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The Tuesday Report

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May 31, 2005

Written by Bob Meyer, Editor of BarterNews

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What Keeps Financial Executives Up At Night?

According to a new nationwide survey, the answer was making sure their businesses are in the black. Robert Half Management Resources says their nationwide survey revealed 34% of chief financial officers (CFOs) said their company’s top priority for 2005 was growing revenue. And nearly half, or 45%, of respondents said they anticipate employee healthcare plans to be the biggest cost increase over the next year.

Other top priorities for CFOs included managing expenses 22%, recruiting and retaining qualified staff 17%, and gaining competitive market share 11%.

Biggest anticipated cost increases after employee healthcare plans were technology spending 20%, employee recruitment and training 11%, and other employee benefits 6%.


Running a trade exchange is a 24/7 effort. At every national convention trade exchange owners always talk and nod in agreement about the importance of educating their clients—making them aware of the many benefits of barter so they will be better traders.

Then they return home, and once again are inundated with simply not enough time in the day to get everything done...let along time to research and then write and layout an eye-appealing, interesting, educational and powerful marketing newsletter. One which points out and reinforces the benefits of your valuable services—each and every month...on a consistent and on-going basis.

As a trade exchange owner, you realize that having such a unique marketing tool to use for your existing members—as well as the hundreds of prospects in your marketplace—is really necessary in these competitive times. Yet who has the available time and ability to generate such a newsletter?

What’s the answer...? The highly effective Competitive Edge newsletter. For almost two decades now, unfailingly, each and every month CE has been published for your use only. It’s the professionally written and designed, yet inexpensive answer for a busy, growing exchange like yours.

Check it out...click here to see a sample copy.


From the archives of BarterNews...

Part 2: There’s No Room For Empty Hotel Rooms

Michael Fear of the North Shore Hilton, a northern suburb of Chicago, participated in another minor miracle of barter. “We had a bus, a beat-up old thing that wouldn’t have lasted another six months, which had been used for years to shuttle people to and from the hotel,” he recalled.

“We took some of our barter dollars and went to one of ITA’s auto body members. Now the van is like new! It’s one of those before/after stories.” The hotel also acquired vacuum cleaners, plus paving and striping for its huge parking lot on trade.

Steve Hodges of South Carolina’s Palace Suites in Myrtle Beach, has worked out arrangements with radio and TV stations where trips and hotel vacations are given as promotional items on barter through ITA. “One nice thing I like about it,” Hodges exclaimed, “is that a lot of people who win trips don’t take them.”

Which brings up another fascinating bonus of barter: trade dollars often turn out to be worth more than cash dollars. One ITA executive, for example, booked a trip on trade to an exotic Caribbean island. Her hotel suite was huge and plush and could accommodate four.

So she took three girlfriends—each of whom paid her in cash to share the space for one week. What they paid was half of what they would have had to pay. But the cash to the executive far exceeded the trade dollars she had to use for the vacation.

By networking basically every major American metropolis and North American preferred vacation spot from the exotic Radisson Inn on Sanibel Island to the plush Valley Hilton on the West Coast, and countless others around and in-between, Illinois Trade Association has become a barter benchmark for hotel/travel. The bottom line is few empty hotel rooms for those who are members of ITA.

The reason? President Jack Schacht insists that not only are the friendly skies not the limit, but that barter be built upon bedrock reality. “We are not order takers at ITA,” Schacht stressed.

“Every trade is based upon educating both the hotel and the client to having their best interest met. For example, we know some people are $10,000 traders (annually) and some are quarter-of-a-million dollar traders.

“We know that some hotels hesitate to barter because they fear not being able to accommodate cash-paying guests, or because they feel they would not have proper control over the trade. But if the client and hotel know going in what is best for each, then no problems should result.”

Schacht lists the following guidelines toward that end:

  • Hotel rooms should never be delivered until confirmation that media or goods/services are secured.
  • Any period of the year when hotels project they will be more than 80% occupied should be “blacked out” for trade. However, that should not exceed two months a year or it will be difficult to establish regular trading.
  • The best way to achieve large media buys for hotels is to accommodate seminars and conventions.

