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Students should stand for labor rights

Topix - Tue, 2015-10-06 06:30

There are three things you should consider before putting a Wendy's burger in your mouth. First, you're getting roughly 830 calories from the burger alone.

Categories: Today's Food News

RestorationMaster Adds ServiceMaster of Tacoma Out of Tacoma, WA as...

PR Web - Tue, 2015-10-06 03:30

RestorationMaster has recently added ServiceMaster of Tacoma to to increase their online marketing program.

(PRWeb September 29, 2015)

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Franchise Dynamics Helps Big Whiskey’s American Restaurant & Bar...

PR Web - Tue, 2015-10-06 03:30

Casual dining concept partners with leading franchise sales outsourcing firm to forge ahead with nationwide growth initiative

(PRWeb September 29, 2015)

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Experienced Coach and Leader Opens Local Growth Coach Franchise

PR Web - Tue, 2015-10-06 03:30

The Growth Coach, the largest provider of affordable group coaching workshops in the nation, now serves Dayton, Kettering, Centerville, Springboro, Trotwood, Troy, Piqua, Sidney and Eaton in Ohio as...

(PRWeb September 29, 2015)

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New Business Provides Estate Sale, Relocation Services to Lake Norman...

PR Web - Tue, 2015-10-06 03:30

Caring Transitions of Lake Norman serves Mooresville, Davidson, Cornelius, Huntersville, Concord, Harrisburg and the surrounding communities.

(PRWeb September 29, 2015)

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Paint it Forward Project Revitalizes Mainspring Schools

PR Web - Tue, 2015-10-06 03:30

Fresh Coat of North Austin gave Mainspring Schools a fresh coat of paint at no charge thanks to the company’s nation-wide Paint it Forward® campaign.

(PRWeb September 29, 2015)

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Meet the Top Six Mission Fit to Own Finalists in SOLDIERFIT’s...

PR Web - Tue, 2015-10-06 03:30

Vote Now Through October 4th for Your Favorite Finalist

(PRWeb September 29, 2015)

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Leading Commercial Cleaning Firm, Image One, Names Bob Caramusa as the...

PR Web - Tue, 2015-10-06 03:30

Leading commercial cleaning franchise recognizes best performing franchisee with a Franchisee of the Year Award.

(PRWeb September 29, 2015)

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Frenchy’s Chicken Generously Gives Back to UNCF

PR Web - Tue, 2015-10-06 03:30

Frenchy’s Chicken, the Creole kitchen, presented the earnings of the “Campus Special” fundraiser to the United Negro College Fund.

(PRWeb September 29, 2015)

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Wendy’s CEO to Retire; Finance Chief Tapped as Successor

WSJ Franchising - Mon, 2015-10-05 17:48
Wendy’s Co. said Chief Executive Emil Brolick plans to retire in May and named Todd Penegor, chief financial officer and head of international operations, as his successor.

Travel Club Startup Began with a Facebook Invite

Small Business Trends - Mon, 2015-10-05 17:30

Evita Turquoise Robinson loves to travel. She has ever since her college years when she took her first trip to Paris. And it was that love for travel that led her to invite 100 of her Facebook friends to start a traveling group four years ago.

Now, that travel group is known as the Nomadness Travel Tribe. And it has grown to include more than 10,000 members in cities around the world.

What makes the group different from other travel clubs is its inclusiveness. Instead of targeting only those who can afford lavish trips full of top notch amenities, Nomadness Travel Tribe is open to anyone with at least one passport stamp. The group focuses on affordable trips around the world and those who travel as more of a lifestyle than a hobby.

Robinson, who is an artist and filmmaker by trade, didn’t necessarily mean for Nomadness Travel Tribe to become a business. As the group grew, she added features like a Web series, shop, an upcoming travel conference, and of course, many different social platforms for group members to follow along with trips.

