Volleyball Tactics - How to Position the Players

In every sport positioning the players correctly often holds the key to winning or losing - soccer, baseball, football or volleyball. To appropriately put the right strength in use is very important in games today that survive on strategizing. What is the strength of a certain player? What is the ideal position for him or her? The answers to these questions decide the whole strategy of games like volleyball where player positions are extremely important.

Let's now look at some of the pointers on how to decide on player positions in a volleyball field.


o Tall players should ideally stay in the front. They will stay close to the net, receive the ball well and spike it to the opponent's court. It is easier for taller people to spike the ball better to the ground.

o Building up a strong line of defense and offense is equally important. You need both attackers and blockers placed strategically.

o Setters are the backbone of offense. They will be positioned such that they can receive the ball well and place it strategically within their court for a player to receive it and send it across the net. If the setter places the ball rightly to the right person then the receiver can aim the ball well while sending it off to the opponent's court.

o Liberos will be positioned such that they can attack the ball right away once it is served.

o Hitters are placed at the middle of the court or along the borders. When set by setter, the hitters reach the ball quickly and hit it across the court. Hitters can be good spikers too.

Next is the formation. So you know who goes where but now you need to decide how those positions are placed in the court. One of the popular arrangements are the six two formation where six attackers are set in the middle of the court and near the net. Of them two would work as setters and the other four as plain hitters. You can also have a five one formation where only one setter is positioned are the rest play as attackers. This formation can be changed within the course of a game based on the outcome. A game of volleyball is extremely dynamic and one will need to think on their feet to have success in this game. Remember keeping your position and performing your task is equally important in this game.

Once the positions and formations are decided, then that should be clearly conveyed to the team as confusion often leads to wastage of time and bad playing. Also it is important that the team captain keeps an eye on the players and whether they are holding on to their correct positions or not. It will also be the captain's duty to communicate with the coach or the manager and then with the team members on changes in strategy and positions during the course of the play. The captain's position brings along with it power and as famously said with power comes responsibility.

Volleyball Tactics - How to Position the Players

Gregg Hall is an author living on the Emerald Coast of Florida. Now that you know a little more about playing volleyball be sure that you get quality volleyball by going to http://www.nsearch.com

Spring Trout Fishing Tactics

When it comes to fishing for trout in the spring of the year everyone seems to be looking for that one thing that will give them "a leg up" over other fishermen. That one special bait or lure that will help them catch trout, when everyone else seems to be having a difficult time. Well, I have been fishing for trout for more than two decades and have found that more than the trout bait or lure that you are using, the tactic that you employ seems to make the most difference when it comes to experiencing springtime trout fishing success.

Below I will outline a few springtime trout tactics that should be employed by anyone who wants to experience more success when fishing for trout this spring. The spring of the year offers some unique challenges that fishermen don't necessarily have to deal with during other fishing seasons and those challenges would include competition (fishing pressure), high water conditions, and muddy water conditions. The good thing is that every one of the challenges can be overcome by employing the one or more of the trout tactics being outlined below.

  1. Use A Longer Fishing Rod - This springtime trout tactics is most prevalent when fishing for trout in rivers that are running higher than they normally do. You see, if you use a longer fishing rod than you normally would, being able to "feel" what is happening with your bait or trout fishing lure is much easier. For example, rather than using a standard five foot ultralight fishing rod (which under 'normal' water conditions is ideal for trout fishing) use a seven to seven and a half-foot ultralight rod instead. Although often overlooked, this simple springtime trout tactic will make you a much more successful springtime trout angler.

  2. Drifting "Mealies" - Meal worms are often thought of as an effective trout bait for ice fishing, but get forgotten as soon as the weather begins to warm up. Drift fishing with small hooks that are baited with "mealies" (meal worms) might be the most effective of the spring trout tactics being discussed in this article. A meal worm can be threaded onto a #8 or #10 fishing hook, in much the same way a jig body is threaded onto a jig head, results in an extremely realistic presentation that hungry spring trout find hard to resist.

  3. Micro Jigs - Another often overlooked trout bait are micro jigs, which means a jig that is from 1/100 to 1/32 of an ounce. These teeny jigs can be fished in lakes or rivers and are like little pieces of candy to hungry springtime trout. If you are going to fish micro jigs without the help of a slip bobber (which adds weight to the rig making casting these tiny jigs much easier) make sure that you are using long fishing rod and very light fishing line. Most experienced micro jig fishermen advise using two-pound test line when fishing micro jigs without the help of a slip bobber. In muddy water conditions, use a jig that has a white head and brightly colored body. This will mean that the jig is much more visible to hungry trout.


