The Top Financial Apps for Small Business Owners

Every entrepreneur needs a little bit of help managing their business finances—use these apps to make your life easier!

When you’re a business owner, you have more than just a job. Even after you’ve turned off the lights and locked the doors, you are still in charge of making business decisions at all hours of the day. Any entrepreneur understands how the details of your business can pile up until some of your important tasks get buried. That’s why it is so important for business owners to constantly monitor all of the financial details for their business. You never know, one accidentally missed bill could potentially turn into a mess of additional fees and phone calls! 

In order to avoid making financial mistakes while running your business, it’s good to have a few tools on your side to simplify your finances. That’s why we’ve come up with a list of handy finance apps that will make managing your business that much easier. We’re covering a variety of different apps that can help you in different branches of business— including everything from getting life insurance to filing your taxes. If you’re looking for some pro tips to make managing your business that much easier, keep reading!

1. Fabric by Gerber Life

Using Fabric you can set savings goals and even protect your loved ones by purchasing no medical exam life insurance

Use Fabric to secure a life insurance policy that works with your budget,

Searching for an app that can help you set money saving goals and get you an instant quote for a life insurance policy? Look no further than the Fabric by Gerber Life app. This app is a powerful tool that will help you set personal and professional savings goals. For example, you can use the Fabric app to set savings goals for a rainy day fund. All you have to do is set your goal in the Fabric app and you can begin contributing to a high yield rainy day fund. As you contribute to your account, you can track your progress and even get suggestions on how you can save even more money. Once you have reached your rainy day savings goal, you are prepared in the case of a slow sales season or any other unforeseen expenses.

Another excellent feature of using Fabric by Gerber Life is the ability to get life insurance without a medical exam. Life insurance is extremely important for business owners. If you are running your business and you are uninsured, there will be no payout to keep the business running in the case of your untimely death. In fact, the financial burden of your business ventures will be transferred to your loved ones. If you don’t have a large sum of money saved in advance, the situation could be financially difficult for your family. 

If you are looking to get insured quickly, your best option is to search for life insurance with no medical exam. When you choose to get life insurance without a medical exam, then you are choosing the most efficient method for coverage. While the results of the medical exam can take 6-8 weeks to come back, you can get approved with no medical exam in a matter of days. For a lot of busy entrepreneurs, this time saved between applying and getting approved for life insurance is incredibly valuable.

2. IRS2Go

IRS2Go makes paying your taxes easier than ever before

Get your taxes taken care of with IRS2Go.Image courtesy of RefundTalk.

The IRS2Go app is the official mobile app of the IRS. It allows you to check your refund status, make payments, find tax preparation assistance, explore different tax tips, and more! You can also use IRS2Go to get access to mobile payment options like IRS Direct Pay. IRS Direct Pay offers a free and secure way to pay directly from your bank account. You can also make a credit or debit card payment directly through a payment processor. 

When you use the IRS2Go app, you are able to directly access different tax software from your mobile device to quickly prepare and file your taxes. Additionally, IRS2Go can generate login security codes for IRS online services which allows you to retrieve codes through IRS2Go instead of using text messages. This added security measure to make sure that all of your information remains confidential. Plus, you can access important tax information in both English and Spanish.

3. Goodbudget

Keep your business finances in order with this budget tracking app

Easily plan out your expenses using Goodbudget. Image courtesy of Ting.

Goodbudget is budgeting software that is based on the “envelope method”. When you use the app, you make envelopes for all your budgeting categories—rent, loan payments, payroll—and then set aside money up front in each envelope. Then, you can spend the money in each envelope based on categories instead of your account balance. The “envelope method” is a way to plan your spending instead of just tracking it. 

Using Goodbudget you can save money for professional purchases by making payments on renovations, raw material costs, or for expanding your team without draining your savings. Having the money to save and actually taking steps to save money are two very different things. Using this app you can plan ahead and save for big expenses months in advance. Not to mention, you can use the app to start setting aside money to pay off debts! Use the Debt Accounts feature to track your payoff progress and see when you’ll be debt-free—all while simultaneously setting aside money for the other essential business costs.

4. Toshl Finance

Keep all of your paperwork and expenses together in the Toshl Finance app

Never worry about losing important reports again. Image courtesy of Toshl.

Toshl Finance is an app for small business owners who want to keep their expenses under control and all of their important documents in one place. You can use the app as a budget keeper, bill organizer, or an expense tracking tool. Toshl Finance can also be used to monitor expenses under the same account, filter budgets by categories, export PDFs, spreadsheets, Google Docs, and CSV reports. 

If you deal with international clients or suppliers, then there is another feature of Toshl that you’ll find appealing. The Toshl Finance app includes support for 165 currencies with real-time exchange rates. That way, you can track your expenses in any currency you deal with regularly. The app also offers cloud syncing, so you don’t have to worry about losing spending histories. Overall, the Toshl Finance app clearly displays the info providing charts, expense locations maps, graphs, and notifications through a user-friendly interface. Make sure you never lose track of your expenses using Toshl!

5. Venmo

Make payments and sales using Venmo—an already nearly universally adopted platform

More than just personal money transfers, Venmo can help you run your business. Image courtesy of Paypal.

You’ve likely heard of Venmo before, but did you know that you can use it to help run your business? Venmo offers business profiles, which allow users to accept payments for goods and services. Business profiles are built for individuals, sole proprietors, and registered businesses. When you start a business Venmo account, the account is completely separate from your personal account. This way, you can accept payments for goods and services without  any interaction from your personal payments or accounts. 

Venmo offers a lot of benefits from their business profiles including the ability to generate referrals among Venmo users, the option to add links and social media accounts to your profile, and the ability to refund customers directly from the Venmo app. Venmo is especially useful for businesses that are just starting out and need a payment processor. However, when your business begins to grow, you may need to eventually upgrade to a different platform. That said, if you are starting your business by selling products directly to customers—like at a farmers market—then Venmo is the perfect tool for your business.

If you haven’t already downloaded these apps to help you manage your business, now is the time to try them out! Starting your own business is difficult enough, so why not consult a few apps that can really make your life easier. You know more than anyone how valuable your time is as an entrepreneur, so even if these apps help you save seconds or minutes this blog will have been well worth your time!

