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April 20, 2012
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Business news you can use from your Better Business Bureau®

  Trends & Trust 
  • The key to creating a culture of trust
    Top organizations tend to have cultures that engage employees and encourage them to buy into their companies' goals. Companies can build a culture of trust by focusing on transparency, according to Chester Elton, co-author of "All In: How the Best Managers Create a Culture of Belief and Drive Big Results." "Much of the distrust we see in work groups is a result of misunderstanding or misreading the intentions of others, especially leaders," he notes. Business News Daily (4/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Customer Satisfaction & Marketing 
  • Excellent customer service starts with listening
    Customers can come up with some fairly wild questions, which means customer-service staffers need to be prepared to handle anything, says author John Tschohl. It's vital to let the customer know you're listening and taking the question seriously, even if it's outside your scope, he advises in this list of tips for providing excellent customer service. Entrepreneur online/The Daily Dose blog (4/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • How to get customers to read your e-mails
    Recipients will delete uninteresting marketing messages in the blink of an eye, so it's important to grab their attention from the start, Tom Searcy writes. Your marketing e-mails should include a call to action and should be personalized, he advises. "Craft messages based on information known about individual recipients and segments of recipients," he adds. CBS MoneyWatch/Sales Machine blog (4/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • The key to advertising success for a seasonal business
    Seasonal businesses that are gearing up for summer have to get customers to notice them. It's important for seasonal businesses to advertise early and often to attract the attention of potential customers, said Chris Rimlinger of Money Mailer. "You can't just advertise once and expect people to remember you for the next several months -- you have to be in front of their faces all that time to get people to notice you," she said. Bloomberg Businessweek (tiered subscription model) (4/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • The changing world of B2B marketing
    Many business-to-business marketers say creating more sales leads is a key challenge for this year, according to a survey by Crain's BtoB Magazine. Many respondents said getting an accurate idea of the effectiveness of their campaigns is challenging. The key takeaway from this survey is that marketing is undergoing an evolutionary process, according to Lisa Arthur. Forbes (4/17) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  Management & Leadership 
  • How CEOs should spend their time
    As your business expands and you hire employees, your role as head of the company changes. As the CEO, you should focus on setting the direction of the company, putting a strong team in place and looking for new opportunities, write Mary Goodman and Rich Russakoff of Bottom Line Up Enterprises. "Locate future opportunities for the company that enhance its current systems and further its financial goals," they write. CBS MoneyWatch (4/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Why you should cross-train your employees
    Offering cross-training to your staff can energize employees and prepare them to fill different roles within the company if necessary, Stephanie Faris writes. Training resources are available on the Internet, and there are also a number of tools you can use to create your own materials, she writes. (4/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • How to find the right time sheet tools for your company
    When shopping for a time sheet solution, it's important to look for vendors who are able to prove the value of their product for your business, writes Curt Finch of Journyx. "If a vendor can't make you 100% certain that the solution will work for your specific business needs, then walk away," he writes. If you are thinking about a software-as-a-service solution, you should ask vendors about the security and backup features involved, he adds. Small Business Trends (4/18) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Most small business owners know the importance of managing credit effectively and that a "one size fits all" model won't work. Use Managing Credit - Made Simpler to find the right credit management model for your business and to help identify strategies to ensure you are on top of your business's financial condition.
  Funding & Finance 
  • Which business expenses are deductible?
    If you aren't compensated for business expenses by your employer, you may be entitled to tax deductions, writes Bonnie Lee. "The IRS says you may deduct all ordinary and necessary business expenses," she writes. Although restrictions apply, you may be able to deduct vehicle expenses and the cost of a home office. Fox Business/Taxpertise (4/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Featured Content 
  BBB in the News 
  • Smartphone users should beware fake Android apps
    Users of Android devices should be aware that crooks are circulating fake versions of the Instagram and Angry Birds Space applications that contain malware, according to the BBB. Smartphone users can protect themselves by downloading these apps from Google Play rather than from an unofficial source. WXYZ-TV (Detroit) (4/19) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Avoid popularity; it has many snares, and no real benefit."
--William Penn,
British statesman and philosopher

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