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June 2017 / 84 posts found

How 7 Changes at the SBA Would Boost Small Business Lending

by Manuela
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Business leaders say new Small Business Administration (SBA) chief Linda McMahon needs to focus on lending in order to truly make a difference. McMahon has presided over  more than $53 million in guaranteed loans to North Central Florida’s small business owners.  She’s also appointed four new Associate Administrators since she took the reigns including Allen Gutierrez to the Office of Entrepreneurial Development. However, experts say changes to SBA’s 504 program will have far more impact on small businesses. The program deals with financing major fixed assets like real estate and equipment. Like other major SBA programs, the 504 is not directly funded [...]

Ideas to Try Right Now

by Manuela
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Imagine you single-handedly run a lemonade stand. You get 20 customers each day and have just the right amount of ingredients for a day’s commerce. Then, out of the blue, you get coverage from the New York Times. Suddenly, there are customers queuing down the block. You run out of sugar within an hour and have to shut down, losing out on money. That happened because the lemonade stand wasn’t equipped to scale. There was no process for hiring, onboarding new lemonade makers, or projecting the amounts of sugar and lemons you’ll need. In short, there were no processes. And [...]

Apply These 25 Tips to Improve Security at Your Small Business

by Manuela
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Making sure you online data is safe is only part of what your small business needs to do. Improving security for your business is about combining physical and cybersecurity efforts. Here are 25 tips to improve security at your small business. How to Improve Security at Your Small Business Use Keyless Entry Looking for a better way than hanging keys on a belt or a hook at the office? There’s a whole host of locking devices available now to open and close office doors through a smartphone app.  Place Wireless Cameras at Entry Points Portable security cameras can be placed [...]

Following These 6 Tips Will Help You Avoid a Macro Phishing Attack

by Manuela
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Some of the cybersecurity threats small businesses face lurk in the emails employees open everyday. One of the most dangerous forms is called phishing, in which malicious viruses hide in otherwise innocent attachments. That was the case with the recent DocuSign macro attack. In the DocuSign hack, emails spoofed the company brand and tricked unsuspecting people into opening an infected Word document. Macros are automation codes used in Word documents and Excel spreadsheets in Microsoft Office. In some of these phishing attacks, a file is sent prompting users to open these macros, which contain the malware. So the question becomes, [...]

Minority Advantage in Small Startups

by Manuela
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When starting as an entrepreneur for a new startup it can be quite overwhelming. When starting as a minority it can add a whole another dimension to survival and other adaptations. However, when looking for funding it is definitely in your favor with many benefits. Minorities and Socio-Economic Class Your background can really benefit you in this area if you come from a low income area, a woman or single mother, or different race. Apparently minorities get a break in this area because research has told us that minorities simply do not have access to credit as the majority and [...]

How and Why You Should Validate Your App Idea Before You Build

by Manuela
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Almost on a weekly basis, I meet new aspiring entrepreneurs looking to execute on their ideas. Some believe in the all-in approach to product development: build an advanced app. If it works, they’ll hit it big, and if it doesn’t, they’ll make some changes and do it again. Others believe in the start small, grow strong approach: build a small version of the app, test user demand, and then take it from there. In both scenarios, it seems that startup venture initiation and idea validation are strictly dependent on the app. Here’s what I learned from launching my first app, [...]

These 5 Tips Will Change the Way You Market Your Online Store

by Manuela
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So, you’ve put together a beautiful eCommerce store and are eagerly anticipating traffic to start trickling in. At this point, many eCommerce merchants start to realize that, without doing the right types of marketing, this traffic may never come. It’s easy to feel frustrated or confused at the wide variety of different marketing channels available to you, but don’t fret. This guide is designed to present you with 5 of the most effective eCommerce marketing strategies. eCommerce Marketing Strategies Invest in a High-Quality Content Strategy Many eCommerce merchants view content only as an effective marketing channel but, for some, content [...]

5 Tips for Business Start Ups

by Manuela
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So you’ve come up with an amazing idea – something unique and different from all the rest out there – but how do you get your business going? Start Ups need luck and talent in spades but they all begin with an idea and entrepreneurial ambition, with the aim of seeing the business grow quickly. Starting any new business is a big challenge and requires a lot of commitment and hard work but can also be hugely rewarding. Here are five tips to bear in mind: 1) Understand markets – When you are beginning your venture into the world of [...]

5 weirdest business ideas that became successful

by Manuela
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Look at something you do daily and see if it can be your next money maker. When it comes to pursuing a venture, starting a small business or having a big idea, all three come in all shapes and sizes. Sure, we have heard about the beginnings for companies like Google, Microsoft, Apple, Facebook, Tesla and others, but there are other businesses we never knew about it. Have you ever heard about an affair website for married? How about the man who created a million-dollar business of dog poop-scooping? What about the company that invented glasses for dogs? These are [...]

Stop Selling Products, Start Selling Experiences

by Manuela
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While brands have more access to their audiences than ever before, it’s arguably never been more difficult to engage and convert customers. If you’re finding this to be true, it’s likely that you’re approaching your customers in the wrong manner. Instead of selling products, you might benefit from selling experiences. What is experiential marketing? Experiential marketing, as defined by those in the industry, is a form of advertising that focuses on helping consumers experience a brand. Instead of being sold a product or service based on features, they’re directly involved and engaged. “While traditional advertising (radio, print, television) verbally and [...]