The bottom line is that the aforementioned spring trout tactics are all extremely effective and should be a part of every serious trout fisherman's fishing arsenal. If any of them aren't a part of yours, they should be added sooner, rather than later.

Spring Trout Fishing Tactics

Trevor Kugler is president of JRWfishing.com, a website dedicated to ultra light fishing, with an emphasis on ultra light river fishing for trout. Check out our new blog focused on trout fishing tips and techniques to help you be more successful on the water: http://jrwfishing.blogspot.com

How To Prepare For Case Studies In Management Consulting Interviews

Management consulting interviews are notorious for case studies. They are not your standard job interview, but rather a series of case descriptions and hypothetical or theoretical problems in business, which are expected to be analyzed or solved by the candidate. Preparation for such interviews is crucial to success and getting hired with a top management consulting firm.

Firms, such as McKinsey or Bain present a series of case studies during the interviewing process. The skills necessary to successfully perform on a case study interview are the similar skills needed to work effectively as a management consultant. Management consulting experts are required to understand the basic concepts in business, such as market structure or financials, as well as think analytically and in a highly structured manner. A management consultant's daily job basically consists of real-life case studies, so the case study exercise in an interview setting provides the hiring committee an active assessment of how well the candidate performs in core firm activities.


BCG and A.T. Kearney have been using case study interviews for years with proven success. Hiring committees from these leading management consulting companies indicate that the process is nearly foolproof. If a candidate performs significantly well on a case study interview, they show that they will be a good fit for the company.

Preparation is needed before going in front of a hiring committee at any firm. In fact, top consulting firms like Booz recommend practicing as much as possible with friends, co-workers, and other consultants. Practicing in front of the mirror is a great way to overcome insecurity and provides a wonderful way to self-examine in terms of body language and style.

There are a number of case study practice guides available on the market today. In fact, some companies offer practice questions and interviewing tips on the company website. You don't need to drain your bank account by purchasing every study guide that was ever published, but selecting two or three solid and reputable guides may help you to succeed on your management consulting interview. The more exposure that you have to the types of questions and cases offered, the more prepared you will feel going into your interview.

It is important to think about cases and scenarios in your everyday life in preparation for your case study interview. This means, for example, that when reading the business section of the New York Times, you should put yourself in the position of the CEO. Ask yourself how you would handle the problem: what would you do, what kinds of things would you do to lead your team. By presenting yourself with these types of scenarios on a constant basis, you are preparing yourself for the management consulting interview. It is important to be able to think quickly on your feet and present an answer with confidence and determination.

The case study is valued so highly that you performance on this task accounts for at least 50% of your determining score. It cannot be emphasized enough that it is crucial for you to prepare for these kinds of interviews. Doing well on this portion of the management consulting interview weighs heavily on you getting hired by the firm. If you are looking for an offer at one of the leading consulting firms, the best thing to do is practice, practice and practice some more. You cannot practice enough for the case study stage of the interview; when you are sure you have done enough, you need to go back and do more.

Landing a job at a management consulting firm is no easy task, but you can increase your chances of getting hired by doing your homework ahead of time. Take the case study interview portion of the hiring process seriously and land the job of your dreams.

How To Prepare For Case Studies In Management Consulting Interviews

Need strategies for your management consulting interview? Download our free guide, "How to Land a Consulting Job" to get more insight into case studies and the interview process. ConsultingFact.com offers insights to help you land the consulting job of your dreams.

Niche Marketing Will Make Building Your Business Easier and More Profitable

What is a niche? A niche is a clearly definable group of like minded people with a common and mutual interest. It is a subcategory of a larger market that has specific issues, problems, wants, and needs. By understanding those issues you will be able to focus your marketing communications and get that message to the correct audience in the correct format and medium. This creates a message to market match. You actually become an advocate for them and as result begin to attract them to you.

For example, if you market a nutritional product, you may focus on a the 50 to 60 year old demographic that is concerned with protecting and maintaining their health as they grow older. Your messages to them would focus on particular issues such as heart disease or cancer, or generating more energy. As you provide information about the nutrition that is related to their concerns, you qualify yourself as knowledgeable and a leader in that field. You begin to establish trust and credibility.