4 Digital Marketing Strategies You Need to Grow Your Business

Find out how you can grow your business through digital marketing—plus we’ll be discussing how the right mass email plugin makes email marketing a cinch

Marketing is a constantly changing industry. Just a few years ago before 2020, marketing principles were very different. With less of a focus on physical marketing mediums, digital marketing has taken over as the primary avenue for businesses to communicate with their audience and win over new customers. Digital marketing has a few clear goals—and depending on your industry and current campaign intent you may find yourself implementing several different strategies to achieve the same goal. For example, some businesses may want to boost their conversions from their eCommerce site. Another business might want to send mass emails in Gmail to increase brand awareness and brand loyalty. No matter what your marketing goal is, you need to start by establishing a clear strategy and goal before you begin your next campaign. To help you structure your upcoming marketing campaign, we’re detailing some of the key marketing strategies you need to know as you plan your marketing campaign. Let’s get started by taking a look at email marketing and how you can find the right mass email plugin for your business. Are you ready to up your digital marketing game?

Email Marketing

Using a mass email plugin, businesses of any size can thoughtfully engage with their target audience

Mass email marketing is a low-cost and effective way to reach potential customers.

Email marketing comes in a variety of different forms. There are newsletters, abandoned cart reminders, shipping notifications, and several other methods for reaching your audience via email. Since we rely so heavily on email for our jobs and our lives outside of work, email marketing is one of the most effective digital marketing strategies out there. This is especially true for small businesses as email marketing is one of the less expensive digital marketing strategies.

To get started with email marketing, the first step is to set a goal. Are you trying to increase your conversion rate? Are you trying to update your audience with your newsletter?

Once you have used goal setting to inform the type of message you want to send, the next step is to find a mass email plugin to help you send your messages. Mass email plugins are powerful tools that allow users to design, schedule, send, and pull reports on their campaigns. In fact, without the help of a mass email tool, sending mass emails for marketing purposes is nearly impossible.

After you’ve established the why and how of sending your emails, you’re ready to take advantage of the benefits of email marketing. The average person spends more than 5 hours per day checking emails. So if you aren’t taking advantage of email marketing to reach your audience, you could be missing out on the potential for conversions and heightened brand loyalty. 

Social Media Marketing

We all use social media—which makes social media marketing one of of the most powerful tools for marketers to reach their audience

Social media ads get impressive results when shown to the right audience.

Widely used social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and TikTok have become a major part of our daily lives. That makes the advertisements we see on social media also a part of our lives. Social media marketing has quickly become one of the most lucrative, and one of the most crowded fields for digital marketing. If you choose to pursue social media marketing, there are a few decisions you need to make to decide how you want to reach your audience. The first and most common example we’ll be discussing is social media ads. Social media advertisements come in several different forms—so before you start planning you need to determine which platforms and which types of ads you intend to run. For example, a Facebook advertising campaign will look a lot different than a TikTok advertising campaign. 

More than just a change in demographics from platform to platform, the ads need to be formatted correctly and be designed to make the most out of the few seconds your audience will see the ad. Since social media posts are often only viewed for a few seconds at maximum, you must make your ad impactful and easy to read. It is also important to segment your social media ads to appeal to the right audiences. To maximize the number of views, clicks, and other observable metrics, your ads will need to be designed for each audience you want to reach. For example, you may have an ad that you run that is designed to appeal to the 18-35 demographic and another ad designed to appeal to the 35-55 demographic. These ads will then appear in the feed or story of only that demographic, ensuring that all of your ads are being delivered to their intended audience. 

Just as important as segmenting your ads, it is essential to A/B test your ads to determine how your audience responds to different marketing strategies. For example, you may want to test out different images, copy, or color choices to see which ones your audience most prefers. Once you have the data from your audience, you can use that data to improve future campaigns. 

Influencer Marketing

People are more likely to trust influencers that are experts in their field

People look to social media for product recommendations.

Influencers—whether you love them or hate them in your personal life—make great additions to any marketing campaign. For one, influencers have large followings which makes them great assets to reach hundreds or thousands of social media users at once. Influencers also have strong personal brands that give marketers insight into who might be following them. To successfully pursue influencer marketing, the first step is to find influencers that align with your brand. While the influencer does not need to focus solely on the type of product or service your business provides, it needs to make sense that the influencer is discussing the product.

For example, you wouldn’t ask a fitness influencer to promote a brand of power tools—it just doesn’t fit. Once you’ve found an influencer—or a few influencers—that you feel work well within your brand mission, you need to send them a message to discuss compensation. Depending on the size of your business and the size of the influencer’s reach, compensation differs greatly. If you are a small business looking for small influencers to promote your product, something as simple as sending a product sample is sometimes enough for the influencer to dedicate a post to your product. If you are searching for someone with a large influence, then they will likely have a pay rate that they charge for dedicated posts, stories, and any other sort of promotion.

The great thing about influencer marketing is that you can adjust your strategy based on how much you can afford to pay. If you don’t have the funds to pay a massive influencer, you can always start with a set of smaller influencers to get your name out there.

Search Engine Optimization

Improving your Google results position gives your product or service added credibility

SEO requires extensive keyword research.

Search Engine Optimization is a common buzzword that is used in marketing settings. If you haven’t previously encountered SEO marketing, the goal is pretty simple—get your site or one of your site’s pages as high up on the Google results page as possible. While the goal is simple, the process is fairly complicated and takes a lot of research to begin an effective SEO campaign.

The first step in using SEO is to conduct keyword research and assess your site against your direct competitors. As you are conducting your research you want to see how your site and your competitors’ sites appear on the Google results page for common search phrases. For example, if you run an eCommerce site that sells women’s shoes, you want to explore how you rank for phrases like “high heel shoes” or “comfortable women’s shoes.” The key is to find a keyword that your competitors are not currently using and use that phrase to boost your position on the Google results page. Using our current example of women’s shoes, there may be a phrase like “women’s shoes for weddings” that you can identify and integrate into your site copy or content.  By incorporating this keyword into your site, you can expect that customers will be able to easily find you when they search the keyword you used in your campaign.

It is also beneficial to make sure that any blog content uses these keywords in a way that feels natural and avoids keyword stuffing. This practice is called content marketing and is a branch of SEO marketing that helps businesses build their search result placement over time.

