Map Business Online Blog

Read about business mapping and how it can help your business succeed.

Clearly Express Your Business Map Message

Your very first mapping experience probably happened through a childrens’ book.  The Sponge Bob Kids History Research Institute reports most children are exposed to the concept of ‘mapping’ by the age of two years. For children, maps are typically depicted as guides to where the secret treasure is located, perhaps for Aladdin or Captain Hook. But as an adult, maps become more visual aids than treasure maps.

Over the holiday break I noticed two map infographics circulating in my LinkedIn and Facebook feeds. (Hey, so I was working a little? It’s not like I was checking my LinkedIn at a New Year’s Eve party. I’m not that guy.)  One map showed the most common Internet searches by state.  Maine’s was Amy Schumer.  And the other map showed, again by state, the most likely cause of death on average compared with other states.  Maine’s was the Flu – which surprised me. Get your shots people.

Now I found both of these maps to be visually informative. I glanced at them briefly and I quickly understood what they were trying to communicate. This, to me, is a critical element of a successful map or business map. Maps do not need to be complicated, colorful, or multilayered to get the job done. In fact, the more complicated or busy your map becomes, the less that map may communicate. A lot depends on knowing your map audience. What is your map audience looking for?

As Ben Carson, the one-time GOP leading candidate for president recently found out, maps need to be proof read. Take time creating and publishing your maps.  Leave them for a while. Come back later and view the map with fresh eyes. Look for glaring inconsistencies, or simple mistakes. Ask a colleague to review your map.  Try to see your map from the perspective of your map users.

Ben’s map person would have done well to examine that odd-shaped New England section before releasing it to a world eager to poke holes in his boss’ reputation. I include this video link to show how maps can generate the wrong result if you are not careful. Do not fall into this trap. Maps, like any other document, are subject to human error.

So no matter what mapping tools you apply, be thoughtful and careful with your map creation. Your map is a visual aide, not the busy kitchen table catch-all of spatial ideas. Keep it clean and neat. It is often valuable to consider what not to include in your business map:

Base Map-Data – Does your map require base-map data?  Perhaps just state outlines will do the trick. Digital base-map data is without a doubt one of the coolest things our generation has loosed on the world, and you may have access to the most accurate and up-to-date data available. Just make sure that a base-map data layer adds value to your map’s intent. All business mapping software should let you adjust this feature.

Administrative Districts – What administrative district – zip code, state, county – layer makes the most sense for your map view? It’s not always zip codes, although zip code maps are most commonly created, in my experience. Perhaps your business analysis is more effectively communicated over counties?  This could be because counties are easier to visualize nationwide, or because population by county displays better than by zip code, or perhaps because county population data adds more value to your analysis than the zip code population. Think it through. It only takes a moment.

Map Extent – At what zoom level of detail should your map be presented? A zoom extent covering the whole contiguous USA map may feel like it defines your map project, but the details may be more pertinent by zip code, in which case four separate regional map views might display more effectively for your map audience. A map describing the density of hospitals across the USA works at a USA wide level, while a demographic population map classifying all the Methodist Churches by congregation size might work better regionally.

Label Definition – Your map may or may not include state labels, zip code labels or imported data labels. Make sure they are required before turning them on.  If your map is displaying numeric values by zip code or county, displaying numeric zip code labels may create an incomprehensible map for your viewers. Too many numbers. Often a business map can be set to display a pop-up label upon mouse hover or click. Experiment with the different label options in your mapping software – large or small text sizes, various text-box color backgrounds, and text formatting options. Do you really need state labels to display?  Perhaps your map audience already knows the state names, for the most part? I know I do ( I know – Map Geek!) In general, keep the map simple.

Boundary Definition – Most business mapping software will allow adjustments to boundary lines. View your map carefully and choose appropriate line thicknesses and colors. Try different options to see what works best for your map. You may find in your industry, with your particular type of analysis, certain colors are expected or display data in away that rings truer with your map viewers.

Point Color Coding – Like boundaries, put some thought into how you color code points that you’ve imported. For instance, if I show a 7,000 location point hospital map, I typically make my points small and dark so the density of facilities by city is obvious. Should I label each point? Why would I do that? Only do it if you have to. Perhaps turning on just a few key regional point labels better communicates your map’s point.

My Busy Map
A cluttered map.

Most of the maps we make in our business work are not going viral like the Ben Carson map. But many of our maps are critical to our business processes. Think about your map presentation. As a business manager, you are always communicating with higher-ups, peers, or associates who work for you. Each of those audiences is looking for different map messages.

Management wants to see dollars, risks, and operational efficiencies – the high level business view. Avoid too many details. Steer clear from decimal points, extra map layers, and random data that invites criticism.

Your peers may be watching work flows carefully. Some peers will be looking to poke holes in your presentation (you know who they are.) Don’t give them easy errors to attack you with. It’s distracting for everyone and defeats the business purpose of your mapping efforts.

The people who work for you are looking for clear direction and leadership. Avoid mixed messages and map clutter. Turn off superfluous layers. Use multiple maps where operational issues pile up. Maps can be great tools for sharing progress associated with company goals and objectives.

Think it through, proof read your maps keep it simple and maybe you’ll be president someday.

Find out why over 25,000 business users log into MapBusinessOnline.com

Contact: Geoffrey Ives geoffives@spatialteq.com (800) 425-9035, (207) 939-6866

MapPoint users – please consider www.MapBusinessOnline.com as your MapPoint Replacement.

Please read customer reviews or review us at Capterra, or g2crowd

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Map Business Online Nooks and Crannies


I’ve eaten English Muffins for breakfast many times in my life. Especially growing up, when Ma was looking for quick, cheap, and easy ways to feed four growing boys before school. I thought Thomas’ English Muffins did a great job using Nooks and Crannies as their advertising tag line. You knew exactly what they meant – you could taste it.

Well, Map Business Online has nooks and crannies too.  There’s a software developer behind every MBO nook and cranny. There are many small details and features we’ve added to our business mapping software that make it a richer, more productive mapping experience for the business mapping user.  I run into these features often, partly because I’m constantly using the product, but also because people ask questions about how to do weird things and often I’m surprised to find out that we actually can do these things.

Copy & Paste Ten Rows

The other day I was providing some training for a collection of Map Business Online team edition users. The team edition is used for shared map editing. We were looking at sales territory mapping based on counties.  We had added demographic data to the territory data base to create a demographic map. The question was asked, “How can we arrange the data in descending order by population and choose the top ten records for export.”  A fair question, and I wasn’t sure what to do.  A quick communication back to headquarters and I had my answer.  Not sure if it’s a nook or a cranny.

