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Best Books For Quick And Easy Cooking

Hungry Girl 300 under 300 by Lisa Lillien

This book delivers 300 great breakfast lunch and dinner meals that are all less than 300 calories. It also includes starters and appetizers. The many food items bring original food items and spring to life with new ingredients into the mix like the Buffalo Chicken Wing Macaroni & Cheese or PB & J Oatmeal Heaven. If you are interested in losing weight and keeping your calorie intake lower, this is the book for you.

Top 100 Baby Purees by Annabel Karmel

Babies grow the most in their first year of growth, so they need the most nutritious diet as they are doing so. Making your own baby food not only saves money, it also ensures your baby that it will have the freshest and purest food with veggies, meat, and all it has to have to grow up. This book sports 100 easy baby foods from the moment your baby is born to six months of age. If your child needs the regular nutrients that a baby will need, it is highly recommended that you should pick up this book.

Fresh & Fast Vegetarian by Marie Simmons

If you are a vegetarian who wants the vitals of veggies, than this book is great for you. There are many soups and vegan delights in the mix of meals in this book, and it will let the many vegetarians searching for a good cookbook speechless. Many of these meals are very easy to make and very fast too. The meals are not only tasty, but they are visually appealing also.

How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman

This cookbook has a whole 2000 recipes for great food. It really has everything to cook, like vegetables from peppers to eggplants, meats, fish, and pasta, almost everything you can imagine in just one book. You can throw away your old cook books because probably Mark Bittman's probably has all of those recipes in just that book. This is the best kitchen companion if you want a good variety of foods. This cookbook has been acclaimed and has caused buzz around the cooking society. It has replaced many books in the past, and looks to the most needed book for cooking.

Primal Blueprint Quick and Easy Meals by Mark Sisson and Jennifer Meier

These are meal that you can make in just less than 30 minutes that are low carbs and are proven to be the most effective difference in health and weight management. These are quick, non-intimidating meals, and will leave you mouthwatering. There is a lot of variety, it has color photos and does not require strange ingredients and they are healthy as ever. All of these are made in just 30 minutes or lower.

These great books are the best cook books out there on the shelves today, and any good cook need at least one of these in his or her kitchen.

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Is Forever Living Products A Great Opportunity Or A Bad Joke?

Forever Living Products is a direct selling company from Scottsdale, Arizona. It has been around for a long time – since 1978 – and so you would think it must be a legit company that offers a good opportunity. But surprisingly not everyone agrees, so what is the truth? Is the company a big scam?

Forever Living – The Good

Forever Living Products sell a wide range of health and wellness products including nutritional supplements, weight-management solutions, cosmetics, skin care, and drinks. This is a very crowded market place with the likes of Herbalife, Amway, MonaVie, Wowgreen, and Oriflame all competing for space, but Forever Living Products is older than all of these companies except Amway, so it must be doing something right

Forever Living – The Ugly Truth

So why is it that people criticize the company? In truth it is more to do with the marketing systems deployed by their Distributors than their products. It is a sad but true fact that most network marketers fail to make a profit because they use an outdated marketing system. Pitching to your friends and family members on your product, service, and opportunity might have worked in the 1950s and 1960s, but it doesn’t work any more.

These days, it takes real marketing knowledge to be successful with Forever Living, and asking your friends and family to “do you a favor” is no longer effective. You need business acumen and the ability to sell your product, service, and opportunity.

So if you don’t know the art and science of marketing in the 21st century then I highly recommend that you learn it before you enrol with Forever Living Products. The company can be a great opportunity, but only if you have enough skills to make the most of it.

To learn more about how network marketers are doing business in the 21st century, see the Modern Guide To MLM

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4 Vital Self-Care Tips for Caregivers

At some point in your life you may need to, or already have, taken on the role of caregiver to a loved one. The following statistic gives you an idea of the magnitude of caregivers in the United States – 65.7 million caregivers make up 29% of the U.S. adult population providing care to someone who is ill, disabled or aged. ~The National Alliance for Caregiving (2009).

The caregiver role includes a range of responsibilities based on the level of care your loved one requires. Whether it’s short term or long term care, it typically creates unbalance in our lives. Caring for a loved one has its challenges and can become overwhelming, which takes its toll on the relationship as well as our health.

The main concern is stress which leads to burnout. When it gets to that point, you are of little help to yourself, let alone anyone else. Understanding the symptoms of stress will help you manage the effects to avoid succumbing to burnout. The list below shows some symptoms of stress but is not all-inclusive.

· Anxiety

· Depression

· Irritability

· Difficulty sleeping

· Difficulty concentrating

· Feeling tired or rundown

Knowledge is power, so understanding more about stress and how to deal with it is the first step. Understanding your triggers for stress will also provide the information you need, to combat the situation before it rises to an unmanageable level. Use the tips below to provide the self-care required to maintain your well being in your role as caregiver.

1. Your needs

Determine what is it that you do now or have done in the past to eliminate your stress. There are many ways to reduce, or eliminate stress. Some common activities include – deep breathing, physical & mental exercises, meditation, comedy clubs or movies, 7-9 hours of sleep per night, petting your dog or cat, and massage. Think about what you usually do to tone it down when faced with a stressful situation.

