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10 Business Decisions that Influenced the Future  

10 Business Decisions that Influenced the Future  

We've found 10 examples from the last 75 years when individuals, companies or groups saw a need and took dramatic action, often creating something historic out of nothing--advancing not only single invention or program, but also the business principles that influenced not only that time, but today and our future. Here they are: Suburbia is Born: In 1947, American GIs were just back from the war, and often returning to sub-standard housing with little income to leverage. A real estate developer...

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4 Dimensional Trust in an Age of Change

4 Dimensional Trust in an Age of Change

When you or your company or group seek to operate in a change environment, or if you are going into a time of change, the highest priority will be to create and rely on embedded, earned trust. And in times of change, the last thing you need to experience as an employee, or the company experience from its staff and partners, or customers experience from a supplier is:  The discovery that trust has been violated. Do any of the following sound familiar? * A person, group or organization has broken...

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What difference does it make? The importance of tracking customer response

What difference does it make? The importance of tracking customer response

Valcort’s 35 Keys to Business Growth:  #21 We have specific, consistent ways we collect data and track customer response to every advertising, marketing and sales effort. We use this information to measure our marketing and sales efficiency and effectiveness. For more than 10 years we have been asking executives to rate their companies’ performance in each of 35 best practices. One that is consistently troublesome to companies large and small is #21-- tracking customer response to sales and mar...

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Influencing the influencers through communication

Influencing the influencers through communication

Valcort’s 35 Keys to Business Growth: #20--“Have strong communication with people who can influence a buyer’s decision, based on addressing a buyer’s most important needs.” Think about your last major purchase.  As a business owner, it may have been a piece of equipment or a building. As a home owner or a parent, you may have just purchased a new set of patio furniture to prepare for summer, or a new bicycle for your 10-year-old. Whatever it may be, you did not make the purchase in an informatio...

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7 Reasons Nonprofits Flounder or Fail

7 Reasons Nonprofits Flounder or Fail

A group of our friends led a wonderful start-up that was trying to bring new perspectives to theenvironmental cause, to reach faith-based constituencies who were not traditional supporters of these concerns.  They had the plan worked out on paper, and even had a foundation to underwrite the effort for a couple of years.  But although there were many who cheered from the sidelines, very few people were committed enough to provide significant financial support.  When the grant money ran out, the c...

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7 reasons people buy

7 reasons people buy

Since money isn’t easy to come by, what makes us part with it?  And if we decide to make a purchase of any kind, why do we choose one product or service over another?  There are mountains of research on these questions, but since you may have even less time than money, we’ve condensed a lot of answers into 7 reasons people buy. Here they are:   Scarcity First, we buy to meet our basic needs; things to fulfill what Maslow describes as the foundation of his hierarchy,  like food and shelter. Or ...

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Resuming the series:  Valcort’s 35 Keys to Business Growth

Resuming the series: Valcort’s 35 Keys to Business Growth

We’re resuming today our writing on Valcort’s 35 keys to business growth, which highlight our comprehensive view of the most important disciplines that companies and organizations will master if they are to consistently succeed.  To help you review the discussions to date, we’ve provided below the links to the articles on the first 19 disciplines. 1.    The Importance of a Vision Statement 2.    What People Believe Matters 3.    Listen (to the Voice of Your Customers)    4.    Why Selling Your...

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Reaching the people most important to your business

Reaching the people most important to your business

The easy part of marketing is to state a crisp, sensible plan for success: Whether we have a product that will be of interest to 10 or 10-million people, the most important task we have is to identify who those people are and how we can reach them with an effective message in the right context. The difficult part is answering each component question of that formula.  Let’s take a look at these questions. 1.  Who are these people? Identify the potential customer groups broadly, then methodically ...

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15 tips for successfully reaching “unreachables”

15 tips for successfully reaching “unreachables”

It’s only natural for us to want to market our products or services to everyone, in hopes of capturing a larger audience. But every business has some “unreachables” who seem unsuited for or resistant to your overtures.  Now, some of these people are placed in that category for a good reason. For others, you may just need to try something new.  Here are 15 great tips from multiple experts: 1. Do your homework. This is an important step you won’t want to skip. Before you start trying to reach all ...

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IRS approvals, Red Cross problems and top stories from the nonprofit sector

IRS approvals, Red Cross problems and top stories from the nonprofit sector

  Nonprofit Tax-Exemption Approvals Double, Thanks to Simplified Form.  The Internal Revenue Service approved 94,365 applications from organizations seeking 501(c)(3) designations in fiscal year 2014, more than double the number approved in the previous two years. 4 Options for Targeting Donors.  You have four options when evaluating how you might compete in the nonprofit world, using ammunition distilled from what your organization knows about itself and about which potential donors repre...

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