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April 2011
Volume 12 Issue 5

Article of the Month

Developing a database
Tom Shay

The article for April 2011 has a close relationship with the Power Promoting idea of the month.

The article shows a technique our business was using in the 1960's; giving our customers a reason why they would want us to know how to contact them.

The idea worked some 50 years ago and it works even better today. It works better today because business has become so estranged from the personal interaction with customers.

We all are so hungry to have a business that knows us; that cares about us; and is sincere in their interest in us.

Financially, the idea shared in the article is so much less expensive than any form of advertising you could do.

Click on Article of the Month to read this article.

Book of the Month

Sell yourself first
by Thomas A. Freese

Gotta say I purchased this book based solely on the title. I think about having watched this book in action every day in our business as I watched Bob at work.

With each customer, and with the greatest of ease, Bob always sold himself first. He secondly sold the business where he worked - our business. Then he sold a product or service.

Those that have it in this sequence have repeat customers. Those that have it in the reverse order have customers that are shopping for price.

Enjoy the book.

Click on Book Referral to visit this page on our site.

e-retailer conversations

Hey, we are blogging, tweeting, facebooking and invite your participation.

Visit our e-ret@iler conversations, find the category of interest and post your comments, questions or best practices. You may also go directly to one of our categories by clicking on one of the links below.

Employee Issues
Financial ManagementGeneral DiscussionMerchandising
Sales Techniques
Vendor Issues

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Profits Plus
P.O. Box 1577
St. Petersburg, FL
33731 USA
(727) 464-2182 Voice
(727) 898-3179 Fax

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Business Advisory

Thursday, April 28 is Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day

Thinking ahead to April 28, I remember a letter I received from a reader; Someone that has attended sessions I have taught over the years. The writer's name is Ron. His message resonates with me today. While I have the entire letter on a page on the Profits Plus website, allow me to quote a part of what Ron said.

"I realize that I have failed to cast the vision for my grandchildren's future in my business. I'm second generation, and I have been more focused on what isn't working and not what is.  I'm sure this is common with many owners. However, what son or daughter would want to be a part of a business that dad comes home each night complaining about? 

I think it presents a mystery to them as to why we continue to do it. They are not party to the good sales, the great service by the majority of our vendors, the thank you cards from customer - the very food that moves us to remain engaged in doing what our fathers have done before us because there is a huge reward in doing what we do. I make a difference in peoples lives."


How profound and insightful. I frequently think about what Ron has said. I hope you will think about his comments as you work and as you tell your family about your business.

I am very proud of my family heritage in a small business. I am very thankful for the three generations that preceded me and taught me what an honorable and necessary aspect of business in a community that a business owner provides.

I realize the event, Take our daughters and sons to work day is meant for everyone, but it just feels like it was meant for us.


e-ret@iler conversations conference calls

We had a good crowd for the March e-ret@iler conversations conference call. I appreciate everyone being a part of the program as I told of many of the experiences I had in the previous month in which a small business could have made a great impression but did not. In addition to not making a great impression, they gave some pretty lousy service; enough to the point a person would likely go running to a chain store or mass merchant where the customer would likely have no experience with any person in the business other than a cashier.

If you missed the call and would like to listen to it, you can visit this link where you can hear the March e-ret@iler conversations conference call, or you can download it to your ipod.

E-ret@iler conversations conference calls

The e-ret@iler conversation conference call for April is scheduled for Tuesday, April 12 at 8pm eastern time. We are going to talk about cashflow for your business. We take a look at our budget and cashflow plan every month. It is important to know what the future holds.

Every business needs to be using this concept. Join me as we do a bit of accountant bashing as it continues to concern me that small business owners are not hearing this information from someone they are paying to help them with their business.

Speaking of paying, let me first remind you that all of the e-ret@iler conversations conference calls are free, as are the downloads of these events. Let me also caution you about spending your money wisely. In the past few weeks, I have seen numerous offers from others selling all kinds of systems, tools, and conference calls to small business owners.

Knowing that the majority of all books purchased are never read, I think we can easily apply that thought to all the 'stuff' others want you to buy or participate in. Let me explain it this way. Let's pretend your business produces a net profit of 5%. If your sales for a month are $60,000, your net profit is $3,000. If you spend $1,000 for some product or system to help your business, you have spent 1/3 of your profit for a month for this. You have operated your business for 10 days just to pay for this.

Of course, there are all kinds of promises the material, the book, or even a webinar they are charging for, will make you all kinds of money. But it is kind of like the promise an infomercial makes on tv; those great results cannot happen to everyone.

I am just saying that you work hard to make your money; work just as hard to determine where you will spend it and what you will get from it.

Unfortunately for small businesses, not all the sharks are in the ocean.

Internet Tip of The Month

Small business financial test

I think this is the very first calculator we created for the Profits Plus website.

The financial test is a 20 question multiple choice test to help you determine how much you know about the financial aspect of running your business. See this as a warm up for the conference call on April 12.

As you take the test, and hit the submit button, you will immediately see the results of your effort. The website will tell you what you missed and what the correct answer is. The website will even give you a grade; just like you got in school.

Small business financial test

The Power Promoting Idea of the Month

Letting customers know you care

People like to do business with someone they know; someone they know cares about them. If you would like to cement that relationship and have customers talk about how much they like your business, give this idea a try.

Watch your local newspaper for announcements of births, deaths, weddings, anniversaries, graduations and other significant events in the lives of your customers.

All it takes is a short written note or card to acknowledge the customer and the event. Created with a high level of sincerity, your customer sees you as more than just someone they do business with; they see you as someone that genuinely cares about them. And no chain store or mass merchant can match that!

In the red power promoting book, the second promotional book I wrote, this is idea #17.

You can find more ideas like this in our promotions books. You can order your copy by clicking on the link below; each book is only $9.95 plus postage.

Profits Plus Resource Center


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PO Box 1577
St. Petersburg, Fl 33731
(727) 464-2182
Fax: (727) 898-3179