Published April 29th, 2015
Today, most of our communication is based around email correspondence. Since by nature I am a talker, most of my emails are super long. I realized I needed training in how to communicate more clearly and keep my emails shorter. I have decided to attend a workshop on how to utilize emails to write clear and effective messages. This month, I wanted to share with you some tips that I am currently working on applying to my every day communication.
1. Subject line:
I have been guilty of putting something very generic in the subject line. Through the workshop, I realized how important it is to make the subject line meaningful and detailed. Now, I make it a point to write in the subject line what the email is about, if it is important, and any other details that I would like someone to know.
Ex: Previous subject might say “New Client Information” but now I will write “Bethlehem Office Assistant – new client details – please reply within 48 hours”
In general, you want to keep your subject line short, but because I am emailing my staff I can make the subject line very specific.
Another tip is to change the subject line if the topic of your email changes. Throughout your communication with the recipient, you may get off topic and start a total new conversation. Simply change the subject line to reflect the change. This will make it very easy for you to locate the email if at a later time you need to find information about the topic.
2. Get directly to the point – and say last sentence first:
I am super guilty of this! The talker in me, wants to know about your day, how you are feeling, etc. But, with the amount of emails we are receiving throughout the day, most of us will appreciate a message that goes directly to the point of the email. We usually tend to ‘end’ with what the email is truly about, but what if your recipient doesn’t finish reading the email or visually scans it for important information? I try to make it a point to say what I need to say first and then to satisfy my need to ‘talk’ will end the email with a warm message.
3. Use short sentences and even shorter paragraphs:
Apparently not everyone is like me and enjoys reading every single word of a lengthy email. (GUILTY!) When writing an email, try using simple words, short sentences and even shorter paragraphs. Using bullets to point out different parts of the email is a great strategy.
4. Don’t use all CAPS:
(Finally NOT guilty of something) Using all caps makes it seem like you are shouting. That’s a simple one right?
5. When you can, only reply to emails from your computer/laptop:
Autocorrect on smart phones – do we need to say more? Always proof read any message sent from your phone – it can save you from an embarrassing ‘autocorrect’ moments.
6. Keep formatting simple:
As a general rule, use black color on a white background. Utilizing many fonts, colors and other decorative features makes your message hard to read.
7. Always add the email last:
(GUILTY!) How many times did you send the email to the wrong person or somehow you hit send before you finished the email or had a chance to proof your message. Leaving the email blank will prevent these mistakes and allow you the time you need to properly proof read your email.
Hopefully, I will follow my own tips and make it a habit to keep my emails shorter and to the point. The talker in me will always come through, but by adding these tips into my daily routine I hope to become a better communicator. If you have any tips for email correspondence email them to Ania@AllServiceUS.com. I would love to spotlight you during next month’s connect.
Top Ways to increase your visibility:
9. Backlinks: Backlinks are links that directed towards your website or a blog.Backlinks are also known as inbound links. Backlinks are important in terms of SEO because more the backlinks more the chance of your website to come on top of search engines. However, be careful – you don’t want to list your website just anywhere. Research the directory and make sure it is appropriate for your business. In no particular order, here are some backlink directories with additional personal notes:
We know this is a lot of information, but if you dedicate one week to each topic in three months you will have created a great online platform for your website's SEO.
Published December 9th, 2014
Follow-up - Why it needs to be a part of your marketing calendar
We all can agree that follow up is one of the most important things we can do in business. However, many of us will probably fall into the 48% of people that do not follow up with a prospect. Why?
End of October, a client has asked us to attend an industry specific conference in order for their business to be represented and to start building relationships with other attendees and expo vendors. Once we came back, we worked with the client to pick top 75 leads and put them through our month long intense follow-up process. 55 hours later here is a break down of how we were able to strengthen the client's industry presence, develop personal relationships and close 7 new accounts.
Within the first 48-72 hours each lead received a personal call. We thanked them for their time and ask them a question or two about the conference. Out of the voice mails left, 27% called back to discuss their experience and thoughts about the conference.
Three days after the calls were made, we hand written a card and sent it to each prospect. Snail mail works wonderful! In this case, nothing was printed - addresses and messages were hand written. We even put the cards in bright envelopes so that they would be easily seen in the pile.
This week our goal was to build a relationship with our leads on each social media platform our client utilizes. We focused our engagement on researching the prospect, learning more about them and connecting with them on personal level.
This week we sent out a personal email to each prospect. There was NO selling and we did not utilize an email campaign platform. A simple quick email can be a great tool to reach out to your audience. We received a follow up email from one of the presenters with a video link for a topic they shared with us. We took an advantage of sharing this with our prospects since we thought they could utilize the content for their business.
