RoboForm

RoboForm

RoboForm  is a password management system.  

  • It is available on all platforms.
  • Join for $9 for the first year.  The price goes up to $29 per year after that.  
  • RoboForm Everywhere is the version that synchs with all platforms.  

Some days, I feel so unproductive.  It seems all that I do is login with ID’s and passwords all day.

I remember the days before I used Roboform to manage my passwords.  I used a combination of a little password-protected javascript app called Pocket, an Excel spreadsheet, or Word document (MS Office applications do have the ability to set a password).

Google Chrome was one of the first browsers to save your passwords for every site that required a login and password (Internet Explorer had the same capability but it was ridden with bugs and anomalies).

The problem was sharing those password keepers among multiple browsers on the same machine, and the various browsers and apps on other devices (at the time, I had 2 laptops, a Windows server, a Linux server, an iPad, an Android tablet, and an Android smartphone).  Roboform had come out with an Everywhere option, and I could not wait to sign up.

I guess you wonder how something that is accessible from the web, as a plug-in to multiple browsers, available as apps on multiple platforms can be safe.  Well, it is as long as you set a Master Password.

This is what I consider an absolutely REQUIRED TOOL for your toolkit.  Anyone who does business on the internet knows the frustration of keeping track of all the userid’s, passwords, bookmarks, etc.  

With any respectable inventory of safelists and traffic exchanges, you could have literally thousands of logins and passwords  Roboform detects when you are answering a login prompt, and will record the pertinent information.

Check out the video

Here is the link for Roboform

 

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Copyright (c) 2016 Richard Moyer

Google Tools

Google Tools
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For many normal daily functions I use free Google tools.  Google has help videos for all of them.

  • Drive – free cloud storage.  Can be shared

  • Docs – MS-Word compatible word processor. Open, edit, and create documents

  • Sheets – MS-Excel compatible spreadsheet.  Open, edit, and create spreadsheets

  • Slides – MS-Powerpoint compatible presentation tool.  Open, edit, and create presentations

  • Hangouts – conference/webinar/screen sharing.  I also use for remote support

  • Calendar – multi-platform calendar.  Smartphone or tablet apps synch with web version

  • Contacts – Smartphone or tablet apps synch with web version

  • Tasks – nice simple task manager – I have multiple task lists

  • YouTube – yes, this is a Google app

  • Forms – Build free surveys

  • Drawings – Create diagrams and flow charts

  • Sites – Create websites and secure group wikis

  • Voice – One number for all your phones, online voicemail and cheap calling

  • Keep – Evernote-like note/checklist tool – I use this for grocery/shopping lists on my phone

Tutorial: Create a Filter With Gmail

If you are using safelists and traffic exchanges, your inbox gets jammed with messages.  I organize my Gmail account by creating a filter that skips the inbox and stores those messages in a Gmail label (or folder).

Tutorial: Use GMAIL Labs to create Canned Responses for your Welcome Messages

I get 20-50 new leads per day from the various landing pages I publish.  My policy is that when someone has shown enough interest to sign up for my list, whether it be for a newsletter, a particular product or service, or simply from curiosity, I want them to get a message from my PERSONAL EMAIL welcoming them, telling a little about me, a little about the program they subscribed to, and some free resources to help them in THEIR business. If I had to create this from scratch every time, it would be very time consuming.

GMAIL has “Labs” – add-ons you can use go provided features and functions over and above the normal, robust Gmail features.  These come from various sources but are approved by the Google Watchdogs.

Get to Labs by clicking the “Gear” and then select “Settings”.  Find the section called “Labs” on the top menu.  Click the Enable or Disable radio button, and Save Changes.

 

With the particular Lab called Canned Responses, the make it very easy.   Simply compose a message as though you were sending a new email.  Enter a subject line (which will become the title of the canned response message), the pull up the mini-menu at the lower right corner.  Scroll down until you see in italics “Save New Canned Response”.

Done!

To use it, compose a new message, pull up the mini-menu and select the canned response message you want to copy into your new message from the list.


Google Voice Voicemail Recording Setup

Google is just packed with goodies – you need to start using.  They are free, easy to use, and can make a huge difference in your business.

Google Voice is one of those sleepers.  Not only can you make outgoing calls for FREE but it has a full featured voicemail that you can use to make a recorded message for providing information about your business.

The COOL thing about Google Voice, is that when someone calls your phone number, you are notified of the CALLER-ID.  When someone leaves a message, Google will transcribe that voicemail message into an email or text message you can retrieve using your smartphone or tablet!

I recommend writing out your SCRIPT, testing it for length, then PRACTICE SAYING YOUR SCRIPT until you don’t have to think about it – it just becomes a natural extension of YOU.  Your ELEVATOR SPEECH!

I have several Google Voice accounts – one for my VStreamTV Media Center business, and another for my Consulting company. 

My office phone has similar features and is provided through Comcast (that I pay a hefty fee for).  I get transcribed messages from that voicemail also when the line switches to voicemail after business hours.  But getting these features for free at Google Voice has saved me from having to upgrade my Comcast business package for additional lines.

Everybody that has done SEO thinks of Google as the big bad ogre:    Consider this:  They DO  have some really COOL STUFF you can use FOR FREE!



