Vargas & Vargas Insurance

1133 Washington St
Dorchester, MA 02124

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Low Cost Marketing Ideas for Your Small Business

One of the most-asked questions from small business owners is this: How do I market my business without spending a fortune? Thankfully, there are lots of potential customers out there for you, you just have to know how to find them. Here are a few tips for getting the word out about what you offer without breaking the bank:

  • Word-of-Mouth advertising is free! Just ask your customers if they are happy with the service that you provided and ask them to let their friends, family, and co-workers know about your business, and the word may start to spread.
  • Leverage Social Media – depending on the type of business you have, you can consider using many social media platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and more.
  • There are many local events going on in the Greater Boston area all year round. Ask to be an event sponsor or volunteer to help out in order to both aid the community and gain exposure for your business.
  • Running a contest could encourage your current clients to spread the word about your business – just make sure to spread the word both in person and on your Social Media.
  • Ask for reviews on Google and Yelp. If a customer is satisfied with your business, let them know that it would be a huge help to you if they would post a review of your business on websites like Yelp and Google. After all, those sites are a major influence on potential customers!
  • Leverage your friends, family, coworkers, really anyone that you have met in the past, typically referred to as your top 100, or executive 200, I call it working your Dunbar’s 150, leave a message below and I can share with you more details.

Here’s another tip on how to save your small business some money: talk to a Vargas and Vargas Insurance agent about your Massachusetts small business insurance. We can get you the insurance coverage you need while making sure that you get the discounts you deserve – so call 617-298-0655 today for your free quote.

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I’m In Love With Many Things…

“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”
-Mahatma Gandhi

Thank you to everyone who showed their love by replying to last week’s message!

Your feedback and responses have been incredible, AND I am so looking forward to having coffee with you and will reach out to everyone else by the end of this week to schedule a time for us to meet.

I’m glad last week’s emails resonated with so many people!

I am a man in love. I’m in love with many things, and a few people. And I’m also in love with learning – it’s what makes my ‘business-me’ work well.

I’m drinking a Starbucks “Clover Pressed” Panama Carmen Estate Reserve Blend at our local Starbucks shop (I find that I sometimes work better here than at home or the office, it helps me to pause and people watch). What’s in your cup?

I asked in last week’s message, “How are you feeling about your year so far?” I am feeling pretty good about my year… the summer is here, which in my book has always meant that the workload scales back a notch or two and Kathy and I get outdoors more than ever, and all of the meet and greet family and friend events are starting, of which I try to not miss any.

Lately, I’m learning from people who push beyond average. The time for average is over. I am learning from people who live simply but with impact. I’m learning how clarity and the value of integrating your life around the alignment of your mission, your goals, and the targets related to those two points matters a lot more than which social network you use.

We are wasting so much energy in turbulence instead of in forward motion. We are drowning ourselves in distraction (Trump, Russia, impeachment, etc.) and are avoiding facing the work that we must do. We’re still chasing the shiny and new when what we need most are the basics. We are seeking every possible opportunity to lie to ourselves, coddle ourselves, or make excuses.

There are plenty of employees and passive people roaming the planet that are just waiting for “the man” to ruin their lives more so that they will have something new to complain about. But you’re an owner/entrepreneur. Even if you’re an ‘employeepreneur,’ your belief is that you own your choices affect your own your life, and you aim to own your future.

We strive to build our capabilities through learning and executing on that knowledge so that we can be of better service to the people we have the opportunity to serve.

What’s right for you? Even if you’re not sure, I know this: learning is a part of the menu, and it must be. Every day.

Since starting down the path of helping others, I’ve learned that it’s important to be relationship-minded. I’ve learned that, like with all industries, there are good and bad examples. I’ve learned that my concept that “we are all salespeople” is absolutely true in marketing. And I have learned that many self-employed/entrepreneurs are happy to “just be,” rather than growing their knowledge or brand.

Right now I am reading two books, my summer enjoyment reading is Winter of the World by Ken Follet and to stay sharp and continue learning, Fanatical Prospecting by Jeb Blount.

That’s all I have for today. I’m finding myself drawn to people seeking the next level. Those who are making excuses or who feel they’ve already figured it all out aren’t that interesting to me. I’m sure they’re nice people, but I’ve only got 50 years left on this planet (if I’m very lucky) and I’d rather spend it with people who care.

And thus, I end where I began – What you learn matters. Do you agree?

What are you learning?


