Sunday, November 30, 2014

How To Avoid Sales Tax On Cyber Monday

Buying online? Here's how to still avoid sales tax if you're willing to go to the extra effort.

Black Friday And Cyber Monday Essentials: 10 Trends In Customer Service, Retail, eCommerce

Here's a timely refresher as we head into Black Friday and The Season: The 10 trends I'm seeing more of this year in my work as a customer service consultant: trends in how customers and their customer service, customer experience and retail expectations are changing. Please don't overlook these as we head into the battlezone (I overstate, but just by a little) that starts tonight and with any luck won't end for us 'til about January.

The Best Cities For Female Founders

Modern Philanthropy: the answer to public debt?

The US, with its historic antipathy towards government support, is sometimes presumed to contain the seeds of philanthropy, but in fact, a legal framework dates back to the days of English Queen Elizabeth I, whose 1601 Charity Act protecting philanthropic donations from fraud and misuse gave a legal framework to donating to the poor and worthy causes.

Leaders Need To Follow The Entrepreneurial Spirit

It comes to something when a religious leader criticizes Europe for its stagnant economy. True, the main focus of the speech Pope Francis made at the European Parliament in Strasbourg last week was the plight of immigrants. But he also called for the creation of jobs and better conditions for workers. He said there was a need to reinvigorate Europe, describing the continent as a “grandmother, no longer fertile and vibrant” and adding it risked “slowly losing its own soul”.

TransferWise's Co-Founder On Banks, Bitcoin and Branson

TransferWise is a leading light in London?s flourishing fintech scene. I catch up with Taavet Hinrikus, co-founder of the high profile peer-to-peer money transfer service, for his thoughts on financial services.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Do Criminals Run The IRS?

A government report says the IRS is paying millions in fraudulent tax refunds to prison inmates and has failed to take steps to stop the bleeding. With this and those emails, who's running the IRS?

Admitting You Don't Like Your Boss Could Be The Wisest Career Move You'll Ever Make

Acknowledging your aversion to the boss could actually improve your motivation and productivity.

Eric Schmidt's Venture Fund Collaborates On Agtech 'Collective'

A group of companies including Google Chairman Eric Schmidt's Innovation Endeavors and Flextronics' Lab IX has created a "collective" that aims to support technology startups focused on innovation in agriculture.

Golden Globe Winner and Wildlife Campaigner: Virginia McKenna Discusses Fashion and The Born Free Foundation

The Born Free Foundation a global organization devoted to saving endangered species started from the 1966 film Born Free. Where Virginia played a conservationist raising an orphaned lion cub name Elsa. Through the film, it has become a lifelong commitment to animal welfare. After her husband and co-star Bill Travers passed away, Mckenna continued the work they began.

How The Band OK Go Are Making It Up As They Go Along

OK Go?s Damian Kulash on the similarities between scientific, technological and artistic discovery.

Will Affordable 3D Scanning Lead To 3D Printing Disrupting IP?

A new product is making 3D scanning affordable and available to everyone. But what impact will it have on companies looking to protect Intellectual Property (IP)?

Interview With Steve Cheney On Estimote And The Power Of Local Commerce

I've interviewed tech blogger Steve Cheney before in Forbes, but - about a year ago - he became SVP of Business and Operations for Estimote. Estimote is an NYC-based start-up that produces beacons and software to allow for the next wave of local commerce. I had a chance to catch up with him recently to discuss Estimote and the tech landscape in general.

The Judo Move - How To Out-Google Google

As the European Parliament approves the break-up of Google, and Europe across the board targets US internet firms with regulation, we are failing to think deeply about how Europe (and the rest of the world) can win, not just lose less quickly and not as devastatingly.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Garfunkel On Relationship With Simon: 'Love' And 'Like Weather In Slow Motion'

The weather ebbs and flows, much like the relationship between Art Garfunkel and Paul Simon over the years. The two tour together, break up, reconcile, do it again and so on. It’s been 60 years now.

Five Important Lessons From A Trip To The Apple Store

Want to sell more stuff? Take some tips from the folks who do it best.

The Four Tax Breaks (And Two Senators) That Killed The Tax Extender Deal

When you woke up on the morning of January 1, 2014, it was more than just your pants and your dignity that had gone missing. Also gone were 55 tax breaks, many of which are routinely used by businesses and individual taxpayers alike.

'Clumsy Ninja' Creator's Eight Rules For Building Record-Breaking Mobile Games

Torsten Reil co-founded NaturalMotion as an Oxford University spinout in 2001 to commercialise dynamic motion synthesis animation technology. The firm’s Endorphin virtual motion capture system helped make films including Troy, Spiderman and Lord of the Rings, while its Euphoria animation engine is used in best-selling games including Grand Theft Auto IV and V and Star Wars: The Force Unleashed.

2015 Guide To FAFSA, CSS Profile, College Financial Aid And Expected Family Contribution (EFC)

If you have children going to college, this 2015 guide will simplify the complex world of college financial aid and will help you understand the FAFSA and CSS Profile college aid forms, estimate how much you will be expected to contribute toward the cost of college, explain how assets hurt aid eligibility, what the difference between merit and need-based aid is, how your choice of colleges impacts the amount and quality of your aid award and how to avoid costly misconceptions about paying your share of the cost of college.

Billionaire Richard Kinder Weathers Oil Market Plunge With Mega Deal

Shale baron Richard Kinder isn't suffering from a plunge in oil prices as OPEC tries to live with North American production.

How To Adapt Your Online Sales to the 4 Personality Types

Anytime you sell anything to anybody, you are encountering personalities. Different personalities make purchase decisions in different ways.

Oxford Launch Programme Can Help You Build A Business In One Weekend

Ever since Sherry Coutu CBE released her ground-breaking report on 17th November, arguing that closing the “scale-up gap” is the biggest single challenge the UK government faces in its efforts to stimulate small business growth, all the talk around the “Silicon Roundabout” has focused on “scale-up” businesses, defined as enterprises “with average annualised growth in employees or turnover greater than 20 per cent per annum over a three year period, and with more than 10 employees at the beginning of the observation period.”

Why Cameron And UKIP Have It Wrong: Immigration and Entrepreneurship

UK Prime Minister David Cameron has announced new promises for dealing with immigration. Out is the plan for a cap but plans to limit benefits remain. However, is there really any need for a new direction on migrants?

Which Small Businesses Need A Big Small Biz Saturday?

With awareness of Small Business Saturday rising and the generally fuzzy feelings people have for America’s small businesses, this Saturday could provide an important lift for many retailers .

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Art Garfunkel On The Tune That Changed His Life: Sounds of Silence

In the first part of this interview series with Art Garfunkel, the great singer/songwriter gave us perspective on the recent passing of his long-time friend and mentor, Mike Nichols. Nichols had directed Garfunkel in two movies in the early 1970s – Catch-22 and Carnal Knowledge – and worked with him on the soundtrack of The Graduate in the late 1960s.

Hardware Startups In Greater China Educate Consumers On Indoor Air Pollution

In Hong Kong, we’re used to images of our smog-choked harbour and celebrate at the sight of clearer skies. While we know the air outside is less than perfect, but what about our indoor environments?

