5 Small Business Trends to Follow in 2012

There are 5 small business trends to follow in 2012 that broaden the horizons of small business:

. Specialization
. Media Saturation to promote business
. Impenetrable client base through social media contact
. Creating dedicated business phases for better product or service branding
. Interactive Network Marketing

Specialization

One trend small businesses can use to strengthen their image and client base is specialization. The opportunity to specialize products and services has the greatest potential for embedding small businesses into commercial arenas. Specializing products and services refers to emphasizing a unique business presentation. There is always a way to present goods and services as a more unique offering. Create a need for common goods and services in a unique offering customers feel compelled to buy. Focus on less obvious assets such as durability, quality or value that make the offering special.

Media Saturation To Promote Business

One very important trend small businesses should follow in 2012, is discovering the value of media saturation. When dealing with advertising and promotion in the media, cohesive and consistent sales and marketing campaigns result in higher levels of media saturation. Take ownership of business promotion style in sales and marketing so it becomes a recognizable branding for products or services.

Impenetrable Client Base Through Social Media Contact

In order to create an impenetrable client base, an organized, efficient plan for social media is a trend worth exploring. Adopt a specific style of customer service that stands above competitors for market share. Network social media with article marketing, business blogs and websites to strengthen customer knowledge of products or services. Knowledgeable customers are loyal customers.

Creating Dedicated Business Phases

Create dedicated business phases. This simply means that a business organizes each fiscal year into four phases of business operation. By adhering to a distinct separation between business phases, this introduces greater opportunities to advance product or service branding. Create four phases beginning with research, development and planning for the first phase. Focusing on this as a first phase allows new ideas for sales and marketing to emerge. Phase two should focus on implementation of planning from Phase one. Phase three is the most pro-active in terms of branding products or services because it reveals which target markets are strongest and which require more vigilance. Phase four is a wrap-up phase of business where an annual audit of impacts, results and achievements should be evaluated.

Interactive Network Market

Building interactive small business networks is a trend to consider for 2012. By networking small businesses within interactive industry and commerce associations, shared business community efforts maximize the return on investment. Look to local businesses as well as contacts in social media and the internet for viable networking.

How Important Is a Business Broker to Buyers and Sellers?

Establishments and companies change ownership at some point. As such, the services of business brokers prove to be highly valuable for both the seller and the buyer. An aspiring entrepreneur needs to evaluate a target business establishment, and this is where a professional business broker can offer valuable assistance. The seller also will find it rewarding to seek the assistance of a business for sale broker for the advertising and the negotiation facilitation with prospect buyers.

Benefits of Hiring Business Brokers

Selling a business can be a demanding and tiresome process. This can take up a lot of time and can even affect the value of the business, as you spend more time on its sale process rather than on the daily operations of the business. This is where the services of business brokers come in handy.

First off, a professional broker can give you confidentiality, and can assure you that only the prospective buyers you approve will be contacted. A trustworthy and experienced broker can save you time in screening prospective buyers in advance. Brokers can already check if a prospect buyer has good financial resources to buy your business. They will also ask buyers to sign a confidentiality and non-disclosure contracts. If you attempt to sell your business openly or independently, you would most likely damage your staff’s morale. You would also give your competitors the opportunity to spread damaging rumors about you and steal your valued customers. When you hire a business for sale broker, he can work anonymously, ensuring the protection of your business.

Moreover, selling your business all by yourself can be inefficient, especially if you lack the experience. A business broker generally has more experience, resources, and tools to effectively reach potential buyers faster and easier. However, reaching target buyers is just one part of a broker’s job; getting the best price for your business is his other important job. A professional broker should have the capacity to advertise your company in such a way that it can attract serious and financially stable buyers. This would definitely increase your benefits and advantages in selling your business.

Finally, business brokers can name the value of your business. This process involves more than just revenue or profit, thus, you may undervalue or overvalue your company, and these mistakes bear indicative consequences. For an experienced business broker, there is a rare chance to commit such mistakes.

