You’ve heard it thousands of times before. You know, the statement by Henry Ford: “If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.”

If you are absolutely happy with what you’ve got, well done.

What does the statement mean?  It probably means: “If you continue to do what you’ve done before but it failed, the chances are that if you keep doing it in the future, you’ll continue to fail.”

What’s the lesson? “If you aren’t sure what to do, and what you’ve tried before has failed, then try something different.”

It worked for Apple. If it worked for Steve Jobs, it could work for you. View their “Think Different” Ad.

The marketing guru Drayton Bird emailed me today with a helpful hint. He said it is so brief and simple, that he was tempted to apologise for giving it.

It is: Start with the truth, not what you wish it to be.

However, far too many people seem unaware of the importance of this, which is prompted by something Drayton read in a New York Times obituary in 1984: “Honesty is not only the best policy. It is rare enough nowadays to make you pleasantly conspicuous.”

Unless you are a most remarkable organisation around, you aren’t perfect, and admitting this, wins you big brownie points with your prospects. When you admit to your shortcomings, people are far more inclined to believe other things you say.

My message to you today is: Read the last few articles I’ve sent to you. Doing something different doesn’t happen by magic. But when it works, it’s just like magic.

Most of what’s offered here is free. It costs nothing. Except if you think it’s a catch and don’t bother to read it at all – which would be a real shame.

The very best publication on the Budget

Chancellor George Osborne has chosen 18 March date for his 2015 Budget. This will be the last Budget of the Parliament and is less than two months before the date of the general election.

His update on the economy, including any tax announcements, will come just weeks before Parliament breaks up ahead of campaigning for the 7 May 2015 poll.

Place your order now…

The Bizezia 2015 Budget Summary is not free but it’s offered at an amazing price. It will be published on 18 March 2015, just a few hours after the Chancellor presents his proposals to Parliament. You can now start placing your order for it here.

The earlier you order, the cheaper it is. You’ve already missed the chance to buy it for only £20 + VAT. The lucky subscribers got it for that price by ordering before 9 January. Remaining options are:

Order by 5pm on Price
06/02/2015 £80 + VAT
06/03/2015 £140 + VAT
13/03/2015 £155  + VAT

The ICPA said glowingly: “This is simply the very best publication on the Budget available anywhere”.

See what you missed from the 2014 Budget publication, click here.

Please don’t miss it this year.

Here is my regular round-up of marketing and business promotion issues plus other interesting things over the past week.:

Marketing and Business Promotion

Marketing ideas from Marketing Profs

More marketing ideas and tips have been published by Marketing Profs:

The Accountant’s Checklist to Prepare for Client Meetings

From Sageworks: You can now download this FREE checklist, “An Accountant’s Checklist to Prepare for Client Meetings,” to learn questions to ask to facilitate information exchange and build relationships with clients.

Questions include:

  • Do you annually budget for your expected cash requirements?
  • Do you know your Gross Margin, and is it comparable to your peers?
  • Can you describe your ideal customer?

Building relationships with our accounting clients requires trust, rapport and an atmosphere for open dialogue. Many accounting firms use a checklist to prepare for client meetings and to facilitate information exchange. This FREE checklist has some questions that many accountants who are clients of Sageworks have found helpful when interacting with their business clients.  Details here.

Download ‘An Agenda For Growth’, the KPMG Exclusive YouGov Report.

Accountants everywhere take note. Learn what the big boys are doing…

How much time do you spend growing your business? KPMG’s new report ‘An Agenda for Growth’ finds that administration and accounting take up almost 60% of the working day for entrepreneurs running growing businesses. How much is this impacting your ability to grow and run your business? The report brings together views from over 1,000 SMEs in the UK and uncovers the hurdles and challenges they face.

There is also expert analysis and comment which reveals:

  • Where to best apply technology to lighten the administrative load
  • How spending more time on what’s important can future-proof your business
  • Why you could be missing out on initiatives and tax incentives aimed at SMEs
  • What SMEs want government to do to support growth

KPMG Small Business Accounting is our new affordable online accounting service. They take away lots of admin, like invoices, receipts, expenses, and bank reconciliation, leaving clients free to focus on your business while they take care of the books. To find out more, click here

Can you learn anything? Definitely, yes.

2015 Social Marketing Planning Guide

From Simply Measured:  2015 is already here, but there’s still time to fine-tune your social strategy. Start the New Year off right with ten fresh tactics based on the 2014 trends we expect to shape this year, and learn how you can refine your brand’s social strategy for success.

Download this guide to learn:

  • What changed in social marketing in 2014?
  • How you can expect social to change in 2015?
  • Ways for you to take advantage of the latest social media trends

…and much more.
Click below to download the guide:

Technical Stuff

Get ready for 2015 with a FREE 32-page Accountancy FRS 102 guide

From accountancyLIVE: As the countdown to the new UK GAAP starts, download a FREE 32-page guide to FRS 102, effective 1 January 2015 to help you manage the transition. The Accountancy FRS 102 Guide provides the ideal starter pack for anyone preparing for the move to the new UK GAAP or as a refresher for those of you already well down the road to adoption.

Read the step-by-step guide to the new accounting rules written by technical experts, Helen Lloyd FCA, accounting specialist at Wolters Kluwer and Andrew Davies ACA, technical accounting lead at EY.
Click here to download your copy of the Accountancy FRS 102 guide:

Tools to help you prepare for new UK GAAP

From ICAEW: The ICAEW have described new UK GAAP as “the biggest change to financial reporting rules in a generation”. And it becomes effective this month (on 1 January 2015). So how prepared are YOU for the change?

To help to ensure that you are prepared and make a smoother transition, Wolters Kluwer have compiled comprehensive coverage of the Standards, expert commentary, and practical tools onto three different platforms. Choose the ones that suit the way that YOU work.
More at:

Accountants note: Overhaul of Class 2 NICs planned for self-employed

From accountancyLIVE: By Diane Tan: The new tax year 2015/16 will see a major overhaul of Class 2 National Insurance contributions (NICs) for self-employed taxpayers, marking a significant change in the way self-assessment tax liabilities are collected.

The Association of Taxation Technicians (ATT) are urging the government to reconsider plans to bring the collection of Class 2 national insurance contributions (NICs) into the self-assessment system, as announced in the Budget.

From April 2015, Class 2 NICs will be collected along with other self-assessment tax liabilities, on 31 January following the year of assessment for all self-employed tax payers, warns the Low Incomes Tax Reform Group (LITRG).

Under the new arrangement, Class 2 NICs for 2015-16 will be collected on 31 January 2017.

This is a significant change for those who pay their Class 2 NICs by either direct debit (on a monthly or quarterly basis) or by direct billing by HMRC (six-monthly) as these will both cease automatically during 2015, with the last monthly/ quarterly direct debit payment collected by 10 July 2015 and the last six-monthly bill due by 10 July 2015.

The change will impact those who rely on their Class 2 NICs for payment of certain state benefits, for example Employment and Support Allowance or Maternity Allowance, as they may need to pay contributions earlier than would be required for annual self-assessment liabilities.
Read more:

Martin Pollins
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