intellectual property new

Why is Intellectual Property Relevant to Your SME

Along with human creativity and inventiveness, intellectual property is all around us. Every product or service that we use in our daily lives is the result of a long chain of big or small innovations, such as changes in designs, or improvements that make a product look or function the way it does today. Take a simple product. For example, a pen. Ladislao Biro’s famous patent on ballpoint pens was in many ways a breakthrough. But, like him, many others have improved the product and its designs and legally protected their improvements through the acquisition of IP rights. The trademark on your pen is also intellectual property, and it helps the producer to market the product and develop a loyal clientele.

And this would be the case with almost any product or service in the marketplace. Take a CD player. Patent protection is likely to have been obtained for various technical parts of a CD player. Its design may be protected by industrial design rights. The brand name is most probably protected by a trademark and the music played in the CD player is (or has been) protected by copyright.

business counselor


Tobi is a business startup and the founder of a digital learning community and he recounts his experience during his first business counseling session with APLUS Trainers.

The Need: "Being the case that I have little experience about business development, I'd wanted to meet a business expert who can offer guidance in building not just a successful business, but the strategy needed to form a formidable team. Also, to be able to do a holistic evaluation of the whole business idea in order to offer practical perspectives of what is profitably achievable, and how best to go around it"

Outcome: "Mrs. Titi is warm and welcoming- I think this gave me the opportunity to just be...during the meeting. She was quite honest and pragmatic- not out there to just make me feel cool and heady with my ALMIGHTY idea. Her emphasis on the Core Value Proposition was a call to reflect for me. I learnt that its quite easy just to think in solitude that an idea is the global game changer, whereas its just a fantasy"

"Mrs.Titi gave me an access to a lot of relevant information. I almost felt as if she was using another type of google / was an eye-opening experience I must say".

"In conclusion, I can't wait to meet Mrs. Titi again. I'm hoping that I'll give her an Ah Ah..!! moment- I guess I can wait after all"

Business counseling, also known as business mentoring, is a highly effective process that enables business owners to work through, and explore possibilities on the issues affecting theirbusiness.

I have been a business counselor and mentor for ten years now and I have seen how small businesses have grown through the process. Startups in particular are a delight as I like to work with creative ideas from great minds.

Its time small businesses realize the importance of a business counselor/mentor. Do you ever take your car to the carpenter’s workshop when it needs fixing? Why? I am sure it is the fear of getting things totally screwed up by someone who is not trained to handle it. The same goes for your business! When the business is not doing as well and help is needed, when a business idea is seeking expression and structure, a business counselor/mentor is the right place to go and get it sorted. Mentoring, or business counseling, is a process that requires the counselor/mentor and you, the business owner, to look into the core of the business and to work together to develop a plan of action that will guide both you and your business forward.

Business counselors due to their nature sometimes end up solving personal problems too especially if it affects the desired success of the business. Counselors have become trusted friends on the long run as they are there to help. The joy of a business counselor is to see that the client breaks forth and breaks through the barriers. It is most gratifying I must say.

Many of our clients have found it highly useful to meet with one of our mentors at APLUS Trainers to discuss about their particular situation. This sessions usually leads to the client and the mentor agreeing on a specific plan of action to take which could entail carrying out a task or assignment, attending a specific programme, meeting with an expert, writing a business plan, conducting a survey, developing business tools, organizing a brainstorming session with a focus group among other things. The business counseling process is structured with the desired end in mind and a means to measure progress.

If you are considering seeing a business counselor anytime soon, talk to us at APLUS Trainers. Call us on 08037041752 or 08083533172. You can also send an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

In a global economy, the need for SMEs to increase their competitiveness cannot be overemphasized. The first place to start is knowing and crafting the UNIQUE CUSTOMER VALUE PROPOSITION (UCVP) and BRAND BUILDING through consistent focus on quality and communicating this without fail. While small businesses are desirous of growth, thinking global is one sure way to achieve it. Business in the 21st century has become highly competitive because the world has become a globally competitive marketplace. With the advent of DIGITAL MEDIA and diverse SOCIAL MEDIA platforms that are freely and easily accessible to all, expanding the reach of businesses have become possible thereby providing opportunities for small business to go global.  Countless businesses have been given the opportunity to connect to global markets thereby increasing their chances of survival. Why not yours? 

