Demystifying Small Business Blogging

Blogging Misses the Cut for Small Business Priorities

If you own or lead a small business, you are familiar with the vast number of tasks that need to be completed on a daily basis jut to keep the doors open. Priorities like paying suppliers, managing payroll, invoicing and sales probably top the list.

Over the past few years social media and blogging have become a big conversation piece in the small business world and have left many small business owners feeling a bit on the outside as to how to approach these new media opportunities in a way to maximize their businesses.

Hence the reason that blogging and social media aren’t on the “high priority” list.

The biggest reason for this is probably the fact that measurement in the new media arena is still hard to come by and what can’t be measured becomes incredibly hard to invest in.

However, the fear of not participating is causing a lot of companies to jump into social and blogging (content) activities. However the approach is more of a “check the box” rather than a strategy that works.

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LEAD Magazine Features CMC Regional Manager

CMC Properties Encourages Small Business Growth with the “Perfect Small Office”

Written by Katie Southerland

Entrepreneurship is experiencing a resurgence in the Tristate, even in the midst of a still shaky economy. Because entrepreneurs have been given an opportunity to network in a supportive environment, they are sharing ideas, support, and camaraderie to create lasting success. One of the drivers of this resurgence is the “perfect small office” spaces provided by CMC Properties, which currently accommodates more than 1,000 small business owners. If not for their properties, entrepreneurship might not be as robust.

When they began building office spaces in the 1970s, CMC Properties―developers, owners, and operators of residential, retail, and commercial property throughout Greater Cincinnati and the Midwest―had one goal in mind: to provide the perfect office environment for small business owners. CMC’s objective is to “lower the barriers of going out on your own” and “provide well-located and exceptionally affordable business communities for professionals and entrepreneurs” to operate independently.    

In order to achieve that, every inch of their office spaces were designed with the small business owner in mind. Offices were built so tenants can communicate just like they would in a corporate environment―sharing ideas, advice, and best practices―and all seven locations have property managers on-site that work to spur growth.

“We provide the office space, but more than that, we help entrepreneurs to get out of their homes and come into a conducive environment to become successful,” says Chasta Postler, regional manager for commercial property at CMC.

CMC promotes the growth of new and existing businesses in each of their locations. They hold monthly networking events for each property where owners can meet, exchange contact information, and answer questions about their business in a public platform. Moreover, CMC has a new online business directory that connects all seven offices. Tenants can log in, do business with one another, and see a calendar of events. These extra perks can help businesses grow, but more importantly, it gives business owners a chance to communicate with like-minded professionals.

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Marketing to Young Consumers Without Breaking the Bank/Springdale Office

Guest post by Julie Hartwell

The Millennial generation is coming  Marketing to Young Consumers Without Breaking the Bankinto its own as consumers. It’s an exciting time for marketers, as the entrance of these tech-savvy young’uns ushers in a slew of marketing opportunities.  Here are a couple of low-cost options that will cause a buzz without breaking the bank.

Social Media

From Twitter to Vine, Facebook to Reddit, social media has earned its place in the heart of digital culture. Thus, social media marketing has earned its place in the heart of marketing strategy. Engaging young consumers through these platforms is easy because they’re open to the public. You can advertise products and promotions while simultaneously learning about and interacting with your target audience.

 

Keeping it Safe

Small businesses are becoming a larger target for criminals seeking to access sensitive data because attackers are well aware that small businesses have limited resources or personnel dedicated to information system security. In an effort to combat cyber-attacks, the Department of Homeland Security established October as National Cyber Security Awareness Month to educate the public about cyber security and to prepare the nation in the event of a cyber-incident.

Here are 9 cyber security tips for small business owners:

1.      Use the FCC’s Small Biz Cyber Planner to create a cyber security plan

The Small Biz Cyber Planner is valuable for businesses that lack the resources to hire a dedicated staff member to protect themselves from cyber threats. The tool walks users through a series of questions to determine which cyber security strategies should be included in the planning guide, and generates a customized PDF that serves as a cyber-security strategy template.

2.      Establish cyber security rules for  your employees

Establish rules of behavior describing how to handle and protect personally identifiable information.  Clearly detail the penalties for violating cyber security policies.

3.      Protect against viruses, spyware, and other malicious code

Install, use, and regularly update antivirus and antispyware software on every computer used in your business. Such software is readily available online from a variety of vendors.

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Email Advertising

E-mail advertising is among the very best methods to remain in touch with your audience and develop a list of loyal clients. Numerous companies have produced fortunes utilizing this kind of advertising, and it is just as efficient these days as it ever was.

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Are you “Change Ready”?

Everything that I read about change says that it’s hard, scary, sad, something to shy away from, etc. In other words, change is negative and something to be avoided.

REALLY? I’ll give you this—unexpected, hurtful, loss inducing change is all of those things: scary, fearful, sad and, yes, hard to deal with. On the other hand, change can be wonderful, life-changing in a good way, impactful and even empowering.

time-for-changeBecause we are living beings we continue to grow and change on a daily, even minute by minute basis. Much of this is passive change. Try as hard as we do we can’t prevent aging. Every once in a while something traumatic happens and we have to change as a response to the trauma. This is reactive change. This is the kind of change that so frequently elicits those negative emotions.

Proactive change is neither. It’s the kind of change that comes from making a choice. When the time is right, will you be ready to make a proactive change? Or, better yet, without waiting for the right time, can you prepare yourself in advance and catalyze proactive change?

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