Archive for December, 2017

"Pirogov" Hospital is Ready with Enhanced Reaction Teams for New Year’s Eve

Sunday, December 31st, 2017

Two are the most common causes of New Year’s incidents – excessive use of alcohol and spicy foods and misuse of pyrotechnics. No attempts should be made to do anything on the spot, a wet bandage should be made as quickly as possible and immediate medical attention should be sought at the nearest health care facility. This was said for BNT by Prof. Asen Baltov, Director of “Pirogov”, who confirmed that the hospital is ready and there are prepared teams for New Year’s Eve.

For more than 6 months, we have another type of control, a reinforced control-card by the Ministry of Interior and the guard, which serves Pirogov. We have the opportunity and we are prepared not to have incidents. I hope 2018 is a little better. Let everyone be well and healthy. I wish everyone to have the feeling that they work in the best and most respected hospital in Bulgaria, Prof. Baltov said.


Sofia Welcomes the New Year with a Stage Under the Stars

Sunday, December 31st, 2017

The hosts of the show are Anna Angelova and Vladimir Penev.

For the 19th time the Bulgarian National Television and the Sofia Municipality organize the show “Stage under the Stars” at “Knyaz Alexander I” Square.

The musical program includes popular performers. Sofia residents and guests will see and hear Hilda Kazasyan and Vassil Petrov with Banda of Angel Zaberski, Akaga Group, DARA, Mihaela Marinova, Christiana Loizu, Signal Group and Nikolina Chakardakova with the Nevrokopian Dancers Ensemble.

Each year, more than 20,000 people are involved in the big event, and together they celebrate with more than 1 million viewers in front of the television screens.

“Stage under the Stars” is part of the Calendar of Cultural Events of Sofia Municipality.


Winds of change blow through renewable energy market

Sunday, December 31st, 2017

In 2017, companies bid to build the first subsidy-free offshore wind projects

This Webinar Can Help You Make Your Business More Profitable in 2018

Saturday, December 30th, 2017

Actionable Tips for Marketing Webinars

No matter what your specific business goals for 2018 are, your more general goal is probably to increase profitability.

A lot goes into making your business more profitable. And there are some trends for 2018 that can help you get there. If you’re looking to learn more about these trends and increase profits for your business in the new year, an upcoming webinar may be able to help.

The webinar, 5 Trends That Will Drive Your Profitability and Growth in 2018, is scheduled for January 24 so you can learn this valuable information just as the year is getting underway. Learn more about the event and how to sign up in the Featured Events section.

There are also plenty of other upcoming events that could help your business grow in 2018. Check out a full list of opportunities below.

To see a full list or to submit your own event, contest or award listing, visit the Small Business Events Calendar.

Featured Events, Contests and Awards

Make it Rain Money: How to Close Deals Faster and Speed Up CollectionsMake it Rain Money: How to Close Deals Faster and Speed Up Collections
January 17, 2018, Online

Would you like to bring revenue in the door faster? Do you want every edge possible to get paid fast? In this webinar, learn how other small businesses are eliminating their pain points in the contract and invoicing process, through use of electronic signature and invoicing apps. You’ll hear the results of exclusive DocuSign research about where other small businesses encounter the biggest challenges, and how to solve them. Today’s tools minimize manual steps and mistakes. Digital automation streamlines activities, tracks status and follows up for you — freeing up staff for other activities. Register today!

And most importantly, these tools get you paid faster, improving your cash flow.

At the end of this webinar, you’ll walk away with concrete tips for how to get contracts signed and invoices paid — much faster. Plus, you get access to DocuSign research and two concise whitepapers with insights and actionable ideas for how to improve YOUR company’s systems. So you get paid faster.

Sponsored by DocuSign.

WEBINAR: 5 Trends that Will Drive Your Profitability and Growth in 2018WEBINAR: 5 Trends that Will Drive Your Profitability and Growth in 2018
January 24, 2018, Online

Customer habits and perceptions are rapidly evolving as new technologies such as artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things go mainstream. New opportunities are opening up – but at the same time businesses of all sizes are under intense pressure to meet changing customer expectations. In this webinar on Wednesday, January 24, 2018 at 2:00 pm ET, you will learn five key trends that will drive profitability and growth in 2018, if businesses quickly leverage them and adapt to them, including: The Automation Revolution, Rise of Amazon, Expectations, The Instant Customer Service Trend, The DIY Dichotomy, Always-On Operations. Get ahead of the curve and lead in your marketplace, by understanding how to use these trends for growth and profit. Register today!