Using Google Tools To Organize 

 

 


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Copyright (c) 2016 Richard Moyer

Basic Tools and Organization

Basic Tools and Organization

If You Haven’t Seen Today’s Update, View It Here!

One of the biggest failures of new entrepreneurs, besides record-keeping, is organization.

I hear some old-school guys (who are even technical wizards), that they take notes using pencil and paper.  Sorry, but I left my fossils behind.  I have subscribed kicking and screaming to the digital age.

There is no right or wrong, but I can pass on what I do, what works for me, and you are free to follow that, or come up with something on your own. Something you should know: I am a POWER USER of everything I touch.   I USE WHAT I SELL,and sometimes sell what I use.

Let’s Start with your Business Plan

The collective groan I’m hearing from the crowd is why the Business Plan was moved to Section 3.  Don’t think that I feel it is not important.  Actually, quite the opposite.  It’s just that I agreed to move it here because the feedback was received loud and clear that I should lead off with the two DYNAMITE Business Opportunities: 

  • Skinny Body Care is the hottest product line out there right now and will move into the now vacant Section 1.  I would be remiss if I did not present this to you.  As I said, I USE WHAT I SELL.  I am not only a CUSTOMER but a Gold Level Reseller.     Here is my genealogy summary:

  • Lead System Network is a complete Premium Suite of essential Business Marketing tools that remains in Step 2.  Feedback received from my subscribers reinforced the early planning suggestion that we LEAD with a KILLER Product, then provide a platform to MARKET that product, or anything else for that matter.   LSN is the technology THIS system is built on.  LSN has matured greatly since 1.0, and the capabilities of LSN 2.0 are OUTSTANDING!  A perfect complement:  SBC + LSN


It also makes sense to START with a PLAN before assembling a toolbox with which to build and maintain what we built.  Kinda like, you bring in an architect before starting to dig your foundations and order building materials.  Yeh.  Like That!

Check out the video first…

Now, here is the link to get your Business Plan under way.  


Essential Tools  (each has their own Resources Page)

  • Google Tools (free) – I use virtually all, but my absolute necessities are Gmail, Calendar, Contacts, Tasks.

  • Microsoft Office – Word, Excel, PowerPoint

  • RoboForm – Password management synchs with all platforms.  Join for $9 for first year.

  • EverNote – Free.  This is where I store all of my ready-to-go ad copy

  • DropBox – Free.  Secure Cloud Storage that synchs with all platforms. Drop and Drag with Windows Explorer,  Handy for sharing with others

  • Viral Mail Profits – Ad organizer and scheduler. Cuts your promotion time significantly.  Free to join but upgrade to Silver is recommended

  • Referral Frenzy – 91+ traffic sources. Cuts your promotion time significantly. Absolutely WORTH it!

  • JitBit Autotext – Multiple clipboards. Save and create keyboard shortcuts for common things you type over and over.

  • Down Line Builder Caddy – builds a database of your referral IDs and URLs and quickly captures and updates downline builders on safelists and TAEs.   I have blog dedicated to DLB Caddy, so rather than re-inventing the wheel, I will refer you to that blog page, Why use Downline Builders?  There is no affiliate program.

  • Screencast-O-Matic – video creation software

  • Filezilla – FTP tool – absolute necessity

  • Accounting Software – Quicken or QuickBooks for business accounting, but a spreadsheet will suffice when first starting out.

  • Microsoft Windows Accessories
    • Paint – Graphical editor included with every version of Windows
    • Snipping Tool – Screen Capture tool included with every version of Windows
    • WordPad or Notebook – Simple text editing tools included with every version of Windows
    • Speech Recognition – Allows you to “dictate” – after it is “trained” to your voice, it gets better every time you use it.

  • 7-Zip – Archival/Extraction tool for Zip format files and other archive formats

  • Antivirus – NEVER go on the internet WITHOUT antivirus!

  • MalwareBytes – anti-malware plugin for Chrome and Firefox

  • Backup and Recovery – Not If, but When.  Hardware fails.

  • MLM Recruit On Demand – Overcome your fear of Telephone Sales with $15 Lifetime program that has the best Telephone Sales training that I’ve found.

 

Other Organizational Resources – eBooks and References


 

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Copyright (c) 2016 Richard Moyer

Business Plan Resources

Business Plan Resources

Software from Amazon.com (click on the image- you will be taken to the Order Page)

Microsoft Office 2016 helps you to do your best work – anywhere, anytime and with anyone. New, modern versions of the classic desktop applications, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote, are built for maximum productivity. You’ll quickly produce professional documents with rich authoring features, design controls for pixel-perfect layouts and intuitive tools to help you make the most of your data. You’ll have access to your docs in the cloud whenever you need them. With your documents stored online, it’s easy to get your team on the same page. Share, present and work together on projects with built in team collaboration tools across the suite.
  QuickBooks Online Simple Start Small Business Accounting is easy to setup and personalized for your business. Get paid fast by sending online invoices. Reduce manual data entry errors by automatically downloading transactions from your bank and credit card accounts. Access 20+ insightful built-in reports to understand the health of your business. Manage your business on the go by accessing QuickBooks anywhere, anytime on any device. Expand your QuickBooks functionality by easily syncing with 350+ apps. Seamlessly collaborate with your accountant to make tax time a snap. Live US based phone support at any cost.
  Quicken Home & Business Personal Finance & Budgeting Software organizes your personal and business finances, all in one place. Shows your profit and loss at a glance. Identifies tax-deductible business expenses. Creates Schedule C reports to simplify taxes. Access your personal finance data on the go and make smart money management decisions with free Quicken mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android devices. Includes snap & store receipts. Securely imports bank transactions through April 2019. New! Bill Center ­ see, track, and pay your bills all in one place.

