Warning: You can’t build your business without real relationships

Building relationship

It’s not often that I come across people in business who have no idea about building relationships. I suppose when you start out you go through a bit of a spamming stage of wanting to shout out to the world of what you do but this subsides quickly once you have to really get down to business. Warning: You can’t build your business without real relationships. You need to network and be interested in people not just pretend to be interested but really be interested.  Here are my top tips for building relationships.

If I haven’t meet you or conversed with you online don’t inbox me your sale pitch

Huge mistake, big mistake and a rookie mistake. Don’t inbox me or ring me talking all about yourself and flogging your wares to me. I don’t know you and I don’t care what it is that is going to change my life or my business I have no relationship with you. When you don’t care about me and you only want my money. Bing Bong you are gone.

You need to be authentic

If I am really your target market and you want a relationship with me. Care about me. Actually be real and not a fake, fair weather relationship. At Mumpreneurs WA we have built real relationships with each other, we care and we support each other. It’s meaningful. I don’t get spammed and love to share at any stage businesses of our Mumpreneurs when ever I can help them and I know they do the same for me. Why? I know they care about me and I care about them as people and I care about the friendships. It’s not rocket science and it’s really that simple.

Get out and start networking

It’s like snail mail you just can’t beat it. The same with real, face to face networking. You need it. You can’t network all the time and be everywhere as you won’t get any work done. But it’s vital you do network with your target market. There are many great networking and business groups. My favourites of are Mumpreneurs WA (lol of course and you can network with your kids), District 32 is insanely good value for all the events and business support you get and Joondalup Women in Business where you get invaluable business education.  Not only do get to build the relationships with other business women but you can form great alliances with other businesses.

Business relationship building can take some time. I am not a shy or reserved person and I found it hard when I first started business networking. The groups I am involved with are so friendly and warm it’s hard not to keep going back for more.  This is all a part of building your brand and your business.

What are your favourite business networking groups?

Cheers Julie xx

How to run your business without selling a kidney

How to run your business without selling a kidney

Business is hard. There is so much too do it can be quite overwhelming. Yes you can outsource but in the beginning money is tight and you could easily sell a kidney, get into debt and blow the budget with your new business. Here’s my top tips on How to run your business without selling a kidney.

Time management with scheduling

There are great website that can schedule all your posts for your Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and social media. If you are time poor, you can sit down on a Friday night or a Sunday afternoon watching a movie or drinking a glass of wine and schedule your posts for the month. My favourite is Bufferapp and on Facebook you can schedule on your business page with the drop down triangle when you go to publish. If you have run out of ideas follow Andy K Business Mentor and Inspirational Speaker she has loads of great idea’s of what to schedule for the month.

Use Freebie website

Customer Relation Management can be expensive. When you are first starting out use the freebies sites like Waveapp, Agilecrm or go old school and use a spreadsheet. These are all free (and more great advice from Andy K). One of the best tips I got from Suze Trappit from Cherish Cherub Babysitting told me to until your business is groaning and you have to up grade from free or outsource do it then not before. Suze was a one woman show for a while doing everything and now has 3 employees and over 100 babysitters.

Follow what you need through Facebook or email lists.

If you need a professional photographer for business shots follow a photographer you like. Vibrance Studio or ShaBo Studio photographers offers great deals at times to get the professional shots you need at affordable prices. If you follow them or subscribe to their email list you will get a good deal when they come up and they are fabulous photographers.

Follow the people you love and take up their great offers.  The best business coaches or entrepreneurs online can give you heaps of tips online. Two of my favourites are Janine Davison from Exposure Coach and Sarah Cordiner from Main Training. These ladies are legends.  They are a must follow if you are in business.

Learn how to do it yourself

This is a hard one and the most painful part of running a small business. You have to learn how to do it yourself. I built websites through WordPress, created my own graphic on Canva, learnt Vector images and more. It’s a never ending story as they say. Sometime you just have to take the time do the god damn tutorials which there are thousands of freebies on Youtube to help you. It always makes me groan when I have to start learning something new but I do feel great when accomplishing it.

