Friday, March 30, 2018

FORGET IT!!

Looking for “new”, catchy ways to attract customers? Forget It!!

Certainly we need an informative and thorough advertising program. Beyond that, instead of looking for gimmicks, etc,. consider what works every time. Devote your time to making sure you and your staff provide good, old-fashioned hard work. Provide this and your customers will become your best emissaries.

Referrals and repeat business from satisfied customers will bring you success and greater profits. Offer high quality service to a select market and your reputation will become the biggest part of your advertising program. Always be appreciative of your customers, offer good value and be courteous to them.

These are the tried and true “old” catchy ways that make your Company more successful.

Related Information and Articles:

Please read the latest issue of the Clene-Times® at www.baneclene.com/publications/.

Please visit our web site at www.baneclene.com.

The Bane-Clene® Team.


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Bane-Clene Paper CatalogFree packet of information about Bane-Clene can be obtained by calling toll-free 1-800-428-9512 (U.S. ONLY!). Your information packet will include a full color catalog and price addendum. Packets will arrive in approximately 2 weeks through standard United States Mail.

You can also order the packet at the Catalog Request Form.


Friday, March 23, 2018

Tax Breaks For The Middle Class

Lawmakers have enacted many tax incentives that will benefit middle class families and small businesses. It will be important to consult with your CPA and or tax advisor. These are but a few of the highlights.

  1. Savings Tax credits or IRA deductions continue to be an important tax advantage. Also, there is the obvious benefit of providing for your eventual retirement. Depending on how your business is structured you may have little or no social security benefits at retirement. So some type of retirement plan is paramount.
  2. The child credit of $1000 obviously benefits business owners with children. This credit reduces your tax bill dollar for dollar.
  3. Speaking of children, you may also qualify for a tax credit that will reduce the cost of child care. Eligible expenses may include the cost of preschool, before or after school care and summer day camps.
  4. Charitable contributions are easy to keep track of if you write a check. However, do not overlook driving your car for charity events, plus parking and tolls. Postage you pay or supplies you provide for a charitable or fund raising event may also be deducted.
  5. Many small business owners are members of National Guard or Reserve Units. For 2017 travel, the rate is 53.5 cents a mile plus what you may have paid for parking or toll fees. You may claim this deduction even if you use the standard deduction rather than itemizing.
  6. Deductions for Medicare Premiums for the Self-Employed are available to those that continue to run their own business after qualifying for Medicare. They can deduct the premiums they pay for Medicare Part B and Medicare Part D, plus the cost of supplemental Medicare (Medigap) policies or the the Medicare Advantage plan.
  7. Airline baggage fees are deductible if you are self-employed and travel for business. Keep track of those and other expenses when you attend seminars, schools (such as The Bane-Clene® Institute) or other business related events.
  8. Bonus depreciation and beefed up expensing may allow you to write off the full cost of qualifying carpet cleaning equipment, trucks and other assets. For 2017, businesses can expense up to $500,000.00 worth of qualifying assets.
  9. Those that are self employed and pay the full 15.3% Social Security and Medicare Tax can write off half of what you pay. This deduction is on the first page of Form 1040; so, it is not necessary to itemize to take advantage of it.
  10. If you use part of your home exclusively for your business, there are office credits for the self employed. There are some stipulations; so, check with your tax consultant to see if you qualify. If you do, then part of your utility bills, (rent or mortgage, insurance costs, etc. may be deductible.
  11. Health insurance premiums for you and your family if you are self employed. This deduction is disallowed if your spouse is eligible for Health insurance at their job

This information is for enlightenment purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice from a CPA or other tax adviser. Please consult with them for clarification and whether you qualify.

Related Information and Articles:

Please read the latest issue of the Clene-Times® at www.baneclene.com/publications/.

Please visit our web site at www.baneclene.com.

The Bane-Clene® Team.


Free Bane-Clene Information Package

Bane-Clene Paper CatalogFree packet of information about Bane-Clene can be obtained by calling toll-free 1-800-428-9512 (U.S. ONLY!). Your information packet will include a full color catalog and price addendum. Packets will arrive in approximately 2 weeks through standard United States Mail.

You can also order the packet at the Catalog Request Form.


Friday, March 16, 2018

HIRING IS A FULL TIME JOB

An often refrain in the Carpet Cleaning business is “I can’t hire good help”. While we do not dispute that notion, our industry is not the only one which experiences such an issue.

So how do you proceed to remedy this situation? Some people run want ads and others use employment agencies, which are certainly viable strategies. However, there are people who would like to and want to work, if they were asked and if they found the job rewarding. So, the key is asking. All owners and managers should go out and recruit. Coaches use that strategy all the time in looking for players at the high school and college level. When you are out and about, look for people a good attitude, patience, courtesy and a professional appearance. Hand that person your business card and tell them you have a job opportunity available. Invite them to call you at their earliest convenience to discuss this opportunity.

Don’t just invite one or two; keep the pipeline open as many people may not call you until they feel the time is right. Statistics show the lack of “Satisfying Work” is one of the main reasons people change jobs. Just like in your advertising program, hiring is a numbers game. It may take several interviews to find the person you want.