Hardware Startups in Greater China Educate Consumers on Indoor Air Pollution

In Hong Kong, we’re used to images of our smog-choked harbour and celebrate at the sight of clearer skies. While we know the air outside is less than perfect, but what about our indoor environments?

Black Friday Essentials: 10 Customer Service And Retail Trends You Need To Have Your Eye On

Here's a timely refresher as we head into Black Friday and The Season: The 10 trends I'm seeing more and more of this year: trends in how customers and their customer service, customer experience and retail expectations are changing. Please don't overlook these as we head into the battlezone (I overstate, but just by a little) that starts tonight and with any luck won't end 'til about January.

Which Are You: A Well Dressed Man Or A Stylish Man

Is there a difference between having style and being well dressed? Some would say the labels we wear determine the difference and certain brands become our aesthetic identity. Do they define how we dress and our perceptions of what we know about style? The problem: many labels simply become one big group we all wear which mean something and nothing all at the same time. What the 'fashion police' deem to be stylish or whom we deem to be well dressed is entirely subjective. To realize the concept of being well dressed or stylish in our minds requires us to take personal taste into account. We cannot look at it objectively – we all have our own ideas of what looks good and what does not.

The UK's net migration figures are nothing to worry about

A new report from The Entrepreneurs Network shows that international graduate entrepreneurs are being let down by the UK government.

Black Friday And DNS Hijacking

It is that time of year again in the US when people are getting together to enjoy a turkey dinner and exhibit feats of strength…or is that Festivus? Never mind. At any rate, as people are slipping into their tryptophan induced comas in front of their TVs, the negative element of the Internet denizens soldiers on. One of the problems that comes around at this time of year in addition to distributed denial of service attacks is the insidious practice of DNS (domain name system) hijacking.

Lead Like It Matters: Enrich Your Job, Boost Your Career

We’ve all seen it: The hotshot salesman who bombs when he’s appointed sales manager. The gifted engineer who seems lost in a new supervisory role. The skilled lawyer who totally stumbles when promoted to a role that involves leading others.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Shop Green! Eco-Friendly Cyber Monday Deals From A-Z

It’s almost here again – Cyber Monday is just around the corner.  This year, the shopping phenomenon is once again expected to yield close to $1.8 Billion for online retailers  — but what percent of that spending will find its way to companies producing ecologically sound products?  UL’s recent Under The Lens: Claiming Green study, found that 70% of consumers are actively seeking green choices, but sometimes actually finding eco-friendly products can be difficult.

Myanmar Digital Startup NEX Gets 2nd Round Funds From Blibros

Myanmar digital startup NEX has won second round funding of  US$150,000 from Singapore's Blibros Group, the privately-held investment arm of Sweden’s Böcker family. Yes, this is the family of Magnus Böcker, CEO of the Singapore Exchange and former CEO of Nasdaq OMX Nordic. NEX got its initial angel investment of $50,000 last year from Singapore  investor Ned Phillips, formerly of  E*Trade and Chi-East.

On Faith And Finance

I did something really scary. My soul’s desire to go back to freelancing finally overpowered my need an infinite stream of paychecks, a cadre of charming coworkers, and all the Tazo tea I could drink in a day. I sat down with my manager, stammering as I told her, “I have some news …” and then quit, giving a month’s cushion to tie up and transition projects. I gave her a hug, went back to my cubicle and felt like throwing up.

Buzz Over Hong Kong Startups Gets A Reality Check

Three experts on startups appear on Silicon Dragon Talk to air their views on the reality of Hong Kong as a future tech innovation hub.

Thespians And Pagans Fight Assessors In New York Court

Merry-Go-Round Playhouse Inc operates a professional summer stock theater in Auburn, New York.  MGRP recruits actors and staff from all over the country.  Given the short term nature of the gig and the low pay, MGRP needs to provide the aspiring thespians with housing.  This had been handled by leasing apartments with local landlords, but as the operation grew it became rather cumbersome.  So in 2011 MGRP acquired two apartment buildings with a total of 30 units.  None of the units are rented out.  They are used exclusively to provide staff housing.  So now that the buildings are owned by a not for profit and being used for its exempt purpose, they come off the city's tax rolls - right?  The assessors did not think so, which is why we now have a decision from the New York Court of Appeals.  I'll keep you in suspense for now, so you can decide who to root for.

The 4 Most Productive Ways To 'Slack-Off' At Work

“I have an odd question,” she told us. “During the holiday season, I spend most of my time trying to look busy. And, I’m too nervous to tell my boss that I have nothing to do. What should I do?”

10 Defining Podcast Stories From 2014 Not Named Serial

Serial has everyone talking about podcasts, but the launch of the breakout hit from the folks behind This American Life is only one of many interesting stories from the world of podcasting in 2014.

Against Attention: The Pre-Thanksgiving Manifesto

Attention is not a fixed resource. Thank goodness. This means the little guy and gal can rise above the crowded skyline. Just because Seth Godin has 400 million eyeballs, it doesn’t mean you can’t capture some of those eyeballs, too … Doesn’t mean you can’t attract some of that interest and loyalty. We all start at the

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Why Fashion Is Not a Frivolous Matter: E-Commerce with Impact

The shopping season for the holidays has begun, and as people line up outside stores to await Black Friday “deals,” you may want to consider a few other options -  and offer a gift with a bit more meaning (than a sweater yanked off the rack from other shoppers). A growing tide of fashion start-ups are linking social impact to their designs.  Mainly through production, these companies are attempting to create a more inclusive economy, by employing marginalized communities.  Given that the majority of these companies are only about two to three years old, it’s too soon to deem them as a successful alternative to aid.  Yet, they’re still a viable addition to the marketplace, one that’s long been skewed by big box brands and multinationals.  Here are a few socially-conscious fashion brands to consider for this holiday season: Soko: Soko’s peer-to-peer approach, means that you can buy products directly from artisans.  No middlemen are involved, though they do work with partnering non-profits at the grassroots level.  (Founded in 2012)  Their tagline: A woman-run and operated e-commerce marketplace for the developing world.    What do they sell?  Mostly jewelry.

The Cheapest Airfares You've Never Heard Of (And Why They May Disappear)

Airlines are striking back against 'hidden city' fares - passengers purchasing cheap connecting flights and getting off at more expensive destinations en route.

The Only Reasonable Response to Thanksgiving in Europe: Ditch It

The State Department estimates that there are between three and six million Americans living overseas – over a hundred thousand in Germany, another hundred thousand, give or take, in England, another hundred thousand in France, and very nearly that number in Australia. Mexico tops the list, with 700,000-plus Americans registered. Given that, it is the season of the big bird. However dry and stringy the fowl you usually encounter, however flat the dressing, however saccharine the canned cranberries, and not least, however disheartening the college football results, the American living abroad tends to miss the annual trudge through the hysterical mess that is our long Thanksgiving weekend. There are many intense ways of coping and hoping to recreate the day 4000 miles from the native shore. Some people actually try to find the stuff and cook it, a quixotic enterprise, at best.  You exit the oddly-cobbled American meal, overstuffed as usual, only to find yourself in...Rome, for God's sake, on a working Thursday night, your nationality arguably confirmed but entirely skewed, more or less at sea as the entire town rushes you by.

