Category Archives: marketing

Five Valuable Alternatives to College

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Going straight to college directly after graduating high school is not the right path for everyone. Some students will want to explore other options first. Some will take a little while off, while some will decide to never go to college. If you decide not to go to college right out of high school, what are the other options? What can you do with your time? Here are five valuable alternatives to going to college right out of high school.

1.Join the Military

Some students will join the armed forces directly out of high school. The military will provide the opportunity to experience life away from home while you build life skills. You will also be able to save for college if you are planning to go to school after. There are also many college financial aid opportunities for active military and military veterans. If you make the military career, you’ll enjoy an early retirement and excellent benefits. Just remember that once you sign up, you give away many of the rights average citizens enjoy. Talk to someone who is happily enlisted about military life before you choose this option.

2. Learn a Trade

Rather than going to a university or a community college, you can opt to go to vocational training. Examples of careers that begin with specialized training are hair stylist, auto mechanic, plumber and carpenter. Many of these jobs require training at an institute and a certificate upon completion. You may also need to complete an apprenticeship, which gives you valuable on-the-job training by an experienced professional.

3. Get a Full-Time Job

If you’re not going to be in school, getting a full time job will help you transition from the role of high school student to adult. You should look for a position that is not a typical teenager’s job. Your goal is to find something that may develop into a career. When interviewing for jobs, find out how long the average person stays with the company. For instance, Pepsi-Cola is a company that holds onto its employees for decades. Companies like that are rare in today’s market.

If you cannot find a company that offers longevity, look at jobs that offer transferable skills. Administrative assistants can go on to become project managers once they develop excellent communication and organization skills. Insurance companies always need customer service and claims agents and the job is very similar no matter where you work. Look at your community and find opportunities that can blossom into full careers.

4. Volunteer

If income is not a problem, you can choose to volunteer your time. You can look for programs in your community that make a difference, or you can join a national program such as Americorps. This organization offers those between the ages of 17 and 24 the opportunity to make a difference right here in the United States. Another group, the Student Conservation Association has programs for 18-year-olds and older where you can work towards conservation efforts.

5. Travel Abroad

You may decide to take some time for travelling the world. This is a great way to go exploring, not just the world, but yourself too. You will learn about the differences and similarities between your country and others around the world. Interacting with about other cultures and economies will open your mind to new possibilities and a new understanding of the person you are to become. If you do not have the funds but still want to travel, you can sign up for student exchange programs or even find work on a cruise ship.

Not all high school graduates want to go immediately to college. There are other options for these students that include working, traveling, and doing good for the community.

 

Jessica Bosari blogs for Adventures Across Country (ARCC), an organization that has been helping high school graduates who decide on a gap semester to find the best programs available to them.

How Invoice Factoring Can Fix Your Small Business Cash Flow Problem

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Large companies have taken advantage of invoice factoring for hundreds of years. Factoring covers the time between the company’s submitting an invoice to a client and the date when the client actually pays the invoice. The company is able to receive their payment right away, which eliminates the problems that can accompany a slow payment on an invoice. The business bank accounts remain solvent, and the company can maintain a healthy cash flow.

Factoring Relieves the Financial Strain of Slow Pay Invoices

Big businesses generally have a better cushion than smaller businesses when it comes to dealing with slow paying clients. A small business might budget their receivables much more tightly. Since it is becoming more difficult to qualify for regular loans through standard banks, many small business owners may be facing shortfalls if they are not receiving client payments in a timely manner. Invoice factoring relieves the stress of waiting for a client to pay the invoice on time. Since invoice factoring is not a loan, it does not incur any additional interest costs, either. The money that the business earned is simply available right away.

Keep Cash Flow Current

Small businesses can avoid several potential problems when they take advantage of invoice factoring. Without factoring, a business could face a bad debt situation if they are unable to pay their bills. Factoring allows you to maintain a current cash flow without sacrificing any of the equity in your business, as you would have to do with a traditional loan. Your business accounts will remain current and you will be able to make all of your payments on time, no matter when the client actually pays the invoice you have submitted.

Avoid Offering Unnecessary Discounts

Many small business owners have resorted to offering discounts for customers as an incentive to get them to pay their invoices on time. If you take advantage of invoice factoring, there is no longer any need to offer a discount for fast payment. The payment will be covered by the factoring agent, so the client payment schedule makes no difference to a company’s bottom line. You can save a great deal of capital by reducing the discounts for things like early invoice payment. That capital can be invested in the company so that you can continue to grow your business instead of being held back by slow paying clients.