Now that we’ve covered 4 of the most important digital marketing strategies you need to know, it’s time to get started on your next campaign. Whether you are entering digital marketing for the first time or starting a new business, you can use these methods to grow your audience and create conversions.

It doesn’t matter if your business is eCommerce based or brick and mortar—digital marketing is essential to reach people where they are, and where they are is often online. Unfortunately, businesses that refuse to adopt these strategies are likely to get left behind when it comes to reaching their target audience. So, don’t get left behind! By implementing these strategies, you can start growing your audience and creating conversions using digital marketing.

4 Ways for Companies to Reach Their Sustainability Goals

Using strategies like automated building controls and limiting waste, companies can minimize their environmental impact in the near future

These days, sustainability initiatives are becoming more popular. Businesses large and small are realizing that they can both conserve energy and cut down on their monthly operating costs by introducing sustainable practices into their everyday operations. If you are someone who is tasked with initiating sustainability policies or are just searching for ways your company can become more sustainable, you’ve landed in the right place! We’re going over a few of the ways that companies can update their current operating infrastructure using building automation systems—plus we’ll be going over solutions to cut waste production and conserve our natural resources. If you are interested in finding out more about how companies are reaching their long-term sustainability goals, keep reading!

What Does Sustainability Mean?

Sustainability can be difficult to define, so we compiled a list of the most common definitions for corporate sustainability

Sustainability means we are planning for future generations.

Sustainability is difficult to define because it encompasses so many different aspects of our life and how we interact with our environment. As a baseline definition, sustainability means that something can be maintained at the same rate. This definition makes a lot of sense when we apply the term to environmental sustainability. When we talk about environmental sustainability, we are talking about ways that we can alter current practices to sustain our surrounding environments. Sustainability—in this case—also references the human ability to continue consuming natural resources in a way that won’t eliminate them in the near future. When we talk about sustainability in the context of natural resources, we are talking about the preservation of both our environment and our way of life.

Moving on to corporate sustainability, there are a few common principles that the majority of businesses follow to structure their initiatives. Companies break down their initiatives into three different pillars—environmental, social, and economic. As we discuss each solution, we’ll be referencing how it impacts the three main pillars of corporate sustainability with a special focus on environmental impact. Let’s discover a few ways that companies are working towards reaching their sustainability goals. 

Why Are Companies Searching for Sustainable Solutions?

Companies are realizing that older, unsustainable operations are harmful to both the environment and the bottom line

Conserving energy means businesses save money, too.

When it comes down to it, corporations are all about the bottom line. Only since it has become financially beneficial for companies to begin exploring sustainable practices have environmental concerns become common rhetoric among large corporations. Though the money-saving opportunities presented by environmentally sustainable practices are the top reason companies are making changes, there are several other reasons for businesses to spearhead sustainability initiatives—let’s take a closer look:

  • Sustainable practices are better for the environment
  • Environmental sustainability can be leveraged for branding purposes
  • Gives overall better working conditions in corporate buildings and offices

These three advantages—as well as cost-saving measures—are the most popular reasons why companies are searching for ways to become more sustainable. Now that we’ve covered some of the corporate sustainability basics, it’s time to dive deeper into the ways that companies are reaching their sustainability goals.

  1. Automated Building Controls

Using integrated automated building controls, businesses can conserve energy and get better insights into their operating systems

Decrease HVAC costs by introducing automation elements.

Automated building controls are one of the most powerful solutions available to companies that are trying to improve their sustainability. To take advantage of automation, companies can choose to install a building automation system (BAS) or upgrade their wireless network to establish an Internet of Things (IoT). For companies that inhabit large buildings—usually over 100,000 square feet—a BAS is a worthwhile investment despite the high cost for installation and steep learning curve. For smaller businesses, an upgraded network and assorted IoT-capable devices can provide similar automation services at a fraction of the cost. Both of these systems will be able to monitor and control different systems within a building including lighting, HVAC, plumbing, security, and more. Both applications can use sensors that report information to the building manager, adjust system outputs, and make lives easier for all inhabitants of the building. Using these building automation controls, businesses can save money on their monthly energy bills and optimize their building controls—which is why automation is gaining so much traction. Additionally, these systems can collect data and make suggestions for ways to further conserve energy and make your business environmentally sustainable. Using automated building controls, businesses can conserve up to 35% of their yearly total energy consumption.

2. Decreasing Pollution

Pollution is a major environmental concern that can be remedied by the widespread adoption of these solutions

Pollution management helps keep our surroundings clean and healthy.

The air we breathe, the water we drink, and the soil where we grow food are all subject to pollution. Companies that are currently running sustainability initiatives need to take a closer look at how they are contributing to the different types of pollution. For companies that are interested in decreasing the amount of pollution they add to the environment, there are a few solutions that can help them reach their sustainability goals. For example, companies can examine how their products or services are produced and search for ways to reduce emissions. They can also choose to cut down or stop using products that contain toxic materials that harm the environment. Companies can also limit the amount of packaging used in their products and facilities along with reusing previously disposed materials. Through these conservation efforts, businesses will be able to reduce the amount of harmful pollution they allow to enter our environments.

3. Conserving Natural Resources

To minimize their impact on the environment, companies are now searching for ways to conserve resources at their facilities

Businesses are often the biggest consumers of natural resources like water and energy.

Conserving our natural resources is one of the most important ways that we can ensure that we are living sustainably into the future. This is especially true for businesses, as commercial spaces make up just under half of all worldwide energy consumption. Because companies consume so much energy, there needs to be an effort to cut back to guarantee our futures. 

Businesses can start small by installing low-flow faucets and toilets in their restrooms. To create significant change—however—companies will need to make major changes to their operations. Examples of this include greatly reducing the amount of water used for landscaping, using automated building controls to monitor and reduce lighting output, and replacing all light sources with energy-efficient LEDs. These solutions are still just a starting point for businesses to reach sustainability. To make their businesses truly sustainable, most companies will need to halve their energy consumption.

4. Waste Minimization

Companies are making an effort to minimize the amount of waste that ends up in landfills

Waste management begins at an employee level.

