Using Your Blog to Win Over Clients

If you’re in business, then you probably have a domain and website. If you don’t, you can find one here. Many businesses also have a blog that’s been dormant for quite a while or are just starting out. Many business people don’t always know how to utilize their blog effectively, whether that is to win over their clients or to gain more organic traffic to their website by ranking higher in search engines.

While there are many ways to utilize your blog, one of the most important is to win over clients. Your blog can take potential customers who are on the fence about who to use for a service or what product to purchase and make them your customers for life. Here are just a few ways to help you convert prospective clients into buying clients.

Ask Open Ended Questions and Ask for a Response

Asking your audience their opinion goes a long way toward creating a relationship with your client. It healps them feel connected to you when you show that you truly care about them and their ideas. Create surveys and post them on your blog.

Once the survey has closed, you can review the answers and create a blog about the results. For example, If you run an appliance repair business, you can create a survey asking your blog readers how long they’ve had their appliances and which appliances they have in their home.

Once you’ve collected all the information, you will better understand your clients and be able to focus on their needs. These answers may also interest them, and inspire them to explore repairing old appliances instead of buying new ones.

No matter what your business, you can apply the principle of asking open ended questions to engage and convert your readers.

Communicate about Deals and Sales

Everyone likes a bargain, and communicating through your blog about latest sales and deals will keep customers coming back to see what you are offering next. You can even create a special sale activated by a code or coupon only shared on your blog. Encourage readers to share it through their social media channels and offer them incentives to do so.

At the same time, share your blog across your social media outlets as well. This will drive traffic to your blog, and can gain you both blog readers and e-mail subscribers, another place to share unique deals that help convert browsers into clients. Users also may browse other articles you have written, and at the same time learn about your business. Make the deals personal and those you use them feel like a privileged, part of a community, and they will keep coming back over and over.

Tell Your Business Story

People by from you because of why you do what you do, not because of what you do, or because you offer the cheapest product or services. Customers want to feel a deep personal connection with the people they do business with.

It’s not about how cheap you can sell something. All businesses have a mission statement and you can tell the story of why what you do is important to you and what you’re doing to connect with your community.

Share what you are doing in the area of community outreach. Write about your passion for creating viable living spaces for the homeless. Find those passions that push you to do better in your business and highlight them by sharing them on your blog.

Blog Regularly

Regular blogs are important. People these days are inundated with so many communications that they are likely to read or watch only those that engage them right away. If you regularly post on your blog, your clients will come to expect and anticipate your blogs and willingly interact with you on social media.

Even if you don’t get interaction at first, keep at it. Most businesses require months of blogging before their clients and potential customers start to interact. It doesn’t mean they’re not watching, they could be reading all your posts and not yet engaging.

Also, know that to spread the word about your blog, you are going to have to spend money. Boost posts, take out Twitter ads, and advertise on LinkedIn. You will gain attention, readers, and clients, and that will make it worth the cost in the end.

Post Case Studies and Guides

A great way to gain client trust is to create case studies and offer them on your blog with a synopsis. These easily read documents can come as small e-books or white papers. Creating how to guides for your clients to do small do-it-yourself projects activates the principle of reciprocity, and case studies prove that your products or services work they way you say they do.

It’s subtle, but by giving away information, how to guides, and useful documents inside case studies proves your expertise. And because you’ve given your knowledge to those you serve; the client feels indebted to your for sharing your expertise.

That client will think of your company when she’s ready to tackle those hard projects or buy that big-ticket item. If you have a service business, this technique is important to creating a connection along the buyer’s journey.

Even if the person who is using the information on your blog does not buy from you right away, they may. share it with someone who is ready to buy, or may introduce you to a connection or client that turns in to something bigger.

Whether you’re just starting your businesses blog or you’re restarting it, these tips for using your blog to win over clients will help you get a jump start on the process. many businesses use a blog of some sort to communicate with their clientele. If you want to win them over, you’ll need to create a blog that people will want to read and that continues to create value for your clients. In the end, it’s about giving the client these small values and they’ll give you big returns in gratitude.

