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Bob Meyer

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October 27,  2009

Written by Bob Meyer, Editor of BarterNews

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From the desk of Bob Meyer...10/27/2009

TIME Magazine Features Bartercard�s Operations

Bartercard founder and CEO Wayne Sharpe was quoted extensively in a lengthy TIME magazine (Europe edition) story about barter. Pointed out in the story, �Bartering: Have Hotel, Need Haircut,� were the advantages of trading through a trade exchange versus that of trading directly with another party.

Realtors Income Dropping

The National Association of Realtors report that median income for realtors and brokers fell to $36,700 last year from a high of $49,300 in 2004. Membership in the group dropped from 1.35 million to 1.14 million from September 2008 to September 2009.

BarterQuest A PayPal Silver Sponsor

BarterQuest, a platform that supports the cashless exchange of goods and services will be a Silver Sponsor at Innovate X 2009 � PayPal�s first dedicated developer conference. The conference will be held in San Francisco, November 3 and 4.

Best Time To Start A Business � Today

According to Ariane de Bonvoisin, founder and CEO of The First 30 Days, it�s time to get moving! �We live in a time where everything is up for discussion,� she asserted. �Barter, trade exchange services, do whatever it takes to get started or to maintain. It�s cheaper to start a business now than ever before.

�Do not fall into the trap of thinking it costs money to get going. Everything is going for cheap now. Make the most of it. And if you don�t have money, look at what you do have and what you can trade.�

All back issues of "From the Desk...� can be accessed by clicking here.

(Please feel free to forward our newsletter to your friends and colleagues. We have a �box� at the end of the newsletter for your convenience. See you next week. . .)

Federowsky Still Passionate About Barter Industry � (And Very Successful)

Here�s an update on Andrew Federowsky, an IRTA Barter Hall of Fame recipient as well as being recently recognized as one of the �Legends of Barter� at the International Reciprocal Trade Association�s October National Convention.

According to Federowsky, after Bartercard Australia was sold to the Australian Management team, he retired from Bartercard International for various reasons...but not from the industry.

At that time, he had co-owned one of the Bartercard franchises for several years with a business partner, which was ranked #37 within the franchises in Australia. Earlier this year he bought his partner out, and proceeded to write a new business plan to improve the brokerage.

Today, his office ranks #1 out of over 50 offices in Australia. And it has also been the #1 Bartercard office globally, twice in the last six months. Federowsky calls this �semi retirement� and he�s loving it!

Attention Trade Exchange Owners. . .It�s GROW OR GO!

The magic bullet for growth is sales, always has been and always will be...yet the industry�s overall growth is anemic. Why? Maybe it�s because we�re not providing on-going education about our unique way of doing business. Knowledge is always a pre-requisite to taking sustained action.

And for those newcomers, the lifeblood of an exchange, awareness of and understanding about the value of trading is even more important.

If you expect prospects to come aboard and your members to be more active traders, but you are perplexed when the results are less than you desire...there�s a good reason. You must continually educate and motivate every month--month after month after month!

Such action is necessary because, let�s face it, more cash business, not trade, is of paramount importance to your members. You must break through this �cash only� focus and redirect their thinking toward barter. Although most exchanges don�t see the importance of doing so, many industry leaders are taking action and so can you.

As the owner of your own operation, there is an easy and inexpensive solution for moving forward...look into using The Competitive Edge newsletter. It�s a camera-ready, 4-page, professionally written, informational marketing tool...available in PDF format as well as print. So regardless of how you reach your prospects and clients, you will have the necessary vehicle.

Written especially for you, the busy trade exchange owner, I am certain it will be the best investment you ever make.

For more information about The Competitive Edge, and how it can benefit you click here.

Want To Increase Your Productivity By 10% A Year?

You can increase your productivity by using the art of comparison, also known as bench marketing. It�s the art of comparing your practices, processes or services with better practices, processes or services. You make comparisons with your competitors, other industries, other departments or work centers.