In fact, it’s that social media presence that has allowed the business to grow and thrive. Since its start on Facebook to its use of newer platforms like Instagram and Periscope, that ability to interact with people instantaneously around the world has been crucial. Robinson told Entrepreneur:

“There are so many social media outlets: Twitter, Periscope, Instagram. Instagram and Periscope — the live-streaming app — allow anyone to follow along on our trips. If the Internet was a geographic location, Facebook would be the capital. It is where everyone is. If you can start someplace where everyone is and then push out from that point, you have the opportunity to do something special.”

The lesson for other entrepreneurs, whether you’re building a business based around travel or something completely unrelated, is the power that social media has to bring likeminded people together. Plenty of businesses have been started completely by accident just because some people came together online and found a niche interest or market that was underserved.

So no matter how small the niche might seem to you, there are probably people out there, somewhere, who share your interest or passion. And you might just be able to build a business around it.

Image: Nomadness Travel Tribe

This article, "Travel Club Startup Began with a Facebook Invite" was first published on Small Business Trends

Crowdfunding Platform Kickstarter is Now a Public Benefit Corporation

Small Business Trends - Mon, 2015-10-05 15:30

It’s not unusual for businesses to proclaim their commitment to the greater good, although only a few actually live up to their promises. That’s why Kickstarter’s decision to reincorporate as a public benefit corporation has pleasantly surprised many.

The crowdfunding company has joined the ranks of organizations like Patagonia and This American Life to take this big step.

In a post on the Kickstarter blog, the company announced it is officially changing its name to Kickstarter PBC.

The post reads:

“Until recently, the idea of a for-profit company pursuing social good at the expense of shareholder value had no clear protection under U.S. corporate law, and certainly no mandate. Companies that believe there are more important goals than maximizing shareholder value have been at odds with the expectation that for-profit companies must exist ultimately for profit above all.

“More and more voices are rejecting business as usual, and the pursuit of profit above all.”

Pursuing Public Benefit

By turning into a public benefit corporation, Kickstarter is now required to demonstrate its contribution to public good, and reflect the commitment in its corporate charter.

To this end, the company has spelled out a detailed list of values and commitments it promises to live by in its corporate charter. It has declared it will annually donate five percent of its post-tax profits to arts education, and to organizations fighting inequality.

Other notable commitments include not using loopholes or other esoteric but legal tax management strategies to reduce its tax burden, caring for the health of its ecosystem and integrity of systems and never selling user data to third parties.

Impact on Crowdfunded Projects

In an interview with CNET, Co-Founder and Kickstarter CEO Yancey Strickler says “the core business of building community around creative projects continue to grow.”

Responding to a question on how some specific projects will be affected by this change, he says:

“There are two categories of projects on Kickstarter at a high level. One would be more consumer-minded projects. That’s predominantly people creating hardware and making games. The other category is arts and culture projects. That’s probably 80 percent to 90 percent of projects on the site. Those are the projects that have the highest success rate on Kickstarter … and those are projects that tend to have strong community around them.”

Notably in the charter, Kickstarter clearly states that its “mission is to help bring creative projects to life”. The company explains that it will create tools and resources to help people bring their creative projects to life.

While this major transition is creating a lot of buzz for Kickstarter, it’s not the first time the company has made important changes. Last year, it revised its rules to make it even easier to crowdfund a project.

Image: Small Business Trends

This article, "Crowdfunding Platform Kickstarter is Now a Public Benefit Corporation" was first published on Small Business Trends

Are YouTube Advertisers Paying for Bots?

Small Business Trends - Mon, 2015-10-05 13:30

A new study by European researchers questions the reliability of the method used by Google to charge advertisers for YouTube ads.

In their study (PDF), the researchers claim that Google charges advertisers for YouTube views even when YouTube’s systems flag a view as coming from a robot rather than a human.

Experts from UC3M, Polito, Imdea, and NEC Labs Europe worked together to evaluate the fake view detection systems of five online video portals, including YouTube.

Interestingly, the Google-owned online video platform carries out two separate counts of video views. The public view count shows the number of times a video has been seen publicly. The monetized view count, on the other hand, determines the number of views for purposes of calculating advertising charges.

In their experiment, the researchers uploaded videos to YouTube, bought ads targeting those videos, and set up bots (software that runs automated tasks over the Internet) to view their ads.