Do you have a niche? Most people starting in Network Marketing are encouraged to adopt the strategy that everyone is their prospect and that all they have to do is talk to enough people, stay positive, do the personal growth work, and never give up. While it may seem that the niche or market focus is naturally defined by the company and their products, it is a strategy that is often too broad. As a result business builders often fail to create a niche focus in their business. This lack of focus and direction has led to major problems for many network marketers as they use this broad brush to try to address too large an audience. Rather then getting to know their potential customers and business partners and their desires, needs, and wants, they quickly find themselves in a desperate selling mode which turns people off. This type of behavior has led to a negative image of network marketing.

Finding your niche. Any successful business must communicate and provide value that solves customer wants and needs. In order to do that, you must become intimate with issues, problems, wants, desires, and needs of your ideal client. That is best and most efficiently determined by focusing on a niche or unique market segment that you thoroughly understand. 3 critical questions to answer in finding your niche:

1. Who is a market?
How do you define them? Who is your best or ideal customer?

2. What does your niche want?
Specifically, what are they looking for? What problem are they trying to solve? Where do you have passion that matches what your niche wants? How can you position yourself as a solutions provider?

3. How do they want it? Often the delivery and the customer experience is more important then the product itself. Learn how they get information and in what format. Then put that strategy into action.

By specializing on a specific marketing niches or segments, you can bring ideal prospects to you. When you differentiate yourself from other people in the market place you set yourself apart from everyone else and gain attention. As you demonstrate that you understand your niche or group's specific wants and needs you establish greater credibility. You actually become an advocate for them. This builds on relationship and will lead to trust by actually demonstrating your ability to solve a problem that is important to them. Now they will want to know more about you and what you have to offer. You have become an expert in your niche which makes it easy to convert prospects to customers and price competition diminishes, making for a more profitable relationship.

Niche Marketing Will Make Building Your Business Easier and More Profitable

Bob Nussbaum is a National Home Business Consultant showing network marketers and home business owners how to improve their business results with proper training and marketing. Bob teaches internet based marketing strategies for building home based or network marketing businesses. http://www.HomeBizNetMarketing.com

Organizational Culture Tactics For Tackling Negative Co-Workers

Negative co workers can make working in an organization a difficult thing. Even when you are positive in your approach, a negative environment and negative co workers can make working with them really cumbersome. Organizational culture in any business model promotes a positive attitude among the employees of the organization. When you are dealing with negative co workers, they are certain things that you must do for yourself as well as for others around you.

  • Be approachable


When you find yourself surrounded by negative co workers, organizational culture demands that you maintain your positive attitude while being approachable to others. When you acknowledge negativity in others and encourage them to turn positive in their thoughts, it will make a big difference to people's habits. Approaching negative people with a positive attitude will also contribute to reducing negativity.

  • Be patient

As a positive person, you need to be patient to be able to deal with co workers who have a negative approach to everything. Listen to the ideas and suggestions of your colleagues and give them your time and a patient hearing. Discuss things as gently as possible and you will find your listeners in receptive mood. When you show interest in a person and his ideas, you find them less rigid. Any pretense they might hold up will be given up gradually over a period of time.

  • Focus on what is positive

Not everyone is completely negative. There is always a good thing about anyone who works with you. If you are a positive person, you need to focus on what is positive in the person you are dealing with. By remaining focused on the positive attitudes of co workers, you tend to keep away negativity. Organizational culture is all about getting the best out of people in a positive manner.

Organizational Culture Tactics For Tackling Negative Co-Workers

If you'd like more information about Organizational Culture download your free guide Organizational Culture. Jodi and Mike specialize in business succession with a focus on organizational culture.


Strategy Implementation

Nine out of ten strategies fail to be implemented successfully. We are starting to understand the very important lesson that implementing strategy is harder than creating the right strategy from the study of success and failures of previous strategy implementations.

When we triumph over implementation it can become a blue ocean strategy - that is a competitive differentiation and while there are many tools and techniques for crafting strategy there are very few for implementing it. Rosabeth Moss Kanter put it very eloquently when she said: "Ethical standards and our ability to groom future leaders inevitably decline. That's why execution, or "making it happen," is so important. Execution is the un-idea; it means having the mental and organizational flexibility to put new business models into practice, even if they counter what you're currently doing. That ability is central to running a organization right now. So rather than chasing another new management fad, or expecting still another "magic bullet" to come along, organizations should focus on execution to effectively use the organizational tools we already have."


To further support Rosabeth Moss Kanter comment, consider the fact from Barons that only 15% of the 974 programs reviewed in Fiscal 2005 were rated effective.

