Tag: Entrepreneurs:

The Top 10 Best Small Business Blogs for Entrepreneurs in 2015 #business #development #plan

#business blogs

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The Top 10 Best Small Business Blogs for Entrepreneurs in 2015

As a small business owner myself, I know how important it is to stay up-to-date with the ever changing trends that the business world throws at us.

Because I watch very little TV, and rely heavily on the internet for keeping up-to-date with the news, it s somewhat obvious that I d also use the online medium to learn, consume and also produce and market my own content. Bloggers (and increasingly, podcasters, as well as video producers and many are wearing all three hats!) have the ability to express themselves in somewhat ‘real time’, and in an evergreen way, by keeping their content fresh, and sharing their opinions with the world.

However, in the world of business blogging there s a lot of noise. A lot of content marketers are gagging to get your attention, and with only so many minutes a day to devote to learning and consuming content (personally, I put aside around 30-45 minutes daily), you’ve got to be very strict with who’s content you make time for.

This is the reason why I’ve put this list together. This collection are the best small business blogs I know of right now. My personal favorite / go-to people in the world of small business blogging and online business building. Individually they strike a chord with me enough to keep me coming back for more, together they act as an ever-growing encyclopaedia of business brilliance.

Note: These blogs are listed in no particular order of preference, or influence.

Chris Brogan s Blog

Chris is the only repeat awardee on this list, from last year. I ve known this man for several years and he has continued to deliver quality, helpful, thoughtful and inspiring content to every business owner wise enough to tune into what he has to say. I m assuming (heavily!) that you re one of them!

Must Read: Dear Podcaster Chris lays it down in true Brogan fashion. Letting podcasters know exactly how to approach expert guests, record with them and the importance of respecting their time. This SO needed to be said!

Smart Passive Income

It s no secret that Pat and I are very close friends. Known for being the crash test dummy of online business he s launched and grown several business, meaning you can learn what works and what doesn t, directly from watching him. We recently started a new partnership together, 1-Day Business Breakthrough. too!

Must Read: And They Thought I was Stupid – In this post from early 2014 Pat reflects on his decision to starting podcasting and what it s done for his brand along with the 468 comments on the post itself!

Gary Vaynerchuk s Blog

In 2010 I picked up a copy of Crush It! by Gary and became an instant fan. Since then I ve had to chance to have him on the podcast twice, as well as hanging out in the US a little together. Ballsy, to the point and with a BS detector like I ve never seen before, he s an influencer in every imaginable way.

Must Read: Cloud Dirt: How I Do Business – This is a fantastic short film that Gary and his team produced to explain how he feels about business today and why he doesn t focus on anything that won t bring him closer to his goals.

Amy Porterfield s Blog

I often refer to Amy as the Queen of Social Media . But, she has become so much more than that in recent years. Now focusing on everything from list building to product marketing, Amy is paving the way for other entrepreneurs in a crowded space that needs to hear it like it is. She s simply awesome.

Must Read: 3 Strategies to Rapid List Building – I often say that the health and overall success of your online business is directly tied to your email list. This post (and podcast episode) is compulsory consumption for everyone!

Entrepreneur on Fire

Talk about taking the bull by the horns! John Lee Dumas hit the scene a couple years ago and hasn t looked back. In 2014, along with his partner in crime (and life!), Kate Erickson, he turned his podcasting empire into a thriving million dollar entity something rarely seen in the online infomarketing world.

Must Read: 2014: The Year in Review – John and Kate (some would say the real boss at EOFire!) had a remarkable year. In this post they show you exactly how they did it, along with warts and all! Great annual review write-up.

Copyblogger

Copyblogger have long been a guiding light in the very dark tunnel that is content marketing . Brian Clark and his team are still leading the way, with decisions such as cutting comments from their blog, deleting their Facebook page and reinventing content publishing by developing the New Rainmaker platform.

Must Read: Why Copyblogger is Killing its Facebook Page – With social media changing at a drastic pace, sometimes equally drastic decisions are required. Copyblogger shows you the facts behind this big decision.

Convince Convert

It s not one of the top ranked social media and content marketing websites on the internet for no reason! Jay Baer and his team consistently publish amazingly thought-provoking and inspiring entrepreneurial content. Whether it s a blog post, podcast, or an episode of JayToday TV subscribe now.

Must Read: Can You Build a Content Marketing Super Brand – I said thought-provoking for a reason. This ll get ya thinking! A deep dive into Jay s mind as he discusses the in s and out s of developing your own super brand.

Marie Forleo s Blog

I do not know Marie. We ve not met, and other than a few brief social media exchanges, we ve never even spoken. But, boy, oh boy can this lady market the hell out of herself and everything she stands for. Want to build a personal brand? Watch what Marie does, rinse and repeat. She s simply awesome.

Must Read: Can t Turn Off Your Bizself? 2 Quick Steps to Flip the Switch! – In this video (she vlogs, instead of blogs) Marie discusses the importance of switching off as an entrepreneur, and gives us a couple of great tips to get started.

Duct Tape Marketing

John Jantsch is an all-star, old school marketing player that has continued to deliver the marketing and sales goods over and over again. His team produce a blog that s a mix of his experience, coupled together with the new in s and out s of online marketing all thrown into one.

Must Read: How to promote Every Piece of Content Your Create – I loved this birds-eye view of how John and his team cross promote their content archive. This shows you the power of on-going marketing for older content.

Michael Hyatt s Blog

When I think of Michael Hyatt, I think of a Leader s Leader . With over two decades of experience in the publishing world, he has since taken online entrepreneurship to a whole new level with his blog, podcast, products and membership communities. He s a one-man leadership, walking talking workshop!

Must Read: Advice to First Time Authors – This is about as real as advice gets. It s short, sharp, to the point and timeless. Michael s take on everything from finding an agent to considering self publishing is must-read material.

Don t Forget THIS Blog, Too!

Along with these awesome bloggers, podcasters, online video producers and all-round content marketing rock stars, please don t forget to continue to tune into this blog and my podcast on a regular basis. I promise you lots of content to help you become the most productive and profitable entrepreneur possible.





