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How to Set Up Your Business With Google Plus

GooglePlus

Google Plus is quickly becoming a go-to social media platform for businesses.

With a Google Plus account, you’ll be able to connect with thousands of potential customers, and will have a great chance to get the word out about your company.

With Google Plus, your posts are indexed by Google’s search engine, and links that are shared on Google Plus are indexed very quickly –which means that content posted on Google Plus is more likely to be picked up by search engines than content on Facebook or Twitter.

Google Plus is also a great platform for local marketing. It can help to bring you closer to the top of local searches, and when someone types in the products or services that you offer, your Google Plus business page will appear near the top of the search results. Google Plus also gives you the chance to “put your business on the map” which means that when someone runs a search on your company, they’ll be able to find your location.

Then there’s the fact that Google Plus is growing quickly. While Facebook is still in the lead with 700 million active users, Google Plus has 343 million users and is now the second largest social network.

Thankfully, setting up a Google Plus account for your business is incredibly simple. Here’s how you can set up a Google Plus account, and a few tips for getting the most out of your new account.

Step One: Set Up Your Profile

To create a Google Plus page for your business, you must first have a personal profile on Google. Setting up a personal profile is relatively simple. You can create yours here: Google Plus. From there, click “pages” in the left menu or go here and you will be on your way to setting up a Google Plus page for your business.

Step Two: Create a Business Page

Once you have a personal profile you can get to work creating a Google Plus business page. You will need to answer a few questions regarding your business and select a category that defines your company best. You will then enter in some other information that will help Google locate your company and find you on Google Maps. Be sure to enter your website address as well. Review and agree, and you have will have your very own Google Plus business page.

Step Three: Include Information

Include information about you and your company. This is a great chance to inform your followers and potential customers more about who you are, and the services and goods that you offer. Information should include a brief description about your business including contact information, a profile picture, and other business-related information that will be relevant to your customers. The more services you list on your Google Plus page, the better. This way, people searching for services that your company offers will be more likely to find you.

Step Four: Appeal Factor

Finally, put some extra effort into making your Google Plus page visually appealing. Be sure to keep things consistent with your personal brand, and include a cover photo, and interesting (yet informative) videos that show what your company is all about. The more you personalize your page, the more appealing it will be to customers –it will show that you care about the company and take pride in the services you offer. Include external links to all of your social media sites, and then remember to update your other social media sites with links to your Google Plus page as well.

Congratulations! You now have your very own Google Plus business page. Don’t forget to update it with relevant information such as new product or service updates, posts on special offers, links to your latest blog posts, or other information on services that your business offers.

For tools and support for single-person businesses, visit Indie. We provide an easy to use platform for small businesses to promote themselves on, and a web-based dashboard that makes it easy to manage your business. Sign up today –it’s free!

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3 Questions to Ask If You Think You Need Twitter For Your Business

3 Questions to Ask If You Think You Need Twitter For Your BusinessTwitter is an extremely popular social media website that many companies are using –and with great success.

But before you jump on board the Twitter bandwagon, there are a few things you should ask yourself ahead of time, that will help you to gauge whether or not it’s the right fit for your company. Taking the time to ask a few questions upfront can also help you to develop a game plan, and enable you to get the most out of this social media network.

If you’re considering Twitter for your business, here are three questions you should ask before you get started.

1. Do You Have Time to Use Twitter Effectively?

To get the most out of Twitter, you need time. Twitter is designed to be an interactive dashboard, which means if you don’t have the time to apply to it, your Twitter account will soon become just another inactive account. Twitter is more than just a messenger service, or a “micro-blog,” it’s a real-time snapshot of your company. Those who choose to follow you want real, up-to-the-second updates. When used and managed effectively, Twitter can work for you –just remember that in order to get the most out of Twitter, you will need time to devote to it.

