There are some things we can do in all our relationships to build and maintain strong bonds. This is true because, underneath all our differences, likes, dislikes, and biases, we are all human beings who desire social connections. So, how do you go about building business relationships?
Let me count the ways.
The tips below should be used in all your business building relationships to form bonds that will stand the test of time.
1) Be appreciative
This might mean different things in different relationships, but the overarching sentiment is the same. When they do something kind for you or take the time to support you when you need it, be appreciative – acknowledge their care and concern.
2) Spend time together
It can be hard to find time to get together when we are all so busy, but it’s important for all business relationships. If necessary, set up a standing appointment so that it just automatically happens. This makes sure it happens because you will get used to scheduling other things around it.
3) Communicate honestly
Sometimes you may be tempted to bend the truth to avoid conflict, but building business relationships will be much healthier overall if honesty is held in high regard. It’s possible, to be honest without being brutal. Choose your words carefully and be as diplomatic as possible, while still sharing your feelings openly and honestly.
4) Forgive faults
Forgive them for their eccentricities and annoying habits, and also forgive yourself for any mistakes you make. We all have faults and shortcomings that we bring with us into any relationship. Sometimes to keep the relationship strong, we need to just come to the conclusion that their presence in our lives is more important than the little habits that drive us crazy.
5) Support them
Intermingled between all the good times, there will surely be times when the other person could use a helping hand. Whether it’s helping them move, taking them dinner when a loved one has passed or being a sounding board for a difficult decision, any relationship worth having requires some TLC. And the other person deserves it, just as you do when you need it from them.
6) Do unto others
It’s just a good idea to always live by the Golden Rule, but it’s especially true in relationships that are important to us. If you wonder if something you might do is likely to upset them, chances are it’s better to talk to them about it first. Wouldn’t you want them to do the same for you? It’s better to err on the side of caution.
Looking for ways to building your business relationships? A Relationship Marking Course is just what YOU need!
Let me know if you have any questions. Always happy to help you build relationships with the people that matter to you most in your business, your clients!
The Benefits & Problems of Being a Good Listener
How many times have you listened to someone and found that you have come away knowing them better for it? When a person speaks, they reveal a lot about themselves. So if you want to know a person better and understand their motives, dreams, and desires, then it makes sense to listen more closely. The Benefits & Problems of Being a Good Listener is important.
While most of us can hear, not all people have the ability to listen as attentively as others. This is why listening is often listed as a desired skill set.
Be a Good Listener
When you start to listen to a person you gain more insights such as:
* Understanding what they expect of themselves and you
* Build better relationships with family, friends and your coworkers
* You will be able to resolve issues more quickly
* Have a better understanding of what people are trying to tell you
* Know how to respond properly
* You will become a trusted and respected person
Are YOU a Good Listener?
The moment you present yourself as someone who is not listening, your trust level drops substantially. There are actually physical and mental barriers that you need to overcome in order to become good at listening.
The most common ones include things like:
* Language and accent barriers
* Noise levels
* Poor attention span
* Hearing issues
Some of these barriers are going to prevent even the best listener to fully understand the issue. A great example of this is trying to listen to someone who is not speaking their native language. They may use the correct words, but the biggest handicap is their accent. No matter how hard they try to pronounce words correctly they are just not understood.
Understanding & Trusting Others
So what can you do if you are having a hard time understanding someone? A good active listener will often try to do the following things to improve their comprehension of the situation.
* Move in a little closer
* Maintain eye contact
* Nod and smile to indicate that you are listening
* Ask appropriate questions
* Try to clarify the issue in your own words
By doing these things you are showing the person that you are doing your best to understand them. This can be very helpful and can put the person speaking at ease. Quite often they are feeling stressed out, nervous and anxious.
By helping them to put their feelings behind them, they can often explain the situation better.
As you can see it is not that difficult to improve your listening skills. Just be aware that there are problems that can prevent you from fully understanding people sometimes.
Share Your Heart & Practice Empathy
We trust people around us who are open and honest with us. We like and trust people who aren’t afraid to share what they feel and what they are passionate about. Share Your Heart & Practice Empathy – yeah, how do you do that?
In other words, we’re willing to be vulnerable around others who aren’t afraid to share their heart. Thus, it’s only logical that if you want to get closer to those around you, pull them in, and get them on your side so to speak, you should open your own heart and share what’s important to you.
Share YOUR Passion
It’s not always easy to make yourself vulnerable by sharing your passions and ideas, but it will pay off in the right context.