Now Unhappy, Happy's Pizza Founder Is Convicted Of Tax Fraud

As Detroit emerges from Bankruptcy, a Detroit based pizza chain is decidedly unhappy: the Happy's Pizza founder was convicted of 32 tax crimes and could go away for a long time.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Digital Marketing Is A Great Equalizer For Startups

Most technical entrepreneurs cringe when they finally realize that marketing is still king, despite the power of technology, and they are up against competitors who have a hundred times their spending power. Luckily, the digital revolution has been a great equalizer in the marketing world, if used effectively to target the audience, engage the customer, and measure results.

What Athletes And CEOs Have In Common That Can Help You Up Your Game In The Final Quarter

World-class athletes and high-performing CEOs know that the secret to achieving and breaking records comes from producing in “the Zone.”

Holiday Cheer: There's Never Been A Better Time To Build A Life Or Career

The glumness is global. But as Thanksgiving arrives, we’ve got real reasons to be grateful for what's ahead.

How to Structure a Perfect LinkedIn Profile

Can you guess why LinkedIn is my favorite social network? Compared to any other social network, LinkedIn drives me more revenue each year because it is made for business. It’s so effective that it drives at least $250,000 in yearly revenue for me. But if your profile isn’t optimized, you’ll find yourself gaining little to  [click to continue...]

Jay Baer on “Generosity Marketing” and the Power of Business Podcasting

You’d expect a guy who’s started five multi-million dollar businesses from scratch to know a thing about marketing that works. And then, of course, he’d write the book on it. In this case, the guy is Jay Baer, and the book is Youtility, a guide so useful for effective marketing it’s becoming a franchise unto

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Does Mobile Hurt Or Help Your Retail Store?

By Rieva Lesonsky According to a recent poll from Gallup®, 70% of Americans over age 18 regularly use either a smartphone or a tablet. How are these devices affecting the way consumers shop in brick-and-mortar stores? For more than half of Americans surveyed in the poll, the answer is, “not very much.” However, 19% reported to shop less at physical stores as a result of mobile technology, while 22% shop in person more often. Whose shopping habits has mobile technology affected the most? Younger Americans (18- to 29-year-olds) are almost twice as likely as other age groups to say mobile technology has increased (29%) rather than decreased (15%) how often they visit brick-and-mortar stores. While Gallup theorizes this might be because 18-to-29-year-olds are less likely to have credit cards, (thus limiting the ease of online shopping), this doesn’t seem to me like the only reason. After all, you can pay online with debit cards, PayPal and a raft of other options that people 18 to 29 are likely comfortable using.

Determining Material Participation By Trusts: What Types of Fiduciary Participation Count?

When determining if a trust or an estate should be considered as materially participating for Code Sec. 1411 purposes, the IRS’s position is that the only party whose participation counts is the fiduciary. Therefore, the IRS does not consider the activities of the beneficiary or any other party for material participation determination (“MP Determination”) purposes.

Why Too Much Emotional Appeal in Your Copy Can Harm Your Credibility

Let’s be clear: You need emotional appeal in your writing. Compelling stories keep readers on your website, and since you must discover their worldviews and understand their experiences so that you can serve them better, you’ll naturally learn about their emotional states. But when you communicate with your audience, you need to strike the right

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Disruptive ZocDoc Accused of Sexual Harassment By Ex-Employee

I really hope the accusations against consumer-facing physician scheduling company ZocDoc aren't true, for a lot of reasons.

Britain's Five Fastest Growing Technology Companies

Britain's fastest growing technology companies are seeing their sales accelerate at an astonishing rate.

Family Office Accounting Practices Are In High Demand

One of the most profitable types of accounting practices today is a well-run family office. Thus, many accounting firms and other organizations are highly motivated to build or acquire them.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Shanghai Car Rental Service Wheels Into Wall Street To Chase China Dream

Shanghai car rental service eHi wheels into Wall Street by raising $120 million in an IPO on NYSE as founder Ray Zhang and his venture and strategic investors chase the market opportunity in China.

Why The Rapid Growth Of Mobile Commerce Is Bad News For Amazon

  Shoppers are going mobile in larger and larger numbers, according to on-line retail data leader comScore. Mobile digital commerce is expected to have grown by 25% over the last season, almost twice the growth of desktop E-commerce.  Overall digital commerce is expected to grow by 16%, reaching $61 billion. That may be music to the ears of large e-commerce companies like, and the momentum crowd who have been chasing after company shares for years. Then again, it may be the wrong music, for a simple reason: mobile commerce changes the rules of the game for the retailing industry. It eliminates the boundaries between e-commerce retailing and traditional retailing. Armed with smartphones and tablets, shoppers can now access different sites and compare product prices while in a Wal-Mart, a Best Buy, a Target store or any store. Changing of the rules of the game brings the retailing industry close to what economists call perfect competition, an ideal market whereby consumers have the upper hand, forcing sellers to engage in price wars -- as evidenced by the “price-matching policies” of Best Buy, Wal-Mart and the likes. Price wars or retail deflation—to use the fashionable term of Central Bankers—are certainly good for consumers. But not for retailers, especially for on-line retailers. They depress razor thin profit margins, fueling an exit of weak sellers from the industry (Does anyone remember eToys back in the era?). In the end, retail profit margins reach “normal profits,” what the capital invested in retailing could earn when invested in alternative opportunities like 30-year US Treasuries. In fact Amazon’s retailing business is currently earning well below what investors could earn through alternative investments like 30-year US Treasuries (see table). Did anyone say bubble?

Warren Buffett And CalSTRS Agree On Brian Moynihan's Performance At Bank Of America

Even Bank of America's critics are likely to mostly agree with Buffett's positive reviews of CEO Brian Moynihan.

Proper Use by IRS of Outside Contractors in Examining Microsoft

Earlier this year I wrote about the effort by some Senators to revive the private debt collector provisions that expired several years ago.  For the moment the revival of that bad idea seems to have lost steam.  A new and creative way to use private parties for what seems like a governmental function – the examination of a tax return – has surfaced and deserves watching.

New Resource Aims To Help Students With ADHD

"ADHD is like having a powerful race car for a brain, but with bicycle brakes.  You need to strengthen your brakes to win races in life," said Dr. Ned Hallowell, an MD child psychiatrist and leading authority on ADHD.

Leadership Experts Worry About Process, Leaders Worry About Results

Most management experts prefer "process over product" -- a certain management style over a certain outcome. But most big-time leaders (and their followers, frankly) demand a particular, narrow outcome.

The ABCs of Landing Pages That Work [Infographic]

Landing pages are bread and butter. Landing pages never stutter. Landing pages are rhyme and reason. Landing pages stay in season. See what I did there? Rhymes help make learning fun and easy. And when you want to make a living as a blogger, learning how to create landing pages that convert is a smart

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Become a Bigger You

On a recent trip to Las Vegas, I found myself observing many people who were dressed for their nights on the town as if they were starring in a movie or TV show about Vegas. They wore shiny faux-gold sunglasses at night (pretty sure they don’t do this at home). They left three or so […]

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Who Stands To Benefit From Obama's Immigration Plan?