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Weight Loss Tips for Your Bikini Body

Bathing suit season is here once again. If you’re getting ready to hit the beach or go out on your boat, you may be thinking about how to lose those extra pesky couple of pounds that you gained over the winter. When it comes down to it, weight loss is all about calories: burn more calories than you consume, and you will lose weight. However, this is sometimes easier said than done. Here are a few tips that will help you consume less calories (and burn more):

  • Cut out drink calories: You may be surprised how much juice, soda, and alcohol calories add up! Drinking low-calorie beverages like water, tea, and black coffee is a great start to any diet.
  • Portion control: Instead of giving yourself a giant serving, use a smaller plate to cut back on the size of your meals. Tell yourself that you can always go back for seconds, but odds are you won’t need to.
  • Increase your protein intake: Protein makes you feel fuller longer and boosts your metabolism. Chicken, eggs, avocado, and almonds (among other foods) are great sources of protein.
  • Take the stairs: In addition to eating less, take even small opportunities to burn a few extra calories. Take the stairs, park in the back of the lot, or take a short walk during your lunch break.

If you’re planning on heading out on your boat or watercraft this summer to show off your swimsuit body, first call Vargas and Vargas Insurance Agency at 617-298-0655. We can help you with your boat insurance needs, and much more! And remember, stay safe while you’re out on the water!

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Where Are You Now? A Half-Year Check-In On Your 2017 Goals


“Vision is a destination – a fixed point to which we focus all effort. Strategy is a route – an adaptable path to get us where we want to go.” -Simon Sinek

Can you believe that the midpoint of 2017 is almost upon us? If you look back on the first half of this year, did you get done what you wanted to accomplish? How many of your goals are you hitting or have you abandoned? How are you feeling about your year so far? Pull up a chair and a mug of something warm and let’s talk about it. I’ve sitting outside enjoying a delicious organic coffee from my friends at Plate Restaurant and one of their “chubbs” What are YOU drinking? Leave a message below and let me know.

Deliberate Living
When I looked at my business over 13 years ago, I came to a realization: I wasn’t really working as tightly to my plan as I had wanted. And as you know, I do a yearly goal alignment exercise at the beginning of the year and now I have started also looking mid-year at my progress with my goals.

We all get flustered – something fails, we end up feeling like we can’t make it all work, or we set our goals so high or they are so varied that we can’t possibly hit them. Have you heard that expression “You can’t be a servant to two masters?” I’ve been thinking a lot about that. I want to give you a quick run-through of how I’m handling this and what I’m doing to make 2017 my strongest year ever.

Remember my email message last December that said this on setting goals:

Make them “SMART.” This is an acronym, as you probably know, and it is interpreted in various ways by different teachers. When I refer to SMART goals, I mean goals that meet five criteria. They must be:

  • Specific—your goals must identify exactly what you want to accomplish in as much specificity as you can muster.
    • Bad: Write a book.
    • Good: Write a book proposal for The Life Plan Manifesto.
  • Measurable—as the old adage says, “you can’t manage what you can’t measure.” If possible, try to quantify the result. You want to know absolutely, positively whether or not you hit the goal.
    • Bad: “Earn more this year than last.”
    • Good: “Earn $5,000 more this year than last.”
  • Actionable—every goal should start with an action verb (e.g., “quit,” “run,” “finish,” “eliminate,” etc.) rather than a to-be verb (e.g., “am,” “be,” “have,” etc.)
    • Bad: Be more consistent in blogging.
    • Good: Write two blog posts per week.
  • Realistic—you have to be careful here. A real goal should stretch you, but you have to add a dose of common sense. I go right up to the edge of my comfort zone and then step over it. (If I am not out of my comfort zone, I’m not thinking big enough.)
    • Bad: Qualify for the PGA Tour.
    • Good: Lower my golf handicap by four strokes.
  • Time-bound—every goal needs a date associated with it. When do you plan to deliver on that goal? It could be by year-end (December 31), or it could be more near-term (September 30). A goal without a date is just a dream. Make sure that every goal ends with a ‘by when’ date.
    • Bad: Lose 20 pounds.
    • Good: Lose 20 pounds by December 31st.

Reevaluate your own goals for 2017
If I were thinking through the categories of how I’d change my goals for 2017, this is what I would all myself:

  1. Where am I now?
  2. Where do I want to be?
  3. What do I think is missing/needs improvement?
  4. What do I already know?
  5. How can I reach my goal?
  6. What needs to be in place to stay consistent?

I hope that these questions are helpful. Work through them and you’ll see that it helps in lots of ways. Use it however you see fit. It’s how I’m starting my mid-year goal review exercises to prepare for the remainder of 2017.

I’m looking forward to living deliberately from my plan, and my plan involves serving you to the best of my ability. Help me stay accountable? Please help me understand how best to serve you – please leave a comment below.

And know that you are loved.

Hope to see you around the neighborhood!