As part of their sustainability goals, many companies are searching for ways to minimize their waste output. This is an excellent strategy for several reasons, the most important being that the current waste output across the world is overwhelming our landfills and oceans. For this reason, businesses are pursuing zero waste to landfill and zero waste goals. Though these initiatives may seem like they are the same, they are quite different. If a company is pursuing a zero-waste initiative, it means that the goal is to produce zero waste. On the other hand, zero waste to landfill initiatives are a bit murkier. For example, a company could claim they are working toward a zero waste to landfill initiative when they are actually sending their waste to be incinerated. Incineration not only harms the environment due to toxic chemicals dispersed in the air from the burning, but it also creates ash that ends up in a landfill anyway. To truly minimize waste, companies need to consume less and find more environmentally friendly ways to dispose of their waste—like composting. Another strategy used by companies to minimize waste is to prioritize reusable cleaning products. Many cleaning products can be washed and reused like bottles of cleaning products, towels, and gloves. By using these company-wide as an alternative to disposables, your company will be taking the first steps towards becoming sustainable.

These four solutions are just a few of the many ways that companies can take steps toward a more sustainable future. If you are in charge of your business’s environmental initiatives, then you can use our suggestions as a way to introduce potential solutions to meet your sustainability goals. To reach sustainability goals, it is likely that businesses will have to implement a combination of all of the solutions offered to really make a difference in their waste output and energy consumption. Thankfully, there are more options than ever for businesses to reach true sustainability within the next few decades.

How to Write a Compelling Cold Email: 5 Steps to Help You Send Better Cold Emails

Find out how you can write effective cold emails using your Gmail mass email tool and our tips

Sending cold emails for sales purposes has long been an effective way to garner new leads. But, that does not mean that cold emailing is stagnant or that the same rules from yesteryear still apply. These days, people are receiving more emails than ever before, meaning sales emails have to do more to stand out. If you are starting your first mass cold email campaign, then you’ve made it to the right place!

Today, we’re going to be discussing how to write the best and most compelling emails that will maximize your engagement and responses. We’re going to be taking a step-by-step look at how to optimize every element of your email and make sure that you are making the right decisions to run a successful campaign. Plus, we’re going to be going over how you can use a Gmail mass email tool to maximize your reach. Let’s get started!

What is a Cold Email?

Before we start exploring how to best utilize your Gmail mass email tool, we should define what a cold email is and what a cold email is not

Cold emails are meant to start and foster new business relationships.

If you haven’t used cold email to grow your sales leads and grow business relationships, you’re missing out! A cold email is any sales email sent to a prospected address. In layman’s terms, it means you are starting a conversation with a potential sales lead. A prospected address is an address that you have found publicly online. These addresses are what will build out your address list and allow you to send your cold emails to large groups of people at once with the help of your Gmail mass email tool. 

When you craft effective cold emails to send to these addresses, you can start building strong business relationships that will help you further your company’s mission.

How Has the Cold Email Process Changed?

Cold email best practices change all the time. Luckily, there are Gmail mass email tools to help you keep up

Prospects are more cold email savvy than ever before.

When cold email began, it was used exclusively for sales pitches. While it is still used in this way today, the purpose of cold emails has vastly expanded. Before the advent of critical assets like Gmail mass email tools, cold emails were sent as generic messages to large groups of people. As these messages flooded people’s inboxes, recipients began to recognize that these generic messages were not really intended for them, and started to report these messages as spam

So, cold emails had to evolve to stay compelling to recipients. Over the years, that target has moved considerably, making cold emails far more segmented and personalized. A lot of this development is thanks to the Gmail mass email tools that have made it far easier for companies to send out eye-catching and relevant messages. 

These days, mass cold emails are designed to feel more personal and are intended to build a relationship with a prospect—as opposed to outright selling. If you try to send a cold email using old methods, your message will likely get marked as spam. Think about it, if you received an email with an explicit sales offer as the subject line, then you are bound to assume this is a mass-produced message and mark the message as spam. As all mass cold emailers know, getting marked as spam will considerably hurt your campaign.

The way to avoid getting marked as spam is through segmentation and personalization. By segmenting your email list and using a Gmail mass email tool to automatically personalize your messages, you can start creating sales leads and building relationships with your prospects. If you want to find out how all of this works and how you can start sending better cold emails today, keep reading!

Step 1: The “From” Line

Before you start using a Gmail mass email tool to send your messages, you should first take a look at the “from” line in the message

Sometimes the most difficult part of writing a cold email is getting started.

Our first step is one of the most frequently omitted—taking time to edit the “from” line. This is an often overlooked, yet powerful strategy to build trust in your prospects. The first thing people will notice when reading an email is who the email is from. If the sender name looks like it was sent as part of a mass email blast, then it’s more likely that your message will go unopened or end up in the spam folder.

This is a tricky subject because your prospect does not know who you are, so you need to use the “from” line to make them feel comfortable. You can even edit your “from” line depending on the campaign or the campaign segment, as there may be certain groups that respond well to certain “from” lines. For general best practices, you want to make sure that you are using someone’s first name. If a recipient doesn’t see a first name, they will likely assume that they’ve received a copy & paste message sent from a corporation—not exactly a compelling first impression on your audience. You can use any combination of first name, last name, company name, or job title, but it is important to make sure that the address looks natural, friendly, and legitimate.

There is no one-size-fits-all kind of solution for your “from” line, but there are a few more things to consider before you start drafting your first cold email. Let’s take a look:

  • Consistency is Key – Make sure the “from” line matches the tone of the rest of your message.
  • Imagine You Are Receiving the Message – Write a “from” line that you would like to open.
  • Write for Your Prospects – Think about the industry or audience you are trying to target and try to predict what would cause them to trust your “from” line.

Once you’ve taken these considerations into account, it’s time to move on to the next step, your subject line!

Step 2: The Subject Line

Don’t hit “send” on your Gmail mass email tool until you’ve written a compelling subject line

Writing compelling subject lines is harder than you think.

After your prospects see who the email is from, what is the next thing they’ll assess? The subject line! Writing a compelling cold email subject line is one of the most important—if not the most important—aspects of writing a cold email that your prospects will want to open. 