On November 20 U.S. President Barack Obama announced sweeping executive actions on immigration policy. In his speech Obama said, “For more than 200 years, our tradition of welcoming immigrants from around the world has given us a tremendous advantage over other nations. It’s kept us youthful, dynamic, and entrepreneurial. It has shaped our character as a people with limitless possibilities.” His plan will provide new protections for undocumented foreign born individuals who have children who are U.S. citizens and have lived in the U.S. for at least five years. In his speech Obama explained, “we’re going to offer the following deal: If you’ve with been in America more than five years. If you have children who are American citizens or illegal residents. If you register, pass a criminal background check and you’re willing to pay your fair share of taxes, you’ll be able to apply to stay in this country temporarily without fear of deportation.”

Morocco's Startups At The Crossroads

A few weeks ago, I was a keynote speaker in Casablanca, Morocco at the Global Annual Conference of CEED, a organization that assists entrepreneurs in several emerging markets. There I met countless inspiring people, mostly from Morocco but also from nearby places. I could virtually taste the electricity in the air. Entrepreneurs and other businesspeople were continuously buzzing around the event, pitching, trading, and pursuing their dreams. Morocco, it seems, is rising.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Opportunity Is About To Knock So Get Ready To Open Your Door

It has been said that the key to success is being ready to act when opportunity comes knocking at your door. Well hopefully you are ready, because opportunity is about to start knocking with a billion dollar vengeance!

Big Reckoning For Big Philanthropy? New Calls For Democracy, Reason And Impact

Giving reflects the times. And in the years since the Great Recession in the U.S. and around the world, the organized world of philanthropy saw a contraction and mild recovery that mirrored the larger economy that formal giving is a part of. Yet culturally, the social sector - and especially the well-organized and often hidebound universe of big philanthropy - is recovering more slowly.

The New York Times, Kim Kardashian's Rear-end, and the Unfiltered Web. 

The arrival of the information apocalypse It all began on Saturday morning.

5 Must-Read Tips For Building A Brand

In just five years, Yes To has become the second largest natural beauty brand in the U.S. Cofounder Ido Leffler explains how to build a brand consumers believe in.

What Makes A Killer Business Pitch For Branson And Other Top Investors

Entrepreneurs don't have to be pitch perfect, but passion, projection of strengths and awesome products are essential

Manny Pacquiao Beats Chris Algieri, But Two Tax Fights Loom

Manny Pacquiao wins again and earns big, but will the IRS or Philippine taxman collect his purse?

Saturday, November 22, 2014

'Lost' Lois Lerner Emails Found Despite 'No Backup' Claims. IRS Has No Comment  

The 30,000 'Lost' emails weren't backed up and are lost forever, IRS officials testified under oath. Now, it turns out they exist. What targeting will they reveal?

F1 Teams Burn Up $570 Million Of Losses In Just Five Years

Formula One’s teams made combined net losses of $561.6 million over the five years to 2013 according to recently-released financial statements.

Why You Should Invest In Angola

Teodoro de Jesus Xavier Poulson, a Member of the Investment Committee of the Fundo Activo de Capital de Risco Angolano speaks to Mfonobong Nsehe about Angola’s economic potential, the business opportunities available in the country, and why investors from all over the world should take notice.

How To Market A Franchise Using Social Media

Today, social media marketing is a must in order to stay competitive in the global, digital market. Using social platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Google Plus, can be a unique challenge for franchise owners who may have more restrictions on their marketing than traditional businesses. There are a few things to consider before jumping in to social media as a franchisee, and it's vital to understand your unique situation and what you're able to do.

How the Swasthya Slate is Revolutionizing Healthcare, and Why It Steers Clear of the USA

The Swasthya Slate is a remarkable device.  Crammed into the footprint of an Android tablet, the Slate's electronics monitor electrocardiogram measures, blood pressure, blood sugar, urine protein, and several other biometrics.  The data is reported to be within 99% of the accuracy of far more complex machines.  Furthermore, the Slate collects data input by users and communicates this to a central server, both creating a reliable record of patients' health and enabling download of recommended therapies.  With all of its sensors included, the Slate is being manufactured for $800, a cost that its creators expect to drop to perhaps $150 with volume.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Rehabilitation Or Redemption: What Does Henry Blodget Want Most?

Remember Henry Blodget? How could anyone forget? Isn't this the man who made headlines in the dotcom boom of late last century by making a ridiculous share price prediction for the then heavily loss-making, only to see his prediction come true just three weeks later?

How To Think Like Apple About The Customer Service Experience

Steve Jobs would say, over and over and over, words to the following effect:
You‘ve got to start with the customer experience and work back toward the technology - not the other way around.
This means that the technology sold by Apple, or used by Apple in support of the customer experience, doesn't have to be invented at Apple.  And the technology Apply has lying around at its disposal doesn’t have to end up being used.

How Apple Thinks Differently About The Customer Service Experience

Steve Jobs would say, over and over and over, words to the following effect:
You‘ve got to start with the customer experience and work back toward the technology - not the other way around.
This means that the technology sold by Apple, or used by Apple in support of the customer experience, doesn't have to be invented at Apple.  And the technology Apply has lying around at its disposal doesn’t have to end up being used.

How Apple Thinks Different(ly) About The Customer Service Experience

Steve Jobs would say, over and over and over, words to the following effect:

The 7 Dumbest Startup Decisions You Could Ever Make (And The Idiots Who Keep Making Them)

They may seem like good ideas, but believe us, you'll only end up hurting yourself, your investors, and your customers.

Is The US Stock Market Unhealthy?

The US stock market, as measured by the S&P 500, is up over 11% so far in 2014.  Coming after a 30% gain in 2013, this year’s positive returns have caught many professional investors off guard.  The US stock market is a market of skepticism.  It is a bull market that is unloved and considered by many to be complacent, “unhealthy,” and manipulated higher by unwarranted liquidity provided by the Federal Reserve.  These negative feelings are not without merit, but as a general matter stock indices are not quite as unhealthy as the most negative bears would have us believe.

How to Structure a Perfect SEO Optimized Page

With Google looking at over 200 factors when ranking a website, how do you know which ones to focus on? Or better yet, what steps do you need to take in order to improve your rankings? In order to help you with your on-page optimization, I’ve created an infographic that shows you how to make  [click to continue...]

Uniting New And Old In The Brave New World Of Business

It’s Autumn, and time for a flock of new graduates to take up positions at companies in financial centres around the world. Many will have already completed internships or work placements in finance or business, but even they may find that the realities and responsibilities of full-time business are rather different and more complex than they had envisioned.

700 Year Sentence For Tax Fraud, While Failing To File Is A Misdemeanor

Tax evasion or identity theft, criminal charges are serious and can carry serious jail time. Yet failure to file returns is only a misdemeanor. What gives?

Give Me The Data! Why So Many Data Ideas Fail

To build a data product you need to have the right data. There are three distinct ways: (1) to have a product or service that creates data. (2) Buy or get publicly available data. (3) Offer a B2B service on top of other people's data.

Gates' Investment In India-centric Impact Fund Is A Boost for Impact Investing

Bill Gates’ first investment into an impact fund, India’s Unitus Seed, is expected to boost the early-stage impact funding sector and drive more philanthropists to fund scalable and profitable social enterprises to serve the world's poorer millions.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

London Mayor Boris Johnson Politely Gives IRS The Finger

London's Mayor Doesn't Want To Pay U.S. Taxes But Remains a U.S. Citizen. Will the IRS pursue him or Just lien him like Al Sharpton?

