Posts in Smart business tips

8 tips and tricks to sharpen your emails

May 25th, 2017 Posted by Online Business, Smart business tips No Comment yet

Read this before you press send.

Follow these eight simple tips and tricks to sharpen your emails and get the response you want.


1. Tailor to the recipient

Don’t spray and pray – mass blanket emails just don’t get read beyond the first line.  Taking the time to tailor your emails to the receiver is worth the extra time and effort.  Use their first name and understand what they want so you can structure the email around a solution.


2. Lead with your main idea

Start with the crux. Tell the reader why you are contacting them in the first line, then flesh out the rest of the details.


3. Keep it concise

No one wants to read a long, convoluted email. Remove unnecessary words and keep it to the point.


4. Use active voice

Instead of writing ‘The meeting will be held in room 2’, write ‘I’ll be delighted to see you at the meeting in room 2’. The active voice is clear and direct to elicit the response you want.


5. Proofread and edit

Check your email is clear, concise and error-free.  Stick this checklist in your workspace to wipe out email mistakes:

Email Checklist

  • Subject line
  • Spelling
  • Grammar
  • Dates
  • Times
  • Links
  • Pricing
  • Image copyright

Check each point twice to eradicate errors.


6. Add a catchy subject line

Give the reader a reason to open the email. Pick the most relevant, catchy and pertinent information and avoid clickbait – it might boost the open rate but it will also boost unsubscriptions.


7. Be polite

You can make any point politely and it won’t come back to haunt you down the track.


8. Don’t hit send

Sending an email is a simple way to tick off a task, but according to Collective Hub, it takes asking six people face-to-face to achieve the same effectiveness of a 200 recipient email blast.  See where you can wipe out email and communicate in real time instead – especially when asking for a pay rise, pitching to investors or asking to meet a superior.

 

Useful tools to improve your email:

As with most things in life, there’s help on the internet. These tools will help you get the most out of your emails:

  • Easy Word Count will check the length of your emails, ensuring that they aren’t too long. You can also check your spelling too.
  • Boom Essays: Want someone to check your emails before you send them? Send them to this service, where they can proofread them for you.
  • Paper Fellows: This writing community will help you get the most out of everything you write at work.
  • Assignment Help: If grammar’s not your strong suit, this writing service will help you get to grips with it.
  • Cite It In will help you get the right citation for any source you use in your writing.
  • Essay Services: Got an important email to write? This service can put it together for you.

Use this advice the next time you are writing an email. It’s amazing how much a simple message can improve when you implement these simple steps. Send effective emails to receive the response you want!

 

Blogpost by Mary Walton on May 24, 2017
You can read the original post on the Bartercard Australia Blog

How to boost e-commerce and sales in 2017

May 10th, 2017 Posted by Bartercard, Marketing, Online Business, Smart business tips No Comment yet

Every day more traders are becoming aware of the potential and power of selling within Bartercard’s online trading platform MYBC. Many members are achieving sales within just a few days, if not hours, of creating a new listing and are recognizing a real opportunity to boost business growth.

In this week’s blog we see what actions successful members are taking every day to make thousands in online sales to achieve growth. We also look at simple e-commerce mistakes to avoid.

 

Take these following steps for online success.

1. Communication

It’s important that if someone has trusted you enough to purchase one of your offers, you make contact within 24hrs. Just because you are selling electronically, where you often don’t see or speak to the buyer, doesn’t mean general business communication practices go out the window.  Making contact with a buyer in a timely manner builds trust, puts their mind at ease, and they believe that you intend to follow through on your promise. Ask yourself how you would like to be communicated to if you were the buyer?

2. Transparency

You want to position what you are selling in the best possible light without misleading the buyer. Be clear, honest and reveal as much detail as possible about an item you are selling. If the item you’re selling has a scratch or a ding, make it clear. Your buyer will appreciate the honesty and want to transact with you in the future.