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10 Personality Traits Successful Entrepreneurs Possess #business #lookup

#online business ideas

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10 Personality Traits You Need to Start a Business

Traits for Success

Credit: Starting a Business Image via Shutterstock You already know you need a great business idea, a solid business plan and some startup cash to start a business. But, you also need to have a personality that’s suited to being an entrepreneur. Experts tell us the personality traits every entrepreneur needs to succeed.

Lots of Energy

Credit: Happy Workers Image via Shutterstock As a brand marketing and public relations consultant, Lisa Murray has worked with a number of serial entrepreneurs and says one quality they all have in common is their ability to always be on the go.

“Born entrepreneurs don’t know how to power down,” Murray, principal of Murray Whalen Communications, told BusinessNewsDaily. “They emit a constant hum of ideas, plans, strategies and high-octane energy.”

Persuasive

Credit: Sales team image via Shutterstock One of the key signs of a born entrepreneur is the salesmanship and power of persuasion they show very early on for their causes, said business coach and consultant Nancy Eberhardt.

“Whether it is a landscaping business at age 12, or selling magazines door-to-door to fund a school trip, they are persistent in telling you about it and pitching why you need it,” Eberhardt said. “They are almost fearless in who they will approach and present their idea, service or product to.”

Resourceful

Credit: Creativity image via Shutterstock As someone who works almost exclusively with entrepreneurs, Robin Samora, president of the business and PR consulting firm Let’s Make You Shine. said entrepreneurs all tend to have a unique way of fixing issues that may arise.

“They come up with novel ways to solve problems that others can’t even imagine,” Samora said. “Ideas flow and come naturally to them.”

Winning attitude

Credit: Think Positive image via Shutterstock. Even in the worst situations, successful entrepreneurs always see the opportunity to glean something new, said Lili Balfour, founder of the investment banking firm Atelier Advisors.

“When their world is falling apart, they remain calm, knowing that there is a lesson to be learned.” Balfour said. “They are grateful for what has worked out and learn from what has not worked out.”

Thrives in uncertainty

Credit: Curious image via Shutterstock Especially when first starting out, executive coach Elene Cafasso said entrepreneurs are able to function without a lot of certainty.

“If you are someone who becomes paralyzed when there are too many moving pieces and too many contingencies, then owning your own business is not right for you,” Cafasso said.

Opportunistic

Credit: Dreamstime.com Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, a research affiliate with Hogan Assessments. believes entrepreneurs have an opportunistic mindset and are always prepared to take advantage of every situation.

“They see opportunities where others don’t,” Chamorro-Premuzic said. “Few people are driven to pursue them.”

Learns from mistakes

Credit: Embarrassed man image via Shutterstock New York wedding expert Nadia Digilov said entrepreneurs all have a willingness to learn from their mistakes.

“Natural entrepreneurs analyze their behavior and are not afraid to admit that they have made a mistake,” Digilov said. “They attempt to correct negative behaviors more easily then non-natural entrepreneurs.”

Thinker

Credit: Dreamstime The mind of an entrepreneur is always at work, said Richard Stiennon, chief research analyst and founder of analyst firm IT-Harvest.

“He or she cannot turn off the flow of ideas,” Stiennon said. “Every problem is an opportunity to build a business to solve it.”

Communicator

Credit: Dreamstime Business consultant Paul O’Leary believes born entrepreneurs have a natural gift for gab.

“They are assertive, direct and to-the-point with a sense of urgency,” O’Leary said.

Fighter

Credit: Dreamstime.com Hope Katz Gibbs, founder and president of Inkandescent Public Relations, said that as an entrepreneur herself, she believes those who are born with the characteristics needed to run their own business all are willing to get back up after being knocked down.

“Our ideas aren’t always successful, but the thing that differentiates us is that we don’t give up — or give in,” Katz Gibbs said. “We just learn from what didn’t work, and what did, and start again.” Ultimately, she said, entrepreneurs are the last ones standing.

Find Your Business Idea

Ready to figure out what business idea is best for you? Try our Business Idea Generator. Answer 21 yes or no questions and we ll tell you the top five business ideas that might work for you. Click here to get started. Don t worry, it will open in a new window and you won t lose your place in this countdown.

More Countdowns





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11 Most Profitable Agricultural Business Ideas for Young Entrepreneurs – Insider Monkey #sba #business #loan

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Published on June 17, 2015 at 5:53 am by Soma Dutta in Lists

If you are looking to for opportunities in the agriculture industry, the most profitable agricultural business ideas for young entrepreneurs are some of the best options to choose from! Traditional agriculture might not sound too appealing to the youngsters of today, but the modern agriculture has diversified into many areas which make for lucrative avenues that just might be their thing. And, contrary to popular belief agriculture is one of the most remunerative business which can also be a glamorous one.

For starters the investment costs are generally low, and the payouts are decent. While, with organic farming coming into vogue, the opportunities have grown manifold. Agriculture might actually prove to be a way of life, away from the cut-throat competition and stressful corporate life, for the driven young Turks who aren t afraid to tread the offbeat path.

The enterprising individuals who are not quite the outdoor kind to get down to farming and agriculture might opt for the 5 Most Profitable Online Businesses You Can Start Today. However, an agriculture business does not necessarily mean you have to get down to actual farming. Some of the suggestions and ideas we have for you can well be undertaken indoors and relate to the allied areas of agriculture. Most of them can also be undertaken with little or no training. Just some DIY guides and a keen interest can get you started. And, they might actually prove to be great avocations along with vocations.

Intrigued? Here, check out the list of the most profitable agricultural business ideas for young entrepreneurs!





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6 Best Business Tips from 6 Top Entrepreneurs #business #franchise

#business tips

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6 Best Business Tips from 6 Top Entrepreneurs

Entrepreneur, content marketer, online educator

Becoming a successful entrepreneur is no easy feat. Sacrifice, hard work and an unwavering determination for achieving greatness are required. So is surviving your mistakes — because they will happen.

