Saturday, July 23, 2016

Friday, July 22, 2016

Sparkmag: The Greek Bailout Explained

Sparkmag: The Greek Bailout Explained: the velocity of money is explained...

Incredible Power of Relationships


Business is a human enterprise, driven and determined by people. In this world of people you successfully build your brand - one relationship at a time .

The quality of your net-work indeed determines the value of your net-worth ! Margaret Wheatley rightly says that relationships are all there is. Nothing exists in isolation. Everything in the universe exists because it is in relationship to everything else. We cannot survive alone.

Unprecedentedly, net-working skills were never in life more critical a contributor to individual success as it is now. Your past is no longer a prologue to your future. To achieve your goals in life, it now matters less how smart you are or how much innate talent you have. It means precious little if you do not understand that you can reach much further or reach the same distance much faster, only if you have the skills to capitalize on the incredible 'power of relationships'.

Net-working unfortunately has attracted it's equal share of negative attention by virtue of its unfortunate association with those who systematically manipulate and politicise their relationships to gather undeserving personal advantages.  Their driver is simple...."you give information - you get information" and that's how they build their success capital on such  networks. They are constantly engaged in concocting strategies to build their dubious popularity on the basis of 'who did what for whom'...they gave so that they can receive. But such are 'networking jerks' as Keith Ferrazzi classifies them in his very interesting book - 'Never Eat Alone'. Such people and their groups are often the maternity wards of gossips in an enterprise.

But for a handful of these not so gentlemen, one cannot afford to undermine the criticality of net-working skills in this age of people , information and relationships. In a hyper connected world, cooperation is gaining  ground over competition.

Real net-working skills are about finding ways to make other people in the configuration of your connections , more successful. It is working hard to give more than you receive and this is positive net-working. Success kisses those who have a vibrant circle of trustworthy, talented and inspirationally powerful people who build a protective insulation around each other.

FIVE Positive things effective net-workers do, which could be learning lessons for us :

👉 No Balance-Sheet : Effective net-workers never keep a tally sheet of how often they gave to match with the times they received. No keeping track of favours. They prepared no Balance-Sheet of exchange. Relationships are like muscles...the more you work them, the stronger they become. The currency of networking is printed in the Generous Mint.

👉 Listing Influencers and Researching Inner Circles : Effective net-workers do a lot of research to identify the people who are Influencers or in the inner circle of the decision-makers and the Powers that be. This is based on what their purpose/journey is all about. Their focus is on expanding their circle of contact and influence. This research is very critical as it makes the net-worker understand the power broking pattern in the system and the decision making process of the enterprise. This is done much ahead of time. Rightly they say 'build it before they need it'.

👉 Building a Break-through Plan : Effective net-workers strategize and build a systematic plan to be able to break through and reach out to each of these Influencers in the inner power relationship at a time. Certainly they use the Six Degrees of separation rule very effectively to build their linkages. They identify the intermediary 'go-to' person, if they are not able to reach out directly. Effective net-workers are audacious and are skilled at tactfully socialising and managing these gatekeepers to their list of Influencers. They never miss an opportunity to meet, greet or celebrate. Cakes, flowers and chocolate shops owe a lot to these net-workers !!!.

👉 Mastering the Elevator Pitch : Effective Net-workers craft their Elevator pitch depending on who they are reaching out to. Needless to say that they do serious homework and research to check out profiles of the people they are working to build their relationship with. What's- App Groups of Influencers, LinkedIn Blogs, LinkedIn Groups and other social media platforms are all their hunting ground.

👉 Acting as an Exchange for Information : An effective net-worker is like a multi track information highway. They gather, at times buy, store , allow mining and freely exchange information. They act like a hub. No longer hoarding information is the source of power. The net worker believes in social arbitrage and freely therefore shares information which he has gathered with others.

We are living in a world where community of alliances thrives. It is hardly surprising that most of our happiness should thus arise from the context of our relationships with others. It is not about self-centred political net-working. It is about making your mark as a 'Connector' and thus making worthy contributions to your friends, family, Company, Community and the World through its interconnectedness, says Keith Ferrazzi.  