3. Detail

Providing as much detail about your listing as possible is vital for converting a lead into a paying customer. You will be amazed at how many people view your listing and decide not to buy, because there just wasn’t enough information included. If you are creating a listing with the intention to sell it, take the time to provide detail, otherwise there is no point slapping up something quickly with not enough information included.

4. Images

If you want to increase online sales, you must have high quality images. The more clearly you can show a product, the better. Try position it near a window, turn all the lights on, shine a spot light on the image – anything to remove shadows – so a buyer can clearly see what you are selling. If using MYBC, make sure you provide a minimum of four images. Click here to discover more photography tips and tricks.

5. Delivery

Take the guesswork out of the costs involved in postage/delivery. Try and include delivery in the price if possible and/or offer a flat postage rate on smaller items. It might seem better for you (the seller) to state that shipping is the buyer’s responsibility, but it may cost you sales. If selling something large that you could potentially drop off locally on your way to work, consider listing it as free local delivery. Doing this makes it easier for the buyer to receive the goods, and they are more likely to buy from you again.

6. Think laterally and create packages

If you are a mechanic, offer a bundled package that includes oil change, wheel alignment, suspension and engine clean. If you are a restaurant, package a dinner for two with a bottle of champagne. Give people ideas! MYBC is free advertising for your business. Don’t wait for customers to come to you. Create value for others and bundle your product/service into attractive packages!

7. Make your listing ‘Featured’

It’s worth investing an extra T$5.95 to get your listing featured on MYBC, which will place your offer in the prime position on the home page. This will place your listing in front of thousands of Bartercard members when they first login, as well as catch them when they are in a buying frame of mind and looking to spend.

8. High Standards

It is clear that the people who are making thousands in online sales have incredibly high standards.

The standard of their offer, listing or presentation is representative of their attitude and the results follow. For example, the best restaurants who attract the most customers and make the most sales, generally have the best standards. From the moment you walk in, the premises is exceptional and attention has been applied to the finer details.

This is exactly the same when creating a listing online, if you maintain high standards and take the time to present an exceptional offer, whilst paying attention to the finer details, you are guaranteed to attract high quality customers and increase your sales success.

Following these simple steps will help you succeed in online sales and attract new customers to your business.

MYBC is free for Bartercard members and will attract new customers who are actively looking to spend.

Visit mybc.bartercard.com and start your listing today.

For more information about growing your business, visit bartercardusa.com.

 

 

Article adapted from a Bartercard Australia Blogpost.

Why building business relationships is important

May 3rd, 2017 Posted by Smart business tips No Comment yet

In every business, it is vital to build solid customer relationships, but building business relationships, even with your competitors, can help you succeed.

BUILDING RELATIONSHIPS WITH COMPLIMENTARY BUSINESS PARTNERS

Perhaps you are an orthopedic surgeon and focused on your patients from a diagnostic and treatment perspective.  Your patients will have ancillary needs, including rehabilitative services.  It is important for a surgeon to build relationships, even partner with a physical therapist or Athletic Trainer to ensure a patient’s needs are met even beyond the capacity of their services.

Similarly, a restaurant owner would benefit from building solid business relationships with partners in the food supply chain, beverage suppliers, and people in the music and live entertainment community.

No matter what your business is, you will always benefit from having solid relationships with complimentary businesses. 

 

BUILDING RELATIONSHIPS WITH THE COMPETITION

Unfortunately, many business owners keep an “arm’s length” approach to competitors.  Although it is difficult to understand why one would need to be close to the competition, it is imperative that any successful business owner keep their fingers on the pulse of the competition.

In the hotel business, property owners compete for room sales.  When one hotel becomes booked beyond its capacity, keeping a relationship with neighboring hotels is a great way to keep your guests close to friends and family.  In many instances, a wedding or function may require several rooms for accommodations following an event.  Having a strong partnership with a neighbor hotel can provide the additional rooms you need to keep large groups happy.

