The Indian Pharmaceutical Industry at a Glance

Research suggests that the Indian pharmaceutical sector is the world’s second-largest by volume and in all likelihood, leads the manufacturing sector of India. In terms of the global market, India currently holds a modest 1-2% share, but it has been growing at approximately 10% per year. India has also gained its foothold in the global scene with its innovatively engineered generic drugs and active pharmaceutical ingredients.

A recent survey has suggested that the Indian pharmaceutical industry ranks 14th in terms of value at over a whooping Rs. 1 trillion! This industry started with a 15 billion turnover in 1980 and is approximated to have reached a turnover of 1006.11 billion!

Just as any other industry, the Indian pharmaceutical industry also has to face several challenges such as regulatory obstacles, lack of proper infrastructure, under-qualified professionals, and expensive research equipments among several others. However, they must learn to overcome all of this and find a way to work through all of it. The Government of India in turn has done a lot to help the pharmaceutical industry to rise. They have offered them tax breaks, a new procedure for development drugs and appropriate clinical procedures. The Government of India has also launched two schemes to help the pharmaceutical sector, namely, New Millennium Indian Technology Leadership Initiative and the Drugs and Pharmaceuticals Research Programme. The Government is also in the process of contemplating the creation of Special Purpose Vehicles (SRV) with an insurance cover for use in funding new drug research. The department of Pharmaceuticals is pondering over the creation of drug research facilities which can be used by private companies for research work on rent.

What has also contributed to the growth of the pharmaceutical industry in India is pharmaceutical export. Export has become an important driving force for growth in this industry with more than 50 % revenue coming from the overseas markets. The export of drugs is estimated to be $8.25 billion as per the Pharmaceutical Export Council of India, set up by the Government of India.

What does the future look like for Indian Pharmaceutical companies? With several companies slated to make investments in India, the future scenario of the pharmaceutical industry looks promising. There seems to be a tremendous potential for growth considering the rate at which pharmaceutical companies and the pharmaceutical industry is growing.



Business Plan Outline & Checklist

Who needs a Business Plan?

Every business needs one. It’s not just for start-ups or new product launches or business expansion initiatives.

Why? And what should be in one?

Documenting a Business Plan is an extremely useful process to focus management and owners on their business concept, strategies, and operating plans. It forces consensus and decision making that might otherwise be neglected. It requires issues to be resolved and the decisions to be reflected in financial projections.

A well-documented business plan will help you communicate the most important elements of your strategy and plans to the people who need to know them. Including you.

Already in business for years and never needed a business plan? It’s still a good idea for all the same reasons. And now is a good time.

Ready to exit your business? Even better. A solid business plan will be the most important document in supporting the valuation of your business.

The greatest value of a business plan, however, is likely to be in the process – involving your management team in a thorough examination of your business – its purpose, its strategies and its plans to ensure success. When completed, all the key players will be more knowledgeable of the issues, the opportunities, the risks, and the alternative paths considered, before committing to the final plan.

Following is a suggested guideline of the layout and content for developing an effective Business Plan. It is a consolidation of best practices, based on our consulting and management experience with many different clients under a variety of circumstances.

COVER PAGE:

Includes title, date, purpose, prepared by whom, confidentiality statement, issued to whom, and a document control number.

PURPOSE:

Objectives of the Business Plan – attract financing, key executives, customers, or strategic partners? Document strategy and action plan for all participants? Set financial objectives and timetable?

CONTENTS:

1. Executive Summary (Max. 2 pages, written last as a stand-alone document, may be offered for review prior to full disclosure of the business plan, convinces reader to go further, or not.)

o Business Concept, Plan and Objectives

o Current status relative to the market opportunity

o Key success factors, risks, expected results

o Financial situation and needs

o Reference to the complete Business Plan (sections below) for more detail

2. Concept and Business Opportunity (Describe the need being addressed, how this approach is different, and why it is likely to succeed.)

o Market need and current solutions available

o Business concept and product/service differentiation

o Initial market feedback

3. Mission statement (Generate missionaries!, why others should join the cause – have fun, make money, make a difference?)

o Clear, attractive objectives – who and what do you want to be?

o Statement of values and priorities

o Milestones and timetable

4. Market Analysis (Provide relevant, pertinent information to demonstrate your knowledge and competence in this industry.)

o The overall market, recent changes

o Market segments

o Target market and customers

o Customer characteristics

o Customer needs

o Buying and selling process

5. Competition (Demonstrate an awareness of competitors and your ability to compete successfully.)

o Industry overview, recent changes

o Nature of competition, inside and outside the industry

o Primary competitors

o Competitive products/services, relative pricing, advantages, disadvantages

o Opportunities, protection by patents, copyrights, barriers to entry

o Threats and risks, ability of competitors to respond, imitate or copy.

