PR Equals Free Publicity

Posted by jeffheggie

There are three key areas of public relations you can use to boost your advertising results ten-fold over your paid advertising.

The key to public relations lie in:

  • Public relation or publicity
  • Merchandising
  • Promotions

With a solid plan in place that encompasses all these areas, you’ll have a great approach to use public relations in the best way possible.

Public relations include all that is the media. Don’t limit yourself. The attention of newspapers, television, radio, magazines, bloggers, ezines and more are all equally powerful. Online marketing is just as, if not more, important as conventional media.

Here are the steps to get noticed by the media:

  1. Put together a press release for your company. The press release should be relevant to your target market and address consumer interest, not just announce your business.
  2. Compact your press release to include one hook and one angle. Choose the most attention-getting to make sure the media person you are sending it to is interested in reading it.
  3. Put your press release in professional formatting. With press releases, you need a dateline, the most important information at the top, facts, figures and wrap it up with contact details including who and how. Print the press release on your letterhead.
  4. Send your press release to all television and radio stations, local and metro newspapers, national newspapers, industry magazines, and any other form of media that reaches your target market. Don’t forget to include relevant blogs, ezines, press release submission sites and to industry professionals.

More importantly than a perfect press release is to make sure you have addressed the needs of your target market in the products/services you offer and made that clear in the press release. If you are provided people a solution to a problem, a way to avoid a

problem and an opportunity to enhance their life the media and public will be interested.

If you have a connection (or the ability to get a connection) with a celebrity, this can practically guarantee you’ll get attention. Make sure you are offered newsworthy information and then follow up with media outlets to make sure they are publicizing that information.

“One of the most powerful techniques every business should use is free publicity. As the name implies, there is no cost, just the time and effort required to attract attention to your business.” Jay Abraham

Our GUIDED TOUR can show you how to put together press releases that work! Check out how the pro’s do it and craft the perfect press releases for your business.

How To Increase Your Productivity

Posted by jeffheggie

When I sit down to write an article, or as I’m planning an upcoming mastermind call, the topics usually come to me because of conversations I’ve had throughout that week.

On our mastermind call yesterday, one of the things we discussed was how to keep focused and work efficiently towards your goals. I received a comment from someone that said they work much more efficiently and are better at getting things done as deadlines approach. This comment reminded me of a post I had written back in April of 2013. Today, I want to share that information again.

The following is portions of my post from April 18, 2013:

Last night, my daughter, Tia, finished practising the piano and was sitting at the table looking very stressed. My wife, Tamara, asked her what was stressing her out. From there the floodgates opened up and out came all of the things she had to get done in the next few days with some tight deadlines: French test, write a paper about her experience in Africa, create a video to use at the piano recital, prepare her presentation for the Rotary Club, basketball practice, and…

That was when Tamara stepped in. She told Tia to make a list of all the things she needed to get done and the deadline for each one. She also needed to figure out which ones she could have help on and who could help her.

This made me think about Zig Ziglar and his “Day Before Vacation” teachings, which he asks:

  1. As a general rule, on the day before you go on vacation, do you get two or three times as much work done as you normally get done in a day?
  2. If you can learn why you are that much more productive on the day before vacation, and then repeat that process on a daily basis without working any longer or harder, does it make sense that you will be more valuable to yourself, your family, your company, and society in general?
  3. On the night before the day before vacation, do you take a sheet of paper and say to yourself, “Now tomorrow I’ve got to do…,” and then make a list of things you must do?… In it’s simplest form, that’s goal setting and it’s critical. Next, did you organize your must-do list in the order of importance and accept responsibility for completing those tasks?

The day before we leave on a vacation, Tamara and I both have our to-do lists. On that day, both work-related and non-work related things get completed efficiently. This all happens because we have deadlines and we need to focus to get those things done.

This is what Tia will experience over the next few days. Her French test, the Rotary presentation, piano recital and all the other things coming up are going to happen if she’s ready or not. So she needs to focus and prioritize to ensure she does well at all of them.

