Friday, May 30, 2014

Alexander Bouri Provides 4 Creative Ideas to Help Boost Your eCommerce Holiday Sales

As an online business owner, you're always looking for different ways to boost your sales. And with each changing season comes an opportunity to think creativity and get your products and services out there. If you're looking to find out how to make the most of this holiday season, business professional Alexander Bouri of Seament Holding provides four original ideas to help you out.

Get creative with advertising
Get festive with your advertising to appeal to your customers and be more competitive with other businesses. Make sure that your site is pleasing to the eye and reflects both your general branding and any seasonal promotions that you are having. In addition, you can invest in different advertising strategies (and not just online ones), including television and radio commercials, online advertising, social media marketing, and mobile advertising. If you're on a budget and don't want to overspend, determine which type of strategies will help you reach your audience the fastest.

Offer a free product
'Tis the season for giving, right? One fast, easy and highly effective way to capture the interest of customers is by giving away a free product, which you can offer by itself or with a purchase. This is especially beneficial if you have a seasonal product. Since everyone loves a good bargain, you can also run sales and promotions, and coupons are a tried and true way to do so. You can provide customers with online coupons via e-mail or through a promotion code that will save them a certain percentage or amount off their total.

Have a contest
You can really get your customers excited by having a contest, and social media is the perfect platform to do so on. Contests are simple and fun, and are a great way to collect contact information. After all, who wouldn't want to receive e-mails if they could get a free limited edition item or a fabulous prize out of the deal? By having a contest via social media, you can expand your fan base on these platforms, build customer relationships, compile a substantial contact list, increase brand awareness, and promote any products you're selling.

Reveal a new product
Customers are always on the lookout for new products, but never more so than during the holidays. With so many people trying to find unique gifts for family and friends, it's the perfect time to reveal any new and exciting items that your company may have lined up. You can display your new product on the home page of your website and e-mail the details to your current customer list. You can give it even more exposure by showcasing it on social media.  

Friday, May 9, 2014

The Story of Mark Bouri is the Story of Cement

Under his father's tutelage, Mark Bouri and his brothers have taken over leadership of world cement leader Seament. If you aren't in the cement industry, you may not know the names Mark Bouri or Seament – but to those who are in development or construction, Seament has become legendary. That's because it's the group that transformed how cement companies do business and first brought quality building materials en masse to the developing world.

In the 1970s, Nigeria was ready to spring from a third world country to a developing nation. Industrialization was the buzzword of the era. But while local business leaders and their foreign counterparts were all excited about Nigeria's potential, actual development was slow because of a painful practical consideration: Nigeria had a shortage of cement.

Most countries take cement for granted, but the reality is that not every nation has the natural resources necessary to create cement. That means that in many countries, cement is an import. And without this crucial import, almost any modern development will stall. Cement is needed for the foundations of houses and offices, for the walls of apartment buildings and tall skyscrapers, for bridges and highways, and (of course) for factories, power plants, airports and refineries. Nothing in the developed world happens without cement, the most versatile building material there is.

Mark Bouri's father founded Seament to combat that problem. Initially he began importing cement as best he could, and his superior salesmanship and dedication to quality meant early success. However, no salesman can succeed forever if he runs out of product. And Nigeria at the time had a shortage not because of lack of local initiative, but because of its ports.

Nigeria's ports were outdated. They could handle some seagoing vessels, but not the giant cement ships that are needed to carry cement in bulk. These ships were just too big for the ports to take. Seament decided to fix that. They built and launched their own floating loading platform—essentially a mini port unto itself—and anchored it offshore. This platform was able to accommodate the large cement ships and then bring the cement to shore. The innovation secured Seament's position as a world leader in cement.

