PROTECTING SMALL BUSINESS, PROMOTING ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Small Biz Accelerator: Tips, Trends and Resources for Entrepreneurs

By at 18 November, 2017, 10:13 pm

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

Small Business Saturday 2017, November 25

It’s almost time for Small Business Saturday®.  SBE Council is once again a partner in this very special event, which has proven to be a successful driver of sales and exposure for all types of small businesses nationwide.

There is still time to download customizable materials from the Shop Small® Studio, like posters, email templates, social media marketing images, and more.

Visit SBE Council’s Holiday Tips and Resources for helpful information on getting the most out of the big shopping season, and more tips for leveraging Small Business Saturday.

The Holiday Season

Top Holiday Season Digital Trends, Target Marketing. “The holiday season is nearly in full swing. How will it be different than past seasons? The most striking difference is not in what consumers are buying, it’s how they are shopping.”

Retailers that Close on Thanksgiving Lose Out, Says Location Data, Fast Company. “Recently, stores have made a point of keeping their doors shut on Thanksgiving–and even Black Friday–to encourage their employees and customers to spend time with their families. But taking the moral high ground comes at a cost, according to Foursquare…”

9 Strategies for Operating Your Business During the Holidays, TechCo. “We asked nine entrepreneurs what the best way to operate a business during the weeks when employees are typically home for the holidays. Take a look at what they had to say and get ready for the most hectic time of the year.”

The 8 Ways Small Businesses Can Compete with Big Companies for Holiday Sale, Forbes. “The National Retail Federation expects $678 billion in retail sales during November and December. Although small businesses cannot compete on the scale of industry titans, small business owners can deploy intelligent strategies to ensure a happy and profitable holiday season.”

How This Small Retailer Wins the Holidays by Completely Transforming Itself Every Year, Inc. “Every holiday season, Sea Bags, which is headquartered on a working wharf in Portland, Maine, introduces one new product that is both a gift and a substitute for disposable packaging.”

Planning an Office Holiday Party? Why it’s a Good Idea, Barbara Weltman. “Small business owners may be wondering whether to hold any type of festivities. There are some solid business reasons favoring a holiday party.”

Financing and Access to Capital

Persisting Through a Capital Raise, GrowThink. “You need to be patient as it will take time. You need to focus on the types of funding sources that are fit for your business. And you need to make sure you can clearly articulate the value of your company.”

Sales, Marketing and Branding

Online Reviews: The New Word of Mouth Referrals, DIY Marketers. “Put simply: reviews matter to consumers. They look to reviews to learn about a business based on someone’s actual experience.”

6 Golden Rules of Perfect Social Media Visuals, Young UpStarts. “No digital marketing strategy can be complete without social media, and no social media can generate noticeable results without top-notch visuals. Stop sitting around, step up your social media game, create graphics that impress.”

How to Create a High Converting Landing Page, CrowdSpring. “In a study by Marketing Sherpa, 43% of marketers reported that dedicated landing pages are highly effective and 49% of marketers reported that they are somewhat effective. That’s a consistent endorsement. But, dedicated landing pages can only deliver if they are designed properly.”

4 Psychology-Based Design Tips for Eye-Catching Package Design, CrowdSpring.People subconsciously respond to visual stimuli. Knowing how to get people to respond favorably to your packaging design will help you sell more products.

How First Names, Gratitude and Post-It-Notes Can Increase Your Marketing Response Rates, Inc.Don’t believe me? Then believe the 2013 Experian Email Market Survey. The survey showed that personalized emails had 29 percent higher open rates, 41 percent higher unique click rates, and produce transaction and revenue rates at six times higher than impersonal emails.”

Startups and Entrepreneurship

6 Steps Required from a New Venture Dream to Reality, Startup Professionals.  “…a better question than asking about the quality of an idea, is asking about the quality of your plan to implement the idea. There are lots of resources available for that question, including the Internet and mentors like me. It’s really a multi-step process, with the first step getting you from an idea to a viable product, and the remaining steps creating a sustainable business.”

21 Side Projects that Grew into Million Dollar Startups (and how they did it), Planio. “Despite all the hype around personal side hustles, and the importance of hobbies and interests outside your job, entrepreneurs aren’t as willing to put their money where their mouth is and fund those crazy, moonshot ideas that could become million-or even billion-dollar businesses. And this is a mistake. Side projects aren’t just distractions. In fact, some of the world’s most successful companies started as side projects.”

Entrepreneurial Trends

The Rise of CoWorking Lifestyle Brands, Small Biz Labs. “…as the industry evolves and hybridizes, we’re seeing more spaces going beyond just being workplaces and communities.”

Big Data Trends to Watch, Tech Co. “The hope for the next generation of businesses is that the large quantities of data, which is accessible to the masses, can help in planning everything from better decision making to executing better marketing campaigns.”

Move Over McDonald’s, The Future of Fast Food is Vegan, Forbes. “It’s a concept that’s proving to be popular, as demonstrated by a successful equity crowdfunding campaign in April this year that raised close to $400,000, as well as the company’s sales figures. In its first year, the Ocean Beach location turned over $1.1 million, with the second year tracking at $1.8 million by close of December 2017. Meanwhile, according to Harris, the newly opened Encinitas location is tracking $2.2 million for its first year, and the number of customers served by both restaurants by the end of the second year is estimated to be more than 1 million.”

Our Love Affair with Digital is Over, New York Times. “Thankfully, the analog world is still here, and not only it is surviving but, in many cases, it is thriving.”

Self-Improvement, Leadership and Success

6 Strategies to Optimize Self-Leadership for Business, Startup Professionals. “ I define self-leadership as the capacity to set direction and make decisions, to positively drive your own performance. Leadership in business starts with making good personal choices.”

7 Habits of Highly Effective Business Owners, Big Red Tomato Company. “Being a successful highly effective business owner isn’t always intuitive. It requires a unique set of skills built over time and the capacity to learn new behaviors.”

10 Principles of Abundance and Prosperity, Success. “Abundance is a state of consciousness and gratitude, which is why I end my day telling the last person I talk to the three things I’m most grateful for.”

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