It is important to understand that while hotels can deal directly with the media, media may not need that particular hotel. Because barer has so many potential matches, companies like ITA have become experts at media buys and, of course, can provide much more than media for the hotel.

Still, there is no doubt that where hotels are concerned, media is the main message. Maybe the best testimonial comes from the Marriott’s Bauck: “Barter is sometimes an accounting nightmare for me because it means extra bookkeeping. But I have to do it in order to advertise effectively. It fills my hotel with cash customers. And with ITA, which does a superlative job, it works so well that I wouldn’t think of not bartering.”


Get New Money-Making Ideas And Valuable Contacts!

You can obtain useful, informative ideas and contacts in every available back-issue of BarterNews.


Survey Reveals Most Annoying Workplace Terms & Phrases

A survey conducted by an independent research firm and developed by Accountemps, the world’s largest specialized staffing service for temporary accounting, finance, and bookkeeping professionals revealed the following responses to the question, “What is the most annoying or overused phrase or buzzword in the workplace today?”

• At the end of the day • Solution • Thinking outside the box • Synergy • Paradigm • Metrics • Take it off-line • Redeployed people • On the runway • Win-win • Value-added • Get on the same page • Customer centric • Generation X • Accountability management • Core competency • Alignment • Incremental •

Buzzwords and industry jargon are a form of shorthand used by people within a particular company or profession, but they can be confusing or even seem exclusionary to individuals outside of that field. And when these words are overused, they can lose their impact altogether.

While part of the motivation to use buzzwords can be attributed to a desire to demonstrate your expertise, it can often backfire. Other people must understand them if you hope to communicate your point effectively. For instance, instead of saying a project was a win-win, explain why it was successful.


Every barter company in the world is listed on our web site, click through to our Global List of Barter Companies


From the BarterNews archives...

Renovation Exchanged For Exclusivity & Advertising

Radio Shack, an electronics retailer with 7,000 locations, is getting down to the basics and using barter for its surprising turnaround. When they tapped the former chairman and chief executive at the Shoney’s restaurant chain to be president of Radio Shack, he led a new focus on retailing.

Leonard Roberts did what every smart business-owner does, he focused on “using what he had to get what he wanted.” He figured Radio Shack’s greatest asset was its 7,000 stores—even if some were outdated.

With visionary insight Roberts decided he would refurbish the stores, having suppliers pay for it in exchange for exclusivity within those stores.

The three suppliers he worked with were Sprint, Compaq Computer, and Northpoint Communications Group.

When Sprint Corporation was looking for a retail base from which to sell its new wireless phone network, Radio Shack and Roberts offered to make Sprint its exclusive national wireless provider for ten years.

In exchange Sprint would provide tens of millions of dollars in new store fixtures and advertising support, plus about 5% of the revenue generated by their shared customers.

Radio Shack cut a similar distribution deal with Compaq Computer. Compaq would refurbish a portion of Radio Shack stores, controlling the look and merchandising of the space, and sharing some of its service revenue.

Likewise, Radio Shack struck a deal with broadband internet service provider Northpoint Communications Group in which the stores sell high-speed web-access contracts.


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Here & There...

  • Time-management guru Stephanie Winston, author of Organized for Success: Top Executives and CEOs Reveal the Organizing Principles That Helped Them Reach the Top, reports the most successful senior managers welcome constant contact: “To a CEO the torrent of questions, comments, updates, requests, and expectations—perhaps hundreds a day—is a rich resource to be mined.”

    So how do these hands-on bosses get any thinking done? They get up very, very early to grab some quiet time. And, Winston divulged, “Successful CEOs do not multitask, they concentrate intensely on one thing at a time...they set boundaries and don’t feel guilty about doing so.”

  • Have you signed up to receive a summary via e-mail of the Tuesday Report every week? If not, go to the top of this issue (right hand corner) and sign up!

We welcome your comments, questions, and observations.
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