If you’re trying to get your team on board with a big idea that will improve the company, the work environment, or how your department works, don’t be afraid to let your passion and excitement show. It can be quite contagious and if nothing else, it communicates how important this is to you and that you’re doing it to better the work environment or job security for everyone on the team.
The Easy Button
This, like many other “people skills” will come easier to some than others. If you’re in the habit of keeping your feelings and important thoughts to yourself, it will take some conscious effort and practice to get in the habit of sharing your heart.
Start small and among people like close friends or family that you feel relatively safe in doing so.
As time goes by, keep practicing and widening the circle of people you share your heart with until it becomes part of who you are.
Skils – skills – skills
Another important skill that’s worth developing is empathy. Empathy is being able to recognize what the other person feels and what motivates them. Here’s why this is important. At our core, we’re motivated by what’s in it for us. When you’re able to empathize, you’re able to see what will motivate the other person and what they could get out of whatever it is you want to accomplish.
When you can communicate that well, it becomes easy to get people on your side and get them on board with what you want to do.
Are YOU Empathic?
Some people are naturally empathic, while others have to work at it a little harder. Try to put yourself into the other person’s shoes. Think about how things affect them from their point of view. The better you get at viewing things from their side, and figuring out what motivates and drives them, the easier it will become to use the right words, acts, and motivators to win them over.
When people themselves are happy, they experience positive feelings which they attribute as being something good. But when people make others happy, it elevates those positive feelings even further. Making other people happy should be a goal.
There is no doubt that people love to make others happy. In fact, if you are ever feeling down yourself, one way to bring yourself up is to find ways to make others happy. This will give you the boost you need.
Do YOU Even Try?
When you strive to make others happy, they notice.
They will get a boost in their mood which you will see that reaction in their face immediately. It may even be returned to you in kind, either immediately, or sometime in the future.
Here’s the Thing
The great part about making others happy is it is relatively easy to do. It can be as simple as paying someone a compliment.
Or it can be helping out a colleague whose workload is overextended. Sometimes, simply thanking someone can lift up their spirits no matter how small the task that you are thanking them for is.
One really easy way to make people happy is to smile. Smiling is a warm and friendly act that most people will respond to positively by smiling back. A smile is a form of welcoming and shows that you are opening yourself up to those people. It gives people an invitation to approach you.
Another way to make someone happy is to simply listen to them. You would be amazed at how effective this is. People aren’t usually good listeners so if you stand out as someone who is, this too will get noticed by people and it will make them happy.
If you want to go a step further in making others happy, try to learn more about the people that you want to make happy. Be interested in what they do. Then, if you see something related to their interests, either bring it to their attention or give them something related that shows you were paying attention.
It’s important to be genuine when making others happy and not use it as a form of manipulation. People will pick right up on that tactic and it is sure to backfire on you.
😛 – Does this make you smile?
Since it doesn’t really work anyway, why bother even trying it? People will appreciate you much more and will respond positively to your efforts to make them happy instead of trying to get something out of it for yourself.
They will also be more willing to make you happy when the effort is real. Just do it!
When people treat you wrong, it is very easy to hold a grudge. You may not understand how it could be possible to forgive someone for a slight, especially if the action was especially hurtful. Maybe you think forgiveness is about the other person and somehow, they benefit from you forgiving them. Forgiveness is not about the other person; it is about you.
Do YOU Know How To Forgive?
Forgiving another person does not always mean they stay in your life. Sometimes you do not even let them know you are forgiving them. You do not even need to trust them again. Just forgive them to eliminate the negativity in your life.
Even horrific crimes can be forgiven. For safety reasons, you may want to use an indirect way of forgiving them instead of contacting them directly. Write a letter as if you plan on sending it to the other person. Talk about how what they did made you feel, and about how it made you think about yourself. Write about how you are no longer going to allow them space in your head and how you forgive them for what they did to you.
When you finish writing, seal up the letter in an envelope and put their name on the front. Then either throw it away (shred it first!) or burn the letter. It does not have to actually be read by the person you are forgiving, this exercise is to help you get past the negativity and the chains that are holding you back as a person.
If you find you can’t forgive on your own, you may want to talk with a professional. Therapy can really help you get past this hurdle. Especially if the person committed a serious crime. If you have been abused, particularly over a long period of time, you may need therapy to help you get past what was done to you. There is nothing wrong with seeking help.
And After – Forgiveness
Once you have forgiven the other person, you will feel like a weight has been lifted, or chains have been removed. Grudges are not healthy for you and they do not affect the other person. When you bottle up negative feelings, you can increase your risks of developing heart disease, and other health conditions. You tend to age faster as well. Not forgiving others can dim your overall outlook on life, so why put yourself through all of that?
