Organize Your Business for Sustainable Growth

Small business entrepreneurs must often wear hundreds of hats.  But limited financial resources often make it difficult to hire full-time staff.   At the end of the day, they realize that time has passed by and important things are still pending.   Those tasks can easily be done by a virtual assistant who has the experience to create sustainable growth and develop a solid marketing plan for your business. I work hand in hand with you to attract customers, grow your company, reduce your costs, and get better organized.

In so many ways, how you set up and organize your company can be the difference between success and failure in today’s business world.

The problem is that few entrepreneurs have the time, resources or expertise to organize their businesses in the most efficient and effective ways possible. Fortunately, there’s an easy and affordable solution available to you!

In this course, you’ll find the indispensable tools to easily organize your thoughts, ideas, needs, and wants to keep you focused on your overall vision for growing your business.

When you work with me, you’ll learn the skills and techniques you need for sustainable growth as your company develops its products, creates its marketing plan and takes on more customers.

This includes:

  • Making better decisions related to where, when and how to invest your capital

  • Developing the confidence to reach your business goals by setting deadlines and making steady progress daily, weekly and monthly

  • Creating a realistic budget and implementing a truly effective plan for growth

A simple, three-phase program

 

My program includes three distinct phases—each of which covers a critical area of business organization.

Phase I: Together, we’ll determine where you want your business to go and how you might get there.

Phase II: We then help you create attainable goals, while beginning the process of developing a marketing plan and comprehensive business budget.

Phase III: Finally, we outline a path for you to reach your goals by implementing your marketing plan and sticking to your budget.

And, with each phase, you get a downloadable workbook that allows you to quickly and easily organize your thoughts, ideas, needs and wants. This keeps you focused on your overall vision as you move through the three phases.

 

Maintain growth while saving money

If you’re like many business owners, you could be spending more than is actually necessary to attract customers and grow your company. To reduce your costs, get better organized and learn how to find sustainable business success, I invite you to take advantage of this incredibly helpful three-phase program.

I am offering a tremendous level of value for FREE that could help you save thousands of dollars in the long term. And because it’s completely online, you can:

  • Work on your business at your own pace.

  • Apply our instructions, examples, and workbooks to your company as you see fit.

  • Gain the confidence as you move forward and implement our proven strategies.

Don’t wait to take the steps necessary to run the most efficient and effective business possible!

Simply email me (elizabeth.debol@smallbvs.com) and let me know you’d like to take this course ($1,000 value) and I’ll email it to you for FREE.

Thanks for reading.  And I look forward to hearing from you!

Elizabeth Debol
Executive Virtual Assistant
elizabeth.debol@smallbvs.com
www.SmallBVS.com
Join the Club HERE

Email Marketing – Website Design & Maintenance – Administrative Tasks – Event Support – Marketing Support – Virtual Recruiting – Blog Posting – Research – Data Entry – CRM Support – Social Media Scheduling – Content Creation – Spreadsheet Design – LinkedIn Prospecting – Lead Generation

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How Outsourcing Can Improve Business

As a Virtual Assistant, I often get asked these questions:

  1. What tasks can you help me with?
  2. How can I get more done each week?
  3. Will your assistance bring me business?
  4. What would be the first step to working together?

 

I am going to take a few minutes to answer these 4 questions below:

Q:  What tasks can you help me with?

A:  Well, it really depends on your business, your skills, your time, and your budget.  If your business consists of multiple people working together, then we would need to focus on team tasks.  If you are the only one in your business, then we would need to focus on what you need to get done and where you need help.  That brings us to your skills (and time).  What are you good at?  What do you enjoy doing?  What do you want to do but don’t have time to?  What needs to get done but never does? And the list goes on and on. We would brainstorm your strengths (and weaknesses) against mine and come up with a solution.   Now, we need to talk about your budget.  I have created an interactive spreadsheet HERE that allows you to type in your monthly income, what tasks you currently do yourself (or plan to do), how much it costs you to do them versus having a Virtual Assistant do them, and how much you can save if you do get help.  So, this not only helps you work on a budget, but it shows you how much money you may be throwing away trying to do everything yourself.

