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Showing posts from July, 2017

9 Low-Budget Marketing Strategies Every Startup Can Afford

Many cash-strapped startups abandon the "superfluous" investment of marketing. Big mistake, because marketing can actually provide that cash.
Startups face many challenges, but none as precarious or life-threatening as the struggle to remain cash positive. The Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) estimates the average cost to start a business to be in the neighborhood of $30,000; and there’s significant variance in this figure, with some businesses starting out for just a few hundred dollars and others requiring upwards of millions.
But, remember: These numbers are only startup costs. In addition, new companies have to pay thousands a month in team salaries, office-leasing fees, raw materials and other ongoing operational costs -- all while struggling to secure enough revenue to stay afloat.
Caught in this dire financial balancing act, most entrepreneurs end up abandoning investments they come to view as superfluous, such as marketing and advertising. Yet the cruel irony…

3 Simple Product Development Lessons All Entrepreneurs Should Remember

Here are the things I have always kept in mind in continually working to evolve the companies I've run. There is a long simmering, rather interesting argument around the notion of "nurture vs. nature" as it relates to human beings and their abilities. The Eddie Murphy film Trading Places was actually based on it, with a bet revolving around whether he could learn the commodities business without being born a blue blood.
I’m often asked whether entrepreneurs are born or made, and I firmly believe that entrepreneurs are born. Why? Because the mark of a good entrepreneur is that you’re never satisfied, you’re not OK with the status quo and you’re out to change the world no matter how large or small. Even looking back to my youth, I was always the kid in school to ask “why?” and I’m sure that rings true for many of us.
It’s that energy -- the unwillingness to stand pat and let that “why” vanish from the back of your mind -- that drives successful entrepreneurs as they tirelessl…

8 Reasons a Powerful Personal Brand Will Make You Successful

Opportunity will find you and your business when you have a strong brand.
If you don't have a powerful and visible personal brand, you are putting yourself at a disadvantage in almost every aspect of your professional, business and personal life. Personal branding has become a requirement for anyone looking to grow their business, get a better job, get noticed by the press, take their career to the next level or meet new, high quality friends.
Personal branding is the practice of people marketing themselves and their careers as brands -- the ongoing process of establishing a prescribed image or impression in the mind of others about an individual. Everyone has a unique personal brand, whether they know it or not. But what we should all be striving for is a powerful, attractive and visible personal brand. I define that as an online and in-person authentic display of the engaging aspects of your professional and personal activities and interests.
In my previous article, 7 Social Media …

My Virtual Assistant Tried to Steal From Me. Here's What You Should Know.

What you can learn from my experience.
In my lifestyle business, I generate income in several different ways. I write for publications (for exposure and pay) and books, coach clients, speak at events, consult at and for large multinational corporations and sell digital information products. To run a half-million-dollar-a-year business, I have been using a team of four virtual assistants for administrative tasks and two freelancers for the technical parts. 
A few weeks ago, I walked away from a consulting deal that I was negotiating with a company here in Asia (I'm writing this article to you from Seoul, South Korea). The deal fell apart because the company wanted to own all of my content after I presented it. They offered a six-figure consulting contract for the intellectual property rights. 
My attorney and I tried to offer many other options, but they were adamant. They wanted to own the content so they could repackage it and sell it as their own. I walked away from the deal. I kno…

25 Habits of Successful and Extremely Happy People

Quality sleep, big dreams and meaningful conversations are all part of the mix for those lucky enough to call themselves "happy."

What's the secret to happiness? That can differ according to the person involved. But we do know that happy people have different habits and think differently than those who are miserable. So, the good news is, if you're trying to be one of those happy people, recognize that that desired emotion comes from within and that you have the power to literally turn that frown upside down by mastering some simple habits.
Here's what happy people do and don't do . . . 1. They savor the moment. Do old cliches like "stopping to smell the roses" and "it's the little things in life" really lead to happiness? Yep.
Researchers call this "savoring," which is all about paying attention to the moment. Instead of multitasking and being focused on the past and future and on the present negativity all around, those of us wh…

4 Success Tips From Small Businesses That Are Doing It Right

Somethings work regardless what your business is.
Sometimes the most valuable advice comes from your fellow entrepreneurs, not the CEO of a Fortune 500 company. At Facebook, we know that behind every business is a person, and behind every person is a story – with insights and advice to share. That’s why we created the Small Business Council which consists of entrepreneurs who share a common belief in the importance of serving their customers, their communities, and each other.
Each year we meet with our U.S. Small Business Council members to hear from small businesses across a variety of industries, sizes and geographies. Earlier this year I had the pleasure of meeting our newest 2017 Small Business Council members to learn from them and help them support their communities and fellow businesses.
Here are a few of my favorite tips directly from the Small Business Council members past and present:
Learn from and connect with other businesses. “Visit your competition and introduce yourself. N…