2. Will It Benefit Your Company?

If you are thinking about signing up for Twitter, you should ask yourself whether an account will benefit your company. Since it will require an investment of time to grow your follower base, interact with others, and make timely, relevant posts, it’s important to make sure you’ll be getting something in return. Having clearly defined goals about what you hope to gain from Twitter is the best way to ensure that you’re getting the most out of your account.

Here are some questions that you can ask, that will help you to determine if a Twitter account can benefit you:

  • Will it help you to reach out to a new generation of customers?
  • Are your potential followers potential customers?
  • Are you hoping to stay up with the latest trends?
  • Is your target audience found there?
  • Are you looking for the opportunity to network with other professionals?
  • Will you use Twitter to open the doors of communication between you and your customers?

It’s also important to remember, that often, the benefits of social media can be intangible and difficult to quantify. Twitter can help you to establish a brand, build awareness, or give a face to your company, all of which are valuable benefits, but it’s important to have a clear direction about what you hope to gain from the social network. Twitter has plenty to offer single-person businesses, but in order to recognize those benefits you’re going to need a plan.

3. Is It the Right Fit for Your Company?

Finally, is Twitter the right tool for you? Since Twitter is connected with in-the-moment developments and cutting-edge information, it can especially benefit companies that are based on current and trending events. News organizations and sports-related businesses are examples of companies that can benefit from Twitter accounts. Of course, since Twitter is important for customer relationship building and for connecting with other professionals, other industries can benefit from Twitter too.

When it comes down to it, the decision to get your business on Twitter is entirely up to you. As a general rule, you’ll get out of Twitter as much as you put in, and it’s important to ask yourself whether or not you have the time to invest in maintaining an active account or whether your resources would be better spent elsewhere.

Are you on Twitter? Have you found that it benefits your business? Share your experience with us!

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Why MailChimp Is Good for Your Single-Person Business

Why MailChimp Is Good for Your Single-Person Business

While rumor has it that email is a dead form of advertising, the facts show otherwise.

 

With over 247 billion emails being sent every day, it’s quite obvious that email isn’t dead. In fact, email is the highest converting form of digital marketing, and recent statistics show that ninety percent of customers prefer to hear about company updates via email newsletters.

 

Company newsletters are especially valuable for small, single-person businesses. Small businesses may not always have the budget to spend considerable amounts of cash on advertising, but they are still in need of ways to get the word out about their company, services, promotions, and offers.

 

MailChimp is a service that makes it easy to send out company newsletters via email. They may it possible to slash the amount time it usually takes to create and send a newsletter while enabling a company of any size to design professional emails. They also offer some handy tools that make it easy to track the results of email campaigns.

 

If you’re wondering how MailChimp can help your single-person business, here’s what this program can do for you.

 

Newsletters Made Easy – And More Effective

While it’s true that you can send out an email newsletter through your standard email account, most email accounts are designed to send emails to small groups of people –not lists. MailChimp though, is designed specifically for mass emailing newsletters and promotions, and offers some important features that make it invaluable for single-person companies. Here are just a few.

 

  • Bulk Mailer – While many email services and internet providers limit the amount of emails that you can send at once, using a tool such as MailChimp enables you to send out mass emails at once.

 

  • Professional Style – MailChimp enables you to easily create a customizable, yet professional template for your emails. You can also choose from a predesigned professional template if you prefer.

 

  • Compatibility – Using MailChimp also enables your viewers to open your email in HTML or text only format and also gives them to option to click a link and read the email in a browser if they prefer.

 

  • Data on Email Campaigns – With MailChimp, you also have the ability to see who has received and responded to your emails. You can track how many visitors came to your site via a link in the email. This valuable data allows you to customize your mail outs for the best response.

 

  • Scheduling – With the ability to track the response to your emails, you will be able to determine the ideal time to send them. MailChimp also allows you to schedule your emails to be sent at a certain time. This means that you’ll be able to different take time zones into consideration, and will no longer have to send your emails out at the same time to everyone.