Going back to Zig and his day before vacation example, he says “On the way to work the next day your self-talk was upbeat and centred on what you were going to get done. You arrived at work on time so you were punctual. You immediately started to work, making you a self-starter. You were highly motivated and optimistic that you were going to finish every task you had set for yourself. You were enthusiastic about your work and decisively moved from one task to the next, making good choices as you did so, even if the next job on the list was disagreeable.”

I love this example related to unpleasant tasks. “An ol’ boy down home said it best, “Friend, if you’ve got to swallow a frog, you just don’t want to look at the sucker too long. He ain’t gonna get no purtier! As a matter of fact, the longer you look, the uglier he gets.” That’s the way unpleasant tasks are.”

“As you move from task to task, if someone tried to interrupt and talk about last night’s television program or last night’s game, you disciplined yourself to stay on task and not be distracted from your job… Since there was no “tomorrow” for you on each job, you persisted until you completed each one… and momentum built with the completion of each task… Perhaps the most exciting part of this vacation scenario is the fact that your co-workers instinctively picked up the pace [as well].”

If this approach works so well on the day before vacation, or the days before a test or a presentation, won’t it work just as well every day?

A big part of this is in your planning. When you plan and track things, the odds of their happening go up substantially. If we plan our months, weeks and days we will be more productive and balanced.

Tia spent the evening writing about her experiences in Africa. She made her list and prioritized it. When Tamara told her to pause and to make a list to prioritize, it relieved a lot of the stress in the situation.

Plan your time efficiently, and act upon your plans so that you don’t spend your time reacting to what is happening to you.

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How To Deal With Negative People

Posted by jeffheggie

We all have to deal with negative people at some point. How do you deal with it?

You need to be conscious of the impact it has on you. I can recall when I’ve been around the negative energy and attitude of someone and the next thing I know I’m unloading negativity onto someone else.

Just stay away from negative people. Eliminate them from your life. Who cares what they think… Right?

It’s really not quite that easy, so then what?

Some people are chronically negative. They are always complaining. Finding the bad in everything. The Eeyore’s of the world.

With others it may be out of character but something has triggered them to be in a mood.

A while ago I wrote, “The Crowd’s Chanting ‘Airball’… You’re Thinking, ‘NEXT!’ I talked about how you have to deal with negativity by moving on. I used a Tweet from Gary Vaynerchuk as an example where he said “I just don’t give a @$%& about what anybody thinks about me, because they don’t know who the *&^% I am inside.” 

But here’s the thing. The context of that article was talking about the impact of your own negative self-talk and the negative feedback from social media. Sometimes the “I don’t care” attitude and brushing them off might be the answer, but not all the time.

When you consciously prepare for something before it happens, you are better able to deal with it when you’re actually in the situation because you can stop yourself from reacting based on emotions.

 When you have to deal with negative people, keep these four points in mind:

Decide Your Response and Don’t Allow Yourself to Get Sucked In

You always have the choice to decide your response. In Man’s search for MeaningViktor E. Frankl said, “Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms – to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”

It doesn’t matter how negative, nasty or degrading someone is to you. You are always the one choosing how you respond. Don’t let your emotions dictate your reaction and suck you into their negativity.

Don’t Let Their Problem Become Your Problem

Often, when someone is spewing their negativity onto you, it really has nothing to do with you at all. But they want someone on their side. They want someone to agree with them or just listen to them on whatever it is they are ranting about.

It’s not your job to justify their negativity, fix their problem or take it upon yourself. Don’t allow yourself to become everyone’s problem solver and become infected with their negativity.

Hold Your Tongue

This one can be a challenge. There will be times that it’s not just a negative person you are dealing with. Sometimes they will be attacking you, someone you love, your thoughts or your goals.

When this happens you need to stand up for yourself, right? Will it really change anything if you do?  You might feel like you have to justify your thoughts or actions, but you don’t.

“In life, it’s important to know when to stop arguing with people and simply let them be wrong.”