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Wednesday, July 20, 2016

15 Facts About Why Referrals Matter for Your Business

We are social beings and exist in community with one another. People seek truth and share their opinions on what they’re buying and using, they want to share the value they are getting. And whether they share their opinions online or offline – you want your customers to share them so they can create real value for you and your business. If you still don’t believe referral marketing matters for your business, or you underestimate the power of a good referral, you need to read through these marketing statistics. 

  • Millennials ranked word-of-mouth as the #1 influencer in their purchasing decisions about clothes, packaged goods, big-ticket items (like travel and electronics), and financial products. Baby Boomers also ranked word-of-mouth as being most influential in their purchasing decisions about big-ticket items and financial products.
  • 84% of consumers reported always or sometimes taking action based on personal recommendations. 70% said they did the same of online consumer opinions. 
  • Word-of-mouth has been shown to improve marketing effectiveness by up to 54%.
  • 91% of B2B buyers are influenced by word-of-mouth when making their buying decision.
  • 61% of IT buyers report that colleague recommendations are the most important factor when making a purchase decision.
  • 56% of B2B purchasers look to offline word-of-mouth as a source of information and advice, and this number jumps to 88% when online word-of-mouth sources are included.
  • On social media, 58% of consumers share their positive experiences with a company, and ask family, colleagues, and friends for their opinions about brands.
  • 72% say reading positive customer reviews increase their trust in a business; it takes, on average, 2-6 reviews to get 56% of them to this point. 
  • 88% of people trust online reviews written by other consumers as much as they trust recommendations from personal contacts.
  • 68% trust online opinions from other consumers, which is up 7% from 2007 and places online opinions as the third most trusted source of product information.
  • 74% of consumers identify word-of-mouth as a key influencer in their purchasing decision.
  • 79% of people say their primary reason for "liking" a company's Facebook page is to get discounts. 81% also said they're influenced by what their friends share on social media.
  • 66% of respondents under the age of 34 are likely to give a referral after receiving social recognition.
  • More than 50% of respondents are likely to give a referral if offered a direct incentive, social recognition or access to an exclusive loyalty program.

Statistics provided by the follow sources: Ogilvy/Google/TNS, Nielsen, BrightLocal, MarketShare, Software Advice, Market Influence.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

The recipe for a professional firm to grow revenue, profit, capacity and the right clients

Inspiration from Rob Nixon

  1.  the right team, 
  2. the right clients and 
  3. the right model
  1. Pricing up front - No time sheets. It’s really simple. When you price a client project up front you are now directly motivated to do it as efficiently as possible. You get more margin and more time. Oh, and the clients love it as well.
  2. Value pricing and success based special projects. Value pricing is determining your value contribution to the project and pricing it accordingly. Without you the result is X, with you the result is Z. Your value add is Y. Price accordingly.
  3. Communicate regularly with your clients - Visits, phone calls, emails, newsletters, magazines and other touch points. Invite them to events! Show them that you care. You have to be disciplined with this but the payoff is very happy clients and lots of new projects.
  4. Systems - Workflow efficiency model. Manyfacturing 101 . Raw materials come in, it passes through a series of hands / technologies and a finished product comes out the end. To get efficient you need to take the bottlenecks out of the process.
  5. All clients on cloud accounting. When you migrate your clients across to cloud accounting and help them get more accurate numbers you have more visibility on their financial performance. You are also more efficient at your end because the data is more accurate. Research indicates up to a 60% efficiency gain at your end.
  6. Marketing that works. Leverage from others that are good at this. If you’re going to create capacity with workflow management and cloud computing, then the capacity is not going to refill itself. You’ll need to get on the front foot with direct response marketing that assists in finding new projects and new clients.
  7. Cross - selling .  Ensure that every client they want to keep is buying every service that they need. Sales is a skill that can be learned. To sell is to serve and new skills will be needed to serve properly.
  8. Business Advisory services. If you live by the following client mantra “all clients are buying all services they need that helps them achieve their goals” then you’ll find that the additional services provided are in the ‘advisory’ space. We think that Accountants should stay close to the numbers with their advice. So that would be growth, profit, cashflow, assets, structuring type advice. Financial coaching / consulting is where it’s at.
  9. Developed a programme for alliance partners to refer business - see www. 
  10. Referron - Be sure to track, measure, follow up and reward your referrals , and be sure to refer your clients to people you know, like and trust.(see

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Regular meetings create klt!

