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The Affordable Care Act: Dates Every Small Business Owner Should Know

Tue, 2013-07-16 14:03

At the U.S. Small Business Administration, we know that health is one of the top concerns for small business owners across the country.  Since the Affordable Care Act passed in 2010, the Obama Administration has been hard at work implementing key policies that are already helping make health care more affordable and accessible for America’s small business owners--and more progress is on the way.

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6 Marketing Tactics That Quickly Boost Sales

Tue, 2013-07-16 00:53

You work hard to market your business, and you’ve succeeded—so well that you’re swamped with work and have no time to market your business. When you come up for air after finally finishing that big project or filling that huge order, you realize you’ve got no new business in the pipeline. Does this sound familiar? Striking a balance between running your business and marketing your business is a common problem for small business owners. The smaller or newer your business is, the bigger a problem it’s likely to be.

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Participating Accelerators Announced for First-Ever Accelerator Demo Day

Mon, 2013-07-15 16:54

Note: This blog is by Pravina Raghavan, Director, SBA Office of Investments & Innovation
On Friday, July 19, 16 diverse business accelerators from across the country will gather at Washington, D.C. accelerator, 1776, to pitch their programs as part of the inaugural Accelerator Demo Day--jointly organized by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and the Global Accelerator Network (GAN). 

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Secretary Pritzker Speaks with Top Business Leaders on Commerce’s Work to Support American Businesses

Mon, 2013-07-15 16:30

Since taking office two weeks ago, Secretary Penny Pritzker has made it clear that engaging with the business community is a top priority.  Her commitment to this effort is evidenced by recent calls to top CEOs: Jim McNerney, President and CEO of Boeing, and Ursula Burns, CEO of Xerox Corporation.Given her extensive experience in the private sector, Secretary Pritzker understands not only the importance of the Department establishing close ties with the business community, but more importantly what can be learned from meeting with local business leaders (both large and small companies).

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Identify the Best Marketing Strategies for Your Business

Mon, 2013-07-15 14:58

According to the 2013 AT&T Small Business Technology Poll, which surveyed 1,000 small businesses nationwide, 66 percent of respondents plan to invest as much or more in digital marketing – websites, social media and online advertisements – as they did last year. And more than 80 percent of those surveyed will also continue investing in traditional word-of-mouth marketing to increase awareness and visibility the old-fashioned way.

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NIST: Iris Biometric Identifiers for Agency Security

Mon, 2013-07-15 12:25

Commerce's National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has issued a new publication that broadens agency security options for Personal Identity Verification (PIV) cards. Biometric Data Specifications for Personal Identity Verification (Special Publication 800-76-2) adds iris images as biometric identifiers and on-card fingerprint comparison as options for the cards.A PIV card is a government-issued smart card used by federal employees and contractors to access government facilities and computer networks.

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10 Ways to Make Your Small Business Social Media Activities Rock

Mon, 2013-07-15 08:03

Social media may have the lowest cost of entry of any marketing tool, but is not actually that easy to do well. In fact, a report by eMarketer found that small businesses are struggling to adopt social media, with only 24 percent of small firms having integrated social media in a structured way into their operations.
Knowing where to start is perhaps the number one obstacle holding many small business owners back. Knowing what to do when you get there is next.

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How to Get the Most Out of Facebook Graph Search

Fri, 2013-07-12 16:54

In January of 2013, Facebook starting rolling out a Beta version of something called Graph Search. And this week, they opened up Graph Search to all U.S. users.
Graph Search has been touted by some as Facebook’s answer to search engines such as Google and Bing, but it’s truly not a replacement of a standard search engine. In fact, Facebook actually incorporates Bing search results in a feature it calls “Search the Web.”  

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Secretary Pritzker Joins Secretary Lew at the Fifth Round of the U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue

Fri, 2013-07-12 14:00

This week, Secretary Penny Pritzker joined Secretary Jacob
J. Lew at the fifth round of the U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue
(S&ED). Secretary Lew led discussions with the Chinese delegation, headed
by Vice Premier Wang Yang. They were joined by a high-level delegation of
Cabinet members, ministers, agency heads, and senior officials from both
countries. This year’s S&ED
provided an opportunity to
demonstrate the tangible benefits of strategic engagement by making concrete progress on our priority issues and

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NIST Workshop Gets a 'Grip' on Robotics Challenge

Fri, 2013-07-12 12:50

Even though modern industrial robots are becoming nimbler and more capable, they still need to get a good grip on things—the equivalent of hands that are as agile and dexterous as the human variety.How to tackle the thorny challenge, known in robotics speak as dexterous manipulation, was the aim of a recent workshop hosted by Commerce's National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).

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