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Happy Holidays

Happy Holidays!  Isn’t it nice to get some good news at the end of the year?!  With the passage of the 2010 Tax Relief Act, there is good news for 2011 and 2012.  Most of the good news is that tax rates are not going up, but there is more good news as well.  For example, the employee-share of Social Security taxes will be reduced by 2%, putting more money in all our pockets to either save or spend.  In addition, the estate tax exemption is now $5 million for individuals, and there is a portability provision for spouses.  To learn more about these and other aspects of the Act, click here.

We know many will feel their procrastination in completing their estate plan is now justified given that the exemption is $5 million as opposed to the anticipated $1 million.  For many, they know they will now have no estate tax exposure.  However, tax planning is only a very small aspect of planning. 

A more important aspect of planning includes planning for the unlikely event we become disabled or incapacitated and cannot take care of ourselves or our family, especially minor children.  Another important aspect is taking the time to choose and appoint the right person to be the guardian of our minor children, because the local probate judge, who knows nothing about us or our relationships, may very well make the wrong choice if we do nothing.  It’s also important to plan for the protection of our adult children’s inheritance, because sometimes bad things happen to good kids. 

There are, of course, many good reasons to plan.  These are just a few.  We like to say planning is always important, “because you probably have someone you love.”  If you do have a plan in place, good for you, but be sure to read it at least yearly and visit your attorney to have it professionally reviewed at least every 2 or 3 years.

We hope you have a wonderful holiday season surrounded by joy, peace and those you love!

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When it comes to marketing for our businesses, assuming we have a great product and/or we provide a great service, how do we set ourselves apart from our competition?  After all, when we set ourselves apart from our competition, we have no competition!  So think about doing something that your competitors may not be doing.  Here’s a simple idea you can institute this moment–reach out with recognition and appreciation to your clients, customers and referral sources every day

Some may wonder whether they have the time or whether it’s worth the effort.  Watch this short testimonial and decide for yourself:

Frankly, I think this is a no-brainer!  I can’t tell you how many times I have sent a heartfelt card or a card and small gift for a birthday, to say “thank you” or just because I was thinking of someone, and I have received a call thanking me for the card or gift!  It just goes to show that what you send out always returns to you.  People crave recognition and appreciation and are so . . . grateful . . . when they receive it!  And no matter how much genuine gratitude you send out–no matter how many genuine “thank you’s” you extend in a day–you will never, never, never run out. 

Whether you choose to send “thank you” cards, hold client appreciation events, or use some other method to express your appreciation, if you make sure to include it in your daily schedule, you will not only enhance the lives of others, but you will grow your life and your business as well.

As a companion to Thank Everybody for Everything! Grow Your Life and Business with Gratitude, authors Debbie Roser and Peggy Hoyt created a unique journal for recording, tracking and re-visiting daily gratitude expressions over a five-year period.  Each page of the journal is dedicated to one day and contains room for five entries–one for each of the five years represented by the journal.  Every day when you write your gratitude expressions, you can look back and relive the blessings you experienced on the same day in the years prior.  Each page also contains an inspirational quote as a gentle reminder of the value of gratitude and appreciation.  

Once your written expressions become a habit, Gratitude Expressions will serve as a constant inspiration and provide you with a lifetime of treasured memories. 

Gratitude Expressions, a Five Year Journal, is now available at Amazon.com.  Follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GratitudeExpressions.

When you think of this year’s resolutions, don’t forget your business.  Make appreciation marketing your resolution, and you will be rewarded with long-term relationships, customer loyalty and business growth.
 
SendOutCards offers an extraordinary appreciation marketing tool, not only because it is easy and economical, but also because it is personal.  Sending personal heartfelt cards has long been one of the best ways to build sustaining relationships with your clients, customers and referral sources.  Although many consider it tedious and time consuming, that is no longer the case with SendOutCards! 
 
With SendOutCards, you create real cards, in your handwriting and with your own signature, from your computer, then click “send” and we print them and mail them for you!   
 
Let me show you how easy it is to reach out in a personal way to the people who are important to your business!  Now is the time to get started with SendOutCards, because you want to start the year STRONG!
 
 Send Free Cards!
 
If you haven’t yet tried SendOutCards, contact me, and I will invite you to visit my website and send a few cards on me.  It’s fun, easy and there is no obligation!
 
I’ll see you at the top!

Check out Debbie’s new book, Thank Everybody for Everything! Grow Your Life and Business with Gratitude, written with Peggy Hoyt and now available through Amazon.com.

Thank Everybody for Everything! Grow Your Life and Business with Gratitude is an inspirational guide to attracting joy, prosperity and even abundance through acts of kindness and expressions of gratitude.  The simple act of saying, “thank you,” either written or spoken can have a dramatic effect on the recipient.  You have the power to change the recipient’s life through recognition and appreciation; but as the authors also reveal, you have the power to change your own life as well, because what you send out to the world always returns to you.