The bots viewed two of their videos 150 times. YouTube’s public counter only listed 25 views and correctly identified the rest as fake. However, the monetized counter charged the researchers for 91 views — indicating that views YouTube flagged as fraudulent in the first place were still billed to the advertiser.

The study concluded:

“YouTube uses a seemingly permissive detection mechanism to discount fake monetized views. This exposes advertisers to the risk of building their advertisement campaigns on unreliable statistics, and may make them initially burden the risk of fraud. Conversely, the public view counter is much more discriminative, demonstrating that YouTube has effective means to identify fake views.

“We speculate that even though YouTube’s policy puts in lots of effort to compensate users after an attack is discovered, this practice places the burden of the risk on the advertisers, who pay to get their ads displayed.”

In response to the study, a Google spokesperson is quoted in a post published by Marketing Land saying:

“We’re contacting the researchers to discuss their findings further. We take invalid traffic very seriously and have invested significantly in the technology and team that keep this out of our systems. The vast majority of invalid traffic is filtered from our systems before advertisers are ever charged.”

Despite this, YouTube has a rather clean record as a reliable and credible online advertising platform and advertisers use it diligently. Monitoring an advertising campaign on YouTube is quite simple, and many emerging brands and entrepreneurs have been discovered from videos on the site.

YouTube Photo via Shutterstock

This article, "Are YouTube Advertisers Paying for Bots?" was first published on Small Business Trends

5 Reasons Your Business is in Chaos and What You Can Do About It

Small Business Trends - Mon, 2015-10-05 12:00

It’s a universal truth among small business owners: There are only twenty-four hours in the day – but a million and one things to do.

Business chaos is commonplace among entrepreneurs, but there are ways to overcome it if you recognize its causes and think creatively about its solutions.

Having spent several chaotic years getting Infusionsoft off the ground, I’ve learned five major causes of business chaos and how to overcome each one for continued growth.

Chaos Cause No. 1: You’re Wearing All the Hats

I see entrepreneurs dig themselves into this hole most often, and it’s not hard to understand why. When you start your business, there is often no one else to depend on other than yourself. So, you take charge of everything to ensure the work gets done.

However, if you keep this approach as you start to grow, you’ll never be able to dig out. Take a step back to understand what you’re best at and get some help with everything else.

For example, maybe accounting isn’t your strong suit and it eats up more and more of your time each month. If that’s the case, you’ll actually be saving yourself money if you get help that may seem pricey up front. The time you’ll save focusing on what you do best will be worth it.

Chaos Cause No. 2: You Don’t Know How to Grow Your Business

While entrepreneurship has been increasingly glamorized in recent years, don’t ever forget that it’s a day-in, day-out fight for customers that will pay the bills.

Learning how to grow your business means truly putting (paying) customers first. The way to do this is to set specific priorities on how you spend your time. If you aren’t serving your paying customers to the best of your ability, you better be working hard to find new ones.

Chaos Cause No. 3: You’re Growing the Wrong Way

Closing new sales and adding new customers is great, but don’t forget that with growth comes increased fulfillment needs, more transactions to track and more complications from every angle.

To make sure you are growing the right way, get systems in place that help you manage the growth. This can be something as simple as tracking repeat orders or knowing how many more sales will support another employee. The key is addressing these challenges as they come up and not letting the chaos of the unknown snowball.

Chaos Cause No. 4: You’re Drowning in Technology

The same technology that helped many people become entrepreneurs in the first place can also be counterproductive when not leveraged correctly. Data overload can result in too many potential ideas, and that can take your focus off your core challenges and how to overcome them.

To avoid being drowned in technology, keep your customers top of mind. There are countless software solutions for seemingly every business function, but if they’re not helping you better serve your existing customers or attract new ones, that technology probably isn’t worth it.

Chaos Cause No. 5: You Have No Central Focus

I often hear small business owners say, “I’ll just take it a day at a time.” That philosophy can work in many aspects of life, but if you’re trying to launch a business and you don’t have a bigger vision in mind, you’re in for unending business chaos.