From a business buyer’s perspective, a business for sale broker brings a lot of advantages as well. If you are a buyer and asked the assistance of a broker, you will be able to have access to opportunities that you won’t likely find on your own. If you do not have enough knowledge regarding the industry you chose, you can get helpful advice and useful insights from a good business broker. Your broker can also facilitate other essential tasks such as researching recent market conditions, current prices, and reasonable financing.

Trusting only Certified Business Brokers

With the increasing number of sale brokers out there, you may face challenges identifying which ones are trustworthy and which ones are bogus. To resolve this dilemma, all you need to do is check their certifications and experiences. The main organization that provides business broker certification opportunities is the International Association of Business Brokers (IBBA). A certified business broker should have at least one of these designations:

– Accredited in Business Valuation (ABV)

– Certified Business Appraiser (CBA)

– Accredited Senior Appraiser in Business Valuation (ASA-BV)

– Certified Valuation Analyst (CVA)

Although a certification may be a good sign that a business broker is legitimate and trustworthy, it does not fully guarantee his competence in the field. The broker’s practical experience is also an important aspect to consider in choosing which one to trust. Do some research or ask around for the number of transactions that your prospect broker has successfully closed, as well as some positive feedback regarding his experience in the industry. An insightful business broker can benefit a lot from his or her experiences, such as building significant relationships within the industry and learning from past mistakes. Certification cannot match such benefits and advantages.

While certification is a vital requirement in establishing a broker’s credibility, you should always take into account the experience of a business for sale broker before making a decision. Choose one who has the knowledge and experience that you will not get anywhere else. Don’t you agree that the role and importance of business brokers is essential to both business sellers and buyers?

Using Business Service Management to Succeed in a Tough Economy

Whether the economy is booming or facing a crunch, one factor plays a critical role in business: IT. In today’s business environment, almost all business activities are tied with the IT department. However, most of the departmental heads have no idea of the impact of complex technology on their respective business processes. Many a times, department heads have no means of identifying and preventing bottlenecks within applications so that end users are not affected. In today’s tough economy, Business Service Management can come to the rescue of many IT managers as well as departmental heads to ensure a smooth running of business processes.

The importance of knowing end to end performance is not only applicable for large enterprises, but smaller entities too. In fact, monitoring end to end performance of applications is more important for small businesses, considering that they function on a very tight margin. In order to stay on top of any performance issue and to effectively solve it, business owners need application monitoring tools through which they can monitor whether their business services are functioning properly. Such application monitoring would also inform them of any bottlenecks in advance and prevent any large scale impact on end users. Business Service Management enables both the teams to do just that.

Business Service Management solutions help bridge the gap between the departmental heads and the IT team. When a BSM solution is put to work, the business department can work in coordination with the IT department to ensure that all the services are available and any potential problems may be solved before they start affecting end users. BSM helps in detection of IT issues, tracing their root problem and solving them quickly.

With Business Service Management,

o Issues related to business-critical applications can be dealt with proactively
o Departmental heads can start prioritizing tasks according to their importance
o Information can be presented according to the role of the person concerned
o IT Service Management is easier to put into practice

Businesses hence need to consider Business Service Management as a necessary component in order to know the end to end performance of all their critical applications. However, businesses are sometimes forced to choose between two extreme BSM solutions: one which is inexpensive but lacks functionality, and another, which is expensive and needs a lot of manpower to support it.

An ideal Business Service Management would be one which is integrated, affordable and easy to use. A business should not have to make a compromise in quality due to the cost of the BSM solution. An ideal solution would allow end to end performance monitoring as well as management Service Level Agreement. It would also not require any manpower to manage it.

Until sometime ago, only larger APM vendors used to offer BSM solutions; even then, these solutions were expensive and complicated. But now, with the popularity of Business Service Management, other vendors have started offering affordable and easy to use solutions which can be applied in small businesses as well.

The increased dependency on IT for business critical functions has made Business Service Management as well as IT Service Management a must for any business. Both IT managers and departmental heads can work together to ensure that business services are available to end users without a problem.