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How to Use Salesforce Event Monitoring Software

For many years, companies would need third party experts to come in if they wanted an event organizing. Their methods were hugely expensive, with some even calling them exploitative. The costs of organizing events were so high, in fact, that many businesses had to significantly limit the number of events they held. However, thanks to salesforce event monitoring software, which is now available online, there is no more need to do this.

What Is Salesforce Event Monitoring Software?

This type of software is incredibly easy to use. It is a type of SaaS (Software as a Service) and it can be accessed from anywhere with an internet connection and the right credentials. No extra hardware has to be installed and if you opt for the cloud-based solution, you don’t even have to download software. You also don’t have to worry about downtime because of upgrades and you don’t need any specialized training to use it.

A Brief User Guide

In order to make sure you get the greatest benefits of this type of software, you need to make sure that you understand the different tools and functionalities that it offers. Some of its key features include:

  1. Online event registration, which means you can add numerous events with standard templates. You can also incorporate graphics and content into these templates, so that you develop forms that are just right for you. They are uploaded onto your personal portal automatically and can then be accessed 24/7 by those who can register for the event.
  2. Online payment management, which includes a variety of payment gateways supported by the Payment Card Industry. They are SSL certified, which means they are completely secure. This means that people can pay for their attendance with ease.
  3. Automated emailing, which is a really robust system. It enables you to send out bulk emails to stakeholders and end users, thereby improving communication. It ensures that you can send communications about the event that people have signed up for, but also to keep them informed of new events as and when they happen.
  4. Group registrations and promo code engines. This means that you can offer people special prices and discounts to attend events. Additionally, you can include group registrations, which makes it much easier for people to book as an organization, for instance.
  5. Social media promotion and other forms of online marketing. These tools, including things such as online catalogs and calendars, enable you to send information about events all across the internet and therefore the world. You can link it to your own social media accounts to further spread awareness of events happening.
  6. Name badge printing services, so that those who attend can have their name badge waiting for them at registration.
  7. A lead retrieval system that is smartphone compatible, so that you don’t need expensive scanners anymore.
  8. Report creation, which is a great tool to make sure that you can review how well an event went once it has taken place.
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Understanding the Best Material Handling Equipment Financing

Lots of businesses can benefit from the best material handling equipment financing. This equipment includes such things as industrial shelves, forklift trucks, and various other pieces of equipment that allow for the moving, storage, and transportation of items. Unfortunately, all this equipment is incredibly costly, which is why financing options are so important. Most businesses do not want to invest capital in equipment that do not have a direct link to production revenue, and that is if they have the capital in the first place.

How to Recognize the Best Material Handling Equipment Financing Option

There are lots of financial institutions, banks, and individual companies that offer a range of different programs for those who need to finance their equipment. It is important to look into the different terms and conditions they offer, as well is into their interest rates. Usually, the application process is very straightforward, although that does not necessarily mean that you will be accepted. It is important, therefore, to properly do your research first.

There are different categories of material handling equipment financing as well. These include small value loans, term loans, bill discounts, hire purchase, and operating lease. The latter is perhaps the most popular of all, because it has so many benefits, the greatest of which is that it ensures businesses can use the equipment they would otherwise never be able to afford.

When a business leases equipment, they do not have to make a down payment. Rather, they simply make monthly payments towards their equipment, which is not theirs for that duration. In essence, they rent the equipment, although there are some different terms and conditions associated with it. Namely, a lease generally has a lengthy minimum time period associated with it and, at the end of the lease, there is the option of purchasing the equipment or returning it for an upgrade. There are some key benefits to leasing, including:

  • That no down payment is required.
  • That monthly payments are affordable.
  • That payments are tax deductible.
  • That the company that leases the equipment does not hold any responsibility for the machinery becoming obsolete.
  • That the equipment can sometimes be purchased at the end of the agreement, or upgraded.
  • That payments usually include such things as insurance and maintenance.

A lease is a type of financing agreement, however, which means that it will not be give to anybody. You will need to meet the terms, conditions, and other qualification requirements as set by the financing company. This will usually include passing a credit check. However, the requirements are generally a lot easier to meet than those for a bank loan. Mainly, however, a lease is far more advantageous than a bank loan because of the fact that you do not own the equipment for the duration of your finance agreement. While it may sound strange that not owning something is better, it makes sense when you consider it also means you never have to have responsibility for continuously using it and maintaining it.

