Don’t judge a business card by its cover? Ah, yes, I’m afraid so. Business cards, the silent piece of advertisement is scrutinized more than you think. It’s not just the design element potential clients are intrigued or impressed by. They want to learn the meat and potatoes, or the nuts and bolts about what your business has to offer.
Potential clients want to know,
Who you are
Where you are located
What exactly do you do
How can they contact you
How much will your products or service affect their wallet
How long will it take to reach customer satisfaction
Are you trustworthy and what does the BBB have to report about your business
What type of experience do you have supporting your business
Customers are savvier about their spending habits than they have ever been. Also, consumers have trust issue concerns with how they conduct business and the reputation of who they give their dollars to, especially when they have been burned by a business before. There really is more behind the business card than meets the eye.
Have you ever noticed that some individuals in leadership roles tend to ignore or stifle the voices of subordinates who want to share their ideas with the rest of the team? A good leader will not be nervous, feel threatened or intimidated by such team members. Instead, they will listen to what they have to say and encourage them to contribute ideas, foster their achievements and help to spark innovation within the company.
Good leadership encourages healthy brainstorming, by creating tactical moves, conducting research, implementing testing and constantly exploring to bring those collective ideas to the table and making magic happen.
Typically fun and work can sometimes be perceived as an oxymoron, instead of a therapeutic medium. Having fun at work does not insinuate we are goofing off or are nonproductive. Keeping the workplace environment rooted in an enjoyable culture can lead to renewed energy, increased contributions of imagination, creativity, innovation, and healthier attitudes within our workforce.
Enjoy what you do, no matter how menial of a task you may think it is. Your work is important to the overall picture. Look at your contributions as being valuable, because they are.
It’s okay to be goofy at times. You don’t have to be so wound up and serious all the time, in order to take your work seriously. It really ain’t that deep, as you make it out to be.
Add an element of tranquility, a little Zen to calm your spiritual juices when needed.
Put a funny, lighthearted cartoon up or some cheery quotes in your range of sight, whether in your cubicle or office space. Don’t let it be one that mocks, humiliates or insults others because it is motivated by undercurrents of “isms.” Keep your humor clean.
People need not dread coming to work because of a hostile work environment. Turn the tides and add some fun elements to help you and your team remain efficient, happy, healthy and productive.
“Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.” -Steve Jobs
Organizations are transforming their sales functions with artificial intelligence to stay ahead of the game. If you have not yet embraced the trend, you are missing a crucial competitive edge.
The emergence of vast amounts of data from multiple sources and platforms, generating new information every minute, has gifted companies with more consumer information than they’ve ever had before. Technology is getting smarter as it continues learning and optimizing recommendations. A study published in MIT Sloan Management Review reveals that “76% of early adopters are targeting higher sales growth with machine learning.”
AI and machine learning in sales: An explainer
Artificial intelligence is the broader concept of machines making decisions or performing process as a human would. Machine learning is an application of artificial intelligence that enables computer models to recognize shapes, designs, and patterns in existing data, allowing the machines to then learn for themselves how to take next action or make business predictions.
Each new piece of data received allows the machine to learn even more, update information, look for new patterns and continuously optimize recommendations. For example, every time Alexa doesn’t get the right command, or Netflix misses the movie recommendation, the model learns from this new data and alters its recognition process to adapt and respond better, or provide better suggestions the next time around.
Intelligent sales: From prospect to client, AI will be sales best friend
We are seeing a paradigm shift in sales from being reactive to proactive, and from instinct-driven to insight and data-driven. AI can guide the sales journey from identification to customer retention. Sales applications can pick up each…Continue reading
It’s worth taking a moment to consider which font will best communicate your information. For example, most people know that Comic Sans is a faux pas for more professional situations. But what fonts should you use?
According to a study we conducted over at Venngage looking at the most popular font types in America, it might be worth basing your font choice on where most of your audience is located.
We analyzed the 50+ fonts we offer to see which font types people favor, and how their preferences vary depending on location. Our analysis focused in on the top 25 most populated cities in America, since they’re the ones creating the most content.
