5 D’s of business loans

5 D’s of business loans

As we mentioned in our last post, bankers are very cautious when making loans to small businesses — they really want to be confident that your business will be able to make the payments and if not, that they can seize sufficient assets to get... 

How banks look at small-business loan applications

How banks look at small-business loan applications

Bankers don’t see themselves as being there to take a risk on your business, so they want to ensure that your small business have the ability to make the payments on your loan. Based on our experience, this usually means that they check on four basic... 

Blue Monday? It’s just marketing!

Blue Monday? It’s just marketing!

Apparently the third Monday in January is the gloomiest day of the year, named “Blue Monday”. Marketing fans might be interested to know that Blue Monday — just like Mother’s Day — was originally a marketing tactic. Created... 

Are you starting 2017 with the same old resolutions?

Are you starting 2017 with the same old resolutions?

Get in better shape. Learn new stuff. Grow your business. Volunteer. Actually take a real vacation. Same old, same old. Just like last year — and the year before and the year before that. Mix in the winter blues, Trump, Brexit, Syria, and a slow... 

Back-to-work marketing ideas

Back-to-work marketing ideas

September is the time when everybody gets back to work after vacations, time at the cottage, back-to-school prep, and the many other pleasant distractions of summer. What’s a consultant to do if they’ve let their marketing efforts taper off?... 

Difference between market research & intelligence

Difference between market research & intelligence

So, what’s the difference between market research and intelligence? We get asked this question a lot. Most business people are familiar with market research that is based upon focus groups, questionnaires, interviews, and surveys. This type of research... 

Round-up of 2016 tech trends & impacts

Round-up of 2016 tech trends & impacts

Need a review of technology trends for your strategic plan? Below is our round-up of the top technology trends for 2016 as predicted by consulting and market research firms Gartner, McKinsey, and Deloitte. Our comparison table lets you see where the three... 

UPDATE: The Office Preppers EDC

UPDATE: The Office Preppers EDC

My blog post back in July 2013 (The office preppers EDC) described a small everyday-carry kit that could help office workers cope with emergencies. Since then, we’ve seen plenty of nasty winter storms and other events that would indicate this... 

Safeguarding your IP in a global market

Safeguarding your IP in a global market

How can a company protect its intellectual property when its products and services get copied in other countries? This is the question that Milton Kotler, cure chairman of both Kotler Marketing Group USA and Kotler Marketing Group China, case asks in... 

Thinking about getting your business ready to sell?

Thinking about getting your business ready to sell?

Most entrepreneurs want establish their start-up and then sell it. But potential buyers will want to assess the odds of sustaining the business without you, viagra order and growing it in the future. So you can improve your chances of being acquired... 

Business continuity: How to prep for winter

Business continuity: How to prep for winter

Winter’s coming, and according to the City of Ottawa, so are increased chances of encountering an emergency situation. We’ve all heard the advice about householders stocking up on water, a few days worth of non-perishable food, flashlights,... 

No business plan? That’s like Ready, Fire, Aim!

No business plan? That’s like Ready, Fire, Aim!

Developing a business plan takes effort, and many entrepreneurs prefer to just jump in and get started. We understand why. It feels good to be doing something and seems like it will save time. Unfortunately, execution without strategy usually yields... 

The difference it makes when you don’t use Other People’s Money

The difference it makes when you don’t use Other People’s Money

Developing a business plan is one thing, being able to execute it is another. We’ve worked with lots of entrepreneurs who have big ideas but bank accounts whose size don’t match up. Their hope is that they will find an investor who will realize... 

Don’t fail the bozo test when negotiating with big companies

Don’t fail the bozo test when negotiating with big companies

If your small business is going into a negotiation with a much larger company, it’s vital that you present yourself as a credible partner. Remember that you — the entrepreneur — are as important as the product. Be professional, reasonable,... 