2. Schedule ‘me time’ regularly

The definition of ‘me time’, and the regularity will be different for everyone. For some it could mean something as small as a 15 minute warm, bubble bath. For others it could mean a two hour lunch with the girls. It actually means whatever it takes for you to unwind, and recharge.

3. Let your emotions come out

Realize that caregiving is a tough job, and most care recipients understand that as well. When you provide care for someone else, you WILL feel frustrated, angry, sad, overwhelmed, and many more negative feelings, and also some positive feelings. We have a tendency to try to keep these negative feelings inside, so we don’t upset our care recipients. It’s true we don’t want to upset them, but even though you try not to let it show, it will. When you realize a negative feeling is coming on, I recommend that you go someplace out of earshot to let out your feelings. I even apologized in advance to one of my care recipients, because I knew that I may, let’s say, be less than amiable at some point. You need to get it out of your system in some way. Sometimes just talking with another family member or a friend helps. There are also support groups for caregivers that really understand what you’re going through.

4. Get help

No one can, or should take on the role of caregiver alone. We all have full lives, and this role will add to a potentially already full schedule of activities for ourselves. Because of this fact, we need help to fulfill our role of caregiver, not only for us but also for the care recipient. The type of help you need will depend on the level of care required by the care recipient. Determine the times in the day or night when you need the most help. If you have other family members that can help, that’s great, if not, there are respite care services available.

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Beauty Tip: Foundation Secrets For A Flawless Complexion

1. For a natural look your foundation must match your skin tone. Test foundations along your jawline. You will know the best color because it will disappear into your skin.

2. Spread foundation on your hands and pat it on your face, then smooth out with a sponge making sure not to pull or stretch the skin. Be extra careful in the area around
Your eyes where the skin is super thin. Do not forget to apply foundation on your eyelids and lips.

3. To make foundation last apply moisturizer first giving the foundation a base. Dry skin will soak up the foundation if not given that base. For oily skin use an oil-free moisturizer and powder foundation

4. On hot days foundation can be difficult to keep looking fresh. Set your foundation in the morning using a loose powder and puff, then do regular touch ups through
The day.

5. To cover imperfections apply foundation first and then go back and dot on a concealer that neutralizes red. For noticeable imperfections like very dark circles and birthmarks use a yellow concealer (available from Mary Kay). Do not use too much powder in problem areas because it will draw attention to it.

6. To avoid a foundation line around the jaw apply foundation as usual then use a little moisturizer in your hand and blend it down your neck.

7. For evening mix some shimmer powder with your powder and put it where you want to attract light such as the bridge of the nose, underneath the brow bone, the temples, cheekbone, chin and shoulders.

8. Always use a foundation with a sunscreen of at least 15 to prevent future sun damage.

9. Change your foundation shade if the color of your skin changes.

10. After you apply foundation go near a window to make sure it looks natural. Natural light is the ultimate test.

Copyright 2004 Sheila Dicks

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Build Muscle – How Overtraining Affects Your Ability to Build Muscle

If you are currently trying to build muscle, there is no doubt you are performing intense weight lifting sessions in the gym. If you aren’t, you’re likely not getting the results you’d like to be.

Bodybuilding is a very physically demanding exercise on the body and as such, will recover more time to recover from than other activities such as a jog, a swim, or a game of basketball.

The thing to remember with bodybuilding is that when you build muscle, you are actually tearing down your body, so that it will build itself back up. If time is not given to allow this process to take place, where do you stand? Your body is technically ‘broken’ and you won’t be seeing any muscle weight gain then.

Now, apart from not going, how else does overtraining affect you? This is not a simple issue that should be overlooked. If proper care is not taken immediately when you realize this may be occurring in your body, you could be out of the gym for months trying to recover.

Here is what it will do to you.

Decreased Testosterone Levels

If your body is not recovering between your workout sessions, your testosterone levels are going to decline. Since the body is focused solely on trying to overcome the great stimulus you are subjecting it to, it’s certainly not going to be trying to increase a hormone that is related to building, and creating a new life (since, testosterone is after all, a sex hormone).

Increase Fat Gain

Yes, that’s right. If you overtrain yourself long enough, you could be setting yourself up for an increase in fat storage.

The reason for this is because when overtraining sets in, there is a tremendous stress on the body and in response to this, cortisol is released.

This cortisol causes the body to store more body fat, especially around the abdominal region, therefore rather than gaining any muscle, you might just end up gaining more body fat.

Decreased Immune Response

Another problem that occurs with overtraining is your immune system will start to suffer and weaken.

This will put you at risk to experience colds and diseases more easily – and potentially more frequently as well, thus, not only will this take you out of the gym itself, but you may just jeopardize your health if you let it go on long enough.

Muscle Mass Loss

Finally, the last critical thing that happens when you overtrain that is the enemy of anyone out to build muscle is that you will suffer a loss of muscle mass.

So, just as you spent the last year work hard to gain those precious ten pounds of muscle, if you then start going too hard on your program, lifting too much and too frequently, you may just end up kissing

that muscle away.

This is such a hard concept for bodybuilders to grasp since common sense says the harder you work, the better you do, but there is a very fine line between doing enough and doing too much.

Making sure you don’t cross this line is going to mean the difference between you developing an amazing body and you looking mediocre, despite spending years in the gym.