At CreativeLive, I ve always strived to learn from my own mistakes and to gain powerful insights from those who have successfully gone down the path before me. That s why I reached out to six top entrepreneurs, writers and CEOs I ve admired for years.

I asked each of them to share with me, in a selfie-style video clip, their single most impactful piece of advice for fellow entrepreneurs. Those interviewees included:

  • Chase Jarvis. the prolific photographer and CEO at CreativeLive, who s on a mission to revolutionize the way the world learns
  • Jon Acuff. the best-selling author of five books designed to teach how to find and create meaningful work
  • Sophia Amoruso. the founder of NastyGal and the best-selling author of #GIRLBOSS. who launched one of the fastest-growing retail brands in recent history
  • Lewis Howes. the best-selling author, lifestyle entrepreneur and podcast host, who s interviewed more than 200 influential entrepreneurs on how to achieve greatness
  • Nir Eyal. the best-selling author, entrepreneur and speaker, who s pioneering the psychology behind creating habit-forming products
  • Guy Kawasaki. the entrepreneur, investor and former chief evangelist at Apple, who s helped dozens of well-known startups launch with a bang

Here s what each had to say:

Just about any and all business owners who have created a sustainable self-employed career will tell you that they wouldn t have achieved their goals without guidance from others. They re not afraid to ask for help. In fact, most of them are successful in a large part, because they ve surrounded themselves with trusted advisors. mentors and industry experts.

Here s more from these top entrepreneurs on how they ve risen to success in the world of business.

1. Chase Jarvis, CEO at CreativeLive

Image credit: Chase Jarvis

Scratch your own itch.

After becoming one of the world s best-known photographers at a relatively young age, Chase went on to found CreativeLive. the world s largest live-streaming education company. He credits much of his success to following his passions and pursuing only the opportunities that he s genuinely interested in.

Jarvis: Go after solving a problem that you have. Something that s near and dear to you, not some random market opportunity. Because, when things get hard, if you re chasing just the dollars, or a random market opportunity, you re not going to be able to have the fortitude, the passion, to stay with it.

2. Jon Acuff, New York Times best-selling author of Do Over

Image credit: Jon Acuff

Success takes hustle.

Acuff, the New York Times best-selling author of five books, including Do Over . set out early on in his career to pursue at all costs only meaningful work. For him, that meant 16 long years of being hired and fired, before eventually finding his dream job and launching his self-employed career as a writer, speaker and brand consultant.

Accomplishing his dream of working for himself took a lot of hard work, focus and hustle.

Acuff: Hustle is an act of focus, not frenzy. Hustle is about subtraction and addition. It s not about doing more, it s about focusing on the things you need to do, in order to move your business forward.

3. Sophia Amoruso, founder of Nasty Gal, author of #GIRLBOSS

Image credit: sophia amoruso

Don t give up, don t take anything personally, and don t take no for an answer.

Since founding Nasty Gal. in 2006, as an eBay store selling vintage clothing, Amoruso has transformed the business into a multi-million dollar empire with its own clothing line, which was named the Fastest Growing Retailer in 2012. Recently, TheNew York Times best-selling author of #GIRLBOSS has stepped out of her role as the CEO of Nasty Gal to become the executive chairman and to oversee the creative and brand marketing functions of the business.

Without any fashion or business experience before starting Nasty Gal, Amoruso credits much of her hard-earned success to her refusal to accept failure as an option.

Amoruso: The people who told me no were the people who eventually told me yes.

4. Lewis Howes, author of The School of Greatness

Image credit: Lewis Howes

Follow your heart.

Howes, The New York Times best-selling author of The School of Greatness , and host of the podcast bearing the same name, is a professional athlete-turned-entrepreneur. After suffering a debilitating injury on the field, Howes faced the fact that his football career was finished. Overnight, he lost his ability to do what he was passionate about, and was forced to discover a new way to live with purpose. Today, he s a writer, speaker and online educator who teaches entrepreneurs how to grow their online businesses .

5. Nir Eyal, author of Hooked

Image credit: Nir Eyal

Certainty is more dangerous than ignorance.

Eyal, the author of the Wall Street Journal best seller, Hooked . has become the authority on how to build habit-forming products. After years of research and experience in the video game and advertising industries, Eyal is a sought-after writer, speaker and educator on the psychology behind what motivates consumer engagement.

Eyal: It s up to us as entrepreneurs, to see the world as it should be –not necessarily how it is. When you think you re sure of the way things are, that s when you get passed up and you don t see the opportunities that real entrepreneurs envision.

6. Guy Kawasaki, chief evangelist of Canva, author of The Art of the Start 2.0

Image credit: Guy Kawasaki

Focus on the prototype.

Kawasaki, the former chief evangelist of Apple, is an immensely successful marketing executive, investor and author of 13 books including The Art of the Start 2.0 . Over the years, he s helped dozens of well-known companies take their products from concept to market dominance.

His formula for replicating startup success? Focusing only on the activities that drive positive results for your business.

Kawasaki: If you get a prototype out and you get enough people using it, you never have to write a business plan. A prototype is where you separate the BS from the reality.





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Britain s Top 100 entrepreneurs #business #lawyers

#top entrepreneurs

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Britain’s Top 100 Entrepreneurs 2015

This year’s top spot on our list goes to Simon and Bobby Arora, who’ve built their bargain homewares chain B M into a billion pound success story. They are joined by entrepreneurs in everything from aviation and drinks to soft toys and software.

If Britain is to continue to prosper amid the spreading shockwaves of the great China economic slowdown, it’s going to need all the help it can get from its energetic army of entrepreneurs. Happily our 10th MT survey of Britain’s Top 100 Entrepreneurs and family businesses shows that in the last five years, from the depth of the downturn until last year, the nation’s self-made businessmen and women have been performing heroically, growing their operations, taking on staff and generating much-needed cash for both their local economies and the country.

So our Top 100 have seen staff numbers shoot up by nearly 85,000 in the last five years to over 164,000. This near-107% rise is much sharper than in previous years, justifying the view that our best entrepreneurs are the economy’s real job creators. And job creation is one of the crucial measures we use in ranking our Top 100.