Seament has now passed to Mark Bouri and his siblings. But the change in leadership only reflects an even greater commitment to the same values and innovation of their father. Mark Bouri has kept Seament as a well-positioned, highly successful international cement company.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Maurice Bouri and the Cement Industry

Depending on where you live in the world, you may not think of cement as a big deal. Today almost the entire globe has access to affordable cement, but for many nations, this wasn't always the case. Throughout the 20th century, development and growth was synonymous with the construction of large-scale infrastructure and manufacturing centers, all of which require huge amounts of building materials—typically cement. Housing and government or private office space also required cement. That meant that if a country had no access to affordable cement, they were unlikely to be able to keep up with industrialization, and would not succeed as a developing nation.

Enter Maurice Bouri and Seament.

Maurice Bouri is the son of Seament founder Alex Bouri, and manages Seament today. Seament is the company that revolutionized developing countries' ability to get the cement they needed for growth and industrialization. When Seament was founded in the 1970s, it started off serving local and international companies in Nigeria. These companies counted on Seament to get them the materials they needed to get their operations off the ground. Seament was able to succeed on a local scale but, Maurice Bouri's father knew that if they were going to grow internationally, they would need to do more. They began to look at the underlying problems in Nigeria's cement importing.

Cement was difficult to import at that time because it was most economical when shipped aboard giant cement ships. However, Nigeria's antiquated ports had no capacity to dock these giant behemoths. They were just too big. Seament could see that other developing nations had a similar problem, leading to bottlenecks in the supply chain. They knew that if they could solve this problem for one nation, they could solve it for many.

While most businessmen clamored to expand the ports, a proposal that could take decades to complete, Seament took action. The company came up with its own proprietary loading platform that floated free in the water offshore. These "floating ports" could anchor in deep water to facilitate the seagoing cement ships, and then transfer the cement to shore on smaller boats.

The invention was a success. Seament went on to lead a huge time of growth in the international cement industry, spurring development in nine different countries. Now under the leadership of Maurice Bouri and his siblings, it remains one of the most innovative and successful cement companies in existence.

Maurice Bouri carries on the family tradition of value, creativity, and good business. With his guidance, Seament is likely to continue as an industry leader for many years to come.

Friday, May 2, 2014

The Story of Charles Bouri

Charles Bouri may not be a household name, but cement is. And in many countries today, cement would still be in short supply if it wasn't for the innovation of Charles Bouri's family company, Seament.

Seament was first started in Nigeria by Charles Bouri's father, an American University-educated businessman of Greek and Lebanese descent. Seament was founded when, during the 1970s, Nigeria was ready to industrialize, but had great difficulty getting the necessary raw materials for all of the construction that industrialization requires. Plants, factories, and infrastructure all required an abundant supply of cement, but Nigeria was sorely lacking.

Seament began as a local concern and started supplying much-needed cement to local businesses for construction. Although successful, the scale was still very small because Nigeria's ports were not able to handle large cement imports. Industrial cement ships were too large to dock at a typical Nigerian port, leading to a continued shortage. Seament noticed this problem in a number of developing nations at the time, and knew that in order to bolster both the cement industry and the local economies they would need to find a way around the bottleneck of the ports.

There was no way to easily expand or upgrade the ports themselves, and doing so would require years of government work. So Charles Bouri's father, the founder of Seament, came up with a workaround. Seament conceived, designed, and built the very first floating cement port. This "port," essentially a modified barge, floated off the main port and was able to dock with major seagoing cement vessels. The cement was then shuttled to the normal port using local vessels. This ingenious workaround got Seament a great deal of respect from its competitors, who soon began copying the technique. But by leading the way, Seament was able to revolutionize not only Nigeria's developing economy, but those of eight other struggling nations, as well.

Charles Bouri went on to follow in his father's footsteps, playing an active role in Seament and becoming general manager of offshoot Seabulk. Seament continues to carry on the same spirit of innovation today, and serves countries around the world by delivering quality, high-grade cement at affordable costs. The company makes it a point to help spur development and growth wherever it works, while putting substantial resources into protecting the environment.

The work of Seament and Charles Bouri is one of the major steps in bringing cement, a crucial building material, to the developing world.