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Small Biz Tip: Common Mistakes: Public Relations

Tips from February 5, 2010 The Small Business tips today discuss common public relations (PR) mistakes. Poorly Written Press Releases: Incorrect format, improper grammar and punctuation, and misspelled words contribute to a poorly written and structured press release. Don't send something out to the public and media that is not grammatically correct.  Over-Hype: Hype and excitement is important, but too much is over dramatic and will draw negative attention towards your PR campaigns. No Purpose: Press releases announcing petty, unimportant things related to your business doesn't convey a positive image and people will stop listening to you. No Plan: Releasing a press release to the public without a proper follow up plan is a huge mistake. You need to know what to do to proceed, who to direct questions to, and have a backup plan. Daily Overview: Sending out poor press releases for the wrong reasons with no p... [Read Full Article]

Suspicious Support: Wal-Mart's Failing Campaign in Chicago

Wal-Mart has set on an endeavor to break into the Chicago retail market yet again. A location has been proposed in Chatham, a town on the South Side of Chicago, for a second Wal-Mart within Chicago city limits. There are people that have voiced their opinions against Wal-Mart. Some believe that there will be no tax revenue for the city, no net job increase, Wal-Mart will drive down wages, and, most importantly, destroy local businesses. Wal-Mart and its allies refute the accusations, saying that the neighborhood and its area residents should be the ones who decide on the fate of the mega mart. Truthfully, the South and West sides of Chicago don't have very many options for their necessities and few resources. The Chatham Wal-Mart is one of the suggested solutions. The StoryAll businesses, including ones that are already established, need to have support to get the business started on the right foot. This can be done through public relations, marketing efforts, words o... [Read Full Article]

Merchants May Find Help With Credit Card Costs

  Government, Politics and the Economy Partisan Lines Forming Over Healthcare Reform The top Senate Democrats and President Obama appear aligned in support of a government-run health insurance option, facing off against Senate Republicans who say they refuse to won't back such a measure. New Bill Could Help Merchants with Credit Card Costs Under a new bill before the House of Representatives, merchants would be able to negotiate with banks to reduce the costs associated with credit card purchases. [Read Full Article]

The IRS Recipe for Disaster Preparation

When you think of disaster preparation, you think first about blankets and sandbags, potable water and crank radios. What most folks don't think about are their finances and operations, but they are important as well and should not be neglected. Here are the six things that the IRS believes you should concentrate on when preparing for a disaster: 1.    Recordkeeping Take advantage of paperless recordkeeping for financial and tax records. Many people receive bank statements and documents by e-mail. This method is an outstanding way to secure financial records. Important tax records such as W-2s, tax returns and other paper documents can be scanned onto an electronic format. You can copy them onto a ‘key’ or ‘jump drive’ periodically and then keep the electronic records in a safe place.  2.    Document Valuabl... [Read Full Article]

The Public Relations Toolkit: A Review

We understand that marketing is primarily concerned with generating sales leads and sales works to turn those leads into closed sales. That is clear enough, but what many have a problem with is public relations. Is it marketing? Is it something else. We hear vague terms like “communications” and we can see public relations at work when things go wrong or when a politician wants something from the voters (what do you think the latest presidential news conference was all about?). However, if you pin down the average person and demand a proper definition for the term “public relations,” they may be hard-pressed to give you one even though they know it when they see it. The PR Toolkit has gone a long way to solve this issue wi... [Read Full Article]

Flight 1549: The Importance of Good Public Relations

The story from Fox-TV 61, in Hartford, Connecticut, had this to say about one aspect of the aftermath of the Hudson River crash of US Airways Flight 1549: Some airlines apparently stop at nothing to charge customers above and beyond the price of the airline tickets. Spirit Airlines is trying to charge passengers extra fees after canceling a flight, which forced the passengers to be on the plane that landed in the river Thursday. Rob and Jeff Kolodjay were scheduled to fly on Spirit Airlines to a golf vacation with four other friends on Thursday out of LaGuardia in New York City. Their flight got cancelled, and they were rebooked on to US Airways flight 1549. While the Kolodjay’s have good things to say about US Airways, they are less pleased about the policies of their original carrier. When they tried to cancel the return tickets on Spirit they could not use because they never made it to Myrtle Beach, the company representative insisted on charging... [Read Full Article]

Small Business Brief for 11/25

Politics and Government Foundation Laid for Obama Stimulus PackagePresident-elect Barack Obama had his aides develop a plan to quickly pump money into the economy, create millions of jobs and deliver a tax cut to the poor and middle class. They came up with a two-year economic rescue is expected to cost about $500 billion. Small Business Health Care Woes U.S. senators are proposing legislative fixes for high health insurance costs. Economics and Labor Issues Entrepreneurs Who Kept Coming Back [Read Full Article]

Public Relations and Your Small Business

What do you call advertising without ads? You call it public relations or PR, and it is something that no business, large or small, can do without. At its most basic, PR is the face your company shows to the world, how your organization relates to the public. It can be as simple as the way your employees treat your customers or it can be a complex array of things playing their part in a larger marketing campaign. This kind of communication is not done through paid advertisements. The credibility of advertising is limited at best since it is naturally assumed that the advertiser is trying to sell something. Public relations uses the news media as its conduit. The primary tool for this is the press release.  Press releases are stories, written by you (or someone in your organization or even a professional PR firm), covering something newsworthy pertaining to your company. It is usually a page or two in length with the majority of the space given to the subject of the release. The las... [Read Full Article]

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