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Economic News

4 Benefits of a Kickstarter Campaign

So you own a business… or maybe you are just starting out. Whatever phase of business you are at, most of us have in common one thing- we must have financing. I am sure you have been exploring your options: financing it yourself, Angel Investing, bank lending options, charge cards, borrowing from a friend or loved ones member… you’ll find methods to get it done.
But have you investigated Kickstarter or crowdfunding in general? It may or may not be for you (depending on your organization, etc) but it is worth investigating. Kickstarter is a financing platform for people with project ideas. An individual puts together a page about their project- what it is, what they are aiming to fulfill, how much cash they will need to raise, etc. If the project is authorized, it goes live and others are able to see it.
Consumers view the project and if they decide to “invest” in it is creation they are able to make a donation. Funding is all or nothing- so if the amount needed is raised, the individual that created the project will get the funds. If support comes up short, money does not exchange hands. This creates security for both the project owner and the investors. You do not have to attempt to build a product without enough money; and purchasers do not put money into a venture that may 0r may not be completed.
So why would I propose this style of fundraising?
1.) The all or nothing concept – there is an ability to fundraise the money you must have and possibly more. If you do not, no damage done. You do not owe anyone anything
2.) The visibility – having possibly 100s of people knowledgeable of your project before it is even built and having “pre-orders”
3.) Control – compared borrowing money, you don’t pay back the funding you receive. The backers through Kickstarter traditionally are given “rewards” for a variety of monetary contributions. So the finances are yours to develop your project. However, understand that money earned through “crowdfunding” can be subjected to taxes
4.) Input – once you fund-raise and build this community around your project, you now have people with a authentic concern in seeing your project succeed- and possibly are already thinking about acquiring it. Go to them for suggestions, with your options, etc. Discover what they would like to see included!
Of course there are many other crowdfunding site out there besides Kickstarter. Take a look at the different outlets, compare them and get going! What do you have to lose?…

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Business Week

Is Working For Yourself Worth It?

Starting and running your own business is one of the most exciting and potentially rewarding activities anyone can undertake. The possible rewards are boundless as is the opportunity for fulfilling personal ambitions. However, there are certain questions you should ask yourself, before you decide to take the plunge and invest your time and money in trying to start a new business venture.
You will also need to make plans, because that old saying: ‘Those who fail to plan, plan to fail’ is true, especially in business. For without plans, a business is subject to the random outcomes of chance rather than sound judgment. you can even get to the stage where instead of running the business, the business runs you. In order to avoid that sad state of affairs, you need to make sound plans before you start; decide which skills your business will need and accurately assess whether you possess those skills.
The first question you should be asking yourself is, ‘What am I going to get out of it?’. After all, you are giving up most of your rights as an employee. Rights such as job tenure, regular wages, paid holidays, sick leave, insurance and the right to forget your job when you leave it at the end of the day. In exchange you get the right to invest lots of time, energy and money. So, you have every right to know or at least to ask yourself, what you will get in return.
The rate that the number of new business being opened every year rises most years, although perhaps it won’t this year due to the banks’ reluctance to lend us our money. However, usually the rate does rise, so there must be a positive perception among the population that owning one’s own business is an advantage. The most common advantages cited are:
Control: as the boss, the authority and indeed the responsibility to make decisions rests squarely on your shoulders. You will direct all the activities of your business for better or for worse.
Creative Freedom: you are at total liberty to express your talents and ideas without seeking permission, having them approved by superiors or going through channels.
Profits: the more successful your business becomes, the more money you will make, whereas, in general, an employee’s salary is dependent on corporate or even national agreements, policy and regulations. Yours will be directly related to the performance of your business.
Job Security: if your business is viable, no one can sack you, lay you off, make you redundant or force you to retire.
Satisfaction: most people derive a great deal of satisfaction from knowing that they have built a successful business from nothing.
The most common disadvantages of being the boss cited are:
Risk to Capital: if you business fails, you could lose everything you put in and more.
Long Hours: your hours will not be ‘9 to 5’, especially in the beginning, when they are more likely to be ‘8 till late’.
Income Variation: you may not receive the same amount of wages every week, depending on the takings.
Responsibility: the buck stops with you and you can’t blame anyone else, if things go wrong.
Pressure: the pressure is on you the whole time to keep your customers happy and pay your suppliers and employees on time.
Regulations: you are responsible for complying with government and union regulations and ignorance of those regulations is never taken as an excuse.…

