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December 14, 2012
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Stories from the Street 
  • Some business owners say they can handle higher taxes
    Business owners might not be crazy about the idea of paying higher taxes, but some, such as Chelsea Sloan, say they can manage it. "Business owners who say they'll stop hiring if tax rates go higher are blowing smoke," said Sloan, who started a retail franchise called Uptown Cheapskate. For Steve Weaver, who owns four Uptown Cheapskate stores with his wife, the potential for political gridlock to hurt consumer spending might be a greater concern. "Uncertainty in the economy is going to cost me a hell of a lot more than this tax increase is," he said. CNNMoney (12/13) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Caring for Customers 
  • How to build your business through content and social media
    When producing content to power your content and social media marketing efforts, you should concentrate on addressing your customers' needs, writes Madison Jacobs of Infusionsoft. "When you think about the forms of content you want to create and the message you want it to deliver, you have to focus on answering practical questions that are on the minds of your prospects and customers." Most of your content should be designed to educate your consumers rather than to promote your products, she advises. (12/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
  • What it takes to build a strong brand for your business
    You can create a strong brand for your company by developing good products, choosing a recognizable name and logo, and building a community, writes Ross Kimbarovsky, co-founder of crowdSPRING. "[R]emember that you can’t be in all places at once," he writes. "Pick one or two places where you can focus building your community, and invest your time and resources there." Duct Tape Marketing (12/13) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Keeping Shop 
  • 6 reasons to run a background check before you hire
    Workplace fraud can take a significant toll on small businesses, so it's a good idea to conduct background checks on job candidates before hiring them, writes Sarah Johnson. Even if a candidate doesn't have a criminal record, a background check can help you spot warning signs, she writes. In addition, looking into a candidate's background can allow you to find out whether his or her résumé is accurate. Intuit Small Business Blog (12/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
  • 5 reasons bosses shouldn't try to be perfect
    Perfectionism isn't a desirable trait in business leaders, writes Henna Inam. The best leaders are comfortable in their own skin and recognize, and even embrace, their flaws to develop an authentic and credible leadership style, Inam argues. "They learn to ease their desire to 'be perfect' based on some kind of external standard in favor of 'being powerful' in an authentic way," she writes. The Glass Hammer blog (12/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Managing the Money 
  • Does your company qualify for the R&D tax credit?
    An extension of the Research and Development tax credit is likely to be part of any "fiscal cliff" deal, but many businesses that qualify for this credit aren't taking advantage of it, writes Dean Zerbe of alliantgroup. One major problem is that leaders of small businesses simply aren't aware that the credit applies to them. "The R&D tax credit is not just about test tubes and lab coats (although those certainly count) – but rather, it's about an enormous range of activities, like improving an existing product, making a building greener, and reducing the costs to make a product," Zerbe writes. The Washington Post/On Small Business blog (12/13) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Tips & Tools 
  • Why text messaging is a key tool for businesses
    Social media may be all the rage at the moment, but you shouldn't neglect the potential business benefits of text messaging, writes Ramon Ray. Ring Central is one service that is helping businesses interact with their customers through text messages, he notes. However, you should still text responsibly. "Remember, because you CAN do something doesn't mean you should do it," he writes. (12/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
News You Can Use 
  • Large and small companies don't see eye to eye on taxes
    The Business Roundtable, which is composed of executives from multinational companies, has irked the National Federation of Independent Business by suggesting that increased tax revenue should be a part of a "fiscal cliff" deal. "It's easy for corporate CEOs to say that individual tax rates ought to be raised," said NFIB's Dan Danner. "Their companies don't pay taxes at the individual rate." The Obama administration has offered to include an overhaul of corporate tax rates as part of a "fiscal cliff" agreement. Bloomberg Businessweek (12/13), The Wall Street Journal (12/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
  • Bank-account guarantee program could be coming to an end
    The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.'s transaction-account guarantee program is currently helping to protect money stored in non-interest-bearing checking accounts, but the program is scheduled to end soon. Some people are concerned that the program's demise will lead businesses to move their money to larger institutions, which could take money away from community banks. CNNMoney (12/13) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Featured Content 

The truth is that the traditional way of generating referrals can only go so far for a small business living in this ever changing digital marketing world."
--Madison Jacobs, content manager at Infusionsoft, writing at
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