 

Books from Amazon.com (click on the image- you will be taken to the Order Page)

Would you take off on a road trip to a new destination without a map or good directions? Probably not. Yet, sometimes business owners go full speed ahead without even having a destination in mind, much less a map on how to get there. That’s why so many businesses never make it. In today’s competitive marketplace, 3/4 of all new businesses fail within two to three years. Whether you’re launching a new business or working to strengthen or expand an established one, a business plan is your road map to success.Business Plans For Dummies, 2nd Edition helps you keep your businesses on track and reach your goals. Written by Paul Tiffany, PhD, professor at UC Berkeley Haas Business School and the Wharton School of Business and Steven Peterson, PhD, Professor at UC Berkeley Haas Business School and CEO of Strategic Play, it helps you

  • Realistically determine where your business is and where you want to go
  • Create a detailed business plan and put it into action instead of in a drawer
  • Use the plan to secure financing
  • Prepare for opportunities avoid common pitfalls

In short, Business Plans for Dummies helps you determine where you want your business to go and create a map for getting there. You’ll discover how to:

  • Identify and approach potential financial backers, including venture capital firms, angels, bankers, and others
  • Clarify and crystallize your company’s mission, vision, and values
  • Analyze your industry and your competition
  • Identify your customers, including their needs, habits, purchase triggers, and decision-making processes
  • Objectively analyze your company’s strengths and weaknesses
  • Analyze your financial situation in order to do realistic forecasts and budgets
  • Recognize trends and anticipate changes, both in the overall economy and in your industry
  • Plan for growth, considering the product life cycle, new products, or new markets
  • Structure your organization and nurture leadership

Complete with diverse techniques and approaches plus a sample business plan, Business Plans For Dummies gives you detailed how-to for designing a dynamic, business plan that will keep you on course in spite of the inevitable curves and detours in today’s marketplace. It’s a plantastic resource for business owners and entrepreneurs.

Discover the ins and outs of constructing a winning business planWhen you’re establishing, expanding, or re-energizing a business, the best place to start is with your business plan. Whether you want start–up money from investors or are looking to expand or re-energize your business, a business plan will give you a defined road map to help you get your business moving.

Business Plans Kit For Dummies, 4th Edition has been updated to give you the very latest information on today’s current economy and its impact on business plans; dealing with venture capitalists; getting start-up money in any economy; incorporating social and ecological responsibility issues; and developing a plan conducive to marketplace changes and advancements.

  • Refreshed examples and data sources for planning
  • Updated “ten top plans” section
  • CD includes new forms, worksheets, and resources

If you’re a small business owner, investor, or entrepreneur looking for expert guidance and friendly tips on developing and implementing a strategic plan to help your business succeed in any economy, Business Plans Kit For Dummies has you covered!

Note: CD-ROM/DVD and other supplementary materials are not included as part of the e-book file, but are available for download after purchase.

Everything you need to know to design a profitable business planWhether you’re starting a new business or you’ve been trading for a while, Creating a Business Plan For Dummies covers everything you need to know. Figure out whether your business idea is likely to work, how to identify your strategic advantage, and what you can do to gain an edge on the competition. Discover why a business plan doesn’t have to be a thirty-page document that takes days to write, but can be a simple process that you do in stages as you work through your business concept. Learn how to prepare an elevator pitch, create a start-up budget, and create realistic sales projections. Discover how to predict and manage expenses, and assemble a financial forecast that enables you to calculate your break-even. Look at the risk involved in this business and experiment with different scenarios to see if you’re on the right track.

  • Explains how to create a one-page business plan in just a few hours
  • Takes a simple step-by-step approach, focusing on budgets, financials, and everyday practicalities
  • Offers focused guidance on managing cashflow, designing marketing plans, and establishing a long-term vision for your business
  • Includes access to downloadable templates and worksheets, as well as helpful online audio and video components
  • Written by Veechi Curtis, bestselling author and business consultant

A good business plan is the first step to success for any new business, and getting it right can mean the difference between big profits and big trouble. Creating a Business Plan For Dummies gives you the detailed advice you need to design a great business plan that will guide your business from concept to reality.

Hardware from Amazon.com (click on the image- you will be taken to the Order Page)

Dell Laptop
15.6″ touch screen for hands-on control

Typical 1366 x 768 HD resolution. Natural finger-touch navigation makes the most of Windows 10. LED backlight.

5th Gen Intel Core i7-5500U mobile processor
Ultra-low-voltage platform. Dual-core processing performance. Intel Turbo Boost Technology delivers dynamic extra power when you need it.

Built-in stereo speakers
Waves MaxxAudio is tuned to give you great sound across music, movies, voice and games.

