• Lawyers create ice cream for carb counters

    Halo Top Creamery founder Justin Woolverton

    Their buttoned-down professional photos and corporate law backgrounds give no clues that Justin Woolverton and Doug Bouton could be the next Ben & Jerry. But if these fitness-oriented Gen-Yers succeed, their Halo Top Creamery could be to health-conscious indulgence what the now-famous Vermont hippies were to socially conscious consumption.

    When they met in a Los Angeles lawyers’ basketball league a few years ago, Woolverton was keeping trim eating an all-natural, high protein, low sugar, low fat ice cream that he made at home in a Cuisinart. “I couldn’t find what I wanted, so I made it myself,” he says.

    Halo Top COO Doug Bouton

    He was getting enough positive feedback on the taste and so much sympathy for his notion that no one ever eats a single serving of ice cream from a pint, that he was thinking about going into business with his low-calorie concoction. In Bouton he found an enthusiastic entrepreneurial partner who was committed enough to quit his law firm job to launch the company while Woolverton

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  • Intern Sushi’s Co-Founder and CEO answers questions via live chat

    This live chat is now over - you can see the video highlights from it here.

    Intern Sushi Co-Founder & CEO Shara Senderoff was named one of Forbes’ “30 under 30” leaders in Tech, Fast Company’s “100 Most Creative People in Business 2012,” Fortune’s “7 Gen-Y Employment Champions,” and CEO.com’s “14 Most Creative CEOs.” She is a contributing writer for The Huffington Post and LinkedIn’s Influencer Program. With a passion for Film and Television, Shara began as an intern for mega producers Scott Rudin (THE SOCIAL NETWORK), Dan Jinks & Bruce Cohen (AMERICAN BEAUTY) and Kevin Bright (FRIENDS). She went on to quickly climb the ranks in the film business where she grew to Vice President status and paved innovation at The Mark Gordon Company (Grey’s Anatomy, Criminal Minds, Speed, Saving Private Ryan, 2012), where she created a new media department that leverages technology, the social dynamics of the web and the company’s expertise in storytelling to develop new properties with cross

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  • Degrees don’t make a difference to many small employers

    The cost of a college education has parents and students alike questioning the value of a diploma these days. But small business owners have apparently known all along that the job candidate holding the degree isn’t necessarily going to be the better performing employee.

    A recent survey of nearly 1,000 small business owners revealed that half employ some staff without a college degree, and 62 percent say they don’t notice any performance difference between staff with or without college education. The study was done by Manta.

    Business owners themselves, however, are more likely to have post-secondary education. Nearly 70 percent of those polled have a bachelor's degree and most said college was important to their success. Still, 39 percent reported they’re indifferent or do not see any value in higher education for success in the business world.

    Access the full survey results at Manta’s website.

    Infographic: Manta

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  • What Is CRM? [FAQs]

     

    Today’s question of the day: What is CRM?

     

    Everyone in marketing tosses this acronym around. If you run a small business or work in sales, you've probably heard of CRM. But maybe you're sitting there wondering what those letters could possibly stand for.

    Crazy Red Monkey? Champion Runner Man? Corn Row Marketing? Can’t Read Maps?

    Well, no. It’s Customer Relationship Management.

    See? That clears things up, right? Er, no. The annoying thing about CRM is that even when you find out what the letters stand for, you might still have no idea what this stuff is.

    But fear not, dear reader. Hang in for a few hundred words more, and all will be revealed.

    What Is CRM?

    Customer relationship management refers to a set of software programs that let companies keep track of (that’s the “management” part) everything they do (that’s the “relationship” part) with their existing and potential customers.

    At the simplest level, CRM software lets you keep track of all the contact information for these

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  • Controlling outside legal costs can be daunting for even the most sophisticated small business.  While many counsel brilliantly represent their clients, at times, some counsel fail to supply prompt, clearly efficient billing statements to the same clients. This can result in frustration, and deplete time and resources that entrepreneurs don’t have to spare. The solution is simple: setting clear, written billing expectations – in advance – so that all involved have a clear path.