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Preparing to Sell Your Home

If you’re thinking of leaving the Boston area, or if you’re just upgrading to a new home, you need to get your home ready for market. With the help of a top notch real estate professional, you can have your home ready to show off to potential buyers in no time. To start preparing a little early, use the following Realtor-approved tips:

  • Curb appeal is crucial – make sure that your lawn is manicured, and touch up paint if necessary. Outdoor furniture and windows should be clean, and shrubbery and flowers should be pruned.
  • You want to make sure that your home feels spacious, so put away clutter. If you’re planning on moving, you can start packing away anything that you won’t need in the near future so that your home feels roomier.
  • Are there any repairs that will need to be done before your home sells? Get a start on those now – some sellers won’t like the idea of buying a home that needs repairs. For an idea of what needs to be done, ask for the help of a licensed home inspector.
  • When buyers tour your home, they will need to be able to envision living there. Help this process by depersonalizing the space – remove family photos, toys, and pet items from view.

And remember, when you do sell your home, talk to your Vargas and Vargas Insurance agent about how to cancel or transfer your existing Massachusetts home insurance policy. We are happy to answer any and all of your questions, and we will work hard to make the home insurance process as easy as possible for you and your family.

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Monday Motivation June 19, 2017 When You Reach The End Of Your

I hope you had an amazing Father’s Day weekend!

As always I like to start my week off right with some words of inspiration…

“When you reach the end of your rope, tie a knot in it and hang on.”
-Thomas Jefferson

Whether you are new to or a seasoned professional in sales, there are times in our life where we have done all we can… In those times,
don’t give up
don’t stop,
just hang on and continue pushing….

Consistent action, even if the action is just hanging on, will pay off…

Keep pushing and keep creating the amazing life you know you want and deserve!

We have made many changes at our agency to better help you and your clients when you have an insurance question or need a quote.

You can call us at 617-298-0655
You can now text us at 617-409-0329
Or, for a quick insurance quote, you can email:

Check out our blog for some advice if you are working with a property that is vacant or unoccupied, read the blog here.

And remember that I work deliberately from my plan, and my plan involves serving you to the best of my ability. Help me stay accountable? And make sure you help me understand how best to serve you. Fair?

Have an awesome week!

And know that you are loved.


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The Best Ways to Treat a Sunburn

Sometimes, no matter how hard you try to practice safe sun, you end up with a sunburn. If that’s the case, here are some tips for you on how you can deal with this annoying and painful issue:

  • As soon as you notice yourself getting burned, go indoors to prevent the issue from getting worse.
  • To help cool off the burned skin, take a cool shower or bath or use a cool compress.
  • You will be more prone to dehydration while you have a sunburn. Make up for this by drinking extra fluids.
  • Soothe skin with a moisturizer that contains aloe. Hydrocortisone cream can also be used if you are in particular discomfort.
  • Swelling and discomfort can also be treated with aspirin or ibuprofen.
  • If your skin begins to blister, avoid the temptation to pop them – they are there to help the body prevent infection. Instead, let them heal naturally and call you physician if symptoms get worse.
  • If you go outside while your sunburn is healing, take extra precaution to protect the more vulnerable burned skin.

Remember, though, that (as the saying goes) an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. While treating a sunburn is possible, it’s better not to get one in the first place – so make sure that you continue to practice safe sun techniques throughout the summer months.

The same is true with your insurance policies: insurance from Vargas and Vargas Insurance Agency will help you prevent mishaps from turning into full-blown disasters. Call 617-298-0655 today to make sure that your insurance portfolio is ready in case you end up needing your coverage in the future.

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American Flag Guidelines, how to handle, honor and dispose of Old Glory


This is the time of year that we show our American pride by waving the American flag, hanging it on our homes, boats, bikes, buildings, and cars. It’s easy to forget, though, the proper way to handle and hang the American flag. But, did you know that there are rules for how to handle, respect, honor and dispose of Old Glory?

Here are the top ones.

Orient it correctly. The field of stars should always be at the top-left corner, whether you are hanging it horizontally or vertically. The view should always be from the outside-in, so you still have the field of stars in the top left corner if it’s horizontal or vertical. It’s important that the flag be flown higher than any other flag if there are others beside it.

Leave the light on. Traditionally the flag has flown outside from sunrise to sunset, but if illuminated properly it can be left out for 24 hours. You might try a solar light that gets dim during the day and brightens at night, or a garden spotlight to keep it illuminated throughout the evening.

Consider the weather. You do not want the flag subjected to harsh elements of rain, wind, or snow, but long as it is made of weather-resistant materials, it should be able to withstand those elements.

 “Life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness –

– whatever America means to you is symbolized by

the stars and stripes, and we should feel

a sense of pride and gratitude every time we

salute Old Glory.”

