Basics of Standard Renters Insurance

Planning on getting renters insurance? If you are then there are certain details that you should take into consideration and understand before you actually opt for one. This is mainly because renters insurance does have certain terms and conditions that may not just suit anyone.Insurance is not about protecting the building that you’re staying in. The insurance that your landlord is holding on his building does not include your safety and also the possessions that you have in the property. Taking that into view, below are some of the basics of standard renters insurance.First of all most standard renters insurance is broken up into two types which is HO-4 which is for renters and also HO-6 which is for condo owners. The policies in these insurances do include natural disasters such as fires or lightning, snow and also volcanic eruption. But one thing you should take into account is that most of these renters insurances do not cover floods and earthquakes. Why you may ask? The reason being that if you’re located in a flood or earthquake prone area the insurance agency would have to fork out a high amount in damages to their customers. Being that, most insurance agencies do not have policies that cover those two natural disasters. If you’re living around these types of places try to find the most appropriate policy for yourself as being safe is better than being sorry later on.Besides that another aspect that you should take into account would be the type of payment your insurance policy is entitled to give you if there are any damages or theft. There are two types of payment schemes available which are actual cash value (ACV) and also replacement cost average. ACV refers to a coverage scheme that pays you only the current value of an item. For example, you had bought a speaker set for $200 2 years ago and it got damaged recently, your insurance will only pay you back the actual amount of the speaker set today and not the $200 you had spent 2 years ago. Replacement cost average will pay for the actual cost of the item that you have lost. This method works by claims that you’ll have to submit to your insurance agency.

Online Shop – Future of Shopping

Online shopping  witnessed spending of £178 million per week during January 2009. This means 3.7 percent of overall retail sales were through internet shopping. During 2008, online retail sales experienced steady and steep growth rate. It accounted for 3.1 percent in January 2008 and went up to 3.5 percent in December 2008. The trend is expected to continue as more and more people are showing interest in this arena of shopping.

Online shopping is extremely convenient and attract shoppers with lucrative offers. Almost every thing that is purchasable appears on the various online stores. It is impossible to summarize the entire list but few examples are books, gadgets, accessories, clothes, groceries, movies, music, shoes, heath and fitness products, cosmetics, eatables and travel tickets etc. Great variety of the products adds on to the excitement of buying online. Best holiday packages to the world’s greatest destinations are planned online within a short span of time. Even food joints accept delivery orders over the internet. Online shopping avoids the unnecessary wastage of time and money.

Initial cost to start a shop includes land prices, cost of the stock, construction rates and many more hidden costs. Additional to these costs are the running expenses of the store. On the other hand, selling products online requires no such setup and initial cost is very low. This allows attractive discounts on the deals and makes internet shopping economical for the buyers and profitable for the sellers. It is a win-win situation at both ends. The reduced cost is forwarded to the shoppers as discounts. This encourages the clientele to depend upon e-shopping for everything. The web stores offer discounts throughout the year and deals become very lucrative during peak seasons. The discounts vary from one shopping portal to another for the same product. Everyone tries to provide their products at cheapest possible rates to attract customers. Therefore shopping sites reduce their profits by offering heavy discounts to increase the volume. This calls for the concept of comparison shopping. There are many sites which offer comparison between the prices of same product on different sites. This allows user to view all deals at one location and make the best purchases. Companies and shopping portals distribute discount codes to attract internet shoppers toward their sites. The code number can be entered before leaving the shopping portal to avail discounts. Online shopping is becoming interactive and consumers share their views on various social shopping communities and blogging sites. They provide their personal experience with the products to help others make the right choice. The social shopping brings fun and excitement to the shopping experience.

Few other aspects about internet shopping requires careful attention. First is the Free Delivery advertised by sellers. It is not truly free as the delivery expenses are included in the product’s cost. Dealers accept shipment charges depending upon the distance. Therefore products delivered from close locations attract low shipment charges and other additional costs. Online dealers provide warranty for their products but the returns are difficult due to long distances. It requires the user to ship back the product and pay some additional charges in many cases. Maintaining privacy of the information supplied by buyers is another crucial issue. There are no law preventing this and sellers are free to get your information. This leak of information results in more direct-mail marketing, spam e-mails and telemarketer calls.

