14 Jul

How Intelligent is Your Business?

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 14.07.16 by John Meloche

We keep on mentioning the impact of the advanced technology around us. Lately on our blog, we’ve analyzed the effect this technology will have on conducting business. However, we haven’t really looked at how this technology affects the internal operations of a business. Technological advances have lead to increased efficiency across the supply chain. New systems are being developed to essentially run a businesses’ internal operations. With the virtually unlimited data available on the internet, it may be easy to overlook relevant data; experience a sort of data overload.

Business Intelligence(BI) software gathers data from all over and turns it into information that your business can use to be more successful. It essentially translates relevant data into useful information that your business can use for making good business decisions. Historically such software has been used mainly by bigger corporations, however, the growth of Internet technology has enabled small businesses to utilize these BI solutions as well.

BI software is becoming more and more prominent as businesses are turning to computerized BI systems to filter out useless data. BI is becoming part of our business world, and its usage is only expected to grow. According to Elizabeth Mazenko, the BI and analytics market will grow to $20 billion by 2019. It is clear businesses are switching to BI for their data needs. The question now becomes, how intelligent is your business?

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29 Dec

3 Ways To Rejuvenate Your Company In 2016

Posted in Small Business Advertising, Synergy Suggestions on 29.12.15 by John Meloche

2016 growth chart, 3d render, white backgroundWith 2016 right around the corner, business owners from all over Canada will be looking to better the overall impressions of their companies. It would be surprising to find any business owner who didn’t have this plan as part of his or her New Year’s Resolutions list. In yesterday’s blog, we touched upon the fact that ditching old habits and taking better advantage of business events were two key ingredients to a more successful year.

In today’s blog, we’ll look at more ways to rejuvenate your company in 2016. Here are three:

1. Do your homework. You may not be in school anymore. But that doesn’t mean that your time for learning new things is over. It’s important for you to constantly study your industry. As well, it’s wise to be up on new trends and technologies. How else do you expect to keep ahead in your marketplace? Take some time during your holiday break to learn about what your competition may be up to you so that you can come up with ways to better their strategies.

On DouglasMagazine.com, Kerry Slavens writes that this is a worthwhile approach to bettering your business in the new year. “If your business is quiet during the holidays, take the time to catch up on your reading,” she advises, “Comb the Internet for ideas from inspiring sites like springwise.com or sit down with some of the year’s most influential business books for inspiration.”

2. Add creative content to your website. Your website needs to be updated as often as your storefront – maybe more often. It’s important to show your online visitors that your company is constantly up to something. Arguably, more important than your website’s design is its content. Start up a blog and have it written in an informative, yet entertaining way. Keep in mind that many company websites have blogs. Yours needs to be unique.

“Because many other companies are doing the same thing, it’s more important than ever that your content is highly useful to your target audience, unique and engaging,” says Jeff Kalter on SalesForce.com, “Create content that your company can be proud of, shows off your thought leadership, and your prospects will love.” If you don’t fancy yourself much of a writer, it would be beneficial for you to go ahead and hire a professional blogger.

3. Trust in your staff. Too many business owners think that they need to do everything on their own. As a result, they inundate themselves with work, but never have the time to get all of it done. If you need to hire competent staff members, begin your hiring process once the new year begins. But, if you already have a strong team, put more of your faith in the people you’ve hired to help you run your company.

“Get a smarter start on the new year by making a commitment to delegate or outsource those tasks that take you away from working on your business,” recommends Slavens, “For instance, do you need to do all of the social media yourself, or is it smarter to hire a savvy university student who can do it twice as fast, freeing you up to innovate, pursue opportunities and lead your team? The same goes for bookkeeping. Is your time worth more to your business when you are balancing the books or prospecting for new clients?”

Here’s hoping 2016 will be your most successful year yet! Happy new year!

