How To Be More Creative In Business

How To Be More Creative In Business

To be an innovative entrepreneur, you want to foster creativity in your daily life so that your mind is ready when opportunity arises.

Unusual combinations, sometimes called “remote associations,” are related ideas that may seem unrelated at first glance. They are the essence of creative thinking.

To cultivate creativity, you want to increase your chances of stumbling on an unexpected link. Here are four strategies you can use in your everyday life that will train your mind to be more creative in business:

1) Shake up your routine.

To expand your creative horizons, surround yourself with a broad range of perspectives and experiences. A diverse workplace is helpful, but it isn’t enough. Outside of work, seek variety in what you eat, where you hang out, the types of art you look at, the places you travel, or the books you read. You are more likely to find an unusual solution when you have more options at your fingertips.

2) Cast a wide net for feedback.

We often discuss important ideas with the same inner circle of colleagues, but in doing that we can miss the obvious answers. Try to see a problem or idea in a new light.

Find smart people with little knowledge of your business and talk through whatever you’re working on now. You may be surprised by the solutions they help you discover.

3) Let go of rigid rules.

You want to train your mind to be more open. Practice letting your mind wander and come up with as many ideas as you can, however absurd they may seem. You can even be silly or funny. Relaxing your standards while you generate ideas increases your openness and boosts creativity.

4) Observe the world around you.

The most creative people are always on the lookout for interesting things, even if they don’t apply to whatever they’re working on now. Keep a notebook or a computer folder full of interesting ideas, articles, images, or even passing thoughts. They will likely come in handy at the moment you least expect, and that lightbulb will illuminate in your head.

Recommended: 3 steps to triple engagement by adding a Twitter image to your ad

About 40Billion.com

40Billion is the social network of entrepreneurs and crowdfunders – a social platform for connecting business owners and promoting the things they create. Use 40Billion to find professional contacts and projects, get affordable business advertising and crowdfunding promotion, and show off your creations to the world.

How To Hire Great Employees As A New Manager

How To Hire Great Employees As A New Manager

Hiring staff can be difficult as a new manager, and making bad choices can be disastrous. These 5 easy steps will help you find the right fit for your company:

1) Determine what you need.

Many people make the mistake of not clearly defining the skills needed before starting to interview. This can lead to hiring people because you like them or they’re impressive in an interview.

Instead, take a close look at your company and the specific skills and knowledge required to reach the next level. Write out detailed job descriptions for each position, including recommended levels of education and experience.

2) Pay attention to the details.

Don’t write too generic a job description. You will get way too many unqualified people as it is. Define the job clearly and spell out the salary range. This will help eliminate at least some people right at the start.

Furthermore, require a detailed cover letter with each application or resume submitted. The specifics in the cover letter will give you some idea whether the person is applying specifically for your job or any job. You’ll also learn something about their writing skills.

3) Choose your first three interviews.

In the top 10 candidates, there may be one or more that stand out because of a well-written cover letter, experience in your industry, or some other characteristic that closely matches your needs. Interview those choices. Then, interview the top 3 candidates overall.

4) Be upfront.

Let people know whom they will be working for and make expectations clear. Develop interview questions that ask for examples of past behavior. This is called behavioral interviewing and leads to better hiring results. Make sure to include questions about any experience working for someone younger or any of your other concerns. The answers will help you determine if you have a good candidate.

5) Include others in your hiring process.

Particularly with a small company, you need everyone to work well together. By including other staff members, or even suppliers or customers, you can get varied perspectives, and another pair of eyes or two can help you make the right choice.

Now, if you hire what looks like the right person and they don’t live up to your expectations or you find out another problem that is not readily fixable, then fire them. The biggest mistake you can make is keeping someone longer than you should.

Recommended: Lead Generation: 19 Tips For Better Results

About 40Billion.com

40Billion is the social network of entrepreneurs and crowdfunders – a social platform for connecting business owners and promoting the things they create. Use 40Billion to find professional contacts and projects, get affordable business advertising and crowdfunding promotion, and show off your creations to the world.

Step-By-Step Guide For Social Video Marketing

Step-By-Step Guide For Social Video Marketing

Here’s a list of buzzwords for you: social, video, and marketing. But if you put them together, they create something that can powerfully engage customers and greatly improve their online experience.

It’s a combination that works very well for online marketing: the grassroots, viral environment of social media; video’s ability to engage; and a strong marketing strategy.

