Profit Minded
  • Smarts, Luck and Hard Work

    Hard Work

    When the confluence of these three things happen simultaneously there can be magic in the air. Of course, that’s the magic everyone is seeking. Whether they are seeking to become a newly minted entrepreneur or whether they are a seasoned industry veteran. Corralling the smarts, creating the luck and putting in the hard work takes effort.

    The good news is… each of these can be learned and earned.

    For those seeking to stand out in their career there is work to be done upfront. Those that put in the work up front will find that their hard work will pay off as they “create” their own luck and it will all seem like magic to an outside observer. But, they’ll know how much hard work went into their overnight success.

    Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration. ~ Thomas A. Edison

    Sure there are those that happen upon a great idea or have a flash of inspiration, but these magical situations are rare. It’s even more rare to know what to do… and then to do everything just

    Read More »from Smarts, Luck and Hard Work
  • 5 Creative Marketing tactics small businesses can use without breaking the bank

    Shawn PrezThe holiday season marks the time when companies begin bombarding consumers with expensive commercials and marketing campaigns. Toys “R” Us, for example, spent $88.3 million on marketing for the holiday season in 2012. Small businesses, with more down-to-earth budgets, often get lost among the multi-million dollar campaigns for major retailers and brands.

    This year, small businesses should focus on using unique marketing methods to reach a larger audience, instead of trying to compete with big retail advertisements and glitzy marketing campaigns. The following are five cost-effective and creative marketing tactics that will help your small business get recognized this holiday season:

    1. Social Media Marketing: Seventy-seven percent of adults in the 30-49 age bracket use social media, according to Pew Research Center. Since this age range represents a significant portion of those in a household with purchasing power, make sure you target your audience through social media platforms such as
    Read More »from 5 Creative Marketing tactics small businesses can use without breaking the bank
  • MobileShoppingByDayGraphic

    Americans spent $1.1 billion shopping on their mobile devices on Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday. Purchases made by smartphone and tablet accounted for more than 20 percent of the $5.28 billion in online sales during the three super shopping days, according to an Adobe Digital Index analysis based on nearly 900 million visits to 2,000 retail sites and 3+ billion visits since Thanksgiving.

    In total, $7.4 billion in online sales were generated over the five days from Thursday through Monday.

    It was a record-setting weekend all around, and especially for mobile device shopping, according to Adobe, which tracks online sales and says its Adobe Marketing Cloud funnels 7 out of 10 dollars spent online with the top 500 U.S. retailers. Total online sales for the 5-day opening weekend of holiday shopping season rocketed up 26 percent from 2012, while mobile sales jumped 80 percent.

    “Consumers took full advantage of their mobile devices to shop on Thanksgiving Day and ‘omnishop’ while

    Read More »from Thanksgiving weekend shoppers send retailers a message: We’re going mobile

  • In recent years, a successful trajectory of social networking for small businesses owners was closely tied with specialization in online marketing. By establishing a dialogue and building social environments for consumers, small businesses were able to grow out of their local markets.

    So you’ve started a business, bought a domain name, and registered a Facebook page. Now what?

    Nowadays, it is not enough to own a simple social profile and a template based website. More small business owners are becoming experts in various forms of specialization in social networking, including online social marketing.

    Keeping a focus on the next big thing – by sharing news, pictures, and comments - is detrimental to building a social network. Small business customers expect extra attention; and want to see what YOU are doing. Positive comments and testimony on social pages have a higher bearing on consumer’s decision making, according to research published by the Johnson & Wales University.

    When selecting

    Read More »from The Trajectory of Social Networking Shows Specialization
  • The ability to fully concentrate on whatever you're working on is a critical component of success. As the saying goes, "The successful man is the average man focused."

    Most individuals, however, have difficulty staying focused. A Harvard University study shows that 47 percent of people's waking hours are spent not being in the moment—not being focused on whatever they're doing. In his new book, Focus: The Hidden Driver of Excellence, internationally known psychologist Daniel Golemanwrites about the impoverishment of attention most of us suffer from.

    The two main distractions that erode our ability to focus, says Goleman, are sensory and emotional. Some of us are able to tune out sensory distractions, such as loud chatter in a coffee shop while working on a spreadsheet or ads on Facebook while catching up with our news feed. But emotional distractions, such as dislikes, disappointments, frustration, annoyance or aggravation, to name just a few, are the most challenging ones to manage for

    Read More »from Stay Focused: 8 Ways To Boost Your Attention Span
  • 5 ways to attract the right new hires in 2014

    If you’ve ever made a hiring mistake—and who hasn’t?—you know the consequences can be painful. Many of them—including the estimate that a bad fit for even the lowest paid job will cost an employer $25,000—are presented in a National Business Research Institute infographic. And a widely cited statistic attributed to the U.S. Department of Labor, which has long offered employers guidance on good hiring practices, puts the cost of a bad hire at 30 percent of the employee’s potential annual salary.