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28 Dec

Making Better Impressions In The New Year

Posted in Promotional Products, Small Business Advertising on 28.12.15 by John Meloche

The words Time to Impress on a white and red clock telling you that now is the moment to persuade others and make a good impression to be successful and achieve your goalsWe certainly hope that you’re enjoying your holiday season! While the Synergy Marketing offices are currently closed until the new year, we haven’t taken time off from thinking about the ways in which Canadian business can grow their businesses. With the beginning of 2016 just a few short days away, we know that business owners all over Canada are thinking up ways to make better impressions in the new year. And how can you do that?

Ditch what hasn’t worked for you in the past. Some business owners are simply too stubborn for their own good. They refuse to assess their past mistakes in an effort to correct them going forward. What good is that going to do your business? Suck it up and realize that not every decision you’ve made for your company has been a good one. Start 2016 off fresh by getting rid of old habits that have never proven to be fruitful.

On DouglasMagazine.com, Kerry Slavens reiterates the importance of ditching old and unsuccessful strategies. “A clunky business strategy, a bad website design, an uncomfortable office chair, a broken printer?” she lists, “Why surround yourself with things that symbolize failure? Shred, refresh, rethink and recycle your way to a better frame of mind for you and your team.”

Take better advantage of business events. Simply showing up to trade shows, conferences and other industry events isn’t enough. It should be your goal to leave an impact everywhere you go. The point, of course, is to be memorable. Leaving a positive impression on everyone you meet can go long way in securing future business. On SalesForce.com, Jeff Kalter advises entrepreneurs to get more out of events.

“Events consume a lot of time and money,” he reminds us, “It’s essential that a trade show or conference goes off without a hitch. Because of this, hours go into creating the perfect trade show booth or conference hall to wow visitors. Time goes into preparing speeches and choosing appetizers for receptions. In the rush to the event deadline, sometimes the overall objective is forgotten.”

At Synergy Marketing, we also highly recommend that you bring your company’s promotional products with you to all of the events that you attend. When it comes to leaving positive impressions and being memorable, few things provide more success in those areas that promo gifts. Branded promotional items not only add value to a recipient’s life by coming in handy on a daily basis, they provide excellent reminders of who to do business with.

Our offices open up bright and early on the morning of January 4th, 2016. We’d love to hear from you in order to discuss the promotional products that would work best in advertising your company. If you have plans to attend trade shows and conferences in the new year – and you certainly should! – then it’s wise to carry along promo gifts that bear your company’s name and logo.

We have so many to choose from. Pens, key chains, flashlights, wine stoppers, ear muffs, knives, tools and so much more! Be sure to give us a call at 1-877-748-9884!

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25 Jul

5 Crucial Steps To Take To Secure Business Growth

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 25.07.14 by John Meloche

Five steps of a dietWe all want to grow our businesses. So, naturally, we all take steps towards gaining new customers and increasing our sales on a daily basis. But not all advertising strategies work for every business owner. It’s important to adopt business plans that will work for your specific industry and brand. Having worked with a multitude of different business owners across Canada for many years, the Synergy Marketing staff has learned this all too well.

This is why we offer so many different types of promotional products. Every business is different. So some gifts are simply going to work better for certain companies and not so much for others. Choosing the right business strategy is key. But as David Shed points out on BusinessInsider.com, “growth is a pre-requisite for business success, (so you) need to expand market share, seek out related and new market opportunities, and constantly pursue new customers just to stay even over the long haul.”

As mentioned, there are different ways to find success for all of us. Are there specific steps that we should all follow that are bound to help us out? Shed believes so. He insists that there are five crucial steps that entrepreneurs must take into order to secure business growth. And they should be able to help all business owners. In today’s blog, we will analyze these five steps while providing our own insight on each of them.

1. Satisfy Your Current Customers. Shed reminds us that it’s always easier to secure loyalty from your current customers than it is to attract new ones. So start with the people who already support you. Shed insists that you exceed the expectations of your current customers. It will reduce client turnover so that you don’t have to work towards replacing them. Satisfied customers will also make for the best advertisements for your brand.

