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5 Challenges Facing Cattle Ranchers Right Now

Small Business Trends - Tue, 2017-07-25 12:00

America’s cattle ranchers are watching the new deal for beef exported to China closely.  The first U.S. shipments began arriving there July 16.  Buzz Tatom is a Partner and Ranch Sales Associate at Venture West Ranches in Montana.  Tatom spoke with Small Business Trends about the challenges facing ranchers now considering the latest news.

Challenges Faced by Cattle Ranchers Succession Planning

Many American cattle ranches have been a one family operation for one hundred years or more.

“Some of these ranchers are somewhat challenged about how to transfer that ownership onto future generations,” Tatom says.  Finding out which children want to take over can be daunting enough. Transferring ownership for this type of asset is a big part of the challenge.

It’s important to keep communications open through the process. Establishing a common business vision is critical so  everyone  starts off on the same foot. Start with self assessments of each member of the family so they understand their strengths and weaknesses.

Rushing the Sale

Tatom says ranchers quite often want to rush the sale and transfer of ownership. Being hasty can cost unnecessary tax dollars. He suggests planning the sale or transfer of a ranch five to ten years in advance heads off tax problems at the pass.

“The ones that haven’t done any planning, they’re going to cost themselves tax dollars,” he says.

The Age of Ranchers

The average age of the current rancher is about sixty years old. Over the next ten to fifteen years, a large percentage ( Tatom estimates around 70 percent) of American cattle ranches are going to change ownership. He says the implications are big.

“If we don’t get ahead of this to some degree, this could be a potentially disruptive force for our food chain.”

The statistics hold up. The latest numbers from the USDA Census of Agriculture point to a steady rise in the age of farmers in general. In 1982, the average age of an American farmer was 50 years. By 2012, that number had risen to 58 years old.

Government Regulations

According to Tatom, a big challenge for American cattle ranchers is the mechanics working the levers of the future’s market. He says that financial tool “is manipulated by people that have no intention of ever taking delivery of he commodities they’re putting contracts down for.”

There are other issues. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Department of Interior have been singled out for some time for implementing regulations many farmers see as growth killers .

Corporate Ownership

Historically farms and ranches in the United states are independent. Considering the other factors in play, consolidation and corporate ownership become a large possibility. However, it’s one  Tatom wants to see avoided.

“I’m certainly not anti-business,” he says.  “I also believe there’s a real underlying lifestyle with these farmers. They’re real salt of the earth people and I would like to be part of giving them the option of not having to sell.”

According to Farm Policy Facts, this threat hasn’t materialized yet. As of 2015, the USDA’s Economic Research Service (ERS) reports 99% of U.S. farms were still structured as family farms.

Rancher Photo via Shutterstock

This article, "5 Challenges Facing Cattle Ranchers Right Now" was first published on Small Business Trends

Taco Bell app tests Lyft rider pit-stops

Nation's Restaurant News - Tue, 2017-07-25 12:00
‘Taco Mode’ option routes to restaurants during rides

Like it or not, signs signal change for auto retail

AutoNews - Tue, 2017-07-25 11:49
Car dealers need to prepare for a new way of selling as consumers may not desire car ownership in the future.
Categories: Latest News

McDonald’s UberEATS Partnership Shows Power of Convenience

Small Business Trends - Tue, 2017-07-25 10:30

Want a Big Mac delivered to your front door? Now you can, thanks to McDonald’s (NYSE:MCD) recent partnership with UberEATS.

For a fee of $4.99, customers can order McDonald’s menu items for delivery, which should normally take between five and 15 minutes. This is a convenient new option for fast food buyers, who are already apt to value convenience. In fact, the fast food giant is focusing its marketing efforts on the convenience factor. There’s a new line of “lazy wear,” including Big Mac onesies and similar items — because now you don’t even have to leave the house to get your Big Mac!

It Pays to Focus on Customer Convenience

Independent restaurants and other small businesses can take a page from McDonald’s book as well. When you have the opportunity to offer convenient new options to consumers, especially if your customers tend to value convenience, it can be a positive step for your business.