Viewing your territory in the Data Window, click the header of the population column until you show the records descending in order from largest to smallest.  Then arrange the data window bounding rectangle to show only your top ten records.  Then, in the lower right-hand corner click the Cut & Paste button. This launches the Copy data dialog box.  Up until now, I had not paid much attention to this box. I don’t copy and paste very often in MBO. Notice that it offers multiple choices for copying.  Choose the lower circle – Rows visible on current page. Now paste into Excel. As they say in Rockport, MA where I grew up when something was wicked easy, “Dimes, or what?”

The Power of the Data Window

Although the Map Business Online Data Window is not Excel by any stretch of the imagination, it does have some unique features that come in pretty handy.  For example, any time you create a query thereby generating a data result in the Data Window, you can take that result and turn it into a territory or an area of interest.  See the button on the Data Window tool bar that shows a green and red arrow over a blue puzzle piece. That button lets you Create new or Edit existing territories.

Using this approach, you are able to filter a dataset by a column of data pertinent only to your business, for instance just the banks in your account list, and then turn all of those geographies into a territory. This could be a nice way to create territories or areas of interest out of a master list without having to create subset data outside of MBO.

And keep in mind, the filtering capability of the data window will let you create multiple criteria for your filter.  For example, determine all of the records with greater than $5,000 in sales, in zip codes 90000 to 90599, and in zip codes 87000 to 87599. And as always the results are exportable.

One more thing – an Area of Interest and a Territory are the exact same thing in MBO. These are simply groups of zip codes, counties, or other geographic districts you’ve selected to represent a focused area of interest. I use the term Area of Interest when applying the tool to market analysis projects and the term Territory when conducting more sales oriented customer mapping projects.

Imported Data Labeling

You know you can import up to one hundred thousand records per map. And you also know that as you import these records you choose the five most important fields to show when someone hovers over the imported data points.  But if you made a mistake when you did this, or if you just want to change the fields that you show upon hover, you can do that. It’s a cranny, Granny.  Hover over your imported Data Layer in the Map & Data Tab, click the Edit Gear when it pops up.  Now along the right side of the dialog box pick the Callout folder tag. Choose Format Callouts and change your fields.

And while you’re in there, get familiar with all the various formatting buttons we’ve added there. Someday your boss is going to request some crazy way to display labels and we just might have it in there.

Imagery Nooks

While you’re in Map & Data, click Map Options along the top to review the imagery options available. Imagery and Streets are new and provide a nice overlay that can combine street level detail with aerial imagery. Very cool in downtown urban areas.

To view more map back ground options, back out to the opening page of Map & Data.  Hover over the Street layer and click the edit gear.  Here you will find two topographic map view options.  One is National Geographic data and the other more of a generic topo quad map.

I’ve run out of blog words and time for this week, but there are many nooks and crannies to Map Business Online. Just don’t go smearing pads of butter on your mapping software. That’s no good for any one. Instead, consider opening up a new map view and just click around. Explore the nooks and crannies that support your business mapping work.

Remember in MBO you can:

  • Import your own symbols
  • Edit data you’ve imported
  • Add incremental records to the map manually
  • Print regular or large format maps
  • Draw free form shapes in the map
  • Summarize your data
  • Export your data query results
  • Add demographic data to your map
  • Share interactive web maps
  • Create map templates
  • Impress family and friends

 

 

Find out why over 25,000 business users log into MapBusinessOnline.com

Contact: Geoffrey Ives geoffives@spatialteq.com (800) 425-9035, (207) 939-6866

MapPoint users – please consider www.MapBusinessOnline.com as your MapPoint Replacement.

Please read customer reviews or review us at Capterra, or g2crowd

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How Can I Filter My Business Data in Map Business Online?

There are reasons why Map Business Online is the fastest growing business mapping software in North America and one major reason is that the tool is a pretty quick learn. This is mostly true – and yes, there are people who struggle with our user interface – but most people find the learning curve to be fast and easy. I qualify that statement because there are many successful business people whose minds just don’t easily absorb a new user interface. They think in different ways and we all need to support them. So, I can’t just say our user interface is easy for everyone. No user interface is.

One aspect of Map Business Online that people seem to be really enjoying, are the various ways a business map user can filter their business data. Now remember, you have to import your data first and we’ve addressed that in previous blogs, and will again in future blogs, so for now let’s assume you’ve created a really excellent Excel spreadsheet with address columns neatly established and imported your business data into Map Business Online.

Your Data Wants to be Filtered
For the novice, when we say ‘Filter your data’ we are describing ways in which you can sift through your business data to find specific groups of records. You could describe it as segmenting your list of location points or addresses. You can certainly filter your data in Excel. A business mapping application offers some filtering tools that are similar to Excel, but it adds the visual filter of geography whereby you can filter your data by district, zip code, polygon, circle or some other spatial arrangement. One way to think of this is you map excel data and filter it for insights about your business.

Color Code Your Points
Although color coding isn’t specifically filtering I point it out because color coding and symbolizing your business data immediately takes your imported data out of simply mapping multiple locations and into the realm of organizing data by type on the map with a Map Legend describing them. It’s easy to do in MBO and you have five buttons on the master tool bar dedicated to this symbolizing purpose. Use them. Color code your data by point, circle, heat map or chart. Or turn off your points (in the Map & Data Tab) and color code map layers based on your imported data by zip code, county, state or other map layers. By using these tools you’ve already provided your map viewers with a new view of your data. Test any one of them by simply clicking the tool and selecting the data you’ve imported. Go ahead – test it.

The Geographic or Spatial Filter
You can easily set up geographic or spatial queries by using either the Search Data tools or the Draw Tools in Map Business Online. They are right next to each other on the tool bar: Search and Draw The search tools on the left will more directly create data lists from your search action. The draw tools on the right focus first on drawing lines, points or polygons, but then offer the search data binocular icon to help create a segmented data group or marketing list.

Simply select a Search Tool from the drop down options – search by circle, polygon, or drive time polygon. Any of these when drawn around your data will create a subset list or marketing list of records in the Data Window. Those results could be used as a list for sales planning, customer mapping, or export the list out of the application completely. These query results could be routed on immediately by adding all rows to a Route from the Data Window toolbar. Or you could export your records back to Salesforce or ACT! – if you happen to be using one of those newly integrated products with MBO.

Any query results or marketing list results can be filtered on the map. In the Data Window, with your new query result named and selected, simply check the box marked “Filter Data on Map” at the top left of the Data Window. Bingo – now you see just those filtered results on the map. Don’t forget to uncheck when you are done.

Data Window Filtering
Now that the Data Window is open (your spreadsheet within Map Business Online) we have some additional filtering operations to explore.

Using the Data Window drop down in the upper left, choose your imported dataset – that’s your target for filtering. Once selected, you could filter that dataset by any Sales Territories you’ve created in your map – just selected the Search Data inside a Territory Button – the Yellow Puzzle Piece icon. This function will present the Save Data dialog to name your data for that territory. This search by sales territory is core functionality for sales territory mapping in Map Business Online.