In addition, tennis and golf facilities often host tournaments and events.  In many instances, this requires the use of additional courts and sometimes an additional course to play on.  Having a solid relationship with a “sister” facility could be the difference between having a smooth event and having a scenario of organized chaos.

Having a strong business is the foundation of success, but having strong business relationships can provide a business owner with additional tools necessary for the highest level of success.

Tips on promoting your business using social media

April 19th, 2017 Posted by Marketing, Online Business, Smart business tips No Comment yet

So you say you’re not a social media buff? Perhaps you just don’t know what all the hype is about.  It’s easier than you think to use social media for marketing to launch your business into cyber-success.  Here are just a few easy steps to get you started.

  1. FIND THE BEST FIT

There are several different platforms to choose from when using social media for marketing: Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, LinkedIn, Google+ and Pinterest just to name a few.  Figure out which ones your target audience is most likely to use and sign on up, but don’t shy away from unconventional social media platforms either!

  1. ALWAYS MAINTAIN BRAND CONSISTENCY

While you won’t use the different social media platforms for all the same purposes, you’ll want to maintain a consistent brand image. Make sure your username and logo are the same on every account. You want people to be able to recognize your brand easily; even the best message won’t do any good if it can’t be traced back to you. Remember, too, that visuals are important—an amateurish Facebook page will hurt your brand more than help it.  Any lack of attention to image will surely impact your credibility.

  1. USE VARIETY TO STAY INTERESTING

People join social media to be social! Your followers will start dropping rapidly if all they see are ads for your services. Diversify your posts with interesting or funny images, articles, videos, and links related to your industry to get people to click that, be careful to avoid posting anything that may serve to alienate customers.  In between all the hilarious and thought-provoking content, you can slip in posts about your services that won’t come across as pushy advertising.

  1. MEASURE YOUR SUCCESS 

When using social media for marketing, it’s easy to use tracking data to monitor your progress.  Google Analytics is a good place to start, and it’s easy to understand.  The ability to see which of your posts generated the most clicks to your website can be a huge help in determining what works and what doesn’t when using social media for marketing.  This is the feedback you need to continue a forward progression.

Be bold. Be creative. Take stock in knowing that you’re exposing your business to a customer base you could never have reached otherwise. Social media can be the difference between moderate and high business traffic, so get started!

 

Top photography tips and tricks to make your brand stand out

April 12th, 2017 Posted by Bartercard, Marketing, Online Business, Smart business tips No Comment yet

Photographs are key to standing out in a digital world – whether on social media, a company website or in a marketing campaign. Did you know there are 60 million new photos uploaded to Instagram daily?

This week we list the top photography tips and tricks from Instagram superstars to give your brand cut-through – whether you’re snapping on a digital SLR or your smart phone.

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How to kick start a venture through crowdfunding

April 4th, 2017 Posted by Smart business tips No Comment yet

You’ve seen crowdfunding splashed over social media and business sites.  In this week’s Bartercard blog, we list the basics and what you should know to successfully raise the finance you need to get your concept to the market.

What is crowdfunding? 

It’s funding a venture or project by raising monetary contributions online before the concept launches.  It’s also a way test your idea based off its capital-raising success.  If it sinks at crowdfunding stage, it might be a flash in the pan or won’t take off in the market at all.

It’s a popular space  

In 2015, the crowdfunding market raised approximately $34 billion (crowdexpert.com).
The most successful crowdfunding campaign ever is the ‘Pebble E-Paper Watch’ which raised over $10.2 million in 37 days.

There are many different types of crowdfunding.  A few of them are: 

  • Rewards crowdfunding: is where a product is pre-sold to launch a concept, without incurring debt or sacrificing equity.
  • Equity crowdfunding: is where the backer receives shares in a company in exchange for the money pledged.
  • Syndicate crowdfunding: adds value by putting three key elements together: a start-up, a lead investor and backers (the latter is an investor who doesn’t have extensive experience or wants someone else manage the investment).
  • Donation crowdfunding: raises contributions towards a charitable cause.
  • Lending crowdfunding: is where investors are repaid their investment over time.

