Archive for June, 2018

Attend This Free Online Event And Gain Insights from Seasoned Entrepreneurs

Saturday, June 30th, 2018

Work From Home Ideas: 12 In-Home Business Opportunities You Can Start From Your Laptop
Want to start a new business — or grow an existing one? Where do you go and who do you ask for help?

Both these questions will be answered with an online event coming your way this fall. And attendance is free!

At this year’s Growth & Success Conference, experts will discuss ways to build your brand; reset, reboot and redirect your success; gain confidence and clarity; and how you can learn to systematically carry out successful negotiations.

The event brings together a collection of seasoned entrepreneurs and thought leaders to share their knowledge, experience and insights as business owners, mentors and strategists with you!

You can attend the free conference from September 17 – 18, 2018 online as part of the Virtual Conference Series.

Click on the Growth & Success box below to register and attend:

Register for Free



Featured Events, Contests and Awards

Growth & Success ConGrowth & Success Con
September 17, 2018, Online

This small business virtual conference is dedicated to supporting entrepreneurs at all stages who are stuck in the daily grind of building their businesses and struggle to get solid advice and guidance. An amazing panel of experts in various disciplines and business coaches will share tips & tricks on topics including Growth, Marketing, Management & Business Building for Success. Register today!


More Events

More Contests

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

You can see a full list of events, contest and award listings or post your own events by visiting the Small Business Events Calendar.

Image: Shutterstock

This article, “Attend This Free Online Event And Gain Insights from Seasoned Entrepreneurs” was first published on Small Business Trends

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10 Expert Suggestions for Getting Your Content Found

Saturday, June 30th, 2018

Content marketing can be a tricky strategy for small businesses to master. Not only do you need to actually create content that’s both relevant and effective, but you also need to find ways to get that content in front of potential customers. SEO, social media and collaboration can all be effective strategies in this area. Read what members of the online small business community have to say on those subjects below.

Check Out These Powerful Examples of Link Worthy Content

If you want to build links to your content, you need to create content that’s actually worthy of being linked to. It can help to gather some inspiration by looking at other link-worthy content. Here are some examples to guide your own content creation from Anne Leuman of TopRank Marketing.

Gain Visibility Using Instagram Hashtags for Business

Once you create content on Instagram, hashtags can help you get it in front of more potential customers. However, it’s important to have a strategy in mind so you actually get found by relevant people. Learn more in a recent Social Media Examiner post by Jenn Herman.

Get the Scoop on LinkedIn Hashtags

If you use LinkedIn to promote your content, you may have noticed a recent update that includes the ability to add hashtags. This new feature is being tested and could potentially help you reach more users. Rachel Strella discusses more in a post on Strella Social Media. And BizSugar members offer additional thoughts here.

Save Time on Content Curation and Collaboration

Involving others in your content strategy can be a great way to get your message in front of new eyes. Curating content and collaborating with others can be time consuming. But there are tools out there to help you save time, like the ones listed in a recent Content Marketing Institute post by Aaron Orendorff.

Overcome Common Link Building Blockers

When it comes to building links to your content, there are some common challenges and mistakes keeping content creators from making as much of an impact. Read about some of the most common blockers and how to overcome them in a Search Engine Land post by Paddy Moogan.

Rethink Authenticity in Your Content Strategy

It can be difficult for a lot of marketers to strike a balance between creating authentic content and creating a performance that gets results. In a recent Copyblogger post, Stefanie Flaxman talks about how you can rethink that idea and create authentic content. And you can also see commentary from the BizSugar community too.

Drive Sales with Your Instagram Marketing Strategy

Of course, the overall goal of your content marketing strategy should be to increase sales for your business, whether that’s directly or indirectly. If you’re looking to drive real sales to your small business from Instagram, check out the tips in a rcent Quick Sprout post by Neil Patel.

Learn What’s New with Facebook in 2018

Part of taking advantage of social platforms like Facebook to gain visibility for your content is keeping up with new features. Facebook is constantly evolving.  You can learn more about what’s new on the platform in this SMB CEO post by Ivan Widjaya.