Another wicked quick filter of your data is too simply search the Left Hand column of your data by keying a word or number sequence into the Data Window Search Bar – that big white space in the middle of the tool bar. So if the left hand column in your Data is the Company Name – and it often is – just key in a three or four letter syllable you know is in the record you seek. For instance – “INC.” Then click the Binoculars. Then all the records with INC in their name will be listed in the data window view.

The Data Window Filter Funnel
Go back to selecting your data in the Data Window drop down and this time choose to Filter Data by clicking that Funnel Icon. This tool lets you truly filter your data. Choose which column of data you desire to filter. Then choose from a selection of modifiers that will let you create a filter or a series of filters to fine tune the results you get.

You could for instance filter in the following ways:
• Choose a text column – Filter to show all records that Contain the name – John
• Choose a dollar value column – Filter to show all records that have values of >= (greater than or equal to) $2500
• Choose a numeric column – Filter to show all records that have values of = (greater than or equal to) 1500
• Choose the Zip code column in your data – Filter to show all Zip Codes >= (greater than or equal to) 99000 and <= (less than or equal to) 99800. Use the result to create a territory.

Do you get it? Modifiers, once the bane of a boring high school algebra class are now a very useful part of our business day. Wouldn't Mr. Mello and Mr. Moore be excited? Ok, you probably never had those guys in High School. But I did.

Anyway, filtering your data is really a huge part of what business mapping is all about. It let's you view business realities from various perspectives. It presents your customer transactions in a way that allows comparisons to other data sets. And it helps you consider new operational options. So have at it – filter your business data using Map Business Online.

Find out why over 25,000 business users log into MapBusinessOnline.com

Contact: Geoffrey Ives geoffives@spatialteq.com (800) 425-9035, (207) 939-6866

MapPoint users – please consider www.MapBusinessOnline.com as your MapPoint Replacement.

Please read customer reviews or review us at Capterra, or g2crowd

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A Business Mapping Sales Process

Managing a sales team takes a combination of patience, maturity, and vision. And on occasion you’ve got to be willing to kick a few butts. You spend a lot of your time coaching sales people, asking questions about opportunities, and making sure your people are doing the basics – following up on leads, quoting prospects, qualifying the sales pipeline, and following up on quotes.

Another aspect of your sales manager role is presenting to the executive team. They have expectations that your sales pipeline is going to grow, and grow quickly. In fact, that’s the real reason they hired you. Your job from their perspective is to generate or purchase leads, convert them into qualified prospects, and then convert those prospects into orders. In short, you must manage your sales pipeline and thereby grow sales revenues.

The job of sales manager can be challenging yet rewarding, or it can be challenging and terrifying. I prefer the former. Creating a geographic model of your sales organization based on a business map can help turn terrifying into challenging. You can achieve a business mapping sales process using opular business mapping software available online.

You’ve Got To Get Organized

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ve57l3c19g

Successful sales management can occur when a team gets organized. We’ve all seen sales teams that are not clearly directed flail about looking for sales growth. Sales chaos can happen in any economy. In many ways it’s a function of the leader of the sales team. I have watched a flailing sales team suddenly start to produce under a new manager’s firm and steady guidance. Simple things like phone queue management, organized customer assignment, rules on discounting, or fun lunch-time sales meetings, can have a rapid impact on a department’s ability to generate sales. Just knowing there’s an accessible, reasonable listening ear to go to can make a sales team feel empowered and get the orders rolling in.

Part of the sales organizing process should be developing an understanding of the geography of your sales environment. Business mapping software can help the sales manager and the sales team create that location-based sales model and integrate it into your overall strategic sales approach. There is power in location and market analysis maps – ignore this at your peril.

A first step might be building a customer location map complete with your sales representative’s home addresses, and your major competitor locations. Viewing these three core datasets against an accurate map creates an immediate field of view on your sales operational theater. This simple business data import and data visualization process opens up a world of understanding:

· You now know where all your customers are, and where they are not

· You have an understanding of how well positioned your competitors are to service your market

· You have a logistical model with real locations from which you can derive sales progress and productivity assessments

Basic data visualizations like this should be a standard practice for any sales organization.

Here’s an example of how a business map can impact your sales process when you simply plot locations on a map. Considering purchasing a prospect list? Get some sample data with addressing and view the data on a map. This process can tell you many things, like how accurately the addresses are geocoded, which can indicate how up-to-date the list is. Are there too many duplicate addresses? And how many of these prospects are located close to existing customers? This can have an impact on sales productivity. Let someone familiar with the area view the prospects against a map – do the names look right? Ask what they think is missing.

Let a geographic perspective add value to your prospect list analysis. Business mapping can provide new perspectives that drive creative thinking. Creative thinking will improve sales.

Accountability and Sales Territory Management

Now that you are getting a grip on your theater of sales operations, let’s think about accountability. One of the biggest challenges a sales manager faces is driving accountability into the sales process. Sure, your whole team means well. From the poorest to the best performers, I’m sure they are giving it their very best. Still, your job is to hold everyone on the team accountable for appropriate follow-up with their assigned customers. This means your sales people should:

· Have a clear understanding of their goals and objectives

· Communicating the correct messages to their assigned accounts in a timely fashion

· Be focused on the sales potential of their book of business – not those assigned to others

· Be posting regular and accurate updates in your CRM system – updates that accurately reflect realistic opportunities and customer expectations

Accountability – what is it anyway? For you the sales manager or business owner, accountability is a fair presentation of goals and expectations, not a constant manipulation of the rules to limit or cap commissions. Be fair and honest. At the same time, accountability is making sure the goals are challenging and benefit overall company profitability. Accountability is management keeping the company in business so people have jobs.

For you sales people, accountability is balancing an awareness of company goals and objectives with the requirements and stated objectives of the customer. It is leaving your ego at the coat rack, and shouldering today’s business load. Accountability is you, the sales person, doing the job you said you would do. Accountability is focusing on your goals and objectives not the goals and objectives of other sales people.

Sales accountability is understanding that you work for a living and that that living requires a certain number of phone calls, follow-up emails, and meetings to achieve your sales goal. Accountability means you listen to understand, ask questions when you don’t understand, and that you have the gumption and clarity of thought to speak up when you believe something is amiss.

Sales territory management helps with many aspects of sales accountability. By arranging sales territories by zip code, county or state, a sales manager makes very clear what the sales person’s area of responsibility is. And usually that sales territory is going to define which accounts they are responsible for. Armed with that knowledge, a salesperson should take control of their customer base and begin looking for and accurately processing opportunities. Without territories in place the sales team is at high risk for sales chaos. And you know what that means – your sales manager role is now up for grabs.

Communicate Goals Effectively and Share Business Data

Sales territory mapping is a great way to assign and shared sales goals. Mapping applications let you aggregate numeric values by geographic area of interest. Moreover, business map visualizations are easily shared as interactive web maps, image files for presentations, even printed wall maps. Posted and shared sales goals are viewed and understood by the entire sales team – preferably in a shared meeting and over a shared network. With the entire team now well aware of the overall and individual goals, sales activities can become the primary focus.