Remember that forgiveness is not about the other person, it is about eliminating the negativity in your own life.
So free yourself today by forgiving others for the wrongs they have done to you.
The best way to eliminate negativity is to develop a positive attitude. Your thoughts and outlook on life have a profound effect on how you live your life. They are also contagious and affect those around you. You can’t have both positive and negative in the same space. So why not focus on turning the negativity into something more positive?
You will find you have more energy and enthusiasm when you have a more positive attitude. People will want to be around you more and will be more positive as well, leading to a cascade effect. Negativity tends to bring you down and steal away your energy. It can also cause health issues over time.
Some ways you can develop a more positive attitude are:
Read Books about Positive Thinking
There are many books out there that can teach you about how to develop a positive mindset and eliminate the negativity in your life. Reading is not only a great way to learn, but it helps your brain build more connections which keep it healthy for a longer time. You can even find many very good books on this subject in your local library and read them for free.
Affirmations are a way of reprogramming the negative thoughts you tell yourself – and in many cases, you may not even be aware that you have them. By doing affirmations, you can change these negative thoughts into positive ones. You can start thinking better of yourself.
Meditation is a great way to help eliminate negativity and turn it into positive thinking. It also reduces stress. Because you get past the conscious level, you can really help reprogram your mindset with meditation. If you combine this with the affirmations, you can increase the results.
Spend time with positive people
How to Eliminate Negativity
Try to eliminate or limit contact with people who tend to have a negative mindset. Sometimes you can’t completely break off contact with them, especially if they are family or people you work with, but as much as possible try to spend time with positive people. Not only will you find it easier to be positive around them, but you may learn new ways to help yourself be more positive.
Just Do It
You can eliminate negativity if you set your mind to it and use tools and techniques to make it happen. You will not only feel better about yourself and have more energy and zest for life, but you will be physically healthier. Negative people drain their mental and physical well-being of their mindset. So, learn to have a positive attitude.
You will never be a people person if you aren’t truthful and deliver on what you say you will. People will start to avoid you when this happens. You need to make sure that if you promise something, you will do whatever it takes to make sure you get it done. Are you a “Be a Person of Your Word” kind of person?
Don’t Promise if You Can’t Deliver
Of course, don’t promise things if you feel you cannot get them done. You see this happen with companies all the time. They agree to anything customers ask for and then are unable to give them what they want. That is never a good situation to be in. People will react negatively when this happens. The company won’t get more business, and their reputation will be tarnished as a result.
Don’t let this happen on a personal level
Be confident in knowing what people are asking you to do. Don’t agree just because you don’t want them to become upset with you. They will be more upset if you aren’t able to produce what you told them.
If you agree to meet with someone, be sure to keep the appointment. There are certain circumstances where you have to cancel, once in a while. That’s okay, but don’t make a habit of this. Being a people person means being dependable.
What are YOUR Standards?
It’s also okay to expect the same standards as others. If you find someone who is not dependable, you may have to cut ties with them. This may seem counterintuitive to the whole idea of being a people person, but it’s not. You are expected to be reliable, and you should expect the same from everyone you deal with.
Of course, there are going to be occasions where people have to break appointments. This is normal and should be expected. Don’t be too hard on people when it happens. But, here too, they shouldn’t be repeat offenders. It’s important to be understanding, but there is a point where some people will take advantage of this.
Be a Person of YOUR Word
When you are known as a person of your word, others will have no problem recommending you. In fact, they will start referring to you even without you asking for it. This is one of the foundations of being a people person.
Being a people person is mostly about common sense. It’s about interacting with others and having some expectations for everyone you deal with. It’s about developing friendships as well as work relationships. As you increase the number of people, you will discover what works best for you and those people.
How to Be Kind
Being kind isn’t difficult. Once you set your mindset to ‘Kind,’ you’ll notice all sorts of opportunities throughout your day to reach out and be kind to someone.
As a bonus, once you’re in the kindness loop, you’ll notice you feel happier and more fulfilled. Scientists call this ‘the helper’s high’ as altruistic acts trigger the same endorphins as a ‘runner’s high’!
Here are some simple everyday ways of including kindness in your day.