Use Mentoring to Increase Your Odds of Small Business Survival

A recent report found mentoring can help small businesses survive for longer. Jonathan Dyer of Dyer News discusses the findings in this post. And BizSugar members also share their thoughts on the post in their community.

Avoid These Blogging Mistakes on Other Sites

Sharing your expertise on new sites can be a great way to increase your content’s reach. However, there are a lot of common mistakes that go along with this approach. In a recent CorpNet post, Matej Markovic goes into some of the most prevalent ones and offers solutions.

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: sbtips@gmail.com.

Photo via Shutterstock

This article, “10 Expert Suggestions for Getting Your Content Found” was first published on Small Business Trends

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Rebooted Microsoft Classic IntelliMouse Brings New Features to Your Business Computer

Saturday, June 30th, 2018

Microsoft Classic IntelliMouse Reboots an Old Favorite

The original Microsoft IntelliMouse was launched in 1996, with the last model being released in 2003. It has taken 15 years, but Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) has decided to revive this iconic mouse with the new Microsoft Classic IntelliMouse.

Microsoft Classic IntelliMouse

As to why Microsoft decided this was the right time to bring back the IntelliMouse, Simon Dearsley, Devices Design Director at Microsoft, explained the reasoning on the company’s official Windows Blogs. Dearsly said tracking and switch technology, as well as price, has matured, which presented an opportunity for the company.

Dearsly added Microsoft saw the opportunity to “Improve on an icon by updating it with modern technology. We know how important the IntelliMouse range has been and wanted to take a moment to reflect on the history of it and do something special for our fans.”

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Keeping the Classic Design

The first IntelliMouse was originally sculpted by hand by the most experienced mouse designers in the world, this according to Dearsly. For Microsoft, it meant leaving a good thing alone and instead channeling its focus to updating the performance with the latest technology.

Inside the new IntelliMouse, Microsoft has upgraded the device with new mechanical engineering and new structures to make it stronger than the original.

This includes adding three Kailh switches for the middle wheel and side buttons as well as making improvements to the two side buttons. The three classic buttons can be customized to introduce more efficiency to your workflow.

When it comes to tracking, a DPI range of up to 3200 makes the mouse more precise. And at $39.99, the Microsoft Classic Intellimouse is an affordable peripheral with great design and technology.

Microsoft Classic IntelliMouse Reboots an Old Favorite

Workflow Efficiency

The mouse has evolved greatly since it was invented by Douglas Engelbart in the 1960s when it was called the “X-Y Position Indicator for a Display System.” As it continued evolving, it introduced new levels of efficiency in applications and eventually web browsing and more.

It is almost inconceivable to picture a computer without some type of mouse capability these days. Along with the keyboard, the mouse has become an indispensable tool likely to remain with us until something better comes along.

You can get the new Microsoft Classic IntelliMouse here.

Images: Microsoft

This article, “Rebooted Microsoft Classic IntelliMouse Brings New Features to Your Business Computer” was first published on Small Business Trends

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The week in energy: It’s a gas, gas, gas

Saturday, June 30th, 2018

Global gas industry on the ball at world conference in Washington

Burn the Business Plan! is a Book about Turning Entrepreneurial Vision Into Practical Solution

Saturday, June 30th, 2018

Burn the business plan! Burn the business plan! Wait? Is that all I need to do to get started in this

Does author Carl Schramm truly believe entrepreneurs should “Burn The Business Plan” as the provocative title of his book suggests? If you were to ask the  former president of the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, the answer would likely be no.

Schramm’s colorfully titled, Burn The Business Plan: What Great Entrepreneurs Really Do does offer plenty of other suggestions though.  Schramm, a university professor at Syracuse whom The Economist calls the “evangelist of entrepreneurship,” wrote this book to dispel the myths people hear about entrepreneurship and share the truths for building sustainable success.

What Is Burn the Business Plan About?

Burn The Business Plan covers key scenarios entrepreneurs face in terms of setting entrepreneurial expectations. The first chapter makes its case for burning the business plan, of course, but the rest  of the book gets to the motivation behind business building. The book also looks at resources, both professional and personal. It also looks at how to learn from other entrepreneurs and how to create an entrepreneurial culture.