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Corporate Service – 9 Golden Rules of Business Building

How to build any corporation or business at light speed the right way is not as hard as you may think, if you follow the 9 Golden Rules of Business.

If you follow these 9 Golden Rules, success will come to you in a faster period of time than you could imagine.

Golden Rule Number One: Never get tied down with the details of your business. This is surely one of the fastest ways to accomplish absolutely nothing know to mankind. I am sure you have experienced this before, where you get so bent on trying to figure one little thing out that before you knew it hours have gone by and you have accomplished nothing.

Golden Rule Number Two: Always create a daily plan of action because if you don’t, you will find yourself like I have on accession- spinning my wheels and only getting a fraction of the thing done that I meant to get done for the day.

Golden Rule Number Three: Don’t try and sell cold to people living in the arctic. If you’re going to be in business, it would probably work out well for you to give people what they are asking for, not what you think they should have.

Golden Rule Number Four: Build your business out of stone brick and mortar, not straw. Simply put, if your foundation is weak, then there is a great chance that your business will go down in flames faster than you could ever imagine. Trust me when I tell you this, because I know from personal experience.

Golden Rule Number Five: You will need to learn and then live by this old saying that my oldest brother, Clarence Jr. taught me when I was in my teens and I wanted to start my first business. ” Feed the classes eat with the masses, feed the masses eat with the classes”. The simple translation of this is, provide a service or product to just a few people then you will never really get ahead in life financially. But if you provide a service or product to thousands and thousands of people, your financial well-being is almost assured.

Golden Rule Number Six: Find your passion and you will find your business. Simply put, you can make a living at almost anything, but the key is to find what is it about what you are doing that you like and make that your focal point and your passion. Then everything else becomes less distasteful to you.

Golden Rule Number Seven: This one I learned from the great Zig Ziggler. FEAR is nothing more than an acronym for “False Evidence Appearing Real.” The funny thing about fear is that 99% of the time we really don’t have anything concrete to base it on, but we still allow it to consume us and keep us from success in your personal and business lives. So how do we beat FEAR? By simply taking a deep breath, and then exhaling, and doing whatever it was that we needed to do over and over again until it is a habit. Then FEAR can no longer take space within that space or action.

Golden Rule Number Eight: “Every Thing Has Its Season” Learn this little nugget of truth that my mother told me after I had to close the doors of my most successful business back in 2002 that I built from nothing and ran for 9 very good and profitable years. The marketplace no longer had a need for pager stores. The lesson that we should take from her saying is this. Do not be a one trick pony. After you have mastered the first thing and it runs itself, move to the next thing and master it.

Golden Rule Number Nine: Everything begins with marketing. So learn and use it.

Don’t wait incorporate today, now to build a better financial future tomorrow.

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How to Master MLM Sponsoring

How to master MLM sponsoring is not difficult if you have the right tools, knowledge and personal mentors who can show you exactly how to effectively market your MLM business. If you have those essentials, all you need to do is take action and implement those strategies within a system designed for your success.

The real reason that approximately 97% of the network marketers fail is not because their company does not represent a decent product or service. Because honestly, you can find value in just about any network marketing company out there. The problem is that when you get on board with a company, most people are not given the tools for success. You were maybe given a couple of handbooks and that was probably about it, right? The problem is that people simply do not have something that they can follow such as a proven blueprint that has already been proven to not only work, but was shown to blow other marketers out of the water and get great results.

The important thing that you have to realize is that to be able to generate network marketing leads, you have to know how to effectively market online. And marketing to everyone under the sun is just not effective. Nor is talking to your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers. There are very effective techniques in existence that crush the numbers out there simply because these techniques are geared to marketing to the people that actually have an interest in what you have to offer other people and provide great value to others.

If you want to be able to add MLM reps to your primary business, no matter what that business is, partner up with the experts as I have done and you will get results. If you are looking for great results, then all you have to do is to stay committed with what you are being taught and continue to educate yourself using a proven system wherein you will have the power to really make as much money as you want. You will also have the power to help change the lives of others who are looking to fulfill a similar or similar dream. And there is nothing like being able to do that.

If success is your sincere desire, you owe it to yourself to get the most comprehensive program that teachers you step by step, the essential techniques that will bring you the massive results you long for. Partner up with the experts that utilize a proven system that has an army Army of resources that both teach you and allow you to implement those learned techniques all in one centralized location.

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Client Marketing Audit Engine Builders

The paper is intended to outline the marketing situation of the Company and to make reasonable recommendations about the proper tact and development of a strategic marketing position.

As written in A Framework for Marketing Management and Marketing Management Millennium Edition, Tenth Edition (Kotler, Philip), “Modern marketing calls for more than developing a good product, pricing it attractively, and making it accessible to target customers. Companies must also communicate with present and potential stakeholders, and with the general public. The marketing communications mix consists of five major modes of communication: advertising, sales promotion, public relations and publicity, personal selling, and direct marketing.”

Kotler also wrote that for a company to develop an “effective marketing communication requires eight steps: (1) Identify the target audience, (2) determine the communication objectives, (3) design the message, (4) select the communication channels, (5) establish the total communication budget, (6) decide on the communication mix, (7) measure the communications’ results, and (8) manage the integrated marketing communication process.