“Business is easy” said no one ever. It has the ups and the downs but you don’t need to sell your kidney to run your business. There are loads of great freebies to use when you are a micro business or in the start up phases.  When business is booming you can up grade but until then there is heaps of great resources online.

Have a fabulous Business Day today and if you know someone who needs to read this. Please share with the buttons below and tag them. Thanks.

Julie xx

Top 7 mistakes from my first year of Business

top 7 mistakes from my first year of business

What a year.  I first ventured into business February last year.  I have been in business a little over a year.  I have stressed heaps, I have learnt heaps and I have not made a lot of money.  Whoa!!!  You say, you have not made a lot of money!  What are you doing wrong you ask?  You must be terrible at business.  Ha ha this may be true, I’m certainly no Richard Branson yet but I am determined and I am still learning and going to get there.  I am not ready to give up.

“You can only go forward by making mistakes” Alexander McQueen

Here are my top 7 mistakes from my first year in business.

Not having the right Business Model

Now this seems like a no brainer.  If you have never been in business before and you are like me I had no idea about business models, what they were and how they operated, how do you know which ones are good.  I had heard of them but because I started with a MLM company I didn’t even think about business models.  I liked the product so I went in with all gun’s blazing to tell everyone about it. This is not a business model.  Being an excited maniac about something good you found doesn’t make the foundations for a successful business.  You need to find a good business model that works for you.  There are many different business considerations when looking at starting business are you going to be a company, sole traders,  MLM, direct sales, partner, franchise etc.  What is the business model you are going with run with? 

Over the past year I have been running around all over town trying to learn and do business. This is hard work.  If you are thinking about going into business, look at the business model that you are going to use so you are clear, focused, can maximise your income and your time.  Most of all have a business model to work with.  I would highly recommend meeting with Business Station which is a free government funded organisation that can give you advice. Or here is a list of all the organisations that you can help you with your business or getting your business off the ground.

Not having a Business Plan and Business Budget

It doesn’t matter what business you are going to do you need a business plan. Before you sign on the dotted line, before you buy your stock, before you start making those dresses or necklaces. Get yourself a business plan and fill it in. It doesn’t need to be a huge document.  You can get a good easy business plan here to fill in. It gives you focus, it allows you to flesh out what your business will be about.  I didn’t have any business plan or business budget until I was about 7 months into my business.  I had lots of to do list and I been logging my sales but I didn’t have any business plans or budgets.  I wish I had started with a business plan before I started anything. 

Secondly,  you need to have an understanding of your business budget. Many people over spend on their businesses when they first start.  I was so excited I ran around Officeworks buying stuff and stationary I didn’t really need, it looked lovely and I got to play with my new “stuff”.  This is mild spending compared to some who buy new cars and phones. Ha ha I still have a shocking phone as many of you know. Really look at your budget. How much will it cost you to run your business?  Have you got the market for it?  Not all business ideas are financially viable.  The idea might be great but it might be a lot of paper work for not much profit and is it really worth being in business with that idea. Be realistic. Get your Business Budget Planner here. 

Facebook Trap

Firstly, we all do it and we all know it, we spend to much time on Facebook. Some days you can get on Facebook and it’s the biggest time gobbler for you. We all know this.  Have I got any advice on this one…..mmmm no not really you can try and only go on twice a day, at the beginning of the working day and at the end. I don’t do that but it sounds like a good idea.

I think my biggest mistake on Facebook when starting in business was dumping my “advertisements” in Facebook groups then running off and dumping another “ad” in another group.  Facebook is people orientated.  It’s like running up to people at an event are shoving your flyers in people faces without even getting to know them.  If you are in a group and you are dumping in the group and not genuinely interacting with the people in the group, let me give you the heads up they don’t care at all for your advertisements and they won’t buy off you.  It’s really a waste of time.  If you do post around in groups at the very least put a “Hi (name the group) and something personal with your ad’s.  The best advice for Facebook Etiquette comes from one of Perth Etiquette guru’s Sharon Attwood from Brand Etiquette. If you get a change to see Sharon talk or attend any of her workshops she is great and knows her stuff on branding and etiquette.

