Categorized | Business Authors

The Guide to Getting Paid: weed out bad paying customers, collect on past due balances, and avoid bad debt.

Michelle Dunn

Michelle Dunn is an award winning author and columnist frequently featured in the Wall Street Journal, CNN and Forbes. She has over 24 years experience in credit and debt collection. Look for her newest book being released in May by Wiley Publishing titled, “The Guide to Getting Paid, weed out bad paying customers, collect on past due balances and avoid bad debt”, available now on Amazon.

Book synopsis:

When the economy took a nosedive in recent years, businesses in every industry suddenly had to make more collection calls than ever before. If those businesses didn’t have an effective credit policy in place, they found themselves scrambling. Many fell behind on their own bills, and bad debt rippled through the economy.

What many business owners fail to realize is that credit management IS your business. A credit policy will help you make more sales, increase cash flow, and make a profit. The Guide to Getting Paid teaches you how to manage your business in an efficient and effective way.

Why readers should buy this book:

In The Guide to Getting Paid you’ll get detailed advice on how to create a simple credit policy that is tough but flexible, has specific action guidelines, and gets enforced consistently. Avoid the common mistakes people make, such as not checking credit, not getting any signed paperwork, or being unfamiliar with laws.

Why did I write this book:

I wrote this book because of all the emails and questions I receive from business owners and entrepreneurs about how they can check customers credit, how they can get paid on time and in full and how to collect from customers that have become past due. I found that most of the books available on this topic were outdated and did not include information on new and updated collection laws as well as how collectors use new technologies.

Michelle Dunn, The Guide to Getting Paid: weed out bad paying customers, collect on past due balance, and avoid bad debt

My website link is http://www.Credit-and-Collections.com or http://www.MichelleDunn.com

The website link to order the book: http://www.amazon.com/Guide-Getting-Paid-Customers-Balances/dp/1118011619/

Yes, I have a blog (http://www.Credit-and-Collectons.com) where I talk about everything to do with credit and debt collection. Some of the topics I cover are how businesses can check peoples credit, set up a credit policy, enforce a credit policy, get past due customers back on track, the laws regarding debt collection, how collectors are using social media in collections, how to avoid getting bad checks and what to do if you do get one, limiting your credit risk, auto collections, bankruptcy, making effective collection calls, establishing business credit, dealing with excuses, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, hiring and paying collectors and much more.

I do speak quite often, some of the topics I speak about on a regular basis are:

Getting Paid using Social Media
Email Collections: Do’s and Don’ts
Understanding the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act
Effective Collections: a Proactive approach to Credit Management
Establishing Payment Arrangements: Beyond Net 30

When I present these topics I talk about how a business owner can utilize social media in their collection efforts legally, how to use email to aid in collections from past due customers and how to do it without breaking the law or alienating the customer. In my presentation about understanding the FDCPA I talk about what the rules are for collectors, what they can and can’t do and how to avoid violations. In Effective Collections I talk about how a business owner can make the best use of their time and resources in order to manage their credit and limit their credit risk while extending credit to new and existing customers. In Establishing payment arrangements I talk about how a business owners can set up payment plans, how to set them up and what questions to ask the customer in order to be able to offer a solution and payment arrangement that will work for them and for you. Ensuring that you get paid and the customer is happy.

Yes, I do my own marketing and PR and have done so well with it that I authored a book on the topic. In my experience the best PR strategy for a budding author is to write a marketing plan, find out who your target audience is and then “hang out” where they are. Follow the marketing plan and remember that it will change as you work it, accept that it will change and use it as a guide to keep you on track, motivated and ease frustration. Once you know where your target audience is and you are familiar with those websites, blogs, magazines, or online forums take the time to listen and participate. Don’t just plug your book, offer some real and helpful advice based on your expertise so that folks will see that you know what you are talking about and then they will check out your book. Use chapters of your book as excerpts to send to blogs and magazines that your target audience reads. Share those posts on social media and answer comments. Sharing your information and expertise is the most effective way to promote your book. Also, remember that as you market your book it can seem as though nothing is happening, this all takes time. Don’t get discouraged and continue to follow your marketing plan and move forward.

I use twitter, LinkedIn and created a Facebook page for my book to help me to promote the book. Doing this helps me to reach people I would otherwise never have been able to reach.

http://www.LinkedIN.com/in/creditmd
http://www.Twitter.com/DunnMich
http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Guide-to-Getting-Paid/175893280661

The free online tools that I use are social networks, posting articles and doing guest blog posts. The free offline tools that I use are writing my columns to get my name out there, donating books and articles, donating my time to speak at different community events and networking.

The one thing that I have always done right is to know that nothing is impossible and that I can do anything I set my mind to no matter what anyone else says. I have had people tell me I couldn’t start a collection agency, so I did. I have also had people tell me I could not make a living being a writer, which I have done. I am very determined and if someone tells me I can’t do something, I try even harder. Failure is not an option.

Books that I have read and I would recommend to others are:

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Steven Covey
Yes, you Can! By Sam Deep & Lyle Sussman
Any of the Guerilla Marketing books by Jay Conrad Levinson
Putting it on paper by Dawn Josephson
Getting Business to Come to You by Paul Edwards
1001 ways to Market your Services by Rick Crandall

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