Finding The Right Project Management System For You

When it comes to growing your business successfully, you must be able to manage your time effectively. In this podcast, we are talking about finding the right project management system for you so you can manage your time more effectively.


Click here for direct link to podcast.


Here is my list of project management systems I have had some experience with. Enjoy!

Basecamp

My experience with basecamp was pretty short. It worked well, but not the most aesthetically pleasing to the eye. It reminded me of excel spread sheets, maybe they have changed since then.

Action Method
Action Method was a good system and I loved some of the cool features, like the “nag” feature! The client of mine that was using this ended up leaving due to pricing for additional team members.

Do

Do.com is a nice system that makes it super simple to assign tasks to team members. Personally, I did not like it for team collaboration. You can now integrate Do into Salesforce.com now, which is cool.

Flow

Out of the list here, Flow is the only one I have not used. I created an account to see how it worked for a client, but the client ended up going with a different project management system. But from what I saw, it looks like a great system.

Asana

I have been impressed with Asana, there are a lot of big brands that are using them. They have cool features like syncing with Dropbox. They also have an iPhone app, which I like!

Chatter

Like I said in the podcast, this is what I have been using for the past year everyday for project management and CRM. I use the desktop and mobile apps all the time. I have found no reason to leave this system at this time.

ZoHo

I don’t have too much to say about ZoHo. They seem to do a great job for many. From what I remember, the interface was not the most aesthetically pleasing.

Rule.fm

Personally, I really liked Rule.fm. I almost stuck with them instead of going with Chatter. That was when they first launched, so they are most likely even better! I really like their style and easy to use interface that allows you to assign tasks and see exactly what is going on and what needs to get done.

So there you have it! My quick run down with project management systems that I have experienced.

Do you use something different? I would love to hear about it, leave a comment below and let’s talk! :)

Go out and rule your time!

Paul Cooley

How To Avoid Price Wars With Your Competitors

Have you ever found yourself competing with the prices of your competitors? If you have, you know it sucks! Not only does it suck, but it also causes you to lose out on profits you should be making. If you are currently in this kind of situation, I want to show you the root of the problem and relieve your frustrations. The following video clip (which has lousy lighting) taken from a recent conference I spoke at, begins to explain something very important. One point is, the following statement:

“Brands that engage their consumers emotionally can command prices 20%-200% higher than competitors.” – Fast Company

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3XNZ3992E_8&w=560&h=315]

 

A big mistake many business owners make is, they spend most of their time trying to be like everyone else in their industry, which results in having a cookie cutter type of brand. There ends up being nothing unique about the brand, it just looks like everyone else – which then leads to the consumer not being loyal to any brand, they simply base their buying decision on which product or service is more affordable. The good news is, while all of your competitors are battling in the price war, you don’t have to be! You can focus on the following 3 things…

price war

1. Be You.

When you humanize your brand, you are allowing YOU to shine through. Which ends up making your brand unique from everyone else. Something I say a lot is, “You will never stand out being like everyone else”. So, if you be YOU, chances are you will stand out. Now there is more to defining your brand, but if you look at some of famous brands out there, you will see they are unique in some way.

2. Focus On Creating Value.

Many of us need to come to the realization that our business really isn’t about us. We may like to think that it is, but it is really about something much bigger. Our business should be about our customers, about adding awesome value to them. I’m not saying there are not times to focus on your business, I am just saying our focus should be on our customers more. People really don’t care about the hours we spend designing our logo, they care about the experience they had with us, our products, and our services.

3. Bringing the “WOW” back.

When you combine being you and focusing on creating value, you are bringing the “Wow” factor to your audience. The “Wow” factor is something that makes them go “Wow”. This can be done in many ways, but always involves some kind of brand touch point. Yes, you can “Wow” them with your awesomeness in person, but it can also come from a “Thank You” or “Happy Birthday” card, it can come from going above and beyond what you told them you were going to do or in the time frame you were going to do it in. So take a look at the brand touch points in your business and see what you can improve to make your audience go “Wow!”.

So if you are ready to stop the price wars with competitors, it’s time to stand out and be the brand that people love.

Until next time, go “Wow” your audience!

What If You Woke Up And Your Business Was Destroyed?

It’s not a very fun thought, but what if you woke up and disaster had stuck? Maybe a flood, fire or burglary…. Would your business be completely destroyed or would you be able to keep running? In today’s podcast we are going to be discussing some basic steps to having a disaster recovery plan and how to plan ahead to ensure your business keeps on performing even in the middle of a disaster.

 

What are your thoughts? Do you already have a disaster recovery plan in place? Let me know below! :)

If you’re having trouble with the audio player you can listen to the podcast here: What If You Woke Up And Your Business Was Destroyed?