The Nelson Network: 

An introduction to a new blog series.


I'm a natural networker that became a Realtor. I've always been a people watcher and although naturally shy, I tend to enjoy large crowds at parties and networking mixers. As a retired DJ who performed at over 2,000 events & weddings, I’ve always thrived of the energy of others, in part because I enjoy listening to their stories. All you have to do is ask questions and then genuinely listen, people will share a lot with you, when they feel listened to and I think most want to share their experiences.

Everyone has a story and I happen to enjoy hearing them because you learn so much from other people. You can't possibly experience all there is to experience in life personally, but you and vicariously do so through the stories of other peoples' experiences. 

Dr. Ivan Misner

Ailina (my Bride), Founder of BNI and Author Dr. Ivan Misner & TJ


So, I started the Nelson Network which I've used as a foundation to manage and operate various networking groups I belonged to or currently run/manage or participate in. They are made up of San Diego entrepreneurs and exclusive groups of like minded Realtors over the last 14 years. I've networked with thousands of people in since 2003, which is when I got serious and on purpose. I have a database of hundreds: why not thousands you wonder? Well, not everyone I meet - I can help, not everyone I meet are good at networking with me, therefore I do not try to network with everyone I meet, just the best of whom I meet, according to my standards.

The Nelson Network has yielded me unbelievable opportunities in people I've met (see photos), referrals, friendships and business. I'm a published author because of it, I've walked a red carpet in Hollywood because of it, and I survived the 2006-2011 devastation of the Great Depreciation during our recession because of it. My bride is a Virgin America In-flight Team Leader because of one of my networking groups!

TJ, Author & Professional Speaker Jack Canfield & Ailina


I’m adding my Nelson Network to a series of Networking posts I’m planning as well as my video blog (Vlog) that I’ll start posting as meet with and  I interview some of my favorite entrepreneurs and Realtors in San Diego County. Their stories may inspire you like they’ve inspired me. Maybe you’ll be inspired to start your own networking group or put new ideas to work on the one you’ve already started. 

My goal is to post 1-2 per month under The Nelson Network and I’d love your suggestions, networking tips & success stories in the comment section, each time I do post one. I learn a lot in the Active Rain, so don’t be shy!

Nothing like a warm referral!

How will artificial intelligence change the way we network? 

A handshake, a chat, a courteous exchange of business cards, then an add on LinkedIn. 
Another new connection for me. But that new connection needs nurturing for it to have meaning and only then can it become really powerful. 

As an entrepreneur it is crucial to leverage the power of connections because they can give extraordinary access to a potential customer, vital piece of advice or a new platform to tell your story.
An unfair advantage can come as a warm introduction or recommendation. People place a great deal of value on a new person when they have been verified by an already trusted connection. 
People making thoughtful introductions makes the world go round and that is a lot more efficient than standing in a room full of strangers in the hope of making a business match. Even in the last five years in London’s thriving tech start-up world I’ve witnessed a sea change of attitude from one of being very possessive of connections to one of understanding that in sharing that asset everyone can win. The halo effect of being helpful is not only good for the soul but can have an unintended consequence of reaping the rewards of the goodwill it generates towards you. Building relationships can be time consuming and entrepreneurs know better than many how finite a resource that is, so it is important to have fun and share your passion for what you are doing. It is far more likely you’ll do business with someone you feel good being around. To both kick off and maintain relationships and also spark ideas I’ve found Charlie App to be useful, it does a lot of the googling for you if you are doing some research on a contact. My brother, Tristan, and our little sister’s boyfriend, Will, and I set up our own company, Howdy Hub, to help build powerful connections. LinkedIn is a remarkable vault of human professional interconnectivity but it tends towards making a link only after a physical meeting. We complement LinkedIn to allow people to discover others around them at meetups and conferences or when joining a new community. No more standing around in a room full of strangers.
Howdy is developing artificial intelligence to recommend who is a match for your professional needs. You can see who you have met before and where, it is contextualised so you can continue to develop the relationship. We plan for Howdy to become one of your trusted introducers. Howdy’s AI is in its infancy but the moonshot is to bring people together from different fields of expertise, people whose paths wouldn’t ordinarily cross. In doing so they have the chance to collaborate, solve problems and create new, as yet unimagined, opportunities.
When we only rely on being in the right place at the right time we miss countless opportunities or spend valuable time making connections that have no longevity. 
At this dawn of artificial intelligence we should be exploiting it in our daily lives to help our businesses and careers flourish.
However useful Howdy becomes we won’t have a word said against the magic of smiling, striking up a conversation and seeing what journey that might take you on.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