Weighs 4.85 lbs. and measures 0.8″ thin
Balances portability and screen size, so you get a respectable amount of viewing space without the laptop being too cumbersome for practical portability. 3-cell lithium battery.

Bluetooth 4.0 interface syncs with compatible devices
Wirelessly transfer photos, music and other media between the desktop and your Bluetooth-enabled cell phone or MP3 player, or connect Bluetooth wireless accessories.

2 USB 3.0 ports maximize the latest high-speed devices
Also includes 1 USB 2.0 port to connect more accessories and peripherals. The USB 3.0 ports are backward-compatible with USB 2.0 devices (at 2.0 speeds).

HDMI output expands your viewing options
Connect to an HDTV or high-def monitor to set up two screens side by side or just see more of the big picture.

Built-in media reader for simple photo transfer
Supports SD, MultiMediaCard, SDHC and SDXC memory card formats.

Wireless network connectivity
High-speed wireless LAN built into the screen, so it connects to your network or hotspots on the most common Wi-Fi standards in both laptop and tablet modes.

Backlit keyboard
Allows you to enjoy comfortable and accurate typing, even in dim lighting.

Additional ports
Headphone/microphone combo jack.

Note: This laptop does not include a built-in DVD/CD drive.

Dell Laptop
Sold by No Tax Future Land and Fulfilled by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.
  • 4th generation Intel Core i5-4210u 2.20 GHz with Turbo Boost Technology up to 2.70 GHz ; Studio-quality sound with Waves MaxxAudio
  • Brilliant TrueLife display: 15.6 in HD LED-backlit touchscreen with TrueLife (1920 x 1080), 10-finger multi-touch support ; Backlit keyboard
  • 1TB 5400 RPM SATA Hard Drive for apple storage ; 8GB DDR3L 1600 MHz Memory for multitasking power ; Windows 10, the latest operating system
  • Media card reader ; Intel HD Graphics 4400 with shared graphics memory ; Bluetooth
  • Wireless: 802.11ac/a/b/g/n (Miracast enabled) ; Ports: 1 USB 3.0 ; 2 USB 2.0 ; HDMI ; Headphone output/Microphone input combo ; LAN (10/100) ; Security lock port
Dell Laptop
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.

  • Intel Pentium N3700 2.6 GHz Processor
  • 4 GB DDR3L SDRAM Included; 4 GB Maximum
  • 128 GB SSD Storage; Tray load DVD Drive (Reads and Writes to DVD/CD)
  • 15.6 Inch HD (1366×768 pixels) LED-lit Screen
  • Windows 10 Operating System; Black Chassis
  • 1.6 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 (Turbo Boost up to 2.7 GHz) with 3 MB shared L3 cache
  • 4 GB of 1600 MHz LPDDR3 RAM; 128 GB PCIe-based flash storage
  • 11.6-Inch (diagonal) LED-backlit Glossy Widescreen Display, 1366 x 768 resolution
  • Intel HD Graphics 6000
  • OS X Yosemite, Up to 9 Hours of Battery Life
Western Digital External Hard Drive
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com

  • Secure portable storage with up to 3TB capacity
  • Formatted for Windows. For Mac compatibility this Hard Drive requires reformatting. Refer to Application Guide for guidance on this
  • Optional 256-bit AES hardware encryption
  • Automatic local and cloud backup. Stylish design with a range of exciting colors
  • USB 3.0 connectivity. 3-year limited warranty

I am an authorized Amazon.com Affiliate.  
These links are provided and served by Amazon.com.  
There is no price or operational difference at all.  
These links are placed here for your convenience.

Rich Moyer

Fast Cash Mechanics

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Copyright (c) 2016 Richard Moyer

Operate Your Business

Operate Your Business

Your Business Plan should define those things used in the day to day operation of your business.  I create a separate document for these items (and maintain a link to it in my business plan) since these are more likely to change.  I also maintain a separate document liked back to the business plan – an operator’s  manual that defines standards and operating procedures.

IT Infrastructure

  • Computers, Printers
    • Record what devices are transferred to your business (must be dedicated to business, not shared use), purchased, or leased
    • The commonly used criteria is that anything over $500 should be capitalized, and the expenses amortized over a period of years (as defined by the IRS)
    • Identify all devices in your business plan with date of purchase, model, serial number, warranty and service plan expirations.  Include support contact information

  • Software
    • The software you use to operate your business is typically capitalized, and the expenses amortized over a period of year (as defined by the IRS)
    • This includes accounting software, utilities (like video tools, etc.) and other software tools used in your business.
    • Identify all software used by your business in your business plan with date of purchase, provider, version, serial number, warranty and service plan expirations.  Include support contact information

  • Internet, Routers, WIFI, Network
    • Internet service if dedicated to your business, is deductible.  
      • Example: In my home office, I use a shared WIFI router but my laptop and printers are hardwired to the upgraded business-class cable modem.  Since there is a line item on my bill for the business-class internet upgrade, that differential is deductible.
    • Identify all networking devices used by your business in your business plan with date of purchase, provider, version, serial number, warranty and service plan expirations.  Include support contact information