Within the following marketing audit an honest attempt has been endeavored to accurately observe behaviors and contemporaneously record conversations with employees, ownership, prospects and customers in such a was as not to divulge the identity of the source. Hopefully, such anonymity has bolstered the honesty of those that have given information to the author. In turn, the resulting honesty should have improved the chances for an accurate compilation of the current marketing position of the Company.

To the extent that accrued sales data and financial statement information was not available for review and comparison to industry norms and metrics the audit was limited to interviews and subjective data. While some polling has been executed with customers in order to paint an accurate picture of local and surrounding demographics and market share, the Company should endeavor to obtain more comprehensive market share data to fully exercise their place in the industry.

During the past five weeks, the following elements of the marketing position of the company have been reviewed:

Part I. Marketing Environment Audit

· Macro environment

· Demographic

· Economic

· Technological

· Competitors

Part II. Marketing Strategy Audit

· Business Mission

· Strategy

Part III. Marketing Organization Audit

· Formal Structure

· Functional Efficiency

· Interface Efficiency

Part IV. Marketing Systems Audit

· Marketing Control System

· New-Product Development

Part V. Marketing Productivity Audit

· Profitability Analysis

· Cost-Effective Analysis:

Part VI. Marketing Function Audit

· Products

· Price

· Distribution

· Sales Force

Essentially it is the Auditor’s opinion that the Company suffers no problems that well thought out communication both internal and external to the firm coupled with consistent execution through solid team building processes and a permanent change in attitude cannot remedy. Albeit there lies strong institutional resistance to change in the Company which is endemic to most all small closely held operations, much can be done to effect the positive change absolutely required if the Company ever desires to stretch beyond a local company serving customers haphazardly.

Part I. Marketing Environment Audit

Macro environment

Demographic:

Since the customer demographics include direct retail purchasers as well as automotive engine repair shops we look to the individuals and their buying habits within the two groups. First, the individual buying habits of the customers dictates how to approach not only the existing demographic but new undeveloped markets as well. Traditionally, the Company has combined mass mailing with direct in person customer contact by the outside marketing department.

In 2000, a major competitor in the rebuilt engine company from Indiana, “Jasper”, entered the Texas market by employing a direct sales force with full management staff in the major markets. Jasper sells directly to the end user, the repair shop mechanic and this approach has changed the way customers can buy engines. In addition, ownership has caused Internet exposure via the websites to become formidable additions to the strategic marketing front consistently generating almost 40% of the sales volume according to ownership since no financial data is made available to employees for management purposes.

Jasper prices significantly higher than CLIENT, Inc. but offers a stout warranty. The Company can compete on both the distance advantage and the warranty if it accounts for it in price. In response to Jasper as well as a declined engine market, the company has hired a marketing person to lead the marketing and sales effort for the foreseeable future. Within the last two months, CLIENT., INC mailed 8800 pieces of a combination flyer event invitation to remind customers that CLIENT., INC is still in business. The mailer resulted in approximately 100 attendees to the barbeque event November 8, 2003. Two or three motors were sold as a result.

Economic:

No doubt exists that as long as man drives the internal combustion engine; demand will exist for rebuilt replacement engines. CLIENT., INC stands ready to serve this demand. Several factors contribute to the overall demand in a given market as regards engines. First, the general economic health can contribute to whether people drive their cars longer requiring sometimes a replacement engine or they buy a new one. CLIENT., INC obviously prefers the former. Price conditions currently are tough as what is believed to be an end to general industry compression in the number of engine producers, which started in late 2000 and is now tapering off. Nevertheless, ownership has attributed its loss in volume to a poor economy while this Auditor believes a case could be made that the business has shrunk due to improper handling of several strategic issues.

Ownership’s short-term attitude to the cost of warranty rather than coupling that with the consequences of irritating customers over warranty such that they cease the relationship may not have been realized.

As a response to this compression, CLIENT., INC has laid off much staff shrinking the payroll to have its height in 2000 when gross sales were also double what they are today. The Company has held prices stable for the past eighteen months, as it has found innovative ways to cut costs.

Technological:

The President has indicated a desire to transform the company from a mom and pop operation to a firm that allows rigorously recruited and hired employees to take charge and responsibility of the company’s destiny toward growth and profitability so that all stakeholders will prosper. As such, systems from accounting to order entry to dispatch, communications and fuel and fleet management must be improved and brought up to date so that the company can jump ahead of expectations and get away from the reactionary mode of operating. New skill sets must be recruited to fit the model if this company is going to ever achieve anything more than a fifty-employee company.

Competitors:

As indicated earlier, Jasper Engines is a late entry to the Texas market and at the top of the price tier. Other competitors include Four Star, Thunderbolt, Jasper, Roadmaster and others as well as local small town machine shops. Jasper has effectuated a policy to sell to anyone. Others have marketed repair shops but tend to work through parts distributors where possible.

Summary Conclusion Part I.

In 2000, the Texas remanufactured auto engine market changed by the entry of Indiana’s Jasper Engine and Transmissions to the State. Jasper changed the industry here not only by entering as a formidable competitor but in their marketing tact of selling directly to the consumer through the repair shop rather than through a jobber or distribution network. Jasper seized onto the extreme high dollar end of the market with its pricing structure where the Company and others missed out by pricing too low and delivering lower quality.