Making a mistake in your subject line means that your message will most likely go unopened or end up in the spam folder. This is your chance to encourage your prospect to open the message by creating interest. But, how can you create interest in the few characters allotted for a subject line? Here are a few common rules you should keep in mind when writing your subject line for your next cold email campaign:

  • Find Value – If you want your audience to engage with your message, you can’t rely on good faith—you need to offer something. Make it clear in your subject line how your recipient can benefit from interacting with your message. 
  • Personalization – We’ve talked about personalization briefly, and we’ll discuss more later on, but for now it is important to mention that you need to personalize your subject line. When people see their name in the subject line, they are far more likely to open your message. It also shows that your email is actually for the recipient—not just for anyone. 
  • Keep it Natural – Since we all receive so many mass emails, it is easy to spot language that sounds like it is coming from a corporation—or worse, a robot. Because overly formal or choppy language is a signal of a depersonalized, mass-produced message, you need to make sure your subject line sounds like it is coming from a human. 
  • Relevance –  It doesn’t matter if you write the most compelling subject line of all time, if there is a disconnect between your subject line and message content, your message will likely get reported as spam. Writing a misleading subject line is similar to “click-bait” which is a common—and deceptive—tactic to get clicks online. However, for mass emails, it is always best to keep your message straightforward and to the point. 

Using your Gmail mass email tool, you can test your subject lines before sending all of your messages to see which ones get a higher open or reply rate. A/B testing is just one of the many powerful features included with most Gmail mass email tools. 

Step 3: Drafting Your Cold Email Introduction

Maximize your open and reply rates by writing an attention-grabbing intro to your message

Your cold email introduction can make or break your campaign.

Once you’ve come up with a compelling enough “from” line and subject line, it’s time to move on to the body of the email. When a recipient opens your message, you only have a few seconds to grab their attention and make them want to interact or reply to your message. So, before you can really get to the meat of your subject matter, you need to prime your audience with a clever and compelling introduction. Here are a few things that you need to keep in mind while you’re writing your email introduction:

  • Keep it Brief – Your email introduction should not be more than 2-3 sentences long. If your intro is too long, your prospect will likely get bored and move on to another, more enticing message in their inbox.
  • Be Specific – Just like when you are writing your subject line, it is important to directly address the recipient and let them know you know who they are. This is the point in your email where personalization is the most important. In this section you want to use a little bit of flattery, but not so much that it comes off as pandering. For example, you can include a personalized sentence about one of your prospect’s recent accomplishments. This is a good way to let them know that you know who they are, you have a specific purpose in sending your message, and you are interested in their work.
  • Don’t Overdo Personalization – Though personalization is a powerful way to gain your audience’s trust, there is a limit. You want to be selective about which personalization elements you use in your first few sentences. If you use too many personalization elements, you risk putting off your recipient—or worst of all, you might creep them out.

Now that we’ve covered your introduction, it’s time to move on to the body of your message. 

Step 4: Your Email Body

After you’ve completed your intro, it’s time to start writing your body paragraphs and testing them using your Gmail mass email tool

Be sure to get a second set of eyes to look at your copy before hitting the send button.

Now that you’ve used all of your best tactics to grab your audience’s attention, it’s time to move on to the body of the email. This is where you make your pitch, but be careful—people can still click out of your message if they feel that your message is too aggressive, too corporate, or they feel that it isn’t relevant enough. Let’s examine a few ways that you can make sure that your email body gets your point across, without putting off your prospect.

  • Don’t “Sell” too Hard – As we’ve been discussing, people are more adept than ever at identifying when you’re coming on too strong. Prospects will be immediately skeptical if you are too insistent that they respond to your message or visit your website. To create sales copy that doesn’t come off obviously as sales copy, imagine that you are asking a friend for a favor. You are communicating the desired action, but not in a way that seems pushy or like you are a salesperson going door to door.
  • Focus on the Prospect – When writing your body for your cold email, it can be tempting to focus on everything that your company has to offer. However, this can quickly become a sales pitch, which is not a good way to start a relationship with your audience. Instead, you need to focus on how they will benefit from clicking or responding. Remember to focus on how they stand to benefit, as opposed to bragging about your product or service.

As always, the tone and style of the message body must match the subject line and introduction. If you have trouble assessing your own writing, it is helpful to get a second set of eyes to assess if the body paragraphs match with other elements of the message.

Step 5: Your Call to Action

The last step before you hit send on your Gmail mass email tool is to write a clear and concise call to action

Use your Gmail mass email service to test out your call to action.

Now that we’ve taken care of the “from” line, subject line, intro, and body of your cold email, it’s time to talk about the call to action. Your call to action will express exactly what you want your prospect to do. Depending on your industry and the intent of your campaign, there are a lot of different actions you can encourage your audience to take. For example, you might want your audience to visit your website, download your app, give you feedback, schedule a meeting, or some other action. Though there are endless possibilities for what your call to action might be, there are a few tried and true rules to follow:

  • Keep it Brief –  Your call to action should not be more than a sentence.
  • Make it Clear – At all costs, avoid vague language when writing your call to action. It is super important to be as direct as possible so your recipients know what to do after they’ve read through your message.
  • Consider Time – Make sure that your call to action is something that can be done quickly. If your call to action seems like it will take a long time to complete, you may not get the results you want.
  • Make it Easy – Your call to action should not be difficult or confusing to complete. After all, when people check their email, they are usually only able to devote a few seconds per message. So, when writing your call to action, make sure that you aren’t asking too much of your audience.

Just like you did with your subject lines, you can A/B test different calls to action by using your Gmail mass email tool. By testing, you can feel confident that you are sending the most effective message possible. After all, cold emailing is all about getting positive engagement! So, to avoid wasting time, we recommend testing different parts of your email to make sure you are sending out the best option possible.

We hope you feel more confident writing cold emails! Remember, cold emails are not an exact science and it could take a few tries before you really hit the mark. Luckily, we have Gmail mass email tools to help improve each campaign. Good luck and happy emailing!

Topic – Offshore Outsourcing – Definition and Benefits

Offshore outsourcing is the process of hiring a vendor outside the company to perform certain business functions, such as manufacturing, in an offshore location. Although offshore outsourcing generally refers to a company contracting with another entity across national borders, it can also refer to hiring within your own country but outside of your corporate structure or local area.