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Why You Need To Embrace Live Interactive Broadcasting For Your Business

We’re all used to sitting down on our couch and turning on the TV, only to be greeted with a news segment where the broadcaster is going over the latest news from the day. Can you imagine, instead of sitting on your couch as a passive viewer, if you were able to have a conversation with the broadcaster about the current segment?

That’s the promise of live interactive broadcasting for most of your customers, and it’s up to your business to turn that promise into a reality. After all, most of your customers are already familiar with live interactive broadcasting, as social media apps like Periscope and Snapchat already allow them to record live video easily and stream to friends and followers.

Your business can take advantage of live broadcasting too, and while 84% of businesses successfully utilize video for their marketing campaigns, you can go one step further and broadcast directly to your customers. There are plenty of reasons to set up a live interactive broadcast, but here are a few of our favorite reasons to use this trending technology.

Host Real-Time Product Trainings

Managing your expenses is a big part about running a lean business, and while onboarding customers is important, you don’t have to run those client onboarding sessions in-person. Using live interactive broadcasting, you can host video onboarding sessions in an instant, and that doesn’t just help your bottom line. When you transition to using live interactive broadcasting, you’ll be able to host onboarding and training sessions easily, no matter where you are in the world. This also allows you to host more product trainings than you normally would, improving client service, while keeping your costs low.

Stream Live Events

If you host any live events already, then you’ve got a great opportunity to bring more customers or prospects to your event instantly by adding live broadcasting to the mix. There are a few ways to do this, but one of the best would be to set up a high definition stream of your event, while including some form of live feedback. For smaller live broadcasts, you could have a direct video feed that allows streaming viewers to ask questions over the video. For larger events, you may want to set up an alternative mechanism for taking questions and answers, so that you can filter the questions before presenting them to the event host.

Take People Behind The Scenes Of Your Business

An excellent way to foster greater customer engagement is by showing your customers that your business is more than just a suite of products and services. Live video is a great mechanism to bring people behind the scenes of your business, introducing them to the people and environment where you work. When you incorporate an interactive component of that live stream, you can give your team a chance to connect directly with customers, something that they might not usually have the opportunity to do.

Host Q&A ‘Office Hours’

If you’re regularly getting questions from customers about a particular product or service, one way of handling a lot of those questions at once is to host regular ‘office hours’, where you go through and answer customer questions for a set period of time. This will let customers join to get their questions answered, or to get a quick walk-through of a specific issue that they’re having, and they can leverage the live broadcasting to ask you questions that may come up during the Q&A session as well.

Live interactive broadcasting is a great new technology that has the potential to revolutionize the way that you interact with your current and future customers. While having access to live video is a great way to increase customer engagement and to grow your business, it’s important that you make sure that your video feed is fast, high-definition, and lag-free. The last thing that you want is for your video feed to cut out or buffer during a heavily attended event, but you can get around that by using a video chat service like Agora.io to stream video all over the world. Regardless of the technology that you use, it’s essential that your video quality and video connection speed leaves your business looking great, and not like an old, stodgy firm that has trouble with technology.

How are you thinking about using live interactive broadcasting to reach more customers? Let us know in the comments.

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Turning the Tables: How to Evaluate Sales Prospects

Knowing How to Evaluate Sales Prospects can make a big difference in your business

(Image Credit: 123RF / liravega258)

Salespeople are accustomed to prospects evaluating them and may assume that is the sole purpose of their meeting. However, sales professionals should get into the habit of evaluating their prospects as well. This helps them determine the worthiness of each one based on how much time, resources, and attention he or she will require throughout the sales process. After weighing this against the potential return, the sales representative should have a better idea of which leads to pursue and which ones to thank for their time and move on.

