November 18 – 24 is an exciting time each year for the start-up, innovation, education, entrepreneur and broader communities of the world: it is Global Entrepreneurship Week (#GEW). And it is really “global” in every sense of the word.
The growing popularity of these events is partly due to the global connectivity of social media networks. Never before have so many buddy entrepreneurs had so much opportunity to use ‘free’ global communications tools to inspire, share and make connections, experiences and ideas. Twitter is buzzing with the hashtag #GEW, #GEW2013 and other country specific hashtags and LinkedIn provides opportunities for targeted networking: social media helps develop international relationships, introduced through #GEW, that many innovators will find as they pursue their goals.
So what is #GEN? Perhaps the best way for me, as a social media strategist, is to use social media (YouTube) and let the international organisers explain for themselves:
#GEW is here. Jump on, jump in or take that first step – it may just change your life! If nothing else, you will find following all the tweets and other social media posts and events an inspiring spectacle in its own right! So, enjoy and feel free to contact Optimize Business if you have any questions or queries. Here is the Australian GEW page link:
Having worked with many accounting and invoicing systems over the last 20 years, Optimize Business knows a good billing solution when we see one. That is why Optimize Business uses and recommends Freshbooks. It offers the convenience of cloud accounting and an easy of use and efficiency you have to see to believe.
Forget about backing up your invoices: it is done in the cloud
Stop fussing with an email or envelope: it is delivered in the click of a button
Convert that estimate to an invoice and email: done in seconds
Visit our Optimize Business Bookshop for the latest books, DVD’s and resources to optimize your business performance
It is great for small business start-ups who can use it free for three or less clients and even better for bigger businesses who can streamline their invoicing process with the click of a button. And the best part? Clients pay quicker because of the paper-less email delivery and the easy of payment!
This is why Optimize Business is pleased make Freshbooks available to Australian and New Zealand business through our relationship with Freshbooks. In fact, Freshbooks can be used by any business, anywhere! From Deli to Denver, over 5 million businesses are using Freshbooks.
So why not test drive this great product? We did, and we were so impressed with the customer service, support and user experience, that we can’t help but recommend it! Try it for free:
Is your small business on Twitter? Do you understand how Twitter works and why so many small businesses have jumped onto Twitter?
The above two minute video from Twitter gives a basic understanding of how you might use this social media for your organisation or business. Optimize Business uses Twitter as the main form of social media to engage, communicate ideas, develop business relationships and keep abreast of the latest news or trends in business.
Social media is an investment in our brand. Five years ago, people would use a search engine like Google to find your website, learn about your business and assess if they want to do business with you. Today, consumers and businesses also look at your social media presence to gauge “who you are”: YouTube is now one of the most popular search platforms and Facebook, Twitter and other forms of social media are also being used to find businesses.
Unlike Google and Yahoo!, if you are not ‘present’ in Twitter (for example), you will not appear in the results of a search that is done within Twitter. Your business will be Missing in Action in the Twitterspere, this is unless your customers are talking about you (good or bad!), or worse, your competitors are filling your void.
The absence of “your voice” from social media platforms, like Twitter, says something to the world about your business. For those who have used social media to find you, or to talk to you, your absence from their preferred channel will be noted and probably not in a good way.
It is important not to just jump into social media. You should speak to other businesses that use social media, and make sure it is done in a planned way, as part of a social media strategy that suits your brand, your business and your customers. A failed social media presence is perhaps even worse that no social media at all.
Unlike Facebook, LinkedIn and other forms of social media, each “Tweet” is limited to only a 140 characters. Other forms of social media have larger word limits. Tweets therefore need to be short, engaging and easy to understand. The 140 character limit is quite helpful in helping you take the ‘padding’ out of your business communications.
So back to Twitter. It is a great tool for start-ups, small and large businesses alike. You can easily share (tweet) links to videos, blogs, webpages and photos to provide richer content with your short Twitter ‘broadcasts.’ If you content is engaging, you will probably find each tweet brings in additional new followers and people may share your communications by retweeting (RT) your message.
Twitter is a free social media tool that provides an incredible networking and communication channel into the hands of even the tiniest business, NGO or NFP. You can do a lot of targeted ‘campaigns’ yourself for free:
Twitter can provide almost perfect customer targeting, for free! Just search for a topic relevant to your organisation on Twitter.com and look at the people that are engaging in discussions or following others on that topic. Then search through the “followers” of relevant people and you will find people, businesses and organisations that are interested in the topic. These people will therefore be likely to follow you back if you follow them. Be a little selective in who you follow (avoid those who you would not really want following you) and you can easily build up your own followers by simply following those with common interests to your own.
Businesses, large and small, can also pay to have their products or services promoted on Twitter, via promoted “accounts” and promoted “tweets”. This video gives you a good sense of how you can pay to promote your organisation, but most new Twitter users would initially try the free approach outlined in the paragraph above.
For more information, Twitter publishes a great guide to get your organisation started on this exciting social media platform: Twitter for Small Business.
2012 Andrew McIntosh CPA Optimize Business @Optimize_Biz
Imagine it is late last century (say 1992) and you were told you could have your own video channel and distribution network to build your brand, engage your customers and advertise to those who care.
Two decades ago, what would you have given to have this capability for your small or medium business?
It’s incredible, it is free, and twenty years later, how many business owners just ignore this amazing tool? How much value are they leaving on the table, when two decades ago they would have given an arm and a leg for these capabilities!
Imagine that futuristic world from 1992, now even richer with handheld devices that stream an amazing colour TV image; can help you find products, services or friend just around the corner when that would have taken a phone box, a good phone book and 20 minutes back then…..
Oh the possibilities of mobile video for your own business!
So please don’t lose the wonder at these amazing capabilities that surround us! Seize the day again and re-look at your opportunities, especially those are just waiting for you on social media tools like YouTube!
You would have given an arm and leg for this capability 20 years ago, so don’t ignore it now it’s free….. SMB’s, please don’t lose the wonder of what is right in front of you!
If you need help or advice with creating your own SMB channel or video content, contact Andrew McIntosh CPA via the social media of your choice…. or call on good old-fashioned mobile phone to Australia +61 4 48516151.