1. Stop to let a pedestrian cross the street or to allow another driver into the traffic.
2. Say please and thank you.
3. Say good morning and good night to your colleagues.
4. Smile at a stranger.
5. Hold the door for the next person.
6. Hold the elevator.
7. Let someone with only a few items go in front of you in the grocery store.
8. Do a coffee run for your colleagues.
9. Hug your loved ones.
Here are a few more
10. Push the trash bins out for your neighbors.
11. Mow your elderly neighbor’s lawn.
12. If you’re going to the store, ask your neighbor if you can pick anything up for them.
13. Try volunteering at your local soup kitchen or shelter.
14. Be the bigger person and let the other guy have the coveted parking space.
15. Stand up for someone on the bus or subway.
16. Ask a stressed-out co-worker if you can help.
17. Help wash the cups after a meeting.
18. If the photocopier is running on empty, replace the toner and fill the paper bin.
19. Buy surprise flowers for your partner.
20. Give some coins to a street entertainer.
And a Few More
21. Pledge to stop grousing for a week.
22. Join your company’s mentor or buddy program.
23. Leave a book or magazine on the subway or in a bus station.
24. Donate your excess art supplies or craft materials to an elementary school.
25. Encourage your kids to sort through their stuff and donate items in good condition to charity.
26. Donate money to your favorite charity or non-government organization.
27. Notice what your partner or colleagues are wearing and pay a few compliments.
28. Ask friends or colleagues how they are, and listen to the answers.
29. Reach out to family members or friends, send a text message, or call them to see how they are.
30. Clean up your neighborhood. If you see trash in the street, pick it up and put it in the bin.
SEO for your Website – Part 2 and it’s all about how you can use the power of your relationships with other business owners. Yes, another reason why you need to build strong relationships with other people.
Here’s how to make this happen:
Get Affiliates to Promote YOU and Improve Your Search Visibility
Yup, this is another arrow in the quiver. Get others to advertise for you or make more revenue advertising for businesses with similar products.
Let’s talk about becoming an affiliate partner. There are several affiliate programs on the Internet, but all are not created equal. Before choosing an affiliate program to enhance your marketing be sure that it is worth your while.
Some criteria to consider are payment schedule, pay rate, the credibility of the product and business philosophy. If you can’t believe in the product, there is no reason to advertise for it.
Popular affiliate programs are the ones that offer incentives and training to their affiliate partners. Training can come in the way of newsletters and informative articles that address aspects of Search Engine Marketing to help you increase your business. Sharing wealth begins with sharing information. The company gets a loyal affiliate who knows their stuff and you get help streamlining your business marketing strategy.
You may want to try a full service like clickbank.com, cj.com or do it yourself with 1shoppingcart.com or amember.com.
So, SEO for your Website – Part 2 is all about Affiliate Marketing and it has been around forever – well almost!
Some affiliates set up websites just for affiliate marketing. The website employs unique SEO content that increases sales for both of you. Now, you might wonder what affiliate marketing is, but that’s a topic for another post.
But I’m not going to leave you hanging, so here’s the definition: it’s a type of performance-based marketing in which a business rewards one or more affiliates for each visitor or customer brought by the affiliate’s own marketing efforts. Simple right?
Search Engine Advertising:
Pay per Click (PPC)
Pay per click is an advertising formula that gives free upfront advertising (in most cases) and you only have to pay when your ads are clicked or some action is taken. The strategy here is to have your ads placed in key areas where they will get seen by a large number of people. Search engine advertising needs to include this little gem for an all-around approach to growing your business.
Pay per click has several different applications. It can be used in affiliate marketing campaigns for you and your partners, paid searches and bidding on search engine advertising. Pay per click is a broad term but that doesn’t necessarily mean that you will get paid on every click. We’ll explain.
Pay per Click (PPC) programs based on keywords
Search engines like Google and Yahoo have pay per click programs where you can gain exposure on search engine result pages (SERPs). With these programs, you use relevant keywords for your website products to create short concise ads that gain the attention of searchers.
Pay per click programs is a way to test out your keywords before mounting a major SEO campaign. Different types of keywords can be used in ads and the response gauged. Beginning with broad keywords allows you to get an idea of what types of keywords searchers are using. You will get clicks but because it is such a broad keyword, all of the clicking visitors may not be the right kind of traffic that goes from sales lead to a buying customer.
Pay per click ads are short and there is a word or character limit depending on the program.
Check out these programs:
- Google AdWords
- Yahoo Advertising
- Bing Ads
Each ad has a line for a title, a description, and a URL link. You don’t have much space to make a terrific first impression. One must is to use your targeted keywords in the title and the description. Be sure to add action verbs like “click, try, and open” to let searchers know an action on their part is required.
The URL link will direct searchers to your landing page. We alluded to landing pages earlier but here is where you get the explanation. As an Internet surfer, you know how frustrating it can be to go through several links just to find where you want to go. Links in ads that lead to a homepage lose potential sales leads and customers because the process becomes laborious.