6. Strategic Plan (Describe your starting point, direction, and plan to get there.)

o Company history & background – experience, resources

o Key competitive strengths & current weaknesses

o Business plan and strategy to leverage strengths, reduce weaknesses

o Action plan for implementing strategy

7. Management team (Usually the most important factor in determining your success and in attracting staff and financing. Emphasize current strengths and plan to fill in the gaps.)

o Key personnel, experience & credentials

o Staffing plan

o Organizational structure

8. Product & Service Offering (Consider the reader’s familiarity with the industry, avoid technical jargon, relate to the market and competition.)

o Product/service description

o Positioning of products/services

o Competitive evaluation of products/services

o Future products/services

9. Marketing and sales plan (Another key to success, too often neglected by owner/managers with strong product, technical, or operations backgrounds. Prove you have a plan that will be affordable and effective.)

o Marketing strategy, positioning, presentation

o Sales tactics

o Advertising, Promotions/incentives

o Publicity, public relations, press releases

o Trade shows, industry events

o Web marketing

10. Operations plan (Describe the important issues and factors that will affect customer service perceptions and the costs related to capital investment and operations.)

o Processes for product/service delivery

o Customer service and support

o Facilities and staff required

11. Risk analysis (What can go wrong, what will you do about it?)

o Market factors – economic cycle, interest rates, currency, government regulations, trade restrictions.

o Business risks – key customer & supplier dependence, labour availability, staff turnover, new competitors, new technology, changing demand.

12. Financial plan (Convert all the preceding words into numbers, next year by month, then three-to-five years annually.)

o Summary paragraph, Assumptions and Comments, followed by analysis

o Starting Balance Sheet

o Profit and Loss Projection

o Cash Flow Projection

o Balance Sheet Projection

o Ratio’s and Analysis, value of equity

o Financial needs

o Sources of funds

APPENDICES:

Add some personalisation and realism with biographies and photos of key executives, product photos, marketing literature, sample packaging, facility plans, press releases, customer testimonials, relevant research documents, etc.

Following these guidelines will ensure that you have considered all the issues and can defend your strategies and action plans against all inquisitors.



Importance of Website Design In The Hotel Industry

There are an increasing host of hotel websites all with a slightly different offer. You have the independent hotels websites that offer their own hotel and no-one else – often offering sleek and sophisticated design notes and lots of elegant, high-quality photography. There are the chain hotel websites that market a full raft of hotels sitting under one single brand, offering less a booking function and more the opportunity to communicate the overriding brand and the hotels that fall under it. There are package websites that offer hotels as part of a package boasting a host of different facets, such as flights and airport transfers – which boast a more aspiration design and very often a somewhat more busy design. And then there are the classic hotel booking websites that allows guests to search for locations or hotels directly, view the available dates and room types, and make a booking. These hotel websites offer the opportunity to be a little more idiosyncratic in terms of web design as there are so many variables, and this is also an arena that has a significant amount of competition and so creating a really robust, eye-catching and fluid design is very important in this market to ensure your website sits apart from the others.

Functions of Clean Design

There are a host of challenges that are present in this industry and market – with so many different things to consider. Starting with your website’s homepage which serves as the route in for the products you offer and the services available, while also functioning as an essential showcase page for your brand; a good and well-designed homepage is an absolutely fundamental element of any website and requires a great deal of thought, planning and design thinking. Beyond the webpage, a consistent and clean design with a strong emphasis on user-experience is the way to retain users to your site and increase the chances and likelihood of these users becoming bookers. In the current design climate and sphere there are a host of reasons to favour a more simple and clean design ethos. There are so many different theories and arguments for and against clean design, but the mode certainly favours this design ilk at the moment, and so this is very much the convention for this particular industry and market.

How to

While there is no prescriptive way to go about designing and thinking about the design and user experience of your website – there are a host of industry-specific best practice considerations to take into mind. With so many experts in this often complicated field it’s definitely pragmatic to consult with agencies specialising in this area to make sure your website’s design is every bit as it needs to be to compete in this ever competitive market. The best hotel website design is achieved by this sort of collaborative activity.



History Of Promotional Products

The first known Promotional Product used in America were commemorative campaign buttons used by George Washington during the Presidential campaign in 1789. In the early 1800’s calendars and rulers as well as some wooden items used for advertising, although an organized industry for creation and distribution did not yet exist until the late 1800’s.