What does it take to launch a successful crowdfunding campaign? 

It does take a marketable concept but it’s not as simple as chalking up an idea, creating graphics and copy, and throwing it all up on a crowdfunding site.

What it does take is a well-mapped marketing campaign, assets like brand, website and a database, telling a unique story, building up anticipation and your following on social media leading up to the launch, investing in advertising and PR to secure placement and exposure, preparing all marketing assets like video, press releases and imagery, and engaging audience and potential investors whilst the campaign is live.

It’s imperative you have everything lined up before the launch. Translating video and editing it in accents for countries where you think it’ll have the most impact could maximize reach and pledges.

The first 48 hours are critical

During launch you will need to constantly show, engage and explain why your product is invaluable, and post frequent updates which will create buzz and give existing fans and advocates more reason to talk.

There are a myriad of crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter, GoFundMe and Indiegogo. Research all of them to find the most fitting platform to launch your crowdfunding concept.

Crowdfunding is a smart way to tackle capital at start-up. Bartercard’s Interest Free Line of Credit is another.  Talk to your Trade Broker about how you can use Bartercard to makeover your business without spending cash.

Adapted from an article that appeared on bartercard.com.au.

9 tips for a successful partnership

March 29th, 2017 Posted by Smart business tips No Comment yet

Did you know at least 50% of partnerships fail in the first 2-3 years?

This statistic alone may scare you into staying solo, but we have the insight to keep your partnership rock solid.

A partnership venture starts out as a brilliant idea between at least two entities. You agree it’s a good idea, you sign the agreement, get started and things may be great for a while. But then the cracks start to show.

Based on conversations with business owners who’ve experienced partnership failures, here’s a list of 9 tips to give your next partnership the best shot at survival.

1. Complementing skill sets. Partnerships have been instrumental to many successful start-ups and the reasons are simple: complementing skill sets and a collaborative approach. But often partners with similar skills gravitate to each other. This may seem attractive for growing market presence, but it doesn’t create enough diversity, which is where many partnerships fall over. Ensure you have a mix of diverse and complementing skills to avoid too many cooks in the kitchen.

2. Similar values and vision. Many of your partner’s values will impact the outcome of your venture – will they be willing to put in the work, and how will they respond in a stressful situation? Do they do what they can to keep going in a crisis, or will they pack up? Sharing similar values is imperative. You can agree to disagree in different areas of the business, but at the end of the day partners should also share a similar vision. One partner may be reliant on carrying out the next commission, whilst the other is thinking big picture and building the customer base. These differences may quickly become a deal breaker to make your partnership unstick.

3. Balance effort. Sometimes one partner alleges to be putting in more time and energy than the other(s), which may be the case, agreed or not. Much of this comes down to the perceived value of the partnership venture and the time and resources available. So explore the value of the partnership, the return on investment, commitment, and resource requirements at the start. Then deal with any conflict more rationally via the terms of the agreement.

4. Transparency. Openness and honesty is critical to every successful partnership. As one entrepreneur stated after three acrimonious partnership failures, “whoever controls the money, holds the power”. Whilst conjecture, this viewpoint represents that of many partners on the receiving end of poor transparency. Partners bringing hidden debts and agendas to the venture has also seen many partnerships crumble so ensure yours is transparent.

5. Communicate. When communication breaks down, at least there is some recourse to figure out what went wrong, but a lack of communication is a symptom of lack of planning – who does what, reporting and accountability. So plan every step, variable and worst case scenario to prevent your partnership unravelling and always keep your partner in the loop.

6. Don’t move faster than you can manage. A new partnership can move very fast and that’s a great thing. But a partnership that moves too quickly without inclusion of key personnel is heading for trouble. Without a good plan, change gets bogged down in resistance compounded by fear. Having an inclusive strategy which incorporates a change management plan is more likely to assist success.

