Marketing Yourself

Selling yourself is all bout confidence. It is knowing what your product is and how to sell it. However, it is not as simple as most people may think. It takes research and charisma to thoroughly convince people that what you have to offer is of value to them.

What is Marketing supposed to do?

  • Familiarize the audience with your presence. Make your product widely known.
  • Increase interest. Get people talking about your product.
  • Increase customer demand. Plant the idea that what you offer is the end all be all of solutions.

Who are You and What do you offer?

What do you sell and why? Give us your identity. Something to give your product that added spark of life that separates it from the rest of the flock. You know the ins and outs of your industry and where your product should be in it. You’ve done your research and you know who exactly to sell to and how. The only way to get noticed is to stand out.

Get your Act Together

Now that you know your identity, it’s time to look professional. Get an appropriate logo. Garb your employees in uniforms. Trademark your intellectual property. Set up multiple social media accounts on various websites. Once people find out what your business is, you will need to appear like you are already established.

Get the Show on the Road

Get people talking about your brand. Word-of-mouth is usually the best type of advertising. You can get all the expensive exposure in the world, but nothing beats people simply talking about your product. Know how you are perceived and capitalize on it. Build on the persona that your brand is forming in their heads.

January Featured Business | CFS Furniture Solutions,LLC

CFS Furniture Solutions, LLC is a company with 17 years of experience in office installation, working as subcontractors with many prestigious furniture companies. Headed by Javier Garcia since 2017, CFS has a well trained staff, able to handle reconfigurations, shelving, moving and a variety of tasks.

Q: What does your business provide?

A: We provide the labor for companies who are in need of installers, that we prepare and send out. We also end up doing work on all sides, like when we moved into Builder’s Backbone, we had clients who wanted to install some of the workstations of their offices.

Q: What made you want to start this kind of business?

A: Back in 2002, I had started a business that turned into a big success for about 4 years. I was running the business by myself at the time and we provided for a single company, so if things were slow for them, they were slow for me. Now I have a business partner named, Hector Modonado, and about four months ago, we had decided to start this business again. This time, my business provides for 3 different companies, which give us more opportunities for work.

Q: What made you want to join Builder’s Backbone?

A: I met one of your sales reps, who gave me a virtual tour that gave me ideas on what Builder’s Backbone intended to do for it’s members, like mingling with people and exchanging information to help each other out.

Q: How do you use your office that Builder’s Backbone had provided?

A: We want to make things more professional when we meet with clients, as well as a space to hold job interviews. We also held our first company meeting in one of your conference rooms. It gives us the space we need to conduct our business.

Q: What aspect about Builder’s Backbone do you like the most?

A: I like the fact that it’s a big open space, with people constantly coming in. I also appreciate the things Builder’s Backbone has done in regards to expanding my business with your marketing and social events.

Q: When Builder’s Backbone gets more members and the construction to the showroom is finished, what are your looking forward to the most?

A: That will definitely be a big plus for everyone, because there will be alot more clients and contractors to mingle with. If we ever decide to start marketing on furniture, the showroom will be a very good place to put out our product.

Q: How could other business owners starting their own businesses by becoming a member of Builder’s Backbone?

A: Just follow your dreams. The hardest part is to make the move. Once you make the move with help from Builder’s Backbone, you’ll learn new ideas and different ways to meet your goal. I had run a business for years and I’m still learning new things, especially since I joined Builder’s Backbone

CFS Furniture Solutions, LLC is a company with 17 years of experience in office installation, working as subcontractors with many prestigious furniture companies. Headed by Javier Garcia since 2017, CFS has a well trained staff, able to handle reconfigurations, shelving, moving and a variety of tasks.

Q: What does your business provide?

A: We provide the labor for companies who are in need of installers, that we prepare and send out. We also end up doing work on all sides, like when we moved into Builder’s Backbone, we had clients who wanted to install some of the workstations of their offices.

Q: What made you want to start this kind of business?

