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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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5 Tips for Ensuring Your Blog Doesn’t Get You into Legal Trouble

Wed, 2013-03-13 07:28

More and more small companies are using blogging to promote their business. In fact, in 2012, “small business” was one of the fastest growing categories in Technorati, a global blog search engine, with 20 percent growth that year alone (source: Small Business Blogging Proved Effective for the Year 2012 by Rahul Manekari).
Why? Blogs are a great tool for connecting with your customers and sharing your expertise. They also improve your company’s search engine rankings. Search engines love fresh, relevant and local content—and blogs deliver on this need.

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Women’s History Month: A Bright Future For Women-Owned Small Businesses

Mon, 2013-03-11 12:29

Today, women-owned businesses are the fastest-growing segment of new businesses in our economy.
In fact, an analysis by American Express suggests that the number of women-owned businesses has risen by 200,000 over the past year alone, which is equivalent to just under 550 new women-owned firms created each day.
Regardless of how you slice the data, we know that this trend is growing and that women are over-indexing in entrepreneurship.

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The Social Storefront – How to Sell Your Products and Services on Facebook

Mon, 2013-03-11 07:12

Have you ever considered extending your small business storefront to Facebook?
According to The New York Times, small retailers are having more success than their larger counterparts when it comes to selling socially with Facebook storefronts proving to be a successful outlet for small businesses with less than $100,000 in revenue and fewer than 10 employees.

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Two Civil War Sailors from the Ironclad USS Monitor Interred at Arlington National Cemetery

Fri, 2013-03-08 16:30

151st anniversary of Battle of Hampton RoadsThe remains of two unknown USS Monitor sailors, recovered by NOAA and the U.S. Navy in 2002 from the ship’s gun turret, were buried today, with full military honors, at Arlington National Cemetery.

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Women in Silicon Valley Leading the Way

Thu, 2013-03-07 19:00

Guest blog post by Deputy Secretary of Commerce Rebecca BlankYesterday, I met with women who are fostering entrepreneurship and innovation in our economy through their leadership at top venture capital firms in Silicon Valley.We discussed the need for more girls and women to be able to find opportunities in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields, where women comprise less than one-fourth of the workforce. We also discussed how women are investing in and leading startups and businesses in key areas that support U.S.

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