A BEGINNER’S GUIDE TO USING TWITTER

With millions of users from all over the globe, all of whom are potential customers to a business, Twitter is fertile ground for the social media-savvy entrepreneur. However, not all small business owners get how Twitter works. Many are lone rangers who traverse the Twitterverse with limited knowledge of how to tap into the advertising potential.

In truth, a little savviness is required when it comes to all social media, not just Twitter. The following tips should help you use the platform for reaching potential customers.

Connections matter

Thanks to Twitter’s search bar, you can quickly get versed with the kind of topics your target customer would be interested in. Active Twitter users will talk about various aspects of their lives, making the platform a database full of helpful information.
If you own a bed company, searching keywords such as “bad back” or “bad sleep” will pull up tweets that you can narrow down to potential customers.

Have a personality

The successful business accounts on Twitter have something in common – they’ve developed a personality on the platform. More to just self-promotion, your tweets should demonstrate your quirky and witty side that people will appreciate.

Strategy is important

With thousands of tweets fired out every hour, your message can get lost in all the fast-paced action. The key is to have a clear strategy that ensures you communicate with customers on a regular basis. Establish an editorial calendar that allows you to tweet about events, products, services and blogs that you wish people to see.

Trenton Dierkes is a former business consultant with more than a decade of experience consulting and advising small firms and businesses.

BASIC MOTORCYCLE MAINTENANCE TIPS

You don’t require the experience of a MotoGP technician to perform simple repairs on your bike. Simply having the right tools and some wisdom is all you require to keep the bike in working conditions. Properly servicing your motorcycle is a key part to longevity and may be the difference between a smooth, safe ride and a trip to the emergency room.

Obviously, the much complex aspects of maintenance like the engine require a trained eye to handle. The following areas, on the other hand, are easy to check.

Tire pressure

Checking the tire pressure on your bike should be done weekly. The tires are some of the most important parts of the bike, but many people forget to check on them.

Underinflated tires make the bike harder to control while overinflated ones can also affect handling and lead to reduced friction with the road. This can result in difficult braking.

When checking the tire pressure, always have a quality pressure gauge.

Battery

The battery on a motorcycle isn’t always easy to access, but it shouldn’t be overlooked. Just like tires, the battery should be checked on a weekly basis. Place the battery on a level surface to check the acid level. If the level is low, top up with distilled water before recharging the battery.

Appearance

Unless you don’t have the time, regularly cleaning the bike will help maintain its look. Use a sponge to wash the body and a soft brush for the complex bits. Avoid using washing-up liquid as it might corrode the parts.

Trenton Dierkes is an experienced motorcycle owner and rider who regularly holds bike maintenance clinics for young riders in his community.

RELATE BETTER WITH PEOPLE

In the business world, it is very important to relate well with your peers, employers, clients, suppliers, and subordinates. If you can’t get along with people, constant squabbles and friction will be upon you. An employee with good interpersonal skills are an asset to the organization, and it is crucial that every individual work towards improving their people skills.

Trenton Dierkes, a long-time business consultant who now works as a production manager, offers the following tips for improving your relational skills.

Be a good listener

When others talk, remain silent and wait for them to express their thoughts. When you give others a chance to talk, they are more assured of what they say. Constantly interrupting should be avoided. Listening seems easy, but it takes repeated practice to become a good listener.

Stay calm

Many are the times we let our emotions get the best of us. If you find yourself slowly moving towards anger, take a minute and just breathe. Always aim to keep your emotions in check, especially when you feel like an outburst is the only way to get your message across. If you feel the other party is pushing you towards the edge, you always have the choice to walk away.

Read the cues

You don’t always have to listen to know the message that’s coming across. Body language relays more than half the message. Facial expressions, posture, tilting of the head and hand gestures can all communicate what an individual is not saying in words.

HIKING TIPS FOR TACKLING THE GRAND CANYON

The Grand Canyon is a marvel of nature and one of the most spectacular hiking destinations for any hiker. The rugged terrain offers plenty of challenges and requires a lot of build up to conquer successfully. If you are looking to hike the Canyon, the following tips should help your efforts.

Proper planning

The difference between a hiking trip for the ages and a trip to the local emergency room boils down to proper planning. The Grand Canyon will test your decision making, stamina, and preparation. Proper planning is required. Know where you want to go and the route to take. Know where to get water. Learn the weather patterns of the area.

Know your limits

You will hike in hot, humid conditions in high elevation with a steep climb expected at the end of the day. Anyone who’s ever hiked in the Canyon will tell you it’s not easy the first time.
If you have an existing health condition or any medical issues, limit the amount of effort you put on the body and exposure to the heat. The elevation, steep climb, and humidity will test your limits, so stay within your capabilities.

Be light

The heaviest items in your backpack should be water and food. Aim to hike as light as possible. Bring a flashlight (with a change of batteries), hiking sticks (to ease the pressure on your legs), sunscreen and sunglasses, a map, first aid kit, and signal mirror.

Lastly, walk at a pace that allows you to talk, says Trenton Dierkes. If you can’t carry on a conversation while hiking, you are pushing yourself.