A: Back in 2002, I had started a business that turned into a big success for about 4 years. I was running the business by myself at the time and we provided for a single company, so if things were slow for them, they were slow for me. Now I have a business partner named, Hector Modonado, and about four months ago, we had decided to start this business again. This time, my business provides for 3 different companies, which give us more opportunities for work.

Q: What made you want to join Builder’s Backbone?

A: I met one of your sales reps, who gave me a virtual tour that gave me ideas on what Builder’s Backbone intended to do for it’s members, like mingling with people and exchanging information to help each other out.

Q: How do you use your office that Builder’s Backbone had provided?

A: We want to make things more professional when we meet with clients, as well as a space to hold job interviews. We also held our first company meeting in one of your conference rooms. It gives us the space we need to conduct our business.

Q: What aspect about Builder’s Backbone do you like the most?

A: I like the fact that it’s a big open space, with people constantly coming in. I also appreciate the things Builder’s Backbone has done in regards to expanding my business with your marketing and social events.

Q: When Builder’s Backbone gets more members and the construction to the showroom is finished, what are your looking forward to the most?

A: That will definitely be a big plus for everyone, because there will be alot more clients and contractors to mingle with. If we ever decide to start marketing on furniture, the showroom will be a very good place to put out our product.

Q: How could other business owners starting their own businesses by becoming a member of Builder’s Backbone?

A: Just follow your dreams. The hardest part is to make the move. Once you make the move with help from Builder’s Backbone, you’ll learn new ideas and different ways to meet your goal. I had run a business for years and I’m still learning new things, especially since I joined Builder’s Backbone

How much will it help my business to have an office?

By: Blaine Walker

I get asked this question often… do you NEED to have an office? Will it help my marketing if I have an office? Is it worth the investment? The short (but technical) answer is yes, it is worth it. Because there are many benefits that you gain when you have an office that is difficult to overcome or compensate for without one. In the following article, we will explore offices and virtual offices and talk about what the best solution is for you and your business.

 

Perhaps the number one benefit an office gives you is the benefits of optics. That means the way your business looks to the outside world. When you have an office, you automatically look more professional than your competitors who do not have offices. People tend to judge your business by its cover. When they do not know you or any of your competitors and all things are equal, you better believe that the guy with an office will win out over the guy without an office.

 

An office gives you a physical address, which gives you the ability to register your business on websites like Google and yelp where people can see the storefront (or office front) and associate it with your business. And in a city like Houston, it can say a lot about your business! (Note* a PO BOX does not achieve the same result! Because PO Boxes are housed within other businesses like a mail and package center or an actual post office, the image that will show up online will be their physical location, not yours.)

 

Offices give you a home base from which you can operate your business. No more coffee shop or worksite meetings. You will have an office where you can send your customer the address and have them meet you there. Additionally, you will be able to keep all your paperwork and files (even tools and supplies if necessary) where they are safe and consolidated.

 

Having an office has shown to help separate work and home life. If your family is complaining about you working too much and bringing your work home with you, an office makes it easier to create a clear definition between the two. You can leave work at the office and be present with your family when you are home.

 

But, what if I cannot afford an office!?

No problem. There are options that can give you a majority of the office benefits without all the cost. Perhaps you can consider a virtual office instead. In Houston, you can get a virtual office for as little as $50 a month from www.Buildersbackbone.com a local business that also sells private offices and co-working space memberships. For $50 you will be issued a physical address inside an impressive office building with impressive curbside appeal. To your online customers you will look like a million bucks (actually you may look better than some of the guys who have a physical office do because virtual offices are often really beautiful! The downside is that you will not have an actual office to go to or store things. You are buying an address only where you can send and receive mail from.

3 concepts that will help you make 2018 an unforgettable year.

We are now, today, only a few days into this new year. Most people begin the new year with a handful of trivial, petty, easily broken or forgotten resolutions. Predictably, they are abandoned or forgotten almost immediately.

