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Three Best Ways to Sell Excess Holiday Merchandise

Management and Operations Ten Worst Communication Blunders of 2009 From a steady review of major news events, here are the ten worst communication blunders of 2009. Management and OperationsProductivity Coach's Corner: Clear the Clutter, Create OpportunityThe following is a specific key to success in lightening the load on your body and mind. This is a practical activity, one you can do to reduce the unnecessary physical and psychological stress you may be carrying around right now. Wouldn't it be worth it to invest less than one half of an hour to regain some confidence and control? M... [Read Full Article]

Small Biz Tip: Customer Service: Building Customer Loyalty

Tips from October 12, 2009 The Small Business tips today are about building customer loyalty. Communicate with your customers to see what they need/want. Exceed their expectations to make them come back. Offer coupons and incentives for customers on their next purchase to ensure they return to your business. Create a customer loyalty program. After so many purchases, offer a freebie. Offer rewards for referrals to your business. Personalize! Get to know your customers. It will bring them back to your biz because you know them. Daily Overview: Creating a loyal customer brings people back to your store, constantly increasing your business. [Read Full Article]

Ten Things Never to Say to a Customer

  Government, Politics and the Economy Democatic Senators: Climate-Change Legislation Should Be Dropped This Year Four Democratic senators as calling for the Senate to abandon efforts to pass legislation curbing greenhouse-gas emissions this year and concentrate on a narrower bill to require use of renewable energy. Management and Operations 10 Things Not to Say to Customers There are great things to say to a customer, and then there are things that will drive that same customer into the arms of the competition. Here are the top 10 things not to say to a customer and what you and your people should say instead.... [Read Full Article]

Turn the Buzz into Loyalty

  Government, Politics and the Economy Seidman: I Don't Want the Recession to End Yet According to Dov Seidman, the founder, chairman and chief executive officer of LRN, we need more time to understand where our economy went wrong and to get Wall Street back into proper perspective. Next Six Months Will be Tough for Obama In his first six months as President, Barack Obama got a $787 billion economic stimulus package, $750 billion for the financial crisis, and a down payment on a $1 trillion overhaul of the healthcare system. With greater policy hurdles before him, the next six mo... [Read Full Article]

Bill Introduced to Restrict Small Business Contracts to Real Small Businesses

  Government and Economy Bill Restrict Small Business Contracting to Real Small Businesses Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA), has introduced a bill that would ensure that small business government contracts go only to true small businesses, rather than being awarded to subsidiaries of large companies. Emerging 200 Program: Training Entrepreneurs to Save Cities Starting its... [Read Full Article]

New RNC Chairman Pushes for More Small Business Stimulus

Government and Economy Quarterly Indicators: The Economy and Small Business In the fourth quarter of 2008, the U.S. economy suffered its worst decline since 1982 as real GDP fell by an annualized 3.8 percent. In 2008, the US lost 2.97 million jobs, more than half of them in the fourth quarter. These and other trends are discussed as they affect small business. RNC Chairman Steele Pushes for More Small Business Aid Not all jobs are created equal according to recently elected Republican National Committee Chair Michael Steele, who argues that the Obama Administration in making work than in creating lasting jobs. He is pushing for more of the econo... [Read Full Article]

When Loyalty Programs Go Bad

We all know that when it comes to marketing, loyalty programs, buying clubs and the like are great tools, but only if you use them right. Like any other tool, these things can prove very useful or they can do a lot of unintended damage. While perusing one of my favorite sites,, I ran across a couple of stories that illustrate just how not to manage your company’s loyalty program, an object lesson in the need to keep the corporate chaos to a minimum.  Loyalty in the Reward Zone It begins with Best Buy. This big-box behemoth offers a rewards program called “Reward Zone Premiere Silver,” a bigger and more rewards-intensive version of its original free Rewards Zone program; and as if to demonstrate that they take the concept of “customer rewards” very seriously, they restrict membership to those who spend at least $2,500 each calendar year. Your reward for supporting Best Buy l... [Read Full Article]

Thanks, Merci, Gracias, Danke, Grazie, Agradecimentos

Giving thanks isn’t just for the fourth Thursday in November. April is International Customer Loyalty Month, a great time to show your customers that you appreciate their patronage. This is especially true for small businesses, which are particularly reliant on consistent customer support. Whichever way you go with this, the key is to make your customers feel as though they are more than mere customers. Make them feel special as people and they will be back time and again. Here are five easy ways to show your customers that you value their repeat business:Thank-you CardsA recent national consumer survey by Hallmark Business Expressions showed that 66% of respondents said that they’d be more likely to do more business with a company after receiving a thank-you card for making a purchase or referral. What’s more, 73% of those surveyed said that if they received a thank-you card from a business, they’d appreciate the gesture and feel like... [Read Full Article]

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