In addition, from 1917 to 1987 only 39 of the original Forbes 100 survived and only two outperformed the market, GE and Eastman Kodak.

Many strategies are expected to deliver growth. This creates even more issues due to the "Growth Paradox". As businesses grow they create new and larger challenges which again emphasizes the need to be good at strategy implementation.

It is time to switch the focus from just crafting strategy to crafting and implementing it. If for no other reason, it is estimated that U.S. managers spend more than billion annually on strategic analysis and strategy formulation. If 90% fail then that is a waste of billion.
Strategy implementation is a relative new field that's genesis was the high failure rate and lack of a framework. The field is about 10 years old and the research on the subject is just being gathered. There has been various research:

1. Kaplan and Norton, the originators of the Balance Scorecard, published also that 90% of organizations fail to execute their strategies successfully.

2. In a study of 200 organizations in the Times 1000, 80% of directors said they had the right strategies but only 14% thought they were implementing them well, no doubt linked to the finding that despite 97% of directors having a 'strategic vision', only 33% reported achieving 'significant strategic success'. (Source: Why do only one third of UK organizations achieve strategic success?)

3. Harvard Business School teaches that at least 70% of all change initiatives fail.

4. A long term study by Newcastle University, (1973 - 1989) showed that business success is governed more by how well strategies are implemented than how good the strategy is to begin with.

5. The Economist Intelligence Unit reported that organizations realize only around 60% of their strategy's potential value because of failures in planning and execution.

With the pendulum now swinging away from leader's main responsibility of crafting the strategy to the recognition that they are also responsible also for its implementation and that can be even harder, there is a fast growing global interest in the field.

Strategy implementation is defined as the actions an organization takes today to deliver the strategy, tomorrow. The key word is "action". People in an organization are always taking action.

The critical question is, "Is it the right action?" Are the actions that their staff members are taking today driving the implementation forward? We know staff members are always busy and frequently have more work than they have hours in the day but strategy implementation is the collective individual actions taken every minute of every day by every staff member. If there are not enough of the right actions being taken then the strategy is heading for the graveyard.

"One of top management's biggest blind spots is the failure to recognize that any significant shift in strategy requires changes in day-to-day activities throughout the organization. Small shifts may require only minor changes. Significant shifts require significant changes-from subtle to sweeping-that can only be successful if implemented systematically. And people at all levels can either help or hinder the transition."

Executing Your Strategy, Morgan, Levitt & Malek

Leader's also have a fundamental responsibility to create the right conditions in the organizations. They must, for example, encourage the right people; clearly communicate the strategy objectives, create the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs); align the culture to the implementation; redesign processes, change the way staff members are reinforced to encourage the right behaviors and actions for the new strategy to be implemented and then review the strategy implementation every two weeks. This can be an overwhelming list but if it was easy to deliver the promises of a new strategy then nine out of ten implementations would not fail. And the pass mark is when the leaders deliver at least 50% of the objectives of the new strategy.

The leaders must identify what needs to be done and where to put the organization's focus.

Although it is not unheard of for two organizations to have the same strategy, for example number one in the industry or differentiate through customer service or leading product, each organization's implementation of the strategy is unique and the leader must first identify what needs to be done and then lead staff members to perform the required behaviors and actions. The leader's role is to translate the strategy in to daily actions that staff members can take. Strategy implementation is not the same as change management.

Change management is a systematic approach to dealing with change, both from the perspective of an organization and on the individual level. It is applied as the solution for running out a new sales program as it is for strategy. Strategy implementation is a specific approach which drives the right actions today to deliver tomorrow's strategy. The challenge is for leaders to stop doing what doesn't work.

Change management is flawed as a methodology for implementing strategy as the research is revealing. If we keep doing the same thing then no wonder we keep failing and the strategy fails! It is time to change the way we think about change. We must go beyond change management as we know it and focus on implementation.

Consider that 30 years ago management was about control and change management was designed as command and control. But business has dramatically changed. We have moved to empowerment and a teaming methodology. Many leaders use change management out of ignorance, as they are not aware of an alternative and end up taking the wrong the actions.

After crafting the strategy for the organization's future the leader's role is to ensure that staff members are set up for success in its implementation by being guided by the leadership on what actions to take. The problem on many occasions is that even the leaders do not know what the right actions to take are. In addition leaders often have the wrong mindset. Leaders often underestimate the implementation challenge and what is involved. They believe that once they have created a new strategy, the hardest part is over. Not true. The hardest part - implementation - is just beginning.