  • Security
    • It is simply irresponsible to NOT have antivirus and anti-malware software on any device used for your business.
    • Be sure you have WIFI security ENABLED on your WIFI router
    • Passwords should be required on all devices, all software, and all websites used in the conduct of business.
    • Passwords should be secured (not posted in your office or accessible to anyone else).  Passwords should be a minimum of 8 characters, mixed upper and lower case, they should contain a number, and if permitted, special characters like !^#
    • Physical security for your home office and business records
    • Offsite or secure cloud backup storage (See GotBackup)
    • Declare your security guidelines, practices and procedures in your business plan

  • Websites, Hosting, Software
    • Define any hosting, websites, blogs, membership sites, and any browser-based software in your business plan, along with warranty, support, expiration, and contact information
    • It is a good idea to declare the domain registrar name, website, and support/billing numbers.
    • Record the NAMESERVERS (DNS) and any forwarding/masking URLs
 
Business Insurance
  • Errors and Omissions Insurance
    • Some businesses require insurance that protects you against inadvertent errors and omissions. 
      • For example, as a consultant, I gave advice to my clients that could have huge operational and financial consequences.  Upon consulting my insurance professional, we decided on an errors and omissions policy that protected both me, and my clients
    • Consult your insurance professional
    • Make note of this in your business plan

  • Liability Insurance
    • This could be liability on many levels. It protects your assets in the event of law suits
      • Example: I had a real estate investment and a property management company.  If any of my tenants would fall or sustain an injury on my properties, liability insurance would provide legal and financial protection
    • Consult your insurance professional
    • Make note of this in your business plan
 
Employees
    • Workmens Comp (if you have employees)
      • There are Federal and State regulations pertaining to employer liabilities if an employee is injured or killed on the job.
    • Benefits and/or Medical Insurance
      • With the new Federal laws, an employee must have medical benefits, whether provided or not by the employer
    • Payroll Processing and Tax Withholding/Filing
      • Federal labor laws and state regulations pertain to payroll, handling of funds and reserves, payroll tax submission requirements, and reporting requirements.
      • Make note of these in your business plan
      • Be sure you have W-9 or green card information on file for all employees
    • HR
      • Federal labor laws and state regulations pertain to hiring, firing practices.  
      • Make note of how these regulations apply to your business
    • Americans With Disabilities Act Compliance, OSHA
      • Be sure your business is in compliance with all accessibility and safety requirements
  • Policies and Procedures
    • Personnel policies and procedures should be PUBLISHED
    • They should also be referenced in your business plan
 
Pro Forma – a Projection of Current Assets, Revenue, and Expenses
  • Start-up Expenses
    • Define the items and financial value to establish baseline
  • Fixed Assets
    • Items and financial value of buildings, properties, fixtures, equipment, furniture
  • Expenses
    • Recurring expected expenses
  • Revenue
    • Expected revenue from stated business activities
  • Liabilities/loans/financing
    • Define those things that reduce revenue and carry future liabilities to determine net revenue for this and future accounting periods
  • Equity
    • What is the expected owner draw from the business and retained equity
Professional Resources
  • Attorney
  • Consultant
  • Accountant
 
Business Continuity
  • Backup and Recovery
    • You should have a plan that states how business would be conducted in the event of business interruption
    • Define the process and procedures that ensure post recovery future operations

  • Storage
    • What, where, how it is created, updated, and accessed to ensure business continuity

  • Security
    • Define security processes and procedures associated with a disaster recovery or business continuity plan

  • Records Retention
    • There are certain legal requirements regulating what documents are necessary, and how long they are to be retained for legal and financial purposes (may be different retention requirements)

  • Records Destruction
    • Define the records destruction schedule and procedures.
 
Exit Strategy
  • Dissolution and Sale
    • Define any issues, liabilities, and contingencies associated with disollution of this business
  • Merger/Acquisition
    • Define any issues, liabilities, and contingencies associated with merger of this business with another entity, or acquisition of other entities
  • Asset Division/Distribution
    • Define asset division and distribution of residuals associated with dissolution of this business

These items should be referenced in your business plan but could be in a separate document

 
Marketing Plan
  • Media – Print, Email, TV/Radio/Internet, Telemarketing
    • Discuss the intended media utilization for marketing
    • Market segmentation
    • Telemarketing Compliance

  • Advertising Strategy
    • Discuss the strategy and plan for current advertising issues
    • Resources, tools, approach, timing, creative assets

  • Elevator Speech
    • This is a 30 second summary of what you would tell a prospective customer to introduce them to your business

  • Value Proposition
    • Why should a prospect want to do business with you, buy your product or service?
    • WIIFM – from the customer’s perspective, What’s In It For Me?
 
Product Creation
  • Design
    • Who, what, where, when, how, why

  • Creative
    • What creative assets were utilized?

  • Patents, Copyrights, and Licenses
    • Protections for your creations, and terms of use

  • Franchises
    • Legal and financial terms
 
Legal
  • Contracts and Leases
    • Define what contracts are in place, parties involved, term, terms and conditions

  • Partnership Agreements
    • Legal, and financial specifics

  • Legal Forms
    • Forms commonly used in your business, source, validation, update frequency, schedules

  • Notary Services
    • In-house or contracted services to certify authenticity of signatures and ownership
 

 

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Copyright (c) 2016 Richard Moyer

Start Your Business

Start Your Business


Define Your Business
Introduction

This mini-course will explore the reasons and benefits of creating your BUSINESS PLAN, will provide templates and examples, and guide you through the process of defining your business.