The other of course is turnover growth, reflecting the economic activity they generate. This year our 100 entrepreneurs had a total turnover of 26.35bn, up from 12.898bn five years ago.

This represents a 104.3% increase – great news for UK plc, but perhaps a note of caution should come here. This is the first time since we started doing the Top 100 that the overall growth in employment has been greater than the comparable growth figure for turnover. It may help explain why the British productivity record has been so lamentable in recent years, with an 18% lag behind our competitors. Quite simply the entrepreneurs collectively are not getting as much out of each staff member in output terms.

But behind the macroeconomic numbers are some pretty impressive individual performances, none more so than this year’s number one – the Arora brothers (pictured) of discount homewares chain B M. Simon, the Cambridge-educated ex-McKinsey man, and his younger brother Bobby, who has a market trader’s nose for a bargain and pricing, have in the last decade built up a group that is now the envy of the discount retail world, valued by the stock market at around 3.2bn. More importantly for UK plc, in the last five years, B M’s remorseless expansion has seen its staff numbers jump by over 200% to 19,462. That must be a welcome boost in its Merseyside heartland where it has its headquarters.

This is matched by their track record in growing sales, up by 206% in the same period. But they are not alone in this respect. Our joint second place entries, 32-year-old Nitin Passi of the Missguided online fashion group and the Coates siblings – Denise and John – through their Bet365 online gaming operation, are just as effective when it comes to expansion. Passi has invested in a new headquarters in Manchester which, with all the trappings of an internet operation, is regarded as the coolest in the city. He reckons it will motivate his growing staff to make Missguided a 1bn business in five years. Few would bet against him, or the nine others from Britain’s thriving Asian business community who make our list.

Excellent progress this may be, but sadly we can’t say the same about the number of female entrepreneurs in the Top 100. There are 17 women listed, but only two, including Denise Coates of course, make the top 20. Last year’s celebrity winner, fashion entrepreneur Victoria Beckham. has not produced any new accounts and so cannot be considered this time around.

There are of course some fabulous women entrepreneurs who have developed businesses of the scale to make it into the Top 100, including Chrissie Rucker of the White Company, Margaret Barbour and Vivienne Westwood. But despite having trawled Companies House for the accounts that provide the underpinning of our research, there are just not enough. Perhaps this is a deficiency which the current crop of twentysomething female entrepreneurs like Kathryn Parsons of Decoded and Smruti Sriram of Supreme Creations will address in future lists – after all, the wealth which is one of our core criteria typically takes many years to accrue.

In the meantime, the aforementioned Bet365 founder and co-CEO Denise Coates is our highest placed woman and flies the flag ably for women in business. A bookie’s daughter, she certainly knows a good bet when she sees one. Coates has masterminded a near doubling of profits to over 400m in the Stoke-based firm’s latest accounts. And her business acumen extends to looking after her employees, too – she plans to turn what’s left of Josiah Wedgwood’s famous Etruria Works into a children’s day nursery, a facility bound to be welcomed by the firm’s working parents.

The north-south divide may be ever-present, but encouragingly there are a fair crop of regional entrepreneurs working to close it. The South West has 14, the North West 13 and Yorkshire 12.

But the South East still remains top, with 33 names. Encouragingly for the government’s efforts to re-balance British business towards manufacturing, the march of the Top 100 makers is going at full tilt. Thirteen of the Top 100 are industrialists of one sort or another, with another 21 in high-tech sectors like the internet, software, telecoms and computing. They include Sir James Dyson of the ubiquitous bagless vacuum, whose firm is rapidly moving into new markets. Smaller but growing steadily are the likes of Melett, built up by Ian and Nicola Warhurst, which makes turbocharger repair kits for cars, and exports 90% of its output, with a growing market in China.

One of our measures of how well our entrepreneurs are doing comes from a valuation of their stake in the business and other assets, based on the stock market values if quoted or in line with those values for those who run a private company. Such valuations, of course, come with many caveats but serve as a rough and ready guide. Collectively the Top 100 are, by our reckoning, worth 24.5bn, a whisker below last year’s 25bn total.

This may reflect the general fragility of markets worldwide at present. But the one fact that unites all our 100 is their demonstrable record of success. They are the best hope for Britain to enjoy a sustained recovery with more jobs – and more prosperity – to come.

Find The Complete List Here





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The Top 10 Best Small Business Blogs for Entrepreneurs in 2015 #business #management

#business blogs

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The Top 10 Best Small Business Blogs for Entrepreneurs in 2015

As a small business owner myself, I know how important it is to stay up-to-date with the ever changing trends that the business world throws at us.

Because I watch very little TV, and rely heavily on the internet for keeping up-to-date with the news, it s somewhat obvious that I d also use the online medium to learn, consume and also produce and market my own content. Bloggers (and increasingly, podcasters, as well as video producers and many are wearing all three hats!) have the ability to express themselves in somewhat ‘real time’, and in an evergreen way, by keeping their content fresh, and sharing their opinions with the world.

However, in the world of business blogging there s a lot of noise. A lot of content marketers are gagging to get your attention, and with only so many minutes a day to devote to learning and consuming content (personally, I put aside around 30-45 minutes daily), you’ve got to be very strict with who’s content you make time for.

This is the reason why I’ve put this list together. This collection are the best small business blogs I know of right now. My personal favorite / go-to people in the world of small business blogging and online business building. Individually they strike a chord with me enough to keep me coming back for more, together they act as an ever-growing encyclopaedia of business brilliance.

Note: These blogs are listed in no particular order of preference, or influence.

Chris Brogan s Blog

Chris is the only repeat awardee on this list, from last year. I ve known this man for several years and he has continued to deliver quality, helpful, thoughtful and inspiring content to every business owner wise enough to tune into what he has to say. I m assuming (heavily!) that you re one of them!

Must Read: Dear Podcaster Chris lays it down in true Brogan fashion. Letting podcasters know exactly how to approach expert guests, record with them and the importance of respecting their time. This SO needed to be said!

