How To Care For Your (Grand)parents: 11 Business Ideas That Benefit The Elder

It’s a bit tougher to think about demand here.

Or maybe not.

We are losing touch with those that came two or three generations before us. New Social Media Apps are born and rise to the top in ever decreasing intervals. Our world becomes faster and faster paced. 

And today, 4 year-olds already handle the iPhone better than their 20 – 30-year-old parents. Sorry guys… I consider myself pretty computer savvy – at the age of 40 though, I actually belong to the grandparent generation of Social Media 😉

Yet, our society also grows older and older. Thus, there is a huge market that caters to people of 60+ years.

So it makes sense to design business ideas around serving the older generation.

I find that they can come from two different categories.
(a) In person services.
(b) Items that make specific things easier.

Without further ado, here are my ideas.

How To Care Foot Rest
Nothing is comfier than this foot rest

#1 – A foot or leg rest.

Continue reading “How To Care For Your (Grand)parents: 11 Business Ideas That Benefit The Elder”

How To Make Better Sales: 11 Ideas To Improve Your Ad

This is a post on how to write better ad copy.

However, here is a disclaimer: I am not a professional copywriter.

The ideas I have accumulated below are based on my personal experience and material I read, and they are basically nothing but that: ideas.

Imagine your friend wants to sell his car. How would you improve his ads?

From my own perspective: what gets me sold is not the classical sales punch.

Even though I may go on craigslist with the intention of buying a car, somebody who tells me a story how his car has done great things for him and then just shows and describes his car without asking me to buy will win.

If I am entertained while reading the sales letter, I actually think by myself: ‘this was fun to read, how can I give back?’ Luckily, the guy who wrote the letter just happens to sell his car!

It is also important – though often overlooked – that every type of car has a different audience. A sports car will sell to a different market segment than a Lexus. A Prius will probably have different buyers than a Jeep.

So you want to target your ad to your specific segment of the market. A family that buys an SUV will care less about speed and more about safety and ease of handling, e.g. how easy it is to add or take out an extra seat if they want to bring friends along for a picnic etc.

A sports car buyer will be happy to see how many carburetors the motor has and whether you installed special exhausts that add some horse power.

Stress out those respective features in your ad.

Here are several specific ideas.

Make Better Sales Dealership
Once you have taken it down, you will want to buy this car.

#1 – Provide a better headline.

According to Robert Bly’s “Copywriter’s Handbook”, 80% of people are sold on the headline… they only use the text of the copy to reconfirm their good initial impression. This list has some great templates for headlines.

#2 – Provide photos.

A photo tells more than 100 words.

Have the car displayed in good lighting from a perspective that makes it look nice.

In addition, show yourself. If your potential customers see your face, they will simply trust you more and you will stand out from the majority of ads you find.

#3 – Provide a video.

If you have the possibility of a video in your ad, do it.

The video could show you starting the car, driving it etc. – and at the very least show the potential customer that they can trust you.

#4 – Tell a story about that car.

Make Better Sales Miami Car
Classic Car. Summertime. Sitting outside. Happy People. Cocktails. Life!

Tell a specific story taylored to the car and the audience you want to sell it to. Show them a potential benefit.

If the car is a family car, then tell a story on how you went out to the beach with your family.

Maybe something unexpected happened, and then grandpa saved the day. This story would communicate that everyone was secure and unharmed in the end.

If the car is a sports car and your audience will mostly be younger, talk about how this was your first car after your 18th birthday and you took your girlfriend out with it.

You would make that story about how this car makes the buyers cooler among their friends.

And if it is a small car, mostly purchased by people with limited resources, talk about how you drove that car to clients and were able to sell them something because they liked the understatement.

Suggest to people that they, too, can make money using this car.

Which is actually not a lie – my friend works for an insurance company, and his clients appreciate that he drives a “normal” car.

Tell your story in 2 – 3 sentences, if possible, with a picture (see #3) that fits the storyline.

One photo alone can tell the whole story.

#5 – Testimonials.

Maybe you can add some testimonials from a friend. Like a citation. For example, if your friend is a car mechanic, you could have him say:

“The easiest car I have ever worked with. Despite one sluggish windshield wiper, which we fixed, it was a pleasure doing the yearly inspection for Mike and his car. Sorry to see them leave us!”

Your friend, the mechanic, has just explained to the world that the car has been kept in pristine condition with only minor changes. Moreover, he has declared you a trustworthy person that he liked doing business with!

#6 – Showing how the car will help people solve a problem.

Once again, it depends a bit what your target customers are.

What I mentioned in #4 applies. Tell a little story. In addition, give some extra advice. 