2. Increase Your Market Share in Your Current Market Space. To further that last point, Shed notes that “satisfying your current customers strengthens your brand and proves that you live up to your brand promise. Building on this strong brand and referrals from your good customers, viral market out and penetrate new customers in your current market space.” As mentioned, the more happy current customers you have, the more that others are going to hear about it.

3. Work with Current Customers to Determine New Product and Service Opportunities. Notice a little theme going here? It’s all about working with your current customers. People who support your brand are the best people to ask about what you can do to continually make them happy. Take their feedback and follow their advice. Doing so “will bind you closer to these best customers and point the way to new product and service offerings that can then be offered to your entire customer base,” writes Shed.

4. Pursue Market Opportunities Already Under Your Nose. Make sure that you are someone who is easy to do business with, says Shed. This will open you up to potential customers who may be able to use your products and services to solve their problems. Consider what your new customers are buying from you and learn what it is you can do to continually make their lives easier. Watch the trends that take place in your store and you’ll discover new ways to increase sales.

5. Actively Pursue New Products and Market Opportunities. It’s important to be proactive, notes Shed. That means “seeking out growing and profitable markets, solving customer’s problems, and finding new market niches where your company can have a sustainable competitive advantage,” he writes, “This can include all the sexy stuff that they teach about in business schools: new product development, market entry strategies, joint ventures and acquisitions.”

And, by the way, don’t forget to hand out your snazzy promotional products to all of your customers to continue to secure their loyalty! Order yours today by calling Synergy Marketing at 1-877-748-9884.

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15 Apr

Rebuilding Your Business The Right Way

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 15.04.14 by John Meloche

Businessman rebuilding a damaged bridge with cityscape in the backgroundIn yesterday’s blog, we (sadly) admitted that we’re hanging our heads, here at Synergy Marketing, over the disastrous end to the Toronto Maple Leafs’ season. What seemed like a sure bet to make the playoffs prior to the Olympic break in February became a free fall out of the playoff picture with just three games to go in the season. The hope, of course, is that a serious rebuilding process is started this offseason.

As we mentioned at the end of the blog, this happens to businesses all the time. It’s not uncommon to experience slow periods and tough times. But, like the Leafs (we hope), it doesn’t mean that you can’t put in the type of work that will see you reach success in the future. On Boston.com, Claudette Rowley writes that there are several steps that can be taken to rebuild your business the right way.

Assess your circumstances realistically. Maybe things aren’t as bad as they seem. Then again, perhaps you need a complete overhaul. Make sure you’re aware of your available resources and strengths as well as your current liabilities, says Rowley. Be sure to be thorough, concise and honest with yourself during this process. Consider whether or not any of your liabilities can be changed into assets.

Locate your opportunities. “Opportunities are embedded in almost all obstacles,” writes Rowley, “Stories abound of entrepreneurs who take an obstacle and turn it into asset.” It’s all about switching your mindset. It’s easy to worry about a bad situation. But it only becomes harder to deal with when you don’t focus on the positive. Brainstorm with your team and make lists of all of your opportunities no matter how small they may seem.

Make note of what you’ve learned. Corrections can be made when you know where you’ve gone wrong. Solving your immediate problems don’t always bring about solutions for the long haul. Incorporate a strategy that addresses the big picture. It may not just be about resurrecting a lost account or reshipping a lost item. You may need to rethink your policies and modes of operation in general.

Identify your solutions and strategies. “Once you’ve assessed resources, strengths and liabilities, understand your opportunities, and have crystallized what you’ve learned, it’s time to identify the best solution to rebuild,” insists Rowley. You may have to come up with a new long term plan to truly set your company on the right path. Having gone through your first three steps, you should be better prepared to make decisions that will benefit your brand well into the future.

Commit to a plan of action. To get your company back on track, you must be diligent. Rowley suggests that you specify a number of roles. Determine who will spearhead your plans and figure out who will need to be involved and in what capacity. Outline the steps that you will be taking and set deadlines to hold your team members accountable. Be sure to implement a communication plan so that you can evaluate progress and know when you’ve succeeded.