Ideally, you should complete this process PRIOR TO STARTING WITH ANY BUSINESS ACTIVITIES.

It is important that you begin recording your expenses and income IMMEDIATELY!  This can be done with pencil and paper, with free tools like Google Sheets (a spreadsheet program), Microsoft Excel, or using an accounting package like Quicken or QuickBooks.  

UNTIL YOU HAVE MADE YOUR FIRST SALE, all of your expenses up to that point are considered STARTUP EXPENSES, and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has very specific rules about what would be considered legitimate startup expenses and how they are treated in accounting and tax reporting.  

The question of LEGAL STATUS and LEGITIMACY comes into play so it is important that you get any business licenses and permits PRIOR to conducting any business transactions.

The next issue is satisfying an ACCOUNTING ISSUE on how to transition from STARTUP status to NORMAL BUSINESS.  This important point here is that you are considered in STARTUP until you make your FIRST SALE.  It is very important to earn your first dollar of REVENUE because all expenses up to that point should be CAPITALIZED, which means that those expenses are AMORTIZED over a period of years.

Why is this important?

MONEY.  CASH IN YOUR POCKET. PAY LESS IN TAXES, LEGAL LIABILITIES

 
 
 
Since we have talked about MONEY, you MUST keep your PERSONAL assets and expenses separate from BUSINESS assets and expenses FROM THIS DAY FORWARD.  Even with a sole proprietorship, your BUSINESS is a SEPARATE LEGAL ENTITY.  You should record when personal assets are used in your business, because they are to be treated as EQUITY in your business.

Formalize Your Business


A Business Plan needs to be a WRITTEN document, and it is EVERGREEN.  I recommend to my clients that when changes are made to your business or strategy, a snapshot of your EXISTING Business Plan should be archived, and a NEW VERSION of your plan be created so you have an AUDIT TRAIL (did I mention that I was a consultant and auditor, among other things I did in my extensive career(s) before retiring for the third and final time according to my wife).

You will get details about each section, and a template to use to start building your OWN Business Plan.

 

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Copyright (c) 2016 Richard Moyer

Business Plan Template

Business Plan Template

Download Template from Google Docs:
>>>>> Click This Link


Business Plan Template
By: Richard Moyer
GrabThoseLeads.com


Company Name:

Document Name:

Version Number:

Creation Date:

Modification Date:


Define Your Business Goals


What are YOUR Goals?

  • How much TIME are willing to dedicate to YOUR business?
  • How much MONEY are you willing to invest in YOUR Business?
  • What is a REALISTIC short and long term financial target for YOU?
  • What resources do you have available?
  • Do you want to build a new business, or expand/focus an existing business?


Define your Market, Niche, and Potential Customers

  • Who are your potential customers?  Warm Market? Your existing list?
  • Do they already have a business or are they starting from scratch?
  • What are your potential customers’ goals?
  • How to acquire new customers


What Resources Do You Need?

  • Inventory of current resources
  • Resource requirements
  • Gap Analysis
  • Resource acquisition planning
  • Consultants and retainers
  • Education and training

Formalize Your Business


Business Registration

  • Zoning requirements and acquisition
  • Licensing requirements and acquisition
  • Professional Certification


Business Organization and Tax planning

  • Business organization requirements and registration
  • Business reporting requirements
  • DBA or Fictitious Name registration
  • EIN or Social Security registration
  • Business filing requirements
  • Accounting method and tools
  • Federal/State/Local tax filing requirements
  • Safe Harbor funding and reporting
  • Sales Tax reporting and filing


Workplace Requirements

  • Home Office or rent/lease
  • Comprehensive and liability insurance
  • Equipment, furniture
  • Computers, printers
  • Office supplies


IT Infrastructure

  • Computers, printers
  • Software
  • Internet, routers, wifi, network
  • Security
  • Websites, hosting, software


Business Insurance

  • Errors and Omissions insurance
  • Liability


Employees

  • Workmens Comp (if you have employees)
  • Benefits and/or medical insurance
  • Payroll processing and tax withholding/filing
  • HR
  • Policies and procedures

Pro Forma

  • Start-up expenses
  • Fixed assets
  • Expenses
  • Revenue
  • Liabilities/loans/financing
  • Equity


Professional Resources

  • Attorney
  • Consultant
  • Accountant


Business Continuity

  • Backup and recovery
  • Storage
  • Security
  • Records retention
  • Records destruction


Exit Strategy

  • Dissolution and sale
  • Merger/acquisition
  • Asset division/distribution

Operate Your Business

Marketing Plan

  • Media – print, email, TV/Radio/Internet, telemarketing
  • Advertising strategy
  • Elevator speech
  • Value Proposition


Product Creation

  • Design
  • Creative
  • Patents, copyrights, and licenses
  • Franchises


Legal

  • Contracts and leases
  • Partnership agreements
  • Legal forms
  • Notary services



Y
ou Can Now Close This Window By Clicking the X in the Upper Right Hand Corner

 

 

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Formalize Your Business

Formalize Your Business


Business Registration

    • Zoning requirements and acquisition
      • Because my home is zoned for residential only use, I had to get a permit, an inspection, and a zoning variance to operate my business out of my home.  
      • The zoning laws in our township are very strict and many times, home-owner associations (HOA’s) have stricter regulations than the townships and municipalities (They WILL rat you out!).  
      • The township looked at where in my home my office would be located, whether my customers had a clear path to my office, parking, snow removal, electrical requirements, signage, and many other requirements.
      • Because you may have an internet-only business NOW, it may change so it is better to KNOW these regulations and plan for them NOW.  Governments don’t like it when you ask forgiveness rather than permission.