 

 

As a small one-person business, you probably don’t have a lot of extra money lying around to spend on the latest marketing tools. MailChimp is extremely cost-effective. In fact, it’s usually free. If you have less than 2000 subscribers, you can send up to 12,000 emails per month without paying. After that, there are upgrade plans available that helps increase the amount of emails you can send per month –none of which will break the bank.

 

Finally, MailChimp is incredibly easy to use. In fact, one of the features MailChimp is known for is its tremendous ease of use. MailChimp makes it easy to upload, edit, and create a newsletter quickly and easily, and let’s face it, when something is this easy you’ll be more likely to use it regularly, allowing you to reap the benefits that come from sending out a regular company newsletter.

 

What about you? Have you used MailChimp or another program for company newsletters? Would you recommend it to others?

 

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3 Steps to Writing a Tagline for Your Business Homepage

taglineYour tagline is an often-overlooked, yet vitally important part of your business website.

The tagline is a phrase that tells the world what they should know about you. A tagline takes your mission, goals, business strategy, and everything you stand for –and condenses it into a few words.

What Is a Tagline?

A tagline is a string of words that is placed after your business name, and delivers the core meaning behind your business.

While your business name doesn’t generally explain what your business does –your tagline does. It partners up with your business name, and offers insight and clarity into your business. A good tagline will almost become a brand name for itself –when people hear it, they will automatically connect your business with it. Consider some of the more popular taglines: “Just do it,” or “Have it your way.” When you hear these taglines, you automatically associate the company with them.

Here are three steps to writing a tagline for your business homepage.

Brainstorm

Brainstorming is perhaps the biggest part of choosing an effective tagline. Don’t try to come up with a good tagline –simply think of (and write down) as many words as you can think of when it comes to your business. Try to come up with some good reasons for a tagline. Tell the world why your company should matter to them.

Some things to consider include:

  • What does your business do?
  • Who are your target customers?
  • What are the benefits of your products or services?
  • What are your businesses strengths?
  • What makes your business unique?
  • What are your values?
  • Why are your products or services amazing?

Write down as many descriptive words that you can think of.

Pair Up the Words

Next, try pairing up some of these words up. It may take upwards of fifty tries before you land on something suitable. Don’t just go for the first thing that makes you say “Ah ha!” Keep working, you might find something better.

Your tagline should be:

  • Simple and to the point
  • Easy to remember
  • Catchy
  • Likeable
  • Customer-oriented

Choose

Once you have all the elements of a good tagline and potentially promising options –it’s time for the real work to begin: choosing your tagline.

Line up all the potential candidates and get to work. Ask yourself a few questions to help narrow down the choices:

  • Does it work well with the business name? Is it visually appealing?
  • Is your tagline already in use?
  • Is it ‘ownable’? Can you move the tagline around with your logo, and change things up with it still remaining solid?
  • Do people like it? Try the tagline out on your social media accounts and ask friends and unbiased family members for their opinions on it. Ask them what it makes them think of when they hear it –and see if it lines up with your business.

Remember, choosing a tagline can take a lot of time and effort. It won’t happen overnight, and you might have to rotate through quite a few options before you find one that works well with your business –but when you get that right tagline, your business will thank you.

Do you have a tagline for your business? How did you come up with it?

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How to Choose the Right Computer for Your Single-Person Business

ComputerLet’s face it –your business needs a computer. But it’s easy to get lost in the sheer number of choices and options that are available, not to mention that the lingo of the computer world isn’t exactly clear-cut.

Choosing the right computer is important, but it doesn’t have to be complicated. Once you know what you are looking for, you can narrow down the choices and will be able to make an informed decision, and end up with a computer that will serve you well.

If you’re in the market for a new computer, here are a few important things to take into consideration –to help make the decision much easier.

Desktop Vs. Laptop

When it comes to choosing a computer, the first thing you should consider is which type of computer you want: a desktop, laptop, or tablet.