“When the unexpected happens in business, the outcome can be a temporarily bumpy ride,” explains Rowley, “But once you find the opportunity inside of the circumstances, galvanize your courage, and gather your resources, the outcome can be even better than you had imagined.” And while you’re on your way back to the top, don’t forget to contact Synergy Marketing for assistance with promoting your brand to your new customers.

Call us at 1-877-748-9884.

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05 Nov

Taking Your Brand From Worst To First

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 05.11.13 by John Meloche

Okay, we admit it. We’re still reeling from the Boston Red Sox capturing the World Series Championship last week. It was just one year ago when the Sox had finished dead last in the American League East – the same place that our hometown Toronto Blue Jays finished this year. And now, with John Farrell at the helm – the man who managed the Jays one year ago – the Red Sox have officially gone from worst to first.

“It couldn’t have been a worse outcome for Blue Jays fans,” one of our colleagues commented last week, “Farrell leaves Toronto for Boston and turns the team around in just one season. Meanwhile, the Jays get all these new guys and are predicted be the World Series champs – only to finish in the basement. It’s really embarrassing for Jays fans to have Farrell best us like this.”

So what now? Will the Jays be able to pull off what the Red Sox have pulled off in just one season? Do we need yet another new manager? If there is a silver lining at all in the Sox taking the World Series, it’s that going from worst to first certainly is possible. And while this does provide some type of hope for Toronto Blue Jays fans, it should also inspire business owners as well.

Being a business owner does come with its proverbial bumps and bruises. Business can’t always be great. There will be times when it feels like you’re in last place, chasing after your competitors to no avail. At times like these, it’s important to think of new strategies to turn things around. But before you can do any of that, you need to have a positive attitude about your mission.

On Intuit.com, Susan Johnston writes that “saving a small business from the brink of disaster isn’t easy”, but it’s not impossible either. She turns to entrepreneur Grant Cardone for some strategies on how to get a small business back on track. If you feel like you’re the Toronto Blue Jays right now, you may want to consider the following tip to begin feeling more like the Boston Red Sox.

Identify the real problem. No matter what you think your problem may be, it always comes down to revenue. If you’re not making a profit, there is no way to expand, advertise or compete within your marketplace. So when it’s all said and done, the bottom line is that you have to concentrate on your bottom line! One of the ways to do this is to recognize your employees for their efforts.

That means not just acknowledging them when they make sales, but showing your support of their efforts to make those sales. Appropriately, Cardone compares this business sensibility to sports. “You don’t have to just make a shot. You also get credit for assisting in shots in the NBA, and in the NFL you get credit for assisting in tackles,” he points out.

As you can imagine, we’ve only just begun to scratch the surface here. In tomorrow’s blog, we’ll look further into Johnston’s article to learn more about Cardone’s strategies on how to turn your business around. Here’s hoping the brass over at the Blue Jays organization will be reading! For more information on how Synergy Marketing can help promote your business using promotional products, call 1-877-748-9884.

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03 Oct

5 More Tips For Running A Top-Notch Business

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 03.10.13 by John Meloche

Adsense-tips-keys-1024x768You don’t become a champion on day one. This is why professional sports teams play entire seasons just to make it into the playoffs. Your business is no different. Expecting success on your opening day may be a bit far reaching. Even if things go well from the get-go, you don’t want to get ahead of yourself and miss the bigger picture. And that would be success for the long haul.

There are many ways in which entrepreneurs can assert themselves as leaders in their fields. Being an expert entails doing your due diligence and finding new and exciting ways to promote your company. It also entails spending money in the right places and not spending too much of it at the end of the day. On Entrepreneur.com, Brad Sugars offers his insight into this matter.

In yesterday’s blog, we began to take a look at Sugars’ tips on how to run a successful business. Good planning, offering what the public wants and getting a good cash flow going are just a few of his ideas on how to get things going in the right direction. In today’s blog, we’d like to pick up where we left off by further examining the ideas listed by Sugars.