    Of course, the smaller your business, the tougher those costs are to absorb. And those estimates don’t even account for damage to employee morale, community relations, and customer satisfaction.

    In a LinkedIn blog post, HootSuite CEO Ryan Holmes recently offered his tips for avoiding making a bad hire. And Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh once revealed to Fast Company that one of his strategies for weeding out misfits and “people who are just there for the paycheck” is to offer a $2,000 bonus to anyone who’d

    Read More »from 5 ways to attract the right new hires in 2014
  • Leo Grand’s story might be the best thing you will hear this year at Christmas, a real-life version of "It's a Wonderful Life."

    Better yet, if we all work together we can create an incredible ending for this story. We can help a homeless man get off the streets and back on his feet. We can, in fact, give Leo Grand the best Christmas ever.

    The story goes like this. Leo Grand used to work at MetLife, but in 2011 he got laid off and had to move out of his apartment. He was living on the streets.

    Back in August, an idealistic young software programmer named Patrick McConlogue made Leo Grand an offer — take $100 in cash, or get lessons in how to write software code.

    Grand chose the lessons. McConlogue bought Grand a few books on computer programming, and a Chromebook. They met every weekday for an hour each day. They did this for 16 weeks.

    McConlogue is 23, a recent graduate from Pepperdine University who moved to New York last fall. A lot of people made fun of him (see here and here) and called

    Read More »from Here’s Your Chance to Write a Happy Ending for the Most Heartwarming Christmas Story Ever
  • Survey: 2014 tech plans may be surprising. Facebook, Twitter dominate

    When it comes to using the latest technologies to save money, increase revenues, and increase efficiency, do you know where your business stands in relation to other small operations? Results of a new survey might put things into perspective.

    Are you one of only 30 percent who are Facebook holdouts? Are you among the 40 percent who still aren’t realizing at least some annual savings from cloud services? Those figures come from Los Angeles Internet services provider j2Global, which polled more than 1,500 of its small business customers last month in order to extrapolate trends in mobile usage and 2014 business expectations.

    To be sure, customers of j2Global, which owns the Ziff Davis and IGN digital media brands, are likely more technologically astute than most. J2’s eFax, eVoice, and Campaigner products are all cloud-based services that let customers complete tasks such as sending a fax without a fax machine, receiving office voicemails via text on a mobile phone, or designing and

    Read More »from Survey: 2014 tech plans may be surprising. Facebook, Twitter dominate
  • As a business person looking to maximize on it social media endeavors, the top goal will be to get people viewing your posts. This you will do by updating constantly and sharing the latest informative content. However, not every one of your posts will be seen by your audience. Even with your best efforts, some of your posts will pass by unnoticed.

    How can you remedy that?

    Thanks to research by the Pew Research Center, we have some information as to how you can maximize visibility for each of your posts. The research mainly pertains to how Facebook users consume information, but can be viewed generally as to how online users respond to posts and news events posted on other online mediums.

    For your benefit, we’ve culled the relevant stats which we’ll share, then give you three ways to maximize the effects of your posts.

    By the numbers

    Social media is changing the way people get information from their favorite brands, and how audiences respond to such information. Most importantly, in relation

    Read More »from 3 things to know so your Social Media posts get seen
  • Making the most of Pinterest

    While Facebook and Twitter are the heavy hitters of social media for business, there are lots of other possibilities, from LinkedIn to Google+ to Pinterest. Each has its own uses as well as foibles and quirks as a social platform for business. But Pinterest stands out as especially valuable for any business where visuals count heavily. Studies have shown that in some areas Pinterest results in much higher rates of lead generation and sales.

    So how to make use of Pinterest?

    This infographic from Launch Grow Joy should give you some ideas.

    142 board ideas for entrepreneurs

    You can see the original here - or click on the image above to make it larger.

    Read More »from Making the most of Pinterest


(435 Stories)


Profit Minded is the Yahoo! Small Business Advisor blog that looks at ideas, trends, commerce, and noteworthy developments that can help small business owners develop and grow their organizations.

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Profit Minded Authors

Owen Linderholm

Editor for Yahoo! Small Business

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