All job applicants should fill out an employment application. This document should list references and these should be checked. Your insurance company should process the applicant’s Driver’s License information through your State’s Bureau of Motor Vehicles. All information on the application should be verified. There should be a place on the application where you tell them of the intent to do these things and the applicant should acknowledge that by signing the application.

Related Information and Articles:

Please read the latest issue of the Clene-Times® at https://www.baneclene.com/publications/.

Please visit our web site at https://www.baneclene.com.

The Bane-Clene® Team.


Free Bane-Clene Information Package

Bane-Clene Paper CatalogFree packet of information about Bane-Clene can be obtained by calling toll-free 1-800-428-9512 (U.S. ONLY!). Your information packet will include a full color catalog and price addendum. Packets will arrive in approximately 2 weeks through standard United States Mail.

You can also order the packet at the Catalog Request Form.


Friday, March 09, 2018

The Name of the Game

Brand RECOGNITION certainly plays a prominent role in any marketing and merchandising effort. However, it is only one of the “R” factors which will allow a company to enjoy success.

The other “R” factors are REFERRALS, RELIABILITY and REPUTATION. In the beginning of the purchasing process, a consumer may choose a company based upon brand “recognition”. In other words, there was a “referral” for your company. But then, based upon the performance of your Company, the consumer develops an opinion for “reliability”. Then that opinion establishes a “reputation” for the company.

Therefore, all the “R’s” are intertwined and are building blocks for your Company; so, let’s recap:

RECOGNITION. Promote the brand of equipment and chemicals you use. List any organizations or groups you belong to. If you have been in business for an extended period of time, list that - it establishes credibility. Keep your vehicles, equipment and employees looking professional. These all definitely help build brand recognition.

REFERRALS. Referrals are the life blood of all companies. They establish instant credibility. Unfortunately, but not unexpectedly, an unhappy customer will tell more people about their experience, than a happy customer. Work hard to keep your referrals “Five Star”.

RELIABILITY. Do what you promise and do not promise more than you can deliver. Show up on time. This too leads to more positive referrals.

REPUTATION. The final “R” - this is what you have worked hard to achieve. Your Company must continue to maintain their “high quality” work. A reputation can quickly be tarnished; so do not rest on your reputation. Competitors come and go but a good reputation will separate you from your competitors.

Related Information and Articles:

Please read the latest issue of the Clene-Times® at https://www.baneclene.com/publications/.

Please visit our web site at https://www.baneclene.com.

The Bane-Clene® Team.


Free Bane-Clene Information Package

Bane-Clene Paper CatalogFree packet of information about Bane-Clene can be obtained by calling toll-free 1-800-428-9512 (U.S. ONLY!). Your information packet will include a full color catalog and price addendum. Packets will arrive in approximately 2 weeks through standard United States Mail.

You can also order the packet at the Catalog Request Form.


Friday, March 02, 2018

The Competitive Edge -- It’s You!

When a customer retains the services of a Professional Carpet Cleaner, they presume that the company possesses the necessary tools and skills to successfully complete the job. Many companies, including yours, use good equipment and chemicals. They send out trained courteous technicians. So where is the Competitive Edge?

Service businesses are people businesses. When all else is equal, the owner or owners running the business must set standards that assure a Competitive Edge. So what are some of the factors and standards that will set you apart?

  1. The proper advertising will educate potential customers about your company and the services you offer. It should be informative, to the point and always maintain a positive message.
  2. Whether it is yourself or a CSR (customer services representative), a trained well informed person should answer your phone and be prepared to handle incoming calls in a professional manner. A potential customers’ time is valuable, show them you respect that. While sometimes voice mail or message centers may be needed, avoid making it your “normal” way of communicating with your customers.
  3. When your customers see your trucks and technicians, do they see “clean”? Your truck is the first visual perception of your company and your technicians are the second. Make sure everything and everyone is neat, clean and professional looking.
  4. Unless it was done by the CSR during the initial phone contact, be sure your technicians advise the customer of additional services you may offer such as treatments for carpet and fabric protector. Also, if appropriate, treatments for pet odors and or special stain removal should be mentioned.
  5. Instructions on how to care for their carpets should be provided before leaving and technicians should thank the customers for their patronage and the opportunity to be of service.
  6. Leaving a “Thank You / Reply Card” is a professional way to show you appreciate your customer. Or another approach is to follow up after the job either by phone, e-mail or a “Thank You” letter. Any of these will show that you value them as a customer.

Related Information and Articles:

Commit to these simple but important efforts and it will give you the Competitive Edge.

Please read the latest issue of the Clene-Times® at https://www.baneclene.com/publications/.

Please visit our web site at https://www.baneclene.com.

The Bane-Clene® Team.

Free Bane-Clene Information Package

Bane-Clene Paper CatalogFree packet of information about Bane-Clene can be obtained by calling toll-free 1-800-428-9512 (U.S. ONLY!). Your information packet will include a full color catalog and price addendum. Packets will arrive in approximately 2 weeks through standard United States Mail.

You can also order the packet at the Catalog Request Form.