 

Q:  How can I get more done each week?

A:  Here’s the thing.  If you are unfamiliar with a program you need to use for creating email campaigns, or if you’re not good at typing and need to create multiple documents each week, or if you find yourself consistently trying to learn something you don’t even want to do, then you’re not using your time wisely.  We ALL have our area(s) of expertise.  Business owners want to focus on what directly brings them income.  This could be one-on-one meetings, staff training, client workshops, or networking. It’s the back-office, out of the way tasks that pile up.  These tasks often bring indirect income, meaning they generate curiosity and possibly leads, but they don’t always close the sale.  You need someone to help you generate those leads, keep your name in front of people, encourage efficiency and productivity, and push you to get more done! You may still be doing the same tasks every week (the ones you love and those you’re good at), but the administrative/lead generating tasks are ALSO getting done.  So, more will be getting accomplished every week.  The key is consistency and communication.

 

Q:  Will your assistance bring me business?

A:  Yes, eventually it will.  There is not a sure formula out there or an exact science to this.  It’s consistently posting to social media and sending emails.  It’s keeping your name in front of your target audience.  It’s making connections with ideal prospects. It’s working with a plan, creating reasonable goals, and moving forward.  And if done right and consistently, yes, your business will grow.

 

Q:  What would be the first step to working together?

A:  The first step would be a good conversation (about an hour) where we learn about each other, how our personalities fit, and how we can best work together.  We would come up with a plan, create goals within that plan, decide on a budget, and communicate effectively.  It’s often a trial and error sort of relationship.  There will be things that don’t work, things that work great, things that need some nurturing along the way, and things that we won’t even try.  But, with a good plan in place and a consistent path to move forward, you will see that working virtually with a professional can relieve stress and grow your business.

 

If you are interested in having a short chat with me, please schedule a day/time here:  https://calendly.com/elizabethdebol

There is no obligation to use my services, but I can guarantee you’ll have a clearer idea of how to move forward with your business.

Thanks for reading.  And I look forward to hearing from you!

Elizabeth Debol
Executive Virtual Assistant
elizabeth.debol@smallbvs.com
www.SmallBVS.com
Join the Club HERE

Email Marketing – Website Design & Maintenance – Administrative Tasks – Event Support – Marketing Support – Virtual Recruiting – Blog Posting – Research – Data Entry – CRM Support – Social Media Scheduling – Content Creation – Spreadsheet Design – LinkedIn Prospecting – Lead Generation

Five Ways to Kick Stress in the Rear! (Guest Post)

Stress. We all have it. We all get it and if you are anything like me, you would like for it to just go away! Unfortunately, stress is something that blocks us from living a healthy, purpose-filled life and often stops us dead in our tracks. Have you had that experience?

As I Googled stress one day, I found basic consensus that the top five stressors include:

  • A sick family member
  • Your health
  • Finances
  • Relationships
  • Career/Business

There was a point in my life, when all 5 of those hit at the same time. No wonder I was having trouble just getting out of bed and dragging myself to the shower each morning and barely having the energy to get to work. I did learn although I couldn’t control some of those things, there were some ways to relieve some of my stress to improve my mental, physical, emotional, and relational life. So here are five things that I have learned to do to release some of the overwhelming stress in my life. I know I cannot rid myself of all stress, however, I find that releasing some of it is like a pressure cooker releasing some steam – I am able to get up, hop in the shower and get to work… and for me, that is success!