Economic conditions generally declined the auto market and this took auto engine remanufactures with it. As a result to market belt tightening the Company’s ownership made the strategic error of electing a perceived cash flow remedy of not paying warranty claims for shabby craftsmanship rather than controlling cost in a more efficient manner and preserving customer relationships. The Company has as a result lost 45% of year 2000 top line sales.

The Company’s technology is par with industry in the plant but at least ten years lagging in order processing and information technology. The Company has no network administrator and problems result.

As the market has stabilized during 2003, the Company by recognizing opportunities and grasping a second wind now endeavors to position itself to capture market share in risk balanced market place activities and niches.

Part II. Marketing Strategy Audit

Business Mission:

Although ownership possesses a clear mind of mission in the generic sense, part of the mission gets confused when verbally imparted to the employees. That is to say that no visible written strategic business plan of action or business mission exists. If one does exist it no promotion exists or is made available to employees for empowerment and accountability purposes.

The owner and leadership have indicated their desire to recapture lost accounts and develop new channels and customer niches and are willing to invest the time, energy and dollars to do so. The entire process of this marketing audit has indirectly caused a spur in the thinking of what the Company is doing and why they are doing it. In other words, the ownership and employees have begun to realize that positive change is a good thing and that in order to thrive in a global engine market a firm must be flexible and “roll” with market conditions and demands. Customers will not accept less than superior service and a proper pricing model; they will just take their order to the competition.

Marketing Objectives and Goals:

The marketing objectives and goals are the proverbial “Let’s grow” which is to say that no formal written goals and objectives are recorded or articulated to the team. The general employee temperament is stagnation at keeping their job rather than working and dreaming to excel and actually enjoy coming to work. In other words, employees take care of themselves first and the Company (the President) and Customers next. As such, the only way to plan marketing and measure performance is from the daily profit and loss statement, which only seems to be available to the owner and not managers or staff. The purpose of this audit is to determine the action items needed to formulate a formal marketing policy that the staff may implement.

Strategy:

While the strategy may be clear in the mind of the ownership of the company, there is tremendous vagueness when an employee is asked the question. The ownership is clear in vision albeit not documented so that it may be measured. The company is not using best basis or best practice for market segmentation nor does it have a clear criterion for rating segments and choosing the best ones the company merely sells to the one on the phone or in their face first.

There is no formal marketing resources allocation mix. Monies are provided when the ownership believes the task will be beneficial. Moreover, “the Marketing Budget” exists in the ownership mind but not on a real budget whereas a management team could be charged and then held accountable for results.

Summary Conclusion Part II.

The Company has no formalized mission statement. Disconnection exists between ownership goals and employee execution. Marketing and sales goals are articulated as “Let’s grow.” The ownership has requested this audit to identify problem areas in order to establish and action plan for 2004.

Marketing strategy should be written and shared among the employees for morale, accountability, incentive, quality and brand imaging.

Part III. Marketing Organization Audit

Formal Structure:

Prior to September 2003, there was no concentrated marketing effort for well over a year. Customer satisfaction has not been made a responsibility of Marketing, Sales or Production but rather the ownership handles “heat cases” as they eventually make their way to him. Once these situations arrive at “firefighter headquarters.”

Headquarters consists of a small desk with an outdated obsolete computer networked to a “Novell” system that is so unproductive when one loads any current day program “the whole network is slowed”, according to one employee. The owner either “handles” it right then or “puts them in cue.” Cue means that they go on a wall file for further negotiation.

Most all of the employees believe that customers’ dissatisfaction is so highly enhanced and embellished by this cuing of complaints or untimely resolution that lost customers are the result. A new warranty mechanism must be articulated and implemented. Marketing activities are ad hoc.

Functional Efficiency:

Good communication and working relations between marketing and sales now exists. Since overcoming a rocky beginning in September between this Auditor and certain long time entrenched employees, sales and marketing are in constant communication with each other. In the past, the “sales guy” would just go about his business and there was no communication between him and other staff. Product managers (General Manager) are not able to plan profit or sales volume due to no reporting available.

Interface Efficiency:

There are substantial problems as regards communication and interaction between sales and manufacturing to the extent that the manufacturing manager seems to employ an “us (manufacturing) against them (sales)” philosopy. This individual told the author in October 2003 in an attempted impromptu leadership meeting that “there is nothing that we can do to get better, we are doin’ it as well as it can be done.”

Many employees in the inside have stated that the manufacturing manager has threatened the owner in the past with a total labor walkout if his demands are not accommodated. As a result to this and this employees general attitude, the inside the office leadership resents this individual and that causes apprehension about the working relationship so both sides ignore each other. Lower quality, customer satisfaction and high warranty costs are the resulting victim in the end.

The established détente and dysfunctional operation cause problems to the extent that communication and cooperation is extremely difficult. The auditor believes that this dysfunctional behavior creates and indeterminable hidden cost to the Company in dollars due to diminished quality and morale.

