Monday, July 21, 2014

3 Reasons Your Employees Should Use LinkedIn

A few months ago William Arruda wrote an article about why business owners should make their employees use LinkedIn. He believes it can help promote the company and products. Unfortunately, he found that many employers block LinkedIn on the company’s internet. The reasoning behind this
is the employers are afraid their employees may hunt for other jobs, get recruited, or socialize while working on their dime. Yes, this could very well happen but Arruda believes LinkedIn can be used as a positive amenity to your company if used the proper way by your employees.

Let me introduce Arruda’s 3 ideas as follows:

1. Increased Visibility for your Brand

Arruda believes that every employee is a brand ambassador because “when your employee’s ‘like’ and ‘share’ status updates, they make them visible to their contacts.” This will get your company’s page more views, which means even more followers. A study done by BrightEdge found \ “companies that have a greater portion of their employees on LinkedIn have more followers on their company pages.” Employees that comment on your communication increases the visibility to others which could very well help you get more views, followers, and consumers. Having your employees use LinkedIn gives your company more Google value because there are more places to find out about the company online. Having employees used LinkedIn is a great way to help attract your target audience.

2. Consistent Brand Ambassadors

People will look at your employee’s LinkedIn pages believes Arruda. If you help your staff build captivating profiles it will not only help them, but it will help your company. As mentioned above, it makes your employees brand ambassadors. It highlights the specific skills and talents of your employees and this will positively promote your business. The more your employees use social media to participate in your brand community, the more they become a part of your company’s distinctiveness. This is a great way to connect and build trust with clients because it humanizes your company. Have ALL of your employees use LinkedIn, not just your sales people.

3. Improved Morale

If your employees cannot access LinkedIn on your company’s network, it shows that you do not trust them. Arruda believes your employees will be more dedicated to the company if you show trust; they will be less likely to want to leave. By using LinkedIn your employees can learn and keep up-to-date with one another and other departments not only teaching them new skills, but also creating a company bond. Endorsements may help your company out tremendously because it will be viewed by an even bigger audience on the other person’s LinkedIn account. Praising an employee on LinkedIn makes them and your company look great. This will also give your employees even more confidence leading to an even better work performance.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Good vs. Bad PR

Good PR

In October 1982, 7 people were reported dead in Chicago after taking extra-strength Tylenol capsules. The packaging of the product was obviously tampered with; officials had found traces of
cyanide in the extra-strength Tylenol capsules which had caused the deaths.

Johnson & Johnson took responsibility by taking action to notify consumers about what was going on in a promptly manner; then they recalling the product.

Then in February 1986, there was another death reported from a different Tylenol product. All Tylenol products were taken off of the market until the company made sure there was nothing in the product that could be harmful to humans.

Taking action promptly and being honest makes you more credible and trustworthy which could save your business.

Once Johnson & Johnson was certain that all of the Tylenol products were safe to take again they reintroduced the products.

Before they reintroduced the products officially, they had tamperproof packaging created to ensure a safe product and to bring back trust in their once trusting consumers. They also had coupons for Tylenol products to get consumers to buy their product again. They decreased the price of the product and some medical providers created presentations on Tylenol to ensure safety with consumers.

This is a great example of how Public Relations and an efficient Crisis Communication Plan can save your business.

Bad PR

In the spring of 2012 Dole Food Co. issued a recall on a certain salad product that posed salmonella risk. The recall was in effect but Dole failed to address the crisis effectively using social media.

The first place consumers will look to when there is talk of a recall is the company’s website. According to Brandon Uttley from, “A press release about the Dole recall was posted on

the FDA’s website Saturday, April 14. Dole posted a press release on its own site that same day but [it was] buried.” That’s great that Dole posted a press release about the recall but it did not do the consumers any good because it was too hard to find on Dole’s website. The other problem with Dole’s crisis communication plan according to Uttley was “the recall did not appear on any of Dole’s social media channels until about 1 p.m. EST Monday.” That is two days after the press release was allotted.