Although, Offshoring vs outsourcing comes with two different approaches to software development, offshore outsourcing is the best of both where a company hires a service provider in another country to perform business functions for them. This could be anything from database management to customer support. Some common examples include Indian software development centres for U.S. companies and Chinese manufacturing plants for U.S.-based retailers and distributors.

Outsourcing is often less expensive than having employees perform the same work in-house, although this depends on many factors, including the nature of the product or service being outsourced and the current economic conditions of both countries where the work will be performed and where it will be used.

Top Five Benefits of Offshore Outsourcing

Companies can benefit from offshore outsourcing by shifting time-consuming and expensive functions, such as accounting or payroll management, outside their own offices so they can focus their attention and resources on core competencies. The following are some of the benefits that companies may realise from offshore outsourcing:

Cost savings

The most common reason cited for offshore outsourcing is cost savings. Manufacturing costs overseas are typically much lower than those in the United States. For example, a company that manufactures goods in China may pay $1 per hour for labor compared with $20 per hour in the United States. Even when these cost savings are shared with an offshore outsourcer, significant savings may still be generated.

Turn Fixed Costs into Variable Costs

One of the primary benefits of offshore outsourcing is that it can turn fixed costs into variable costs. In other words, you can hire more people when you need them and let go of them when you don’t. That’s a big advantage in terms of flexibility, especially if you’re worried about the uncertain future of your business or industry.

A business owner is able to shift fixed costs into variable costs which means that he/she will only be paying for the results. The company will no longer need to invest in capital equipment needed for an operation but can instead pay for their services when needed. This allows them to save a significant amount of money, which can then be used for other purposes such as expansion or marketing campaigns. It also reduces the risk of failure because there will no longer be any capital investment required.

Focus on core business activities 

Outsourcing can help a company stay focused on core business activities because they do not have to worry about anything else. When you outsource non-core functions, you are allowing your employees to focus on their jobs and not have to worry about other things that might distract them from what they should be doing. This means that productivity levels will increase since people are doing what they are supposed to do.

Offshore outsourcing frees up your time so you can give more attention to your core business that makes a difference to your bottom line, such as developing new products or services, strengthening relationships with customers, and managing employees more effectively.

Access to global talent pool 

Offshore outsourcing also gives you access to more talent. You can hire people with skills that aren’t available locally or find people with specific language skills for projects that require them. You might even find people who are willing to work for less money, but who are more talented than their local counterparts. 

Outsourcing companies have the ability to tap into a larger talent pool than their onshore counterparts. This is because there are many highly qualified individuals living throughout the world who are unable to find jobs in their own countries. These individuals have the same level of experience and expertise as onshore employees but are able to perform tasks for a fraction of the cost. 

Outsourcing companies can also use freelancers who work remotely for various clients around the world. Freelancers provide even more flexibility to teams by allowing them to add additional resources when needed without worrying about project constraints and deadlines.

Increased efficiency 

One of the most common benefits of offshore outsourcing is increased efficiency. This can happen in a number of ways. 

In some cases, outsourcing allows companies to focus on their core competencies. Core competencies are an organisation’s strengths. For example, a company that designs software may not want to spend the time and money to create its own customer service department to handle technical support calls. Instead, it can outsource this responsibility. This frees the company up to focus on its business goals and core competencies while still providing service to its customers.

In other cases, outsourcing can increase efficiency because it takes advantage of economies of scale (the quantity discounts that come from mass production). Manufacturers often work with external suppliers who sell the raw materials needed for production at a lower cost than if the manufacturer had to produce them itself. 

And sometimes companies outsource tasks because they don’t have the expertise in-house or because they want to take advantage of new technologies that outside firms provide. Often these technologies are founded on innovations made by companies whose sole purpose is researching and developing new tools and processes.

Takeaway 

There’s no doubt that offshore outsourcing has many benefits. It can help companies achieve their goal of saving time and money while achieving the same results. But before going to such extremes, it would be wise to investigate the pros and cons carefully so that the option is a win-win for your business.

If you’re a company considering offshore outsourcing, it’s very important to conduct proper due diligence and research. The key to a successful outsourced project is effective communication, clear objectives, and open follow-through from your potential supplier. Without these three things, you run the risk of losing money, time and ultimately faith in your supplier.

What is a Green Office Building?

Find out how green office buildings save energy with building automation controls and several other key environmentally responsible features

Building green isn’t just about aesthetics, it is something that can help us build better communities.

If you’ve entered a newly built office building or museum recently, there is a good chance you’ve noticed a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification near the entrance. LEED certifications represent the efforts of the architects, builders, and occupants to make the building as environmentally sustainable as possible. In order to receive a LEED certification, they have to minimize energy and water usage in order to prevent wasteful consumption. 

There are several ways to accomplish these goals for large scale construction projects including responsible sourcing materials, indoor air quality, and water & lighting control systems. If you’re curious about what makes a “Green” building worthy of LEED certification, keep reading!

Why Are Green Building Important for the Future of Responsible Urban Design

Learn about the benefits of building automation controls and green design for cities across the globe

Building green isnt just about aesthetics, it is something that can help us build better communities.

Green buildings have become the most popular options for large buildings for a few reasons. First, sustainability is essential to keep our planet running and is it important to conserve resources wherever possible. It is also fiscally responsible to build green buildings, as they have lower energy costs, maintenance costs, and provide better indoor environments for employers and employees. 

Another reason that green offices are so important is due to current human migration trends. Today, more people are living in cities than ever before. Long gone are the days of ever expanding suburbs. In fact, by 2050 it is estimated that 68% of the world’s population will live in cities. As more people flock to cities for better job prospects, public transportation, and other amenities, green urban design becomes a critical element of future infrastructure.

What Makes a Building Green?

In order to find out if a building is green or not, you need to consult the LEED certification, which measures building automation controls among  several other factors

Incorporating the local environment into the design and construction process is essential.

We’ve discussed what makes green building design so important, but what are the individual factors that make a green building? According to LEED, there are 8 key factors that each need to be considered before any certification is awarded. 

In order to be initially considered, the building must assist in maintaining or improving quality of life in the local area and achieve a high level of efficiency. If these requirements are met, then LEED will look at the following 8 key metrics to determine whether the building is truly sustainable. Let’s take a look at what goes into designing and constructing a green building. 