You’re likely well aware of video’s value in bringing your brand and messages to life. But simply posting video isn’t enough to change consumer behavior; you need to do extra work to encourage people to interact with your content, contribute their ideas, and give it the thumbs-up. As social media changes the rules about marketing and relationships, conversation must be a part of any content you produce.

Social video marketing can encourage prospects and customers to help get your message out and reach a wider audience. Study after study has found that the vast majority of consumer’s trust “earned media,” including word-of-mouth and recommendations from friends and family, over any other source.

In addition to social video marketing, don’t forget online marketing sites. You can visit 40billion.com which is a fastest-growing network of entrepreneurs and crowdfunders. They specialize in promotion of small businesses by broadcasting and promoting to its large network of several million users across the most popular social networking sites for small businesses – including Twitter, LinkedIn, 40Billion, and even Facebook. Innovative services such as promoted company listings were created for small entrepreneurs to tap into a growing, active network online without spending thousands on pay-per-click ads or traditional advertising. They also offer crowdfunding promotion and promote crowdfunders and their campaigns/projects.

Here are some easy ways to get started with social video marketing:

. First step: posting. Populating your social networks with fresh, relevant video is a critical first step. Doing so will not only make your content shareable but also pay off in terms of SEO rankings. In our work with clients in the retail space, we know that enhancing natural search via social network links has helped raise those retailers’ rankings.

. Include a call to action. Ask viewers to comment on, like, and share your videos on their own social networks. Those functions are often built into social networks, but don’t assume that viewers will take these steps on their own. Add a clear call to action and make sure that sharing icons and links are readily available.

. Show some emotion. Consumers find how-to and product videos quite helpful, but product videos don’t usually capture people’s hearts. Consumers are more receptive to authentic, personal messages about companies. Think about ways to bring your company messages to life, and show how your products make a difference, or illustrate how consumers use your products in unique ways. The videos that do so don’t have to be highly polished; it’s the message that matters.

. Put customers in the spotlight. Professionally produced and user-generated video can work together to provide an even more share of voice. Think about how to incorporate user-generated content into your video channel; for instance, allow customers to upload videos about their experiences with your products. Or let them compete to sing your jingle in a fresh way.

. Encourage sharing. Adding sharing options helps your customers tell other people about your videos. Put sharing tools next to every video, everywhere on your website where videos appear. Automated video solutions can make this process easier, reducing the time and work involved in posting videos and adding social network sharing features.

. Do your measurement. What are your priorities: Are trying to boost views and thumbs-ups? Or do you want more sharing, comments, links, and social buzz? Quality engagement usually does more good for your business than lots of views. Millions of people might watch a clever viral video, but if it doesn’t budge people’s opinions about the product or brand, it’s not worth much. The point remains: Although social video marketing is useful in producing brand awareness, it should also help strengthen relationships and increase sales.

. Be careful with humor. Many brands that want to go viral do try by being funny, but humor can backfire on you. Humor can help build interaction and get your content shared, but it can be tricky to pull off. It’s more important to be real and to connect with your targets than to simply generate laughs.

The overall impact of video on the bottom line can be measured, but some factors are tougher to measure-though they can be enlightening. Video makes your online storefront look more professional and trustworthy, which gives shoppers more confidence to buy. There is also a social marketing benefit, since video is often shared and liked on social networks. In addition, the presence of relevant video on your site contributes to better search engine ranking, which can draw more traffic; visitors are also shown to click on SEO links when a video image is present, so you get a double benefit.

Recommended: Content Marketing Made Easier With These 5 Tricks

About 40Billion.com

40Billion is the social network of entrepreneurs and crowdfunders – a social platform for connecting business owners and promoting the things they create. Use 40Billion to find professional contacts and projects, get affordable business advertising and crowdfunding promotion, and show off your creations to the world.

How to Advertise Your Business to 2,500,000 People on 4 Social Networks for $20

How to Advertise Your Business to 2,500,000 People on 4 Social Networks for $20

Want to spread the word about your business? Did you know you can broadcast your product or service to our large audience across Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and 40Billion for only $20, or as little as $5 a day? Buy a promo ad to broadcast your small business, startup company, product, or service to 2,500,000+ social users on 4 social networks – including Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and 40Billion – at once.

For over 4 years, aspiring entrepreneurs and startup companies have used 40Billion for affordable promotion across popular social networks in order to reach more potential customers. Buy a promo ad to get started in just 3 easy steps.

