The Australian Small Business Blog

The Australian Small Business Blog

This Blog has been providing 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 for over 10 years. 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.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

5 Messages You Should Never Send on LinkedIn


by Nathanial Bibby

With access to over 500 million members on the world’s largest professional network, LinkedIn enables a unique opportunity to build your brand, generate leads and position yourself as an industry authority.

To help our readers avoid these common mistakes, LinkedIn expert Nathanial Bibby shares with us the 5 most common mistakes people make when sending messages to prospects on LinkedIn.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Why learning 15 ways to Close the Sale is a waste of Your time


by Dr Greg Chapman

There are dozens of ways to close the sale, and lots of sales trainers know them all. There is the assumptive close, the alternative choice close, the reverse close, the time sensitive close and many more.

Closing of course is the end point of every sales pipeline, and you must have an elegant way of asking for the sale. So many sales are lost because the sales person doesn’t ask for it, but relying on the close to get the sale for you, making the close do all the work in converting a prospect is a big mistake. If the customer is not ready to buy, no close will work for them.



More...





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, July 21, 2017

Getting Paid First in Your Business


by Dr Greg Chapman


The way most people run their business, they are the last to get paid. Their wage is what’s left over after they have paid their bills and their staff. If there’s not enough to go around, they take a cut, or even worse, have to chip in from their own pockets to make sure that everyone else gets paid.

Is there another way? Yes.

To ensure you get paid first, you need to set-up your business in a way that makes that happen. The first step is to include your wages right from the start when you develop your pricing and profit strategy. What most people do when they set their prices is to look what their competitors charge as a guide to their own prices, and what’s left over after expenses is their wage.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Marketing Moments – The 80-20 Rule


by Dr Greg Chapman


The 80/20 rule appears to be ubiquitous. That's the rule that says 80% of the result comes from 20% of your effort. You will also find that 80% of your new business will come from 20% of your marketing effort. The key is to measure what you are doing with your marketing so that you can then identify that 20%. In this podcast I discuss how you can use the 80-20 Rule to get the most out of your marketing budget.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Marketing or Systems – The Chicken or the Egg?


by Dr Greg Chapman


Your business is doing pretty well, but you can tell it could be a whole lot more productive. You notice that your staff spend a lot of time putting out fires to keep clients happy. On the other hand, you know that the marketing is unfocused and sales, while at a reasonable level, are unpredictable. Great one month, and not so much the next.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Ad of the Month – Problem and Solution

by Dr Greg Chapman


The basic formula for advertising, demonstrate a problem, reveal your solution, and show how it solves the problem. What if the problem causes them to laugh at you? Does it make it more pressing for you to find a solution if only to stop them laughing at you? That’s the formula in this ad.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Finding Your Marketing Silver Bullet


by Dr Greg Chapman

Like the never ending search for unicorns, businesses seek their own holy grail, their own marketing silver bullet. They try advertising in different media, they rely on word of mouth and may even try cold calling. Nothing seems to work.

Online gurus promote SEO, Adwords and pretty new websites with pop-ups, pop-unders, chat boxes and every other new internet gadget that has an affiliate program. Nothing seems to work. But the search continues. There are only four enquiry generation marketing strategies: More...





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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Wednesday, June 21, 2017

The Known Unknowns that Business Owners Face



by Dr Greg Chapman, MBA

When someone starts a business, it’s typically doing something for which they have the knowledge and training and enjoy. They may be a tradie with a trade qualification or professional with a relevant degree. When starting their business, they focus on that skill and delivering to their clients the best service they know how based on their training and previous experience working for others.

As the business grows, however, they find there are other issues for which their professional or technical qualification left them unprepared. Often the business stagnates as it hits a glass ceiling. Even though they may be doing well, they find there are just not enough hours in the day. Much of the time is spent firefighting and following up staff. This distracts them from stepping back from the coalface to work on their business rather than just being trapped within it, like running in a hamster-wheel.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Marketing Moments - First Impressions


by Dr Greg Chapman


One of the absolute basics that any business owner can do to be sure that they're putting across the image they want potential customers to have of them, is to phone their business. If your phone isn't being answered correctly, then make no mistake, it's costing you business.

In this podcast I discuss the importance of first impressions and what you can do to make a good one.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Friday, June 09, 2017

Making Your Business Run Without You

by Dr Greg Chapman, MBA



Imagine for a minute. You are on a tropical island, laying by a pool on a banana lounge. Your biggest concern right now is whether you will have another swim, or order another drink. Your mobile trilling the James Bond theme interrupts your resolution of this most vexing issue, and you see you have just received a text.