Don’t Let Them Change Your Path

If someone tells you that your dreams are unrealistic, should you change them? As you read that I’m sure you thought to yourself, “of course not.” But are you sure? Have you ever been excited about something only to share it with someone and you were deflated after you saw their response? Maybe they even laughed at it or told you that you’re crazy.

 I’m blessed with the most supportive wife in the world. From day one, I’ve been able to come to her with any of my crazy dreams and she’s automatically by biggest supporter and cheerleader.

Recently we were discussing some of our business ideas and activities and she made a comment that crushed me. For the first time in my life I felt like I didn’t have her support in something that I was excited about. I began questioning myself. What am I thinking? Why did I think I could or should do this? But I was able to gather myself and remember the thought and preparation I had put into the idea before beginning it, and I knew it was the right thing.

Luckily I also soon realized that I misinterpreted her comment and she’s still my number one supporter!

When you know you’re on the right path, don’t let the negativity of someone else change it.

Our attitudes are a choice that we have. Just as someone’s negative attitude or personality can have an impact on others, your positive attitude and excitement can have an impact on others as well.

Everyone is dealing with some kind of challenge. Be the light in their life!

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Protect Your Mind

Posted by jeffheggie

“A man is what he thinks about all day long.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson

The amount of information that we are exposed to on a daily basis is amazing.

It comes through social media, television, radio, books, and the list could go on and on.  It’s great how much access we have in this day and age to information, but it is potentially dangerous as well.  I want to look at the potential impact information can have on our lives.

I’ve talked previously about the importance of being powerful creators of our own lives. As we walk through this process it will demonstrate why it is so important that we are intentional about it.

You get in life what you create.

Create > Life

This is why you see people from all different backgrounds, countries and races doing amazing things in the world, regardless of where they start out. We’ve seen people rise up out of poverty, from having absolutely nothing and becoming extremely successful and wealthy. At the same time, we’ve seen people who would be considered privileged, create amazing things in their own lives.

On the other hand, we’ve watched people on both ends of the same spectrum create un-powerful lives and end up even worse off than they began.

The things that you expect in your life are the things you create. What you expect to happen, drives your creative capacity.

Expect > Create > Life

But now, taking one more step back, where do your expectations come from?

You expect what you think about.

Think > Expect > Create > Life

Life is a result of what we think about. As Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “There is a deep tendency in human nature to become precisely like that which you habitually imagine yourself to be.”

This philosophy spurred the writing of books such as Think and Grow Rich, As a Man Thinketh, The Power of Positive Thinking, The Magic of Thinking Big, and others.

But if you go another level deeper, what is it that influences your thoughts?

It’s the things you allow yourself to hear and see. The inputs that you are exposed to

Inputs > Think > Expect > Create > Life

This is why it’s so important to be conscious of the things you allow yourself to be exposed to.

In such a fast-paced, chaotic world, all of the different media outlets are fighting for your attention.

Have you ever wondered why there isn’t a news station that just reports on the good things that happen? The happy, feel-good stories? It’s because they would go broke. It’s the stories of fear, tragedy and disaster that catch our attention.

Your brain’s job is to keep you alive, not make you happy and the media understands this. That’s why they don’t use the happy, feel-good stories to grab your attention. It’s the tragic, shocking stories that get your attention. It’s the same reason traffic comes to a halt as people rubber-neck to see an accident, but at other times those same people don’t think twice about looking at the most beautiful sunset they would have ever experienced as they are making their commute home.

When you look at the path of how the inputs in our lives impact our thoughts, which impact our expectations, our expectations turn into our creations which results in our life you can understand why it’s so important to pay attention to the inputs we allow into our lives.

When you look at the path of how the inputs in our lives impact our thoughts, which impact our expectations, our expectations turn into our creations which results in our life you can understand why it’s so important to pay attention to the inputs we allow into our lives.

You have to protect your mind. You have to be vigilant about what you expose yourself to, because every single input matters.