In the 10 per cent of organizations that successfully implement their strategies the leaders double the effort compared to what they had spent crafting it. In some cases, leaders are cognizant that implementation requires extra effort. In reality, however, very few are able to free up valuable time and resources to do justice to the implementation process. In other cases, leaders become so caught up in managing the day-to-day business that they lose sight of their goal to implement the new strategy and as such are taking the wrong actions.

The research in the field of strategy implementation started to become part of the mainstream awareness in 1999 when Fortune Magazine ran a front page on "Why CEO's Fail". The article, which has since been quoted on numerous occasions, explained that "organizations fail to successfully implement strategy not because of bad strategy but because of bad execution". This was one of the first times the field of implementation (execution and implementation are interchangeable), had received major exposure.

In 2002 Ram Charan followed up the article by co-authoring with Larry Bossidy Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done, Crown Business, 2002. The book made execution a common word in business conversations. Since its publications there has been a greater focus on the topic by leaders and a handful of books and articles have followed on the same topic.

There is, however, still a vast gap of knowledge, techniques and tools in the field.

For much of the last 40 years the focus in business has been how to create the right strategy and quite rightly. It is the leader's responsibility to create strategy, it is what they are paid the big bucks for and it is critical to the success of the organization that they get it right. A plethora of tools and techniques have been created to assist in the strategy formulation. Hundreds and even thousands of books have been written on the topic and in every city, consultants are standing by to offer leaders their support and wisdom.

As a result we have improved at understanding strategy and how to create it. Although it is worth noting that even strategy is still being developed. Consider the simple fact that we do not have a globally common definition for the word "strategy".

There is a change in the wind. In the last ten years we have started to ask, "What happens after we create the strategy and why are there so many failed strategy implementations?" These questions are just starting to be asked because we are just discovering from the research that so many strategy implementations fail.

Instinctively most leaders know that implementation is tough and can recall at least one corporate wide implementation; they participated in, that failed. It is, however, only in the last few years that strategy implementation has started to become a recognized field in its own right. We are starting to understand that implementation fails not because we have the wrong strategy, in most cases, but because the challenge of implementing the strategy is tougher than most CEOs and leaders anticipate and they underestimate the whole challenge.

Professor Joseph Bowler of Business Administration at Harvard Business School http://harvardbusiness.org/ recently said, "One of the criticisms we would have of some of our colleagues who have studied strategy (and some consultants who advice on strategy) is that they assume that once you design strategy it gets executed. They don't look inside the process and realize that it's much more complicated."

Strategy Implementation

please visit http://www.bridgesconsultancy.com/

Business Strategy And Trends

Any kind of business strategy is flawed in that you cannot be completely sure of what the future holds. But crystal balls aren't needed to make accurate predictions - what's more useful is an understanding of present trends.

Some of the biggest mistakes in business strategy arise when the manager is unable to see past his own nose - for instance, when Detroit's car giants didn't spot the trend of smaller cars, unlike the Japanese companies; or when IBM similarly overlooked smaller computers.


Business strategy experts like Faith Popcorn of BrainReserve reached conclusions by careful observation of the present rather than looking at the past. But no wild estimates are made about the future, in which absolutely anything can happen.

The Popcorn Report, Faith's book, contains predicted big trends that are difficult to argue with because they are already happening. For instance:

'Cocooning' - people using their homes for activities more commonly done away from the home in the past, an example being internet shopping.

'Ergonomics' - designing a product according to the needs and desires of the customer, whether through high or low tech means.

'Down-aging' - a refusal of people to grow old, for example with anti-aging products.

'Staying alive' - the trend towards health and fitness, witnessed by the explosion of popularity of alternative medicine.

'Save our society' - the green revolution and growth in popularity of environmentally friendly products and recycling.

'99 lives' - the growing trend for 'fast' everything, not just food, as people live 99 lives a day.

A great many entrepreneurs have already built their business strategy around these ever growing trends and are reaping the benefits. To join their ranks, you have to emulate Popcorn and keep your eyes and ears peeled to spot the present trends and gain a full understanding of them. Observe the business strategies used by the big companies - they don't get it wrong very often.

But rather than jump on any bandwagon, you have to create your very own business strategy from the current trends.

Business Strategy And Trends

The above article was written by Robert Heller, renowned management expert and co-author of management and business strategy website Thinking Managers along with world renowned thinker and creativity expert Edward de Bono.