Judge Tosses Glucosamine Settlement, Citing FORBES

An influential judge throws out a class-action settlement over glucosamine pills that would have paid the lawyers more than twice what they got for their clients.

Sotheby's Surges As CEO Ruprecht Steps Down Amid Board Pressure

William F. Ruprecht, chairman and chief executive of Sotheby's is stepping down, the famed art auction house said on Thursday evening.

You're Too Nice To Be A Great Leader (And That's Okay)

'Nice' people usually don't make great leaders. They make their greatest contributions by working behind the scenes to keep great leaders out of trouble. And in that way, these unsung nice people are truer heroes than all of history?s great leaders combined.

Activist Hedge Fund's Plan For Cliffs Natural Resources Destined For The Scrap Heap

Cliffs CEO Laurenco Goncalves has mostly been cast aside a turnaround plan proposed by activist hedge fund Casablanca Capital.

Sports May Be The Next Industry To Produce Massive Valuations For Tech Startups

Let’s just throw an interesting number out there - $18.2 billion. That was a recent valuation tied to the massively successful taxi and ride sharing startup Uber. There is no doubt that the company is on a tear, raking in the cash and grabbing headlines (both good and bad) worldwide for the rapid growth and disruption it is causing to the global taxi market. Uber may not be successful everywhere, yet, but it has certainly made waves in some of the most important taxi markets in the world with New York being on top of that list.

How to Use Content Curation to Create a Recurring Revenue Business

It’s no secret that I’m a tireless advocate for the creation of original content to fuel business growth. My next online project, however, is based on … curation. You read that right. I’m starting a new site, and the centerpiece of my content strategy will be locating and making sense of the smartest articles, audio,

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Corporate Social Intrapreneurship: Why the Most Common Strategies Aren't Good Enough

While the label “corporate social intrapreneur” is a torturous construction, behind it lies an idea that is easy to understand: seeking social and environmental change by trying to change the way companies work. Corporate social intrapreneurs – as opposed to many of their colleagues in CSR or sustainability departments – often work without an internal mandate, but rather pursue positive social change through their own individual agency. Think of them as “activist employees.” They may help companies develop new product lines or become better citizens, or they might try to change parts or all of a company’s strategy or positioning.

Transparency: Key To Doing Business In China?

All it takes these days for brands to experience a significant crisis in China is a few words, photo or video shared by someone on an emerging social media platform.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Why Japan And China Cannot Compete With America in Entrepreneurship

  Japan and China are lagging far behind the US in global entrepreneurship, according to the recently released 2015 Global Entrepreneurship Index. With a historical score of 85, the US tops the list of countries on the index, followed by Australia, UK, Sweden, Denmark, Iceland, Taiwan, Switzerland, and Singapore. Japan is to be

The 2 Elements Of A Happy Life (And Great Customer Service): Zappos vs. Amazon

The customer service gospel according to Zappos and Amazon, Freud and Tolstoy, distilled by customer service consultant Micah Solomon for the realities of today's customer experience landscape

The 2 Elements Of A Happy Life (And Great Customer Service): Zappos, Amazon...And Freud

The only two things necessary for a happy human life are “love and work.” (My sources on this are both Sigmund Freud and Leo Tolstoy, so who am I to argue?)

Lessons From Rev. Al Sharpton's $4.5 Million Tax Bill

Rev. Al Sharpton Owes Big Taxes, and some of his lessons are fundamental.

Angels Among Us -- Huge Impact On Main Street And Growing Global Reach

Thursday, November 20 the important role angel investors play in helping startups grow is being celebrated as part of the first ever Global Business Angels Day, part of Global Entrepreneurship Week.  Angels are often a hidden hero of the startup and innovation economy – so it is important to unveil and celebrate the important contributions angels make.

Why Do Small Companies Fail To Hire Women Bosses?

New research suggests small companies aren't appointing women directors. They're making a big mistake.

How to Get 247% More People to Read Your Content

When you write a blog post, you want people to read it, right? What happens when you spend hours writing your masterpiece and find that very few people have actually read it, shared it, or commented on it? You’re probably lost for words, and you’re unsure of what to do next. I know I was. Read  [click to continue...]

Code Sec. 1411 Material Participation by Trusts: The IRS Audit Position

This series of posts concludes the continued discussion begun in prior series dealing with the Code Sec. 1411, 3.8-percent net investment income tax (NIIT). It specifically discusses material participation of trusts and estates, concluding the discussion begun in earlier posts. Recall that to the extent that a trust or estate receives income from an activity in a trade or business in which the trust or estate materially participates, such trust or estate avoids the NIIT.

Can You Help Us Out? Take Our 2015 Online Business Survey

Here at Copyblogger Media, it’s safe to say that we’ve been in your shoes. As freelancers, consultants, content publishers, and small business owners … It’s in our DNA. Our founder, Brian Clark, was a recovering attorney in the mid 90s when he discovered the Internet and just knew he could make a living from it.

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Why Brands Should Pay Influencers

I’ve been talking about influencer marketing for quite some time now and what seems to capture my attention more often than not is: there’s one debate that’s getting hotter by the minute – whether brands should pay influencers for their content, ideas and participation.

Business School Vs Incubator? An Entrepreneurial Test Drive At Stanford To Find Which Works Best

If you are looking to buy a new car it is only natural to test drive the models you are interested in. You'll quickly get a sense of quality, handling, comfort, and can back up your research with comparable data on cost, mileage, reliability, resale value and much more that is easily available online.

Whose Rights Is The Hun Sen Government In Cambodia Protecting?

Two separate incidents in the past week in Cambodia--a crackdown on protestors and a scuttling of the minimum wage demands for garment sector workers--are raising serious questions, again, about who the Hun Sen government is out to serve. Not the majority of its electorate, by the looks of it.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Why World Toilet Day Should Matter To You

Today, November 19th, is the second annual World Toilet Day. This is a United Nations recognized day and the founding day of the World Toilet Organization in 2001. So what’s in it for you? How about: profits, protection of your personal health and increased personal safety.

Impact Investing Innovation: Conservation Finance

Conservation finance is a relatively new concept in impact investing circles that looks to create financial returns from conservation activities. The Freshwater Trust is a key player in this promising financial arena.

Alibaba's Alipay and Taobao Marketplace Expands Into Australia

2014 has been a landmark year for Alibaba. Just last week, the Chinese e-commerce juggernaut set a world-record selling US$9.3 Billion worth of goods in 24 hours on Singles Day. A few months back, Alibaba claimed the title of the world’s biggest IPO, raising US$25 Billion on the NYSE. Things will only get bigger for Alibaba.

Dallas Personal Injury Attorney Reviews

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How Facebook Is Shaping Who Will Win The Next Election

Here’s an obvious, yet poorly understood fact: a single social network could have a major influence on who gets to control our government in the future.

This Holiday Season Will Change Retail As We Know It -- And That's a Really Good Thing

The holidays bring in a lot of foot traffic for both on and offline retailers. Between Black Friday, Cyber Monday and then the days leading up to Christmas, traffic near malls skyrockets, shipping times dramatically differ depending on how far away said holiday is, prices fluctuate based on deals, sales and the like, and each of us is inundated with ads full of gift ideas for family and friends. But this year marks a decidedly different pattern, and consumers will need to start getting used to it.