8 Social Marketing Fails to Avoid

8 Social Marketing Fails to Avoid

1. Little or no social media or blogging activity.

Why start a blog and never publish? Why start a Twitter account and never tweet? In social marketing, you have to show up and be active. Yes, starting that Facebook page was a good idea, but unless you are going to be consistent in posting and using it, just forget about it.

You can save time by using sites like 40Billion.com, which specializes in broadcasting and promoting posts to its large network of several million users across the most popular social networking sites for small businesses – including Twitter, LinkedIn, 40Billion, and even Facebook. Innovative services like promoted posts, future retweets and promoted company listings were created to make social media marketing easy and affordable for entrepreneurs and marketers who want to tap into a growing, active network online.

2. Publishing low quality content.

It doesn’t matter if this is on your blog or your social posts, if you do not provide quality to your community, they will leave. Stop writing fluff pieces, and show them where’s the beef.

3. It’s 24/7 about you.

We’ve seen these posts – they are all about ‘me’ when they should be all about ‘them’ – your community of users. Social media is a place to build relationships with your current and prospective customers, not scare them off.

4. No strategy.

Using social marketing for business is tough. You have to have a plan. This isn’t anything new. Attempting to do this blindly will only lead you to disaster. You have to know why you are using social marketing and have everything you do point back to that reason.

5. No social links or social share buttons on website or blog.

I like to use the analogy, if a tree falls in the forest and no one is there, can you hear it? If you are on social media and you don’t tell anyone you are there, how will they find you? By accident? Same goes for articles on your blog – set up social sharing icons so people can share your great content and let others know you are there.

6. Not responding. At all. To anything.

Don’t you hate it when you comment on a post somewhere and there is no response. You have to be engaged with your community – you have to be present and be active.

7. Not taking things seriously.

Yes, social marketing can be fun; however, it’s also a lot of work. You have to take it seriously. With all the changes that happen rapidly, you will always be on your toes. You can have fun with it, but you are doing this for your business or someone else’s – it’s not personal play time.

8. Not keeping up with the changes.

This one will get you in the rear every time. If you can’t or don’t keep up with the changes you’ll be left behind or worse – get an account suspended. You will not be successful unless you know what is going on.

In conclusion, let’s summarize what you can do to not fail:

* Make a goal to provide one quality article each week. We will all publish fluff at some point, but have one, good solid post a week.
* Take an active role in your community – ‘talk’ with your customers, ask and answer questions, show them you care more about them than yourself. Be someone they can trust.
* Be consistent. They say long and steady wins the race, and it does in social marketing. Keep at it and don’t give up; you will get there.
* Have a plan. Write your goals on a piece of paper and plan out how you are going to use social marketing to get there. Having a plan (strategy) will not only keep you organized, it will keep you focused.
* Continually educate yourself. This is a fast-paced industry. Subscribe to a few blogs and stay in the loop. People will follow and trust those who truly know what is going on.

Recommended: Viral Video Marketing 101

About 40Billion.com

40Billion is the social network of entrepreneurs and crowdfunders – a social platform for connecting business owners and promoting the things they create. Use 40Billion to find professional contacts and projects, get affordable business advertising and crowdfunding promotion, and show off your creations to the world.

8 Social Marketing Fails to Avoid

8 Social Marketing Fails to Avoid

1. Little or no social media or blogging activity.

Why start a blog and never publish? Why start a Twitter account and never tweet? In social marketing, you have to show up and be active. Yes, starting that Facebook page was a good idea, but unless you are going to be consistent in posting and using it, just forget about it.

You can save time by using sites like 40Billion.com, which specializes in broadcasting and promoting posts to its large network of several million users across the most popular social networking sites for small businesses – including Twitter, LinkedIn, 40Billion, and even Facebook. Innovative services like promoted posts, future retweets and promoted company listings were created to make social media marketing easy and affordable for entrepreneurs and marketers who want to tap into a growing, active network online.

2. Publishing low quality content.

It doesn’t matter if this is on your blog or your social posts, if you do not provide quality to your community, they will leave. Stop writing fluff pieces, and show them where’s the beef.

3. It’s 24/7 about you.

We’ve seen these posts – they are all about ‘me’ when they should be all about ‘them’ – your community of users. Social media is a place to build relationships with your current and prospective customers, not scare them off.

4. No strategy.

Using social marketing for business is tough. You have to have a plan. This isn’t anything new. Attempting to do this blindly will only lead you to disaster. You have to know why you are using social marketing and have everything you do point back to that reason.