5 Survival Tactics for When Everything Goes Wrong

You know the type of week.

* You've worked hard and are gearing up to
launch a new product when a vendor calls and
says that he can't get the new website up on
deadline which is "okay" because the graphic
artist's computer crashed and your product
picture isn't ready anyway. They'll get back to


* Taxes are due for those who got extensions
and, in some previous insanity, you agreed to do
them for friends and family. But you still need
information and the tax deadline looms.

* Your hubby needs reading classes but you
can't find the credit card which will give you the
big discount. It's gotta be around

* Your sister wants to borrow your AAA card - it
must be with the missing credit card.

* Your business phone line stops working and
the telephone company insists the problem is in
the home and they can't get to you for a

* It hasn't rained for weeks and yet the dog is
covered in mud and lying on the couch.

* Your largest client calls on a Friday afternoon
and requests the impossible. This was preceded
by your smallest client calling and demanding
that you drop everything as her every need is

* The bathroom toilet stops working and then
starts leaking and your plumber is on

What do you do when it all goes wrong?

1. Laugh.

Laugh hard and laugh often. Laugh like there's
no tomorrow - given the above, there may not

Seriously though. . .laughter will put you in a
much better frame of mind to deal with life's
interruptions without losing your sanity.

2. Breathe.

If laughter isn't possible, and sometimes it just
isn't, then focus on your breathing. Breathe in
and out, in and out as deeply as possible until
your pulse stops racing or you let go of the
throat that somehow found its way into your

3. Regroup.

When the walls are caving in around you, take
five minutes and figure out what you can do to
keep at least one thing moving forward.

Follow-up on the email that may land you a new
client. Submit your article to the various article
submission sites. Pay a couple of bills. Do one
thing, anything so that you can cross something
off your *list*. It's probably best if this
something doesn't involve interaction with

4. Give thanks.

"What? Give thanks? Are you insane?"

I can hear the grumbling from here. Do it
anyway! Grab a piece of paper and make a list
of everything that you are thankful for - chances
are, you have it better than millions of

Here's a quick list of things that I know I'm
grateful for: my health, family and friends, my
pets, my business and my clients, sunrises and
sunsets, flowers, chocolate ice cream, the sound
of the ocean and a crisp New England fall

5. Get out.

Get out of the house and out of the office.
Whether you choose to go for a walk, have lunch
with friends, go window shopping (leave credit
cards at home) or browse the shelves at your
local library, get out and enjoy yourself for a
bit. You'll return in a much refreshed frame of
mind and ready to tackle whatever life throws
your way.

Let's be real. Sometimes problems are just
problems and not "opportunities". Sometimes
lemons make bad lemonade. And not all clouds
have a silver lining. When everything goes
wrong, try one (or all) of the above techniques,
accept it and move on knowing that things
will get better!

5 Survival Tactics for When Everything Goes Wrong

Online Business Manager & Entrepreneur, Sandra Martini coaches small business owners to more efficiently manage their businesses while increasing profits and having fun. Sandra's coaching programs are available via teleconferencing, emails and telephone calls. For more information or to sign-up for ‘Effective Entrepreneur’, visit http://www.online-biz-coach.com today. Want to grow your business? Sign up for the FREE e-course "How to Write a Dynamic Marketing Plan" by sending a blank email to smartini-187175@autocontactor.com today.

10 Proven Steps to a Highly Profitable Opt In List

We have all heard it that so as to stay in business online you want to build a focused Opt-In list. Well.. I really have to agree with that simply because here is where you can always have a consistent source of FREE highly targeted traffic and an open line of communication which is perfect for sales messages. It just makes sense, right? And, everyone knows that email marketing is where the big money is really made when talking about promoting your business online as it gives you the power to Follow-Up with your possible customers until they decide to purchase from you. So how do you start your own profitable marketing opt-in list?

Now, for those of you that are new web marketing and do not know what a Opt-In list is, here is a fast definition: An Opt-In list is just a database of Names and emails that have subscribed to a mail list through a web form giving that list owner authorization to send them continual mails on the subject they have an interest in. This is the definite safest kind of e-mail selling where you will not get charged with SPAM. This is critical that you understand this from the start. Hence now you have a clear idea in your brain of what an opt in list is and how it'll be of benefit to you and your business, I suspect it is time to share with you how it is done.


1-Pick your market or Niche. This is an important step because this is where you've got to work out who your audience will be for the product your going to give.