7. Have a dispute and exit plan in place. Peace of mind is knowing you have a feasible exit plan. An exit clause in your agreement defines what happens to intellectual property, profits, debts, clients and other considerations, in the event of, or when, the partnership venture ceases. This is particularly important if partners bring assets to a new venture which they wish to retain. Add a sound and clear dispute resolution clause into the formal partnership agreement and seek a mediator if necessary.

8. Evolve. The business world moves quickly and the reasons for entering a partnership six months ago may no longer be relevant. Evolving your partnership and adjusting to stay relevant and feasible is key.

9. One last thought, do you really need a partner? Consider why you are entering a partnership, and explore if there is an alternative to achieving what you want. A partnership should create something mutually beneficial for both parties which is greater than the sum of its parts combined. If you don’t see this value perhaps you should consider other options.

If you’re involved in a partnership, whether it’s a strategic alliance, joint venture, partnership in law, or anything in between, getting your business model and systems right are essential for success.

A partnership venture is one example of a business strategy for growth. Others include coaching and mentoring programs, outsourcing (e.g. virtual assistants and IT specialists), strategy development, IP advice and services, marketing, grant writing and financial modeling. Bartercard is a network that provides easy access to the business support services your company needs. Check out the directory in MYBC for services locally and across the USA.

Pat Grosse is the CEO of The Community Entrepreneur, providing marketing and business services support to not-for-profits and business enterprises. She specializes in grant writing services, project management and partnerships. Pat has been working with partnerships for over 20 years. At one point she was employed by a consortium of 10 universities.

Visit Partnership Toolbox for more information.

Written by Pat Grosse on Jan 18, 2017
From http://blog.bartercard.com.au/9-tips-for-a-successful-partnership
For more information contact
Pat Grosse
Executive Manager
The Community Entrepreneur
Tel: +61 3 9005 5889 | e-mail: pat@thecommunityentrepreneur.com |
www.thecommunityentrepreneur.com | facebook |

Bartercard Top Trading Tips

March 22nd, 2017 Posted by Bartercard, Smart business tips No Comment yet

Ever wonder how Bartercard’s most successful members trade?  In this week’s blog, we have the most creative deals and road-tested tips from Bartercard’s top traders.

Rising to the top with Bartercard

Whether you like your bread savory, sweet, crusty, classic or artisanal, Bakers Delight has been baking it since 1980. One franchisee of the popular bread brand has created a partnership with Bartercard to maximize sales. “We need to make a high volume of sales every day to stay viable. Bartercard has helped me grow my customer base and sell excess products, leaving me with less bread wasted at the end of each day,” said Ryan Kirkham, owner of Bakers Delight franchises in Kawana and Maroochydore, Queensland, Australia. “Bartercard really fits in with our ‘baked fresh daily’ approach. On average our sales have jumped by approximately $40,000 per year with Bartercard – that’s a lot of loaves!

Bartercard lands electrical business its biggest cash job

In a competitive male-orientated industry, Sharyn Watson is crushing stereotypes as the only female operator of an electrical business on the Gold Coast. She recently landed her biggest cash job when a Bartercard contract led to a referral at a resort on the Gold Coast.

“It’s our biggest cash job to date and now we have a continual supply agreement to maintain the resort’s electricals and air-conditioning,” said Sharyn. She said the three most important things to customers is showing up, cleaning up and following up which the company sticks to rain, hail or shine. She uses Bartercard to cash convert, spending T$25,000 for light fittings in Bartercard trade dollars and selling them for $25,000 cash.

In exchange for trade dollars, Sharyn has prepaid out her office telephones and internet for two years, a big cash saving in her pocket. She’s also building a house and conserving $50,000 in cash by using trade dollars to pay for trades. Her tip is to treat Bartercard customers just like cash-paying clientele. “Putting Bartercard and cash clients into different categories can come at a cost,” she said. “Always treat clients equally and the results will speak for themselves.”