LinkedIn Tips to Help Make You a Great Networker, presented by: Bill Brinkle, the Global Uniter and (LinkedIn Expert) at building 30k networks.                        

Have you ever dreamed of publishing a LinkedIn post, but were afraid to try, because it seemed so complicated?

Well, let me make you feel at ease right now, because creating a LinkedIn blog post is really very simple and a lot of fun..........  

The first thing you will need to do, is make sure you are not using a smart phone to create a blog post.  At the present time, this feature is not available on smart phones.  The second action, will be found on your LinkedIn home page using your computer or laptop.  Click on your Profile icon.  Then scroll down just a little and click on Your Updates.  

Then the next step to complete, is to move your cursor over to the right, where you will see Published Post. Click on this icon.  Then you will see in the upper right hand corner, after your (total number of followers) Publish a Post icon.  Click on that and away you go..........  

At this point, I recommend that you become familiarized with the tool bar.  This tool bar is right below where you can upload a photo to represent your blog post. In this tool bar you can add a video, an image and also a link, in case you want to add a website.   

Now here, is the most important Tip to remember when creating a blog post...You need to be very familiar with the subject matter and content of your post.  I say this, because there are a lot of really smart people on LinkedIn that will challenge you, or ask you questions about your post...You do not want to be caught off guard.

My advice to you, is to have resources available to you at all times.  The most important resource is obviously the internet. You need to be able to research your topic thoroughly, in case someone asks you a tough question.  

Let's face it, now would not be the time to pack up your stuff and go on a beautiful vacation for a week, with no access to LinkedIn.  This could lead to you being embarrassed, and a bruise to your ego, if people talk badly about your post.

 The last thing you want to do, is create a beautiful blog post and then skip town. This will tarnish your professional reputation really fast.  A key component to having a successful post, is that you Engage with your Audience.  When you develop your writing skills and become skillful at creating blog posts, your followers will want to engage you at every level.  This my friend, is a wonderful feeling. 

You should expect the views to your post to be relatively low when you first start blogging.  Unless you are a gifted writer, like Stephen King, do not feel bad.  With time, the number of people to view your posts will increase.  The better you become at creating posts, the more views you will eventually acquire.

Now, the final point I would like to make, and this is a very important piece of advice, comes from a friend of mine.  His name is David B. Grinberg.  Mr. Grinberg is a Strategic Communications Advisor, Writer/Blogger, and Social Media Strategist.  I will always remember his advice to me, when I started blogging.  David told me something to this effect.  

Bill, do not be consumed with the number of views you have.  Yes, it is natural that we all would prefer a large number of views, but it is really the level of engagement that is of most importance.  What good is it, to have 225,000 views to your post, if only 150 people have commented on it.  This my friends is great advice.  Thank you, David.

In closing, I hope this advice has helped to make you a more informed networker. Also, if you have been thinking about writing your first blog post, Go For It.  You have nothing to lose, and everything to gain, in your pursuit of LinkedIn greatness.  

