February 2012’s Winning Entry…

Greetings again!

February’s contest has blown the lid off previous participation in The Supplier Spotlight monthly contest as every aspect of the contest broke new ground:

Most entries in a single month:
8 entries vs. 6 entries in Nov. 2011

Most page views in a single month:
3,115 (as of 3PM, 2/27/12) vs. 823 in Nov. 2011

Most page views in a single day:
743 on Feb 21 vs. 229 on Nov. 18
Then: 943 on Feb 24 vs. 743 on Feb 21

In fact, the hotly contested competition almost covered over the fact that right on the heels of Wells Fargo joining as “Lucky 13”, JP Morgan Chase joined Supplier-Connection as its 14th Member Company. Now the four largest banks in the US are all part of this initiative. And with more major companies in the queue, Supplier-Connection is gaining more and more traction. The best thing you can do is make sure your application is 100% completed and make sure the application includes all services you provide (one company lost an opportunity to bid on a project because they didn’t include all services on their application! When the buyer did a search for suppliers by category, they did not appear in the search! True story!).

February’s Contest:
The activity was running so hot I checked out the WordPress statistics page to find out what was going on… And there it was: two aggressive contestants were leveraging their influence in social media to drive contest awareness.  They posted their entry on their Facebook pages (personal & company fan page), took to Twitter, posted on LinkedIn.  One company even posted about the contest in various LinkedIn Groups.  The other company actually posted it on their Sorority’s website!  They ginned up enough activity to turn the 8 entry contest into a two-company race.

Since one of the objectives of the contest is to bring awareness to Supplier-Connection, I was excited by the activity… even though, based on the statistics, a good number of visitors read the Home Page article, voted and left.  And it was only the benefit of a late Friday afternoon surge that put Entry #8 into the winners circle.  At the end of the day, after a record number of visits and votes, it was still the closest contest vote we’ve ever had:

Final Voting Results for Feb. 2012 The Supplier Spotlight Monthly Small Business Contest
Based on sheer determination and a sincere desire to use The Supplier Spotlight to promote the non-profit organization (Troops to Transportation & Logistics) and subject of their Spotlight entry, the winner of February’s contest is AB Transportation! Heavily involved in community service, AB Transportation is dedicated to helping military and their spouses find work in the transportation and logistics industry.

One last look at February’s entries gives you a great understanding of the value of this contest.  Check out the wide variety of ideas to help you grow your business and increase profitability:

Entry #1: Get an IT Health Check from DBA in a Box
Entry #2: Source Locally & Use The Cloud from Dyventive
Entry #3: Strategic Partnerships from Splash Worldwide
Entry #4: Transitioning from Sales Rep to Partner from Havens & Co.
Entry #5: 5 Steps to Better Service from Parker Law Group
Entry #6: The THANK YOU Initiative from Brown & Meyers
Entry #7: Client Satisfaction Survey from Key Lime Interactive
Entry #8: Get Involved in Your Community from AB Transportation

Visit the Get Connected page on Supplier-Connection beginning March 1st to check out AB Transportation’s business profile – I spent some time with Shawn Leonard, Founder and CEO, and Jami Gordon, Project Manager, Diversity & Government Relations, and they run a real quality organization. Take some time to connect with them.

Thanks again to all eight companies for their submissions.  Even though there’s only one winning company, we promote every company that submits an entry & last month we touched over 100,000 people through all of our social channels (email, LinkedIn, Facebook & Twitter).

The contest shifted into another gear in February—moving in ways I could not predict. I’m looking forward to seeing what happens in March.  Why not join me by submitting an entry? We’ll be taking entries from March 1st through 8:00PM EST on March 8th.

*     *     *  Here’s a really important message    *     *     *

Over the last few weeks I spoke with almost a dozen registered SBEs and not a single company was aware of this great feature of Supplier-Connection, the Small Business Profile.

Do you sell products and services to other small businesses?  Do you look to partner with other SBE companies in order to bid on large government and private contracts? Then you should check out the Small Business Profile on Supplier-Connection.

The Small Business Profile is a search feature in the Supplier-Connection portal that allows you to search, contact and connect to other registered SBEs. However, in order to use the function you must complete your application.

How to find it: After you login to Supplier-Connection you’ll see a row of blue text hot-links right beneath the 4 page tabs:

Access "Small Business Profiles" from your "My Supplier-Connection" page

The Small Business Profile can be a great source of leads and opportunity. Check it out today! (Hint: You’ll only be able to “see” registered SBEs who’ve completed their application.)