The rest of the book focuses on the motivations driving entrepreneurs to build a business. Good points and counterpoints exist in the chapters, with supporting materials where possible. In Chapter 5, for example, Schramm cautions about toxic mentors and gives four examples.  When seeking an example of how entrepreneurs can improve their  learning speed, Schramm mentions OODA (Observe, Orient, Decide, Act), an approach to decision making used by pilots when making quick judgments. Devised by John Boyd, an Air Force pilot who served in the Korean War, this approach helps entrepreneurs broaden their view, one of Schramm’s main purposes in writing the book.

What I Liked about Burn the Business Plan

Schramm does a very good job of providing useful explanations that show the reader why certain business ideas are accepted without question even though they can’t stand up to scrutiny.  I liked the book’s emphasis on creating a platform and selecting mentors.  When Schramm explains how an idea is executed, he notes how this happens through product trials.

“No one knows at the outset …exactly how her idea will be valued by customers. Thus, every startup becomes a platform on which to develop and test the utility of an evolving product.”

As software becomes part of a business model, businesses have to rethink how they deliver products and services. That means deploying multiple dynamic plans rather than a single static business plan and rethinking your road map regularly as information changes.

Schramm’s ideas flow smoothly from chapter to chapter without being repetitive.  In fact Chapter 6, Big Companies Can Be Schools For Start Ups, was a standout chapter to me.  Schramm explains how large enterprises benefit startups in a somewhat unusual way. While these behemoths certainly can scale, they can also become bureaucratic. This sometimes leaves open untapped opportunities and innovations. And these can entice employees who had never showed any interest in entrepreneurship before to launch businesses in order to take advantage of these opportunities. Schramm calls these people Spinout Entrepreneurs and explains how and why they can contribute to a small business’s success.

“Very few spinout entrepreneurs start companies outside of the industries in which they work. The obvious reason is that they have acquired specific knowledge….Executives within an industry often move from one company to another. They are not hired because they are bringing company secrets, but because they know the common culture of the industry.”

Schramm shares a few specific stories, like entrepreneur Gary Burrell, head designer for King Radio, who went on to design communication and navigation systems used by King’s customers.

Schramm says Ewing Kaufman, founder of Marion Labs and the Ewing Marion Kaufmann Institute (Schramm’s former employer), had especially inspired him. In fact, Schramm ended up dedicating the book to Kaufman. According to Schramm, Kaufman had always encouraged this kind of entrepreneurship, even if it meant a few employees would leave:

“Ewing Kaufman delighted in knowing that many new companies, at least fifteen, were created by former employees of Marion Labs. He viewed his company as a nursery for other entrepreneurs.”

Schramm also explains however the need for something extra on the part of entrepreneurs who find themselves in such a place:

“But being in an innovative environment is not enough. An aspiring entrepreneur needs to pay close attention to the process by which companies develop new products.”

I know many lost entrepreneurs who have identified a product or service, but not a clear idea on how they will deliver that product.  The Amazons of the world know about delivery, and Schramm appreciates it too.   He provides stories of successful entrepreneurs and gets past the typical “passion-is-important” pronouncements to look at the practical side of what works and what doesn’t.

What Could Have Been Done Differently?

What may have been missing in the book was a chapter on team dynamics.  While the book relied on many well-chosen stories to make its points, more detail might have been helpful to see exactly how people behind the scenes made things happen.

But much of this lack of detail is down to the book’s brevity. And the slimness of the volume is also its virtue, delivering important, easy to digest insights to busy entrepreneurs who may not have the tome for a lengthy read.

One significant concept Schramm hits home is how innovation can come with knowledge acquired along the way. One example of this from the book is how two University of South Carolina coaches applied their observations about the materials used in many sports uniforms to launch Sheex, a performance bedding manufacturer.

Why Read Burn The Business Plan?

Entrepreneurs should learn how to plan without letting their plans become restrictive.  Reading Burn The Business Plan will help you see how to focus not just on your vision but on how to make a vision into practical reality delivering real value for customers.