So what does this mean to you? How do you do it?

You have to consciously choose what you are going to allow yourself to be exposed to.  According to a Nielsen Report, US adults watch 5:04 of TV per day on average (35.5 hours/week, slightly more than 77 days per year). It’s time to cut back. Make a choice as to what you are going to give your attention to. Are you going to focus on the good or the bad? The things you can’t do anything about, or the things you can impact?

The first time I trained for a marathon I did all of my training on a treadmill and my routine was to watch the news while I ran. I knew about everything going on. Politics, the markets, the wars and all the other dark, dirty and fearsome content. But then one day I decided I didn’t need to know all of it and continue to fill my mind with all of the garbage and I quit watching the news. The result?

  • Not watching the news didn’t limit my capacity.
  • It didn’t end or cause the start of any war.
  • I wasn’t uninformed because the things I needed to know came to me in different forms.
  • It drove my parents crazy when they said something to me about something in the news and I had no idea what they were talking about.
  • It cleared my mind!

A number of years ago I listened to Darren Hardy speak on this topic and the following are his thoughts combined with my own on how to best manage the inputs you let into your life.

Selective Listening

Be specific about the things you let in. You don’t have to give it all your attention, just the things that are important to you. Pay attention to the things that impact you and your family and ignore the rest.

Remember, what you give your attention to becomes your reality. Focus your attention on what is good – ideas, knowledge, talents and skills

Low Information Diet

Limit your intake. Filter your news so you’re only getting the things that are important to you. Do not over-consume!

Mind Your E2E Ratio

Your E2E Ratio is a concept from Brian Tracy, which stands for Entertainment to Education Ratio. Recognize how much of your time is focused on Entertainment vs Education. One study stated that 95% of people spend their extra time on entertainment, while 5% (the successful) spent their extra time focused on education.

Feed Your Mind

As you feed your mind with high-quality content, your thoughts and ideas become more powerful.

I enjoy good music, but I rarely listen to it. I prefer to spend any time I can listening to books or podcasts online.

For example, last week I wrote the article, Dealing With Negative People. This morning at the gym, with TV’s on every wall broadcasting news stations and ESPN, I had my headphones in listening to, “Talking to Crazy,” a book that someone suggested to me after reading my article.

Separate yourself from the average. Use your extra time to fill your mind with positive and inspirational material.

When we are fully aware of the impact the things we allow as inputs have on our lives we can be more conscious and selective to ensure we are letting only the best things in. Be intentional in all you do and live the life you most desire.

How Well Do You Know Your Vendors?

Posted by jeffheggie

It’s extremely important to build relationships with your vendors and those around you can bring in new customers/clients and increase awareness of your company branding.

The people you work directly with on your products and services are really the ones with the most to gain when you find success. By taking the time to get to know them, you’ll find a whole host of opportunities you didn’t realize were there.

Look for great ways to offer your vendors rewards for helping grow your business and everyone wins. One of the ways you can do this is by offering performance-based incentives that are much larger than their normal charges.

Here’s the step-by-step process of putting together a partnership with a vendor:

  1. Approach all the vendors you work with and offer an incentive-based on performance.
  2. Put the generous incentive plan together from their perspective, even take suggestions.
  3. Develop a clear, concise and easy to track incentive plan, this will increase competition between vendors and therefore higher performance levels.
  4. Encourage subsequent sales instead of focusing only on the initial sale. By doing this you can give away more of the profit from the initial sale to your vendors and make higher profits off the back end products. Encourage:
    •   Future sales
    •   Upsell better and more profitable products/services
    •   Cross-sell to additional products
  5. Create an incentive plan that’s irresistible to your vendors by offering generous, exclusive compensation.

Think of all the vendors you work with and the creative ways you can put together an incentive plan that entices them to be part of your business. Use their talents, capabilities and connections and you’ll both be winners.

Putting together an incentive plan doesn’t have to be a complicated process. Use our GUIDED TOUR to come up with some great ideas and put your incentive plan together for maximum results.