Questions to Help Determine the Most Valuable Prospects

Both parties should ask questions of each other during the initial meeting. This is the only way they will know whether it’s a good fit. It can be more challenging for sales representatives to know what to ask since they’re usually the one answering the questions. Here are three questions to help them get into the right frame of mind for every meeting:

  1. What problem are you trying to resolve with the product or service my company has available? Most company leaders don’t even consider spending money until a problem becomes too significant to ignore. The salesperson should sense at least a little bit of desperation for a solution during the initial meeting. Without a significant problem to resolve, the sales prospect could be doing little more than window shopping. Unfortunately, this isn’t a good use of the salesperson’s time or resources.
  2. How have you tried to resolve this problem in the past? If the prospects answers that he or she hasn’t done anything about it until now, the salesperson may need to work a bit harder to find the ideal solution. By probing what hasn’t worked as an effective solution, he or she can steer clear of the same mistake and present a more targeted resolution. The sales professional should also ask the prospect to envision what would happen if he or she did nothing about the problem.
  3. Have you prepared a budget for this project or do you expect to soon? It’s a big waste of time to go through the qualification process only to learn that the prospect hasn’t been authorized to spend the required amount on the product or service. There’s nothing wrong with asking whether a budget has been approved or when the prospect expects to receive approval for the expense.

Create a Winning Pricing Strategy

All customers want to receive the best value for the lowest price. It’s the salesperson’s job to convince his or her prospect of the value in the product or service and minimize the focus on cost. A business that continually sells at the lowest price in the industry may not remain profitable for long. When considering selling price, company leadership needs to consider whether it encourages structures that ultimately prove unprofitable.

For example, selling at a volume discount brings in customers but not necessarily as much profit as the company would like. What sales managers can do instead is create incentives that align with pricing realities. Taking control through customer value-based pricing means looking at ways to reduce the cost to serve customers while still exceeding their expectations. Customers who don’t feel like they are getting their money’s worth may not say anything, but they will send a loud message by taking their business elsewhere.

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How Did I Miss That Trade?

Are you a Forex trader? Are you “in it to win it?  Are you looking for profits wherever possible? That means you will be examining the results of the trades that you take and learning from both your successes and your failures. But what about “the ones that got away”, the trades that for one reason or another never happened and nearly always would have turned up trumps.

Why do we miss out on trades, especially the ones that will cause us so much heartache subsequently? There are of course loads of different reasons. You could have chosen to “sit this one out” having had a couple of losing trades just previously.  You could have been too preoccupied with another trade or considered that it just didn’t fit into your preconceived trading pattern. You may have had enough for the day having met your daily target or you might not have had enough balance to proceed.

Now these are all good reasons, but the fact remains that a missed opportunity is a missed opportunity which will cost you in the fullness of time.  You might not realise how much money you are actually losing by not taking up those missing trades and all the potential profits that have vanished unless you are honest enough to track everything in a journal.

If you are a mechanical trader, you can well find that your performance will be down and you will not get a full idea of whether the system is working for you.

If you get into the habit of missing trades, especially after a losing streak, you must treat that as a really bad one.  You have to accept losses as an integral part of trading and you shouldn’t have the baggage of previous failure over-influencing your decisions.

Perhaps the most hazardous result of when you miss out on a trade is that your psyche says “hey we made a big error there, let’s make up for it”. This is what is called “looking for revenge” – you go into something that’s a long way short of ideal and trade it aggressively. You lose control of your emotions and at the same time, lose a good deal of money as well.

Missing trades therefore is a bad place to be in. So what can you do to avoid all that?  Firstly you could log all your missing trades which would be an incentive to sticking to your trading plan.  Secondly set your trading style alarm clock – you could fix price alerts or use entry orders; perhaps even design a mechanical system for your platform. We know you can’t be everywhere but you can help yourself!

Are you missing trades through lack of confidence, worried about the dangers that could affect your funds? If you decrease your position size, you will ease up on a great deal of pressure.

Finally if you focus on the process you will accept loss, take care of it but have the courage to carry on trading sensibly and methodically and in the end you will make a lot of money.

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Recruit the Best Talent with a Virtual Office Setup

Generally, talk about the virtual office set-up focuses on practical and logistical perks. While these benefits shouldn’t be underestimated, more information is needed about its impact on recruitment, particularly in Southeast Asia. With countries like Singapore now becoming magnets for entrepreneurs, it’s useful for businesses to know how to grab great talent.

Virtual offices and coworking spaces tend to a real draw for creative types and forward thinkers, as they provide plenty of opportunities for collaboration. Here, you’ll find copywriters, graphic designers, accountants, marketers, website developers, and more. Plus, you’ll benefit from a prestigious address and that, in itself, is a big attraction for professionals.

