Business Opportunities of Wearable Tech

Wearable technology is the next chapter in innovation and will have incredible effects on business and marketing.  When smartphones first emerged several years ago, there was without a doubt a monumental change in innovation that affected everyone.  Today life is centered around our tech devices.  While some may get irritated with how glued people can be to their tech tools there is little doubt that our lives have improved in many ways due to smart devices and the internet of things.  Wearable technology is about to create a second wave of innovation and change.

 

If you have doubts about this, consider that analysts expect wrist based devices alone to account for $14 billion in 2017 and the wearable tech industry to reach a staggering $34 Billion by 2020 [1].  With products like the Apple Watch, Google Glass and now Virtual Reality headsets, technology continues to move forward and evolve and it’s moving into the workplace as well.  Retailers are seeing wearable tech used to pay and checkout. Most iPhones now have applications like PayPal or Apple Pay, which are accessible on smart watches, making payment and checkout processes more efficient.  Wrist displays or wireless headsets are also helping workers to look up information about products without having to leave the customers side.  This all increases customer satisfaction, since they get the information they need as quickly as possible and they’re able to pay and checkout in seconds without taking out a wallet.

 

People will be safer and more informed.  SmartGlasses present tradesmen with hands-free instruction manuals or schematics, improving overall work safety and productivity. There is even a product called the SmartCap — a hat that can monitor and advise a person of his or her level of alertness. Helmets are also being manufactured with smart technology that provides a rear view, camera, Bluetooth, integration with smartphones, GPS and infrared night vision — all within the visor – to give greater safety and information to motorcyclists!

 

These all provide “touchpoint” opportunities for businesses to market their products and services to wearable tech users.  Smartphones already allow us to find information in seconds.  Wearable technology allows the user to be constantly connected and informed. With a constant stream of live data available, the marketing opportunities for businesses looking to drive sales through a growing new channel are limitless.

 

Be sure to visit the Bullfrog Blog often for more tips on marketing, productivity and risk mitigation.

 

 

[1] “Wearable Tech to be worth $34 Billion by 2020”, Forbes Magazine

Healthy You – Healthy Business!

Stay Fit While Running Your Business!

Small business owners need to get creative when it comes to establishing times to work out and methods for staying fit. It doesn’t need to be fancy, but your business and everyone around you will thank you when you’re feeling more productive, active and excited about your company and your life. The challenge is: how do you stay fit while running a small business?

Take Exercise Breaks
When you stimulate blood flow you refresh your mind by giving it oxygen and an escape from staring at a computer screen.  Every hour just stand up and stretch, go for a quick walk around the building, do some squats or jumping jacks. On a conference call, walk around rather than sit.  The key is to get up and do something!  If you pause frequently enough, you can get in a few hundred squats or jumping jacks a day!  Studies have shown that breaking up your work leads to a more productive work day. Time spent on exercise is made back in improved productivity.

Don’t Forget a Healthy Lunch
You’re hurting your business if you don’t refresh your mind with a nutritious lunch break.  Your body needs nutrition to function properly.  Many small business owners skip breakfast and even lunch sometimes, running mainly off coffee all day.  Doing so is a recipe for disaster.  Skipping meals makes you less healthy and leads to weight gain, since your body reads no food as a signal to store whatever calories it gets.  You’ll be amazed how much more energy you can obtain from an apple, snack, salad or sandwich for lunch. Don’t skip meals!

Rest
Sleep is critical to your health and well being.  Entrepreneurs are the biggest violators of this because they have so much too do all the time.  Along with recuperation of the body sleep is the time used for clean up and repair of the brain as well.  Get the proper amount of sleep and you’ll be sharper and more energetic.  Skimp on rest and you’ll risk high blood pressure, possible stroke and a variety of heart related issues as well.  Bottom line – you’re not invincible, you need sleep!

