Small Business Accelerator: Tips & Trends News Highlights

By at 9 September, 2017, 11:24 pm

The past week’s roundup of “How To” articles, educational resources and future events, business news and success stories recommended by SBE Council President & CEO Karen Kerrigan.

Hurricane Disaster Assistance and Emergency Preparedness

SBA Disaster Assistance: Who Can Use a Low-Interest Disaster Loan? And more of your questions answered here.

FEMA Rumor Page

There is a lot of misinformation circulating online, and because rumors spread fast please tell a friendshare this page, and help FEMA provide accurate informationCheck here often for an on-going list of rumors and their true or false status.  Irma Rumor Control Page is Here.

IRS: Tax Relief and Assistance

The IRS is providing help to the victims of Hurricane Harvey. Special tax relief and assistance is available to taxpayers in the Presidential Disaster Areas. The agency is monitoring the situation closely to resolve potential tax administration issues as they are identified. The IRS often updates its information on disaster relief efforts related to Hurricane Harvey. For the latest news, check this page frequently.


Smart planning can help you keep your business running if disaster strikes. You’ll want to take the right steps to prevent and prepare for disaster, and know where to get aid if disaster strikes.  An estimated 25 percent of businesses don’t open again after a major disaster, according to the Institute for Business and Home Safety. Protect your small business by identifying the risks relevant to your location, both natural and man-made. See more from the SBA on emergency preparedness, getting financial assistance after a disaster, disaster cleanup and additional assistance here.

Take the Course: A Guide to SBA’s Disaster Assistance Programs


Webinars and Events

Small Business Lending Forecast for Q4, Webcast

September 12, 2:00 p.m. ET (FREE)

This live webcast will address overall credit conditions and forecasts for small company lending in the U.S. during Q4.Panelists will be covering economic trends and other factors that will impact the volume of borrowing in the small company loan segment, generally defined as companies with under $20M in revenue or borrowing less than $1M. SBE Council chief economist Ray Keating will present. Register here.

How to Create a One-Page Plan of Action to Grow Your Company, Webinar

September 12, 1:00 ET (FREE) – SCORE

Have you ever felt overwhelmed with too many details and urgent fires that pull you away from the highest value responsibilities needed to scale your business?  Learn a winning formula to help you determine what your company should focus on over the next 90 days. Register here.

Small Business Master Class, October 17, Tampa

Join the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council for the Small Business Master Class in Tampa on October 17. Network with over 200 small business owners and entrepreneurs while also learning the tools and strategies from experts on how to successfully grow your business in today’s competitive environment.

Featured speakers: Kevin Carter, Super Bowl Champion, NFL Pro Bowler & College Football Analyst; Leigh and Mike Harting, founders of 3 Daughters Brewing; and Amanda Brinkman, Chief Brand and Communications Officer at Deluxe. We will have a variety of other speakers including executives from Juxtapose Apparel & Studio, AC4S, Majesty Title Services, Inc., Mise en Place Restaurant Group, and more. Friends of the SBE will receive complimentary attendance with the code TampaSBEClick here to register.

Global Small Business Summit, October 20, Chicago

E-commerce is booming and is considered the new retail. All companies must prepare for the digital age, like it or not, and in the global economy there is extraordinary opportunity for small to mid-size firms.  Learn more at the 3rd Annual Global Small Business Forum!  SBE Council is a proud sponsor of this exceptional event.

6th Global Crowdfunding Convention, October 23 & 24, Las Vegas

Join the Industry Rock Stars, learn how successful entrepreneurs raise money for their businesses or projects, get educated about the $60 billion crowdfunding industry.  SBE Council is a proud partner and sponsor of this event, and Karen Kerrigan is a presenter. More information here.

Branding, Strategy and Sales

Small Business Owners: Read These Four Insightful Strategies to Compete with Big Businesses, Small Biz Daily. “What many entrepreneurs may not realize is that small ventures have a certain edge over their bigger competitors that can help them compete with even huge corporations at some level. Read on to find out some ways that can empower the small businesses to compete with bigger businesses in their target market.”

5 Best Tips for Salespeople, Gray Vaynerchuk. “I guess what I want to really drill home is I just don’t understand how in 2017 people don’t realize that if they’re not producing written content, audio, or video for these 15 platforms, SoundCloud, Spotify, iTunes, Google Play, Facebook, Youtube, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, Medium, Pinterest, Tumblr, etc. I just don’t understand how they think they’re still relevant.”

How a Little Capitol Hill Kitchen Store Survives in the Age of Amazon, Washington Post. “Daniels’s competitive advantage is convenience. The big kitchen stores like Sur La Table or Williams-Sonoma have higher sales per capita, but the well-heeled Capitol Hill crowd can drop by Hill’s Kitchen without jumping in a car or making a lot of fuss. Her biggest competition is what is known as ‘showrooming.’”

Restaurant Owner’s “On the Wall” Idea Reels in Customers, WFAA. “Shannon, an avid fisherman himself, has been gifted nearly a dozen of the once-famous Big Mouth Billy Bass. ‘Take Me to the River’ still haunts me in my dreams, Shannon said, referencing the infamous song Billy Bass sings. It also broke his heart to know Big Mouth Billy Bass everywhere were locked in an attic, drowning in dust. So he put his on the wall and offered a free dinner to anyone else willing to give theirs up for adoption.”