To get a central focus, it’s critical to set aside time to reflect and strategize. First, formalize your business goals and vision and get them down on paper. Then, don’t forget to track your progress. Finally, keep working toward your vision – even when times are tough.

If you’re able to commit to a central focus and concentrate on overcoming the other common creators of business chaos above, you’ll soon find it melting away.

Pick-up Sticks Photo via Shutterstock

This article, "5 Reasons Your Business is in Chaos and What You Can Do About It" was first published on Small Business Trends

Toshiba Upgrades Chromebook 2 With Better Processors

Small Business Trends - Mon, 2015-10-05 10:30

Chromebooks are designed to work out of the box without adding anything else. This has proven to be a very successful delivery model in different segments, but especially in education, where it has seen the highest adoption rates.

As a company that makes one of the better Chromebooks, Toshiba has launched the second iteration of its Chromebook 2. When it becomes available in October, the new version will have two types of Intel Processors and a backlit keyboard.

Toshiba pretty much left everything else intact and addressed the one complaint customers had about the device, more power.

The company’s Digital Products Division (DPD) announced the update. Philip Osako, Senior Director of Product Marketing at Toshiba said in a company release:

“With the launch of our latest Chromebook 2 models, Toshiba delivers brilliant performance for an outstanding experience on and off the Web with entertainment-inspired hardware features that make the most of Chrome OS and enable customers to get things done faster wherever their Chromebook 2 takes them.”

The previous Chromebook 2 had the older Intel Celeron Processor, which was at the crux of the problem for the company, and the complaints it was receiving.

The new device will have two models, one with a 5th generation Core i3 and the other one with the latest Celeron processor. With these upgrades, the company said users can expect better performance overall.

In addition to the more powerful processor, a backlit keyboard makes its way to a low-cost computing device. This feature is usually available in high-end laptops, including the pricey Pixel Chromebook from Google.

A partnership with Skullcandy resulted in two front-facing stereo speakers becoming part of the new Chromebook 2, which should be a great improvement from the previous model. An on-board dual array microphones and a Web camera capable of recording in HD format will make your video chats livelier.

The connectivity features include 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth V4.0, along with a large number of ports for a device this small, which include, a USB 3.0 port, a USB 2.0 port, HDMI port, SD Card slot, and a security cable lock slot.

The specs that have remained the same include a 13.3-inch Full HD display, a 12-inch body, 8.5 hours of battery life, 100GB of Google Drive storage, 90-day unlimited music streaming on Google Play and 12 in-air passes for Gogo Internet.

The company hasn’t announced the storage size for the two Chromebooks, but most of these devices come with 16GB and 32GB, relying mostly on cloud and external SD storage by its users.

Toshiba announced both models will be available in October with a price of $429.99 for the Intel Core i3 model and $329.99 for the Intel Celeron version.

Image: Toshiba

This article, "Toshiba Upgrades Chromebook 2 With Better Processors" was first published on Small Business Trends

Is Thought Leadership a Waste of Money?

Small Business Trends - Mon, 2015-10-05 08:30

“Thought leadership” is one of those ubiquitous buzz phrases that dominate content marketing in 2015, right up there with personal brand building.

Your boss is doing it, your boss’s boss is doing it, and you’re doing it. If you’re not, you’re worried that you should be!

As Michael W. McLaughlin wrote in the online sales magazine Rain Today, thought leadership has become the content marketing “arms race” for the 21st Century. With so many voices vying for attention, everyone from C-level executives to Silicon Valley solopreneurs are upping content production in an effort to keep pace  with the competition.

The result: the Internet is flooded with would-be thought leaders publishing pieces of dubious quality, diluting value for everyone. Has thought leadership now become a waste of time and resources?

Is it Too Late to Save Thought Leadership?

Once upon a time back in 1994, Joel Kurtzman, the then-editor-in-chief of Strategy & Business, coined the term “thought leader” as a means for identifying people within the business marketplace that merited our attention. Thought leaders were the individuals within their respective industries who offered fresh, creative ideas and commentary on industry problems and trends.