LEAP HR: Retail Conference, Nashville 2018LEAP HR: Retail Conference, Nashville 2018
February 27, 2018, Nashville, Tenn.

LEAP HR: Retail 2018 will once again dig deeper into the innovative people leaps helping digital-native and established retailers succeed in a rapidly transforming industry. With new speakers, fresh case studies, and a pre-conference ‘Boot Camp’ day dedicated to what the next-generation retail workforce really looks like, LEAP HR Retail 2018 remains the unique opportunity for senior people leaders in this industry to really challenge and get creative around how we do HR in retail.

More Events

More Contests

This weekly listing of small business events, contests and awards is provided as a community service by Small Business Trends and SmallBizTechnology.

Image: Shutterstock

This article, “This Webinar Can Help You Make Your Business More Profitable in 2018” was first published on Small Business Trends


10 Ways to Branch Out with Your Marketing Strategy in the New Year

Saturday, December 30th, 2017

5 Startup Success Factors that Increase Your Chance of Survival
Every marketer has his or her own favorite methods and tools. But branching out can sometimes be beneficial. That’s why it’s a good idea to learn what strategies are working well for other entrepreneurs. Here are some insights from members of the online small business community to help you create a marketing plan for your own business in 2018.

Repurpose Blog Content into Short Form Social Media Updates

When you write a blog post, that doesn’t have to be the only time you use that particular content. In fact, there are plenty of different ways you can repurpose that content into shorter snippets that you share on your social media pages, as Brian Appleton explains in this Social Media Examiner post.

Use This 2018 Content Marketing Toolkit

If you want to up your content marketing game in 2018, you need the best resources at your disposal. This Content Marketing Institute post by Jodi Harris includes an entire toolkit of content marketing tips, templates and checklists you can use in 2018.

Consider These Simple Content Writing Tools

Content marketing is a proven method for getting the word out about your business. And there are plenty of tools out there to make the writing process easier, like the ones in this Buzz and Tips post by Steve Williams. You can also see what the BizSugar community is saying about the post.

Take These Marketing Lessons into 2018

If you want your marketing efforts to really resonate in the new year, then you need to learn some lessons from what you did in 2017. In a recent post on Juvlon, Apeksha Kshirsagar offers some marketing lessons for small businesses that you can take into 2018.

Power Up Your Sales with These Salesforce Apps

Salesforce has long been one of the most powerful tools for managing sales. And there are also plenty of apps you can use with the platform to improve your processes even more. Here, Benjamin Brandall of Process Street lists some of the top apps you can use to power up your sales.

Add More Than One Admin to Your Facebook Page

You might think that you can run a successful Facebook page on your own. But there are actually significant advantages to having more than one admin. Lisa Sicard of Inspire to Thrive shares why in a recent post. And BizSugar members discuss the post further too.

Follow These Digital Marketing Strategies for Solopreneurs

If you run a business completely on your own, then the marketing strategies that work for larger businesses aren’t likely to apply. Instead, take a look at some of the marketing strategies specifically for solopreneurs in a recent DIY Marketers post by Rhonda Burgess.

Consider Hiring a Marketer for Your Freelance Biz

Even freelancers could use some help marketing their services from time to time. There are many different ways a marketing expert can help freelance businesses. Ivan Widjaya of Biz Epic elaborates in a recent post.

Use Video to Increase Conversions on Your Landing Page

The landing page of your website should serve a specific purpose — converting visitors into customers. And video can play a major role in that, according to a recent Pagewiz post by Elna Cain. BizSugar members also share some thoughts on the post.

Check Out These Logo Design Trends for 2018

If one of your goals for the new year is to update your branding, then a new logo might be in order. If that’s the case, you need to look at some of the current design trends that might impact your process. Here are some things to consider from Katie Lundin of Crowdspring.

If you’d like to suggest your favorite small business content to be considered for an upcoming community roundup, please send your news tips to:

Image: Shuttestock

This article, “10 Ways to Branch Out with Your Marketing Strategy in the New Year” was first published on Small Business Trends


10 Creative Ways You Can Improve Your Next Clearance Sale

Saturday, December 30th, 2017

10 Clearance Sale Tips for Success

The year 2017 is almost over. Are you still carrying unsold merchandise in your store?

As the post-holiday frenzy dies down, January is a slow month for most retail stores. On top of the holiday bill hangover consumers are experiencing, bad weather or resolutions to stop spending money will often keep shoppers away.