By applying these healthy principles to your lifestyle, you’ll kick off 2017 with more energy to grow your business and you’ll be in better shape too!

Be sure to visit the Bullfrog Blog often for more tips on marketing, productivity and risk mitigation.

 

Make 2017 Your Best Year!

Succeed Like Never Before 

It’s the beginning of 2017 — a great time to reflect on last year and plan for the year ahead.  January is a terrific time to get a head start by really making those early days of the New Year count.  Here are some recommendations to help you increase your business success, while maintaining a work-life balance.

 

Consistent and Regular Promotion

Make the promotion of your business one of the top priorities. Usually landing at the bottom of the to-do list is the consistency and regularity of promoting your small business. To attract new customers, promotion is key. A New Year’s resolution could be to hire a marketing expert, or to take some time to create a marketing plan on your own that you’ll follow through with.

 

Learn to Delegate

You can’t do it all.  When running a small business, it’s easy to lose focus when there are so many things to be doing.  Then you’re stuck wondering why you never have enough time! It’s key delegate by assigning some tasks to others.

 

Learn from your failures

Taking review and planning is crucial to growing a healthy business. It allows you to assess what worked and what didn’t, then recalibrate and set new goals. Instead of doing it once a year or once a quarter, set aside time each week to review, adjust, and look forward.  You’ll not only be avoiding costly mistakes; you’ll be more focused and relaxed.

 

Be Realistic

Goal setting is a valuable habit, only if the goals lead to success rather than distress. Determine goals that will be achievable, rather than unrealistic pipe dreams that are too far out of reach that you’ll just be frustrated in trying to achieve them.

 

Make Time for You

Maintain a healthy work-life balance by taking time to refresh and recharge yourself! When your life is all work and no play, it’s a recipe for mental and physical disaster. If you’re having trouble finding free time block off time in your schedule to “meet with yourself” and stick to it!  By applying these New Year’s resolutions throughout the year, you’ll not only feel better but have more energy to put into your business and make it the successful business you deserve!

 

Be sure to visit the Bullfrog Blog often for more tips on marketing, sales and risk mitigation.

 

2016 Events That Impacted Small Business

2016 Events – How They Impacted Small Business 

As 2016 is ending, it’s time to look back on the news stories that affected business and prepare for what’s to come in the new year. From Pokémon Go putting small businesses on the map, to the “beast” of a wildfire that charred Fort McMurray, to the stunning U.S. election and everything in between 2016 was a year of incredible news headlines.  But how did these headlines impact small businesses?

 

Even though in the first half of 2016, Uber’s losses totaled at least $1.27 billion, the company still has between 84%-87% of the market in North America. Uber enabled common citizens to suddenly have access to a sizeable supplementary or full-time income as they instantly became self-employed cab drivers!  In an economy where it has become increasingly difficult to find work Uber was a small business opportunity that went viral.

 

The Pokémon Go App was putting small businesses everywhere on the map – literally!  After the official Canadian release of Nintendo’s wildly popular augmented reality game Pokémon Go in the summer, small businesses across North America started purchasing in-game items for a fraction of the cost of developing their own apps – resulting in higher foot traffic and sales.  By spending roughly $10 CAD on in-game items, such as a PokéStop, a lure outside a pizzeria or citing that their small business was close to a Gym, this was one app that small businesses capitalized on in the summer of 2016.

 

Named Canada’s biggest weather story of the year by the country’s top meteorologists, the “beast” of a wildfire that charred Fort McMurray, Alberta, caused over 90,000 people to be evacuated.  As well, an estimated 4,000 small businesses were affected by the wildfire in May.  This made business insurance one of the most talked about topics of 2016.  Since the tragic event, the Province of Alberta has allocated $15 million for its share of a program that is aimed to help small businesses affected by the wildfire. Small businesses with 50 or fewer employees, could receive up to $20,000 to cover costs, including property damage, cleanup and purchasing new equipment.