For example, if your car is a family car, add a small line: “A little advice: if you have a playmobile duck and some Micky Mouse comics on the backseat of the car, your kids won’t have to be told twice to get going on the next family trip”.

If your car is more of a sports car, add “a little tip: always have a CD with slow rock on board, and you’ll never have awkward silences again”.

You want to convince your target audience that you are a source to be trusted.

Bonus: even if they don’t buy, you have given them great advice and they have likely learnt something from you. Who knows, maybe they recommend you to one of their friends?

#7 – Good design

For example, use blue-grey colors if you are selling a car for professional purposes.

Like a Lincoln town car that people will probably use for driving clients around.

If the car is a sports car, add some design to make it cool.

I would copy the design from ads made by the car manufacturer. They have likely run extensive studies on which colors and letter type appeal best to their target audience.

If you are looking for an easy way to design graphics – there are several templates out there, for example,

Also, if you use a photo, have it take up ca. 60% of the area of the ad, according to the Golden Ratio.

#8 – Include your phone number and eMail address.

Make your ad as trustworthy as you can.

If you have a social media account, also provide that account. Make yourself accessible out there. Nothing to hide.

Besides, people actually Google you anyway. So direct their curiosity into lanes that you have control over.

#9 – Offer a test drive.

I rarely see that offered, but why not?

That shows your willingness to let the customers see for themselves.

#10 – Add promotional offers

If you can, add a bonus gift for people that want to buy your car.

Ridesharing service offers (buy the car, get a bonus if you use it for Uber) work great, because you point out that the customer can actually earn money with the car. Alternatively, you can could offer potential buyers a promotional code for a local car repair service or similar.

#11 – Advertise on Social Media

For example, you could run ads on Facebook targeting your ideal customers, down to their location, age, interests and consumer behavior. So you can point your specific target audience to your ad or your webpage. Down to the amount of money they earn. Then, have your ads point to your car.

If you already have a social media followership, talk about how the era of you and your car comes to an end. Share some memories with your car. Talk about why you bought that car in the first place. Share your enthusiasm and generate some buzz for your car.

The bottom line for an ad that would excite me and potentially entice me to buy?

#1 – Tell a story about you and your car and

#2 – Show that you are a trustworthy person that does not try to “sell me up” on something.

If you want to check out “Become an Idea Machine”, you can do so here.

Yesterday’s challenge: Click me!

What is this challenge about? This link will teach you more.

And to get back to the main page, you can click here.

Have you ever sold your car?

Do you have additional ideas for upgrading your ad?

Thanks for reading and let us know in the comments below!

(Pictures taken from Wikimedia Commons.)

How To Become More Efficient: 11 Ways To Improve Your Work.

No matter what you work on, there are always ways to improve. 

It can mean to have more efficient rituals.

Keeping connected to your friends and working out will also allow you to work more efficiently.

Simple example: If you know that you always have excellent focus when you are awake, you best make sure you sleep enough.

Become More Efficient Sundial
A sundial prevents you from burning the midnight oil.

#1 – Find the optimal time to work.

Continue reading “How To Become More Efficient: 11 Ways To Improve Your Work.”

But then again, too few to mention: How To Let Go Of Regrets

This is one of these posts that are more difficult to write than others.

I always thought I don’t have many regrets. I have taught myself to see potential failures of the past as opportunities to learn.

I have learnt to regard the past as illusion and the future as real. And every day is a new beginning!

In her book “The Top 5 Regrets Of The Dying“, Bronnie Ware talks about five main points people regret:
1. I wish I had the courage to live a life true to myself.
2. I wish I hadn’t work so hard.
3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.
4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
5. I wish I had let myself be happier.

None of these are points I regret, because luckily I was taught by my parents – and later learnt on my own – how to do what I think is right and not what others want me to be.

Since I took care of that one first, I avoided all other regrets.

Or at the very least, it seems easy to me to just become happy about my life, even if I am in a bad mood.

However… let’s put my feet to the fire. Are there actually points in the past I do regret?

It is not enough to just tell ourselves we are happy and then never work on moving towards our dreams and visions.

A good rule of thumb whether we are on the right track comes from Ed Latimore.

How to Let Go Of Regrets Ed Latimore
It took me a while to find this comment – glad I did.

To me, the way we overcome regrets consists of three steps:
1. Be honest and ask ourselves whether we have any regrets.
2. Is there also something positive that we can take away? What do we really regret? Reframe the regret – if possible – as demonstrated in the article about 10 Hard Gratitude Problems.
3. Device practical steps to avoid the mistake in the future.

So without further ado, I will go over 10 regrets that sometimes still come up in my mind, show how I reframe them and what I am actively doing to avoid them in the future.

#1 – That I did not first work in finance and be financially independent now.