  • Desktop

A desktop is considered easier to use since they come equipped with larger keyboards and monitors. But they’re not portable, and are meant to stay on a desk. One advantage of desktops over laptops and tablets is the price to performance ratio. You’ll get a more powerful computer for the price if portability isn’t important to you.

  • Laptop

A laptop is ideal for those who travel often, or for those who don’t have a specific office or storefront. A laptop is portable, so you can easily take it with you wherever you go. Laptops are ideal for research, content creation, and general multitasking.

  • Tablet

Tablets are the most portable option. They’re ideal for presentations, travel, sales engagement, and on-the-go computing. Since they lack the full keyboard that laptops have, they’re less ideal for tasks that involve a lot of typing.

Specifications

Every computer has its own set of specifications, for both hardware and software. This affects the computer’s performance, capabilities, and even the computer’s “shelf life” –how well it will function, and for how long.

  • Memory – The memory, or RAM, is your computer’s short-term memory. It has a big impact on your computer’s performance, how fast it is, and how quickly it processes certain tasks. Depending on the nature of your business, you might want to choose a computer with more memory. For instance, if you are a graphic designer –you will need more memory than a vacuum repair shop simply because your computer will be storing more information. RAM needs have increased drastically in recent years, with even basic computers coming with 4 or 6GB.
  • Hard Drive – The hard drive is the storage center for your files. The size of the files that you will be storing (or using), will affect the storage space that you need on your hard drive. It is important to keep in mind that graphic files take up more space than text.
  • Processor – The processor, or CPU, impacts the speed in which your computer operates. Just as with the memory, the processor you need will depend widely on the amount of work you will be doing on your computer. While high-end processors are meant for those who are going to be doing heavy work on their computers, it’s important to get a computer with a processor that is fast enough to handle the work you are doing.
  • Monitor – The size of your monitor is also an important feature when it comes to choosing a computer. This is mostly a matter of preference. While some work is easier done on large screens, some people prefer a smaller screen. The screen you require will depend on the amount of time spent on your computer and the nature of your work.

Ask for Help

Finally, if you are confused or not 100 percent sure what computer you need, don’t be afraid to ask for help from your local computer shop. You could also talk to friends or family members –the ones who know all about computers, and take them with you when you go shopping.

Above all, make sure you make the decision –avoid feeling pressured into buying something by a salesperson. Make sure the computer you are purchasing is the right one for your business needs.

At Indie, we provide tools and support for single-person businesses, enabling them to operate efficiently and helping them to grow. For more information, visit us today.

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5 Things Your Single-Person Business Probably Doesn’t Need

Single Person BusinessFor single-person businesses, there are certain benefits that come from having a one-person operation, as opposed to a large corporation.

While at times you may feel overwhelmed or wish you were bigger, there are some distinct advantages to being a small business: aside from getting to call all the shots that is!

Small businesses and single-person operations can get by on less. A lot less. While bigger companies have a lot more to take into consideration, and usually require a higher initial outlay to get started, with single-person companies, there are some things that you can let go of, without it negatively impacting your company.

Here are a few things that most single-person companies won’t need.

A New Company Car

A new car is unlikely to impress customers enough to inspire them to buy your products or services. Of course, there are certainly exceptions to this, for example –if you’re running a business from your car, you may need to invest in a new one to make a good impression. But for the rest of us, a brand new company car probably isn’t necessary. What matters to your customers, is that you’re good at what you do, and can offer service or products that meet their expectations.

Expensive Software

You need software, but as a single-person business, there is no need to sign up for ‘pro’ on everything. If you think you need it, consider taking it for a trial run to see if you can benefit from it. Many times pro is aimed at bigger companies. Having more expensive software or going ‘pro’ isn’t going to change your business to ‘pro’ or grow you into a corporation. So since you’re a single-person business, embrace the fact that you don’t have to pay extra for company software!

An Overly Expensive Website

A website is important. No matter what size your company. In fact as a single-person business, your website is one of the most important forms of advertising you can have. But having an overly expensive, all tricked out website to make you appear bigger than you are is overkill. Save yourself some money and go with a more size-relevant option.

