Essential Gifts For Small Business Owners. (Or you)

7 essential gift ideas for any small business owner

The holiday season is upon us, and that means you are probably buying someone in your life a gift.  If that particular person is a small business owner, I recommend getting them something practical.

Small business owners wear many hats.  We plan. Create. Post. Order. Sell. Design. Call. Email. Network. Provide customer support. And occasionally sleep. We don’t need more stuff. We need tools to help make our life easier.  

I compiled a list of some life-changing items that help me function more efficiently as a business owner.

They all deliver tremendous value at a low price.  

 

Building A Story Brand: Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen – Donald Miller – $16.99 (as of 12/3/18)

7 Essential Tools For any Small Business Owner Blog PostEvery business has a story.  But do they know how to tell it so customers will listen?  Most companies intuitively make their story about them, but Donald delivers an easy to digest approach to making it about your customers.  Essential reading.

 

 

 

 

Everybody Writes – Ann Handley – Hardcover $17.00 (as of 12/3/18)

Everybody Writes - Ann Handley Content MarketerI received this book as a gift last Christmas.  It took me six months to pick it up (I was already reading two books at the time).  If I had known how engaging and insightful it is before reading, I would have put down the other two books.

Ann has a way of speaking to you through her writing that makes you feel like you’re buddies from college.  She simplifies the process of writing, anything.  The chapters are short and packed with actionable items to take your content marketing from stagnant to stellar.

Read it.  Practice.  Become ridiculously good at marketing.

 

Hemingway Editor$19.99 (As of 12/3/18)

Hemingway Editor application for desktopIf you write anything online, the Hemingway app will be your new best friend.  If you struggle with grammar, sentence structure, formatting, active and passive voice, or boring writing, You will love this editor!

 

 

Adobe Spark Post –  Monthly subscription $9.99/month – Spark Post is an easy to use social media graphic, video, and single web Adobe Spark Logopage creation tool.  They offer a free two-week trial so that you can check it out yourself. There are no long-term contracts.

What I love most about this tool is the ability to batch produce images or videos for sharing on social media.  A mobile app is available, but I prefer the desktop version.  The choice is yours.

 

Lavalier Lapel Microphone by PoP Voice – $11.99 (as of 12/7/18)

Lavalier Lapel MicWe live in a mobile-first world, and if you are recording videos for your business, you probably use your phone.  This lapel mic plugs into the microphone jack on your phone and makes your videos sound professional.  If you have an iPhone 7 or newer, you’ll need an adapter for the headphone jack.

 

Iphone headphone jack adapterI picked up this one up for $11.00 on Amazon.  Your total investment for the mic and adapter is $23.00.

 

 

 

Sticker Mule Custom Stickers, Magnets, Buttons, Packaging, and Labels – Prices vary by quantity

Sticker Mule stickersSticker Mule creates high-quality products and their customer service rocks!  Orders typically ship within four days, for free.  You can order samples to see what your finished product looks like before placing a large order.

Creative branding is everything and makes a lasting first impression.

 

 

Covax Laptop Backpack – $17.99 (as of 12/3/18)

Covax business laptop backpackI recently discovered this backpack while searching for a for a better fitting bag for my laptop.  If you are tired of having your work bag hanging to one side and pulling on your shoulders, here is your solution.

This stylish bag hugs your body and has numerous sections and compartments.  Did I  mention it’s only $17.99?

 

The Go-Giver and Go-Givers Sell MorePrices Vary (but they are under $20.00)

Go Giver Book seriesThis book series will change your business approach.  Every business owner should read it and heed the message.  What’s the message?  If we shift our focus from getting to giving, consistently add value, and focus on relationships, we will thrive as business owners.

The story is powerful.  The message is simple. You already possess the necessary tools.  Now, Go Give.

I recommend reading the Go-Giver first and then Go-Givers Sell More.  Want more?  Check out The Go-Giver Leader and Influencer (not pictured).

If you could change the life of another person and help them succeed in business for under $30.00 wouldn’t that be the best gift ever? 

Need more ideas?  Check out my 5 practical Gift Ideas from last year.