10 things successful people do differently

10 things successful people do differently

Here’s a great article that I found inspiring. The original post is at http://www.lifehack.org/articles/communication/10-things-successful-people.html — Bill Gates. Oprah Winfrey. Steve Jobs. These names all come to mind when we think of successful... 

How to get your Canadian tech start-up acquired

How to get your Canadian tech start-up acquired

Canadian entrepreneurs looking for a liquidity event can find it tough going. I recently heard about a sure-fire path to getting your Canadian tech start-up acquired. Although it smacks of a get-rich-quick scheme, amazingly enough, it does make some... 

Peter Drucker on how to use objectives

Peter Drucker on how to use objectives

A common theme in entrepreneurship is self-management, and key to self-management is setting objectives. Of course, entrepreneurs must be able manage themselves effectively before being able to mange others. Here’s some useful advice from Peter... 

Mark Cuban’s 12 rules for start-ups

Mark Cuban’s 12 rules for start-ups

Mark Cuban is a serial entrepreneur, co-founder of Denver-based cable network HDNet, and owner of the Dallas Mavericks basketball team. He is an active investor and regularly appears on ABC’s reality series, “Shark Tank”. This... 

Rules for entrepreneurs from Shark Tank’s Daymond John

Rules for entrepreneurs from Shark Tank’s Daymond John

I didn’t know much about Daymond John, creator of the FUBU clothing brand and one of the investors on the popular reality TV show “Shark Tank”, so when I came across a “Behind the Brand” interview with him on YouTube, I... 

How to nurture your prospects for the future

How to nurture your prospects for the future

I was at a professional networking function, chatting to a fellow who mentioned that he tries to contact his past clients once a year. After we spoke some more, it was obvious that he didn’t really have any formal method of regularly staying in... 

Peter Drucker on effectiveness

Peter Drucker on effectiveness

More on being effective in 2014 — sterling advice from Peter Drucker, the consultant’s consultant, courtesy of our friends at Priority Management. The following seems to be a summary of Drucker’s business classic “The Effective... 

How to get things done in 2014

How to get things done in 2014

I was inspired by this article in the recent Priority Management e-newsletter, and thought you might be too. Write it on your heart that every day is the best day of the year! Your performance this year, to have any meaning at all, must not be vague... 

The importance of quantifying your value prop

The importance of quantifying your value prop

A client was excitedly telling me about his marvellous new product under development, and the tremendous benefit that customers would get from using it. Since the new product targets the enterprise market, I asked if he had an economic justification or... 

“We have widgets” is not a value proposition

“We have widgets” is not a value proposition

I was speaking to a prospective client the other day who was looking for help attracting more leads to their web site, and converting more leads into sales. The company offered useful technology, an impressive self-serve portal, free trials, and on-line... 

The office prepper’s EDC (Every Day Carry kit)

The office prepper’s EDC (Every Day Carry kit)

The recent floods in Calgary and Toronto made me think about what it would mean for people at work, or commuting to work, if a disaster were to occur here in Ottawa. And I realised that I’m often meeting with clients in unfamiliar buildings. I don’t... 

The single most important marketing metric

The single most important marketing metric

We believe that the single most-important marketing metric for growing businesses is the cost of acquiring a new customer. This is sometimes called the Customer Acquisition Cost or abbreviated to CAC. Every Director of Marketing needs to know their CAC... 

“The value of promotional marketing” infographic

“The value of promotional marketing” infographic

This infographic is a great summary of the costs of typical B2C promotional vehicles, check and, pharmacy in some cases, help the total U.S. annual expenditures on these promotional vehicles. We pass it along with thanks to the folks at iaspromotes.com  Read More →

Get ready for 2013 with a quick business tune-up

Get ready for 2013 with a quick business tune-up

Instead of making a long list of New Year’s resolutions, here are five concrete things business owners can do right now to prepare for the year to come. Each item only takes between 30 and 60 minutes, and all you’ll need is last year’s financials... 