    • Licensing requirements and acquisition

      • Most municipalities require some sort of BUSINESS LICENSE.  
      • Even an internet business is required to have a business license

    • Professional Certification
      • Proof of certification may be required with certain professions.  For instance, if you are a doctor doing Web-Medicine (remote diagnosis), you may need to provide proof of your license to practice medicine.
 
Business Organization and Tax planning
  • Business organization requirements and registration
    • Will your business be a Sole Proprietorship? Partnership? LLC?  Corporation?
    • Creating anything beyond a Sole Proprietorship has many regulations for creation of those business entities
    • Legal liabilities associated with each entity type
    • There are many reasons to form each entity type.  Consult professionals, both legal and accounting, to be sure your business organization is the best choice for your business
    • Many people go to the expense of forming an LLC, but if there is only one principal in the LLC, it is treated as a sole proprietorship, which negates any legal and liability protections in most states.

  • Business reporting requirements
    • Every business has filing and reporting requirements to local, state, and federal authorities.
    • If your business is a corporation, you may have certain reports required quarterly and/or annually
    • If your business deals in stocks or securities, you may have Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing requirements.
    • If your business operates in foreign countries, you may be subject to not only US laws, but foreign and international commerce regulations.

  • DBA or Fictitious Name registration
    • You may be required to file for a Ficticious Name or Doing Business As (DBA) filing.  
    • For instance, I had to file a DBA for my consulting firm, Richard Moyer DBA Spaho Consulting, LLC

  • FEIN or Social Security registration
    • A sole proprietorship can file a 1040 Schedule C under the Social Security number of the business owner.
    • A partnership can file individually under the Social Security numbers for each of the partners, but they must file a Schedule K and other tax documents
    • Other business types must file as a separate entity, which requires a FEIN (Federal Employer Identification Number).  This may be required whether your business has employees or not)

  • Business filing requirements
    • Corporations are created and managed by the individual state in which the Articles of Corporation are created.  Each state may have different reporting and filing requirements.
    • Nevada and Delaware corporations are very popular due to the easy and inexpensive corporate creation and reporting requirements
    • What people don’t realize is that if you have a business presence in other states, you must also file for a Foreign Corporation in some of those states.
    • People don’t realize that corporations are fairly easy to create, they are extremely difficult to dissolve.
    • When I formed my LLC, I  looked into a Nevada or Delaware corporation but because I live in Pennsylvania and was doing business in Pennsylvania, I would have to file for a foreign corporation, which was twice the expense and reporting requirements.

  • Accounting method and tools
    • For a sole proprietorship, your accounting tools may be as simple as a spreadsheet, or you can use any accounting package to help you organize, record, and report on your accounts.
    • Save all of your receipts
    • I strongly recommend consulting an accountant and tax professional

  • Federal/State/Local tax filing requirements
    • Yes, you must file taxes.  You must declare your business income and expenses.
    • As a business owner, you pay a Self Employment Tax which is the equivalent of DOUBLE the Social Security tax.
    • People get so excited about RESIDUAL INCOME – HERE is where it matters.
    • Regular sales commissions and earnings are treated as REGULAR INCOME, whereas Residual Income is taxed at a LOWER TAX RATE.  This only matters if you FILE YOUR BUSINESS TAXES and maintain the appropriate DOCUMENTATION.
    • States and local municipalities ALSO require that you declare your income and pay taxes.
    • Safe Harbor funding and reporting
    • You may be required to pay your estimated Federal, State., and Local taxes QUARTERLY if your withholdings from the previous year income do not meet the Safe Harbor regulations (typically 90% of the estimated taxes due are withheld or paid as quarterly estimated tax)

  • Sales Tax reporting and filing
    • Most people believe that sales or use tax is not levied for transactions on the internet, WRONG!  Check with your state department of revenue.
    • For example, I live in Pennsylvania.  If I make a sale, and the customer also lives in Pennsylvania or the ship-to address is in PA, I must charge state sales tax (6%).  If that customer is in a tax jurisdiction like Allegheny County near Pittsburgh or Philadelphia County, I must charge the prevailing tax rate for that tax jurisdiction (7% and 8% respectively).  Businesses are required to file and pay state sales tax either quarterly or semi-annually
 
Workplace Requirements
  • Home Office or rent/lease
    • Your workplace must comply with Federal (OSHA, EPA), State, and Local (building code, zoning) workplace regulations
    • If you rent or lease the building, you have a legal obligation to obey any contractual requirements
    • Your purchase or lease of your home for dedicated office space in your home may not be deductible, but if properly segmented and documented, certain utilities and other expenses may be deductible

  • Comprehensive and liability insurance
    • Minimally, you should have Comprehensive (fire, theft, flood, natural disaster) insurance
    • You should consider an Umbrella Liability policy in case you are sued

  • Equipment, furniture
    • You should account for any special equipment or office furniture.  These items are typically capitalized and those expenses amortized over a period of years

  • Computers, printers
    • Computers, network infrastructure, printers may be deductible if dedicated to your business.