 

Meanwhile, in the U.S., Donald Trump shocked the world when he was elected as the country’s 45th president. With challenges like reducing the trade deficit and the trade gap dropping to $36.4 billion in September 2016, these issues were negatively impacting small businesses across North America. How Trump will help small business remains to be seen after he takes office, but if he follows through with his plans to lower the business tax rate from 35% to 15% conditions for small business should become more favorable.

 

Indeed 2016 was a year of highs and lows, both emotional and political.  Even though there were unsteady and hesitant moments for small businesses throughout the year with 2017 just around the corner it’s time to welcome new events, new stories and new opportunities for your small business. Here’s to your success in 2017 and beyond!

 

Be sure to visit the Bullfrog Blog often for more tips on marketing, sales and risk mitigation.

 

The Carpenter’s Wish

 


 

There once was a carpenter with skills beyond compare

He dreamt of starting a business “Renovations Done with Care.”

 

He came home one Christmas and said to his wife,

“Perhaps if I make a go of this, we can improve our life.”

 

He tried to call a broker for business insurance,

But on Christmas Eve this was an unlikely occurrence. 

 

So he searched on Google and to his great delight

He found “Bullfrog Insurance – Get A Quote day or night.”

 

He entered his details and purchased online

His business had been insured – one thing less on his mind.

 

It wasn’t a big Christmas Wish 

Not something you could put under a tree

But it gives us such joy to see people’s dreams become reality.

 

Whatever your business 

Bullfrog Insurance wishes everyone Happy Holidays and All The Best In 2017

 

Shopping Cart Abandonment

Abandoned Shopping Cart? 

The reality of running an online business is that you work hard to get people to your site, then you work even harder to move them through the pages to purchase something. After tomorrow, Boxing Day in Canada means millions will be shopping online so entrepreneurs selling products online need to be as ready as possible in order to maximize sales and profit.

 

Unfortunately almost 70% of online shopping carts get “abandoned”  when it comes time to check out.  With a full basket of goodies, customers just leave.  So how can you avoid the abandonment of online shopping carts?  Here are some key snafus that cause customers to “walk away” from the checkout on a daily basis.

 

“10-14 business days to receive your product? No thanks!”

Businesses need to be clear on their shipping times, and offer options to deliver on an expedited basis — especially during the holidays. This one is pretty self-explanatory.  If you were about to swipe your credit card at the grocery store, and the cashier said you’re not going to get your groceries for another week, you probably wouldn’t be very pleased.

 

“6 steps to checkout? Seriously?”

If you have to ask questions ask the questions post-purchase.  That way the customer is satisfied with purchasing their items and will be more open to answering a few questions.  You’re about to checkout and you get hit with a 2-page questionnaire. A few questions aren’t an issue, but 2 pages is intolerable.

 

“Why do I have to check my email before I buy this?”

Requiring an email-verification before accepting payment is just another reason to close the checkout page and go elsewhere.  A person’s email inbox is full of distractions, including emails from your competitors.  Don’t send them there while they’re in the middle of your checkout process!

 

“If I use my Mastercard, I have to pay extra? Forget it”

Your website should accept multiple forms of payment, and have clear notices about the ones you don’t accept as early as possible to avoid abandoning of the shopping cart at the finish.  Many websites have limits to their payment options, but if your customer is in the final stage of the checkout process and then are told that the card they would like to use isn’t allowed without additional fees, they’ll abandon their cart and will also feel annoyed and frustrated, which will discourage them from returning to your site in the future as well.  Not good!

 

If your online store is suffering from shopping cart abandonment, you should perform an assessment of your checkout process. With an improved checkout process, your business will have more time to focus its attention on the things that keep your customers coming back.  Decrease complications and anything that may frustrate or cause a distraction to your customer.  The best checkout processes are quick and painless.

 

Be sure to visit the Bullfrog Blog often for more tips on marketing, sales and risk mitigation.

 

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