Our question to you is "Have you leveraged SOCIAL MEDIA and other DIGITAL MEDIA platforms to increase your business visibilty?"

If your answer is NO, dont miss the APLUS Trainers 1 day training on Social Media Branding & Marketing

Date: Saturday, 16th April 2016. Time is 8:00am – 5pm  Fee: N7,500 (early bird registration is N5,000)

Venue: G-Consulting Training centre, 4th Floor Abiding Grace Plaza (by Federal Government boys college), along Apo legislative quarters, Apo, Gudu road.

Participants will be taken through the following practical sessions

  1. Crafting your Unique Customer Value Proposition (UCVP)
  2. Brand building strategies
  3. Business Communication & Marketing – professional letters & email, professional website/blog, word-of-mouth
  4. Practical session on social media platforms (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram)
  5. Using Social Media marketing planning tool to decide which medium works best for you and your business.


Internet is provided for the practical session. Come along with a laptop if you have one. If you don’t have, one will be provided for you.

Post training:

Complimentary Business Advisory support for 3 months





How to inspire employees, investors and customers.

By Carmine Gallo

For the past year, I have interviewed renowned leaders, entrepreneurs and educators who have an extraordinary ability to sell their visions, values and themselves. What I’ve found are seven techniques that you can easily adopt in your own professional communication with your employees, clients and investors.


“Ask, and it will be given to you, seek, and you will find, knock, and the door will be opened to you, for everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened”.

History is filled with incredible riches and astounding benefits people have received simply by practicing this principle. Yet it is still a challenge that holds most people back. It is simple but profound. It says ASK!

If you are like most people you may be holding yourself back by not asking for the information, support, money and time you need to fulfill your vision and make your dreams come true because you are afraid to ASK! But why are people afraid to ask?


Since ancient times, poets & philosophers had proposed that true intelligence that enhances success is beyond mere logical acumen or high IQ; they insist that it must be a blend of heart & head, thought & feeling. This explains the famous Marya Mannes quote that “The sign of real intelligence is the ability to control emotions by the application of reason"

You probably all know people, either at work or in your personal lives, who are really good company, who always seem to know just what to say and how to say it. They're always our first port of call when we need company or have a problem to solve. They are so considerate and tactful, that even if they don't find an immediate solution to your problem; you would still leave their company more hopeful and optimistic.


We have a generation of college graduates who treat English language like a rented mule. They push, prod and poke it into submission for the lowly purposes of texting, emailing and – God help us – tweeting. Never mind the millions of years it’s taken for human speech to evolve into a wondrous system of nuance and complexity. We now have an entire generation that would rather communicate like birds on a telephone wire.

The rules of spelling, grammar and punctuation are not simply ignored; they are beaten with a stick. Language has no intrinsic beauty. On the rare occasions when technology fails and these bright young minds must use the spoken word, they use a vocabulary so flea-bitten with “um,” “uh,” “like,” “you know” and “sorta” that it does, in fact, resemble the muted braying of a barnyard animal.


A competitive advantage is simply defined as the advantage or ability a firm has over its rivals in the industry; or the ability a firm has to outperform its competition. This advantage allows the firm to do better than its competitors by generating greater sales or margins and/or retaining more customers.

There are two main types of competitive advantages: Comparative Advantage and Differential Advantage.


A young man fell asleep during math class. He woke up as the bell rang, looked at the blackboard, and copied down the two problems that were there. He assumed they were the homework for the night. He went home and labored the rest of the afternoon and into the evening knowing if he didn’t complete the work he would surely fail the class.

He couldn’t figure out either one but he kept trying for the rest of the week. Finally, he got the answer to one and brought it to class. The teacher was absolutely stunned. The boy feared he had done too little, too late. It turned out the problem he solved was supposedly unsolvable.