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NOAA Predicts Mixed Bag of Drought, Flooding and Warm Weather for Spring

Fri, 2013-03-22 11:00

Commerce's National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has issued the three-month U.S. Spring Outlook, stating that odds favor above-average temperatures across much of the continental United States, including drought-stricken areas of Texas, the Southwest and the Great Plains. Spring promises little drought relief for most of these areas, as well as Florida, with below- average spring precipitation favored there.

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Webinar on Cash Flow Management for 8(a) and HUBZone Firms

Thu, 2013-03-21 15:51

Are you a small business certified in the U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) 8(a) Business Development or Historically Underutilized Business (HUB) Zone program interested in learning how to better manage your business relationships? 
If so, you’ll be happy to know that the SBA is teaming up with Experian’s Business Information Services, the leading global information services provider, to launch BusinessIQ ExpressSM, an online cash flow management tool for small businesses certified in SBA’s 8(a) Program and HUBZone certified-firms.

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Communication Converts Leads

Thu, 2013-03-21 12:09

Honesty is the best policy. Adopting an attitude of being clear and upfront has many benefits in life, from reduced stress to better relationships, but it can also be valuable in your business and key to converting leads into real customers. SCORE mentors will tell you that developing an open and honest relationship with your leads is important for several reasons:
- Honesty creates trust. If a lead feels comfortable sharing their needs and concerns, you can address them directly.

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Is Your Business Moving? 6 Tips for Attracting Customers To Your New Location

Thu, 2013-03-21 07:25

Businesses move for all sorts of reasons. Existing rents may be too high; neighboring anchor tenants may have left; or perhaps you just need a bigger premise for your growing business!
But how can you ensure your existing customers move with you and how can you go about attracting new customers to your new location? Here are six tips:
1. Communicate Pre-Move and Post-Move

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Self-Employed? Learn What the Affordable Care Act Means for You

Tue, 2013-03-19 12:52

Many of the provisions of the Affordable Care Act affect small businesses differently depending on their size.  For self-employed individuals in particular, there are new options for health coverage and other changes under the health care law that will directly affect you in the coming months.
New Options for Health Coverage through the Affordable Insurance Marketplaces

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Creating Customer Loyalty Programs

Tue, 2013-03-19 12:10

These days, loyal customers are hard to come by. So when you do have customers who are faithful to your business, returning day after day and year after year, you want to reward them. But how? There are many ways to reward your loyal customers, from simple paper-based methods to mobile apps and more. Here’s a look at some different options to consider.

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Need Financing to Buy or Grow a Franchise? New Franchise Industry Programs Can Help

Mon, 2013-03-18 07:33

The franchise industry, like all businesses, was not immune to the economic crisis of 2008 and the ensuing credit crunch. But the vital signs of a recovery are there. According to the International Franchise Association (IFA), many of the country’s business sectors currently starting to show growth mirror those sectors expected to be the leading drivers of employment in franchising this year. These include food service, health care, hospitality and construction—all sectors with a high concentration of franchise businesses.

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What is the Best Small Business Credit Card for Establishing Creditworthiness?

Thu, 2013-03-14 11:58

With fast access to cash, convenience and all the perks that come along with it, a business credit card is a standard tool used by business owners.
But did you know that less than 50% of the credit cards obtained by business owners nationwide are actually in the company’s name?
It’s a shocking reality, to say the least, but the good news is there are plenty of business credit cards that cater to savvy business owners like you who understand the importance of establishing business credit.

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Deputy Secretary of Commerce Rebecca Blank Announces New Manufacturing Council Members

Thu, 2013-03-14 10:50

U.S. Deputy Secretary of Commerce Rebecca Blank today announced the appointment of 26 members to the 2013 Manufacturing Council (Council). The Council, established in 2004 and directed by the Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration, helps to ensure that there is regular communication between the U.S.

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5 Tips for Hiring and Empowering Great Employees

Thu, 2013-03-14 07:25

Hiring employees is probably the most important decision any entrepreneur will ever make. But relinquishing some of the responsibility of your business to others is tough.
The key to getting it right is finding employees with the right value alignment and attitude (often easier said than done). Of course, you need to work at it too. Once you’ve built your team, learning to let go and empower employees is critical if you want focus on growing your business.

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