Tons of Stationery

Unless you are in the business of selling stationery, then your single-person business can do without stockpiling personalized stationery to send your customers personalized notes on. While it’s ok to have small quantities, there is no need to buy in bulk. Just buy what you need.

More Debt

Finally, more debt is one thing that a small company does not need. To an extent, a level of debt is usually required to get a company started, but for a single-person business, company debt equals personal debt, and you don’t need that. Staying in business is risky and hard enough without factoring in a costly loan. If something should happen, and your business is no longer able to stay afloat –the only person who would be responsible for paying back that debt would be you. With nearly 80 percent of all small businesses failing within the first 18 months, taking on an unnecessary loan could lead to devastation should you be forced to sell your belongings to pay off a loan that your business is responsible for. If you feel a loan is necessary, approach it with extreme caution, with a solid business plan to back you up.

How do you save money as a small business?

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Why Google Places Is Good for Your Single-Person Business

Google Places

For a small company or a single-person business, Google Places can be even more important than a Facebook page. This is because without a Google Places listing, new customers will have a hard time finding you. But with this listing, when a potential customer runs a search on services that you provide, your company will come up.

Google Places is a web listing that will get your company listed on Google Maps. A business owner can also use Google Places to manage information related to their company –photos, reviews, services, and more.

Google Places is a locally based means of advertising that attracts customers in your area and brings them straight to your front door –with very little effort on your part. Since one out of every five Google searches is related to a location, Google Places is a great way to help local customers who are looking for the services that you provide to find you easier.

Here are a few reasons why you may want to consider a Google Places listing for your single-person business.

Google Place Is the New Yellow Pages

Very few people turn the phonebook to find a company or business. Instead, they head to the internet. This doesn’t mean you should forgo listing in the phonebook, but it does mean that you should consider getting yourself listed online as well. For a single-person business, a Google Places listing could be very beneficial; Google Places has all your relevant information –even if you don’t have a website.

Improve Your Search Engine Rankings

Google Places focuses in on local searches. This means your competition on Google Places are only businesses in the surrounding areas. When customers search for locally based services that you offer, you’ll be on the first page. Since Google weeds out companies that aren’t local, there’s less competition –and your chances of getting spotted are much higher.

Easier to Find Your Business on Google Maps

Google Places and Google Maps work in sync, sharing that little red peg. When your business is listed in Google Places, it is also marked in Google Maps; giving your business a location, and provides potential customers with directions to get there. Fifty-four percent of smartphone users have the Google Maps App downloaded onto their phone. When your business ranks highly, and includes, customers are more willing to try you out.

Cost-Effective Local Marketing

Since it’s free, Google Places is a cost-effective means of local advertising for a single-person business. While it doesn’t cost anything, the benefits are extremely valuable, and a simple listing can generate a tremendous amount of potential business.

Google Places isn’t complicated and doesn’t take long to set up. By taking a few minutes to complete your listing, filling out all the details, and including all of the categories related to the products or services that you offer, you’ll boost your company’s web presence, and help your company to make it onto the map!

Do you have a Google Places listing? Has it brought you new business? Share with us in the comments!

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3 Local Advertising Opportunities for Single-Person Businesses

Local Advertising Opportunities

While the effectiveness of local advertising is often overlooked, regional-specific forms of marketing can be a great way to reach your target customer base.

For small businesses or single-person companies –local advertising is a tried and true way to reach customers, regardless of the size of your company. Since your advertising will be more targeted, you may even find that you have a higher return rate than other forms of less targeted advertising.

If you own a small business, here are three local advertising opportunities that you may want to consider taking advantage of: newspaper, coupons, and radio. Read on to see what the benefits are of each.

Newspaper

More business owners are finding that taking out an ad in the local newspaper can help to increase brand recognition, boost product sales, and lead to repeat customers. Here are some of the reasons why newspapers are beneficial to small businesses.

