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Kelly Said:

I am going to start an Concierge Business?

We Answered:

1) What kind of services would you like to see?

A concierge business involves performing routine errands for clients, such as picking up dry cleaning, buying the dinosaur cake for the little tyke, and so on. With the rise of two-income families, working people nowadays seldom have the time to do life’s little chores. If you do not mind performing these little tasks and enjoy doing something different each day, this is a business with excellent growth potential.

I would personally use a concierge business in doing some routine tasks for my home business such as arranging files and doing clippings of magazine articles.

2) What kind of price point would you pay?

As for prices, check on the web for website of personal concierge businesses and check if they publish their prices. One such site is Parris Concierge http://www.parrisconcierge.com whose services include such routine (and time-consuming) tasks as returning items to the store, picking up your prescriptions or obtaining annual automobile license renewal stickers. Prices for Parris Concierge run from $40.00-$50.00 per hour and a 10 hour package is $400.00.

Another concierge service is Sisters http://www.sistersx2.com/ and their hourly fees range from $40.00-$75.00 per hour and packages can be built to suit any request.

3) What would you recomend as an advertisement media?

Creativity and flexibility are the key qualities to establish a successful concierge business. You need to have strong affinity with people and a lot of imagination to make ordinary mundane things seem so special, even magically obtain tickets to a sold-out concert that your client craves. Think of yourself as a personal concierge. The most important component of this business is finding your target audience, which often consists of busy executives and working people. To reach this market, you can place ads in your local newspapers, write an article about this service, and send press releases to generate publicity for your business. You can also choose to personally visit a lot of businesses and drop off your brochure.

4) What sources of infomation that you would find usefull to my line of work

Start-up costs can range from $500 to $2,500, depending on the equipment you already have. You will need a computer, fax machine, Internet access, pagers and cell phones. Another possible start-up expense includes the cost of bonding and insurance to protect you in the event of accident, theft or mishap. You can expect to earn gross revenues of $50,000 to $75,000 and up, depending on the services you provide and the clients you target. You can charge clients with a variety of membership fees based on the nature of service and number of requests per month. You can charge for family or individual membership, a corporate membership for companies to give their employees, and a one-time service fee. Remember though, that whatever you purchase for your clients are billed to them.

I recommend that you check the following articles, books and websites:

Entrepreneur Magazine's book "How to Start a Personal Concierge Service" http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1…
How to Be a Personal Concierge
http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/0,46…
How to Start and Operate an Errand Service (Revised 2nd Edition) by Rob Spina
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0…
Sound Startup Strategies For a Personal Concierge http://www.startupjournal.com/columnists…
National Concierge Association http://www.conciergeassoc.org

Tammy Said:

Does anyone know the quickest way to start a small business?

We Answered:

You've got two different issues here - floral sales & wholesale services. Let's tackle one at a time...

RE: Floral sales/Florist Shop

The best routes to take are to research the process of starting a business as well as the industry you're interested in.

I recommend checking out the SBA, Entrepreneur, The Start Up Journal & Nolo. All 4 are great informational resources for the new/small business owner. I posted links for you in the source box.

Associations may be a good avenue to explore as well. These organizations will address many of the thoughts, questions and concerns you'll inevitably have as well as many you haven't anticipated yet. See the source box for some relevant links.

Research, research, research – this cannot be stressed enough. Read as much as you can about the industry. Here are some book titles that are relevant:

* Starting A Flower And Gift Shop by Millicent Gray Lownes-Jackson
* Start and Run a Profitable Retail Business by Jim Dion, Ted Topping
* Retail Business Kit for Dummies by Rick Segel
* Specialty Shop Retailing: How to Run Your Own Store Revised by Carol L. Schroeder
* So You Want To Own The Store: Secrets to Running a Successful Retail Operation by Mort Brown

RE: Wholesale Services

See the source box for some relevant association links.

