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Paneer cooked in a rich gravy flavoured with mint
Preparation Time :5 minutes
Cooking Time :12-15 minutes
Heatoil in a pan. Add black cardamoms, green cardamoms, cloves, blackpeppercorns and cinnamon and sauté. Add broken green chillies, gratedonions and continue to sauté till the onions brown lightly.Tie up the mint sprigs together and add to the pan. Bruise the leaveslightly, add one and a half cups of water and mix. Add poppy seed pasteand mix. Add salt and bring the gravy to a boil. Let it simmer forthree to four minutes.Take the mint sprigs out and add the paneer triangles. Mix with a lighthand and cook for three to four minutes or till the paneer trianglesare heated through.Add fresh cream and take it off the heat.Serve hot.
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Ten Tips ToTurbo-Charge Your Income
Small Action Steps That Will Make A Difference To Any Home-BasedBusiness
by Elizabeth H. Cottrell, IAHBE Editor
The New Year always brings optimism, good intentions, freshstarts, and a few new actions. Invariably,however, we get bogged down in the same old routines, excuses, patterns, anddelusions. As I write this, it is early 2009 and I am 58 years old (for a few moremonths). I have been putting some professional priorities on theback burner for far too long and I am declaring to you right nowthat this is going to be my year to begin breaking free from old, worn-outways. The checklist in this article, though written in the context of a newyear’s resolutions, is timeless and can be used at any time of the year, anyyear of the century. The operative word in the subtitle is “action.” Until youput something into action, it won’t help you. The next operative word is“small.” None of these things, by themselves, is hard to do. So there’s noexcuse!
1. Spend some timethinking. Thisexercise will help you focus your efforts and save you a tremendous amount oftime down the road by enabling you to prioritize better and work smarter. It’s astep that we so often hate to take because we think we don’t have time. TAKE THE TIME for this step.
Carveout an hour or two, preferably a morning or an afternoon. Don’t answer calls; don’t check e-mails; gointo a room by yourself with a legal pad and ask yourself thefollowing questions and write down the answers:
What am I really good at? What things do others comment on that I do well?Of all the things that I do in a week (month, year in my business), what things really give me satisfaction…make my heart sing?Of all the things that I do in my business, what things do I really dislike the most?Which clients or client jobs give me the most satisfaction? Which give me the most heartburn?Which products or services in my business offer the most return for my time invested?Now,look at your answers and compare them to the ways you are spending your time.If you’re spending too much time on things that you’re not good at or thingsthat you don’t like doing or things that don’t return much income, then it’stime to delegate or drop some things off of your “To Do” list.
2. “Systematize,Automate, and Delegate.” Andy Jenkins teaches this strategy for workingsmarter. He says to make a list of everything you do in your business day today and then break it down into discrete tasks, as detailed as possible. Thiswill take many pages (he says for him, it was 35 pages), but when you’refinished, you can look for patterns and find things to automate and otherthings to delegate. Read his excellent blog entry (see Sources below) fordetails on how to get your business running much more smoothly.
3. Increaseyour fees or prices by at least 10-15% right now. Home-based entrepreneursare famous for under-pricing the market. They have a misguided sense that theyhave to charge less to compete with “the big guys.” Not so! Before you freakout completely from this advice to increase your fees, do the math. In orderfor you to LOSE money by raising your price 15%, you’d have to lose 33% of ALLof your sales for that particular service or product. You may lose a fewclients, but research shows that most of your clients won’t even notice; infact, you are much more likely to increase your income and gain other clientswho will be attracted by the intangible fact that you value yourself enough tocharge appropriately for your product or service.
4.Add value to your current products or services. This is the secret to offsetting anypotentially negative aspects to raising your prices. The result will not onlyincrease sales but will increase customer satisfaction in their perception ofwhat they are buying. Read Jenkins and Lemberg’s “MBA in a Box” (see Sourcesbelow) to find out how to add so much value to your offering that a priceincrease will seem like a great deal to your customers. The gist of theiradvice is to remember that you’re not just selling a product or service.There’s a lot that goes along with that, and we—as sellers—need to remind ourcustomers how much value there already is in such things as extra features,delivery, installation, your customer service, your reputation, your guarantee,convenience, terms, etc. Note that we’re not adding cost to the product orservice, we’re just painting a more accurate picture to the customer of thetrue value of what they’re buying.
