Sunday, September 14, 2014

As an up-and-coming entrepreneur

, you fought to have a product marketed successfully to the masses. When you have a breakthrough product, the work may have appeared to get easier, but remaining successful in a competitive market is just as difficult as catching that first break. As your business slowly grows, you need to balance both shareholder and consumer needs for a happy medium and consistent profit.

Keep a Solid Platform 

If you've built your business empire on one or two core products, such as in the snack food industry, always keep those items untouched by updates or changes. Consumers rely on those products as you rely on them for consistent sales. Don't change any recipes or major ingredients because it will be obvious to loyal customers. If a fresh look is necessary, updated packaging is always an option. Simply note the packaging is new, not the product itself, to retain your customer base.

Introduce New Angles 

Relying on key products doesn't mean you can't be creative otherwise. Build new products off reputable standards. For example, add vanilla to a soda drink. Alcohol companies, such as Bacardi Cuba, look for exotic ways to spice up their drinks for specific holidays and events. As long as the original product is untouched, you can have several variations off its success. Customers will be curious to at least try the new products. They'll still have their favorite item waiting in the wings.

Listen to Consumers

When a trusted product has a recall, especially in the automotive industry, consumer confidence takes a hit. Use today's technology to analyze and curb any backlash against core products. You want to fix the issue swiftly for customer care and profit protection. Truly listen to the customers' issues. They are your best test subjects to verify if a change or update truly works for the masses. Don't be blinded by internal strife because it's the consumers who complete the company's success, not just the engineers and designers.

Give and Take 

Retail prices can't always be the norm for loyal customers. Periodically reward your customer base with discounts and possible deep reductions. You'll take a slight dip in profits, but the discount helps consumers see you are on their side. Loyalty to a product must work in both directions. When customers see you are giving them something extra, they feel obliged to return the favor. Even make some of the discounts limited to just a select few. Feeling special boosts consumer confidence and loyalty to a brand.

Stay Consistent

Social media is a platform that directly connects you to consumers by the millions. Get onto the popular platforms and stay consistent. Post pictures and comments about industry particulars, from a new product to interesting anecdotes. You'll also hear feedback about any product issues the moment they occur. Make your customers part of the company's family. The more they see your name each day, the more potential you have to sell even more products. This familiarity pays off at the end of the quarter.

Rely on your core products to get you through those inevitable slow periods. By listening to customers and their valuable feedback, you'll get a sense of their changing needs. Staying ahead of the pack makes you visible and innovative in a busy business world.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Make your own PESTO

We love Pesto Baked Salmon - here is my easy PESTO recipe.  

PESTO
2 cups of fresh Basil leaves - do not use the stems
1/4 cups of Pine Nuts
2 large cloves of fresh Garlic
2/3 cups of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper to taste
1/2 cup of grated Cheese - I use a combination of Italian cheeses - you can use Romano/Parmesan/Pecorino whatever white Italian cheese you like

You will need a food processor 

First in the food processor I ground up the Pine Nuts and Garlic - I then began to add the Basil leaves. I rotated Basil Leaves - Olive Oil until all the leaves are ground and I had used all of the Olive Oil - then I add the cheese to the mixture and ground again.  I began to salt and pepper to taste. Making sure to grind mixing all ingredients together.

Delicious - I used about 3 tablespoons for our salmon and I froze the remainder. Freezer life for PESTO is 3 months.

I forgot to take a pic of the PESTO before I froze it! These pics are my frozen PESTO!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Which Shoes to Wear: Know Your Office Dress Code and Still Make Your Mark

Shoes are surprisingly more important than people think when it comes to office attire. Most of the time, we slip on our shoes without comparing how they look with our ensembles. You can’t just throw on any boring pair of shoes with your nice camo socks, you need to think things through! But while style is a clear factor and no one wants to look a mess on the job, there are other issues that make footwear a serious topic of discussion at work. Whether your company or boss has a policy about footwear for fear of slip and fall accidents, or they simply have an image they wish to portray (and your Miami Vice style rope-sole canvas slip-ons don’t hit the mark here), office shoe policies can be all work and no play.

Because dress code laws are protected under the court of law, not wearing the correct shoes in your workplace can get you booted from your position. It might sound a little over the top, but managers and other supervisors can get in trouble themselves for allowing you to wear shoes that don’t meet dress code or that could jeopardize you and others in the workplace. If you’re looking for some shoes to wear at work that won’t get you a verbal or written warning, here are a few options for you:

Kitten heels: 
These heels are exactly what they sound like. Well, not really. The point is, these heels are small and short, perfect for the women who don’t like too much of a heel. Audrey Hepburn first introduced them and if she could pull them off, so can you. They’re a classic heel that can be paired with any office outfit and come in a wide range of colors and designs. But a word to the wise: If you’re going to be on your feet all days, skip the kitten heels and look for another more comfortable shoe.