Smart Passive Income

It s no secret that Pat and I are very close friends. Known for being the crash test dummy of online business he s launched and grown several business, meaning you can learn what works and what doesn t, directly from watching him. We recently started a new partnership together, 1-Day Business Breakthrough. too!

Must Read: And They Thought I was Stupid – In this post from early 2014 Pat reflects on his decision to starting podcasting and what it s done for his brand along with the 468 comments on the post itself!

Gary Vaynerchuk s Blog

In 2010 I picked up a copy of Crush It! by Gary and became an instant fan. Since then I ve had to chance to have him on the podcast twice, as well as hanging out in the US a little together. Ballsy, to the point and with a BS detector like I ve never seen before, he s an influencer in every imaginable way.

Must Read: Cloud Dirt: How I Do Business – This is a fantastic short film that Gary and his team produced to explain how he feels about business today and why he doesn t focus on anything that won t bring him closer to his goals.

Amy Porterfield s Blog

I often refer to Amy as the Queen of Social Media . But, she has become so much more than that in recent years. Now focusing on everything from list building to product marketing, Amy is paving the way for other entrepreneurs in a crowded space that needs to hear it like it is. She s simply awesome.

Must Read: 3 Strategies to Rapid List Building – I often say that the health and overall success of your online business is directly tied to your email list. This post (and podcast episode) is compulsory consumption for everyone!

Entrepreneur on Fire

Talk about taking the bull by the horns! John Lee Dumas hit the scene a couple years ago and hasn t looked back. In 2014, along with his partner in crime (and life!), Kate Erickson, he turned his podcasting empire into a thriving million dollar entity something rarely seen in the online infomarketing world.

Must Read: 2014: The Year in Review – John and Kate (some would say the real boss at EOFire!) had a remarkable year. In this post they show you exactly how they did it, along with warts and all! Great annual review write-up.

Copyblogger

Copyblogger have long been a guiding light in the very dark tunnel that is content marketing . Brian Clark and his team are still leading the way, with decisions such as cutting comments from their blog, deleting their Facebook page and reinventing content publishing by developing the New Rainmaker platform.

Must Read: Why Copyblogger is Killing its Facebook Page – With social media changing at a drastic pace, sometimes equally drastic decisions are required. Copyblogger shows you the facts behind this big decision.

Convince Convert

It s not one of the top ranked social media and content marketing websites on the internet for no reason! Jay Baer and his team consistently publish amazingly thought-provoking and inspiring entrepreneurial content. Whether it s a blog post, podcast, or an episode of JayToday TV subscribe now.

Must Read: Can You Build a Content Marketing Super Brand – I said thought-provoking for a reason. This ll get ya thinking! A deep dive into Jay s mind as he discusses the in s and out s of developing your own super brand.

Marie Forleo s Blog

I do not know Marie. We ve not met, and other than a few brief social media exchanges, we ve never even spoken. But, boy, oh boy can this lady market the hell out of herself and everything she stands for. Want to build a personal brand? Watch what Marie does, rinse and repeat. She s simply awesome.

Must Read: Can t Turn Off Your Bizself? 2 Quick Steps to Flip the Switch! – In this video (she vlogs, instead of blogs) Marie discusses the importance of switching off as an entrepreneur, and gives us a couple of great tips to get started.

Duct Tape Marketing

John Jantsch is an all-star, old school marketing player that has continued to deliver the marketing and sales goods over and over again. His team produce a blog that s a mix of his experience, coupled together with the new in s and out s of online marketing all thrown into one.

Must Read: How to promote Every Piece of Content Your Create – I loved this birds-eye view of how John and his team cross promote their content archive. This shows you the power of on-going marketing for older content.

Michael Hyatt s Blog

When I think of Michael Hyatt, I think of a Leader s Leader . With over two decades of experience in the publishing world, he has since taken online entrepreneurship to a whole new level with his blog, podcast, products and membership communities. He s a one-man leadership, walking talking workshop!

Must Read: Advice to First Time Authors – This is about as real as advice gets. It s short, sharp, to the point and timeless. Michael s take on everything from finding an agent to considering self publishing is must-read material.

Don t Forget THIS Blog, Too!

Along with these awesome bloggers, podcasters, online video producers and all-round content marketing rock stars, please don t forget to continue to tune into this blog and my podcast on a regular basis. I promise you lots of content to help you become the most productive and profitable entrepreneur possible.





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10 Personality Traits Successful Entrepreneurs Possess #free #business #software

#online business ideas

#

10 Personality Traits You Need to Start a Business

Traits for Success

Credit: Starting a Business Image via Shutterstock You already know you need a great business idea, a solid business plan and some startup cash to start a business. But, you also need to have a personality that’s suited to being an entrepreneur. Experts tell us the personality traits every entrepreneur needs to succeed.

Lots of Energy

Credit: Happy Workers Image via Shutterstock As a brand marketing and public relations consultant, Lisa Murray has worked with a number of serial entrepreneurs and says one quality they all have in common is their ability to always be on the go.

“Born entrepreneurs don’t know how to power down,” Murray, principal of Murray Whalen Communications, told BusinessNewsDaily. “They emit a constant hum of ideas, plans, strategies and high-octane energy.”

Persuasive

Credit: Sales team image via Shutterstock One of the key signs of a born entrepreneur is the salesmanship and power of persuasion they show very early on for their causes, said business coach and consultant Nancy Eberhardt.

“Whether it is a landscaping business at age 12, or selling magazines door-to-door to fund a school trip, they are persistent in telling you about it and pitching why you need it,” Eberhardt said. “They are almost fearless in who they will approach and present their idea, service or product to.”

Resourceful

Credit: Creativity image via Shutterstock As someone who works almost exclusively with entrepreneurs, Robin Samora, president of the business and PR consulting firm Let’s Make You Shine. said entrepreneurs all tend to have a unique way of fixing issues that may arise.

“They come up with novel ways to solve problems that others can’t even imagine,” Samora said. “Ideas flow and come naturally to them.”

