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How To Jump Start ANY Business By Robert Vilardi

Typically it is said that when you open up a new venture, it takes fro 2 to 5 years of steady growth before you can call it a success. All things considered, this is true and because it is true, it is all the more important to do everything correctly, right from the start! So here are 7 guidelines on engagement for every business entrepreneur.


It is a different world out there and worldwide access can increase your sales dramatically. Its just like fishing. If you are on a lake with 100 fishermen and only 10 fish in the lake, odds are slim you are going to get anything unless you have the perfect spot and the perfect bait. However, if you are on the same lake with the same number of fishermen and there are 10,000 fish. The odds are you will have a great day out on the water. Thats exactly what a web presence does for you. It allows more fish to check out your bait! OK, enough with the fish! Getting hits on your site is another topic.


One thing about building a web site, they all start at the bottom. Where they go from there is a matter of money, tenacity and hard work. If you have the funds you can do pay-per-click. A good place to start is http://www.kanoodle.com/return.cool?query=pay+per+click.

Other than that, if you want to manage your own site, the right keywords, manual site submission and tweaking will become a way of life. Getting the know-how will also become a way of life. There are a lot of e-zines available to help you out. One of my favorites is http://www.merlesworld.com/newsletter.htm.


Naturally word of mouth is by far the best and eventually, no matter how big your audience, the truth about your company will spread far and wide. In the mean time, if you are doing business locally, business cards, fliers, mailers and door hangers are very effective parts of your marketing arsenal. Especially if you are in a localized business such as the Real Estate or Mortgage Business. As a rule of thumb, for every 100 you send or give out, a 2 % return is considered standard. None of these techniques by them selves are worth very much nor will they bring you a stream of business. But used in tandem and with consistency, the business will continue to build. You should also keep in mind that some of these applications work better for certain business then they do for others but generally speaking; you can judge your effectiveness by the 2% rule benchmark.

a. Business Cards:

One should make it a personal habit to hand out a minimum of 20 business cards per day. It doesnt matter if you gave them one the last time you visited. When you send out your monthly bills both personal and business, drop a card in the envelope. When you eat out at a restaurant, leave a good tip and a card for the server. If you hand out 100 in a day, you can consider yourself done for the week. Good steady habits will help you win in the end!

b. Fliers:

We have all seen them on telephone poles, car windows and trees. They have their place depending on your type of business. They are mildly effective and very business specific for example, home based, weight loss, etc.

c. Mailers:

If your budget allows, mailers can reach a larger area and you have the ability to pinpoint your target audience by zip code, income level, recent car buyers, recent mortgages, new home owners, etc. I have tried different types of mailers including form letters, postcards, special delivery looking letters and even tube type mailers. Unless you target a very specific need such as wheel chair sales to wheel chair users, 2% is the rule.

d. Door Hanger:

Pizza places all over the U.S. do it everyday. They wouldnt be doing them week after week if it did not work. I found this to be an effective tool for almost any localized business.

e. Local Throw Away Paper:

Every town has them and they are typically very affordable for reaching thousands of people. You can choose which zip codes you would like your ad to appear in. Different zip codes typically have different income levels so the response you may get from one zip code may be totally different in another. You will have to play around with a few before you find out which one clicks. A good way to reach perspective prospects but like fliers and door hangers, they are usually work better for some business than others.


P.T. Barnum once said 50% of all my advertising is useless, if only I could figure out which 50%. The next section is on toll-free numbers but I found a great use for them other than voicemail. Whenever I run a marketing campaign every piece of advertising I use has a different extension number. By simply putting my 800 number along with a different extension number, I can track which ads are effective and pulling in leads. I have used various 800 services, the best for this purpose is by far FreedomVoiceMail at www.freedomvoicemail.com


I recommend a voice mail service for any business that is serious about becoming a success. Why spend all your time advertising and planning only to miss the call when it comes in. If you do not answer, someone else will reap the benefit of all your hard spent marketing time and advertising money. When you have an 800 or Toll-Free voicemail number, you will never miss a call and the general public is more likely to perceive you as a legitimate company. The least expensive way I have come across is a service called Freedom Voice Mail, www.freedomvoicemail.com. They have different systems available on a monthly basis and there are no long term contracts. Each system includes your own unique toll-free number. If you already have you, you can transfer it to their system or you can get yourself a vanity number such as, 1 800 buy this.


Sending out a Press Release to various newspapers in the areas you do business in can be a big fast boost to your company! The key to writing a press release is to keep it short and to the point while adding enough pertinent information where the newspaper can re-print snippets of your information. Almost every word program available today has a template press release included in their programs. Still feel a little shaky; there is a lot of information available on the net. Type in writing press releases and you will be in press release heaven.


Submitting articles on line are probably the best things you can do to increase your rankings in the search engines and give your business authenticity. There are plenty of submission sites available. Go to any search engine and type in article submission being specific to your field such as real estate article submission.

About The Author

Robert Vilardi former VP for Specialty Rest., in charge of 27 operations, has sold and taught catering marketing with annual sales in excess of $125 million. Robert holds a Florida Realtors License, teaches Ethics for the Pasco Board of Realtors and is the Vice Chairman of their education committee. An active Mortgage Broker, he writes the Sunday Article for the Florida Saint Petersburg Times Real Estate and Mortgage section. His Mortgage Website www.rjvilardi.com is considered by many to be the most informative mortgage web site available on the Internet today. Mr. Vilardi can be reached at rjv@rjvilardi.com.

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