One Year Later: 13 Ways 600 Words Changed My Life

The choices we make every day - even the little ones - can have a huge impact on on our future. One small decision I made last year has certainly changed my life.

How We Built Our Careers Online (And What You Can Learn From It)

The two biggest concerns for the average blogger are obscurity and sustainability. In other words … for the vast majority of us who set sail creating content online, we want to first develop an audience; and then, once we have an audience, we want to find a way to earn a living from our content.

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Daily Fantasy Sports Hedge Funds: Coming Soon To A Market Near You?

Although legal issues surrounding daily fantasy sports remain unsettled in some states, new money continues to flow into these contests at a rapid rate.  As a result, springboard industries have emerged to provide high-stakes daily fantasy sports contestants with spreadsheets, statistical databases, and other mathematical ways to increase their odds of winning.

Mayor Boris Johnson's Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day...As An American

London's Mayor says he won't pay U.S. taxes due on his home sale, noting that worldwide taxation is 'outrageous.' Is the IRS listening?

Monday, November 17, 2014

Adobe Embraces Location-Based Marketing

As organizations look to gain an edge against their competitors, marketing organizations are increasingly being pushed to deliver ever more contextual messages to consumers. One of the areas that marketers personalize messaging is through the use of location-based tools and Adobe is today rolling out some updates to its Marketing Cloud suite to take advantage of new approaches towards location-based marketing.

How Do Asia's Rich View Succession Planning?

Asia’s wealthy individuals employ a variety of methods in planning for the succession of their family businesses, ranging from Lippo Group’s twice a year meetings with family members to Wen Ken Drug Company’s strictly controlled governance managed through trusts and foundations. Family feuds are known to have sunk companies; famous among them in Asia are Aws of Haw Par Group, Chuas of Cycle & Carriage Co, Tans of Tan Chong Motor, Widjajas of Sinar Mas and Yeos of Yeo Hiap Seng.

Emerging Entrepreneur Nick Unsworth: How To Market On Facebook Like A Pro

Entrepreneur Nick Unsworth was so compelled to build and sell a successful business by age 30, he tattooed the goal on his chest. Now he's helping other entrepreneurs and organizations to grow their businesses faster with Facebook marketing.

Lower Oil Prices Steal The Buzz For The New F-150 Pickup, But Ford's Stock Rises

Disclosure: I own F shares Ford’s F-150 Pickup is the right product for the wrong time, but it will help drive the company’s sales and stock higher. Ford Motor Company continued its launch of new products last week, with the rollout of the new aluminized F-150 pickup and that’s the right product, at least for energy conscious consumers and government regulators. “There is no dramatic change to the looks of the Ford F-150, but the aluminum body makes a big change in weight,” writes Consumer Reports. “It’s 700 pounds lighter than the previous generation. Fuel economy regulations are getting tougher. So pickup truck manufacturers have to make changes. The previous F-150 got 15 miles per gallon in Consumer Reports tests. Making the truck lighter, the engineers say, should make fuel economy better. And the lighter weight also allows Ford to use smaller engines.” The trouble is, however, that the new F-150 comes at a time oil prices have been falling sharply making efficiency less of a concern for thrifty consumers. Still, a growing US economy, record low financing rates, and Ford’s mastery of the buzz may pave the way toward a smooth ride for the new vehicle. That would mean an improving financial performance for Ford, as pickup trucks are the primary driver of Ford’s profit. “F-series trucks bring in the bulk of Ford’s profit,” writes Barron’s Jack Hough, noting that General Motors’ re-entry into the midsize pick-up market may help Ford. “General Motors re-entered the cheaper midsize pickup market with Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon,” he continues. “That could indirectly benefit Ford, which doesn’t sell a midsize pickup in the US.” Wall Street has already taken notice, helping the company’s stock rebound nicely from yearly lows last week. Still a bargain at 9 times next year’s earnings and 3.5% dividend. Ford’s and GM’s Financials

Historic Racetracks From Around The World

Most racetracks are vestiges of an era when horse racing was the only gambling game in town.

Corporate Tax Execs: 'Go Ahead, Close My Loopholes'

Seventy percent of corporate tax professionals are in favor of lowering the U.S. corporate tax rate, even if that assumes giving up tax loopholes.

And The Winners Are Actavis, Allergan And Ackman

With White Knight Actavis standing in its corner, Allergan was able to outmaneuver Valeant Pharmaceuticals and Bill Ackman’s hedge fund, Pershing Square Capital, breaking a seven-month siege of the company. Earlier this morning on CNBC, the CEOs of Actavis and Allergan appeared on the financial network to extoll the virtues of the picture perfect arrangement between the two companies. I expect this deal to be added to the annals of business school case studies very quickly. What really sets this attempted takeover apart from the classic cases we study is the surprise partnership that emerged between a publicly traded company, Valeant, and a private hedge fund, Pershing Capital. It was a creative and intelligently designed approach that will surely raise the bar of activist investing.

Running out of Topics to Blog about? Follow These 5 Simple Steps

No matter how good of a writer or marketer you are, eventually you will run out of ideas to blog about. It’s just a matter of time. It happens to all of us… including me. What should you do when this happens? Throw in the towel and quit? Of course, not! Just follow the steps  [click to continue...]

DreamWorks: Too Greedy For A Deal?

At the end of last week, the Transformers and My Little Pony were getting ready to welcome Shrek, Donkey, and Kung Fu Panda into the fold, as Hasbro was rumored to be buying DreamWorks Animation.

What You Need to Know to Make a Living as a Blogger Right Now

The average blogger only has two concerns. The first is obscurity. She is a total stranger in a vast world loaded with people — unknown, inconspicuous, and insignificant. Odd, considering there are so many people online. But it’s a simple law: We all start at the bottom. One recent study discovered that the average British blogger

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Federal Reserve To Back Real-Time Payment System For U.S.

The Federal Reserve will back a move to a real-time payments system in the U.S., catching up with 20 or 30 countries that already have real-time.

Why Checking Your Smartphone In Meetings Is A Bad Career Move

Recent research shows that checking your smartphone in meetings could be a bad move for your career. These are some of the reasons you should think twice before reaching for your smartphone in your next meeting.

Emotional Integrity

Emotional Integrity

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Post-Guilty Plea Advice From Credit Suisse?

Credit Suisse Plead Guilty To Tax Evasion and Paid $2.6 Billion in Fines. But is its Retirement Plan Business at Stake Too?

10 Leadership Steps To Transform Your Customer Experience Culture (And Day To Day Customer Service)

Here are 10 things that are important to get right as a leader if you're intent on transforming your customer experience and the culture that supports and sustains it. 1. Stand For The Right Thing. Does every employee know what your company stands for? Make sure your organizing principle is meaningful, short and memorable like Ritz-Carlton's "We are Ladies and Gentlemen serving Ladies and Gentlemen," or Starbucks' "We create inspired moments in each customer's day." Or perhaps the greatest organizing principle of all time, because it is so brief, non-latinate, jargon-free and unequivocal:  Mayo Clinic’s  “The needs of the patient come first.” 