Continue reading “But then again, too few to mention: How To Let Go Of Regrets”

10 Ways To Surprise A Friend Or Loved One

A loved one here can be a great friend, your kids, your partner etc.

This is another example about people’s “Love Languages“.

The way in which people like to give and receive positive affection – via touch, praise, physical gifts, favors or quality time – determines the nature of your surprise for your friend. 

Many “surprises” work so well because people don’t always communicate with words what they like. But since a vast part of communication is non-verbal, we can observe and take an “educated guess” what the other person likes. So we all give clues as to what we’d like to receive all the time. Other people, unfortunately, don’t immediately pick up on our hints.

So we have gotten used to only expect someone to do something for us when we actually ask for it. And when we get our needs fulfilled without saying anything, we are positively surprised!

To recap the “5 Love Languages
1. Does somebody touch other people often, slap them on their shoulder etc.? “Touch” may be his favorite language.
2. Is someone always praising others or love being praised?
3. Does someone enjoy giving and receiving gifts?
4. If you talk to someone, is that person present in the conversation and not at all in a hurry to continue with his day? If so, he or she may value time most.
5. Is your friend often helping you with little errands? Some people just get up and fix the sink while you tell him about it.

The way in which people behave, how they interact and communicate with you gives you a good glimpse on what their preferred “language of love” is. Someone who is ready to jump ahead and fix your sink might appreciate if you reciprocate in a similar way. In the same language.

Surprise Kitchen Sink
Clean the sink and your husband will be happy.

#1 – Take over small errands

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Game Time: Ten Simple Card Games

10 Card Games.

Some of them are adaptations from existing board games, some are new creations.

I hope you can derive some value from it – I believe you can even construct the cards for some of these games with cardboard and a pen. Have fun!

Card Games Pattern Correct
This is how two cards fit…
Card Games Pattern Incorrect
… this is how they don’t.

#1 – Picardso

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Laugh And Let Live: 12 Reasons Why Adults Laugh Less Than Children – And How To Fix It

It is sa(i)d that children laugh about 300 times a day, while adults get to mere 5 times. How can we change that?

Simple: make life more miserable for children!

Ah, but of course not. Laughter is important, it relaxes us and frees us from pain – and it’s damn funny.

Somehow on our road to adulthood, we unlearn how to laugh. Why is that, and how can we regain our laughter?

Laugh No Laughing
This is serious.

#1 – Scarcity instead of abundance mentality.

Continue reading “Laugh And Let Live: 12 Reasons Why Adults Laugh Less Than Children – And How To Fix It”

How To Outwit Your Elementary School Teacher: 16 Funny Answers

Even though my 3rd grade time was quiet, peaceful and friendly – in fact, I went to school in a small German village where dogs and cats would tell each other “good night” – there is a treasure trove of funny answers by elementary schoolers.

Thus, I have rekindled my childhood, thought about questions you would get as a 3rd grader and infused some humour into potential answers.

Often, these questions bring us back to think about problems in a very simplistic way – which is a great skill to have.

Elementary School Teacher X
Best Answer Ever

#1 – Imagine Snow White had made 28 cookies. How many cookies does each dwarf get?

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Travel Around The World: 10 Cities Worth Visiting – And Why

Today’s blog post is short and sweet – 10 cities around the world that would be worth a visit – including one specific detail or landmark that I think would make the visit even better.

I would definitely like to visit any of those cities.

Cities Worth Visiting Winter Palace
The Winter Palace in St. Petersburg.

#1 – St. Petersburg

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Everything Is A Market: 15 Companies We Frequently Use That Are On The Stock Exchange

This topic was a bit of a puzzle to me.

I can easily list ten companies the products of which I use – but what do I learn from the fact that they are or are not publicly trading?

I even re-read the chapter on investing in Aaron Clarey’s Bachelor Pad Economics. What does it mean if a company is on the stock exchange?

It probably means that that company is so valuable that a lot of people are using it. And thus, in turn, the company brand becomes big enough that people trust them and then hope they can make money off the company’s profits.

But is that true? Are, for example, the 10+ items I use – on a daily base coming from publicly traded companies? Let’s find out.

Let’s also see WHY myself and others use them – because that will show us what the real valuable part of those companies is. Convenience? Quality? The only company in the market? Which problem do these companies solve? Let’s also just look at this graph of the companies and corporations that experienced a lot of growth over the last 25 years…

Stock Exchange Big Players
Return on investment of Apple, Google, Amazon and Microsoft from 2003 to 2012

From that graph, it seems that the launch of the iPhone has been extremely profitable for Apple – suggesting that we are now accessing the web really more and more from mobile sources.

#1 – Amazon (AMZN on NASDAQ).

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