Why You Still Need Business Cards, Entrepreneur. “The traditional work habit is still alive.”

6 Symptoms of Dysfunction that Can Kill Your Dream, Startups Professionals. “Founders almost always cite lack of money as the reason for failure, but if you look deeper, I believe the reason is more often about dysfunctional people and leadership. Sometimes it comes right back to the founder, in terms of a malaise often called ‘founder’s syndrome.’”

Have Millennials Killed Brand Loyalty? Startup Beat.  “When it comes to pushing brand loyalty, coupons and special offers ranked highly among what people wanted to see from brands. Nearly half (46 percent) specifically asked for more “loyalty schemes”. Exclusive access to offers and products would be compelling for 39 percent.

Operations and Management

Disaster Prep: Nationwide Study Reveals Troubling Small Business Statistics, SBE Council/Susan Solovic. “If a natural disaster hits your community or a cyberattack or death hits your small business, it won’t take down the national economy. However, the local impact on you, your family, and your neighbors can be overwhelming and extremely difficult to recover from.” Don’t be on the wrong side of these statistics.

Intellectual Property 101: What is It, and Why Should I Protect It? National Law Review. “The marketplace is more competitive than ever, with consumers having so many choices among all the emerging technologies and businesses and the points of differentiation becoming more subtle. This growing challenge makes protecting  IP critically important and is why it needs to be near the top of the list of a startup’s priorities. The four types of IP are among a startup’s most valuable business assets: trademarks, copyrights, patents, and trade secrets.”

How to Protect Your Brand With Trademarks, Small Business Daily. “Registering a trademark will improve the visibility of a business on the market and will also offer an advantage in situations where two similar products or services are sold by different companies.”

Startups and Business Growth

These Frameworks Will Hold You Accountable to Turn Your Idea into a Business, Forbes. “It takes courage to pursue an unlikely dream and discipline to manifest it. Follow Foley and Rudolph Walsh’s advice to take the first step to test your idea, create opportunities to pursue it and make the decisions you need to bring it to life.”

How to Create an Elevator Speech (with examples), Bplans. “Elevator speeches are a great opportunity for entrepreneurs. Whether you’re at a party, at a networking event for startups, giving a quick overview to a potential investor, or just meeting new people, a solid elevator speech is your chance to introduce your company to potential customers, investors, and referrals.”

Startup Marketing Should Skip Traditional Marketing, Startup Professionals. The case for zero paid media as the new marketing model was highlighted in the classic book, ‘Z.E.R.O.’ by Joseph Jaffe and Maarten Albarda, both experienced marketers working with new companies, as well as larger firms. They advocate investing in their new framework, where the Z.E.R.O. initials take on meaning as follows..(read the article.)

What you Need to Know About Drop Shipping, AllTop Startups. “While this method of product fulfillment isn’t exactly new, it does seem to be picking up steam as of late. Here’s a look at what you need to know with a handy dropshipping guide that covers all the basics of the model.”

Quit Your Job: 7 Places So Cheap in the U.S. You Can Afford to Be An Entrepreneur, Forbes. “During the search for a new place to live, Cabrera narrowed the list to seven cheap places in the U.S. where there’s a high-quality of living, good weather and fast internet. Here, she shares the places she considered. These are places where the cost of living is so cheap you can afford to quit your day job and become an entrepreneur.”

Small Business Policy

Can America Regain Its Entrepreneurial Mojo? Heritage Foundation/Karen Kerrigan. “Rebuilding America’s entrepreneurial spirit will require institutional, political, policy, and personal support. We can easily get our entrepreneurial mojo back. We just need the commitment of leaders across this nation to make it happen.”

How Congress Can Help Reluctant Millennial Entrepreneurs and Small Business, Forbes. “Why are innovators – particularly Millennials – reluctant to start their own company? The recent recession coupled with barriers such as regulations, taxes, and lack of access to capital needed to start and grow a company, is adding to their reservations.  As chairman of the House Small Business Committee, I’ve seen first-hand how entrepreneurs and small businesses create a majority of our nation’s jobs.”

The Worrisome Trends in Small Business Lending, Solutions in the Pipeline, SBE Council. “Small business lending still has not recovered to levels before the 2008-09 credit/economic meltdown. Thankfully, there are policy solutions being considered and advanced in the U.S. Congress.”

Success and Inspiration

Beehive Innovation Story Explains Why Small Businesses Should Turn to Crowdfunding, Small Biz Daily. “To continue their journey toward transforming the beekeeping industry, the duo had to raise money to fund their vision. Thus began their Indiegogo fundraising campaign. The campaign’s results were astonishing. Within minutes, the Flow Hive campaign met its $70,000 funding goal. By campaign’s end, the two had raised more than $12 million and set a record as Australia’s most successful Indiegogo initiative.”

4 Bold Ways to Be a Confident Leader, Success. “2016 research from Cornell University found that when you’re in a stressful situation, reframing your distress as passion makes you seem more competent. In other words, shift your emotions from negative to positive. The question, though, is how?Here are some do’s and don’ts to survive a stressful situation.”

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