A book I am reading this month is The Science of Getting Rich. Get a Copy Here
There are a number of interesting points in the book and I won’t cover them all today but there is one concept that bears discussing.
“You cannot give every man more in cash market value than you take from him, but you can give him more in use value than the cash value of the thing you take from him.”
Think about how this applies to your business and what Use Valueare you providing. We all need money to run our businesses, feed our families, pay our bills and other items but is your business product or service providing more in Use Value than you are receiving in Cash Market Value?
I’ll use one of my businesses for example. In one of my Laundromats I have a Drop Off Service. Customers can bring in their laundry, it is weighed, sorted, washed, dried and either folded or put on hangers. They are charged a certain price per pound.
What Use Value am I providing for Cash Market Value?
In the case of a parent they may be able to spend more time with their kids at a park or reading a book with them. That time may make the difference in the child’s life that they are able to make better decisions or have awesome memories of their time growing up.
A business person staying at a local hotel may use that time to work on a project, complete a proposal or be on the phone with someone back home. Or even just relax for a few hours.
For Professional couples that may only have a few hours together in the evening and spend the weekends at their kids events, having their laundry done while they are at work allows them to focus on what is important to them.
In the case of my Laundromat Service the Cash Market Value is being traded for the Use Value of Time.
What Use Value does your business or service give you customers?
I would love to read your comments below and feel free to provide a link to your business.
Another key issue is the amount of storage you will need to allow you to have the time to go back and review the issues. Going on a 10 dayvacation and only having 7 days of video recording is not a good setup.
You can Chat live or call and they will work with you through every step of the way.
Not sure where to put your cameras?
Just provide a layout of your store and they will put a plan together with some different pricing options. And don’t forget to give them your address so they can do a Google Drive by and determine the outdoor camera angles as well.
Here are some updates from my recent upgrade. I used the new Tribrid DVR and switched a couple of the main cameras. I still have come additional ones to add now that I have a 16 channel DVR.
The following pictures show some before and after shots. The actual difference seen on the monitor is better than these pictures show.
The updated outside camera
Interior Camera BEFORE Shot
A new camera mounted in the same location.
Another Interior Camera BEFORE picture
Before you head over to Security Camera King, how about stopping by iTunes and click on the big 5 star rating and together we can help other business owners find the PodCast.
I’m always looking for ways to improve productivity. Rather than just working more, I want to work smarter and get more done in less time. That gives me more time for the things I really want to do in life, like spending time with my family or just plain relaxing. I found this video today and it packs a TON of incredibly useful information in 3 short minutes. This is a no-brainer video to watch, there are enough ideas that there’s no way your productivity won’t improve if you put even one idea to immediate use.
Following are links to the sources used in the video if you want to delve deeper.
Willpower is a finite resource
Most parents know this – it’s a lot harder to be a good parent at 8pm than 8am. Scientifically this is called ego depletion; I call it too tired.
Getting started really is the hardest part
And it has a name too – the Zeigarnik Effect. When it comes to big projects, we tend to visualize the hardest parts and that prevents us from starting. I can’t think of a better way to improve productivity than to actually do the work.
We use busy work to procrastinate
When we have big work to do, our brains simulate real work by doing small, mindless tasks that feel like work. That certainly puts checking the email obsessively in perspective for me.
Focus on the hard stuff
Deliberate practice is a method used by elites in all fields. It means focusing on harder, specific tasks for a period time. If we were basketball players, that would mean doing specific drills for a couple of hours instead of just playing.
Improve productivity 90 minutes at a time
It’s impossible to maintain our energy through the whole day. It’s much easier for our brains to work when it knows there will be a break coming up. This part has been a challenge for me as I like to put my head down and just GO until it’s done You can learn more about ultradian rhythms and the research behind it here (if you want, there’s a whole book about it too). I’ve also put the 10-15 minute breaks to use too by taking a walk. I come out of my breaks feeling energized and ready to get back to work.
We need deadlines and accountability
This is one of the hardest parts for someone leaving a J.O.B. and starting their own business. Deadlines work – and research backs it up. Ask any student how productive they are in the 24 hours before an assignment is due vs the week before. Accountability – aka tracking progress – is important too as it improves self-control. Check out the Accountability Chart shown at 1:56 in the video. It’s like checking off a to-do list but even better because it helps avoid mindless busy work too.
Here is a question you need to ask yourself.
“Would I fire myself for doing this?” Are you really getting dsomething done or “just working”?
And finally – stop multitasking
I used to think multitasking was good – and that I was good at it. Now I know that focused, sustained work is MUCH more productive. Science backs this up – multitaskers are less productive even though multitasking makes us feel good. Time to pare back & FOCUS!