If you would like more valuable information about building a world class 30k LinkedIn network, please click on my official website listed throughout this post.  This website will let you view my credentials as a LinkedIn expert and allow you to preview a sample of what my revolutionary new e-book has to offer you.  May You Live Long and Prosper.  Official website to e-book listed below.                          

Bill Brinkle, The Global Uniter, and LinkedIn expert.         

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Tuesday, July 5, 2016

10 gems to get new leads

Leads are the lifeblood of any sales team and business. The easier it is for a business to get leads the faster that company will grow. 

Warm leads close faster and with less effort allowing you to process more of them. 

It is generally understood that B2B lead gen is held up by three pillars. 
- content marketing, 
- in-person relationships and 
- referrals from existing customers or contacts. 

Beliw are 10 ideas that will generate you warm leads 

* Web Functionality over beauty. The more functional and easily understood your website is the better chance it has of generating leads for your business. It needs to be easy to navigate and find information on easily. 
* Host an event, course or webinar. Events, Courses and webinars are powerful tools in establishing you as a credible source of knowledge in the industry and a company that businesses can trust. A significant bonus with a webinar is that you are creating useful content that will continue to generate leads for you long after you upload it. It is also a wonderful way to help educate potential clients on ways that you can help them, this helps to build goodwill and trust.
* Demos and Trials. You can explain everything you want to people but there is nothing like showing them. Letting prospects hold your product in their hands for a while or at least showing them how it works in real life is important particularly in B2B. This study found that 64% of business owners prefer to personally try something before they buy it. So extending free trial periods is a good way of getting people hooked onto your product. It also shows that you have faith in your product by offering it for free for a period of time. This has become a very popular choice of lead generation in the software industry where free trial periods are almost expected.
* Guest blogging and commenting. Yes, blogging is a great way to get leads. But it does take time and you are not quite sure how much time it will take before your blog is generating leads for you. One way to help jump-start the process is to try and guest blog on another (hopefully popular) blog or comment on blogs and articles from industry publications. The goal is to provide useful and meaningful comments and information and should not just be sales driven. This tactic will bring you into the eye of a lot of people, some of whom will click on your link and go to your site.
* Paid Traffic. Want things to happen instantly, just pay a bit more. Huge companies like Google and Facebook generate most of their income through business buying space for people’s attention. It is a quick way to generate traffic, if done correctly, if not it can be a huge waste of money. But it is a well understood formula, with enough effort and money you will generate leads. These leads are not ideally scalable as your cost for acquiring the customers will continue to increase.
* Exit-popups. These tools have proven to be hugely successful for both B2B and B2C businesses. 99% of people do not buy on their first visit to a website, but that does not mean they will never buy. Asking for their email in exchange for something is a great way for you to stay in touch and be in top of mind recall when their problem does arise again. This helps to make sure you are maximising the value of every visitor that comes to your website.
* Customer Testimonials. Nothing makes another person feel more comfortable than knowing someone else has used your product or tool. Have solid customer testimonials from companies that people know and recognise go a long way in helping convince visitors to trust you. Videos also make great sharing content and having a customer speak about your product increases the ability for you to social sell.
* Personalisation. If you do not have the budget to go big, then go the opposite and go small. Instead of sending an email to 10 million people, try sending it to 100 very specific very targeted people. Addressing how you can help them add value to their clients. You may find the response rate of that campaign much higher than a larger “spray and pray” approach. Everyone wants to feel they are special, by targeting an individual you make them much more likely to respond and continue the conversation.
* SMARKETING. This is the combination of sales and marketing into a unit that understands and works together. Although both playing for the same team (i.e. revenue), sales and marketing have for so long been operated in silos. As digital continues to grow its share and size of wallet, Smarketing will be increasingly important for any successful business. Are your sales and marketing teams meeting regularly and at every level? The sales team should be feeding back important information from the coalface and marketing should be providing ideas and concepts backed by data and have proven to work. You will see instant results from enough a small increase in cooperation.
* Referron - be sure to refer someone you know like and trust and be sure to track measure and reward it 
* BBG - join a BBG chapter in your town .... And if there isn't one