  • Extend Your Reach

According to Scarborough Research, nearly three out of four adults (72.6%) read a newspaper or visit a newspaper website in an average week. Taking an ad out in your local newspaper is a great way to expand the reach of your ad.

  • Take Advantage of Flexibility

A newspaper ad is one of the most flexible ads you can take out! Unlike many online ads, you can pick and choose the size and variation of the ad you are placing -and change it frequently if need be.

  • Build Trust

The newspaper is considered to be a credible form of advertising. According to a 2006 Scarborough Engagement Study, 40 percent of adults surveyed admitted that they found newspapers trustworthy, while only 18 percent said that they trusted the radio, and 16 percent the internet.

Another way to garner press, often for free, is by submitting a press release to your local newspaper. Use this opportunity to promote your company, without making it seem too promotional. Press releases are especially effective when they take a local angle, and highlight things that your company is doing to benefit the community.

Coupons

Everyone loves to save a few bucks. What better way to get your name out there and encourage potential customers to check you out than by offering an incentive? Coupons can be great motivators to both existing and new customers alike. So how do you go about advertising with coupons?

  • Newspaper

The newspaper is a great place to host an advertisement, so why not include a coupon to help encourage the readers to remember you? Just be sure that your coupon is simple and to the point, since most people will pass over anything that appears too complicated.

  • Flyers

Flyers are a great way to get your coupon directly into the hands of your customers. Regardless of if your flyer is a promotion, a notice that provides business information, or a combination of both, flyers are a great way of getting your coupons, and your company name out there.

  • Community Bulletin Boards

Another great way to get your coupons out is to post them on your local community bulletin boards. Many community centers or grocery stores have bulletin boards available for public postings. While you might not garner a lot of extra business from these boards, you will most likely get a few who are community oriented, and will be fully-engaged and committed customers.

Radio

Advertising with your local radio station is another great way to advertise in your community. Local radio attracts an audience that wants to keep up with local news and events, making them an ideal pool of potential customers to market to. Here are three benefits of radio advertising.

  • Expand Your Coverages

Radio coverage is great for small businesses. You’ll be able to reach those in your local area, and the surrounding areas as well.

  • Cost Effective

Radio advertising is considered a cost effective means of advertising for local companies. Radio advertising is a low-cost medium when compared to other means of press advertising, such as TV.

  • Save Time

With radio advertising, you don’t have to spend a lot of time putting together a perfect ad that will run well with the rest. When you consider how long it takes to get a TV ad or other advertisement up and running and then compare the results to a radio ad, you will be surprised at how much time you can actually save by advertising with a local radio station.

While local advertising is easily brushed aside in favor of more modern and cutting-edge strategies, don’t overlook the effectiveness of local promotions. Targeting people in your local area, and marketing directly to your local target customer base can yield tremendous results, and is something that every small business can benefit from.

What about you? Have you had success with advertising locally?

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How to Use Buffer to Make Social Media Easier

BufferFor small businesses and single-person operations –social media can be an invaluable form of advertising.

Unfortunately though, social media also requires a lot of time and close management to make it successful. For many, this is one of the reasons that a social media marketing strategy falls flat. As a small business owner or sole proprietor, carving time out of your busy schedule to post on Facebook can be difficult. In fact, when things get busy, it’s often one of the first things to go.

With so much on your plate already, it can be difficult to devote the time and attention to detail that your social media marketing strategy needs.

This is where Buffer comes in. Buffer is a handy social networking tool that can help you to make the best use of your time. Thanks to scheduling features, management simplification, and a scheduling system that makes it easy to choose the best times to share, Buffer has just about everything that a small business needs to get the most out of their marketing plan.

Sounds good? Read on to explore how you can use Buffer to make social media marking easier.

