The Australian Small Business Blog

The Australian Small Business Blog

This Blog is a Forum where Australian Small Business Owners can exchange Ideas old & new and get Advice from experts in Australia on how to Improve their Businesses through better Business Management, Planning & Strategy, Business Systems and Marketing Strategy and Systems. They will also learn about the Small Business Best Practice Benchmarks that are critical for their success. Our Ultimate Objective is to help Australian Small Business Owners take their Business to the Next Level and achieve their Goals whatever they may be.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Ad of the Month- Made You Look


by Dr Greg Chapman


In the modern media world, advertising is usually sold by “Impressions”. That’s not the number of people who have read your ad, or even seen your ad, just the number of people who had the opportunity to see your ad.

I think we have all evolved the ability to narrow our focus to the content we want so we can ignore the ads in the side panels. Even most direct mail ends up in the bin unopened, so getting people not only to see your ad, but also read it is becoming an ever greater challenge.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Buying an existing small business : smart or not?


by Dr Greg Chapman

You have just decided that you don’t want to work for someone else anymore and build their dream, you want to build your own. You know the kind of business you want and are not afraid of the hard work it’s going to take. The question you are now asking is whether to buy an existing business to avoid early growing pains. Here are threekey issues to consider before you buy.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

The wrong time to Increase Sales


by Dr Greg Chapman

Whenever you read an article about business growth, it almost always comes down to a push to increase sales, but there are times when this may have totally the opposite effect that was intended.



The big mistake businesses make is using Sales as a proxy for growth. When economists speak about growth, they look at profit, which is not the same Sales. In certain circumstances, increases in Sales can reduce profitability, but people continue to use Sales as an indicator of growth because it’s easy to measure.


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May You Business Be - As You Plan It!

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Dr Greg Chapman is the Director of Empower Business Solutions and is Australia's Leading Advisor on Emerging Businesses and provides Coaching and Consulting advice to Australian Small Business Owners in Marketing & Business Strategies Planning & Systems. He is also the author of The Five Pillars of Guaranteed Business Success and Price: How You Can Charge More Without Losing Sales.



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Friday, August 12, 2016

Price Comparison Websites


by Dr Greg Chapman


To list, or not to list, that is the question, as Hamlet probably never asked.

There are numerous websites now offering customers the ability to get multiple quotes for a service. This is great for the customer because they are able to find the best service at the lowest cost in a side-by-side comparison- but is it the right thing for your business?

The attraction for businesses listing on such sites, if they have been properly promoted, is that it will be another channel for referrals of business that you may not have otherwise received. Unfortunately, this business will likely be won on price.

While such comparison websites offer a convenience to customers, there is limited capability to interact with the businesses. This is necessary as these websites don’t want to be cut out by either customer or the business with them dealing directly, and so losing their commission. This means that it’s difficult for businesses to demonstrate their point of difference and speak with the customer directly. Usually, they just have a text box to describe their offer with limited ability to link to their own website, if at all.



Thursday, August 04, 2016

Managing Your time requires Small Business Brain Surgery


by Dr Greg Chapman


What do you have in common with Bill Gates and Richard Branson? You have the same 24 hours in a day. It’s what you do with those hours that produces the difference. Often business owners are working longer hours and taking home less than their staff. If this is you, maybe it’s time you learnt what Brain Surgeons do.

Most business owners are micro-managers. They have learnt from experience if they give work to someone else, they mess it up, and then they spend twice as long fixing things. But this is not what Brain Surgeons do. When they operate on a patient, they are not in charge of the theatre- the theatre nurse is. They don’t open up the patient, or close. They leave that to a junior surgeon. Everything is prepared for them, and someone else mops up the blood later. All they do is the brain surgery. With a little bit of marketing beforehand (client needs), and a little bit more marketing afterwards (client satisfaction).

How is this possible?

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Case Study: How to Transform a Business


by Dr Greg Chapman


Changing a business is not easy. The first step has to come from the owner. Hear how one client took his business from nowhere to receiving an award from the Governor General of Australia whilst increasing his prices by 400% in 12 months. In this podcast, Dr Greg Chapman interviews his client who explains how he transformed his business.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

The Second Profit Driver – Increasing Conversion to Sales


by Dr Greg Chapman


In an earlier article I described The Five Profit Drivers marketing system. The second of the Five Profit Drivers is Increasing Conversion to Sales.