    Creating clear billing standards, however, is not as easy as it may sound.  The marketplace is filled with consultants and others who offer varied types of help. Business owners can be barraged by an extraordinary variety of urged solutions: some are well-founded, while others only provide partial help.  Pushing past the well-meaning advocates of Alternative Fee Arrangements, e-billing software and various methods of rate control, there are several basic strategies that can prove effective in setting a sensible

    Read More »from 6 Tips for Reducing Outside Legal Bills for Small Businesses
  • Announcing a live chat with Intern Sushi CEO and Co-Founder Shara Senderoff

    Streaming live on Yahoo! Small Business Advisor’s Young Entrepreneur blog Intern Sushi Co-Founder & CEO Shara Senderoff will answer questions from readers at 3 p.m. ET (12 p.m. PT) Thursday, August 22nd. As part of the Young Entrepreneur Council’s #StartupLab initiative, a virtual mentorship program, Shara will appear live via video chat broadcast on this site.

    Intern Sushi CEO Shara Senderoff was named one of Forbes’ “30 under 30” leaders in Tech, Fast Company’s “100 Most Creative People in Business 2012,” Fortune’s “7 Gen-Y Employment Champions,” and CEO.com’s “14 Most Creative CEOs.” She is a contributing writer for The Huffington Post and LinkedIn’s Influencer Program. With a passion for Film and Television, Shara began as an intern for mega producers Scott Rudin (THE SOCIAL NETWORK), Dan Jinks & Bruce Cohen (AMERICAN BEAUTY) and Kevin Bright (FRIENDS). She went on to quickly climb the ranks in the film business where she grew to Vice President status and paved innovation at The

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  • Nicole Kelner is one of those people who can make you feel exhausted just by listening to them talk about their day. An energetic advertising major at Penn State University, Kelner, 20, is not only an honors student with a 4.0 GPA, she’s also the president of the Penn State Entrepreneurship Club, editor of the university’s largest co-ed service organization, and is the owner of her own start-up company, Nicole Kelner Designs, a maker of fashion accessories for mobile tech.

    Oh, and Kelner is the entire manufacturing staff for the SmartPurse,™ a wallet/handbag she designed that does double-duty as a waterproof cellphone carrier and was featured in the April edition of Vogue UK magazine. To launch her business, Kelner stitched together 400 SmartPurses in her dorm room in her spare time.

    It’s this indefatigable enthusiasm that helped Kelner win the EmpowerWomen mentorship contest sponsored by global e-commerce website Alibaba.com. Earlier this year, Alibaba.com organizers invited female

    Read More »from At 20, a Student Entrepreneur Already Has a Million-dollar Business Idea
  • Ideas

    Do you have a million ideas for your business?

    If you’re anything like me, you have new ideas bubbling up all the time. A lot of entrepreneurs are like this, always trying to think one step ahead. Idea people see opportunity everywhere.

    Having a million innovative ideas is a great. One good idea leads to another -- and who knows, your next idea could change the world. However, when a brainstorm hits, it can be tricky to manage all those thoughts so you can take them to the next level and execute them. Finding the right methods to tame your ideas and make them work for you often takes a lot of trial and error.

    But follow these six tips, and you'll take charge of your ideas in no time:

    1. Need help tracking your ideas? There’s an app for that.

    Productivity apps like “Things” and “Wunderlist” make it easy for you to record your ideas on the go. You can move your tasks around, sort ideas into different projects, create lists, add notes, due dates, and more. My favorite places to organize ideas

    Read More »from Take Charge of Your Ideas in Six Simple Steps
  • Action is the most important part


    Is your idea worth pursuing?


    What is the best marketing tool?


    One Horse-Sized Duck


    Your minimum viable product should prioritize user experience


    What is the Future of Work?

    Read More »from Podio Co-Founder Kaspar Hulthin. Highlights from Live Chat, Action, Marketing, Ideas and the Future of Work
  • Success

    Before beginning my own entrepreneurial journey I became obsessed with studying the business world’s high achievers. Why? Because I was convinced there was some ‘trick’ or hidden secrets to their success that without fully understanding I would fail at business. After reading a lot of egotistical books I realized I my theory was both correct and, frankly, also totally wrong!

    From reading & studying the behaviors of many hyper successful people I began to notice a trend…most of what they had done, were doing and continue to do was just plain old good common sense. No tricks involved! Nonetheless, I’m not knocking their abilities or successes because following good common sense when you are heavily emotionally attached to your business (your baby) is extremely hard! To stay impartial and objective about your business is nearly impossible but those at the top manage for the most part to do so. This being said, they also know when to fight for their dream, ignore others and pursue their

    Read More »from Seven habits of a successful start-up

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