Image: Amazon

This article, “Burn the Business Plan! is a Book about Turning Entrepreneurial Vision Into Practical Solution” was first published on Small Business Trends

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40% of the Deaths in Bulgaria could have been Prevented

Saturday, June 30th, 2018

Little more than 40 percent of the deaths in Bulgaria could have been prevented in the presence of optimal health care and they would not have happened if there was an efficient health system and quality medical services and technologies, according to Eurostat data analysis. The so-called “preventable death” analysis in the EU in 2016, quoted by Darik.

The EU average for “preventable death” is 33 per cent, and the most deaths that could be prevented are registered in our northern neighbor Romania – nearly 49 per cent or nearly half of the registered deaths there.

According to the analysis, most Bulgarians died during the period due to circulatory diseases – 1 131 cases per 100 00, which is almost 4 times the EU average – about 350 cases per 100 000 people in the EU.

About 110,000 people died in Bulgaria last year.

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The Gas Prices in Bulgaria Rise by 10.8% from July 1

Saturday, June 30th, 2018

Natural gas prices will increase from July 1 with 10.8%, energy regulator KEVR reported, quoted by bTV.

Preliminary estimates show that this will lead to an average of 7% more expensive central heating and hot water from next month.

Because of the rise in natural gas prices, it is not excluded that the price of electricity may increase by more than initially projected 2%.

Final prices for electricity and heating will become clear on Sunday.

CEZ wants an increase of 1.7%, EVN – by 1.8%, and Energo-Pro – by 2.6%.

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BNR: Bulgaria Hands over Presidency of Council of EU to Austria

Saturday, June 30th, 2018

Bulgarian National Radio – Today is the last day of the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the European Union. The start of the next term, headed by the Republic of Austria, will be given in Schladming, a well-known winter resort in the area of Steiermark, where Austria will send a strong pro-European signal under the motto “Servus Europa”. This is not only a typical Austrian welcome greeting, but also a call for dialogue aiming at motivating EU citizens to participate in building a strong and protective Europe.

Visitors to Schladming and the nearby Planai Mountain will take part in an all-day program, starting with a picnic offering regional specialties and beverages. 28 cabins of the gondola lift will be decorated with the flags of the EU Member States; one will be in the colors of the Bulgarian and the Austrian flag and another one will be decorated with colors of the EU flag. During a panoramic hike, guests will be able to get acquainted with interesting facts about the European Union. Shortly before noon, a “summit meeting” will take place and Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borissov will symbolically hand over the Presidency of the Council of the European Union to his Austrian counterpart, Federal Chancellor Sebastian Kurz.

A big concert entitled “Europa LIVE” will take place in the evening at the Schladming stadium. Many Austrian artists are invited to perform local and international hits along with hundreds of non-professional musicians, singers and choirs who will make the audience sing, dance and have fun together with them. About 7,000 guests are expected to participate in the EU family picnic and 20,000 visitors will take part in the town’s initiatives.

English: Alexander Markov

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The US Ambassador to Estonia Resigned, Frustrated by Trump

Saturday, June 30th, 2018

The US Ambassador to Estonia resigned after announcing that he was disappointed by President Donald Trump’s comments on European allies, the BNR reported.

James Melville wrote on Facebook that Trump’s words had led to his decision to retire. The US president has imposed a European duty and continues to criticize allies from NATO.

Other US diplomats have also left their posts in recent months. In January, this was done by the ambassador to Panama, saying he was no longer able to serve under Trump. Another diplomat working for the US mission in Somalia left his position with the explanation that the US has abandoned human rights as a priority, the National Radio adds.

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Earthquake with a Force 6.1 Shook the Pacific Coast of Mexico

Saturday, June 30th, 2018

An earthquake of magnitude 6.1 has shook the Pacific coast of Mexico today, Reuters reported, citing the Geophysical Institute of the United States.

The epicenter of the earthquake was 88 km west-southwest of the city of Sioultlan, the state of Halisco. According to the US Institute, the earthquake has reached a depth of 10 km.

Mexican Civil Protection chief Luis Felipe Puente said on Twitter that the earthquake has been felt slightly and that there is no damage.

In the last months, there were a series of stronger earthquakes in Mexico, including two in September, killing a total of several hundred people and destroying buildings.

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