A commercial printer by the name of Jasper Meeks from Coshocton Ohio was the 1st seller of promotional products for the industry when he got a local store selling shoes to print their business name on book bags for local schools. Mr. Meeks local printing competitor Henry Beach followed suit and began printing and selling other items like marbles, aprons, cloth caps, card cases, calendars, and fans to businesses.

In 1904, Mr Meeks and Mr Beach along with 12 other manufacturers of promotional merchandise came together and founded the first Promotional Product Trade Association for the industry. The organization is now referred to as the P.P.A.I (Promotional Products Association International) This organization now includes over 7,500 global members. and represents an industry of more than 22,000 distributors and 4,800 manufacturers across the world.

The United Kingdom & Ireland Promotional Product Merchandise Industry officially emerged as corporate marketing became advanced during the late 1950s. Before this era a company may have handed out occasional gifts, but there still was no recognised Industry in existence. The 1st dramatic growth in the industry began in the 1970s. When an increasing number of corporate companies saw the benefits gained from promoting their Business name, brand and product or service with the use of gifts displaying their own logo. There was a limited choice In the early years of Promotion Products, then at the beginning of the 1980’s demand grew from distributors for a generic Promotional Product catalogue they could distribute to their corporate customer displaying their brand as their own.

In years to follow these catalogues could be over-branded to show a distributor’s corporate logo and then distributors could deliver them to their end-user as a product of their own. In the beginning stages these catalogues were a vital sales tool and customers would order directly from these catalogues.

Beginning in the 1990s new catalogue services became available for distributors from many sources. The Industry created ‘Catalogue Groups’ who offered a specialized catalogue to a selected geographical group of Promotional Product merchandise distributor companies. Membership of a Catalogue Group also offered improved buying term options, a group of fellow distributor companies, & offered more support services. A current example of this type of Group would be the Envoy Group, who offers discounted products to a select group of distributors who have been in the industry for a minimum of three years. These members of the Envoy Group have regional exclusivity as a perk.

Preceding the 1990s the Promotional Product Merchandise Industry had a peak season, this was around Christmas & the giving of gifts. This changed dramatically by the beginning of the 1990s when Christmas gifts became less popular in the growing multicultural Country of England. Corporate companies became more creative by using promotional product merchandise to support their brand throughout the entire year.

In the early 2000’s the role of a Promotional Product merchandise catalogues started to change, because they could no longer fully display the vast range of products being offered. By 2007 companies were mailing catalogues to targeted customer lists, instead of the blanket postal mailing list they were using before. The catalogue has become more of a ‘business card that demonstrates the concept of what a company did, instead of a critical sales tool. In 2009 results published showed research involving a representative group of distributor companies, this indicated the usage of real hard copy catalogues would fall up to 25% by the end of 2010.

Distributor companies are experts in finding a way to source their creative Promotional Products. Traditionally, to make sure that they offered an effective manufacturer network, theses companies kept themselves updated on the trade product ranges available by attending exhibitions held all over the world, the (Trade Only National Show in the United Kingdom, Product Stewardship Institute or (PSI) in Europe and the P.P.A.I Show in Las Vegas, NV) & from the mailings the manufacturers received themselves. In 2004 Promotional Product sourcing began to change due to the launch of online trade sourcing services that became available and united distributors with manufacturers all over the world. This service is completely for vetted trade promotional merchandise distributor companies & is not offered to corporate end-user companies.

By 2008 just about every distributor incorporated a website demonstrating a range of items available. Not many offered the ability to order online mainly due to the complexities surrounding the processes to brand the merchandise needed. Today there are several companies that offer home based business opportunities to sell Promos. This allows the big distributor companies the ability to bring in more orders without having to advertise themselves. Smaller business can compete in the industry since all they need to do is advertise, find orders, and place orders, not having to worry about overhead costs. The fulfillment centers collect the artwork, print the orders and handle delivery.



Top 5 CPA Marketing Strategies

CPA (Cost-Per-Action) Marketing is an internet marketing income opportunity that’s very similar to affiliate marketing. The difference between affiliate marketing and CPA marketing is the fact that CPA networks pay you every time a user clicks on your link and takes an action – like fills out their email address, register on the landing site or download and install an app on their phone.

The actions required to profit from CPA programs depends on the specific program, but unlike affiliate marketing, CPA programs don’t require an actual purchase to be made. This means that it’s much easier to profit from CPA programs since users are only required to take a certain action, and then you get paid. With affiliate marketing, the user has to complete a purchase and pay for a product / service before you get paid.