Banks Reticent to Offer Factoring to Small Businesses

Most traditional banks already offer invoice factoring to large companies. These banks do not like to offer the service to smaller businesses, however. It can be difficult for a company that is not factoring hundreds of thousands of dollars a day to qualify for factoring through a traditional bank. Small businesses typically do not bring in the large volume of invoices that the banks would feel comfortable factoring. That is the reason most banks do not offer invoice factoring services up front when you approach them for an operating loan. The service is reserved for the largest corporations in the market.

Alternative Factoring Resources

There are some companies that specialize in small business factoring. You can qualify with one of these companies if your invoices total between $10,000 to $100,000 per month. Factoring decisions are also based on the client’s credit rating rather than the credit rating of the small business. These factoring specialists serve all kinds of businesses, from manufacturing to service providers. If you regularly invoice clients for products or services rendered and you are not a large corporation, invoice factoring could be the best solution for keeping your company moving forward without relying on the pay schedules of your clients.

 

Jessica Bosari is a small business owner who believes in helping small businesses thrive. Her latest project is at Technology-Colleges.info, a site that helps students achieve their goals for information systems security jobs, computer networking careers, and other technology fields.

Try Something New In Your Business with Custom Made Plastic Bags

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There is a way of saturating your target market that effectively merges affordability when it comes to advertising cost and visibility in terms of promotional presence.   You’d be amazed at the sheer potential that custom made plastic bags can positively affect your business.

From its humble beginnings, plastic bags were originally conceived by Sten Gustaf Thulin, a Swedish engineer.  Since then, it has grown into a massive financial enterprise, which is roughly 102 billion plastic bag use in the U.S. alone as of 2009 according to the United States International Trade Commission.  Worldwide, it has been reported that the plastic bag consumption has an estimated volume of at the very least half a trillion.  While itself a profitable business, the use of the plastic bags has undergone a commercial evolution in terms of applications in sales and promotion.

Due to the utter amount of plastic bags disseminated all over the world, the potential function for advertising has been realized.  Polyethylene bags are used in shopping, groceries, storage and pretty much any conceivable utility.  On top of this though, graphic designs may be embedded on the plastic bags themselves to become advertising tools.  Bags give an extremely large promotional mileage that encompasses a geographical area rivaling that of broadcast media and print ads.  Bags are simply taken anywhere.  Since polyethylene begs are made of very durable (and recyclable) materials, they can be used over and over again, taken by the owner anywhere he feels it is needed.  Printed images or corporate brands, ranging from the best pepperoni pizza to an oversized beach bag, when displayed prominently, are tantamount to a personal endorsement and can subconsciously imprint the desired promotional message for instant product recall should there be a need.

This commercial application is well within your grasp, along with it its power to advertise.  Chances are, you have probably personally experienced its intended effect first-hand, and you never even knew it.

Best Tips In St George Real Estate

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There are many great things you can do with your money. However, the most recommended investment if you really have a big nest egg saved up is to get into real estate. As you all know, establishing a good home for yourself and family is one of the most common goals among all people regardless of social standing, beliefs and nationality. If you are residing in the United States or you are thinking of doing so, you should wisely consider making an investment in St George real estate. While other places are always buzzing with activity—people crisscrossing paths, cars swooshing in the highways and practically everything is being used in fast pace—Utah provides just the balanced lifestyle especially if you are not cut out for such a big city.
Moreover, what is great about this place is the market of homes and properties that are well conditioned but still affordable and reasonable. In order for you to get the right house for you and your family, there are some things you just need to know before you drive over there. As with all types of real estate in various places, give greatest consideration to the location. This means if the neighborhood is great, if there are sufficient community facilities nearby and if it will provide a greater value in the future as more people pour in to settle in that area. By using these guidelines, you will not only live in comfort but also increase the property value and thus an increased investment.
Of course, there are also other things about the available St George Utah homes for sale in the market. Pay attention also to the material, age and history of the house for sturdiness. It would be ideal for you to go inside and check the overall condition of the place to not get any surprises on moving day.