Sales should be considered as a process like any other key part of a business. It is in fact the most important part because without sales there is no business. This step in the Five Profit Driver Marketing Model converts the leads created with the First Profit Driver into sales.

At this point in the marketing process, the prospect has called you, they have walked into your store, or you have the appointment with them. While the types of sales processes can appear quite different in different businesses, every sale goes through seven steps. For different businesses, some steps might appear to be almost missed, while in others, there might be a very long time spent within a single step.

Friday, July 22, 2016

I’m sorry, I have to double my prices


by Dr Greg Chapman

That’s what a friend of mine said just recently to all his clients. Would you be brave enough to do that? And was this truly an act of bravery on his behalf? This is his story.



Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Australian Small Business Blog Ranked In Smart Company’s Best Business Blogs



While this only happened a while ago, we have just become aware that Smart Company ranked this blog as one of Australia’s 20 BestBusiness Blogs for 2016. Thanks guys for the recognition.



Dr Greg Chapman




May Your Business this Year be - As You Plan It.


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Dr Greg Chapman is the Director of Empower Business Solutions and is Australia's Lea ding Advisor on Emerging Businesses and provides Coaching and Consulting advice to Australian Small Business Owners in Marketing & Business Strategies Planning & Systems. He is also the author of The Five Pillars of Guaranteed Business Success and Price: How You Can Charge More Without Losing Sales.

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Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Is Search Engine Optimisation Dead?


by Dr Greg Chapman

If you have websites, you will no doubt be contacted daily by someone who will promise they will put you at the top of Google with their Search Engine Optimisation services. In fact if I don’t receive several offers a day, I think my email must have stopped working! But does SEO still work?



Because it wants to make more money, Google has decided that it wants to make it harder for your website to get a free ride in the organic search listings when you are trying to attract new business, so you will spend money with them with Adwords. (Fancy a business wanting to reduce freeloaders and make more money.) So Google has increased the number of ads it puts on a page and made them a little more difficult to distinguish from organic searches while cracking down on some SEO techniques that used to work.
More...





May You Business Be - As You Plan It!

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Over to You. What do You Think? Post Your Comments Below. [Note to those seeking a free ride on our google ranking, blog spam will be deleted,but genuine contributions will be happily published.]

Dr Greg Chapman is the Director of Empower Business Solutions and is Australia's Leading Advisor on Emerging Businesses and provides Coaching and Consulting advice to Australian Small Business Owners in Marketing & Business Strategies Planning & Systems. He is also the author of The Five Pillars of Guaranteed Business Success and Price: How You Can Charge More Without Losing Sales.



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Friday, July 15, 2016

Daddy, where do jobs come from- Big Business or Small?


by Dr Greg Chapman



While the media tend to ignore small business, politicians of both major parties will say that small business is the growth engine of the economy, although organising them to support their policies is like trying to herd cats. Even so, with 47% of private sector employees producing 30% of our GDP, together they are a powerful force in our economy.

When a big business such as an auto manufacturer shuts down, it makes big headlines with union bosses, who have been sabotaging the company’s profitability and ability to manage for years, complain how unfair it is and demand government intervention to protect jobs and even bigger handouts. Unfortunately several thousand jobs will go when this happens, and just as importantly small business suppliers are also hit.

While big businesses such as car manufacturers receive billions of dollars, with taxpayer support for each auto job of around $50,000, small business owners have to manage on their own. Suppliers to failing big businesses have to innovate and seek other markets for their skills to survive. They won’t get handouts.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Ad of the Month – Showing Off


by Dr Greg Chapman


Advertising agencies crave attention. (Who would have thought it!) So they try to win awards. These awards assume that the entrants are real ads, and the ad must have been shown somewhere, but that bar is pretty low. So what if none of their paid ads really reveal their talents, constrained as they usually are by their clients’ demands? Then they create an ad showing off with a product which you can’t buy, and probably don’t want.