Curiously, you check out the text and it says $30k has just been deposited into your bank account. Then you check your messages. You have also received an email from your office. It is your monthly report. When you download it, you can see an activity report, with highlights of the month, the sales figures, and profit analysis for the time you have been away. You can see a list of current issues and the plans to address them along with forecasts for the next month.

You consider for just a second, whether you will call your office, and then think to yourself “Nah, they are doing fine without me.” You then attract the attention of the pool waiter, and order a pina colada.

Monday, June 05, 2017

Ad of the Month – When Your Offer is Less

by Dr Greg Chapman


So your business is up against the big boys. How can you compete? They are better known, there are more of them everywhere and they have a bigger range. Can you turn that around to your advantage?


Friday, June 02, 2017

Trust – The Small Business Secret Weapon?



by Dr Greg Chapman, MBA

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?

Thursday, June 01, 2017

Why most businesses Stay small and What YOU can do about YOURS



A truth that is not well known is that 98% of businesses are Micro Stayers and never leave the micro bubble. To understand why this is so, we need to examine the lifecycle of businesses. In this podcast I discuss the key stages in the life of any business and what the most important actions are at each and how to get to the next.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Are Your Customers having a Nice Day?

by Dr Greg Chapman


Some years ago, I worked in the corporate world in the US, and after 3 years I, my wife and two kids were to be transferred to the UK. My employer had engaged an international moving company which would handle the packing and transport of all our possessions. The same company would handle the unpacking in the UK.

As we had accumulated a lot in the US (they make it really easy to spend your money there) it was to take 3 days to pack and remove everything. Each day, the packing team arrived promptly on our doorstep at 8am lined up behind their leader. They were neatly dressing in crisp uniforms. The team leader explained each day what they would be doing and they proceeded to work.





The packers, if they had a query about an item, asked politely about how we wanted them to be packaged, even our children’s precious items which to the uninitiated looked like junk. They were always polite and courteous. Each night they cleaned away any mess, and explained what would happen the next day. While moving is always stressful, they did everything they could to make the move as painless as possible.

After we flew to London we organised the UK removalists to deliver and unpack everything. The difference with the US team couldn’t be more stark. More...



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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Thursday, May 18, 2017

What should I do now?


by Dr Greg Chapman


You have caught a buyer’s eye. Perhaps it was your expensive ad in a magazine, or even an ad online that has cost you nothing (till someone clicks on it), or got them to your website or store, what do you want them to do next? Buy?

Of course, but if they don’t know you yet, and you shout “Buy Now” you will just as likely lose the buyer as they run out the door or click away. So the customer may take some time to look around to see if they are in the right place.

There is a moment of uncertainty. It may be the right place, but the range of options may just be too overwhelming, so just at the time they are asking themselves “What should I do now?” – tell them.

If it’s an ad, tell them why they should visit your website or store. How will taking such action help them? What benefit can you provide?

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Small Business Best Practice Benchmarks - Performance Review


by Dr Greg Chapman


Previous small business best practice benchmarks articles covered the need for a Five Year strategic plan and an annual business financial and operational plan. Obviously important, however, General Truman once said:

Planning is essential but plans are useless

He was of course referring to a battle situation where the enemy has its own plan which is, naturally, to prevent your plan from succeeding. This means that plans must be flexible and responsive to changed circumstance.

The planning process enables you to consider the possible outcomes but not to identify which of the possible outcomes is likely to be the reality. A good planing process will also have identified contingencies.

Tuesday, May 09, 2017

Ad of the Month – Point of Difference

by Dr Greg Chapman


In a world of cutting corners, slashing costs and instant gratification, it’s nice to know there are some businesses who insist on attention to detail and taking the time to do things properly. For this business they demonstrate this in a series of ads, just taking that attention to detail a little bit farther.


Tuesday, May 02, 2017

Marketing Moments – Educate Your Customers


by Dr Greg Chapman


Few companies get the most they can from their sales potential with their current customer base, yet most are preoccupied with getting new customers. This happens because there isn't any allowance in their marketing program to keep current and prospective customers well informed. Customers need to have a constant stream of information about the products and services you provide. Otherwise they will assume that you cannot fulfill their needs and will look for other businesses that can.

In this podcast I discuss promoting your less well known services to your existing customers.

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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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