And there are further productivity improvements possible through sales territory management. A shared interactive business map usually means your team has access to customer maps, and prospect maps. These business data visualizations will offer the ability to conduct spatial queries. Spatial queries are nothing more than the ability to search data within a radius, a polygon, a drive time area, or a territory.

Encourage your people to conduct spatial queries to segment their lists of customers and prospects geographically. Segmented customer lists allow the sales person to bite off manageable sections of their overall list of customer contacts. Segmenting the data could make physical sales calls more productive, perhaps creating a potential list for a week long sales trip. And segmenting data makes sense for outbound calling or email campaigns as well.

Customer data segmentation exercises for sales and marketing people:

· Color code your prospects by total purchasing responsibility using dollar values

· Create a list of prospects that reside within one half hours drive time of your planned hotel for next week’s trip

· Create a prospect list against a map of zip codes or counties with high median income rates. Choose only those zips or counties that have minimal existing customers located within those areas

Creating a Sales Pipeline Using a Map

Here’s a new approach. The challenge is this: how many of the customers on your client list have been recently and truly qualified as potential buyers of your products within the next six months? Admit it – your sales pipeline data is getting stale.

Share a business map with each sales rep that displays a full list of clients to contact on the map. They are to contact each client and ask qualifying questions about potential orders for the next six months. They will note each customer response in the mapping database and save that MapPoint. When a clear potential for upcoming purchases is recognized they immediately convert that client in the overall customer database to a pipeline database on their map. That is they move client A from the overall client list to a new qualified pipeline dataset on the map application.

Business mapping software will allow your reps to create these datasets at just the click of a mouse. In a matter of weeks you will have an up-to-date sales pipeline with specific dollars projected by date. Hold them accountable to this new list. Keep it updated moving forward. Welcome to the power of the business mapping sales process.

Once you mastered these three basic aspects of geosales:

· Business data map visualizations

· Sales territory management

· Geographic sales pipeline construction

You’ll be able to recognize the power of applying business mapping software to your other business challenges. You will find business mapping to be an indispensable tool for common business intelligence exercises including:

· Strategic planning

· Market analysis

· Expansion planning

The list goes on. In many ways you’ll just be using the same data import and visualization tools over and over in different applications. For instance, building a competitor analysis map will supplement your strategic planning as much as it will your expansion planning.

Now let’s go back to the presentation requirement – that of you, the sales manager, presenting to the executive team. I’ve just outlined above a bunch of ways for you to enhance your visual presentation to the management team; including the bit about using maps to verify and upgrade the sales pipeline. How do you think that’s going to play? A new visual approach to presenting the pipeline, complete with enhanced sales accountability across your department of ‘misfits’ – as they are known in the Executive Suite. I think you can count on holding your job for a few more months.

In the long run, you’re going to find the use of business mapping software to be the beginning of a beautiful friendship. And like Rick and Louis, you’ll come to understand that in business you focus on your little piece of the world and you make it your hill of beans and that it does matter.

Visualize, make it accountable, verify and report. Um, “Here’s looking at you kid.”

Find out why over 25,000 business users log into MapBusinessOnline.com

Contact: Geoffrey Ives geoffives@spatialteq.com (800) 425-9035, (207) 939-6866

MapPoint users – please consider www.MapBusinessOnline.com as your MapPoint Replacement.

Please read customer reviews or review us at Capterra, g2crowd

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Label Your Map Like You Mean It, Using Map Business Online


As you know, business mapping software is all about data visualizations. Business data imported into Map Business Online provides our business users with views of their competitors, staff, customers, and prospects. All of those points require labeling options.

With larger datasets, more than just ten or twenty records, we discourage turning on all labels at once. Labels can overwhelm a map and the map becomes meaningless when all you can see are labels. But we do allow the user to hover over a point and view a label with five flexible fields that display the information you feel is primary to your map goals. And if you really want to, have at it and turn on all those labels. It’s your map after all.

MBO provides multiple opportunities to customize the labeling of your imported business data points when mapping multiple locations. Included in these location point label features are MBO’s latest capabilities associated with adjusting the Callout Tag. In general we divide location labeling into three types:

Label – These are labeling tags associated with zip code, county or state districts. For example, each state shows a state label within the state.

Callout – Callouts are label tags that popup when you mouse over an object, point, or a district
Territory Labels – Territory labels act the same as regular labels do but are associated specifically with the territories you’ve created while sales territory mapping.

All naming tags and labels in MBO can be turned off and on. With regard to map layers like zip codes and states, you have the power to determine when those labels appear based on zoom level. Hover your mouse over the layer in question and click the Edit Gear. Choose the Label tag along the right side, and use the bottom function to control whether or not labels show, their size and font, and at which zoom level they appear. At each zoom level, the application will automatically decide which labels show and when labels don’t display, to control map clutter and label overlap.

The Callout Tag Enhancements
Callout tags are pop-up labels that occur when you hover over an imported layer point or a district like a zip code. We recently enhanced our callout tag features so that the user has more control over the size of the call out and how the text is displayed.

To access Callout Tag editing, in the Map and Data Tab hover over the layer and click the Edit Gear. You can now control callouts by adjusting:

• Callout tag size, and position
• Callout tag font, and text enhancements
• Callout tag color backgrounds
• Callout tag data sources and formats

Adding Sales Dollars to Territory Labels
Territories are usually built based on zip codes, counties or state map layers – or other map layers available in the Add Map Layers option. So when you want to add a calculation or numeric update to your territory label, once again, hover over the related map layer and click the Edit Gear. Select the Label option along the right side and then choose Format Labels.
Now choose Territory Labels. From Territory labels you will see below an option to link with your imported data layer. Choose the column that contains your numeric sales data. Feel free to edit the label text – like adding a “$” sign or maybe the words “Q2 Results.” After you’ve finished click Change Labels and see your data now populated in the territory label on the map. This is my favorite feature in Map Business Online, except the ability to import Jpegs as symbols so I can build a map dedicated just to Don Knotts. See video.
Barney Fife
Grow Your Own Symbols
Map Business Online let’s you choose your own symbols and add them to the available library of symbol options. Your industry may have its own library of standard symbols to choose from. As long as the symbols are of reasonable size, in Jpeg or bitmap format, you can import them for use on the map as mappoints.

To do this, you should have already selected a jpeg image and saved it to you desktop somewhere. Then in MBO simply click into the Symbol library where ever a symbol is available (color code by point, the Data Window) and scroll to the top of the library. Choose Custom Symbol and import your symbol pic into the library.

Editable Legend
And speaking of labeling, let’s not forget, that the map legend is entirely editable in Map Business Online. Use this tool to make your final map speak to your map audience. The legend pulls together your entire map presentation by allowing you to spin your message using terms your audience understands. Click that little circle in the upper right corner of the Map Legend and edit the points and layer names. You won’t regret it.

