Discover the five must-have business tools, recommended by Davinci Virtual Offices, to keep your business competitive with low overhead while maintaining that personal feel necessary for great client relationships.
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Small Business Trends: What You Need to Know to Stay Ahead
In order to advance as a small business, it’s important to follow the latest small business trends. But with an overload of information available, it’s sometimes difficult to know what trends are pertinent and what ones are just extra noise in the media.
To simplify your search, here are five small business trends you should have on your radar to stay ahead throughout the coming months:
Use These 5 Steps to Create a Marketing Plan
Having an ineffective marketing plan is one of the several reasons why many small business startups fail. In the linked article below, you can learn how to write a marketing plan from the very beginning by creating a “situation analysis,” describing your target audience, listing your marketing goals, developing a strategy, and setting a budget. Following these five steps can help you initiate a strong marketing plan specifically targeted to your niche market while staying within a previously defined budget.
Read the full article here.
3 Things Entrepreneurs Must Learn About Digital Marketing and PR
Another thing that might be holding you back is failure to market through digital channels. The article below discusses the importance of integrating digital marketing into your web presence for “competitive intelligence.” Digital marketing practices like SEO, tracking and understanding collected data to refine marketing messages, creating more sophisticated social media posts, and working through the PR process to release interesting stories can keep your business on point in an increasingly-digital world.
Learn more about how to integrate digital marketing..
The New Way of Thinking About Time
In the next article, Jill Krasny talks about how our society views available time and how people assume that if we just better manage our time that we can accomplish anything. This superhuman mentality is dangerous, leading to increased burnout, missed work, and even health complications. Krasny also observes how CEOs are changing their practices to increase productivity, manage their schedules, and eliminate always-on work connections—a lesson that all overwhelmed business owners should learn.
Read the full article or discover five tips for overloaded business owners here.
5 Ways to Disrupt a Dying Industry
It’s important to stay relevant when you own a business, and that means constantly watching for ways to innovate your industry. Failure to do so could ultimately result in bankruptcy. This article discusses five ways to disrupt a stagnant and dying industry, including how to listen to the needs and desires of your customers, addressing industry pain points, and embracing new technology—one of many ways to reduce overhead costs. If you feel like you are in a dying industry, this article is a great resource to begin thinking of ways to innovate.
Learn more in the full article.
Here’s How Customer-Service is Going to Explode in 2015
This last article says it all: great customer service is important, and it isn’t static. Like all other facets of your business, customer service is evolving. Customers want to engage with your brand and find answers quickly on multiple channels. Customer service tools like live web chat and social media are becoming the new standard, so your business must adapt to meet the new expectations for exceptional service.
Read more to learn how to update your customer service practices.
These small business trends demonstrate that all business operations, from marketing to customer service, are going digital. To adapt to the latest technology and customer needs, finding solutions by reevaluating your business plan and turning to virtual office solutions can help you stay ahead of new digital business trends.
Learn more about small business trends and how to stay ahead of the competition by subscribing to our blog and using virtual office solutions from Davinci.
Davinci 101: The Tools of the Mobile Entrepreneur in 2015
The last few years have brought some of the most dramatic and meaningful change to business operations and services that we've ever seen. With the accelerated maturation of smartphones, tablets, and other mobile devices, it's not only possible, it is actually common, to find entrepreneurs who conduct their business operations without offices, staff, or any office hardware beyond what they can carry in a messenger bag. These business owners are known as "Mobile Entrepreneurs," and they're taking over in just about every industry as they prove to be more flexible, more readily available to new and current clients, and overall quicker to respond to business opportunities. In this week's Davinci 101, we take a quick look at the mobile entrepreneur's tools of the trade.
Today's mobile entrepreneur needs very little to get a lot done. The essential tools include: a smartphone, a virtual office, a personal computer, a tablet, and a live receptionist service.
The smartphone allows a mobile entrepreneur to communicate from anywhere, stay organized, and stay informed throughout the day.
A virtual office solution gives the mobile entrepreneur the business address they need to impress clients, access to meeting rooms worldwide, and mail forwarding support for their business correspondence.
The personal computer, whether a laptop or desktop, serves as the mobile entrepreneur's workstation and business hub. Used to prepare documents and presentations, manage business assets, and for research, a personal computer is essential.
A tablet is quite a handy device for the mobile entrepreneur as it allows them to have a powerful computing device on the go. Use it to manage tasks, complete basic work, communicate, stay organized, and as a valuable tool in presentations and meetings.
A live receptionist service is becoming one of the most important tools for a growing small business or mobile entrepreneur. Able to handle all inbound calling, order processing, customer support, call routing, business admin, and much more, a team of live receptionists replaces the need for an in-house receptionist at a fraction of the cost.
Davinci can provide you with a virtual office solution and live receptionists to help you succeed as a mobile entrepreneur in 2015. For more information, please contact us at 888-863-3423 or www.davincivirtual.com
10 Signs the Entrepreneur Life is Right for You
The life of an entrepreneur isn’t for everyone. It requires a lot of passion, dedication, and independence. Simply put, it is not for the faint of heart. However, it can be incredibly rewarding when a business idea takes off.
If you are thinking about starting your own business, consider ten signs the entrepreneur life is right for you:
You’re a thinker.
Entrepreneurs are always thinking, whether it’s about an exciting idea for a new product or service, or how to innovate in a competitive industry. If you daydream about starting your own business, you would find comfort in finding ways to implement all of your great ideas as an entrepreneur.