  1. Learn to say NO! Look at your schedule and commitments and start to de-commit, cancel or postpone those things you really do not need to do. Remember, when you way “yes” to something, you are saying “no” to something else. Make your “yes” be something that will not add more stress to your life. If you can, trade it for something you can gladly say “no” to. For me, I said “no” to being on a committee at my church that was non-productive the previous year and said “yes,” to a business networking event where I could meet others, grow as a leader and share about our businesses.
  2. Share the load. It is true that no one is able to do things just like you. But once you give up the need to control some areas that are causing stress and begin to delegate, your load will be lighter. My husband agreed to take my mom, who couldn’t drive anymore, to the store every other week for me. You cannot imagine how that one change relieved a lot of stress in my life! All I had to do was ask for help!
  3. Let it go. Often the circumstances causing stress consumes our thinking. Train yourself NOT to focus on the stressor. How? Find a way to let it go. For me, I have several ways to do this. I will write the stressor on a rock and toss it in the lake.  Sometimes I will write something down and put it in the shredder. At night, I’ve trained myself to write the stressor on an imaginary white board and then, in my mind, I keep erasing it until I can move forward. If you are a person of faith, surrender it to God.
  4. Hit the delete key. When your head is spinning and will not turn off thoughts say “not helpful” as many times as needed. Or imagine your thoughts being typed on your computer screen and then visualize yourself hitting the delete key. Then focus your thoughts on something or someone you love.
  5. Know what you can and cannot control. Take a pen and piece of paper and draw two lines to make three columns. Label the columns: Stressor, Can Control, Cannot Control. In the first column, list those things that are causing you stress. In the second column, if you have control or can do something to relieve the stressor, write it down with some action steps. In the third column, list the things that are out of your control. If you cannot control a stressor mark through it and get it off the list. It’s not worth your time or energy to focus there.

Coach Cindy Tannehill

Coach Cindy Tannehill is a John Maxwell Team Coach, Trainer & Speaker, Professional Certified Life Coach and the co-founder of Pass It On Purpose Coaching & Training Center in Kansas. She works with leaders and executives in businesses, NGOs, and faith based organizations around the world. She also has a heart for women entrepreneurs and has co-written an online course, Raise the Bar Academy – The Crash Course to help women entrepreneurs be successful in business and life.

www.johnmaxwellgroup.com/cindytannehill www.raisethebaracademy.com

Contact: cindytannehill@johnmaxwellgroup.com or cindy@raisethebaracademy.com

Now Here’s An Awesome Find – Check This Out!!

I was contacted by a company called Blow Birthday Cards.  I had a really great conversation with the owner, Jerry.  He explained to me how the business came about, we brainstormed together, we came up with a marketing plan, and now we’re working together.  It came together fairly easy.  Why?  Well, probably because I love his concept and he is extremely reliable and trustworthy.  Sometimes I just have a good feeling about people.  And I definitely have a good feeling about Jerry (and Blow Birthday Cards).

Blow Birthday Cards lets you search for a specific card, like chocolate or heaven or octopus or toast or even Zoltar (wasn’t that from the movie BIG with Tom Hanks?).  Anyway, all cards are alphabetized on the website. You simply find the topic you want and click on the card you like.  You can then sign the card yourself by hand writing your personal message on a piece of paper, taking a picture of it with your cell phone, and then adding it onto the card through the website.  It’s super cool!!!

You then pay for the card ($4.95 with FREE mailing) – yep, cheaper than most nonpersonal cards in stores.  And the card goes in the mail just minutes later.  And your mom, dad, sister, son, aunt, teacher (whoever) gets the card just a couple days later (like regular mail).  How fast (and cool) is that?

Did you FORGET about someone’s birthday?  Do you have to get a card in the mail ASAP?  Don’t take the time to go to the store, pick one out, sign it, and mail it.  Just go to www.blowbirthdaycards.com and do it in your home, on your phone, in your pj’s.  Really!!!

You really have to check it out for yourself.  This is a super idea for just about anyone (especially husbands, well, at least for my husband).  But I really think busy moms could use this company more than anyone.  Think about it – not running to the store with the kids to “try” and shop for the perfect birthday cards – GENIUS!!!  Not to mention, you can have your kids draw a picture or write a message to Grandma or Aunty.  How cute would that be????

OK…so go here:  www.blowbirthdaycards.com and CHECK IT OUT!!!

Oh yeah, and since I work with business owners, and KNOW how crazy busy they can be, and also KNOW that they KNOW how important it is to make their workplace personal and inviting for their employees, then they should use Blow Birthday Cards to personalize birthday cards for those employees.  Right?  Good idea?  I think so!!!