Your map viewers will never remember a confused, overwhelming map, but if you use MBO to make your map speak to your audience in terms they understand, they’ll always come to you for maps that help. You’ll be like the mad map maven, or the map-meister – at last known for something.

You should find the labeling of your imported data layers or on map geographic districts to be pretty straight forward. Click the help button for more suggestions or go to our Youtube video library for more approaches.

Find out why over 25,000 business users log into MapBusinessOnline.com

Contact: Geoffrey Ives geoffives@spatialteq.com (800) 425-9035, (207) 939-6866

MapPoint users – please consider www.MapBusinessOnline.com as your MapPoint Replacement.

Please read customer reviews or review us at Capterra, g2crowd

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Map Business Online and Your Data Security

For good reason both large and small businesses are worried about data security. It feels like we read about data breaches in the news almost every day. While at the same time, desktop software is steadily giving way to web-based or cloud service software because cloud services require less infrastructure, software updates are automatic, and these online tools are usually much more affordable. How can a business decision maker reconcile these two trends and feel their business data is safe and secure?

Data security at its most fundamental requires that business managers remain both cognizant and vigilant. We must stay aware of the challenges facing data privacy and be on guard for missteps and violations. Part of data vigilance is making sure certain business data sets are never uploaded to shared applications – on the desktop or the web. Personal data like social security numbers, credit card account numbers, and patient identity data are all extremely private and should never be used in a business mapping application. Make sure your business’ super sensitive data is never released for business analysis. Be vigilant by establishing and adhering to strict rules around your sensitive data management and make sure all employees and contractors adhere to your policies.

Map Business Online Data Protections
Here at Map Business Online, a web-based cloud service, we take data security very seriously. Our customers come to us from health care, financial services, national retail chains, franchise organizations, and a host of other vertical markets. So whether we’re talking about HIPAA concerns, bank accounts, credit card data, or just business intelligence, our customers share a strong desire to keep their business data well protected. Our customers depend on our data security vigilance.
MapBusinessOnline.com is a business data visualization tool. Data visualization is the core value of business mapping software. So, if you are using a businessmap, you are using it specifically to import business data onto a map, usually to develop shared data visualizations for constituents, clients, and employees.

Map Business Online collects certain personal information such as your name, e-mail address, and postal address, in our registration processes, to improve the services we offer to you, to communicate with you about Map Business Online services, and to provide effective customer support when needed.

When you plot a database on a digital map using Map Business Online we process the data on our servers. We extract only the data columns that you designate to be used on the map. We delete original data files immediately after the designated data has been extracted. We store selected data columns for you in our access-protected-database in encrypted form.

Encryption

Any and all data that is imported into Map Business Online is encrypted. Not all Cloud services provide encryption. Map Business Online applies best practices, standard data encryption algorithms that work at the account level and make routine business mapping sessions extremely difficult for evil doers to access.

Cloud Hosted Services

Software products typically offered as a Cloud or web-based service are served over the Internet by a cloud hosting agent. Map Business Online is hosted by Microsoft Azure, out of Atlanta, GA. Microsoft Azure is reliable, advanced, fast, and provides security compliant protocols that protect client software platforms and assure general security compliance for hosted applications. This means applications served up over the Azure cloud can comply with specific industry security requirements. Read more here: Microsoft Azure

Azure is one of several large and secure hosting agents available in the USA. Any of these cloud services spend a great deal of time and money making sure all of their services are secure. Map Business Online engineers comply with Azure policies and recommendations to assure hosting services remain secure across all transactions.

Secure Socket Layer (SSL) Protocols

MapBusinessOnline applies Secure Socket Layer (SSL) protocols to all business mapping web sessions specifically to protect user security across all transactions. SSL ensures that all business transactions, be they e-commerce or data analysis related, are kept private. Look for the S after HTTP in web URLs, and check for the Pad Lock symbol on any website to make sure SSL security settings are in place. Click the Globe icon to the left of our URL text to read about MBO security settings. Read more about SSL security protocols here: https://www.globalsign.com/en/ssl-information-center/what-is-ssl/

Map Business Online requires that all users logging into the application use their email address and a specific password. Your password prevents random users from accessing your account and viewing your maps and imported data layers. In fact, Map Business Online software engineers and employees cannot access your maps or view your business data. We have metering tools that let us monitor how much data you’ve imported, how many maps you’ve stored, how many routes you’ve developed but we cannot access your maps without security keys and software development.

The only way evil doers can access your saved MBO maps is if you provide them with your login credentials including the correct password. MBO does allow for shared web maps, and shared business map URL’s include password protection options. We encourage all business map users to share maps and imported business data only under password protection. And, if your data is not for public viewing consider not sharing it at all.

We can’t claim that Map Business Online is not 100% secure from privacy and data violation events. No cloud software service or desktop software can provide that level of protection. But through vigilance and through the assignment of proactive controls over your data sharing activities your business can remain confident that your business is at minimal risk of a major data breach through our business mapping services.

We encourage your feedback, questions, or suggestions about data security or any other business related matter.

Find out why over 25,000 business users log into MapBusinessOnline.com

Contact: Geoffrey Ives geoffives@spatialteq.com (800) 425-9035, (207) 939-6866

MapPoint users – please consider www.MapBusinessOnline.com as your MapPoint Replacement.

Please read customer reviews or review us at Capterra, g2crowd

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Create Sales Territories Using Drive Time Queries

Driving time is always an issue, isn’t it? How long a drive is it to get to Rolanda’s birthday party tomorrow? How long will it take on average for our patrons to reach our new restaurant? Is it faster to take the 10 or the Freeway to get to the All You Can Eat Icelandic Buffet tonight?

Driving times impact our lives daily, be they commuting delays or an emergency routing times during heavy traffic. Drive times have impact. So it makes sense that some companies might want to base their sales territory mapping assignments on driving times or driving distances. Using Drive Time tools to create sales territories are an alternative to the standard Map Business Online methods of territory creation including polygon queries, incremental selection, and territory creation from preassigned spreadsheet import.

Company’s with lot’s of field technicians may have interest in defining sales territories by drive time. It makes sense to organize areas of responsibility around specified drive times or distances from the technician’s home. Drive time is essential for retail mapping.

Drive Time Queries
Map Business Online business mapping software includes a Drive Time/Distance button in the toolbar – click the drop down next to the Search Data in Circle button. You’ll want that odd-shaped polygon button.

To begin a series of new sales territories based on Drive Time or Drive Distance polygons start with a list of points. Your drive time analysis usually starts from a series of specific locations, like all of your sales representative’s home offices. You might also choose all of your branch business locations. Create a spreadsheet of those business addresses and import those locations into Map Business Online. Plot multiple locations on a map.