And you don’t have to dedicate all of your own resources to offering delivery and other convenient options either. As McDonald’s and UberEATS have demonstrated, you can find other companies with which to partner. These businesses may already provide those services your customers are interested in. It can be a great option for small businesses that don’t have the resources to hire new staff or invest in new equipment to offer those new options in house.

McDonald’s Photo via Shutterstock

This article, "McDonald’s UberEATS Partnership Shows Power of Convenience" was first published on Small Business Trends

McDonald's Nasi Lemak burger, Chendol McFlurry sell out in 2 weeks

Topix - Tue, 2017-07-25 09:48

SINGAPORE: Fans of McDonald's Nasi Lemak burger will no longer be able to get their fix, after the fast-food chain announced on Tuesday that it was sold out islandwide, less than two weeks after it was first launched . Other limited-edition items such as the Chendol McFlurry and Bandung McFizz have also sold out, McDonald's said in a press release in which it thanked Singaporeans for their "overwhelming support".

Categories: Today's Food News

Forget sales, Prime Day is about loyalty

Store Front Talk Back - Tue, 2017-07-25 09:41
Prime Day may have been a huge sales day for Amazon, but it was also an important day for building consumer loyalty. The annual Black Friday-like shopping spree in July achieves three major goals for Amazon, according to Lindsay Bloom, senior marketing manager at SessionM, a leading customer engagement platform.

42 Percent of Internet Users in the US Are Regular Fast Food Eaters

Small Business Trends - Tue, 2017-07-25 09:30

Almost half of U.S. internet users patronize fast food restaurants regularly, according to a recent study.

Internet Fast Food Market Opportunities

The study is part of an infographic from GlobalWebIndex. The infographic states that 42 percent of internet users in the U.S. are regular eaters of fast food, making it one of the biggest markets for fast food restaurants in the world.

In addition, the infographic states that fast food consumers are 44 percent more likely than others to have interacted with a brand on a mobile app in the past month. They are also 24 percent more likely to follow brands they are thinking of buying something from on social media, and 28 percent more likely to opt in for personalized loyalty rewards from brands.

So what does this mean for small businesses? Well, if your business is a fast food franchise or independent quick service restaurant, the link is clear. Using methods like mobile apps, social media and personalized loyalty programs can be a great way to appeal to returning customers.

But it’s not just fast food restaurants that are seeing results from these methods. New media and marketing methods like mobile apps and social media have proven to be a great way for all types of brands to reach their ideal customers. But it can be especially relevant to the brands that have some overlap with those regular fast food consumers. For example, if your brand is known for convenience features like fast shipping or delivery, your business could very well appeal to a lot of those same people who appreciate the convenience of fast food restaurants.

Overall, it’s a good idea to do some research on your target audience and learn which methods and channels are most likely to appeal to them. For fast food and quick service restaurants, that seems to include things like mobile apps and personalized loyalty programs. And your business could potentially benefit from using some of those same methods as well.

Click for a larger view…

Fast Food Photo via Shutterstock

This article, "42 Percent of Internet Users in the US Are Regular Fast Food Eaters" was first published on Small Business Trends

Tesla buyers antsy for Model 3 keys months after $1,000 deposit

AutoNews - Tue, 2017-07-25 08:52
Thousands of Tesla Model 3 reservation holders are in limbo, with deposits paid but little clarity about the status of their car -- when they'll get it or what they'll pay.
Categories: Latest News

Tomorrow’s Office May Be Expandable to Suit Your Needs — or May Not Exist at All

Small Business Trends - Tue, 2017-07-25 08:30

Offices might look very different in 10 years. Some new tech innovations are bringing about new possibilities for businesses. And you may even have some completely different options to choose from.

A Peek at the Office of the Future

First, take the case of Meta, a startup that is working to integrate augmented reality into the modern workplace. The company creates holographic headsets that let you integrate monitors and other virtual materials into your actual surroundings. So you could theoretically take your headset to your home, your favorite cafe or even the beach and do your work from there without having to lug around a bunch of heavy equipment.

There’s also a company called Ten Fold Engineering that hopes to provide customizable structures for businesses. This option offers an actual physical location that you can use for your office, store or other space. But it features collapsible and expandable parts so you can create a space that’s really specific to your needs.

