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Because most of us conduct business by telephone, having exceptional phone manners is a key to landing sales and obtaining repeat business. The voice answering the phone represents your business. From the way we answer our phone,  to the way we hang up our phone can leave a positive...
Minding Your Telephone Manners

It is always frustrating when a new company opens up in town and starts low-balling everyone else to try to gain business. It really tends to diminish the value of products and services offered by area competitors.  It would be nice if all the competitors in an operating area could...
Price Wars - Low Ballers Die of Natural Causes

In a previous blog I wrote about Do-It-Yourself marketing. At the time I wrote that, I thought that was a good idea. I realize now that I knew just enough to be dangerous but not enough to be helpful. The complexity of today’s online marketing has exceeded my knowledge and I find myself...
Why You Need a Dedicated Marketing Person

Repeat business is the key to successful longevity.  It is much easier to sell to existing customers than it is to bring in new ones.  Efforts must be concentrated to keep customers coming back.  Here are three suggestions that will improve the way you interact with your...
Three Tips for Building Repeat Business

Photos bring power to your advertising and marketing campaigns.  Humans are very visual and can process a photo much faster than reading text.  For instance, we could say that a Big Mac has two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese and pickles on a sesame seed bun but...
Using Images for Marketing

You may be unfamiliar with the term “Loyalty Program” but you are surrounded by them.  One of the most recognized loyalty programs in the nation is Starbucks who uses a “star system”.  Each time you make a Starbucks purchase, you earn a star.  When you have...
Increase Sales with Loyalty Programs

When it is time to retire, who will take over your business?  Your business can provide for your retirement as well as the future of your children and grandchildren if planned and executed correctly. The All-American dream for most of us is to start our own successful...
Handing Over the Rains- Succession Planning & Execution

As a small business owner, you know the value of every dime. To grow your business you must pay close attention to every expense. Unfortunately, accepting credit cards means incurring processing expenses.Typically, credit card processing companies charge as much as 5 percent on everything...
Tips for Saving On Credit Card Processing

Founder and president of Create-A-Card along with Managing Director of the Driving Results Alliance, Arthur Messina shares his gratitude for our Sponsors and peer group members. For this special poem, click HERE
Poem of Appreciation Penned by Arthur Messina

Who are the millennials customers and what buying trends can we expect in the future? For full story, click HERE
Millennial Customers

Here are a few questions to help you decide if you need to revamp your company's image:If you had to give an elevator pitch, how would you describe your business?What gave you the idea for your business?Why did you decide to become your own boss?What is your long-term vision for your...
Your Brand Image is Critical Component

The 10 & 5 Rule for GreetingsThe 10 and 5 rule is famous in the hospitality industry as a simple reminder to consistently greet people that you encounter.When customers are 10 feet away from you, use a non-verbal greeting such as a smile or a wave.When customers are 5 feet away from...
Create a friendly customer service zone all around you

The Attitude AnchorThe Attitude Anchor is a great way to keep our own negative feelings neutralized, especially when dealing with an upset or difficult customer.The concept works by focusing on something positive that "anchors" your attitude where it needs to be to deliver outstanding...
Anchor Your Positive Attitude

We're taught to always go the extra mile. You can't go wrong with giving a customer a little extra, right? Well, sometimes you can. A free dessert at a restaurant can backfire if the guests are already stuffed or watching their diet. Do they eat something they don't want or...
Be Careful When Giving Extras

Customers use feelings to form their perception about the service they receive. These feelings are much stronger, and much more important than what actually happened. Service failures can create strong feelings about poor service. Research shows that fixing the problem might not be...
The Over-correct Approach

The term, "Authorizations" in credit card processing can mean different things to difference merchants. There are pre-authorizations, purchases and captures. We will explain the difference for you in easy to understand terms. Pre-Authorization Also commonly referred to as...
Authorization vs. Pre-Authorization - What's the Difference?

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