Once imported, you will see that when you click on any of these points a mini toolbar opens up below the point, and on that mini toolbar you will find a Drive Time button. Before you click that drive time button choose the geographic district layer or map layer you would like to base your territories on: state, county, or zip code. More layers are available by clicking the Add Map Layers button.

The drive time button:Drivetime

Using the Map & Data Tab choose the district layer most appropriate for your territory. Most people focusing on drive time territories choose zip codes. But you could choose zip3 codes or Census tracts too. For this exercise let’s go with zip code mapping.

Now, back to that mini toolbar under your selected point. Click the drive time polygon button. Choose the drive time increment you’d like to set for your territory. For example, if you choose 25 minutes MBO will draw a polygon on the map that represents an area drivable along the road network in all directions from your central point for 25 minutes. (If zip codes are the only layer checked on, you’ll go right to naming.)

Once that polygon outline is displayed in yellow on the map, click the Binoculars icon on the mini toolbar. This will let you query the zip code layer. Choose the zip code layer and save your territory name when prompted.

Now you have created your first drive time sales territory. You could do the exact same process and choose a driving distance polygon instead. A driving distance query simply returns the zip code list within 25 driving miles of a central point, as opposed to driving minutes.

Demographic Maps
Remember if you add demographic data to your first territory by choosing the Add Data button in the Data Window, you can expect all additional territories based on zip codes in that map, to include the same demographic data. This is a fantastic way to optimize your territories based on population or income.

Additionally, in Map & Data you can click the Gear Icon and choose the Territory Options tab, which can allow territories to overlap. Allowing territories to intersect will let you identify areas of overlap and address them per your particular business rules.

Drive time business analysis helps smart businesses plan around the very real restrictions we face in day-to-day living. People may be willing to drive to visit retail stores, schools, and medical clinics up to a certain time frame. Drive time can help your business understand how far your customers are willing to drive and or operationally, how far your associates can drive and be efficient. Either way, the All You Can Eat Icelandic Buffet stands to benefit.

Find out why over 25,000 business users log into MapBusinessOnline.com

Contact: Geoffrey Ives geoffives@spatialteq.com (800) 425-9035, (207) 939-6866

MapPoint users – please consider www.MapBusinessOnline.com as your MapPoint Replacement.

Please read customer reviews or review us at Capterra, g2crowd

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Sales 101 & the Hard Conversation: A Basic Path to Sales Success

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A swarm of bees. If I can help catch a swarm of thirty thousand bees, you can sell.

After some twenty-five years in sales I find myself in an unusual situation.  The customers I speak with are buying my product and by in large, are extremely happy with it. This happy-customer phenomenon makes me stop and take stock of exactly how I got here. Why do I have happy customers?  I want to understand how I am able to sustain customers and grow business even in the face of hard conversations about pricing, service levels, competition, and product shortfalls.

My professional sales experience runs the gamut, from electronic and electrical distribution, automotive industry component supply, and finally to consumer and professional software sales. Before and during college I worked sandwich shops, sold cigarettes, vended soft-serve ice-cream.  And back in fifth grade, I started out delivering newspapers and mowing lawns. When I look back across five decades of transactions and interactions with customers, all jobs share that same basic fact: you provide a product or a service to a client in exchange for money, and you want to repeat the exercise.

In my experience success, in selling is dependent of three major factors:

  • Product Development – the value of the product or service you provide
  • Marketing – the way your product or service is presented to the world
  • Sales – the way you treat individual customers across all transactions. Do your customers trust you?

The chances are good that, as a sales person, you have minimal control over the product that you sell. Until your organization is confident in your ability to manage and develop customers, you are going to expected to focus on your primary job – sales. In my most recent role I’ve been slightly more involved on the product side.  I brought some expertise in the product I sell, but the product itself was already affordable, valuable, and in demand. This makes my sales job a whole lot easier.

Related Concept:  I believe sales success to be eighty percent luck. Right place, right product, right economy, right time.  Most high and mighty sales people you meet – just plain lucky.

The Part-time Marketer

So let’s forget about product value. Let’s assume, as a sales person, you only have control over your marketing and your selling approach. The chances are good, if you’re in sales you’ve probably been asked to handle some marketing elements from time to time.  That can mean your company is not spending much money on marketing. Your company may not have a marketing director on-board or perhaps your top-dog in marketing is a place holder, someone asked to plug a hole while the company focuses on other things.

Your part-time marketing effort is restricted by a tight budget that’s as limited as your time. Remember, if your official position is in sales you are going to be measured on sales results, not on how much time or money you dedicate to marketing. Marketing is often treated as a ‘we’ll get to it’ thing. One company I worked for always referred to the sales department as ‘marketing.’ So don’t quit your day job. 

When marketing you need to make sure your company’s Search Engine Marketing (SEM), usually a Google Ad Words campaign, and organic Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is active and generating traffic from Google, Bing, and Yahoo Internet searches.  You’re going to need to become a little conversant in the SEM/SEO aspects of the marketing world. You can hire a consultant or an agency to help you with SEM/SEO at a reasonable cost, but you have to search.  Contact me and I’ll recommend one. SEM (paid) and SEO (free) are critical processes to generating leads and in many cases are responsible for most e-commerce sales. If SEM/SEO is not working at your company and it doesn’t look like you’ll be allowed to make it work – leave right now. It means the business is stuck and you will fail. I guarantee you that your competitors are using SEM/SEO and it’s working for them.

Related Concept:  Don’t put sales people in part-time marketing roles. It takes six months to just come up to speed on the latest marketing technologies, which detracts from their selling focus, which means you will fire them. Hire a marketing director.

Do not waste the company’s money on trade shows, banner ads, print ads, TV ads or radio ads. Those are all obsolete methods of advertising.   I suppose there are a few businesses that can still drive local sales results with the right TV ad, but it’s generally not for you. For most of you it’s SEO or get out of marketing.

The Comfy Chair

SEO works like this. A potential customer types words into a search engine and clicks on a search engine’s returned results and lands on your landing page. Those landing pages are designed to make your customer feel confident they’ve come to the right place.   Organic search and paid search is like trapping a mouse. You use keywords as the bait. You place your mouse trap ad on the Internet as if it were the kitchen floor. And you hope to catch a mouse, or in our case – a customer.

Think back to college. Was your room the party room? That customer you seek is like someone who comes to your dorm room to party.  When they look into your room they need to see a comfy chair or two, maybe a bong, a cool poster, perhaps some liquor and glasses, some cool music should be playing, and your room is clean.  If they feel at home, they decide to stay and party.  It is the same with your landing page for your potential customer.  Upon landing there your future customer should immediately feel like they made the right choice by clicking on your site. No creepy off topic subjects to distract, just signs of your authority and clear pathways to answers and calls-to-action or purchasing.  Ah! Your customer is ready to party.