Cashless Uber investment

Here’s a smart trading tip to keep up your sleeve. One Bartercard member has capitalized on Uber, the ride sharing service which has swept Australia. The business owner bought a car on Bartercard’s online trading platform MYBC, listed it on Gumtree as an Uber rental vehicle for a set cash amount per week and the car is paying for itself – not a bad extra revenue stream!

Buying a block of land with the press of a button

Sean Levy, the owner of Sub Zero Vending and distributor of vending machines nationally recently purchased a block of land through Bartercard’s trading platform MYBC with the press of a button on his smartphone. “The land is in Townsville and was selling at a distress rate of $15,000,” said Sean. “My Trade Broker told me about the deal which was listed on MYBC, where you can trade 24/7. I bought the property on trade and then hired a lawyer on Bartercard to complete all the paperwork.”

Couran Cove splashes out

Couran Cove Island Resort is a piece of paradise on the Gold Coast which has used one small card to turn empty rooms into cash. Asserting that one of the biggest challenges in any resort is filling room nights, Couran Cove director, Lachlan McIntosh said he’s used Bartercard to maximize bookings and revenue. “Couran Cove has 350 rooms and whether they’re filled or empty we still have the fixed expenses of running a resort,” he said.

“Bartercard helps us fill those empty rooms at un-discounted rates paid in an alternative currency of trade dollars. We then use those trade dollars to purchase wine through Bartercard which we sell to visitors for cash – so suddenly an empty room becomes $200 in revenue.”

 

From an article on bartercard.com.au
By Klara Vida, Nov 23, 2016

2017 Means Marketing

March 15th, 2017 Posted by Marketing, Online Business, Smart business tips No Comment yet

This week Alan Thompson of Stingray Branding explains why now is the perfect time to think about your 2017 marketing strategy.

Do you go get the yellow pages when you need a plumber or photographer? No?! Well surprise, neither do your clients. While we always want word of mouth to be a large part of our marketing strategy and hope to count on it forever, it is not the only form of marketing, nor should it be the only marketing you put all of your future in the hands of.website design, marketing, web design, development.
But I have a website, why would I need to do anything else?
Our firm hears this half question, half answer a lot, and the answer is no. Simply having a website is not enough and certainly never will be. Most business owners feel that because they have a website, even if it ranks on the first page of Google search results their marketing is perfect and it’ll stay that way. Well, Google makes changes every day to how they rank websites in their search results, and a website that is not making proactive and reactive changes to adjust with them will not stay on the first page.
So what are some of the big changes I haven’t thought of?
Have you heard of cyber security and all the breaches the past couple of years? Well, they are kind of a big deal and Google doesn’t take it lightly. Therefore, a major change coming is any site that does not have a security certificate installed will have a notice displayed by Google saying the site is not secure. Do you think your clients will want to buy when Google starts saying their connection isn’t secure? Of course SSL’s have helped your website rank better in searches for years, but this is a big move to make it even more important. I’m sure you know your site has to be mobile responsive for user friendliness. Did you know that if isn’t your website will also reduce in ranking results.
Ok, so a website and social media must be the end-all, be-all right?
Unfortunately, no. Marketing in 2017 is so much more than just posting on Social Media and having a nice, effective, and resourceful website. As marketing becomes more competitive and your competition gets better at it, you have to step up your game too. If you don’t have an effective inbound marketing strategy with at least 3-4 inbound marketing techniques, our team can help you create your 2017 marketing strategy. Effectively implementing a blogging program, a newsletter follow up, relationship marketing, and a digital strategy are all marketing methods you should have working for you and that you know how well they work.
What does this all mean for you?
Simple, NOW is the time to make a plan to implement new marketing strategies, refine your current marketing platforms, and review the analytics from your 2016 marketing efforts (if you don’t have them, make a plan to start tracking in 2017).

If the thought of all this marketing stuff is overwhelming, or maybe you just don’t have time…. Call, E-Mail, or Book an Appointment with the Stingray Branding team today and pay using your Trade Dollars!