Retire the flag once it’s worn out. Traditionally, disposing of a flag is done via burning. If you don’t want to do this yourself, however, you can call the local VFW to dispose of it in a respectful way, or even in a ceremony.

Don’t let it touch the ground or anything beneath it. When flying the flag from your vehicle, you want to attach it to your antenna, or to the right side of the fender, or to your window by letting the Flagstaff hang from the right side.

The flag is not to be used for advertising or promotional purposes. For example, putting it on napkins, plates, and boxes. Anything that’s temporary or can be disposed is restricted.

No decorations of any kind. You can use decorative flag banners, for example, but the flag itself should not be used as such.

It’s important that we handle the flag with the respect, dignity, and honor that it deserves. There are extensive guidelines, per the U.S. Flag Code, that provide more information. If you’d like to be an authority on that code, go ahead and read it. In the meantime, I hope to be your insurance experts. Our team and I are always happy to provide Star – Spangled Banner service to you or anyone you know needing an insurance quote or review.

Please feel free to give us a call at 617-298-0655 or email our team at



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Storytelling Is Powerful Tool

“Storytelling is the most powerful way to put ideas into the world today.”
– Robert McAfee Brown

Humans are born storytellers, and we do not relate to visual communication very well. Storytelling brings to life a scenario and makes an emotional connection, provoking feelings of ecstasy, sorrow, or peace, and captivating an audience. This is exactly what you need when it comes to your marketing strategy.

We all love a good story, especially when it catches our attention and draws us in. Stories have the power to captivate and increase our customer conversions and referrals from our customers. They also make your audience think of you as the local expert in your field, with the help of your satisfied clients.

Every good business has customers that have had such a wonderful experience doing business with us that they rave to their friends and family about their experience. We should capitalize on these satisfied customers to help promote our businesses. In order to best learn from these customers, you must listen to them.

Making sure that you have people, processes, and technology in place to put your customer first is critical. But none of it matters if you don’t activate it the right way. If you don’t act on feedback or show your customer that you and your company cares each and every day, you are missing out on a big opportunity!

#PeterShankman says in his book Zombie Loyalists: Using Great Service to Create Rabid Fans that these are the customers that you should turn into Zombie Loyalists by getting them to share your story.

“You get the customers you want by being beyond awesome to the customers you have,”
-Peter Shankman.

According to Peter, “Zombie Loyalists” are fervent fans that help companies massively increase their customer base, brand awareness, and most importantly, revenue. After all, why should you have to tell the world how amazing you are if you can have your existing customers do it for you? Imagine an army of customers who will do your public relations, marketing, and advertising without being asked, each and every time they interact with your business. These are Zombie Loyalists. They are ready to buy what you sell, respond to your email offers and demand that their friends do the same.

So…are your satisfied customers telling your story?

Zombie Loyalists will disappoint you if you are looking for a science fiction horror story about blood-lusting zombies. Instead, this book is for anyone who is in customer service, sales management, and marketing. It will serve as a reminder of what customers – like you and me – deserve from the businesses we patronize.

Your business will see an increase in revenue if you begin taking care of your current clients and giving them an amazing experience every time they have an interaction with you and your company. Let them know your story and ask them to share their experience with their friends and family. Then you will be well on your way to creating your very own army of Zombie Loyalists!

Remember, I’m always here to help you and your clients win. It’s what I LOVE to do.

Go out and use this as a strategy to build your business, and DOMINATE your week!


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Space Saving Tips for Your Home or Apartment


When you’re looking to live in Boston, you can find it all – minimalistic or ornate, compact or spacious. If you are living somewhere more compact and need to make the most of the space you have, here are a few tools that you can use to increase your storage:

Curtain Rods

Thinking of a curtain rod probably evokes images of window treatments and shower liners. But there are so many more uses for these versatile objects! Use a small tension rod in your under-the-sink cabinet for spray bottle storage. A longer tension rod can create a dust ruffle on some beds, leaving room for under-the-bed storage. Ribbons spools can be threaded onto a rod for a gift-wrapping station during the holidays. The possibilities are endless!

Extra Shelves

When you’re short on space, never miss an opportunity for a shelf. And get creative with where you place extra shelves – bookshelves in the den or living area are good, but putting small shelves in your cabinets will take your storage game to the next level!

Furniture with Storage

Nowadays, there are nearly limitless options for furniture that include storage. Inside the ottoman is a great place for blankets and pillows, under-the-bed storage would be perfect for all those clothes that aren’t in season. And don’t forget about over-the-toilet cabinets for toiletries and more.

To make sure that all of the items that you store are protected, call Vargas and Vargas Insurance Agency at 617-298-0655 for a renter’s insurance or home insurance quote.

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