The experts reckon that technology is here to make life easier and save us all a whole heap of valuable time.
So why do we seem to spend so much of our time trying to retrieve emails that we accidentally deleted last week?
Or wondering where all those really useful buttons on our applications have disappeared to?
Or trying to work out why our Contact Lists are full of people with strange names that we’ve never even heard of?
Or finally just giving up and shouting at the screen to make ourselves feel a little bit better about everything?
Hmmm. That might just be me. The shouting thing doesn’t really work, by the way, I wouldn’t recommend it.
But it’s certainly true to say that some of the time, software technology just seems to have been put there to infuriate us all, and just get in the way of all those important tasks that it’s actually supposed to be helping us with!
I’m a Small Business.
It may seem a little bit odd that I’m writing to you, and I know that you generally only cater for excitable and noisy small children, rather than excitable and noisy small businesses, but I thought I’d give it a go anyway, as it’s only costing me a stamp.
The thing is, I was wondering if I could maybe have something a little bit different from you, this year?
In the past, you’ve always been very good to me, delivering me sackfuls of brilliantly branded marketing gifts, which I can then pass on to my appreciative customers as a welcome little freebie.
They get a nice little present, and I get a healthy slice of promotion whenever they use it. We’re both winners!
But this year, I was wondering if I should perhaps come up with something a little bit extra special? Something out of the ordinary, which none of my customers could possibly have been expecting? Something fun and unique which is guaranteed to take them by surprise and leave a real lasting impression of my quality?
STATUS UPDATE: OMG!! Martin Print Blog reveals brilliant video footage of nutty bloke acting very strangely in public, as he gets Social Media Life and Real Life just a little bit mixed up LOL!
Please be our friends and LIKE and COMMENT on this update ROFL!!!!
Martin Print Blog Readers LIKE this video.
Well, I hope so anyway….
If this opening paragraph of today’s Blog article makes very little sense to you…..then, quick, there’s still a chance you can be saved! Run now, run into the wilderness as fast as your little legs will carry you, and don’t you ever look back, not for a second! The whole world may have gone completely bonkers, but there’s still a chance for you, so take it while you can and run like the wind!
However, I strongly suspect that most of you certainly got the gist of it.
Social Media interaction is becoming such an increasingly common and ‘normal’ way of communicating with our ‘friends’, that I’m sure the vast majority of us rarely take the time to stop for just a minute to consider how utterly bizarre the whole thing is, and what a deeply odd bunch of people we’ve become!
Christmas is coming!
It’s not long to go now until we’re all firmly in festive mode, celebrating the true magic of Christmas by drinking far, far too much alcohol, and wondering what on Earth we’re going to do with all these new socks and cans of smelly stuff.
Far be it for me to put a bit of dampener on things, but this time of year can also prove to be a pretty tricky period for Small Business, if you’re not fully prepared for the potentially icy roads ahead.
In particular, your business cashflow could be very rudely interrupted by the imminent arrival of Santa, for a whole banquet of reasons.
Not only are we facing a mini-avalanche of holidays on the horizon with many businesses and suppliers all closing their office doors at various different intervals, but many everyday customers are also likely to be preoccupied with their own festive priorities, and paying their late invoices might not be at the very top of their list to Santa.
When we talk of leasing business equipment, we instinctively tend to think of mighty corporations hiring huge chunks of robust industrial machinery, or perhaps even just fairly big businesses choosing to borrow enough hi-tec IT equipment to fill an entire fleet of spaceships.
It’s not always a concept that you would readily associate with Small Business.
For example, here at the Martin Print office, the only kind of leasing development that we’ve seen over the last few weeks, was when Old Bert borrowed the electric stapler, and forgot to bring it back again.
I’m not even sure why exactly he was trying to repair a leaky tap with an electric stapler in the first place, but Old Bert’s mind works in very mysterious ways, and I’ve long since given up trying to work him out.
But have you ever considered the advantages in leasing the very latest state-of-the-art office equipment, on a smaller scale, to suit your own business?
We all feel refreshed and revitalised by a nice big dollop of healthy change.
Well, maybe not Old Bert, our resident caretaker – he hasn’t changed anything since about 1972.
It really is about time he invested in some new shoes, or perhaps even just a couple of nice new shirts or something.
Still, the old boy does seem convinced that those old pink frilly shirts are going to make a big comeback one day, and if they ever do, he’ll be ready and waiting to take his well-deserved place on the fashion catwalks of tomorrow.
Until that day finally surfaces (and, frankly, I have very strong doubts that we’re ever going to live to see it) then poor Old Bert is happy to stay in his own little time-warp.
But what if your Small Business website is caught in a similar time trap?
If there’s one thing that brings customers back again and again, it’s the tantalising prospect of fresh new content.
Keeping your website updated on a regular basis ensures that your loyal clients will keep on popping back to see what’s new on the scene.
I’m pretty sure that the vast majority of people don’t have to worry too much about the consequences of a slightly chaotic day at work.
After all, at the end of yet another shift, they can just leave that mountain of messy paperwork sprawled all over the office desk, forget all about it until tomorrow morning, and go home to enjoy the rest of their evening in peace.
Might even have time to crack open a beer, and watch a funny film about cartoon penguins. Sorted.
But what if your home is your office?
Is there a real danger that the thrilling entrepreneurial chaos of an average working day might just spill into your personal life and create an infinitely less appealing kind of chaos altogether?
Flipping the coin, what if your home life begins to intrude into your working day, and seriously slows down the smooth running of your Small Business?
It’s a tricky little conundrum. Whilst many people out there probably think that working from home must be an easy life, they perhaps don’t quite realise that it throws up its own unique little problems – the biggest of which is when your two worlds collide, and the quality of both of them is compromised.
I can think of several more enjoyable things to do with my day than think about making any drastic changes to my banking arrangements.
Probably several million, in fact.
Some of them actually involve my own head, the nearest wall, and a repeated banging movement.
Let’s face it, nobody really relishes the prospect of going through all that financial hassle, do they? Doesn’t sound like too much fun to me. Perhaps it’s something that can be put off until another day?
In fact, why change anything at all, if your current arrangements seem perfectly reasonable, and reassuringly comfortable?
Well, according to the experts (and, in particular, Robert Graham, the chairman of Refunds Direct) the current financial climate is creating such healthy competition between the banks, that right now could well be the perfect time to hunt out a better banking deal for your Small Business.
Ah, what fun we can have with passwords!
We spend ages scratching our heads trying to come up with passwords that are fiendishly clever and absolutely impossible for anybody else to ever guess in a million years.
Then, we erm…..well, we go and forget them ourselves.
Which makes us feel just a bit silly.
So, the next time, we decide to come up with much simpler ones; passwords that are going to be incredibly easy for us to remember in a quick flash….which kind of defeats the whole point of creating a password, doesn’t it?
I once knew a guy whose crafty solution to constantly forgetting his own passwords, was to write them down on sticky notes and leave them plastered all over his computer desk.
Again, I think he may have been missing the point just a little, tiny bit.
I did try and warn him, but he was having none of it, he thought his unique system was infallible.
It really, really wasn’t.