These two companies offer very different options. But they do point to one common trend — the office of the future is whatever you need it to be. If you have a store that hosts events and special promotions at a specific location, then you would probably benefit most from using structures like the ones from Ten Fold Engineering. But if your office is full of people who are all working individually, then technology like Meta’s holographic headsets could be more of interest.

Image: Meta

This article, "Tomorrow’s Office May Be Expandable to Suit Your Needs — or May Not Exist at All" was first published on Small Business Trends

Most SMBs get sales boost from Amazon

Store Front Talk Back - Tue, 2017-07-25 08:18
Many small to midsize businesses see half or more of e-commerce sales come from selling on Amazon or other online marketplaces. Retail search marketing company NetElixir surveyed more than 500 SMB owners and managers that sell products on Amazon and discovered the giant marketplace has a big impact on their companies, in ways that make it both a friend and a foe. 

10 Things You Didn’t Know (But Should) About Insurance and Your Home Based Business

Small Business Trends - Tue, 2017-07-25 07:30

How do you protect your home business from risk? People who run a business from their home may not know what kind of insurance is needed. Small Business Trends spoke with Gary Capone, Vice President of Field Services, Franklin Mutual Insurance, about 10 things you probably didn’t know (but should) about insurance and your home based business.

Home Based Business Insurance Facts Your Homeowner’s Coverage Isn’t Enough

“Homeowner policies give almost no coverage for your business,”  Capone says, “and this is something that most people don’t realize.”  He says there’s usually no liability coverage under a homeowner’s policy and very limited contents coverage for your business.

 You Can Have Off Premises Exposures

Your liability with a home business can  extend beyond your front door. For example , it’s common to run a hair salon in your house. However, if someone has a reaction to the dyes you use after they leave, you can be held responsible. Same as any other shop.

You Can Get What the Big Guys Get

Many small business owners who work from home don’t know they qualify for the same coverage as bigger places.

“A commercial policy even has options like accounts receivable coverage,” Capone explains.

You Need Coverage When the Business isn’t Under Your Roof

If you’re just fixing cars in the garage part time, you can be held liable. What’s more, separate structures on your property that you use for business have no coverage at all without a business policy.

Renting the Home? You Should Still have this Insurance

Even if you’re renting the house, you need to be sure your business is covered entirely. These policies cover items like printers and computers even if you don’t own the place.

Take a Bad Bill? A Business Policy can Cover You

Business polices cover more than just the tools of your trade.

“Even a forgery or counterfeit money you’ve collected would be picked up under a business policy,” Capone says.

Lost Income Gets Covered

If you ‘re covered and something like a fire or flood ravages your house, the policy covers lost income and additional expenses until you’re up and running again. A home based business insurance policy makes sure you can make a living even after a disaster.   Make sure you endorse this aspect.

Advertising Injury is Covered Too

This is another coverage resting under the umbrella of what’s good for any business. However, it’s good to have this for a home based enterprise to cover you for libel, slander , copyright infringement and such. Perfect for those creative types working on the Internet.

Online Issues are on the Radar

Worried about protecting customer contact information and other important data in cyberspace? The chances are your insurance company now has something to cover you.

“It’a a new area,” Capone says. ” A lot of insurance companies are getting into it.”

Your Overall Exposure can be Bigger than you Think

Even if you’re only working from home part time, you’re probably wide open for some kind of liability    Capone concludes by stressing what these small business owners don’t know, can hurt them.

“It doesn’t matter what kind of home based business it is, everybody has exposure ,” he says.

Home Business Photo via Shutterstock

This article, "10 Things You Didn’t Know (But Should) About Insurance and Your Home Based Business" was first published on Small Business Trends

Demographics Secrets Revealed: The Ultimate Guide for Retail Marketing to 4 Generations of Shoppers

Small Business Trends - Tue, 2017-07-25 06:30

Retail is undergoing major transformations as the habits of millennials, Generation X and baby boomers change with age. (And don’t forget about Generation Z, the group right behind the millennials). What retail tactics work with each of these demographics? Yes Lifecycle Marketing studied shopper behavior in-depth to find out. Here’s your ultimate guide to retail marketing for each age group.