But if those unsold products are gathering dust on your shelves or taking up space in your stockroom, they’re not bringing in profits for your business. It’s time for a clearance sale!

The word “clearance” is overused these days when many retail chains seem to offer weekly clearance deals. However, when clearance is done sparingly, it can be a highly effective marketing strategy. Clearance can attract not only your regular customers, but bargain-hunters who might not otherwise stop into your store. For instance, many people who don’t normally shop at Nordstrom Rack hit the discount store regularly for its seasonal clearance sales.

Clearance Sale Tips

Here’s how to make your clearance sale a success.

1. Time it right. Quarterly seasonal clearance makes sense for most retail businesses. You want to sell products at the tail end of the season, while they’re more attractive to customers. (For example, it’s easier to move parkas in January than April.) If your products aren’t particularly seasonal, a clearance every six months may work. Just don’t let too much unsold stock build up.

2. Choose your wares. Using your point-of-sale/inventory management system, identify the products that are least profitable and slowest moving so you can pull them for clearance.

3. Create your clearance display. Don’t hide your clearance in the back of the store. You can often tempt shoppers to come into your store by putting clearance items relatively close to the door. Limit the total space you devote to clearance. It’s OK if the products are a little crowded. You don’t want so much clearance that your retailer looks like a thrift store or as if you’re going out of business. Try putting some small clearance items near the checkout line. You’d be surprised how many people can’t resist this.

4. Price it right. Using actual prices rather than percentage-off signs typically attracts more bargain hunters. No math is required to see that “$10 each” is a good deal. Try sectioning products by price — a $10 display, a $20 display, a $5 and under display, etc.

5. Kick it off with a bang. Ever been to a “clearance” sale that offers 15 percent off? (Eye roll.) That’s not nearly enough to tempt true bargain hunters. Start with 50 percent off — possibly even deeper discounts depending on your industry, your competition and what types of discounts you’ve offered throughout the year.

6. Market online and off. Market your clearance through email, online advertising, social media, on your website and/or direct mail. Greet customers at your entrance and let them know about your clearance specials. Point out the sale racks or shelves and maybe even suggest an item. Giving shoppers a bag or basket to shop with can entice them to buy more, too.

7. Sweeten the deal. If your product doesn’t sell on 50 percent clearance, don’t hang on to it. Your primary goal is to move the items out of inventory, so increase the discount every day of the clearance — 50 percent the first day, 60 percent the second day, etc. — to motivate buyers.

8. Let it go. What if at the end of your clearance, you’ve still got stuff left? Don’t try to sell it next season. One shoe store I shop at has an annual clearance sale where at least half the inventory is shoes that didn’t sell at the last sale! Know when to cut your losses.

9. Act quickly. If a product doesn’t sell, have a plan for disposing of it at the end of the sale. You can try liquidators, remarketers or donating the items to charity for a tax write-off.

10. Connect with new customers. Make a special effort to get new customers on your mailing list. Ask them to sign up for your email newsletters or loyalty reward program. For those who are bargain oriented, asking, “Would you like to know about our next clearance sale in advance so you can get a better selection?” is generally all it takes to get them to sign up.

Happy selling!

Photo via Shutterstock

This article, “10 Creative Ways You Can Improve Your Next Clearance Sale” was first published on Small Business Trends


Mastercard Says Retail Sales Grew 4.9% During Record Holiday Season

Saturday, December 30th, 2017

Mastercard Says 2017 Retail Holiday Sales Grew 4.9% During Record Holiday Season

The largest year-over-year holiday sales increase since 2011 was just recorded by the Mastercard SpendingPulse report. The 4.9 percent increase comes at a time when terms such as “Retail Apocalypse” are in the headlines forecasting the demise of retailers.

2017 Retail Holiday Sales Results

According to Mastercard, customer confidence is one of the biggest drivers. This also accounted for an 18.1 percent increase in online shopping compared to 2016. The recent overhaul and passing of the tax bill may have also played a role in the late season rally.

The number of customers shopping in retail stores has been declining, but a large percentage of customers still prefer brick and mortar outlets.

Sarah Quinlan, senior vice president of Market Insights for Mastercard, addressed the increase in sales on the company’s press release. She said, “Evolving consumer preferences continue to play out in the aisles and online sites of retailers across the U.S. Overall, this year was a big win for retail. The strong U.S. economy was a contributing factor, but we also have to recognize that retailers who tried new strategies to engage holiday shoppers were the beneficiaries of this sales increase.”