Every day we need to be reminded to stop, “smell the roses” and be thankful for our blessings—both large and small.  This motivational book provides easy-to-do exercises and suggestions for adopting “an attitude of gratitude” in everything you do by giving recognition and appreciation to everyone you know and meet.

You have the power to control what the world sends you.  You have the power to make good things happen–learn how when you thank everybody for everything!

Learn more at www.ThankEverybodyforEverything.com

Follow us on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/ThankEverybodyforEverything.

I just finished an informative and interesting new book called Appreciation Marketing — How to Achieve Greatness Through Gratitude, written by Tommy Wyatt and Curtis Lewsey.  Tommy and Curtis show how important it is to use appreciation in your life and in your business.  One illustration is particularly descriptive. 

According to Tommy and Curtis, Psychology Today stated that by the age of 21, everybody knows on average 2,000 people on a first name basis.  If true, it suggests you have at least 2,000 people you know and who know you.  That may seem high to some, so Tommy and Curtis ratchet it down to 200.  That probably seems more reasonable. 

Now, as Tommy and Curtis tell us, lets assume the 200 people you know like you because you understand the value of counting your blessings, so you appreciate the people you know and you express your appreciation on a regular basis.  Let’s also assume you are in a business that relies on referrals, like realtors, and that the average person purchases a new house every six years.  This is what Tommy and Curtis say:

“If you have 200 people in your ‘circle,’ let’s say that 150 are local and 50 are married couples.  That leaves you with 100 people who are ready, willing and able to sell their house through you when the time comes.  If you sell houses for 100 people over six years, that would average out to 16 houses per year.  Not too bad.  And you were able to accomplish this without taking newspaper ads, or doing any advertising.  You were able to make this happen because you are a Master [of Appreciation Marketing].

But as good as that is, it’s not enough.  Your goal is to sell five homes per month, not 16 per year.

If you have 200 people in your circle of influence, then . . . they each know . . . 200.  Question:  If you know 200 people and those people know you, like you, and think of you fondly every time your product or service is mentioned, would it be a stretch to say that they’d refer you to the 200 people they know when your product or service comes up in their conversations?  Please realize that if this occurred you would potentially have 40,000 people who may be interested in doing business with you . . . all because you made a decision to be a Master of Appreciation.

Ok, so 40,000 people might seem a little farfetched.  So let’s scale it back even further.  What if you took care of your 200 people and they each spread the good word to only the top 20 people in their networks.  That would still result in 4,000 warm connections.  Nice!”

It makes good human sense to feel and show appreciation for your clients, customers and other referral sources.  It also makes good business sense.  So what can you do?  Every day, make one phone call to one client just to say “Hi”, see how he or she is doing or to let him or her know you appreciate their business.  Send an unexpected note or card or even a gift without soliciting any business.  Have a “Client Appreciation Day” once a year. 

Good service will get you referrals.  There is no mistake about that.  But whether you are a realtor or an accountant or an attorney, you have a lot of competition.  Set yourself apart from your competition so that your competition is no competition.  Your clients will care about you if they perceive you care about them.  Good luck!

The holiday card and gift season is almost here!  Hard to believe but there are less than 11 days to Halloween, 34 days to Thanksgiving, 52 days to Hanukkah and 64 days until Christmas.  It can make your head spin. 

The solution to your holiday card and gift sending dilemma is simple—SendOutCards.  With SendOutCards you can mail a holiday greeting to your entire mailing list in just a few minutes of your time.  Want to send a great picture card of you and your family?  No problem.  SendOutCards lets you create PicturePlus cards for a fraction of the cost of store bought cards!

And these aren’t the dreaded e-cards, these are high quality printed cards that are stuffed and stamped at the SendOutCards facility in Salt Lake City, Utah, and mailed direct to the recipient’s home. 

You can even include great gifts, including food items like brownies, chocolates or cookies, and even gift cards from stores like Home Depot, Bed Bath & Beyond and Wal-Mart.  There are holiday gifts and gifts for women, men, children and pets—the selection is great.  There’s no last minute shopping, no crowds, no waiting in line.  You can handle all of your holiday needs right from the privacy of your own home (or anywhere, for that matter!) from your computer. 

SendOutCards is about to become a household name.  If you aren’t familiar with SendOutCards and you haven’t experienced the simplicity and fun of sending a personalized card from the SendOutCards system, then I invite you to contact me, right away, and I’ll be happy to share. 

 You can call me at 941.400.8293 or email me at Debbie.Roser@gmail.com.  Send a free card on me by visiting SendOutCards.com/RoserCards.  Have fun, send a card today!