ABCs of Small Business Industry – M is for Marketing

We are onto M in our series, and this week we are looking at the marketing and public relations industry. Marketing and PR is often seen as a hard industry to break into. There are a lot of rival firms – some big and some small – and new businesses often have trouble figuring out how to stand out. But with a good amount of experience, the right contacts, and enough work ethic, it is possible for a company to succeed in the growing marketing and PR industry. marketing industry

What do you need to start a business in the marketing industry?

Most experts say that the most important factor to a new firm’s success is marketing experience. You need friends and contacts to really succeed. And while it is totally possible to build a successful business with no experience in the marketing industry, it’s really, really hard. There are a lot of lessons you learn about marketing and PR by working within the industry, and a major part of that industry is who you know. Networking is much more effective than cold-calling.

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ABCs of Small Business Industry: C is for Construction

The construction industry has had a rough few years. After the economy dipped and the Great Recession began, a lot of construction and housing projects were suspended or shut down, and the industry was easily one of the hardest hit. Because of this, many are apprehensive to start their own construction firms, and while construction is slowly picking up, one of the biggest concerns entrepreneurs in this industry have is how to protect themselves if the economy dips again. Construction IndustryBut if you start off on the right foot, and take a few precautions, you can run a successful business in the construction industry.

How do you start a construction company?

Construction is a bit different than other industries. For one, you can’t just file for a ‘Doing Business As’ name and start building houses. Continue reading

X is for Xenodochial… or (e)Xcellent Customer Service!

Obviously, we struggled a little bit with the letter X. There aren’t a lot of topics that lend themselves well to this particular letter, so unless we wanted to discuss the ins and outs of running a xylophone business, we had to expand beyond our normal vocabulary. Enter xenodochial, a long word that essentially means being nice to strangers – a quality that businesses must exhibit if they ever hope to attract new customers! But for simplicity’s sake, you can also think of X as standing for (e)Xcellent customer service.

Truly the most confusing letter.

There are a lot of theories on how to best serve your customers, but in reality there is no one answer on how to provide good customer service. Instead, there are multiple factors that have to built into how a business interacts with its customers.
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O is for Operating Agreement

This week on the ABC’s of MyCorp, we’re focusing on the letter “O” for operating agreement. State laws are fairly lax when it comes to operating agreements – a handful of states require that an operating agreement be drafted, and even fewer require that Limited Liability Companies hold onto written copies of it. So, typically, LLCs choose to either forgo creating an operating agreement, or simply say that their operating agreement was agreed to orally.

However, the lack of government oversight for operating agreements does not make them any less important or valuable. Even if your LLC was created in a state without laws governing operating agreements, it is still a good idea to draft one and keep copies of it on hand for a few important reasons.
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L is for Legal Structure

We are back with our ABC’s of business – hopefully you didn’t miss us too much! This week the letter is L, and how could we not take that as a sign and talk about a couple of our favorite legal structures? Many business choose to putt around as a sole proprietorship, clinging onto their default structure.
However, choosing to forgo an incorporation or LLC formation may put your personal property at risk if the business does not work out. To avoid this, consider incorporating your business, or forming an LLC.
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F is for Filing Deadlines

Deadlines are definitely a necessary evil – no one likes to feel the pressure of a deadline on their back but without them, we would procrastinate. And procrastinate. And procrastinate. This week on our ABC’s for small business blogging segment, F is for filing, and meeting, deadlines.

We need a bit of a push if we ever expect to get anything done. And, for many, that “deadline” is the end of the year. It’s a simple enough deadline, and gives you 364 days of wiggle-room. We hear from a lot of people that say they want to start a business by the end of the year. They have an idea, they have a plan, and they just need to actually get that paperwork filed and their business opened. So they put it off, month after month, because they gave themselves until the end of the year. Continue reading

E is for Entrepreneur

We had a slight hiatus from our weekly ABC’s of small business, but this week we’re back with the letter E! And what better to immediately come to mind than our favorite type of person, the one who takes the plunge and follows their heart to start up that side project they’ve been hard at work at and are passionate about, than the entrepreneur?

Entrepreneurs are the backbone behind any great business, big or small. They organize and operate a business, monitor the activities within it, and take financial risks to starting up their company and keeping it going and the great word of mouth spreading.

How can you tell if you’re an entrepreneur at heart? You may have a few of these characteristics: Continue reading

B is for Branding

For the second installment of our ABC’s of Business here at the MyCorp Blog. B gave us a bit of trouble – we knew we couldn’t lapse into the overtly lazy choice and just use “Business” as our B word, but we soon realized that most of the B’s we could use involve Business in some way. Business financing, Business to Business Sales, Bring Your Own Business (the new BYOB) … and while we love busy businesses, we just couldn’t be seen using the tell-tale B word for this installment. In what must have been one of the weakest eureka moments in the history of blogging, we figured out an important B that DIDN’T involve the word Business – Branding. So, for this week at least, B is for Branding. Continue reading