Find ways to exponentially increase profits. “In business, there are five drivers that impact profits,” he writes, “If you can master them while keeping your costs in check, you will run a successful business.” This includes getting more leads and converting more of them into buying customers. You also want to increase the number of times these customers buy from you and increase your price point to grow profit margins as well.

Test and measure everything. If you don’t measure your rates of success or failure, how will you know what needs changing? It’s important to be on top of whether or not your strategies are working. Test, measure and track your results. It’s no different than taking your business to a doctor’s appointment – so to speak. How is your business doing? What can you do to improve its health?

Accept that learning more equals earning more. You can’t run a million dollar corporation without starting at the ground level, insists Sugars. Learning to run a small business is your first step to owning a huge one. Accept that “learning” comes before “earning”. Be committed to learning as much as you can about your industry so that you can master good marketing methods to increase sales.

Don’t discount, add value. “Whenever you discount, you are taking money directly out of your pocket and directly from your bottom-line profit,” writes Sugars, “So don’t do it. Instead, create added value propositions all the way up and down your product or service line. Whatever the industry is, look to hold your price points, increase your margins with the low-cost or no-cost extras and any kind of freemium offerings.”

Get a coach. You’re never too old to learn and you’re never too smart to not need help. Get an objective person from outside of your business that you can depend on. Get honest feedback and advice. Listen and truly take in the feedback and remember that the impression of your business relies on how you make changes based on that feedback. Another set of eyes can work wonder for you!

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12 Jul

More Ways To Win Over Your Clients For Good

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 12.07.13 by John Meloche

handshakeFor decades, promotional products have helped to form bonds between Canadian business owners and their customers. Of course, the bond must be strengthened with much more than the promo gifts themselves. Business owners need to build upon what they’ve initiated in order to develop long lasting relationships that benefit their companies.

In yesterday’s blog, we took a look at Matt Polo’s take on how to build those relationships in his guest article posted on Freshbooks.com. He noted that your products and services may be great, but that won’t necessarily ensure that your customers will stick around for good. It’s important to give them more than what they need so that you can build trust and develop loyalty. Let’s look at a few more ways to do that.

Network. Polo suggests that you make yourself open to sharing contacts. Putting your clients in touch with others who may be able to provide them with relevant products and services will keep you in their good books. It will help for your clients to develop confidence in your advice and your referrals. In return, you are sure to be connected with contacts that will help you to grow your own business.

Referrals are actually quite a big part of a company’s success. The larger you grow your network, the more opportunities you give your business to succeed. “I always recommend my friends,” mentioned one of our clients this week, “And in turn, they always recommend me. Because we are good at what we do, I’m not scared of disappointing people who I refer. It helps out a lot.”

Manage Time and Meet Deadlines. Yesterday, we highlighted the importance of completing work on time. As Polo writes, “getting work completed well and on time is essential to maintain client relationships. If you have planned the project timeline clearly and realistically, fitting it into your overall work and life schedule, then this shouldn’t be a problem.”

Your best bet, he says, is to overestimate the amount of time that you’ll need to complete a project. That way, you give yourself time to potentially finish early. This will clearly be looked upon with favour. Making your client happy and even surprised at your ability to be efficient will go a long way in ensuring that they work with you again. Giving yourself extra time also helps you to overcome any wrong turns or surprises.

Be Honest and Be Yourself. “All human relationships work best when both parties are open and honest,” says Polo. This is true for both personal and professional relationships. Misleading your clients will only lead to disappointment and failure. They are bound to find out if you can’t live up to your word, so be sure to make your words as genuine as possible.

Be yourself, he reminds us. There’s no need to pretend that you’re a big shot. People tend to take to humble and down-to-earth individuals. In many cases, it’s personality that wins people over. If you can be flexible and personable throughout the course of the relationships you develop with your clients, you are bound to keep them around for a very long time.

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