Kaspersky developing super-secure operating system

Kaspersky developing super-secure operating system

Earlier this month Eugene Kaspersky confirmed in a blog posting that his IT security company, Kaspersky Lab, is developing a new super-secure operating system for industrial control systems that will be “exploit-proof” — meaning safe... 

More tech predictions for the year to come

More tech predictions for the year to come

Icreon Tech, a global IT services, recently released its top-10 predictions for technology trends that are expected to drive innovation and influence decision-making around IT spending in 2013. “Technological advances that connect the digital and physical... 

Gartner’s top technology trends for 2013

Gartner’s top technology trends for 2013

Gartner, a leading global IT research firm, presented its top-10 list of strategic tech trends for the year to come at the annual Gartner Symposium/ITxpo event held in Orlando, Florida on October 23-25, 2012. The event gathers together CIOs, senior IT... 

Attracting investors | Real-world investment criteria

Attracting investors | Real-world investment criteria

Here’s a real-world example of the investment strategy used by an extremely successful private equity firm — one that claims it has completed $27 billion of leveraged transactions and other private equity investments involving 450 properties... 

Attracting investors | Presenting the opportunity

Attracting investors | Presenting the opportunity

Presenting a business opportunity usually entails at least one discussion followed up with a written document. Your potential investors will want to understand the opportunity and — unlike the popular TV show Dragons Den — will probably wish... 

Kickstart 2012 with a 5-point business tune-up

Kickstart 2012 with a 5-point business tune-up

This is a repeat of a post we made at this time last year. But we feel it is worth repeating. Best wishes for a successful 2012! Instead of making a long list of New Year’s resolutions, here are five concrete things business owners can do right now... 

DOD’s headache? Save $3.5 billion a year on IT!

DOD’s headache? Save $3.5 billion a year on IT!

The lead story in the November 28th issue of InformationWeek (you should be able to read the story online at www.informationweek.com in another week or so) is about the challenges faced by the U.S. Department of Defense. The Pentagon has an IT budget... 

Attracting investors | Moving past the numbers

Attracting investors | Moving past the numbers

So far we’ve looked at the aspects that are table stakes for potential investors in your business — profit potential, IRR, and early cash flow. We also discussed quantifying risk and reward. Let’s say a potential investor hasn’t... 

Attracting investors | More numbers for start-ups

Attracting investors | More numbers for start-ups

As we discussed in our previous posts, if your company can provide credible financial statements that indicate a positive financial position or outlook, you’ve passed a potential investor’s first hurdle. Explicitly, that means: the profit... 

Attracting investors | The numbers that count

Attracting investors | The numbers that count

We’ve blogged before about the need to step back and take a hard, cold look at whether your business plan will be attractive to bankers, lenders, and investors. This is particularly true for small private companies seeking investors, or those going... 

New links on Resources/Social page

New links on Resources/Social page

We have just added some links to the “Links:Social” page of the “Resources” section on the Market Metrics web site that helps you perform a PEST analysis. As you probably know, a PEST analysis is a required step in developing a business plan.... 

Are you ready for a disaster at work?

Are you ready for a disaster at work?

After the recent tsunami and earthquake in Japan, I started to wonder about what — heaven forbid — it would be like if a disaster should ever hit our business premises. If you are able to, please donate or participate in a fund-raising activity... 

Why setting the right price is so important

Why setting the right price is so important

“If you’ve got the power to raise prices without losing business to a competitor, you’ve got a very good business. If you have to have a prayer session before raising the price by 10 percent, you’ve got a terrible business.”  —... 

A reality check for your business plan

A reality check for your business plan

When working on a strategic marketing or business plan, you need to step back every so often and take a reality check. Is your plan feasible? And will it be attractive to bankers, lenders and investors? Naturally, this depends on your goals. The first... 

Can your U.S. web site serve the Canadian market?

Can your U.S. web site serve the Canadian market?