Keep reading to learn more about how virtual offices can help you connect with top level talent.

Dynamic Personalities

In a place like Singapore, where people from all walks of life meet and interact, it’s actually easier than you think to scout top-level talent. Servcorp virtual offices are full of diverse personalities, with a broad range of skills.

The tenants here come from all kinds of different industries, so hanging out at a virtual workspace is a chance to rub shoulders with artists, photographers, product designers, advertisers, app creators, and much more.

More Support, Less Cash

Plus, if you outsource, instead of recruiting full-time employees, you can save yourself a substantial amount of money. Obviously, if you need a job constantly doing, it’s best to hire a permanent employee. If it’s just a one off or finite run of tasks though, consider a freelancer.

Virtual vendors can put you in contact with a wide variety of contractors and freelancers. Alternatively, in some cases, they have in-house teams of their own. For instance, you might be able to outsource the design of a new website to the qualified staff at your virtual office.

Sitting In Top Position

Even something as simple as operating from a well-known location can make it easier to attract high-level recruits. Graduates and advanced job seekers have discerning tastes too. If they know they have valuable skills, they’ll prioritise brands which look highly successful.

To make sure that you’re one of them, claim the address of a virtual facility, particularly if you are yet to start renting a private office. It’s okay to be working flexibly, from home or other informal spaces, but you need that professional address to build up your brand.

Creating a Global Team

Perhaps the best thing about virtual offices is that they place no limits on the nature of your employees. It is entirely possible to build up a workforce of individuals who are spread out across the globe. In fact, this is an effective way to grow a business and infiltrate new markets.

This kind of setup requires careful management, but entrepreneurs make it work all the time. The right virtual vendor will provide all the support you need, in the form of premium communications software, receptionist services, secure mailboxes, and low monthly rates.

Where to Find the Best Virtual Vendors in Singapore

There are six highly respected virtual facilities in central Singapore. They all have impressive corporate addresses, with places like the Metropolis Tower and the PSA Building coming top of the list for most business owners. If you’re interested in becoming a tenant, all you have to do is find your local office and request an onsite tour.

This is a great opportunity to meet current users, check out the tools and resources on offer, and ask any questions you might have. Virtual vendors are committed to serving the needs of their clients. Unlike traditional landlords, they allow tenants to make changes to their corporate packages and access schedules if it suits.

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3 Traits Every Good Accountant Has

Being resilient in the face of work is one of many Traits Every Good Accountant Has

Whether you are just starting your career in accountancy or you have been an accountant for a long time, there are always ways to improve your work and give your clients the best experience ever. Even the best accountants can become complacent and with ever improving technology, accounting is becoming a different world than compared to 20 years ago. Being an accountant isn’t just about calculations and clients want people they can trust. Below are three of the main traits every good accountant has.

Communication

This is by far one of the most important skills needed to be an account. With so much competition out there in accountancy nowadays, clients are looking for accountants that stand out, who they can relate to, and who can go the extra mile. As an accountant, you need to give clients complex information in a way that they understand. Being able to understand your client and communicate effectively with them will improve your relationship and ensure the client knows exactly what is happening with their finances. Being able to talk to your client may help you understand them and therefore tailor your advice to them accordingly. Getting to know a client can mean regular business and a better service.

Resilience

Accounting can be a very time consuming and fast-paced job, working to deadlines, and perhaps working with clients you may not always get on with. There may be times where you have deadlines you don’t know how you will complete and this can be very stressful. Being able to do your job despite all of these pressures is what makes a good accountant. Being resilient means starting from the bottom of the career ladder and working your way up no matter what your career throws at you – if you stay positive you’ll find yourself where you want to be and you will attract clients with your can-do attitude.

Adaptive

Technology is ever changing therefore so is the way accounting works. A good accountant must always keep up-to-date with the relevant training of new programs and ways of working in order to keep up with clients. There are many ways you can improve your accountancy knowledge and whether you attend work training sessions or you want to improve your knowledge vastly, then a masters degree in accounting could be what you’re looking for. An online masters degree in accounting means you can carry on working alongside gaining a masters. This will show both clients and employers that you are willing to learn and you are adaptable to the way accountancy is changing, as you will gain the most up-to-date knowledge and skills.

