That's "return on investment" for folks who hate acronyms. When I was approached to share an ROI story, on behalf of HP's "Reboot with ROI" ... which is inviting people to share stories and be entered in a contest to win a trip to NAPA, that's NAPA folks!, for six people in your office...and a technology makeover - how could I resist writing a sponsored post?
I know many of you will want to enter this contest, but I hope all of you will share stories of ROI, here and on the HP contest site. Enter today! Just visit this link.
Here's my story:
Back in the day, before blogs, I wrote a book. You know the book - Dickless Marketing - smart marketing to women online. I wanted to show small businesses that women were a force to be reckoned with, especially online. Following the publication of the book, I prepared to start a newsletter.
My new love, Tom, encouraged me to start a blog, instead. Ha! I wasn't getting into that - blogging - I mean, what for? It was new, it was untested, it was strange. And, I was sure it was too time consuming. Over a period of months, when the newsletter didn't happen (for many reasons not important to this story), I caved. We started a blog. It's the blog you're reading.
The ROI was immediate. I connected with women (and men) who wanted to understand the women's market online. I was invited to speak at events. I was asked to moderate forums. In short order, I sold more books and made fantastic contacts that started fantastic relationships which have only grown over the years.
Some of those relationships brought me clients and helped promote my business. Others became valued friends who share their business advice. Even the naysayers and few trolls that came out of the woodwork, provided value. They taught me what NOT to do.
In the end, a blog is a tool. I learned that quickly. It works better and more effectively than a newsletter. It doesn't take that much time if you create an editorial calendar and stick to it. I recommend you start one, if you haven't already.
Whatever you're focused on, when thinking about true ROI for your business, remember that it's the act of using the right tools, like HP printers and laptops, that bring the most value. Would I purchase an HP? You bet I would! Do I have one now? You bet I do! My HP laserjet 1320 is at my elbow and has never - never - failed me! And, it doesn't cost an arm and a leg to operate. As we consider new equipment, HP is one of the companies I will explore.
That's my story. ROI comes when you have a plan, find the right tools, and work to make things happen!