One only needs to review the accompanying photographs on the next page to understand the true room for improvement just by noticing the filthy and non-inspected for safety working conditions. As such the Auditor, while not a certified safety inspector believes that if a regulatory agency like Occupational Safety and Health Administration were to inspect the plant, the Company would incur massive fines. This slip-shod manner in operations carries over into the general image of the Company through the delivery model.

Summary Conclusion Part III.

No concentrated marketing effort has existed for at least the last year. Customer satisfaction is handled on an emergency basis as a rule and the old adage of the squeaky wheel gets the grease. Sales counter personnel are distracted with too many non-revenue producing activities. Sales and marketing are jointly working to expand the “thinking” of personnel in order to deliver a superior product to customers. Warranty cash expended is weighed more heavily than long-term customer effects.

Part IV. Marketing Systems Audit

Marketing Control System:

There is no annual plan objective to track or gauge achievement. The ownership rather than the management periodically reviews product profitability, markets, and channels of distribution. Marketing costs are ad-hoc evaluated with the gut instinct rather than with formality or plan. Again, if such a plan exists it is not shared with leadership since the owner is the leader. This control system achieves the result of stifling growth rather than enhancing it. The Auditor makes recognition of ownership’s desire and new found efforts to step back and allow leaders to germinate a new initiative of team work, accountability and profitability.

New-Product Development:

The company is not well organized to gather, generate or screen new-product ideas? Idea generation comes from spur of the moment conversations held with many interruptions and no execution or very difficult execution consequences. It is operated with loose, shoot from the hip mentality with the ownership dictating his desires since as the employee consensus says, “he knows everything and a lot better than us.” In the past the owner has executed much research. Employees perceive that personal initiative is fruitless, not rewarded and discouraged. The disconnection between facilitating passive aggressive behavior and honest communication cause tension when the owner “is around.” This complaint requires that goals, targets and minimum standards for performance dictate rewards and compensation increases. The old saying of just giving him/her enough rope to hang him/herself would apply here.

The perception of this attitude by employees is two fold. By placing all blame on the owner, employees avoid taking responsibility for any actions or results. Vice versa, the owner by not properly delegating and then holding personnel accountable only ratifies the employee attitude. Adequate and proper market and product testing is to “whatever the market will bear.” In summation, the owner commits the traditional sin, searching for approval from employees rather than pushing them to develop their talents and allowing them to make mistakes to grow.

Summary Conclusion Part IV.

Information is not disseminated to people that need to take responsibility for their daily performance. New-product development does not exist.

Part V. Marketing Productivity Audit

Profitability Analysis:

The company’s profitability of different products, markets, territories and channels of distribution is unknown to the extent that the ownership does not divulge that information to employees. There are no findings pursuant to entry or exit from markets to the extent rendered in the aforementioned statement.

Cost-Effective Analysis:

Marketing activities are standard and in line given the developmental level of the Company.

Summary Conclusion Part V.

Distribute information to trusted team members and enlist team building with true limited authority for a budget to achieve objectives.

Part VI. Marketing Function Audit

Products:

Product-line objectives are to double sales volume to where it was three years ago so overhead costs are contained. It is unknown which product-lines should be expanded or contracted since that information is not made available by ownership.

Buyers’ attitude toward our general product is good until there is a warranty issue. The ownership executes all warranty claims and takes a short-term approach to solving the claim. While the ownership believes most engine issues are caused by mechanic at installation (this action mitigates costs by blaming the customer), once the claim is not handled to the customers’ satisfaction that customer goes away and tells many to do the same. The general quality of the product to its presentation is in drastic need of improvement.

Price:

The company’s pricing objectives are to be price competitive and we are. The ownership constantly reviews and is aware of the market as regards price. Customers that buy believe that we are competitive. Customers that do not buy do so for an array of reasons.

Distribution:

Since inception the distribution objectives have been ad-hoc with not much order place on efficiency or consolidation. Now, that ownership has developed the means to wholesale our product by way of a special d/b/a/ and website dedicated to the parts distributor (jobber), marketing can develop new customers and channels through such.

The company considers expanding its distribution channels to further diversify its channel mix from delivery and pick up.

Advertising, Sales Promotion, Publicity, and Direct Marketing:

The company has no formalized advertising budget, at least not one known by the staff. The company does not employ media except the United States Mail. Ownership has recently chosen to purchase weekly newspaper type advertisement commencing January 2004 convinced that during the Christmas season peoples cars always run and never need motors. The company has a database but does not employ on-line marketing save the website and sporadically (used once or twice according to staff memory) uses coupons.

Sales Force:

What are the sales force objectives? Unknown. Is the sales force large enough to accomplish the company’s objectives? Debatable. The three salesmen at the counter probably exert more effort and activity during the day than any other employees in the company. The direct issue in sales is not effort or activity but direction or lack thereof. The salesmen serve not only as sales people to walk in customers and in bound phone calls but they also serve the Company in a myriad of functions.

The salesmen answer the phones of the company fielding every single in coming call. This is an issue because it is a distraction from sales. In a move to cut costs in recent memory, ownership decided to retire the receptionist. This move was good and bad. When no receptionist answered all the calls, every call then and now arrived straight at the sales counter.

The resulting poor allocation of labor may have decreased payroll costs significantly but the underlying hidden costs of lost sales is not measured or realized. In a word, sales guys need to be on the phone with customers or prospects. This customer service or prospecting time is lost due to the overwhelming distraction of having to jump to answer the phone when it rings.