Winning attitude

Credit: Think Positive image via Shutterstock. Even in the worst situations, successful entrepreneurs always see the opportunity to glean something new, said Lili Balfour, founder of the investment banking firm Atelier Advisors.

“When their world is falling apart, they remain calm, knowing that there is a lesson to be learned.” Balfour said. “They are grateful for what has worked out and learn from what has not worked out.”

Thrives in uncertainty

Credit: Curious image via Shutterstock Especially when first starting out, executive coach Elene Cafasso said entrepreneurs are able to function without a lot of certainty.

“If you are someone who becomes paralyzed when there are too many moving pieces and too many contingencies, then owning your own business is not right for you,” Cafasso said.

Opportunistic

Credit: Dreamstime.com Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, a research affiliate with Hogan Assessments. believes entrepreneurs have an opportunistic mindset and are always prepared to take advantage of every situation.

“They see opportunities where others don’t,” Chamorro-Premuzic said. “Few people are driven to pursue them.”

Learns from mistakes

Credit: Embarrassed man image via Shutterstock New York wedding expert Nadia Digilov said entrepreneurs all have a willingness to learn from their mistakes.

“Natural entrepreneurs analyze their behavior and are not afraid to admit that they have made a mistake,” Digilov said. “They attempt to correct negative behaviors more easily then non-natural entrepreneurs.”

Thinker

Credit: Dreamstime The mind of an entrepreneur is always at work, said Richard Stiennon, chief research analyst and founder of analyst firm IT-Harvest.

“He or she cannot turn off the flow of ideas,” Stiennon said. “Every problem is an opportunity to build a business to solve it.”

Communicator

Credit: Dreamstime Business consultant Paul O’Leary believes born entrepreneurs have a natural gift for gab.

“They are assertive, direct and to-the-point with a sense of urgency,” O’Leary said.

Fighter

Credit: Dreamstime.com Hope Katz Gibbs, founder and president of Inkandescent Public Relations, said that as an entrepreneur herself, she believes those who are born with the characteristics needed to run their own business all are willing to get back up after being knocked down.

“Our ideas aren’t always successful, but the thing that differentiates us is that we don’t give up — or give in,” Katz Gibbs said. “We just learn from what didn’t work, and what did, and start again.” Ultimately, she said, entrepreneurs are the last ones standing.

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10 Cool Business Ideas For Newbie Entrepreneurs #business #for #sales

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10 Cool Business Ideas For Newbie Entrepreneurs

Photo: Liesha Petrovich ; Credit: Crystal Clear Photography, LLC

Ready to take a chance this year? Maybe try something a little bit different?

If your answer is yes, then it’s time to start that business you’ve always dreamed about. You don’t have to start big, or risk your life savings. You can start each of these businesses with a minimal investment, and many as a side hustle on the weekend .

So, if you’re ready to have a little more fun (and income) this year, get inspired by one of these cool business ideas .

1. Offline education.

Online teaching is a booming business—$107 billion to be exact! That figure includes online universities, corporate training, webinars, and selling courses on platforms like Udemy and Ruzuku.

There are also a ton of courses on how to create (and profit from) online courses! But the growth of online learning hasn’t stopped the need for offline, local independent teachers.

If you have a talent and developed skill, why not teach it to an offline audience? Adult education, after-school programs, day-cares, community centers, and even churches need interesting and valuable courses for their members.

Here are a few examples: horseback riding. swimming, karate, dance, gymnastics, music, computers skills technology, golf, tennis, archery, business planning, accounting, home repair, cooking, meal planning, personal finance and so on.

2. Sell your hobby.

Combine your hobby with a business and you’ve got a recipe for success. Businesses like, How to Cook That. are part helpful blog and part online shop. Owner Ann Reardon shares helpful tips and tricks to make amazing desserts, but also sells interesting and fun how-to’s and templates.

Using a simple widget from the e-commerce platform Selz. Ann can sell any recipe, guide or template from anywhere on her website. This can be a great niche business for anyone who wants to start an online business selling plans, guides, patterns or tutorials. You don’t even need your own website, as you can sell your digital download from your own Facebook account or Selz store.

3. Lunch carts, food trucks and kiosks.

Starting a restaurant is one of the riskiest and capital-intensive businesses out there. There is a ton of overhead, even for the smallest diner.

On the other hand, starting a lunch truck, food cart or a kiosk has minimal startup costs. You still have to follow local regulations, but the investment is much smaller than a full-fledged restaurant.

One of the best things about food trucks is the insanely wide variety of possibilities. From a marshmallow cart to cannolis, the portable food business is here to stay. Checkout Portland Maine’s Mami Food Truck, which specializes in Japanese street food.

Photo: Mami s Food Truck; Source: Facebook

4. Vending machine business.

Who would have thought the vending machine industry is worth approximately $8 billion? While the location of the vending machine is the key to success, there are many different kinds of vending machines to consider, including drink, food, toys, gumballs, stickers, games, and even personal grooming machines.

There are also variations of traditional vending machines, like those that only offer healthy vending choices and others that offer credit card payment options.

If you’ve got an entrepreneurial bug and want to try something a little different, Healthy Vending offers a smart guide on how to start a vending machine business .

5. Reiki therapist.

Reiki therapists are at the intersection of new age and creative wellness businesses. Reiki is a Japanese technique for stress reduction and relaxation that also promotes healing. It’s not for everyone, but it can be a fun, interesting and rewarding business.

You have to learn the practice and check the regulations in your area, but for those with a drive to help people, Reiki can be smart and rewarding business.

6. Herbal farm stand.

Shop local. It’s a mantra heard in every small community; and many offer farm stands year-round. There are many different niches to choose from including honey, jams, grass-fed meat, organic produce and fresh herbs.

Photo: © dusk, YFS Magazine

Beyond using herbs for cooking, consumers are now using herbs for medicinal purposes, candles and aromatherapy essences, baths and teas. If you have a green thumb and enough of a backyard for farming, consider starting a herb farm.

It has a low startup cost and can be operated part-time. One enterprising farmer started his business using lavender that grew along his road, and sold lavender sachets. That’s about as low-cost as you can get!