  1. Transportation

A robust public transportation system is the key to any sustainable city. In order to be LEED certified, the building must have access to a transportation network. Not only is it more sustainable to ride public transportation than it is to travel in a personal vehicle, the building will also require fewer parking spaces. Fewer parking spaces means less wasted area dedicated to fossil fuel consumption.

  1. Location

Choosing a location that fits with your local community is one of the most important parts of green construction. If the building is disruptive to the local environment, it will not be considered for LEED certification.

  1. Water

Using building automation controls, energy efficient buildings can drastically reduce average water consumption. It is also essential to closely monitor water consumption during the construction process.

  1. Energy

In addition to conserving water, building automation controls are also essential for saving  energy for lighting, HVAC and other necessary building operations.

  1. Materials

To ensure a sustainable construction, all materials used must be ethically and responsibly sourced.

  1. Indoor Environment

Though it is most important that the building makes a minimal impact on the environment, the indoor environment is also considered for LEED certification. These metrics include indoor air quality, indoor noise pollution, lighting quality and any other design element with a positive impact on the inhabitants of the building. This is another opportunity to mention how building automation controls contribute to a high quality LEED certification — when these systems operate efficiently and automatically it leads to a higher quality of life inside the building.

  1. Innovation

One of the more subjective elements of LEED certification is design innovation. Every year, architects and project managers make developments in sustainable design and LEED believes it is important to keep pace with these innovations.

  1. Local Impact

A building is not truly sustainable unless it directly benefits the local community. Local impact is a major factor in LEED certification. Too often buildings are constructed with little to no concern for the surrounding community. In an effort to encourage more responsible city planning and construction practices, LEED takes community impact seriously when issuing certifications.
Stil curious about LEED certification and what it takes to build sustainable communities? You can learn more from their website or take a look at some of the world’s most sustainable buildings. When we take our environment, surrounding areas, and energy consumption seriously, we build better and more responsible communities.

Securing That Essential First Impression For Your Brand

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It sounds quite limiting to say, but first impressions matter. Sure, you can always reimpose a new impression after the fact if given a chance, but you’re not always given that chance to do so. While you may not like someone at first, repeated exposure to them may help you realize you judged too hastily.

But it’s true that the first impression a house gives can secure an impression of its overall valuation, a first date will be unlikely to make it to the second if a first impression isn’t secured at least half-positively, and of course, potential customers seeming unimpressed by a brand can totally limit it’s potential moving forward.

As you can see, then, securing that essential first impression is not necessarily just a good marketing move, but an essential business strategy. But how can you achieve this? Well, this process means much more than just being flashy with your marketing material. In this post, we’ll discuss how to substantiate such a need, and how your business can benefit as a result:

Careful Copywriting

Many people think that copywriting is an easy process. After all, you just need to express something with a few positive adjectives and you’re golden, right? Well, not necessarily. Carefully and consistently explaining your product or service with brevity takes skill, and is often best handed by the guided insight of a writing professional. This way, you can explain your service tiers, your unique delivery packaging, or your brand on social media with brevity. This can help people understand what you offer before they form their first impression – immediately allowing them to have all the facts before that natural judgment comes into play.

Marketing Delivery

The format by which you deliver your marketing also makes a massive difference regarding its overall success. For instance, using the best shopper marketing agency can help you more accurately understand and deliver immediate marketing to those who may be ready to make that immediate purchase, increasing the worthwhile sense of demand, FOMO, and natural interest to cultivate awareness and immediate interest in what you have to offer. Depending on the product, marketing form can differ also. For instance, there’s a reason why fragrance and designer sunglasses ads litter the pages of magazines like GQ – it’s all about correct placement, and the theme you nest in.

Convenience & Clarity

The easier you make your presentation to potential clients or customers, the more likely they’ll look at you with hidden gratitude, because not only did you not waste their time, but you attempted to help them become familiar almost instantly. For instance, instead of listing all of your services on the front page of your website, what are your most popular options? How does your booking form work, or could it be that your landing page shows a tier list of how to book projects with your brand there and then? Convenience is king, especially online.

With this advice, you’ll be sure to secure that essential first impression for your brand going forward.

How to Improve your Employee Morale and Teamworking Abilities

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They say that teamwork makes the dream work. At the end of the day though, people do have different points of view and they also have very different working histories. When you are bringing groups of people together, you have to remember that there is bound to be a bit of tension at times. That being said, there are ways for you to improve this. Want to find out more? Take a look below.

Know your Goals

People who work in teams are often trying to work towards a common goal. At the same time though, every individual in your team may have personal goals that they are trying to reach. They also have goals that they want to be responsible for. If you want to make sure that they do not fall through the cracks, then you need to help your team to accomplish their goals and you also need to make sure that you are doing your bit to help them with the bigger picture within the company. If you can help your team with this, then they will really help you in return with achieving the corporate goals that you have.

Clarify your Role

If you have a team then you should make sure that everyone understands their role and their responsibilities. If you can put the work in to make sure that they understand this, then you can stop everyone from overstepping any boundaries. You also need to make sure that everyone understands each other’s role too. Trust is a very important factor when it comes to your team and the way that they work together. If one person is responsible for making payments, then your team need to not only know that this is their role, but that they are going to fulfil their responsibility properly and on time. If you do not ensure that this is the case then you may have people who know the responsibilities of others, but who take it upon themselves to do it anyway purely because they can’t guarantee it’ll get done otherwise.

Positive Mindset

Every single thing that you do will come down to your mindset. If you can help to foster a very positive and caring environment, then this will help to promote positive mindsets overall. When problems arise, people have to feel as though they are empowered to solve them. A positive mindset also helps people to feel as though they can handle anything that comes their way. If you want to foster a positive mindset for your team then you need to try and give them support when they have issues or questions. You also need to encourage collaborative talking and create an environment where no opinion is invalid. If you can do this, then you will help your team more than you realize.

Manage your Time Properly

If you have a team then you may find that the job of one person may well rely on the job of another. It is important that you practice time management and that you also communicate what you want in terms of deadlines as well. If you can do this, then you will soon find that you are able to get the best result out of everyone’s working day.

