The dangers of buying e-mail lists for marketing | How to market your company on Pinterest | Don't grow too fast, and other business mistakes to avoid
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March 1, 2013
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Problem. Solved.
Ask "why" to make sure your ideas make sense
Too often, company owners flit from one idea to the next without pausing to consider their reasoning for doing what they are doing, writes Josh Patrick of Stage 2 Planning Partners. For this reason, you should ask yourself "why" before implementing a new initiative. "When we get to the core reason of why we are doing something, we often decide to change our approach," he notes. The New York Times (tiered subscription model)/You're the Boss blog (2/28)
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The dangers of buying e-mail lists for marketing
Buying an e-mail list to market to strangers is a losing tactic in the long run, writes Meghan Keaney Anderson. Not only will it damage your sender score, it could even get you blacklisted from potential customers. A better approach is to start a relevant, search-friendly and content-rich blog that draws people in and encourages them to sign up for e-mails. MarketingProfs (2/28)
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How to market your company on Pinterest
The first step to setting up a successful Pinterest page for your business is to set clear goals for using the site, writes Kim Lachance Shandrow. Do you want to publicize your commitment to a cause, for example? Use images to tell a visual story about your company. "Choose brightly colored, interesting pictures that show your followers how they can use your products and services in interesting, non-promotional situations," she recommends. Entrepreneur online (2/27)
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Don't grow too fast, and other business mistakes to avoid
It's tempting to expand your business as quickly as possible, but careless growth can cause problems, writes Jan Fletcher. "Invite a seasoned entrepreneur to give you feedback (and perhaps a reality check) on your expansion plans," she recommends. Among other common pitfalls for business owners are insulting competitors and bragging too much. Intuit Small Business Blog (2/28)
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Small firms embrace mobile payments to boost cash flow
Small businesses are benefiting from new technologies that allow customers to pay via smartphone. These payments provide businesses with immediate working capital that allows them to reimburse creditors without having to borrow. The Wall Street Journal (2/27)
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What small businesses need to know about lending trends
Small businesses must be aware of lending trends as they seek out financing, SCORE Association CEO Ken Yancey writes. The larger the bank, the less likely it is to lend to small businesses; well-capitalized, newer and less-profitable banks are more likely to lend to small companies, Yancey notes. He also says Small Business Administration loans should be considered. By contrast, alternative sources of capital such as crowdfunding should be approached with caution, Yancey writes. SCORE Small Business Success Blog (2/28)
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Tips & Tools
5 ways to get people to answer your e-mails
If you want people to actually read and answer your e-mails, get to the point immediately and proofread them before hitting the "send" button, writes Dave Johnson. "[Y]ou'd be surprised how often what makes sense in your head is borderline gibberish when it lands on the screen," he writes. Also, choose subject lines that accurately reflect the content of your messages, he advises. CBS MoneyWatch (2/28)
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Just for Fun
Ever wanted to be a gummy bear? Now's your chance
A Japanese company is offering to make gummy-bear replicas of its customers. For $65, the firm will process customers with 3D scanning technology and use the data to produce delicious and meticulously accurate candy replicas. "I don't know a single sane person that wouldn't be excited about doing this," writes Casey Chan. (2/26), Gizmodo (2/25)
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Toot your own horn, but don't use a bullhorn to do so."
-- Jan Fletcher, president of Dreamcatch Creative, writing at the Intuit Small Business Blog.
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