 

What kind of resolutions did you make for yourself? Will 2018 be a year of great success for you, or will it be just another year where you got older,  worked the same job, lived in the same home, drove the same car and did the same things as 2017, 2016 and 2015.

 

I HOPE NOT. So, to help you, I have 3 concepts designed to set you on a path to success and prosperity in 2018 (and beyond!).

 

Concept 1

Learn the 56 hours you need to spend wisely. Make 2018 a year where you DO WHAT  YOU LOVE.  That does not mean you need to quit your job as a banker or sales clerk to begin painting or making things in your woodworking build shop. But it also doesn’t mean you cannot do that either!

 

We all have 168 hours every single week to do WHATEVER we want to with. This is one area (or metric) where the world’s most wealthy, and prosperous individuals, people like Elon Musk, Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos, have NO ADVANTAGE over you. That is because everyone in the world only gets 168 hours per week.

 

WHAT WILL YOU DO WITH IT??

 

Neil Pasricha, author of the Happiness Equation, illustrates that our 168  hours per week can be broken into 3 very basic buckets of time:

  1. Sleep ……….….56hours
  2. Work ….………..56hours
  3. Passion …….….56hours

 

How you decide to spend the hours in your passion bucket are up to you.

Decide today how you will spend your passion time and start making a plan to execute on this objective. (NOTE– this may very well mean canceling your Netflix account and throwing out your gaming system, are you ready to do that!?)

 

Concept 2

Simplify & Declutter. Our culture has become increasingly disposable. Most goods have a disposable version or counterpart, less and less products are being made to last and our homes are filling up with more and more junk.  Think about all the stuff you have in drawers, closets and in your garage that you do not use. Items that have just enough value to make it difficult to throw out because we feel like we’d be wasting something of value. Check out the documentary “The minimalists” for a great perspective on minimalism and simplifying your life with a purpose.

I challenge you to reduce these items by half. Start the new year off with a garage sale or yard sale. Load your stuff up and take it to a flea market. You will find that you have a great deal of money sitting around doing nothing in the form of junk at your home.  As you reduce the clutter you will feel better, your mind will feel more clear. You will have less stress and feel less pressure.

 

Prevent the return of the junk by carefully considering each future purchase. Learn to resist a “good deal”. (I particularly fall victim to this more than anyone else because I love a good deal. I will buy something I know I do not need simply because it is on sale for 75% off). Try to purchase items that are designed to last a long time. Spend good money on the items you use every single day. Demand quality and performance from these items and do not be afraid to pay extra for them. Everything else, try to avoid buying unless necessary. Think to yourself …” where will this item be and what purpose will it serve in 1 month, 3 months, 6-months, 1 year from today?” If you can predict it will be contributing to the clutter problem, reconsider the purchase or find a better alternative.

 

Concept 3

Learn to trust your gut. Learn to trust your gut instinct. It is almost always right (especially when it comes to matters of opinion!) Nowadays we are bombarded with choices to make every day. Hundreds and hundreds in a single day! Do you recall the last pair of shoes you bought? I am sure you were presented with at least a dozen serviceable choices and that is at one store alone! (forget about online shopping, the choices abound!)

Start to recognize your initial gut feeling and learn to trust it. Don’t be afraid to commit to a choice knowing that you will have to live with it! You will find that by doing so, you will make your choices faster, thereby recovering valuable “passion time” that you could be spending on something more important. If you find yourself waffling back and forth over a purchase; whether to buy item a, b or c… perhaps you do not need any of them? If you must make a choice, learn to commit to a choice and give yourself permission to be proud about the choice you made.

 

By trusting your gut you will have more time for your passions, love your possessions more and you’ll become more confident in your ability to make the important decisions without second-guessing yourself.

 

Questions:

What are your new year’s resolutions? Have you kept them so far? In what ways do you want 2018 to be a great year for you??.

