The Academy

Apps Every Entrepreneur Must Have

Continued from last week

3. Adible 

Ever wondered, 'How can those successful entrepreneurs constantly find great ideas?' The answer to this question simply cannot lie in high productivity or motivation, since no one can remain motivated and productive at all times. 
Any successful entrepreneur will tell you the same thing – you get ideas by reading. You read on the go, during your free time, and during breaks in between tasks. To help you with this, use Audible. This app allows its users to listen to books instead of reading them, which means that you can actually do your tasks or travel while sourcing ideas.

4. TripIt 

The previous app is perfect for travelers, but so is TripIt. Listening to books and texts while on the go can be very productive, but you need to organize your trips to start with. 
Being an entrepreneur means that you are faced with a hectic schedule most of the time, which is why a simple and effective app such as this one can make your travel organizations much easier.

5. Flowdock 

Flowdock combines a chat and inbox, allowing you to collaborate with your team members whenever you need it. This convenient app works on almost every browser and the mobile platforms, which makes for a great way to handle a variety of projects. 
In addition, the team members who have installed this app will get instant updates whenever you make changes on the project.

6. Expensify 

You are probably making many expenses on the go and need to claim these expenses once you get back home or to the office. This means gathering all receipts of business-related costs and carrying them around, all so you can spend valuable time organizing them before you submit them to your boss. 
What if we told you that you don't have to go through all this hassle? By using Expensify and your phone's camera, you can now take pictures of the receipts and the app will record them chronologically!

7. Recruiterbox 

Every entrepreneur wants to hire the best of the best for their company, but they rarely have the time to go through all the applications and resumes. While you can hire someone to do this for you, you can only be certain in your employees' qualities if you do the recruiting yourself, at least the first part of it. 

Apps Every Entrepreneur Must Have

Getting things done can be challenging for everyone, but entrepreneurs find things especially hard. In order to succeed in the industry, you need to be more productive and work efficiently, and having a million things on your to-do list is not encouraging at all. 

This was the situation that Mohammed Ladan found himself in, towards the end of 2017. His business was recovering after a sluggish start and he suddenly found that he was either leaving many important things undone or mixing up appointments. He knew he needed help to start 2018 on the right footing.

Fortunately, there is a solution to this problem. 
Technology has been assisting entrepreneurs for over a decade now, and the advances make it easier and easier to tackle all tasks in an efficient manner. Starting from apps for time organization to those that keep you focused, there is basically an app for everything.

Here are the top 10 choices of apps for entrepreneurs that want to make their lives easier: 

1. Accompany 

Also called the 'virtual chief of staff', this app will help you reduce all that time spent doing research when prepping for important meetings. This amazing app can be the secret helper who will email you a briefing before a meetingand provide you with all the information you need to close the deal. 
Just download the app and connect it to your email account, as well as the mobile calendar and Facebook account. It will go through a variety of information and data online to create a summary of your contacts.

2. Evernote 

Evernote is one of the most popular tools and not only in the world of entrepreneurs. According to an HR manager this app 'saved his life more times than he could count'. He says: 'Evernote should make it on the top of every app list out there because of one simple reason: it allows you to stay organized and finish everything in time.' 
The freeware version of Evernote is available for Android, Web, and iOS. This allows you to synchronize all your devices and files, capture photos, save Web pages, create to-do list and even record reminders. If you have troubles scheduling your tasks, this is the first thing you should download.

3. Audible 

Ever wondered, 'How can those successful entrepreneurs constantly find great ideas?' The answer to this question simply cannot lie in high productivity or motivation, since no one can remain motivated and productive at all times. 
Any successful entrepreneur will tell you the same thing – you get ideas by reading. You read on the go, during your free time, and during breaks in between tasks. 

To be continued next week

7 Excellent Ways To Attract New Customers

Continued from last week

5. Try Direct Response Marketing

Your best bet for reaching out and touching customers is to use tactics to encourage them to complete a specific action, such as opt into your email list or request more information. Learn to create ads that attract your ideal clients by giving them something of value for free, to get them started in your funnel. Learn all you can about direct response marketing practices, because they will teach you to focus on results that matter. Create compelling messages that tell your ideal audience why they'd have to be a fool not to work with you. Show them you understand their pain, and can make it go away faster and cheaper than they could without you.