2-Can your target audience or Niche be reach online? This step is where you have got to do some research on whether your personal target market can be reached on the web. So as to do this you have to do some keyword analysis using keywords related to your target audience.

3-Do a Google search for newsletters in your niche. This may give you a listing of search results. Those results are the competition, but rather more important, to the right you can notice tiny advertisements. These are paid advertisements offered through Google AdWords. This suggests that someone is ready to pay to publicize and is concentrating to this Niche and must be earning profits if they are willing to pay for advertising. This, of course, is terrific news for you.

4-Look at ClickBank products that are selling good, and see if any of them are selling in your niche. ClickBank has so many affiliates across the world that you can tell what niches are hot. By doing this you are going to be able to understand immediately what your target audiences TOP issues are and how it's possible for you to help to solve there problem. Forums are another place to spy on your market to find out what needs they have that you can fill.

5-What's keeping them from getting what they desire? This is where you have got to work out whats keeping them from getting what they need in order to solve the problems they're dealing with meaning, this is where you have to work with them to discover a solution to there issues.

6-What can you offer them to unravel there issues? This is where the money is being spent. Now, the one thing you need to receive your slice of the cash is a service or product which will resolve your potential consumers problem. You can either promote your own products or affiliate products.

7-Use a Simple Lead Capture Site. A lead capture page is exactly what it sounds like, a page that gets leads by capturing contact info like names and emails.

8-Get an Auto-Responder account. This is where you will be laying the foundation down for your list. You've got to have an auto responder account Set-Up prior to making your site go live because here's where your future clients are going to come and submit there Name and email so you can begin building a list to send your offers or related information to.

9-You want to work out what 'Bait' to use. What I mean by Bait is..... free offers to add incentive for joining your list. Freebies that have real value will work the best.

10-Get Traffic-Now, once you have your website running and an email followup system in place, it is time to get targeted traffic to your site. There are many paid strategies, and also many free web traffic strategies. You can learn the free strategies in my free ebook below.

10 Proven Steps to a Highly Profitable Opt In List

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Funding Strategy

Your nonprofit's funding strategy is its road map for its flow of funds. It defines where the money will come from and when it comes from a specific source, the use it will serve.

A typical question that arises is, "Why do I need a strategy? Can't I decide when the money arrives how to spend it?" That certainly works but other methods can work better.


Recently, when asked, one of our clients thought about their need for money over the next five years and listed the following items:

Capital Expenditures - acquiring more land, putting up several new buildings, and repairing the roof on an existing building (the roof was still sound but there are indications it will need attention in the next 2 or 3 years).

Technology - Upgrading the current communications systems, network, and computer infrastructure.

Startup Expenses - Develop new programming to serve the changing demographics of the nonprofit's neighbors.

Normal Operating Expenses - Staff raises and benefits, replace aging buses, pay rent, and other expenses necessary to serve the clients.

You may have different categories or want to divide the expenditures up in different ways.

The purpose of the categories is to make it easy to explain to donors how their funds will be used. As an example, a donor who provides capital funds usually understands that it will be months or years before the money is spent. Categories also make it easier to connect the donor to the parts of the organization that are important to the donor.

It is usually easy to solicit a small one-time gift from anyone. Large frequent gifts however usually require a special relationship with the organization. Part of making the relationship special is providing the donor with a giving opportunity that is tailor-made for their interests.

When you have a choice of categories, it is easy to start the discussion with the donor by asking, "Which of these general headings is more important to you?" From there you can quickly narrow the discussion to the most important part of the mission.

Having broad categories also makes it possible to target donor groups for specific interests. If the nonprofit serves youth, it is easy to assume that a group of family practice lawyers or doctors will be interested in it programming. Likewise, a group of realtors is more likely to be interested in capital expenditures such as buildings or land.

Knowing how much money is needed in each area helps you plan your time. If the capital portion of the budget is small this year, it is unnecessary to talk with dozens of capital donors. If the new programming budget is large, it may be time to concentrate on expanding the donor base rather than cultivating generosity in the current donors.

Next Step:

Create a funding strategy by dividing the budget into meaningful categories.

Identify the donor pool that is most likely to want to support each category.

Create a focused message for each donor pool and category.

Budget your time spent on each category based upon the size of the pool and the size of the need.

Report back to each donor pool about the effectiveness of their gifts and how the mission has benefited from their focused support.

