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Resources for Small Businesses

23 Oct

As we have written about several times before (see 1, 2, 3), small businesses have numerous resource opportunities that they need to know about and utilize.

Here are more resources, this time, provided by the UPS Store for Inc.:

“Small business owners are always busy and looking for a way to save money. That’s why The UPS Store has done the research and hand-selected valued partners to provide you with exclusive offers on the products and services that you need most.”

These resources are divided into several categories:

  • Accounting and Bookkeeping
  • Business Planning
  • Communication Tools
  • Financial Services
  • Human Resources
  • IT Support
  • Marketing Services
  • Merchant Services
  • Reception Services
  • Record Storage
  • Telecommunications
  • Web Site Services

Click the image to access the resources.
 

 

How Much Does Social Marketing Really Cost? The Case of Nestle

22 Oct

Most companies involved with social media are quite interested in keeping costs under control — and ensuring that those costs result in real benefits to those firms.

With this mind, take a look at the infographic prepared by Percolate, a firm that uses software to connect and automate key marketing tasks:

“Across both B2B and B2C, the largest challenge digital marketers face is reaching their audiences with relevant content. Now that content has become the core vehicle for brands to connect with their audiences, it’s imperative marketers seek efficient, cost-effective content workflows to engage their audiences – which have fragmented across mobile and social.”

“At a 2014 AdAge Digital Conference, Nestle revealed that its teams produce more than 1,500 pieces of marketing content each day for its 800+ Facebook pages. What type of investment does that entail? We broke down the expected costs with our content partner Visual.ly to give you a full idea of what a Fortune 100 company like Nestle might spend on content marketing.”

 

 

Which Hats Do YOU Wear?

7 Oct

Pardot, a B2B marketing automation provider and part of salesforce.com, has developed an interactive, provocative Web site on jobs that people have/do:

How many hats do you wear? Marketing automation has many features and capabilities that can simplify the lives of marketers. But if you’re an army of one, wearing a million hats and running your company’s marketing department with limited manpower and resources, the prospect of learning and maintaining a marketing automation system may not sound simple at all — in fact, it may sound impossible. But consider this: Pardot’s own marketing team started as a one-woman powerhouse, backed by nothing more than our own marketing automation product. Let’s take a look at a few of the ways that marketers with limited time and resources can use marketing automation to accomplish the work of a much larger marketing department — and hopefully start shedding their multiple ‘hats’ one by one.”

Click the image to check out the hats many people wear at work. Where do YOU stand? :-)
 

 

Internet Security Threats: 2014

5 Oct

Symantec – which provides security, storage, and systems management solutions – has released its Internet Security Threat Report 2014, a comprehensive 98-page document:

“Symantec has established the most comprehensive source of Internet threat data in the world through the Symantec™ Global Intelligence Network, which is made up of more than 41.5 million attack sensors and records thousands of events per second. This network monitors threat activity in over 157 countries and territories through a combination of Symantec products and services such as Symantec DeepSight™ Threat Management System, Symantec™ Managed Security Services, Norton™ consumer products, and other third-party data sources.”

Click the image to access a PDF file of the full report.
 
Internet Security 2014
 

Great Advice from Successful Business Founders

22 Sep

Our most popular post to date — by far — has been The Best Advice Received — and Passed On — by Leaders of Industry.” That post referred to advice by some of our best-known business “luminaries,” who have managed large firms.

However, there is also quite A LOT that we can learn from the entrepreneurs who have introduced and managed successful businesses that started out quite small.

Recently, Entrepreneur‘s Matt Villano interviewed several company founders and titled the article: “The Best Business Advice You’ll Ever Get.” [Notice the similarity in the title of our earlier post. :-) ] As Villano notes:

“Being an entrepreneur doesn’t mean you have to go it alone. Most successful business owners will tell you they could not have accomplished their goals without help — from a mentor, colleague, even mom and dad. For many, their ability to evaluate, internalize, and act on the counsel they received was instrumental in getting their companies off the ground. In an effort to tap some of this wisdom, we called on business gurus to tell us the very best piece of advice they’ve received. From hiring to philanthropy and more, their responses were as varied as the companies they run.”

These are some the executives whom Villano interviewed and who provided advice:

  • Dennis Crowley, CEO, Foursquare
  • Rick Alden, Founder, Skullcandy
  • Petera Relan, Founder, 9+
  • Sheila Johnson, Founder and CEO, Salamander Hotels & Resorts
  • Melinda Emerson, Founder and CEO, Quintessence Group
  • Christine Day, CEO, Luvo
  • Rehan Choudhry, Founder, Life is Beautiful
  • Reece Pacheco, Founder, Shelby.tv
  • Nick Lazaris, President and CEO, Coravin

Click Dennis Crowley’s photo to read Villano’s full interviews.
 

Photo © Ewan Burns

 

General Electric: Becoming Quicker and More Agile

27 Aug

When annual sales approach $150 billion, it becomes harder to be agile and flexible in anticipating and responding to the evolving marketplace. This is something that even star companies such as General Electric – whose slogan is “GE imagination at work” — must face.

In GE’s case, it is embarking on new ways of doing business. As Bloomberg Businessweek’s Richard Clough reports:

“GE has enlisted tech entrepreneur Eric Ries to help develop FastWorks, based in part on his bestseller The Lean Startup. As detailed in the 2011 book, Ries’ lean startup philosophy is designed to help companies foster innovation and hasten product development by building imperfect early versions, releasing them to customers, getting feedback, and then ‘pivoting,’ or adapting the products when necessary. Now GE is adopting that playbook to speed the rollout of products ranging from lightbulbs to gas turbines to refrigerators. The company has already trained 40,000 employees under the new initiative, one of the largest in GE’s 122-year history.”

Click the image to read more from Clough.
 

 

Visualizing Big Data — A Microsoft Video

25 Aug

Microsoft has developed an interesting video overview that demonstrates the extent and value of big data.

Click the image to access the video.
 

 

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