This week we focused on providing educational content to our prospects. We scheduled our social media posts to reflect the message shared in an email and brochure that was sent to them via slow mail.
The time has come to introduce our leads to the client's products and services. Prospects are now part of the regular lead generator that the client has in place.
Worried that you don't have the necessary time to follow up with your prospects? Let our staff help you create a follow up calendar that is specific to your industry and business. If you are interested in finding out more information about our team of Personal Assistants we would be happy to schedule a complimentary meet-n-greet. Let us handle your business needs while you focus on growing your company. As always, there are no minimums to utilize our services. Please note, on average it takes us 4-6 weeks to on-board a new client. Contact us early to make sure you give yourself plenty of time to go through our process. We look forward to hearing from you soon!
Published August 1st, 2014
Social Media Tips
As a small business owner, we are frequently reminded of how important it is to build up an online branding. There are many platforms available for our use and based on your industry not all are worth the investment of your time. Keep in mind, each business has its own culture and clientele. Prior to joining every single network, take some time to research its audience and see if it is a good match for you. Additionally, you should spend some time creating a content marketing calendar and create a different strategy per social media platform. A social media content strategy will help you stay focused and organized.
I wanted to give you 3 tips on how to customize a vanity URL on:
1. * Facebook
2. * LinkedIn
3. * YouTube
Chances are you already have a Facebook business page. If not, this is definitely the time to stop reading and go create one!
Things to keep in mind when you are looking into creating a customized URL on Facebbook:
· * You must have at least 25 fans to set a username for your Page
· * You must be an admin of the Page in order to secure a custom link
· * Usernames can only contain alphanumeric characters (A-Z, 0-9) or a period (“.”)
Step-by-Step guide of how to change your URL on Facebook:
Now you have a custom Facebook URL! Share it on your other social networks, and you can even have it printed on your business cards.
LinkedIn is a great platform to professionally connect with your network. It is a great tool for networking, job searching and referrals. Just like with Facebook, there are different ways of reaching the ‘edit profile’ screen, however, I want to show you the route via the privacy and settings page. While working with our clients, we found out that many do not realize this page exists!
Step-by-Step guide of how to change your URL on LinkedIn:
In our opinion, YouTube is an ‘under-used’ platform as creating videos might be a bit overwhelming for many of us. Spend a few minutes researching how videos help SEO and you will quickly see the benefit of having a channel on YouTube.
Step-by-Step guide of how to change your URL on YouTube:
If you are updating your URL and come across a problem, feel free to send Ania Fiduccia a message. If you are interested in finding out more information about our team of Personal Assistants we would be happy to schedule a complimentary meet-n-greet. Let us handle your social media needs while you focus on growing your business. As always there are no minimums to utilize our services. Please note, on average it takes us 4-6 weeks to on-board a new client. Contact us early to make sure you give yourself plenty of time to go through our process. We look forward to hearing from you soon!
Published July 22, 2014
The chances are
most of you reading this have met Ania Fiduccia through a networking event. Our paths have crossed and a relationship developed. I was fortunate enough to not only double my business but also build
professional relationship that with time turned into great friendships. I think back to my first networking event in the Lehigh Valley (over 3 years ago!!) and reflect on how WELCOMED I felt. I
realized I never thanked you for taking the time to get to know me, to introduce yourself and to make sure I didn’t feel lost among the sea of strange faces.
If you are new to networking, don’t worry – Lehigh Valley is a place of many great people that want to help you. They will be there to guide you through the room, take the time to introduce you to other like-minded people and with time they will be the friendly face you see wherever you go.
When attending a function, you should focus on growing your professional and personal connections. Networking is not an overnight success and you have to commit yourself and your time to see the rewards. It is also important that you are authentic about the connections that you make. If you go to an event with the only intention of selling yourself and your product/service you will probably be disappointed with the outcome. However, if you go with an open mind you might connect with someone that can become a big influence in your life.
The best example of the ‘magic’ behind networking happened few months ago. I was having a one-to-one meeting with a local business mentor. While we were catching up with our business I told her about a friend who was looking for a very specialized attorney. At the end of the meeting, I walked away with two referrals for local attorneys that I passed on to my friend. Even though neither one of us walked away with ‘new’ business we were able to connect two other people that might have never met otherwise.
You might be tempted to give out your card to everyone in the room. Your card is really only as good as the impression you leave with the person. It might be best to try to wait to the end of the conversation.