Keep Customers Happy When Queuing With Point Of Sale Display Units

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A queue can often bring out the worst in people and yet queuing is a fact of life in today’s busy and fast paced society. A queue can be found in many establishments, ranging from the bank to the post office and in many other places that many people frequent on a daily basis. For this reason, many people get frustrated with queue systems and the need to queue on such a frequent basis. Unfortunately, due to the current economic climate, many businesses have found that they have had to let people go, often making a large amount of employees redundant in order to continue making a profit and to avoid going bust. This in turn means that there is often not enough staff on at any one time to accommodate all of the customers that may require the services of a business, thus resulting in large queues in which customers have to wait. This can be very frustrating for the customer and may result in anger. This anger may in turn be directed at the member of staff who may be serving at a particular time, thus making the queuing experience unpleasant for both the customer and the staff working. This experience may become even more unpleasant when there is little or no order to the queue. In what ways may a business keep customers happy when queuing for a service? One way is through investing in point of sale display units.

Point of sale display units are in-store furnishings which not only help bring order and efficiency to a queuing system, they also help keep customers happy and distracted whilst queuing and they may also help generate an even greater profit for the business! Point of sale display units can be set up around a designated area for queuing. These units may display a product or an additional service that a business may offer. For instance, common items to include within point of sale display units are beauty products, confectionery, leaflets and information booklets or small items of interest and intrigue. These point of sale display units are usually set up around retractable barriers to show customers where to queue. There are many benefits for a business that may decide to invest in point of sale display units.

Point of sale display units make queuing more efficient and organized. When people see retractable barriers and point of sale display units, they automatically know how to queue and in which direction to queue in. People appreciate this level of organization and are thus happier to queue. Point of sale display units also distract the customers as they queue, making the queuing experience more enjoyable. A customer may also decide to buy additional items whilst queuing from the point of sale display units, thus generating a larger profit for the company or business. Frustration and anger are reduced, making queuing more enjoyable for both the customer and the staff providing a service!

 

This post was written by James Harper on behalf of Tensator. James writes on a number of subjects including business and retailing.

 

What’s Not To Like About How You Tackle Social Media?

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Everyone has their own opinion of what Facebook is for depending on what they’re using it for at the time you ask them. Mostly it’s to keep in touch with friends and see what they’re up to, either generally or later on in the week. But of course it has to be paid for and monetizing a site is going to attract advertisers and business, hence Facebook becoming a passive marketing platform. Passive in that you have to wait for your customers to come to you and then friend them up, approaching people en masse is a sure no-no because, when you strip everything else away Facebook is a social media platform, invented for friends to connect, not to be hijacked by big business as just another tool to get their message in front of as many eyes as they can. If they are able to through outreach and brand loyalty that’s fine but there are also many mistakes being made when it comes to the business-social interface.

Often those who claim to know what social media is about make declarations like “connect with your consumers” and “get involved with the conversation” where they basically mean introduce yourself and then start plugging your product. What they mean to say is offer solutions to your friends’ problems, isn’t that what friends do? These experts know what they mean but they get so caught up in trying to be brief and encapsulate theories in Vox pops that they lose their message.

People think that the high numbers are the important ones, having thousands of friends is what really counts right? Getting thousands of likes and mentions is what it’s all about surely. But what’s the real story? You might have numbers but are you really engaging? Are your friends and customers just clicking on you out of habit or are they really receiving your message? How can you tell? Well, look at the conversations on your wall, find out if other people are setting up fanpages, how busy are they? Don’t just look at a rock and think “that’s a big rock” take a look under the rock to see what sort of life there is down there.

It doesn’t much matter what your product is or who your demographic are if you’re not ‘down with YOUR kids’ they’re not going to bite. Whether those ‘kids’ are the mothers of teenage boys or the teenage boys themselves simply mirroring them isn’t going to wash. If you try too hard to be ‘down’ with them you won’t look cool or part of the group, you’ll look like you’re trying too hard and people will start ignoring you.

That trying too hard can be carried over into exceeding your reach when it comes to the number of networks you try to get engaged in. Spreading yourself too thin means that you won’t be able to react if and when things start moving. When you build a following go for quality not quantity, quality always shows.

Another thing that people do wrong when they’re looking at social media is to treat it in the same way as they used to look at traditional broadcast media, that is, that it is mono-directional. You broadcast your message and people buy your product. Again, stop thinking that way! This is SOCIAL! If your ‘friends’ have something to say listen and reply/learn from their input. They might be loyal to you but they can always migrate, show them that you care what they think.

Dan Cash is a social media specialist who also loves to take spa holidays. The best are Europe spa breaks for a short holiday and, Caribbean if you’re traveling a little further affield.