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

How to Drive Your Business forward with a 1 hour Business Plan


by Dr Greg Chapman


Owners avoid writing out a business plan because they believe it will take a long time for little benefit. But what if you could create your own plan in an hour and have a simple process with which to update it? Dr Greg Chapman shows you how.

Monday, July 04, 2016

The First Profit Driver – Increasing Enquiries


by Dr Greg Chapman


The First Profit Driver – Increasing Enquiries

In an earlier article I described The Five Profit Driversmarketing system that can double your profits. The first of the Five Profit Drivers is Increasing Enquiries.

What marketing strategy are you going to use to communicate with your customers and entice them to contact you? There are really only four types of enquiry generation marketing strategies.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Can You create a Perpetual Motion Marketing Machine?


by Dr Greg Chapman

Several centuries ago inventors tried to build perpetual motion machines. The idea being, you just kick started it, and it would go on for ever and could potentially be a never ending source of energy. We now know that such machines are impossible, and they always run down due to the presence of friction. Perpetual motion machines would violate the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics, colloquially described as “Things fall apart”.



It doesn’t matter how clever the design of the machine is, external factors will cause the machine to slow down until it stops. However, once you start the machine, overcoming inertia, only a small amount of energy may keep it running.

The 2nd Law of Thermodynamics also applies to Marketing. You might have a strong flow of customers from referrals, but over time there are external influences such as the changes in the, competition, innovation, customer needs, the economy or other reasons, that create a source of friction that can cause that steady flow to dwindle to a trickle. More...




May You Business Be - As You Plan It!

Subscribe to this Blog for more Small Business news and tips.

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Over to You. What do You Think? Post Your Comments Below. [Note to those seeking a free ride on our google ranking, blog spam will be deleted,but genuine contributions will be happily published.]

Dr Greg Chapman is the Director of Empower Business Solutions and is Australia's Leading Advisor on Emerging Businesses and provides Coaching and Consulting advice to Australian Small Business Owners in Marketing & Business Strategies Planning & Systems. He is also the author of The Five Pillars of Guaranteed Business Success and Price: How You Can Charge More Without Losing Sales.



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Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Ad of the Month – Old is New Again


by Dr Greg Chapman


Even if you are a well known brand it’s important to stay top of mind. Mostly this is done through some form of advertising, however, social media now offers new opportunities for brand re-enforcement. In this ad, a very old idea is made new again.

Tuesday, June 07, 2016

How to use Guarantees to Boost Your Sales


by Dr Greg Chapman


While all business are required by law to provide a guarantee that the goods supplied are as advertised, most miss the opportunity to use their guarantee as a point of difference that will boost their sales. In this podcast, Dr Greg Chapman explains how you can do just that.

Friday, June 03, 2016

Trust – The Small Business Secret Weapon?


by Dr Greg Chapman


Trust – The Small Business Secret Weapon?

One of the most potent weapons of big businesses is their ability to build a brand. A brand creates Top of Mind awareness that remains until you are ready to buy, building familiarity until it naturally becomes a safe choice. Which do would you trust more- a brand you have heard of, or one you have never heard of?




Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Using the Five Profit Drivers to Double Your Business’ Profit


by Dr Greg Chapman


The Five Profit Drivers

Have you ever seen a business that has doubled their sales apparently overnight? Have you wondered what is the one thing they did to achieve that result? The chances are they did a number of things which when multiplied together gave the end result. In all likelihood, they understood and used the Power of Leverage.

Let’s see how that works. Consider this example.



Friday, May 20, 2016

Importance of Technology in my Business Coaching business


by Dr Greg Chapman


The following question was asked by an Australian Small Business Blog reader:

“How important is technology in your business and which is the most important for your success?”

Technology is important in any business, but it’s all too easy to get distracted by the latest bright shiny object that becomes available with suppliers insisting it’s essential for your business. As my business, Empower Business Solutions, is largely an online business with most enquiries generated in that environment with a mixed online/offline conversion, I am regularly tempted by the latest fads. However, I resist this by stepping back and thinking carefully about how the application might help my business, and researching how others are using it, running trials, and quickly dropping it if it doesn’t live up to promoters’ promises.

Featured Book

Dr. Greg Chapman is also the author of
The 5 Pillars of Guaranteed Business Success

The Five Pillars of Guaranteed Business Success

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