Cyber Monday Deal at Builder’s Backbone

To claim your FREE gift with purchase:

Call 713-270-1888

or

Visit www.Buildersbackbone.com

Fill in the form on the homepage. A member services associate will contact you to setup your account.

 

 

 

Get a FREE Amazon “Alexa” Echo Dot for your new office when you pay for your first month!

*This deal applies to the gold and platinum memberships only. Cannot be combined with any other offers. Offer good till November 30th.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Black Friday — ALL MONTH SPECIAL!!

  • Move into today and get the rest of the month TOTALLY FREE!

 

  • Get 20% off the next 3 months!!

 

  • Expires November 30th

CALL 713-270-1888 to lock in this promotion

or click here schedule a tour!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Promotion applies to entry Gold and Platinum memberships. $50 setup and fee.

Congratulations to the 2017 World Series Champion Houston Astros!!!

Congratulations to the world champion Houston Astros!!!

2017 was a difficult year for the city of Houston. In spite of inner city crime, hot weather and the unprecedented damage caused by Hurricane Harvey….you reached deep within the soul of your team and achieved something that has never been done before by anyone in your shoes.

Sure, baseball is a GAME — and while there may be some who dismiss the importance of this accomplishment… we believe that it is something to be respected, remembered and celebrated! For everyone who lost their home, lost their cars, endured weeks of life away from home in crowded hotels or friends home, this championship series brought a light to the city of Houston and has united us behind a cause that not only makes us stand side by side with one another in spite of race, or economic position, it has pulled together the collective will of a city and channeled it toward a goal that is undeniably shows the strength of this team, their organization and the city and fans who love them.

Congratulations to the role players who do not stand in the limelight.

Congratulations to the employees of the organization who make sure every detail and aspect of the game and it’s preparation go off without a hitch.

Congratulations to the players who came to Houston from other teams and cities and have adopted Houston and it’s people as fellow brothers and sisters.

Congratulations to an organization that deserves it’s time in the spotlight.

We love Houston.

We love the Astros.

2017 World Series Champions!

18 Questions to Ask Before Hiring

 

There are really only 2 reasons you need to hire a contractor to help you. You are either planning to make exciting new upgrades to your home or build a new home  –or–  You are forced to hire a contractor to help you rebuild from damage that has been done to your home. One is typically much, much more fun than the other. Never-the-less, it is important that you hire the right person for the job.

Below are 18 questions you can ask any contractor before you hire them. These are all reasonable questions that they should have answers to. We recommend that you get several quotes and interview several contractors before you make a final decision. Often, the lowest quote is NOT the person you want to hire.

Based on the results of your investigation, their quote and recommendations you may have received you should be able to make an informed, educated guess

1.       How long have you been in business?

2.       Are you licensed?

3.       Are you insured?

4.       Do your employees have workman’s comp insurance?

5.       Do you have insurance to protect MY broken property?

6.       What professional Organizations do you belong to?

7.       Can you provide me with references from past jobs?

8.       How many projects will you be handling at the same time as mine?

9.       Will you sign a time & materials contract?

10.   Will you be on-site at all time to oversee work being done?

a.       If not, how often will you stop by to check in

b.       Will there be an onsite manager when you are not here?

11.   Can you provide daily progress reports?

12.   Will you pull the necessary permits?

13.   Will you provide a project scope contract to outline; time, materials needed, cost, and how to handle disputes

14.   Do you offer a guarantee on your work?

15.   What time do you plan to start each day and end? Weekends?

16.   Have you had any legal disputes on past jobs you have done? Explain

17.   What is the payment schedule?

18.   Will you agree to include a termination clause in the contract

 

Avoid Additional Risks:
Turn off all water and electrical sources within the home.
Inspect for any visible structural damage, such as warping, cracks, loosened foundation elements, and holes before entering the home.
If possible, hire a flood restoration service, preferably with Institute of Inspection, Cleaning, and Restoration Certification.
Seek necessary medical care. Do not neglect minor wounds or illnesses.
Food, clothing, shelter, and first aid are available from the American Red Cross.