Remember:  www.blowbirthdaycards.com

Elizabeth Debol
Executive Virtual Assistant
elizabeth.debol@smallbvs.com
www.SmallBVS.com

 

 

 

What Does Your CRM Look Like?

OK.  I need to start a topic of conversation regarding CRM programs & database management.  I talk to at least 1 person a week (sometimes more) regarding their contact database and CRM platforms.

I currently work within the following platforms for clients:

www.Soffront.com
www.ConstantContact.com
www.MailChimp.com
www.Zoho.com

What does your CRM look like?  Here is what I often see:

  1. Thousands of contacts getting no consistent communication.
  2. Thousands of contacts getting regular communication, but poor list segmenting means poor open rates.
  3. Thousands of contacts added to the wrong lists, resulting in poor open rates and no engagement.
  4. Thousands of contacts, segmented fairly well, getting the same communication, resulting in no engagement.

Now, some of the individuals I speak with say they have thousands of contacts, hundreds of business cards, numerous clients, and dozens of suspects, but when asked what they do with all them, they say NOTHING.

Does this sound like you?  If so, don’t feel bad.  I’m not trying to call you out or put you down.  It’s just the way it is.  Why? Because not many people really know what to do with their contacts. They just don’t know where to start.

Well, let me explain something to you.  Email marketing and list segmenting is NOT something magical.  It doesn’t happen overnight.  It doesn’t create instant clients.  But, if done correctly and consistently, it does get your name out there and get you in front of people.  And it can get you new clients. And that’s what you want!

It doesn’t have to be complicated.  It can start with a simple spreadsheet and turn into so much more in a short time if the work put in is consistent and effective.  But who has time for that?  I know you don’t. I speak with so many business owners who say they WANT to get starting with email marketing and they WANT to see the results, but they have no time in their busy work week to even think about sitting down and starting from scratch.

Don’t let all those contacts go to waste.  Don’t let all those years of networking and hours of meetings leave you with no prospects or leads. Utilize all that hard work.  Put it to good use.  Find a CRM program and email marketing platform that works for YOU.

Need help?  Contact me.  That’s what I do.  I help the overwhelmed business owner keep track of their communication efforts and consistently work with them to effectively keep their name in front of those who need their business.

Elizabeth Debol
Executive Virtual Assistant
elizabeth.debol@smallbvs.com
www.SmallBVS.com

Partnered with PixGift

What’s the real (effective) way to send email campaigns?

OK.  So lately, I’ve had some real questions about email marketing.  There is so much out there, and so much to learn, that many of my clients (and potential clients) are just getting frustrated with how unpredictable email marketing seems to be.

Well, let me start by saying this…It is a very slow process!!  You will have to do these things, and do them correctly, for email marketing to work:

  1. Pick an email marketing program that will work for your budget and your needs (I recommend Constant Contact because of all the tools it has to offer).
  2. Create web forms for your website, your blog, and social media.  These forms help get sign-ups for your email campaigns.
  3. Create an email that has value, is not too long, is not too short, has the right colors, and is mobile friendly.
  4. Load an organic, nurtured list of individuals into your program (and then learn how to segment them as your list grows).
  5. Follow-up with your contacts, based on their interests, their wants, and their needs.
  6. As your list grows and the demands get higher for your valuable content, create automated emails, or even put together a “product” using email marketing.

Oh goodness…so much to think about.

Let’s first start with FINDING INDIVIDUALS TO EMAIL. Where are you getting your contacts from?  Do you have a well-nurtured list of people just sitting in your folders in your Gmail or Outlook accounts?

Did you purchase a list that you’re hoping to use (I really hope you didn’t waste your money)?

Are you in the process of networking, collecting business cards, handing out flyers, speaking at events, etc?

AND what do you do with all those NEW contacts?

First, you have to decide who is who, where each contact came from, how you know them, what relationship you’ve nurtured through them.  Then, you need to segment them based on your answers.  The idea is to create SPECIFIC lists so you can send them SPECIFIC valuable content through your email marketing efforts.  If you don’t have contacts, well, then you need to get some. You can do this by using a web form through your email marketing program, through networking in person, or through prospecting on LinkedIn.