Learning new skills and getting a masters is a great way of showing clients and employers that you are up to speed with relevant training and that you are serious about your role as an accountant. There are many other traits that a good accountant may also have but these are a good building block in improving yourself and your career positively.

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Tips to Help You Avoid Business Failure 

Being in business is about striking a balance between your desire for success and your commitment in the avoidance of failure, focus too heavily on one or the other and you may find yourself in difficulties. Both striving for success and watching out for failure can be done best though looking at what successful and failed businesses have done in the past and how you can learn from it.

Success may come and go but failure is forever and this is one area which should in all honesty, keep you awake at night, especially if you want to avoid it. Let’s take a look at some of the recipes for failure and how you can make sure that you do not fall foul of them.

Financial Mistakes

Behind every failed business on the planet is finance, lack of it, the mismanagement of it or the careless attitude towards it and if you want to avoid catastrophic failure for your business you should ensure that you are focusing on every cent that comes in and goes out of your company. Equally you must make sure that whoever is looking after the finances is a professional and can give you the best service possible. Your role as the leader is to understand the finances, not do them so you should ensure that you are not getting lost in the detail.

Reputation

Reputations can be incredibly frail, they are hard to build and hard to maintain, yet surprisingly easy to destroy. If you want to look after your reputation in the best way possible then you should consider hiring a reputation management company such as reputationmanagementconsultants.com who will work on your behalf to ensure that the company’s reputation is the strongest which it can be and continues to instill confidence in clients and customers. Many businesses fail to understand the importance of a strong reputation and in today’s world of stiff competition, the truth is that a reputation could very well be the difference between the success or failure of your company.

Over Expansion

It is vitally important that your business understands its scale and whilst you should always be looking towards future growth, you must also understand when it is right to do so. Far too many businesses try to grow up too soon and they will expand their business dealings before they are attracting the revenue which they need to pay for it. If you want to ensure that you are growing at the right time then seek advice, plan carefully and take everything in to consideration before you opt for expansion. Success never happens overnight, you must take it in stages and grow to the demands of your business. Bigger premises, bigger ad campaigns and bigger staffing numbers is all well and good but not if you cannot afford to fund it, do this at the wrong time and you could be facing big trouble.

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What Benefits Are There to Using a Reputation Management Firm?

For many years celebrities, politicians, important pubic figures and large firms have used public relations services to ensure that their reputations remain intact. These days that type of PR is still very much in operation and has taken to the internet to help out a great number of people and businesses in building, growing, maintaining and protecting reputations, you only need to look at the reviews to see for yourself just how many people rely on these services to  protect themselves online. Such is the way of the internet that these days, protecting a reputation is not only for the cells and big businesses, but for small and medium enterprises too. If you aren’t sure what benefit you could get from this kind of service then read on to find out more.

Knowledge

the first question is are you even aware what kind of reputation you have online? Most people aren’t and this can be quite damning in itself. A bad reputation can do terrible damage to a business and if you are not aware of whether you have a good reputation or a bad reputation online then enlisting the support of a rep management firm can help you to get on top of it and take action.

Removal of Slander

Reviews online are a great tool to help you to attract more customers but these review systems are very open which makes it easy for anyone who may have a particular grudge with you, to leave a scathing and slanderous review. Equally, if you have ever had any unfounded accusations leveled at you then this may be the most popular result online when searching for your company, regardless of how unfounded the accusation was. An online reputation management company can ensure that your prospective clients see the truth about your business online and not the slanderous comment of someone with an axe to grind.

Guilt by Association

One of the biggest reputation management consultants complaints is the guilt by association which takes place online. For example, if you have a partner or associate who has run into trouble or who have been operating unethically then you will of course want to cut ties with them. The trouble is that removing all of the links that tie the two of your tougher online can be very tricky and this could cause many to think that you are guilty, solely because your partner is. A reputation management firm will be able to help you to cut all ties with your former partner and ensure that any prospective clients and customers do not put you in the same category as the company which you were previously associated with. There is nothing worse than being considered guilty of something purely through association and if you ant to avoid this then a reputation management company is the way forward, for the future health of your company and its success.

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