This is only one of the advantages CPA marketing holds over affiliate marketing. It’s also easier to convert users with CPA programs since the programs are usually related to global interests – like “Win the brand new iPhone 6s” or “Win a $100 Amazon Gift Card”. There’s also a lot of different download CPA offers available on different networks – with these programs, your audience needs to download an app or game on their phone for free, and then you get paid for every install you refer.

These are all offers that targets a much more generic audience than a specific internet marketing or weight loss product you’d promote through affiliate marketing.

Now let’s take a look at my top 5 strategies for driving traffic and conversions to your CPA offers.

#1 – Use a squeeze page

The most important part of succeeding in the CPA marketing industry is to make use of a squeeze page. By using a squeeze page, you are increasing your chances for a conversion, while building a list of ready-to-take-action subscribers at the same time.

A squeeze page is a simple “landing page” where visitors will land before they are directed to the CPA offer. Your squeeze page should contain relevant information related to the CPA offer you are promoting – ask users to enter their email address into your email subscription form to continue. Once they add their email to your email subscription form, redirect them to the CPA offer. You can also have your auto responder send them an additional email with a link to the CPA offer in case the redirect didn’t work in their browser, or they closed the browser too soon.

#2 – Use Social Media

Social media is a very important part of CPA marketing. Millions of users are turning to Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+ and other social media networks every day to catch the latest news, check up on their friends, search for coupons and offers, and much more.

This means that it’s the perfect place to drop links to your squeeze pages / CPA offers. By promoting your CPA offers on social media, you are tapping into millions and millions of traffic – and if you do a good job, you can drive a lot of traffic back to your links.

The strategy to use here is to first join some groups related to the niche your CPA offer is targeting. If you’re promoting a trial offer for a new dieting pill, then you should join health and weight loss related groups / communities on social media.

Once you’ve joined a couple of groups, start sharing helpful content with the group. Your content should provide some value – do not simply drop links! After a couple of posts, the group members will start to recognize your name and you’ll have better authority in these groups.

Now it’s time to drop a link to your CPA offer – add a good description and tell the group why they should click on your link. Also add a creative image that related to the niche you’re targeting.

When dropping a link in these groups, be sure to add the link as close to the top as possible without starting the post with the link. Start with a title, drop the link and then add a description. The reason for this – when you create a long post on most social networks (except Twitter, where your tweets are limited) the post will be “shortened” with a “… ” link that will expand the post. You want your link to appear above the text that gets cut off so people will be able to click on the link even if they don’t expand the post.

#3 – Use Document Sharing Sites

Document sharing sites allow you to share PDF documents with others – they put your documents on their site and anyone browsing their site are able to see and read your documents.

This is another great way to drive traffic back to your CPA offers! By simply sharing a couple of documents related to the CPA offer you are promoting, you are able to drive hundreds to thousands of visitors back to your link, bringing you more conversions and more profit.

You might be wondering what documents you can share here… it’s actually quite simple. Do some research about different topics in the niche your CPA offer is targeting. Try to find a few different topics you can target. Then create a simple new document on your word processor and start to write about the specific topic. If you’re using a word processor such as Microsoft Word, you can also choose one of the templates that the software comes with to create a nice layout for your document. I usually go with the “Reports” templates.

Add some helpful information in your document – anything more than 5 pages would do. The more helpful and the more closely related the information you share is compared to the CPA offer you are promoting, the higher the chances of getting more conversions on your clicks. Make sure you add a couple of links to your CPA offer in the document!

Share your documents on as many document sharing sites as you can. Be sure to add unique descriptions for your document on each site, and also include a link back to your CPA offer in each description.

#4 – Use Instagram

Instagram is a social media network that focusses on multimedia – images and videos. This network is owned by Facebook, and it’s almost as popular as Facebook. Instagram received millions of unique daily visitors, and there’s millions of new images and videos posted every day.

With Instagram, you can post images and videos, and you can tag them so people can easily find them. You can also like another person’s posts, as well as comment on them. The more comments and likes your post received, the better chance of going viral.

Instagram also allows you to follow other people, and offers a “timeline” view with the latest posts by the people you follow. The more followers you get, the more exposure your posts get.

Now to drive traffic back to your CPA offer using Instagram can take a while to get started, but once you’ve tapped into this market, you can drive hundreds of dollars’ worth of conversions each and every day from Instagram alone.