The online shopping is gaining continuous popularity and is becoming a growing trend among shoppers. The advantages of internet shopping are too attractive for people to resist. It is time to accept the new ways of shopping and enjoy its benefits.

VO Marketing Tips – Part 1, The Basics

For the past few years, I have had the distinct honor and pleasure of taking part in an exciting and wonderful career as a Voice Talent. Because I have such a passion for voice acting, it naturally drives me to want to succeed and see my business flourish. Most people, when I tell them what I do for a living, simply shake their heads in amazement and exclaim how cool it must be to get paid “just for using my voice”. I smile, shake my head vehemently, and agree. But, as all of us in the industry know, the fun part of using your voice is probably only 20% of the job! The rest is comprised of everything else that is required to operate and maintain a successful business. A large part of that is knowing how to market yourself to generate new business, as well as having an effective plan to nurture and sustain existing business relationships.

Along my journey, I have experienced many trials and tribulations, and have been truly blessed to have learned a few lessons along the way. I certainly do not claim to be a marketing expert to any degree, but I’d love to share some marketing tips that were effective for my business. I hope that they can, in some way, help you too, and allow you to truly flourish in this great industry!

Some basic tips that I have found to be really helpful in expanding my business include:

Get Your Demo Professionally Produced and Keep it Fresh!

This is your most important marketing tool and vital to your success as a voice over artist. If you are serious at all about your VO business, this should be your number one goal. As you grow as an artist and as a business, it will be necessary to keep your demos current and even add more to your current portfolio. Go to a professional studio and make it a priority to invest in your demo – it is your calling card!

Write a Great Bio

A foundation to marketing yourself – Even if you are just starting out in the business, you will need to provide people with information about who you are and your relevant experience. For many of us, this can be an immensely difficult task! Once your bio is developed, however, it can be used many times over – as part of your business introduction for new clients, a cover letter for auditions, Bid Response letters, as well as a section on your website.

Talk about what you do

All the time – to everyone! You never know who may be in need of your services. Even if they may not be in need of your services right now, they just might be later on down the road, or they may know someone who is. Don’t be shy! People always seem to be fascinated with the concept of voice overs as a business – and it’s a great ice breaker and conversation piece at parties!

Figure out your “Brand” and Develop a Strategy

This is a vital step in creating and establishing your identity as a voice over artist. Exactly “who” are you and what is your specialty? Your brand identity will be repeatedly communicated, in multiple ways with frequency and consistency throughout the life span of your business. Famous for his innovative branding,Doug Turkell, the “Unnoucer” has flourished by creating and marketing his unique brand of voice overs. Just do it already! Butdothink carefully about this one – changing your brand once established can be a bit difficult, though not impossible!

Take classes and workshops in your profession

It will allow you to network with your peers and even better, establish a relationship with an industry “expert”, who can provide you with even more valuable business leads. Taking classes will not only add educational/ training credits to your resume, but will also allow you to establish and assess your “competition”, and strengthen your vision for possible “niche” markets which may not be covered by your peer group.

Make yourself Accountable

Write down your business goals and establish a system of accountability for your business. This will help you develop a clear picture of how you can better market yourself. Spend an allotted time each day working on new contacts – this includes cold calling! Make it a goal to meet someone new in the business everyday!

It’s all about Customer Service!

Go above and beyond for your clients. Give more than they expect – and you will find that they will come back again and again. When I book a job, I usually give at least two finished takes for the client to choose from, even if they are not requested. Since I usually record more than two takes for each spot anyway, it doesn’t add a lot of time to the job on my end, and my clients really appreciate it!

Take care of your existing customers!

The word “Marketing” is often thought to describe advertising activities specific to gaining new business, but keep in mind that enriching and nurturing the relationship of your existing customers can be critical to your business survival. Contact them periodically and let them know you are available for them and keep them abreast of any new projects. Many times during a new business “low”, my repeat clients have come through with flying colors and kept my business booming!

Get Testimonials and Publish them!

When you complete a job, especially when you know the client loved your work, always ask for a testimonial, as well as a copy of the finished product for your demo reel. You can simplify this process by creating a generic “Thank You” template or form email that includes your request so you don’t forget. You’d surprised at how many clients are more than willing to do this for you if you just ask! Let your clients do the marketing for you!

I hope you have found these tips to be helpful and I welcome all comments! Upcoming articles in this series will discuss marketing options for building and marketing your VO business online.