Slingbacks: 
Looking to follow your dress code, but still have a little fun with it? Slingbacks are the heels that have the straps at the back that wrap around the heel or ankle. They have that closed toe feature that a lot of workplaces mandate, so you’ll still be in the clear. They come in a wide range of colors so you can pick the one that suits you best.

Stilettos: 
Yeah, just heard all of you flinch. Stilettos are the heels that you wear to cocktail parties—for some women, they are just too uncomfortable to even consider, while for others considering anything else is unthinkable. You can wear these to work because they typically do fall in line with the dress code as long as they follow the closed toe rule. A lot of women wear these to work because they make them taller and some feel it gives them a sense presence that other footwear choices just don’t come with.

Clogs: 
Clogs are an interesting footwear choice, but when paired with the right outfit, they can definitely make a statement. Clogs should be paired with casual pants and even jeans, if your office allows denim. But don’t overpower your clogs with a loud top or clunky jewelry. Instead, let the clogs be the loudest piece of your outfit. And brand does matter—Birkies or Birkenstocks over Crocs every single time!

If you’re looking to switch up your shoe closet or want to be on the safe side, there are dozens of shoes that will look fashionable and professional.

The Courage Of One Will Change The World….

THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY - PART 1  starting the countdown to the global debut of a brand new trailer and Series 2 of The Hunger Games Exclusive.
Get an exclusive first look at Katniss Everdeen now, at TheHungerGamesExclusive.com


Check back on September 15 to see Our Leader The Mockingjay arrive in full force in the NEW official worldwide trailer and go behind the scenes with exclusive interviews and images in The Hunger Games Exclusive Series 2. Just five days away…

Saturday, September 6, 2014

#Mockingjay #OLTM ~ #Mockingjay #OLTM

THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY ­PART 1 opens nationwide November 21, 2014!

The worldwide phenomenon of The Hunger Games continues to set the world on fire with The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1, which finds Katniss Everdeen (Jennifer Lawrence) in District 13 after she literally shatters the games forever. Under the leadership of President Coin (Julianne Moore) and the advice of her trusted friends, Katniss spreads her wings as she fights to save Peeta (Josh Hutcherson) and a nation moved by her courage. The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 is directed by Francis Lawrence from a screenplay by Danny Strong and Peter Craig and produced by Nina Jacobson's Color Force in tandem with producer Jon Kilik. The novel on which the film is based is the third in a trilogy written by Suzanne Collins that has over 65 million copies in print in the U.S. alone.
Lionsgate presents, a Color Force / Lionsgate production, a Francis Lawrence film.
Cast (Character): Jennifer Lawrence (Katniss Everdeen), Josh Hutcherson (Peeta Mellark), Liam Hemsworth (Gale Hawthorne), Woody Harrelson (Haymitch Abernathy), Elizabeth Banks (Effie Trinket), Julianne Moore (President Coin), Philip Seymour Hoffman (Plutarch Heavensbee), Jeffrey Wright (Beetee), Sam Claflin (Finnick Odair), Jena Malone (Johanna Mason), with Stanley Tucci (Caesar Flickerman), and Donald Sutherland (President Snow)    
Directed by: Francis Lawrence           
Screenplay by: Danny Strong and Peter Craig                 
Based upon the novel “Mockingjay” by: Suzanne Collins  

Friday, September 5, 2014

Preparing for Parenthood

There's nothing quite like the excitement of seeing a positive pregnancy test. When you realize that a baby is on the way, you know that your lives are going to change forever.
Growing your family is one of the most rewarding things you will ever do. While your pregnancy is progressing, you'll spend many hours preparing for your baby's arrival. It's fun to create the perfect nursery, buy tiny clothes and shoes and research the best diaper brands and stroller models.
Getting everything ready for your little one is important, but you should also spend some time preparing for parenthood. There is no instruction manual that will tell you exactly how to handle the changes that are to come, but that doesn't mean you can't research and

prepare.
One of the best ways to prepare for parenthood is simply by reading resources from reputable sources. At KingInstitute.org, you can find a variety of helpful publications on numerous topics, including parenthood.
You'll need plenty of rest, especially at the end of pregnancy, so spend some of this time reading through your new materials. Even though your partner is not physically carrying the baby, it's also important to include him in your reading. Some couples enjoy reading books about pregnancy and childcare together, while others prefer to read separately and discuss what they are learning.
When you take the time to prepare for parenthood, you'll feel more informed and well-equipped once your adorable little bundle of joy arrives to join your family!