While the Auditor is not informed of payroll pursuant to sales personnel, it is imagined with certainty that the lost dollars in opportunity costs relative to lost sales overwhelmingly advocates a better system. The sales force is not organized. The sales manager is also the General Manager as well as a salesman. Procedures are not adequate for setting quotas or evaluating performance.

Without any measurement no incentives are paid and employees are unhappy about lower compensation. How does the company sales force compare to competitors’ sales forces? Unknown.

As the means to determining all of these questions, the Auditor tried to review various data compiled by the Company over the past few years. Specifically, we wanted to look to daily, weekly and monthly sales totals and then compare these to their past equivalents. In order to verify the authenticity of the historical data, we wanted to analyze the data to determine who the customers have been and why, what factors yield the best gross margin as well as net income.

We would have reviewed this data within the prior committed time limits but such data is not made available to employees to craft a timely report to management. The most difficult part of the analysis will be gaining access to the data since the computer system is not now maintained and not administered from a networking position. This cost cutting measure could be catastrophic is any one of a number of issues occurs.

Summary Conclusion Part VI.

Overhead costs have been slashed to a minimum. Ownership has indicated a goal of year 2000 sales volume at $5,000,000. Warranty costs must be managed as well as the good will of the customer. Look to quality deficiencies in the manufacturing process to cut the true cost of warranties by implementing zero tolerance for defects. Wear safety glasses in the plant and institute at least minimal safety procedures. Enforce the procedures and allow no one to work outside the law or rules.

The Company should balance advertising and marketing with a consistent message to customers. Formalize the marketing, advertising and sales budget as well as all other operating budgets. Improve the quality of product by improving the quality of workers. Start with the worst performing 10% and replace them with more hungry individuals. Eliminate those with non-cooperative or difficult personalities. Remember the Company has to deal with the public and that means that everyone contributes to sales, image and quality. Focus employees on their primary and secondary jobs and eliminate distractions.

Recommended Marketing Improvements

· Enlist team work among leadership

· Establish budget

· Set monthly sales targets

· Monitor daily the progress

· Allocate marketing dollars to maximum impact media

· Advertise

· Diversify media used in advertising

· Promote customer events that pay for themselves via increased sales

· Establish safety and quality as internal standards of living

· Translate internal safety and quality to the brand and the market

· Establish competitors product and pricing and achieve “best of class” solutions

References

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How to Effectively Promote Your Book Online

Self published novel or ebook? Generate sales with proven online marketing strategies.

If you're looking to market your personally authored book or ebook, learn from the Internet marketing experts. Selling books online is a great way to promote your product and increase sales. Although many marketing methods are available, there are some in particular that have proven to generate above average results for selling books – printed and electronic.

Learn more about each of the following if you're ready to start selling and be sure to seek guidance from those who have already successfully marketed online.

1. Develop a Website or Blog. Thinking that it's not worth developing a website or blog for a single publication? Think again. Today, acquiring a domain name is easier than ever – and it costs less than $ 10. Additionally, you can buy a website or a website template for about $ 75. If you know some very basic HTML, you can develop a website for less than a hundred dollars. Having a website that is only focused on a single publication can work wonders for promoting your product.

Blogs are even easier to create. Already have a website but need a blog? Visit Blogger.com, WordPress.com, or simply type in "free blog" into Google. You'll quickly find a whole host of free blog sites that help you set up a blog in less than five minutes. Once you've created your blog, enter a post about your ebook and provide a link to your store or order form.

If you're looking for a way to process online transactions, visit Paypal.com. For about twelve dollars per month, you can process transactions for those wishing to purchase your book online. There are other online transaction management tools you can use, but Paypal is one of the easiest I've used to set up and accept online transactions.

2. Online Marketing (PPC)

By now you've heard of Google Adwords. Other providers such as Yahoo! And MSN also offer pay-per-click programs. These online marketing programs allow you to promote your book or e-book to a very targeted audience. For example, if your book is about "antique lamp shades", you can purchase the keyword phrase, "antique lamp shades" to display on sites that offer related content. As a result, those seeing your ad can click through to your website or Jump Page.

The best part about pay-per-click advertising is that you only pay when someone clicks on your advertisement. Be careful though, you could end up with a lot of clicks and only a few conversions. Test multiple campaigns and evaluate their effectiveness on a daily basis. Google offers you free tools that can help you evaluate the results of your campaign in greater detail such as Google Analytics.

3. Specific Jump Page / Testimonials (audio and written)

Short of building an entire website or starting a blog, you could simply build a single jump page. A jump page is a promotional page that pitches your product or service. There are tons of successful jump pages out there that you can reproduce with your own content.

The most successful jump pages are those that are easy to read and include testimonials. Testimonials from book reviewers are very influential. To make your jump page even more compelling, offer print and audio testimonials.

4. Samples

One of the most effective marketing strategies on the planet is sampling. You see companies offering samples to invite users to try their products or services. The same can be true for book purchasers. Share a summary, a chapter, or let them peruse your book. Just spend some time on Amazon.com and you'll soon see how promotion and access can play a major role in the purchase decision.

