By admin|October 1, 2014|Category: Business Growth

Whether you are an aspiring small business owner looking to offer a traditional product or service, or an energetic entrepreneur passionate about your new and innovative idea, drive and desire are not enough to get your business started. To start off on the right foot, potential new business owners should strongly consider conducting secondary market research to ensure the right decisions are being made from the beginning.

Key Resources to Jumpstart Secondary Market Research

Secondary market research can be broken into three areas of knowledge: the industry, the competition and the customer.

By admin|September 24, 2014|Category: Social Media

Awhile back I came across an article in a national newspaper criticizing bloggers for being sloppy and unfocused. Easy to say with the benefit of a department editor, copy editor, and a fact checker. You can’t be your own newsroom, but a blog post can be professional and engaging with a little self editing. It’s work – and yes, another hat to wear – but these few guidelines will help you craft better stories, ones that get traction.

1. Tighten Up
Give yourself a word count – and stick to it. Magazine editors assign them to writers and that’s that. A good number for a blog is 350 - 500. You’ll be surprised how word constraints makes you a better writer.

By admin|September 17, 2014|Category: Marketing

The task of updating your website can be intimidating. Many business owners think they need to defer any changes or updates to web developers. The truth is there are simple things you can do to update your website and make it an enjoyable place for your customers to visit.

Here are six steps you can take to freshen up your website:

By admin|September 4, 2014|Category: International Trade

Prompt follow-up with tradeshow prospects is key to converting leads to clients. A common complaint heard from leadership is “I don’t know what happened to all of those leads.” Mitigate this by developing a system to track leads – ask for business cards from each prospect, and take a moment to record one or two words about them. This simple strategy will allow you to personalize the follow-up, and put you way ahead of the competition.

Prospect Follow-Up

By admin|August 27, 2014|Category: Business Growth

Although business plans are a requirement for getting funding, this is not the only reason to plan. Savvy business owners develop a plan so they can plot their course, think through their business model, price out their offering, consider what staff they will need, examine their cash flow, plan out their marketing activities, and do 100 other things. Business plans are a clear and concise way to get your ideas down on paper to chart your course.

When considering your business plan, beware of the eight classic mistakes that most business owners make when it comes to business planning.

1. Not having a plan. Not having a plan is like flying a plane without navigation. You can do it, but why would you?

By admin|August 20, 2014|Category: International Trade

Tradeshows are an excellent source of new business and platform to touch base with clients and suppliers. Best practices dictate that tradeshows should be a complementary tool in your sales funnel. However, even those without a systematized sales process can experience compressed sales cycles, and deeper connections to clients.

First, determine which tradeshows to attend and of these, at which to exhibit. Critically examine the returns - both financial and non-financial - for your company.