That’s everything the video covers, except the video does it really, really well in 3 minutes. I hope this helps you work smarter and create more time for the really important things in life
A form of advertising that still gets a lot of exposure is Radio. I have used this medium a number of times over the past few years.
When I first opened my Laundromats I started to see what stations were in the area and found there were 9 based in my market. This did not include ones from other cities that could be heard in the area. The range stretched from AM Gospel stations to FM Rock stations to Talk Radio. I was surprised by the amount and diversity.
I used different promotions with the stations I worked with. Some did not actually have a radio spot but was part of a weekly promotion. The station ran a Birthday Club promotion where people could call in each day with a birthday announcement and on Friday one was chosen for a Gift Package. This consisted of items from local businesses, A birthday cake, flowers, meal coupons and a Drop Off Laundry Gift Card.
During the Holiday Season the station ran almost non-stop Christmas songs and each hour was sponsored by a different business. This was my first venture into an actual radio ad.
Usually I run a limited amount of targeted ads each year. This helps to maintain the advertising budget and get the most exposure.
The next year I started to move into full 30 second commercials that covered all of the facts and details about the business.
As I learned more about advertising methods and how to explain benefits and not features the commercials took a different approach.
The size of the washer and the temperature of the water are features, getting the comforter cleaned is the benefit.
As I developed the businesses and started to determine the base markets for each location the advertising became more specific to the store. Washin Golden Springs is a partially attended store with a Drop Off Service that could target a different customer base. So instead of splitting the pie, the thought was too make a bigger pie or more pies.
So where to go from here? We have covered the basics of the store locations, features and benefits, hours and size.
Now it was time to start having some fun. I had worked with the Radio Personalities for a couple of years and they had a better understanding of the business so they wanted to make some changes to catch the audience’s attention.
I took a bit of a break and used some other advertising methods that you can check out at LaundromatHowTo.com
But like most things you have fun with you can only stay away for so long. The ads can be featured around seasons, events or other particular days depending on your target market and area so there was a Special Day coming up so it was time to give the audience something completely different.
Let me set the stage for the first time I heard the ad on the radio.
I was driving home and tuned to my local Rock station. This wasn’t Old Rock, or Soft Rock but real screaming guitars and beating drums. I had it turned up listening to Godsmack 1000 HP and when the song ended it blended into my ad.
There is a term in advertising called a Pattern Break where you make a drastic change to re-engage you audience. I believe this fits the term very well.
There are a couple of effects to the audience when this happens. First they stop what they are doing and look to see who messed with the radio, next they listen to find out what they are hearing and third they listen to the next ad to see if they are back where they feel they should be.
It was a bit of a risk for the station to mix this drastic of a change into their lineup but I received a lot of feedback from people who heard the ad on the radio.
Another more reasonable entry into radio ads is to sponsor the traffic , weather or news. These are typically short 10 second ads instead of the full 30 second spots. The ads are short and to the point and maybe not so much fun but the listener will focus in on them as they want to hear the weather or traffic updates or they may use the news as a “timer” during their daily routine.
Here’s a sample
Recently I installed some new large capacity washers and dryers at my unattended store. With the increase in volume I am able to direct more traffic to the store.
In this ad one of my attendants from the other store did part of the voice over. It is for a set time frame and target market and I will be working with a couple of local stations to determine the best timing of the ads.
After using the radio ads they don’t need to go to waste. They can be mixed together with still pictures and turned into a video for use on Social Media or even some of the local Cable Advertising Channels.
I hope you got some enjoyment and ideas from these commercials. As I mentioned earlier look from some local stations and see if you can work with them a few times during the year to expose your business to new customers and have some fun doing it.
After reviewing all of the ads for this PodCast I realized I should probably be in one myself. After doing hundreds of videos I don’t really have an excuse not to and as small business owners it’s good for our customers to get to know us.
All the show notes and a couple of videos are available at LaundromatHowTo.com/PodCast
Washing machine water leak. Speed Queen Top Loaders
There was a small amount of water under one of the Top Load washers. I had been working on a machine beside it and after I was done I found a small drip from the hose connection. I tightened it up but a few days later it was still slowly leaking from under the washer. Sometimes it takes a bit for the water to dry under a machine so seeing some wet spots the next day is not always an issue.
When I pulled the front off of the washer (two small screws at the bottom) I noticed water in the bottom part of the frame. The hoses seemed OK so I pulled the pump of by un-snapping the 3 clips and found water on top of the pump.
As you can see in the video, once I cleaned up the pump and filled it with water it leaked around the seal at the point where the motor connects to the pump.
I installed a new pump and everything worked fine.