The Mastercard SpendingPulse report looks at all retail sales except the automotive segment in the U.S. across all payment types. The holiday shopping period, according to Mastercard, is from November 1 through December 24.

Key Findings

While the number was good overall, some segments fared better than others when the data was analyzed. At 7.5 percent, electronics and appliances had the strongest growth of the past 10 years. As for the home furniture, furnishings, and home improvement category, the growth was 5.1 percent.

The report also said the success retailers experienced could be attributed to heavy early-season promotions as well as last-minute shopping. The early promotions resulted in significant increases in sales for the first three weeks of November.

Last-minute shopping, especially in jewelry which rose by 5.9 percent, resulted in record spending sprees.

Retail Stores not Ready to Die

The demise of the retail store has been in the headlines, but it doesn’t look like 2018 is the year it is going to happen. Granted retailers have been closing in record numbers, but consumers have shown they still enjoy the experience of going out to shop.

For small businesses operating in this highly competitive environment, it’s necessary to make the in-store experience even more special. This includes delivering better customer service and seamless integration with digital solutions.

Photo via Shutterstock

This article, “Mastercard Says Retail Sales Grew 4.9% During Record Holiday Season” was first published on Small Business Trends


Pazardzhik is in a State of Emergency Because of the Disposal of Garbage

Saturday, December 30th, 2017

From today, in Pazardzhik has been declared a part-time disaster because of a problem with the transport of garbage. This was decided at yesterday’s meeting of the Municipal Crisis Headquarters for Disaster Protection. The disorderly situation is announced and will last until January 5 but can be prolonged.

This measure came about because of a European directive that all landfills outside environmental standards should stop working. The grace period expires at the end of the year, and with the new 2018 old waste dumps should stop accepting waste.

The municipalities in Pazard have to transport the garbage to the regional depot. It was opened two months ago by the Minister of Ecology, Neno Dimov, but there is no operator yet, as the procedure for his election is appealed. There is a decision of the CPC on the preliminary performance of the contract with the designated operator, but it can be appealed to the court by 5 January. Announcement of a state of emergency allows the mayors to conclude a direct contract with a company to become a temporary operator of the landfill.

The problem is not only for the municipality of Pazardjik. 113 landfills in the country should be closed. The rubbish crisis will affect 9 municipalities in the Pazardzhik region, 6 in Blagoevgrad, Kyustendil and Dupnitsa. 


After all Turkey Buys Russian Missile Systems for USD 2.5 Billion

Saturday, December 30th, 2017

The big arms deal between Moscow and Ankara is a fact, says BiT. Turkey has signed a deal with Russia on the purchase of C-400 missile complexes. The agreement is worth a total of two billion and a half dollars.

Part of the amount Ankara will pay on its own, and for the rest will take credit from Moscow.

The treaty has sparked NATO’s displeasure, as the organization is in a tense relationship with the Kremlin. In addition, Turkey is a member of the Alliance, and the Russian system can hardly be integrated into the military structure of NATO.

The real integration of the C-400 complex into the rest of the Turkish air defense systems seems a rather difficult task as they are working on NATO standards. However, it is not impossible: Greece, for example, has OSA, Thor and C-300, supplied after 1990, and equipped with NATO-owned systems.


Russia has Delivered the First Quantities of Liquefied Gas in the UK

Saturday, December 30th, 2017

Icebreaker Christophe de Margerie, carrying liquefied gas from Russia, has landed tonight in the port of the British island of Grane, reports, referring to TASS. These are the first quantities of liquefied Russian gas that is received by the UK.

Christophe de Margerie, the icebreaker, is the first of its class built specifically for the Yamal CNG project that Russia is trying to break through and take on a share of the liquefied gas market. A further 14 icebreakers will be built to ship liquefied gas to the North Sea, it is clear from the project website.

The tanker was launched on December 8 in the presence of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

In Yamal SNG, the majority shareholding (50.1%) holds the Russian company “Novateck”, while co-owners with 20% are French Total and the Chinese CNPC. 9.9% are in the hands of the One Belt, One Road Chinese investment fund.

According to Financial Times, Christophe de Margerie had to deliver its cargo to Asia. But the Forties oil pipeline in the North Sea has changed plans. This oil pipeline in the UK supplies 40% of oil and gas extracted in the North Sea, adds


Business news