7.Freelancing.

The term freelancer is actually an umbrella term for hundreds of different businesses. It’s anyone who is outsourced to do a job, and the benefit is the employer doesn’t have to pay benefits like insurance or 401k’s.

If you have in-demand skills that can be outsourced, consider starting a freelance business. One of the best things about being a freelancer, is that you can offer your services at competitive prices.

There is always a demand for business services such as: IT, human resources, accounting, PR, customer service, marketing and sales; Writing services: resumes, cover letters, ghostwriting, articles, editing and blog posts; and Miscellaneous services: wedding/event planner, graphic artist, photographer, and interior design.

8. Aquarium maintenance.

This business idea sounds crazy (i know) on the surface. But it’s actually a growing industry, and does great in the right market. You can cater to either homes or businesses, and you are responsible for all aspects of maintaining a healthy aquarium.

Research the licensing regulations in your area. It s a unique business idea for anyone with a passion for fish and aquatic life.

9. Bicycle maintenance and repair.

It’s easy to assume that bike riding is for the young. But biking is actually skyrocketing, especially in city centers and local towns! Thanks to baby boomers, seniors now account for 22 percent of adult bikers. And where bikes are, bicycle repair isn’t that far behind.

Plus, it’s the type of business that anyone can start in a home garage. For example, the Green Machine Bike Shop in Norway, Maine offers bike repair, but also created group rides in their area to promote their love of biking.

10. Ethical dog breeder.

The term puppy mill brings up horrific images of abused dogs. However, with so-called designer dogs fetching thousands per puppy, there is a growing need for ethical dog breeders.

Photo: © bussardel, YFS Magazine

Ethical breeders keep and care for each dog as a pet, not as livestock. They view their dogs as family members, not just a means to an end. Of course this means less profits than traditional puppy mills, so most ethical breeders only keep a few dogs for breeding purposes. The pet business is part money maker and part adorable fun.

This article has been edited and condensed.

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Britain s Top 100 entrepreneurs #business #for #sales

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Britain’s Top 100 Entrepreneurs 2015

This year’s top spot on our list goes to Simon and Bobby Arora, who’ve built their bargain homewares chain B M into a billion pound success story. They are joined by entrepreneurs in everything from aviation and drinks to soft toys and software.

If Britain is to continue to prosper amid the spreading shockwaves of the great China economic slowdown, it’s going to need all the help it can get from its energetic army of entrepreneurs. Happily our 10th MT survey of Britain’s Top 100 Entrepreneurs and family businesses shows that in the last five years, from the depth of the downturn until last year, the nation’s self-made businessmen and women have been performing heroically, growing their operations, taking on staff and generating much-needed cash for both their local economies and the country.

So our Top 100 have seen staff numbers shoot up by nearly 85,000 in the last five years to over 164,000. This near-107% rise is much sharper than in previous years, justifying the view that our best entrepreneurs are the economy’s real job creators. And job creation is one of the crucial measures we use in ranking our Top 100.

The other of course is turnover growth, reflecting the economic activity they generate. This year our 100 entrepreneurs had a total turnover of 26.35bn, up from 12.898bn five years ago.

This represents a 104.3% increase – great news for UK plc, but perhaps a note of caution should come here. This is the first time since we started doing the Top 100 that the overall growth in employment has been greater than the comparable growth figure for turnover. It may help explain why the British productivity record has been so lamentable in recent years, with an 18% lag behind our competitors. Quite simply the entrepreneurs collectively are not getting as much out of each staff member in output terms.

But behind the macroeconomic numbers are some pretty impressive individual performances, none more so than this year’s number one – the Arora brothers (pictured) of discount homewares chain B M. Simon, the Cambridge-educated ex-McKinsey man, and his younger brother Bobby, who has a market trader’s nose for a bargain and pricing, have in the last decade built up a group that is now the envy of the discount retail world, valued by the stock market at around 3.2bn. More importantly for UK plc, in the last five years, B M’s remorseless expansion has seen its staff numbers jump by over 200% to 19,462. That must be a welcome boost in its Merseyside heartland where it has its headquarters.

This is matched by their track record in growing sales, up by 206% in the same period. But they are not alone in this respect. Our joint second place entries, 32-year-old Nitin Passi of the Missguided online fashion group and the Coates siblings – Denise and John – through their Bet365 online gaming operation, are just as effective when it comes to expansion. Passi has invested in a new headquarters in Manchester which, with all the trappings of an internet operation, is regarded as the coolest in the city. He reckons it will motivate his growing staff to make Missguided a 1bn business in five years. Few would bet against him, or the nine others from Britain’s thriving Asian business community who make our list.

Excellent progress this may be, but sadly we can’t say the same about the number of female entrepreneurs in the Top 100. There are 17 women listed, but only two, including Denise Coates of course, make the top 20. Last year’s celebrity winner, fashion entrepreneur Victoria Beckham. has not produced any new accounts and so cannot be considered this time around.

There are of course some fabulous women entrepreneurs who have developed businesses of the scale to make it into the Top 100, including Chrissie Rucker of the White Company, Margaret Barbour and Vivienne Westwood. But despite having trawled Companies House for the accounts that provide the underpinning of our research, there are just not enough. Perhaps this is a deficiency which the current crop of twentysomething female entrepreneurs like Kathryn Parsons of Decoded and Smruti Sriram of Supreme Creations will address in future lists – after all, the wealth which is one of our core criteria typically takes many years to accrue.

In the meantime, the aforementioned Bet365 founder and co-CEO Denise Coates is our highest placed woman and flies the flag ably for women in business. A bookie’s daughter, she certainly knows a good bet when she sees one. Coates has masterminded a near doubling of profits to over 400m in the Stoke-based firm’s latest accounts. And her business acumen extends to looking after her employees, too – she plans to turn what’s left of Josiah Wedgwood’s famous Etruria Works into a children’s day nursery, a facility bound to be welcomed by the firm’s working parents.