Impatient

“Rome wasn’t built in a day” I wish it had been as it would make it so much easier.  I want it all and I want it now.  When I first started I was starting with no business experience and I had no professional development in it.  I had to start slowly as I didn’t have much time with small children. I had to juggle all the balls and I had to learn a lot (and still do).  You hear stories of overnight success but true overnight successes are rare.  Most overnight success stories might be people on their third business, they might have been working at it for a few years and juggling a full time job until it becomes a viable and successful business.  Business takes time and so does all the professional development courses that you need to do. 

Running around with my head cut off

The old say of work ‘on’ your business not ‘in’ it is so true. This one is a hard one and I only now feel like getting my head around it.  It’s so easy to get caught up making pretty things for your business on Vistaprint. I can spend hours pottering along making flyers and business cards, I can spend hours making my website look good (sometimes you will need to do this if you have no budget like myself), I can spend hours making up special spreadsheets,  I can spend hours pretending to work but really checking Facebook or making stunning Canva posts.  These are all fun to do but these things don’t make money. Yes these are important and you do need to do these. If you are pumped for time, do these in front of the TV at night. When you have your business time during the day, make those hours worthwhile and use them for follow up, lead generation, servicing your clients and finding more clients.  I have spent way to much time on the fun no business generating jobs.

Business does not appear out of nowhere

Just because you have a great product doesn’t mean your customers are going to appear out of thin air.  Doing Facebook alone is not going to grow your business.  You have to get out there and find your customers.  There are many opportunities to network,  be a part business groups, work at co-working spaces and get your business out there.  (Phew at this point I am just going to pop over and check my Facebook for a break). 

Being a Magpie and getting distracted by Shiny things

Back to business after my Facebook check and I also made a pretty picture post for this blog.  As I was saying I am a bit of magpie and can get easily distracted by shiny things.  I suppose this is related to running around with my heads cut off paragraph but it’s a little different. I have started two business ventures in the last year and now I am gearing up to do a third (this doesn’t count all the other side projects I have going on). Firstly, my Nucerity business which got me into doing businesses I am putting the back burner for now.   Secondly, Mumpreneurs WA will continue as a community organisation and a hobby business rather than developing that as a money making business model. Although I will still be taking donations at networking events and you are always welcome to buy me a bottle of wine on the side bar for running it.  This makes me feel like I am running after shiny things but I have been told that I am not looking for new shiny things as finding my feet in business and getting on to the right business model for me. Which is lucky because I would hate to feel like I was starting all the way at the beginning again. 

Now my big news,  low and behold I am starting a new business. I am going to continue with skin care but will move into offering beautiful facials for women and mum’s with my Beautiful Skin Solutions page.  Even though I have adjusted and now re-adjusting my business I feel the last year has given me so much and served me with great skills to pick up and give it another crack.  If you are looking for a gorgeous 30 minute facial I am your lady with the magic hands.   Taking bookings now. Go on treat yourself – 0400 716 532

In conclusion – “She who leaps towards the sky may fall, it’s true. But she may also fly”. I truly believe that I will fly.  I am stilling leaping and falling at the moment and quite honestly sometimes the falls are hard and I cry. I always get up, try again, move direction and keep going.  Sometimes you need to stop what you are doing and take a different path and that’s ok to change.  I feel I am turning a corner and taking a different path I hope this is the right one, if it’s not I will turn again until I find it. 

What are your big mistakes when you started off in business? I would love to know. 

Julie Signature

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Natalie Bradley Executive Regional Vice President

This week I am thrilled to introduce Natalie Bradley Executive Regional Vice President for Arbonne.  I first meet Natalie a few month ago at the Sunset Business Networking coffee morning.  Natalie has been with Arbonne for 3 years and 8 months.  It’s always great to meet business women who have grown an amazing business to the point where their husbands can retire. I mean WOW who wouldn’t like that and doing a job that doesn’t feel like work. Double bonus.  So I am pleased introduce the lovely Natalie for our Women in Business series today.

