to send the advertising rates (and how to place an ad) automatically to all your prospects' email addresses.

11. Create your own trivia quizzes or contest. Tip: Place the answers and confirmation of their contest entry in an autoresponder.

12. Offer a sample version of your own products. Tip: Give your customers a sample of your own ebooks, courses, software, etc.

Autoresponser allow you to automate many parts of your marketing campaign. Autoresponders are potentially a very powerful marketing tool and allow you to make contact with thousands of potential customers with no work on your end - past the initial autoresponder setup.

This could be an invaluable asset considering how many potential customers you usually have contact with BEFORE you make an actual sale. Now that you have a few new ideas about autoresponders, see if you can come up with some brilliant and creative autoresponder methods of your own!

Copyright 2007 • Debbie Ray. All Rights Reserved

Debbie Ray, owner of , , and is a lifelong dog owner, teacher and internet business owner. Want to learn more about internet business? Purebred dogs? Let me teach you.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Leadership Rolemodels

I attended a luncheon today and our local Clay County Commissioner, Chereese Stewart spoke. As I was listening to her, I was also thinking about the role she plays in our county but also the other roles she plays in our community. She is a daughter, a wife, mother of two children, and a high school ag teacher. She is a role model for women that believe in doing their part to help make the county and community a better place to live. Her parting comment was, "Leave each day better than you found it".

What if we really did try to "leave each day better than we found it"? That is kind of like the "Pay It Forward" movie. Can you imagine what your workplace, community, and neighborhood would look like if each one of us tried?

“It is our choices that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.”
Joanne Kathleen Rowling

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Five PR DO-It-Yourself Tactics from

I received via a separate newsletter an article from titled, In Pictures: Five PR Do-It-Yourself Tactics. I do a little PR work with a couple of my clients, not to mention trying to promote my own business, so this is an area of business that interests me. And as the title read, it is in pictures. I thought it was good enough to share. Check it out at:

In Pictures: Five PR Do-It-Yourself Tactics

And as suggests, if you enjoy this entry subscribe to my feed or email subscription for more articles and/or suggestions of the same or better quality.