Companies should always take the time and make the effort to post about crisis’ on their own website and then on all other social media that company uses. It shows the consumers that you care and are taking responsibility for the crisis.

Companies must be prepared to respond 24 hours a day and seven days a week. If your company does not respond as soon as possible it will lose credibility therefore consumers.

Dole’s website was hard to navigate through. Always make sure your company’s website is easy to navigate so you can readily access important news such as a crisis.

Make sure you have a social media presence. Have a Facebook, Twitter, a blog, etcetera. Remember to monitor what others are saying on these social media sites as well so you are in the loop of what is being said about your business.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Contructing a Crisis Communication Plan

When a crisis arises, time is of the essence. It is important to communicate as fast as possible. Companies suffer from crisis because they do not have a plan enacted beforehand. Creating a crisis communication plan will ensure your company more security.

When creating a crisis communication plan think of all the worst possible scenarios that could happen. It is better to be prepared for the worst, than not be prepared at all. According to, “hazards that could cause injury, property damage, business disruption or environmental impact should be addressed.” states that you should first perform a risk assessment.

Risk Assessment

A risk assessment is the process of determining all the threats that could jeopardize your small business. Threats such as injury, property damage, business disruption, environmental impact and more. Once you have verified all possible threats, you must predict the outcomes if these threats were to ever occur. To determine what could possibly happen if a threat would take place, you would need to perform a Business Impact Analysis (BIA).

Business Impact Analysis

A Business Impact Analysis predicts the outcome of a crisis and collects information on how the business will recover. explains by executing a Business Impact Analysis it will allow you to understand “the basis for investment in recovery strategies as well as investment in prevention and mitigation strategies.”

According to, the Business Impact Analysis (BIA) should detect financial and operational impacts. also suggests when conducting a Business Impact Analysis (BIA) to use a BIA questionnaire. The government website suggests surveying those “with detailed knowledge of how the business manufactures its products or provides its services.” It also suggests having employees classify “potential impacts if the business function or process that they are responsible for is interrupted.” The website says the BIA should also “identify the critical business processes and resources needed for the business to continue to function at different levels.”

According to the BIA report should “record the potential impacts resulting from disruption of business functions and processes.” Circumstances causing substantial business disruption should be evaluated in terms of financial impact, if possible. says, “These costs should be compared with the costs for possible recovery strategies.”

Hazard & Prevention Deterrence

It is highly recommended that every business should create a hazard & prevention deterrence program. This could prevent accidents such as fires, chemical spills, and more. Machine breakdowns can be prevented by following the maintenance and inspection provided by the manufacturer.

OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) provides more resources to evaluate and improve the safety of the workplace.

Deterrence assists in preventing unlawful activity. One way to prevent criminal activity is to keep outside and inside lights on at night.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

The Power of Social Media

In a world filled with forms of social media that allow anyone to post anything, businesses must take extra precaution. Unfortunately, the media likes to focus on the bad more than it likes to focus on the
good. This can be detrimental for small businesses. Libel or slander could be just enough to destroy a small business. There are ways to protect your business by responding and acting appropriately in a timely manner. Always know what is being said about your company. Use the internet to your advantage and by all means “creep." Check Twitter, Facebook, or just type in your company reviews on the web. Expect malicious comments, but look for trends. For example, if there are a lot of people posting about a defect in your product, you should investigate your product further.