WOW! What a wonderful surprise. We are so honored to find out that our blog was recently nominated by blogger Rafi Nandi, the administrator fromLONEART1ST, for the Blogger Recognition Award. Thanks so muchLONEART1STfor your kind consideration and we are humbled by your thoughtfulness. Be sure to stop by and visit Rafi’s blog site.
InKnowvative Concepts dedicates this blog to encourage our audience to“Take what you know and turn it into something extraordinary!”
We began our blog in January 2017. Although to date we only published approximately 130 organic and curated blogs, we are pleased by the wide range of audiences we attract. We are a creative disruption think-tank pursuing new ways of helping our readers step outside your comfort zone and position your company as a trusted leader in your industry. We also encourage individuals to do the same. This platform, along with our Facebook and Twitter channels, gives us the opportunity to share, educate, engage, collaborate and communicate with an international audience. We divulge resources from a wide range of industries and offer inspirational and motivational good reads outside the business realm.
Here are 4 easy tips to apply to your blog content creation:
1. Ideas drive interest and social engagement. Whatever your blog’s unique angle is write down ideas that connect or contrast to your theme, no matter how farfetched they may seem. This gives you a premise to work from and a unique topic to write about.
2. Research- In order to break out with new, informative and exciting things to write about, you must first disrupt yourself by doing your research. You can find out information about practically any subject matter anywhere. Research will help you to either innovate or disintegrate in the construction of your words and ideas.
3. Use images whether they are your personal credits or those from public domain to give a well rounded more engaging introduction to your blog piece. Be sure to avoid using images from stock photography, stock footage, and stock music providers, unless you purchase them. Give credit to images you may add to your post from sources like Google Search images if they are not copywritten. Some are.
4. Share your blog posts on your social media channels for greater exposure. Oftentimes your social channels attract an audience different from your blog. Consistency and frequency is the key.
Those worried that the rise of artificial intelligence means that robots will take their job might feel comforted by the fact that many AI tools are actually being designed not to replace humans, but to help them do their jobs better.
Though the field is still in its infancy, many young startups came to Europe’s largest tech conference, Web Summit, last week to showcase how their AI tools are working to make people more efficient and productive, in both their personal and professional lives. Here are a few that stood out.
(HONESTLY) TRACKING YOUR TIME
Does it feel like you’ve never got enough time for the things you really want to do in life? Paris-based AI startup Smarter Time is helping its 80,000 users find the time that always seems to be missing by tracking their habits and providing feedback.
[Photo: courtesy of SmarterTime]
The concept is that even if one were to try and track every moment of their day in order to manually analyze and optimize their time, few would bother putting in the really small things, but that’s where much of our time gets lost.“You will think it’s so small, I don’t need to input it, but that’s one way of cheating with your own schedule, because these small bits of time add up,” said Smarter Time’s cofounder and CMO, Anna Winterstein. “If you spend five minutes on Facebook 10 times a day that’s 50 minutes, that’s a huge amount of time, and you get distracted, and studies say you need at least 15 minutes to get focused again.”
Using a plugin that tracks desktop browsing, along with an app that tracks phone usage patterns, Smarter Time seeks to “give its users back time for what really matters,” said Winterstein, adding that the company is building features that will eventually encourage healthy lifestyle habits as well.
“By using the latest scientific research we’re trying to give people advice, like maybe you haven’t been sleeping enough or should be doing more fitness,” she said.
The app is currently available as a free download on Android devices, with additional features available for purchase, and an iOS version coming soon.
CRAFTING THE PERFECT COLD EMAIL
Founded in 2016 and officially launched last week at Web Summit, French startup AiZimov seeks to take the guesswork out of cold emails and solicitations, gathering data and information in order to autonomously craft emails that are more likely to receive a positive response.
[Photo: courtesy of Aizimov]
“All you have to put in are four things; first name, last name, email, and company,” said AiZimov’s CEO, Jérôme Devosse. With that information Devosse says the tool crawls the internet for every mention of the person and their organization, and crafts a message tailored to them. That could include references to their latest position paper, their company’s latest press release, their personal Twitter feed, or the hobbies listed on their LinkedIn profile.“If the guy, for example, has done a marathon, I may finish the email by saying ‘by the way, I also did a marathon in Rome, here is my time, how do we compare?’ to get their attention,” said Devosse.
