The StartupNation Blog Trends, tips and real-life anecdotes from industry experts

Archive for December, 2008

Tips for Creating Effective e-Newsletters

The current holiday season encouraged many small businesses to test out email marketing in 2008. It’s simple, affordable and trackable after all. Maybe you started out with a “thank you for your business” message or you enticed customers with offers for repeat business and referrals. But the idea of creating a consistent e-newsletter to issue [...]

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The Fool Proof Marketing Offer

By Erin Jacobs, VerticalResponse Customers often ask me, what are the best offers to use in email marketing programs, or any lead generation program for that matter.  The answer, of course, is dependent on a list of factors- among them: What is the nature of your business? What are you trying to achieve with your [...]

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Is Kindness….seen as a weakness?

I am a retail agent, I assist companies with getting their products reviewed and accepted by mass retailers. I recently had a client that said he mistakenly assigned another rep to a retailer he and I had a contract with, and would we exclude this account from our sales roster and allow his “other rep” [...]

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Happy Holidays!

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all of you for reading my blog and offering your questions, comments and insights. It is a pleasure sharing with you! I’ll be taking a short break to celebrate the holidays, but I’ll be back in 2009 with more tips and information to help you boost awareness, [...]

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Last Minute Gifts for Busy Entrepreneurs

As a busy entrepreneur, have you started your holiday shopping yet? To save time, there are always gift cards and food items. Another option is to visit your favorite bookstore. Here, you can find unique gifts and even buy a hot, holiday beverage at an in-store café. Plus, you can peruse the periodicals for the [...]

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End of the Year Push-Monday Morning Memoir

Last year our company sat on its heals using the old excuse “it’s the holidays, nobody makes buying decisions right now” and it killed our numbers.  Our sales team felt like they had a free ride to underperform.  The funny part was that in January and February our numbers were great.  The sales team just [...]

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National Bankruptcy Day. Will the CPSIA effect you?

It’s possible if you manufacture or sell products for children under 12 years old.  The phrase “National Bankruptcy Day” was coined by toy manufacturer Rick Woldenberg, President/CEO of Learning Resources, in reference to the new CPSIA legislation that passed on October 18, 2008.  The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) is a direct response to [...]

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The Forgotten Secret to Startup Success

It’s 10:00 a.m. in the middle of the work week, and your website just went down, a client wants a document in the next twenty minutes, the shipment you were expecting didn’t arrive, you spilled mustard on your shirt five minutes before your big meeting, an employee is doing all of her holiday shopping during [...]

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The Toilet Paper Illustration

As an example of systems-thinking, and at the risk of an awful pun, reaching for a piece of toilet paper is the bottom line.   Toilet paper is a mandatory accessory. It may be the one thing that all of us have used daily for all our lives. As an illustration of a system that is [...]

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What’s Your Number….Baby?

VERY often I stumble on, or am introduced to GREAT products! I visit their web site to contact them for what could be a fantastic opportunity…..and find only a contact EMAIL…..for which I send an inquiry, and hear no response. Oh La La, YIKES! This happened to me recently, and I need to express my [...]

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Enough Doom and Gloom Already!

  For the last few weeks, it seems like there has been nothing but bad news. All of the radio and television reporters blast the latest unemployment stats, stock market dips and unrest in the world. It’s enough to turn you into a Scrooge this holiday season or make you cower in a corner with [...]

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The Dreaded Holiday Party! Monday Morning Memoir

This is always a difficult one.  Every year no mater what business I’m in, the holiday party is always drapped in a delima.  Do you invite their spouse/significant other? Do you have an open bar or cash bar? do you rent a private room or have it at your office?  We have done it all.  [...]

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Best Advice I Can Give You

Wondering if now is the time for you to start up? Intimidated by all the complexity and confused by the possible options at hand? Here’s my simple advice today: Start taking steps, even baby steps, but just start…

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Tips for Pitching the Small Business Professor

On Tuesday, we talked to Bruce Freeman. He’s the Small Business Professor for Scripps Howard News Service at www.smallbusinessprof.com, founder of ProLine Communications, and the author of the new book, “Birthing the Elephant.” If you’d like to approach Bruce to get some publicity for your business, here are his words of advice: What is your [...]

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Retail Sales up 7.2% from Last Year, But Is Anyone Making Money?

The National Retail Federation announced holiday sales are up 7.2% from last year.  While these numbers are encouraging, here’s the real question: “Is Anyone Making Money?” As the dark cloud of Recession looms over the economy, retailers are showing their desperation as they drastically slash prices to compete for consumer dollars.  The end result is [...]

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Ask and You Shall Receive

I’m finding that in business people tell you what they want.  In order to get what you want, sometimes all you have to do is ask.  Especially in times like these most people are eager for your business.  Therefore learning the art of negotiation is essential.  First and foremost though you have to know what you want.  I’ll [...]

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Back from India – Land of Paradoxes

I am passing through the Amsterdam airport and wanted to share some perspectives about India from my exposure over the past week, a couple of days touring around the city and the Franchise India Conference where I spoke. First of all, the Indian people I met and observed were incredibly kind and warm. The ideas [...]

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Fake It…Till You Make It!

I had a good friend of mine, and a very successful vendor at QVC who makes about $50 million a year successful….tell me sister, fake it till you make it! Boy, take her advice. I am all about making it…BIG…but what happens if you’re not quite there yet? Well you know FAKE IT! Everyone to [...]

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Attitude, Do You Have One?-Monday Morning Memoir

Looking at the current financial crisis creates such a negative picture for everyone.  Have you checked your 401K lately? Have you looked at your bank statement? Everywhere you turn there is more bad news.  In Michigan its been like this for three years and no hope of it getting better soon.  If you have this feeling then, how [...]

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