For our readers’ convenience, we’ve combined two previous blog posts into a downloadable PDF and made it available on our Resources/Downloads page.  The download is divided into two parts. Part 1 shows how you can ensure that your U.S.-based... 

Software review: Business PlanMaker Professional

Software review: Business PlanMaker Professional

As we’ve mentioned in previous posts, there are more business plan templates, lists of suggested business plan content, and samples out there on the net than you can shake a stick at. There also are some free on-line (mainly offered by banks in case... 

Canadian market tips for U.S. e-commerce sites, part 2

Canadian market tips for U.S. e-commerce sites, part 2

In last week’s blog posting we discussed the most common barriers that U.S.-based e-commerce web sites face in serving Canadian customers. If your site can deal with those issues, you’ll be able to accept, bill, fulfill, and support international... 

Canadian market tips for U.S. e-commerce web sites

Canadian market tips for U.S. e-commerce web sites

In today’s connected world, your customers may not come from your home town, state, or even country. If you operate a U.S.-based e-commerce web site, an easy way to expand your potential market by an extra 30 million people is to make sure that... 

Forget resolutions! Here are your back-to-work essentials

Forget resolutions! Here are your back-to-work essentials

Instead of making a long list of New Year’s resolutions, here are five things business owners can do to prepare for 2011. Each one should only take about 30 minutes, and all you’ll need is last year’s financials, pen and paper, and some yellow... 

Better presentations, less PowerPoint

Better presentations, less PowerPoint

Recently I went to see a presentation by Jim Gray, sales who is described as “a leading speaker, ailment communication skills coach and media strategist”. A former CBC journalist, Mr. Gray lives in Toronto and contributes to the Globe and Mail.... 

Gartner’s tech trends for 2011

Gartner’s tech trends for 2011

This posting presents what Gartner believes are four converging trends that will impact enterprise business and IT for the next decade. Headquartered in Stamford, sick Connecticut, order Gartner, Inc. is a leading global information technology research... 

10 tips for planning your business

10 tips for planning your business

People often ask us for tips about creating a marketing or business plan for their small business. We believe that the following steps are essential and can help you successfully develop an effective plan for any size of business. 1.  Make the Time... 

3 reasons why you shouldn’t use on-line business planning tools

3 reasons why you shouldn’t use on-line business planning tools

There are more business planning templates, outlines, and articles on the Internet than you can shake a stick at. Some are terrific; others, not so much. But while you can shift through loads of online material and find some useful stuff, I really don’t... 

Just what is a strategic marketing plan, anyway?

Just what is a strategic marketing plan, anyway?

This is a pretty common question. A strategic marketing plan is much like a traditional business plan. It has a thorough analysis of your business’ current situation and should include a business description; a description of the firm’s products and... 

Help for the first-time entrepreneur

Help for the first-time entrepreneur

With pragmatic advice for the would-be entrepreneur, case the “Aboriginal Business Planning Workbook”  provides a realistic approach to figuring out if running your own business is really for you. The workbook is one of a series of business guides... 

A sad day for Silicon Valley North

A sad day for Silicon Valley North

It was a bittersweet event for Ottawa’s tech sector — and a sad day for Nortel fans, if there are any left — as the blue-and-white sign marking the entrance to the Nortel Networks Carling Campus was removed today. A highly-recognized... 

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  • Meet Greg Graham

    photo of Greg Graham, Certified Management Consultant - Strategic Marketing - Ottawa, Ontario

    Market Metrics Inc. helps knowledge-based businesses with strategy, planning and innovation and was founded in 2003 by Greg Graham, a seasoned marketing professional. Greg is a Certified Management Consultant, a member of the American Marketing Association, and holds MBA/BEE degrees as well as a Certificate in Strategic Management. He frequently performs consulting engagements on behalf of the Government of Canada's Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP). Prior to Market Metrics, Greg's 21 years of corporate experience encompassed tech start-ups through Fortune 500 companies.

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