Too many small businesses are stuck at the bottom of the economic mountain, watching in frustration as larger competitors hog the top, snagging resources and reaping the benefits.
Bigger companies can afford to use quantity discounts to undercut prices. Banks are happy to accept small-business deposits but don’t build strong relationships with credit and loans for their smaller customers.
Even programs marketed for small businesses, such as vendor finance programs and dynamic discounting programs, often benefit the large company that takes the discount. Even government help seems to favor the well-connected. Just see what happened with the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program.
Just surviving will be a huge success for most small businesses this year.
And few expect to break even given all that’s happened as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
Yet Meriwether Cider in Boise, Idaho, is on track to meet that mark, thanks in large part to Covid-related federal assistance, according to Ann Leadbetter, who owns the business with her husband and two daughters.
Also helpful: Meriwether Cider makes money a few ways, so while some lines of revenue took a hit, others went up. Sales are down at its two sit-down venues — a cider house in downtown Boise and a smaller tap room at its bottling facility in nearby Garden City. So are its sales to bars and restaurants. But the company has made more from its distribution to grocery stores and the curbside pickup it now offers customers.
As we wrap up the year and prepare for the next, make sure to give your business a cash health checkup. This is more than looking at a statement to see if there is money in the bank or to check the profit margin. It’s analyzing where you are, deciding where you want to be, and outlining a strategy to get you there.
The Chubb’s Third Annual Cyber Report reveals employee education is key for small businesses to prevent cyberattacks. Even with headline after headline about the latest data breach, people are not encouraged to defend against their cyber exposure.
The goal of the report is to determine the level of understanding individuals have about their cyber risks. While at the same time looking at the steps they are taking to protect themselves.
For small businesses with limited resources, complacency can have detrimental consequences. This is because the chance of a small company going out of business after a cyberattack is highly likely. And the best way to defend themselves is by making everyone in the company more aware.
Amazon Storefronts is a new way for small and medium-sized businesses to sell products directly through Amazon. Amazon has established a separate section where it will highlight small businesses, feature curated collections of unique products and provide a platform for an online small business experience. Instead of navigating thousands of online sellers, Amazon wants customers to interact with small businesses and have an intimate, mom-and-pop-shop experience through the online platform.
Growing top line revenue is survival. Without setting the table, you have no chance to make a profit, or even just stay in the game. With so much hype around the Internet and social media, more established forms of marketing are being discounted. Yet the elevation of social media as an end all, be all strategy does a disservice to those who must plot the direction of their company’s marketing efforts.
Nowhere is this more apparent than in small business where owners and managers are bombarded by sales pitches for different types of tactics. Some owners will be swayed by a good pitch and buy the tactic. Others will not feel comfortable and will not do anything. If neither of these persons has identified their customer, neither choice is helpful to their business.
Who is your customer? That is the single most important question you will ask in your business life. If you’re smart, you’ll ask it again and again because the answer is always changing. Most owners never ask it. The majority answer “anyone.” You can’t market to ‘anyone.’
Millennials have been the target of more scrutiny than any other generation. Why? Because as a generation, they are larger than the Baby Boomer generation that clocked in at 77 million. Baby Boomers were a significant force in terms of purchasing power, political direction and now retirement as they have moved through their lives. Millennials, sometimes called Echo Boomers, are expected to have an equal or greater influence on society.
Representing 25% of the population, and 80 million strong, Millennials are generally agreed to have been born between 1980 – 2000. You will also hear them referred to as Generation Y. The youngest Millennials are 17 years of age while the oldest will be 37 in 2017. What has this intense scrutiny revealed about these consumers?
Posted in Lydia Mehit, Op-ED
Tagged 80 million strong, authentic goods, Echo Boomers, Gen Y, generation y, handmade goods, locally produced goods, Lydia Mehit, marketing, Millennials as a Target Customer, small business
Is your small business marketing working as well as it could be? Marketing even the smallest businesses has gotten both easier and more complicated in the digital age. Easier, because online marketing is so affordable; more complicated, because there are so many options to choose from.
To find out how small business owners are keeping up, Vistaprint recently surveyed “micro-businesses” (U.S. small business owners with fewer than 10 employees). Here’s what they found.
Despite their small size, micro-businesses in general have moved into the digital marketing age. More than two-thirds (68.8 percent) say they market their businesses both online and offline. Over half (52.7 percent) say their online presence is “very important” to their marketing efforts, while 30.4 percent say it’s “fairly important.”
You may think it is easier to just throw their old or lightly used items away instead of donating them. It often seems like the process of donating clothing items, electronics or even office furnishings to charity is too cumbersome or time consuming for individuals — or for your small business.
However, organizing and planning for a charitable donation drive isn’t as difficult as you might think with a bit of help, suggests GreenDrop, an East Coast company that collects lightly used clothing and other denotable items on behalf of charities.
In this newest episode of the Blinkist Podcast, our guest producer, Emily, talks with an old friend who’s brought her small business from twinkle of an idea to globally recognized, Beyoncé-worn recognition.
Emily and Laura Wass of WXYZ jewelry talk entrepreneurship, what it takes to bring a business from fledgling to flight, and the importance of ritual. I’m also in there making awkward jokes, as usual, and the Book Doctor makes another house call—this time, hitting closer to actual home.