6. Build Partnerships

Teaming up with businesses that offer complementary services offers you the opportunity to take advantage of synergy, which can be very effective in building a business. For instance, if you have a company that specializes in Search Engine Optimisation, consider teaming up with a business that builds websites.
When all is said and done, nurturing relationships, either with other business owners or customers, helps you create a client base. Focus on building human relationships. The stronger your relationships are, the more likely your customers will be to tell their friends about you. And the more likely they'll be to come back.

7. Follow Up

After your efforts to bring in business, always remember to close the loop. Remember to set follow-up tasks (follow up to sample sent, etc.), and execute your plan. So many leads and great conversations are wasted because you forget to follow up. Doing this simple step is sure to get your client base to grow.

Culled from: and adapted

7 Excellent Ways To Attract New Customers

As 2017 winds down and a new year approaches, many entrepreneurs have their sights on how to grow their businesses in the new year. A major part of this plan is how to manage existing customers more efficiently and, crucially, attract new ones.

Uwem Ekarika, an Uyo-based fashion designer, asked his friend, Ukpo, for suggestions. His friend gladly shared with him valuable tips he picked up while researching this subject recently:

1. Identify Your Ideal Client

It’s easier to look for customers if you know the type of consumers you seek. Without a composite of your ideal customer, you probably wouldn’t know where to start looking. Have a crystal clear picture in your head of exactly who you're targeting. Think about what makes those types of people happy, sad, scared, relieved, and then think about how you can make their lives a little easier. Narrow down the focus of your ideal client and avoid making broad target market statements, such as every woman, every man or all baby boomers. Few products appeal to that vast group of people, and overstating your market will prevent you from developing viable targeted strategies for attracting clients.

2. Discover Where Your Customer Lives

With your targeted customers in mind, identify those places where they are likely to be found (media, online, offline, mail, etc.), and then create messages for them.
Where you look for customers will depend on the nature of your business. Some good online locations include forums and social media pages, including your own and those of similar or complementary businesses. Offline, you can meet plenty of potential customers at conferences and conventions in your industry.

3. Know Your Business Inside and Out

Thoroughly understanding your industry and having a firm knowledge of your product or service is critical to being able to attract interested clients. When you know your product backward and forward, that fact comes through. The people who would be interested in your offerings can see how knowledgeable you are and will seek your assistance.

4. Position Yourself as the Answer

Give potential clients you come into contact with a good reason to try your services, which is your first step to making them loyal customers.

Ten Effective Negotiation Skills

Continued from last week

4. Emotional Control

It is vital that a negotiator have the ability to keep his emotions in check during the negotiation. While a negotiation on contentious issues can be frustrating, allowing emotions to take control during the meeting can lead to unfavorable results. For example, a manager frustrated with the lack of progress during a salary negotiation may concede more than is acceptable to the organization in an attempt to end the frustration. On the other hand, employees negotiating a pay raise may become too emotionally involved to accept a compromise with management and take an all or nothing approach, which breaks down the communication between the two parties.

5. Verbal Communication

Negotiators must have the ability to communicate clearly and effectively to the other side during the negotiation. Misunderstandings can occur if the negotiator does not state his case clearly. During a bargaining meeting, an effective negotiator must have the skills to state his desired outcome as well as his reasoning.

6. Collaboration and Teamwork

Negotiation is not necessarily a one side against another arrangement. Effective negotiators must have the skills to work together as a team and foster a collaborative atmosphere during negotiations. Those involved in a negotiation on both sides of the issue must work together to reach an agreeable solution.

7. Problem Solving

Individuals with negotiation skills have the ability to seek a variety of solutions to problems. Instead of focusing on his ultimate goal for the negotiation, the individual with skills can focus on solving the problem, which may be a breakdown in communication, to benefit both sides of the issue.

8. Decision Making Ability

Leaders with negotiation skills have the ability to act decisively during a negotiation. It may be necessary during a bargaining arrangement to agree to a compromise quickly to end a stalemate.

9. Interpersonal Skills

Effective negotiators have the interpersonal skills to maintain a good working relationship with those involved in the negotiation. Negotiators with patience and the ability to persuade others without using manipulation can maintain a positive atmosphere during a difficult negotiation.

10. Ethics and Reliability

Ethical standards and reliability in an effective negotiator promote a trusting environment for negotiations. Both sides in a negotiation must trust that the other party will follow through on promises and agreements. A negotiator must have the skills to execute on his promises after bargaining ends.

Culled from and adapted

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