Deliberate Courteousness

Not every client will buy right off. Most are going to require some hand holding. That’s why you have a job in sales. You’re going to probably have to respond to an email.  It could also be a phone call, but most people today use email. This is especially true with younger customers; and they are gradually holding sway. Regardless of the channel, at all times be deliberately courteous.

Deliberate courteousness is dirt simple. It what your mom tried to teach you – a combination of politeness and common sense. It is also surprisingly absent in many sales interactions. I have to remind myself in the face of occasional rude customer, be deliberately courteous.

Related Concept:  Respond. RESPOND! Don’t let emails atrophy. Don’t set a spam filter trap for customer emails. Don’t be that guy who writes: “Janet, I’m sorry I didn’t respond two months ago. I just found your email in my spam filter.” NEXT! This happens all too often.

Start your email response with a ‘thank you.’ “Thank you for your interest in Specialty Dog Brushes.”  This simple and easy step immediately tells your customer that you are glad they contacted you and you are ready to help. Don’t say too much in this first email, perhaps an answer to an obvious question, or maybe clarify time zones for a meeting. Make it polite and professional with a ‘thank you’ signature and your full contact info.

Now your customer knows they are dealing with a professional. Your job is to keep them thinking that way.  Every comment you make, every email you send, every conversation you share counts. It all adds up to your professional persona in the eyes of the customer.

And don’t forget to spell check. We all misspell words. I may even have some grammar or spelling issues in this post. But, please spell check and think through your grammar. It matters. When a customer compares your email, with three misspelled words, to your competitor’s perfect email, guess who wins?

If you get phone messages, call back. Do it right away.  I have been stunned by the amount of customers I call back who express how thankful they are that I actually called back. You know what that means? That means sales people generally do not call back. Remember that. You can stand out from your competition just by calling back promptly. Your simple response puts you on the winning track. How freaking cool is that?

Related concept: The more you act like a professional the more you become a professional. No one has to know about your failures in a previous life. Act and you shall become.

Selling Method – Be Yourself and Know Your Product

Now that customers are calling and considering your product, you must answer their questions. Be honest and forthright. Over time, it is through speaking with customers that you will learn how your product solves business problems.  Listen carefully and answer their questions thoughtfully and succinctly.  Ask clarifying questions about how you can help them. Above all be honest and sincere. Be yourself.

There are many heavily marketed selling methods and sales pipeline management schemes that can help you generate sales and effectively manage your sales revenue funnel. You should explore these tools with an open mind and selectively apply some of the methods they purport. I particularly like, The Funnel Principlehttp://www.breakthrough-sales.com/funnel-principle.html.   Just remember: 95 percent of the customers you speak with today will be almost as educated as you are about your industry and your product. The Internet makes it easy for buyers to research products and companies in detail. In a way, it’s a buyer’s market simply the Internet exists.  When people get smart about products and companies they easily see through methods and scripts. So, be yourself and answer their questions with sincerity. If you don’t have answers tell them you’ll get back to them, and do just that. It is an opportunity to show follow through.

I’ve observed several sales-strategy gurus enter and exit companies over time. It is generally a painful yet somewhat entertaining exercise to watch. One ‘guru’ was an alleged expert at a particular selling methodology. He followed a particular process exactly, always listening to the customer, tying the customer requirement to the product and the product back to customer benefit; always asking for the order. For process he got an A grade. Unfortunately he sold nothing. One of his clients was the largest oil and gas company in the world.  That energy industry buyer’s comment on this ‘expert’ sales person was simple, “That guy was worst sales person ever.” The finest sales strategy on Earth can’t overcome an offensive personality.

Related Concept:  The typical customer greeting, “How can I help you?” should define your role as a sales person. You get paid to help.  Help is your consistent role throughout the customer relationship.

I am no sales guru, but here’s a list of the primary selling skills that work for me:

  • Always review the customer’s website to better understand their business
  • Be an active and responsive listener – use empathy, repeat back what you’ve heard
  • Resist the urge to speak (this is different from listening) – over time this becomes easier but may be very difficult for some of you talkers. Often a customer will sell themselves while you take notes
  • Tie the customer’s stated requirements back to your product’s benefit. Try to focus on just three major customer requirements. Look for a requirement that your product uniquely addresses (that is not price)
  • Try to politely ask questions that reveal who the customer is and how they process decisions
  • Don’t talk about competitors unless asked to. Tread carefully here – saying positive things about competitors can build your industry authority. Trashing a competitor can destroy your credibility
  • Write down key points and follow-up items. Sound like a no-brainer? Do it. Write it down.
  • The customer is not always right and you must master the art of correcting without insulting; communicating without pontificating
  • Don’t ask for the order. That’s obnoxious. Ask what more you can do for your customer

Be patient with your customers.  You have nowhere else to go. You are paid to answer their questions and hold their hand through processes. I know on bad days it can feel exasperating. Remind yourself – helping this difficult customer is exactly what you are supposed to be doing right now.

Early in my career I worked in industrial controls distribution.  There was a low-level engineer that worked for one of our relatively small accounts. This guy was a royal pain. He’d come in our counter area at odd hours and demand detailed support. He was a very picky and sometimes down-right rude.  My associate Ray had the account and the patience of Job with this customer.  I’d head home on a Friday night and Ray would be bent over the sales counter, eye-to-eye with this guy, debating wiring diagrams. Several years later that customer had been promoted to lead engineer at a major Maine business and awarded a massive stores contract to our company. You just never know who you are talking to. Way to go Ray.

Sales Happen and So Do Hard Conversations

If you are selling a solid product that people need, and your SEO is working, you are going to get the clicks and calls.  If you treat people courteously you will get the calls back and sales will happen.  But now comes the hard part. Once people get to know you a little, and especially after they spend money, they expect your product or service to display real value. There will always be points where your product or service falls short of expectations. Nothing is perfect.

Unmet expectations could happen for many reasons:

  • Some customers just naturally expect too much
  • You may have deliberately or inadvertently over promised
  • Customers might be used to another product or service and yours requires they use new work-flows
  • Customers might just ask for something because ‘if you don’t ask, you don’t get’
  • Some customers are in over their heads and demand excessive support to get comfortable
  • Your product or service might not be up to par with market requirements – in technology this happens on a cyclical basis

How do you have the hard conversation with these valued customers and not lose sales? First of all, you do it by having the conversation. Don’t avoid it. If you avoid the hard conversation all the work you’ve done up to this point is lost.  Your customer will feel ignored, demeaned, or just pissed off. They will lose respect for you.  Your college dormitory is no longer a place for them to party. They will take their business to a place that feels more comfortable.  So step one is to decide to have the conversation.

  1. Decide to have the conversation
  2. Think about your response. Thank the customer for asking. Come to the conversation with ideas, suggestions, or workarounds
  3. Use the phone. If the conversation is hard – you should use the phone not email
  4. Use open language. Engage the customer’s ideas and concerns. Repeat their major points back to them to make them feel heard
  5. If the requirement is complex, bring the issue to your higher-ups. Tell the customer you will elevate the issue – and actually do just that. Good companies want to hear about customer objections. 