Two decades later, much of today’s thought leadership has gone from original to repetitive. It’s not that business leaders, C-level executives, or entrepreneurs don’t have great ideas or valuable insights. The problem is a bit more complex.

Consider this: in just one month, the largest 25 consulting firms in the world published almost 500 new books and articles. Their websites have a total of more than 16,000 pieces of thought leadership on them. Here’s the kicker: this was back in 2010, reports The Source Blog.

Five years later, the pressure to produce content is even stronger. “As more and more people leap on the ‘Thought Leadership bandwagon’, the distinction between ideas that actually lead thought, and those that do not, is getting murkier,” says Melissa Lafksy, the founder of Brick Wall Media and a contributor to Contently.

Lafsky laments that that vast majority of today’s content is so poorly written and argued that thought leadership has become yet another item to check off the content marketing to-do list, rather than an opportunity to elevate discourse and inspire industry innovation.

3 Ways to Improve Your Thought Leadership

Don’t write off thought leadership just yet. When done correctly, thought leadership delivers true benefits both for the people writing the content and the people reading it. Rushing out a thought leadership article, however, can result in low-quality content that tarnishes your reputation. Here’s how to avoid common thought leadership pitfalls in your writing:

1. Start with an Insightful Idea

Lafsky recommends would-be thought leaders start by reflecting on their industries’ past and then isolate their “special sauce”. What ideas have moved the needle? What common themes are shared by the highest traffic generators on LinkedIn? Why are the top influencers in your industry influential? Focus on finding an authentic way to share your narrative and frame this narrative around an original idea.

2. Tell a Compelling Story

Developing an insightful idea is just the first step. The best way to share this idea and connect with other industry leaders is through skillful storytelling. Not a writer? Call in the experts. “Many freelancer writers are highly specialized within different industries and make fantastic ghostwriters,” says John Rampton at, which publishes a guide to freelancing. “Leveraging freelancers as industry experts is a must for keeping up with the current content publication demands and still delivering the highest quality content.”

3. Use the Right Distribution Channels

Now that you’ve dedicated significant time and energy into developing your idea and telling your story, don’t let your thought leadership languish on a rarely-visited company blog. Be it LinkedIn, Twitter, or industry blogs, publish your content to the sites your industry leaders frequent.

“Not only do businesses frequently use the wrong social media platforms to reach their audience, but they spread themselves thin by having a presence on too many social networking sites,” says, Keran Smith co-founder of LYFE Marketing. Find out which social media sites your industry thought leaders frequent and make those the focus.

Bottom line: If you’re going to publish a piece of thought leadership, commit to doing it the right way.

Before you publish anything, ask yourself, “Is this thought leadership or self-promotion?”

If you’re not sure, head back to the drawing board and keep refining your idea. It’s better to publish high-quality work less frequently than push out sub-par pieces that get lost in the digital chaos and ultimately hurt your reputation.

Woman Thinking Photo via Shutterstock

This article, "Is Thought Leadership a Waste of Money?" was first published on Small Business Trends

What Integrity Means to Investors

Small Business Trends - Mon, 2015-10-05 06:30

Angel investors often say they are looking for entrepreneurs with integrity.

After nearly 25 years of teaching entrepreneurship, I still struggle to explain what that means. But over the last two weeks, I had three successive speakers in my entrepreneurial finance class that have provided me with a concrete example of what investors mean.

This week, I want to share this insight.

David S. Rose, founder of New York Angels, and author of “Angel Investing: Making Money and Having Fun Investing in Startups“, presented last week to my entrepreneurial finance class at Case Western Reserve University about angel investing.

He put up a slide that described what angels are looking for in an entrepreneur. The first word on the list was “integrity.”

As a sometimes angel investor myself, I found myself nodding in agreement as David spoke. But as I looked around the room, it was clear from the faces on the 20-something-year-old kids in the room that the word “integrity” didn’t resonate with them the way it did to me. I remember thinking, I needed to find a way to get the concept across to them.

The next class, John Knific, a 2010 Case graduate and founder of DecisionDesk, a provider of software that helps universities manage student applications and recruitment, came to speak. Bob Sopko, who runs Case’s Blackstone Launchpad , happened to be sitting in, too.