A landing page is a website page where the product or service will appear and be explained to visitors. If you are selling flower bulbs, the landing page for those bulbs will contain pictures of the bulbs you have for sale. Your landing page can be from your virtual store providing per unit price and a “buy now” button for a hopefully easy sale. Direct links are best to interest the searcher.
Within these programs, you will choose your keywords, complete your ads, and then bid on those keywords. The price you quote represents the most you will pay for the ad using those keywords to be shown on the search results page. Still, you don’t pay for your advertising until the ads are clicked on the page.
Use a mixture of popular keywords and keyword phrases to gain targeted traffic. Longer phrases narrow the searchers to those who are definitely interested in the product or service you have to offer. The traffic rate may not increase significantly but your sales can. And that is what having a business is all about right? Making money, having great relationships with people and providing value to the people in your world.
I hope you found this an interesting concept and an additional way to increase your SEO.
Did you remember to pick up your SEO Check List from SEO for your Website – Part 1? If not here it is again, just click on the link, it will open to a new page – SEO List
Until next time – that’s a wrap!
SEO for your website…” that doesn’t explain anything to me ” you say. Well, follow along below while I explain it to you and pay attention, please!
The SEO Checklist
Free search engine traffic (SEO) is an amazing thing. It can grow your targeted traffic, bring you new subscribers and, best of all, increase your sales. SEO for your website is critical for your business. But the thing is, you have to work at it. If you want to improve your search engine rankings, keep the following checklist handy to steadily growing traffic. (Click the FREEBIE LINK below to get your copy)
For Your Off-Page SEO
These are things that will affect your search engine rankings from outside of your web page. These are very important for growing the overall popularity of your site and make it easier for you to rank well for your chosen keyword phrases.
1- Create excellent content because it affects the following:
- How much your content is shared on social media…this provides important clues to search engines about the quality of your content.
- How long a search engine user stays on your site. If searches on a search engine and finds your site but clicks back right away, it will tell the search engine that you may not be very relevant for that phrase.
- How often your content is linked to. If you have good stuff, people will link to it…but beware, search engines can detect quality links, so old self-linking practices are dead.
- Make sure you have a social media presence and you readily encourage your visitors to share your content on social media. It’s important that you’re being seen all over the web, if you want Google to give you favor.
SEO for your website is so important, especially to Google!
2- Ways to ensure you’ve got quality engaging content that attracts users and search engines:
- Each page should be on one unique topic.
- Your navigation is clear and all your content is easily found by humans and search engines.
- Use attention-getting headlines to grab your visitors’ attention and so they know they’re in the right place.
- Make your content easy to read by using short sentences and paragraphs. Keep your words simple.
- Break up your copy with subheads and bullet points, so viewers can scan it easily…instead of having them click away.
- Use images to draw the eye in and tell a story with your content. Humans are visual creatures and photos and other images can help retain their attention.
- Don’t forget to connect with other website owners in your niche. Friends tend to share the content of others, so this is just a win-win for all of you.
For Your On-Page SEO
In addition to the big overall picture of creating great content that makes its way around the web, there are things you can do on each page you post to your website. Here is a list of quite a few things that can affect your rankings, but remember…don’t overdo it.
Keep your optimization natural and make sure it makes sense. Otherwise, you might alienate your visitors, and search engines can sniff out attempts to game the system.
- Make sure your content is at least 300 words long. This is not a hard and fast rule, but certainly a good guideline. Search engines want to see there is some meat to your content.
- Conduct keyword research to find a highly targeted phrase that gets decent traffic, but doesn’t have too much competition. Try a tool like WordTracker.com.
- Use your keyword phrase in the title of your post and in the title tag, but make sure it will be appealing to website visitors.
- Use your keyword phrase in the description tag for your post. Make sure the description not only includes the keyword phrase but is interesting enough to make people want to click.
- Incorporate the keyword phrase into the URL of your page. For example, fun-family-vacations.html
- Add the keyword phrase and other useful descriptions to your images with the use of ALT tags.
- Employ the use of H2 and H3 tags. They make your content easier to scan and are also a good place to include your keyword phrase and variations of it.
- Include the keyword phrase and variations of it in a few places in the body of your content. Try to include it in the first paragraph as well.
- Show you are a hub of useful information and link out to a related page on another website.
See, I told you that SEO for your website is important!
Keep track of your rankings and tweak things as you go along. Just remember, it can take a bit of time before search engines update their listings, so give your changes time to come into effect.
Stay tuned for Part 2 of SEO for your website next week!
Get the above information as a downloadable checklist. Just click here for access.
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