*     *     *   Back to The Supplier Spotlight blog post…   *     *     *

In exchange for their efforts, AB Transportation has earned the following opportunity to promote their company on Supplier-Connection for the month of March:

• Company logo displayed under The Supplier Spotlight banner on the Get Connected page
• A 200 word description of their business posted on Get Connected beneath their logo
• The option to write an article on their idea, explaining the value it brought to their company
• A link to their website, Facebook page, Twitter account, company blog(s), etc.
• A link to an online sales presentation with audio
• Link(s) to product videos, commercials, and/or their YouTube channel
• Posted links to white papers they might have written
• A link for interested Member Partners or SBE Suppliers to schedule an online sales meeting
• A promotional email gets sent to all registered buyers from the 13-Member Partners

And finally…

• If AB Transportation can attribute any new customer order to this promotion I’ll follow up by interviewing their CEO, Shawn Leonard, and post the interview on The SBE Lifer blog.

And, by now, you know The Supplier Spotlight contest starts all over again on March 1st. And now with 14 Member Companies (more will join in March), a growing number of registered SBEs, along with our Social Media campaign driving non-registered SBEs to The Supplier Spotlight blog; you’ll agree Supplier-Connection is where all SBEs who sell B2B should want to be seen.

ACTION ITEM:
Review all aspects of how you run your business. Review the innovations you’re deploying that have improved your performance. Write them up and email the best ones to me no later than 8:00PM EST Thursday, March 8th. Send them to dangallo@allassogroup.com and qualify for March’s contest. (For details on how The Supplier Spotlight works click here.)

Remember… You can’t advertise on the Supplier-Connection portal for any amount of money.

No. You cannot.

The only thing we’ll accept is your best ideas.

SBEs are a journey… Be safe!  And may the best idea win!

Dan Gallo
Social Media Director & Small Business Advocate, Supplier-Connection
Managing Director, The Allasso Group, LLC

Let’s Connect!
CLICK HERE to FOLLOW for my SmallBiz focused Twitter feed – @dnagallo
CLICK HERE to JOIN The Supplier-Connection Discussion Group on LinkedIn
CLICK HERE to READ The SBE Lifer blog (2 GREAT blog entries!)
CLICK HERE to CONNECT with the Supplier-Connection community on Facebook – All Likes are appreciated!
CLICK HERE to go to Supplier Connection: Visit the Get Connected page before Thursday to read about Splash Worldwide, the winner of last month’s contest!

To submit an entry in The Supplier Spotlight contest you need to be a registered member of the Supplier-Connection initiative with a completed registration. Registration is FREE. For more information you can watch this 1.5 minute video or read a lot more on the Supplier-Connection portal.

About Dan Gallo

I'm a small business lifer, starting/running businesses since I sold seeds door-to-door as a kid in The Bronx. I've played guitar and enjoyed baseball since I was 5 (born a NY Yankees fan). Just prior to marrying Kim in 1983 I became a Christian. We have two sons; Daniel's a musician & social media expert with a smart, insightful sense of humor, and Adam who recently graduated from Brooklyn College double majoring in Creative Writing/Literature and Anthropology. Adam now works in the non-profit sector. Since 2002 one thing we love to do together is go on service/missions trips to Belize. We've collectively spent 60+ weeks in Belize with this missions organization http://twaw.org. I started my 1st company in January 1985, and been self-employed ever since. I sold my last company, Mentor Communications Group, in '04. After 2 years w/ the acquiring company I started The Allasso Group, LLC doing Small Business Consulting, Fund Raising/Capital Raise-up Campaigns, Sales Strategy, Outsourced Sales Agency work, & Digital Marketing Programs (Social Media, SEM, etc.) since April 2006. Notable projects: Hired as Small Business Advocate and Social Media Director for IBM's "Supplier-Connection" - Feb '11-Dec '13. Hired as COO to help turn-around late stage start-up software company myVRM. Jul12-Dec '13 Hired as CEO of CoupleWise.com, a Digital Health2.0 app, to write business plan, raise seed capital, & completely redesign and relaunch the app. Aug '16 I won a Finalist spot for MassChallenge UK's 2016 fall cohort in London from Sept thru Nov. Started Oct15 - Current. I enjoy helping turn-around struggling small businesses, and launching new business ventures. Feel free to contact me with opportunities.
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