Generational Marketing Tips and Examples Generation Z (aged 21 and under)

Keywords associated with this generation might include “authentic,” “quality” and “personalization.” Dubbed Centennials by Yes Lifecycle Marketing, this generation cares more about quality than any other. Quality is the most important factor in brand loyalty; brand prestige is important, too. Centennials don’t hunt for bargains, but will hunt to find the perfect, customized product. They also expect your store to understand their needs and personalize communications

Reach this group with social media, which you can use to promote events and experiences in your store. Email matters much less to this generation than others, but triggered emails that are personalized are more likely to get results.

Millennials (aged 22 to 37)

The keywords associated with this generation include “loyalty” and “personalization.” This generation is the most brand-loyal of the four. Loyalty rewards programs, company reputations and company philosophies drive their loyalty. Price and quality carry equal weight with millennial shoppers; 34 percent say quality matters most, while the same percentage say price matters most.

Reach this group with personalized marketing messages and communications. Be sure to stay true to your brand and keep your promises. Instituting a loyalty rewards program is also a good ides. Fifty percent of millennials say loyalty points influenced their most recent purchasing decision.

Generation X (aged 38 to 52)

Keywords for this demographic might include “deals,” “quality,” “convenience.” Price is the biggest motivating factor for Generation X shoppers: Some 85 percent say discounts influenced their most recent purchase. They also care about quality and convenience. What don’t they care about? Brand loyalty. If you can offer deals, quality and convenience, they’ll switch to your store in a snap.

Reach this group with email — the method 59 percent of them prefer for marketing and communication — and send it at the times they are likely to be checking email (morning, mid-afternoon, lunch hour). Social media marketing and online display advertising matter less to them.

Baby Boomers (aged 53+)

Keywords for this group include “price,” “convenience,” “variety.” Selection and price, not loyalty rewards or “brand experiences,” influence the boomers’ shopping decisions. They care more than any other generation about getting discounts, and their recent purchases were most influenced by convenience. Half of boomers described themselves as “price savvy.” However, your store also needs a wide variety of products in order to appeal to this generation.

Reach this group with email and direct mail. Fifty-nine percent of boomers value both means of marketing communications, while just 19 percent care about social media marketing.

No one store will appeal to all four generations, of course, but by understanding the generations you hope to attract, you can boost your chances of getting them in the door.

Demographics Photo via Shutterstock

This article, "Demographics Secrets Revealed: The Ultimate Guide for Retail Marketing to 4 Generations of Shoppers" was first published on Small Business Trends

Dream Hotel Group Appoints Rohit Anand As VP, Brand Activation & Partnerships

Hotel Interactive - Tue, 2017-07-25 06:13
NEW YORK–-Renowned hotel brand and management company Dream Hotel Group appoints Rohit Anand as Vice President of Brand Activation and Partnerships. ...

Sheriff's helicopter supports search for stolen minivan in Titusville

Topix - Tue, 2017-07-25 05:35

A group of minors is believed to have abandoned the stolen mini-van after attempting to buy fast food with a fake $100 bill. Sheriff's helicopter supports search for stolen minivan in Titusville A group of minors is believed to have abandoned the stolen mini-van after attempting to buy fast food with a fake $100 bill.

Categories: Today's Food News

The Buccini/Pollin Group Acquires Sheraton DFW Airport Hotel In Irving, TX

Hotel Interactive - Tue, 2017-07-25 05:30
IRVING, TX—-Officials of The Buccini/Pollin Group, a privately held, full-service real estate acquisition, development and management company (BPG), today announced that ...

All-New Marriott Dual-Branded Residence Inn/SpringHill Suites Opens August 2017 On Clearwater Beach

Hotel Interactive - Tue, 2017-07-25 05:25
CLEARWATER BEACH, FL–-Key International – a prominent real estate investment and development company specializing in hospitality – has announced that the ...

Crescent Hotels & Resorts To Manage Sheraton Milwaukee Brookfield Hotel

Hotel Interactive - Tue, 2017-07-25 05:21
MILWAUKEE, WI–-Crescent Hotels & Resorts has been selected to manage the recently renovated 389-room Sheraton Milwaukee Brookfield Hotel. Crescent, based in ...