Schedule

Consistency is key when it comes to social media marketing and management. Without consistent updates, your social media account will have far fewer followers. As a small company, your time is limited and monitoring your social media accounts, regardless of if you have one or ten, can be time-consuming. With Buffer though, you can schedule out updates for all of your social media accounts –allowing you to get everything done at once, from one simple dashboard.

Manage

With Buffer, you have access to all your social media accounts –in one spot. No more logging into multiple accounts to say the same thing. Instead, you can schedule, publish, post, and reply to posts –from one convenient platform. You can also outsource the management to other team members –without having to give away passwords to multiple accounts.

Reach More Followers

According to TechCrunch, your average Facebook post will only reach about 12 percent of your followers. But Buffer makes it easy for you to post at the most opportune times, increasing the chances of your posts being seen by more viewers –increasing your visibility.

Track and Monitor

Track and monitor your social analytics easily with Buffer. Trying to figure out which content was well received can be a time-consuming process. It’s a task that, although important, is easily overlooked. With Buffer, it’s easy to see which posts were the most popular, and gain valuable insight on the types of updates that your followers are interested in, and can also help you to discover which times get the most attention.

As you can see, Buffer is a great way to manage social media accounts, and for a busy small business owner, this tool can be invaluable. It’s also worth noting that the Buffer team is committed to providing the very best support possible, something that’s reflected in their personal replies to questions within 24 hours.

If you’re finding that it’s difficult to keep up with social media, consider Buffer. Manage all of your accounts from one place, and easily set up your updates on a schedule. It’s as close to automated social networking as you can get!

Do you use Buffer? Have you considered a social media scheduling and management tool? Share with us in the comments!

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3 Questions to Ask If You Think You Need to Hire an Employee

Hiring an employee

It can be an exciting moment when you realize that your business or company has reached the point of needing extra help –but the fact is, that just because you’re busy doesn’t always mean that it’s time to hire someone.

While a flood of new work could be an indicator that you need some help, it’s important not to welcome someone onboard until you’re sure that it’s the right move for your business.

But by taking time to fully assess the situation, and asking yourself some important questions about your business, you’ll be able to get a pretty clear idea about whether hiring an employee is the best move –one that will lead to improved profits, or growing your company.

If you are considering hiring an employee, or wondering if you should hire some help –here are three questions that will help you to make the right decision.

Will This Decision Grow Your Company?

Hiring an employee may be a great way to reduce some of the excess work you have found coming your way –but an employee should not simply be hired to “pick up the slack.” An employee should help you to expand your business, and any additional work that they take on should help your business grow and thrive. Before hiring, be sure to draw up a plan that shows how bringing in an employee will to either grow your company, increase profits, or both.

What Specific Role Will the Employee Fulfill?

Before you bring on a new hire, it’s important to have a specific job description worked out. You should never make the mistake of hiring someone as a type of “catchall position,” who is there just to take on overflow work. This will only result in an employee who is confused about their role, and will lead to frustration and eventual burnout. Instead, consider taking a strategic approach, and take the time to establish a specific role that’s in line with your vision to grow your company. Having a clearly defined job description will show you exactly what you’re looking for, and will help you to find someone who is ideal for that role.

Do You Have Enough Business to Handle an Employee?

Finally, ask yourself whether you have enough business to sustain an employee. While it’s easy to get excited by a sudden increase in new work, and think about outsourcing –it’s important to question whether this is a temporary increase in work, or if it’s something more long-term. If the work increase is seasonal, or short-term, it may be better to consider a temporary hire, or even look to outsource some of the work online. You may also want to consider looking into online tools and technology that can help you to save time, and cut your workload.

While hiring a new employee is a significant step that can help you to take your company to new levels, and open up tremendous potential to increase profits and expand your company, it’s not something that should be taken lightly. Remember to make the decision with your long-term goals for your company in mind, and to ensure that a new employee will help your company to grow.

What about you? Have you reached the point where you’re thinking about outsourcing or hiring an employee? We’d love you hear from you, share your thoughts in the comments!

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