To use this method, you should create a new Instagram account. Name your account something that relates to the offer you are promoting. You also need a landing page / squeeze page hosted on a custom domain – you CANNOT link directly to a CPA offer or you will be banned.

Add a profile picture that relates to your niche, and then add a bio that relates to the offer you are promoting. And finally add a link to your squeeze page in the “Website Link” field while updating your profile.

Now you should add only 1 new image / video per day on your Instagram account. You can find millions of images on the internet related to your niche. Tag your image with popular tags – there’s many different apps and websites that will give you the most popular and trending tags. Then hit publish.

Once you’ve added your image, start to follow a couple of people in your niche. Also like some of their pictures, and also comment on some of their posts. Do NOT spam – be thoughtful and considerate, and find a good balance between posting new images / videos, following other people, liking other’s posts and commenting on posts.

Continue doing this and you’ll soon start building up followers and driving traffic to your squeeze page. Just be-aware that this drives MOBILE TRAFFIC so you need to ensure both your squeeze page and the CPA offer you are promoting are mobile-optimized.

#5 – Use PPV Advertising

The last strategy for gaining a lot of profit with CPA marketing is to use PPV advertising. PPV advertising is pay-per-view promotion, which means you pay an amount based on the total number of views your ad receives.

This type of advertising works, you just need to find the right network. There’s several different PPV networks that you can make use of, and it will take some trial and error before you finally succeed – but keep at it and you will soon hit your first $100 day!

PPV advertising can cost you as little as $0.01 per visitor, which is really cheap. Imagine being able to convert offers at $0.01 per visitor. That’s insane!

The only downside to using PPV advertising is the fact that most PPV networks require a large amount to start with. Most PPV networks will only allow you to start off with an amount of $50+ – this means you should have some startup capital if you want to use PPV.

If you don’t have this much to spend right now, don’t worry. There’s still an upside to this!

I’ve shared with you 4 different strategies you can use to drive traffic to your CPA offers without having to spend a lot of money. Most of them are actually completely free. This means you can drive free targeted traffic to your squeeze pages and CPA links. So if you follow the first 4 strategies, implement them and keep with them, you will be able to push up your CPA earnings to the point where you have enough to invest in PPV advertising.



Love Gaming? Learn Why You Need Gaming News

The video gaming industry is really a huge sector in the overall economy, with tens of billions of dollars per year. Due to the fact it is such a crucial and also expanding industry, there’s a large amount of news produced regarding it. There are tons of competitors involved, from individuals earning money simply by providing capital or even managing licensing, to the people that design and produce the games, to people included in development of hardware, to the people helping with distribution, and lastly for the customers. You possibly can take a wander down the section of just about any retail store which carries magazines, and you will probably come across no less than 2-3 magazines about the industry.

The gaming news coverage is usually a person’s way to obtain know-how that could allow you to improve your equipment along with how you play. This is one way you’ll be able to take advantage of the consistent news, despite your current gaming skill. One of many ways to begin getting gaming news is usually to take a visit to the nearby game store. Game Stop as well as Game Crazy certainly is a few the most popular retailers which have the industry’s magazines. Most of these publications can provide you with a bunch of info on the newest releases of new titles, and also you may review the price ranges of both games as well as gaming devices.

Numerous magazines could possibly be centered on one particular company’s items. The Game Informer, on the other hand, covers reviews as well as news regarding every one of the many titles and systems. In that magazine you will find details for PC, PlayStation 3, Nintendo DS, PSP (PlayStation Portable), along with much more.

The magazines really are a way to obtain industry news, to be able to tell you what is hot and also what exactly is certainly not. You will find there’s a large amount of connections involving advertising and mainstream media focus. Immediately after getting brought up in the five o’clock news, sales of a video game can easily experience a sharp surge with sales.

Gaming news sources can certainly notify everyone regarding fresh and competitive gaming companies before you decide to purchase items. Often activities in diverse areas of the world may affect the market industry, since there are lots of organizations which sponsor awards pertaining to video games as well as gaming items. You can also look deep to determine what is influencing the market industry that you are part of.

Whenever you go to one of the nearby game stores, make sure you ask questions. The folks which work inside most of these stores could let you know about awesome things going on or perhaps upcoming game releases available with special prices. As well they might be able to inform you of gaming activities that you could go to and even attend. Look around at the posters, signs, and also other types of printed ads inside stores, as well.

Media companies for instance all those connecting people to satellite, cable, as well as additional news or Online resources can certainly have an effect on the game industry with their actions. Leaks of details or even videos will often give valuable information regarding upcoming games or events. These along with other types of intriguing news are available in the game magazines. Apart from Game Informer, some other magazines you might want to consider will be Computer Games Magazine, GamePro, as well as GameSlice. You will find homes for most of these magazines on the net as well. By simply keeping up along with game industry news, you’ll be able to greatly enhance your fun of your gaming interest.