Related concept: Email is less effective with hard conversations. Emails can easily present an inadvertent harshness in tone.  When in doubt – pick up the phone.

I have found when I follow this hard conversation approach my relationship with hard conversation customers almost always improve. And in the long run, the product I represent becomes a more effective product because of the plain feedback I received.

This process won’t save every customer. There will always be lost customers. No sales person keeps 100% of their customers. But by having hard conversations in a positive and open manner, with follow-up, you will gain a reputation as a person of your word; as a sales person who feels like a partner, not like a vendor.

Here at www.MapBusinessOnline.com we experienced a rare service break-down due to a software glitch.  There were multiple customers impacted and many called us wondering when things would improve. It took a few days and it was stressful. But in the end every one of those customers thanked us for fixing the issue and the reason they thanked us was because we kept them informed the whole way through. It was frustrating for the customer but they knew we were on it.  Make the hard conversation call.

Make your customers feel at home. Welcome them to your world with comfy landing pages, positive emails and phone greetings. Be deliberately courteous. Listen more, talk less. Keep the customer interested by responding to questions and don’t avoid the hard conversation. This will serve you well in your current role and in roles to come, because sooner or later your luck will run out and you will have to spin the wheel once more and take on a new sales role (and maybe marketing) in a new organization.

Related concept: Treat your associates and reports exactly as you would a customer. There’s a golden rule there somewhere.  Follow it.

Geoffrey Ives is Vice President of Sales for www.MapBusinessOnline.combusiness mapping software for sales & marketing professionals.  He would be happy to receive comments or answer questions about this article.

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Lyme Disease May Not Kill You – But You’ll Wish It Had

I hope you will excuse this interruption of our usual business mapping blog for a short public service message.  Spring finally reached the state of Maine yesterday and many of us winter closeted Mainers spent the day outside watching snow melt away, sitting in the sun, and beginning work on our gardens.  However, I am well aware that with spring and the joy of outdoors comes the extremely serious danger of catching Lyme disease.  I know because I’ve come down with it twice – two years in a row.

Learn more on the Lyme tic here: http://www.cdc.gov/ticks/life_cycle_and_hosts.html

Symptoms are many and vary from person to person. My year one symptoms were different from year two.  Both times I felt like crap but I got the rash only in year two. For me the list included:  trouble staying asleep, aches, fever, itching, overwhelming fatigue, headaches, a stiff neck, and ear-ringing.

As I mentioned, last year’s bout included a rash but it didn’t seem to match online descriptions. I was slightly achy and I had that stiff neck.  I really didn’t think I was sick but symptoms persisted for three weeks.  I went to my doctor apologizing for being paranoid and asked him to check me for Lyme. It came back positive.  I could easily have attributed the symptoms to growing old, a cold, or some other low level reason.

One of the very real dangers of Lyme is that it is very difficult to test positive for. Often the diagnostic tests are inconclusive. The only cure is prescription antibiotics so make sure to have a serious talk with your doctor if you suspect Lyme.

Get Proactive

Tics are most active April through September. In the past I haven’t been proactive enough at preventive measures. But this year I’ve already started:

  • Spray your pants, shoes, socks, hat with Permethrin available at outdoor stores like Cabellas or on Amazon.com. Evidently this stuff both repels and kills tics
  • Buy a pair of pre-permeated Permethrin ankle chaps and wear them religiously – well not at church maybe but always when working outside
  • Other repellents include 20 to 30% DEET (N, N-diethyl-m-toluamide) but only last for a few hours
  • Take showers when done with your outdoor activities
  • Check yourself for those small tics
  • If you feel a slight tickling in one general area over and over get out of those clothes and shower. Run the clothes through a high heat dryer cycle to kill any tics. This happened to me and I’m pretty sure I could have prevented my second case if I’d reacted.

Here’s a map of the 2013 reported Lyme cases: http://www.cdc.gov/lyme/stats/maps/map2013.html

Enjoy your spring and summer and take precautions to avoid Lyme disease.

____________________________________________________________________________
Find out why over 25,000 business users log into MapBusinessOnline.com

Contact: Geoffrey Ives geoffives@spatialteq.com (800) 425-9035, (207) 939-6866

MapPoint users – please consider www.MapBusinessOnline.com as your MapPoint Replacement.

Please read customer reviews or review us at Capterra, g2crowd

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SpatialTEQ Announces MapBusinessOnline.com Available on Salesforce AppExchange, the World’s Leading Enterprise Apps Marketplace

LOWELL, Mass. – March 26, 2015 — Map Publisher SpatialTEQ Inc. today announced the release of MapBusinessOnline.com (MBO) for Salesforce users – business mapping, sales planning and sales territory mapping for organizations and professionals using the world’s #1 CRM. MapBusinessOnline.com 4.4.4 (MBO) will be accessible to licensed subscribers of Salesforce via the Salesforce AppExchange. MBO for Salesforce provides a complete array of business mapping software tools designed to support the sales and marketing mapping needs of the retail sales, industrial sales, healthcare, financial and other vertical markets.

MapBusinessOnline.com for Salesforce users enables direct integration and easy transfer of contacts, prospects, and opportunities from within Salesforce directly into Map Business Online business maps. Business data can then be visualized, searched, segmented by geography or filtered, and exported back to Salesforce for campaign work or other projects. Salesforce users with sales territory assignments by zip code, city, county, or state will be able to easily import those records into Map Business Online for sales territory creations and management enabling shared map views and queries by territory. Salesforce users will also have access to MBO’s shared map editing tools for collaborative business map creation and editing across designated teams of MBO subscribers.
Banner Yellow

Geoffrey Ives, vice president of sales for SpatialTEQ said, “MBO for Salesforce users is designed to enhance sales productivity and drive down fuel costs through optimized sales planning. Franchisors, and general sales organizations will create and manage sales territories that expand upon Salesforce sales funnel accountability practices, further driving accountability to every sales organization. And Salesforce marketers will gain access to geographic visualizations and analysis of customers, prospects and competitors for use in developing effective campaigns.”

About Map Business Online
From the creators of BusinessMAP, http://www.MapBusinessOnline.com has been providing sales & marketing professionals with affordable and intuitive mapping software for Macs and PCs since 2010. Design, edit, and share maps that reflect your business. Create and manage sales territories that drive accountability into your sales force. Access optimized multi-stop routes to control travel costs. No other map software solves so much for so little.

About Salesforce AppExchange
Salesforce AppExchange is the world’s leading enterprise apps marketplace that empowers companies to sell, service, market and engage for the Internet of Customers. With more than 2,200 partner apps and more than 2.4 million customer installs, it is the most comprehensive source of social, mobile and connected cloud apps for business.

Salesforce, AppExchange and others are trademarks of salesforce.com, inc.

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