Does your business have a strategic plan?

Growing a business without a strategic plan is like driving without a map. By developing a strategic plan, you set the direction of the business and create a detailed roadmap based on long-term goals and the steps you'll take to achieve them. And by implementing it, you can focus on the main priorities for the business, monitor your progress against specific objectives, and ensure the business continues heading towards its ultimate goals whenever you need to adjust course. Although strategic pla...

Design Thinking, Lean Startup and Agile: What is the difference?

Methodologies such as design thinking, lean startup, and agile development help startups reduce the risk of failure due to a lack of product-market fit. Yet founders often use these terms almost interchangeably and make the mistake of using only one of them instead of combining all three to create an effective innovation process. Here, Nicolò Mantini explores the differences between these three methodologies, how they complement each other, and how they work together to help startups a...

3 strategies to make fewer mistakes in 2019

To achieve success you need to be willing to make mistakes and learn from them. However, there are some mistakes you can avoid by understanding, and overcoming, some of the cognitive biases that can lead to missed opportunities and poor decision making. Cognitive biases are errors in thinking that influence the choices we make, even when we believe we're making rational judgments. Here, behavior scientist and author Jon Levy shares some top tips for making better decisions by recognizing when yo...

10 marketing trends to watch in 2019

Digital marketing is in a constant state of flux and brands have to be quick to adapt to shifts in consumer behavior, changes in the social media landscape, and growing concerns over data security and privacy. In a crowded market place, and with social media platforms making it more difficult for branded content to reach its audience, small businesses may struggle to increase their reach. To give you the best chance of success, Deep Patel shares here the marketing trends and technologies yo...

How to choose a WordPress theme for your business website

WordPress is one of the most popular tools for creating feature-rich websites. It's a free, open-source content management system (CMS) with a strong reputation as a versatile, flexible and robust system for any kind of website from blogging to business and e-commerce. And many businesses, including top brands, use it to power their websites. With so many themes available for customizing your website, the challenge is knowing how to choose the right design for your business. ...

Why every product you make should pass this 5-question test

To be successful as an entrepreneur you need to add value to the lives of your customers, whether it's through the products or services you create or the way in which you deliver them. Yet the same products that provide the convenience and ease of use that we seek as consumers can also be detrimental to our health and wellbeing. "What's true of snack foods is also true of the technologies we use," writes Thomas Goetz, and "it's the responsibility of every entrepreneur to consider the impact of t...

Strategic planning: prepare, create, & deploy your strategy

Strategic planning is an essential process for determining where your company is going and the best way to get there, yet nine out of 10 organizations fail to execute their strategies. A strategic plan is a detailed roadmap the business will follow for the next few years. It includes an action with specific activities and due dates and sets out who is responsible for what. To help yours be among the "10% of businesses that actually make their strategic plan stick," strategy expert Ted Jackson sh...

The ultimate guide to small business goal setting

Goal setting is crucial for the success of any business. You need measurable goals to keep your business moving forward, yet learning how to set the right goals, how to achieve them, and how to track your progress takes practice. To help you steer your business in the right direction, Alyssa Gregory shares here a collection of resources that will "maximize your goal setting process and guide you as you achieve your business goals, from the simplest to the most ambitious goals on your list."...

How to write a great value proposition [Infographic]

Your value proposition is an essential component in your overall marketing messaging. It doesn't just tell potential customers how they'll benefit from your products or services. It explains how you're solving their problem or improving their situation in a way your competitors can't. It describes the unique value you offer your customers that they won't get elsewhere. And it can make all the difference between losing the sale and closing it. Here, Lindsey Kolowich shares some top tips for ...

How to use SEO to build your brand

  The ultimate goal of search engine optimization (SEO) is to grow your business by driving more traffic to your website. There are numerous on-page and off-page techniques you can use to boost your visibility and the higher your website appears on search engine results pages (SERPs), the more traffic you'll get. "When optimized properly, your company website can boost your brand image and increase your online authority," writes Lauren Wiseman who shares here some top tips for building...

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