What Is a Focus Group?

A focus group involves having potential purchasers come together to experience something. Each member of the group then shares their opinions, criticisms and other feedback about the experience by answering the same set of questions posed by an interviewer. A focus group can be an effective way for small businesses to conduct market research. For example, a focus group can involve having a set of potential clients walk through one of your email marketing campaigns,Read More

Alyssa Gregory

101 Small Business Marketing Activities

One universal small business goal is to sell the business’s products and services. This is usually best accomplished by positioning the business in front of the target audience, and offering something they can’t refuse or find elsewhere. To this end, one of the smartest things a small business owner can do for their business is take the time to develop asmall business marketing plan that will set them apart from the competition. A marketing planRead More

Alyssa Gregory

How to Write a Unique Selling Proposition

A unique selling proposition (USP), or unique selling position, is a statement that succinctly outlines how your business, product or service is different from that of your competition. It identifies what makes your business the better choice, and why your target clients should choose you over the competition. Your USP can be an effective tool that helps you focus your marketing goals, and verify that every piece of marketing collateral you create successfully sets youRead More

Alyssa Gregory

SWOT Analysis for Small Business

A SWOT analysis is a strategic planning tool that helps a business owner identify his or her own strengths and weaknesses, as well as any opportunities and threats that may exist in a specific business situation. A SWOT analysis is most commonly used as part of a marketing plan, but it is also a good tool for general business strategizing, and to use as a starting point for team discussions. When conducted thoroughly, a SWOTRead More

Alyssa Gregory

How to Write a Small Business Marketing Plan: A Step-by-Step Guide

small business API

A marketing plan is an essential marketing tool for every small business. Use the guide on the following pages to answer these 10 questions: Marketing Strategy: How will your marketing plan support your business goals? Mission Statement: What are you trying to accomplish, and why? Target Market: Who are you trying to reach with your marketing activities? Competitive Analysis: Who are you up against, and where do you rank? Unique Selling Proposition: What makes yourRead More


For Many Small Business Owners, Providing Health Insurance Remains a Struggle

For Many Small Business Owners, Providing Health Insurance Remains a Struggle

Brian Adams, who sells fireplaces in Indianapolis, is like many of the nation’s small-business owners. As the cost of providing health benefits has climbed, he has struggled to afford coverage for his employees — a problem the new health care law was designed, in part, to address. But a year after the law’s introduction of the insurance exchanges, provisions that were supposed to help small businesses offer employee health benefits are largely seen as a failure.Read More

Eric Dynowski

The Three Letters That Could Change Your Small Business: API

small business API

Today’s business owners are incredibly tech savvy. They use cloud-based applications, run their small businesses from mobile devices and track the return on revenue of every advertising dollar with online dashboards. Many can even update their own websites, tweaking code when necessary. But even with this level of sophistication, most entrepreneurs are missing out on what might be the biggest opportunity they have to expand their small businesses, an opportunity expressed in just three letters: API.Read More

Mark Lancaster

Customer Experience Should Not Be the Job of Just One Person

The whole world is going digital and it’s having an immense impact on organizations’ abilities to engage with customers. Through digital channels, social media and mobile communications, consumers today orchestrate their own experiences, choosing how and when they want to interact with companies’ brands. This creates a number of challenges for organizations, as they attempt to provide timely, consistent and personalized experiences to customers across channels. With less than half of companies rating their customer experience asRead More

Chris Matthews

Small, But Fierce: How Small Firms Can Pack a Big Punch

Small But Fierce How Tiny Firms Can Pack a Big Punch

If you compare the American economy to an automobile, then 2009 was the year it careened off the road. We’ve since towed it out of the ditch but, make no mistake, we’ve still got engine trouble. And there’s no better way to understand this fact than to look at the state of Small Firms in America. These enterprises, led by risk-taking entrepreneurs, have always been the true driver of job growth and innovation in America. AndRead More

Harmoney to target small businesses

Peer-to-peer lending platform Harmoney will add a second string to its bow by facilitating loans to small businesses next year. The Auckland firm has processed $4.5 million of personal loans since its launch in July. The company is the first middleman licensed by the Financial Markets Authority to offer peer-to-peer (P2P) finance. People can apply to seek loans through its website which investors can then peruse and fund. Harmoney doesn’t itself instead lend money, insteadRead More