Natalie Bradley - arbonne - Mumpreneurs WAI  am a mum of 3 beautiful children Summer 11, India 9 and Ashton 4 and have been married to the love of my life Warren for 13 years, they are my world! We emigrated to Perth Australia 6 years ago from the UK where I was born and bred. I am a qualified nanny and have a science Diploma and worked the last 8 years before emigrating for Estee Lauder companies onboard P&O Ferries. After moving over with no friends or family or support and working in a job that made me very miserable I decided while on maternity leave to jump into the business of the 21st Century and start my own network marketing business where I could work from home around my family. Two months in I was able to sack my boss and 12 months in my hubby was able to fulfill his dream of being a stay at home dad and I love empowering others to be able to do the same and fulfill their dreams.

Tell us about your business.

Arbonne is a Vegan, botanically based, gluten free, cruelty free skincare, cosmetic, health and wellness company. Target market is everyone with skin and hair who are looking for healthier, safer and pure products that give them a beneficial result.

Please tell us what being a business owner means to you and why you became an business owner in the first place?

Being a business owner is the most empowering feeling that I never thought possible! I thought this just happens to other people and not normal everyday mums like me. I became a business owner because I was ‘over’ a boss dictating to me when and if I could have time off to spend time watching my childrens assembly’s and faction carnivals and I wanted to spend as much time as possible watching my last baby grow up. I’ve always wished to generate an income where I could give back to others and really make a difference to my families life and I was never going to achieve that working for someone else.

What would you say is your greatest professional accomplishment to date?
 My greatest professional accomplishment to date would definitely be creating a will-able business for my family and building a legacy for my children to be passed down for generations to come and then reaching Regional Vice President which meant my hubby could also sack his boss.
Natalie Bradley - arbonne - Mumpreneurs WA
Natalie Bradley - arbonne - Mumpreneurs WA

What’s the best advice you have received in business that you wish to pass on to our readers?

The best advice that I have received in business is that, you will never be able to pay your bills with other peoples opinions.

What has been the most effective marketing initiatives or programs you have used to promote your business?

The activity I have found best to promote my business has been attending networking events and meeting new people and connecting with them.

If you were to write a book, what would the title be and why?
The title of my book would be… Believe…. for me its all about your belief, you have to believe in your product and most importantly believe in yourself that you have the power to create what ever life it is that you desire. You are smarter then you think you are and you are stronger then you think you are all you need to do is believe.

Are there any resources or tools you’d like to share with other small business owners that have helped you run your business?
I’ve recently discovered hard hat bookeeping app which has helped me out big time! Saves me hours of time from wading through receipts and invoices.
https://hardhatbookkeeper.com.au/

What can we look forward to in the next year?
In this next year I hope to inspire and empower and coach many more women to create the life that they desire and give them more choices.

Natalie Bradley - arbonne - Mumpreneurs WA

What do you do for fun/relaxation?
For fun and relaxation there is nothing better then spending time and days out with my beautiful family and spending time with friends.

Natalie Bradley - arbonne - Mumpreneurs WA
Natalie Bradley - arbonne - Mumpreneurs WA
If you weren’t in the business you are in, what would you be be doing?
If I didn’t have my Arbonne business I dread to think what I would be doing. When you do something that you love you will never work a day in your life.

Natalie Bradley - arbonne - Mumpreneurs WA

Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers?
If you would like a free trial of any of the Arbonne products please email me at nataliebradley76@gmail.com or call me on 0415448600

Natalie Bradley - arbonne - Mumpreneurs WA

You can connect with Natalie on

FacebookLinkedinArbonne Website

Email: nataliebradley76@gmail.com

Phone: 0415448600

Thank you Natalie for a wonderful interview.

What do you think your husband would say and do if you could retire him?

Julie in the Making