As far as online sites and blogs there are a number of online gaming news sites and blogs. These web sites can inform you of new game releases; games reviews, and give gaming gear and games away for free. Now who does not like a free game or a free Xbox 360 console? Now days the best place is to look online for most of your gaming news, as is all readily available at the tip of your fingertips.

For more gaming news and gaming information, including game reviews visit http://raging-nerd.com/



Women-Owned Cleaning Businesses: The Finest in the Industry

The professional cleaning business is in a renaissance of sorts. It has evolved into more than just dragging a mop across the floor or sweeping a feather duster across knick-knacks. New concerns such as toxins, environment conservation, and ever-improving technologies create competition among products and companies. An influx of women and minority-owned cleaning businesses is forcing the competition take notice.

Cristi Cleaning Services

Successful women come from all countries and backgrounds but one thing they have in common is their ability to inspire. In 1980, business owner Christina Lopez created an opportunity for herself when she founded Cristi Cleaning Services. At the time there were not many female business owners in the cleaning community, and Christina set out make a name for herself. After 30 years of successful operations, Cristina received the Minority Small Business Person of the Year Award from the US Small Business Administration in 2001. Her cleaning company caters to businesses in the New York and New Jersey area. Clients include offices, hospitals, schools, shopping malls, and even The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

Cristi Cleaning Services employs approximately 475 workers who are trained to provide top-notch professional service with a personal touch. The company bills itself as “guardians of your customers’ first impressions” and sees its job as a vital part of their clients’ life-support system. The company takes great pride in being caretakers of the environment. They use green cleaning products and procedures to create theirenvironmentally friendlycleaning service. These products create pleasant indoor and outdoor environments using natural ingredients and fragrances.

Ideal Cleaning Services

Ideal Cleaning Services, LLC is located in New York City and is a woman-owned residential and commercial cleaning company. Ideal Cleaning Services has been in business for ten years and it services the boroughs as well as some upstate areas. This company has found a unique niche. They specialize in hoarding cases, biohazard cleanup and cleaning crime scenes.

Ideal Cleaning is the first company to specialize in hoarding/clutter and human waste combo cases and they have nine years of experience in this area. They realize that compulsive hoarding is an issue that needs to be dealt with using compassion and resources to help clients with their problem. The company works with the hoarder or a third party to get the living space cleaned out. Ideal Cleaning even has a life coach to help clients work through their hoarding issues.

Ideal Cleaning has a separate crime services division that does some very intensive cleaning in sensitive situations. The staff is properly trained to remove and handle bio-hazardous waste.

Green Cleaning for Life

One of the most inspiring story of all takes place in Denver, Colorado where ten immigrant women started their own cooperative with the help of El Centro Humanitario of Denver, an organization that promotes workers’ rights. The co-op is called Green Cleaning for Life LLC. Each woman makes $12 an hour and has an equal share in the business. The Bureau of Labor Statistics states that in 2011 maids and housekeepers in Colorado earned an average of $9.72 per hour. This puts the co-op workers ahead of their peers as far as starting salary, plus these women can take pride in their work and the fact that they own part of the business. At the end of each year, the ten women divide the co-op’s net profits among themselves. This gives everyone the incentive to work harder since they reap the profits directly.

As in all these scenarios starting a business is never easy, but these women were very dedicated to bettering themselves. El Centro spent more than six months teaching these women to speak English, how to run a business, and the importance of green cleaning. It is this sort of supportive environment that helps the successful of the team. And they do not forget it either. Maria Lopez, one of the co-op owners said, “Our intention is not just to make money; it’s to make money so we can help other women who are in the position we were before.”

Each of these women’s stories is unique yet all are inspiring – not just because they are women, but because they are successful women who had the courage to step out of what they knew, take a huge leap of faith and ended up being successful and helping others by providing services and jobs that improve people’s lives.

If you are interested in starting your own business, visit ViziClean’s blog to read the article, “How to Start A Cleaning Business.”



Finding Careers in the Fashion Industry

The vibrant, ever-changing fashion industry is always looking for brilliant minds with an idea of what comes next in design and merchandising. Could you be that visionary voice? What does the future hold for jobs in the fashion industry?

Check out some of the top fashion industry jobs, and learn what you can do to work your way into one of these exciting careers.

