An entrepreneur with skin in the automotive game | Tweeting for capital | 7 buzz-worthy events for promoting your business
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June 16, 2010
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Bold Ventures
An entrepreneur with skin in the automotive game
A cell phone mix-up in 2003 -- back when most cell phones were basic black or silver -- led Tom Stemple to create personalized phone "skins" -- an idea that quickly became a must-have accessory around the world. Now he's bringing customization to the auto world, allowing car buyers to express themselves behind the wheel. Stemple has forged alliances with three major manufacturers, and profits have increased 50% per year since Original Wraps was launched in 2006. Entrepreneur online (6/10)
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Finance & Growth
Tweeting for capital
U.K. entrepreneur Simon Dolan has invested about $1.2 million in three startups that pitched him their business ideas via Twitter. He did additional due diligence on his finalists, of course, but he says 140 characters should be plenty for piquing his interest. There's "way too much detail" in the average business plan, he notes. The Telegraph (London) (tiered subscription model) (6/14)
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7 buzz-worthy events for promoting your business
Attention-getting events don't just happen; they require planning. Amber Singleton Riviere offers tips on seven promotional events you can stage with little or no cost, including an interview series, a tele-seminar, a contest and a dinner party. Web Worker Daily (6/10)
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The Whole EntrepreneurSponsored By
Does your brand have a "premium" aura?
Premium brands often sell for double the price of "ordinary" brands, yet some product categories still lack a premium player -- socks and gin, for instance -- notes consultant Mark Healy. Quality is important, but it's not the only thing: Packaging, celebrity endorsements and a compelling back story also help to create a premium aura, he writes. The Globe and Mail (Toronto) (tiered subscription model) (6/15)
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Why "shocked" e-mails could be a big mistake
Your words can come back to haunt you -- just ask Lehman Bros. Lawyers looking for wrongdoing at the banking giant have set up filters to search through old e-mails, and some of the search terms they use may be things you've typed yourself, including "stupid," "shocked," "big mistake" and "highly sensitive." NPR.org/Planet Money blog (6/14)
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Business Tips and Advice
Sponsored Content from American Express
SmartPulse
In Tuesday's primary elections, candidates affiliated with the "tea party" movement scored some big wins against more established politicians. Do you think the tea party insurgency is good or bad for small-business issues?
Good  57.48%
Bad  23.23%
Not sure  19.29%
Poll analysis: You might think that "not sure" would be a popular answer to questions about "tea party" politics, given that the movement is still somewhat new and untested. But when it comes to small-business issues, SmartBrief on Entrepreneurs readers have already made up their minds -- with a sizable majority reporting that they like what they see and hear. That's bad news for the current leadership in Washington, which has spent billions of dollars on high-profile efforts to support small business. If entrepreneurs keep up their tea party support as November approaches, the lesson would be clear: Small business is looking for space, not support. --Robert Jones, SmartBrief on Entrepreneurs contributing editor
How much do you regularly contribute to a qualified retirement plan, such as an IRA or SEP? 
VoteMore than $10,000 per year
Vote$5,000 to $10,000 per year
VoteUnder $5,000 per year
VoteI don't contribute regularly to such a plan
SmartQuote
I view the market as a sprint and not necessarily as a marathon."
-- Tom Stemple, founder of Original Wraps, as quoted by Entrepreneur.com
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