You are finally home … exhausted … what to do now
The first thing I do (sometimes I do it right in the car before I head home) is to make a note on back of each business card with the following:
a. Date we met
b. Location we met
c. Name of the function
d. Short physical description of the person (so that I can always put a face to a name)
e. Short description of their business
f. What they are looking for – how can I help them
notes (ex: if I need to send them information, if I happen to remember the spouse’s name etc)
Within the next 48 hours I would focus to do the following for each new contact I made:
a. Review their website
b. Send out a personal email thanking the person for their time
c. Connect via LinkedIn
d. Like their business Facebook page
e. Review any additional social sites the business participates in
f. Enter their information in a database (either manually or via business card scanner)
g. Do not automatically add them to your newsletter/mailing list. This will come as you grow a relationship with them.
Remember, our ultimate goal is to get to know others in our community so we can help one another grow our business. Building a professional relationship is very similar to ‘dating’ – it takes time and effort from both participants. Take some time to think about your new connections and pick 3 that you would like to get to know on a more personal level. I know some that follow a very strategic plan when they schedule their ‘coffee dates’. For me it varies: sometimes it might be someone that I don’t understand what their business is all about, other times it is a service I think a client of mine might need, it could be someone that offers the same services as I, or someone that I might not be able to utilize their product or service right away but that doesn’t mean I can’t refer them or use them down the road.
Networking is truly a great tool that if time allows should be utilized by everyone. Not only will your business benefit from the time invested, but you will find yourself developing a support system that will be there for you cheering you on when you need them the most.
You may have come across some of our team members during local functions. We have been blessed to be able to attend functions representing other businesses and/or work the function itself. If you are interested in finding out more information about our team of Personal Assistants we would be happy to schedule a complimentary meet-n-greet. Let us handle your business needs while you focus on growing your business. As always, there are no minimums to utilize our services. Please note, on average it takes us 4-6 weeks to on-board a new client. Contact us early to make sure you give yourself plenty of time to go through our process. We look forward to hearing from you soon!
Client Relationship System
"Everything starts with the customer." June Martin
We all know that maintaining your current clients costs less than trying to add to your existing clientele. Having the best service or quality product is usually not enough to create a lifetime client that returns for your service/product throughout the year.
Most of the businesses will send out a ‘thank you’ card or a ‘happy holiday’ card throughout the year. However, holiday cards usually get lost in the mist of all other cards that are sent out. It is still a nice gesture and should be done.
However, have you thought about how you can stand out from your competition?
First think about your clients and why they purchase your product or service. Most people don’t buy a product just because they ‘like’ the company. Most of us are guided by emotional needs that a product or a service fulfills. By taking some time to create a ‘client relationship management system’ you can create a yearly calendar of how and when you will contact your client.
When creating this schedule, take into account the characteristics of your business. Are you providing comfort, luxury, security or entertainment? How you communicate with your clients should reflect your business and its mission.
Most of us know to send a note for the holidays, thank a client after a purchase or wish them Happy Birthday. How about taking the time to wish them a ‘work anniversary’, or wish their child (or a furry friend) a Happy Birthday.
Some ‘unique’ holiday ideas:
Try utilizng a survey!
You can also stay in touch with your clients by asking them to fill out a survey – all of us like an opportunity to give feedback for the services and products we utilize.
SurveyMonkey is the world's most popular online survey software. They make it easier than ever to create polls and survey questionnaires for learning about anything from customer satisfaction to
employee engagement. There is a basic plan that is free to use or more advanced options that cost $17, $25, or $65 a month.
Not only is this tool very easy to use, but it serves many purposes — surveys, polls, online registration, online forms, and online exams. It is a great communication and tracking tool, and you
can make surveys for FREE. If needed, you can also upgrade to SurveyExtra for $19.99 a month.
KwikSurveys is a free to use online survey builder, which has been specifically designed so that it is quick and easy to use for people of all experience levels.
Questionform is a web application for creating, publishing and analyzing online surveys and forms. There is a free version, but it only allows you to make 2 surveys, with 5 questions per survey. There are other options that cost $9.95, $19.95, or $49 per month, depending on how many surveys you want to make and with how many questions.
You can introduce your clients to a product or service that compliments what you are offering. Selling products? How about letting everyone know about a recall! Most of us would appreciate a heads-up that a product we have has been recalled.
How can All Service Concierge help you?
Last year, we have worked with our clients to help them create a customized plan that fit their business needs. A planning session usually last 2-3 hours and we focus on what is important for your clients. If you are interested in creating your own client contact calendar contact us today!
Please note, if you are interested in finding out more information about our team of Personal Assistants we would be happy to schedule a complimentary meet-n-greet. Let us handle your staffing needs while you focus on growing your business. As always, there are no minimums to utilize our services. Please note, on average it takes us 4-6 weeks to on-board a new client. Contact us early to make sure you give yourself plenty of time to go through our process. We look forward to hearing from you soon!