Is all this too much to process?  I know, it can be overwhelming.  And that’s JUST finding contacts.

Now, the first email you send to your contacts SHOULD always be an introductory email.  You should include who you are, how you know them, why you’re emailing them, what you have to offer, and how often you plan to email them.  AND always include a way for them to opt-out or unsubscribe…always!!!

Listen, don’t beat your head against the wall trying to figure all this out. Let me help you with ALL of this and more.  Email marketing is often times trial and error.  It’s can be a very long process…it takes time.  Don’t get lost in the email marketing world.  Contact me today so I can help!

Think of it this way.  Even if it takes you months to actually get it all right, just ONE of those contacts actually making the right move at the right time can pay for all your hard work and then some.  But in order to get that contact (and hopefully more) to purchase from you, you have to nurture them the right way…through segmented email marketing!

So, get help and do it all the correct way.  Don’t settle for a purchased list or a $10/hour admin to help you.  Remember, you ALWAYS get what you pay for…ALWAYS!!

Have a question about your email marketing needs?  Contact me! I will walk you through what needs to be done first, we will set a plan in motion together, and I will work with your budget and your business needs!

Elizabeth
Virtual Marketing Assistant
Business Virtual Services, LLC
www.BusinessVirtualServices.com

 

Business Communication…why it’s so important.

Effective Business Communication

When you own a business, it’s essential to have GREAT communication skills.  Whether you are communicating with vendors, clients, colleagues, or employees, your business is not going to work if there is lousy communication.

If you don’t know how to communicate in your business, then you should invest some time and money into learning how to.  Here is a great website to find communication skills seminars in your area.

It’s extremely important to realize that how you communicate is often how people see you as a business owner.  This can have lasting effects on your business and in your business relationships!

Example:  I have spoken to many business owners over the last 4 years.  Because I have the luxury of choosing who I work with, I make sure I pick those who can communicate effectively.  Why, you ask?  Because if I can’t get the information I need from them to work on their projects, then I’m useless and not making MYSELF money.  If they can’t communicate their needs to me, then again, I’m useless and not making THEM money. If I can’t get their projects done, then their business falls short.  Not only are they already behind (which is why they reached out to me in the first place), but now they are even further behind and frustrated because all they want to do is explain their needs to me, but they can’t.

Because of this communication gap I often see with business owners, I started offering monthly support calls.  These phone meetings are a way for us both to come up with a current strategic marketing plan, a detailed budget, and a suggested marketing plan going ahead.  It’s an effective way to communicate what their needs are because I am able to walk them through their thoughts.  This is often what many business owners need assistance with but don’t even know it.

I have also come to understand that many business owners just can’t dedicate time for monthly support calls due to traveling or extremely busy schedules (which I fully understand).  That is why I also created a 3-part online program to help them organize their business, so they will know exactly what they need assistance with.  And they will have everything in order to effectively communicate their needs when they are ready.  Plus, since it’s an online program, they can work on it when their schedule allows, at their own pace.

Now…the hard part is keeping up with emails!!!  I have a very manageable email process I use, and it’s free.  It’s efficient and I can easily find any emails I need.  It helps with my communication process and it altogether helps my business in a big way!

Here is a really great article from Forbes that goes into detail about how to write effective business emails.

The overall message here is…learn how to effectively communicate with ALL your business people.  It will not only help YOUR business, but it will help others as well.

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Elizabeth Debol
Virtual Assistant
Business Virtual Services
elizabethdebol@live.com
http://www.businessvirtualservices.com/


My Weekly Knowledge Log (a list of things I’ve learned from or about this week):
1.   Clean out your inbox WEEKLY.
2.  Schedule social media posts in advance.
3.  ALWAYS ask questions!

THANKS FOR READING!!  🙂

Feel free to use my post on your blog.  Just please make sure to include the link to my blog in your post.  I would greatly appreciate it!:)

Consider filling out this short multiple-choice evaluation to see if you might need some business re-organizing!!   Click HERE.