Over time the tool collects information on the sorts of emails that get the best responses among specific target audiences and adjusts various factors–such as tone, length, content, and the time it’s sent–accordingly. While the program optimizes a first draft, the sender still has the opportunity to tweak the email according to their preferences and style, which AiZimov gradually learns to replicate.
“The tool will learn how people in that industry and that country react to different propositions; do they like humor? Do they like a formal tone? Do they like if we talk about their expertise?” explains Devosse.
Though a limited number of users can still get a free trial, Devosse says that it will eventually come with a price tag. As a result the company is targeting B2B companies to be used by their sales departments.
MANAGING AND IMPROVING YOUR WEBSITE
Those who manage their own website typically have three options for improving and optimizing its effectiveness: relying on free tools that require an understanding of website analytics, hiring a firm to help with website optimization, or doing nothing. With little time or resources to dedicate, many freelancers and startups must opt for the latter.
Based at the Technical University of Copenhagen, Canecto hopes to spread website optimization to the masses, providing everyone with the ability to affordably improve the performance of their online presence. “We remove the analytical process and just tell them exactly what to do to improve their website,” said Canecto’s CEO, Per Damgaard Husted, explaining that it doesn’t require significant resources or technological proficiency.
[Photo: courtesy of Canecto]
The tool, which officially launched to the public at Web Summit, seeks to help its users increase their visitors’ time onsite, and will eventually be able to optimize for other metrics as well. “What we’re working on is to enable you to put in your business goals, and get recommendations,” he said. “So in a couple of months you can put in say conversion goals, signups to the newsletter, downloading a PDF file, whatever generates value for you.”By downloading the Canecto script for their content management platform, users are not only able to get detailed information about how visitors interact with their website, but recommendations on how to improve. Such recommendations can range from color scheme to the prominence of photos to the length, tone, and content of text to the optimal number of links, videos, and images.
The tool even tracks social media to help provide additional recommendations based on real-time trends and interests amongst the target audience.
“It will tell you what are the interests of the people who have downloaded that PDF file or signed up for the newsletter, and you can see the reverse, the people who didn’t, and see the difference,” said Damgaard Husted.
Damgaard Husted adds that Canecto’s basic features, which are targeted toward individual freelancers and small business owners, are now available for free, while its more advanced tools, which can help optimize media spending, are available for a cost.
YOUR OWN EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT
The decline in executive assistant roles following the Great Recession has always confused Roy Pereira. Though originally considered a cost-saving measure, the extra time now spent by executives on organizing schedules, preparing meeting notes, and planning travel logistics often proves more expensive. “I wanted to have my own EA, so I decided to build it,” said the Toronto-based entrepreneur.
The resulting product, Zoom.AI, can learn your habits and preferences, make recommendations, schedule meetings automatically and order a car to take you there.
[Photo: courtesy of ZoomAI]
“One of our most important tasks is to get you prepared for the meeting,” said Pereira. “So when you’re in the Uber you’ll pull up two pages of information on the person you’re meeting with, based on public information.”That information can include work history, common connections and friends on social media, recent media appearances, research papers, blog posts, common interests, and an analysis of personality traits.
“There’s also informational discovery inside the office,” said Pereira, who explains that the application can pull information from public documents, internal customer relations management systems, digital files, and other support systems. “With a couple of requests you can just ask, ‘where is the N.D.A. for Coca-Cola that we did last month?’ and it will find it,” he adds.
Asking Zoom.AI for the location of a file or to schedule a meeting is as simple as sending a message via text, Slack, Facebook, Skype, or any of the 16 compatible chat platforms. “It’s like talking to a person in a direct message,” said Pereira.
For example, if Pereira sends a message to his Zoom.AI assistant asking to schedule a coffee with a friend, the program will find time in both schedules near the time of day and for the duration that he typically takes a coffee break, at the coffee shop he frequents that is most geographically convenient for both participants, and send a meeting request.
According to Pereira this technology gives users an average productivity boost of 14%, or 25 hours a week.