Ask me a question

5 Practical Business Tools Under $20.00

We all have our favorites when it comes to business tools. I sure do. Some tangible and others spiritual. The way I see it, health is wealth and having a proper balance will ensure my approach to daily life and my business will be more intentional and proactive. Give the gift of practicality and experience.
Below are my top 5 favorite items that I use every day. They are all under $20!
1) Arkon MG2TRIXL 11″ Smartphone Tripod – I love this tripod! Live and recorded video is the future of social media so get on board now. The base is flexible and can be wrapped around an object if a flat surface is not available.
It comes with adaptors for medium to large digital cameras and a carrying case — all for only $18.95 (current sale price on Amazon).
2)“Presence” by Amy Cuddy – This book has helped transform the way I think and present myself. The cover says it all “bringing your boldest self to your biggest challenges.” We all experience self-doubt at one time or another.
Amy encourages us to “stop worrying about the impression we are making on others and adjust the impression we are making on ourselves.”
The quotes and nuggets of wisdom are endless in this book. You can help others help themselves for under $20.00.
3)“This Book Will Teach You How To Write Better” by Neville Medhora – The title says it all. Give the gift of simplicity. Neville’s approach (you WILL laugh) is one that everybody can comfortably relate to and incorporate into his or her marketing.
He offers basic exercises that break down the process of crafting a compelling message. Simple. Effective. Buy it. Oh, it is only five bucks!
4) Wise Stamp – Our email signature is a business card for those that haven’t met us in person, make it memorable. Wise Stamp offers an array of templates and tools to make your signature interactive. All for $6.00 a month!
5) Power Of Thought Cards – Louise L. Hay – I love starting my day with a little inspiration. Every morning I take one of these beautifully illustrated cards out of the deck and keep it visible all day. We can never get too inspired! $10.94
If you could change the life of another person and help them succeed in business for under $20.00 wouldn’t that be the best gift ever? 

5 Life-Changing Business Tools Under $100

Every business needs tools to be successful. I seek out the best affordable tools, try them and make recommendations for the ones that have significantly improved my productivity. My core mission is to help you save time, money and become a better marketer. The following list will do that.

This year, many of them are online which probably won’t surprise you either.

1) Wisestamp – An email signature template service offering many templates and apps for creating an impactful, interactive signature. It’s easy to use, affordable and lets your recipients know you care. Your email signature is your business card for those who have not met you yet. Be memorable.

Cost: A one-year PRO subscription will cost you $72.00. Other plans are available.

2) The Adweek Copywriting Book by Joseph Sugarman – This book completely changed how I look at writing anything. It not only applies to advertising but anything you write in hopes of persuading another human being to take action. Joe makes writing fun, and his approach is easy to digest and apply to your business. I forgot to mention, he has sold millions and millions and millions and millions of products.

Cost: At the time of this writing, Amazon is offering the paperback version for only $15.00

3) Grammarly – For those who have challenges with grammar, this app will quickly become your best friend. The G icon appears at the bottom right corner of your screen once you begin writing and will make suggestions if needed. The mobile IOS version is a keyboard and easily integrates with your apps and browser. You can toggle between this keyboard and your default one with the click of a button.

The one downside is it doesn’t work for Google Docs, but you can check your work by copying and pasting it into the online editor. An extension is available for Google Chrome and add-in for Microsoft Word and Outlook.

Cost:

  • Monthly  — $29.95 USD/month
  • Quarterly Subscription — $19.98/month (billed as one payment of USD 59.95)
  • Annual Subscription — $11.66/month (billed as one payment of USD 139.95)

4) Adobe SparkA content creation app accessible via desktop or mobile. Whether you are creating images with text overlays, videos, or web pages, Spark has you covered. I am more of a desktop user, but the app is pretty awesome and very easy to use. Your choice.

Cost: $9.99 per month or $99.00 for a full year paid in advance.

5) Zhiyun Smooth Q Handheld Video Stabilizer For SmartPhoneThis little gem is a game changer for anyone shooting video on the go. No more shaky camera and unprofessional video tours. I was lucky enough to purchase mine for $99 on Black Friday and noticed they are selling for $140 now. I had to include it on the list. Compared to some of the higher priced Gimbals this one is a solid affordable option.

Cost: $99-140. Keep an eye on Amazon for the discounted price.

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