 

Take Pictures:
Take photos or video and fully document the damage for your insurer .

Call Your Insurance Company:

– Notify your insurer soon as possible after the flood
– If the agents are not available,  contact the insurance company’s headquarters.
– Follow the insurance company’s direction about  making any required changes to the property before inspection.
– Start removing water once your insurer asks you to proceed.

Make temporary repairs: Take reasonable steps to protect your property from further damage. Save receipts for what you spend. They can be submitted to your insurance company for reimbursement.
If you need to relocate, keep your receipts: If you need to find other accommodations while your home is being repaired, keep records of your expenses.
Prepare for the adjuster’s visits: Your insurance company may send you a proof of loss form to complete or an adjuster may visit your home first. (An adjuster is a person professionally trained to assess the damage.)

To substantiate your loss, prepare an inventory of damaged or destroyed items and give a copy to the adjuster along with copies of any receipts.

Don’t throw out damaged items until the adjuster has visited.

Flood damage is excluded under standard homeowners and renters insurance policies. Flood coverage, however, is available as a separate policy from the federal government’s National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) and from a few private insurers. The NFIP provides coverage up to $250,000 for the structure of the home and $100,000 for personal possessions.

Compensation for Damage
Vehicles: If your car was damaged and you have exstensive coverage in your auto insurance policy, contact your auto insurance company.
Trees and shrubbery: Most insurance companies will pay up to $500 for the removal of trees or shrubs that have fallen on your home.

Registering for FEMA Disaster Assistance
Residents and business owners in designated areas who have sustained losses can begin applying for FEMA assistance by registering online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov.

If you do not have access to the internet you may register by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY). Users of 711 relay or Video Relay Service (VRS), call 800-621-3362 directly. The toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. (local time) seven days a week until further notice.

 

Reduce Mold Damage:
– Mold can form within 48 hours; you will need to work fast.
– Mold growth can be controlled on surfaces by cleaning with a non-ammonia detergent or pine oil cleaner and disinfecting with a 10% bleach solution. (Caution: Never mix ammonia and bleach products, as the resulting fumes can be highly toxic.)
– Test the solution on a small just to be sure it doesn’t cause staining or fading.
Evacuation
– Find an open shelter near you by texting SHELTER and your zip code to 4FEMA (43362). You can also use the FEMA mobile app. FEMA is also providing resources for people with disabilities, access and functional needs on its website.
– If you’re considering evacuating your home, the Houston Chronicle is compiling a map of flooded streets.

Shelter and relief
– The U.S. Department of Education activated its emergency response contact center Tuesday. Education stakeholders seeking informational resources and relief from Department-based administrative requirements are encouraged to email HarveyRelief@ed.gov.
– Following reports that several Texans are missing in the midst of the storm, the Red Cross is encouraging people to list themselves and their families as safe by clicking here. You can also receive disaster assistance from the Red Cross by calling 877-500-8645,

Useful Phone Numbers:
*For any assistance you can call FEMA at 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY).
*For food, clothing, first aid call Red Cross at 877-500-8645. (or by visiting RedCross.org)
* Texas Department of Insurance’s consumer hotline at 1-800-252-3439.
*Call the State Bar of Texas legal hotline at 800-504-7030 for toll-free answers to basic legal questions
* Harris County: Call 713-308-8580 to locate your towed car.
* To report a missing child, call the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-866-908-9570.
*Talk to a professional about emotional distress by calling the Disaster Distress Helpline at 1-800-985-5990

Useful Links:
https://www.fema.gov/media-library-data/1452008937293-2c5cf070cabce562b9ae8727abbdc7e9/Flood_FIMA_Fact_Sheet_2015_508.pdf
https://www.texastribune.org/2017/08/28/hurricane-harvey-relief-efforts-how-help/