If you’ve always had a penchant for organization, you’re in luck. Being the owner of a business involves tracking and organizing a lot of information, which becomes challenging as you are generally always multitasking. Having a solid foundation of disciplined organizational skills will benefit you greatly, but when it becomes overwhelming, many entrepreneurs find they need a little extra help from other employees, accountants, and receptionists.
You’re a problem solver.
Being an entrepreneur absolutely requires the ability to solve problems. Handling a crisis under pressure with grace and coming up with brilliant solutions is a sure sign that the entrepreneur life is right for you. This demonstrates natural leadership and shows that you won’t just start a business for the sake of starting a business—you’ll create a product or service designed to solve a problem.
When you start a business, there is no one there to keep you on track, so it is pertinent that you are self-motivated to handle extra responsibilities while managing your own time. With self-motivation, you show a desire to succeed, even when many other people might give up. The ups and downs of owning a startup business are inevitable, but entrepreneurs that are self-motivated have the strength to withstand the rollercoaster and learn to grow from it.
You think you can build a better company.
If you think you could build a better company than what you see in today’s market, you might be right. Confidence is a very important trait in many of today’s most successful entrepreneurs, so don’t be afraid to embrace it. It’s hard to create a successful business if you don’t strongly believe in its purpose. If you have a great idea, back it up with unwavering tenacity.
You like to take risks.
If you are a thrill-seeker that likes to take risks, and you can afford to take those risks, you should seriously consider starting a business. Entrepreneurs are constantly taking a gamble when they start businesses, but with proper planning, you can make success more of a certainty. Besides, you’ll never know how successful your idea can truly be until you put it motion.
You want to take control.
Most entrepreneurs start businesses simply because they want to be their own boss. If you don’t like taking orders from others or simply think that you would make a better leader, you would not be first person to feel liberated by freedom that comes with being an entrepreneur.
You feel like you’ve hit a wall.
Nothing is more frustrating than feeling like you’ve hit a wall with your career. However, if you dream of becoming an entrepreneur, there is always an exit strategy. If you have strong business plan and want to explore your full potential, it may be time to quit your day job and build your own company.
You have an eye for the future.
Successful entrepreneurs that always think of the big picture have a clear vision of the future. Not only is this a sign of strong leadership, it’s also an early indicator of a business’s future success. An eye for the future helps foresee any roadblocks and allows time for smart decision making and strategy.
You don’t want to be chained to a desk.
Some people just can’t stand being confined to an office. They want the freedom to work when and where they want, which many jobs cannot provide. Small business owners that use virtual offices, however, have the luxury of moving to wherever business demands, so they never have to feel like they are chained to a desk.
If you think the entrepreneur life is right for you, contact Davinci to learn how virtual office solutions can help you get started today.
5 Lies that Restrict Real Estate Agents from Going Solo
Going solo is a very appealing venture for many real estate agents currently under the umbrella of a bigger broker or firm, but it’s also surrounded by a lot of stigma within the industry.
However, there is much to be gained by leaving a company and deciding to make it on your own, like newfound freedom, independence, and yes—even higher salaries. Many of the cases against going it on your own are perpetuated by five lies:
1. “You can’t afford the operation costs.”
Starting your own real estate business does have certain costs, but with proper planning, operating costs should not extend past general start up costs. On average, start up costs can run about $1,500-$2,000 for necessities like licensing and insurance. However, if you operate your business from the home, rent an office cubicle or meeting rooms as needed, operating costs can be as low as $50-$100 per month.
2. “You won’t be able to have a brick and mortar presence.”
Even if you don’t have a permanent physical location for your business, you can still create the appearance of a brick and mortar presence. With a virtual office space, you can have a professional business address to use on your websites and business cards, mail forwarding services, and lobby directory listings. If you need to meet with a client, you can meet at the very same address in any of the variety of meeting spaces available.
3. “You won’t have access to the best technology.”
Going solo doesn’t necessarily mean that you won’t have access to the same technology offered by another company, neither does it mean you should purchase next generation tech and devices out of pocket. When presenting or meeting with a client, either in person or through audio/video conferencing, you can use available high-tech presentation tools included with virtual office solutions, such as meeting room rentals and virtual receptionist services.
4. “You won’t make as much as you would under a brand.”
Another misconception about going solo as a real estate agent is that your potential for a higher salary will decrease. Reports actually show that the annual salary of real estates that leave larger firms and companies to work alone can increase by as much as $100,000. This is largely due to the fact that compensation would no longer need to be shared among multiple business partners. You keep every penny you have earned.
5. “You’ll have to do everything on your own.”
While it is true that going solo will, indeed, involve extra work, you do not have to do everything on your own. Many real estate agents find that though they want to do everything themselves, they quickly burn out and lose productivity. If at any point you feel overwhelmed, you may need to ask yourself if you need to hire a virtual receptionist. Virtual receptionist services can assist with call forwarding/screening, appointment scheduling, and a wide variety of other administrative tasks so you have more time available to work on higher priority business.
If you are at a firm and thinking about going solo, don’t be afraid to make the leap. While it is a challenging enterprise, the rewards are immense. Not only will you have more independence, you will also have the potential for a larger percentage of commission and the ability to recruit partners as you see fit when it is time for your firm to expand. Until then, virtual office solutions can help you maximize productivity and cut costs along the way.
Find the confidence to go solo as a real estate agent with virtual office solutions by contacting Davinci Virtual today.
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