Share your Enthusiasm

Everyone feels way better when they receive positive feedback. It is super important to celebrate achievements as well as accomplishments. If you do not show your team how much you appreciate their work and if you do not get them motivated and driven regarding projects, then this will certainly work against you. By showing your team that you care, you will soon see that they perform better. You may even find that they are more likely to stay with your business rather than seeking employment elsewhere too, so keep that in mind if you can.

Workout

Another way for you to build your team would be for you to focus on outside activities. You may want to try and encourage your team to workout together or to even take part in various teambuilding activities. If you can do this, then you can help them to build their bond with one another and you can also encourage a very supportive network. If you do not feel as though you are able to motivate your team in this way, then why not give them some perks? This could include giving them a free gym membership when they have been with your company for a year or even starting a corporate sports team. If you know that your team are always looking up NHL odds online, then starting a corporate hockey team could be a good idea. Either way, if you can dig deep into your team’s interests, then this will help you more than you realize.

Celebrate Wins

It is also very important that you celebrate wins where possible. You need to try and make sure that your team know that they are supported and that you notice the wins that they have. It may be that you have an employee of the month award where the winner ends up getting a free day at the spa. You might also want to give out hand-written notes to congratulate members of your team for closing a huge deal. If you can do this then you will soon find that you are able to get the best result out of your team while also boosting morale. A bit of friendly competition doesn’t hurt and it may even boost your sales too.

Of course, there are many things that you can do to try and rocket your team’s potential and if you follow this guide then you will soon find that it is easier than ever for you to get the best result out of your team while bringing everyone closer together. This is especially important if you have new hires who have recently joined your business or if you are undergoing rapid expansion and want to make sure that your team are working well with one another.

Get Ahead Of Your Competitors With These Digital Marketing Tips

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Do you have the feeling that you are trailing behind your industry rivals? You know you need to discover a means to get ahead by understanding meaningful Charleston digital marketing, but you do not know where to begin.

It is pretty simple to fall into this category as a small business owner. But, unfortunately, you do not have the personnel or the finances to recruit a team of strategists who are up to date on all of the latest digital marketing methods and know-how to implement them.

However, this does not rule out the possibility of becoming a powerhouse on your own and leapfrogging your competitors in the process. Knowledge is a powerful weapon, so if you can spare some time to brush up on your skills and learn the latest tricks, you will be in a better position to pick up your weapons and use them against your competitors.

Here, we will look at some of the most effective digital marketing strategies to help you stay one step ahead of your competitors.

Do not try to juggle too many tasks at once.

It can be tempting to throw caution to the wind and attempt to achieve everything at once. After all, you are attempting to reach the most number of individuals possible, right? In other words, you have set up Google AdWords pay-per-click (PPC) advertisements, created accounts on all of the major social networking sites, began working on search engine optimization, created content, and are in the process of implementing an email newsletter.

Your energy has been depleted, and you have been spreading your efforts too thinly.

Rather than attempting to do everything at once, choose one or two things to focus on at a time. Not only will you avoid burning yourself out, but you will also have a greater understanding of what is working and what is not in your business. You want to maintain a high level of consistency.

Make a name for yourself on social media.

There is no doubt that social media will continue to exist. The majority of the American citizens – more than 3/4 of them – are active on at least one social media platform.

Going from nothing to becoming everywhere, on the other hand, is just as futile.

You must spend some time considering your target demographic and the social media networks they are most likely to be active on, and then begin by concentrating your efforts on those networks. 

If your target audience is just not present on a social media platform, there is no use in wasting your time and effort.

Marketing using influencers
Influencer marketing is a relatively new strategy in digital marketing, having only emerged in the last few years. However, it has the potential to be one of the most effective. Rather than directly marketing to your target audience, you pay or persuade essential people in your niche to spread the word about you and your business on their social media platforms.

Three Ideas For A Second Income

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Quick, money-making ideas that appear on a regular basis. Are they effective? Not at all. Will you be able to profit from it? Maaaybe. However, your 9-to-5 job would most likely pay you more money. At the very least, you’ll have a steady income.

The truth is that there are legitimate ways to earn money online, and millions of individuals do so every day. There are many of business ideas you may attempt at home utilising your laptop and a reliable internet connection, from freelance digital nomads to savvy marketers to aspiring entrepreneurs. Let’s take a look at how to make money online the right way.

Begin Dropshipping Today

Let’s begin with one of the most common methods for making money online. Dropshipping’s popularity is steadily expanding, according to Google Trends, demonstrating its feasibility as a means to generate money online. There’s plenty of proof that dropshipping is a viable method to make money online, with success stories like how an entrepreneur made $6,667 in eight weeks or how a store owner made six figures selling just one product.

Affiliate Marketing 

One of the most common ways to generate money online is through affiliate marketing. Its popularity has risen and fallen over the years, but it remains to be a reliable way to earn money online. The wonderful aspect about affiliate marketing is that you can work for almost any brand, from Shopify to Amazon to Uber to FabFitFun, as an associate. Click here to take a look at Amazon. 

Affiliate marketing allows you to make money by promoting other people’s products. You can earn a commission from sales by marketing retail products, software, apps, and more if you’re a skilled marketer. While a little commission may appear insignificant, remember that you may be an affiliate for multiple brands and include multiple affiliate links in a single blog post.

If you truly want to make money with affiliate marketing online, you should concentrate on content marketing. By creating a blog with numerous pages of high-quality content, you’ve effectively created an asset that you can claim. The nice aspect of concentrating on content marketing is that if an affiliate programme closes, you can swap your affiliate link to a competitor without losing money from your side job.

Online Course Design

Educating others is a great method to earn money online. Experts can monetise their knowledge by creating online courses. In order to sell your course, you may either use Udemy or create your own website. Online courses can yield up to $5,000 per month for some.

For a popular and successful course, you should watch previous courses on the subject. Examine the reviews. What do people like and dislike about it? How can you improve on what has already been created? Focus on developing content that addresses major issues while imitating favourable features.

Selling your course on a platform that makes money is important. You don’t need to promote your course on Udemy. It’s nearly set and forgets. Promote it on blogs or your site. If you host the course on your website, you may wish to run adverts to promote it. Build an email list to promote future courses to the same target.

These should help you start earning a secondary income. Do you have any others that could help? Please share them in the comments below.