One great technique is to offer a small sample for free. Offer additional access (depending to a full chapter), after users provide you with their name and email address. This allows you to touch prospective buyers via email after they've contacted you, keeping their interest high and continuing to promote your publication.

5. Email marketing

With the 2003 introduction of CAN-SPAM legislation, email marketers must be very careful about who they email and how. Learn CAN-SPAM basics before you begin emailing people. A couple of things to keep in mind from an email marketing perspective is that your own list (of emails collected via your website) will almost always perform better than a purchased list. Think about ways you can collect the names of individuals visiting your website such as offering a free summary or excerpt in exchange for their name and email address.

From a CAN-SPAM perspective, make sure your physical address is included on each email and offer an opt-out. If a recipient requests to be taken off your list, remove him / her within 10 days. You can also use an online service to help manage your email marketing. Online email providers are very careful about conforming to email marketing standards and will lead you through the process step-by-step.

6. Refer a friend

Your current customers can be your best marketers. Once an individual has purchased your book, be sure to give them a reason to refer others. Perhaps you can offer them a special promotion on a different product or otherwise additional content that was not available with their first purchase.

Offering a friends and family coupon is another great way to generate additional sales. Something as simple as a $ 5 off coupon is a great way to promote your product and create buzz. Whatever tactic you use in your email, be sure to encourage customers to refer others.

7. Affiliate program

Are there other websites that attract the audience that would be perfect for your book? If so, contact them via phone or email and see if they'd be willing to sell your publication in exchange for a commission. This is a great way to reach an audience in an affordable way and is considered an affiliate program.

Most of the successful products being sold online today are not being promoted from a single website. Rather, many websites are promoting a given product or service. These sites are often referred to as niche sites as they cater to specific audience or segment. In addition to doing some research on your own, you can also investigate affiliate program sites that you can use to promote your product.

Affiliate sites bring together advertisers and publishers. The publishers provide the content, software, or resources, and the advertisers promote these products in exchange for a sales commission.

Marketing your book or ebook takes time but can have a significant pay-off. Utilize some or all of the marketing methods described above to sell you book online. These methods have been used by some of the most successful internet marketers promoting printing and electronic book products online. Internet marketing does not have to be complicated. Learn from the experts and follow internet marketing strategies like those above which have already proved successful.

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Marketing and How it Applies to Carpet Cleaning

Marketing and how it applies to carpet cleaning is one of the most interesting topics to carpet cleaners. It seems like every time you get some cleaners in a room, they often talk about how to get more jobs, not how to clean a carpet. Good marketing is what carpet cleaning is all about; it’s what gets customers and helps keep them. But the usual marketing terminologies, such as “price, product, place and promotion” (known as the four Ps of marketing), mean very little when not deciphered to apply to carpet cleaning, They are also somewhat outdated. They might still be the original pillars of marketing, but they seem to be evolving.

In the 1990s, Professor Dick Berry of the University of Wisconsin conducted an intensive study of basic marketing principles. What he found was interesting. New marketing strategies Besides the original four Ps of marketing, he added a few more and then ranked them in order of importance. The new mix ranked customer sensitivity as the first and most important part of the new marketing mix, followed by product, customer convenience, service, price, place and – in last place – promotion.

Let’s examine each and see how they apply to carpet cleaning.

Customer sensitivity. Employee attitude, customer treatment and response to customers fall under this category. How does this apply to carpet cleaning companies? A friendly smile the first time and every time you see your customer is the most important marketing principle. It doesn’t cost you a thing. Think about a customer’s reaction if you do the following:

  • Ask permission to park in the customer’s driveway.
  • Ask to use the customer’s water.
  • Ask permission to use the bathroom.
  • Knock on the door instead of ringing the bell (someone could be sleeping).
  • Wear shoe covers when in the house.
  • Pre-vacuum with a commercial vacuum cleaner.
  • Use a door guard when running hoses.
  • Use caution signs when working. Use protectors that don’t over-wet the carpet.

Product. This is the equipment that you use. You have to use the best available and it has to be reliable and have other unique features that your competition will not have. Your cleaning chemicals also fall under this category. What do your chemicals smell like? Will your protector work six months from now?

Customer convenience. Availability to your customer, customer convenience and sales are part of this category. What is the question the customers ask most? “How long will it take to dry?” Drying is probably the biggest part of customer convenience. We need to leave the carpet as dry as we possibly can. Answering your phone when a customer calls is also part of customer convenience. Having a sufficient opening relatively soon on your schedule is another aspect of customer convenience.

Service. Pre-sale service, service during cleaning and post-sale service are part of this marketing strategy. Your pre-sale service is where it all starts, and is best with an “out-of-this-world” portfolio to show your customers. That usually makes the sale. Your portfolio should consist of your accreditations, testimonials from your customers, guarantees and before-and-after pictures of your work.

Price. Price charges, pricing terms, pricing offers and methods of payment come under this category. Honest and reasonable pricing is what the customer expects.

Place. Place is the area you service, your facility (your van), and your availability to customers.

Promotion. Advertising, publicity and selling fall into this category. Contrary to what most people believe, promotion is marketing.

Berry’s study ranked promotion last.

If you can’t smile when you greet customers, then don’t even bother with the promotion part.

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