Why Is My Business Failing? Here is why….

Are you frustrated with the growth of your business? Have you ever wondered why you are not achieving the results you desire?

In this podcast I am going to show you how to find out why your business isn’t growing the way you wish it was.

Think about this:

“Right now your business is perfectly designed to achieve the results you are getting”

What do you think about this systems approach to business? Please leave a comment below!

If the podcast player isn’t working on your browser, you can listen to it here.

How a homeless guy increased his income with one little tip

Are your marketing campaigns not bringing the results you were expecting? There could be a big reason why!

In this podcast, you will discover the difference between marketing vs. selling and how just minor tweaking to your campaign could make all the difference in the world!

Thanks for listening! I’ll leave you with the following questions, and please leave a comment below!

  1. How are you currently marketing? Or are you really selling still? How is that working for you?
  2. Is your marketing staying in line with your overall brand image?
  3. Do you understand who your target audience is? Not just age and gender, but really knowing them.
  4. Is marketing making your selling superfluous?

If the podcast player isn’t working on your browser, you can listen to it here.

Why Self-Promoting Could Kill Your Brand

Have you ever been to a chamber of commerce event or any kind of networking event, where there was that one self-promoting person that comes up to you, hands you their business card and says something corny like, “If you ever need a ______, I’m the one for you”…

Exchanging Business CardThink about how you feel when you are approached by someone that is trying to push you in a direction to hire or buy, do you feel good or do you want to get the heck away from them? This is why selling has such a negative image today.

I am very surprised about how many “gurus” online are telling us that we need to “sell” ourselves. But I am going to have to disagree with them! And here is why…

Selling is annoying

I have found that people that are always trying to sell themselves are often very self-centered, annoying, pushy and willing to throw people under the bus to to make themselves look good. Now, if you like those qualities, you might want to stop reading and go to another site that promotes annoying your prospects, but for those of you that don’t, there is a better way.

It’s important to know that you may not always be trying to sell yourself, but you are always branding yourself. Everything you do, say, don’t do, and don’t say is branding you. In other words, people are creating an image or perception of you by what you are expressing. For example, if you are a very caring person that is always doing nice things for people, others will see that and have that image about you. But, if you say you like caring for people, but you are always a jerk to people, you will be viewed as a hypocrite and will have a negative image in their minds.

The same holds true for your business, everything you post via social media, every interaction you have with a prospect at Starbucks, every email you send out, it’s all telling others something about you… Your brand.

So if you are always branding yourself, why would you want to try to sell yourself? If you can express a brand image that others will love, there is no need try to sell and promote yourself. In fact, once you start trying to sell yourself, you risk turning people off. Keep in mind, I am not talking about big corporations like Apple where you expect to see all their updates about them and their products. I am talking about your personal brand that can carry over into your corporate brand.

My own experience with a self-promoter

There is a lady I know online that is a consultant, she is always promoting herself. She will post pictures of quotes from famous people and add her web site link at the bottom of the picture, as if her company is responsible for what Abraham Lincoln said. She will promote her web site or a sales page 95% of the time via social media, instead of engaging people. What she is doing is selling herself and let me tell you, it’s getting old! But, at the same time she is also branding herself.

She is branding herself as a self-promoter. Isn’t that a shame?! I’m sure she is very good at what she does and if she focused on adding value instead of promoting her, she would hold a totally different image in my mind (and most likely many others as well).

The main point here is, you should be strategically branding you and don’t worry about selling yourself. People do not like being sold, so why would you try to do something they don’t like?

Here are 4 steps that you can do to make sure you are strategically branding you and not self-promoting:

  1. Have a clear definition of what your brand is. Know what you are wanting to express and what you are not. Define what you stand for and what you don’t. Know what the message is you want to express. Be real and not fake.
  2. Focus on offering value to your target audience. This does not mean you spam them with self-promotional posts, Tweets and updates. Know who your target audience is and what they like, then give them that. This way, when you post something like your latest blog post or something you are offering, it wont come across as spam. When you offer value, people will begin to take notice and view you as an authority.
  3. Engage and build rapport. This is where you build the approachability factor in your brand. Which means you show people how you are a real person that cares about them. You strategically engage your target audience and build relationships with them. Because after all, isn’t business built on relationships?
  4. Be clear on what selling is and in what ways you do not like being approached, promoted to, mentioned, tagged, etc. and then, don’t do those things! In fact, do the opposite and you will stand out even more to your target audience.

We really need to stop selling and marketing to people in ways we do not like being marketed to ourselves. We need to be careful who we are taking business advice from and examine everything to make sure it is in-line with our core brand image and message.

Have you ever been approached by a self-promoter? What how did you feel? Please leave your comments bellow.