1. (Social media platform/spokesperson) say you are investigating

2. Actually do it

3. Fix product if needed

4. Announce that the product is fixed

5. Promotions / begin selling product again

Remember, keep the 24-Hour News Cycle in mind. Basically, the news never sleeps, there is always something coming up in the media about someone or something. As mentioned above, you should always be checking social media outlets so you know what is being said about your company. You want to be able to put a stop to rumors or lies about your company and being on top of everything will make this process much easier. You want to catch the bad ideas that people are writing/ speaking about and get the spokesperson or website to say something that will keep good relations with consumers. The public is fascinated with scandal. Determine rumors/problems early on and you will have a better chance protecting your company.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

5 Tips to Improve your Local Search Presence

Social media is critical for anyone starting or who already has a business. Social media websites relay important information about your business and should be used to keep good relations with consumers. Jonathan Long, President and CEO of the Market Domination Media of the Huffington Post, has tips to improve your local search presence. Long believes, because so many consumers are using “mobile and tablet devices, it is making local search engine optimization” a key marketing approach.

1. Make sure your business is listed in prominent online directories

Long suggests that small business owners should focus on high quality business directories instead of any business directory that they come across. He says many business owners “attempt to get listed on every single business directory they come in contact with.” This is bad because they are low quality and full of spam, that may lower your business’s rankings. To find a local business directory type in Google, “Pennsylvania Business directory.” Make sure it is clear that the business directory is credible.

2. Don’t forget the Yellow Pages The yellow pages are online

Long says consumers, online communities and social media applications pull information from the Yellow Pages. There are many other directory sites but the Yellow Pages are extensively used by local consumers. Long recommends getting your business listed on because “it allows you take advantage of the actual searches performed on the site as well as other applications that use the YP data. “

3. Audit your Google+ listing and make sure it is complete and accurate

Just because you have one doesn’t mean it can’t be improved. Long believes that you should make sure all of the information fields available within your Google+ listing are filled out. Also, make sure the web address on your Google+ listing is identical to the one listed on your website; this also goes for phone numbers as well. Paying attention to the little details like this can prevent problems from occurring.

4. Be Smart about your social media strategy

Long says, the top social media sites that local businesses should use are Facebook, Google+, and Twitter. It is important to research what your target audience is active on and then focus on that specific social media platform.

5. Encourage customers to leave reviews

Long encourages business owners to print a question response code that directs customers to your local listings on receipt paper that says, “Let us know how we are doing” or “We value your feedback.” This is a great way to get feedback instead of bribing or directly instructing them to do so.

For more information please click the link below:

Thursday, June 5, 2014

How Entrepreneurs build the U.S. Economy

Every successful company begins with an innovative idea to sell a product or provide a service. Starting a company and running it alone is nearly impossible.
1. Companies need workers to help make the business processes run smoothly. For example, a business owner may need a manager to help run the corporation or an accountant to keep and organize the company’s expenditures. Therefore, entrepreneurs create more jobs because they need people to work under them. This helps the economy because now the entrepreneur’s employees have money to spend on wants and needs. The money the employees spend gets thrown back into economy.
2. Entrepreneurs not only create more jobs which help the economy, but they also must pay taxes. Another business means another tax payer. Businesses must pay federal, state, and local taxes. This tax money goes toward national defense, social security, Medicare, income security, healthcare, education, etc. This money is forced into the economy because businesses are forced to pay it.
3. Lastly, entrepreneurs create demand for other products. When starting a business, products that are used in the workplace are not just given out for free. Entrepreneurs are expected to go out to other companies and buy products such as office supplies. This is great for the economy because these entrepreneurs are supporting other businesses.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

What to Do When Crisis Arises in Your Small Business

When crisis arises in your small business, immediate action is necessary. The trusting bond you have created with the public will quickly diminish if you do not act fast enough. Make sure to contact the media before they contact you. You must stay on top of everything in your business. If the media knows something you don’t, they may get the chance to talk to the public about it before you do. Remember the media’s job is to make us aware and focuses on the “bad” news. Don’t give it this opportunity. Make sure to monitor any and all social media sites related to your business so you can beat the media to it. Then be prepared to talk about the discrepancies openly and honestly. The public is more forgiving when you are truthful, so be prepared to answer any and all questions they may have. The worst thing you can say is “no comment.” It allows the public to wonder and question your business’s motives.

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