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Starting A Business

Starting a Business? You Need to Market Your Website, Too

Every new business needs a website, but simply posting a website and waiting for folks to find you doesn’t work. With the millions of websites floating around out there, simply uploading yours without marketing it is like leaving a business card on the moon — if nobody sees it, it might as well not exist.
Thus, it is essential that you incorporate constant marketing of your website into your day-to-day work. There are many free or cheap ways to drive traffic to your site, and the best methods fall under the term search engine optimization, or SEO. These tasks help the major search engines find and catalog your website under the appropriate search terms. Like most other marketing, SEO is only effective if it is an ongoing, consistent part of your overall marketing strategy. New business owners need to take the time to learn the basics, even if you ultimately decide to outsource the actual work.
One of the most critical outcomes of marketing your website is building linkbacks, as search engines place a lot of weight on good linkbacks. Linkbacks are live links to your website on other, reputable websites. Buying linkbacks is usually a waste of money — the link farms that take your money are identified and not counted by the search engines on a regular basis. Good linkbacks come from posting articles, responding to forums and chatboards, having other people love your site and linking to it from their website or blog, and trading links with relevant, appropriate websites. Writing and submitting articles on a regular basis is an excellent way to begin building linkbacks to your site.
Whatever your business is, there are plenty of topics to write article about. Think about what your customers need to know and use article marketing to get that message out. The better article sites will not let you submit pure marketing material (as in, you can’t mention your own company in the body of the article), but your website link can go in the resource box, along with a brief description of what you do.
Article marketing provides excellent linkback opportunities, especially if your articles contain useful information. Consider writing about how to select your particular type of product or service, what to look for and what to avoid. Describe how using a product or service like yours makes your customer’s life easier or better. Write about the features of a particular product. When those ideas are exhausted, dig into your target market research to see what other topics your potential customers are interested write about that.
Article marketing requires a steady, consistent effort. One or two articles aren’t likely to build much momentum, so schedule time to produce new articles on a regular basis. You can cover the same topic multiple times, as long as the final article is not a word-for-word copy of the others. Generally, writing a fresh article about the same topic will turn out different enough. Keep an eye out for new things to write about and keep a list handy to jot down notes as you go. Often, new ideas will pop into your head while you are they will be gone within a few minutes.
Marketing your website is a new necessity for every business, and writing articles is a good way to get exposure for your business while building a foundation of links back to your website.…

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The Business

Women “Need” Business Grants

Are you a “Woman” in (need of a business grant?)
I have something to tell you….
You know, sometimes people, especially men don’t respect women the way they deserve to be respected. This especially applies to professional representation. But you know what? Times have changed.
Did you know…?
“One of twelve big companies in the UK with a woman CEO has less than three females on its board. This company is Rite Aid, with two female members. The remainder have a healthy number of between three women board members through to as many as six at WellPoint.”
This is a great reason why [women business grants can be even more important]
The question you are asking yourself now is… “WHERE CAN I FIND A GOOD GRANT?”
I understand it’s not always that easy for women to just find grants, especially with the economy in the slump it’s in at the moment.
So what now? Well… just read the rest…
There are millions of dollars just waiting to be claimed for grants from the government and other little-known organizations. The problem is, “you” need to find the right grant for “you”, and also at the right place.
Did you know that businesses run by professional females are becoming more and more successful? This is another great reason why women business grants, and the right ones are out there for you to find if you look hard enough and if you are serious and willing to be apart of the chase! I mean, that’s fun right?
Sure it is!
“We are living through extraordinary times, and extraordinary times call for innovative solutions. I am convinced it is essential to accelerate the progress of women into senior positions, given the world’s need to deploy the best talent available. This need is greater than ever in the current economic climate.”
If you are a female, looking to do great things with your future, well I’m happy to say this is a great time for you! You can definitely be extraordinarily successful, and this is just the beginning! Times have changed, and will continue to change so it’s important that we all adapt.
Take some time and leave me a comment, or visit my blog…

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Business News Articles

Do You Have What it Takes?

It seems that a lot of people want to own their own business. The dream of entrepreneurship is embedded deep within our psyche. Everyone hopes they can be the next Bill Gates or Sam Walton. The real truth and real probabilities are far from those dreams.
Very few people have the knowledge, perseverance, and financing to be in business for themselves. That’s the simple truth. It takes time to build a successful business and you must be able to support your family during that process.
Being successful in a new business takes a specialized knowledge that will set your enterprise apart from the others. It also takes a lot of hard work and long hours to fully reach your potential. Only a tiny fraction of people that start their own business are able to be successful enough to actually earn a living. Only a very few will be in business for at least five years. The odds are definitely against you.
But if you do have what it takes, by all means go for it. Be sure to have a good plan of action, plenty of patience, and have adequate capital to carry you through the lean months. It usually takes twice as much investment as you initially figure, so be sure you have a contingency.
Only if you have a product or service that is not available anywhere else, or has some feature that makes it stand out from the crowd should you pursue your business opportunity. However, if you are selling a product or service that is basically the same as everyone else, without any special attribute or angle, you should save yourself a lot of time and money and keep your day job.…

