The Federal Reserve must stop its strategy of keeping interest rates extremely low in an attempt to boost growth, said Allianz chief economic adviser Mohamed El-Erian. The new president and Congress must work to generate growth in order to "take pressure off the central banks," El-Erian said.
An omnichannel mobile commerce strategy is necessary to reach customers whose purchase path is not as predictable as it used to be, writes Katherine Frangos. For example, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus discovered that many of their buyers decided to buy while browsing their site on a smartphone and made the actual purchase from a separate device, so they adjusted their mobile commerce strategy and increased ticket sales by 30%.
Public exposure -- including a seemingly unsuccessful appearance on the CNBC show "Restaurant Startup" -- has been a boon for Banza, a company that makes chickpea-based pasta. The company has found its way to greater consumer awareness and more store shelves through executives' media appearances and by reaching out to journalists and social media influencers.
Digital marketing for small businesses need not be complex or costly to be effective. Woo Creative's Ryan Boylston explains how to take a simple, productive approach to email marketing, search engine optimization and social media.
Attempts by businesses to prevent negative online reviews with so-called gag clauses would be banned under a bill passed recently by Congress. The bill, which awaits President Barack Obama's signature, would stop companies from inserting such clauses into customer agreements.
October saw a drop in small-business borrowing as the Thomson Reuters/PayNet Small Business Lending Index fell to 121.3, its lowest level since January. Meanwhile, the percentage of loans more than 30 days past due rose for the seventh consecutive month, reaching the highest delinquency rate in nearly four years.
Solo entrepreneurs face the sometimes challenging task of staying focused despite dealing with plenty of distractions. Entrepreneur Arianna O'Dell, who knows from firsthand experience, offers five tips on how to stay productive, starting with using product-management tools and making time to connect with others in your industry.
Outbound sales can be helpful if you're looking for a predictable, sustainable way of generating new leads. You can scale your outbound sales efforts through automation and ensure that your lead generation keeps up with your company's growth, writes Lewis Stowe.
Define the problem that you can solve for your ideal client and narrow your focus to address those clients specifically in your messaging if you want to spend more time with promising leads, writes Ian Altman. If marketing content leads someone to you, ask them what about the content specifically caught their attention so that you can be prepared to address their needs.
Microsoft's Outlook Customer Manager will provide small and medium-size businesses with a powerful customer relationship management tool that works within their Outlook email client. The automated tool will help users with CRM by highlighting events, tasks, emails and other information.
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