The funding strategy will help to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of your fundraising. It will help to create a stronger connection between the donors and the mission even though they may only be connected to one part of the mission. It makes it easier to communicate with the donors in ways that are meaningful to them. It helps hone skills in various areas and sharpens the message to the donors. It provides guidance for the board and everyone's decision-making. The funding strategy increases sustainability.

Creating a funding strategy is relatively easy and well worth the effort. When will your funding strategy be ready?

Funding Strategy

The Five Components of a Business Strategy

Can you define exactly what makes up a business strategy? Some people say no, but we think you can.

In fact, we believe a valid business strategy has five components:


  1. Your company's current or desired core competencies
  2. A description of how you will differentiate vs. competitors
  3. The industry or industries in which you intend to compete
  4. The initiatives you plan to implement in the areas of marketing, operations, information technology, finance and organizational development
  5. A financial forecast that shows how your plans will meet stakeholder requirements over the next 3 to 5 years

Let's look at each of these components.

The first component of a valid business strategy is a clear description of your company's current or desired core competencies.

You may be thinking, "Great, but what's a 'core competency?'" While there are many definitions, here's a good one from Wikipedia:

"ACore competency is something that a firm can do well and that meets the following three conditions:

  • It provides consumer benefits
  • It is not easy for competitors to imitate
  • It can be leveraged widely to many products and markets.

A core competency can take various forms, including technical/subject matter know how, a reliable process, and/or close relationships with customers and suppliers. It may also include product development or culture, such as employee dedication."

For example, we could say that Southwest Airlines is a reliable airline that offers low fares. But in order to provide those benefits, it has to have certain "core competencies," important capabilities that enable it to have low fares and to be reliable. We believe that Southwest Airlines has four core competencies that it executes so well that it regularly beats all other US airlines in terms of profitability.

These core competencies are:

  • The lowest operating costs per plane
  • An economical point-to-point airport network
  • A fanatical culture focused on customer service and cost savings
  • An ability to keep planes in the air more of the time than its competitors.

Southwest airlines couldn't offer the benefits of low prices and reliable service if it didn't master these core competencies. What key benefits do you want to offer your customers? What core competencies do you need to master to provide them?

The second component of a valid business strategy is a description of how you differentiate vs. competitors.

In our experience, differentiation is about being the best at something. This should be encapsulated in your mission statement - what are your company's aspirations and how are you going to beat the competition? We just talked about how Southwest Airlines differentiates -- what are you going to offer customers that will make them choose your products or services so that you can grow your business?

It takes a lot of hard work to come up with a great answer to this question and even more work to make that differentiation real. It's easy for us to say that Southwest is the best low-cost airline in the US, but it's extraordinarily difficult for them to pull it off.

The third component of a valid business strategy is a description of the industry or industries in which you intend to compete.

You need to be able to define just what kind of company you are - are you a furniture manufacturer? A gift card retailer? A consulting firm, a bearings distributor, a toy importer, etc.? This step sounds easy but we find that companies are often so concerned about getting too narrow in their focus that they fail to become really clear about what they want to do. A company with a good business strategy will have thought through these issues and made the hard decisions necessary to clarify its identity. If it has, it can easily pass the litmus test of identifying the industry or industries in which it operates.

The fourth component of a business strategy is the set of initiatives you plan to implement in the areas of marketing, operations, information technology, finance and organizational development.

These are the plans that guide your company's focus and resource allocation over the next several years. If your business strategy is specific enough to be relevant, you will have detailed plans in all of these areas.

The fifth component of a business strategy is a financial plan that forecasts the results you expect to get from your plans and illustrates how they will meet stakeholder requirements over the next 3 to 5 years.

Your strategic planning process cannot be separated from your annual budget process. In the vast majority of companies, if it's not in the budget, it doesn't exist. That's why you have to have a very senior financial person on your strategic planning team, preferably the CFO. During the planning process, your team must compile a financial plan that estimates the results of implementing your strategy. This plan needs to earn the approval of your company's management and board and should be reviewed on a regular basis to track results and make refinements.

So - those are the five components of a valid business strategy. Good luck planning your success. And succeeding because you plan.

The Five Components of a Business Strategy

Ian G. Heller is the founder and senior partner at Real Results Marketing, Inc. With senior executive experience at companies like GE Capital and Grainger, CEO experience at a private-equity owned firm and countless consulting engagements, Ian brings a realistic and bottom-line focus go strategic planning. Please visit http://www.RealResultsMarketing.com for engaging videos and articles on strategic planning.