Fashion & Retail Management

If you love fashion and you’ve always wanted to own your own business, a degree in retail management could be right up your alley. You already know what shoes to pair with that little black dress for the perfect night out, but you need to learn the details of management as it relates to fashion. Courses in fashion sales, retail history, and more can give you the experience you need to enter the field with confidence.

Management Salary Points. In 2007, retail sales managers and supervisors saw mean annual earnings of $39,210, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Management positions at high-end boutiques and specialty stores might earn more, depending on location and experience.

Fashion Merchandising Careers

If you stand behind your brand, you have to be able to sell it. Fashion merchandising is an umbrella term that covers a range of careers, including: Merchandise managers ” Fashion buyers ” Fashion marketers ” Fashion sales

Even those who specialize in creating window dressings for department stores fall under the category of fashion merchandising.

Fashion merchandise managers see a lot of use in today’s fashion economy. “Today it’s the merchandise manager who carries the weight,” Marvin Traub, a retail consultant, told the New York Times. “He has an eye to the numbers.” While a degree or certificate in fashion merchandising may not be required for all careers, it can help to have the technical knowledge you can pair with you existing passion.

Merchandising Salary Points. Wholesale and retail buyers earned $53,580 in 2007, the BLS reports. That same year, purchasing managers across all industries earned mean annual wages of $90,430. While that figure goes well beyond the fashion industry, it should give you an idea of the kind of salary a skilled manager in the field might expect.

Fashion Designers

When you first think of jobs in the fashion industry, you might picture famous fashion designers like Donatella Versace or Michael Kors. While it’s true that most work can be found in fashion hubs California and New York, designers typically work all over the country, running small businesses and boutiques. Whether you’re dreaming of small-town success or a big-city dream, training in fashion design can get you there.

Fashion Design Salary Points. Fashion designers saw mean annual wages of $71,170 in 2007, according to the BLS. Most designers worked in New York or California, cementing the notion that your best chances for employment are on the opposite coasts.

While competition is keen for many careers and no degree can guarantee a job, graduates of fashion schools are still finding a viable job market. Research fashion schools to get a better idea of your potential future.



Marketing Mix – Top 4 Promotion Mix Tactics

Marketing mix is part of your marketing plan. It defines product, place, price and promotion. The promotion mix targets raising product or brand awareness, communicating the unique value proposition of your product and gaining acceptance of your products. The primary purpose and focus of promotional mix is to get the desired result: the sale of your product. There are more than seven common promotion mix tactics and while most businesses do not use all of these tactics to promote and sell their products, they do use a mix of these tactics.

The Top 4 Promotion Mix Tactics:

  1. Personal selling is one of the most common of the promotion tactics. Most companies will hire people to do the selling: sales representatives, account managers, inside sales representatives, retail sales, sales agents, or telemarketers. Face-to-face selling is one of the most common methods of selling, although sales by phone, and more recently, sales by email, are becoming well used. These are not necessarily as effective, but they are low cost sales tactics.
  2. Advertising is another common promotion tactic. Advertising focuses on brand recognition and identity; not on the product alone. Advertising can be a costly tactic that only the big businesses can invest in; particularly advertising on television which can cost anywhere from $100,000 to over $1 million for a national broadcast in prime time (for a 30-second spot!). This cost is in addition to the cost of producing the commercial. Advertising in industry or consumer magazines is less expensive and typically you can target your advertisement to a specific industry or region. Other advertising can include car or bus ‘wraps’, events (such as sports, music, art), and billboards. The Internet is becoming a very popular place to advertise, and on a relative basis, it is more affordable.
  3. In the retail marketplace, consumer promotion is very common. Buy one, get one free. Coupons for discounted or free product. Free trial packages. Cash discounts or refunds. Contests that give back cash, prizes, or products. The commitment by marketers to consumer promotion is that this form of promotion can be designed to be very measurable. Coupons, contests, and packaging can be coded to report redemptions and to report sales increases and/or decreases related to consumer promotion. Additionally, packaging new products as a trial, with a mature or declining product, can often provide an opportunity to up-sell and extend the declining product’s life-cycle.
  4. Public relations (PR) is another common promotion tactic. Public relations includes writing and distributing press releases (to the local newspaper, the national newspapers, to online PR sites, to radio and television, to magazines, and more). The key for effective PR is to identify and understand your target audience, the key message or messages you want to deliver, the credibility of your organization, and the recognition that PR is not a sales tactic but an identity (whether corporate, brand or product) building tactic.