Bob got John to talk about the time he turned down a request from the White House to be present at an event where President Obama was highlighting young entrepreneurs because he had previously committed to committed to play piano for a piece he co-wrote with his father (a music professor) at his dad’s CD release party.

Some people in the room thought that John made the right decision because it put family first. I remember thinking that I agreed that John made the right decision, but not because he put family first.

John Huston, the founder of Ohio Tech Angels and Chairman Emeritus of the Angel Capital Association came to the next session of class and pointed out that being an entrepreneur means doing a lot of things to build your business at the expense of your health and family. I realized then that John Knific’s decision to attend his father’s CD release party didn’t resonate with me because he put his family first. After all, that’s not something that most investors are looking for in an entrepreneur.

My a-ha moment came when John Huston talked about the problem angels have with entrepreneurs who walk away from deals they have made because venture capitalists offer them something better. Having integrity means that an entrepreneur will keep to his promises to investors even if something better comes along later.

If an investor believes in an entrepreneur enough to write a check when a new company’s prospects are very uncertain, he or she wants to know that the entrepreneur will not change, renege, or walk away from the deal because something better comes along.

Investors are looking for signs that entrepreneurs will stick to their word. Turning down the President of the United States because you already made a commitment to someone else, like John Knific did, is a very powerful signal that an entrepreneur can be trusted to do what he or she promised.

That’s what I think angels mean when they say they are looking for an entrepreneur with integrity.

Entrepreneurs Photo via Shutterstock

This article, "What Integrity Means to Investors" was first published on Small Business Trends

Financial Benefits to Being Kind to Others

Small Business Trends - Mon, 2015-10-05 05:00

The single most important aspect of business is the finesse you exhibit when you are with your “audience.” In coaching and teaching communication leadership, I often remind learners to “be kind to your audience.” And I constantly remind them to, “Take responsibility for your audience’s experience of you.”

Who is your audience? Everyone around you.

Whether you are sitting with your boss having a one-on-one conversation, texting a friend or standing on stage in front of 10,000 people: you are with your audience.

Consider how profound your silence is, if you aren’t active on social media. Consider the cost to you, if you are not treating other people like your audience.

Consider the consequences of being aggressive, withholding, menacing, lazy, jealous, insensitive or crazy (even momentarily).

Consider the power of communication with the intention to help your audience move forward — while you are also serving your own goals. Consider how that gives you a competitive advantage in a job interview, the chance for a promotion, and a referral from someone who simply knows you online, or any other situation that matters.

The terrible truth is: every word, every image, every frame of video, and even silence lifts you up or tears you down in the eyes of your audience.

This might include the people who share air with you, like at the office. It includes all your social media posts and comments, all the book reviews or LinkedIn messages you write and all the Periscope, YouTube, and Sooth you create. All the Skype, Facetime, and other relatively real time communication channels you use.

Got it? Anyone who can hear you, see you or otherwise catch your drift: those people are your audience.

The good news is: your greatest, fastest, and most profitable way to reach your desired outcomes is completely in your command. Your success depends on the next word you say, and the word after that, and so on.

Finesse in communication isn’t something tricky like it is in billiards, baking bread or doing anything that demands extraordinary skills.

Communication done with finesse kindly takes into account the ability of your audience to understand and focus on your message, and responsibly putting it in words your audience will embrace because they see evidence you are trustworthy and caring.

With everything you might do to create wealth and profit, consider how simple and productive it is to be kind and responsible.

Those two qualities drive offers and referrals to you, give evidence you are the most attractive candidate or partner, and give people the faith to sign contracts and do deals with you.

Heart Hand Gesture Photo via Shutterstock

This article, "Financial Benefits to Being Kind to Others" was first published on Small Business Trends

Five Reasons Why Franchising Without a Franchise Consultant is Reckless

Franchise-Chat - Fri, 2015-03-27 22:00
Callum Floyd, Director of Franchize Consultants in New Zealand, explains five important reasons why a franchise development consultant is pivotal when franchising a business.
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