Friday, November 14, 2014

Effects Of Clouds On A Solar Panel

solar power panel CloudsSolar panels hold a wealth of benefits, both for individuals and for the world at large. Economically, solar panels promise to lower the cost of electrical power. Environmentally, solar panels can give us cleaner power, sustainable power that will not require further damage to the environment. Solar power can reach remote areas. It can carry ...

How to Influence Purchasing Decisions

So, people are coming to your website, and that’s great. But how many of them are actually buying something from you? Chances are it’s less than 1% of your visitor base. But don’t worry! You can actually influence your visitors to make a purchase. How? you may ask. Well, I’ve created an infographic that will show you  [click to continue...]

Same Day Payday Loans in Cleveland TN

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Thursday, November 13, 2014

7 Ways to Find a Topical Market that Will Fuel Your Digital Commerce Business

Before you get down to business online, you need to find the topic(s) and market(s) that can support that business. And, after answering your questions on digital sharecropping and content curation, that’s exactly what Brian and I get into on this week’s episode of Rainmaker FM. Listen in and check out the seven-part process for

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Wednesday, November 12, 2014

What to Look for in a Professional Content Writer

Every business needs content. Not the bland, me-too nonsense that so often clutters up our in-boxes and feeds, but genuinely useful, interesting content. Content that lets a business stand out amid the clutter and noise. Content that moves prospects closer to a sale. Content that can become a powerful differentiator for your company. And increasingly,

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My Failed Attempt at Content Marketing and What I’ve Learned

Did you know that there was a forum on Quick Sprout? Well, there isn’t anymore, but there was one for roughly a year. Before I get into my reasons for removing the forum, I want to go over the lessons I learned while running it. If you are considering adding user-generated content as a form of content  [click to continue...]

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

This Simple Writing Trick Will Help You Overcome the Inertia of Perfectionism

When you have to create fresh topics for your blog each week, sometimes you just feel stuck. Or maybe you can’t nail down your unique selling proposition that sets your business apart from the competition. Perhaps you’re still wrestling with ideas for your email autoresponder series. All of these issues are completely normal for writers

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Look Beyond the Sniper Rifle

I had the pleasure of interviewing Brandon Webb, CEO of Force 12 Media about many things: his writing, his web empire, his books, his view on ISIS, and a lot more. His background, such as it is, includes having run the US Navy SEAL sniper training program and training several of the world’s deadliest snipers. […]

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Monday, November 10, 2014

Considering Going Solar? Read This Valuable Solar Energy Advice First!

why solar energyYou may want to use solar energy at work or home, but you might not know very much about it. Do some research on the topic, and find reliable professionals who can help you with this project. Continue reading to learn more about solar energy. Be sure the solar energy system you choose can efficiently ...

How A Third-Generation Family Business Keeps Customers Coming Back

By Deanna Cioppa

Check out the Lineup for Authority Rainmaker: Denver, May 13-15, 2015

The photo above is the Ellie Caulkins Opera House in Denver. It’s a world-class hall designed in the lyric style with acoustical excellence, state-of-the-art technology, and clean sight lines, and it’s the venue for our second annual live conference — Authority Rainmaker. We’re in the Super Early Bird phase of ticket sales, so I want

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How I Generated $25,000 with 249 Comments

It’s no secret that you can generate traffic by commenting on other people’s blogs. But the question is are you actually using this tactic? Chances are you aren’t. To show you the benefit of leaving comments on other blogs, I decided to run a test in which I left 249 comments on other people’s blogs  [click to continue...]

10 States Aiming To Tax Internet Sales

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Nonprofit Customer Service In (What We Hope Is) A Post-Greg Mortenson era

What makes a donors contribute repeatedly to a particular charity, in ever-increasing amounts–rather than to either its not for profit “competitors” or the many other options for spending money that exist?

Mara Group Challenges WhatsApp With New African Messaging App

Mara Group, the Pan-African conglomerate founded by Ugandan businessman Ashish J. Thakkar, plans to challenge the dominance of WhatsApp in Africa with the launch of Mara Messenger, a new messenger App targeted at Africans all across the world.

Why Bureaucracy Must Die

A terrible epidemic, writes Gary Hamel, is afflicting the human race. Its name isn’t Ebola. It’s called bureaucracy.

Millennial Meltdown: What Nonprofits Should Learn From The Political Disconnect

In three weeks, the nonprofit world will be promoting a vast non-commercial response to the holiday shopping season that will simultaneously - its planners hope - expand charitable coffers and continue to build a new network for giving that counters the year-end explosion of consumerist buying and selling.

Check Out These Great Solar Energy Tips!

Latest solar newsLately, solar energy has become extremely popular for homeowners and businesses alike. What are the reasons that have kept you from getting on-board with solar energy? If you are interested in finding out what solar power can do for you, keep reading. In this article, we will share information about solar energy. When using solar ...

Saturday, November 8, 2014

11 Brilliant Leadership Quotes Obama and McConnell Should Heed

Imagine what it would be like to run your business like a divided government. Approximately half the company would fervently execute your plans, even when they obviously made no sense. The other half would obstruct your recommendations, including those clearly in the company's best interest.

11 Astute Leadership Quotes Obama and McConnell Should Heed

Imagine what it would be like to run your startup like a divided government. Approximately half the company would fervently execute your plans, even when they obviously made no sense. The other half would obstruct your recommendations, including those clearly in the company's best interest.

Excuses, Excuses: Leadership That Avoids The Blame Game

“Do. Or do not. There is no try.

Todd Gurley's Suspension: Just One More Reason Why College Athletes Need A 'Union'

The University of Georgia  (6-2) travels today to Commonwealth Stadium for an important S.E.C. contest against the University of Kentucky Wildcats (5-4).  However, for the fourth consecutive week the Bulldogs will be without their star running back, Todd Gurley, who remains suspended for accepting upwards of $3,000 for signing autographs to sports memorabilia.

Friday, November 7, 2014

The Truth About How Your Brain Gets Smarter

Are you ready to have more ?ah ha? moments, break through mental barriers swiftly and with deep fulfillment? The truth about how your brain gets smarter is revealed.

Belgian Riots And Confusing Money With Wealth

Yesterday, 100,000 rioters clashed with police in Belgium over government austerity measures that will raise the pension age and reduce social services. These measures are, it was explained, “essential to keep the budget deficit within European Union constraints” (Belgian protesters clash with police over pensions and pay). This is utter nonsense and is yet another example of the confusion between money and wealth that is contributing to economic stagnation throughout the globe.

How Detroit Saved Its Art Collection From The Bill Collectors

Behind the "Grand Bargain" saving Detroit's art collection from creditors, an untested legal theory about who owns a public collection.

Last Day to Get Every WordPress Theme We Make (Now and in the Future) for One Crazy Low Price

As has been our custom for years now, we don’t wait for the Friday after Thanksgiving to start offering you our best discounts on our best products. And today is the last day for this year’s Black Friday discount. In case you missed it on Monday, here is the offer: Until Friday, November 7, 2014

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What SEO Used to Be Versus What SEO Is Now

With Panda, Penguin and all the other Google updates, SEO has changed over the years. What used to work doesn’t anymore. So, how do you know what you should be avoiding and what you should be doing now? Well, I’ve created an infographic that breaks down the old and the new in SEO and explains  [click to continue...]

