Newsletter - 2011 01

January 2011

Business Success

Brought to You By BMA Marketing

BMA Marketing

Chris Swanson

Ray Tuttle


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How to Know When It's Time to Start Hiring

When is it time to stop flying solo and bring in some help? Hire too soon and your business may not be able to support the costs involved. Wait too long and you may lose out on business opportunities.

Following are some indicators that it may be time to get assistance:

  • You never have enough time to think big about your business.
  • You miss out on an important call, bid or sale.
  • You fail to ship an order or attend a key meeting because you're overwhelmed.
  • You have a nagging sense that you are losing control of the business.

The kind of human capital you add depends on whether you want to grow organically or diversify and expand into new areas. If you opt for the steady course, you might just want someone to relieve you of routine tasks, such as bookkeeping, filing or answering phones. Growing into new areas, however, may involve finding someone who has specialized expertise or who complements your knowledge and abilities.

Think about the jobs you plan to delegate so you can give your new employee a clear idea of your expectations. Also make sure you have a plan for handling the additional expense. The cost of adding an employee takes a big bite, including compensation, benefits, taxes, training, equipment and support.

Experts advise squirreling away at least a year's worth of expenses and overhead before hiring.


Should You Consider Writing a Book?

Quick Quiz

Each month I’ll give you a new question.

Just reply to this email for the answer.

Where are the gardens once owned by Claude Monet and made famous by the impressionist's Water Lilies paintings?

Why Not Pass Me On?

If you've enjoyed this newsletter and found its information useful, please pass it to another businsses owner or a co-worker.

Worth Reading

Selections from the best articles seen online this month.


Ten Tips for Giving an Important Speech from

Despite the old adage that "less is more," many public speakers still manage to bore their audiences into a coma. Alyssa Danigelis offers 10 practical tips focused on delivery, overcoming stage fright and jitters, connecting with the audience, sharing the stage gracefully with others, and engaging the audience so that they stay with you throughout your time on the podium. Be passionate, she says. Tell stories that have meaning for audience members as well as for you. Choose your moments to inspire and know when to say no.

Charitable Dollars Are Marketing Dollars

from Drew's Marketing Minute Blog

Every business has a responsibility to give back to the community that supports it and helps it prosper. But there's nothing wrong with benefiting from the good you do. In fact, according to Drew McLellan, "every charitable dollar you spend is actually a marketing dollar."

10 Tips for Making Employees Love Their Office


This article points to physical, psychological and social factors that boost employee morale, productivity and attachment to a company. Basic office amenities and policies have a huge impact on workers' abilities to do their jobs. A comfortable, organized, well-laid-out environment is important, and good design can transform an office into a more productive workspace.

Writing a book can be a great way to promote your business. It's a great way to help you get your name, ideas and expertise out to the world. It attracts new people to your business and can help open up new markets.

If you are passionate about your business, your service model, or your industry, a book provides a platform to tell your story.

Being a published author elevates you to the status of an acknowledged authority; it opens doors to workshop opportunities, paid speaking engagements and other income streams.

You can generate income by selling your book, either online or in bookstores, and by creating spin-off products related to the book.

Writing a book is not all that difficult.

There are plenty of courses and online tips to help you get started.

You can draw on your expertise as an entrepreneur or businessperson, your notes from seminars and training programs, or articles you have written.

If necessary, you can hire a freelancer to help you write or edit your book.

Self-publishing is a smart choice for first-time writers.

It's relatively low-cost and quick, and it allows you to maintain control over the publishing process.

If you self-publish independently, you will make a higher profit and possibly increase your chances of getting a deal with a traditional publisher later on.

Some printing firms will print very short runs of 25 to 500 copies for just a few hundred dollars.


Why Some Businesses Are Letting Google Manage Their IT

Google logo


Changing the Channel, by Masterson and Tribby

The number of ways a business can reach its potential clients has exploded over the past few years.

No longer is it enough to just market via print advertisements or TV - now there's the Internet with its own multiple ways of reaching your clients.

This book, by Michael Masterson and Maryellen Tribby, explains that businesses need to exploit multiple channels in order to market themselves effectively. But that doesn't mean you need multiple campaigns. As the book says, one campaign can be used in multiple ways, working in harmony across multiple media.