Here are some book titles that are relevant:

* Start Your Own Wholesale Distribution Business (Entrepreneur Magazine's Start Up) by Entrepreneur Press
* Marketing Matters-Winning Strategies for Wholesaling by Dick Barnes

There are plenty of free informational resources out there. Check the source box for links to articles.

Hope that helps! I wish you much success & happiness in all your ventures!

Maurice Said:

Where do i go to look for wholesalers with my business license?

We Answered:

The best routes to take are to research the process of starting a business as well as the industry you're interested in.

I recommend checking out the SBA, Entrepreneur, The Start Up Journal & Nolo. All 4 are great informational resources for the new/small business owner. I posted links for you in the source box.

Associations may be a good avenue to explore as well. These organizations will address many of the thoughts, questions and concerns you'll inevitably have as well as many you haven't anticipated yet. See the source box for some relevant links.

Research, research, research – this cannot be stressed enough. Read as much as you can about the industry. Here are some book titles that are relevant:

* Start Your Own Wholesale Distribution Business (Entrepreneur Magazine's Start Up) by Entrepreneur Press
* Marketing Matters-Winning Strategies for Wholesaling by Dick Barnes

There are plenty of free informational resources out there. Check the source box for links to articles.

Hope that helps! I wish you much success & happiness in all your ventures!

Anthony Said:

how to enhance or expand the home catering business?What kind of strategy to be considered?

We Answered:

You didn't mention what type of home catering business you have. Do you cater for small parties, large events or daily meal delivery? In any case, some general tips on marketing :

- First design nice business cards and flyers. Distribute them at homes, community centers, offices etc.

- Make sure every customer has your business card. When catering for a function, place your business cards on every serving table.

- Print your business name and contact on disposables - paper napkins, paper cups, paper plates etc. You want to get your contact information in front of eyeballs albeit discreetly.

- Suggest a modest (and cheap) gift that the host can give to every guest. Make sure your contact in printed on the packaging. Your customer (host) pays for the gifts, and you get your contact in front of eyeballs!

- Place ads in your local paper, yellow pages and niche magazines.

- Get to know your local wedding / event organizing companies. These companies always need caterers and some business will surely come your way from them.

- If you are running a daily meal delivery business, then offer a 50% discount to any existing customer who refers a friend to you and they actually become a customer.

- Offer some sort of loyalty scheme. If you run a daily meal catering business, offer one week of free meals for every six months that they cater from you. For parties, offer a 20% discount (or an amount acceptable to you) to customers for their next party if they confirm within six months/one year. This helps to build loyalty and helps customers save costs.

- Ask your local grocer or shops to distribute samples of your goodies. Either pay them a flat rate or offer to give them a cut of payment from customers refered by them.

- Sponsor cooking demonstrations at malls, women's club etc where you get to give out your tasty samples and business cards.

- Sponsor meals for events (especially charity events). Make sure your business information is displayed prominently.

Finally, I've found that the TWO most important ingredients to making my own catering business successful are :

- Making sure I serve, tasty, quality food. Absolutely no compromise on quality. That's doesn't mean that we only use expensive products. It means that we don't give customers a raw deal.
- Making sure our service is ALWAYS top notch. That means everything from smiling and greeting customers, to delivering food on time, even if it IS raining and our delivery men are drenched!

Andrew
http://www.positivemoneyideas.com

Darren Said:

Need business people mail ids for email marketing?

We Answered:

If you are new in email marketing, you know that:

1 - People HATE spam; and sending emails to people who did not agree to receive emails from you is spamming. If you simply ask like that to provide the business emails held by other marketers here in YA, that's spamming

2 - There's a reason why emails are being SOLD -- because it takes time and strategy to gather them. You can't expect people to hand their list to you for free.

You are obviously very new in email marketing. I suggest you read up on the ethics of email marketing. Get a copy of magazines such as Target Marketing http://www.targetmarketingmag.com to learn about the new rudiments of email marketing and the challenges faced by email marketers. Your Ad Here

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