The north-south divide may be ever-present, but encouragingly there are a fair crop of regional entrepreneurs working to close it. The South West has 14, the North West 13 and Yorkshire 12.

But the South East still remains top, with 33 names. Encouragingly for the government’s efforts to re-balance British business towards manufacturing, the march of the Top 100 makers is going at full tilt. Thirteen of the Top 100 are industrialists of one sort or another, with another 21 in high-tech sectors like the internet, software, telecoms and computing. They include Sir James Dyson of the ubiquitous bagless vacuum, whose firm is rapidly moving into new markets. Smaller but growing steadily are the likes of Melett, built up by Ian and Nicola Warhurst, which makes turbocharger repair kits for cars, and exports 90% of its output, with a growing market in China.

One of our measures of how well our entrepreneurs are doing comes from a valuation of their stake in the business and other assets, based on the stock market values if quoted or in line with those values for those who run a private company. Such valuations, of course, come with many caveats but serve as a rough and ready guide. Collectively the Top 100 are, by our reckoning, worth 24.5bn, a whisker below last year’s 25bn total.

This may reflect the general fragility of markets worldwide at present. But the one fact that unites all our 100 is their demonstrable record of success. They are the best hope for Britain to enjoy a sustained recovery with more jobs – and more prosperity – to come.

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Simple Business Plan Templates for Entrepreneurs #insurance #for #business

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8 Simple Business Plan Templates for Entrepreneurs

Writing a business plan is an important step in the startup process. It helps you and your partners decide if you will work well together, teaches you about the marketplace, and lets you brainstorm business and product goals. But because of all the effort and detail involved, many entrepreneurs dread the thought of sitting down and creating this critical but time-consuming document.

While business plans can be frustrating if you re writing one from scratch, there are plenty of online templates available to take some of the pain out of the process. Small business owners can benefit from simple, easy-to-follow business-plan tools so they can spend less time writing and more time launching.

Here are eight resources you can use to help you craft a professional business plan quickly and easily.

$100 Startup

You ve heard about those entrepreneurs who started off by jotting down their ideas on a napkin at a bar, caf or restaurant. $100 Startup s One-Page Business Plan is a little like that, but more organized. Designed for entrepreneurs who are itching to get started, this simple business-plan template asks a handful of questions that you can easily answer in one or two sentences. It covers everything from what you sell and who will buy it to how you will get paid, hustle to find customers, foresee challenges and overcome the obstacles all in a single page. [Writing a Business Plan? Do These 5 Things First]

Copyblogger

Not all small businesses are concerned with credit lines, partnerships and office space at least not in the beginning. So why should their initial business plans include these things? Copyblogger s Remarkably Simple Business Plan doesn t. Instead, it offers a business-plan template fit for the real would-be entrepreneur s world. Whereas most business-plan templates assume all businesses are uniform, Copyblogger s Remarkably Simple Business Plan was created to get to what entrepreneurs really need to know to start a business: the ins and outs of the product or service, how customers will find the business and how the business will make money. Simply copy and paste the template of the Remarkably Simple Business Plan, created by Sonia Simone, co-founder and chief content officer of Copyblogger Media, and you re good to go.

Enloop

Founded in 2011, Enloop is regarded as an innovative player in the business-plan-creation industry. Like many others, the service uses an online interface to help automate your business plan s creation. To get started, users enter basic information about their businesses, including product details. Then, Enloop s software uses metrics to help predict the financial performance of the company in comparison with others in the sector. According to CEO Cynthia McCahon, the goal of the company is to help entrepreneurs make better-informed decisions. Users can get started on Enloop for free; more advanced paid options are also available.

LivePlan

LivePlan is a relatively new entrant to the online business-tools market that helps you every step of the way, from the planning stages through your launch. Like other services, LivePlan allows business owners to craft perfectly formatted plans. From there, users can create the presentation necessary to pitch their business ideas to would-be investors. Once off the ground, businesses can track revenue and expenses against forecasts, and multiple users within a company can work through the LivePlan interface. Pricing starts at less than $12 a month.

The One Page Business Plan Company

Created by The One Page Business Plan Company. this simple business template covers only the key areas entrepreneurs need to address to start a business: their vision for the company, mission for why the business exists, objectives for setting out goals, strategies to make the business successful and action plans indicating what work needs to be done. Unlike complicated business plans, boring blocks of text are not required bullet points will do.

Platform Planner

Are you the visual type? Look no further than Angela Bowman s One-Page Visual Business Plan. Based on the principles of the Business Generation Model Strategyzer app, Bowman s One-Page Visual Business Plan uses sticky notes to help you creatively craft an out-of-the-box business plan. To create a One-Page Visual Business Plan, start by separating a single page into different sections or columns, such as company information and customer segments. Write down your ideas or responses on a sticky note, and then stick it on the corresponding section. You can also color-code the sticky notes for better organization. Then, if your plans change, you can easily remove a note, move it around or add new ones to better fit the direction in which your business is headed.

SBA Build Your Business Plan Tool

The fact that the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has an online tool to help users craft business plans will come as no surprise to anyone who has investigated the SBA s offerings before. The agency has a wealth of free planning, financing and consulting tools and resources, both online and through available consultants. The SBA s online tool for business-plan creation allows a user to enter information on a Web interface that is tied to that user s account. The administration says this is intended to be a live plan that can be referred to and changed as the company s plans progress. The SBA encourages entrepreneurs to use their generated plans to discuss their company s prospects with SBA advisers like those available through SCORE and the Small Business Development Center. The SBA s tool is available online at no cost.

Wise Bread

Greg Go, co-founder of online finance community Wise Bread, is a big believer that entrepreneurs who are just starting out don t need lengthy business plans. What they actually need, he said, is an internal working plan to get started. The internal working plan consists of four simple questions that make up the simple business plan: What is your product or service? Who are your customers? When will things get done? When are bills due, and when do you get paid? To guide entrepreneurs in completing their four-question business plan, Go provides a simplified way of answering each question in his blog post on the subject.

Updated on May 1, 2015. Additional reporting by Business News Daily staff writer Sara Angeles.

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