The most effective promotional program is usually one that uses a variety of tactics and techniques. It is important to measure the effectiveness of the program you engage in, and adjust your promotional program to increase effectiveness and outcome (sales).



What the Green Building Industry Can Learn From Motorola

Whether driven by a genuine desire to reduce their environmental footprint, or simply to insulate themselves against rising costs, energy efficiency is becoming a significant organizational goal for many companies around the country. In order to achieve these goals, businesses are looking for direction on how they can have their buildings’ designed and/or operated to consume as little energy as possible. Many have looked to the LEED Rating System to provide both the guidance for, and recognition of exceptional energy, water and material conservation. However, large barriers remain; the planning, modeling, implementation, measurement and documentation requirements of attaining a LEED designation can be daunting. Worse, many companies begin the process of having their building LEED certified, only to abandon the project due to lack of focus and uncertainty. While some companies are waiting for the streamlined documentation promised by LEED V4 (set to release in September), the real solution may be found in a more unlikely place – the Six Sigma Methodologies originally developed by Motorola in 1986.

Six Sigma Methodologies

Six Sigma is a business management strategy that seeks to improve the quality of process outputs by identifying and removing the causes of defects and minimizing variability in manufacturing and business processes. It uses a set of quality management methods, primarily statistical, to define a project and carry out a defined sequence of steps towards a quantified target (generally cost reduction or profit increase). These steps are known as DMAIC – Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve and Control. All this is done in an effort to operate at Six Sigma quality levels, in which only 3.4 outputs out of 1,000,000 are defective. In a time when New York’s Energy Benchmarking law found that the Chrysler Building, constructed in the 1930s, is more energy efficient than the newly constructed (and LEED Certified) 7 World Trade Center, a discipline that focuses on excellence in results might be exactly what the green building industry needs.

Although Six Sigma had been developed for manufacturing processes, the principles are highly compatible with sustainability initiatives, and specifically, the LEED rating system. Instead of cost reductions, a simple shift in the focus to the environmental performance requirements set by the various LEED Credits would offer a perfectly quantifiable target. In addition, the collaborative management model that includes key employees, independent subject-matter experts, suppliers, and customers lines up neatly with the commissioning requirements of LEED projects. While the LEED reference guides outline different responsibilities for the levels of hierarchy on a project, a true collaborative model must be thoroughly understood and internalized to truly be successful.

Surprising Compatibility

In fact, there is a surprising level of similarities between what the USGBC intended LEED to promote and what the Six Sigma methodologies actually uphold. In order to achieve points towards a LEED Certification, extensive measurements must be taken on a variety of different metrics. Moreover, while a project team may, for example, measure a building’s energy consumption for 1 year of post-construction occupancy to achieve the credit points, having a Six Sigma mindset would let project teams see the real value in measurement and continuous improvement.

Another example is the adjusted weights that the USGBC gives to the different credit categories of LEED. In an effort to convey that energy efficiency is more important to overall sustainability, there are significantly more points available in the Energy & Atmosphere credit category than the other credit categories. While most understand and agree that energy efficiency is indeed the most important factor in how sustainable a building is, it would be interesting to see what the point ratings would come out to if measured and analyzed through the Six Sigma processes.

The green building industry must also recognize another significant truth – that, despite the tremendous growth, there remains a large swath of construction companies and building owners that stay clear of LEED because they do not recognize an economic benefit. The rigorous and quantifiable analysis of the Six Sigma methodologies could help reveal the economic payback, and show the late adopters that it makes almost no economic sense to not invest in efficient and sustainable designs and operations. Instead of simply trusting the utility savings based on an energy model, becoming trained in the Six Sigma methodologies would allow everyone to understand what was measured, how it was measured and what the results of improvements will bear. All companies can benefit from applying the Six Sigma methodology to these sorts of challenges and will see definite financial benefits.

Shifting Perceptions

Finally, the change in attitude of managers and employees may be the biggest contribution to the green building industry that Six Sigma can offer. The USGBC hopes that mangers and owners of a LEED project are convinced that sustainable measures and tools are worthwhile. But now, they are convinced primarily by the tax and marketing benefits rather than a genuine understanding of the issues. This success is not possible without the right degree of skill gained through a Six Sigma Certification. Not only will they be able to eliminate the inefficiencies that lead to unsustainable practices, but they will also have the tools and data to better manage their energy use and get a clear view of ROI.

With more business models and government programs being created based on expected energy efficiency, it is time for the industry to align itself with an established system for achieving perfect results. This transition could simultaneously lead to broader appeal and more intense enthusiasm for the benefits of sustainability, both economic and environmental.