The Oddity of Post-Election Stock Market Cycles

As most know, I study economic and capital market historical trends. Trading activities within the financial markets never follow a script, but oddities based on the time of year and political events tend to rhyme with historical performance. As an example, the old saw - “Sell in May and Go Away” – suggests that more times than not, the period from May to the end of October tends to be negative for stock prices. In addition, the period from the beginning of November to the end of January tends to be a time of good performance for the stock market.

Limelight: Trying To Drive Sales In Brutally Competitive Market

It’s not easy being a content distribution network (CDN.) There may be overall growth in demand for these services, but the growth has beckoned lots of entrants  -- and thus commodization.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Top 10 Risks Businesses Fear Most

From U.K. risk management firm, Aon Plc, a look in pictures at the top political and economic risks organizations are most concerned about in 2013.

Is Qualcomm's Business Model And Stock At Risk?

  Disclosure: I own shares of QCOM For two decades, Qualcomm has been growing by leaps and bounds. For a good reason: it has been in the right business at the right time—wireless technologies--riding one mobile communications trend after another, as its products became the industry standard. Wall Street has taken notice, making the company’s

Uber-like Services Leapfrog Car Ownership In India

Uber-like services are leapfrogging car ownership in emerging markets such as India, where Bangalore-based OlaCabs is building a thriving business in 20 cities.

You Need a Better Network

I am fortunate to know people like Carey Lohrenz, the first female F14 combat pilot, who gave me the shirt in the picture above. She wrote a great book called Fearless Leadership, by the way, a Wall Street Journal bestseller about how to be a better personal leader and then how to lead others. She’s […]

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The Crucial Starting Point For Building a Digital Commerce Business

In the latest episode of Rainmaker FM, Brian Clark and I talk about the big picture of digital commerce. Many of us are now familiar with platforms like Udemy and Skillshare, but in 2007 Copyblogger launched its first product, one that was aimed directly at the myth that people wouldn’t pay for digital content. A

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Why The C-level Needs To Rethink Their Strategic Management Process

I read an article two weeks ago reporting on the challenges faced by a CEO of a big box retailer. At the annual analyst meeting, the CEO identified some challenges that contributed to flat same store sales for the last six quarters. Issues contributing to lackluster growth were: Changes in shopper behavior resulting from online research and shopping Shoppers’ desire to shop at smaller stores.

The Surprising Truth About Where New Jobs Come From

Over the last 25 years, existing firms have been net job destroyers, losing on average 1 million jobs net combined per year.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Tencent-Backed Didi Dache Pursues Buses, Government Cars After Daughter of Lenovo's Liu Chuanzhi Joined

In July, Liu Qing, daughter of Lenovo founder and Chinese internet technology icon Liu Chuanzhi, made a dramatic career switch. She joined Didi Dache, a Chinese taxi-hailing app backed by Tencent Holdings, after working for Goldman Sachs for 12 years. “I wanted to do something different,” she told local media then.

Hooked: How Apple, Google, Twitter And Facebook Make Their Products Utterly Addictive

Feeling bored? Open up a link on YouTube. Lonely? Log into Facebook? Anxious because you don’t know something? Then just search for news on Google.

What Matters Most When It Comes To Tax Policy? Hint: It's Not Control Of Congress.

Last night, the elections signaled a power shift in Congress. With Republicans controlling both houses, does that mean tax reform is on the way? Here's why, historically, it's not control of Congress that matters: it's something else.

How One Marketing Blog Tripled Its Email Subscribers With 3 Simple Strategies

You’ve probably heard how important email marketing is for your business, but do you know how it can specifically save you time and increase revenue? When I started, it took me three months to get a special deal with a company to promote one of our sales. Then on the day of the sale,

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A/B Testing For Beginners: 70 Resources to Get You Started

There are two ways to make more money from your website. The first is to drive more traffic, and the second is to convert more visitors into customers. Perhaps you already know about traffic acquisition as there are thousands of resources online for it… But what about conversion optimization? How do you know what to  [click to continue...]

Women Entrepreneurs Who Cure Marketplace Pain Points Scale Big

You don’t have to be a guy or a techie to start a high-growth business. Healing any marketplace pain point is a great place to start.

No Money, No Problem: Bootstrapping Off Of Apple

Zach Halmstad and Chip Pearson made their first hires five years on--and took no outside money until year eight. Good plan.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Where Are All The Scary Ads Targeting Hotel Workers With The Rollout Of Keyless Tech?

'What if when the hotel senses you’re nearby, it not only alerts you that your room is ready, but has a cup of coffee sent to your room within five minutes of arriving because it knows you took a red eye flight beforehand?'

Does Practicing Mindfulness Really Make For More Effective Leadership?

By David Slocum

Interview with Brian Clark: How Customer Experience Maps Help You Develop a Smarter Content Strategy

Well isn’t this a pleasant surprise. After we published the third installment of our three-part series on content strategy, Brian Clark informed me that he had the perfect follow-up topic for the next episode. Sure, Mr. Clark, I think we can make room for you in the schedule. Consider this a bonus fourth episode in

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Traditional Publishing vs. Self-Publishing: What's The Best Route For Entrepreneurs

Have you ever read a business book and thought, “I could write that,” or imagined publishing a business book that would catapult you to the front of your industry? You are in good company. Whether to help lift their business profile, get more speaking opportunities or become an industry trendsetter, many entrepreneurs wish to publish.

The Ice Bucket Challenge Used 23 Million Liters Of Water. This Non-Profit Wants You To Live On Just 4.

How would your day be altered if  you were forced to live on 4 liters of water, the minimum necessary to survive, for 24 hours?

Monday, November 3, 2014

Top UBS Banker Not Guilty Of Tax Evasion, Big Blow To Offshore Crackdown

UBS's Top Offshore Banker Gets a Quick Not Guilty Verdict in Massive 7 Year Tax Evasion Case. A big Setback for IRS Offshore Account Jihad, What Does it Mean?

Nigerian Multi-Millionaire Tycoon Issam Darwish Raises $2.6 Billion For Telecom Towers

Lebanese-Nigerian businessman Issam Darwish has raised $2 billion in equity and $600 million in debt for his telecoms towers company in one of the largest equity fundraising exercises by an African company in recent times.

Our Black Friday Sale Starts Today (Because Your Business Goals Can’t Wait)

Are you one of the many folks out there who are thinking about using holiday downtime to launch their website and get a head start on 2015 (like a lawyer I spoke with last week)? Or are you, like me, planning to use the holidays to give a long-standing site the fresh, modern, mobile-responsive look

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The 20 Young Power Women In Africa 2014 -- Nominate Now

Who are the most successful and influential women in Africa under 40? This year's list of the 20 Young Power Women In Africa will be published in December. Send in your nominations now.

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Largely for tax purposes, I began tracking the miles I drive my car rather carefully, noting the mileage at the beginning and end of each month. I was fairly shocked to note that in several months during the year, I had driven only 200 miles. I figure the car costs me about $500 per month to own, so I was paying a lot for driving a little just to keep the option to drive a lot.

How To Ask For The Raise You Want

Looking to ask for a raise?  Molly Fletcher has a unique understanding of what it takes to get more pay. As a sports agent, she has represented clients including coaches Tom Izzo and Doc Rivers, sportscasters Ernie Johnson, Jr., John Smoltz and Joe Theismann and pro golfer Matt Kuchar.