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Business Week

Success on a Budget

The best thing I ever did for myself as a business owner was to become a student of success. That meant plunking down some cash to get the knowledge I now have. I truly believe that small business owners must never stop learning. When we stop learning, we stop growing and our businesses typically follow.
Today, I’m consistently investing in 5-figure coaching programs and I have no doubt I’d be investing in coaches that cost 6 figures before long. Hard to believe, but I didn’t start out that way. I started out on a budget. Here are 5 budget-friendly ways to get some revenue-producing knowledge for your business.
Magazines
Magazines cost very little. Typically $15-$30 a year (even less sometimes). Sign up for Entrepreneur Magazine or even better Millionaire Blueprints. Even my teenager is subscribed to the teen version of Millionaire Blueprints and he devours it. I recommend this magazine because it’s full of stories on how people created success. How they overcame the odds, how they remained persistent, and how they succeeded. Basically, success recipes. Feed you brain this kind of stuff every week and success will no-doubt become the way you think… and the way you are.
Books
I remember constantly being on in my search for how to create a successful business. And there were times I’d search for a book on Amazon, check out the user-reviews, then call my local library to borrow it (zero dollars). Books like the Guerrilla Marketing book series and many others. I devoured them all because it was all I could afford at the time.
I didn’t complain that “I didn’t have time to read.” I just did. I found the time because I was determined to feed my brain recipes for success. Don’t forget books on success mindset as well like Think & Grow Rich and Who Switched Off My Brain. Also check out the No BS series of books by Dan Kennedy for some unique marketing advice.
Free teleseminars
Just do a Google search for free teleseminars. They are happening every single day. Sign up and learn something. You’ve got nothing to lose. If you don’t like it, you can get off their list just as easily as you got on. I listen to about 6 teleseminars a week. Some free and some are included in the coaching programs I’m in. But all of them teach me something. Even if I get just one idea, it was well worth it.
Home Study Systems
If you cannot invest in a high-priced coaching/mentoring programs, a great alternative is to get the home study version. It’s always less expensive and they are rich in content. Read the testimonials to get a sense of what is valuable about the product. Most have some kind of money-back guarantee so you can check it out risk free. “Do it Yourself” home-study options are a great low-cost way to boost your business knowledge and your revenue with profit-generating new ideas and strategies.
Low-cost Seminars
In every city, there are low-cost seminars. Typically 2 hours to half day and many are free. Sure, the free ones mean you’ll get a sales pitch at the end, but you can graciously decline. Even if you get just one idea to pump into your business, that’s one idea you didn’t have before. Check your Chamber of Commerce, or just Google “business seminars” in your area. Search around, you’ll find them.
Get determined
Often people ask me how I found my 7-figure mentors or how I got the vast amount of business knowledge I share with them. The answer is sheer determination. A burning desire to succeed. Whether you have lots of cash to invest or very little, if you’ve got a burning desire, you’ll find countless ways to increase your business knowledge. And if that knowledge is translated into ACTION, you’ll see an increase in your revenue as well.…

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Business Owner

Starting an Internet Business: Rules to Follow

More often today than ever before, people are realizing the dream of earning a living at home and firing their bosses for good. The internet is making this possible for both savvy business people and new entrepreneurs. The truth is that anyone can make a living on the internet if they have the right information and are willing to work hard now for a payoff in the future. Starting an internet business today is a great way to achieve financial freedom tomorrow.
There are some important rules to follow when starting an internet business and people who know and understand these rules will always do better than those who don’t take the time to learn them before venturing into the land of internet business.
When starting an internet business, especially if it’s a first online venture, the most important thing one can do is to learn from those who have already been a success on the internet. Becoming successful on the internet has required a lot of trial and error for a lot of people, but it doesn’t have to anymore. Many people who have been successful in starting an internet business now help others do the same thing they have done. People who invest in their business by seeking out help are far more likely to succeed faster than those who enter the world on online business blindly.
Another rule to follow when starting an internet business is to set aside time every day to work on your business. This can be difficult for those who work a full-time job and have other obligations, but taking time every day to do something to further an online business will ensure success in the long run.
When starting an internet business, it’s important to understand that patience is key. Things don’t always happen overnight and getting a business off the ground can be hard work. The key is to remember the reasons for starting an internet business in the first place. Keeping those goals in mind will help to keep the online entrepreneur motivated during the start-up process.
Another great rule to follow when starting an online business is to learn from mistakes. Savvy internet marketers and business people learn from their own mistakes, but they also learn from the mistakes of others. Taking the time to learn what’s worked and not worked for other people can save time and money. Investing in an online business by taking courses and reading books is a great way to avoid many of the pitfalls associated with this type of business.
The bottom line is that starting an online business is a great way to make money. Many people have realized their dream of making their own schedule and being their own boss. Anyone can reach this dream with a little bit of hard work and by utilizing the information provided by those who have already done it.…