5. Revivean untapped source of clients by sending an e-mail, postcard, or letter to everyone withwhom you have ever done business and bring them up to date with your currentproducts and services, providing them with your current contact information,Website, and e-mail. Andy Jenkins says to make it sort of like a survey and toalways include a special offer. If you have been diligent about keeping theire-mails, one e-mail from you alone may generate lots of sales. Don’t forget animportant rule about sending group e-mails: put the e-mail addresses in the Bcc(Blind carbon copy) field instead of the To field or the Cc field so that theiraddress will be invisible to all recipients.
6.Reward your existing clients and customers. Send them a coupon or a small gift, perhaps even justa personal note or letter expressing your appreciation for their business. Themore personalized your gesture is, the better. Remind them that in these hardeconomic times, their business is so important and so valued by you. Stay intouch with them—through e-mail, newsletter or telephone. Let them know whenyou’ve got a new product or service. Even if they’re not in the marketthemselves, they can be turned into ambassadors to tell their friends andfamily.
7.Always be in networking mode. Have a stash of business cards with you at all times, andgive them out generously, even when you hand them out in social settings morethan business settings. That person who gets your card may eventually needwhatever product or service you are selling…or know someone who does. Alwaysask if they have a business card too, and follow up with an e-mail or notesaying how nice it was to meet them. If you find a way to help them or providethem with helpful information, so much the better.
Alwaysuse a signature at the end of your e-mails. It should include some informationalor tantalizing text about your business. Just the other day, I got an e-mailfrom a business associate of my sister’s who does executive coaching. She hadforwarded him an e-mail from me with a compliment about their company Website,and he happened to notice, in my signature, that I did resumés as part of mydesktop publishing and writing business. He wrote me, and we are now incollaboration on ways that he can refer his clients to me if they need helpwith their resumé.
8.Schedule some learning time into every week. One of the hallmarks of successful entrepreneurs istheir mastery of their field. Clients will pay more when they confidence inyour expertise and ability and knowledge of your product or service. We’ve allbeen in stores where the salesperson was unfamiliar with their products and notvery helpful. Contrast that with someone who knew not only the specificationsof the product but was familiar with the potential uses, the situations a buyermight encounter, and prepared to answer almost any question or concern youmight have. This not only increases the chances for a sale, but it vastlyincreases the chances for repeat sales. The sources of your learning willdepend, of course, but look in industry journals, professional associationWebsites, and manufacturers’ product literature (if you sell products). Besidesimpressing others, this knowledge will build self-confidence in you.
9. Makefriends with technology. This is related to both #2 (Automate) and #8 (Learn). Technology has revolutionizedthe ability of entrepreneurs to operate world-class businesses from ahome-based office, especially in the areas of Internet and Communications.Don’t be afraid of it or get overwhelmed by it. Get help when you need it, andbe willing to pay others to do things you don’t want to do yourself. Our ownstaff writer, Yank Elliott, has provided some terrific Tool Reviews of varioussoftware and other technologies that can make a big difference for home-basedbusiness owners. IAHBE members should definitely check the archives for theseexcellent sources of information. Keep an eye on the technology articles in BusinessWeek.comand Entrepreneur.com.Harnessing the power of technology can enable you to create a business presencethat appears to have a much larger staff than otherwise. As with any tool,however, technology can be mis-used, so knowledge is power!
10.Make time for yourself. Why is it that we’ll keep appointments, promises, and commitments toother people faithfully, but we won’t do the same for promises we makeourselves…promises to take time off, to live a healthier lifestyle, to spendmore time learning about our field or trade, to write that article or book, tolearn that language, to visit that aging relative. Make just one more list—a“bucket list” if you will (those things you’d like to do before you “kick thebucket”;). When possible, put a timeframe after the items on your list and referback to it regularly. Put these things into your calendar (or steps toachieving them) the same way you would schedule any other importantappointments.
Itend to “hit the floor running” in the morning, but I’ve changed my dailyroutine to allow at least an hour of quiet time—prayer, contemplation,reflection, and…yes…business thinking. On those days when I adhere to it (andI’m getting much better), I find that my productivity is much better and mysense of well-being soars. I spend more time on the right things, and thebottom line of my business reflects this directly.
Youcannot wait until you have time to do these things. You have to MAKE time to dothem. When you do, the most amazing thing happens: you’ll have more time to dothe things you really want and need to do, and you’ll earn more money for thetime you spend on your business.
To Your Success,
Visit My Blog: http://bizsuccess-manohar.blogspot.com/
Follow Me on Twitter:http://twitter.com/manu55
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