You don’t need an inner-city address, Caren will help you tackle money matters in the ‘burbs, through a better understanding of all the important issues – investing, superannuation, budgeting, tax, insurance, mortgages, gearing, shares, managed funds, small business, food, home, fashion, travel, and much more.

A fun and entertainingly educational forum, specifically designed for Australian “suburbanites".

Monday, July 15, 2013

The doctor's thoughts on keys to successful investing

Regular readers will know that I have two favourite Australian economists (there's no way for that not to sound nerdy) - Felix Stephen and Shane Oliver.

Shane Oliver - sorry Doctor Shane Oliver - recently wrote a great article on Keys to Successful Investing, which I found to be relevant, easy-to-understand and entertaining.  All of which you have to admit is fairly surprising given it was written by an economist :)

A lot of his points confirm issues I've raised in previous blogs (a fresh perspective is always valuable), and he highlights some areas where he feels investors may have lost sight of what's really important.

His key points include:
  • Four investment market realities: there is always a cycle; it's a mad, mad, mad world; starting point valuations matter a lot for returns; and the power of the compound interest.
  • Keys to successful investing: know yourself; seek advice; invest for the long term; diversify; turn down the noise; avoid short-termism; focus on investments offering sustainable cash flow; recognise there is no free lunch; buy low, sell high; don't fret the small stuff; don't over rely on expert forecasts; recognise the aim is to make money, not to be right; beware the crowd at extremes; and if you have the right strategy, never despair.
Anyway, I don't believe in re-inventing the wheel, so click here if you'd like to read a full copy of the article.  I really do recommend it.

Talk soon,

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Business owners need to really understand the language of sales

Let's be brutally honest, most of our potential customers don't really care about us, they mostly care about what it is we can do for them... They are looking to have a problem solved or a need fulfilled and are looking for the best business to help them.

I call this the "What's In It For Me" principle or WIIFM.

As business owners we already know that the most effective "sales" technique is to show our clients or customers the benefit to them of our service or product.

We're always being told how important it is to distinguish the benefit of what we do from the features, but this isn't always easy.  Often it takes some real drilling to get to the actual benefit.

I've found two simple phrases that help enormously when you're trying to get down to the nitty gritty of the benefits of what you do:

"so that..."


"this means..."

Once you start using these phrases when describing your services, the benefits just flow quite naturally.

Click here for a detailed explanation of how this simple but powerful sales strategy works.

Or if you'd like to hear more about how to use WIIFMs to improve your business click here for a recording of my most recent "Your & Your Business" radio segment on 98.1FM Radio Eastern (or ask me about a one-on-one session to help you get better results from your market strategy).

Talk soon,