  • Office supplies
    • These are considered normal deductible business expenses

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Copyright (c) 2016 Richard Moyer

Define Your Business Goals

Define Your Business Goals


Here is where we start asking you to turn off the sports channel, take your Beats out of your ears, find a quiet place where you can be isolated and uninterrupted for awhile, because YOU will be asking YOURSELF some pretty tough questions to define your business.

Why?

This seems like so much unnecessary  work.  After all, it is YOUR business, and you know what you want to do… right this minute. What about tomorrow when you are up to your butt in alligators, will you recall at that moment that your original intention was to drain the swamp?

It is too easy to get distracted and off course.  Things change, and that is OK, but if you have a baseline that captures the ideas and goals for your business at a particular point in time,  you can refer to that point to keep yourself on track, or make a CONSCIOUS decision to make a change in direction.

Check Out The Video:  Business Plans Made Easy

In the corporate world, we had extensive training in many formal Quality Systems Methodologies.  (Another surprise, I was Quality Champion for our department, and a certified ISO-9002 auditor). All of those methodologies used some version of VISION, MISSION, GOALS, and TACTICS.  A Vision, and a Mission statement together are useful to communicate your goals to a larger organization.  While I do believe that going through the formalities helps solidify what you see for your business, if you are a small company  (ie. me, myself, and I), then it may be overkill.  I’m not here to get you to buy into a formal methodology since the internet is a vast resource with which you can  look up best practices faster than I could write them here.

So let’s get to it.  (This is where you start to fill in a template for these items.  Make some notes, even if you mark a section N/A.  It shows that you at least thought about it.).

IF you think of something, but it needs followup, like an attachment, something you need to look up, a webpage reference, etc., mark it in your notes with a highlighter or something unique like “*****”.  Most editors and word processors have a FIND function (generally keyboard shortcut “Ctrl f”) that allows you to quickly locate these items.

Tools Needed for This Segment

  • A computer or laptop is ideal.  
    • Because you will be doing a large amount of text entry and editing, it may be difficult (although not impossible) with a Tablet or Smartphone.
  • Storage for your documents.
    • Google Drive is free.
    • It allows your documents to be securely stored in the cloud
    • Your documents are accessible to all of your devices.  There are apps available for all platforms that can operate offline then synch with the web version.
    • Drive has the capability to share these documents.  I do recommend restricting sharing to only a limited number of trusted people since this plan will eventually have personal and financial information pertaining to your business.

  • Word Processor, Text Editor
    • You need some way to create editable documents that can  be saved and modified or updated later. 
    • Windows has a folder of free Windows Accessories that includes Notepad (for unformatted text) or WordPad which is a mini-Word.  
    • Google Drive has a built-in, free, full featured word processing program called DOCS that is compatible with, and can import and export to Microsoft Word and other RTF-format files.
    • If you will be doing any editing across platforms, I recommend Google DOCS.  There are apps for every platform, you can make local copies, and your documents will synch when you reconnect

Start by copying the sections below into your editor, or download and open the following template.

What are YOUR Goals?

  • How much TIME are willing to dedicate to YOUR business?
  • How much MONEY are you willing to invest in YOUR Business?
  • What is a REALISTIC short and long term financial target for YOU?
  • What resources do you have available?
  • Do you want to build a new business, or expand/focus an existing business?
 
Define your Market, Niche, and Potential Customers
  • Who are your potential customers?  Warm Market? Your existing list?
  • Do they already have a business or are they starting from scratch?
  • What are your potential customers’ goals?
  • How to acquire new customers
 
What Resources Do You Need?
  • Inventory of current resources
  • Resource requirements
  • Gap Analysis
  • Resource acquisition planning
  • Consultants and retainers
  • Education and training

 

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Copyright (c) 2016 Richard Moyer

Getting Started Guide

Getting Started Guide


If You Haven’t Seen Today’s Update, View It Here!

In this module, we will discuss the various sections of a Business Plan.

You will be tempted to skip over this module, because, “I don’t need no stinkin’ business plan”.
There are people who walk a tightrope with no net.
If you are confident that you will never “get caught”, that’s cool.

I prefer to “Play by the rules”.  I am, by the way, a certified auditor…
I hold my colleagues, subordinates, business associates, and customers to the highest moral, ethical, and honesty standards, and do not do business with them if they deviate from the
high bar that I have set, and the standards by which I operate.

What You Will Need

– A computer, tablet, or smartphone capable of viewing YouTube videos.

– Pad of paper, pencil/pen, highlighter (or the electronic version of that so you can take notes).  You should be able to take notes while watching the video.

– Earphones, headset, or speakers so you can listen without being disturbed, or disturbing others.

Each module will be broken into 10-15 minute segments

 

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Copyright (c) 2016 Richard Moyer