5. No social links or social share buttons on website or blog.

I like to use the analogy, if a tree falls in the forest and no one is there, can you hear it? If you are on social media and you don’t tell anyone you are there, how will they find you? By accident? Same goes for articles on your blog – set up social sharing icons so people can share your great content and let others know you are there.

6. Not responding. At all. To anything.

Don’t you hate it when you comment on a post somewhere and there is no response. You have to be engaged with your community – you have to be present and be active.

7. Not taking things seriously.

Yes, social marketing can be fun; however, it’s also a lot of work. You have to take it seriously. With all the changes that happen rapidly, you will always be on your toes. You can have fun with it, but you are doing this for your business or someone else’s – it’s not personal play time.

8. Not keeping up with the changes.

This one will get you in the rear every time. If you can’t or don’t keep up with the changes you’ll be left behind or worse – get an account suspended. You will not be successful unless you know what is going on.

In conclusion, let’s summarize what you can do to not fail:

* Make a goal to provide one quality article each week. We will all publish fluff at some point, but have one, good solid post a week.
* Take an active role in your community – ‘talk’ with your customers, ask and answer questions, show them you care more about them than yourself. Be someone they can trust.
* Be consistent. They say long and steady wins the race, and it does in social marketing. Keep at it and don’t give up; you will get there.
* Have a plan. Write your goals on a piece of paper and plan out how you are going to use social marketing to get there. Having a plan (strategy) will not only keep you organized, it will keep you focused.
* Continually educate yourself. This is a fast-paced industry. Subscribe to a few blogs and stay in the loop. People will follow and trust those who truly know what is going on.

Recommended: Is Google Threat to Social-Media Marketing?

About 40Billion.com

40Billion is the social network of entrepreneurs and crowdfunders – a social platform for connecting business owners and promoting the things they create. Use 40Billion to find professional contacts and projects, get affordable business advertising and crowdfunding promotion, and show off your creations to the world.

Social Advertising Is Here To Stay. Learn To Live With It.

Social Advertising Is Here To Stay. Learn To Live With It.

Let’s face a simple fact, boys and girls: advertising on the social channels is here to stay and, increasingly, social butterflies who want to get noticed will have to spend money on it.

This will come as a discouraging news for the legion of social media mavens who like the free nature of the social channels but reality is reality and marketers, organizations and business who really want to advance themselves will need to get serious about spending money on social advertising.

We all know the major social networks need to produce revenue to remain viable and we’ve long ago realized ad sales is really the most successful revenue generator or any mass media. So, it stands to reason social media would be no different.

But none of this means the big-time marketers of the world have realized this yet.

According to a survey of over 500 marketing professionals in 82 countries and 20 industries conducted by the social analytics company, Socail Bakers, many of the largest companies online have no advertising budget at all: nada, zip, blank, no one home.
According to the SocialBakers survey, 14 percent of companies with more than 5,000 employees spend $0 on social advertising even though they are actively engaged on the social media channels.

Another 10 percent spend between $1 and $1000 and 19 percent spend between $1,000 and $5,000. And these are major companies.

And, don’t forget online marketing sites for social advertising. They are affordable and effective. You can visit 40billion.com which is a fastest-growing network of entrepreneurs and crowdfunders. They specialize in promotion of small businesses by broadcasting and promoting to its large network of several million users across the most popular social networking sites for small businesses – including Twitter, LinkedIn, 40Billion, and even Facebook. Innovative services such as promoted company listings were created for small entrepreneurs to tap into a growing, active network online without spending thousands on pay-per-click ads or traditional advertising. They also offer crowdfunding promotion and promote crowdfunders and their campaigns/projects.

And what’s more, the marketers directing these large companies can’t even distinguish between ads placed desktop versions of the social platforms or mobile versions or an ad buy structure to be effective on both at the same time. Even small time companies like ours know it’s important to propagate social content (or ads) in the context of mobile or desktop.

What this tells us, we presume, is that social advertising remains very much an infant aspect of online marketing. It will grow more sophisticated with time and before long we’ll all go back to the future as Mad Men.

Recommended: 10 Content Marketing Trends You Need To Know For Success

About 40Billion.com

40Billion is the social network of entrepreneurs and crowdfunders – a social platform for connecting business owners and promoting the things they create. Use 40Billion to find professional contacts and projects, get affordable business advertising and crowdfunding promotion, and show off your creations to the world.

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