 

About the Author
Alan Thompson got into marketing for the same reason you are reading this article – he had to market and didn’t know how. Several years, a college education, and thousands of hours of experience later, a Marketing Guru has been developed. Outside of marketing and networking, you’ll typically find Alan spending time with his kids and family, at a Gators game, or on a surfboard.

Alan Thompson, Marketing Guru for Stingray Branding
Toll Free: (844) 239-8467 | Local: (843) 480-4476
info@stingraybranding.com | Book an Appointment
www.stingraybranding.com

How to buy a business on Bartercard

March 8th, 2017 Posted by Bartercard, Smart business tips No Comment yet

Showing just how many great ways there are to spend trade dollars, one Bartercard member in Australia got his start in a new business with a franchise he purchased on Bartercard.

When Sydney businessman Claude Spinelli left the restaurant industry, he started looking for his next venture. He had successfully used Bartercard while managing his restaurant, and wanted to use his trade dollars and Bartercard interest-free line of credit to make the most of his capital. 

As a part-time DJ, he was attracted to a Sydney-based audio visual franchise called Light Sound that was advertised for sale on Bartercard. After purchasing the franchise, he moved the business to Wollongong and rebranded it to Pro Sound and Lighting. 

He’s since used Bartercard to maximize cash flow, attract new customers and minimize expenses – a triple boost to his new business.

Reducing business costs
Claude said purchasing a business on Bartercard and using trade dollars to partly or fully cover the cost (he paid used trade dollars to cover 80 per cent of the peripheral costs) can assist business owners to reduce their cash borrowings from the bank, reduce interest and invest more money into their venture.

“Using Bartercard to purchase my business was a no-brainer,” said Claude. “It was the right fit and meant I didn’t need to take out a bank loan for working capital which relieved a lot of stress in start-up. It allowed me to focus on building a client base without having to worry about cash flow.”


The many ways to use Bartercard
Claude’s expertise in hospitality gave him experience in using Bartercard to boost customers. Yet, Claude believes that many members have yet to discover what they can do with the card.

“Bartercard is a great fit in the restaurant industry,” he said. “Members would book during slower periods which would fill the restaurant. I would always seat Bartercard customers near the windows and at the front of the restaurant so it looked full in quiet times – and a crowd attracts a crowd.  If I go to a restaurant on a Thursday night and ask how business is and they say it’s tough, I point out that if they have empty tables they could be filling them up through Bartercard.”

To maximize cash flow and reduce waste in his current business, Claude trades stock that he has accumulated or discontinued.

“Bartercard is business you wouldn’t have in the cash world,” he points out. “For example, a member may ring me looking for a data projector. I explain to that customer that I don’t sell brand new projectors, but that I do have ex-rentals which I replace every 12 months.”

He said he also wins a lot of installation contracts by having Bartercard.

“Schools, churches and nightclubs may ring when they’re doing a refurbish and have a lot of stage lighting and speakers that they want to upgrade. I’ll provide a quote, and it might be $10,000. But then I take all their pre-used equipment and deduct $2,000 from the bill. I sell all this equipment on Bartercard’s trading website MYBC.”

Claude admits that his outgoing and friendly personality makes Bartercard a natural fit, just like his business.

“I’m easy-going, I’m very streetwise and I think I’m a good negotiator,” he laughs. “Ever since I was a kid I’ve worked in retail – Harvey Norman, Retravision – plus I love trading; I’m the go-to-guy in my family whenever anyone’s looking for a deal. My wife doesn’t pay cash for her haircuts and nail treatments – I cut her credit card in half and gave her a Bartercard instead. If she wants to go out to dinner, we find a restaurant on Bartercard and go there.”

He added that before he pays cash, he always looks at options on Bartercard first. “Why use cash or credit when you can pay with your products or services instead?”
Adapted from a blogpost Written by Bartercard Australia.