Boost Sales Become Vanna White

The Little Mermaid

Ursula The Sea Witch- The Little Mermaid

Say what you will about Ursula but the woman knew the power of word of mouth marketing.  She had costumers lined up because someone always knew someone who knew someone who had told them about her services.  Marketing your business is essential. You cannot reach the masses if you don’t market. This week I found an interesting way for small businesses to get their merchandise and services out there. Have you ever considered doing a showcase? A showcase allows you to set up a booth and market your business one on one with potential costumers. Showcasing in conjunction with a larger business guarantees that the traffic will be there as their costumers flow in and out throughout the day. This is great for people who have products they have developed or special services they provide. If you’re interested in doing a showcase contact some big name businesses and ask if they offer the opportunity for people to showcase. During my research, I found  that Sam’s Club  offers this type of opportunity. The video below is based on the showcasing they do and what you should consider if you’d like to participate. The key to getting your product out there is marketing, marketing and more marketing.  Never underestimate the power of word of mouth marketing.  Someone may know someone who knows someone who knows the right person that they just happened to have recommended your product to.  Ursula landed the kings daughter as a client which wasn’t too bad for business.

http://youtu.be/POOZ30N5RMA

photo credit: Loren Javier via photopin cc

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Rumpelstiltskin Needed a Trademark

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Rumpelstiltskin was a man who knew the importance of a name.  He had many talents.  He could spin straw into gold and one day he offered to help a poor millers daughter being held in captivity.  However, he had a few strings attached.   She could use his services just not his name.  As long as he controlled the use of his name he retained his power.  You should always protect your identity in your personal and business life.  In business, you do so by having a trademark.  You can get a trademark for around $300.  Trademarks protect names, symbols, words and logos that distinguish your business from other businesses.  You’ll have to first do your research to make sure that the name isn’t already taken.  I’m in the process of applying for a trademark.  Once I finish the application process,  I will blog about the wait time and response I receive.  There are several sites on-line that offer you trademarks but in my opinion it is safer to go to U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.  As for Rumpelstiltskin, his empire crumbled with one word from the millers daughter, “Rumpelstiltskin!” I guess he should have had a trademark.

photo credit: sofi01 via photopin cc

The Table of Contents

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Good Morning! I call this blog entry ” The Table of Contents” because it just lists some of the components you need to start a business.  These are things I’ll be working on and sharing throughout my blog.  I’ll add links to the sites you would need for these items as well.  I hope you find this list of components useful and have a great day! :O)

1) Create Your Business Idea

a)  Decide what type of business best suits you.

b)  Use analysis to determine if your idea will create profit.

c)  Write a business plan.

d)  Research sources for start-up financing.

e)  Develop a marketing plan.

2) Create Your Business Structure

a)  Who owns this business?

b) What kind of business are you in terms of structure?

c)  Would your business benefit from selling stock?

d) What type and level of legal protection do you need?

e)  How will your business be taxed?

f)  Don’t be afraid to go out there and speak to people in each business structure for advice.

3) Develop A Name

a)  Create a name for your business.

b)  Research the availability of that name to include its availability as a domain name online.

c)  Check with your county clerk if you’re creating a local store.

d)  Do a federal and state trademark search if you want to have your business operate regionally or nationally.

e)  Depending on which level you choose you’ll need to register your business name to protect it.

4) Determine Your Business Location

a)  Annotate the type of features your business would need at its location.

b)  Determine what you can afford in rent and then analyze various neighborhoods for rent cost.

c)  Check the zoning restrictions.

5) Permits and Licenses

a)  Obtain a federal employment identification number.

b)  Obtain a sellers permit to sell legally in your state.

c)  Obtain a state license.

d)  Obtain a local tax registration certificate and any local permits.

6) Insurance

a)  Look at the property you will be working from and what it requires in insurance.

b)  Obtain insurance for any vehicles used for your business.

c)   Obtain insurance for the location your costumers/clients will be coming.

d)   Obtain insurance for your product.

7) The Books

a)   Set up an accounting system.

b)  Decide what your fiscal year looks like.

8) Taxes

a)  Learn the tax system for your business.

b)  Learn what deductions you can use.

c)  Look at the IRS’s tax guide for small businesses,  starting a business and their tax calendar for small businesses.

photo credit: creativelenna via photopin cc

(I derived this list from: http://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/start-own-business-50-things-30077.html.  If you have more to add to this list please share.)