The process facilitates continuous improvement. �What are others doing more effectively than we? What must we do to achieve that level?� The performance of �others� sets a benchmark against which you are contrasted. It implies a willingness to measure as well as the courage to be measured. It�s common sense nicely packaged.


25 Years Of BarterNews Issues Now In Digital Format

Welcome to the largest repository of barter contacts, strategies, and barter techniques in the world. All 64 issues of BarterNews now available in digital format at

         International visitors look for BARTER CONTACTS in our Global Barter Section. If YOUR exchange isn�t listed see the forms on the lower left of the page. (Click here.)

         Attention trade exchange owners...thousands of visitors every month visit our BARTER CONTACTS section on our web site where we have names & addresses of barter companies in the USA. If YOUR exchange isn�t listed, or the information is incorrect, you can correct the situation by using the forms to the lower left of the USA map. (Click here.) 

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Gain And Retain More Customers Using Customer Flow Analysis

After studying the cost of advertising and promotion, most businesses find that it takes about three visits for a customer to start becoming profitable. Therefore, successful businesses are those which spend considerable time and effort getting to know their customers, and understanding the economics of both acquiring and retaining them.

Unless a business is increasing its number of customers, it is either going out of business or treading water. Therefore, it is vital for a business to set up a tracking system to monitor both the increase of new customers and the retention of existing ones. Usually, a business that does not monitor its customers closely makes bad advertising decisions.

Here is a customer-flow analysis questionnaire which will assist you in evaluating your focus on the acquisition and retention of customers�which will help you make good advertising decisions. 

1) Do you know the average acquisition cost per customer?

Take the total advertising and promotion budget and divide it into the total number of customers per day, week, month, quarter, and year.

2) Do you know the average acquisition cost per new customer?

Take total advertising and promotion budget and divide it into the number of new customers per day, week, month, quarter, and year.

3) Do you know how many new customers come into your business each day, week, month, quarter, year?

Ask customers if they�ve shopped or purchased here before and make a tally on a New Customer Sheet.

4) Do you know what areas your customers come from?

Post a map of the general area, and ask customers to stick in a push-pin where they live. At the end of a week or two you will see a cluster where the majority of your customers are coming from, and major gaps where they are not coming from. Then you can redirect your marketing and promotion to those gap points.

5) Are you encouraging your customers to refer your business to friends and associates?

Make sure each customer receives a certificate or discount for bringing a friend, associate or family member. Everything from mother/daughter or redheads, to boss/secretary or teacher/student�specials encourage your customers to tell someone about you.

6) Do you know how many customers you need to achieve break-even each day, week, or month?

Divide your daily operating costs by the average dollars each customer spends. This gives you the number of people you need to buy from you each day to achieve break-even. Example: daily operating costs equal $1,000. Average expenditure per person $10. Total number of people needed to buy daily to achieve break-even is 100.

7) Do you know how many more customers above break-even are needed to achieve various profit level goals?

Using the same basic formula determine how many additional customers will be needed to start generating the profits you desire.

Remember that your fixed costs are already paid for once break-even is reached. Given your variable costs, how many more customers will be needed to achieve your desired profit?

8) Do you have a Customer Quality Control System that gives you customer feedback on how you can stay competitive?

Are you randomly calling your customers to see if they were satisfied with your service, product and price? And then asking how you can be of more service to them?

9) Are you up-selling each customer to maximize the return on sales?

Are you strategically designing your promotions and advertising to assure the customer gets a good price, while you are presenting and offering additional higher-profit items to them once they are in your store or place of business?

10) Are you monitoring the competition�s service, products, and price to insure you are not overlooking any competitive edges that would attract more customers?

There is nothing dishonorable in studying the competition. Every major sporting team does it. And every major business does it. So you shouldn�t feel uncomfortable going into and examining anything and everything the competition is doing.

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