Among the channels mentioned are Internet marketing, direct mail, telesales, radio, events, joint ventures and public relations.

All those channels, according to the authors, should be exploited using direct-response marketing - asking consumers to take action immediately.

The book provides a thorough guide to doing so effectively.

If you're running a small or medium-sized enterprise (SME), it might be worth checking out Google Apps. Google Apps is a hosted, web-based work and collaboration solution that offers a variety of useful, reliable, secure messaging and collaboration tools for SMEs and other businesses.

Google Apps is an example of the type of technology referred to as software-as-a-service (SaaS) or cloud computing. The SaaS model allows users to access information technology (IT) applications from the Internet without having to maintain the infrastructure to support them.

In essence, you offload the cost and the effort required to maintain an IT infrastructure to the SaaS provider. With Google Apps, your data and the applications necessary to access and manipulate the data are served from secure, reliable data centers maintained by Google.

The Google Apps Standard Edition is free and includes basic messaging tools such as Google Docs, Google Calendar and Gmail for up to 50 people. The Premier Edition costs $50 per year per user and includes additional business functions and features, controls support, and a reliability guarantee.

Google's web-based messaging and collaboration apps require no hardware or software and need minimal administration. Since Google Apps is web-based, users can access it from anywhere using a PC or mobile device.

Other key features of Google Apps (Premier Edition) include:

  • Applications for documents, spreadsheets, presentations, sites and video.
  • 25 gigabytes of email storage per user.
  • 99.9% uptime reliability guarantee and 24/7 customer support.
  • Real-time document editing.
  • Custom inbound and outbound mail filtering tools.


Prepare Now and Save Money at Tax Time

Efficiently organizing the information needed to prepare your income tax return is more than just a courtesy to your accountant.

Better organization permits your accountant to prepare the tax return faster and minimizes your cost.

More important, anyone involved in preparing your tax return is required by law to understand information you supply about income and deductions.

Rules of the Internal Revenue Service require tax professionals to conduct reasonable inquiries into taxpayer information to assure that income is not understated.

Categorize Deductions

Your accountant has to spend time clarifying details when your tax deductions are not organized.

Tax deductions should be partitioned among the associated income-producing activities.

In addition, provide totals for each category of tax-deductible expense. Don't simply list expenses chronologically.

List expenses for a rental property with the rent received.

Be sure to list each property separately. Don't combine landlord expenses for all properties.

Know What to Provide

Your accountant can help you determine which incurred costs are tax-deductible.

A tax organizer is available each year that shows you the different types of income and associated expenses from your prior year tax return.

Give particular attention to detail about various deductions.

For example, do you have a business home office? If so, you provide your home utilities. This includes only costs to maintain normal use of the home - which is heating and cooling the house, not home telephone and cable television.

Mortgage interest is reported by your lender on Form 1098, so provide that form to your accountant.

Property taxes are an income tax deduction in the year they are paid, not the year assessed. If you paid a 2010 property tax assessment in January of 2011, it's not deductible until you prepare the 2011 tax return another year from now.

If you started a new business in 2010, list the income along with the ordinary and necessary expenses you incurred.

If you purchased or sold a rental property, provide the settlement statement from the closing. Then list the rental income you received and categorize expenses you paid.

If you received money for any reason that was not a gift, it is probably taxable income. List the amount and the nature of the income.

Provide every Form 1099 you receive.

Don't Perform Calculations

Don't attempt to perform calculations for your tax return.

For example, if your business has a home office, just provide the total square feet for your home and for your office space. Then list your housing expenses for utilities, repairs, insurance, maintenance, homeowner association dues and other expenses of maintaining your home.


Quotes by...Bob Parsons

"I now know that I learn by solving problems as they arise. Rarely do we learn significant lessons, or significantly improve, any other way."

"When I hear bad news I look at it as another leadership test that will determine how successful Go Daddy will become. So I no longer dread it. Instead, I enjoy the game of finding the very best way to deal with it, and take great satisfaction in having a hand in resolving the issues that come my way."

Bob Parsons founded Go Daddy.